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JOINVILLE ....... XXVil 

VATIONS . .... xxxiv 



INDEX * 329 



POWERFUL and rich as English literature is, it has little to 
place in line against the superb array of French memoirs. 
Englishmen enough have done great things, or taken part in 
the doing of them, or seen them done ; but only a scanty few 
have been moved to write even fewer to write with any 
approach to style of what they had done and seen. Among 
the French it has been otherwise. The French statesman, or 
leader, his life s greater battle being fought, has more often 
betaken himself to his pen, either to use Guizot s image 
for the purpose of fighting the old fights once more, with that 
weapon, in the smaller arena of letters, or simply for pure 
indulgence in the pleasures of memory. Villehardouin, 
Joinville I exclude Froissart, beautiful as his work is, be 
cause he was a chronicler pure and simple and not an actor 
in the world s affairs Commines, Sully, Retz, the " Grande 
Mademoiselle," Saint-Simon, Chateaubriand, Guizot, here 
is a fine list of examples. 

Of these French memoirs, the Memoirs of Villehardouin and 
Joinville, here reproduced in an English form, are certainly 
not the least interesting. They are the first in date, those of 
Villehardouin having been written, probably, in the days of 
our King John, early in the thirteenth century; while those 
of Joinville were completed, about a century later, in October 
1309, shortly after our Edward II. had begun to reign. Both 
are monuments of the French language, and of French prose, 
at an early stage of development giant lispings, as one may 
say. Both are written by eye-witnesses who had taken an 
important part, in the case of Villehardouin a very important 
part, in what they describe. Both deal with stirring episodes 
in one of the most stirring chapters in human history, the 
chapter that tells how, for some three centuries, Christendom 
put forth its power to capture, and again recapture, 
* 333 ix 

x Introduction 

" Those holy fields 

Over whose acres walked those blessed feet 
Which, fourteen hundred years ago, were nailed, 
For our advantage, on the bitter cross. * x 

and both serve to illustrate the varied motives that went to 
the initiation and maintenance of that great movement. 


VILLEHARDOUIN S story opens with the closing years of the 
twelfth century. In those years, as he tells, Fulk of Neuilly, 
near Paris, a priest well known for his holiness and zeal, 
began to preach a new Crusade; and Fulk s words, so men 
thought, were confirmed by many signs and miracles; and 
even apart from such supernatural aid, it is not difficult, I 
think, to conjecture wherein lay the force of his appeal or to 
imagine its nature. But while he was descanting on the 
necessity for another attempt to recover the Holy -Land, and 
setting forth the glories and spiritual advantages of the pro 
posed adventure, did he ever dwell at all, one wonders, on 
the story of the Crusades that had already been undertaken ? 
Did he unfold for his hearers that tragic and terrible scroll 
in the history of men a scroll on which are recorded in 
strange, intermingled, fantastic characters, tales of saintly 
heroism, and fraud, and greed, and cruelty, and wrong of 
sufferings at which one sickens, and foul deeds at which one 
sickens more, and acts of devotion and high courage that 
have found their place among the heirlooms and glories of 

Did he tell them of the First Crusade tell them how, a 
little more than a century before, the heart of Peter the 
Hermit had been moved to fiery indignation at the indigni 
ties offered to pilgrims at the sacred shrines, and he had made 
all Christendom resound to his angry eloquence; how at the 
Council of Clermont, in 1095, Pope Urban II. had re-echoed 
the hermit s cry; how the nations had responded to the call 
to arms in so holy a cause, the noble selling or mortgaging his 
land, the labourer abandoning his plough, the woman her 
hearth and distaff, the very children forsaking their play; 
how a great wave of humanity had thence been set rolling 
eastward a wave of such mighty volume, and so impelled 
* The first part of King Henry IV., Act I. Sc. I. 

Introduction xi 

by fierce enthusiasm, that, notwithstanding every hindrance, 
dissension within, utter disorganisation, misrul, famine, 
plague, slaughter, wholesale desertions, treachery on every 
side, wild fanatical hostility notwithstanding all this, it had 
yet rolled right across Europe, rolled on across the deserts 
and defiles of Asia Minor, and swept the infidel from Jeru 
salem and the fastnesses of Judaea ? Did Fulk of Neuilly, one 
wonders, tell his hearers the story of that First Crusade, 
which, for all its miseries and horrors, accomplished the 
mission on which it started, and placed its great and saintly 
leader, Godfrey of Bouillon on the throne of Jerusalem, and 
founded a Christian kingdom in the Holy Land? (1099). 

Did he tell them the story of the Second Crusade? That 
was the Crusade preached by one of very different mould 
from Peter the Hermit, by one who was in many ways the 
master-spirit of his time, St. Bernard. For to St. Bernard it 
seemed a scandal and intolerable that the Christian kingdom 
of Judaea, prayed for with so many prayers, purchased with 
so much blood, should be dissolved. He held it as not to be 
borne that the place where our Lord had been cradled in the 
manger, the fields where He had taught, the hill where He 
had died for men, the sepulchre in which He had lain, should 
fall once more into the unholy possession of the infidel. And 
yet, ere fifty years had passed since the taking of Jerusalem, 
this seemed an approaching consummation, so weakened was 
the new kingdom by internal dissension, so fiercely attacked 
from without. Already the Moslem were prevailing on every 
side. The important position of Edessa had fallen into their 
hands. So St. Bernard came to the rescue. By his para 
mount personal influence, he induced Lewis VII. of France, 
and Conrad of Germany to take the cross. Again there was 
a march across Europe; again treachery on the part of the 
Greek Emperor at Constantinople; again most terrible 
slaughter in Asia Minor; again unheard-of sufferings; again 
folly, ineptitude, treachery. But not again the old ultimate 
success. This time the great human wave, though it did 
indeed reach Jerusalem, yet reached it spent and broken. 
Edessa was not retaken. Damascus was besieged, only to 
show the utter want of unity among the Crusaders. Conrad 
returned to Germany. Lewis, a year later, returned to 
France (1149); and of the Second Crusade there remained 
small immediate trace., save, in France and Germany, de- 

xii Introduction 

populated hamlets, and homes made desolate, and bones 
bleaching in the far Syrian deserts. 

Could Fulk have turned, in the retrospect, with better 
heart to the Third Crusade? Somewhat unquestionably. 
That Third Crusade is the one in which we Englishmen have 
most interest, for its central figure is our lion-hearted king, 
Richard. And it is, probably, the Crusade of which the 
main incidents are best known to the English reader, for they 
have been evoked from the past, and made, as it were, to re- 
enact themselves before us, by the magic of Sir Walter Scott. 
What boy has not read the Talisman ? And so it will not be 
necessary for me to dwell at length on the history of that 
Crusade : the rivalries of Richard and Philip Augustus ; the 
siege and surrender of Acre; the return of Philip Augustus 
to France; the bitter feud with the Duke of Austria; the 
superb daring and personal prowess of Richard ; the abortive 
march on Jerusalem which must have been retaken save 
for the insane rivalries in the Christian host; the interchange 
of courtesies with the chivalrous Saladin; the abandonment 
of the Crusade; the return of the English king westward, 
and his imprisonment in an Austrian dungeon (1192). 

Not a story of success, most certainly. Richard left the 
Holy Land pretty well where he found it. His object in 
going thither had been the recovery of Jerusalem, which, in 
1187, after being nearly ninety years in Christian hands, had 
fallen a prey to Saladin. And that object was as far as ever 
from attainment. But still there rested about the Third 
Crusade a glamour of courage and heroic deeds, so that when 
scarce nine years after its conclusion, Fulk went about 
preaching new efforts for the expulsion of the Saracens, he 
may possibly have sought to raise the courage of his warlike 
hearers by dwelling on the doughty deeds of Richard and his 

Otherwise, if he referred to the past at all for the latest 
German expedition of 1196-1197 had just come to an in 
glorious close, his message can scarcely have been one of 
confidence as he addressed the nobles and lesser men as 
sembled at Ecri, towards the end of November 1199, to take 
part in the great tournament instituted by Thibaut III., 
Count of Champagne. No, the past was against them. It 
spoke little of success, and much of misery, disorganisation, 
disaster; while as to the future, if Fulk and his hearers had 

Introduction xiii 

seen into that, one doubts if they could have been moved to 
much enthusiasm. Whatever admixture of worldly motives 
there may have been, the Fourth Crusade was vehemently 
advocated by Pope Innocent III., proclaimed by Fulk, joined 
by multitudes of devout pilgrims, for the express purpose 
of recapturing Jerusalem, and driving the heathen out of 
Palestine. But it never reached Palestine at all. It did far 
less than nothing towards the recovery of the Holy City. It 
delivered its blow with immense force and shattering effect 
upon a Christian, not a Moslem, state. It contributed not a 
little, in ultimate result, to break down Europe s barrier 
against the Turk. Thus, from the Crusading point of view, 
it was a gigantic failure; and, as such, denounced again and 
yet again by the great Pope who had done so much to give it 

fSow did this come about? What were the real influences 
that led the Fourth Crusade to change its objective from 
Jerusalem to Constantinople ? The question has been many 
times debated. It is, as one may almost say, one of the stock 
questions of history; and I can scarcely altogether give it the 
go-by here as I should like to do because in that question 
is involved the more personal question of Villehardouin s own 
good faith as a historian. If there were wire-pullers at work, 
almost from the beginning, who laboured to deflect the 
movement to their own ends; if the Venetians throughout 
played a double game, 1 and betrayed the Christian cause to 
the Saracens, then it is necessary, before we accept him 
altogether as a witness of truth, to inquire why he makes no 
mention of the Marquis of Montferrat s intrigues, or the 
Republic s duplicity. Did he write in ignorance ? or did he, 
while possessing full knowledge, banish ugly facts from his 
narrative, and deliberately constitute himself, as has been 
said, the " official apologist " of the Crusade? 

For, as he tells the story, all is simplicity itself. There is 
scarcely anything to explain. The Crusade has a purely 
religious origin : Many took the cross because the indul 
gences were so great." Villehardouin himself, and his five 
brother delegates from the great lords assembled in parlia 
ment at Compiegne, go to Venice, and engage a fleet to take 

1 " The unchristian cupidity of the banausically-minded Republic of 
St. Mark," is the quaint description given by Pope Innocent s latest 
biographer. Innocent the Great, by C. H. C. Pirie-Gordon, 1907. 

xiv Introduction 

the host of the pilgrims "oversea" an ambiguous term 
which meant Syria for the uninitiated, but " Babylon " or 
Cairo for the Venetian Council " because it was in Babylon, 
rather than in any other land, that the Turks could best be 
destroyed." Then comes the death of Count Thibaut of 
Champagne, who would have been the natural leader of the 
Crusade, and the selection, in his stead, of the Marquis of 
Montferrat, " a right worthy man, and one of the most 
highly esteemed that were then alive." Afterwards the pil 
grims begin to assemble in Venice; but owing to numerous 
defections, their number is so reduced that the stipulated 
passage money is not forthcoming, and the Venetians 
naturally refuse to move. The blame, up to this point, lies 
entirely with the pilgrims who had failed to keep their tryst. 
Meanwhile, what is to be done? Some, who in their heart 
of hearts wish not well to the cause, would break up the 
host and return to their own land. Others, who are better 
affected, would proceed at all hazards. Then the Doge pro 
poses a compromise. If, says he, addressing his own people, 
we insist upon our pound of flesh, we can, no doubt, claim to 
keep the moneys already received, as some consideration for 
our great outlay; but, so doing, we shall be greatly blamed 
throughout Christendom. Let us rather agree to forego the 
unpaid balance and carry out our agreement, provided the 
pilgrims, on their part, will help us to recapture Zara, on the 
Adriatic, of which we have been wrongfully dispossessed by 
the King of Hungary. To this the Venetians consent, and 
likewise the Crusaders, notwithstanding the remonstrances 
of the evil-disposed party aforesaid. So the blind old Doge 
assumes the cross, with great solemnity, in the Church of St. 
Mark, and many Venetians assume it too, and all is got ready 
for departure. 

Then, and not till then, do we get any hint of an attack on 
the Greek empire. " Now listen," says Villehardouin, " to 
one of the greatest marvels and greatest adventures that 
ever you heard tell of," and he procceeds to narrate how the 
young Greek prince Alexius, having escaped from the hands 
of that wicked usurper, his uncle, and being at Verona on 
the way to the court of his brother-in-law, " Philip of Ger 
many," makes overtures to the Crusaders, and how the latter 
are not unprepared to help him to recover his father s throne, 
provided he in turn will help them to re-conquer Jerusalem, 

Introduction xv 

Whereupon envoys are sent to accompany the youth into 
Germany, for further negotiation with Philip, and the host,, 
Crusaders and Venetians together, set sail for their attack on 
Christian Zara. 

And here for the first time Villehardouin makes mention of 
the religious objection to the course that the Crusade is 
taking. The inhabitants of Zara are prepared to capitulate, 
but are dissuaded by the party which, according to Ville 
hardouin, were anxious to break up the host, and while the 
matter is under discussion, the abbot of Vaux, of the order 
of the Cistercians, rises in his place and says, " Lords, on 
behalf of the Apostle of Rome, I forbid you to attack this 
city, for it is a Christian city, and you are pilgrims." Never 
theless the Doge insists that the Crusaders shall fulfil their 
contract, and Zara is besieged and taken. 

While the host is waiting, after the capture, they are 
joined by the envoys from Philip, and from Philip s 
brother-in-law, Alexius, the son of the deposed Emperor of 
Constantinople. These envoys bring definite and very ad 
vantageous proposals. The Crusaders are to dispossess the 
treacherous and wicked emperor, also called Alexius, and 
reinstate the deposed Isaac; and in return for this great 
service, Alexius the younger promises, " in the very first place/ 
that the Greek empire shall be brought back into obedience 
to Rome, and then seeing that the pilgrims are poor that 
they shall receive 200,000 marks of silver, and provisions for 
small and great, and further that substantial help shall be 
afforded towards the conquest of the " land of Babylon," 

The hook was well baited. The reunion of Christendom, 
gold and stores in plenty, active co-operation from the near 
vantage ground of Constantinople in the dispossession of 
the infidel, a splendid adventure to be achieved no wonder 
the Crusaders were tempted. Villehardouin himself never 
falters in his expressed conviction that the course proposed 
was the right course, that he and his companions did well in 
following, at this juncture, the fortunes of the younger 
Alexius. Nevertheless it is clear, even from his narrative, 
that a great, almost overwhelming, party in the host were 
unconvinced and bitterly opposed to the deflection of the 
Crusade. Hotly was the question debated. The laymen 
were divided. The clergy, even of the same religious order, 

xvi Introduction 

were at bitter strife. When it came to the ratification of the 
convention with Alexius, only twelve French lords could be 
induced to swear. Thereafter came defection on defection 
the deserters, as Villehardouin is always careful to note, not 
without a certain complacency, coming mainly to evil ends. 
" Now be it known to you, lords," says he, " that if God had 
not loved that host, it could never have kept together, seeing 
how many there were who wished evil to it. 3 Even the 
Pope s forgiveness for the attack on Zara, and his exhorta 
tion to the pilgrims to remain united, did not avail to prevent 
further disintegration. 

Nevertheless the host ultimately reaches Constantinople, 
routs the Greeks, who have no stomach for the fight, sends 
the usurping Emperor Alexius flying, reinstates the blinded 
Isaac, and seats the younger Alexius, by the side of Isaac, on 
the imperial throne. But naturally the position of Isaac and 
Alexius is precarious, and when the latter asks the Crusaders 
to delay their departure, the adverse party tries once more to 
obtain an immediate descent on Syria or Egypt. They are 
overborne. Soon, however, it becomes clear that Isaac and 
Alexius either cannot, or will not, fulful their promises. As a 
matter of fact Alexius has placed himself and his father in an 
impossible position, of which death, in cruel forms, is to be 
the outcome, and they become, in turn, the objects of attack, 
and their empire a field of plunder. Henceforward the die is 
cast. The Crusade ceases to be a Crusade, and becomes as 
purely an expedition of conquest as William s descent on 
England. Whatever may be their occasional qualms, 
Franks and Venetians have enough to do in the Greek 
Empire, without giving very much thought to Judaea. 

But to all this there is another side. Thus, if we are to 
believe the chronicle x compiled in 1393, by order of Heredia, 
Grand Master of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem, Ville 
hardouin first proposed the Crusade to his lord, the Count of 
Champagne, not on any specially religious grounds, but be 
cause, after the peace between the kings of France and Eng- 

1 Ltbro de los Fechos et Conquistas del Principado de la Morea, trans 
lated from Spanish into French by Alfred Morel- Fatio, and published 
at Geneva in 1885 for the Societe de V Orient Latin. See p. i. I am 
bound, however, to say that this chronicle, which assigns to Ville 
hardouin a very important part in the organisation of the Crusade, wa? 
compiled long after date, and seems clearly apocryphal in many of its 

Introduction xvii 

land, there were a great many idle men-at-arms about, whom 
it would be desirable to employ. So also Ernoul, a contem 
porary, after telling how the barons of France, who had sided 
with Richard against Philip Augustus, cast off their armour 
at the tournament at Ecri, and ran to take the cross, adds: 
" There are certain persons who say that they thus took the 
cross for fear of the King of France, and so that he might not 
punish them because they had sided against him." x 

This, however, is relatively unimportant. Mixed motives 
may at once be conceded as probable and natural. What is 
of greater significance is the attitude of the Venetians and 
the question of their good faith. Villehardouin here hints no 
doubt. According to him, the Republic made a bargain to 
provide freight and food for an expedition to the Holy Land 
or to " Babylon," and provided both amply, and it was only 
on the failure of the pilgrims to carry out their side of the 
bargain that the Venetians fell back on Zara. They were 
prepared to take the Crusade to its original destination. 
But the same Ernoul, from whom I have just quoted, tells 
another story. He relates how Saphardin, the brother of the 
deceased Saladin, hearing that the Crusaders had hired a 
fleet in Venice, sends envoys to the Venetians, with great 
gifts and promises of commercial advantage, and entreats 
them to " turn away the Christians," and how the Venetians 
accept the bribe, and use their influence accordingly ; 2 while 
certain modern historians discover, or think they have dis 
covered, that it was the Venetians who took the initiative in 
this act of treachery, and that after making the treaty with 
Villehardouin and his fellow delegates in 1201, they sent 
envoys to Saphardin and virtually gave the Crusaders away 
by a specific treaty of which, however, the date, and with 
it the relevancy, has been contested. 

So again, with regard to the evil influences at work within 
the host itself, certain historians have endeavoured to show 
that the misdirection of the Crusade was but an episode in 
the long struggle between Guelf and Ghibelline. For the 
Crusade was the pet child of Innocent III. It was the 
dearest object of his heart. It was to crown his pontificate. 
What more natural than that the Ghibelline, Philip of 

1 Chronique d* Ernoul et de Bernard le Trlsorier, published by M. L. de 
Mas Latrie for the Societe de Vhistoire de France. Paris, 1871. Sec 
p. 337. * See ibid. pp. 345, 346, and 361, 362. 

xviii Introduction 

Swabia, the son of Barbarossa, himself just then lying under 
a solemn excommunication, should endeavour, by all the 
means in his power, to thwart the expedition, to turn it to 
his own ends one of which was the conquest of Constanti 
nople for on Constantinople he had pretensions. Thus, 
according to this view, when Villehardouin suggested the 
Marquis of Montferrat for the leadership, he was, indirectly 
indeed, acting as the mouthpiece of Philip. And the Mar 
quis, from the date of his election, did but become Philip s 
agent, and had in view only one object an attack on the 
Greek emperor. 1 All his actions and movements are to be 

1 See M. Riant s articles quoted below. The curious reader who 
would follow this controversy is referred to the following works among 
many others, French and German. I place them, as will be seen, in 
the chronological order of publication: 

Histoire de I Isle de Chypre sous le Regne des Princes de la Maison de 
Lusignan, par M. L. de Mas Latrie, etc. Paris, 1861, Vol. I. pp. 161- 
165. Geoff roy de Villehardouin, Conquete de Constantinople, etc., par M. 
Natalis de Wailly, etc. Second edition, Paris, 1874, PP- 429-439. 

Up to this point only the conduct of Venice is in question. With the 
following enters as protagonist Philip of Swabia, and we are asked to 
consider the part which he took in deflecting the Crusade from Egypt 
or the Holy Land to Constantinople, and the action taken, under his 
influence, by the Marquis Boniface of Montferrat. 

Innocent III., Philippe de Swabe et Boniface de Montferrat. Examen 
des Causes qui modifier ent au detriment de V Empire Grec, le plan primitif 
de la 46 Croisade, published in Revue des Questions Historiques, Vol. 
XVII., April 1875, PP. 321-374, and Vol. XVIII., July 1875, pp. 5-75. 
Signed, Comte Riant. 

These two articles contain an elaborate and most learned indictment 
against Philip of Swabia and the Marquis of Montferrat, and, in a minor 
degree, against Villehardouin, as their accomplice and apologist. 
Comte Riant is most careful in giving reference to chapter and verse to 
support his conclusions, and so enable the student to verify and control, 
and on occasion -to dissent. 

A short note, signed M. de Wailly, on the above articles of Comte 
Riant, expressing dissent. Revue des Questions Historiques, Vol. XVIII., 
October 1875, pp. 578 and 579 (not p. 576 as stated in index). 

Quatrieme Croisade. La diversion sur Zara et Constantinople, par 
Jules Tessier, professeur a la faculty des lettres de Caen. Paris, 1884. 

In this volume, with an equal learning, M. Tessier contests the posi 
tion taken up by M. Riant, and defends Philip of Swabia and Venice. 

The Fall of Constantinople, by Edwin Pears. London, 1885. 

The Notice, extending to 309 pages in Vol. II. of M. Emile Boucbet s 
Geoffroi de Villehardouin. La Conquete de Constantinople, texte et 
traduction nouvelle, avec notice, notes, et glossaire, par Emile Bouchet. 
Paris, 1891. 

M. Bouchet mainly accepts Comte Riant s facts and conclusions with 
regard to Philip and Venice, but exonerates Villehardouin, and defends 
him from the charge of having constituted himself the official apologist 
of the Crusade pp. 289-297 and pp. 308, 309. M. Bouchet s manner 
is rather that of the historical narrator than of the erudite dissertator, 
and his notes are few. In this he differs from M. Riant and M. Tessier. 

Introduction xix 

explained on the grounds that he cared nothing about Jeru 
salem, and very much about Constantinople. 

To go at length into all the pros and cons of this contro 
versy, would take, not the comparatively short space allotted 
to an introduction, but a very considerable volume. And, 
indeed, the latest historian who has dealt with the subject, 
the very learned M. Luchaire, of the French Institute, 1 
declares that, on the available data, the questions involved 
are insoluble. Having placed the two views before the 
reader, I shall not therefore go into the matter further here, 
beyond saying that after a great deal of reading, and re 
search, I have come to the conclusion, Firstly, that the Vene 
tians were not as bad as they have been painted. They were 
a commercial people, and they had made a bargain, and they 
kept to it. The Crusaders did not. To expect the Vene 
tians, for the good of the cause, to forego repayment for the 
large sums expended on a superb fleet and what must have 
been, temporarily at least, a great disturbance of their com 
merce, is absurd. Why should the main expense of the ex 
pedition fall on them? As to the treacherous arrangements 
with the Saracens, they seem to me not proven. Therefore 
I hold myself justified in asking the reader to look, without a 
smile of sarcasm and incredulity, at the great scene in which 
Dandolo, the grand old Doge, blind and bearing gallantly his 
ninety years, goes up into the reading-desk of St. Mark, and 
there, before all the people who wept seeing him places 
the sign of the cross in his bonnet. Surely his bearing in 
council, and afterwards in battle, was not that of a vulpine 
old impostor. 

Secondly, I own to very great doubts as to the elaborate 
Machiavellian schemes of Philip of Swabia, and the Marquis 
of Montferrat, and the after-participation therein, to a 
greater or less degree, of the leaders of the Crusade. Web- 
spinning so successful would imply gifts of foresight verging 
on prophesy. Let us look at things more simply," as M. 
Luchaire says. And disbelieving, to a very great extent, in 

M. Luchaire, as I have noted in the text (1907) declares the questions 
raised to be insoluble on the available data. 

The matter is referred to, but with no additional evidence or further 
discussion, in Sir Rennell Rodd s The Principalities of A chaia and the 
Chronicles of Morea, 1907, Chap. I, and Mr. Pirie- Gordon s Innocent 

the Great, an Essay on his Life and Times, 1907, Chap. IV. 
1 Innocent III.: La Question d Orient. 1907. See pp. 85, 86, 91, 

and 97 

xx Introduction 

the plot, I am bound to exonerate Villehardouin from the 
charge of endeavouring to disguise its existence. Nay, I go 
further. What we see as the past was to Villehardouin the 
present and the future. We know that the Crusade came to 
nothing, ultimately fizzled out," as one may say. But 
Villehardouin, looking forward from day to day, may quite 
honestly have believed that the course he consistently advo 
cated was the course best calculated, all the circumstances 
being given, to ensure success. Shut up in the island of St. 
Nicholas, near Venice, without the necessary means for 
advance or retreat, or even for the provision of daily subsis 
tence, the Crusading host was in helpless case. The advance 
on Zara had no alternative. Afterwards, leaders and men 
were without the sinews of war. When Alexius came with 
his definite proposals, one cannot wonder that men of strong 
political instinct, like our hero, should have thought that the 
best coign of vantage for an attack on Jerusalem, was Con 
stantinople. The ignorant commonalty were for a direct 
descent on the Holy Land. The wiser chiefs would have 
preferred to first break the power of the Saracens in Egypt. 
The politicians of still larger outlook might naturally hold 
that with the Greek empire at their back, and with coffers full 
of Greek gold, they had the best chance of re-establishing the 
Christian kingdom of Jerusalem. 

Nay, shall I go further still? The Franks defeated the 
Greeks with ease, defeated them as Pizarro and Cortes de 
feated the Peruvians and Mexicans, as Clive defeated the 
armies of India. What if they had not only conquered 
Roumania, but had also revivified the Greek empire ; if, in 
stead of giving themselves to the greed, and rapine, and 
unstatesmanlike oppression, which Villehardouin deplored, 
and so losing within sixty years (1261) what they had held 
unworthily what if, instead of this, they had administered 
wisely and well, had mingled in blood and interest with the 
conquered, had breathed with the breath of a new life over 
the dry bones of that dead race and nationality, had created 
a virile state at this specially important point of the world s 
surface, and so barred the way against the entrance of the 
Turk into Europe? When the Frank fleet set sail from 
Venice, these things were on the knees of the gods. Should 
we have been misdoubting Villehardouin if they had come to 

Introduction xxi 

And having said so much for Villehardouin s good faith 
and essential political honesty, one is the more free to 
admire the force and effectiveness of the man. What was his 
exact age at the date of the tournament at Ecri (November 
1199), is not known. Probably he was then about forty, and 
in the fulness of his strength, and, as one may fairly con 
jecture, well-knit, and possessing a frame fitted to endure 
hardship and fatigue. Even if we regard as doubtful the 
statement of Heredia s chronicler, that it was he who first 
proposed the Crusade to Count Thibaut, 1 yet it is clear that, 
from the very beginning, he took a leading part in the enter 
prise, and that, as one may conclude, on purely personal 
grounds, for the Villehardouins were of no imposing noblesse. 
Thus he is chosen by the assembled chiefs as one of the six 
envoys sent to Venice to negotiate for the transport of the 
host; and it is he who stands forth as spokesman for the 
Crusaders in the first memorable assembly at St. Mark s. 
When Count Thibaut dies, he seems to take the most active 
part in the choice of a successor, and proposes the leader 
ultimately nominated. When, afterwards, the pilgrims 
begin to avoid Venice, and travel eastwards by other routes, 
he is one of the two delegates despatched to bring them to a 
better mind, succeeding, to some extent, by comfort and 
prayers. 3 To him is entrusted the task of explaining to the 
restored Emperor Isaac what are the conditions on which the 
Crusaders have consented to come to his help at Constanti 
nople. Again he is selected for the perilous office of bearing 
to the Emperors Isaac and Alexius, in full court, the haughty 
defiance of the host. He is selected once more for the parti 
cularly delicate mission of reconciling the Marquis of Mont- 
ferrat with the Emperor Baldwin, and he is afterwards 
deputed to bring the Marquis to Constantinople. Thus we 
see him taking a prominent part wherever there is a task of 
difficulty or danger to be undertaken; and finally, in one of 
the darkest, direst hours of the expedition, he stands forth 
heroically, and masters circumstance. The Crusaders, con 
trary to all preconcerted plans, have left their ranks and 
followed the lightly-armed Comans into the field, whereupon 
the Comans attack in turn, and cut the Crusaders to pieces, 
killing Count Lewis of Blois, and taking the Emperor Bald 
win prisoner. A broken remnant of the host comes flying. 

1 See ante, p. xvi. 

xxii Introduction 

into the camp. " When he sees this, Geoffry, the Marshal of 
Champagne, who is keeping guard before one of the gates of 
the city, issues forth from the camp as quickly as he can, and 
with all his men, and sends word to Manasses of the Isle, who 
is keeping another gate, to follow." One can almost see it 
all, as he tells the story : the advance in serried ranks, rapid 
but in strict order, and with all the pomp of war a grande 
allure , and the long line of mailed riders forming across the 
plain; the fugitives in full flight, for the most part too panic- 
stricken to stop short of the camp itself, but those of better 
heart staying to strengthen the immovable breakwater of 
men. Towards that breakwater, but still keeping a re 
spectful distance, surges the scattered host of Comans, Wal- 
lachians, Greeks, who do such mischief as they can with 
bows and arrows. It was between nones and vespers, as 
Villehardouin tells us, that the rout was stayed. It is not till 
nightfall that the enemy retire. Then, under cover of night, 
and in council with the Doge, he leads off the beaten remnant 
of the host, leaving, as he records with just pride, not one 
wounded man behind and effects a masterly retreat to the 
sea and safety. 

A man, evidently like Scott s William of Deloraine, " good 
at need " a man trusted of all and trustworthy honoured 
by the Doge, honoured by the Emperor Baldwin, honoured 
and beloved by the Marquis of Montferrat. Nor should it be 
imagined, because this is the impression left by a study of the 
chronicle, that Villehardouin s method of telling the story of 
the Crusade has in it anything of personal boastfulness or 
vainglory. When he speaks of himself, in the course of his 
narrative, he does so quite simply, and just as he speaks of 
others. There is no attempt to magnify his own deeds or in 
fluence. If he has taken part in any adventure or delibera 
tion, he mentions the fact without false modesty, but does 
not dwell upon it unduly. And, indeed, as I read the man s 
character, a certain honourable straightforwardness seems to 
me one of its most important traits. He is a religious man, 
no doubt. The purely religious side of the Crusade has its 
influence upon him. He is not unaffected by the greatness 
of the pardon offered by the Pope. He believes that the 
expedition is righteous, and that God approves of it. He 
holds that God looks with a favouring eye upon all who are 
doing their best for its furtherance. " Listen/ he cries after 

Introduction xxiii 

some great deliverance, " how great are the miracles of our 
Lord whenever it is his pleasure to perform them. . . . 
Well may we say that no man can harm those whom God 
favours." And he stands in no manner of doubt that the 
Divine justice will deal in a very exemplary manner with 
those who separate themselves from the host, and pursue 
their own paths to Palestine. But if he is a religious man, he 
is in no sense an enthusiast. He stands in marked contrast 
to such Crusaders as Godfrey of Bouillon and St. Lewis. The 
worldly side of the whole thing its policy and business, and 
fighting and conquests these are very habitually present to 
his thoughts. And withal, as I have said and notwith 
standing the doubts referred to in the earlier pages of this 
introduction there is a ring about him of honesty and sin 
cerity. His utterances are such as may be counted honour 
able to all time. He never forbears to inveigh against 
dishonesty, double-dealing, covetousness. It is not only as 
a politician, but as an upright man that he denounces the 
rapacious mishandling to which the Greeks are subjected. 

Of such a man, as I repeat, one hesitates to believe that he 
lent himself to a long course of intrigue, and afterwards con 
stituted himself the " official apologist " of what he knew to 
be indefensible. 

And as the man is, so is his book. When judging that 
book, it has to be borne in mind that it is the first work of 
importance and sustained dignity written in the French 
tongue. At the time that he dictated it, therefore, Ville- 
hardouin had no precedents to go by, no models to imitate. 
He was in all respects language, narrator s art, style a 
pioneer. And this being so, it marks him as a born writer, 
and a writer of a very high order, that his narration should be 
so lucid and distinct. He marshals his facts well, proceeds 
from point to point with order and method, brings important 
matters into due prominence, keeps accessories properly in 
the background. Nor, notwithstanding the usual sobriety 
of his method, is he incapable, on due occasion, of rendering 
the moral aspect of a scene, or even the physical aspect of 
what has passed before his eyes. In proof of this I may refer 
to the two great scenes in St. Mark s, 1 to the account of the 
attack on Constantinople, 1 to the story of the battle in which 
Baldwin was taken prisoner. 1 

1 See pp. 7-8, 16-17, 37-44, and 94-96. 

xxiv Introduction 

Still I admit that as a word-painter his powers are em 
bryonic rather than fully developed a fact which Sainte- 
Beuve, the great critic, accounts for by saying that " the 
descriptive style had not yet been invented." But here, I 
venture to think, Sainte-Beuve was nodding. For if Ville- 
hardouin himself depicts soberly, yet he had a contemporary 
and fellow-Crusader, Robert of Clan by name, who also wrote 
a chronicle, and Robert of Clan has left a description of the 
scene when the Crusading fleet set sail from Venice on the 
feast of St. Remigius, 1202, which is not wanting in pic- 
turesqueness and colour: " The Doge," he says, " had with 
him fifty galleys, all at his own charges. The galley in which 
he himself sailed was all vermilion, and there was a pavilion 
of red satin stretched above his head. And there were before 
him four trumpets of silver that trumpeted, and cymbals 
that made joy and merriment. And all the men of note, as 
well clerks as lay, and whether of small condition or great, 
made such joy at our departure, that never before had such 
joy been made, or so fine a fleet been seen. And then the 
pilgrims caused all the priests and clerks there present to get 
up into the castles of the ships, and sing the Veni Creator 
Spiritus, and all, both the great and the small folk, wept for 
great joy and happiness. ... It seemed as if the whole sea 
swarmed with ants, and the ships burned on the water, and 
the water itself were aflame with the great joy that they 
had." ! 

It was in colours like these that Turner saw Venice suffused 
when he painted such pictures as the Sun of Venice going 
out to sea. It was in terms almost identical that Shake 
speare described Cleopatra s barge " burning " upon the Nile. 
Surely when Robert of Clari, a writer not otherwise compar 
able with Villehardouin, mixed such hues upon his palette, it 
cannot be said that the descriptive style was unborn. Aiid 
if Villehardouin makes use of it but soberly, the reason is 
rather, I conceive, to be found in this, that his interest was 
but little concerned with the outward shows of things. He 
was a politician and soldier who had played an important 
part in the drama of history. What he cared to remember, 
in after days, was the deeds of the men who had played their 
parts with him, their passions and objects. Their dress, the 

1 The reader may compare this passage with Villehardouin s descrip 
tion of the same event, p. 19, or of the departure from Corfu., p. 29. 

Introduction xxv 

pomp and circumstance by which they were surrounded, the 
look of the stage, and appearance of the side-scenes, all this 
had, comparatively, faded from his memory. His chronicle 
is that of a statesman, like the chronicle in which, some two 
centuries and a half later, Philippe de Commines enthroned, 
or gibbeted, the craft of his master Lewis XI. 

As to his style, why style is the man s own self, according 
to Buffon s oft-quoted saying, and Villehardouin s style is 
simple, strong, and direct like himself, and like his narra 
tion. Now and again, but very seldom, it bears a blossom, 
" puts forth a flower," as the French say when some bright 
image, some smiling fancy, breaks like a crocus or snowdrop 
through the cold aridity of prose. Thus, when the fleet is 
leaving Abydos these vessels in full sail seem wonderfully 
to have stirred the hearts of the pilgrim host he says that 
the Straits of St. George were " in flower " with ships. But 
expressions like this, which suffuse with imagination the 
plain statement of a fact, are rare with him. Usually he is 
sober in his use of image, as in his descriptions. He says 
what he has to say, and no more; and he says it in a short, 
plainly-constructed sentence which can be " construed," as a 
schoolboy would say, without difficulty. Compared with the 
sentence of most English and French writers of the fifteenth 
or sixteenth centuries, or even of most German writers of 
to-day, his sentence is simplicity itself. 

" The modern literature of the West they might justly 
despise," says Gibbon, speaking of the Greeks of Ville- 
hardouin s time. Is that quite true? In Villehardouin we 
have a literature of the quite early spring vigorous, full of 
sap, unforced, spontaneous, unsophisticated. Take, by way 
of contrast, and as illustrating the literature of autumn and 
decay, such a passage as the following from his contemporary, 
the Greek historian Nicetas: " What shall I say of the statue 
of Helen, of the perfection of her form, the alabaster of her 
arms and of her breast, of her perfect limbs ? of that Helen 
who brought all Greece beneath the walls of Troy? Had 
she not softened the savage inhabitants of Laconia? All 
seemed possible to her whose looks enchained every heart. 
Her vesture was without artifice, but so ingeniously disposed 
that the greedy eye could see all the freshness of her charms 
scarce hidden by her light tunic, her veil, her crown, and the 
tresses of her hair. Her hair, bound only to her neck, floated 

xxvi Introduction 

according to the fancy of the winds, and fell to her feet in 
waving tresses; her mouth, half-opened like the calix of a 
young flower, seemed to offer a passage to the tender accents 
of her voice, and the sweet smile of her lips filled the soul 
of the spectator with delicious feeling. Never will it be 
possible to express, and posterity will seek vainly to feel or 
depict, the grace overspreading this divine statue. But, O 
daughter of Tyndareus, masterpiece of love, O rival of Venus, 
where is the omnipotence of thy charms? Why didst thou 
not exercise them to subdue those barbarians as thou didst 
exercise them amiably of yore ? Has Fate condemned thee 
to burn in the same fire with which thou wert wont to con 
sume all hearts ? Did the descendants of ./Eneas wish to con 
demn thee to the same flames that thou didst light erewhile in 
Ilion ? " x Was Nicetas, the author of this artificial rhetoric, 
really in a position to " despise Villehardouin ? In this 
matter, and with all due respect for Gibbon, one may say 
that the Frank represents the twilight of dawn, and the Greek 
the twilight of night. 

And what became of Villehardouin at last? How and 
when did he die ? All here is obscurity. We know, as I have 
said, next to nothing about his birth and earlier years. We 
know next to nothing about his later life and end. He 
emerges into the half-light of history with the beginning of 
his chronicle. He passes back into the darkness of the years 
with its close. Of what happened to him after the date in 
1207, when, as he tells us it is his latest record, as if his pen 
had faltered at that point how the Marquis of Montferrat had 
been miserably slain of what, I say, happened to him after 
that year we are almost ignorant. He had left his wife, his 
daughters, his two sons, to follow the cross. There is na 
evidence to suggest that he ever rejoined them in his native 
Champagne. M. Bouchet conjectures 2 that, replete with 
honour and rewards, weary of life s battle, saddened by the 
loss of so many of his old companions in arms, he retired to 
end his days in his castle of Messinopolis on the enemy s 
marches, and there composed his history; but much of this 
can be no more than conjecture. That the man lived to any 

1 1 am translating from a French version which I happen to have 
before me Bibliothtque des Croisades, by M. Michaud, third part 

1829, p. 428. 

* La Conqu&e de Constantinople, texte et traduction nouvelle, 1891, Volv 

II., pp. 286 and following. 

Introduction xxvii 

great age is improbable, and indeed the year 1213 has usually 
been assigned as the year of his death. That he wrote, or 
rather dictated, his Chronicles when the hand of time lay 
heavy upon him seems to me, from the internal evidence of 
style and spirit, to be quite unlikely. Rather do I fancy that 
he composed them, in the halls of Messinopolis indeed, 
but with spirit unsubdued, and during some brief lull in the 
great strife between the Greeks and their Frank conquerors. 


WITH Joinville we pass into a different atmosphere. Join- 
ville was born, it is believed, in 1224. He embarked with St. 
Lewis for the Crusade on the 28th August 1248; he returned 
to France in the July of 1254. His Memoirs, as he himself 
tells us, were written, i.e. concluded, in the month of October^ 
1309, that is to say, when he was eighty-five years of age, and 
more than half a century after the events he had set himself 
to narrate. Thus while Villehardouin writes as a middle- 
aged soldier, succinctly, soberly, with eye intent on important 
events, and only casually alive to the passing show of things, 
Joinville writes as an old man looking lovingly, lingeringly, at 
the past garrulous, discursive, glad of a listener. Nothing 
is beneath his attention. He lingers here, lingers there, picks 
up an anecdote as he goes along, tells how people looked, 
and what they wore, describes the manners and customs of 
the outlandish folk with whom he is brought into contact; 
has his innocent superstitions, his suspicions of spiritualistic 
influence, stops to tell you about a tumbler s tricks, about a 
strange fossil that has struck his fancy ; illustrates, discusses, 
moralises; reports at length his conversations, especially 
with the king ; and would have a tendency to repeat himself 
in any case, even if he had not adopted, to begin with, a 
defective plan of narration, that involved much repetition. 
And with such a charm in it all ! The man is so simple, so 
honest, so lovable. Fine fellow as he undoubtedly is, he 
makes claim to no heroic sentiments tells you how he was 
afraid to turn his eyes towards his castle as he went away, 
leaving wife and children behind him how he trembled, 
partly with fear, when he fell into the hands of the enemy. 
And his judgments upon his fellows are so essentially the 

xxviii Introduction 

judgments of a gentleman. Then he has the graphic gift: 
we see what he sees, and we know the people that he brings 
before us. All that world of the Crusade lives in his pages. 
Not even in Chaucer s immortal " Prologue " do we get so 
near to the life of the Middle Ages. 

Yes, as one reads the chronicle, it is impossible not to love 
the chronicler. If a snob be, according to Thackeray s defini 
tion, one who meanly admires mean things, then surely one 
who grandly admires heroic things may be pronounced a 
hero. /And Joinville had before him in St. Lewis a high ideal 
of Christian manhood, and all his heart went out in love and 
veneration for the friend, long dead when he wrote, who had 
been to him king and sainty He looks back with pride at 
that great figure which had loomed so large in his earlier 
manhood. He sees him once more as he rode in the field 
among his knights, flashing in arms, overtopping them all, 
the goodliest presence there. 1 He dwells upon his old chief s 
fearlessness, his courage before the enemy, his undaunted 
fortitude under the combined assault of disaster, defeat, 
and sickness unto death. He marks his refusal to selfishly 
abandon the people God had committed to his charge and 
secure his own safety. He notes that neither the prospect of 
death, nor torture, has power to move him one hair s -breadth 
from what he holds to be right, and notes also how, in his 
unswerving rectitude, he will keep to his word, even though 
that word has been given to the infidel, and though the in 
fidel are far from keeping a reciprocal faith. Then, in more 
peaceful times, in the ordinary course of justice, he shows the 
king s determination that right shall be done, with no respect 
of persons, between man and man, and as between monarch 
and subject, and his passionate desire for a pure adminis 
tration. And when, finally, St. Lewis is canonised when 
Rome sets its seal and mark upon him for all time then the 
loyal, loving servant seems to utter a kind of Nunc dimittis. 
Joinville feels that he himself may now depart in peace. 

Not that there is any Boswellism about him. All that St. 

1 Joinville is here quite lyrical. He brings to mind Sir Richard 
Yemen s speech on the royal army, in the first part of King Henry 

l\7 . 

,* w . 

" I saw young Harry with his beaver on, 
His cuisses on his thighs, gallantly arm d, 
Rise from the ground like feather d Mercury," etc. 

Introduction . xxix 

Lewis does is not of necessity good in Joinville s eyes. The 
servant keeps his own judgment quite clear even when judg 
ing of his master s acts, and is unduly swayed neither by love 
nor reverence. Thus, when the Abbot of Cluny gives the 
king two costly palfreys as a preliminary to a discussion on 
certain business matters pending between them, Joinville 
does not hesitate to ask the king whether the gift had in 
clined him to listen with greater favour to what the abbot 
had to say, and to push home the obvious moral a moral, 
be it said, in view of certain municipal facts, which the 
twentieth century might lay to heart with the same advan 
tages as the contemporaries of St. Lewis. 

Again, when some fifteen years after the return from 
Palestine, St. Lewis, prematurely old and broken in health, 
determines to turn Crusader once again (1270), Joinville not 
only refuses to accompany him, but evidently does all he can 
to dissuade his master from a policy so disastrous. " I 
thought that those committed a mortal sin who advised him 
to undertake that journey," says the upright counsellor, who 
was no parasite ; and he thanks God he had no part or lot in 
that expedition. 

And so too Joinville is not satisfied of the king s " good 
manners " in his relations with the queen. The queen, after 
being brought to bed of my lady Blanche, journeys by sea 
from Jaffa to rejoin the king at Sayette. Joinville goes to 
the shore to meet her there is nothing to show why the king 
did not lovingly perform this office himself and brings her 
up to the castle, reporting her arrival to the king, who is in 
his chapel. The king knew where Joinville was going, and 
has delayed the sermon till his return, and asks whether his 
wife and children are in good health. " And I bring these 
things to your notice," says Joinville, : because I had been 
in his company five years, and never yet had he spoken a 
word to me about the queen, or about his children nor to 
any one else, so far as I ever heard. And, so it seems to me," 
adds the good chronicler, " there was some want of good 
manners (mores in the Latin sense, I take it), " in being 
thus a stranger to one s wife and children." 

To this the reader will, no doubt, be inclined to subscribe. 
Indeed, the want of more obviously cordial relations between 
the king and queen which may almost be inferred from Join- 
ville s book, affords matter for surprise, seeing who and what 

xxx Introduction 

that king and queen both were. For if Lewis was a hero and 
a saint, Margaret of Provence, the " falcon-hearted dove " of 
Mrs. Hemans poem, was a heroine, and not all unfit, as men 
and women go, for canonisation. When she figures in Join- 
ville s narrative it is as a woman altogether brave and lovable, 
and possessing a sense of humour withal. There are few 
more striking scenes in history than those in which she 
appears as a queen, about to become a mother, her husband 
and his host prisoners, the city in which she is, beleaguered 
and likely to fall and kneels before the good old knight, 
and asks him to strike off her head or ever she falls into the 
enemy s hands; or that second scene, on the day after the 
birth of the child Tristram they called him for sorrow 
when she summons round her bed those who would basely 
surrender the city, and appealing to the babe s weakness and 
her own womanhood, seeks to inspire them with her own 

One might have thought, primd facie, that there would be 
some record of the meeting between king and queen after 
scenes like these, some written word to show how the queen 
greeted the king when he came out of captivity and sore peril, 
and how the king acknowledged her proud bearing in ex 
treme danger. But the chronicler, who loved them both, is 
silent. And yet he stays to give us the picture of an earlier 
time, and not so much earlier, when the relations between 
the royal couple had been more loverlike. He tells how 
Blanche, the queen-mother, had tyrannised over them, as the 
maitresse-femme, the woman accustomed to authority, will 
tyrannise in all stations of life, and how, to secure some 
privacy of intercourse, they had arranged a meeting-place on 
a hidden stairway, each scuttling back like a rabbit at the 
approach of the maternal enemy. And he tells of the 
younger woman s passionate appeal one of those appeals 
that are so human that they ring through the ages, like the 
appeal of Marie Antoinette to her motherhood tells how 
Margaret lay after child-birth, as all thought dying, and the 
king hung over her, and the queen-mother ordered him away, 
and the wife cried: " Alas! whether dead or alive, you will 
not suffer me to see my lord ! " Whereupon she fainted, 
and they thought she was dead, and the king, who thought 
she was dying, came back." l 

1 Should one smile or sigh ? The same Margaret, in after years, tried 

Introduction xxxi 

It has been conjectured that politics came, to some extent, 
between the king and queen, and that the king wished to be 
unfettered by her influence in state affairs. 1 For Margaret 
was no lay-figure. She played a not unimportant part in the 
world s affairs. Failing the arbitration of Lewis himself, 
Henry III. and the English barons agreed to refer their 
differences to her. That arbitration proving abortive, she 
sided throughout and very actively with Henry, whose wife 
Eleanor was her younger sister. All her life long she passion 
ately maintained her claims on Provence as against the king s 
brother. Possibly, therefore, St. Lewis may, while agreeing 
to allow her a certain independence of action, have preferred 
to remain outside the sphere of her activities. One cannot 
tell. The heart-relations between two human beings are 
always difficult to unraveloften too tangled to be unravelled 
even by the two persons most interested. At the same time, 
as I said, one cannot but agree with Joinville, that the king s 
" good manners " in relation to the queen are somewhat open 
to question. For myself I confess that I should have thought 
it better " manners," if, when the ship struck on the sand 
bank, and death seemed imminent, he had gone to encourage 
his wife and children, instead of prostrating himself " cross 
wise, on the deck of the vessel . . . before the body of our 

To a man of St. Lewis s temperament, the cloister must 
have offered attractions wellnigh irresistible; and it is re 
corded that, on one occasion at least, he expressed a deter 
mination to seek its retirement, when the queen effectually 
combated his resolution by silently fetching his children, and 
placing them before him. Had such monkish ideals any 
thing to do with his attitude towards his wife? Had he a 
kind of feeling that marriage acted as a restraint, not cer 
tainly on his passions, but on his piety ? Was he swayed, in 
marriage, voluntarily or involuntarily, towards the celibate 
life ? I scarcely think so. For the man, with all his religious 
fervour, was essentially sane of heart and head. His ethics 

to exercise her influence most unduly over her own son Philip, and in 
duced him to swear that he would remain subject to her authority till 
he had attained the age of thirty with other like stipulations. See 
p. 422, Revue des Questions Historiques, 1867, Vol. III. 

1 See the extremely interesting article entitled Marguerite de Provence, 
son caractere, son role politique, in the Revue des Questions Historiques, 
Vol. III., 1867, pp. 417-458. 

xxxii Introduction 

were those of a saint, but they were also those of a supremely 
honest and upright man. Nor was he in the least priest- 
ridden. When the assembled bishops of France came to 
him, and proposed a course which his own conscience did not 
approve,, he unhesitatingly refused to acquiesce, and give 
them powers they might misuse. He offers the example, 
rare at all times, and under every form of governmnet, 
whether monarchic, aristocratic, or democratic, of a ruler 
bent en ruling according to the moral law alone. 

With such a guiding spirit, with pure religious zeal and 
honesty at the helm, there can be no question as to the 
aims and objects of the Crusade, nor any necessity, or 
indeed excuse, for such a disquisition as that with which I 
introduced Villehardouin s chronicle. Dandolo, Montferrat, 
Baldwin, even Henry, nearly all the leading actors on Ville- 
hardouin s stage, may have been swayed this way and that, 
by motives not all avowable. St. Lewis had but one motive, 
and that open as the day, from the time when, in his sore 
sickness, and being then some thirty years of age (1244), he 
vowed to take the cross. Broadly, the condition of affairs in 
the Holy Land remained at that date pretty much what 
they had been when Montferrat s host embarked at Venice 
forty -two years before (1202). True, the intervening years 
had been crowded with action. Apart from the constantly- 
recurring local episodes of battle and siege, bloodshed and 
famine, and slaughter, there had been a descent into Egypt, 
with siege and sack of Damietta (1219), and a disastrous 
advance on Cairo, an expedition curiously similar in its in 
cidents to that which St. Lewis was about to undertake. 
There had been the expedition to the Holy Land of the bril 
liant and cultured Frederick II. of Germany, who by treaty 
had obtained possession of Jerusalem (1229) curiously 
enough he was at the time under ban of excommunication 
and had been crowned there as king. There had been, also for 
a time, a recrudescence of Christian power and influence. But 
this had passed away. The tide had set against the West 
and against the Cross. A few strongholds on the shore of 
Judaea alone remained in Frank hands. As in 1202, so in 
1248, when St. Lewis sailed from Aigues-Mortes, the task of 
reconquering Jerusalem still remained to be accomplished. 
That was the task to which St. Lewis set himself with all 
singleness of heart and aim, and he failed. His general- 

Introduction . xxxiii 

ship was clearly not on a level with his personal courage or 
self-devotion. Jerusalem had finally passed into Moslem 
hands. But the man himself, the story of him, the record of 
his loving follower and friend these live for all time. 

As to Joinville s style, why, I fear I have done him some 
wrong in speaking of his age and garrulity. No doubt he was 
eighty-five when he finished his book, and like most old men, 
he liked to hear himself talk. But those whom the gods 
love die young, and they die young not because their span of 
life is short, but because they carry into extreme age, nay to 
the very grave itself, the fresh youth of their spirit. And, in 
this sense, Joinville was young at four score years and five. 
With all his garrulity, his readiness to turn aside and be be 
guiled from the forward path by incident or episode, his love 
for going over the past lingeringly with all this, his outlook 
is as keen, as full of interest, as blithe, as the outlook of a boy. 
He sees clearly, he describes well, and his touch is light 
and bright not perhaps, to speak with perfect accuracy, the 
touch of a writer in the French tradition, because the French 
tradition was scarcely formed, but of a writer who occupies 
his due place in the formation of that tradition. Here again 
" the style is the man himself." 

" And what good came of it at last? the reader may per 
haps be tempted to ask, like the little Peterkin of Southey s 
verse. What advantage has the world reaped from the seed 
sown by the Crusades? Has anything commensurate been 
gained by the blood spilt in that great contest between the 
West and East? Did the good in it all, contemporary and 
prospective, outweigh the evil? As to this the judgments of 
posterity have been very varied. The eighteenth century, 
which was an age of not very profound reason, and possessed 
but little of the historic sense, regarded the whole movement 
mainly as an outbreak of fanaticism. The nineteenth cen 
tury, the present century, with their deeper feeling for the 
complexities of human life, are more tolerant. Here, for 
instance, is what that sober historian, Bishop Stubbs, says: 
" The Crusades are not, in my mind, either the popular 
delusions that our cheap literature has determined them to 
be, nor papal conspiracies against kings and peoples, as they 
appear to the Protestant controversialist, nor the savage out 
breaks of expiring barbarism thirsting for blood and plunder, 

B 333 

xxxiv Introduction 

nor volcanic explosions of religious intolerance. I believe 
them to have been, in their deep sources, and in the minds of 
their best champions, and in the main tendency of their 
results, capable of ample justification. They were the first 
great effort of mediaeval life to go beyond the pursuit of 
selfish and isolated ambitions ; they were the trial-feat of the 
young world, essaying to use, to the glory of God and the 
benefit of man, the arms of its new knighthood. That they 
failed in their direct object is only what may be alleged 
against almost every design which the Great Disposer of 
events has moulded to help the world s progress; for the 
world has grown wise by the experience of failure, rather 
than by the winnings of high aims. That the good they did 
was largely leavened with evil may be said of every war that 
has ever been waged ; that bad men rose by them while good 
men fell, is and must be true wherever and whenever the 
race is to the swift and the battle to the strong. But that, 
in the end, they were a benefit to the world no one who reads 
can doubt; and that in their course they brought out a love 
for all that is heroic in human nature the love of freedom, the 
honour of prowess, sympathy with sorrow, perseverance to 
the last, and patient endurance without hope the chronicles 
of the age abundantly prove; proving, moreover, that it 
was by the experience of those times that the former of those 
virtues were realised, and presented to posterity. . . . The 
history of the Crusades has always had for me an interest that 
quite rivals all the interest I could take in the history of the 
Greeks and Romans." These are wise and sober words, and 
I quote them, partly because they carry weight, as coming 
from such an authority as Bishop Stubbs, and partly because 
they will, I think, provide the reader, as it were, with an 
atmosphere in which to study these fine old Chronicles of 
Villehardouin and Joinville. 


IT is scarcely necessary that I should enter here into a dis 
quisition on the MSS. of Villehardouin and Joinville, and the 
various French editions of their chronicles. Suffice it to 
say, that with regard to Villehardouin I have used, for the 

1 Seventeen Lectures on the study of Mediceval and Modern History, etc., 
by William Stubbs. Oxford, 1874, PP- 157-158- 

Introduction xxxv 

present translation, the learned and admirable editions of 
M. Natalis de Wailly x and the equally excellent edition of 
M. Emile Bouchet. 2 Both these editions contain an excel 
lent text that of M. de Wailly containing also notes of the 
various readings in the leading MSS., while M. Bouchet s 
second volume embraces an elaborate and very valuable dis 
sertation on the Crusade. With regard to Joinville, I have 
similarly used the edition of M. Natalis de Wailly, which is 
similar in form and character and excellence to that of his 

As to English versions, a word more is necessary. Ville- 
hardouin s book has only, so far as I know, been once trans 
lated into English, and that was by a certain T. Smith, not 
otherwise known to me, whose version was published in 1829, 
by Pickering. 4 The book is comparatively rare, so that I 
think I may assume to be the first to place Villehardouin s 
Chronicle before the English reader in a popular form. T. 
Smith, whoever he may have been, was a scholar, and his 
work, subject to a slight criticism I shall have to make here 
after, was well done. 

Joinville s Chronicle has, so far as I know, been translated 
three times. It was translated, in the early part of last 
century, by Johnes of Hafod. 5 Now Johnes of Hafod, 
though not an inspired translator, is a translator by no means 
to be despised. His version of Froissart has not the six 
teenth-century charm, the old-world power and picturesque- 
ness of Lord Berner s version, published in 1523-25; it is 
perforce less near to Froissart in language and spirit; but still 

1 Geoffroi de Villehardouin, Conqutte de Constantinople, avec la Con 
tinuation de Henri de Valenciennes, texte original, accompagne d une 
traduclion, par M. Natalis de Wailly, Membre de 1 Institut. Seconde 
Edition, Paris, 1874. 

a Geoffroi de Villehardouin. La Conquete de Constantinople. Texte 
ft traductionnouvelle, avec notes, notice, et glossaire, two vols. Paris, 1891. 

3 Jean, Sire de Joinyille. Histoire de Saint Louis, Credo, et Lettre a 
Louis X. Texte original accompagne d une traduction, par M. Natalis 
de Wailly, Membre de 1 Institut. Paris, 1874. The Credo and Letter 
to Louis X. I have not translated. They are beautiful in their own 
way, but scarcely of general interest. 

4 The Chronicle of Geoffry de Villehardouin, Marshal of Champagne 
and Roumania, concerning the conquest of Constantinople by the French 
and Venetians, anno MCCIV., translated by T. Smith. London, 
William Pickering, 1829. 

6 Memoirs of John, Lord de Joinville, Grand Mareschal of Champagne, 
written by himself, etc., the whole translated by Thomas Johnes, at the 
Hafod Press of James Henderson, 1807. 

xxxvi Introduction 

it is a good translation. When, however, he came to deal 
with Joinville, he was seriously handicapped. For the French 
version, on which he relied, 1 was that of Du Cange, published 
in 1668, which itself was founded on an earlier version, that of 
Menard Du Cange expressly regretting that he had had 
access to no MSS., and observing, with perfect candour, that 
he " finds a difficulty in believing that the Sire de Joinville 
liad written in such polished language as that which 
M6nard attributes to him. In other words Johnes trans 
lation which is that adopted in Bonn s series is based on 
an edited and corrupt translation into modern French, and 
has, strictly, scant historical value. 

For the translations published by James Hutton 2 in 1868, 
and Ethel Wedgwood 3 in 1906, 1 have no desire to speak with 
anything but civility. Both, however, possess what I cannot 
but regard as a defect, viz., that they do not reproduce Join- 
ville s book as he wrote it. In both there is abridgment, and, 
in Miss Wedgwood s book at least, rearrangement. Now I 
am not denying that for " editing of this kind there is, in 
Joinville s case, considerable excuse. Joinville, as I have 
already said, was garrulous; he dictated largely, freely, 
probably at intervals, as a great lord would; he divided his 
book into two parts, dealing, one, with the king s religious 
life and the other with the king s secular life a division that 
even in more practised literary hands would have involved 
repetition, and he repeats himself without scruple. He had 
clearly never studied the art of composition in any polite 
academy. The most ordinary magazine writer of to-day 
could put him up to certain " tricks of the trade " of which 
he knew nothing. But and here is the real point all this 
garrulity, literary nonchalance, naivete", simplicity, absence 
of the author s pose all this goes to make up the real Join 
ville, who was an old man with a boy s heart, and a grand 
seigneur, and a gentleman, and a Christian, and a very fine 

1 Though a far better version, for this purpose, was even then avail 
able, viz., the version, founded on MSS. texts, published by Capperon- 
nier, in 1761. Any one comparing the first parts, for instance, of 
Johnes translation with that here published will see how seriously the 
original Joinville has been played with. 

a Saint Lewis, King of France, by the Sire de Joinville, translated by 
James Hutton. Sampson Low, Marston and Co. The sixth edition 
published in 1892 is before me. 

4 The Memoirs of the Lord of Joinville, a new English version, by 
Ethel Wedgwood, 1906. John Murray. 

Introduction xxxvii 

fellow. Even apart from the strict historical respect for a 
text, we lose by trying to improve upon the work of a man 
of this individuality and force. So I make no apology, nay, 
I claim credit, for presenting Joinville s Chronicle to the 
English reader, for the first time, as Joinville dictated it, 1 so far 
as the differences between the English and French languages 
will allow. 

And this brings me to the question of translation. Now 
the translator, I take it, should endeavour to place himself, 
as it were, inside the author s mind, and reproduce the 
author s work in the same form which the author himself 
would use if he were writing in the language of the transla 
tion. But when the translator attempts to carry out this 
principle in dealing with such works as the chronicles of 
Villehardouin or Joinville, he is at once confronted with a 
great difficulty. Villehardouin writes at the beginning of 
the thirteenth century, and Joinville at the beginning of 
the fourteenth, and to translate their old French into the 
language spoken in these islands circa 1209 and 1309, would 
even if I could claim the ability for such a task, and this I 
am far indeed from doing be a work of at least doubtful 
utility. The English reader of to-day would thank me very 
little for plunging him into a vernacular very much more 
archaic than that of Chaucer. (Canterbury Tales circa 1383.) 
What, then, is the alternative? To frankly adopt the quite 
modern English in use among our contemporaries ? 

I do not think so. But in order to explain why I think 
otherwise, it will be necessary to go somewhat farther afield, 
and make an excursus into a question of literary sesthetics. 

Why do we read such books as the chronicles in question ? 
For the facts recorded? Certainly, in a measure. Both 
Villehardouin and Joinville were eye and ear witnesses of 
much that they recorded, and in a general history of the 

1 This, however, must be said with just a little qualification. Scribes 
in the days anterior to printing, and editors in the days after printing 
was invented, have rejuvenated and restored Joinville s text much as 
a succession of over- zealous rectors have dealt with some of our old 
parish churches. The first MSS. of the Chronicles, made at Joinville s 
own dictation, cannot be found. The earliest MSS. that can be found 
are not contemporary, and have been clearly doctored, so far as the 
language is concerned. The text on which the present translation is 
based is that of M. de Wailly, itself based on a careful comparison 
of the available sources. As regards all this question of MSS. and 
editions, I cannot do better than refer to the elaborate introduction to 
his edition of the Chronicle. 

xxxviii Introduction 

great events they helped to fashion, they have a claim to be 
heard and considered. But they did not know all that took 
place. No contemporary ever knows that. He sees what 
he sees, the strand, more or less slender, that he holds in his 
own hand, or that comes within his purview not the other 
strands that the future will gather together and fashion into 
the great fabric of history. Villehardouin and Joinville 
were, in a sense, only the special war correspondents- 
though specially well-informed no doubt of their own time. 
If we want a full account of the attack on the Greek empire, 
or St. Lewis s Crusade, and want no more, we shall do better 
to go to one of the histories in which the whole story has been 
quintessentiated from all the chronicles and contemporary 

Why, then, again, do we read such books as those of Ville 
hardouin and Joinville? Partly, as I have said, for the 
facts, but much more for the spirit. These books take us 
back, and take us back delightfully, among " old forgotten 
far-off things;" and they take us back, not as a history, 
however graphic, takes us back, consciously, by effort, with 
inevitable modern sidelights, to-day perforce throwing some 
of its gleams and shadows back upon yesterday but simply, 
naturally, by placing us in the company of the men who 
lived of old time, and enabling us, for the nonce, to see with 
their eyes and hear with their ears. The very imperfection 
of those older writers has a charm. They repeat the same 
forms of expression freely. Their vocabulary is simple, often 
to monotony. Of adjectives they possess but a small pro 
vision. The literary tricks now performed quite freely by 
any tyro in journalism they have not acquired. They are 
essentially of their time a lisping time but the lisping 
time of giants. And to take their speech, their large and 
simple utterance, and mould it afresh into the language of 
modernity, dispels an illusion, jars us, brings us back too 
suddenly, like a diver rashly and over hastily coming out of 
the deep sea, into " the light of common day." 

Let me briefly illustrate. Villehardouin returns from 
Venice, and gives an account of his mission to Thibaut of 
Champagne. These are his words, which I translate quite 
literally: " So rode Geoffry the Marshal, day by day, that he 
came to Troyes in Champagne, and found his lord, the Count 
Thibaut, sick and languishing; and he (Count Thibaut) was 

Introduction xxxix 

greatly rejoiced at his coming. And when he (Geoffry) told 
him the news how they had fared, he was so rejoiced that he 
said he would mount horse, which he had not done of a long 
time; and he arose and rode forth. Alas! how great the 
pity ! For never more did he mount horse, save that once." 
Now this is how T. Smith, for whom, I repeat, I have every 
respect, translates the passage into the English of his genera 
tion: " Geoffry the Marshal continued his journey until he 
arrived at Troyes in Champagne, where he found his lord, 
Count Thibaut sick and dispirited, but notwithstanding 
greatly rejoiced at his return. And when the count under 
stood the good success of his embassy, he was so elated that 
he called for his horse to ride forth which for a long time past 
he had not done. He arose from his bed and mounted his 
horse for the last time." Here we have, no doubt, the sub 
stance. T. Smith tells us, practically, what Villehardouin 
tells us. But he gives us no more than dry bones. The soul, 
the thirteenth-century spirit, the feudatory s burst of sorrow 
over his beloved feudal lord, the predestined chief of a great 
expedition in which they were both to take part, the stern 
soldier s "Alas!" for the "great pity" of it- all this has 
vanished. We are not with Villehardouin in the thirteenth 
century at all. We are, a very different thing for the present 
purpose, in the year 1829. 

So the alternative is, unless I greatly deceive myself, a 
version that shall follow the old French idiom as closely as 
possible without ceasing to be genuinely English, and the use, 
in that version, of turns of speech, and a vocabulary, that 
are either archaic, or suggest archaism, and that in any case 
seek to avoid a too modern ring. 

Whereupon I imagine that some 

" Brisk little somebody, 
Critic and whippersnapper, in a rage 
To set things right, * 

such an one as animadverted on Balaustion s recitation will 
object, " such language as you suggest was not in use during 
the thirteenth or fourteenth centuries, nor has it ever been in 
use since. It is Wardour Street English " that was, if I 
remember right, the term applied to William Morris s prose 
romances, " it is a sham, or at best a convention." 

A sham no. There is not any pretence about it. A con 
vention yes. But then how essentially convention underlies 

xl Introduction 

all art ! We say of Shakespeare that he is natural. And so 
he is, if you will accept the convention that human beings 
speak in blank verse, and possess the imperial sway over 
language that he, the great word-monarch, attributes to his 
characters. Leonardo da Vinci s Last Supper, now fading on 
the old wall in Milan, touches the highest truth, the supreme 
of nature, in the faces and forms of Christ and the Apostles. 
But is it to be supposed that our Lord and His Apostles sat 
at their meal in that superb rhythmic order, which is almost 
suggestive of music? Did they even sit with as much 
arrangement as in M. Dagnan-Bouveret s fine picture of the 
same subject? If we possessed a photograph of the scene, as 
it actually took place in the upper chamber at Jerusalem, 
that photograph would have inestimable value historically 
and, maybe, devotionally. But its artistic value would 
probably be none at all. Or take again another art: M. 
Coquelin is, to my mind, the most " natural " great actor 
living. But M. Coquelin, quite obviously, would not speak 
off the stage as he does on the stage he would not speak so 
loud, nor with the same elaborateness of elocution; nor 
would his gestures possess the same point and emphasis. As 
an actor he adopts perforce the stage conventions, and suc 
ceeds, not because he is really natural which would entail 
failure but because he produces the illusion of nature. 

And so I contend that the translator of such old chronicles 
as those of Villehardouin and Joinville should aim at produc 
ing, in a similar way, an illusion of the past. He should 
place his readers in a congenial atmosphere a conventional 
atmosphere, if you like, but one in which, if his work has been 
well done, there is nothing to jar and distract no obtrusion 
of the winds and zephyrs, nay, possibly the fogs and miasma, 
of to-day. 

While if precedents be wanted, are they not to hand? 
Rightly understood, is not Spenser s Shepherd s Calendar 
a series of poems in which the poet has reproduced, not the 
past, but its simulacrum ? Kingsley s admirable Greek 
Heroes come exactly within my meaning. 1 So do William 
Morris s prose romances, and very large portions of his verse. 

1 It is interesting from the point of view under discussion to compare 
Kingsley s book with Hawthorne s Tanglcwood Tales. Hawthorne was 
a man of genius, no doubt, but the modern note injures his book. It 
will not stand beside Kingsley s. 

Introduction xli 

So does Lady Gregory s Cuchulain of Muirthemne. So, to 
pass to another literature, does Balzac s Contes Drolatiques, 
very foolishly attacked, from the linguistic side, by certain 
pedants of his generation. Nay, Esmond itself fully as 
Thackeray, by study, by the character of his own genius, had 
identified himself with the days of Queen Anne, so that he 
was all but the contemporary of Addison, and Steele, and 
Swift are there not parts of Esmond itself when the modern 
speaks a speech that is not really that of the Augustinian age, 
but only I am far from complaining give us its illusion? 
Or, going further still, that monument of the English tongue, 
the authorised version of the Bible let every Englishman 
salute at the mention of it ! does it represent the language 
as spoken and written in Great Britain when James I. was 
king ? No doubt it approaches nearer to that language than 
it approaches to ours. But even then, with Tyndale at the 
back of it, it had, more or less, an archaic form. It obtained 
force and solemnity by being somewhat out of date. It was, 
if you like to call it so, written in the English of " War dour 
Street," or of whatever street it was that displayed objects 
of doubtful antiquity in King James s London ! 

But here my precedents are clearly overwhelming. Who 
am I to stand in such company? And if the reader says, 
" Your arguments are sound, your principles cannot be im 
peached, your intentions are excellent, but your version is 
deplorable," I can only reply, " Don t visit my shortcomings 
on Villehardouin and Joinville. They are worthy of any 
reader s regard." 


LONDON, February 1908* 


GEOFFROY DE VILLEHARDOUIN, b. (uncertain) cir. 1160-1165; d. 
(uncertain) cir. 1212-18. De la Conqueste de Constantinople par les 
Barons Franpois associez aux Venitiens, Tan 1204, first edition, 1585; 
ed. with translation into modern French and continuation by Henr 
de Valenciennes; by N. de Wailly, 1872, 1874; Texte et traduction 
nouvelle, by E. Bouchet, 1891. 

English Translation. T. Smith, 1829. 

Life. A. Debidour, " Les Chroniqueurs," with analysis of his work, 
1888, etc. See also editions of N. de Wailly and Bouchet quoted above, 
and works quoted in Introduction. 

JEAN, SIRE DE JOINVILLE, b. cir. 1224; d. 1317-18. Credo: A 
Manual of Faith, composed 1250, and revised by author nearly forty 
years later; ed. facsimile, with translation into modern French, 
Melanges de la Societe des Bibliophiles francais, 1837; M6moires, ou 
Histoire et Chronique du tres Chretien roi Saint-Louis, 1309; first 
published edition, 1547. 

The other extant work is a letter from the historian to Louis X., 1315. 

Works. Ed. F. Michel, 1859; by N. de Wailly, with translation 
into modern French, 1874. 

English Translation of Memoirs. By Johnes, 1807, reproduced in 
Bohn s Antiquarian Library; by J. Hutton, 1868; by Ethel Wedg 
wood, 1906. 

Life. A. F. Didot, " Etudes sur la vie et les travaux de Jean, Sieur 
de Joinville, 1870; A. Debidour, " Les Chroniqueurs," with anatysis 
of his Memoires, 1888, etc; H. F. Delaborde, 1894. 

There are cheap editions in French of both Villehardouin and 




BE it known to you that eleven hundred and ninety-seven 
years after the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ, in the 
time of Innocent Pope of Rome, and Philip King of France, 
and Richard King of England, there was in France a holy 
man named Fulk of Neuilly which Neuilly is between Lagni- 
sur-Mame and Paris and he was a priest and held the cure 
of the village. And this said Fulk began to speak of God 
throughout the Isle of France, and the other countries round 
about; and you must know that by him the Lord wrought 
many miracles. 

Be it known to you further, that the fame of this holy man 
so spread, that it reached the Pope of Rome, Innocent; 2 and 
the Pope sent to France, and ordered the right worthy man 
to preach the cross (the Crusade) by his authority. And 
afterwards the Pope sent a cardinal of his, Master Peter of 
Capua, who himself had taken the cross, to proclaim the In 
dulgence of which I now tell you, viz., that all who should take 
the cross and serve in the host for one year, would be de- 

1 In these divisions and headings I mainly follow, but not slavishly, 
M. N. de Waffly. 

1 Elected Pope on the 8th January 1198, at the early age of thirty- 
seven, Innocent III. was one of the leading spirits of his time in every 
sense a strong man and great Pope. From the beginning of his ponti 
ficate he turned his thoughts and policy to the recovery of Jerusalem. 
M. Achille Luchaire has recently published four volumes dealing re 
spectively with Innocent in his relations to Rome and Italy, The 
Crusade against the Albigenses, The Papacy and the Empire, The Eastern 
Question. Mr. Pine-Gordon has also just published a volume entitled 
Innocent the Great, an Essay on his Life and Times. 

2 Memoirs of the Crusades 

livered from all the sins they had committed, and acknow 
ledged in confession. And because this indulgence was so 
great, the hearts of men were much moved, and many took 
the cross for the greatness of the pardon. 


The other year after that right worthy man Fulk had so 
spoken of God, there was held a tourney in Champagne, at a 
castle called Ecri, and by God s grace it so happened that 
Thibaut, Count of Champagne and Brie, took the cross, and 
the Count Lewis of Blois and Chartres likewise; and this was 
at the beginning of Advent (28th November 1199). Now 
you must know that this Count Thibaut was but a young 
man, and not more than twenty-two years of age, and the 
Count Lewis not more than twenty-seven. These two counts 
were nephews and cousins-german to the King of France, 
and, on the other part, nephews to the King of England. 

With these two counts there took the cross two very high 
and puissant barons of France, Simon of Montfort, 1 and 
Renaud of Montmirail. Great was the fame thereof through 
out the land when these two high and puissant men took the 

In the land of Count Thibaut of Champagne took the cross 
Gamier, Bishop of Troyes, Count Walter of Brienne, Geoffry 
of Joinville, 2 who was seneschal of the land, Robert his 
brother, Walter of Vignory, Walter of Montbliart, Eustace 
of Confians, Guy of Plessis his brother, Henry of Arzillieres, 
Oger of Saint-Cheron, Villain of Neuilly, Geoffry of Villehar- 
douin, Marshal of Champagne, Geoffry his nephew, William 
of Nully, Walter of Fuligny, Everard of Montigny T M^nasses 
of Tlsle, Macaire of Sainte-Menehould, Miles the Brebant, Guy 
of Chappes, Clerembaud his nephew, Reginald of Dampierre, 
John Foisnous, and many other right worthy men whom this 
book does not here mention by name. 

With Count Lewis took the cross Gervais of Chatel, Hervee 
his son, John of Virsin, Oliver of Rochefort, Henry of Mont- 

1 This was the Simon de Montfort who afterwards ruthlessly crushed 
the Albigenses. It was his son who led the barons against Henry III. 
defeated the royal army at Lewes, and was killed at Evesham (1265). 

2 This Tvas the father of the Joinville whose Chronicle forms the 
second portion of this volume. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 3 

reuil, Payen of Orleans, Peter of Bracieux, Hugh his brother, 
William of Sains, John of Friaize, Walter of Gaudonville, 
Hugh of Cormeray, GeofTry his brother, Hervee of Beauvoir, 
Robert of Frouville, Peter his brother, Orri of 1 Isle, Robert 
of the Quartier, and many more whom this book does not 
here mention by name. 

In the Isle of France took the cross Nevelon, Bishop of 
Soissons, Matthew of Montmorency, Guy the Castellan of 
Coucy, his nephew, Robert of Ronsoi, Ferri of Yerres, John 
his brother, Walter of Saint-Denis, Henry his brother, 
William of Aunoi, Robert Manvoisin, Dreux of Cressonsacq, 
Bernard of Moreuil, Enguerrand of Boves, Robert his brother, 
and many more right worthy men with regard to whose 
names this book is here silent. 

At the beginning of the following Lent, on the day when 
folk are marked with ashes (23rd February 1200), the cross 
was taken at Bruges by Count Baldwin of Flanders and 
Hainault, and by the Countess Mary his wife, who was sister 
to the Count Thibaut of Champagne. Afterwards took the 
cross, Henry his brother, Thierri his nephew, who was the son 
of Count Philip of Flanders, William the advocate of Bethune, 
Conon his brother, John of Nele Castellan of Bruges, 
Reginald of Trit, Reginald his son, Matthew of Wallincourt, 
James of Avesnes, Baldwin of Beauvoir, Hugh of Beaumetz, 
Girard of Mancicourt, Odo of Ham, William of Gommegnies, 
Dreux of Beaurain, Roger of Marck, Eustace of Sobruic, 
Francis of Colemi, Walter of Bousies, Reginald of Mons, 
Walter of the Tombes, Bernard of Somergen, and many more 
right worthy men in great number, with regard to whom this 
book does not speak further. 

Afterwards took the cross, Count Hugh of St. Paul. With 
him took the cross, Peter of Amiens his nephew, Eustace of 
Canteleu, Nicholas of Mailly, Anseau of Cayeaux, Guy of 
Houdain, Walter of Nele, Peter his brother, and many other 
men who are unknown to us. 

Directly afterwards took the cross Geoffry of the Perche, 
Stephen his brother, Rotrou of Montfort, Ives of la Jaille, 
Aimery of Villeroi, Geoffry of Beaumont, and many others 
whose names I do not know. 

Memoirs of the Crusades 


Afterwards the barons held a parliament at Soissons, to 
settle when they should start, and whither they should wend. 
But they could come to no agreement, because it did not seem 
to them that enough people had taken the cross. So during 
all that year (1200) no two months passed without assem 
blings in parliament at Compiegne. There met all the counts 
and barons who had taken the cross. Many were the opinions 
given and considered; but in the end it was agreed that 
envoys should be sent, the best that could be found, with full 
powers, as if they were the lords in person, to settle such 
matters as needed settlement. 

Of these envoys, Thibaut, Count of Champagne and Brie, 
sent two; Baldwin, Count of Flanders and Hainault, two; 
and Lewis, Count of Blois and Chartes, two. The envoys 
of the Count Thibaut were Geoffry of Villehardouin, Marshal 
of Champagne, and Miles the Brebant; the envoys of Count 
Baldwin were Conon of Bethune, and Alard Maquereau, and 
the envoys of Count Lewis were John of Friaise, and Walter 
of Gaudonville. 

To these six envoys the business in hand was fully com 
mitted, all the barons delivering to them valid charters, with 
seals attached, to the effect that they would undertake to 
maintain and carry out whatever conventions and agree 
ments the envoys might enter into, in all sea ports, and 
whithersoever else the envoys might fare. 

Thus were the six envoys despatched, as you have been 
told ; and they took counsel among themselves, and this was 
their conclusion: that in Venice they might expect to find a 
greater number of vessels than in any other port. So they 
journeyed day by day, till they came thither in the first week 
of Lent (February 1201). 



The Doge of Venice, whose name was Henry Dandolo, 1 and 

1 That Henry Dandolo was a very old man is certain, but there is 
doubt as to his precise age, as also as to the cause of his blindness. 
According to one account he had been blinded, or all but blinded, by 

Villehardouin s Chronicle c 


who was very wise and very valiant, did them great honour, 
both he and the other folk, and entertained them right will 
ingly, marvelling, however, when the envoys had delivered 
their letters, what might be the matter of import that had 
brought them to that country. For the letters were letters 
of credence only, and declared no more than that the bearers 
were to be accredited as if they were the counts in person, 
and tliat the said counts would make good whatever the 
six envoys should undertake. 

So the Doge replied: " Signers, I have seen your letters; 
well do we know that of men uncrowned your lords are the 
greatest, and they advise us to put faith in what you tell 
us, and that they will maintain whatsoever you undertake. 
Now, therefore, speak, and let us know what is your pleasure/ 

And the envoys answered: "Sire, we would that you 
should assemble your council; and before your council we 
will declare the wishes of our lords; and let this be to 
morrow, if it so pleases you." And the Doge replied asking 
for respite till the fourth day, when he would assemble his 
council, so that the envoys might state their requirements. 

The envoys waited then till the fourth day, as had been 
appointed them, and entered the palace, which was passing 
rich and beautiful; and found the Doge and his council in a 
chamber. There they delivered their message after this 
manner: " Sire, we come to thee on the part of the high 
barons of France, who have taken the sign of the cross to 
avenge the shame done to Jesus Christ, and to reconquer 
Jerusalem, if so be that God will suffer it. And because they 
know that no people have such great power to help them as 
you and your people, therefore we pray you by God that you 
take pity on the land oversea, and the shame of Christ, and 
use diligence that our lords have ships for transport and 

"And after what manner should we use diligence? 3 

the Greeks, and in a treacherous manner, when sent, at an earlier date, 
on an embassage to Constantinople whence his bitter hostility to the 
Greek Empire. I agree, however, with Sir Rennell Rodd that, if this 
had been so, Villehardouin would scarcely have refrained from men 
tioning such an act of perfidy on the part of the wicked Greeks. (See 
p. 41 of Vol. I. of Sir Rennell Rodd s Princes of Achaia.) It is hardly 
to be imagined that he would keep the matter dark because, if he men 
tioned it, people would think Dandolo acted throughout from motives 
of personal vengeance. This would be to regard Villehardouin as a 
very astute controversial historian indeed. 

6 Memoirs of the Crusades 

said the Doge. " After all manners that you may advise and 
propose/ rejoined the envoys, in so far as what you pro 
pose may be within our means." " Certes," said the Doge, 
" it is a great thing that your lords require of us, and well it 
seems that they have in view a high enterprise. We will 
give you our answer eight days from to-day. And marvel 
not if the term be long, for it is meet that so great a matter 
be fully pondered." 


When the term appointed by the Doge was ended, the 
envoys returned to the palace. Many were the words then 
spoken which I cannot now rehearse. But this was the con 
clusion of that parliament: " Signers/ said the Doge, " we 
will tell you the conclusions at which we have arrived, if so be 
that we can induce our great council and the commons of the 
land to allow of them; and you, on your part, must consult 
and see if you can accept them and carry them through. 

We will build transports l to carry four thousand five 
hundred horses, and nine thousand squires, and ships for 
four thousand five hundred knights, and twenty thousand 
sergeants of foot. And we will agree also to purvey food for 
these horses and people during nine months. This is what 
we undertake to do at the least, on condition that you pay 
us for each horse four marks, and for each man two marks. 

" And the covenants we are now explaining to you, we 
undertake to keep, wheresoever we may be, for a year, 
reckoning from the day on which we sail from the port of 
Venice in the service of God and of Christendom. Now the 
sum total of the expenses above named amounts to 85,000 

" And this will we do moreover. For the love of God, we 
will add to the fleet fifty armed galleys on condition that, so 
long as we act in company, of all conquests in land or money, 
whether at sea or on dry ground, we shall have the half, and 
you the other half. Now consult together to see if you, on 
your parts, can accept and fulfil these covenants/ 3 

1 The old French term is Vuissiers, and denotes a kind of vessel, 
flat-bottomed, with large ports, specially constructed for the trans 
port of horses. T. Smith translates palanders," but I don t know 
that " palander " conveys any very clear idea to the English reader. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 7 

The envoys then departed, and said that they would con 
sult together and give their answer on the morrow. They 
consulted, and talked together that night, and agreed to 
accept the terms offered. So the next day they appeared 
befoie the Doge, and said: " Sire, we are ready to ratify this 
covenant." The Doge thereon said he would speak of the 
matter to his people, and, as he found them affected, so would 
he let the envoys know the issue. 

On the morning of the third day, the Doge, who was very 
wise and valiant, assembled his great council, and the 
council was of forty men of the wisest that were in the land. 
And the Doge, by his wisdom and wit, that were very clear 
and very good, brought them to agreement and approval. 
Thus he wrought with them; and then with a hundred 
others, then two hundred, then a thousand, so that at last 
all consented and approved. Then he assembled well ten 
thousand of the people in the chapel of St. Mark, the most 
beautiful chapel that there is, and bade them hear a mass of 
the Holy Ghost, and pray to God for counsel on the request 
and messages that had been addressed to them. And the 
people did so right willingly. 



When mass had been said, the Doge desired the envoys to 
humbly ask the people to assent to the proposed covenant. 
The envoys came into the church. Curiously were they 
looked upon by many who had not before had sight of them. 

Geoffry of Villehardouin, the Marshal of Champagne, by 
will and consent of the other envoys, acted as spokesman 
and said unto them: Lords, the barons of France, most 
high and puissant, have sent us to you ; and they cry to you 
for mercy, that you take pity on Jerusalem, which is in 
bondage to the Turks, and that, for God s sake, you help to 
avenge the shame of Christ Jesus. And for this end they 
have elected to come to you, because they know full well that 
there is none other people having so great power on the seas, 
as you and your people. And they commanded us to fall at 
your feet, and not to rise till you consent to take pity on the 
Holy Land which is beyond the seas." 

8 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Then the six envoys knelt at the feet of the people, weeping 
many tears. And the Doge and all the others burst into 
tears of pity and compassion, and cried with one voice, and 
lifted up their hands, saying: " We consent, we consent! " 
Then was there so great a noise and tumult that it seemed as 
if the earth itself were falling to pieces. 

And when this great tumult and passion of pity greater 
did never any man see were appeased, the good Doge of 
Venice, who was very wise and valiant, went up into the 
reading-desk, and spoke to the people, and said to them : 
Signers, behold the honour that God has done you ; for the 
best people in the world have set aside all other people, and 
chosen you to join them in so high an enterprise as the 
deliverance of our Lord ! 

All the good and beautiful words that the Doge then spoke, 
I cannot repeat to you. But the end of the matter was, that 
the covenants were to be made on the following day; and 
made they were, and devised accordingly. When they were 
concluded, it was notified to the council that we should go to 
Babylon (Cairo), because the Turks could better be destroyed 
in Babylon than in any other land ; but to the folk at large 
it was only told that we were bound to go overseas. We 
were then in Lent (March 1201), and by St. John s Day, in 
the following year which would be twelve hundred and two 
years after the Incarnation of Jesus Christ the barons and 
pilgrims were to be in Venice, and the ships ready against 
their coming. 

When the treaties were duly indited and sealed, they were 
brought to the Doge in the grand palace, where had been 
assembled the great and the little council. And when the 
Doge delivered the treaties to the envoys, he knelt greatly 
weeping, and swore on holy relics faithfully to observe the 
conditions thereof, and so did all his council, which numbered 
fifty-six persons. And the envoys, on their side, swore to 
observe the treaties, and in all good faith to maintain their 
oaths and the oaths of their lords; and be it known to you 
that for great pity many a tear was there shed. And forth 
with were messengers sent to Rome, to the Pope Innocent, 
that he might confirm this covenant the which he did right 

Then did the envoys borrow five thousand marks of silver, 
and gave them to the Doge so that the building of the ships 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 9 

might be begun. And taking leave to return to their own 
land, they journeyed day by day till they came to Placentia 
in Lombardy. There they parted. Geoffry, the Marshal of 
Champagne and Alard Maquereau went straight to France, 
and the others went to Genoa and Pisa to learn what help 
might there be had for the land oversea. 

When Geoffry, the Marshal of Champagne, passed over 
Mont Cenis, he came in with Walter of Brienne, going into 
Apulia, to conquer the land of his wife, whom he had married 
since he took the cross, and who was the daughter of King 
Tancred. With him went Walter of Montbeliard, and 
Eustace of Conflans, Robert of Joinville, and a great part of 
the people of worth in Champagne who had taken the cross. 

And when he told them the news how the envoys had fared, 
great was their joy, and much did they prize the arrange 
ments made. And they said, " We are already on our way; 
and when you come, you will find us ready." But events 
fall out as God wills, and never had they power to join the 
host. This was much to our loss; for they were of great 
prowess and valiant. And thus they parted, and each went 
on his way. 

So rode Geoffry the Marshal, day by day, that he came 
to Troyes in Champagne, and found his lord the Count 
Thibaut sick and languishing, and right glad was the count 
of his coming. And when he had told the count how he had 
fared, the count was so rejoiced that he said he would mount 
horse, a thing he had not done of a long time. So he rose 
from his bed and rode forth. But alas, how great the pity ! 
For never again did he bestride horse but that once. 

His sickness waxed and grew worse, so that at the last he 
made his will and testament, and divided the money which 
he would have taken with him on pilgrimage among his 
followers and companions, of whom he had many that were 
very good men and true no one at that time had more. And 
he ordered that each one, on receiving his money, should 
swear on holy relics, to join the host at Venice, according 
as he had promised. Many there were who kept that oath 
badly, and so incurred great blame. The count ordered that 
another portion of his treasure should be retained, and taken 
to the host, and there expended as might seem best. 

Thus died the count; and no man in tras world made a 
better end. And there were present at that time a very 

i o Memoirs of the Crusades 

great assemblage of men of his lineage and of his vassals, 
But of the mourning and funeral pomp it is unmeet that I 
should here speak. Never was more honour paid to any man. 
And right well that it was so, for never was man of his age 
more beloved by his own men, nor by other folk. Buried he 
was beside his father in the church of our lord St. Stephen at 
Troyes. He left behind him the Countess, his wife, whose 
name was Blanche, very fair, very good, the daughter of the 
King of Navarre. She had borne him a little daughter, and 
was then about to bear a son. 


When the Count was buried, Matthew of Montmorency, 
Simon of Montfort, Geoflry of Joinville who was seneschal, 
and Geoflry the Marshal, went to Odo, Duke of Burgundy, 
and said to him, " Sire, your cousin is dead. You see what 
evil has befallen the land oversea. We pray you by God 
that you take the cross, and succour the land oversea in his 
stead. And we will cause you to have all his treasure, and 
will swear on holy relics, and make the others swear also, to 
serve you in all good faith, even as we should have served 

Such was his pleasure that he refused. And be it known 
to you that he might have done much better. The envoys 
charged Geoflry of Joinville to make the self-same offer to 
the Count of Bar-le-Duc, Thibaut, who was cousin to the 
dead count, and he refused also. 

Very great was the discomfort of the pilgrims, and of all 
who were about to go on God s service, at the death of Count 
Thibaut of Champagne; and they held a parliament, at the 
beginning of the month, at Soissons, to determine what they 
should do. There were present Count Baldwin of Flanders 
and Hainault, the Count Lewis of Blois and Chartres, the 
Count Geoflry of Perche, the Count Hugh of Saint-Paul, and 
many other men of worth. 

Geoflry the Marshal spake to them and told them of the 
offer made to the Duke of Burgundy, and to the Count of 
Bar-le-Duc, and how they had refused it. " My lords/ 5 
said he, " listen, I will advise you of somewhat if you will 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 1 1 

consent thereto. The Marquis of Montferrat 1 is very worthy 
and valiant, and one of the most highly prized of living men. 
If you asked him to come here, and take the sign of the cross, 
and put himself in place of the Count of Champagne, and you 
gave him the lordship of the host, full soon would he accept 

Many were the words spoken for and against; but in the 
end all agreed, both small and great. So were letters written, 
and envoys chosen, and the marquis was sent for. And he 
came, on the day appointed, through Champagne and the 
Isle-de-France, where he received much honour, and specially 
from the King of France, who was his cousin. 


So he came to a parliament assembled at Soissons; and 
the main part of the counts and barons and of the other 
Crusaders were there assembled. When they heard that the 
marquis was coming, they went out to meet him, and did him 
much honour. In the morning the parliament was held in 
an orchard belonging to the abbey of our Lady of Soissons. 
There they besought the marquis to do as they had desired 
of him, and prayed him, for the love of God, to take the cross, 
and accept the leadership of the host, and stand in the place 
of Thibaut Count of Champagne, and accept of his money 

1 Boniface, Marquis of Montferrat, was one of the most accomplished 
men of the time, and an approved soldier. His little court at Mont 
ferrat was the resort of artist and troubadour. His family was a family 
of Crusaders. The father, William of Montferrat, had gone oversea, 
and fought valiantly against the infidel. Boniface s eldest brother, 
William of the Long Sword, married a daughter of the titular King of 
Jerusalem, and their son became titular king in turn. Another brother, 
Conrad, starting for the Holy Land, stopped at Constantinople, and 
did there such good service that the Greek emperor gave his sister to 
him in marriage; but afterwards, fearing the perfidy of his brother-in- 
law, Conrad fled to Syria, and there battled against Saladin. Yet another 
brother, Renier, also served in the Greek Empire, married an Emperor s 
daughter, and received for guerdon of his deeds the kingdom of Salonica. 
Boniface himself had fought valiantly against Saladin, been made 
prisoner, and afterwards liberated on exchange. It was no mean and 
nameless knight that Villehardouin was proposing as chief to the as 
sembled Crusaders, but a princely noble, the patron of poets, versed in 
state affairs, and possessing personal experience of Eastern warfare. I 
extract these details from M. Bouchet s Notice. 

i 2 Memoirs of the Crusades 

and of his men. And they fell at his feet, with many tears; 
and he, on his part, fell at their feet, and said he would do it 
right willingly. 

Thus did the marquis consent to their prayers, and receive 
the lordship of the host. Whereupon the Bishop of Soissons, 
and Master Fulk, the holy man, and two white monks whom 
the marquis had brought with him from his own land, led 
him into the Church of Notre Dame, and attached the cross 
to his shoulder. Thus ended this parliament, and the next 
day he took leave to return to his own land and settle his own 
affairs telling them all to settle their own affairs likewise, 
for that he would meet them at Venice. 

Thence did the marquis go to attend the Chapter at 
Citeaux, which is held on Holy Cross Day in September 
(i4th September 1041). There he found a great number of 
abbots, barons and other people of Burgundy; and Master 
Fulk went thither to preach the Crusade. And at that place 
took the cross Odo the Champenois of Champlitte, and William 
his brother, Richard of Dampierre, Odo his brother, Guy of 
Pesmes, Edmund his brother, Guy of Conflans, and many 
other good men of Burgundy, whose names are not recorded. 
Afterwards took the cross the Bishop of Autun, Guignes 
Count of Forez, Hugh of Bergi (father and son), Hugh of 
Colemi. Further on in Provence took the cross Peter 
Bromont, and many others whose names are unknown to us. 

Thus did the pilgrims make ready in all lands. Alas! a 
great mischance befell them in the following Lent (March 
1202) before they had started, for the Count Geoffry of 
Perche fell sick, and made his will in such fashion that he 
directed that Stephen, his brother, should have his goods, 
and lead his men in the host. Of this exchange the pilgrims 
would willingly have been quit, had God so ordered. Thus 
did the count make an end and die ; and much evil ensued, 
for he was a baron high and honoured, and a good knight. 
Greatly was he mourned throughout all his lands. 


After Easter and towards Whitsuntide (June 1202) began 
the pilgrims to leave their own country. And you must 
know that at their departure many were the tears shed for 

Villehardouin s Chronicle i 3 

pity and sorrow, by their own people and by their friends. 
So they journeyed through Burgundy, and by the mountains 
of Mont-Joux (? Jura) by Mont Cenis, and through Lom- 
bardy, and began to assemble at Venice, where they were 
lodged on an island which is called St. Nicholas in the port. 

At that time started from Flanders a fleet that carried a 
great number of good men-at-arms. Of this fleet were 
Captains John of Nele, Castellan of Bruges, Thierri, who was 
the son of Count Philip of Flanders, and Nicholas of Mailly. 
And these promised Count Baldwin, and swore on holy 
relics, that they would go through the straits of Morocco, 
and join themselves to him, and to the host of Venice, at 
whatsoever place they might hear that the count was faring. 
And for this reason the Count of Flanders and Henry his 
brother had confided to them certain ships loaded with 
cloth and food and other wares. 

Very fair was this fleet, and rich, and great was the reliance 
that the Count of Flanders and the pilgrims placed upon it, 
because very many of their good sergeants were journeying 
therein. But ill did these keep the faith they had sworn to 
the count, they and others like them, because they and such 
others of the same sort became fearful of the great perils 
that the host of Venice had undertaken. 

Thus did the Bishop of Autun fail us, and Guignes the 
Count of Forez, and Peter Bromont, and many people 
besides, who were greatly blamed therein; and of little 
worth were the exploits they performed there where they did 
go. And of the French failed us Bernard of Moreuil, Hugh 
of Chaumont, Henry of Araines, John of Villers, Walter of 
Saint-Denis, Hugh his brother, and many others, who 
avoided the passage to Venice because of the danger, and 
went instead to Marseilles whereof they received shame, 
and much were they blamed and great were the mishaps 
that afterwards befell them. 


Now let us for this present speak of them no further, but 
speak of the pilgrims, of whom a great part had already come 
to Venice. Count Baldwin of Flanders had already arrived 
there, and many others, and thither were tidings brought to 

1 4 Memoirs of the Crusades 

them that many of the pilgrims were travelling by other 
ways, and from other ports. This troubled them greatly, 
because they would thus be unable to fulfil the promise made 
to the Venetians, and find the moneys that were due. 

So they took counsel together, and agreed to send good 
envoys to meet the pilgrims, and to meet Count Lewis of 
Blois and Chartres, who had not yet arrived, and to put them 
in good heart, and beseech them to have pity of the Holy 
Land beyond the sea, and show them that no other passage, 
save that from Venice, could be of profit. 

For this embassage they made choice of Count Hugh of 
Saint-Paul and Geoffry the Marshal of Champagne, and 
these rode till they came to Pavia in Lombardy. There they 
found Count Lewis with a great many knights and men of 
note and worth; and by encouragements and prayers pre 
vailed on many to proceed to Venice who would otherwise 
have fared from other ports, and by other ways. 

Nevertheless from Placentia many men of note proceeded 
by other ways to Apulia. Among them were Villain of 
Neuilly, who was one of the best knights in the world, Henry 
of Arzillieres, Renaud of Dampierre, Henry of Longchamp, 
and Giles of Trasegnies, liegeman to Count Baldwin of 
Flanders and Hainault, who had given him, out of his 
own purse, five hundred livres to accompany him on this 
journey. With these went a great company of knights and 
sergeants, whose names are not recorded. 

Thus was the host of those who went by Venice greatly 
weakened ; and much evil befell them therefrom, as you shall 
shortly hear. 



Thus did Count Lewis and the other barons wend their 
way to Venice; and they were there received with feasting 
and joyfully, and took lodging in the Island of St. Nicholas 
with those who had come before. Goodly was the host, 
and right worthy were the men. Never did man see goodlier 
or worthier. And the Venetians held a market, rich and 
abundant, of all things needful for horses and men. And the 
fleet they had got ready was so goodly and fine that never 
did Christian man see one goodlier or finer; as well galleys 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 15 

as transports, and sufficient for at least three times as many 
men as were in the host. 

Ah! the grievous harm and loss when those who should 
have come thither sailed instead from other ports! Right 
well,, if they had kept their tryst, would Christendom have 
been exalted, and the land of the Turks abased ! The Vene 
tians had fulfilled all their undertakings, and above measure, 
and they now summoned the barons and counts to fulfil 
theirs and make payment, since they were ready to start. 

The cost of each man s passage was now levied throughout 
the host; and there were people enough who said they could 
not pay for their passage, and the barons took from them 
such moneys as they had. So each man paid what he could. 
When the barons had thus claimed the cost of the passages, 
and when the payments had been collected, the moneys 
came to less than the sum due yea, by more than one half. 

Then the barons met together and said: "Lords, the 
Venetians have well fulfilled all their undertakings, and 
above measure. But we cannot fulfil ours in paying for our 
passages, seeing we are too few in number; and this is the 
fault of those who have journeyed by other ports. For God s 
sake therefore let each contribute all that he has, so that we 
may fulfil our covenant; for better is it that we should give 
all that we have, than lose what we have already paid, and 
prove false to our covenants; for if this host remains here, 
the rescue of the land oversea comes to naught." 

Great was then the dissension among the main part of the 
barons and the other folk, and they said: " We have paid 
for our passages, and if they will take us, we shall go willingly ; 
but if not, we shall inquire and look for other means of 
passage." And they spoke thus because they wished that 
the host should fall to pieces and each return to his own land. 
But the other party said, " Much rather would we give all 
that we have and go penniless with the host, than that the 
host should fall to pieces and fail; for God will doubtless 
repay us when it so pleases Him." 

Then the Count of Flanders began to give all that he had 
and all that he could borrow, and so did Count Lewis, and 
the Marquis, and the Count of Saint-Paul, and those who 
were of their party. Then might you have seen many a fine 
vessel of gold and silver borne in payment to the palace of 
the Doge. And when all had been brought together, there 

1 6 Memoirs of the Crusades 

was still wanting, of the sum required, 34,000 marks of 
silver. Then those who had kept back their possessions and 
not brought them into the common stock, were right glad, 
for they thought now surely the host must fail and go to 
pieces. But God, who advises those who have been ill- 
advised, would not so suffer it. 


Then the Doge spoke to his people, and said unto them: 
" Signors, these people cannot pay more; and in so far as 
they have paid at all, we have benefited by an agreement 
which they cannot now fulfil. But our right to keep this 
money would not everywhere be acknowledged; and if we 
so kept it we should be greatly blamed, both us and our land. 
Let us therefore offer them terms. 

" The King of Hungary has taken from us Zara in 
Sclavonia, which is one of the strongest places in the world; 
and never shall we recover it with all the power that we 
possess, save with the help of these people. Let us therefore 
ask them to help us to reconquer it, and we will remit the 
payment of the debt of 34,000 marks of silver, until such 
time as it shall please God to allow us to gain the moneys 
by conquest, we and they together." Thus was agreement 
made. Much was it contested by those who wished that the 
host should be broken up. Nevertheless the agreement was 
accepted and ratified. 



Then, on a Sunday, was assemblage held in the Church of 
St. Mark. It was a very high festival, and the people of the 
land were there, and the most part of the barons and pilgrims. 

Before the beginning of High Mass, the Doge of Venice, 
who bore the name of Henry Dandolo, went up into the 
reading-desk, and spoke to the people, and said to them: 
" Signors, you are associated with the most worthy people in 
the world, and for the highest enterprise ever undertaken; 
and I am a man old and feeble, who should have need of rest, 
and I am sick in body; but I see that no one could command 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 17 

and lead you like myself, who am your lord. If you will 
consent that I take the sign of the cross to guard and direct 
you, and that my son remain in my place to guard the land, 
then shall I go to live or die with you and with the pilgrims." 

And when they had heard him, they cried with one voice : 
" We pray you by God that you consent, and do it, and that 
you come with us ! 

Very great was then the pity and compassion on the part 
of the people of the land and of the pilgrims ; and many were 
the tears shed, because that worthy and good man would 
have had so much reason to remain behind, for he was an old 
man, and albeit his eyes were unclouded, yet he saw naught, 
having lost his sight through a wound in the head. He was 
of a great heart. Ah! how little like him were those who 
had gone to other ports to escape the danger. 

Thus he came down from the reading-desk, and went 
before the altar, and knelt upon his knees greatly weeping. 
And they sewed the cross on to a great cotton hat, which he 
wore, in front, because he wished that all men should see it, 
And the Venetians began to take the cross in great numbers, 
a great multitude, for up to that day very few had taken the 
cross. Our pilgrims had much joy in the cross that the Doge 
took, and were greatly moved, because of the wisdom and 
the valour that were in him. 

Thus did the Doge take the cross, as you have heard. 
Then the Venetians began to deliver the ships, the galleys, 
and the transports to the barons, for departure; but so much 
time had already been spent since the appointed term, that 
September drew near (1202). 


Now give ear to one of the greatest marvels, and most 
wonderful adventures that you have ever heard tell of. At 
that time there was an emperor in Constantinople, whose 
name was Isaac, and he had a brother, Alexius by name, whom 
he had ransomed from captivity among the Turks. This 
Alexius took his brother the emperor, tore the eyes out 
of his head, and made himself emperor by the aforesaid 

1 8 Memoirs of the Crusades 

treachery. He kept Isaac a long time in prison, together 
with a son whose name was Alexius. This son escaped from 
prison, and fled in a ship to a city on the sea, which is called 
Ancona. Thence he departed to go to King Philip of Ger 
many, who had his sister for wife; and he came to Verona in 
Lombardy, and lodged in the town, and found there a number 
of pilgrims and other people who were on their way to join 
the host. 

And those who had helped him to escape, and were with 
him, said : Sire, here is an army in Venice, quite near to us, 
the best and most valiant people and knights that are in the 
world, and they are going oversea. Cry to them therefore 
for mercy, that they have pity on thee and on thy father, who 
have been so wrongfully dispossessed. And if they be 
willing to help thee, thou shalt be guided by them. Per 
chance they will take pity on thy estate." And Alexius said 
he would do this right willingly, and that the advice was good. 

Thus he appointed envoys, and sent them to the Marquis 
Boniface of Montferrat, who was chief of the host, and to the 
other barons. And when the barons saw them, they mar 
velled greatly, and said to the envoys : " We understand 
right well what you tell us. We will send an envoy with the 
prince to King Philip, whither he is going. If the prince 
will help to recover the land oversea, we will help him to re 
cover his own land, for we know that it has been wrested from 
him and from his father wrongfully." So were envoys sent 
into Germany, both to the heir of Constantinople and to 
King Philip of Germany. 

Before this happened, of which I have just told you, there 
came news to the host which greatly saddened the barons and 
the other folk, viz., that Fulk, the good man, the holy man, 
who first preached the Crusade, had made an end and was 

And after this adventure, there came to the host a com 
pany of very good and worthy people from the empire of 
Germany, of whose arrival they of the host were full fain. 
There came the Bishop of Halberstadt, Count Bertrand of 
Katzenelenbogen, Gamier of Borland, Thierri of Loos, 
Henry of Orme, Thierri of Diest, Roger of Suitre, Alexander 
of Villers, Ulric of Tone, and many other good folk, whose 
names are not recorded in this book. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 19 


Then were the ships and transports apportioned by the 
barons. Ah, God! what fine war-horses were put therein. 
And when the ships were fulfilled with arms and provisions, 
and knights and sergeants, the shields were ranged round the 
bulwarks and castles of the ships, and the banners displayed, 
many and fair. 

And be it known to you that the vessels carried more than 
three hundred petraries and mangonels, and all such engines 
as are needed for the taking of cities, in great plenty. Never 
did finer fleet sail from any port. And this was in the octave 
of the Feast of St. Remigius (October) in the year of the In 
carnation of Jesus Christ twelve hundred and two. Thus 
did they sail from the port of Venice, as you have been told. 

On the Eve of St. Martin (loth November) they came 
before Zara in Sclavonia, and beheld the city enclosed by 
high walls and high towers; and vainly would you have 
sought for a fairer city, or one of greater strength, or richer. 
And when the pilgrims saw it, they marvelled greatly, and 
said one to another, How could such a city be taken by 
force, save by the help of God himself? 

The first ships that came before the city cast anchor, and 
waited for the others ; and in the morning the day was very 
fine and very clear, and all the galleys came up with the 
transports, and the other ships which were behind; and they 
took the port by force, and broke the chain that defended it 
and was very strong and well-wrought; and they landed in 
such sort that the port was between them and the town. 
Then might you have seen many a knight and many a ser 
geant swarming out of the ships, and taking from the trans 
ports many a good war-horse, and many a rich tent and 
many a pavilion. Thus did the host encamp. And Zara 
was besieged on St. Martin s Day (nth November 1202). 

At this time all the barons had not yet arrived. Thus the 
Marquis of Montferrat had remained behind for some business 
that detained him. And Stephen of the Pe?che had re 
mained at Venice sick, and Matthew of Montmorency. 
When they were healed of their sickness Matthew of Mont 
morency came to rejoin the host at Zara; but Stephen of the 
Perche dealt less worthily, for he abandoned the host, and 

2o Memoirs of the Crusades 

went to sojourn in Apulia. With him went Rotrou of Mont* 
fort and Ives of the Jaille, and many others, who were much 
blamed therein; and they journeyed to Syria in the follow 
ing spring. 1 


On the day following the feast of St. Martin, certain of the 
people of Zara came forth, and spoke to the Doge of Venice, 
who was in his pavilion, and said to him that they would 
yield up the city and all their goods their lives being 
spared to his mercy. And the Doge replied that he would 
not accept these conditions, nor any conditions, save by con 
sent of the counts and barons, with whom he would go and 

While he went to confer with the counts and barons, that 
party, of whom you have already heard, who wished to dis 
perse the host, spoke to the envoys and said, " Why should 
you surrender your city? The pilgrims will not attack you 
-have no care of them. If you can defend yourselves 
against the Venetians, you will be safe enough." And they 
chose one of themselves, whose name was Robert of Boves, 
who went to the walls of the city, and spoke the same words. 
Therefore the envoys returned to the city, and the negotia 
tions were broken off. 

The Doge of Venice, when he came to the counts and 
barons, said to them: " Signers, the people who are therein 
desire to yield the city to my mercy, on condition only that 
their lives are spared. But I will enter into no agreement 
with them neither this nor any other save with your con 
sent." And the barons answered: Sire, we advise you to 
accept these conditions, and we even beg of you so to do." 
He said he would do so; and they all returned together to 
the pavilion of the Doge to make the agreement, and found 
that the envoys had gone away by the advice of those who 
wished to disperse the host. 

Then rose the abbot of Vaux, of the order of the Cister 
cians, and said to them: " Lords, I forbid you, on the part 
of the Pope of Rome, to attack this city; for those within it 

1 Literally, " in the passage of March," i.e. among the pilgrims who 
periodically started for the Holy Land in March. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 21 

are Christians, and you are pilgrims." When the Doge 
heard this, he was very wroth, and much disturbed, and he 
said to the counts and barons: " Signers, I had this city, by 
their own agreement, at my mercy, and your people have 
broken that agreement; you have covenanted to help me to 
conquer it, and I summon you to do so." 

Whereon the counts and barons all spoke at once, together 
with those who were of their party, and said: " Great is the 
outrage of those who have caused this agreement to be 
broken, and never a day has passed that they have not tried 
to break up the host. Now are we shamed if we do not help 
to take the city." And they came to the Doge, and said: 
" Sire, we will help you to take the city in despite of those 
who would let and hinder us." 

Thus was the decision taken. The next morning the host 
encamped before the gates of the city, and set up their 
petraries and mangonels, and other engines of war, which 
they had in plenty, and on the side of the sea they raised 
ladders from the ships. Then they began to throw stones at 
the walls of the city and at the towers. So did the assault 
last for about five days. Then were the sappers set to mine 
one of the towers, and began to sap the wall. When those 
within the city saw this, they proposed an agreement, such 
as they had before refused by the advice of those who wished 
to break up the host. 


Thus did the city surrender to the mercy of the Doge, on 
condition only that all lives should be spared. Then came 
the Doge to the counts and barons, and said to them: 
1 Signers, we have taken this city by the grace of God, and 
your own. It is now winter, and we cannot stir hence till 
Eastertide ; for we should find no market in any other place ; 
and this city is very rich, and well furnished with all supplies. 
Let us therefore divide it in the midst, and we will take one 
half, and you the other." 

As he had spoken, so was it done. The Venetians took 
the part of the city towards the port, where were the ships, 
and the Franks took the other part. There were quarters 

22 Memoirs of the Crusades 

assigned to each, according as was right and convenient 
And the host raised the camp, and went to lodge in the city. 

On the third day after they were all lodged, there befell a 
great misadventure in the host, at about the hour of vespers ; 
for there began a fray, exceeding fell and fierce, between the 
Venetians and the Franks, and they ran to arms from all 
sides. And the fray was so fierce that there were but few 
streets in which battle did not rage with swords and lances 
and cross-bows and darts; and many people were killed and 

But the Venetians could not abide the combat, and they 
began to suffer great losses. Then the men of mark, who did 
not want this^viljojiefall, came fully armed into the strife, 
and began fe^eparate trie combatants; and when they had 
separated them in one place, they began again in another. 
This lasted the better part of the night. Nevertheless with 
great labour and endurance at last they were separated. 
And be it known to you that this was the greatest misfortune 
that ever befell a host, and little did it lack that the host was 
not lost utterly. But_God^nddji^^ it. 

Great was the loss on either side. There was slain a high 
lord of Flanders, whose name was Giles of Landas: he was 
struck in the eye, and with that stroke he died in the fray; 
and many another of whom less was spoken. The Doge of 
Venice and the barons laboured much, during the whole of 
that week, to appease the fray, and they laboured so effectu 
ally that peace was made. Qod_be thanke^Jherefor. 


A fortnight after came to Zara the Marquis Boniface of 
Montferrat, who had not yet joined, and Matthew of Mont- 
morency, and Peter of Bracieux, and many another man of 
note. And after another fortnight came also the envoys 
from Germany, sent by King Philip and the heir of Con 
stantinople. Then the barons, and the Doge of Venice 
assembled in a palace where the Doge was lodged. ^ And the 
envoys addressed them and said: " Lords, King Philip sends 
us to you, as does also the brother of the king s wife, the^son 
of the Emperor of Constantinople. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 23 

" Lords/ says the king, I will send you the brother of 
my wife; and I cemmit him into JheJiaads-oiGod may He 
keep him from deatrTP^ahd into your hands. And because 
you have fared forth for God, and for right, and for justice, 
therefore you are bound, in so far as you are able, to restore 
to their own inheritance those who have been unrighteously 
despoiled. And my wife s brother will make with you the 
best terms ever offered to any people, and give you the most 
puissant help for the recovery of the land oversea. 

" And first, if God grant that you restore him to his in 
heritance, he will place the whole empire of Roumania in 
obedience to Rome, from which it has long been separated. 
Further, he knows that you have spent of your substance, and 
that you are poor, and he_wilj_give you 200^000 jna. rks O f 
silver, and food for all those of the host, both small and great. 
And he, of his own person, will go with you into the land of 
Babylon, or, if you hold that that will be better, send thither 
10,000 men, at his own charges. And this service he will 
perform for one year. And all the days of his life he will 
maintain, at his own charges, five hundred knights in the land 
oversea, to guard that land. 

" Lords, we have full power," said the envoys, " to con 
clude this agreement, if you are willing to conclude it on your 
parts. And be it known to you, that so favourable an agree 
ment has never before been offered to any one; and that he 
that would refuse it can have but small desire of glory and 

The barons and the Doge said they would talk this over; 
and a parliament was called for the morrow. When all were 
assembled, the matter was laid before them. 


Then arose much debate. The abbot of Vaux, of the order 
of the Cistercians, spoke, and that party that wished for the 
dispersal of the host; and they said they would never con 
sent : that it was not to fall on Christians that they had 
their homes, and that they would go to Syria. 

And the other party replied: " Fair lords, in Syria you will 
be able to do nothing; and that you may right well perceive 
by considering how those have fared who abandoned us, and 

24 Memoirs of the Crusades 

sailed from other ports. And be it known to you that it is 
only by way of Babylon, or of Greece, that the land oversea 
can be recovered, if so be that it ever is recovered. And if 
we reject this covenant we shall be shamed to all time." 

There was discord in the host, as you hear. Nor need you 
be surprised if there was discord among the laymen, for the 
white monks of the order of Citeaux were also at issue 
among themselves in the host. The abbot of Loos, who was 
a holy man and a man of note, and other abbots who held 
with him, prayed and besought the people, for pity s sake, 
and the sake of God, to keep the host together, and agree 
to the proposed convention, in that it afforded the best 
means by which the land oversea might be recovered; 
while the abbot of Vaux, on the other hand, and those who 
held with him, preached full oft, and declared that all this 
was naught, and that the host ought to go to the land of Syria, 
and there do what they could. 

Then came the Marquis of Montferrat, and Baldwin Count 
of Flanders and Hainault, and Count Lewis, and Count Hugh 
of St. Paul, and those who held with them, and they de 
clared that they would enter into the proposed covenant, for 
that they should be shamed if they refused. So they went 
to the Doge s hostel, and the envoys were summoned, and 
the covenant, in such terms as you have already heard, was 
confirmed by oath, and by charters with seals appended. 

And the book tells you that only twelve persons took the 
oaths on the side of the Franks, for more (of sufficient note) 
could not be found. Among the twelve were first the Mar 
quis of Montferrat, the Count Baldwin of Flanders, the Count 
Lewis of Blois and of Chartres, and the Count of St. Paul, 
and eight others who held with them. Thus was the agree 
ment made, and the charters prepared, and a term fixed for 
the arrival of the heir of Constantinople; and the term so 
fixed was the fifteenth day after the following Easter. 



Thus did the host sojourn at Zara all that winter (1202- 
1203) in the face of the King of Hungary. And be it known 
to you that the hearts of the people were not at peace, for 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 25 

the one party used all efforts to break up the host, and the 
other to make it hold together. 

Many of the lesser folk escaped in the vessels of the mer 
chants. In one ship escaped wellnigh five hundred, and they 
were all drowned, and so lost. Another company escaped 
by land, and thought to pass through Sclavonia; and the 
peasants of that land fell upon them, and killed many, so 
that the remainder came back flying to the host. Thus did 
the host go greatly dwindling day by day. At that time a 
great lord of the host, who was from Germany, Gamier of 
Borlande by name, so wrought that he escaped in a merchant 
vessel, and abandoned the host, whereby he incurred great 

X X /..., Q 

blame. ,. 

Not long afterwards, a great baron of France, Renaud of 
Montmirail by name, besought so earnestly, with the counten 
ance of Count Lewis, that he was sent to Syria on an embas- 
sage in one of the vessels of the fleet; and he swore with his 
right hand on holy relics, he and all the knights who went 
with him, that within fifteen days after they had arrived in 
Syria, and delivered their message, they would return to the 
host. On this condition he left the host, and with him 
Hervee of the Chastel, his nephew, William the vidame of 
Chartres, Geoffry of Beaumont, John of Frouville, Peter his 
brother, and many others. And the oaths that they swore 
were not kept; for they did not rejoin the host. 

Then came to the host news that was heard right willingly, 
viz., that the fleet from Flanders, of which mention has been 
made above, had arrived at Marseilles. And John of Nele, 
Castellan of Bruges, who was captain of that host, and 
Thierri, who was the son of Count Philip of Flanders, and 
Nicholas of Mailly, advised the Count of Flanders, their lord, 
that they would winter at Marseilles, and asked him to let 
them know what was his will, and said that whatever was his 
will, that they would do. And he told them, by the advice 
of the Doge of Venice and the other barons, that they should 
sail at the end of the following March, and come to meet him 
at the port of Moton in Roumania. Alas ! they acted very 
evilly, for never did they keep their word, but went to Syria, 
where, as they well knew, they would achieve nothing. 

Now be it known to you, lords, that if God had not loved 
the host, it could never have held together, seeing how many 
people wished evil to it ! 

26 Memoirs of the Crusades 



Then the barons spoke together and said that they would 
send to Rome, to the Pope, because he had taken the capture 
of Zara in evil part. And they chose as envoys such as they 
knew were fitted for this office, two knights, and two clerks. 
Of the two clerks one was Nevelon, Bishop of Soissons, and 
the other Master John of Noyon, who was chancellor to Count 
Baldwin of Flanders; and of the knights one was John of 
Friaize, the other Robert of Boves. These swore on holy 
relics that they would perform their embassage loyally and 
in good faith, and that they would come back to the host. 

Three kept their oath right well, and the fourth evilly, and 
this one was Robert of Boves. For he executed his office as 
badly as he could, and perjured himself, and went away to 
Syria as others had done. But the remaining three executed 
their office right well, and delivered their message as the 
barons had directed, and said to the Pope: " The barons cry 
mercy to you for the capture of Zara, for they acted as people 
who could do no better, owing to the default of those who had 
gone to other ports, and because, had they not acted as they 
did, they could not have held the host together. And as to 
this they refer themselves to you, as to their good Father, 
that you should tell them what are your commands, which 
.r-they are ready to perform." 

And the Pope said to the envoys that he knew full well 
that it was through the default of others that the host had 
been impelled to do this great mischief, and that he had them 
in great pity. And then he notified to the barons and pilgrims 
that he sent them his blessing, and absolved them as his 
sons, and commanded and besought them to hold the host 
together, inasmuch as he well knew that without that host 
God s service could not be done. And he gave full powers to 
Nevelon, Bishop of Soissons, and Master John of Noyon, to 
bind and to unloose the pilgrims until the cardinal joined the 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 27 

L-J & /%*K * 


So much time had passed, that it was now Lent, and the 
host prepared their fleet to sail jit Ja,seiC "When the ships 
were laden on the day after Easter (yth April 1203), the 
pilgrims encamped by the port, and the Venetians destroyed 
the city, and the walls and the towers. 

Then there befell an adventure which weighed heavily 
upon the host; for one of the great barons of the host, by 
name Simon of Montfort, had made private covenant wittT" 
the King of Hungary, who was at enmity with those of thej 
host, and went to him, abandoning the host. With him 
went Guy of Montfort his brother, Simon of Nauphle and 
Robert Mauvoisin, and Dreux of Cressonacq, and the abbot 
of Vaux, who was a monk of the order of the Cistercians, and 
many others. And not long after another great lord of the 
host, called Enguerrand of Boves, joined the King of Hun 
gary, together with Hugh, Enguerrand s brother, and such 
of the other people of their country as they could lead away. 

These left the host, as you have just heard; and this was 
a great misfortune to the host, and to such as left it a great 

Then the ships and transports began to depart; and it was 
settled that they should take port at Corfu, an island of 
Roumania, and that the first to arrive should wait for the 
last; and so it was done. 

Before the Doge, the Marquis, and the galleys left Zara, 
Alexius, the son of the Emperor Isaac of Constantinople, had 
arrived thither. He was sent by the King Philip of Ger 
many, and received with great joy and great honour; and 
the Doge gave him as many galleys and ships as he required. 
So they left the port of Zara, and had a fair wind, and sailed 
onwards till they took port at Duras. And those of the land, 
when they saw their lord, yielded up the city right willingly 
and sware fealty, to him. 

And they departed thence and came to Corfu, and found 
there the host encamped before the city; and those of the 
host had spread their tents and pavilions, and taken the 
horses out of the transports for ease and refreshment. When 
they heard that the son of the Emperor of Constantinople 

2 8 Memoirs of the Crusades 

had arrived in the port, then might you have seen many a 
good knight and many a good sergeant leading many a good 
war-horse and going to meet him. Thus they received him 
with very great joy, and much high honour. And he had his 
tent pitched in the midst of the host; and quite near was 
pitched the tent of the Marquis of Montferrat, to whose ward 
he had been commended by King Philip, who had his sister 
to wife. 


The host sojourned thus for three weeks in that island, 
which was very rich and plenteous. And while they 
"Sojourned, there happened a misadventure fell and grievous. 
For a great part of those who wished to break up the host, 
and had aforetime been hostile to it, spoke together and said 
that the adventure to be undertaken seemed very long and 
very perilous, and that they, for their part, would remain in 
the island, suffering the host to depart, and that when the 
host had so departed they would, through the people of 
Corfu, send to Count Walter of Brienne, who then held 
Brandis, so that he might send ships to take them thither. 

I cannot tell you the names of all those who wrought in 
this matter, but I will name some among the most notable 
of the chiefs, viz., Odo of Champlitte, of Champagne, James 
of Avesnes, Peter of Amiens, Guy the Castellan of Coucy, 
Oger of Saint-Che*ron, Guy of Chappes and Clerembeau his 
nephew, William of Aunoi, Peter Coiseau, Guy of Pesmes 
and Edmund his brother, Guy of Conflans, Richard of 
Dampierre, Odo his brother, and many more who had 
promised privily to be of their party, but who dared not for 
shame openly so to avow themselves; in such sort that the 
book testifies that more than half the host were in this mind. 

And when the Marquis of Montferrat heard thereof, and 
Count Baldwin of Flanders, and Count Lewis, and the Count 
of St. Paul, and the barons who held with them, they were 
greatly troubled, and said : Lords, we are in evil case. If 
these people depart from us, after so many who have departed 
from us aforetime, our host is doomed, and we shall make no 
conquests. Let us then go to them, and fall at their feet, and 
cry to them for mercy, and for God s sake to have compas- 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 29 

sion upon themselves and upon us, and not to dishonour ? 
themselves, and ravish from us the deliverance of the land 



Thus did the council decide ; and they went, all together, 
to a valley where those of the other part were holding their 
parliament; and they took with them the son of the Emperor 
of Constantinople, and all the bishops and all the abbots of 
the host. And when they had come to the place they dis 
mounted and went forward, and the barons fell at the feet of 


those of the other part, greatly weeping, and said they would 
not stir till those of the other part had promised not to depart 
from them. 

And when those of the other part saw this, they were filled 
with very great compassion; and they wept very bitterly at 
seeing their lords, and their kinsmen, and their friends, thus 
lying at their feet. So they said they would consult to 
gether, and drew somewhat apart, and there communed. 
And the sum of their communing was this : that they would 
remain with the host till Michaelmas, on condition that the 
other part would swear, loyally, on holy relics, that from 
that day and thenceforward, at whatever hour they might 
be summoned to do so, they would in all good faith, and 
without guile, within fifteen days, furnish ships wherein the 
non-contents might betake themselves to Syria. 

Thus was covenant made and sworn to; and then was 
there great joy throughout all the host. And all gat them 
selves to the ships, and the horses were put into the trans 



Then did they sail from the port of Corfu on the eve of 
Pentecost (24th May), which was twelve hundred and three tf 
years after the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ. And 
there were all the ships assembled, and all the transports, 
and all the galleys of the host, and many other ships of mer 
chants that fared with them. And the day was fine and 
clear, and the wind soft and favourable, and they unfurled 
all their sails to the breeze. 

And Geoflry, the Marshal of Champagne, who dictates this 
work, and has never lied therein by one word to his know- 

30 Memoirs of the Crusades 

ledge, and who was moreover present at all the councils held 
he bears witness that never was yet seen so fair a sight. 
And well might it appear that such a fleet would conquer 
and gain lands, for, far as the eye could reach, there was no 
space without sails, and ships, and vessels, so that the hearts 
of men rejoiced greatly. 

Thus they sailed over the sea till they came to Malea, to 
straits that are by the sea. And there they met two ships 
with pilgrims, and knights and sergeants returning from 
Syria, and they were of the parties that had gone to Syria by 
Marseilles. And when these saw our fleet so rich and well- 
appointed, they conceived such shame that they dared not 
show themselves. And Count Baldwin of Flanders sent a 
boat from his ship to ask what people they were; and they 
said who they were. 

And a sergeant let himself down from his ship into the 
boat, and said to those in the ship, " I cry quits to you for 
any goods of mine that may remain in the ship, for I am 
going with these people, for well I deem that they will 
conquer lands." Much did we make of the sergeant, and 
gladly was he received in the host. For well may it be said, 
that even after following a thousand crooked ways a man 
may find his way right in the end. 

The host fared forward till it came to Nigra (Negropont). 
Nigra is a very fair island, and there is on it a very good city 
called Negropont. Here the barons took council. Then 
went forward the Marquis Boniface of Montferrat, and Count 
Baldwin of Flanders and Hainault, with a great part of the 
transports and galleys, taking with them the son of the 
Emperor Isaac of Constantinople: and they came to an 
island called Andros, and there landed. The knights took 
their arms, and over-rode the country; and the people of 
the land came to crave mercy of the son of the Emperor of 
Constantinople, and gave so much of their goods that they 
made peace with him. 

Then they returned to the ships, and sailed over the sea; 
when a great mishap befell, for a great lord of the host, 
whose name was Guy, Castellan of Coucy, died, and was cast 
into the sea. 

The other ships, which had not sailed thitherward, had 
entered the passage of Abydos, and it is there that the 
straits of St. George (the Dardanelles) open into the great 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 31 

sea. And they sailed up the straits to a city called Abydos, 
which lies on the straits of St. George, towards Turkey, and 
is very fair, and well situate. There they took port and 
landed, and those of the city came to meet them, and sur 
rendered the city, as men without stomach to defend them 
selves. And such guard was established that those of the 
city lost not one stiver current. 

They sojourned there eight days to wait for the ships 
transports and galleys that had not yet come up. And while 
they thus sojourned, they took corn from the land, for it was 
the season of harvest, and great was their need thereof, for 
before they had but little. And within those eight days all 
the ships and barons had come up. God gave them fair 



All started from the port of Abydos together. Then 
might you have seen the Straits of St. George (a>s it were) in 
flower with ships and galleys sailing upwards, and the beauty 
thereof was a great marvel to behold. Thus they sailed up 
the Straits of St. George till they came, on St. John the 
Baptist s Eve, in June (23rd June 1203) to St. Stephen, an 
abbey that lay three leagues from Constantinople. There 
had those on board the ships and galleys and transports full 
sight of Constantinople; and they took port and anchored 
their vessels. 

Now you may know that those who had never before seen 
Constantinople looked upon it very earnestly, for they never 
thought there could be in all the world so rich a city; and 
they marked the high walls and strong towers that enclosed 
it round about, and the rich palaces, and mighty churches 
of which there were so many that no one would have believed 
it who had not seen it with his eyes and the height and the 
length of that city which above all others was sovereign. 
And be it known to you, that no man there was of such hardi 
hood but his flesh trembled; and it was no wonder, for 
never was so great an enterprise undertaken by any people 
since the creation of the world. 

Then landed the counts and barons and the Doge of 
Venice, and a parliament was held in the church of St. 

32 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Stephen. There were many opinions set forth, this way and 
that. All the words then spoken shall not be recorded in this 
book; but in the end the Doge rose on his feet and said: 
" Signors, I know the state of this land better than you do, 
for I have been here erewhile. We have undertaken the 
greatest enterprise, and the most perilous, that ever people 
have undertaken. Therefore it behoves us to go to work 
warily. Be it known to you that if we go on dry ground, 
the land is great and large, and our people are poor and ill- 
provided. Thus they will disperse to look for food; and the 
people of the land are in great multitude, and we cannot 
keep such good watch but that some of ours will be lost. 
Nor are we in case to lose any, for our people are but few 
indeed for the work in hand. 

" Now there are islands close by which you can see from 
here, and these are inhabited, and produce corn, and food, 
and other things. Let us take port there, and gather the 
corn and provisions of the land. And when we have col 
lected our supplies, let us go before the city, and do as our 
Lord shall provide. For he that has supplies, wages war 
with more certainty than he that has none. 3 To this counsel 
the lords and barons agreed, and all went back to their ships 
and vessels. 


They rested thus that night. And in the morning, on the 
day of the feast of our Lord St. John the Baptist in June 
(24th June 1203), the banners and pennants were flown on 
the castles of the ships, and the coverings taken from the 
shields, and the bulwarks of the ships garnished. Every one 
looked to his arms, such as he should use, for well each man 
knew that full soon he would have need of them. 

The sailors weighed the anchors, and spread the sails to 
the wind, and God gave them a good wind, such as was con 
venient to them. Thus they passed before Constantinople, 
and so near to the walls and towers that we shot at many of 
their vessels. There were so many people on the walls and 
towers that it seemed as if there could be no more people (in 
the world). 

Then did God our Lord set to naught the counsel of the day 
before, and keep us from sailing to the islands : that counsel 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 33 

fell to naught as if none had ever heard thereof. For lo, our 

\~j * 

ships made for the mainland as straight as ever they could, 
and took port before a palace of the Emperor Alexius, at a 
place called Chalcedon. This was in face of Constantinople, 
on the other side of the straits, towards Turkey. The palace^ 
was one of the most beautiful and delectable that ever eyes 
could see, with every delight therein that the heart of man 
could desire, and convenient for the house of a prince. 

The counts and barons landed and lodged themselves in 
the palace; and in the city round about, the main part 
pitched their tents. Then were the horses taken out of the 
transports, and the knights and sergeants got to land with all 
their arms, so that none remained in the ships save the 
mariners only. The country was fair, and rich, and well 
supplied with all good things, and the sheaves of corn (which 
had been reaped) were in the fields, so that all and they 
stood in no small need might take thereof. 

They sojourned thus in that palace the following day; and 
on the third day God gave them a good wind, and the 
mariners raised their anchors, and spread their sails to the 
wind. They went thus up the straits, a good league above 
Constantinople, to a palace that belonged to the Emperor 
Alexius, and was called Scutari. There the ships anchored, 
and the transports, and all the galleys. The horsemen who 
had lodged in the palace of Chalcedon went along the shore 
by land. 

The host of the French encamped thus on the straits of 
St. George, at Scutari, and above it. And when the Emperor 
Alexius saw this, he caused his host to issue from Constanti 
nople, and encamp over against us on the other side of the 
straits, and there pitched his tents, so that we might not 
take land against him by force. The host of the French 
sojourned thus for nine days, and those obtained supplies 
who needed them, and that was every one in the host. 


During this time, a company of good and trustworthy men 
issued (from the camp) to guard the host, for fear it should 
be attacked, and the foragers searched the country. In 
the said company were Odo of Champlitte, of Champagne, 
and William his brother, and Oger of Saint-Ch6ron, and 

34 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Manasses of 1 Isle, and Count Girard, a count of Lombardy, 
a retainer of the Marquis of Montferrat; and they had with 
them at least eighty knights who were good men and true. 

And they espied, at the foot of a mountain, some three 
leagues distant from the host, certain tents belonging to the 
Grand Duke of the Emperor of Constantinople, who had with 
him at least five hundred Greek knights. When our people 
saw them, they formed their men into four battalions, and 
decided to attack. And when the Greeks saw this, they 
formed their battalions, and arrayed themselves in rank 
before their tents, and waited. And our people went for 
ward and fell upon them right vigorously. 

By the help of God our Lord, this fight lasted but a little 
while, and the Greeks turned their backs. They were dis 
comfited at the first onset, and our people pursued them for 
a full great league. There they won plenty of horses and 
stallions, and palfreys, and mules, and tents and pavilions, 
and such spoil as is usual in such case. So they returned to 
the host, where they were right well received, and their 
spoils were divided, as was fit. 



The next day after, the Emperor Alexius sent an envoy 
with letters to the counts and to the barons. This envoy 
was called Nicholas Roux, and he was a native of Lombardy. 
He found the barons in the rich palace of Scutari, where they 
were holding council, and he saluted them on the part of the 
Emperor Alexius of Constantinople, and tendered his letters 
to the Marquis of Montferrat who received them. And the 
letters were read before all the barons; and there were in 
them words, written after various manners, which the book 
does not (here) relate, and at the end of the other words so 
written, came words of credit, accrediting the bearer of the 
letters, whose name was Nicholas Roux. 

" Fair sir," said the barons, we have seen your letters, 
and they tell us that we are to give credit to what you say, 
and we credit you right well. Now speak as it pleases you. 3 

And the envoy was standing before the barons, and spoke 
thus: " Lords," said he, " the Emperor Alexius would have 
you know that he is well aware that you are the best people 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 35 

uncrowned, and come from the best land on earth. And he 
marvels much why, and for what purpose, you have come 
into his land and kingdom. For you are Christians, and he 
is a Christian, and well he knows that you are on your way to 
deliver the Holy Land oversea, and the Holy Cross, and the 
Sepulchre. If you are poor and in want, he will right will 
ingly give you of his food and substance, provided you depart 
out of his land. Neither would he otherwise wish to do you 
any hurt, though he has full power therein, seeing that if you 
were twenty times as numerous as you are, you would not be 
able to get away without utter discomfiture if so be that he 
wished to harm you." 

By agreement and desire of the other barons, and of the 
Doge of Venice, then rose to his feet Conon of Bethune, who 
was a good knight, and wise, and very eloquent, and he re 
plied to the envoy: Fair sir, you have told us that your 
lord marvels much why our signors and barons should have 
entered into his kingdom and land. Into his land they have 
not entered, for he holds this land wrongfully and wickedly, 
and against God and against reason. It belongs to his 
nephew, who sits upon a throne among us, and is the son of 
his brother, the Emperor Isaac. But if he is willing to throw 
himself on the mercy of his nephew, and to give him back his 
crown and empire, then we will pray his nephew to forgive 
him, and bestow upon him as much as will enable him to live 
wealthily. And if you come not as the bearer of such a 
message, then be not so bold as to come here again." So 
the envoy departed and went back to Constantinople, to the 
Emperor Alexius. 


The barons consulted together on the morrow, and said 
that they would show the young Alexius, the son of the 
Emperor of Constantinople, to the people of the city. So 
they assembled all the galleys. The Doge of Venice and the 
Marquis of Montferrat entered into one, and took with them 
Alexius, the son of the Emperor Isaac; and into the other 
galleys entered the knights and barons, as many as would. 

They went thus quite close to the walls of Constantinople 
and showed the youth to the people of the Greeks, and said, 

3 6 Memoirs of the Crusades 7 

^ feXf (5LJ&c( 

1 Behold your natural lord ; and be it known to you that we 
have not come to do you harm,, but have come to guard and 
defend you, if so be that you return to your duty. For he 
whom you now obey as your lord holds rule by wrong and 
wickedness, against God and reason. And you know full 
well that he has dealt treasonably with him who is your lord 
and his brother, that he has blinded his eyes and reft from 
him his empire by wrong and wickedness. Now behold the 
rightful heir. If you hold with him, you will be doing as 
you ought; and if not we will do to you the very worst that 
we can." But for fear and terror of the Emperor Alexius, not 
one person on the land or in the city made show as if he held 
for the prince. So all went back to the host, and each 
sought his quarters. 

On the morrow, when they had heard mass, they assembled 
in parliament, and the parliament was held on horseback in 
the midst of the fields. There might you have seen many a 
fine war-horse, and many a good knight thereon. And the 
council was held to discuss the order of the battalions, how 
many they should have, and of what strength. Many were 
the words said on one side and the other. But in the end it 
was settled that the advanced guard should be given to 
Baldwin of Flanders, because he had a very great number of 
good men, and archers and crossbowmen, more than any 
other chief that was in the host. 

And after, it was settled that Henry his Brother, and 
Matthew of Walincourt, and Baldwin of Beauvoir, and many 
other good knights of their land and country, should form 
the second division. 

The third division was formed by Count Hugh of St. Paul, 
Peter of Amiens his nephew, Eustace of Canteleu, Anselm of 
Cayeux, and many good knights of their land and country. 

The fourth division was formed by Count Lewis of Blois 
and Chartres, and was very numerous and rich and redoubt 
able; for he had placed therein a great number of good 
knights and men of worth. 

The fifth division was formed by Matthew of Montmorency 
and the men of Champagne. GeofFry the Marshal of Cham 
pagne formed part of it, and Oger of Saint-Cheron, Manasses 
of lisle, Miles the Brebant, Macaire of Sainte-Menehould, 
John Foisnons, Guy of Chappes, Cleremband his nephew, 
Robert of Ronsoi: all these people formed part of the fifth 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 37 

division. Be it known to you that there was many a good 
knight therein. 

The sixth division was formed by the people of Burgundy. 
In this division were Odo the Champenois of Champlitte, 
William his brother, Guy of Pesmes, Edmond his brother, 
Otho of la Roche, Richard of Dampierre, Odo his brother, 
Guy of Confians, and the people of their land and country. 

The seventh division, which was very large, was under the 
command of the Marquis of Montferrat. In it were the 
Lombards and Tuscans and the Germans, and all the people 
who were from beyond Mont Cenis to Lyons on the Rhone. 
All these formed part of the division under the marquis, and 
it was settled that they should form the rearguard. 


The day was fixed on which the host should embark on 
the ships and transports to take the land by force, and either 
live or die. And be it known to you that the enterprise to be 
achieved was one of the most redoubtable ever attempted. 
Then did the bishops and clergy speak to the people, and tell 
them how they must confess, and make each one his testa 
ment, seeing that no one knew what might be the will of God 
concerning him. And this was done right willingly through 
out the host, and very piously. 

The term fixed was now come; and the knights went on 
board the transports with their war-horses; and they were 
fully armed, with their helmets laced, and the horses covered 
with their housings, and saddled. All the other folk, who 
were of less consequence in battle, were on the great ships; 
and the galleys were fully armed and made ready. 

The morning was fair a little after the rising of the sun; 
and the Emperor Alexius stood waiting for them on the other 
side, with great forces, and everything in order. And the 
trumpets sound, and every galley takes a transport in tow, so 
as to reach the other side more readily. None ask who shall 
go first, but each makes the land as soon as he can. The 
knights issue from the transports, and leap into the sea up to 
their waists, fully armed, with helmets laced, and lances in 
hand; and the good archers, and the good sergeants, and the 
good crossbowmen, each in his company, land so soon as they 
touch ground. 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

The Greeks made a goodly show of resistance; but when 
it came to the lowering of the lances, they turned their backs, 
and went away flying, and abandoned the shore. And be it 
known to you that never was port more proudly taken. 
Then began the mariners to open the ports of the trans 
ports, and let down the bridges, and take out the horses ; and 
the knights began to mount, and they began to marshal the 
divisions of the host in due order. 


Count Baldwin of Flanders and Hainault, with the ad 
vanced guard, rode forward, and the other divisions of the 
host after him, each in due order of march; and they came 
to where the Emperor Alexius had been encamped. But he 
had turned back towards Constantinople, and left his tents 
and pavilions standing. And there our people had much 
spoil. ^ (^ 

Our barons were minded to encamp by the port before the 
tower of Galata, where the chain was fixed that closed the 
port of Constantinople. And be it known to you, that any 
one must perforce pass that chain before he could enter into 
the port. Well did our barons then perceive that if they did 
not take the tower, and break the chain, they were but as 
dead men, and in very evil case. So they lodged that night 
before the tower, and in the Jewry that is called Stenon, 
where there was a good city, and very rich. 

Well did they keep guard during the night; and on the 
morrow, at the hour of tierce, those who were in the tower of 
Galata made a sortie, and those who were in Constantinople 
came to their help in barges; and our people ran to arms. 
There came first to the onset James of Avesnes and his men 
on foot; and be it known to you that he was fiercely charged, 
and wounded by a lance in the face, and in peril of death. 
And one of his knights, whose name was Nicholas of Jenlain, 
gat to horse, and came to his lord s rescue, and succoured 
him right well, and so won great honour. 

Then a cry was raised in the host, and our people ran to 
gether from all sides, and drove back the foe with great fury, 
so that many were slain and taken. And some of them did 
not go back to the tower, but ran to the barges by which they 
had come, and there many were drowned, and some escaped. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 39 

As to those who went back to the tower, the men of our host 
pressed them so hard that they could not shut the gate. 
Then a terrible fight began again at the gate, and our people 
took it by force, and made prisoners of all those in the tower. 
Many were there killed and taken. 


So was the tower of Galata taken, and the port of Con 
stantinople won by force. Much were those of the host com 
forted thereby, and much did they praise the Lord God ; and 
greatly were those of the city discomforted. And on the 
next day, the ships, the vessels, the galleys and the trans 
ports were drawn into the port. 

Then did those of the host take council together to settle 
what thing they should do, and whether they should attack 
the city by sea or by land. The Venetians were firmly 
minded that the scaling ladders ought to be planted on the 
ships, and all the attack made from the side by the sea. The 
French, on the other hand, said that they did not know so 
well how to help themselves on sea as on land, but that when 
they had their horses and their arms they could help them 
selves on land right well. So in the end it was devised that 
the Venetians should attack by sea, and the barons and 
those of the host by land. 

They sojourned thus for four days. On the fifth day, the 
whole host were armed, and the divisions advanced on horse 
back, each in the order appointed, along the harbour, till 
they came to the palace of Blachernse; and the ships drew 
inside the harbour till they came over against the self-same 
place, and this was near to the end of the harbour. And 
there is at that place a river that flows into the sea, and can 
only be passed by a bridge of stone. The Greeks had broken 
down the bridge, and the barons caused the host to labour 
all that day and all that night in repairing the bridge. 
Thus was the bridge repaired, and in the morning the divi 
sions were armed, and rode one after the other in the order 
appointed, and came before the city. And no one came out 
from the city against them; and this was a great marvel, 
seeing that for every man that was in the host there were 
over two hundred men in the city. 

Then did the barons decide that they should quarter them- 

40 Memoirs of the Crusades 

selves between the palace of Blachernse and the castle of 
Boemond, which was an abbey enclosed with walls. So the 
tents and pavilions were pitched which was a right proud 
thing to look upon; for of Constantinople, which had three 
leagues of front towards the land, the whole host could attack 
no more than one of the gates. And the Venetians lay on 
the sea, in ships and vessels, and raised their ladders, and 
mangonels, and petraries, and made order for their assault 
right well. And the barons for their part made ready their 
petraries and mangonels on land. 

And be it known to you that they did not have their time 
in peace and quiet; for there passed no hour of the night or 
day but one of the divisions had to stand armed before the 
gate, to guard the engines, and provide against attack. 
And, notwithstanding all this, the Greeks ceased not to attack 
them, by this gate and by others, and held them so short 
that six or seven times a day the whole host was forced to 
run to arms. Nor could they forage for provisions more 
than four bow-shots distance from the camp. And their 
stores were but scanty, save of flour and bacon, and of 
those they had a little; and of fresh meat none at all, save 
what they got from the horses that were killed. And be it 
known to you that there was only food generally in the host 
for three weeks. Thus were they in very perilous case, for 
never did so few people besiege so many people in any city. 


Then did they bethink themselves of a very good device; 
for they enclosed the whole camp with good lists, and good 
palisades, and good barriers, and were thus far stronger and 
much more secure. The Greeks meanwhile came on to the 
attack so frequently that they gave them no rest, and those 
of the host drove them back with great force; and every 
time that the Greeks issued forth they lost heavily. 

One day the Burgundians were on guard, and the Greeks 
made an attack upon them, with part of the best forces that 
they had. And the Burgundians ran upon the Greeks and 
drove them in very fiercely, and followed so close to the gate 
that stones of great weight were hurled upon them. There 
was taken one of the best Greeks of the city, whose name was 
Constantine Lascaris; William of Neuilly took him all 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 41 

mounted upon his horse. And there did William of Champ- 
litte have his arm broken with a stone, and great pity it was, 
for he was very brave and very valiant. 

I cannot tell you of all the good strokes that were there 
stricken, nor of all the wounded, nor all the dead. But before 
the fight was over, there came into it a knight of the following 
of Henry, the brother of Count Baldwin of Flanders and 
Hainault, and his name was Eustace of the Marchais; and 
he was armed only in padded vest and steel cap, with his 
shield at his neck ; and he did so well in the fray that he won 
to himself great honour. Few were the days on which no 
sorties were made; but I cannot tell you of them all. So 
hardly did they hold us, that we could not sleep, nor rest, nor 
eat, save in arms. 

Yet another sortie was made from a gate further up ; and 
there again did the Greeks lose heavily. And there a knight 
was slain, whose name was William of the Gi; and there 
Matthew of Walincourt did right well, and lost his horse, 
which was killed at the drawbridge of the gate; and many 
others who were in that fight did right well. From this gate, 
which was beyond the palace of Blachernse, the Greeks issued 
most frequently, and there Peter of Bracieux gat himself 
more honour than any, because he was quartered the nearest, 
and so came most often into the fray. 


Thus their peril and toil lasted for nearly ten days, until, 
on a Thursday morning (xyth July 1203) all things were 
ready for the assault, and the ladders in trim ; the Venetians 
also had made them ready by sea. The order of the assault 
was so devised, that of the seven divisions, three were to 
guard the camp outside the city, and other four to give the 
assault. The Marquis Boniface of Montferrat guarded the 
camp towards the fields, with the division of the Burgundians, 
the division of the men of Champagne, and Matthew of Mont- 
morency. Count Baldwin of Flanders and Hainault went 
to the assault with his people, and Henry his brother; and 
Count Lewis of Blois and Chartres, and Count Hugh of St. 
Paul, and those who held with them, went also to the assault. 

They planted two ladders at a barbican near the sea ; and 
the wall was well defended by Englishmen and Danes; and 

42 Memoirs of the Crusades 

the attack was stiff and good and fierce. By main strength 
certain knights and two sergeants got up the ladders and 
made themselves masters of the wall; and at least fifteen 
got upon the wall, and fought there, hand to hand, with 
axes and swords, and those within redoubled their efforts, 
and cast them out in very ugly sort, keeping two as prisoners. 
And those of our people who had been taken were led before 
the Emperor Alexius ; much was he pleased thereat. Thus 
did the assault leave matters on the side of the French. 
Many were wounded and many had their bones broken, so 
that the barons were very wroth. 

Meanwhile the Doge of Venice had not forgotten to do his 
part, but had ranged his ships and transports and vessels 
in line, and that line was well three crossbow-shots in 
length; and the Venetians began to draw near to the part of 
the shore that lay under the walls and the towers. Then 
might you have seen the mangonels shooting from the ships 
and transports, and the crossbow bolts flying, and the bows 
letting fly their arrows deftly and well; and those within 
defending the walls and towers very fiercely; and the 
ladders on the ships coming so near that in many places 
swords and lances crossed ; and the tumult and noise were so 
great that it seemed as if the very earth and sea were melting 
together. And be it known to you that the galleys did not 
dare to come to the shore. 


Now may you hear of a strange deed of prowess; for the 
Doge of Venice, who was an old man, and saw naught (seeing 
he was blind), stood, fully armed, on the prow of his galley, 
land had the standard of St. Mark before him; and he cried 


to his people to put him on land, or else that he would do 
justice upon their bodies with his hands. And so they did, 
if or the galley was run aground, and they leapt therefrom, 
;and bore the standard of St. Mark before him on to the land. 
And when the Venetians saw the standard of St. Mark on 
land, and the galley of their lord touching ground before 
them, each held himself for shamed, and they all gat to the 
land; and those in the transports leapt forth, and landed; 
and those in the big ships got into barges, and made for the 
shore, each and all as best they could, Then might you have 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 43 

seen an assault, great and marvellous; and to this bears 
witness Geoffry of Villehardouin, who makes this book, 
that more than forty people told him for sooth that they saw 
the standard of St. Mark of Venice at the top of one of the 
towers, and that no man knew who bore it thither. 

Now hear of a strange miracle: those who are within the 
city fly and abandon the walls, and the Venetians enter in, 
each as fast and as best he can, and seize twenty-five of the 
towers, and man them with their people. And the Doge 
takes a boat, and sends messengers to the barons of the host 
to tell them that he has taken twenty-five towers, and that 
they may know for sooth that such towers cannot be re 
taken. The barons are so overjoyed that they cannot 
believe their ears; and the Venetians begin to send to the 
host in boats the horses and palfreys they have taken. 

When the Emperor Alexius saw that our people had thus 
entered into the city, he sent his people against them in such 
numbers that our people saw they would be unable to endure 
the onset. So they set fire to the buildings between them and 
the Greeks; and the wind blew from our side, and the fire 
began to wax so great that the Greeks could not see our 
people, who retired to the towers they had seized and con 


Then the Emperor Alexius issued from the city, with all his 
forces, by other gates which were at least a league from the 
camp ; and so many began to issue forth that it seemed as if 
the whole world were there assembled. The emperor mar 
shalled his troops in the plain, and they rode towards the 
camp ; and when our Frenchmen saw them coming, they ran 
to arms from all sides. On that day Henry, the brother of 
Count Baldwin and Flanders, was mounting guard over the 
engines of war before the gate of Blachernae, together with 
Matthew of Walincourt, and Baldwin of Beauvoir, and their 
followers. Against their encampment the Emperor Alexius 
had made ready a great number of his people, who were to 
issue by three gates, while he himself should fall upon the 
host from another side. 

Then the six divisions issued from our camp as had been 

44 Memoirs of the Crusades 

devised, and were marshalled in ranks before the palisades: 
the sergeants and squires on foot behind the horses, and the 
archers and crossbowmen in front. And there was a division 
of the knights on foot, for we had at least two hundred who 
were without horses. Thus they stood still before the 
palisades. And this showed great good sense, for if they had 
moved to the attack, the numbers of the enemy were such 
that they must have been overwhelmed and, (as it were,) 
drowned among them. 

It seemed as if the whole plain was covered with troops, 
and they advanced slowly and in order. Well might we 
appear in perilous case, for we had but six divisions, while 
the Greeks had fuUJtqjty, and there was not one of their 
divisions but was large? than any of ours. But ours were 
ordered in such sort that none could attack them save in 
front. And the Emperor Alexius rode so far forward that 
either side could shoot at the other. And when the Doge of 
Venice heard this, he made his people come forth, and leave 
the towers they had taken, and said he would live or die with 
the pilgrims. So he came to the camp, and was himself the 
first to land, and brought with him such of his people as he 

Thus, for a long space, the armies of the pilgrims and of 
the Greeks stood one against the other; for the Greeks did 
not dare to throw themselves upon our ranks, and our 
people would not move from their palisades. And when the 
Emperor Alexius saw this, he began to withdraw his people, 
and when he had rallied them, he turned back. And seeing 
this, the host of the pilgrims began to march towards him 
with slow steps, and the Greek troops began to move back 
wards, and retreated to a palace called Philopas. 

And be it known to you, that never did God save any 
people from such peril as He saved the host that day ; and 
be it known to you further that there was none in the host so 
hardy but he had great joy thereof. Thus did the battle 
remain for that day. As it pleased God nothing further was 
done. The Emperor Alexius returned to the city, and those 
of the host to their quarters the latter taking off their 
armour, for they were weary and overwrought; and they ate 
and drank little, seeing that their store of food was but 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 45 


Now listen to the miracles of our Lord how gracious are 


they whithersoever it pleases Him to perform them! That 
very night the Emperor Alexius of Constantinople took of his 
treasure as much as he could carry, and took with him as 
many of his people as would go, and so fled and abandoned 
the city. And those of the city remained astonied, and they 
drew to the prison in which lay the Emperor Isaac, whose 
eyes had been put out. Him they clothed imperially, and 
bore to the great palace of Blachernse, and seated on a high 
throne; and there they did to him obeisance as their lord. 
Then they took messengers, by the advice of the Emperor 
Isaac, and sent them to the host, to apprise the son of the 
Emperor Isaac, and the barons, that the Emperor Alexius had 
fled, and that they had again raised up the Emperor Isaac 
as emperor. 

When the young man knew of this he summoned the 
Marquis Boniface of Montferrat, and the marquis summoned 
the barons throughout the host. And when they were met 
in the pavilion of the Emperor Isaac s son, he told them the 
news. And when they heard it, their joy was such as cannot 
be uttered, for never was greater joy in all this world. And 
greatly and most devoutly was our Lord praised by all, in 
that He had succoured them within so short a term, and 
exalted them so high from such a low estate. And therefore 
well may one say: " Him whom God will help can no man 

Then the day began to dawn, and the host to put on their 
armour ; and all gat them to their arms throughout the host, 
because they did not greatly trust the Greeks. And messengers 
began to come out from the city, two or three together, and 
told the same tale. The barons and counts, and the Doge 
of Venice had agreed to send envoys into the city, to know 
how matters really stood; and, if that was true which had 
been reported, to demand of the father that he should ratify 
the covenants made by the son; and, if he would not, to 
declare that they on their part should not suffer the son 
to enter into the city. So envoys were chosen: one was 

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Memoirs of the Crusades 

Matthew of Montmorency, and Geoffry the Marshal of 
Champagne was the other, and two Venetians on the part of 
the Doge of Venice. 

The envoys were conducted to the gate, and the gate was 
opened to them, and they dismounted from their horses. 
The Greeks had set Englishmen and Danes, with their axes, 
at the gate and right up to the palace of Blachernse. Thus 
were the envoys conducted to the great palace. There they 
found the Emperor Isaac, so richly clad that you would seek 
in vain throughout the world for a man more richly apparelled 
than he, and by his side the empress, his wife, a most fair 
lady, the daughter of the King of Hungary; and of great men 
and great ladies there were so many, that you could not stir 
foot for the press, and the ladies were so richly adorned that 
richer adornment might not be. And all those who, the day 
before, had been against the emperor were, on that day, 
subject in everything to his good pleasure. 


The envoys came before the Emperor Isaac, and the 
emperor and all those about him did them great honour. 
And the envoys said that they desired to speak to him privily, 
on the part of his son, and of the barons of the host. And 
he rose and entered into a chamber, and took with him only 
the empress, and his chancellor, and his dragoman (inter 
preter) and the four envoys. By consent of the other envoys, 
Geoffry of Villehardouin, the Marshal of Champagne, acted 
as spokesman, and he said to the Emperor Isaac: "Sire, 
thou seest the service we have rendered to thy son, and how 
we have kept our covenants with him. But he cannot come 
hither till he has given us surety for the covenants he has 
made with us. And he asks of thee, as thy son, to confirm 
those covenants in the same form, and the same manner, 
that he has done." " What covenants are they? " said the 
emperor. " They are such as we shall tell you," replied the 
envoys: "In the first place to put the whole empire of 
Roumania in obedience to Rome, from which it has been 
separated this long while; further to give 200,000 marks of 
silver to those of the host, with food for one year for small 
and great; to send 10,000 men, horse and foot as many on 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 47 

foot as we shall devise and as many mounted in his own 
ships, and at his own charges, to the land of Babylon, and 
keep them there for a year; and during his lifetime to keep, 
at his own charges, five hundred knights in the land oversea, 
so that they may guard that land. Such is the covenant 
that your son made with us, and it was confirmed by oath, 
and charters with seals appended, and by King Philip of 
Germany who has your daughter to wife. This covenant we 
desire you to confirm." 

" Certes," said the emperor, " this covenant is very oner 
ous, and I do not see how effect can be given to it; neverthe 
less, you have done us such service, both to my son and to 
myself, that if we bestowed upon you the whole empire, you 
would have deserved it well." Many words were then 
spoken in this sense and that, but, in the end, the father con 
firmed the covenants, as his son had confirmed them, by 
oath and by charters with gold seals appended. These 
charters were delivered to the envoys. Then they took 
their leave of the Emperor Isaac, and went back to the host, 
and told the barons that they had fulfilled their mission. 


Then did the barons mount their horses, and led the young 
man, with great rejoicings, into the city, to his father; and 
the Greeks opened the gate to him, and received him with 
very much rejoicing and great feasting. The joy of the 
father and of the son was very great, because of a long time 
they had not seen one another, and because, by God s help 
and that of the pilgrims, they had passed from so great 
poverty and ruin to such high estate. Therefore the joy was 
great inside Constantinople; and also without, among the 
host of the pilgrims, because of the honour and victory that 
God had given them. 

And on the morrow the emperor and his son also besought 
the counts and the barons, for God s sake, to go and quarter 
themselves on the other side of the straits, toward Estanor 
and Galatas; for, if they quartered themselves in the city, it 
was to be feared that quarrels would ensue between them 
and the Greeks, and it might well chance that the city would 
be destroyed. And the counts and barons said that they had 

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Memoirs of the Crusades 

already served him in so many ways that they would not now 
refuse any request of his. So they went and quartered 
themselves on the other side, and sojourned there in peace 
and quiet, and with great store of good provisions. 

Now you must know that many of those in the host went 
to see Constantinople, and the rich palaces and great 
churches, of which there were many, and all the great wealth 
of the city for never was there city that possessed so much. 
Of relics it does not behove me to speak, for at that day there 
were as many there as in all the rest of the world. Thus did 
the Greeks and French live in good fellowship in all things, 
both as regards trafficking and other matters. 

By common consent of Franks and Greeks, it was settled 
that the new emperor should be crowned on the feast of our 
Lord St. Peter (ist August 1203). So was it settled, and so 
it was done. He was crowned full worthily and with honour 
according to the use for Greek emperors at that time. After 
wards he began to pay the moneys due to the host; and such 
moneys were divided among the host, and each repaid what 
had been advanced in Venice for his passage. 


The new emperor went oft to see the barons in the camp^ 
and did them great honour, as much as he could; and this 
was but fitting, seeing that they had served him right well 
And one day he came to the camp, to see the barons privily 
in the quarters of Count Baldwin of Hainault and Flanders. 
Thither were summoned the Doge of Venice, and the great 
barons, and he spoke to them and said : * Lords, I am 
emperor by God s grace and yours, and you have done me 
the highest service that ever yet was done by any people to 
Christian man. Now be it known to you that there are folk 
enough who show me a fair seeming, and yet love me not; 
and the Greeks are full of despite because it is by your help 
that I have entered into my inheritance. 

" Now the term of your departure is nigh, and your fellow 
ship with the Venetians is timed only to last till the feast of 
St. Michael. And within so short a term I cannot fulfil our 
covenant. Be it known to you therefore, that, if you 
abandon me, the Greeks hate me because of you : I shall lose 
my land, and they will kill me. But now do this thing that 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 49 

I ask of you: remain here till March, and I will entertain 
your ships for one year from the feast of St. Michael, and 
bear the cost of the Venetians, and will give you such things 
as you may stand in need of till Easter. And within that 
term I shall have placed my land in such case that I cannot 
lose it again; and your covenant will be fulfilled, for I shall 
have paid such moneys as are due to you, obtaining them 
from all my lands; and I shall be ready also with ships 
either to go with you myself, or to send others, as I have 
covenanted; and you will have the summer from end to end 
in which to carry on the war against the Saracens." 

The barons thereupon said they would consult together 
apart; knowing full well that what the young man said was 
sooth, and that it would be better, both for the emperor and 
for themselves, to consent unto him. But they replied that 
they could not so consent save with the common agreement 
of the host, and that they would therefore lay the matter 
before the host, and then give such answer as might be 
devised. So the Emperor Alexius departed from them, and 
went back to Constantinople. And they remained in theTn 
camp and assembled a parliament the next day. To this I 
parliament were summoned all the barons and the chieftains 
of the host, and of the knights the greater part; and in their 
hearing were repeated all the words that the emperor had 



Then was there much discord in the host, as had been 
of ttimes before on the part of those who wished that the host 
should break up; for to them it seemed to be holding to 
gether too long. And the party that had raised the discord 
at Corfu reminded the others of their oaths, and said : Give 
us ships as you swore to us, for we purpose to go to Syria." 

And the others cried to them for pity and said : Lords, 
for God s sake, let us not bring to naught the great honour 
that God has given us. If we go to Syria at this present, we 
shall come thither at the beginning of winter and so not be 
able to make war, and the Lord s work will thus remain un 
done. But if we wait till March, we shall leave this emperor 
in good estate, and go hence rich in goods and in food. Thus 

50 Memoirs of the Crusades 

shall we go to Syria, and over-run the land of Babylon. And 
the fleet will remain with us till Michaelmas,, yes, and on 
wards from Michaelmas to Easter, seeing it will be unable to 
leave us because of the winter. So shall the land oversea 
fall into our hands." 

Those who wished the host to be broken up, cared not for 
reasons good or bad so long as the host fell to pieces. But 
those who wished to keep the host together, wrought so 
effectually, with the help of God, that in the end the Vene 
tians made a new covenant to maintain the fleet for a year, 
reckoning from Michaelmas, the Emperor Alexius paying 
them for so doing; and the pilgrims, on their side, made a 
new covenant to remain in the same fellowship as theretofore, 
and for the same term. Thus were peace and concord 
established in the host. 

Then there befell a very great mischance in the host; for 
Matthew of Montmorency, who was one of the best knights 
in the kingdom of France, and of the most prized and most 
honoured, took to his bed for sickness, and his sickness so 
increased upon him that he died. And much dole was made 
for him, for great was the loss one of the greatest that had 
befallen the host by any man s death. He was buried in a 
church of my Lord St. John, of the Hospital of Jerusalem. 



Afterwards, by the advice of the Greeks and the French, 
the Emperor Alexius issued from Constantinople, with a very 
great company, purposing to quiet the empire and subject it 
to his will. With him went a great part of the barons ; and 
the others remained to guard the camp. The Marquis Boni 
face of Montferrat went with him, and Count Hugh of St. 
Paul, and Henry, brother to Count Baldwin of Flanders and 
Hainault, and James of Avesnes. and William of Champlitte, 
and Hugh of Colemi, and many others whom the book does 
not here mention by name. In the camp remained Count 
Baldwin of Hainault and Flanders, and Count Lewis of Blois 
and Chartres, and the greater part of the pilgrims of lesser 

And you must know that during this progress all the 
Greeks, on either side of the straits, came to the Emperor 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 5 i 

Alexius, to do his will and commandment, and did him fealty 
and homage as to their lord all except John, who was King 
of Wallachia and Bulgaria. This John was a Wallachian, who 
had rebelled against his father and uncle, and had warred 
against them for twenty years, and had won from them so 
much land that he had become a very wealthy king. And 
be it known to you, that of the land lying on the west side of 
the Straits of St. George, he had conquered very nearly the 
half. This John did not come to do the will of the emperor, 
nor to submit himself to him. 


While the Emperor Alexius was away on this progress, there 
befell a very grievous misadventure; for a conflict -arose 
between the Greeks and the Latins who inhabited Constanti 
nople, and of these last there were many. And certain 
people who they were I know not out of malice, set fire to 
the city; and the fire waxed so great and horrible that no 
man could put it out or abate it. And when the barons of 
the host, who were quartered on the other side of the port, 
saw this, they were sore grieved and filled with pity seeing 
the great churches and the rich palaces melting and falling in, 
and the great streets filled with merchandise burning in the 
flames; but they could do nothing. 

Thus did the fire prevail, and win across the port, even to 
the densest part of the city, and to the sea on the other side, 
quite near to the church of St. Sophia. It lasted two days 
and two nights, nor could it be put out by the hand of man. 
And the front of the fire, as it went flaming, was well over 
half a league broad. What was the damage then done, 
what the possessions and riches swallowed up, could no man 
tell nor what the number of men and women and children 
who perished for many were burned. 

All the Latins, to whatever land they might belong, who 
were lodged in Constantinople, dared no longer to remain 
therein; but they took their wives and their children, and 
such of their possessions as they could save from the fire, and 
entered into boats and vessels, and passed over the port and 
came to the camp of the pilgrims. Nor were they few in 
number, for there were of them some fifteen thousand, small 

52 Memoirs of the Crusades 

and great ; and afterwards it proved to be of advantage to the 
pilgrims that these should have crossed over to them. Thus 
was there division between the Greeks and the Franks; nor 
were they ever again as much at one as they had been before, 
for neither side knew on whom to cast the blame for the fire; 
and this rankled in men s hearts upon either side. 

At that time did a thing befall whereby the barons and 
those of the host were greatly saddened; for the Abbot of 
Loos died, who was a holy man and a worthy, and had 
wished well to the host. He was a monk of the order of the 


The Emperor Alexius remained for a long time on pro 
gress, till St. Martin s Day, and then he returned to Con 
stantinople. Great was the joy at his home-coming, and 
the Greeks and ladies of Constantinople went out to meet 
their friends in great cavalcades, and the pilgrims went 
out to meet their friends, and had great joy of them. So 
did the emperor re-enter Constantinople and the palace of 
Blachernae; and the Marquis of Montferrat and the other 
barons returned to the camp. 

The emperor, who had managed his affairs right well and 
thought he had now the upper hand, was filled with arro 
gance towards the barons and those who had done so much 
for him, and never came to see them in the camp, as he had 
done aforetime. And they sent to him and begged him to 
pay them the moneys due, as he had covenanted. But he led 
them on from delay to delay, making them, at one time and 
another, payments small and poor; and in the end the pay 
ments ceased and came to naught. 

The Marquis Boniface of Montferrat, who had done more 
for him than any other, and stood better in his regard, went 
to him oftentimes, and showed him what great services the 
Crusaders had rendered him, and that greater services had 
never been rendered to any one. And the emperor still 
entertained them with delays, and never carried out such 
things as he had promised, so that at last they saw and knew 
clearly that his intent was wholly evil. 

Then the barons of the host held a parliament with the 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 53 

Doge of Venice, and they said that they now knew that the 
emperor would fulfil no covenant, nor ever speak sooth to 
them ; and they decided to send good envoys to demand the 
fulfilment of their covenant, and to show what services they 
had done him; and if he would now do what was required-, 
they were to be satisfied ; but, if not, they were to defy him, 
and right well might he rest assured that the barons would 
by all means recover their due. 


For this embassage were chosen Conon of Bethune and 
Geoffry of Villehardouin, the Marshal of Champagne, and 
Miles the Brabant of Provins ; and the Doge also sent three 
chief men of his council. So these envoys mounted their 
horses, and, with swords girt, rode together till they came to 
the palace of Blachernae. And be it known to you that, by 
reason of the treachery of the Greeks, they went in great 
peril, and on a hard adventure. 

They dismounted at the gate and entered the palace, and 
found the Emperor Alexius and the Emperor Isaac seated on 
two thrones, side by side. And near them was seated the 
empress, who was the wife of the father, and stepmother of 
the son, and sister to the King of Hungary a lady both fair 
and good. And there were with them a great company of 
people of note and rank, so that well did the court seem the 
court of a rich and mighty prince. 

By desire of the other envoys Conon of Bethune, who was 
very wise and eloquent of speech, acted as spokesman : " Sire, 
we have come to thee on the part of the barons of the host 
and of the Doge of Venice. They would put thee in mind of 
the great service they have done to thee a service known 
to the people and manifest to all men. Thou hast sworn, 
thou and thy father, to fulfil the promised covenants, and 
they have your charters in hand. But you have not ful 
filled those covenants well, as you should have done. Many 
times have they called upon you to do so, and now again we 
call upon you, in the presence of all your barons, to fulfil the 
covenants that are between you and them. Should you 
do so, it shall be well. If not, be it known to you that from 
this day forth they will not hold you as lord or friend, but 
will endeavour to obtain their due by all the means in their 

54 Memoirs of the Crusades 

power. And of this they now give you warning, seeing that 
they would not injure you, nor any one, without first de 
fiance given; for never have they acted treacherously, nor in 
their land is it customary to do so. You have heard what 
we have said. It is for you to take counsel thereon according 
to your pleasure." 

Much were the Greeks amazed and greatly outraged by 
this open defiance; and they said that never had any one 
been so hardy as to dare defy the Emperor of Constantinople 
in his own hall. Very evil were the looks now cast on the 
envoys by the Emperor Alexius and by all the Greeks, who 
aforetime were wont to regard them very favourably. 

Great was the tumult there within, and the envoys turned 
about and came to the gate and mounted their horses. 
When they got outside the gate, there was not one of them 
but felt glad at heart; nor is that to be marvelled at, for they 
had escaped from very great peril, and it held to very little 
that they were not all killed or taken. So they returned to 
the camp, and told the barons how they had fared. 


Thus did the war begin; and each side did to the other as 
much harm as they could, by sea and by land. The Franks 
and the Greeks fought often; but never did they fight, let 
God be praised therefor ! that the Greeks did not lose more 
than the Franks. So the war lasted a long space, till the 
heart of the winter. 

Then the Greeks bethought themselves of a very great 
device, for they took seven large ships, and filled them full 
of big logs, and shavings, and tow, and resin, and barrels, and 
then waited until such time as the wind should blow strongly 
from their side of the straits. And one night, at midnight, 
they set fire to the ships, and unfurled their sails to the wind. 
And the flames blazed up high, so that it seemed as if the 
whole world were a-fire. Thus did the burning ships come 
towards the fleet of the pilgrims; and a great cry arose in 
the host, and all sprang to arms on every side. The Vene 
tians ran to their ships, and so did all those who had ships in 
possession, and they began to draw them away out of the 
flames very vigorously. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 55 

And to this bears witness Geoffry the Marshal of Cham 
pagne, who dictates this work, that never did people help 
themselves better at sea than the Venetians did that night; 
for they sprang into the galleys and boats belonging to the 
ships, and seized upon the fire ships, all burning as they were, 
with hooks, and dragged them by main force before their 
enemies, outside the port, and set them into the current of 
the straits, and left them to go burning down the straits. So 
many of the Greeks had come down to the shore that they 
were without end and innumerable, and their cries were so 
great that it seemed as if the earth and sea would melt to 
gether. They got into barges and boats, and shot at those 
on our side who were battling with the flames, so that some 
were wounded. 

All the knights of the host, as soon as they heard the 
clamour, armed themselves; and the battalions marched 
out into the plain, each according to the order in which they 
had been quartered, for they feared lest the Greeks should 
also attack them on land. 

They endured thus in labour and anguish till daylight; 
but by God s help those on our side lost nothing, save a 
Pisan ship, which was full of merchandise, and was burned 
with fire. Deadly was the peril in which we stood that night, 
for if the fleet had been consumed, all would have been lost, 
and we should never have been able to get away by land or 
sea. Such was the guerdon which the Emperor Alexius would 
have bestowed upon us in return for our services. 


Then the Greeks, being thus embroiled with the Franks, 
>aw that there was no hope of peace; so they privily took 
:ounsel together to betray their lord. Now there was a 
jreek who stood higher in his favour than all others, and 
lad done more to make him embroil himself with the Franks 
:han any other. This Greek was named Mourzuphles. 

With the advice and consent of the others, one night 
;o\vards midnight, when the Emperor Alexius was asleep in 
lis chamber, those who ought to have been guarding him 
ind specially Mourzuphles took him in his bed and threw 
lim into a dungeon in prison. Then Mourzuphles assumed 

T> 333 

56 Memoirs of the Crusades 

the scarlet buskins with the help and by the counsel of the 
other Greeks (January 1204). So he made himself emperor. 
Afterwards they crowned him at St. Sophia. Now see if 
I ever people were guilty of such horrible treachery! 

When the Emperor Isaac heard that his son was taken 
and Mourzuphles crowned, great fear came upon him, and 
he fell into a sickness that lasted no long time. So he died. 
And the Emperor Mourzuphles caused the son, whom he had 
in prison, to be poisoned two or three times; but it did not 
please God that he should thus die. Afterwards the emperot 
went and strangled him, and when he had strangled him. 
he caused it to be reported everywhere that he had died a 
natural death, and had him mourned for, and buried honour 
ably and as an emperor, and made great show of grief. 

But murder cannot be hid. Soon was it clearly known 
both to the Greeks and to the French, that this murder had 
been committed, as has just been told to you. Then did the 
barons of the host and the Doge of Venice assemble in par 
liament, and with them met the bishops and the clergy 
And all the clergy, including those who had powers from tht 
Pope, showed to the barons and to the pilgrims that an) 
one guilty of such a murder had no right to hold lands, anc 
that those who consented thereto were abettors of the 
murder; and beyond all this, that the Greeks had ,with 
drawn themselves from obedience to Rome. Wherefore 
we tell you," said the clergy, " that this war is lawful anc 
just, and that if you have a right intention in conquering thi: 
land, to bring it into the Roman obedience, all those who di< 
after confession shall have part in the indulgence granted b} 
the Pope." And you must know that by this the barons anc 
pilgrims were greatly comforted. 



Dire was the war between the Franks and the Greeks, fo 
it abated not, but rather increased and waxed fiercer, so tha 
few were the days on which there was not fighting by sei 
or land. Then Henry, the brother of Count Baldwin o 
Flanders rode forth, and took with him a great part of th< 
good men in the host. With him went James of Avesnes, an< 
Baldwin of Beauvoir, Odo of Champagne of Champlitte 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 57 

William his brother, and the people of their country. They 
started at vesper time and rode all night, and on the 
morrow, when it was full day, they came to a good city, 
called Phile, and took it; and they had great gain, beasts, 
and prisoners, and clothing, and food, which they sent in 
boats down the straits to the camp, for the city lies on the 
sea of Russia. 

So they sojourned two days in that city, with food in great 
plenty, enough and to spare. The third day they departed 
with the beasts and the booty, and rode back towards the 
camp. Now the Emperor Mourzuphles heard tell how they 
had issued from the camp, and he left Constantinople by 
night, with a great part of his people, and set himself in 
ambush at a place by which they must needs pass. And he 
watched them pass with their beasts and their booty, each 
division, the one after the other, till it came to the rear 
guard. The rear-guard was under the command of Henry, 
the brother of Count Baldwin of Flanders, and formed of his 
people, and the Emperor Mourzuphles fell upon them at the 
entrance to a wood; whereupon they turned against him. 
Very fiercely did the battle rage there. 

By God s help the Emperor Mourzuphles was discomfited, 
and came near to being taken captive; and he lost his im 
perial banner and an Eikon that was borne before him, in 
which he and the other Greeks had great confidence it was 
an Eikon that figured our Lady and he lost at least twenty 
knights of the best people that he had. Thus was discom 
fited the Emperor Mourzuphles, as you have just heard; and 
fiercely did the war rage between him and the Franks; and 
by this time a great part of the winter had already passed, 
and it was near Candlemas (2nd February 1204), and Lent 
was approaching. 



Now we will leave off speaking of the host before Con 
stantinople, and speak of those who sailed from other ports 
than Venice, and of the ships of Flanders that had sojourned 
iuring the winter at Marseilles, and had all gone over in the 
summer to the land of Syria; and these were far more in 
aumber than the host before Constantinople. Listen now, 
ind you shall hear what a great mischance it was that they 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

had not joined themselves to the host, for in that case would 
Christendom have been for ever exalted. But because of 
their sins, God would not so have it, for some died of the 
sickness of the land, and some turned back to their own 
homes. Nor did they perform any great deeds, or achieve 
aught of good, in the land oversea. 

And there started also a company of very good men to go 
to Antioch, to join Boemond, prince of Antioch and Count of 
Tripoli, who was at war with King Leon, the lord of the 
Armenians. This company was going to the prince to be in 
his pay ; and the Turks of the land knew of it, and made an 
ambuscade there where the men of the company needs must 
pass. And they came thither, and fought, and the Franks 
were discomfited, so that not one escaped that was not 
killed or taken. 

There were slain Villain of Neuilly, who was one of the best 
knights in the world, and Giles of Trasegnies, and many 
others; and were taken Bernard of Moreuil, and Renaud of 
Dampierre, and John of Villers, and William of Neuilly. 
And you must know that eighty knights were in this com 
pany, and every one was either killed or taken. And well 
does this book bear witness, that of those who avoided the 
host of Venice, there was not one but suffered harm or shame. 
He therefore must be accounted wise who holds to the better 


Now let us leave speaking of those who avoided the host, 
and speak of those before Constantinople. Well had these 
prepared all their engines, and mounted their petraries, and 
mangonels on the ships and on the transports, and got ready 
all such engines of war as are needful for the taking of a city, 
and raised ladders from the yards and masts of the vessels, 
so high that they were a marvel to behold. 1 

And when the Greeks saw this, they began, on their side^ 
to strengthen the defences of the city which was enclosed 
with high walls and high towers. Nor was any tower so high 
that they did not raise thereon two or three stages of wood 
to heighten it still more. Never was city so well fortified. 

1 This passage is obscure in the original. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 59 

Thus did the Greeks and the Franks bestir themselves on the 
one side and the other during the greater part of Lent. 

Then those of the host spoke together, and took counsel 
what they should do. Much was advanced this way and 
that, but in the end, they devised that if God granted them 
entry into the city by force, all the booty taken was to be 
brought together, and fittingly distributed; and further, if 
the city fell into their power, six men should betaken from 
among the Franks, and six from among the ^Venetians, and 
these twelve should swear, on holy relics, tp^elect as emperor 
the man who, as they deemed, would rule with most profit to 
the land. And whosoever was thus elected emperor, would 
have one quarter of whatever was captured, whether within 
the city or without, and moreover would possess the palace 
of Bucoleon and that of Blachernsfc; and the remaining three 
parts would be divided into two, and one of the halves 
awarded to the Venetians and the other to those of the host. 

And there should be taken twelve of the wisest and most 
experienced men among the host of the pilgrims, and twelve 
among the Venetians, and those twenty-four would divide 
fiefs and honours, and appoint the service to be done therefor 
to the emperor. 

This covenant was made sure and sworn to on the one side 
and the other by the Franks and the Venetians ; with pro 
vision that at the end of March, a year thence, any who so 
desired might depart hence and go their way, but that those 
who remained in the land would be held to the service of the 
emperor in such manner as might be ordained. Thus was 
the covenant devised and made sure; and such as should not 
observe it were excommunicated by the clergy. 


The fleet was very well prepared and armed, and provi 
sions were got together for the pilgrims. On the Thursday 
after mid-Lent (8th April 1204), all entered into the vessels, 
and put their horses into the transports. Each division had 
its own ships, and all were ranged side by side ; and the ships 
were separated from the galleys and transports. A mar 
vellous sight it was to see; and well does this book bear 

60 Memoirs of the Crusades 

witness that the attack, as it had been devised, extended 
over full half a French league. 

On the Friday morning the ships and the galleys and the 
other vessels drew near to the city in due order, and then 
began an assault most fell and fierce. In many places the 
pilgrims landed and went up to the walls, and in many 
places the scaling ladders on the ships approached so close, 
that those on the towers and on the walls and those on the 
ladders crossed lances, hand to hand. Thus lasted the 
assault, in more than a hundred places, very fierce, and very 
dour, and very proud, till near upon the hour of nones. 

But, for our sins, the pilgrims were repulsed in that 
assault, and tEose whcrhad landed from the galleys and trans 
ports were driven back into them by main force. And you 
must know that on that day those of the host lost more than 
the Greeks, and much were the Greeks rejoiced thereat. 
And some there were who drew back from the assault, with 
the ships in which they were. And some remained with 
their ships at anchor so near to the city that from either side 
they shot at one another with petraries and mangonels. 

Then, at vesper time, those of the host and the Doge of 
Venice called together a parliament, and assembled in a 
church on the other side of the straits on the side where 
they had been quartered. There were many opinions given 
and discussed; and much were those of the host moved for 
the mischief that had that day befallen them. And many 
advised that they should attack the city on another side 
the side where it was not so well fortified. But the Vene 
tians, who had fuller knowledge of the sea, said that if they 
went to that other side, the current would carry them down 
the straits, and that they would be unable to stop their ships. 
And you must know that there were those who would have 
been well pleased if the current had borne them down the 
straits, or the wind, they cared not whither, so long as they 
left that land behind, and went on their way. Nor is this to 
be wondered at, for they were in sore peril. 

Enough was there spoken, this way and in that; but the 
conclusion of their deliberation was this: that they would 
repair and refit on the following day, which was Saturday, 
and during the whole of Sunday, and that on the Monday 
they would return to the assault; and they devised further 
that the ships that carried the scaling ladders should be 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 61 

bound together, two and two, so that two ships should be in 
case to attack one tower; for they had perceived that day 
how only one ship had attacked each tower, and that this 
had been too heavy a task for the ship, seeing that those in 
the tower were more in number than those on the ladder. 
For this reason was it well seen that two ships would attack 
each tower with greater effect than one. As had been 
settled, so was it done, and they waited thus during the 
Saturday and Sunday. 


Before the assault the Emperor Mourzuphles had come to 
encamp, with all his power, in an open space, and had there 
pitched his scarlet tents. Thus matters remained till the 
Monday morning, when those on the ships, transports, and 
galleys were all armed. And those of the city stood in much 
less fear of them than they did at the beginning, and were in 
such good spirits that on the walls and towers you could see 
nothing but people. Then began an assault proud and mar 
vellous, and every ship went straight before it to the attack. 
The noise of the battle was so great that it seemed to rend 
the earth. 

Thus did the assault last for a long while, till our Lord 
raised a wind called Boreas which drove the ships and vessels 
further up on to the shore. And two ships that were bound 
together, of which the one was called the Pilgrim and the 
other the Paradise, approached so near to a tower, the one 
on the one side and the other on the other so as God and 
the wind drove them that the ladder of the Pilgrim joined 
on to the tower. Immediately a Venetian, and a knight of 
France, whose name was Andrew of Urboise, entered into the 
tower, and other people began to enter after them, and 
those in the tower were discomfited and fled. 1 

I *"*V 

1 1 should like to quote here another feat of arms related by Robert 
of Clari, one of those feats that serve to explain how the Crusaders 
obtained mastery the mastery of perfect fearlessness over the 
Greeks. Robert of Clari, then, relates how a small body of the 
besiegers, ten knights and nine sergeants, had come before a postern 
which had been newly bricked up. " Now there was there a clerk, 
Aleaume of Clari by name, who had shown his courage whenever there 
was need, and was always first in any assault at which he might be 
present ; and when the tower of Galata was taken, this same clerk had 
performed more deeds of prowess with his body, man for man, than 

6 2 Memoirs of the Crusades 

When the knights see this, who are in the transports, they 
land, and raise their ladders against the wall, and scale the 
top of the wall by main force, and so take four of the towers. 
And all begin to leap out of the ships and transports and 
galleys, helter-skelter, each as best he can; and they break 
in some three of the gates and enter in; and they draw the 
horses out of the transports; and the knights mount and 
ride straight to the quarters of the Emperor Mourzuphles. 
He had his battalions arrayed before his tents, and when his 
men see the mounted knights coming, they lose heart and fly ; 
and so goes the emperor flying through the streets to the 
castle of Bucoleon. 

Then might you have seen the Greeks beaten down; and 
horses and palfreys captured, and mules, and other booty. 
Of killed and wounded there was neither end nor measure. 
A great part of the Greek lords had fled towards the gate of 

any one in the host, save only the Lord Peter of Bracuel ; for the Lord 
Peter it was who surpassed all others, whether of high or low degree, so 
that there was none other that performed such feats of arms, or acts of 
prowess with his body, as the Lord Peter of Bracuel. So when they 
came to the postern they began to hew and pick at it very hardily; 
but the bolts flew at them so thick, and so many stones were hurled at 
them from the wall, that it seemed as if they would be buried beneath 
the stones such was the mass of quarries and stones thrown from 
above. And those who were below held up targes and shields to cover 
those who were picking and hewing underneath; and those above 
threw down pots of boiling pitch, and Greek fire, and large rocks, so 
that it was one of God s miracles that the assailants were not utterly 
confounded; for my Lord Peter and his men suffered more than enough 
of blows and grievous danger. However, so did they hack at the 
postern, both above and below, with their axes and good swords, that 
they made a great hole therein; and when the postern was broken 
through, they all swarmed to the aperture, but saw so many people 
above and below, that it seemed as if half the world were there, and 
they dared not be so bold as to enter. 

" Now when Aleaume, the clerk, saw that no one dared to go in, he 
sprang forward, and said that go in he would. And there was there 
present a knight, a brother to the clerk (the knight s name was Robert 
of Clari), who forbade him, and said he should not go in. And the clerk 
said he would, and scrambled in on his hands and feet. And when the 
knight saw this, he took hold upon him, by the foot, and began to drag 
him back. But in his brother s despite, and whether his brother 
would or not, the clerk went in. And when he was within, many were 
the Greeks who ran upon him, and those on the walls cast big stones 
upon him. And the clerk drew his knife, and ran at them; and he 
drave them before him as if they had been cattle, and cried to those 
who were without, to the Lord Peter of Amiens and his folk, Sire, come 
in boldly, I see that they are falling back discomfited and flying. 
When my Lord Peter heard this, he and his people who were without, 
they entered in; and there were no more than ten knights with him, 
but there were some sixty sergeants, and they were all on foot. And 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 63 

Blachernse. And vesper-time was already past, and those 
of the host were weary of the battle and of the slaying. And 
they began to assemble in a great open space that was in 
Constantinople, and decided that they would take up their 
quarters near the walls and towers they had captured. 
Never had they thought that in a whole month they should 
be able to take the city, with its great churches, and great 
palaces, and the people that were in it. 


As they had settled, so was it done, and they encamped 
before the walls and before the towers by their ships. Count 
Baldwin of Flanders and Hainault quartered himself in the 
scarlet tents that the Emperor Mourzuphles had left stand 
ing, and Henry his brother before the palace of Blachernae; 
and Boniface, Marquis of Montferrat, he and his men, 
towards the thickest part of the city. So were the host en 
camped as you have heard, and Constantinople taken on the 
Monday after Palm Sunday (i2th April 1204). 

Now Count Lewis of Blois and Chartres had languished all 
the winter with a quartan fever, and could not bear his 
armour. And you must know that this was a great misfor- 

when those who were on the wall at that place saw them, they had 
such fear that they did not dare to remain there, but avoided a great 
space on the wall, and fled helter-skelter. 

" Now the Emperor Mourzuphles, the traitor, was near by, at less 
than a stone s throw of distance, and he caused the silver horns to be 
sounded, and the cymbals, and a great noise to be made. And when 
he saw my Lord Peter, and his people, who had entered in on foot, he 
made a great show of falling upon them, and spurring forward, came 
about half-way to where they stood. But my Lord Peter, when he saw 
him coming, began to encourage his people, and to say: Now, Lord 
God, grant that we may do well, and the battle is ours. Here comes 
the emperor! Let no one dare to think of retreat, but each bethink 
himself to do well. Then Mourzuphles, seeing that they would in no 
wise give way, stayed where he was, and then turned back to his tents." 
After this, according to Robert of Clari, Lord Peter s men break open a 
gate, and the Crusaders enter into the city. See Li Estoires de chiaus 
qui conguisent Constantinople, de Robert de Clari en aminois, chevalier, 
pp. 60-62. The volume in the British Museum is undated, and there 
is this note in the catalogue, " No more printed." The volume itself 
is noteless, though there are printed marks here and there which would 
suggest that notes were intended. The Chronicle of Robert of Clari 
will also be found in Hopf s Chroniques Greco-romanes inedites ou peu 
connues, etc., pp. 1-85. Berlin, 1873. 

6 4 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

tune to the host, seeing he was a good knight of his body; 
and he lay in one of the transports. 

Thus did those of the host, who were very weary, rest that 
night. But the Emperor Mourzuphles rested not, for he 
assembled all his people, and said he would go and attack the 
Franks. Nevertheless he did not do as he had said, for he 
rode along other streets, as far as he could from those held 
by the host, and came to a gate which is called the Golden 
Gate, whereby he escaped, and avoided the city ; and after 
wards all who could fled also. And of all this those of the 
hojt knew nothing. -^ S-^cJk ^""^ 

During that night, towards the quarters of Boniface, 
Marquis of Montferrat, certain people, whose names are un 
known to me, being in fear lest the Greeks should attack 
them, set fire to the buildings between themselves and the 
Greeks. And the city began to take fire, and to burn very 
direfully ; and it burned all that night and all the next day, 
till vesper-time. And this was the third fire there had been 
in Constantinople since the Franks arrived in the land; and 
more houses had beon burned in the city than there are 
houses in any three of the greatest cities in the kingdom of 

That night passed and the next day came, which was a 
Tuesday morning (i3th April 1204); and all armed them 
selves throughout the host, both knights and sergeants, and 
each repaired to his post. Then they issued from their 
quarters, and thought to find a sorer battle than the day 
before, for no word had come to them that the emperor had 
fled during the night. But they found none to oppose them. 


The Marquis Boniface of Montferrat rode all along the 
shore to the palace of Bucoleon, and when he arrived there 
it surrendered, on condition that the lives of all therein 
should be spared. At Bucoleon were found the larger 
number of the great ladies who had fled to the castle, for 
there were found the sister * of the King of France, who had 
been empress, and the sister * of the King of Hungary, who 

1 Agnes, sister of Philip Augustus, married successively to Alexius II., 
to Andronicus, and to Theodore Branas. 

1 Margaret, sister of Emeric, King of Hungary, married to the 
Emperor Isaac, and afterwards to the Marquis of Montferrat. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 65 

had also been empress, and other ladies very many. Of the 
treasure that was found in that palace I cannot well speak, 
for there was so much that it was beyond end or counting. 

At the same time that this palace was surrendered to the 
Marquis Boniface of Montferrat, did the palace of Blachernae 
surrender to Henry, the brother of Count Baldwin of 
Flanders, on condition that no hurt should be done to the 
bodies of those who were therein. There too was found 
much treasure, not less than in the palace of Bucoleon. 
Each garrisoned with his own people the castle that had been 
surrendered to him, and set a guard over the treasure. And 
the other people, spread abic0ad throughout the city, also 
gained much booty. The, booty gained was so great thaf^ 
none could tell you the end of it: gold and silver, and vessels \ 
and precious stones, apd samite, and cloth of silk, and robes \ 
vair and grey, and ermine, and every choicest thing found 
upon the earth. And well does Geoff ry of Villehardouin, 
the Marshal of Champagne, bear witness, that never, since 
the world was created, had so much booty been won in any 

Every one took quarters where he pleased, and of lodgings 
there was no stint. So the host of the pilgrims and of the 
Venetians found quarters, and greatly did they rejoice and 
give thanks because of the victory God had vouchsafed to 
them for those who before had been poor were now in 
wealth and luxury. Thus they celebrated Palm Sunday and 
the Easter Day following (25th April 1204) in the joy and 
honour that God had bestowed upon them. And well might 
they praise our Lord, since in all the host there were no more 
than twenty thousand armed men, one with another, and 
with the help of God they had conquered four hundred 
thousand men, or more, and in the strongest city in all the 
world yea, a great city and very well fortified. 


Then was it proclaimed throughout the host by the Mar 
quis Boniface of Montferrat, who was lord of the host, and by \ 
the barons, and by the Doge of Venice, that all the booty 
shewed be collected and brought together, as had been 
Wanted under oath and pain of excommunication. 
o. K,^o were appointed for the receiving of the 

66 Memoirs of the Crusades 

spoils, and guards were set to have them in charge, both 
Franks and Venetians, the most upright that could be found. 
; Then each began to bring in such booty as he had taken, 
and to collect it together. And some brought in loyally, and 
some in evil sort, because covetousness, which is the root of 
all evil, let and hindered them. So from that time forth 
the covetous began to keep things back, and our Lord began 
to love them less. Ah God! how loyally they had borne 
themselves up to now! And well had the Lord God shown 
them that in all things He was ready to honour and exalt 
them above all people. But full oft do the good suffer for 
the sins of the wicked. 

The spoils and booty were collected together, and you 
must know that all was not brought into the common stock, 
for not a few kept things back, maugre the excommunication 
of the Pope. That which was brought to the churches was 
collected together and divided, in equal parts, between the 
Franks and the Venetians, according to the sworn covenant. 
if And you must know further that the pilgrims, after the divi 
sion had been made, paid out of their share fifty thousand 
marks of silver to the Venetians, and then divided at least 
one hundred thousand marks between themselves, among 
their own people. And shall I tell you in what wise ? Two 
sergeants on foot counted as one mounted, and two sergeants 
mounted as one knight. And you must know that no man 
received more, either on account of his rank or because of his 
deeds, than that which had been so settled and ordered 
save in so far as he may have stolen it. 

And as to theft, and those who were convicted thereof, 
you must know that stern justice was meted out to such as 
were found guilty, and not a few were hung. The Count of 
St. Paul hung one of his knights, who had kept back certain 
JJs, with his shield to his neck; but many there were, 
both great and small, who kept back part of the spoils, and 
it was never known. Well may you be assured that the 
* spoil was very great, for if it had not been for what was 
stolen, and for the part given to the Venetians, there would 
have been at least four hundred thousand marks of silver, 
and at least ten thousand horses one with another. Thus 
were divided the spoils of Constantinople, as you have heard. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 67 


Then a parliament assembled, and the commons of the 
host declared that an emperor must be elected, as had been 
settled aforetime. And they parliamented so long that the 
matter was adjourned to another day, and on that day 
would they choose the twelve electors who were to make the 
election. Nor was it possible that there should be lack of 
candidates, or of men covetous, seeing that so great an 
honour was in question as the imperial throne of Constanti 
nople. But the greatest discord that arose was the discord 
concerning Count Baldwin of Flanders and Hainault and the 
Marquis Boniface of Montferrat; for all the people said that 
either of those two should be elected. 

And when the chief men of the host saw that all held 
either for Count Baldwin or for the Marquis of Montferrat, 
they conferred together and said: " Lords, if we elect one 
of these two great men, the other will be so filled with envy 
that he will take away with him all his people. And then 
the land that we have won may be lost, just as the land of 
Jerusalem came nigh to be lost when, after it had been con 
quered, Godfrey of Bouillon was elected king, and the Count 
of St. Giles became so fulfilled with envy that he enticed the 
other barons, and whomsoever he could, to abandon the host. 
Then did many people depart, and there remained so few 
that, if God had not sustained them, the land of Jerusalem 
would have been lost. Let us therefore beware lest the same 
mischance befall us also, and rather bethink ourselves how 
we may keep both these lords in the host. Let the one on 
whom God shall bestow the empire so devise that the other 
is well content ; let him grant to that other all the land on the 
further side of the straits, towards Turkey, and the Isle of 
Greece, and that other shall be his liegeman. Thus shall 
we keep both lords in the host." 

As had been proposed, so was it settled, and both con 
sented right willingly. Then came the day for the parlia 
ment, and the parliament assembled. And the twelve 
electors were chosen, six on one side and six on the other; 
and they swore on holy relics to elect, duly, and in good faith, 
whomsoever would best meet the needs of the host, and bear 
rule over the empire most worthily. 

., Memoirs of the Crusades 

* / 

Thus were the twelve chosen, and a day appointed for the 
of the emperor; and on the appointed day the 
twelve electors met at a rich palace, one of the fairest in the 
world, where the Doge of Venice had his quarters. Great 
and marvellous was the concourse, for every one wished to 
see who should be elected. Then were the twelve electors 
called, and set in a very rich chapel within the palace, and the 
door was shut, so that no one remained with them. The 
barons and knights stayed without in a great palace. 

The council lasted till they were agreed; and by consent 
of all they appointed N6velon, Bishop of Soissons, who was 
one of the twelve, to act as spokesman. Then they came out 
to the place where all the barons were assembled, and the 
Doge of Venice. Now you must know that many set eyes 
upon them, to know how the election had turned. And the 
bishop, lifting up his voice while all listened intently 
spoke as he had been charged, and said : Lords, we are 
agreed, let God be thanked! upon the choice of an emperor; 
and you have all sworn that he whom we shall elect as 
emperor shall be held by you to be emperor indeed, and that 
if any one gainsay him, you will be his helpers. And we 
name him now at the self-same hour when God was born, 

A cry of joy was raised in the palace, and they bore the 
count out of the palace, and the Marquis Boniface of Mont- 
ferrat bore him on one side to the church, and showed him all 
honour he could. So was the Count Baldwin of Flanders 
and Hainault elected emperor, and a day appointed for his 
coronation, three weeks after Easter (i6th May 1204). And 
you must know that many a rich robe was made for the 
coronation; nor did they want for the wherewithal. 


Before the time appointed for the coronation, the Marquis 
Boniface of Montferrat espoused the empress who had been 
the wife of the Emperor Isaac, and was sister to the King of 
Hungary. And within that time also did one of the most 
noble barons of the host, who bore the name of Odo of 
Champlitte of Champagne, make an end and die. Much was 
he mourned and bewept by William his brother, and by his 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 69 

othei friends ; and he was buried in the church of the Apostles 
with great honour. 

The time for the coronation drew near, and the Emperor 
Baldwin was crowned with great joy and great honour in the 
Church of St. Sophia, in the year of the Incarnation of Jesus 
Christ one thousand twelve hundred and four. Of the re 
joicings and feasting there is no need to speak further, 
for the tarons and knights did all they could ; and the Mar 
quis Boniface of Montferrat and Count Lewis of Blois and 
Chartres did homage to the emperor as their lord. After the 
great rejoicings and ceremonies of the coronation, he was 
taken in great pomp, and with a great procession, to the rich 
palace of Bucoleon. And when the feastings were over he 
began to discuss his affairs. 

Boniface the Marquis of Montferrat called upon him to 
carry out the covenant made, and give him, as he was bound 
to do, the land on the other side of the straits towards 
Turkey and the Isle of Greece. And the emperor acknow 
ledged that he was bound so to do, and said he would do it 
right willingly. And when the Marquis of Montferrat saw 
that the emperor was willing to carry out this covenant so 
debonairly, he besought him, in exchange for this land, to 
bestow upon him the kingdom of Salonika, because it lay 
near the land of the King of Hungary, whose sister he had 
taken to wife. 

Much was this matter debated in various ways; but in the 
end the emperor granted the land of Salonika to the marquis, 
and the marquis did homage therefor. And at this there was 
much joy throughout the host, because the marquis was one 
of the knights most highly prized in all the world, and one 
whom the knights most loved, inasmuch as no one dealt with 
them more liberally than he. Thus the marquis remained in 
the land, as you have heard. 


The Emperor Mourzuphles had not yet removed more than 
four days journey from Constantinople; and he had taken 
with him the empress who had been the wife of the Emperor 
Alexius, who aforetime had fled, and his daughter. This 
Emperor Alexius was in a city called Messinople, with all his 
people, and still held a great part of the land. And at that 

jo Memoirs of the Crusades 

time the men of note in Greece departed, and a large number 
passed over the straits towards Turkey; and each ore, for 
his own advantage, made himself master of such lands as he 
could lay hands upon; and the same thing happened also 
throughout the other parts of the empire. 

The Emperor Mourzuphles made no long tarrying before 
he took a city which had surrendered to my lord the Emperor 
Baldwin, a city called Tchorlu. So he took it and sacked it, 
and seized whatever he found there. When the news thereof 
came to the Emperor Baldwin, he took counsel with the 
barons, and with the Doge of Venice, and they agreed to this, 
that he should issue forth, with all his host, to make con 
quest of the land, and leave a garrison in Constantinople to 
keep it sure, seeing that the city had been newly taken and 
was peopled with the Greeks. 

So did they decide, and the host was called together, and 
decision made as to who should remain in Constantinople, 
and who should go in the host with the Emperor Baldwin. 
In Constantinople remained Count Lewis of Blois. and 
Chartres, who had been sick, and was not yet recovered, and 
the Doge of Venice. And Conon of Bethune remained in the 
palaces of Blachernse and Bucoleon to keep the city; and 
with him Geoflry the Marshal of Champagne, and Miles the 
Brabant of Provins, and Manasses of 1 Isle, and all their 
people. All the rest made ready to go in the host with the 

Before the Emperor Baldwin left Constantinople, his 
brother Henry departed thence, by his command, with a 
hundred very good knights; and he rode from city to city, 
and in every city to which he came the people swore fealty to 
the emperor. So he fared forward till he came to Adrianople, 
which was a good city, and wealthy; and those of the city 
received him right willingly and swore fealty to the emperor. 
Then he lodged in the city, he and his people, and sojourned 
there till the Emperor Baldwin came thither. 


The Emperor Mourzuphles, when he heard that they thus 
advanced against him, did not dare to abide their coming, 
but remained always two or three days march in advance. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 71 

So he fared forward tilj he came near Messinople, where the 
Emperor Alexius was sojourning, and he sent on messengers, 
telling Alexius that he would give him help, and do all his 
behests. And the Emperor Alexius answered that he should 
be as welcome as if he were his own son, and that he would 
give him his daughter to wife, and make of him his son. So 
the Emperor Mourzuphles encamped before Messinople, and 
pitched his tents and pavilions, and Alexius was quartered 
within the city. So they conferred together, and Alexius gave 
him his daughter to wife, and they entered into alliance, and 
said they should be as one. 

They sojourned thus for I know not how many days, the 
one in the camp and the other in the city, and then did the 
Emperor Alexius invite the Emperor Mourzuphles to come 
and eat with him, and to go with him to the baths. So were 
matters settled. The Emperor Mourzuphles came privately, 
and with few people, and when he was within the house, the 
Emperor Alexius called him into a privy chamber, and had 
him thrown on to the ground, and the eyes drawn out of his 
head. And this was done in such treacherous wise as you 
have heard. Now say whether this people, who wrought 
such cruelty one to another, were fit to have lands in posses 
sion! And when the host of the Emperor Mourzuphles 
heard what had been done, they scattered, and fled this 
way and that; and some joined themselves to the Emperor 
Alexius, and obeyed him as their lord, and remained with him. 



Then the Emperor Baldwin moved from Constantinople, 
with all his host, and rode forward till he came to Adrianople. 
There he found Henry his brother, and the men with him. 
All the people whithersoever the emperor passed, came to 
him, and put themselves at his mercy and under his rule. 
And while they were at Adrianople, they heard the news 
that the Emperor Alexius had pulled out the eyes of the 
Emperor Mourzuphles. Of this there was much talk among 
them; and well did all say that those who betrayed one 
another so disloyally and treacherously had no right to hold 
land in possession. 

Then was the Emperor Baldwin minded to ride straight to 

72 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Messinople, where the Emperor Alexius was. And the Greeks 
of Adrianople besought him, as their lord, to leave a garrison 
in their city because of Johannizza, King of Walachia and 
Bulgaria, who ofttimes made war upon them. And the 
Emperor Baldwin left there Eustace of Saubruic, who was a 
knight of Flanders, very worthy and very valiant, together 
with forty right good knights, and a hundred mounted 

So departed the Emperor Baldwin from Adrianople, and 
rode towards Messinople, where he thought to find the 
Emperor Alexius. All the people of the lands through which 
he passed put themselves under his rule and at his mercy ; 
and when the Emperor Alexius saw this, he avoided Messi 
nople and fled. And the Emperor Baldwin rode on till he 
came before Messinople; and those of the city went out to 
meet him and surrendered the city to his commandment. 

Then the Emperor Baldwin said he would sojourn there, 
waiting for the arrival of Boniface, Marquis of Montferrat, 
who had not yet joined the host, seeing he could not move as 
fast as the emperor, because he was bringing with him the 
empress, his wife. However, he also rode forward till he 
came to Messinople, by the river, and there encamped, and 
pitched his tents and pavilions. And on the morrow he went 
to speak to the Emperor Baldwin, and to see him, and re 
minded him of his promise. 

" Sire," said he, " tidings have come to me from Salonika 
that the people of the land would have me know that they 
are ready to receive me willingly as their lord. And I am 
your liegeman, and hold the land from you. Therefore, I 
pray you, let me go thither; and when I am in possession 
of my land and of my city, I will bring you out such supplies 
as you may need, and come ready prepared to do your 
behests. But do not go and ruin my land. Let us rather, 
if it so pleases you, march against Johannizza, the King 
of Walachia and Bulgaria, who holds a great part of the 
land wrongfully." 


I know not by whose counsel it was that the emperor 
replied that he was determined to march towards Salonika, 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 

and would afterwards attend to his other affairs. " Sire/ 
said Boniface, Marquis of Montferrat, " I pray thee, since- 
am able without thee to get possession of my land, that tho. 
wilt not enter therein; but if thou dost enter therein, I shall 
deem that thou art not acting for my good. And be it 
known to thee that I shall not go with thee, but depart from 
among you." And the Emperor Baldwin replied that, not 
withstanding all this, he should most certainly go. 

Alas! how ill-advised were they, both the one and the 
other, and how great was the sin of those who caused this 
quarrel! For if God had not taken pity upon them, now 
would they have lost all the conquests they had made, and 
Christendom been in danger of ruin. So by ill fortune was 
there division between the Emperor Baldwin of Constanti 
nople and Boniface, Marquis of Montferrat, and by ill- 

The Emperor Baldwin rode towards Salonika, as he de 
vised, with all his people, and with all his power. And 
Boniface, the Marquis of Montferrat, went back, and he took 
with him a great number of right worthy people. With him 
went James of Avesnes, William of Champlitte, Hugh of 
Colemi, Count Berthold of Catzenellenbogen, and the greater 
part of those who came from the Empire of Germany and held 
with the marquis. Thus did the marquis ride back till he 
came to a castle, very goodly, very strong, and very rich, 
which is called Demotica; and it was surrendered by a Greek 
of the city, and when the marquis had entered therein he 
garrisoned it. Then because of their knowledge of the 
empress (his wife), the Greeks began to turn towards him, 
and to surrender to his rule from all the country round 
about, within a day or two s journey. 

The Emperor Baldwin rode straight on to Salonika, and 
came to a castle called Christopolis, one of the strongest in 
the world. And it surrendered, and those of the city did 
homage to him. Afterwards he came to another place called 
Blache, which was very strong and very rich, and this too 
surrendered, and the people did homage. Next he came to 
Cetros, a city strong and rich, and it also came to his rule and 
order, and did homage. Then he rode to Salonika, and en 
camped before the city, and was there for three days. And 
those within surrendered the city, which was one of the best 
and wealthiest in Christendom at that day, on condition that 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

, e 3 would maintain the uses and customs theretofore observed 
y the Greek emperor. 


While the Emperor Baldwin was thus at Salonika, and the 
land surrendering to his good pleasure and commandment, 
the Marquis Boniface of Montferrat, with all his people and 
a great quantity of Greeks who held to his side, marched to 
Adrianople and besieged it, and pitched his tents and 
pavilions round about. Now Eustace of Saubruic was 
therein, with the people whom the emperor had left there, 
and they mounted the walls and towers and made ready to 
defend themselves. 

Then took Eustace of Saubruic two messengers and sent 
them, riding night and day, to Constantinople. And they 
came to the Doge of Venice, and to Count Lewis, and to those 
who had been left in the city by the Emperor Baldwin, and 
told them that Eustace of Saubruic would have them know 
that the emperor and the marquis were embroiled together, 
and that the marquis had seized Demotica, which was one of 
the strongest castles in Roumania, and one of the richest, and 
that he was besieging them in Adrianople. And when those 
in Constantinople heard this they were moved with anger, 
for they thought most surely that all their conquests would 
be lost. 

Then assembled in the palace of Blachernse the Doge of 
Venice, and Count Lewis of Blois and Chartres, and the other 
barons that were in Constantinople; and much were they 
distraught, and greatly were they angered, and fiercely did 
they complain of those who had put enmity between the 
emperor and the marquis. At the prayer of the Doge of 
Venice and of Count Lewis, Geoffry of Villehardouin, the 
Marshal of Champagne, was enjoined to go to the siege of 
Adrianople, and appease the war, if he could, because he 
was well in favour with the marquis, and therefore they 
thought he would have more influence than any other. And 
he, because of their prayers, and of their great need, said he 
would go willingly; and he took with him Manasses of 
Tlsle, who was one of the good knights of the host, and one 
of the most honoured. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 75 

So they departed from Constantinople, and rode day by 
day till they came to Adrianople, where the siege was going 
on. And when the marquis heard thereof,, he came out of 
the camp and went to meet them. With him came James 
of Avesnes, and William of Champlitte, and Hugh of Colemi, 
and Otho of la Roche, who were the chief counsellors of the 
marquis. And when he saw the envoys, he did them much 
honour and showed them much fair seeming. 

Geoffry the Marshal, with whom he was on very good 
terms, spoke to him very sharply, reproaching him with the 
fashion in which he had taken the land of the emperor and 
besieged the emperor s people in Adrianople, and tjjiat with 
out apprising those in Constantinople, who surely would have 
obtained such redress as was due if the emperor had done him 
any wrong. And the marquis disculpated himself much, and 
said it was because of the wrong the emperor had done him 
that he had acted in such sort. 

So wrought Geoffry, the Marshal of Champagne, with the 
help of God, and of the barons who were in the confidence of 
the marquis, and who loved the said Geoffry well, that the 
marquis assured him he would leave the matter in the hands 
of the Doge of Venice, and of Count Lewis of Blois and 
Chartres, and of Conon of Bethune, and of Geoffry of Ville- 
hardouin, the Marshal all of whom well knew what was the 
covenant made between himself and the emperor. So was a 
truce established between those in the camp and those in 
the city. 

And you must know that Geoffry the Marshal, and 
Manasses of 1 Isle, were right joyously looked upon, both by 
those in the camp and those in the city, for very strongly 
did either side wish for peace. And in such measure as the 
Franks rejoiced, so were the Greeks dolent, because right 
willingly would they have seen the Franks quarrelling and 
at war. Thus was the siege of Adrianople raised, and the 
marquis returned with all his people to Demotica, where 
was the empress his wife. 


The envoys returned to Constantinople, and told what they 
had done. Greatly did the Doge of Venice, and Count Lewis 

7 6 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

of Blois, and all besides, then rejoice that to these envoys 
had been committed the negotiations for a peace; and they 
chose good messengers, and wrote a letter, and sent it to the 
Emperor Baldwin, telling him that the marquis had referred 
himself to them, with assurances that he would accept their 
arbitration, and that he (the emperor) was even more 
strongly bound to do the same, and that they besought him 
to do so for they would in no wise countenance war and 
promise to accept their arbitration, as the marquis had 

While this was in progress the Emperor Baldwin had 
settled matters at Salonika and departed thence, garrisoning 
it with his people, and had left there as chief Renier of 
Mons, who was a good knight and a valiant. And tidings 
had come to him that the marquis had taken Demotica, and 
established himself therein, and conquered a great part of the 
land lying round about, and besieged the emperor s people 
in Adrianople. Greatly enraged was the Emperor Baldwin 
when these tidings came to him, and much did he hasten so 
as to raise the siege of Adrianople, and do to the marquis all 
the harm that he could. Ah God! what mischief their 
discord might have caused! If God had not seen to it, 
Christendom would have been undone. 

So did the Emperor Baldwin journey day by day. And a 
very great mischance had befallen those who were before 
Salonika, for many people of the host were stricken down 
with sickness. Many who could not be moved had to remain 
in the castles by which the emperor passed, and many were 
brought along in litters, journeying in sore pain; and many 
there were who died at Cetros (La Serre). Among those who 
so died at Cetros was Master John of Noyon, chancellor to 
the Emperor Baldwin. He was a good clerk, and very wise, 
and much had he comforted the host by the word of God, 
which he well knew how to preach. Aiid you must know 
that by his death the good men of the host were much 

Nor was it long ere another great misfortune befell the 
host, for Peter of Amiens died, who was a man rich and 
noble, and a good and brave knight, and great dole was made 
for him by Hugh of St. Paul, who was his cousin-german; 
and heavily did his death weigh upon the host. Shortly 
after died Gerard of Mancicourt, who was a knight much 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 77 

prized, and Giles of Aunoy, and many other good people. 
Forty knights died during this expedition, and by their death 
was the host greatly enfeebled. 



The Emperor Baldwin journeyed so day by day that he 
met the messengers sent by those of Constantinople. One 
of the messengers was a knight belonging to the land of Count 
Lewis of Blois, and the count s liegeman; his name was 
Bigue of Fransures, and he was wise and eloquent. He 
spoke the message of his lord and the other barons right 
manfully, and said : " Sire, the Doge of Venice, and Count 
Lewis, my lord, and the other barons who are in Constanti 
nople send you health and greeting as to their lord, and they 
complain to God and to you of those who have raised discord 
between you and the Marquis of Montferrat, whereby it 
failed but little that Christendom was not undone; and they 
tell you that you did very ill when you listened to such coun 
sellors. Now they apprise you that the marquis has referred 
to them the quarrel that there is between him and you, and 
they pray you, as their lord, to refer that quarrel to them 
likewise, and to promise to abide by their ruling. And be it 
known to you that they will in no wise, nor on any ground, 
suffer that you should go to war." 

The Emperor Baldwin went to confer with his council, and 
said he would reply anon. Many there were in the emperor s 
council who had helped to cause the quarrel, and they were 
greatly outraged by the declaration sent by those at Con 
stantinople, and they said: " Sire, you hear what they de 
clare to you, that they will not suffer you to take vengeance 
of your enemy. Truly it seems that if you will not do as they 
order, they will set themselves against you." 

Very many big words were then spoken; but, in the end, 
the council agreed that the emperor had no wish to lose the 
friendship of the Doge of Venice, and Count Lewis, and the 
others who were in Constantinople ; and the emperor replied 
to the envoys : I will not promise to refer the quarrel to 
those who sent you, but I will go to Constantinople without 
doing aught to injure the marquis." So the Emperor Bald 
win journeyed day by day till he came to Constantinople, and 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

the barons, and the other people, went to meet him, and 
received him as their lord with great honour. 


On the fourth day the emperor knew clearly that he had 
been ill-advised to quarrel with the marquis, and then the 
Doge of Venice and Count Lewis came to speak to him and 
said: " Sire, we would pray you to refer this matter to us, as 
the marquis has done/ 3 And the emperor said he would do 
so right willingly. Then were envoys chosen to fetch the 
marquis, and bring him thither. Of these envoys one was 
Gervase of the Chatel, and the second Renier of Trit, and 
Geoffry, Marshal of Champagne the third, and the Doge of 
Venice sent two of his people. 

The envoys rode day by day till they came to Demotica, 
and they found the marquis with the empress his wife, and a 
great number of right worthy people, and they told him how 
they had come to fetch him. Then did Geoffry the Marshal 
desire him to come to Constantinople, as he had promised, 
and make peace in such wise as might be settled by those in 
whose hands he had remitted his cause; and they promised 
him safe conduct, as also to those who might go with him. 

The marquis took counsel with his men. Some there were 
who agreed that he should go, and some who advised that he 
should not go. But the end of the debate was such that he 
went with the envoys to Constantinople, and took full a 
hundred knights with him ; and they rode day by day till they 
came to Constantinople. Very gladly were they received in the 
city ; and Count Lewis of Blois and Chartres, and the Doge 
of Venice went out to meet the marquis, together with many 
other right worthy people, for he was much loved in the host. 

Then was a parliament assembled, and the covenants were 
rehearsed between the Emperor Baldwin and the Marquis 
Boniface; and Salonika was restored to Boniface, with the 
land, he placing Demotica, which he had seized, in the hands 
of Geoffry the Marshal of Champagne, who undertook to keep 
it till he heard, by accredited messenger, or letters duly sealed, 
that the marquis was seized of Salonika, when he would give 
back Demotica to the emperor, or to whomsoever the emperor 
might appoint. Thus was peace made between the emperor 
and the marquis, as you have heard. And great was the joy 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 79 

thereof throughout the host, for out of this quarrel might 
very great evil have arisen. 


The marquis then took leave, and went towards Salonika 
with his people, and with his wife; and with him rode the 
envoys of the emperor; and as they went from castle to 
castle, each, with all its lordship, was restored to the marquis 
on the part of the emperor. So they came to Salonika, and 
those who held the place for the emperor surrendered it. 
Now the governor, whom the emperor had left there, and 
whose name was Renier of Mons, had died; he was a man 
most worthy, and his death a great mischance. 

Then the land and country began to surrender to the mar 
quis, and a great part thereof to come under his rule. But a 
Greek, a man of great rank, whose name was Leon Sgure, 
would in no wise come under the rule of the marquis, for he 
had seized Corinth and Napoli, two cities that lie upon the 
sea, and are among the strongest cities under heaven. He 
then refused to surrender, but began to make war against 
the marquis, and a very great many of the Greeks held with 
him. And another Greek, whose name was Michael, and 
who had come with the marquis from Constantinople, and 
was thought by the marquis to be his friend, he departed, 
without any word said, and went to a city called Arthe 
(? Durazzo) and took to wife the daughter of a rich Greek, 
who held the land from the emperor, and seized the land, and 
began to make war on the marquis. 

Now the land from Constantinople to Salonika was quiet 
and at peace, for the ways were so safe that all could come 
and go at their pleasure, and from the one city to the other 
there were full twelve long days journey. And so much 
time had now passed that we were at the beginning of 
September (1204). And the Emperor Baldwin was in Con 
stantinople, and the land at peace, and under his rale. Then 
died two right good knights in Constantinople, Eustace of 
Canteleu, and Aimery of Villeroi, whereof their friends had 

great sorrow. 

Then did they begin to divide the land. The Venetians 
had their part, and the pilgrims the other. And when each 

80 Memoirs of the Crusades 

cms was able to go to his own land, the covetousness of this 
world, which has worked so great evil, suffered them not to be 
at peace, for each began to deal wickedly in his land, some 
more, and some less, and the Greeks began to hate them and 
to nourish a bitter heart. 

Then did the Emperor Baldwin bestow on Count Lewis the 
duchy of Nice, which was one of the greatest lordships in 
the land of Roumania, and situate on the other side of the 
straits, towards Turkey. Now all the land on the other side 
of the straits had not surrendered to the emperor, but was 
against him. Then afterwards he gave the duchy of Philip- 
popolis to Renier of Trit. 

So Count Lewis sent his men to conquer his land some 
hundred and twenty knights. And over them were set 
Peter of Bracieux and Payen of Orleans. They left Con 
stantinople on All Saints Day (ist November 1204), and 
passed over the Straits of St. George on ship-board, and 
came to Piga, a city that lies on the sea, and is inhabited by 
Latins. And they began to war against the Greeks. 



In those days it happened that the Emperor Mourzuphles. 
whose eyes had been put out the same who had murdered 
his lord,, the Emperor Isaac s son, the Emperor Alexius, whom 
the pilgrims had brought with them to that land it 
happened, I say, that the Emperor Mourzuphles fled privily _ 
and with but few people, and took refuge beyond the straits, 
But Thierri of Loos heard of it, for Mourzuphles flight was 
revealed to him, and he took Mourzuphles and brought him tc 
the Emperor Baldwin at Constantinople. And the Emperoi 
Baldwin rejoiced thereat, and took counsel with his mer 
what he should do with a man who had been guilty of suet 
a murder upon his lord. 

And the council agreed to this: There was in Constanti 
nople, towards the middle of the city, a column, one of the 
highest and the most finely wrought in marble that eye hac 
ever seen; and Mourzuphles should be taken to the top o: 
that column and made to leap down, in the sight of all tht 
people, because it was fit that an act of justice so notabk 
should be seen of the whole world. So they led the Emperoi 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 81 

Mourzuphles to the column, and took him to the top, and all 
the people in the city ran together to behold the event. 
Fhen they cast him down, and he fell from such a height that 
ivhen he came to the earth he was all shattered and broken^ 

Now hear of a great marvel ! On that column from whichi 
le fell were images of divers kinds, wrought in the marble.? 
4jid among these images was one, worked in the shape of ani 
anperor, falling headlong; for of a long time it had beenV 
prophesied that from that column an emperor of Constanti- V 
lople should be cast down. So did the semblance and the / 
Drophecy come true. 

It came to pass, at this time also, that the Marquis Boni- 
: ace of Montferrat, who was near Salonika, took prisoner the 
Smperor Alexius the same who had put out the eyes of the 
Smperor Isaac and the empress his wife with him. And 
le sent the scarlet buskins, and the imperial vestments, to the 
Smperor Baldwin, his lord, at Constantinople, and the 
imperor took the act in very good part. Shortly after the 
narquis sent the Emperor Alexius and the empress his wife, 
;o Montferrat, there to be imprisoned. 


At the feast of St. Martin after this (nth November 1204), 
Henry, the brother of the Emperor Baldwin, went forth 
irorn Constantinople, and marched down by the straits to the 
nouth of Abydos; and he took with him some hundred and 
twenty good knights. He crossed the straits near a city 
which is called Abydos, and found it well furnished with good 
things, with corn and meats, and with all things of which 
man has need. So he seized the city, and lodged therein, 
and then began to war with the Greeks who were before him. 
And the Armenians of the land, of whom there were many, 
began to turn towards him, for they greatly hated the Greeks. 

At that time Renier of Trit left Constantinople, and went 
towards Philippopolis, which the emperor had given him; 
and he took with him some hundred and twenty very good 
knights, and rode day by day till he passed beyond Adria- 
nople, and came to Philippopolis. And the people of the 
land received him, and obeyed him as their lord, for they 
beheld his coming very willingly. And they stood in great 

8 2 Memoirs of the Crusades 

need of succour, for Johannizza, the King of Wallachia, had 
mightily oppressed them with war. So Renier helped them 
right well, and held a great part of the land, and most of 
those who had sided with Johannizza, now turned to him. 
In those parts the war with Johannizza raged fiercely. 

The emperor had sent some hundred knights over the straits 
of Saint George opposite Constantinople. Macaire of Sainte- 
Marehould was in command, and with him went Matthew of 
Wallincourt, and Robert of the Ronsoi. They rode to a city 
called Nicomedia, which lies on a gulf of the sea, and is well 
two days journey from Constantinople. When the Greeks 
saw them coming, they avoided the city, and went away; 
so the pilgrims lodged therein, and garrisoned it, and enclosed 
it with walls, and began to wage war before them, on that 
side also. 

The land on the other side of the straits had for lord a 
Greek named Theodore Lascaris. He had for wife the 
daughter of the Emperor Alexis, through whom he laid claim 
to the land this was the Alexius whom the Franks had driven 
from Constantinople, and who had put out his brother s eyes. 
The same Lascaris maintained the war against the Franks on 
the other side of the straits, in whatsoever part they might be. 

In Constantinople remained the Emperor Baldwin and 
Count Lewis, with but few people, and the Count of St. Paul, 
who was grievously sick with gout, that held him by the 
knees and feet; and the Doge of Venice, who saw naught. 


After this time came from the land of Syria a great com 
pany of those who had abandoned the host, and gone thither 
from other ports than Venice. With this company came 
Stephen of the Perche, and Reginald of Montmirail, who was 
cousin to Count Lewis, and they were by him much honoured, 
for he was very glad of their coming. And the Emperor 
Baldwin, and the rest of the people also received them very 
gladly, for they were of high rank, and very rich, and brought 
very many good people with them. 

From the land of Syria came Hugh of Tabarie, and Raoul 
his brother, and Thierri of Tenremonde, and very many 
people of the land, knights and light horsemen, and sergeants. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 83 

And the Emperor Baldwin gave to Stephen of the Perche the 
duchy of Philadelphia. 

Among other tidings came news at this time to the Emperor 
Baldwin whereby he was made very sorrowful; for the 
Countess Mary 1 his wife, whom he had left in Flanders, see 
ing she could not go with him because she was with child 
he was then but count had brought forth a daughter and 
afterwards, on her recovery, she started to go to her lord 
oversea, and passed to the port of Marseilles, and coming to 
Acre, she had but just landed, when the tidings came to her 
from Constantinople told by the messengers whom her lord 
had sent that Constantinople was taken, and her lord made 
emperor, to the great joy of all Christendom. On hearing^ 
this the lady was minded to come to him forthwith. Then""\ 
a sickness took her, and she made an end and died, whereof 
there was great dole throughout all Christendom, for she was 
a gracious and virtuous lady and greatly honoured. And 
those who came in this company brought the tidings of her 
death, whereof the Emperor Baldwin had sore affliction, as 
also the barons of the land, for much did they desire to have 
her for their lad^. 


At that time those who had gone to the city of Piga 
Peter of Bracieux and Payen of Orleans being the chiefs 
fortified a castle called Palormo; and they left therein a 
garrison of their people, and rode forward to conquer the 
land. Theodore Lascaris had collected all the people he 
could, and on the day of the feast of our Lord St. Nicholas 
(6th December 1204), which is before the Nativity, he joined 
battle in the plain before a castle called Poemaninon. The 
battle was engaged with great disadvantage to our people, 
for those of the other part were in such numbers as was mar 
vellous; and on our side there were but one hundred and 
forty knights, without counting the mounted sergeants. _ 

But our Lord orders battles as it pleases Him. By His 
grace and by His will, the Franks vanquished the Greeks and 
discomfited them, so that they suffered very great loss. And 
within the week, they surrendered a very large part of the 
land. They surrendered Poemaninon, which was a very 

1 She was the daughter of Henry Count of Champagne and of Mary, 
daughter of Philip Augustus, King of France. 

84 Memoirs of the Crusades 

strong castle, and Lopadion, which was one of the best cities 
of the land, and Polychna, which is seated on a lake of fresh 
water, and is one of the strongest and best castles that can 
be found. And you must know that our people fared very 
excellently, and by God s help had their will of that land. 

Shortly after, by the advice of the Armenians, Henry, the 
brother of the Emperor Baldwin of Constantinople, started 
from the city of Abydos, leaving therein a garrison of his 
people, and rode to a city called Atramittium, which lies on 
the sea, a two days journey from Abydos. This city yielded 
to him, and he lodged therein, and a great part of the land 
surrendered; for the city was well supplied with corn and 
meats, and other goods. Then he maintained the war in 
those parts against the Greeks. 

Theodore Lascaris, who had been discomfited at Poe- 
maninon, collected as many people as he could, and as 
sembled a very great army, and gave the command thereof 
to Constantine, his brother, who was one of the best Greeks 
in Roumania, and then rode straight towards Atramittium. 
And Henry, the brother of the Emperor Baldwin, had know 
ledge, through the Armenians, that a great host was march 
ing against him, so he made ready to meet them, and set 
his battalions in order; and he had with him some very 
good men, as Baldwin of Belvoir, and Nicholas of Mailly, 
and Anseau of Cayeux, and Thierri of Loos, and Thierri of 

So it happened that on the Saturday which is before mid- 
Lent (iQth March 1205), came Constantine Lascaris with his 
great host, before Atramittium. And Henry, when he knew 
of his coming, took counsel, and said he would not suffer 
himself to be shut up in the city, but would issue forth. And 
those of the other part came on with all their host, in great 
companies of horse and foot, and those on our part went out 
to meet them, and began the onslaught. Then was there a 
dour battle and fighting hand to hand ; but by God s help the 
Franks prevailed, and discomfited their foes, so that many 
were killed and taken captive, and there was much booty. 
/Then were the Franks at ease, and very rich, so that the\ 
/ people of the land turned to them, and began to bring in their/ 
I rents. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 85 


Now let us leave speaking further (for the nonce), of those 
at Constantinople, and return to the Marquis Boniface of 
Montferrat. The marquis had gone, as you have heard, 
towards Salonika, and then ridden forth against Leon Sgure, 
who held Napoli and Corinth, two of the strongest cities in 
the world. Boniface besieged both cities at once. James 
of Avesnes, with many other good men, remained before 
Corinth, and the rest encamped before Napoli, and laid siege 
to it. 

Then befell a certain adventure in the land. For Geoffry 
of Villehardouin, who was nephew to Geoffry of Villehardouin, 
Marshal of Roumania and Champagne, being his brother s 
son, was moved to leave Syria with the t company^ tha came 
to Constantinople. But 3v_ind and cr^n^e^arrieaEim to the 
port of Modon, and there his^sfiip was injured, so that, of 
necessity, it behoved him to winter in that country. And 
a Greek, who was a great lord of the land, knew of it, and 
came to him, and did him much honour, and said : Fair sir, 
the Franks have conquered Constantinople, and elected an 
emperor. If thou wilt make alliance with me, I will deal 
with thee in all good faith, and we together will conquer 
much land." So they made alliance on oath, the Greek am; 
Geoffry of Villehardouin, and conquered together a greal 
part of the country, and Geoffry of Villehardouin founc 


But adyentur^happfiiLas .God_wilJs, and sickness laid hold \ 
qf the Greek, and he made an end and died. And the Greek s ! 
son rebelled against Geoffry of Villehardouin, and betrayed 
him, and the castles in which Geoffry had set a garrison 
turned against him. Now he heard tell that the marquis was 
besieging Napoli, so he went towards him with as many men 
as he could collect, and rode through the land for some six 
days in very great peril, and thus came to the camp, where 
he was received right willingly, and much honoured by the 
marquis and all who were there. And this was but right, 
seeing he was very honourable and valiant, and a good 

86 Memoirs of the Crusades 


The marquis would have given him land and possessions 
so that he might remain with him, but he would not, and 
spoke to William of Champlitte, who was his friend, and 
said : " Sir, I come from a land that is very rich, and is called 
Morea. Take as many men as you can collect, and leave this 
host, and let us go and conquer that land by the help of God. 
And that which you will give me out of our conquests, I will 
hold from you, and I will be your liegeman." And William 
of Champlitte, who greatly trusted and loved him, went to 
the marquis, and told him of the matter, and the marquis 
allowed of their going. 

So William of Champlitte and Geoffry of Villehardouin 
(the nephew) departed from the host, and took with them 
about a hundred knights, and a great number of mounted 
sergeants, and entered into the land of Morea, and rode 
onwards till they came to the city of Modon. Michael heard 
that they were in the land with so few people, and he collected 
together a great number of people, a number that was mar 
vellous, and he rode after them as one thinking they were all 
no better than prisoners, and in his hand. 

And when they heard tell that he was coming, they ref orti- 
fied Modon, where the defences had long since been pulled 
down, and there left their baggage, and the lesser folk. 
Then they rode out a day s march, and ordered their array 
with as many people as they had. But the odds seemed too 
great, for they had no more than five hundred men mounted, 
whereas on the other part there were well over five thousand. 
But events happen as God pleases; for our people fought 
with the Greeks, and discomfited and conquered them. And 
the Greeks lost very heavily, while those on our side gained 
horses and arms enough, and other goods in very great 
plenty, and so returned very happy, and very joyously, to 
the city of Modon. 

Afterwards they rode to a city called Coron, on the sea. 
and besieged it. And they had not besieged it long before it 
surrendered, and William gave it to Geoffry of Villehardouin 
(the nephew) and he became his liegeman, and set therein a 
garrison of his men. Next they went to a castle called Chaie- 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 87 

mate, which was very strong and fair, and besieged it. This 
castle troubled them for a very long space, but they re 
mained before it till it was taken. Then did more of the 
Greeks of that land surrender than had done aforetime. 


The Marquis of Montferrat besieged Napoli, but he could 
there do nothing, for the place was too strong,, and his men 
suffered greatly. James of Avesnes, meanwhile, continued 
to besiege Corinth, where he had been left by the marquis. 
Leon Sgure, who was in Corinth, and very wise and wily, saw 
that James had not many people with him, and did not keep 
good watch. So one morning, at the break of day, he issued 
from the city in force, and got as far as the tents, and killed 
many before they could get to their armour. -^ 

There was killed Dreux of Estruen, who was very honour 
able and valiant, and greatly was he lamented. And James 
of Avesnes, who was in command, waxed very wroth at the 
death of his knight, and did not leave the fray till he was 
wounded in the leg right grievously. And well did those who 
were present bear witness that it was to his doughtiness that 
they owed their safety; for you must know that they came 
very near to being all lost. But by God s help they drove 
the Greeks back into the castle by force. 

Now the Greeks, who were very disloyal, still nourished 
treachery in their hearts. They perceived at that time that 
the Franks were so scattered over the land that each had 
his own matters to attend to. So they thought they could 
the more easily betray them. They took envoys therefore 
privily, from all the cities in the land, and sent them to 
Johannizza, the King of Wallachia and Bulgaria, who was still 
at war with them as he had been aforetime. And they told 
Johannizza they would make him emperor, and give them 
selves wholly to him, and slay all the Franks. So they 
swore that they would obey him as their lord, and he swore 
that he would defend them as though they were his own 
people. Such was the oath sworn. 

Memoirs of the Crusades 



At that time there happened a great misfortune at Con 
stantinople, for Count Hugh of St. Paul, who had long been 
in bed, sick of the gout, ; matte an end and died; and this 
caused great sorrow, and was a great mishap, and much was 
he bewept by his men and by his friends. He was buried 
with great honour in the church of our Lord St. George of 

Now Count Hugh in his lifetime had held a castle called 
Demotica, which was very strong and rich, and he had 
therein some of his knights and sergeants. The Greeks, who 
had made oath to the King of Wallachia that they would kill 
and betray the Franks, betrayed them in that castle, and 
slaughtered many and took many captive. Few escaped, 
and those who escaped went flying to a city called Adrianople, 
which the Venetians held at that time. 

Not long after the Greeks in Adrianople rose in arms; and 
such of our men as were therein, and had been set to guard 
it, came out in great peril, and left the city. Tidings thereof 
came to the Emperor Baldwin of Constantinople, who had 
but few men with him, he and Count Lewis of Blois. Much 
were they then troubled and dismayed. And thenceforth, 
from day to day, did evil tidings begin to come to them, 
that everywhere the Greeks were rising, and that wherever 
the Greeks found Franks occupying the land, they killed 

And those who had left Adrianople, the Venetians and 
the others who were there, came to a city called Tzurulum, 
that belonged to the Emperor Baldwin. There they found 
William of Blanvel, who kept the place for the emperor. By 
the help and comfort that he gave them, and because he 
accompanied them with as many men as he could, they 
turned back to a city, some twelve leagues distant, called 
Arcadiopolis, which belonged to the Venetians, and they 
found it empty. So they entered in, and put a garrison there. 

On the third day the Greeks of the land gathered together, 
and came at the break of dawn before Arcadiopolis; and then 
began, from all sides, an assault, great and marvellous. The 
Franks defended themselves right well, and opened their 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 89 

gates, and issued forth, attacking vigorously. As was God s 
will, the Greeks were discomfited, and those on our side / 
began to cut them down and to slay them, and then chased / 
them for a league, and killed many, and captured many^) 
horses and much other spoil. 

So the Franks returned with great joy to Arcadiopolis, and 
sent tidings of their victory to the Emperor Baldwin, in Con 
stantinople, who was much rejoiced thereat. Nevertheless 
they dared not hold the city of Arcadiopolis, but left it on 
the morrow, and abandoned it, and returned to the city of 
Tzurulum. Here they remained in very great doubt, for 
they misdoubted the Greeks who were in the city as much as 
those who were without, because the Greeks in the city had 
also taken part in the oath sworn to the King of Wallachia, 
and were bound to betray the Franks. And many there 
were who did not dare to abide in Tzurulum, but made their 
way back to Constantinople J/ 

^ vr - 


Then the Emperor Baldwin and the Doge of Venice, and 
Count Lewis took counsel together, for they saw they were 
losing the whole land. And they settled that the emperor 
should tell his brother Henry, who was at Adramittium, to 
abandon whatsoever conquests he had made, and come to 
their succour. 

Count Lewis, on his side, sent to Payen of Orleans, and 
Peter of Bracieux, who were at Lopadium, and to all the 
people that were with them, telling them to leave whatsoever 
conquests they had made, save Piga only, that lay on the sea, 
where they were to set a garrison the smallest they could 
and that the remainder were to come to their succour. 

The emperor directed Macaire of Sainte-Menehould, and 
Matthew of Wallincourt, and Robert of Ronsoi, who had 
some hundred knights with them in Nicomedia, to leave 
Nicomedia and come to their succour. 

By command of the Emperor Baldwin, Geoffry of Ville- 
hardouin, Marshal of Champagne and of Roumania, issued 
from Constantinople, with Manasses of 1 Isle, and with as many 
men as they could collect, and these were few enough, seeing 

90 Memoirs of the Crusades 

that all the land was being lost. And they rode to the city 
of Tzurulum, which is distant a three days journey. There 
they found William of Blanvel, and those that were with 
him,, in very great fear, and much were these reassured at 
their coming. At that place they remained four days. The 
Emperor Baldwin sent after GeofFry the Marshal as many as 
he could, of such people as were coming into Constantinople, 
so that on the fourth day there were at Truzulum eighty 

Then did Geoffry the Marshal move forward, and Manasses 
of 1 Isle, and their people, and they rode on, and came to 
the city of Arcadiopolis, and quartered themselves therein. 
There they remained a day, and then moved to a city called 
Bulgaropolis. The Greeks had avoided this city and the 
Franks quartered themselves therein. The following day 
they rode to a city called Neguise, which was very fair and 
strong, and well furnished with all good things. And they 
found that the Greeks had abandoned it, and were all gone 
to Adrianople. Now Adrianople was distant nine French 
leagues, and therein were gathered all the great multitude 
of the Greeks. And the Franks decided that they should 
wait where they were till the coming of the Emperor Baldwin. 


Now does this book relate a great marvel: for Renier of 
Trit, who was at Finepopolis, a good nine days journey from 
Constantinople, with at least one hundred and twenty 
knights, was deserted by Renier his son, and Giles his 
brother, and James of Bondies, who was his nephew, and 
Achard of Verdun, who had his daughter to wife. And they 
had taken some thirty of his knights, and thought to come 
to Constantinople ; and they had left him, you must know, in 
great peril. But they found the country raised against them, 
and were discomfited ; and the Greeks took them, and after 
wards handed them over to the King of Wallachia, who had 
their heads cut off. And you must know that they were but 
little pitied by the people, because they had behaved in such 
evil sort to one whom they were bound to treat quite other 

And when the other knights of Renier de Trit saw that he 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 91 

was thus abandoned by those who were much more bound to 
him than themselves, they felt the less shame, and some 
eighty together left him, and departed by another way. So 
Renier of Trit remained among the Greeks with very few 
men, for he had not more than fifteen knights at Philippo- 
polis and Stanimac which is a very strong castle which he 
held, and where he was for a long time besieged. 


We will speak no further now of Renier of Trit, but return 
to the Emperor Baldwin, who is in Constantinople, with but 
very few people, and greatly angered and much distracted. 
He was waiting for Henry his brother, and all the people on 
the other side of the straits, and the first who came to him 
from the other side of the straits came from Nicomedia, 
viz. : Macaire of Sainte-Menehould, and Matthew of Wallin- 
court, and Robert of Ronsoi, and with them full a hundred 

When the emperor saw them, he was right glad, and he 
consulted with Count Lewis, who was Count of Blois and 
Chartres. And they settled to go forth, with as many men 
as they had, to follow Geofrry the Marshal of Champagne, 
who had gone before. Alas ! what a pity it was they did not 
wait till all had joined them who were on the other side of 
the straits, seeing how few people they had, and how perilous 
the adventure on which they were bound. 

So they started from Constantinople, some one hundred 
and forty knights, and rode from day to day till they came 
to the castle of Neguise, where Geoffry the Marshal was 
quartered. That night they took counsel together, and the 
decision to which they came was, that on the morrow they 
should go before Adrianople, and lay siege to it. So they 
ordered their battalions, and did for the best with such 
people as they had. 

When the morning came, and full daylight, they rode as 
had been arranged, and came before Adrianople. And they 
found it very well defended, and saw the flags of Johannizza, 
King of Wallachia and Bulgaria, on the walls and towers; and 
the city was very strong and very rich, and very full of 
people. Then they made an assault, with very few people, 
before two of the gates, and this was on the Tuesday of 

92 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Palm tide (29th March 1205). So did they remain before 
the city for three days, in great discomfort, and but few in 




Then came Henry Dandolo, the Doge of Venice, who was 
an old man and saw naught. And he brought with him as 
many people as he had, and these were quite as many as the 
Emperor Baldwin and Count Lewis had brought, and he en 
camped before one of the gates. On the morrow they were 
joined by a troop of mounted sergeants, but these might well 
have been better men than they proved themselves to be. 
And the host 1 had small store of provisions, because the 
merchants could not come with them; nor could they go 
foraging because of the many Greeks that were spread 
throughout the land. 

Johannizza, King of Wallachia, was coming to succour 
Adrianople with a very great host; for he brought with him 
Wallachians and Bulgarians, and full fourteen thousand 
Comans who had never been baptised. 

Now because of the dearth of provisions, Count Lewis of 
Blois and Chartres went foraging on Palm Sunday. With 
him went Stephen of the Perche, brother of Count Geoffry of 
the Perche, and Renaud of Montmirail, who was brother of 
Count Hervee of Nevers, and Gervase of the Chatel, and 
more than half of the host. They went to a castle called 
Peutace, and found it well garrisoned with Greeks, and 
assailed it with great force and fury ; but they were able to 
achieve nothing, and so retreated without taking any spoils. 
us they remained during the week of the two Easters 
"(Palm Sunday to Easter Day), and fashioned engines of 
divers sorts, and set such miners as they had to work under 
ground and so undermine the wall. And thus did they cele 
brate Easter (loth April) before Adrianople, being but few 
in number and scant of provisions. 

1 Meaning here a little obscure. I think, however, the intention of 
the original is to state that the host, and not only the sergeants, lacked 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 93 



Then came tidings that Johannizza, King of Wallachia, was 
coming upon them to relieve the city. So they set their 
affairs in order, and it was arranged that GeofTry the Marshal, 
and Manasses of 1 Isle should guard the camp, and that the 
Emperor Baldwin and all the remainder of the host should 
issue from the camp if so be that Johanizza came and offered 

Thus they remained till the Wednesday of Easter week, 
and Johannizza had by that time approached so near that he 
encamped at about five leagues from us. And he sent his 
Comans running before our camp, and a cry was raised 
throughout the camp, and our men issued therefrom helter- 
skelter, and pursued the Comans for a full league very 
foolishly ; for when they wished to return, the Comans began 
to shoot at them in grievous wise, and wounded a good many 
of their horses. 

So our men returned to the camp, and the barons were 
summoned to the quarters of the Emperor Baldwin. And 
they took counsel, and all said that they had dealt foolishly in 
thus pursuing people who were so lightly armed. .And in the 
end they settled that if Johannizza came on again, they would 
issue forth, and set themselves in array of battle before the 
camp, and there wait for him, and not move from thence. And 
they had it proclaimed throughout the host that none should 
be so rash as to disregard this order, and move from his post 
for any cry or tumult that might come to his ears. And it 
was settled that GeofTry the Marshal should keep guard on 
the side of the city, with Manasses of 1 Isle. 

So they passed that night till the Thursday morning in 
Easter week, when they heard mass and ate their dinner. 
And the Comans ran up to their tents, and a cry arose, and 
they ran to arms, and issued from the camp with all their 
battalions in array, as had afore been devised. 

94 Memoirs of the Crusades 



Count Lewis went out first with his battalion, and began 
to follow after the Comans, and sent to urge the emperor to 
come after him. Alas! how ill did they keep to what had 
been settled the night before! For they ran in pursuit of 
the Comans for at least two leagues, and joined issue with 
them, and chased them a long space. And then the Comans 
turned back upon them, and began to cry out and to 

On our side there were battalions made up of other people 
than knights, people having too little knowledge of arms, 
and they began to wax afraid, and be discomfited. And 
Count Lewis, who had been the first to attack, was wounded 
in two places full sorely ; and the Comans and Wallachians 
began to invade our ranks; and the count had fallen, and 
one of his knights, whose name was John of Friaise, dis 
mounted, and set him on his horse. Many were Count 
Lewis people who said : " Sir, get you hence, for you are too 
sbrely wounded, and in two places." And he said: "The 
Lord God forbid that ever I should be reproached with flying 
from the field, and abandoning the emperor." 

The emperor, who was in great straits on his side, recalled 
his people, and he told them that he would not fly, and that 
they were to remain with him : and well do those who were 
there present bear witness that never did knight defend 
himself better with his hands than did the emperor. This 
combat lasted a long time. Some were there who did well, 
and some were there who fled. \En the end, for so God surfers 
misadventures to occur, they were discomfited. There on 
the field remained the Emperor Baldwin, who never would 
fly, and Count Lewis ; the Emperor Baldwin was taken alive 
and Count Lewis was slain. \ 

Alas ! how woful was our loss ! There was lost the Bishop 
Peter of Bethleem, and Stephen of the Perche, brother to 
Count Geoffry, and Renaud of Montmirail, brother of the 
Count of Nevers, and Matthew of Wallincourt, and Robert of 
Ronsoi, John of Friaise, Walter of Neuilli, Fern of Yerres, 
John his brother, Eustace of Heumont, John his brother, 
Baldwin of Neuville, and many more of whom the book does 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 95 

not here make mention. Those who were able to escape,, 
they came back flying to the camp. 


When Geoffry the Marshal of Champagne, who was keep 
ing guard at one of the gates of the city, saw this he issued 
from the camp as soon as he could, with all the men that were 
with him, and gave command to Manasses of PIsle, who 
was on guard at another gate, that he should follow after 
him. And he rode forth with all his force at full speed, and 
in full array, to meet the fugitives, and the fugitives all 
rallied round him. And Manasses of 1 Isle followed as soon 
as he was able, with his men, and joined himself to him, 
so that together they formed a very strong body; and all 
those who came out of the rout, and whom they could stop, 
were taken into their ranks. 

The rout was thus stayed between Nones and Vespers. 
But the most part of the fugitives were so af eared that they 
fled right before them till they came to the tents and quarters. 
Thus was the rout stayed, as you have heard; and the 
Comans, with the Wallachians and Greeks, who were in full 
chace, ceased their pursuit. But these still galled our force 
with their bows and arrows, and the men of our force kept 
still with their faces turned towards them. Thus did both 
sides remain till nightfall, when the Comans and Wallachians 
began to retire. 

Then did GeofTry of Villehardouin, the Marshal of Cham 
pagne and Roumania, summon to the camp the Doge of 
Venice, who was an old man and saw naught, but very wise 
and brave and vigorous; and he asked the Doge to come to 
him there where he stood with his men, holding the field; 
and the Doge did so. And when the Marshal saw him, he 
called him into council, aside, all alone, and said to him: 
" Lord, you see the misadventure that has befallen us. W*eA 
have lost the Emperor Baldwin and Count Lewis, and the 
larger part of our people, and of the best. Now let us be 
think ourselves how to save what is left. For if God does 
not take pity of them, we are but lost." 

And in the end they settled it thus: that the Doge would 
return to the camp, and put heart into the people, and order 
that every one should arm and remain quiet in his tent or 

9 6 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

pavilion; and that Geoff ry the Marshal would remain in full 
order of battle before the camp till it was night, so that their 
enemies might not see the host move; and that when it was 
night all would move from before the city; the Doge of 
Venice would go before, and Geoffry the Marshal would form 
the rear-guard, with those who were with him. 


Thus they waited till it was night; and when it was night 
the Doge of Venice left the camp, as had been arranged, and 
Geoffry the Marshal formed the rear-guard. And they de 
parted at foot pace, and took with them all their people 
mounted and dismounted, the wounded as well those who 
were whole they left not one behind. And they journeyed 
towards a city that lies upon the sea, called Rodosto, and 
that was full three days journey distant. So they departed 
from Adrianople, as you have heard; and this adventure 
befell in the year of the Incarnation of Jesus Christ twelve 
hundred and five. 

And in the night that the host left Adrianople, it happened 
that a company started to get to Constantinople earlier, and 
by a more direct way ; and they were greatly blamed there 
for. In this company was a certain count from Lombardy 
named Gerard, who came from the land of the marquis, and 
Odo of Ham, who was lord of a castle called Ham in Ver- 
mandois, and John of Maseroles, and many others to the 
number of twenty -five knights, whom the book does not 
name. And they went away so fast after the discomfiture, 
which had taken place on the Thursday evening, that they 
came to Constantinople on the Saturday night, though it was 
ordinarily a good five days journey. And they told the news 
to the Cardinal Peter of Capua, who was there by the 

/ ~r T~ i* "Wv i s~\ f 

authority of Innocent Pope of Rome, and to Conon of 
Bethune, who guarded the city, and to Miles the Brabant, 
and to the other good men in the city. And you must know 
that these were greatly affeared, and thought of a certainty 
that all the rest, who had been left before Adrianople, were 
lost, for they had no news of them. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 97 



Now will we say no more about those at Constantinople,, 
who were in sore trouble, but go back to the Doge of Venice 
and Geoffry the Marshal, who marched all the night that 
they left Adrianople, till the dawn of the following day ; and 
then they came to a city called Pamphyle. Now listen and 
you shall hear how adventures befall as God wills : for in that 
city had lain during the night, Peter of Bracieux and Payen 
of Orleans, and all the men belonging to the land of Count 
Lewis, at least a hundred very good knights and one hundred 
and forty mounted sergeants, and they were coming from the 

other side of the straits to join the host at Adrianople. 

..... . .. . ., . j j. 

When they saw the host coming, they ran to their arms 
right nimbly, for they thought we were the Greeks. So they 
armed themselves, and sent to know what people we were, 
when their messengers discovered that we were the host re- 

J ^^ x> - 

treating after/ our ^.discomfiture. ^ So the messengers went 
back, and tola them that the Emperor Baldwin was lost, and 
their lord Count Lewis, of whose land and country they were, 
and of whose following. 

Sadder news could they not have heard. There might you 
have seen many tears wept, and many hands wrung for 
sorrow and pity. And they went on, all armed as they were, 
till they came to where Geoffry, the Marshal of Champagne, 
was keeping guard in the rear, in very great anxiety and mis- 
ease. For Johannizza, the King of Wallachia and Bulgaria, 
Jiad domeTat the point of day before Adrianople with all his 
nost^and found that we had departed, and so ridden after 
us till it was full day ; and when he found us not, he was full 
of grief; and well was it that he found us not, for if he had 
found us we must all have been iost beyond recovery. 

Sir," said Peter of Bracieux and Payen of Orleans to 
Geoffry the Marshal, "what would you have us do? We 
will do whatever you wish." And he answered them : " You 
see how matters stand with us. You are fresh and un 
wearied, and your horses also; therefore do you keep guard 
in the rear, and I will go forward and hold in hand our 
people, who are greatly dismayed and in sore need of com 
fort." To this they consented right willingly. So they 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

established the rear-guard duly and efficiently, and as men 
who well knew how, for they were good knights and honour 


Geoffry the Marshal rode before and led the host, and rode 
till he came to a city called Cariopolis. Then he saw that 
the horses were weary with marching all night, and entered 
into the city, and put them up till noon. And they gave 
food to their horses, and ate themselves of what they could 
find, and that was but little. 

So they remained all the day in that city until night. 
And Johannizza, the King of Wallachia, had followed them 
all the day with all his powers, and encamped about two 
leagues from them. And when it was night, those in the city 
all armed themselves and departed. Geoffry the Marshal 
led the van, and those formed the rear-guard who had formed 
it during the day. So they rode through that night, and the 
following day (i6th April) in great fear and much hardship, 
till they came to the city of Rodosto, a city very rich and 
very strong, and inhabited by Greeks. These Greeks did not 
dare to defend themselves, so our people entered in and took 
quarters; so at last were they in safety. 

Thus did the host escape from Adrianople, as you have 
heard. Then was a council held in the city of Rodosto ; and 
it seemed to the council that Constantinople was in greater 
jeopardy than they were. So they took messengers, and 
sent them by sea, telling them to travel night and day, and 
to advise those in the city not to be anxious about them for 
they had escaped and that they would repair back to Con 
stantinople as soon as they could. 


At the time when the messengers arrived, there were in 
Constantinople five ships of Venice, very large and very good, 
laden with pilgrims, and knights and sergeants, who were 
leaving the land and returning to their own countries. There 
were at least seven thousand men at arms in the ships, and 
one was William the advocate of Bethune, and there were 
besides Baldwin of Aubigny, and John of Virsin, who be- 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 99 

longed to the land of Count Lewis, and was his liegeman, and 
at least one hundred other knights, whom the book does not 
here name. Master Peter of Capua, who was cardinal from 
the Pope of Rome, Innocent, and Conon of Bethune, who 
commanded in Constantinople, and Miles the Brabant, and a 
great number of other men of mark, went to the five ships, 
and prayed those who were in them, with sighs and tears, to 
have mercy and pity upon Christendom, and upon their 
liege lords who had been lost in battle, and to remain for the 
love of God. But they would not listen to a single word, and 
left the port. They spread their sails, and went their way, 
as God ordained, in such sort that the wind took them to the 
port of Rodosto; and this was on the day following that on 

which those who had escaped from the discomfiture came 


thither. ^.^ 

The same prayers, with tears and weeping, that had been 
addressed to them at Constantinople those same prayers 
were now addressed to them at Rodosto; and Geoffry the 
Marshal, and those who were with him, besought them to 
have mercy and pity on the land, and remain, for never 
would they be able to succour any land in such dire need. 
They replied that they would consult together, and give an 
answer on the morrow. 

And now listen to the adventure which befell that night in 
the city. There was a knight from the land of Count Lewis, 
called Peter of Frouville, who was held in honour, and of 
great name. The same fled by night, and left all his baggage 
and his people, and gat himself to the ship of John of Virsin, 
who was from the land of Count Lewis of Blois and Chartres. 
And those on board the five ships, who in the morning were 
to give their answer to Geoffry the Marshal and to the Doge 
of Venice, so soon as they saw the day, they spread their 
sails, and went their way without word said to any one. 
Much and great blame did they receive, both in the land 
whither they went, and in the land they had left; and he 
who received most blame of all was Peter of Frouville. For 
well has it been said that he is but ill-advised who, through 
fear of death, does what will be a reproach to him for ever. 

I oo Memoirs of the Crusades 


Now let us speak of these last no farther, but speak of 
Henry, brother to the Emperor Baldwin of Constantinople, 
who had left Atramittium, which he had conquered, and 
passed the straits at the city of Abydos, and was coming 
towards Adrianople to succour the Emperor Baldwin, his 
brother. And with him had come the Armenians of the land, 
who had helped him against the Greeks some twenty thou 
sand with all their wives and children for they dared not 
remain behind. 

Then came to him the news, by certain Greeks, who had 
escaped from the discomfiture, that his brother the Emperor 
Baldwin was lost, and Count Lewis, and the other barons. 
Afterwards came the news of those who had escaped and 
were at Rodosto ; and these asked him to make all the haste 
he could, and come to them. And because he wanted to 
hasten as much as he could, and reach them earlier, he left 
behind the Armenians, who travelled on foot, and had with 
them chariots, and their wives and children ; and inasmuch as 
these could not come on so fast, and he thought they would 
travel safely and without hurt, he went forward and en 
camped in a village called Cartopolis. 

On that very day came thither the nephew of Geoffry the 
Marshal, Anseau of Courcelles, whom Geoffry had summoned 
from the parts of Macre, Trajanopolis, and the Baie, lands 
that had been bestowed upon him; and with Anseau came 
the people from Philippopolis, who had left Renier of Trit. 
This company held full a hundred good knights, and full five 
hundred mounted sergeants, who all were on their way to 
Adrianople to succour the Emperor Baldwin. But tidings 
had come to them, as to the others, that the emperor had 
been defeated, so they turned to go to Rodosto, and came to 
encamp at Cartopolis, the village where Henry, the brother 
of the Emperor Baldwin, was then encamped. And when 
Baldwin s men saw them coming, they ran to arms, for they 
thought they were Greeks, and the others thought the same 
of Baldwin s men. And so they advanced till they became 
known to one another, and each was right glad of the other s 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 101 

coming, and felt all the safer; and they quartered them 
selves in the village that night until the morrow. 

On the morrow they left, and rode straight towardsrx 
Rodosto, and came that night to the city; and there they 
found the Doge of Venice and Geoffry the Marshal, and all 
who had escaped from the late discomfiture; and right glad 
were these to see them. Then were many tears shed for 
sorrow by those who had lost their friends. Ah, God ! what 
pity it was that those men now assembled had not been at . 
Adrianople with the Emperor Baldwin, for in that case would 
nothing have been lost. But such was not -Ggd s pleasure. 

So they sojourned there on the following day, and the day 
after, and arranged matters; and Henry, the brother of the 
Emperor Baldwin, was received into lordship, as regent of 
the empire, in lieu of his brother. 

And then misfortune came upon the Armenians, who were 
coming after Henry, the brother of the Emperor Baldwin, for 
the people of the land gathered together and discomfited the 
Armenians, so that they were all taken, killed or lost. 


Johannizza, King of Wallachia and Bulgaria, had with him 
all his power, and he occupied the whole land; and the coun 
try, and the cities, and the castles held for him; and his 
Comans over-ran the land as far as Constantinople. Henry 
the regent of the empire, and the Doge of Venice, and 
Geoffry the Marshal, were still at Rodosto, which is a three 
days journey from Constantinople. And they took council, 
and the Doge of Venice set a garrison of Venetians in Rodosto 
for it was theirs. And on the morrow they put their forces 
in array, and rode, day by day, towards Constantinople. 

When they reached Salymbria, a city which is two days 
journey from Constantinople, and belonged to the Emperor 
Baldwin, Henry his brother set there a garrison of his people, 
and they rode with the rest to Constantinople, where they 
were received right willingly, for the people were in great 
terror. Nor is that to be wondered at, for they had lost so 
much of the country, that outside Constantinople they only 
held Rodosto and Salymbria; the whole of the rest of the 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

country being held by Johannizza, King of Wallachia and 
Bulgaria. And on the other side of the straits of St. George, 
they held no more than the castle of Spiga, while the rest of 
the land was in the hands of Theodore Lascaris. 

Then the barons decided to send to the Apostle of Rome, 
Innocent, and to France and Flanders, and to other lands, to 
ask for succour. And for this purpose were chosen as envoys 
Nevelon, Bishop of Soissons, and Nicholas of Mailly, and 
John Bliaud. The rest remained in Constantinople, in great 
distress, as men who stood in fear of losing the land. So 
they remained till Pentecost (29th May 1205). And within 
this time a very great misfortune happened to the host, for 
Henry Dandolo was taken sick; so he made an end and died, 
and was buried with great honour in the Church of St. Sophia. 

When Pentecost had come, Johannizza, the King of Wal 
lachia and Bulgaria, had pretty well had his will of the land ; 
and he could no longer hold his Comans together, because 
they were unable to keep the field during the summer; so 
the Comans departed to their own country. And he, with 
all his host of Bulgarians and Greeks, marched against the 
marquis towards Salonica. And the marquis, who had 
heard the news of the discomfiture of the Emperor 3aldwin, 
raised the siege of Napoli, and went to Salonica with as many 
men as he could collect, and garrisoned it. 



Henry, the brother of the Emperor Baldwin of Constanti 
nople, with as many people as he could gather, marched 
against the Greeks to a city called Tzurulum, which is a three 
days journey from Constantinople. This city surrendered, 
and the Greeks swore fealty to him an oath which at that 
time men observed badly. From thence he marched to 
Arcadiapolis, and found it void, for the Greeks did not dare 
to await his coming. And from thence again he rode to the 
city of Bizye, which was very strong, and well garrisoned 
with Greeks; and this city too surrendered, Aferwards he 
rode to the city of Napoli (Apros) which also remained well 
garrisoned with Greeks. 

As our people were preparing for an assault, the Greeks 
within the city asked to negotiate for capitulation. But 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 103 

while they thus negotiated, the men of the host effected an 
entrance into the city on another side, and Henry the Regent 
of the empire and those who were negotiating knew nothing 
of it, And this proved very disastrous to the Greeks. For 
the Franks, who had effected an entrance, began to slaughter 
them, and to seize their goods, and to take all that they had. 
So were many killed and taken captive. In this wise was 
Napoli (Apros) captured; and the host remained there 
three days. And the Greeks were so terrified by this 
slaughter, that they abandoned all the cities and castles of 
the land, and fled for refuge to Adrianople and Demotica, 
which were very strong and good cities. ^*~ 



At that time it happened that Johannizza, the King of Wal- 
lachia and Bulgaria, with all his host, marched against the 
marquis, towards a city called Seres. And the marquis had 
set a strong garrison of his people in the city, for he had set 
there Hugh of Colemi, who was a very good knight, and high 
in rank, and William of Aries, who was his marshal, and 
great part of his best men. And Johannizza, the King of 
Wallachia besieged them ; nor had he been there long before 
he took the burgh by force. And at the taking of the burgh 
a great misfortune befell, for Hug of Colemi was killed; he 
was struck through the eye. v*$9C **fJ&}u^f****"-* 

When he was killed, who was the best of them all, the rest 
of the garrison were greatly afeared. They drew back into 
the castle, which was very strong; and Johannizza besieged 
them, and erected his petraries and mangonels. Nor had he 
besieged them long before they began to talk about surrender 
ing, for which they were afterwards blamed, and incurred 
great reproach. And they agreed to yield up the castle to 
Johannizza, and Johannizza on his side caused twenty-five of 
the men of highest rank that he had to swear to them that 
they should be taken, safe and sound, with all their horses, 
and all their arms, and all their baggage, to Salonica, or 
Constantinople, or Hungary whichever of the three it liked 
them best. 

In this manner was Seres surrendered, and Johannizza 
caused the besieged to come forth from the castle and en- 

104 Memoirs of the Crusades 

camp near him in the fields; and he treated them with much 
fair seeming, and sent them presents. So he kept them for 
three days, and then he lied and foreswore his promises : for 
he had them taken, and spoiled of their goods, and led away 
to Wallachia, naked, and unshod, and on foot. The poor 
and the mean people, who were of little worth, he sent into 
Hungary ; and as for the others, he caused their heads to be 
cut off. Of such mortal treachery was the King of Wallachia 
guilty, as you have heard. Here did the host suffer grievous 
loss, one of the most dolorous that ever it suffered. And 
Johannizza had the castle and city razed, and went on after 
the marquis. 


Henry, the Regent of the empire, with all his power, rode 
towards Adrianople, and laid siege to it; and he was in great 
peril, for there were many, both within and without the city 
who so hemmed him in, he and his people, that they could 
scantly buy provisions, or go foraging. Therefore they en 
closed their camp with palisades and barriers, and told off 
part of their men to keep guard within the palisades and. 
barriers, while the others attacked the city. 

And they devised machines of divers kinds, and scaling 
ladders, and many other engines, and wrought diligently to 
take the city. But they could not take it, for the city was 
very strong and well furnished for defence. So matters went 
ill with them, and many of their people were wounded; and 
one of their good knights, Peter of Bracieux, was struck on 
the forehead from a mangonel, and brought near to death; 
but he recovered, by the will of God, and was taken away in 

a litter. 

When they saw that they could in no wise prevail against 
the city, Henry the Regent of the empire, and the French 
host departed. And greatly were they harassed by the 
people of the land and by the Greeks; and they rode from 
day to day till they came to a city called Pamphylia, and 
lodged there, and sojourned in it for two months. And they 
made thence many forays towards Demotica and the country 
round about, where they captured much cattle, and other 
booty. So the host remained in those parts till the beginning 
of winter; and supplies came to them from Rodosto, and 
from the sea. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 105 


Now let us leave speaking of Henry, the Regent of the 
empire, and speak of Johannizza, the King of Wallachia and 
Bulgaria, who had taken Seres, as you have already heard, 
and killed by treachery those who had surrendered to him. 
Afterwards he had ridden towards Salonica, and sojourned 
thereby a long while, and wasted a great part of the land. 
The Marquis Boniface of Montferrat was at Salonica, very 
wroth, and sorrowing greatly for the loss of his lord the 
Emperor Baldwin, and for the other barons, and for his castle 
of Seres that he had lost, and for his men. 

And when Johannizza saw that he could do nothing more, 
he retired towards his own land, with all his force. And the 
people in Philippopolis which belonged to Renier of Trit, 
for the Emperor Baldwin had bestowed it upon him heard 
tell how the Emperor Baldwin was lost, and many of his 
barons, and that the marquis had lost Seres; and they saw 
that the relatives of Renier of Trit, and his own son and his 
nephew, had abandoned him, and that he had with him but 
very few people; and they deemed that the Franks would 
never be in power again. So a great part of the people, who 
were Paulicians, 1 betook themselves to Johannizza, and sur 
rendered themselves to him, and said: " Sire, ride to Philip 
popolis, or send thither thy host, and we will deliver the 
whole city into thy hands." 

When Renier of Trit, who was in the city, knew of 
this, he doubted not that they would yield up the city to 
Johannizza. So he issued forth with as many people as he 
could collect, and left at the point of day, and came to one 
of the outlying quarters of the city where dwelt the Pauli 
cians who had repaired to Johannizza, and he set fire to that 
quarter of the city, and burned a great part of it. Then he 
went to the castle of Stanimac, which was at three leagues r 
distance, and garrisoned by his people, and entered therein. 
And in this castle he lay besieged for a long while, some 
thirteen months, in great distress and great poverty, so that 
for famine they ate their horses. He was distant a nine 

1 An Eastern sect. They believed, among other things, that all 
matter is evil, and that Christ suffered in appearance only. 

106 Memoirs of the Crusades 

days journey from Constantinople, and could neither obtain 
tidings therefrom, nor send tidings thither. 

Then did Johannizza send his host before Philippopolis; 
nor had he been there long before those who were in the city 
surrendered it to him, and he promised to spare their lives. 
And after he had promised to spare their lives, he first caused 
the archbishop of the city to be slain, and the men of rank to 
be flayed alive, and certain others to be burned, and certain 
others to have their heads cut off, and the rest he caused to 
be driven away in chains. And the city he caused to be 
pulled down, with its towers and walls; and the high palaces 
and rich houses to be burned and utterly destroyed. Thus 
was destroyed the noble city of Philippopolis, one of the 
three finest cities in the empire of Constantinople. 



Now let us leave off speaking of those who were at Philip 
popolis, and of Renier of Trit, who is shut up in Stanimac, 
and return to Henry, the brother of the Emperor Baldwin, 
who had sojourned at Pamphylia till the beginning of winter. 
Then he took council with his men and with his barons ; and 
they decided to set a garrison in a city called Rusium, which 
was situate at a place rich and fertile in the middle of the 
land; and the chiefs placed over this garrison were Thierri 
of Loos, who was seneschal, and Thierri of Tenremonde, who 
was constable. And Henry, the Regent of the empire, gave 
to them at least seven score knights, and a great many 
mounted sergeants, and ordered them to maintain the war 
against the Greeks, and to guard the marches. 

And he himself went with the rest of his people to the city 
of Bizye, and placed a garrison there; and left in command 
Anseau of Cayeux, and confided to him at least six score 
knights, and a great many mounted sergeants. Another 
city, called Arcadiopolis was garrisoned by the Venetians. 
And the city of Napoli was restored by the brother of the 
Emperor Baldwin to Vernas, who had to wife the sister 1 of 
the King qf France, and was a Greek who sided with us; and 
except he, no other Greek was on our part. And those who 
were in these cities maintained the war against the Greeks, 

1 Agues, sister to Philip Augustus, King of France. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 107 

ind made many forays. Henry himself returned to Con 
stantinople with the rest of his men. 

Now Johannizza, the King of Wallachia and Bulgaria, 
though rich and of great possessions, never forgat his own 
.nterests, but raised a great force of Comans and Wal- 
.achians. And when it came to three weeks after Christmas, 
le sent these men into the land of Roumania to help those at 
\drianople and Demotica ; and the latter, being now in force, 
i prew bolder and rode abroad with the greater assurance. 


Thierri of Tenremonde, who was chief and constable, 
nade a foray on the fourth day before the feast of St. Mary 
"andlemas (3oth January 1206); and he rode all night, 
laving six score knights with him, and left Rusium with but 
i small garrison. When it was dawn, he came to a village 
vhere the Comans and Wallachians were encamped, and sur- 
)rised them in such sort that those who were in the village 
vere unaware of their coming. They killed a good many of 
;he Comans and Wallachians, and captured some forty of 
;heir horses; and when they had done this execution, they 
;urned back towards Rusium. 

And on that very night the Comans and Wallachians had 
idden forth to do us hurt; and there were some seven 
thousand of them. They came in the morning before 
lusium, and were there a long space; and the garrison, 
vhich was but small, closed the gates, and mounted the walls; 
ind the Comans and Wallachians turned back. They had 
lot gone more than a league and a half from the city, when 
:hey met the company of the French under the command^oj v. 
Fhieni of Tenremonde. So soon as the French saw them 
advancing, they formed into their four battalions, with intent 
1 ;o draw into Rusium in slow ffiieTToTtlieyTmew that if, by 
jod s grace, they could come thither, they would then be in 

The Comans, and the Wallachians, and the Greeks of the 
and rode towards them, for they were in very great force. 
And they came upon the rear-guard, and began to harass it 
:ull sorely. Now the rear-guard was formed of the men of 
rhierri of Loos, who was seneschal, and had returned to 
Constantinople, and his brother Villain was now in command. 

io8 Memoirs of the Crusades 

And the Comans and Wallachians and Greeks pressed them 
very hard, and wounded many of their horses. Loud were 
the cries and fierce the onslaught, so that by main force and 
pure distress they drove the rear-guard back on the battalion 
of Andrew of Urboise and John of Choisy ; and in this manner 
the Franks retreated, suffering greatly. 

The enemy renewed their onslaught so fiercely that they 
drove the Franks who were nearest to them back on the 
battalion of Thierri of Tenremonde, the constable. Nor 
was it long before they drove them back still further on to 
the battalions led by Charles of the Frene. And now the 
Franks had retreated, sore harassed, till they were within 
half a mile of Rusium. And the others ever pressed upon 
them more hardily; and the battle went sore against them, 
and many were wounded, and of their horses. So, as God 
will suffer misadventures, they could endure no fitrther. but 

.11 1. mil MnM*"****--- _ - f J - ., .. 1,1 

were discomfited: for they were neavily armed, and them 

"" "!" j "T" iii**iiiiiii*ii"nirir* * > *C*** i i j.i_ 

enemies lightly ; and the latter began to slaughter them, 

Alas! well might Christendom rue that day! For of all 
those six score knights did not more than ten escape who 
were not killed or taken ; and those who escaped came flying 
into Rusium, and rejoined their own people. There was 
slain Thierri of Tenremonde, the constable, Orri of PIsle, 
who was a good knight and highly esteemed, and John of 
Pompone, Andrew of Urboise, John of Choisy, Guy of Con- 
flans, Charles of the Frene, Villain the brother of Thierri the 
seneschal. Nor can this book tell the names of all who were 
then killed or taken. On that day happened one of the 
greatest mishaps, and the most grievous that ever befell to 
the Christendom of the land of Roumania, and one of the 
most pitiful. 

The Comans and Greeks and Wallachians retired, having 
done according to their will in the land, and won many good 
horses and good hawberks. And this misadventure happened 
on the day before the eve of our Lady St. Mary Candlemas 
(3ist January 1206). And the remnant who had escaped 
from the discomfiture, together with those who had been 
in Rusium, escaped from the city, so soon as it was night, 
and went all night flying, and came on the morrow to the 
city of Rodosto. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 1 1 1 

- r as 


This dolorous news came to Henry the Regent of the 
empire, while he was going in procession to the shrine of our 
Lady of Blachernse, on the day of the feast of our Lady St. 
Mary Candlemas. And you must know that many were 
then dismayed in Constantinople, and they thought of a truth 
that the land was but lost. And Henry, the Regent of the 
empire, decided that he would place a garrison in Salymbria, 
which was a two days journey from Constantinople, and he 
sent thither Macaire of Sainte-Menehould, with fifty knights 
to garrison the city. 

Now when tidings came to Johannizza, King of Wallachia, 
as to how his people had fared, he was very greatly rejoiced; 
for they had killed or taken a very great part of the best men 
in the French host. So he sent throughout all his lands to 
collect as many people as he could, and raised a great host of 
Comans, and Greeks and Wallachians, and entered into 
Roumania. And the greater part of the cities held for him, 
and all the castles; and he had so large a host that it was a 

When the Venetians heard tell that he was coming with so 
great a force, they abandoned Arcadiopolis. And Johannizza 
rode with all his hosts till he came to Napoli, which was 
garrisoned by Greeks and Latins, and belonged to Vernas, 
who had to wife the empress, the sister of the King of 
France; and of the Latins was chief Bgue of Fransures, a 
knight of the land of the Beauvaisais. And Johannizza, 
the King of Wallachia, caused the city to be assaulted, 
and took it by force. 

There was so great a slaughter of people killed, that it was 

C^ ^ ^ r ^ ui ^^ < M > ^i*^i nMii l ii*>*^*^^n>M>ttiF.aiw wQ-^.xv^ u>*:>tf.>*.|... fa ,.. ,-.jh, 10 ,^, 

a " mgrvetr~Aiid i&TOT ~oi Fransures was taken before 

""m lp"""""l I Ml taMMM9*? M T l *1l j . ,. ,-, ,1 .,, 

Johannizza, who had him killed incontinently, together with 
all, whether Greek or Latin, who were of any account; and 
all the meaner folk, and women and children, he caused to 
belied away captive to Wallachia. Then did he cause all the 
city which was very good and very rich, and in a good land, 
to be cast down and utterly destroyed. Thus was the city 
of Napoli rased to the ground as you have heard. 

io8 Memoirs of the Crusades 


Twelve leagues thence lay the city of Rodosto, on the sea. 
It was very strong, and rich, and large, and very well garri 
soned by Venetians. And besides all this, there had come 
thither a body of sergeants, some two thousand strong, and 
they had also come to guard the city. When they heard 
that Napoli had been taken by force, and that Johannizza had 
caused all the people that were therein to be put to death, 
they fell into such terror that they were utterly confounded and 
f oredone. As God suffers misadventures to fall upon men, so 
the Venetians rushed to their ships, helter-skelter, pell-mell, 
and in such sort that they almost drowned one another; and 
the mounted sergeants, who came from France and Flanders, 
and other countries, went flying through the land. 
>-*-Now listen and hear how little this served them, and what 
a misadventure was their flight; for the city was so strong, 
and so well enclosed by good walls and good towers, that no 
one would ever have ventured to assault it, and that Johan 
nizza had no thought of going thither. But when Johannizza, 
who was full half a day s journey distant, heard tell that they 
had fled, he rode thither. The Greeks who had remained in 
the city, surrendered, and he incontinently caused them to 
be taken, small and great save those who escaped and led 
captive into Wallachia; and the city he ordered to be 
destroyed and rased to the ground. Ah! the loss and 
damage! for the city was one of the best in Roumania, 
and of the best situated. 


Near there was another city called Panedor, which sur 
rendered to him; and he caused it to be utterly destroyed, 
and the people to be led captive to Wallachia like the people 
of Rodosto. Afterwards he rode to the city of Heraclea, 
that lay by a good seaport, and belonged to the Venetians, 
who had left in it but a weak garrison; so he assaulted it, and 
took it by force. There again was a mighty slaughter, and 
the remnant that escaped the slaughter he caused to be led 
captive to Wallachia, while the city itself he destroyed, as 
he had destroyed the others. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 1 1 1 

Thence he marched to the city of Daonium, which was 
very strong and fine; and the people did not dare to defend 
it. So he caused it to be destroyed and rased to the ground. 
Then he marched to the city of Tzurulum, which had already 
surrendered to him, and caused it to be destroyed and rased 
to the ground, and the people to be led away captive. And 
thus he dealt with every castle and city that surrendered; 
even though he had promised them safety, he caused the 
buildings to be destroyed, and the men and women to be led 
away captive; and no covenant that he made did he ever 

Then the Comans and Wallachians scoured the land up to 
the gates of Constantinople, where Henry the Regent then 
was, with as many men as he could command; and very 
dolorous was he and very wroth, because he could not get 
men enough to defend his land. So the Comans seized the 
cattle off the land, and took captive men, women, and 
children, and destroyed the cities and castles, and caused 
such ruin and desolation that never has man heard tell of 


So they came to a city called Athyra, which was twelve 
leagues from Constantinople, and had been given to Payen 
of Orleans by Henry, the emperor s brother. This city held 
a very great number of people, for the dwellers in the country 
round about had fled thither; and the Comans assaulted it, 
and took it by force. There the slaughter was so great, that 
there had been none such in any city where they had been. 
And you must know that all the castles and all the cities that 
surrendered to Johannizza under promise of safety were 
destroyed and rased to the ground, and the people led away 
captive to Wallachia in such manner as you have heard. 

And you must know that within five days journey from 
Constantinople there remained nothing to destroy save only 
the city of Bizye, and the city of Salymbria, which were 
garrisoned by the French. And in Bizye abode Anseau of 
Cayeux, with six score knights, and in Salymbria abode 
Macaire of Sainte-Menehould with fifty knights; and Henry 
the brother of the Emperor Baldwin remained in Constanti 
nople with the remainder of the host. And you may know 
that their fortunes were at the lowest, seeing that outside of 
Constantinople they had kept possession of no more than 
these two cities. 

1 1 2 Memoirs of the Crusades 


When the Greeks who were in the host with Johannizza 
the same who had yielded themselves up to him, and rebelled 
aerainst the Franks when they saw how he destroyed their 

o * 

castles and cities, and kept no covenant with them, they held 
themselves to be but dead men, and betrayed. They spoke 
one to another, and said that as Johannizza had dealt with 
other cities, so would he deal with Adrianople and Demotica, 
when he returned thither, and that if these two cities were 
destroyed, then was Roumania for ever lost. 

So they took messengers privily, and sent them to Vernas 
in Constantinople. And they besought Vernas to cry for 
pity to Henry, the brother of the Emperor Baldwin, and to 
the Venetians, so that they might make peace with them; 
and they themselves, in turn, would restore Adrianople and 
Demotica to the Franks; and the Greeks would all turn to 
Henry; and the Greeks and Franks dwell together in good 

So a council was held, and many words were spoken this 
way and that, but in the end it was settled that Adrianople 
and Demotica, with all their appurtenances, should be be 
stowed on Vernas and the empress his wife, who was sister 
to the King Philip of France, and that they should do service 
therefor to the emperor and to the empire. Such was the 
convention made and concluded, and so was peace established 
between the Greeks and the Franks. 

Johannizza, the King of Wallachia and Bulgaria, who 
had sojourned long in Roumania, and wasted the country 
during the whole of Lent, and for a good while after Easter 
(2nd April 1206), now retired towards Adrianople and 
Demotica, and had it in mind to deal with those cities as he 
had dealt with the other cities of the land. And when the 
Greeks who were with him saw that he turned towards 
Adrianople, they began to steal away, both by day and by 
night, some twenty, thirty, forty, a hundred, at a time. 

When he came to Adrianople, he required of those that 
were within that they should let him enter, as he had entered 
elsewhere. But they said they would not, and spoke thus: 
" Sire, when we surrendered to thee, and rebelled against the 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 113 

"ranks, thou didst swear to protect us in all good faith, and 
o keep us in safety. Thou hast not done so, but hast utterly 
uined Roumania; and we know full well that thou wilt do 
into us as thou hast done unto others. 3 And when Johan- 
uzza heard this, he laid siege to Demotica, and erected round 
t sixteen large petraries, and began to construct engines of 
t :very kind for the siege, and to waste all the country round. 

Then did those in Adrianople and Demotica take mes- 
; engers, and send them to Constantinople, to Henry, the 
.legent of the empire, and to Vernas, and prayed them, for 
jod s sake, to rescue Demotica, which was being besieged. 
\.nd when those at Constantinople heard these tidings, they I 
lecided to succour Demotica. But some there were who did 
lot dare to advise that our people should issue from Con 
stantinople, and so place in jeopardy the few Christian folk 
;hat remained. Nevertheless, in the end, as you have heard, 
t was decided to issue forth, and move on Salymbria. 

The cardinal, who was there as legate on the part of the 
r ope of Rome, preached thereon to the people, and promised 
i full indulgence to all such as should go forth, and lose their 
ives on tfifi. way. So Henry issued from Constantinople ,\ 
-vith as many men as he could collect, and marched to the 
:ity of Salymbria; and he encamped before the city for full 
dght days. And from day to day came messengers from 
Adrianople praying him to have mercy upon them, and come 
to their relief, for if he did not come to their relief, they were 

*& ~f 




Then did Henry take council with his barons, and their 
decision was that they would go to the city of Bizye, which 
was a fair city, and strong. So they did as they had devised, 
ind came to Bizye, arid encamped before the city on the eve 
Df the feast of our Lord St. John the Baptist, in June (23rd 
June 1206). And on the day that they so encamped came 
messengers from Adrianople, and said to Henry, the brother 
of the Emperor Baldwin: " Sire, be it known to thee that if 
thou dost not relieve the city of Demotica, it cannot hold 
out more than eight days, for Johannizza s petraries have 
breached the walls in four places, and his men have twice got 
on to the walls." 


114 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Then he asked for counsel as to what he should do. Many 

were the words spoken, to and fro; but in the end they said: 

Lord, we have come so far that we shall be for ever shamed 

if we do not succour Demotica. Let every man now confess 

and receive the communion: and then let us set our forces in 

JJ A 1 . -I -1-1 1 11-11 

array. And it was reckoned that they had with them abtrat 
four hundred knights, and of a certainty no more. So they 
summoned the messengers who had come from Adrianople, 
and asked them how matters stood, and what number of men 
Johannizza had with him. And the messengers answered 
that he had with him at least forty thousand men-at-arms, 
not reckoning those on foot, of whom they had no count. 

Ah God ! what a perilous battle so few against so many ! 
In the morning, on the day of the feast of our Lord St. John 
the Baptist, all confessed and received the communion, and 
on the following day they marched forward. The van was 
commanded by Geoffry, the Marshal of Roumania and 
Champagne, and with him was Macaire of Sainte-Menehould. 
The second division was under Conon of Bethune and Miles 
the Brabant; the third under Pay en of Orleans and Peter of 
Bracieux; the fourth was under Anseau of Cayeux; the 
fifth under Baldwin of Beauvoir; the sixth under Hugh of 
Beaumetz ; the seventh under Henry, brother of the Emperor 
Baldwin; the eighth, with the Flemings, under Walter of 
Escornai; Thierri of Loos, who was seneschal, commanded 
the rear-guard. 

So they rode for three days, all in order; nor did any host 
ever advance seeking battle so perilously. For they were in 
peril on two accounts; first because they were so few, and 
those they were about to attack so many; and secondly, 
because they did not believe the Greeks, with whom they 
had just made peace, would help them heartily. For they 
stood in fear lest, when need arose, the Greeks would go over 
to Johannizza, who, as you have already heard, had been so 
near to taking Demotica. 


When Johannizza heard that the Franks were coming, he 
did not dare to abide, but burned his engines of war, and 
broke up his camp. So he departed from Demotica; and 
you must know that this was accounted by all the world as a 



Villehardouin s Chronicle 115 

great miracle. And Henry, the Regent of the empire, came 
6nnS5eT?urtri day (28th June) before Adrianople, and pitched 
his camp near the river of Adrianople, in the fairest meadows 
in the world. When those who were within the city saw his 
host coming, they issued forth, bearing all their crosses, and 
in procession, and showed such joy as had never been seen. 
And well might they rejoice for they had been in evil case. 

Then came tidings to the host that Johannizza was lodged 
at a castle called Rodosto. So in the morning they set forth 
and marched to those parts to seek battle; and Johannizza 
broke up his camp, and marched back towards his own land. 
The host followed after him for five days, and he as constantly 
retired before them. On the fifth day they encamped at a 
very fair and pleasant place by a castle called Fraim; and 
there they sojourned three days. 

And at this place there was a division in the host, and a 
company of valiant men separated themselves therefrom 
because of a quarrel that they had with Henry, the brother 
of the Emperor Baldwin. Of this company Baldwin of Beau- 
voir was chief; and Hugh of Beaumetz went with him, and 
William of Gommegnies and Dreux of Beaurain. There 
were some fifty knights who departed together in that com 
pany ; and they never thought the rest would dare to remain 
in the land in the midst of their enemies. 


Then did Henry, the Regent of the empire, take council 
with the barons that were with him; and they decided to 
ride forward. So they rode forward for two days, and en 
camped in a very fair valley, near a castle called Moniac. 
The castle yielded itself to them, and they remained there 
five days; and then said they would go and relieve Renier 
of Trit, who was besieged in Stanimac, and had been shut up 
therein for thirteen months. So Henry the Regent of the 
empire, remained in the camp, with a great part of the host, 
and the remainder went forward to relieve Renier of Trit at 

And you must know that those who went forward went in 
very great peril, and that any rescue so full of danger has but 
seldom been undertaken, seeing that they rode for three days 
through the land of their enemies. In this rescue took part 

1 1 6 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Conon of Bethune, and Geoflry of Villehardouin, Marshal of 
Roumania and Champagne, and Macaire of Sainte-Mene- 
hould, and Miles the Brabant, and Peter of Bracieux, and 
Payen of Orleans, and Anseau of Cayeux, and Thierri of 
Loos, and William of the Perchoi, and a body of Venetians 
under command of Andrew Valere. So they rode forward 
till they came to the castle of Stanimac, and approached so 
near that they could now see it. 

Renier of Trit was on the walls, and he perceived the 
advanced guard, which was under Geoffry the Marshal, and 
the other battalions, approaching in very good order; and he 
knew not what people they might be. And no wonder that 
he was hi doubt, for of a long time he had heard no tidings of 
us ; and he thought we were Greeks coming to besiege him. 

Geoffry the Marshal of Roumania and Champagne took 
certain Turcoples l and mounted cross-bowmen and sent them 
forward to see if they could learn the condition of the castle ; 
for they knew not if those within it were alive or dead, seeing 
that of a long time they had heard no tidings of them. And 
when these came before the castle, Renier of Trit and his 
men knew them ; and you may well think what joy they had ! 
They issued forth and came to meet their friends, and all 
made great joy of each other. 

The barons quartered themselves in a very good city that 
lay at the foot of the castle, and had aforetime besieged the 
castle. Then said the barons that they had often heard tell 
that the Emperor Baldwin had died in Johannizza s prison, 
but that they did not believe it. Renier of Trit, however, 
told them of a truth that the emperor was dead, and then 
they believed it. Greatly did many then grieve; alas! if 
only their grief had not been beyond remedy ! 

So they lay that night in the city ; and on the morrow they 
departed, and abandoned Stanimac. They rode for two 
days, and on the third they came to the camp, below the 
castle of Moniac, that lies on the river Arta, where Henry, 
the Emperor s brother, was waiting for them. Greatly did 
those of the host rejoice over Renier of Trit, who had thus 
been rescued from durance, and great was the credit given to 
those who had brought him back, for they had gone for him 
in great peril. 

1 Soldiers born of a Turkish father and a Greek mother. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 117 


The barons now resolved that they would go to Constanti 
nople, and crown Henry, the brother of the Emperor Bald 
win as emperor, and leave in the country Vernas, and all the 
Greeks of the land, together with forty knights, whom Henry, 
the Regent of the empire, would leave with him. So Henry, 
the Regent of the empire, and the other barons, went to 
wards Constantinople, and they rode from day to day till 
they came thither, and right well were they received. They 
crowned Henry as _ emperor with great joy and great honour 
in the Church of St. Sophia, on the Sunday (2oth August) 
after the festival of our Lady St. Mary, in August. And this I 
was in the year of the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ 
twelve hundred and six. 

Now when Johannizza, the King of Wallachia and Bul 
garia, heard that the emperor had been crowned in Constanti 
nople, and that Vernas had remained in the land of Adria- 
nople and Demotica, he collected together as large a force as 
he could. And Vernas had not rebuilt the walls of Demotica 
where they had been breached by Johannizza with his 
petraries and mangonels, and he had set but a weak garrison 
therein. So Johannizza marched on Demotica, and took it, 
and destroyed it, and rased the walls to the ground, and over 
ran the whole country, and took men, women, and children 
for a prey, and wrought devastation. Then did those in 
Adrianople beseech the Emperor Henry to succour them, 
seeing that Demotica had been lost in such cruel sort. 

Then did the Emperor Henry summon as many people as 
he could, and issued from Constantinople, and rode day by 
day towards Adrianople, with all his forces in order. And 

Tohannizza. the King of Wallachia, who was in the land, 

%. i " 1 i i * " i " "" 

when he heard that the emperor v;as coming, drew back into 

his own land. And the Emperor Henry rode forward till he 
came to Adrianople, and he encamped outside the city in a 

Then came the Greeks of the land, and told him that 
Johannizza, the King of Wallachia, was carrying off men and 
women and cattle, and that he had destroyed Demotica, and 
wasted the country round; and that he was still within a 

1 1 8 Memoirs of the Crusades 

day s march. The emperor settled that he would follow 
after, and do battle if so be that Johannizza would abide 
his coming and deliver the men and women who were being 
led away captive. So he rode after Johannizza, and Johan 
nizza retired as the emperor advanced, and the emperor 
followed him for four days. Then they came to a city called 

When those who were in the city saw the host of the 
Emperor Henry approaching, they fled into the mountains 
and abandoned the city. And the emperor came with all 
his host, and encamped before the city, and found it well 
furnished with corn and meat, and such other things as were 
needful. So they sojourned there for two days, and the 
emperor caused his men to overrun the surrounding country, 
and they obtained a large booty in beeves and cows and 
buffaloes, and other beasts in very great plenty. Then he 
departed from Veroi with all his booty, and rode to another 
city, a day s journey distant, called Blisnon. And as the 
other Greeks had abandoned Veroi, so did the dwellers in 
Blisnon abandon their city; and he found it furnished with 
all things necessary, and quartered himself there. 



Then came tidings that in a certain valley, three leagues 
distant from the host, were the men and women whom 
Johannizza was leading away captive, together with all his 
plunder, and all his chariots. Then did Henry appoint that 
the Greeks from Adrianople and Demotica should go and 
recover the captives and the plunder, two battalions of 
knights going with them; and as had been arranged, so was 
this done on the morrow. The command of the one battalion 
was given to Eustace, the brother of the Emperor Henry of 
Constantinople, and the command of the other to Macaire 
of Sainte-Menehould. 

So they rode, they and the Greeks, till they came to the 
valley of which they had been told; and there they found 
the captives. And Johannizza s men engaged the Emperor 
Henry s men, and men and horses were killed and wounded 
on either side; but by the goodness of God, the Franks had 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 119 

the advantage, and rescued the captives, and caused them 
to turn again, and brought them away. 

And you must know that this was a mighty deliverance; 
for the captives numbered full twenty thousand men, women, 
and children; and there were full three thousand chariots 
laden with their clothes and baggage, to say nothing of other 
booty in good quantity. The line of the captives, as they 
came to the camp, was two great leagues in length, and they 
reached the camp that night. Then was the Emperor Henry 
greatly rejoiced, and all the other barons; and they had the 
captives lodged apart, and well guarded, with their goods, so 
that they lost not one pennyworth of what they possessed. 
On the morrow the Emperor Henry rested for the sake of the 
people he had delivered. And on the day after he left that 
country, and rode day by day till he came to Adrianople. 

There he set free the men and women he had rescued; and 
each one went whithersoever he listed, to the land where he 
was born, or to any other place. The booty, of which he had 
great plenty, was divided in due shares among the host. So 
the Emperor Henry sojourned there five days, and then rode 
to the city of Demotica, to see how far it had been destroyed, 
and whether it could again be fortified. He encamped before 
the city, and saw, both he and his barons, that in the state in 
which it then was, it were not well to refortify it. 


Then came to the camp, as envoy, a baron, Otho of La 
Roche by name, belonging to the Marquis Boniface of Mont- 
ferrat. He came to speak of a marriage that had been spoken 
of aforetime between the daughter of Boniface, the Marquis 
of Montf errat, and the Emperor Henry ; and brought tidings 
that the lady had come from Lombardy, whence her father 
had sent to summon her, and that she was now at Salonica. 
Then did the emperor take council, and it was decided that 
the marriage should be ratified on either side. So the envoy, 
Otho of La Roche, returned to Salonica. 

The emperor had reassembled his men, who had gone to 
place in safe holding the booty taken at Veroi. And he 
marched day by day from Adrianople till he came to the land 

1 20 Memoirs of the Crusades 

of Johannizza, the King of Wallachia and Bulgaria. They 
came to a city called Ferme, and took it, and entered in, and 
won much booty. They remained there for three days, and 
overran all the land, got very much spoil, and destroyed a 
city called Aquilo. 

C On the fourth day they departed from Ferme, which was 
a city fair and well situated, with hot water springs for bath 
ing, the finest in the world ; and the emperor caused the city 
to be burned and destroyed, and they carried away much 
spoil, in cattle and goods. Then they rode day by day till 
they came back to the city of Adrianople; and they sojourned 
in the land till the feast of All Saints (ist November 1206), 
when they could no longer carry on the war because of the 
winter. So Henry and all his barons, who were much aweary 
of campaigning, turned their faces towards Constantinople; 
and he left at Adrianople, among the Greeks, a man of his 
named Peter of Radinghem, with ten knights. 



At that time Theodore Lascaris, who held the land on the 
other side of the straits towards Turkey, was at truce with 
the Emperor Henry; but that truce he had not kept well. 

JL J flij^r * ,.^_ 

having broken and violated it. So the emperor held couilcn? 
and sent to the other side of tne straits, to the city of Piga, 
Peter of Bracieux, to whom land had been assigned in those 
parts, and with him Payen of Orleans, and Anseau of Cayeux, 
and Eustace, the emperor s brother, and a great part of 
his best men to the number of seven score knights. These 
began to make war in very grim and earnest fashion against 
Theodore Lascaris, and greatly wasted his land. 

They marched to a land called Skiza, which was surrounded 
by the sea except on one side. And in old days the way of 
entry had been defended with walls and towers, and moats, 
but these were now decayed. So the host of the French 
entered in, and Peter of Bracieux, to whom the land had been 
devised, began to restore the defences, and built two castles, 
and made two fortified ways of entry. From thence they 
overran the land of Lascaris, and gained much booty and 
cattle, and brought such booty and cattle into their island, 
Theodore Lascaris, on the other hand, harked back upon 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 121 

Skiza, so that there were frequent battles and skirmishes, 
and losses on the one side and on the other; and the war in 
those parts was fierce and perilous. 

Now let us leave speaking of those who were at Skiza, and 
speak of Thierri of Loos, who was seneschal, and to whom 
Nicomedia should have belonged; and Nicomedia lay a day s 
journey from Nice the Great, the capital of the land of 
Theodore Lascaris. Thierri then went thither, with a great 
body of the emperor s men, and found that the castle had 

been destroyed. So he enclosed and fortified the Church of 
o o. i i r * ........ nun*" iiiii ^^*-T~ " j 

St. Sophia, which was very large and fair, and maintained 

r ) jo t 

the war in that place. 

/ f 


At that time the Marquis Boniface of Montferrat departed 
from Salonica, and went to Seres, which Johannizza had 
destroyed; and he rebuilt it; and afterwards rebuilt a castle 
called Drama in the valley of Philippi. All the country 
round about surrendered to him, and came under his rule; 
and he wintered in the land. 

Meanwhile, so much time had gone by, tha^LChrigtnias was 
Apw past. Then came messengers from the marquis to the 
emperor at Constantinople to say that the marquis had sent 
his daughter in a galley to the city of Abydos. So the 
Emperor Henry sent GeofTry the Marshal of Roumania and 
Champagne, and Miles the Brabant, to bring the lady; and 
these rode day by day till they came to Abydos. 

They found the lady, who was very good and fair, and 
saluted her on behalf of their lord Henry, the emperor, and 
brought her to Constantinople in great honour. So the 
Emperor Henry was wedded to her in the Church of St. 
Sophia, on the Sunday after the feast of our Lady St. Mary 
Candlemas (4th February 1207), with great joy and in great 
pomp; and they both wore a crown; and high were the 
marriage-feastings in the palace of Bucoleon. Thus, as you 
have just heard, was the marriage celebrated between the 
emperor and the daughter of the Marquis Boniface, Agnes 
the empress by name. 

122 Memoirs of the Crusades 



Theodore Lascaris, who was warring against the Emperor 
Henry, took messengers and sent them to Johannizza, the 
King of Wallachia and Bulgaria. And he advised Johan- 
nizza that all the forces of the Emperor Henry were fighting 
against him (Lascaris) on the other side of the straits towards 
Turkey; that the emperor was in Constantinople with but 
very few people; and that now was the tune for vengeance, 
inasmuch as he himself would be attacking the emperor on 
the one side, and Johannizza on the other, and the emperor 
had so few men that he would not be able to defend himself 
against both. Now Johannizza had already engaged a great 
host of Comans, who were on their way to join his host; and 
had collected together as large a force of Wallachians and 
Bulgarians as ever he could. And so much time had now 
gone by, that it was the beginning of Lent (yth March 1207). 

Macaire of Sainte-Menehould had begun to build a castle 
at Charax, which lies on a gulf of the sea, six leagues from 
Nicomedia, towards Constantinople,. And William of Sains 
began to build another castle at Cibotos, that lies on the gulf 
of Nicomedia, on the other side, towards Nice. And you 
must know that the Emperor Henry had as much as he could 
do near Constantinople; as also the barons who were in the 

id. And well does Geoffry of Villehardouin, the Marshal 
of Champagne and Roumania, who is dictating this work, 
>ear witness, that never at any tune were people so dis 
tracted and oppressed by war; this was by reason that the 
lost were scattered in so many places. 



Then Johannizza left Wallachia with all his hosts, and 
with a great host of Comans who joined themselves to 
him, and entered Roumania. And the Comans overran the 
country up to the gates of Constantinople; and he himself 
besieged Adrianople, and erected there thirty-three great 
petraries, which hurled stones against the walls and the 
towers. And inside Adrianople were only the Greeks and 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 123 

Peter of Radinghem, who had been set there by the emperor, 
with ten knights. Then the Greeks and the Latins together 
sent to tell the Emperor Henry how Johannizza had besieged 
them, and prayed for succour. 

Much was the emperor distraught when he heard this ; for 
his forces on the other side of the straits were so scattered, 
and were everywhere so hard pressed that they could do no 
more than they were doing, while he himself had -but few 
men in Constantinople. None the less he undertook to take 
the field with as many men as he could collect, in the Easter 
fortnight; and he sent word to Skiza, where most of his 
people were, that they should come to him. So these began 
to come to him by sea; Eustace, the brother of the Emperor 
Henry, and Anseau of Cayeux, and the main part of their 
men, and thus only Peter of Bracieux, and Payen of Orleans, 
with but few men, remained in Skiza. 

When Theodore Lascaris heard tidings that Adrianople 
was besieged, and that the Emperor Henry, through utter 
need, was recalling his people, and did not know which way 
to turn whether to this side or to that so heavily was he 
oppressed by the war, then did Lascaris with the greater 
zeal gather together all the people he could, and pitched his 
tents and pavilions before the gates of Skiza; and many 
were the battles fought before Skiza, some lost and some won. 
And when Theodore Lascaris saw that there were few people 
remaining in the city, he took a great part of his host, and 
such ships as he could collect on the sea, and sent them to the 
castle of Cibotos, which William of Sains was fortifying; and 
they set siege to the castle by sea and land, on the Saturday 
[n mid-Lent (3ist March 1207). 

Within were forty knights, very good men, and Macaire of 
Sainte-Menehould was their chief; and their castle was as 
yet but little fortified, so that their foes could come at them 
with swords and lances. The enemy attacked them by land 
and by sea very fiercely ; and the assault lasted during the 
whole of Saturday, and our people defended themselves very 
well. And this book bears witness that never did fifty 
knights defend themselves at greater disadvantage against 
such odds. And well may this appear, for of the knights 
that were there, all were wounded save five only; and one 
was killed, who was nephew to Miles the Brabant, and his 
name was Giles. 

124 Memoirs of the Crusades 


Before this assault began, on the Saturday morning, there 
came a messenger flying to Constantinople. He found the 
Emperor Henry in the palace of Blachernse, sitting at meat, 
and spoke to him thus: " Sire, be it known to you that those 
at Cibotos are being attacked by land and sea ; and if you do 
not speedily deliver them, they will be taken, and but dead 


With the emperor were Conon of Bethune, and Geoffry the 
Marshal of Champagne, and Miles the Brabant, and but very 
few people. And they held a council, and the council was 
but short, and the emperor went down to the shore, and 
entered into a galleon; and each one was to take ship such as 
he could find. And it was proclaimed throughout the city 
that all were to follow the emperor in the utter need wherein 
he stood, to go and rescue his men, seeing that without help 
they were but lost. Then might you have seen the whole 
city of Constantinople all a-swarm with Venetians and Pisans 
and other seafaring folk, running to their ships, helter- 
"telter and pell-mell; and with them entered into the ships 

e knights, fully armed; and whosoever was first ready, he 

st left port to go after the emperor. 

So they went rowing hard all the evening, as long as the 
light lasted, and all through the night till the dawn of the 
following day. And the emperor had used such diligence, 
that a little after sun-rising he came in sight of Cibotos, and 
of the host surrounding it by sea and land. And those who 
were within the castle had not slept that night, but had kept 
guard through the whole night, however sick or wounded 
they might be, as men who expected nothing but death. 

The emperor saw that the Greeks were close to the walls 
and about to assault the city. Now he himself had but few 
of his people with him among them were Geoffry the Mar 
shal in another ship, and Miles the Brabant, and certain 
Pisans, and other knights, so that he had some sixteen ships 
great and small, while on the other side there were full sixty. 
Nevertheless they saw that if they waited for their people, 
and suffered the Greeks to assault Citobos, then those within 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 125 

must be all killed or taken; and when they saw this they 
decided to sail against the enemy s ships. 

They sailed thitherward therefore in line; and all those on 
board the ships were fully armed, and with their helms laced. 
And when the Greeks, who were about to attack the castle, 
saw us coming, they perceived that help was at hand for the 
besieged, and they avoided the castle, and came to meet us ; 
and all this great host, both horse and foot, drew up on the 
shore. And the Greeks on ship-board * when they saw that 
the emperor and his people meant to attack them in any case, 
drew back towards those on shore, so that the latter might 
give them help with bows and darts. 

So the emperor held them close with his seventeen ships, 
till the shouts of those coming from Constantinople began to 
reach him; and when the night fell so many had come up 
that the Franks were everywhere in force upon the sea; and 
they lay all armed during the night, and cast anchor. And 
they settled that as soon as they saw the day, they would go 
and do battle with the enemy on the shore, and also seize 
their ships. But when it came to about midnight, the Greeks 
dragged all their ships to land, and set fire to them, and 
burned them all, and broke up their camp, and went away 

The Emperor Henry and his host were right glad of the \ 
victory that God had given them, and that they had thus 
been able to succour their people. And when it came to be 
morning, the emperor and his barons went to the castle of 
Cibotos, and found those who were therein very sick, and for 
the most part sore wounded. And the emperor and his 
people looked at the castle, and saw that it was so weak as 
not to be worth the holding. So they gathered all their 
people into the ships, and left the castle and abandoned it. 
Thus did the Emperor Henry return to Constantinople. 


Johannizza, the king of Wallachia, who had besieged 
Adrianople, gave himself no rest, for his petraries, of which 
he had many, cast stones night and day against the walls and 
towers, and damaged the walls and towers very greatly. 
And he set his sappers to mine the walls, and made many 

1 The meaning here is a little obscure in the original. 

126 Memoirs of the Crusades 

assaults. And well did those who were within, both Greeks 
and Latins, maintain themselves, and often did they beg the 
Emperor Henry to succour them, and warn him that, if he 
did not succour them, they were utterly undone. The 
emperor was much distraught; for when he wished to go and 
succour his people at Adrianople on the one side, then 
Theodore Lascaris pressed upon him so straitly on the other 
side, that of necessity he was forced to draw back. 

So Johannizza remained during the whole month of April 
(1207) before Adrianople; and he came so near to taking it 
that in two places he beat down the walls and towers to the 
ground, and his men fought hand to hand, with swords and 
lances, against those who were within. Also he made assaults 
in force, and the besieged defended themselves well; and 
there were many killed and wounded on one side and on the 

As it pleases God that adventures should be ordered, so 
it befell that the Comans who had overrun the land, and 
gained much booty, and returned to the camp before Adria 
nople, with all their spoils, now said they would remain with 
Johannizza no longer, but go back to their own land. Thus 
the Comans abandoned Johannizzaf And without them he 
dared not remain before Adrianople. So he departed from 
before the city, and left it. 

And you must know that this was held to be a great 
miracle : that the siege of a city so near to the taking should 
be abandoned, and by a man possessed of such power. But 
as God wills, so do events befall. Those in Adrianople made 
delay in begging the emperor, for the love of God, to come 
o them as soon as he could; for sooth it was that if Johan- 

zza, the King of Wallachia returned, they would all be 
Klled or taken. * 


The emperor, with as many men as he possessed, had pre 
pared to go to Adrianople, when tidings came, very grievous, 
that Escurion, who was admiral of the galleys of Theodore 
Lascaris, had entered with seventeen galleys into the straits 
of Abydos, in the channel of St. George, and come before 
Skiza, where Peter of Bracieux then was, and Payen of 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 127 

Orleans; and that the said Escurion was besieging the city 
by sea, while Theodore Lascaris was besieging it by land. 
Moreover, the people of the land of Skiza had rebelled against 
Peter of Bracieux, as also those of Marmora, and had wrought 
him great harm, and killed many of his people. 

When these tidings came to Constantinople, they were 
greatly dismayed. Then did the Emperor Henry take 
council with his men, and his barons, and the Venetians also ; 
and they said that if they did not succour Peter of Bracieux, 
and Pay en of Orleans, they were but dead men, and the land 
would be lost. So they armed fourteen galleys in all dili 
gence, and set in them the Venetians of most note, and all 
the barons of the emperor. 

In one galley entered Conon of Bethune and his people; 
in another Geoff ry of Villehardouin and his people; in the 

, i i r r r< TV T i i J J i- * 1 j_i 

third Macaire of Samte-Menehould and his people; in the 

j. i. * 

fourth Miles the Brabant; in the fifth Anseau of Cayeux; in 
the sixth Thierri of Loos, who was seneschal of Roumania; 
in the seventh William of the Perchoi; and in the eighth 
Eustace the emperor s brother. Thus did the Emperor 
Henry put into all these galleys the best people that he had ; 
and when they left the port of Constantinople, well did all 
say that never had galleys been better armed, nor manned 
with better men. And thus, for this time, the march on 
Adrianople was again put off. 

Those who were in the galleys sailed down the straits, right 
towards Skiza. How Escurion, the admiral of Theodore 
Lascaris galleys, heard of it, I know not; but he abandoned 
Skiza, and went away, and fled down the straits. And the 
others chased him two days and two nights, beyond the 
straits of Abydos, forty miles. And when they saw they 
could not come up with him, they turned back, and came to 
Skiza, and found there Peter of Bracieux and Payen of 
Orleans; and Theodore Lascaris had dislodged from before 
the city and repaired to his own land. Thus was Skiza re 
lieved, as you have just heard; and those in the galleys 
turned back to Constantinople, and prepared once more to 
march on Adrianople. 

ia8 Memoirs of the Crusades 



Theodore Lascaris sent the most part of his force into the 
land of Nicomedia. And the people of Thierri of Loos, who 
had fortified the Church of St. Sophia, and were therein, 
besought their lord and the emperor to come to their relief; 
for if they received no help they could not hold out, especially 
as they had no provisions. Through sheer distress and sore 
need, the Emperor Henry and his people agreed that they 
must once more abandon thought of going to Adrianople, 
and cross the straits of St. George, to the Turkish side, with 
as many people as they could collect, and succour Nicomedia. 

And when the people of Theodore Lascaris heard that the 
emperor was coming, they avoided the land, and retreated 
towards Nice the Great. And when the emperor knew of it, 
he took council, and it was decided that Thierri of Loos, the 
seneschal of Roumania, should abide in Nicomedia, with all 
his knights, and all his sergeants, to guard the land; and 
Macaire of Sainte-Menehould should abide at Charax, and 
William of the Perchois in Skiza; and each defend the land 
where he abode. 

Then did the Emperor Henry, and the remainder of his 
people return to Constantinople, and prepare once again to 
go towards Adrianople. And while he was so preparing, 
Thierri of Loos the seneschal, who was in Nicomedia, and 
William of the Perchoi, and all their people, went out forag 
ing on a certain day. And the people of Theodore Lascaris 
knew of it, and surprised them, and fell upon them. Now 
the people of Theodore Lascaris were very many, and our 
people very few. So the battle began, and they fought hand 
to hand, and before very long the few were not able to stand 
against the many. 

Thierri of Loos did right well, as also his people; he was 
twice struck down, and by main strength his men remounted 
him. And William of the Perchoi was also struck down, and 
remounted and rescued. But numbers hemmed them in too 
sore, and the Franks were discomfited. There was taken 
Thierri of Loos, wounded in the face, and in peril of death. 
There, too, were most of his people taken, for few escaped. 
William of the Perchois fled on a hackney, wounded in the 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 129 

hand. Those that escaped from the discomfiture rallied in 
the Church of St. Sophia. 
He who dictates this history heard blame attached in this 

_- v ,, . - , til j , 

affair whether rightly or wrongly he knows not to a certain 

i i i i < t-\ i i f mi 

knight named Anseau of Remi, who was liegeman of Tmerri 
of Loos the seneschal, and chief of his men; and who aban 
doned him in the fray. 

Then did those who had returned to the Church of St. 
Sophia in Nicomedia, viz. William of the Perchoi and Anseau 
of Remi, take a messenger, and send him flying to Constanti 
nople, to the Emperor Henry; and they told the emperor 
what had befallen, how the seneschal had been taken with his 
men; how they themselves were besieged in the Church of 
St. Sophia, in Nicomedia, and how they had food for no more 
than five days; and they told him he must know of a cer 
tainty that if he did not succour them they must be killed or 
taken. The emperor, as one hearing a cry of distress, passed 
over the straits of St. George, he and his people, each as best 
he could, and pell-mell, to go to the relief of those in Nico 
media. And so the march to Adrianople was put off once 

When the emperor had passed over the strait^ of St. 
set his troops in array, and rode Hay by dayTTirKe 

came to Nicomedia. When the people of Theodore Lascaris, 
and his brothers, who formed the host, heard thereof, they 
drew back, and passed over the mountain on the other side, 
towards Nice. And the emperor encamped by Nicomedia 
in a very fair field that lay beside the river on this side of the 
mountain. He had his tents and pavilions pitched; and 
caused his men to overrun and harry the land, because the 
people had rebelled when they heard that Thierri of Loos, 
the seneschal, was taken; and the emperor s men captured 
much cattle and many prisoners. 


The Emperor Henry sojourned after this manner for five 
days in the meadow by Nicomedia. And while he was thus 
sojourning, Theodore Lascaris took messengers, and sent 
them to him, asking him to make a truce for two years, on 
condition that the emperor would suffer him to demolish 

130 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Skiza and the fortress of the church of St. Sophia of Nico- 
media, while he, on his side, would yield up all the prisoners 
taken in the last victory, or at other times of whom he had 
a great many in his land. 

Now the emperor took council with his people; and they 
said that they could not maintain two wars at the same time, 
and that it was better to suffer loss as proposed than suffer 
the loss of Adrianople, and the land on the other side of the 
straits; and moreover that they would (by agreeing to this 
truce) cause division between their enemies, viz. Johannizza, 
the King of Wallachia and Bulgaria and Theodore Lascaris, 
who were now friends, and helped one another in the war. 

The matter was thus settled, and agreed to. Then the 
Emperor Henry summoned Peter of Bracieux from Skiza ; and 
he came to him; and the Emperor Henry so wrought with 
him that he gave up Skiza into his hands, and the emperor 
delivered it to Theodore Lascaris to be demolished, as also 
the Church of St. Sophia of Nicomedia. So was the truce 
established, and so were the fortresses demolished. Thierri 
of Loos was given up, and all the other prisoners. 

Then the Emperor Henry repaired to Constantinople, and 
undertook once more to go to Adrianople with as many men 
as he could collect. He assembled his host at Selymbria; 
and so much time had already passed that this did not take 
place till after the feast of St. John, in June (1207). And 
he rode day by day till he came to Adrianople, and en 
camped in the fields before the city. And those within the 
city, who had greatly desired his coming, went out to meet 
him in procession, and received him very gladly. And all 
the Greeks of the land came with them. 

The emperor remained only one day before the city to see 
all the damage that Johannizza had done to the walls and 
towers, with mines and petraries; and these had worked 
great havoc to the city. And on the morrow he departed, 
and marched towards the country of Johannizza, and so 
marched for four days. On the fifth day he came to the foot 
of the mountain of Wallachia, to a city called Euloi, which 
Johannizza had newly repeopled with his folk. And when 
the people of the land saw the host coming, they abandoned 
the city, and fled into the mountains. 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 1 3 1 



The Emperor Henry and the host of the French encamped 

before the city; and the foraging parties overran the land, 
and captured oxen, and cows, and beeves in great plenty, 
and other beasts. And those from Adrianople, who had 
brought their chariots with them, and were poor and ill- 
furnished with food, loaded their chariots with corn and 
other grain; and they found also provisions in plenty and 
loaded with them, in great quantities, the other chariots that 
they had captured. So the host sojourned there for three 
days; and every day the foraging parties went foraging 
throughout the land; but the land was full of mountains, 
and strong denies, and the host lost many foragers, who 
adventured themselves madly. 

In the end, the Emperor Henry sent Anseau of Cayeux to 
guard the foragers, and Eustace his brother, and Thierri of 
Flanders, his nephew, and Walter of Escornai, and John 
Bliaud. Their four battalions went to guard the foragers, 
and entered into a land rough and mountainous. And when 
their people had overrun the land, and wished to return, 
they found the defiles very well guarded. For the Walla- 
chians of the country had assembled, and fought against 
them, and did them great hurt, both to men and horses. 
Hardly were our men put to it to escape discomfiture; and 
the knights had, of necessity, to dismount and go on foot. 
But by God s help they returned to the camp, though not 
without great loss and damage. 

On the morrow the Emperor Henry] and the host of the 
French departed thence, and marched day by day till they 
came to Adrianople; and they stored therein the corn and 
other provisions that they brought with them. The emperor 
sojourned in the field before the city some fifteen days. 


At that time Boniface, the Marquis of Montferrat, who 
was at Seres, which he had fortified, rode forth as far as 
Messinopolis, and all the land surrendered to his will. Then 
he took messengers, and sent them to the Emperor Henry, 
and told him that he would right willingly speak with him 

132 Memoirs of the Crusades , 

by the river that runs below Cypsela. Now they two had 
never been able to speak together face to face since the con 
quest of the land, for so many enemies lay between them that 
the one had never been able to come to the other. And when 
the emperor and those of his council heard that the Marquis 
Boniface was at Messinopolis, they rejoiced greatly; and 
the emperor sent back word by the messengers that he would 
speak with the marquis on the day appointed. 

So the emperor went thitherward, and he left Conon of 
Bethune to guard the land near Adrianople, with one hundred 
knights. And they came on the set day to the place of 
meeting in a very fair field, near the city of Cypsela. The 
emperor came from one side, and the marquis from the other, 
and they met with very great joy ; nor is that to be wondered 
at, seeing they had not, of a long time, beheld one another. 
And the marquis asked the emperor for tidings of his daughter 
Agnes ; and the emperor told him she was with child, and the 
marquis was glad thereof and rejoiced. Then did the mar 
quis become liegeman to the emperor, and held from him his 
land, as he had done from the Emperor Baldwin, his brother. 
And the marquis gave to Geoffry of Villehardouin, Marshal 
of Roumania and Champagne, the city of Messinopolis, and 
all its appurtenances, or else that of Ceres, whichever he 
liked best; and the Marshal became his liegeman, save in so 
far as he owed fealty to the emperor of Constantinople. 

They sojourned thus in that field for two days, in great 
joy, and said that, as God had granted that they should 
come together, so might they yet again defeat their enemies. 
And they made agreement to meet at the end of the summer, 
in the month of October, with all their forces, in the meadow 
before the city of Adrianople, and make war against the 
King of Wallachia. So they separated joyous and well 
content. The marquis went to Messinopolis, and the 
Emperor Henry towards Constantinople. 



When the marquis had come to Messinopolis, he did not 
remain there more than five days before he rode forth, by 
the advice of the Greeks of the land, on an expedition to the 
mountain of Messinopolis, which was distant a long day s 

Villehardouin s Chronicle 133 

journey. And when he had been through the land, and was 
about to depart, the Bulgarians of the land collected and saw 
that the marquis had but a small force with him. So they - 
came from all parts and attacked the rear-guard. And when 
the marquis heard the shouting, he leapt on a horse, all un 
armed as he was, with a lance in his hand. And when he 
came thither, where the Bulgarians were righting with the 
rear-guard, hand to hand, he ran in upon them, and drove 
them a great way back. 

Then was the Marquis Boniface of Montferrat wounded 
with an arrow, in the thick of the arm, beneath the shoulder, 
mortally, and he began to lose blood. And when his men 
saw it, they began to be dismayed, and to lose heart, and to 
bear themselves badly. Those who were round the marquis 
held him up, and he was losing much blood ; and he began to 
faint. And when his men perceived that he could give them 
no farther help, they were the more dismayed, and began to 
desert him. So were they discomfited by misadventure; 
and those who remained by him and they were but few 
were killed. ^ 

The head of the Marquis Boniface of Montferrat was cut " 
off, and the people of the land sent it to Johannizza; and 
that was one of the greatest joys that ever Johannizza had. 
Alas ! what a dolorous mishap for the Emperor Henry, and 
for all the Latins of the land of Roumania, to lose such a man 
by such a misadventure one of the besflSarons and most 
liberal, and one of the best knights in the world ! And this 
misadventure befell in the year of the Incarnation of Jesus 
Christ, twelve hundred and seven. 




To his good Lord Lewis/ son of the King of France, 2 and, by 
the grace of God, King of Navarre, Count Palatine of Cham 
pagne and of Brie, John, Lord of Joinville, his seneschal of 

Champagne, gives greeting, and love, and honour, and loyal 
service ^ *w****!*6^^ 

Dear sire, I would have you know that our lady, the queen, 
your mother, 3 who loved me much may God have her in 
His grace ! prayed me, as earnestly as she could, to cause a 

O J. -T."<*-V* " " .": "~-J, : .^ J 7 

book to be written for her, containing the holy words and 

J CJ? J 

good deeds of our King St. Lewis ; and I covenanted to do so ; 
and, with God s help, the book is now completed, in two 
parts. The first part tells how he governed himself, at all 
times, according to the will of God and the Church, and for 
the good of his kingdom. The second part speaks of his 
chivalrous deeds, and of his great feats of arms. 

Sire, because it is written : Do first that which apper 
taineth to God, and He shall direct thee in all thine other 
doings/ 4 therefore have I first caused to be written that 
which appertaineth to the three things above named, viz. 
that which appertaineth to the good of the soul and the good 
of the body, and that which appertaineth to the government 
of the people. 

/ And these things have I caused to be written also in honour 
of this true saint, because by such things will men be able to 

-A *-^ 

see clearly that/no layman in our time lived so holily all his 
days, even from the beginning of his reign to the end of his 
life/ When the end of his life came I myself was not present; 
but Count Peter of Aler^on, his son who loved me much 

1 Lewis, afterwards Lewis X., King of France. 

5 Philip, called Philippe le Bel. 

8 Joan of Navarre, then deceased. 

4 The reference seems to be to Matt. chap. vi. ver. 33. 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

was there, and told me what a good end he made, as you will 
find written at the end of this book. 

And as to this, meseems that those honoured him insuffi 
ciently who did not place him among the martyrs, seeing the 
great pains that he endured on the pilgrimage of the cross 
during the six years that I was in his company, and seeing 
in especial that he followed our Lord in the matter of the 
cross. For if God died on the cross, so did he, for he was a 
Crusader wearing the cross when he died at Tunis. 

The second book will speak to you of his great deeds of 
chivalry, and acts of hardihood, which were such that I saw 
him four times put his body in peril of death as you shall 
be told hereinafter to spare his people from hurt. 

i i JL. 


The first time he put his body in peril of death was when 
we arrived before Damietta. And all his councillors, as I 
heard tell, advised him to remain on board his ship till he saw 
how his knights fared, who were going on land. The reason 
why they so advised was that if he landed with them, and 
they were slain and he likewise, the whole expedition must 
come to naught; whereas if he remained on his ship, he 
would, of himself, be able to recommence the conquest of 
Egypt. But he would not listen, and leapt into the sea, all 
armed, with his shield at his neck, and his spear in his hand, 
and was one of the first to reach the shore. 

The second time he put his body in peril of death, was 
when, on his departure from Mansourah to come to Damietta, 
his councillors advised, as I have been given to understand, 
that he should go to Damietta in a galley. And this advice 
was given, as I have been told, because, if any mischance 
happened to his people, he might thus, of himself, deliver 
them from captivity. And also, in particular, because of the 
condition of his body, which was afflicted by several diseases, 
for he had a double tertian fever, and a very sore dysentery, 
and the special sickness of the host in his mouth and legs. 
But he would listen to none, and said he should never leave 
his people, and should make such end as they made. So it 
happened that owing to the dysentery that he had upon him, 
it became necessary to cut off the lower part of his drawers; 
and through the sore pain of the sickness of the host, he 

Joinville s Chronicle 137 

fainted several times in the evening, as shall be told to you 

Thejhird time he put his body in peril of death was when 
he remained four years in the Holy Land after his brothers 
had returned to France. Then were we in great peril of 
death, for during the time that the-king was lodged in Acre 
he had but one man-at-arms in his company for every thirty 
that the people of Acre had in after time when the city was 
taken by the Saracens. And I know of no reason why the 
Turks did not then come and take us in the city, save for the 
love that God had for the king, putting fear into the hearts of 

M .^^1 . n i _._. rf ^^ _L_. iiiLiiii-rfn*mti-ii " ^**& i * ttllt1 ***ifiyMii&tiita&^i I ti^ l ujp^ f ,...^ 

our enemies so that they did not dare to attack us, as it is 
written: " If thou fearest God, all will fear thee." And the 
king thus sojourned in the Holy Land against the advice of 
his councillors, as you shall hear, putting his body in peril to 
defend the people of the land, who would have been lost if he 
had not remained with them. 

The fourth time he put his body in peril of death was when 
we were returning from the land oversea and came before 
the island of Cyprus, and our vessel struck in such perilous 
sort that the rock carried away three yards of the keel on 
which the vessel was built. Then the king sent for fourteen 
master mariners, who belonged either to that ship or the 
others in its company, to advise what he should do. And 
all advised him, as you shall be told hereafter, to enter into 
another ship, for they did not see how the ship would be 
able to stand the blows of the waves; inasmuch as the nails 
with which her timbers were attached had all been loosened. 
And they showed the king by example in what peril the ship 
stood, telling him Jiow, when we were sailing to the land 
oversea, one of the ships had perished in like case (and I 
myself had seen, at the Count of Joigny s, a woman and 
child who alone had escaped out of that ship). To this the 
king made answer: " Lords, I see that if I leave this ship, it 
will be condemned ; and I see that there are now in it eight 
hundred persons and more ; and in that each man loves his life 
as much as I do mine, no one will dare to stay in the ship if I 
abandon it, but all will remain in Cyprus. For this reason, 
please God, I shall not place so many people as there are here 
in peril of death, but shall remain where I am, to save my 
people." So he remained; and God, in whom he trusted, 
kept us safe for six weeks from the dangers of the sea; and 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

i 3 8 

we came at last to a fair haven, as you shall he ar. Now it 
chanced that Oliver of Termes, who had behaved well and 
valiantly oversea, abandoned the king, and stayedl in Cyprus; 
and we saw him no more by the space of a year ,and a half. 
Thus did the king save from harm the eight hund red persons 
that were in the ship. 

In the last part of this book we shall speak of Ibis end, and 
how he died in saintly wise. 

Now I tell you, my lord the King of Navarre, that I 
promised my lady the queen, your mother to whom may 
God show grace and mercy! that I should writs this book; 
and in order to acquit myself of my promise, I have caused 
it to be written. And inasmuch as I see no one who has so 
much right to it as you, who are her heir, I send it to you, 
so that you and your brothers and whosoever else shall 
hear it read may take examples therefrom, and put such 
examples to good use, and thereby obtain the favour of God. 

lM ^^ 






In the name of God Almighty, I, John, Lord of Joinville, 
seneschal of Champagne, dictate the life of our holy King 
Lewis; that which I saw and heard by the space of six years 
that I was in his company on pilgrimage oversea, and that 

JL </ J- * * / 

which I saw and heard after we returned. And before I tell 
fou of his great deeds, and of his prowess, I will tell you what 
[ saw and heard of his good teachings and of his holy words, 
;o that these may be found here set in order for the edifying 
>f those who shall hear thereof. 

This holy man loved God with all his heart, and followecT 
3Im in His acts; and this appeared in that, as God died for 
:he love He bore His people, so did the king put his body in 
)eril, and that several times, for the love he bore to his 
)eople ; and such peril he might well have avoided, as you 
;hall be told hereafter./ 

The great love that ne bore to his people appeared in what 
le said during a very sore sickness that he had at Fontaine- 
)leau, unto my Lord Lewis, his eldest son. " Fair son," he 
taid, " I pray thee to make thyself beloved of the people of 
;hy kingdom; for truly I would rather that a Scot should 
:ome out of Scotland and govern the people of the kingdom 
well and equitably than that thou shouldest govern it ill in 
;he sight of all men." The holy king so loved truth, that, 
is you shall hear hereafter, lie would never consent to lie to 
;he Saracens as to any covenant that he had made with them. 

Of his mouth he was so sober, that on no day of my life did 
. ever hear him order special meats, as many rich men are 
vont to do; but he ate patiently whatever his cooks had 
nade ready, and was set before him. In his words he was 
;emperate ; for on no day of my life did I ever hear him speak 
rvil of any one; nor did I ever hear him name the Devil i 
which name is very commonly spoken throughout the king-j 
lorn, whereby God, as I believe, is not well pleased. 


140 Memoirs of the Crusades 

He put water into his wine by measure, according as he 
saw that the strength of the wine would suffer it. At 
Cyprus he asked me why I put no water into my wine; and 
I said this was by order of the physicians, who told me I had 
a large head and a cold stomach, so that I could not get 
drunk. And he answered that they deceived me; for if I 
did not learn to put water into my wine in my youth, and 
wished to do so in my old age, gout and diseases of the 
stomach would take hold upon me, and I should never be in 
health; and if I drank pure wine in my old age, I should get 
drunk every night, and that it was too foul a thing for a 
brave man to get drunk. 

He asked me if I wished to be honoured in this world, and 
to go into paradise at my death? And I said " Yes." And 
he said:/" Keep yourself then from knowingly doing or say 
ing anything which, if the whole world heard thereof, you 
would be ashamed to acknowledge, saying I did this/ or I 
said that. "/ He told me to beware not to contradict or 
impugn anything that was said before me unless indeed 
silence would be a sin or to my own hurt because hard words 
often move to quarrelling, wherein men by the thousand 
have found death. 

He said that men ought to clothe and arm their bodies in 
such wise that men of worth and age would never say, this 
man has done too much, nor young men say, this man has 
done too little. And I repeated this saying to the father of 
the king that now is, when speaking of the embroidered 
coats of arms that are made nowadays ; and I told him that 
never, during our voyage oversea, had I seen embroidered 
coats, either belonging to the king or to any one else. And 
the king that now is told me that he had such suits, with 
arms embroidered, as had cost him eight hundred pounds 
parisis. And I told him he would- have employed the money 
to better purpose if he had given it to God, and had had his 
suits made of good taffeta (satin) ornamented with his arms, 
as his father had done. 


He called me once to him and said: "Because of the 
subtle mind that is in you I dare not speak to you of the 
things relating to God; so I have summoned these twc 

Joinville s Chronicle 141 

monks that are here, as I want to ask you a question." Now 
the question was this: " Seneschal/ said he, " what manner 
of thing is God? " And I said: " Sire, it is so good a thing 
that there cannot be better." " Of a truth/ said he, " you 
have answered well; for the answer that you have given is 
written in this book that I hold in my hand." 

" Now I ask you," said he, " which you would the better 
like, either to be a leper, or to have committed a mortal sin ? 
And I, who never lied to him, made answer that I would 
rather have committed thirty mortal sins than be a leper. 
And when the monks had departed, he called me to him 
alone, and made me sit at his feet, and said, " How came you 
to say that to me yesterday ? And I told him that I said 
it again. And he answered, " You spoke hastily and as a 
fool. For you should know that there is no leprosy so 
hideous as the being in mortal sin, inasmuch as the soul that 
is in mortal sin is like unto the Devil; wherefore no leprosy 
:an be so hideous. And sooth it is that, when a man dies, he 
is healed of the leprosy in his body; but when a man who 
lias committed mortal sin dies, he cannot know of a certainty 
that he has, during his lifetime, repented in such sort that 
God has forgiven him ; wherefore he must stand in great fear 
lest that leprosy of sin should last as long as God is in 
paradise. / So I pray you," said he, " as strongly as I can, for \ 
the love of God, and for the love of me, so to set your heart 
that you prefer any evil that can happen to the body, 
whether it be leprosy, or any other sickness, rather than 
that mortal sin should enter into your soul." f 

He asked me if I washed the feet of the poor on Holy 
Thursday. 1 " Sire," said I, " it would make me sick! The 
feet of these villains will I not wash." / In truth," said he, 
: that was ill said; for yojo^ should never disdain what God 
did for_our_teaching. /So I pn^you^foTthe love of Go3 firs 
and then for theTdve of me, that you accustom yourself 
wash the feet of the poor./ 


He so loved all manner of people who had faith in God and 
loved Him, that he gave the constableship of France to my 
Lor d Giles Le Brun, who was not of the kingdom of France, 

1 Literally " the day of great Thursday." 

142 Memoirs of the Crusades 

because men held him in so great repute for his faith and for 
love to God. And verily I believe that his good repute was 
well deserved. 

He caused Master Robert of Sorbon to eat at his table, 
because of the great repute in which he was held as a man of 
uprightness and worth. One day it chanced that Master 
Robert was eating at my side, and we were talking to one 
another. The king took us up, and said: " Speak out, for 
your companions think you are speaking ill of them. If you 
talk at table of things that can give us pleasure, speak out, 
and, if not, hold your peace." 

When the king would be mirthful he would say to me: 
Seneschal, tell me the reasons why a man of upright 
ness and worth (prud -homme x ) is better than a friar? 
Then would begin a discussion between me and Master 
Robert. When we had disputed for a long while, the king 
would give sentence and speak thus: "Master Robert, 
willingly would I bear the title of upright and worthy (prud - 
homme) provided I were such in reality and all the rest you 
might have. For uprightness and worth are such great 
things and such good things that even to name them fills the 
mouth pleasantly." 

On the contrary, he said it was an evil thing to take other 
people s goods. " For," said he, " to restore is a thing so 
grievous, that even in the speaking the word restore scratches 
the throat by reason of the rs that are in it, and these rs are 
like so many rakes with which the Devil would draw to him 
self those who wish to restore what they have taken from 
others. And very subtly does the Devil do this; for he 
works on great usurers and great robbers in such sort that 
they give to God what they ought to restore to men." 

1 This word prud -homme, which is in constant use both by Ville- 
hardouin and Joinville, is one of the words that are the despair of the 
translator; they stand for so much that it is impossible to provide a 
full equivalent. Sainte-Beuve returns to the term more than once. 
Thus he says: " Prud -homme represented for Joinville, and for St. 
Lewis what the beautiful and the good represented for the Greeks, what 
the word honnete-homme was to stand for in the seventeenth century. 
It was a term large and of floating outline, coming into constant use, and 
made to include the most beautiful meanings. * And again: The 
word prud -homme includes all the virtues, wisdom, prudence, courage, 
craft within the measure which faith allows, civil worth, and what is 
right and fitting in human intercourse as that race of old Christians 
understood the terms." See Causeries du Lundi, art. on Joinville, 
Vol. VIII. of edition of 1855, pp. 420 and 423-424. 

Joinville s Chronicle 143 

He told me to warn King Thibaut, from him, to beware of 
the house of the Preachers of Provins, which he was building, 
lest he should encumber his soul on account of the great 
sums he was spending thereon. " For wise men," said he, 
"should, while they live, deal with their possessions as 
executors ought to do. Now the first thing a good executor 
does is to satisfy all the claims upon the dead, and pay back 
to others what is due to them, and it is only after having done 
this that he should spend in alms what remains of the dead 
man s possessions." 



The holy king was at Corbeil one Pentecost day, and there 
were there eighty knights. The king came down after dinner 
into the court below the chapel, and was talking, at the en 
trance of the door, to the Count of Brittany, the father of the 
count that now is whom may God preserve ! when Master 
Robert of Sorbon came to fetch me thither, and took me by 
the skirt of my mantle and led me to the king ; and all the 
(. %er knights came after us. Then I said to Master Robert, 
" Master Robert, what do you want with me? 3 He said, 
" I wish to ask you whether, if the king were seated in this 
court, and you were to seat yourself on his bench, and at a 
higher place than he, ought you to be greatly blamed? 
And I said, " Yes." And he said, " Then are you to be 
blamed when you go more nobly apparelled than the king, 
for you dress yourself in fur and green cloth, and the king 
does not do so." And I replied: "Master Robert, saving 
your grace, I do nothing blameworthy when I clothe myself 
in green cloth and fur, for this garment was left to me by my 
father and mother. But you are to blame, for you are the 
son of a common man and a common woman, and you have 
abandoned the vesture worn by your father and mother, and 
wear richer woollen cloth than the king himself." Then I 
took the skirt of his surcoat, and of the surcoat of the king, 
and said, " See if I am not speaking sooth." Then the king 
set himself to defend Master Robert with all his power. 

After this my lord the king called my Lord Philip, his son, 
the father of the king that now is, and King Thibaut, and sat 
himself at the entrance to his oratory, and put his hand to 

1 44 Memoirs of the Crusades 

the ground and said : Sit yourselves down here, quite close 
to me, so that we be not overheard." " Ah ! sire/ they 
replied, " we should not dare to sit so close to you." And he 
said to me, " Seneschal, sit you here." And I did so so 
close that my robe touched his. And he made them sit 
after me, and said to them : " You have done very ill, seeing 
you are my sons, and have not, at the first word, done what 
I commanded you. See, I pray you, that this does not 
happen again." And they said it should not so happen^ 
Then he said to me that he had so called us together to con 
fess that he had wrongly defended Master Robert against 
me. " But," said he, " I saw that he was so discouraged 
that he had great need of my help. Nevertheless, you must 
not attach import to anything I may have said to defend 
Master Robert; for, as the seneschal says, you ought to 
clothe yourselves well and suitably, so that your wives may 
love you the better, and your people hold you in the greater 
honour. For, as the sage tells us, our garments should be of 
such fashion as neither to cause the aged and worthy to say 
that too much has been spent upon them, nor the young to 
say that too little has been spent." 



You shall be told here of one of the lessons he taught me 
at sea, when we were returning from the lands oversea. It 
chanced that our ship struck before the island of Cyprus, 
when a wind was blowing which is called gar ban ; and this 
wind is not one of the four great winds. And at the shock 
that our ship received, the mariners so despaired that they 
rent their garments and tore their beards. The king sprang 
from his bed, barefoot, for it was night, and having on no 
more than his tunic, and went and placed himself cross-wise 
before the body of our Lord, as one who expected nothing but 
death. The day after this happened, the king called me to 
him alone, and said: " Seneschal, God has just showed us a 
portion of His great power; for one of these little winds, a 
wind so little that one can scarcely give it a name, came near 
to drown the King of France, his children, his wife, and his 
men. Now St. Anselm says that such are warnings from our 
Lord, as if God meant to say to us, See how easily I could 

Joinville s Chronicle 145 

iave compassed your death, had it been my will. Lord 
jod/ says the saint, * why dost Thou thus threaten us ? For 
vhen Thou dost threaten us, it is not for Thine own profit,, 
lor for Thine advantage seeing that if Thou hadst caused 
is all to be lost, Thou wouldst have been none the poorer, 
ind if Thou hadst caused us all to be saved, Thou wouldst 
iave been none the richer. Therefore, this Thy warning is 
lot for Thine own advantage, but for ours, if so be that we 
uffer it do its work. Let us therefore take the warning 
;hat God has given us in such sort that, if we feel that we 
iave, in our hearts or bodies, anything displeasing to God, we 
.hall remove it hastily; and i^there be anything we think 
vill please Him, let us try hastily to do it. If we so act, then 
)ur Lord will give us blessings in this world, and in the next 
)lessings greater than we can tell. And if we do not act thus, 
le will deal with us as the good lord deals with his wicked 
;ervant; for if the wicked servant will not amend after 
yarning given, the lord punishes him with death, or with 
)ther great troubles that are worse than death." 

Let the king that now is beware; for he has escaped from 
Deril as great as that in which we then were, or greater. 
Therefore let him amend from his evil deeds in such sort that 
jod smite him not grievously, either in himself or in his 


The holy king endeavoured with all his power as you 
>hall here be told to make me believe firmly in the Christian 
law, which God has given us. He said that we ought to 
believe so firmly the articles of faith that neither from fear 
Df death, nor for any mischief that might happen to the body, 
should we be willing to go against them in word or deed. 
And he said that the Enemy is so subtle that, when people 
are dying, he labours all he can to make them die doubting 
as to some points of the faith. For he knows that he can in 
no wise deprive a man of the good works he has done; and 
he knows also that the man is lost to him if he dies in the faith. 

Wherefore we should so guard and defend ourselves from 
this snare, as to say to the Enemy, when he sends such a 
temptation : * Away ! Yes, " Away ! " must one say to the 
Enemy. " Thou shalt not tempt me so that I cease to be- 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

lieve firmly all the articles of the faith. Even if thou didst 
cause all my members to be cut off, yet would I live and die 
in the faith." And whosoever acts thus, overcomes the 
Enemy with the very club and sword that the Enemy desired 
to murder him withal. 

He said that the Christian faith and creed were things in 
which we ought to believe firmly, even though we might not 
be certain of them except by hearsay. On this point he 
asked me what was my father s name? And I told him his 
name was Simon. And he asked how I knew it. And I said 
I thought I was certain of it, and believed it firmly, because 
my mother had borne witness thereto. Then he said, " So 
ought you to believe all the articles of the faith, to which the 
Apostles have borne witness, as also you chant of a Sunday 
in the Creed." 



He told me that the bishop, William of Paris, had related 
how a great master of divinity had come to him and told 
him he desired to speak with him. And the bishop said to 
him: " Master, say on." And when the master thought to 
speak to the bishop, he began to weep bitterly. And the 
bishop said: " Master, say on; be not discomfited; no one 
can sin so much but that God can forgive him more." " And 
yet I tell you," said the master, " that I cannot choose but 
weep; for I fear me I am a miscreant, inasmuch as I cannot 
so command my heart as to believe in the sacrifice of the 
altar, like as holy Church teaches; and yet I know well that 
this is a temptation of the Enemy." ff 

11 Master," said the bishop, " pray tell me, when the 
Enemy sends you this temptation, does it give you 
pleasure?" And the master said: "Sir, far from it; it 
troubles me as much as anything can trouble me." " Now," 
said the bishop, " I will ask you whether, for gold or silver 
you would utter anything out of your mouth that was against 
the sacrament of the altar, or the other holy sacraments of 
the Church? " " Sir! " said the master, " be it known to 
you that there is nothing in the world that would induce me 
so to do ; I would much rather that every member were torn 
from my body than that I should say such a thing." 

Joinville s Chronicle 147 

" Now I will say something more," said the bishop. " You 
know that the King of France is at war with the King of 
England, and you know too that the castle that lies most 
exposed in the border-land between the two is the castle of 
la Rochelle in Poitou. Now I will ask you a question: If the 
king had set you to guard la Rochelle, which is in the danger 
ous border-land, and had set me to guard the castle of 
Montlheri, which is in the heart of France, where the land is 
at peace, to whom, think you, would the king owe most at 
the end of the war to you who had guarded la Rochelle 
without loss, or to me, who had guarded the castle of Mont 
lheri without loss ? "In God s name, sir," said the master, 
" to me, who had guarded la Rochelle without losing it." 

" Master," said the bishop, " my heart is like the castle of 
Montlh6ri; for I have neither temptation nor doubt as to 
the sacrament of the altar. For which thing I tell you that 
for the grace that God owes to me because I hold this firmly, 
and in peace, He owes to you four-fold, because you have 
guarded your heart in the war of tribulation, and have such 
good-will towards Him that for no earthly good, nor for any 
harm done to the body, would you relinquish that faith. 
Therefore I tell you, be of good comfort, for in this your 
state is better pleasing to our Lord than mine." When the 
piaster heard this, he knelt before the bishop, and held him- 
;elf for well appeased. 


The sainted king told me that several people among the 
\lbigenses came to the Count of Montfort, who was then 

k guarding the land of the Albigenses for the king, and asked 
lim to come and look at the body of our Lord, which had 
)ecome blood and flesh in the hands of the priest. And the 
3ount of Montfort said, " Go and look at it yourselves, you 
vho do not believe it. As for me, I believe it firmly, holding 
is holy Church teaches of the sacrament of the altar. And 
iio you know what I shall gain," said the count, " in that 
luring this mortal life I have believed as holy Church 
f caches? I shall have a crown in the heavens, above the 
ingels, for the angels cannot but believe, inasmuch as they 
ee God face to face." 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

He told me that there was once a great disputation between 
clergy and Jews at the monastery of Cluny. And there was 
at Cluny a poor knight to whom the abbot gave bread at that 
place for the love of God; and this knight asked the abbot to 
suffer him to speak the first words, and they suffered him, not 
without doubt. So he rose, and leant upon his crutch, and 
asked that they should bring to him the greatest clerk and 
most learned master among the Jews; and they did so. 
Then he asked the Jew a question, which was this : " Master/ 
said the knight, " I ask you if you believe that the Virgin 
Mary, who bore God in her body and in her arms, was a 
virgin mother, and is the mother of God ? 

And the Jew replied that of all this he believed nothing. 
Then the knight answered that the Jew had acted like a fool 
when neither believing in her, nor loving her he had yet 
entered into her monastery and house. " And verily/ said 
the knight, " you shall pay for it ! Whereupon he lifted 
his crutch and smote the Jew near the ear, and beat him to 
the earth. Then the Jews turned to flight, and bore away 
their master, sore wounded. And so ended the disputation. 

The abbot came to the knight and told him he had com 
mitted a deed of very great folly. But the knight replied 
that the abbot had committed a deed of greater folly in 
gathering people together for such a disputation; for there 
were a great many good Christians there who, before the dis 
putation came to an end, would have gone away misbelievers 
through not fully understanding the Jews. " ^Jid I tell 
you/ said the king, " that no one, unless he be a very learned 
clerk, should dispute with them; but a layman, when he 
hears the Christian law mis-said, should not defend the 
Christian law, unless it be with his sword, and with that he 
should pierce the mis-sayer in the midriff, so far as the 
sword will enter." 


The rule of his land was so arranged that every day he 
heard the hours sung, and a Requiem mass wij^out song; 
and then, if it was convenient, the mass of the day, or of the 
saint, with song. Every day he rested in his bed after 
having eaten, and when he had slept and rested, he said, 

Joinville s Chronicle 149 

privily in his chamber he and one of his chaplains together 
the office for the dead; and after he heard vespers. At 
night he heard complines. 

A gray-friar (Franciscan) came to him at the castle of 
Hy&res, there where we disembarked ; and said in his sermon, 
for the king s instruction, that he had read the Bible, and the 
books pertaining to heathen princes, and that he had never 
found, either among believers or misbelievers, that a kingdom 
had been lost, or had changed lords, save there had first been 
failure of justice. " Therefore let the king, who is going into 
France, take good heed/ said he, " that he do justice well 
and speedily among his people, so that our Lord suffer his 
kingdom to remain in peace all the days of his life." It is 
5aid that the right worthy man who thus instructed the king, 
lies buried at Marseilles, where our Lord, for his sake, per 
forms many a fine miracle. He would never consent to 
remain with the king, however much the king might urge it, 
for more than a single day. 

The king forgat not the teaching of the friar, but ruled his 
land very loyally and godly, as you shall hear. He had so 
arranged that my Lord of Nesle, and the good Count of 
Soissons, and all of us who were about him, should go, after 
we had heard our masses, and hear the pleadings at the gate 
which is now called the gate of Requests. 

And when he came back from church, he would send for us 
md sit at the foot of his bed, and make us all sit round him, 
*nd ask if there were any whose cases could not be settled 
>ave by himself in person. And we named the litigants ; and 
ic would then send for such and ask: " Why do you not 
accept what our people offer? And they would make 
reply, " Sire, because they offer us very little." Then would 
le say, You would do well to accept what is proposed, as 
)ur people desire." And the saintly man endeavoured thus, 
yith all his power, to bring them into a straight path and a 

Ofttimes it happened that he would go, after his mass, and 
;eat himself in the wood of Vincennes, and lean against an 
)ak, and make us sit round him. And all those who had any 
:ause in hand came and spoke to him, without hindrance of 
isher, or_of anyotherjjerson. -/HiFfFwotrlcRie-ask^ 
wnlnouth, TlftKere any one who has a cause in hand? " 
\nd those who had a cause in hand stood uj>. JHien would 

150 Memoirs of the Crusades 

he say, " Keep silence all, and you shall be heard in turn, one 
after the other." Then he would call my Lord Peter of Fon 
taines and my Lord Geoffry of Villette, and say to one of 
them, " Settle me this cause." 

And when he saw that there was anything to amend in the 
words of those who spoke on his behalf, or in the words of 
those who spoke on behalf of any other person, he would 
himself, out of his own mouth, amend what they had said. 
Sometimes have I seen him, in summer, go to do justice 
among his people in the garden of Paris, clothed in a tunic of 
camlet, a surcoat of tartan without sleeves, and a mantle of 
black taffeta about his neck, his hair well combed, no cap, 
and a hat of white peaock s feathers upon his head. And 
he would cause a carpet to be laid down, so that we might sit 
round him, and all the people who had any cause to bring 
before him stood around. And then would he have their 
causes settled, as I have told you afore he was wont to do in 
the wood of Vincennes. 



I saw him, yet another time, in Paris, when all the prelates 
of France had asked to speak with him, and the king went 
to the palace to give them audience. Aiid there was present 
Guy of Auxerre, the son of my Lord William of Mello, and he 
spoke to the king on behalf of all the prelates, after this 
manner: " Sire, the lords who are here present, archbishops 
and bishops, have directed me to tell you that Christendom, 
which ought to be guarded and preserved by you, is perish 
ing in your hands." The king crossed himself when he heard 
that word, and he said, " Tell me how that may be." 

" Sire," said Guy of Auxerre, " it is because excommuni 
cations are at the present day so lightly thought of that 
people suffer themselves to die before seeking absolution, and 
will not give satisfaction to the Church. These lords require 
you therefore, for the sake of God, and because it is your 
duty, to command your provosts and bailiffs to seek out all 
such as suffer themselves to remain excommunicated for a 
year and day, and constrain them, by seizure of their goods, 
to have themselves absolved." 

And the king replied that he would issue such commands 

Joinville s Chronicle 151 

willingly whensoever it could be shown to him that the excom 
municate persons were in the wrong. The bishops said they 
would accept this condition at no price whatever, as they 
:ontested his jurisdiction in their causes. Then the king 
;old them he would do no other; for it would be against God 
ind reason if he constrained people to seek absolution when 
;he clergy were doing them wnmg. " And of this/ said the 
dng, " I will give you an example, viz., that of the Count of 
Brittany, who, for seven years long, being excommunicated, 
^leaded against the prelates of Brittany, and carried his 
:ause so far that the Apostle (the Pope) condemned them alL 
kVherefore, if I had constrained the Count of Brittany, at 
:he end of the first year, to get himself absolved, I should 
lave sinned against God and against him." Then the pre- 
ates resigned themselves; nor did I ever hear tell that any 
urther steps were taken in the aforesaid matters. 


The peace that he made with the King of England was 
nade against the advice of his council, for the council said to 
lim : " Sire, it seems to us that you are giving away the land 
;hat you make over to the King of England; 1 for he has no 
ight thereto, seeing that his father lost it justly." To this 
;he king replied that he knew well that the King of England 
lad no right to the land, but that there was a reason why he 
-hould give it him, " for," said he, " we have two sisters to 
vife, and our children are cousins-german; wherefore it is 
itting that there should be peace between us. Moreover a 
fery great honour accrues to me through the peace that I 
lave made with the King of England, seeing that he is now 
ny liegeman, which he was not aforetime." 

The uprightness of the king may be seen in the case of my 
lord Renaud of Trie, who brought to the saintly man a 
charter stating that the king had given to the heirs of the 
Countess of Boulogne, lately deceased, the county of Dam- 
nartin in Gouelle. The seal on the charter was broken, so 
hat naught remained save half the legs of the image on the 
dng s seal, and the stool on which the king set his feet. And 
;he king showed the seal to all those who were of his council, 

1 Henry III. Margaret, the wife of St. Lewis, and Eleanor, the wife 
>f Henry III., were sisters, the daughters of the Count of Provence. 

152 Memoirs of the Crusades 

and asked us to help him to come to a decision. We all said, 
without a dissentient, that he was not bound to give effect 
to the charter. Then he told John Sarrasin, his chamber 
lain, to give him a charter which he had asked him to obtain. 
When he held this charter in his hands, he said : " Lords, 
this is the seal I used before I went overseas, and you can 
see clearly from this seal thft the impression on the broken 
seal is like unto that of the seal that is whole; wherefore I 
should not dare, in good conscience, to keep the said 
county." So he called to him my lord Renaud of Trie, and 
said, " I give you back the county." 



IK the name of God Almighty, we have, hereinbefore, 
written out a part of the good words and of the good teach- 
ings of our saintly King Lewis, so that those who read may 
find them set in order, the one after the other, and thus 
derive more profit therefrom than if they were set forth 
among his deeds. And from this point we begin, in the 
name of God and in his own name, to speak of his deeds. 

As I have heard tell he was born on the day of St. Mark 
the Evangelist, after Easter (25th April 1214). On that day 
crosses are, in many places, carried in procession, and, in 
France, these are called black crosses; and this was as it 
were a prophecy of the great number of people who were to 
die in the two Crusades, viz., that of Egypt, and the other, in 
which he himself died, at Carthage, whereby there were 
great mournings in this world, and many great rejoicings in 
paradise for such as in these two pilgrimages died true 

He was crowned on the first Sunday in Advent (29th 
November 1226). The beginning of the mass for that Sunday 
runs: Ad te levavi animam meam, and what follows after; 
and this means, " Fair Lord God, I shall lift up my soul to 
thee, I put my confidence in thee." In God had he great 
confidence from his childhood to his death; for when he 
died, in his last words, he called upon God and His saints, 
and specially upon my lord St. James and my lady St. 


God, in whom he put his trust, kept him all his days from 
ais childhood unto the end; and specially, in his youth, did 
He keep him, when great need was, as you shall shortly hear, 
ks to his soul, God kept it through the good teachings of his 

154 Memoirs of the Crusades 

mother, who taught him to believe in God and to love Him, 

and to gather round himself all good people of religion. 

And, child as he was, she made him recite all the Hours, and 

listen to the sermons on festival days. He recorded that his 

mother had sometimes given him to understand that she 

would rather he were dead than have committed a mortal sin. 

Good need had he of God s help in his youth, for his 

mother, who came from Spain, had neither relations nor 

; friends in all the kingdom of France. And because the 

\ barons of France saw that the king was but a child, and the 

1 queen, his mother, a foreign woman, they made the Count of 

Boulogne, who was uncle to the king, their chief, and held 

l him as their lord. After the king was crowned, there were 

certain barons who demanded of the queen that she should 

give them great lands, and because she would none of it, all 

the barons assembled at Corbeil. 

And the saintly king told me that neither he, nor his 
mother, who were at Montlh6ri, dared return to Paris till 
those in Paris came in arms to fetch them. And he told me 
that all the way, from Montlheri to Paris, was filled with 
people, armed and unarmed, and that all cried to our Saviour 
to give him a good life, and a long, and to defend and guard 
him from his enemies. And this God did, as you shall 
presently hear. 

In this parliament which the barons held at Corbeil, the 
barons there present decided, so it is said, that the good 
knight, the Count Peter of Brittany, should rebel against the 
king, and they agreed besides that they would each in person, 
and with two knights only, attend the count when he obeyed 
the summons which the king would address to him. And 
this they did to see if the Count of Brittany would be able to 
master the queen, who was a foreign woman, as you have 
heard. And many people say that the count would have 
mastered the queen, and the king too, if God had not helped 
the king in this his hour of need, as He never failed to do. 

The help God gave him was such that Count Thibaut of 
Champagne, who was afterwards King of Navarre, came 
there to serve the king with three hundred knights; and 
through the help that the count gave to the king, the Count 
of Brittany had to yield to the king s mercy, and when 
making that peace, as it is said, to surrender to the king the 
county of Anjou and the county of the Perche. 

Joinville s Chronicle 155 


Inasmuch as there are certain things of which you should 
have knowledge, I hold it fitting here to depart somewhat 
from my subject. We will tell you here, therefore, that the 
good Count Henry the Large had by the Countess Mary 
who was sister to the King of France and sister to King 
Richard of England two sons, of whom the elder was called 
Henry and the other Thibaut. This Henry, the elder, went 
as a Crusader on pilgrimage to the Holy Land at the time 
when King Philip and King Richard besieged Acre and 
took it. 

So soon as Acre was taken, King Philip returned to France, 
for which he was greatly blamed; but King Richard re 
mained in the Holy Land, and did there such mighty deeds 
that the Saracens stood in great fear of him ; so much so, as 
it is written in the book of the Holy Land, that when the 
Saracen children cried, their mothers called out, " Wisht 1 
here is King Richard," hi order to keep them quiet. And 
when the horses of the Saracens and Bedouins started at 
tree or bush, their masters said to the horses, " Do you 
think that is King Richard? " 

This King Richard wrought to such effect that he gave 
for wife to Count Henry of Champagne, who had remained 
with him, the Queen of Jerusalem, who was direct heiress to 
the kingdom. By the said queen Count Henry had two 
daughters, of whom the first was Queen of Cyprus, and the 
other did my Lord Everard of Brienne have to wife, and 
from them sprang a great lineage, as is known in France and 
Champagne. Of the wife of my Lord Everard of Brienne I 
will say nothing to you at this present; but I will speak to 
you of the Queen of Cyprus, seeing she is related to the 
matter I have in hand; and I speak, therefore, as follows. 



After the king had foiled Count Peter of Brittany, all the 
barons of France were so wroth with Count Thibaut of 
Champagne that they settled to send for the Queen of 

i 5 6 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

Cyprus, who was the daughter of the eldest son of Cham 
pagne, so as to disinherit Count Thibaut, who was the son of 
the second son of Champagne. 

But some took steps to reconcile Count Peter with Count 
Thibaut, and the matter was discussed to such effect that 
Count Thibaut promised to take to wife the daughter of 
Count Peter of Brittany. A day was fixed on which the 
Count of Champagne should espouse the damsel; and she 
was to be taken, for the marriage, to an abbey of Premontre, 
near Chateau-Thierry, and called, as I believe, Val-Secret. 
The barons of France, who were nearly all related to Count 
Peter, undertook this duty, and conducted the damsel to 
Val-Secret to be married, and advised thereof the Count of 
Champagne, who was at Chateau-Thierry. 

And while the Count of Champagne was coming for the 
marriage, my Lord Geoffry of la Chapelle came to him on 
the part of the king, with a letter of credence, and spoke thus : 
" My Lord Count of Champagne, the king has heard that you 
have covenanted with Count Peter of Brittany to take his 
daughter in marriage. Now the king warns you that, unless 
you wish to lose everything you possess in the kingdom of 
France, you will not do this thing, for you know that the 
Count of Brittany has done more evil to the king than any 
man living." Then the Count of Champagne, by the advice 
of those he had with him, returned to Chateau-Thierry. 

When Count Peter and the barons of France, who were 
expecting him at Val-Secret, heard this, they were all like 
men distraught, with anger at what he had done to them, 
and they at once sent to fetch the Queen of Cyprus. And as 
soon as she was come, they entered into a common agree 
ment to gather together as many men-at-arms as they could, 
and enter into Brie and Champagne, from the side of France; 
and the Duke of Burgundy, who had to wife the daughter of 
Count Robert of Dreux, was to enter into Champagne from 
the side of Burgundy. And they fixed a day on which they 
should assemble before the city of Troyes, to take the city of 
Troyes if they could accomplish it. 

The duke collected all the people he could, and the barons 
also. The barons came burning and wasting everything on 
one side, and the Duke of Burgundy on another, and the 
King of France came on yet another side to fight against 
them. The evil plight of the Count of Champagne was such 

Join ville s Chronicle 157 

that he himself burned his cities before the arrival of the 
barons,, so that they might not find supplies therein. Among 
the other cities that the Count of Champagne burned, he 
burned Epernay, and Vertus, and Sezanne. 


The citizens of Troyes, when they perceived that they had 
lost the help of their lord, asked Simon, lord of Joinville, and 
father of the lord of Joinville that now is, to come to their 
help. And he, who had gathered together all his men-at- 
arms, moved from Joinville by night, so soon as the tidings 
were brought to him, and came to Troyes before it was day. 
And thus were the barons foiled of their intent to take the 
said city ; wheref or the barons passed before Troyes without 
doing aught, and went and encamped in the meadow of Flsle 
there where the Duke of Burgundy already was. 

The King of France, who knew they were there, at once 
addressed himself to go thither and attack them; and the 
barons sent and begged him to withdraw in person from the 
field, and then they would go and fight against the Count of 
Champagne and the Duke of Lorraine and the rest of the 
king s people, with three hundred knights less than the count 
and duke had in their force. But the king told them they 
should not so fight without him, for he would remain with his 
people in person. Then the barons sent back to the king 
and said that, if it so pleased him, they would willingly in 
cline the Queen of Cyprus to make peace. The king replied 
that he would agree to no peace, nor suffer the Count of 
Champagne to agree to any peace, till they had retired from 
the county of Champagne. 

They retired in such sort that from Isle, where they were, 
they went and encamped below Jully, and the king en 
camped at Isle, from which he had driven them. And when 
they knew that the king had come to Isle, they went and en 
camped at Chaource, and not daring to wait for the king, 
they went and encamped at Laignes, which belonged to the 
Count of Nevers, who was of their party. So the king caused 
the Count of Champagne and the Queen of Cyprus to come 
to terms, and peace was made in such sort that the Count of 
Champagne gave to the Queen of Cyprus about two thousand 

i 5 8 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

livres (yearly) in land, and forty thousand livres, which latter 
sum the king paid for the Count of Champagne. And the 
Count of Champagne sold to the king, for the said forty 
thousand livres, the fiefs hereinafter named, viz. the fief 
of the county of Blois, the fief of the county of Chartres, the 
fief of the county of Sancerre, the fief of the county of 
Chateaudun. Now there are certain people who say that 
the king only holds the said fiefs in pledge; but this is not so, 
for I asked our saintly king of it when we were oversea. 

The land that Count Thibaut gave to the Queen of Cyprus 
is held by the Count of Brienne that now is, and by the Count 
of Joigny, because the great-grandmother of the Count of 
Brienne was daughter to the Queen of Cyprus and wife to 
the great Count Walter of Brienne 



In order that you may learn whence came the fiefs that the 
Count of Champagne sold to the king, you must know that 
the great Count Thibaut, who lies buried at Lagny, had 
three sons. The first was called Henry, the second Thibaut, 
and the third Stephen. The aforesaid Henry was Count of 
Champagne and of Brie, and was called Count Henry the 
Large-hearted ; and rightly was he so called, for he was large- 
hearted both in his dealings with God and the world: large- 
hearted towards God as appears in the Church of St. Stephen 
of Troyes and the other fair churches which he founded in 
Champagne, and large-hearted towards the world as appeared 
in the case of Artaud of Nogent, and on many other occa 
sions, of which I would tell you if I did not fear to interrupt 
my story. 

This Artaud of Nogent was the citizen of all the world in 
whom the count had the greatest faith; and he became so 
rich that he built the castle of Nogent 1 Artaud with his 
moneys. Now it happened that Count Henry was coming 
down from his halls at Troyes to go and hear mass at St. 
Stephen s on the day of Pentecost. At the foot of the steps 
there came before him a poor knight and knelt down before 
him and spoke thus: " Sire, I pray you, for the love of God, 
to give me of what is yours, so that I may marry my two 
daughters whom you see here." Artaud, who went behind 

Joinville s Chronicle 159 

him, said to the poor knight: " Sir knight, it is not courteous 
on your part to beg of my lord, for he has given away so 
much that he has nothing left to give." The large-hearted 
count turned towards Artaud and said: " Sir villain, you 
speak not sooth when you say I have nothing left to give ; I 
have you left. There, take him, sir knight, for I give him 
to you, and moreover, I pledge myself for him." The knight 
was not abashed, but took hold of Artaud s cloak, and said 
he would not leave him till they had done business together. 
And before he escaped, Artaud had done business with him ; 
to the tune of five hundred limes. \ 

The second brother of Count Henry was called Thibaut 
and was Count of Blois. The third brother was called 
Stephen, and was Count of Sancerre. And these two brothers 
held from Count Henry all their heritages, and their counties, 
and the appurtenances thereof; and they held them after 
wards from the heirs of Count Henry who held the county of 
Champagne, until such time as Count Thibaut sold them to 
the King of France, as has been related above. 


Now let us return to our subject and tell how, after these 
things, the king held a full court at Saumur in Anjou, and I 
was there and can testify that it was the best-ordered court 
that ever I saw. For at the king s table ate, after him, the 
Count of Poitiers, whom he had newly made knight at the 
feast of St. John; and after the Count of Poitiers, ate the 
Count of Dreux, whom he had also newly made knight ; and 
after the Count of Dreux the Count of la Marche; and after 
the Count of la Marche the good Count Peter of Brittany; 
and before the king s table, opposite the Count of Dreux, ate 
my lord the King of Navarre, in tunic and mantle of samite 
well bedight with a belt and a clasp, and a cap of gold; and I 
carved before him. 

Before the king the Count of Artois, his brother, served the 
meat, and before the king the good Count John of Soissons 
carved with the knife. In order to guard the king s table 
there were there my Lord Imbert of Beaujeu, who was after 
wards Constable of France, and my Lord Enguerrand of 
Coucy, and my Lord Archamband of Bourbon. Behind 
these three barons stood some thirty of their knights, in 

160 Memoirs of the Crusades 

tunics of silken cloth, to keep guard over them ; and behind 
these knights there were a great quantity of sergeants bear 
ing on their clothing the arms of the Count of Poitiers em 
broidered in taffeta. The king was clothed in a tunic of blue 
satin, and surcoat and mantle of vermeil samite lined with 
ermine, and he had a cotton cap upon his head, which suited 
him very badly, because he was at that time a young man. 

The king held these banquets in the halls of Saumur which 
had been built, so it was said, by the great King Henry of 
England (Henry II.) in order that he might hold his great 
banquets therein; and this hall is built after the fashion of 
the cloisters of the white monks of the Cistercian order. 
But I think there is none other hall so large, and by a great 
deal. And I will tell you why I think so it is because by 
the wall of the cloister, where the king ate, surrounded by 
his knights and sergeants who occupied a great space, there 
was also room for a table where ate twenty bishops and 
archbishops, and yet again, besides the bishops and arch 
bishops, the Queen Blanche, the king s mother, ate near 
their table, at the head of the cloister, on the other side from 
the king. 

And to serve the queen there was the Count of Boulogne, 
who afterwards became King of Portugal, and the good 
Count Hugh of St. Paul, and a German of the age of eighteen 
years, who was said to be the son of St. Elizabeth of Thuringia, 
for which cause it was told that Queen Blanche kissed him 
on the forehead, as an act of devotion, because she thought 
that his mother must ofttimes have kissed him there. 

At the end of the cloister, on the other side, were the 
kitchens, the cellars, the pantries and the butteries; from 
this end were served to the king and to the queen meats, and 
wine, and bread. And in the wings and in the central court 
ate the knights, in such numbers, that I knew not how to 
count them. And many said they had never, at any feast, 
seen together so many surcoats and other garments, of cloth 
of gold and of silk; and it was said also that no less than 
three thousand knights were there present. 


After this feast the king led the Count of Poitiers to Poitiers, 
so that his vassals might do homage for his fiefs. And when 

Joinville s Chronicle 161 

the king came to Poitiers, he would gladly have been back in 
Paris, for he found that the Count of la Marche, who had 
eaten at his table on St. John s Day, had assembled as many 
men-at-arms as he could collect, at Lusignan near Poitiers. 
The king remained at Poitiers nearly a fortnight, nor did he 
dare to depart therefrom till he had come to terms how, I 
know not with the Count of la Marche. 

Ofttimes I saw the Count of la Marche come from Lusig 
nan to speak to the king at Poitiers, and always he brought 
with him the Queen of England, 1 his wife, who was mother 
to the King of England. And many people said that the 
king and the Count of Poitiers had made an evil peace with 
the Count of la Marche. 

No long time after the king had returned from Poitiers, 
the King of England came into Gascony to wage war against 
the King of France. Our saintly king rode forth to fight 
against him with as many people as he could collect. Then 
came the King of England and the Count of la Marche to do 
battle before a castle called Taillebourg, seated on an evil 
river called La Charente, at a point where one cannot pass 
except over a stone bridge, very narrow. 

VSo soon as the king came to Taillebourg, and the hosts 
came in sight of one another, our people, who had the castle 
behind them, bestirred themselves mightily and passed over 
the stream with great peril, in boats, and on pontoons, and 
fell upon the English. Then began a battle grim and fierce. 
When the king saw this, he put himself in peril, with the 
others ; and for every man that the king had with him when 
he passed the stream, the English had, on their side, at least 
twenty. Nevertheless, as God willed, it so befell that when 
the English saw the king pass over, they fled, and took 
refuge in the city of Saintes, and several of our people entered 
into the city, mingled with them, and were taken prisoners. 

Those of our people who were taken at Saintes reported 
that they heard great discord arise between the King of Eng 
land and the Count of la Marche ; and the King of England 
said that the Count of la Marche had sent for him on the plea 
that he would find great help in France. That very night the 
King of England left Saintes and went away into Gascony. 

1 Isabella of Angouleme, widow of John, and mother of Henry IIL 

1 62 Memoirs of the Crusades 


The Count of la Marche, as one who could do no better for 
himself, came to the king s prison, and brought with him to 
the prison his wife and his children; and the king, in making 
peace with the count, obtained a great deal of his land, but 
how much I know not, for I had nothing to do with that 
matter, seeing I had never then worn a hauberk (t. e., was 
not yet a knight). But I heard tell that besides the land 
which the king thus gained, the Count of la Marche made 
over to him ten thousand livres parisis, which were in the 
king s coffers, and the same sum every year. 

When we were at Poitiers I saw a knight, my Lord Geoffry 
of Rancon by name, who, for some great wrong that the 
Count of la Marche had done him, so it was said, had sworn 
on holy relics that he would never have his head shorn, as 
knights are wont, but would wear his hair in woman s tresses 
until such time as he should see vengeance done on the Count 
of la Marche, either by himself or by some other. And when 
my lord Geoffry saw the Count of la Marche, his wife, and 
his children, kneeling before the king and crying for mercy, 
he caused a trestle to be brought, and his tresses cut off, and 
had himself immediately shorn in the presence of the king, 
of the Count of la Marche, and of all those there present. 

In this expedition against the King of England, and 
against the barons, the king gave great gifts, as I have heard 
} tell by those who returned thence. But neither on account 
\>f such gifts, nor of the expenses incurred in this expedition, 
nor in other expeditions, whether beyond the seas or this 
side of the seas, did he ever demand, or take, any (money) 
aid from his barons, or his knights, or his men, or his good 
cities, in such sort as to cause complaint. Nor is this to be 
wondered at; for he ruled himself by the advice of the good 
mother who was with him and whose counsel he took and 
of the right worthy men who had remained by him from the 
time of his father and of his grandfather. 


After the things related above, it happened, as God so 
willed, that a very grievous sickness came upon the king in 

Joinville s Chronicle 163 

Paris, and brought him to such extremity, so it was said, 
that one of the ladies who were tending him wished to draw 
the cloth over his face, saying he was dead; but another 
lady, who was on the other side of the bed, would not suffer 
it, and said the soul was still in his body. 

And as he listened to the debate between these two ladies, 
our Lord wrought within him, and soon sent him health, for 
before that he had been dumb and could not speak. And 
as soon as he was in case to speak, he asked that they should 
give him the cross, and they did so. When the queen, his 
mother, heard say that speech had come back to him, she 
made as great joy thereof as ever she could. But when she 
knew that he had taken the cross as also he himself told 
her she made as great mourning as if she had seen him dead. 

After he had taken the cross, so also took the cross, Robert, 
Count of Artois, Alfonse, Count of Poitiers, Charles, Count 
of Anjou, who afterwards was King of Sicily all three 
brothers of the king; and there also took the cross, Hugh, 
Duke of Burgundy, William, Count of Flanders, and brother 
of Count Guy of Flanders lately deceased, the good Hugh, 
Count of St. Paul, and my Lord Gaucher, his nephew, who 
did right well oversea, and would have done much good 
service if he had lived. 

With them also took the cross, the Count of la Marche and 
my Lord Hugh Le Brun, his son, the Count of Sarrebruck 
and my Lord Gobert of Apremont, his brother in whose 
company I, John, Lord of Joinville, passed over the sea in a 
ship which we hired, because we were cousins and we 
passed over with twenty knights, of whom he was over ten, 
and I over ten. 


At Easter, in the year of grace that stood at 1248, I 
summoned my men, and all who held fiefs from me, to Join 
ville; and on the vigil of the said Easter, when all the people 
that I had summoned were assembled, was born my son 
John, Lord of Ancerville, by my first wife, the sister of the 
Count of Grandpre. All that week we feasted and danced, 
and my brother, the Lord of Vaucouleurs, and the other rich 
men who were there, gave feasts on the Monday, the Tues 
day, the Wednesday and the Thursday. 

1 64 Memoirs of the Crusades 

On the Friday I said to them : " Lords, I am going over 
sea, and I know not whether I shall ever return. Now come 
forward; if I have done you any wrong, I will make it good, 
as I have been used to do, dealing, each in turn, with such as 
have any claim to make against me, or my people." So I 
dealt with each, according to the opinions of the men on my 
lands ; and in order that I might not weigh upon their debate, 
I retired from the council, and agreed, without objection 
raised, to what they recommended. 

Because I did not wish to take away with me any penny 
wrongfully gotten, therefore I went to Metz, in Lorraine, and 
placed in pawn the greater part of my land. And you must 
know that on the day when I left our country to go to the 
Holy Land, I did not hold more than one thousand livres * 
a year in land, for my lady mother was still alive; and yet I 
went, taking with me nine knights and being the first of 
three knights-banneret. And I bring these things to your 
notice, so that you may understand that if God, who never 
yet failed me, had not come to my help, I should hardly 
have maintained myself for so long a space as the six years 
that I remained in the Holy Land. 

As I was preparing to depart, John, Lord of Apremont 
and Count of Sarrebruck in his wife s right, sent to tell me 
he had settled matters to go oversea, taking ten knights, and 
proposed, if I so willed, that we should hire a ship between 
him and me; and I consented. His people and mine hired 
a ship at Marseilles. 



The king summoned all his barons to Paris, and made 
them take oath that, if anything happened to him while 
away, they would give faith and loyalty to his children. He 
asked me to do the same; but I would not take the oath, 
because I was not his liegeman. 

While I was on my way to Paris, I found three men dead 
upon a cart, whom a clerk had killed; and I was told they 
were being taken to the king. When I heard this, I sent one 
of my squires after, to know what befell. And my squire, 
whom I had sent, told me that the king, when he came out 

1 Say 800 of our money. 

Joinville s Chronicle 165 

of his chapel, went to the entrance steps to look at the dead, 
and inquired of the provost of Paris how this thing had 

And the provost told him that the dead men were three of 
his sergeants of the Chatelet, who had gone into unfrequented 
stieets to rob people. " And they found/ said he to the 
king, " this clerk, whom you see here, and robbed him of all 
his clothes. The clerk, being only in his shirt, went to his 
lodging, and took his crossbow, and caused a child to bring 
his falchion. Then when he saw them again, he cried out 
upon them, and said they should die. So the clerk drew his 
crossbow, and shot, and pierced one of the men through 
the heart. The two others made off flying. And the 
clerk took the falchion which the child handed to him, 
and followed them in the moonlight, which was fine and 
clear. The one man thought to pass through a hedge into 
a garden, and the clerk struck him with his falchion," 
said the provost, " and cut right through his leg, in such 
sort that it only holds to the boot, as you may see here. 
The clerk then followed the other, who thought to go down 
into a strange house, where the people were still awake; 
but the clerk struck him in the middle of the head with his 
falchion, so that he clove his head to the teeth, as you may 
see here," said the provost to the king. " Sire," continued 
he, " the clerk showed what he had done to the neighbours 
in the street, and then came and made himself your prisoner. 
And now, sire, I have brought him to you, to do with him 
what you will. Here he is." 

" Sir clerk," said the king, " you have forfeited your 
priesthood by your prowess; and for your prowess I take 
you into my service, and you shall go with me overseas. 
And this thing I do for you, because I would have my men to 
fully understand that I will uphold them in none of their 

When the people there assembled heard this, they cried out 
to our Saviour, and prayed God to give the king a good and 
a long life, and bring him back in joy and health. 


After these things I returned to our county, and we agreed, 
the Count of Sarrebruck and I, that we should send our 

1 66 Memoirs of the Crusades 

baggage in carts to Ausonne, thence to be borne on the rive? 
Saone, and to Aries by the Saone and the Rhone. 

The day that I left Joinville I sent for the Abbot of Chemi 
non, who was held to be one of the most worthy of the order 
of the white monks (Cistercians). (I heard this witness re- 

- . \ / \ 

garding him given at Clairvaux on the festival of our Lady, 
when the saintly king was present, by a monk, who shoved 
the abbot to me, and asked if I knew who he was; and I 
inquired why he asked me this, and he answered, " because 
I think he is the worthiest monk in all the white order. For 
listen," said he, " what I heard tell by a worthy man who 
slept in the same dormitory as the Abbot of Cheminon. The 
abbot had bared his breast because of the great heat; and 
this did the worthy man see who lay in the same dormitory : 
he saw the Mother of God go to the abbot s bed, and draw 
his garment over his breast, so that the wind might do him 
no hurt.") 

This Abbot of Cheminon gave me my scarf and staff of 
pilgrimage; and then I departed from Joinville on foot, bare 
foot, in my shirt not to re-enter the castle till my return; 
and thus I went to Blecourt, and Saint-Urbain, and to other 
places thereabouts where there are holy relics. And never 
while I went to Blecourt and Saint-Urbain would I turn my 
eyes towards Joinville for fear my heart should melt within 
me at thought of the fair castle I was leaving behind, and 
my two children. 

I and my companions ate that day at Fontaine-FArche- 
veque before Donjeux; and the Abbot Adam of Saint- 
Urbain whom God have in His grace! gave a great 
quantity of fair jewels to myself and the nine knights I had 
with me. Thence we went to Auxonne, and thence again, 
with the baggage, which we had placed in boats, from 
Auxonne to Lyons down the river Saone; and along by the 
side of the boats were led the great war-horses. 

At Lyons we embarked on the Rhone to go to Aries the 
White; and on the Rhone we found a castle called Roche- 
de-Glun, which the king had caused to be destroyed, because 
Roger, the lord of the castle, was accused of robbing pilgrims 
and merchants. 

Joinville s Chronicle 167 


In the month of August we entered into our ship at the 
Roche-de-Marseille. On the day that we entered into our 
ship, they opened the door of the ship and put therein all 
the horses we were to take oversea; and then they reclosed 
the door, and caulked it well, as when a cask is sunk in water, 
because, when the ship is on the high seas, all the said door 
is under water. 

When the horses were in the ship, our master mariner 
called to his seamen, who stood at the prow, and said: " Are 
you ready ? J and they answered, " Aye, sir let the clerks 
and priests come forward ! As soon as these had come 
forward, he called to them, " Sing, for God s sake ! " and they 
all, with one voice, chanted: " Vent Creator Spiritus" 

Then he cried to his seamen, " Unfurl the sails, for God s 
sake! " and they did so. 

In a short space the wind filled our sails and had borne us 
out of sight of land, so that we saw naught save sky and 
water, and every day the wind carried us further from the 
land where we were born. And these things I tell you, that 
you may understand how foolhardy is that man who dares> 
having other s chattels in his possession, or being in mortal 
sin, to place himself in such peril, seeing that, when you lie 
down to sleep at night on shipboard, you lie down not know 
ing whether, in the morning, you may find yourself at the 
bottom of the sea. 

At sea a singular marvel befell us; for we came across a 
mountain, quite round, before the coast of Barbary. We 
came across it about the hour of vespers, and sailed all night, 
and thought to have gone about fifty leagues; and, on the 
morrow, we found ourselves before the same mountain; and 
this same thing happened to us some two or three times. 
When the sailors saw this, they were all amazed, and told us 
we were in very great peril; for we were nigh unto the land 
of the Saracens of Barbary. 

Then spake a certain right worthy priest, who was called 
the Dean of Maurupt; and he told us that never had any 
mischance occurred in his parish whether lack of water, or 
overplus of rain, or any other mischance but so soon as he 
had made three processions, on three Saturdays, God and 

1 68 Memoirs of the Crusades 

His mother sent them deliverance. It was then a Saturda^ 
We made the first procession round the two masts of the 
ship. I had myself carried in men s arms, because I was 
.grievously sick. Never again did we see the mountain; and 
Ion the third Saturday we came to Cyprus. 



When we came to Cyprus, the king was already there, and 
we found great quantities of the king s supplies, that is to 
say, the cellarage of the king, and his treasure, and his 
granaries. The king s cellarage was set in the middle of the 
fields, on the shore by the sea. There his people had stacked 
great barrels of wine, which they had been buying for two 
years before the king s arrival ; and the barrels were stacked 
one upon the other in such sort that when you looked at 
them in front, the stacks seemed as if they were barns. 

The wheat and the barley they had set in heaps in the 
midst of the fields, and when you looked at them, it seemed 
as if they were mountains, for the rain, which had long been 
beating on the grain, had caused it to sprout, so that the out 
side looked like green grass. Now it happened that when 
they wished to take the grain into Egypt, they took away 
the upper crust with the green grass, and found the wheat 
and barley within as fresh as if newly threshed. 

The king himself, as I heard tell in Syria, would very 
willingly have gone on to Egypt, without stopping, had it 
not been for his barons, who advised him to wait for such of 
his people as had not yet arrived. 

While the king was sojourning in Cyprus, the great king of 
the Tartars sent envoys to him, with many good and gracious 
words. Among other things, he signified that he was ready 
to help the king to conquer the Holy Land, and to deliver 
Jerusalem from the hands of the Saracens. 

The king received the envoys in very friendly fashion, and 
sent other envoys in return, who remained away two years. 
And the king, by his envoys, sent to the King of the Tartars 
a tent made like a chapel, very costly, for it was all of fair, 
fine scarlet cloth. The king, moreover, to see if he could 
draw the Tartars to our faith, caused images to be graven in 
the said chapel, representing the Annuciation of our Lady, 

Joinville s Chronicle 169 

and all the other points of the faith. And these things he 
sent by two brothers of the order of Preachers, who knew the 
Saracen language, and could show and teach the Tartars 
what they ought to believe. 

The two brothers came back to the king at the time when 
the king s brothers were returning to France; and they 
found the king, who had left Acre, where his brothers had 
parted from him, and had come to Csesarea, which he was 
fortifying; nor was there at that time any truce or peace 
with the Saracens. How the king s envoys were received 
will I tell you, as they themselves told it to the king ; and in 
ffhat they reported you may hear much that is strange and 
narvellous; but I will not tell you of it now, because, in 
)rder to do so, I should have to interrupt matters already 
Degun; so to proceed. 

I, who had not a thousand limes yearly in land, had 
mdertaken, when I went oversea, to bear, beside my own 
charges, the charges of nine knights, and two knights- 
Banneret; and so it happened, when I arrived in Cyprus, 
;hat I had no more left, my ship being paid for, than twelve 
core limes tournois ; wherefore some of my knights apprised 
ne that if I did not provide myself with moneys, they would 
eave me. But God, who never failed me yet, provided 
or me in such fashion that the king, who was at Nicosia, 
ent for me, and took me into his service, and placed eight 
tundred livres in my coffers; and thus I had more moneys 
han I required. 


While we were sojourning in Cyprus, the Empress of Con- 
tantinople l sent me word that she had arrived at Paphos, 
, city of Cyprus, and bade me go and seek her thence I and 
iy Lord Everard of Brienne. When we arrived at Paphos 
re were told how a stray wind had broken the ropes of the 

ichor that held her ship, and had driven it to Acre; and of 
her baggage there was naught remaining save the mantle 
tie had on, and a surcoat for meals. We brought her to 
imassol, where the king and queen and all the barons of 
r rance and of the host received her very honourably. 

1 Mary, wife of Baldwin II. The Latin Empire of Constantinople 
> r as tottering to its fall. 

1 70 Memoirs of the Crusades 

On the morrow I sent her some cloth to make a dress, and 
fur of ermine with it; and I sent her some taffeta and 
cendal l to line the dress. My Lord Philip of Nanteuil, the 
good knight who was of the king s household, met my squire 
going to the empress. When this most worthy man saw 
what was toward, he went to the king and told him I had 
greatly shamed the king and the other barons, in that I had 
sent this dress to the empress, while they had never per 
ceived what was lacking. 

The empress had come to ask the king for help for her lord 
who had remained in Constantinople; and she wrought to 
such purpose that she took back with her a hundred couple 
of letters or more, as well from me as from the other friends 
she had there by which letters we were bound on oath, if 
the king or the legate wished to send three hundred knights 
to Constantinople after the king returned from oversea, 
then, I say, we were bound by our oaths to go thither. 

And I, to acquit myself of my oath, inquired of the king, 
when the tune came for our departure to France in presence 
of the Count of Eu, whose letter I have and said that if the 
king desired to send the three hundred knights to Constanti 
nople, I would go too, in order to fulfil my oath. And the 
king replied that he had not the wherewithal; and that 
however great his treasure might have been aforetime, he had 
now drained it to the dregs. After we had arrived in Egypt, 
the empress went away to France, and took with her my 
Lord John of Acre, her brother, whom she married to the 
Countess of Montfort. 


At the time when we came to Cyprus, the Soldan of 
Iconium was the richest king in all paynimry. And he had 
done a marvellous thing, for he had melted a great part of 
his gold in earthen jars, such as are used oversea to hold 
wine, and may contain three or four measures, and he had 
caused the jars to be broken, so that the ingots of gold re 
mained uncovered in one of his castles, and every one who 
entered the castle could see and handle them; and of these 
ingots there were at least six or seven. 

1 A silken stuff. 

Join villa s Chronicle 171 

His great wealth might well be seen from a pavilion which 
die King of Arm enia sent to the King of France, and which 
was worth some five hundred livres; and the King of 
Armenia told the King of France that a ferrais of the Soldan 
3f Iconium had given it him. Now a ferrais is he who has 
:are of the soldaii s pavilions and keeps his houses clean. 

The King of Armenia, in order to deliver himself from 
subjection to the Soldan of Iconium, went to the King of the 
Tartars, and, to Qbtain his help, placed himself in subjection 
;o the Tartars; and he brought back such a number of men- 
4t-arms that he was in sufficient force to fight against the 
Soldan of Iconiurn. The battle lasted a long while, and the 
Tartars killed so many of the soldan s men that no one after 
lad news of him. Because of the fame of this coming battle, 
vhich was very great in Cyprus, some of our sergeants passed 
nto Armenia, both to take part in the battle and for the sake 
)f booty ; but not one of them ever came back. 

The Soldan of Babylon expected that the king would 
urive in Egypt in spring, and bethought himself that he 
vould, ere the spiing, overthrow the Soldan of Emessa, who 
;vas his mortal enemy, and he went and besieged him in the 
:ity of Emessa. The Soldan of Emessa saw no way of de- 
iverance from the Soldan of Babylon, for he perceived that 
f the latter lived long enough, he would overthrow him. 
Therefore he bargained in such sort with the ferrais of the 
Soldan of Babylon that the ferrais poisoned him. 

And the manner hi which he poisoned him was this : The 
*errais was aware that the soldan came every day, after 
iinner, to play chess on the mats that were at the foot of his 
3ed; and the mat on which he knew that the soldan sat 
jvery day he put poison thereon. Now it happened that 
;he soldan, who was unshod, turned himself about upon a 
;ore that was on his leg. Immediately the poison struck 
nto the open sore, and took away all power from the half of 
:he body into which it had entered ; and every time that the 
ooison impinged upon his heart, the soldan remained for 
>ome two days unable to drink, or eat, or speak. So they 
eft the soldan of Emessa in peace; and the people of the 
Soldan of Babylon carried him back into Egypt. 

172 Memoirs of the Crusades 


As soon as we entered into the month of March, by the 
king s command the king, the barons, and the other pilgrims 
ordered that the ships should be re-laden with wine and pro 
visions, so as to be ready to move when the king directed. 
And when the king saw that all had been duly ordered, the 
king and queen embarked on their ships on the Friday before 
Pentecost (2ist May 1249), an d the king told his barons to 
follow in their ships straight to Egypt. On 1 the Saturday the 
king set sail and all the others besides, which was a fair thing 
to look upon, for it seemed as if all the sea, so far as the eye 
could reach, were covered with the canvas of the ships sails ; 
and the number of the ships, great and small, was reckoned 
at eighteen hundred. 

The king anchored at the head of a hillock which is called 
the Point of Limassol, and all the other vessels anchored 
round about him. The king landed on the day of Pentecost. 
After we had heard mass a fierce and powerful wind, coming 
from the Egyptian side, arose in such sort that out of two 
thousand eight hundred knights, whom the king was taking 
into Egypt, there remained no more than seven hundred 
whom the wind had not separated from the king s company 
and carried away to Acre and other strange lands; nor did 
they afterwards return to the king of a long while. 

The day after Pentecost the wind had fallen. The king 
and such of us as had, according to God s will, remained with 
him, set sail forthwith, and met the Prince of Morea, and 
the Duke of Burgundy, who had been sojourning in Morea. 
On the Thursday after Pentecost the king arrived before 
Damietta, and we found there, arrayed on the seashore, all 
the power of the soldan a host fair to look upon, for the 
soldan s arms are of gold, and when the sun struck upon 
them they were resplendent. The noise they made with 
their cymbals and horns was fearful to listen to. 

The king summoned his barons to take counsel what they 
should do. Many advised that he should wait till his people 
returned, seeing that no more than a third part had remained 
with him; but to this he would by no means agree. The 
reason he gave was, that to delay would put the foe in good 
heart, and, particularly, he said that there was no port 

Joinville s Chronicle I 7 r 

before Damietta in which he could wait for his people, and 
that, therefore, any strong wind arising might drive the f 
to other lands, like as the ships had been driven on the 
of Pentecost. 


It was settled that the king should land on the Friday 
before Trinity and do battle with the Saracens, unless they 
refused to stand. The king ordered my Lord John of Beau 
mont to assign a galley to my Lord Everard of Brienne and 
to myself, so as that we might land, we and our knights, 
because the great ships could not get close up to the shore. 

As God so willed, when I returned to my ship, I found a 
little ship that my Lady of Beyrout, who was cousin-german 
to my Lord of Montbeliard and to myself, had given me, and 
that carried eight of my horses. 

When the Friday came I and my Lord Everard went, fully 
armed, to the king and asked for the galley ; whereupon my 
Lord John of Beaumont told us that we should not have it. 
When our people saw that they would get no galley, they let 
themselves drop from the great ship into the ship s boat, 
pell-mell, and as best they could, so that the boat began to 
sink. The sailors saw that the boat was sinking, little by 
little, and they escaped into the big ship and left my knights 
in the boat. I asked the master how many more people 
there were in the boat than the boat could hold. He told 
me twenty men-at-arms ; and I asked him whether he could 
take our people to land if I relieved him of so many, and he 
said " Yes." So I relieved him in such sort that in three 
journeys he took them to the ship that had carried my horses. 

While I was conducting these people a knight belonging to 
my Lord Everard of Brienne, and whose name was Plonquet, 
thought to go down from the great ship into the boat; but 
the boat moved away, and he fell into the sea and was 

When I came back to my ship I put into my little boat a 
squire whom I made a knight, and whose name was my Lord 
Hugh of Vaucouleurs, and two very valiant bachelors of 
whom the one had name my Lord Villain of Versey, and the 
other my Lord William of Dammartin who were at bitter 
enmity the one against the other. Nor could any one make 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

peace between them, because they had seized each other 
^v the hair in Morea. And I made them forgive their 

evances and embrace, for I swore to them on holy relics 
tu, A we should not land in company of their enmity. 

Then we set otfrselves to get to land, and came alongside 
of the barge belonging to the king s great ship, there where 
the king himself was. And his people began to cry out to us, 
because we were going more quickly than they, that I 
should land by the ensign of St. Denis, which was being 
borne in another vessel before the king. But I heeded them 
not, and caused my people to land in front of a great body of 
Turks, at a place where there were full six thousand men on 

So soon as these saw us land, they came toward us, hotly 
spurring. We, when we saw them coming, fixed the points 
of our shields into the sand and the handles of our lances in 
the sand with the points set towards them. But when they 
were so near that they saw the lances about to enter into 
their bellies, they turned about and fled. 



My Lord Baldwin of Rheims, a right good man, who had 
come to land, requested me, by his squire, to wait for him; 
and I let him know I should do so willingly, for that a right 
good man such as he ought surely to be waited for in like 
case of need, whereby I had his favour all the time that he 
lived. With him came to us a thousand knights; and you 
may be assured that, when I landed, I had neither squire, nor 
knight, nor varlet that I had brought with me from my own 
country, and yet God never left me without such as I needed. 

At our left hand landed the Count of Jaffa, who was 
cousin-german to the Count of Montbeliard, and of the 
lineage of Joinville. It was he who landed in greatest pride, 
for his galley came all painted, within and without, with 
escutcheons of his arms, which arms are or with a cross of 
gules patee. He had at least three hundred rowers in his 
galley, and for each rower there was a targe with the count s 
arms thereon, and to each targe was a pennon attached with 
his arms wrought in gold. 

While he was coming it seemed as if his galley flew, so did 

Joinville s Chronicle 175 

the rowers urge it forward with their sweeps ; and it seemed 
as if the lightning were falling from the skies at the sound 
that the pennants made, and the cymbals, and the drums, and 
the Saracenic horns that were in his galley. So soon as the 
galley had been driven into the sand as far up as they could 
drive it, both he and his knights leapt from the galley, well 
armed and well equipped, and came and arrayed themselves 
beside us. 

I had forgotten to tell you that when the Count of Jaffa 
landed he immediately caused his tents and pavilions to be 
pitched; and so soon as the Saracens saw them pitched, they 
all came and gathered before us, and then came on again, 
spurring hotly, as if to run in upon us. But when they saw 
that we should not fly, they shortly turned and went back 

On our right hand, at about a long-crossbow-shot s dis 
tance, landed the galley that bore the ensign of St. Denis. 
And there was a Saracen who, when they had landed, came 
and charged in among them, either because he could not hold 
in his horse, or because he thought the other Saracens would 
follow him; but he was hacked in pieces. 


When the king heard tell that the ensign of St. Denis was 
on shore he went across his ship with large steps; and 
maugre the legate who was with him he would not leave from 
following the ensign, but leapt into the sea, which was up to 
his armpits. So he went, with his shield hung to his neck, 
and his helmet on his head, and his lance in his hand, till he 
came to his people who were on the shore. When he reached 
the land, and looked upon the Saracens, he asked what people 
they were, and they told him they were Saracens; and he 
put his lance to his shoulder, and his shield before him, and 
would have run in upon the Saracens if the right worthy men 
who were about him would have suffered it. 

The Saracens sent thrice to the soldan, by carrier-pigeons, 
to say that the king had landed, but never received any 
message in return, because the soldan s sickness was upon 
him. Wherefore they thought that the soldan was dead, and 
abandoned Damietta. The king sent a knight forward to 
know if it was sooth that Damietta was so abandoned. The 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

knight returned to the king and said it was sooth and that 
he had been into the houses of the soldan. Then the king 
sent for the legate and all the prelates of the host, and all 
chanted with a loud voice Te Deum laudamus. Afterwards 
the king mounted his horse, and we all likewise, and we 
went and encamped before Damietta. 

Very unadvisedly did the Turks leave Damietta, in that 
they did not cut the bridge of boats, for that would have 
been a great hindrance to us; but they wrought us very 
much hurt in setting fire to the bazaar, where all the mer 
chandise is collected, and everything that is sold by weight. 
The damage that followed from this was as great as if 
which God forbid ! some one were, to-morrow, to set fire to 
the Petit-Pont in Paris. 

Now let us declare that God Almighty was very gracious 
to us when He preserved us from death and peril on our dis 
embarkation, seeing that we landed on foot and affronted 
our enemies who were mounted. Great grace did our Lord 
also show us when He delivered Damietta into our hands, for 
otherwise we could only have taken it by famine, and of this 
we may be fully assured, for it was by famine that King John 
had taken it in the days of our fathers (in 1219). 



Our Lord can say of us, as He said of the children of Israel 
et pro nihilo habuerunt terram destderabilem. 1 And what 
does He say afterwards? He says that they forgat God 
their Saviour. And so did we forget Him as I will shortly 
tell you. 

But first I will tell you of the king who summoned his 
barons, the clerks, and the laymen, and asked them to help 
him to decide how the booty taken in the city should be 
divided. The patriarch was the first to speak, and he spoke 
thus: " Sire, methinks it were well that you should keep the 
wheat, and the barley, and the rice, and whatever is needed 
to sustain life, so as to provision the city; and that you 
should have it cried throughout the host that all other 
goods are to be brought to the legate s quarters, under pain 

1 " They despised the pleasant land. * The references seem to be 
to Ps. cvi., ver. 21 and 24. 

Joinville s Chronicle 177 

of excommunication." To this advice all the other barons 
assented. Now, as it fell out, all the goods brought to the 
legate s quarters did not amount in value to more than six 
thousand livres. 

When this had been done, the king and the barons 
summoned John of Valery, the right worthy man, and spoke 
to him thus: " Sir of Valery," said the king, " we are agreed 
that the legate should hand over to you the six thousand 
livres, so that you may divide them as may seem best to you. 3 
" Sire," replied the right worthy man, " you do me much 
honour, and great thanks be yours ! But, please God ! that 
honour can I not accept, nor can I carry out your wish, for 
by so doing I should make null the good customs of the Holy 
Land, whereby, when the cities of the enemy are captured, 
the king takes a third of the goods found therein, and the 
pilgrims take two thirds. And this custom was well observed 
by King John when he took Damietta, and as old folk tell us, 
the same custom was observed by the kings of Jerusalem, 
who were before King John. If then it pleases you to hand 
over to me the two parts of the wheat, and the barley, and 
the rice, and the other provisions, then shall I willingly 
undertake to make division among the pilgrims." 

The king did not decide to do this; so matters remained 
as they were; and many were ill-pleased that the king should 
set aside the good old customs. 

The king s people, who ought, by liberal dealing, to have 
retained the merchants, made them pay, so it was said, the 
highest rents they could exact for the shops in which to sell 
their goods; and the rumour of this got abroad to foreign 
lands, so that many merchants forbore to come and bring 
supplies to the host. 

The barons, who ought to have kept what was theirs so as 
to spend it in fitting time and place, took to giving great 
feasts, and an outrageous excess of meats. The common 
people took to consorting with lewd women; whereby it 
happened, after we returned from captivity, that the king 
discharged a great many of his people. And when I asked 
him why he had done this, he told me that he had found, of 
a certainty, that those whom he had discharged held their 
ill places of assemblage at a short stone s-throw from his 
pavilion, and that at a time when the host was in greatest 
distress and misery. 

i 7 8 

Memoirs of the Crusades 



Now let us go back to the matter in hand, and tell how, 
shortly after we had taken Damietta, all the horsemen of the 
soldan came before the camp, and attacked it from the land 
side. The king and all the horsemen armed themselves. I, 
being in full armour, went to speak to the king, and found 
him fully armed, sitting on a settle, and round him were the 
right worthy knights belonging to his own division, all in full 
armour. I asked if he desired that I and my people should 
issue from the camp, so that the Saracens should not fall 
upon our tents. When my Lord John of Beaumont heard 
my question, he cried to me in a very loud voice, and com 
manded me, in the king s name, not to leave my quarters 
till the king so ordered. 

I have told you of the right worthy knights who were of 
the king s special following, for there were eight of them, all 
good knights who had won prizes for arms on the further or 
hither side of the seas, and such knights it was customary to 
call good knights. These are the names of the knights about 
the king: my Lord Geoff ry of Sargines, my Lord Matthew 
of Marly, my Lord Philip of Nanteuil, and my Lord Imbert 
of Beaujeu, Constable of France; but the last was not then 
present, he was outside the camp he and the master of the 
crossbowmen, with most of the king s sergeants-at-arms 
to guard the camp so that the Turks might not do any 
mischief thereto. 

Now it happened that my Lord Walter of Autrche got 
himself armed at all points in his pavilion; and when he was 
mounted upon his horse, with his shield at his neck and his 
helmet on his head, he caused the flaps of his pavilion to be 
lifted, and struck spurs into his horse to ride against the 
Turks; and as he left his pavilion, all alone, all his men 
shouted with a loud voice, " Chatillon." But so it chanced 
that or ever he came up to the Turks he fell, and his horse 
flew over his body ; and the horse went on, covered with his 
arms, to our enemies, because the Saracens were, for the most 
part, mounted on mares, for which reason the horse drew to 
the side of the Saracens. 

And those who looked on told us that four Turks came by 

Joinville s Chronicle 179 

Lord Walter, who lay upon the ground, and as they went by, 
gave him great blows with their maces there where he lay. 
Then did the Constable of France and several of the king s 
sergeants deliver him, and they brought him back in their 
arms to his pavilion. When he came there he was speechless. 
Several of the surgeons and physicians of the host went to 
him, and because it did not seem to them that he was in 
danger of death, they had him blooded in both arms. 

That night, very late, my Lord Aubert of Narcy proposed 
that we should go and see him, for as yet we had not seen 
him, and he was a man of great name and of great valour. 
We entered into his pavilion, and the chamberlain came to 
meet us, and asked us to move quietly, so as not to wake his 
master. We found him lying on coverlets of miniver, and 
went to him very softly, and found him dead. When this 
was told to the king, he replied that he would not willingly 
have a thousand such men acting contrary to his orders as 
this man had done. 


The Saracens entered every night into the camp on foot 
and killed our people there where they found them sleeping, 
whereby it chanced that they killed the sentinel of the lord 
of Courtenay, and left him lying on a table, and cut off his 
head, and took it away with them. And this they did be 
cause the soldan gave a besant of gold for every Christian 
man s head. 

And we were at this disadvantage because the battalions 
guarded the camp, each one its night, on horseback; and 
when the Saracens wished to enter into the camp, they 
waited till the noise of the horses and of the battalions had 
passed, and then crept into the camp behind the horses, 
making their way out before it was day. So the king 
ordered that the battalion which had been used to keep 
guard on horseback should keep guard on foot, whereby all 
the camp was in safety, because of our men who kept guard, 
and were spread out in such wise that one man touched the 

After this was done, the king decided not to leave Damietta 

180 Memoirs of the Crusades 

till his brother, the Count of Poitiers, had arrived with the 
remaining forces of France. And so that the Saracens might 
not charge on their horses into the midst of the camp, the 
king caused all the camp to be enclosed with great earth 
works, and on the earthworks were set crossbowmen to 
watch every night, and sergeants; and such were set also 
at the entrance to the camp. 

When the feast of St. Remigius had passed, and no news 
came of the Count of Poitiers whereby the king and all 
those of the host were greatly troubled, for they feared lest 
some mischief had befallen him then I reminded the legate 
how the Dean of Maurupt had caused us, when at sea, to go 
three times in procession, on three Saturdays, and how before 
the third Saturday we had arrived in Cyprus. The legate 
put faith in what I said, and caused three processions, on 
three separate Saturdays, to be proclaimed throughout the 

The first procession started from the legate s quarters, and 
they went to the church of our Lady in the city, which church 
had been the mosque of the Saracens, but the legate had 
dedicated it to the honour of the Mother of God. The legate 
preached the sermon on two Saturdays. Thither came the 
king and the honourable men of the host, to whom the legate 
gave full indulgences. 

Before the third Saturday came the Count of Poitiers; 
nor would it have been well if he had come before, for be 
tween the three Saturdays there had been so great a tempest 
in the sea before Damietta, that at least twelve score ships, 
great and small, had gone to pieces and been lost, and all the 
people therein drowned. If therefore the Count of Poitiers 
had come before, both he and his people would have utterly 

When the Count of Poitiers arrived, the king summoned 
all the barons of the host to decide what course he should 
hold, whether to Alexandria or to Babylon. Now the good 
Count Peter of Brittany, and the main part of the barons of 
the host, were agreed that the king should go and besiege 
Alexandria, because there was before that city a good harbour 
to which the ships could bring provisions for the host. But 
to this the Count of Artois was contrary, and said he would 
never agree that they should go anywhere except to Babylon, 
forasmuch as Babylon was the capital of Egypt; and if you 

Joinville s Chronicle 1 8 1 

wanted to kill the serpent, you must first crush its head. 
The king set aside the advice of his barons, and accepted 
the advice of his brother. 


At the beginning of Advent the king set out with his host 
to go towards Babylon, as the Count of Artois had advised. 
Pretty near to Damietta we found a stream that issued from 
the main stream, and it was decided that the host should 
remain there a day to dam up the said arm of the stream, so 
that we might pass. The thing was done pretty easily, for 
we dammed the said arm close to the main stream in such 
sort that the water flowed pretty easily along the main 
stream. At our passage over the arm, the soldan sent five 
hundred of his knights, the best mounted that he could find 
in all his host, to harass the host of the king, and delay our 

On St. Nicholas Day (6th December 1249) the king com 
manded that we should prepare to ride forward, and forbade 
that any one should be so bold as to attack the said Saracens. 

Now it happened that when the host began to move for 
ward, and the Saracens saw that no attack was to be made 
upon them and they knew by their spies that the king had 
forbidden it they waxed bold, and attacked the Templars 
who formed the van; and one of the Turks bore a knight of 
the Temple to the earth, right before the horse-hoofs of 
brother Renaud of Vichiers, who was then Marshal of the 
Temple. When the marshal saw this, he cried to his brother 
Templars: " Out on them for God s sake! I cannot brook 
this ! He struck his spurs into his horse, and all the host 
with him. The horses of our people were fresh, and the 
horses of the Turks already weary; and so, as I have heard 
tell, not one of them escaped, but all perished. Many of 
them had got into the river, and were drowned. 


It will now be convenient that I should tell you of the river 
that comes through Egypt, and of the earthly paradise. 
And these things I tell you so that you may understand 
certain matters on which I shall have to touch. 

1 82 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Now this river is different from all other rivers, for the 
further the other rivers flow down, the more little rivers and 
brooks fall into them, whereas no rivers or brooks fall into 
this river, but, as it happens, it comes all in one channel into 
Egypt, and then throws out the seven branches that spread 
throughout the land. 

And when the day of St. Remigius is past, the seven rivers 
spread over the land and cover the plain country; and when 
the waters withdraw the husbandmen go and plough, each in 
his own fields, with a plough that has no wheels, wherewith 
they turn over in the earth the wheat, the barley, the cumin, 
and the rice; and all these come up so well, that better could 
not be. Nor does any one know how these floods arise, save 
it be by the will of God; but if they did not arise, no good 
thing would grow, for the great heat of the sun would scorch 
it up, seeing that it never rains in the land. The water of 
the river is always troubled, so the people of the land, who 
wish to drink thereof, take it towards night and crush into it 
four almonds, or four beans, and the next day it is so good to 
drink that no fault can be found with it. 

Before the river enters into Egypt, people who are ac 
customed so to do, cast their nets out-spread into the river, 
at night; and when morning comes they find in their nets 
such goods as are sold by weight, and brought into the land, 
viz., ginger, rhubarb, wood of aloes and cinnamon. And it is 
said that these things come from the earthly paradise; for 
the wind blows down the trees in paradise, just as the wind 
blows down the dry wood in the forests of our own land ; and 
the dry wood of the trees in paradise that thus falls into the 
river is sold to us by the merchants. 1 The water of the river 
is of such a nature, that when we had put it into white 
earthenware pots that are made in the land, and hung it 
to the ropes of our pavilions, it became, in the heat of the 
day, as cold as if drawn from a well. 

They said in the country that the Soldan of Babylon had 
oftentimes tried to find out whence the river came; and he 
sent for this purpose people who carried with them a manner 
of bread called biscuit, because it is twice baked, and on this 
bread they lived until such time as they came back to the 
soldan. And they reported that they had explored the 
siver, and had come to a great mass of rocks, sharp and sheer, 

1 Meaning of original a little obscure. 

Joinville s Chronicle 183 

which none could pass. From these rocks the river fell ; and 
it seemed to them that there was a great foison of trees in the 
mountain above; and they said also that they had found 
marvellous savage beasts of divers sorts, as lions, serpents, 
elephants, that came and looked at them from the banks 
while they were going up against the stream. 

Now let us go back to our first point, and say that when 
the river comes into Egypt it throws out its branches, as I 
said before. One of these branches goes to Damietta, another 
to Alexandria, a third to Tanis, a fourth to Rexi. And it 
was to this branch which goes to Rexi that the King of 
France came with all his host; and he encamped between 
the stream of Damietta and that of Rexi, and all the power 
of the soldan was encamped on the stream of Rexi, on the 
other side, over against our host, to defend the passage 
which they could easily do, seeing that none could cross 
the said stream to go towards them, save he passed over 


The king decided to build a causeway across the river so as 
to pass over against the Saracens. In order to protect those 
who were working at the causeway, the king caused two 
towers called cats-castles (chats- chateaux) to be constructed, 
for there were two towers before the " cats (or covered 
ways) and two houses behind the towers, so as to preserve 
those who were on guard from the shot of the Saracens 
engines, of which they had sixteen all set up. 

When we came there, the king caused eighteen engines to 
be built, and Jocelin of Cornaut was set over them as master 
engineer. Our engines threw against theirs, and theirs 
against ours; but never did I hear tell that ours had done 
very much damage. The king s brothers kept guard by day, 
and we, the other knights, kept guard by night at the covered 
ways. And thus we came to the week before Christmas. 

So soon as the covered ways were finished, they began to 
build the causeway but not before because the king did 
not wish that the Saracens, who shot at us, aiming across the 
stream, should wound those who were bringing up earth. 
Now in building this causeway, the king and all the barons 
of the host were blinded and without foresight; for because 

H 333 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

they had, as I told you before, dammed up one of the arms of 
the stream which thing they did easily, inasmuch as they 
set themselves to dam it up at the point where it left the 
larger stream therefore they thought to dam up the stream 
of Rexi at a point where it had left the larger stream full 
half a league. 

And in order to counteract the causeway that the king was 
making, the Saracens dug holes in front of their camp, and 
so soon as the stream came to the holes, it rushed into them, 
and made a great space of water. Thus it happened that 
they undid in one day all that we had done in three weeks; 
for when we had dammed up a part of the stream on our side, 
they enlarged it on their side by the holes that they made. 

In the room of the soldan who had died of the sickness 
which he took before the city of Emessa, the Saracens had 
taken for chief a Saracen called Scecedin, who was the 
scheik s son. It was said that the Emperor Frederic had 
made him a knight. He ordered a part of his people to come 
and attack our camp before Damietta, and they did so ; and 
came to a town called Sharmesah on the stream of Rexi. 

On Christmas Day I and my knights were dining with my 
Lord Peter of Avallon, and while we dined the Saracens 
came, spurring hotly, up to our camp, and killed several poor 
folk who had gone into the fields on foot. We went to arm 
ourselves. But make what haste we could, we did not, on 
our return, find my Lord Peter, our host, for he was outside 
the camp, and had gone to meet the Saracens. We spurred 
after, and rescued him from the Saracens, who had thrown 
him to the ground ; and then brought him and his brother, the 
Lord of the Val, back to the camp. The Templars, who had 
come out on hearing the alarm, covered our retreat well and 
boldly. The Turks advanced, harassing us right up to the 
camp ; wherefore the king commanded that the camp should 
be enclosed with trenches on the Damietta side, from the 
stream of Damietta to the stream of Rexi. 


Scecedin, whose name I have already mentioned to you 
the chief of the Turks was the most highly esteemed of all 
paynimry. He bore on his banner the arms of the emperor 
who had made him a knight. His banner was barred; on 

Joinville s Chronicle 185 

one of the bars were the arms of the emperor who had made 
him a knight, on another were the arms of the Soldan of 
Aleppo, on the other were the arms of the Soldan of Babylon. 

His name was Scecedin, the son of the scheik or as one 
might say, " the aged one, the son of the aged one." This 
name was held as a great thing in paynimry; for they are 
the people in the world who most honour old people, if so be 
that God has preserved such from reproach and ill fame. 
Scecedin, this valiant Turk, had boasted, so the king s spies 
reported, that he would eat in the king s pavilion on the day 
of the feast of St. Sebastian. 

The king, who knew of this, disposed of his host in such 
sort that the Count of Artois, his brother, should guard the 
covered ways and the engines; the king and the Count of 
Anjou who afterwards was King of Sicily were set to 
guard the camp on the side towards Babylon; and the Count 
of Poitiers, and we, the men of Champagne, were to guard 
the camp on the side towards Damietta. Now it happened 
that the afore-mentioned prince of the Turks caused his men 
to pass over into the island that lies between the stream of 
Damietta and the stream of Rexi there where our host lay 
encamped and he caused his forces to be set in line from 
the one stream to the other. 

The King of Sicily attacked these people and discomfited 
them. Many were drowned in the one stream and in the 
other. Nevertheless a great part remained whom our people 
were afraid to attack, because the engines of the Saracens 
cast stones between the two streams. In the attack which 
the King of Sicily made against the Turks, Count Guy of 
Forez on his horse cut through the host of the Turks, and 
attacked, he and his knights, a body of Saracen sergeants, 
who bore him to the earth. His leg was broken, and two of 
his knights brought him back in their arms. With great 
difficulty was the King of Sicily extricated from the peril in 
which he stood ; and much honour did he earn that day. 

The Turks came against the Count of Poitiers, and agair^t 
us, and we charged them, and drove them a great space. 
Some of their people were killed, and we returned without 

1 86 Memoirs of the Crusades 


One night when we were keeping guard over the towers 
that guarded the covered ways, it happened that the Saracens 
brought an engine called a petrary, which they had not 
hitherto done, and put Greek fire into the sling of the engine. 
When my Lord Walter of Ecurey, the good knight who was 
with me, saw it, he spoke thus: "Lords, we are in the 
greatest peril that we have ever been in, for if they set fire 
to our towers and we remain here we are but lost and burnt 
up ; while if we leave these defences which we have been 
set to guard, we are dishonoured. Wherefore none can 
defend us in this peril save God alone. So my advice and 
counsel is, that every time they hurl the fire at us, we throw 
ourselves on our elbows and knees, and pray to our Saviour 
to keep us in this peril." 

So soon as they hurled the first cast, we threw ourselves 
on our elbows and knees as he had taught us. That first 
cast fell between our two towers guarding the covered 
ways. It fell on the place in front of us, where the host had 
been working at the dam. Our firemen were ready to put 
out the fire; and because the Saracens could not shoot 
straight at them, because of two pavilion wings that the king 
had caused to be set up, they shot up into the clouds, so that 
the darts fell on the firemen s heads. 

The fashion of the Greek fire was such that it came front 
wise as large as a barrel of verjuice, and the tail of fire that 
issued from it was as large as a large lance. The noise it 
made in coming was like heaven s thunder. It had the 
seeming of a dragon flying through the air. It gave so great 
a light, because of the great foison of fire making the light, 
that one saw as clearly throughout the camp as if it had been 
day. Three times did they hurl Greek fire at us that night 
^iVom the petraries), and four times with the swivel crossbow. 
Every time that our saintly king heard them hurling the 
Greek fire, he would raise himself in his bed, and lift up 
his hands to our Saviour, and say, weeping: " Fair Lord 
God, guard me my people ! And verily I believe that his 
prayers did us good service in our need. At night, every 
time the fire had fallen, he sent one of his chamberlains to 

Joinville s Chronicle 187 

ask how we fared, and whether the fire had done us any hurt. 
Once when they hurled it at us, the fire fell near the tower 
which the people of my Lord of Courtenay were guarding, 
and struck the bank of the stream. Then, look you, a 
knight, whose name was 1 Aubigoiz, came to me, and said, 
" Lord, if you do not come to our help we shall all be burned; 
for the Saracens have shot so many of their shafts that it is 
as if a great hedge were coming burning against our tower." 
We sprang up, and went thither, and found he spoke sooth. 
We put out the fire, and before we had put it out, the Sara 
cens had struck us all with shafts that they shot across the 


The king s brothers kept guard over the towers by day, 
and went to the top of the towers to shoot bolts from the 
crossbows at the Saracens who were in the Saracens camp; 
for the king had decided that the King of Sicily was to keep 
guard over the towers by day, while we were to keep guard 
over them by night; and now on a day when the King of 
Sicily was thus keeping guard, and we were to keep guard by 
night, we were in sore trouble of heart, because the Saracens 
had well-nigh shattered our towers. And the Saracens 
brought out their petrary in full daylight, whereas they had 
so far only brought it out by night, and they threw Greek 
fire on to our towers. And they had brought their engines so 
near to tlie causeway which the host were building that no 
one dared to go to the towers because of the great stones 
that the engines cast, and that fell upon the causeway. 
Whence it happened that the two towers were burned, and 
the King of Sicily was so beside himself that he wished to 
throw himself there where the fire was, in order to put it out; 
and if he was incensed, why I and my knights could but 
praise God, seeing that if we had been on guard (in the towers) 
that night, we should all have been burned. 

When the king saw this, he sent for all the barons of the 
host, and begged them each to give him wood from their 
ships to build a tower to help to dam up the stream; and 
he showed them clearly that there was no wood with which 
this could be done, save the wood of the vessels that had 
brought our goods up the river. Each brought according to 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

his will, and when the tower was made, the wood was 
valued at ten thousand limes and more. 

The king decided also that the tower should not be pushed 
. forward on to the causeway until the day came when it was 
the turn of the king of Sicily to mount guard, so that he 
might thus repair the loss of the other towers that had been 
burned while he was on guard. As it had been decided, so 
was it done; as soon as the King of Sicily came on guard, he 
caused the tower to be pushed forward along the causeway, 
to the point where the other towers guarding the covered 
way had been burned. 

When the Saracens saw this, they so arranged that all 
their sixteen engines should cast their shot upon the cause 
way, to the place whither the tower had been brought; and 
when they saw that our people feared to go to the tower 
because of the stones from the engines that fell on the 
causeway, they brought up the petrary, and cast Greek fire 
at the tower, and burned it utterly. Great was the courtesy 
that God showed to me and to my knights in this matter, 
for if we had mounted guard that night we should have 
done so in as great peril as on the former occasion, of which 
I have already spoken to you. 



When the king saw this he called all his barons into council; 
and they agreed that they could not build a causeway on 
which to pass over against the Saracens, because our people 
were unable to dam up as much on our side as the Saracens 
could excavate on the other. 

Then did constable my Lord Imbert of Beaujeu say to the 
king that a Bedouin had come to him and told him that he 
could show us a good ford, provided we gave him five hundred 
besants. The king agreed that the besants should be given 
him, provided he (on his part) proved the truth of what he 
promised. The constable thereon spoke to the Bedouin ; but 
the Bedouin said he would not show the ford unless the 
moneys were first placed in his hands. So it was agreed that 
the besants should be given to him; and given to him they 

The king decided that the Duke of Burgundy and the men 

Joinville s Chronicle ] 

of note from oversea who were with the host, should guard 
the camp, so that no harm might come to it; and that the 
king and his three brothers should pass the ford at the place 
which the Bedouin was to show them. So was the matter 
settled, and preparation made to pass over on Shrove 
Tuesday (8th February 1250), on which day we came to the 
Bedouin s ford. There, as the dawn of the day was appear 
ing, we collected from all points ; and when we were ready, 
we went to the stream and our horses began to swim. When 
we got to the middle of the stream, we touched ground and 
our horses found footing; and on the other bank of the 
stream were full three hundred Saracens, all mounted on 
their horses. 

Then said I to my people: " Sirs, look only to the left 
hand, and let each draw thither; the banks are wet and 
soft and the horses are falling upon their riders and drown 
ing them." And it was sooth that some were drowned in 
the crossing, and among others was drowned my Lord John 
of Orleans, who carried a banner vivre. 1 Thereupon we 
moved in such sort that we turned up the stream, and found 
a dry way, and so passed over, praise God ! that not one of 
us fell ; and as soon as we had passed over, the Turks fled. 

It had been so ordered that the Templars were to form the 
vanguard, and that the Count of Artois should have the 
second division after the Templars. Now it so happened 
that as soon as the Count of Artois had passed over the 
stream, he and all his people fell upon the Turks, who fled 
before them. The Templars notified to him that he was 
doing them great despite in that while his place was to come 
after them, he was going before; and they besought him to 
suffer them to go before, as had been arranged by the king. 
Now it chanced that the Count of Artois did not venture to 
answer them, because of my Lord Foucand of Merle, who 
held the bridle of his horse; and this Foucand of Merle was 
a very good knight, but heard naught of what the Templars 
were saying to the count, seeing that he was deaf, and was 
crying, " Out on them, out on them ! Now when the 
Templars saw this, they thought they would be shamed if 
they suffered the count to outride them; so they struck 
spurs into their horses, helter-skelter, and chased the Turks, 

1 Term of heraldry with waved lines. 

190 Memoirs of the Crusades 

and the Turks fled before them, right through the town of 
Mansourah and into the fields beyond towards Babylon. 

When they thought to return, the Turks threw beams and 
blocks of wood upon them in the streets, which were narrow. 
There were killed the Count of Artois, the Lord of Couci, who 
was called Raoul, and so many other knights that the 
numbers was reckoned at three hundred. The Temple, as 
the master has since told me, lost there fourteen score men- 
at-arms, and all mounted. 


I and my knights decided that we should attack some 
Turks who were loading their baggage in their camp to our 
left; and we fell upon them. While we were driving them 
through their camp, I perceived a Saracen, who was mount 
ing his horse; one of his knights was holding the bridle. At 
the moment when he had his two hands on the saddle to 
mount, I gave him of my lance under the arm-pits and laid 
him dead. When his knight saw that, he left his lord and 
the horse, and struck me with his lance as I passed, between 
the two shoulders, holding me so pressed down that I could 
not draw the sword at my belt. I had therefore to draw the 
sword attached to my horse; and when he saw that my 
sword was so drawn, he withdrew his lance and left me. 

When I and my knights came out of the camp, we found 
some six thousand Turks, as we reckoned, who had left their 
quarters and retreated into the fields. When they saw us, 
they came running upon us, and killed my Lord Hugh of 
Trichatel, Lord of Conflans, who was with me bearing a 
banner. I and my knights set spurs to our horses, and went 
to deliver my Lord Raoul of Wanou, who was with me, and 
whom they had struck to the ground. 

While I was returning, the Turks pressed upon me with 
their lances. My horse knelt under the weight and I 
fell forward over the horse s ears. I got up as soon as 
ever I could, with my shield at my neck, and my sword in 
my hand; and my Lord Everard of Siverey God have him 
in grace ! who was one of my people, came to me and said 
that we should draw off near to a ruined house, and there 

Joinville s Chronicle 191 

await the king, who was coming. As we were going thither, 
part on foot and part mounted, a great rout of Turks came 
rushing upon us, and bore me to the ground, and went over 
me, and caused my shield to fly from my neck. 

When they had passed on, my Lord Everard of Siverey 
came back to me, and led me thence, and we went to the walls 
of the ruined house ; and thither returned to us my Lord Hugh 
of Ecot, my Lord Frederic of Loupey, my Lord Renaud of 
Menoncourt. The Turks attacked us on all sides. Some of 
them entered into the ruined house and pricked us with 
their lances from above. Then my knights told me to hold 
their bridles, and so I did, for fear the horses should run / 
away. And they defended themselves right manfully; and 
afterwards received great praise from all the right worthy 
men of the host, both those who were there and witnessed 
the deed, and those who heard tell thereof. 

Then did my Lord Hugh of Ecot receive three lance wounds 
in the face, and my Lord Raoul; and my Lord Frederic of 
Loupey received a lance wound between the shoulders, and 
the wound was so large that the blood flowed from his body 
as from the bung-hole of a cask. My Lord Everard of Siverey 
was struck by a sword in the middle of the face in such sort 
that his nose fell over his lip. Then it came to my mind to 
think upon my Lord St. James, so that I prayed: "Fair 
Lord St. James, give me help and succour in this our need." 

As soon as I had made this my prayer, my Lord Everard 
of Siverey said to me : Lord, if you think that neither I 
nor my heirs will incur reproach therein, I will go and fetch 
you help from the Count of Anjou, whom I see in the midst 
of yonder field." And I said to him : " My Lord Everard, 
meseems that you would earn for yourself great honour if you 
went for help to save our lives; and your own life too is in 
great jeopardy." And I spoke sooth, for he died of that 
wound. He sought counsel of all the knights who were 
there, and all advised as I had advised. When he heard 
this, he asked me to let go my hold of his horse, which I held 
by the bridle, with the others, and I did so. 

He came to the Count of Anjou, and begged him to succour 
me and my knights. A man of note who was with the Count 
of Anjou tried to dissuade him, but he said he would do what 
my knight asked of him ; so he turned his bridle to come to 
our help, and several of his sergeants too set spurs to their 

192 Memoirs of the Crusades 

horses. When the Saracens saw them coming, they left us. 
In front of the sergeants rode my Lord Peter of Auberive, 
with his sword in his fist, and when he saw that the Saracens 
had left us, he charged full into the Saracens who held my 
Lord Raoul of Wanou, and rescued him, sore wounded. 


As I was there on foot with my knights, wounded as I have 
said, the king came up with his battalions, and a great sound 
of shouting, and trumpets, and cymbals; and he halted on 
a raised causeway. Never have I seen so fair a knight! 
For he seemed by the head and shoulders to tower above his 
people; and on his head was a gilded helm, and in his hand 
a sword of Allemaine. 

When he halted there, the good knights whom he had in 
his division, and whom I have already named to you, hurled 
themselves against the Turks; and with them several other 
valiant knights of his. And you must know that this was a 
very fine passage of arms, for in this battle no one drew bow 
or crossbow: it was a battle of mace and sword between 
the Turks and our people, all intermingled. 

One of my squires, who had fled away with my banner, 
and had returned to me, gave me one of my Flemish horses, 
on which I mounted, and so drew up to the king, side by side. 

While we were standing thus, my Lord John of Valery, 
the right worthy man, came to the king, and said he advised 
him to bear to the right towards the stream, so as to have 
the help of the Duke of Burgundy, and of those who were 
guarding the camp, and so also that his sergeants might 
obtain somewhat to drink, seeing that the day was already 
grown very hot. 

The king commanded his sergeants to go and fetch the 
good knights of his council who were thereby, and named 
them all by their names. The sergeants went and summoned 
them from the midst of the fight, where the strife was very 
fierce between them and the Turks. They came to the king, 
and he asked counsel of them; and they said that my Lord 
John of Valery was advising him very well. Then the king 
commanded the great flag of St. Denis and his standard- 
bearer to move to the right towards the river. At the 

Joinville s Chronicle 193 

moving of the king s host there was again a mighty sound of 
trumpets, and cymbals, and horns. 

The king had scarcely begun to move when he received 
several messages from the Count of Poitiers, his brother, and 
the Count of Flanders, and several other men of worth who 
had their forces there, all begging him not to move, because 
they were so hard pressed by the Turks that they could not 
follow him. The king summoned once more all the right 
worthy knights of his council, and all advised that he should 
wait. Shortly after, my Lord John of Valery came back, 
and blamed the king and his council for remaining where 
they were. On this all his counsellors advised that he should 
draw towards the river as the Lord of Valery advised. 

At this moment the constable, my Lord Imbert of Beau- 
jeu, came up to him and said that the Count of Artois, his 
brother, was defending himself in a house at Mansourah, and 
that he should go to his relief and succour him. And the 
king said, " Constable, go before, and I will follow." I said 
to the constable that I would be his knight, and he thanked 
me much. So we put ourselves in the way to go to Man 

Then came to the constable a sergeant, a mace-bearer, all 
afeared, and told him that the king was stayed, and that the 
Turks had placed themselves between him and us. We 
turned, and saw that there were at least a thousand of them, 
and more, between him and us, and we were no more than 
six. Then I said to the constable, " Lord, we cannot get 
to the king through these people, but let us go upward, and 
put this ditch that you see here between them and us, and 
so shall we be able to get back to the king." The constable 
took my advice. And you may know that if the Turks had 
taken thought of us, they would certainly have killed us all; 
but they gave no thought to any save the king, and the big 
bodies of men; wherefore they fancied that we were on their 


While we were returning down the bank of the river 
between the streamlet and the river, we saw that the king 

1 94 Memoirs of the Crusades 

was come nigh to the river, and that the Turks were driving 
back the king s other battalions, slashing and striking with 
swords and maces ; and they forced back the other battalions, 
with the king s battalions, upon the river. The discomfiture 
was there so great that several of our people thought to pass 
over to the Duke of Burgundy, swimming; which they were 
unable to do, for their horses were weary, and the day had 
become very hot; so we saw, as we were coming down 
towards them, that the stream was covered with lances and 
shields, and with horses and men drowning and perishing. 

We came to a little bridge that was over the streamlet, 
and I said to the constable, " Let us stay here, and guard 
this little bridge, for if we abandon it the Turks will fall on 
the king from this side, and if our people are attacked from 
two sides, it will go hard with them. 3 And we did so. And 
it was told to us afterwards that we should all have been lost 
that day, save for the king. For the Lord of Courtenay and 
my Lord John of Saillenay told me that six Turks had come 
to the king s bridle and were leading him away captive, and 
that he alone delivered himself striking at them great strokes 
with his sword. And when his people saw how the king was 
defending himself, they took courage, and many of them 
abandoned thought of taking flight across the river, and 
drew to the king s side to help him. 

Right straight upon us, who were keeping the little bridge, 
came the Count Peter of Brittany, riding from Mansourah, 
and he had been wounded with a sword across the face, so that 
the blood ran into his mouth. He rode upon a fine, well- 
limbed horse. He had thrown the reins on the pummel of 
the saddle, and held it with his two hands so that his people, 
who were behind, and pressed sorely upon him, might not 
hustle him out of the path to the little bridge. Well did it 
seem how lightly he held them, for as he spat the blood out 
of his mouth, he said full often: Ha, by God s head, have 
you ever seen such riff-raff ! Behind his men came the 
Count of Soissons, and my Lord Peter of Neuville, who was 
called " Caier," and they both had received blows enow 
during that day. 

When they had passed, and the Turks saw that we were 
guarding the bridge, and turned our faces towards them, 
they ceased from following after Count Peter and his people. 
I came to the Count of Soissons, whose cousin-german I had 

Joinville s Chronicle 195 

married, and said: " Lord, I think you would do well if you 
remained to keep this little bridge; for if we abandon the 
little bridge those Turks whom you see before you will rush 
over it, and so shall the king be assailed both in front and in 
rear." And he asked whether, if he remained, I would 
remain with him? And I replied, " Yes, right willingly." 
When the constable heard this, he told me not to move from 
thence till he returned, and that he would go and bring us 



There I remained on my thick-set stallion, and the Count 
of Soissons remained on my right, and my Lord Peter of 
Neuville on my left. Then behold there came a Turk from 
the direction of the king s troops, which were behind us, and 
struck my Lord Peter of Neuville from behind, with a mace, 
so that he laid him on his horse s neck with the blow that he 
gave, and then sprang across the bridge and rushed among 
his own people. 

When the Turks saw that we would not abandon the little 
bridge, they passed over the streamlet and set themselves 
between the streamlet and the river, as we had done to go 
downwards; and we drew towards them in such manner as 
to be ready to charge them, whether they wished to go 
towards the king or to pass over the little bridge. 

In front of us were two of the king s sergeants of whom 
the one was called William of Boon, and the other John of 
Gamaches, and the Turks who had come between the stream 
let and the river brought a large number of churls on foot, 
who pelted them with lumps of earth, but were never able 
to force them back upon us. At last they brought a churl 
on foot, who thrice threw Greek fire at them. Once William 

J -> ..-" . +n*n,r ff-,, i^^, ., - A> _ II ^ 

of Boon received the pot of Greek fire on~his targe, for if the 
fire had caught any of his garments he must have been 
burned alive. 

We were all covered with the darts that failed to hit the 
sergeants. Now it chanced that I found a Saracen s gam- 
beson (quilted tunic) lined with tow: I turned the open side 
towards me and made a shield of the gambeson, which did 
me good service, for I was only wounded by their darts in 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

five places, and my horse in fifteen. And it chanced again 
that one of my burgesses of Joinville brought me a pennon 
with my arms,, and a lance head thereto, and every time we 
saw that the Turks pressed too hardly upon the sergeants, 
we charged them, and they went flying. 

The good Count of Soissons, in that point of danger, jested 
with me and said: " Seneschal, let these curs howl! By 
^ iGod s bonnet " for that was his favourite oath " we shall 
talk of this day yet, you and I, in ladies chambers." 


At night, as the sun was setting, the constable brought us 
the king s dismounted crossbowmen, and they placed them 
selves in rank before us; and when the Saracens saw them 
setting foot to the stirrup of their crossbows, they fled and 
left us there. Then the constable said to me: " Seneschal, 
this is well done. Now do you go to the king, and do not 
leave him at all until such time as he enters his pavilion." 
So soon as I came to the king, my Lord John of Valery came 
to him and said: Sire, my Lord of Chatillon asks you to 
give him the rearguard." Arid the king did so right willingly, 
and then moved forward. And as we were going, I made 
him take off his helmet, and lent him my steel cap, so that 
he might have air. 

When he had passed over the river there came to him brother 
Henry of Ronnay, Provost of the Hospitallers, and kissed 
his mailed hand. And the king asked if he had any tidings 
of the Count of Artois, his brother; and the provost said 
that he had news of him indeed, for he knew of a certainty 
that his brother, the Count of Artois, was in paradise. " Ah, 
sire," said the provost, " be of good comfort herein, for never 
did King of France gain such honour as you have gained this 
day. For, in order to fight your enemies, you have passed 
over a river swimming, and you have discomfited them, 
and driven them from the field, and taken their engines, and 
also their tents, wherein you will sleep this night." And the 
king replied: " Let God be worshipped for air He has given 
me ! " and then the big tears fell from his eyes. 

When we came to the camp we found that some Saracens 
on foot were pulling at the ropes of a tent which they were 

Joinville s Chronicle 197 

taking down, while people of ours of the lesser sort were 
tugging at the ropes on the other side. We ran in among 
these Saracens, the Master of the Temple and I, and they 
3ed, and the tent remained in the hands of our people. 

In this battle there were many people, and of great ap 
pearance, who came very shamefully flying over the little 
bridge of which I have already spoken to you, and they fled 
away panic-stricken; nor were we able at all to make any 
of them stop by us. I could tell some of their names, but j 
shall forbear, for they are dead. 

But of my Lord Guy Mauvoisin shall I not forbear to speak, 
for he came from Mansourah with honour. And all the way 
that the constable and I had followed up the river did he 
follow down; and in the same manner that the Turks pressed 
on the Count of Brittany and his men, so did they press on 
my Lord Guy Mauvoisin and his men; but as for my Lord 
Guy and his people, they gat themselves great honour. Nor 
is this to be marvelled at, that he and his people should 
approve themselves well on that day; for it was told to 
me, by those who had knowledge of his affairs, that all his 
company, save but a few, were knights of his own lineage 
or knights who were his liegemen. 

When we had discomfited the Turks and driven them 
from their tents, and while none of our people remained in 
the camp, the Bedouins rushed into the camp of the Saracens, 
who were people of very high condition. Nothing in the 
world did they leave in the camp of the Saracens. They 
carried away everything that the Saracens had left. Nor 
did I ever hear tell that the Bedouins, though subject to the 
Saracens, were more lightly thought of because they had 
stolen and carried away these things it being well known 
that the use and custom of the Bedouins is always to fall 
upon the weaker side. 



As it pertains to my subject, I will here tell you what kind 
of people the Bedouins are. The Bedouins do not believe in 
Mahomet, but they believe in the law of Ali, who was uncle 
to Mahomet; and so also believes the Old Man of the Moun 
tain, who entertains the Assassins. And they believe that 
when a man dies for his lord, or in any good cause, his soul 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

. goes into another body, better and more comfortable; and 
for this reason the Assassins are not greatly concerned if they 
are killed when carrying out the commands of the Old Maa 
of the Mountain. But of the Old Man of the Mountain we 
will say no more at this present, but speak only about the 

The Bedouins live neither in villages, nor cities, nor castles, 
but lie always out in the fields; and they establish their 
households, their wives and their children, at night, and by 
day when the weather is bad, in a sort of lodging that they 
make with the hoops of barrels tied to poles, like ladies 
chariots ; and over these hoops they throw sheepskins, called 
skins of Damascus, cured with alum. The Bedouins them 
selves wear great pelisses that cover the whole of their body, 
their legs, and their feet. 

When it rains in the evening, or the weather is foul by 
night, they wrap themselves round in their cloaks, and take 
the bits out of their horses mouths, and leave their horses 
to browse near. When the morrow comes, they spread out 
their cloaks to the sun, and rub and cure them ; nor does it 
afterwards appear as if the cloaks had been wetted. Their 
belief is that no one can die save on the day appointed, 
and for this reason they will not wear armour; and when 
they wish to curse their children they say to them: " Be 
thou accursed like a Frank, who puts on armour for fear of 
death ! In battle they carry nothing but sword and spear. 

Nearly all are clothed in a surplice, like priests. Their 
heads are all bound round with cloths, that go beneath 
their chins, wherefore they are an ugly people, and hideous 
to behold, and the hairs of their heads and of their beards 
are all black. They live on the milk of their beasts, and 
purchase, in the plains belonging to wealthy men, the pastur 
age on which their beasts subsist. Their number no man 
can tell; for they are to be found in the kingdom of Egypt, 
in the kingdom of Jerusalem, and in all the other lands of the 
Saracens, and of the misbelievers to whom they pay, every 
year, a great tribute. 

I have seen in this country, since I came back from the 
land oversea, certain disloyal Christians, who hold the faith 
of the Bedouins, and say that no man can die save on the day 
appointed ; and their belief is so disloyal that it amounts to 
saying that God has no power to help us. For those would 

Joinville s Chronicle 199 

indeed be fools who served God if we did not think he had 
power to prolong our lives, and to preserve us from evil and 
mischance. And in Him ought we to believe, seeing He has \ 
power to do all things. 


Now let us tell that at nightfall we returned, the king 
and all of us, from the perilous battle aforementioned, and 
lodged in the place from which we had driven our enemies. 
My people, who had remained in the camp whence we 
started, brought me a tent which the Templars had given 
me, and pitched it before the engines taken from the Sara 
cens ; and the king set sergeants to guard the engines. 

When I was laid in my bed where indeed I had good need 
of rest because of the wounds received the day before, no 
rest was vouchsafed to me. For before it was well day a cry 
went through the camp: " To arms! to arms! I roused 
my chamberlain, who lay at my feet, and told him to go and 
see what was the matter. He came back in terror, and said : 
" Up, lord, up ! for here are the Saracens, who have come on 
foot and mounted, and discomfited the king s sergeants who 
kept guard over the engines, and driven them among the 
ropes of our pavilions." 

I got up, and threw a gambeson (quilted tunic) over my 
back, and a steel cap upon my head, and cried to our ser 
geants, " By St. Nicholas, they shall not stay here! My 
knights came to me, all wounded as they were, and we drove 
the Saracen sergeants from among the engines, and back 
towards a great body of mounted Turks who were over 
against the engines that we had taken. I sent to the king to 
give us succour, for neither I nor my knights could put on 
our hauberks because of the wounds we had received; and 
the king sent us my Lord Gaucher of Chatillon, who stationed 
himself in front of us, between the Turks and ourselves. 

When the Lord of Chatillon had driven back the Saracen 
foot sergeants, they retreated on a great body of mounted 
Turks, who were drawn up before our camp so as to prevent 
us from surprising the host of the Saracens encamped behind 
them. Of this body of Turks, eight of the chiefs had dis 
mounted, very well armed, and set up an intrenchment of 

aoo Memoirs of the Crusades 

hewn stone, so that our crossbowmen might not wound 
them. These eight Saracens shot volley after volley into 
our camp, and wounded several of our people and of our 

I and my knights consulted together, and we agreed that, 
when night came, we would take away the stones behind 
which they intrenched themselves. A priest of mine, named 
my Lord John of Voisey, assisted at this council, but made 
no such tarrying. He left our camp all alone and advanced 
towards the Saracens, clad in gambeson (quilted tunic), with 
his steel cap on his head, and dragging his spear from under 
his arm, with the point to the ground, so that the Saracens 
might not observe it. When he came near the Saracens, 
who despised him because they saw he was alone, he quickly 
drew his spear from under his arm, and ran upon them. 
There was not one of the eight who thought of defence, but 
all turned and fled. When those on horseback saw that 
their lords came to them flying, they spurred forward to 
rescue them, and from our camp sprang forth some fifty ser 
geants. The mounted Saracens came on spurring, but they 
did not dare to attack our footmen, and wheeled about. 
When they had done this two or three times, one of our ser 
geants took his spear by the middle, and hurled it at one of 
the mounted Turks, so that it struck him between the ribs; 
and he that was so struck, bore away the spear hanging by 
the point that was in his ribs. When the Turks saw this, 
they dared no longer to advance and fell back before us, and 
our sergeants took away the stones. From that time for 
ward my priest was very well known throughout the host, 
and one and another would point him out, saying: " Look, 
that is my Lord of Joinville s priest, who discomfited the 
eight Saracens." 



These things happened on the first day of Lent (the 9th 
February 1250). On that very day a valiant Saracen 
made scheik by our enemies in the place of Scecedin, the 
scheik s son, whom they had lost in the battle on Shrove 
Tuesday took the Count of Artois s coat of arms, and 

Joinville s Chronicle 201 

howed it to all the people of the Saracens, and told them it 
vas the king s coat of arms, and that the king was dead. 
" And I show you these things," said he, " because a body 

\ . f i Hafnium innf y " 

thout a head is not to be feared, nor a people without a 

"g^Therefore, if it so please you, we will attack them on 
day; and, meseems, you can but agree, for we cannot 

L to take them all, seeing they have lost their chief. 
ind all agreed that they would come and attack us on the 

The king s spies, who were in the camp of the Saracens, 
:ame and told these tidings to the king. Then the king 
:ommanded all the chiefs of the divisions to cause their 
>eople to be armed by- midnight, and to draw them up out- 
ide the pavilions and within the enclosure (which was made 
>f long stakes of wood so that the Saracens might not throw 
hemselves into the camp; and the stakes were fixed in the 
ground in such manner that you could pass between them 
>n foot). And as the king had commanded, so was it done. 

Right at the sun-rising the Saracen before mentioned, 
vhom they had made their chief, brought against us at least 
our thousand mounted Turks, and ordered them all round 
>ur camp, and round his own person from the river that 
:omes from Babylon to the river that went from our camp 
;o a town called Rexi. When they had done this they 
>rought against us such a great number of Saracens on foot 
;hat they surrounded all our camp as the mounted men sur- 
ounded it. Besides these two forces (mounted and dis- 
nounted) that I am telling you of, they arrayed all the power 
)f the Soldan of Babylon, so as to give help if need were. 

When they had done this, the chief came all alone, riding 
)n a little stallion, to see the disposal of our host; and accord- 
ng as he saw that our troops were more numerous in one 
place than another, he went back to fetch his men, and 
reinforced his battalions against ours. After this he caused 
the Bedouins, of whom there were at least three thousand, 
to pass towards the camp held by the Duke of Burgundy, 
which lay between the two rivers. And this he did, because 
ae thought the king would send some of his people to help 
the duke against the Bedouins, whereby the king s host 
be weakened. 

2O2 Memoirs of the Crusades 


It took him till mid-day to order these things; and then 
he caused the drums called nacaires to be beaten ; and then 
they charged us, foot and horse. And first I will tell you ol 
the King of Sicily who was then Count of Anjou because 
he was first on the side towards Babylon. The foe came 
against him as men play chess, for they first caused him to 
be attacked by their foot-men, and the foot-men assailed 
him with Greek fire; and the men, mounted and dis 
mounted, pressed upon our people so sore that they discom 
fited the King of Sicily, who was on foot, among his knights. 

And they came to the king, and told him of the great 
jeopardy in which his brother stood. And when the king 
heard this, he rode spurring amidst his brother s men, with 
his sword in his fist, and dashed so far among the Turks that 
they burnt the crupper of his horse with Greek fire. And by 
this charge that the king made he succoured the King of 
Sicily and his men, and drove the Turks from the camp. 

After the troops of the King of Sicily came the troops of 
the barons oversea, of whom the Lord Guy of Ibelin and 
Lord Baldwin his brother were the chiefs. After their 
troops came the troops of my Lord Walter of Chatillon, full 
of right worthy men, and of good chivalry. These two divi 
sions defended themselves so vigorously that the Turks were 
never able to pierce through them or drive them back. 

After the troops of my Lord Walter came brother William 
of Sonnac, Master of the Temple, with the few brethren that 
remained to him after the battle of Tuesday. He had caused 
a work of defence to be erected in front of him with the 
engines that we had taken from the Saracens. When the 
Saracens came to attack him they threw Greek fire on to 
the hoardings he had erected, and these took fire easily, for 
the Templars had put into them a great quantity of pinewood 
planks. And you must know that the Turks did not wait 
till the fire had burned itself out, but ran in upon the Templars 
through the flames. In this battle brother William, the 
Master of the Temple, lost an eye, and the other he had lost 
on Shrove Tuesday; and he died thereof, the said lord on 
whom God have mercy ! And you must know that behind 
the place where the Templars stood there was a space, the 

Joinville s Chronicle 203 

size of a journeyman s labour, so thickly covered with the 
Saracens darts that the earth could not be seen by reason 
they were so many. 

After the troops belonging to the Temple came the troops 
of my Lord Guy of Mauvoisin; and these troops the Turks 
were never able to overcome. Notwithstanding the Turks 
had so covered my Lord Guy of Mauvoisin with Greek fire 
that his people could hardly extinguish it. 

Starting from the place where my Lord Guy of Mauvoisin 
was stationed, the barriers that defended our camp went 
down about a stone s - throw towards the river. Thence 
the barriers passed before the troops of Count William of 
Flanders and extended to the river that went towards the 
sea. In face of the barrier which came from the side of my 
Lord Guy Mauvoisin was our battalion; and because the 
troops of Count William of Flanders stood facing them, the 
Turks never dared to come and attack us; wherein God 
showed us great courtesy, for neither I nor my knights had 
our hauberks and shields, because we had all been wounded 
in the battle on Shrove Tuesday. 

The Turks charged the Count of Flanders with great 
vigour and spirit, and on foot and horse. When I saw this 
I commanded our crossbowmen to shoot at those who 
were mounted. When those who were mounted saw they 
were being wounded from our side, then they took to flight; 
and when the count s people saw this, they left the camp, 
scrambled over the barriers, ran in among the dismounted 
Saracens, and discomfited them. Many were killed, and 
many of their targes taken. There acquitted himself right 
valiantly Walter of the Horgne, who carried the banner of 
my Lord of Apremont. 

After the troops belonging to the Count of Flanders came 
the troops of the Count of Poitiers, the king s brother. 
These troops of the Count of Poitiers were on foot, and he 
alone mounted; and the Turks discomfited them immedi 
ately, and led away the Count of Poitiers captive. When 
the butchers, and the other camp followers, and the women 
who sold provisions, saw this, they raised the cry of alarm 
throughout the camp, and with God s help they succoured 
the count, and drove the Turks out of the camp. 

After the troops of the Count of Poitiers came the troops 
of my lord Josserand of Brancion, who had come with the 

204 Memoirs of the Crusades 

count into Egypt, and was one of the best knights that 
were in the host. He had so arranged his people that 
all his knights were on foot; and he himself was on 
horseback, as also his son my Lord Henry, and the son of 
my Lord Josserand of Nanton, and these he placed on 
horseback because they were but children. Several times 
the Turks discomfited his people. Every time that he 
saw his people discomfited, he set spurs to his horse, and 
took the Turks in the rear; and oft, when he did this, 
the Turks left off attacking his people to set upon Mm. 
Nevertheless this would not have availed to prevent the 
Turks from killing them all on the field of battle, had it not 
been for my Lord Henry of Cone, who was in the Duke of 
Burgundy s division, a wise knight and valiant and of good 
counsel; for every time that he saw the Turks falling upon 
my Lord of Brancion, he caused the king s crossbowmen to 
shoot at the Turks across the river. Thus did the Lord of 
Brancion escape from the peril of that day ; but only in such 
sort that of the twenty knights he had about him he lost 
twelve, without counting the other men-at-arms; and he 
himself was so sorely mishandled that never afterwards 
could he stand upon his feet, and he died of that wound 
in the service of God. 

And now will I speak to you somewhat of the Lord of 
Brancion. He had been, when he died, in thirty-six battles 
and skirmishes hand to hand, and always borne away the 
prize of valour. I saw him once in the host of the Count of 
Chalon, whose cousin he was, and he came to me and to my 
brother, and said to us, on a Good Friday : My nephews, 
come and help me, you and your people, for the Germans are 
destroying the church." We went with him, and ran upon 
them with our swords drawn, and with great labour and 
after a fierce struggle we drave them from the church. 
When this was done the right worthy man knelt before the 
altar, and called on our Saviour with a loud voice, and said : 
" Lord, I pray thee to have mercy upon me, and to take me 
out of these wars among Christians, in which I have lived a 
great while ; and grant that I may die in Thy service, and so 
come to possess Thy kingdom of paradise." And I have 
told you of these things, because I believe that God heard 
his prayer, as you may have seen from what has gone before. 

After this battle, which was fought on the first Friday in 

Joinville s Chronicle 205 

Lent, the king summoned all his barons before him, and said 
to them: " Great thanks do we owe to our Saviour, in that 
he has twice done us honour during this week: on Shrove 
Tuesday, when we drove the foe from their camp where 
we are ourselves now lodged and on the Friday following, 
which has just passed, when we have defended ourselves 
against them, we on foot, and they mounted." And many 
other good and fair words did he speak for their recomforting. 



It is convenient, in pursuing our story, to disturb its course 
somewhat, at this point, for the purpose of showing how the 
soldans kept their forces ordered and conditioned. And it 
is sooth that they had formed the main part of their chivalry 
of foreigners, whom merchants had brought for sale out of 
strange lands, and whom they bought right willingly and at 
a high price. And these people that the merchants brought 
into Egypt were obtained in the East, because when one 
Eastern king defeated another, he took the poor people 
whom he had conquered, and sold them to the merchants, 
and the merchants came and sold them in Egypt. 

As to the children, the soldan brought them up in his own 
house till their beards began to grow; and he would see that 
they had bows proportioned to their strength ; and so soon 
as they waxed stronger, the weaker bows were cast into the 
soldan s arsenal, and the master artilleryman provided them 
with bows as strong as they could bend. 

The arms of the soldan were or, and such arms as the soldan 
wore were worn by these young people also; and they were 
called bahariz}- So soon as their beards began to grow the 
soldan made them knights. And they wore the soldan s 
arms, save for one difference, viz., that they added on to the 
arms or, crimson devices, roses, or crimson bends, or birds 
or other devices, according to their pleasure. 

And these people, of whom I am speaking to you, were 
called of the Halca 2 , because the bahariz slept in the tent of 
the soldan. When the soldan was in camp, those of the 
Halca were lodged about his quarters, and set to guard his 
person. At the entrance to his quarters were lodged, in a 
little tent, the porters of the soldan, and his minstrels, who 
1 Folk from the sea. * Guard. 

206 Memoirs of the Crusades 

had horns, and drums, and cymbals. And with these they 
made such a noise at the point of day and at nightfall, that 
those who were near could not hear one another speak; and 
clearly were they heard throughout the camp. 

Nor would the minstrels have been rash enough to sound 
their instruments during the day, save by order of the master 
of the Halca ; whence it happened that if the soldan wished 
to give an order, he sent for the master of the Halca, and 
gave the order through him; and then the master caused 
the soldan s instruments to be sounded, and all the host 
assembled to hear the order of the soldan: the master of 
the Halca spoke it, and all the host carried it out. 

When the soldan went to war, the knights of the Halca, if 
so be that they approved themselves well in battle, were 
made emirs by the soldan, and he placed them in command 
of two hundred knights, or three hundred; and the better 
they approved themselves the more knights did he set them 

The reward reserved for their deeds of chivalry is this: 
when they become famous and rich beyond question, and the 
soldan is afraid lest they should kill or disinherit him, then 
he causes them to be taken and put to death in his prison, 
and their wives deprived of all they possess. This is how the 
soldan dealt with those who captured the Count of Montfort, 
and the Count of Bar ; and so did Bondocdar deal with those 
who had discomfited the King of Armenia. For these latter, 
thinking to have some reward, dismounted and went to 
salute Bondocdar while he was hunting wild beasts; and he 
replied: " I salute you not," because they had disturbed his 
hunting; and he caused them to be beheaded. 


Let us now return to the matter in hand, and tell how the 
soldan, who was dead, had a son of the age of five and twenty 
years, wise, adroit, and crafty ; and because the dead soldan 
feared that his son would dispossess him, he bestowed on 
him a kingdom which he had in the East. And now when 
the soldan was dead, the emirs sent to fetch the son, and so 
soon as the son was come into Egypt he took the golden 
rods from his father s seneschal, and constable, and marshal, 

Joinville s Chronicle 207 

and bestowed them upon those who had come with him 
from the East. 

When the seneschal, constable, and marshal saw this they 
were very wroth, as were also those who had been of the 
father s council, and they felt that great shame had been put 
upon them. And because they doubted not that the son 
would do to them as the father had done to those who cap 
tured the Count of Bar, and the Count of Montfort (as you 
have been already told), they so practised with the men of 
the Halca, whose duty it was to guard the person of the 
soldan, that the men of the Halca agreed, at their request, to 
kill the soldan. 



After the two battles aforementioned, the host began to 
suffer very grievously ; for at the end of nine days the bodies 
of our people, whom the Saracens had slain, came to the 
surface of the water; and this was said to be because the 
gall had putrified. The bodies came floating to the bridge 
between our two camps, and could not pass under because 
the bridge touched the water. There was such great foison 
of them that all the river was full of corpses, from the one 
bank to the other, and, lengthwise, the cast of a small stone. 

The king had tired a hundred vagabonds, who took full 
eight days to clear the river. They cast the bodies of the 
Saracens, who were circumcised, on the other side of the 
bridge, and let them go down with the stream ; the Christians 
they caused to be put in great trenches, one with another. 
I saw there the chamberlains of the Count of Artois, and 
many others, seeking for their friends among the dead; but 
never did I hear tell that any was found (identified). 

We ate no fish in the camp the whole of Lent save eels; 
and the eels ate the dead people, for they are a gluttonous 
fish. And because of this evil, and for the unhealthiness of 
the land where it never rains a drop of water there came 
upon us the sickness of the host, which sickness was such that 
the flesh of our legs dried up, and the skin upon our legs 
became spotted, black and earth colour, like an old boot; 
and with us, who had this sickness, the flesh of our gums 
putrified; nor could any one escape from this sickness, but 

208 Memoirs of the Crusades 

he had to die. The sign of death was this, that when there 
was bleeding of the nose, then death was sure. 

A fortnight afterwards the Turks, in order to starve us 
which very much astonished our people took several of their 
galleys that were above our camp, and caused them to be 
dragged by land and put into the river, a full league below 
our camp. And these galleys brought famine upon us; for 
no one, because of these galleys, dared to come up the stream 
from Damietta and bring us provisions. We knew naught 
of these things till such time as a little ship, belonging to the 
Count of Flanders, escaped from them by force and told us 
of them, as also that the galleys of the soldan had taken full 
eighty of our galleys coming from Damietta, and put to 
death the people that were therein. 

Thus there arose a great dearth in the camp, so that as 
soon as Easter was come an ox was valued at eighty livres, 
and a sheep at thirty livres, and a pig at thirty limes, and an 
egg twelve denier s, and a measure of wine ten livres. 


When the king and the barons saw this, they agreed that 
the king should shift his camp, which was on the side towards 
Babylon, and move to the camping ground of the Duke of 
Burgundy, which was on the river that went to Damietta. 
In order to collect his people with greater safety, the king 
caused a barbican to be constructed before the bridge 
between our two camps, in such wise that one could enter 
the barbican from either side on horseback. 

So soon as the barbican was ready, all the king s host gat 
to their arms, and the Turks made an attack in force upon 
the king s camp. Nevertheless, neither the king nor his 
people moved till all the baggage had been carried over, 
and then the king passed, and his body of troops after him, 
and after them all the other barons, save my Lord Walter of 
Chatillon, who had the rearguard. As they were entering 
into the barbican, my Lord Everard of Valery delivered my 
Lord John, his brother, whom the Turks were carrying away 

When all the host had passed, those who remained in the 
barbican were in great peril, for the barbican was not high, 

Joinville s Chronicle 209 

so that the mounted Turks shot full at them, and the Sara 
cens on foot threw clods of earth right into their faces. All 
would have been lost had it not been for the Count of Anjou 
afterwards King of Sicily who went to their rescue, and 
brought them out safe and sound. Of that day did my Lord 
Geoffry of Mussambourc bear the prize the prize of all who 
were in the barbican. 

On the eve of Shrove Tuesday I beheld a marvel, of which 
I will now tell you; for on that day was buried my Lord 
Hugh of Landricourt, who was with me, carrying a banner. 
There as he lay on a bier in my chapel, six of my knights were 
leaning on sacks full of barley ; and because they were speak 
ing loud in my chapel, and disturbing the priest, I went to 
them, and told them to hold their peace, and said it was a 
discourteous thing for knights and gentlemen to talk while 
mass was being sung. And they began to laugh and told me, 
laughing, that they were remarrying the dead man s wife. 
And I spoke sharply to them, and told them that such words 
were neither good nor seemly, and that they had forgotten 
their companion over soon. And God took such vengeance 
upon them, that on the morrow was the great battle of Shrove 
Tuesday, in which they were all killed or mortally wounded, 
so that the wives of all six were in case to marry again. 


Owing to the wounds I had received on Shrove Tuesday, 
the sickness of the host took hold upon me, in my mouth and 
legs, as also a double tertian fever, and so great a cold in my 
head that the rheum flowed from the head through the 
nostrils; and because of the said sicknesses, I took to sick 
bed at mid-Lent; and thus it befell that my priest sang mass 
for me, before my bed, in my pavilion. And he had the 
same sickness as I. Now it chanced that at the consecra 
tion, he turned faint. When I saw that he was about to fall, 
I, who had on my tunic, leapt from my bed barefoot, and 
took him in my arms, and told him to do all leisurely, and to 
proceed fairly with the consecration, for that I should not 
leave him till he had brought it to an end. He came to him 
self, and finished the consecration, and sang his mass fully 
to a close. But never did he sing mass again. 

2 i o Memoirs of the Crusades 


After these things the king s councillors and the councillors 
of the soldan appointed a set day on which to come to an 
agreement. The proposed conditions were these: that we 
should surrender Damietta to the soldan, and the soldan sur 
render to the king the kingdom of Jerusalem; and that the 
soldan should take charge of the sick that were at Damietta, 
and also of the salted meats because they did not eat pork 
and of the king s engines of war, until such time as the king 
was able to send and fetch all these things. 

They asked the king s councillors what security would be 
given that the soldan should repossess Damietta. The king s 
councillors offered to deliver over one of the king s brothers, 
either the Count of Anjou, or the Count of Poitiers, to be kept 
until such time as Damietta was placed in the soldan s hands. 
The Saracens said they would consent to nothing unless the 
person of the king were left with them as a pledge; where 
upon my Lord Geoffry of Sargines, the good knight, said he 
would rather that the Saracens should have them all dead or 
captive than bear the reproach of having left the king in 

The sickness began to increase in the host in such sort, and 
the dead flesh so to grow upon the gums of our people, that 
the barber surgeons had to remove the dead flesh in order 
that the people might masticate their food and swallow it. 
Great pity it was to hear the cry throughout the camp of the 
people whose dead flesh was being cut away ; for they cried 
like women labouring of child. 


When the king saw that he could only remain there to die, 
he and his people, he ordered and arranged that they should 
strike their camp, late on Tuesday (5th April 1250), at night, 
after the octave of Easter, to return to Damietta. He 
caused the mariners who had galleys to be told that they 
should get together the sick, and take them thither. He 
also commanded Josselin of Cornaut, and his brothers, and 

Joinville s Chronicle 211 

the other engineers, to cut the ropes that held the bridge 
between us and the Saracens; but of this they did nothing. 

We embarked on the Tuesday, after dinner, in the after- 
aoon, I and two of my knights whom I had remaining, and 
the rest of my followers. When the night began to fall, I 
told my mariners to draw up their anchor, and let us go down 
the stream; but they said they dared not, because the 
soldan s galleys, which were between us and Damietta, would 
surely put us to death. The mariners had made great fires 
to gather the sick into their galleys, and the sick had dragged 
themselves to the bank of the river. While I was exhorting 
the mariners to let us begone, the Saracens entered into the 
camp, and I saw, by the light of the fires, that they were 
slaughtering the sick on the bank. 

While my mariners were raising their anchor, the mariners 
appointed to take away the sick cut the ropes of their 
anchors and of their galleys, and came alongside our little 
ship, and so surrounded us on one side and the other that 
they well-nigh ran us down. When we had escaped from this 
peril, and while we were going down with the stream, the 
king, who had upon him the sickness of the host and a very 
evil dysentery, could easily have got away on the galleys, if 
he had been so minded;^ but he said that, please God, he 
would never abandon his people. That night he fainted 
several times ; and because of the sore dysentery from which 
he suffered, it was necessary to cut away the lower part of his 
drawers, so frequent were his necessities./ 

They cried to us, who were floating on the water, that we 
should wait for the king; and when we would not wait, they 
shot at us with crossbow bolts; wherefor it behoved us to 
stop until such time as they gave us leave to fare forward. 



Now I will leave off speaking of this matter, and tell you 
how the king was taken, as he himself related it to me. He 
told me how he had left his own division and placed himself, 
he and my lord Geoffry of Sargines, in the division that was 
under my Lord Gaucher of Chatillon, who commanded the 

And the king related to me that he was mounted on a 

212 Memoirs of the Crusades 

little courser covered with a housing of silk; and he told me 
that of all his knights and sergeants there only remained 
behind with him my Lord Geoffry of Sargines, who brought 
the king to a little village, there where the king was taken; 
and as the king related to me, my Lord Geoffry of Sargines 
defended him from the Saracens as a good servitor defends 
his lord s drinking-cup from flies; for every time that the 
Saracens approached, he took his spear, which he had placed 
between himself and the bow of his saddle, and put it to his 
shoulder, and ran upon them, and drove them away from 
the king. 

And thus he brought the king to the little village ; and they 
lifted him into a house, and laid him, almost as one dead, in 
the lap of a burgher-woman of Paris, and thought he would 
not last till night. Thither came my Lord Philip of Mont- 
fort, and said to the king that he saw the emir with whom he 
had treated of the truce, and, if the king so willed, he would 
go to him, and renew the negotiation for a truce in the manner 
that the Saracens desired. The king begged him to go, and 
said he was right willing! So my Lord Philip went to the 
Saracen; and the Saraceri*"had taken off his turban from his 
head, and took off the ring from his finger in token that he 
would faithfully observe the truce. 

Meanwhile, a very great mischance happened to our people ; 
for a traitor sergeant, whose name was Marcel, began to cry 
to our people: " Yield, lord knights, for the king commands 
you, and do not cause the king to be slain ! * All thought 
that the king had so commanded, and gave up their swords 
to the Saracens. The emir saw that the Saracens were 
bringing in our people prisoners, so he said to my Lord Philip 
that it was not fitting that he should grant a truce to out 
people, for he saw very well that they were already prisoners. 

So it happened to my Lord Philip that whereas all our 
people were taken captive, yet was not he so taken, because 
he was an envoy. But there is an evil custom in the land oi 
paynimry that when the king sends envoys to the soldan, oi 
the soldan to the king, and the king dies, or the soldan, before 
the envoys return, then the envoys, from whithersoever they 
may come, and whether Christians or Saracens, are made 
prisoners and slaves. 

Joinville s Chronicle 21 


When this mischance befell our people, that they should 
be taken captive on land, so did it happen to us, to be taken 
captive on the water, as you shall shortly hear; for the 
wind blew from Damietta, and so counteracted the current 
of the river; and the knights, whom the king had placed in 
the lighter vessels to defend the sick, fled. Thus our mariners 
lost the current and got into a creek, and we had to turn 
back towards the Saracens. 

We, who were going by water, came, a little before the 
break of dawn, to the passage where were the soldan s galleys 
that had prevented the coming of provisions from Damietta. 
Here there was great confusion and tumult; for they shot at 
us and at our mounted folk who were on the bank so great 
a quantity of darts with Greek fire, that it seemed as if the 
stars of heaven were falling. 

When our mariners had brought us out of the creek into 
which they had taken us, we found the king s light boats, 
that the king had appointed to defend our sick, and they 
went flying towards Damietta. Then arose a wind, coming 
from Damietta, so strong that it counteracted the current 
of the river. 

By the one bank of the stream, and by the other, were a 
*reat quantity of boats belonging to our people who could 
not get down the stream, and whom the Saracens had taken 
and stayed; and the Saracens slew our people, and cast 
them into the water, and were dragging the coffers and 
baggage out of the boats that they had taken. The mounted 
Saracens on the bank shot at us with darts because we would 
not go to them. My people had put on me a jousting hau 
berk, so that I might not be wounded by the darts that fell 
into our boat. 

At this moment my people, who were at the hinder point 

the boat, cried out to me: " Lord, Lord, your mariners, 
because the Saracens are threatening them, mean to take 
you to the bank ! I had myself raised by the arms, all 
weak as I was, and drew my sword upon them, and told them 
I should kill them if they took me to the bank. They 
answered that I must choose which I would have: whether 
to be taken to the bank, or anchored in mid-stream till the 

214 Memoirs of the Crusades 

wind fell. I told them I liked better that they should 
anchor in mid-stream than that they should take me to the 
shore where there was nothing before us save death. So 
they anchored. 

Very shortly after we saw four of the soldan s galleys 
coming to us, and in them full a thousand men. Then I 
called together my knights and my people, and asked them 
which they would rather do, either yield to the soldan s 
galleys or yield to those on land. We all agreed that we 
would rather yield to the soldan s galleys, because so we 
should be kept together, than yield to those on land, who 
would separate us, and sell us to the Bedouins. 

Then one of my cellarers, who was born at Doulevant, 
said: " Lord, I do not agree in this decision." I asked him 
to what he did agree; and he said to me: "I advise that we 
should all suffer ourselves to be slain, for thus we shall go to 
paradise." But we heeded him not. 



When I saw that we must be taken, I took my casket and 
my jewels, and threw them into the river, and my relics also. 
Then said one of my mariners to me: " Lord, if you do not 
suffer me to say you are the king s cousin, they will kill you 
all, and us also." And I told him I was quite willing he 
should say what he pleased. When the people on the first 
galley that came towards us to strike us amidships heard 
this, they threw down their anchors near to our boat. 

Then did God send me a Saracen belonging to the 
emperor s 1 land. He had on drawers of unbleached linen, 
and came swimming across the stream to our vessel, and 
threw his arms about my waist, and said: " Lord, if you do 
not take good heed, you are but lost; for it behoves you to 
leap from your vessel on to the beak that rises from the keel 
of that galley; and if you leap, these people will not mind 
you, for they are thinking only of the booty to be found in your 
vessel." They threw me a rope from the galley, and I leapt 
on to the beak, so as God willed. And you must know that 

1 The Emperor Frederic II. of Germany, who had certain possessions 
in the East. 

Joinville s Chronicle 215 

tottered so that if the Saracen had not leapt after me, and 
sld me up, I should have fallen into the water. 
They set me in the galley, where there were full fourteen 
:ore men of their people, and he held me always in his arms, 
hen they threw me to the ground, and jumped upon my 
Ddy to cut my throat, for any one would have thought it an 
Dnour to kill me. But the Saracen held me constantly in 
.s arms, and cried : " Cousin to the king ! In this manner 
icy bore me down to the ground twice, and once upon my 
lees, and then I felt the knife at my throat. In this 
ctremity God saved me by the help of the Saracen, who 
>ok me to the castle of the ship, where the Saracen knights 
ere assembled. 

When I came among them, they took off my hauberk; and 
r the pity they had upon me, they threw over me a scarlet 
)verlet lined with miniver, which my lady mother had given 
.e erewhile ; and one of them brought me a white belt, and 
girt myself over the coverlet; and in the coverlet I had 
.ade a hole, donning it as a garment. And another brought 
t e a hood which I put upon my head. And then, because 
: the fear in which I was, I began to tremble very much, 
ad also because of the sickness. Then I asked for drink, 
id they brought me some water in a jar; and as soon as I 
;t the water to my mouth to drink it down, it spurted out 
irough my nostrils. 

When I saw this, I sent for my people, and told them I 
as a dead man, seeing I had the tumour in my throat; and 
icy asked how I knew it; and I showed them; and as soon 
> they saw the water spurting from my throat and from my 
ostrils, they took to weeping. When the Saracen knights 
-ho were there saw my people weeping, they asked the 
aracen who had rescued us why they were weeping; and 
e replied that he understood I had the tumour in the throat, 
) that I could not recover. Then one of the Saracen 
nights told him to bid us be of good comfort, for he would 
ive me somewhat to drink whereby I should be cured within 
wo days; and this he did. 

My Lord Raoul of Wanou, who was one of my following, 
ad been hamstrung in the great battle on Shrove Tuesday, 
nd could not stand upon his feet ; and you must know that 
n old Saracen knight, who was in the galley, would carry 
im, hanging from his neck, whenever the sick man s neces- 
ities so required. 

I 333 

2 1 6 Memoirs of the Crusades 


The chief emir of the galleys sent for me and asked me if 
I were cousin to the king; and I said " No," and told him 
how and why the mariner had said I was the king s cousin. 
And he said I had acted wisely, for otherwise we should all 
have been put to death. And he asked me if I was in any 
manner of the lineage of the Emperor Frederic of Germany, 
who was then living. I replied that I thought my lady 
mother was the emperor s cousin-german. And he said that 
he loved me the more for it. 

While we were at meat, he caused a citizen of Paris to be 
brought before us. When the citizen came in, he said to me: 
" Lord, what are you doing? " Why, what am I doing? 
said I. " In God s name," said he, " you are eating flesh on 
a Friday ! When I heard that, I put my bowl behind me. 
And the emir asked my Saracen why I had done so, and he 
told him. And the emir replied that God would not take 
what I had done amiss, seeing I did it unwittingly. And 
you must know that this same reply was given to me by the 
Legate after we were out of prison; and yet, notwithstand 
ing, I did not afterwards forbear to fast on bread and water, 
every Friday in Lent; wherefore the legate was very wroth 
with me, seeing that I was the only man of substance that 
had remained with the king. 1 

On the Sunday after, the emir caused me, and all the 
other prisoners taken on the water, to be landed on the bank 
of the river. While they were taking my Lord John, my 
good priest, out of the hold of the galley, he fainted, and 
they killed him and threw him into the river. His clerk 
fainted also, by reason of the sickness of the host that was 
upon him, and they threw a mortar on his head, so that he 
died, and they threw him into the river. 

While the other sick people were being disembarked from 
the galleys in which they had been kept prisoners, there 
were Saracens standing by, with naked swords, who killed 
those that fell, and cast them all into the river. I caused 
them to be told, through my Saracen, that it seemed to me 

1 The meaning is here a little obscure. 

Joinville s Chronicle 217 

;his was not well done; for it was against the teachings of 
Saladin, who said you ought never to kill a man after he had 
>artaken of your bread and of your salt. And the emifr 
mswered that the men in question were of no account, seeing 
hey were helpless because of the sickness they had upon } 


He caused my mariners to be brought before me, and told 
ne they had all denied their faith; and I told him never to 
)lace confidence in them, for lightly as they had left us so 
ightly, if time and opportunity occurred, would they leave 
heir new masters. And the emir made answer that he 
Agreed with me; for that Saladin was wont to say that 
tever did one see a bad Christian become a good Saracen, or 
, bad Saracen become a good Christian. 

After these things he caused me to be mounted on a palfrey, 
uid to ride by his side. And we passed over a bridge of 
>oats and went to Mansourah, where the king and his 
)eople were prisoners; and we came to the entrance of a 
jreat pavilion, where the soldan s scribes were; and there 
hey wrote down my name. Then my Saracen said to me: 
Lord, I shall not follow you further, for I cannot; but I 
>ray you, lord, always to keep hold of the hand of the child 
hat you have with you, lest the Saracens should take him 
rom you." And this child was called Bartholomew, and 
le was the bastard son of the Lord of Montfaucon. When 
ay name had been written down, the emir led me into the 
>avilion where the barons were, and more than ten thousand 
>ersons with them. When I entered, the barons made such 
oy that we could not hear one another speak, and they gave 
hanks to our Saviour, and said they thought they had 
ost me. 


We had not been there long before they caused one of the 
:hief men that were there to rise, and took us to another 
)avilion. Many of the knights and other people were kept 
)y the Saracens in a court enclosed by mud walls. From 
;his enclosed place they caused them to be taken, one after 
:he other, and asked them, " Wilt thou abjure thy faith? " 
Fhose who would not abjure were set to one side, and their 

2 1 8 Memoirs of the Crusades 

heads were cut off; and those who abjured were set on the 
other side. 

At this point the soldan sent his council to speak with us, 
and they asked to whom they should give the soldan s 
message. And we told them to give it to the good Count 
Peter of Brittany. There were there certain people who 
knew the Saracen and French tongues, and are called drago 
mans, and they put the Saracen speech into French for the 
Count Peter. And the words were these: " Lord, the soldan 
sends us to you to know if you would be set free? The 
count answered " Yes." " And what would you give the 
soldan for your deliverance? " What we can, so it be in 
reason," answered the count. " And would you give," said 
they, " for your deliverance, any of the castles belonging to 
the barons oversea? 3 The count replied that he had no 
power over these castles, for they were held from the emperor 
of Germany, then living. They then asked if we would sur 
render, for our deliverance, any of the castles belonging to 
the Temple or the Hospital? And the count replied that 
this could not be; for that when castellans were appointed 
to those castles, they were made to swear, on holy relics, 
never to surrender any of their castles for man s deliverance. 
The council then replied that it seemed to them we had no 
mind to be delivered; and that they would go and send us 
such as would make sport of us with their swords, as they 
had done of the others belonging to our host. And they 
went their way. 

So soon as they were gone, a great crowd of young Saracens 
rushed into our pavilion, having their swords girt; x and they 
brought with them a man of very great age, 2 very hairy, who 
caused us to be asked whether it was sooth that we believed 
in a God who had been taken for us, and wounded and put 
to death for us, and who on the third day had risen again? 
And we answered " Yes." Then he told us that we should 
not be discomforted if we had suffered these persecutions foi 
His sake; " for," said he, " you have not yet died for Him, 
as He died for you ; and if He had power to rise again, resl 
assured that He will deliver you whensoever it so pleases 

1 In Joinville s Credo, the swords are said to be " drawn." 
* " As old, seemingly, as a man could be," says the Credo ; and the 
Credo adds that the young Saracens " seemingly " held the old man tc 
be mad. The whole scene is described, with a few additional details, 
in the Credo. 

Joinville s Chronicle 219 

Him." Then he went away, and all the young men with 
him; whereat I was greatly rejoiced, for I thought most cer 
tainly that they had come to cut off our heads. And it was 
not long afterwards that the soldan s people came and told 
us that the king had procured our deliverance. 

After the aged man who had given us comfort, was gone 
away, the counsellors of the soldan came back to us, and told 
us that the king had procured our deliverance, and that we 
must send four of our people to hear what he had done. 
We sent my Lord John of Valery, the right worthy man, my 
Lord Philip of Montfort, my Lord Baldwin of Ibelin, Senes 
chal of Cyprus, and my Lord Guy of Ibelin, Constable of 
Cyprus, one of the most accomplished knights I have ever 
seen, and one who most loved the people of that land. These 
four brought back to us word after what manner the king 
had procured our deliverance. 



The counsellors of the soldan had tried the king in the 
same manner that they had tried us, in order to see if the 
king would promise to deliver over to them any of the castles 
of the Temple or the Hospital, or any of the castles belonging 
to the barons of the land; and, as God so willed, the king 
had answered after the very same manner that we had 
answered. And they threatened him, and told him that as 
he would not do as they wished, they would cause him to be 
put in the bernicles. Now the bernides are the most cruel 
torture that any one can suffer. They are made of two 
pieces of wood, pliable, and notched at the ends with teeth 
that enter the one into the other; and the pieces of wood are 
bound together at the end with strong straps of ox-hide ; and 
when they want to set people therein, they lay them on their 
side, and put their legs between the teeth; and then they 
cause a man to sit on the pieces of wood. Hence it. happens 
that, not half a foot of bone remains uncrushed. And to do 
the worst they can, at the end of three days, when the legs 
are swollen, they replace the swollen legs in the bernicles, and 
crush them all once more. To these threats the king replied 
that he was their prisoner, and that they could do with him 
according to their will. 

22O Memoirs of the Crusades 

When they saw that they could not prevail over the good 
king by threats, they came back to him and asked how 
much money he would give to the soldan, besides surrender 
ing Damietta. And the king replied that if the soldan would 
accept a reasonable sum, he would advertise the queen to 
pay it for their deliverance. And they asked: " How is it 
that you will not tell us definitely that these things shall be 
done? J And the king replied that he did not know if the 
queen would consent, seeing she was his lady and the mistress 
of her actions. Then the counsellors returned and spoke to 
the soldan, and afterwards brought back word to the king 
that if the queen would pay a million besants of gold, which 
are worth five hundred thousand livres^ the soldan would 
release the king. 

And the king asked them, on their oath, whether the soldan 
would release them, provided the queen consented. So they 
went back once more and spoke to the soldan, and on their 
return, made oath that the soldan would release the king on 
these conditions. And now that they had taken the oath, 
the king said and promised to the emirs, that he would 
willingly pay the five hundred thousand livres for the release 
of his people, and surrender Damietta for the release of his 
own person, seeing it was not fitting that such as he should 
barter himself for coin. When the soldan heard this he 
said : " By my faith, this Frank is large-hearted not to have 
bargained over so great a sum! Now go and tell him," 
said he, " that I give him a hundred thousand livres towards 
the payment of the ransom. 3 



Then the soldan caused the chief men to be put into four 
galleys and taken towards Damietta. In the same galley 
as I were the good Count Peter of Brittany, the Count 
William of Flanders, the good Count John of Soissons, my 
Lord Imbert of Beaujeu, the constable of France, the good 
knight my Lord Baldwin of Ibelin, and my Lord Guy, his 

Those who were in charge of us in the galley brought us 

1 M. de Wailiy estimates this at 10,132,000 francs, of modern 
French money, or, say, 405,000. 

Joinville s Chronicle 221 

to bank before an encampment which the soldan had estab 
lished by the river; and it was of such a fashion as you shall 
presently hear. Before ^he encampment there was a tower, 
made of fir poles, and enclosed with dyed linen cloths, and 
here was the entrance to the encampment. And within this 
entrance was pitched a pavilion, where the emirs left their 
swords and armour when they went to speak to the soldan. 
Beyond the pavilion was another entrance, like the first, and 
by this entrance you passed into a large pavilion, which was 
the soldan s hall. Beyond the hall was another tower, like 
the first, by which one entered into the soldan s chamber. 
Beyond the soldan s chamber there \vas a court; and in the 
midst of the court, a tower, higher than the rest, whither the 
soldan resorted when he wished to overlook the whole 
country and the camp. From the court an alley ran down 
to the river, and there the soldan had caused a pavilion to be 
pitched in the water, for bathing. All the encampment was 
enclosed in trellises of wood, and on the outside the trellises 
were covered with blue cloths, so that those who were with 
out should not be able to see in; and the towers, all four of 
them, were covered with cloth. 

We arrived, on the Thursday before Ascension Day (28th 
April 1250), at the place where this encampment was set up. 
The four galleys in which we were all together as prisoners, 
anchored before the soldan s encampment. The king was 
taken to a pavilion that stood nigh thereto. Matters had 
been so ordered by the soldan that on the Saturday before 
Ascension Day Damietta was to be surrendered to him, and 
he was to release the king. 


The emirs whom the soldan had dismissed from his council 
in order to appoint thereto his own emirs, brought from 
foreign lands, now conferred together; and an astute Saracen 
spake after this manner: " Lords, you see the shame and 
dishonour that the soldan has put upon us, and how he has 
taken from us the dignity in which we had been established 
by his father. Now we may be sure that when he finds him 
self in the stronghold of Damietta he will cause us to be 
taken, and to die in prison, as his grandfather did to the 
emirs who captured the Count of Bar and the Count of Mont- 

222 Memoirs of the Crusades 

fort. Therefore, so it seems to me, it would be better to 
cause him to be put to death before he escapes out of our 
i hands." 

They went therefore to those of the Halca, and demanded 
of them that they should kill the soldan, so soon as they had 
eaten with him, as he had invited them to do. Thus it befell 
that, after they had eaten, and the soldan had taken leave of 
his emirs, and was going to his chamber, one of the knights 
of the Halca, who bore the soldan s sword, struck the soldan 
therewith in the middle of the hand, between the four 
fingers, and clove the hand up to the arm. The soldan 
turned to the emirs, who had caused this to be done to him, 
and said: "Lords, I make appeal to you against these 
people of the Halca, who desire to slay me, as you can see ! " 
Then the knights of the Halca made answer to the soldan 
with one voice, and said: " As thou sayest that we desire to 
slay thee, better is it that we should slay thee than that 
thou shouldst slay us ! " 

Then they caused the cymbals to be struck, and all the 
host came to ask what was the soldan s will. And they 
answered that Damietta was taken, and that the soldan was 
going thither, and that he ordered them to follow. So the 
host gat to their arms, and spurred towards Damietta. And 
when we saw that they were going towards Damietta, we 
were in sore trouble of heart, for we thought that Damietta 
was lost. But the soldan, being young and active, fled into 
the tower that stood behind his chamber (as you have already 
heard), with three of his bishops, who had sat at meat with 
him ; and he was there with them in the tower. 

Those of the Halca, who were in number five hundred 
mounted men, threw down the soldan s pavilions, and 
swarmed round and about the tower, besieging him and the 
three bishops; and they cried to him to come down. And 
he said so he would if they promised him safety. They told 
him they would make him come down by force, for he was 
not in Damietta. Then they threw at him Greek fire, and it 
caught the tower, which was made of pine planks and cotton 
cloth. The tower flared up quickly, nor have I ever seen 
finer nor straighter flame. When the soldan saw this, he 
gat down swiftly, and came flying towards the river, all 
along the way of which I have already spoken to you. 

Those of the Halca had broken down all the enclosed way 

Joinville s Chronicle 223 

with their swords; and as the soldan fled along to go to the 
river, one of them gave him a spear-thrust in the ribs, and 
the soldan fled to the river, trailing the spear. And they 
followed after, till they were all swimming, and came and 
killed him in the river, not far from the galley in which we 
were. One of the knights, whose name was Faress-Eddin 
Octay, cut him open with his sword, and took the heart out 
of his body ; and then he came to the king, his hand all reek 
ing with blood, and said: " What wilt thou give me? for I 
have slain thine enemy, who, had he lived, would have slain 
thee ! " And the king answered him never a word. 


Full thirty of them came to our galley, with drawn swords 
in their hands, and Danish axes hanging at their necks, I 
asked my Lord Baldwin of Ibelin, who well knew the Saracen 
tongue, what these people said; and he answered that they 
said they had come to take off our heads. Then were there 
a whole host of our people confessing to a brother of the 
Trinity whose name was John, and who belonged to the 
following of Count William of Flanders. But as for myself, 
I remembered no sin that I had committed, and only thought 
that the more I defended myself and the more I tried to 
escape, the worse I should fare. 

Then I crossed myself, and knelt at the feet of one of them, 
who bore a Danish axe such as carpenters use, and I said: 
" Thus died St. Agnes." My Lord Guy of Ibelin, Constabk 
of Cyprus, knelt by my side, and confessed himself to me, 
and I said : I absolve you, with such power as God has 
given me." But when I rose from that place, I had no 
memory of aught that he had told me. 

The Saracens made us rise from where we were, and set us 
in prison in the hold of the galley; and many of our people 
thought they had done this because they did not wish to fall 
upon us all together, but wished to kill us one after the other. 
There we lay in great misery that evening, and all through 
the night, and we were so pressed together that my feet 
came against the good Count Peter of Brittany and his came 
against my face. 

On the morrow the emirs caused us to be taken from our 

224 Memoirs of the Crusades 

prison in the hold; and the messengers told us we were to go 
and speak to the emirs in order to renew the covenant the 
soldan had made with us; and they also told us we might 
hold it for certain that if the soldan had lived he would have 
caused the king to be beheaded, and all of us likewise. 
Those who were able to go, went. The Count of Brittany, 
the constable and I, who were grievously sick, remained 
where we were. The Count of Flanders, the Count John of 
Soissons, the two brothers of Ibelin, and the rest who could 
help themselves, went. 

These agreed with the emirs in such sort that, so soon as 
Damietta was delivered over to them, they would set free 
the king and the other men of rank who were there. As to 
the lesser folk, the soldan had caused them to be led away 
towards Babylon, such at least as he had not caused to be 
put to death. And this thing he had done contrary to the 
covenant made with the king, whereby it seemeth well that 
he would have put us to death also, so soon as he had come 
into possession of Damietta. 

And the king was to swear further to gratify the Saracens 
with two hundred thousand limes before he left the river, 
and with two hundred thousand livres in Acre. The Sara 
cens, by the covenant they made with the king, were to take 
charge of the sick in Damietta, and of the crossbows, the 
arms, the salted meats and the engines of war, until such 
time as the king sent for them. 

The oaths which the emirs were to swear to the king were 
devised and set forth in writing, and were to this effect : that 
if they did not observe this covenant with the king they 
should be as dishonoured as a man who, for his sin, goes on 
pilgrimage to Mahomet, at Mecca, with his head uncovered: 
and as dishonoured as a man who leaves his wife, and then 
takes her again (for in that case, according to the law oj 
Mahomet, if a man leaves his wife, he can never have hex 
again, save after seeing her in the arms of another man), 
The third oath was to this effect: that if they did not observe 
their covenant with the king, they should be as dishonoured 
as a Saracen who had eaten swine s flesh. The king was 
satisfied with the aforesaid oaths of the emirs, because 
Master Nicholas of Acre, who understood the Saracer 
tongue, said that, according to their law, they could devise 
ao oaths stronger or more binding. 

Joinville s Chronicle 225 

When the emirs had sworn they caused to be put in writing 
the oath they demanded of the king; and this oath was 
framed on the advice of the priests who had denied their 
faith and gone over to them, and the writing was to this 
effect: that if the king did not observe his covenants with 
the emirs, he should be as dishonoured as a Christian who 
denies God and His mother, and forfeits the fellowship of the 
twelve Companions of our Lord, and of all the saints. To this 
the king agreed right willingly. The last point in the oath was 
to this effect: that if the king did not observe his covenants 
with the emirs, he should be as dishonoured as a Christian 
who denies God and His law, and who, in despite of God, spits 
upon the cross, and tramples upon it. When the king heard 
this he said that, please God, he would never take that oath ! 

The emirs sent Master Nicholas, who knew the Saracen 
tongue, to the king, and he spake to the king these words: 
Sire, the emirs are greatly incensed, forasmuch as they 
have sworn what you required of them, whereas you will not 
swear what they require of you ; and be assured that if you 
do not swear this oath they will cause your head to be cut 
off, as well as the heads of all your people." The king 
replied that they could act in this matter as it seemed best 
to them ; but that he liked better to die as a good Christian 
rather than to live under the wrath of God and of His mother. 

The patriarch of Jerusalem, an old and reverend man 
of fourscore years, had obtained a safe conduct from the 
Saracens, and come to help the king to obtain his deliverance. 
Now it is the custom between the Christians and the Saracens 
that when the king or the soldan dies, those who are on an 
embassage, whether it be in a Christian or a pagan land, are 
made prisoners and slaves; and because the soldan, who had 
given the safe conduct to the patriarch, was now dead, the 
said patriarch was a prisoner like as we were. When the 
king had given his answer, one of the emirs said that it was 
given by the advice of the patriarch, and he said to the 
pagans : If you will believe me, I will make the king swear, 
for I will cause the head of the patriarch to fly into the king s 

They would not listen to this; but they took the patriarch 
from the side of the king, and tied him to the pole of the 
pavilion with his hands behind his back, and so straitly 
bound that the said hands swelled to the size of his head, 

226 Memoirs of the Crusades 

and that the blood started from between the nails. The 
patriarch cried to the king : " Sire, for the love of God, swear 
without fear; for seeing that you intend to hold to your 
oath, I take upon my own soul whatsoever there may be 
of sin in the oath that you take ! " I know not how this 
matter of the oath was settled; but in the end the emirs held 
themselves satisfied with the oath taken by the king, and by 
the other men of note there present. 



As soon as the soldan was killed, they caused the instru 
ments of the soldan to be brought before the king s tent; and 
it was told to the king that the emirs had had a great desire 
to make him Soldan of Babylon, and had held council 
thereon. And he asked me whether I thought he would have 
taken the kingdom of Babylon if it had been offered to him. 
And I told him that had he so taken it, he would have acted 
like a fool, seeing they had killed their lord; but he told me 
that in sooth he would not have refused it. 

And you must know it was reported that this matter only 
remained where it was, and proceeded no further, because 
Saracens said the Icing was the most steadfast Christian 
that could be found/ And they gave this as an example, 
\that when he issued from his tent, he put himself cross-wise 
^o-n the earth, and made the sign of the cross all over his body. 
And they said that if Mahomet had suffered them to be so 
maltreated, as the king had been, they would never have 
retained their belief in him; and they said further that if 
their people made the king to be soldan, they would have to 
ecome Christians, or else he would put them all to death. 
After the covenants between the king and the emirs had 
been settled and sworn to, it was agreed that they should 
release us on the day after Ascension Day; and that so soon 
as Damietta was delivered over to the emirs, they would 
release the person of the king and of the men of note who 
were with him, as has been already said. On the Thursday 
at night (5th May 1250) those who were in charge of our four 
galleys came to anchor in the midst of the river, before the 
bridge of Damietta, and caused a pavilion to be pitched 
before the bridge, there where the king should land. 

Joinville s Chronicle 227 

At sun-rising my Lord Geoffry of Sargines went into the 
:ity, and caused the city to be given up to the emirs. The 
>ol dan s flags were hoisted on all the towers of the city. The 
Saracen knights got into the city, and began to drink the 
wines, and were soon all drunken; whereupon one of them 
came to our galley, and drew his sword all reeking with blood, 
ind said that for his part he had killed six of our people. 

Before Damietta was surrounded, the queen had been re* 
ceived into our ships, together with all our people who were 
In Damietta, save the sick only. These last the Saracens, 
by their oath, were bound to keep and guard; but they 
killed them all. The king s engines of war, which they were 
also bound to preserve, they knocked to pieces. And the 
salted meat, which they were bound to keep for us, inasmuch 
as they do not eat pork, they did not keep. They made a 
pile of the engines, and a pile of the bacon, and another of the 
dead people, and they set fire thereto; and the fire was so 
great that it lasted the Friday, the Saturday, and the Sunday. 


The king, and all we who were there, should have been set 
free at sunrise, but the Saracens kept us till sunset ; and we 
had nothing to eat, nor the emirs either, and they were 
quarrelling the livelong day. And one of them spoke in this 
wise for those who belonged to his party : Lords, if you will 
listen to me, and to those who are of my party, you will kill 
the king and the men of note who are here; for then, for the 
space of forty years, we need fear nothing, seeing that their 
children are young, and that we hold Damietta; wherefore 
we can do this with the greater security." 

Another Saracen, whose name was Sebreci, and who was 
a native of Mauritania, spoke contrariwise, and said this: 
" If we kill the king, after we have killed the soldan, it will 
be said that the Egyptians are the most evil people in the 
world, and the most disloyal." And those who desired that 
we should be killed, rejoined: " It is sooth that we have too 
wickedly rid ourselves of our soldan, whom we put to death; 
for we have therein gone counter to the commandments of 
Mahomet, in that he commanded us to guard our lord as the 
apple of our eye. And behold in this book, here is the com 
mandment written. But listen/ said he, " to this other 

228 Memoirs of the Crusades 

commandment of Mahomet, that comes after." And with 
that he turned over the leaf of a book that he held in his hand, 
and showed them another commandment, which was to this 
effect : For the assurance of the faith, slay the enemy of the 
law." Now have we disobeyed the commandments of 
Mahomet, in that we have killed our lord; but we shall do 
worse if we do not kill the king, whatever promise of safety 
has been given to him, seeing that he is the most powerful 
enemy of the pagan law." 

Our death was nearly agreed to; whence it happened that 
one of the emirs, who was our adversary, thought we were all 
to be killed, and came on the river, and began to cry, in the 
Saracen tongue, to those who had the galleys in charge, and 
took his turban from his head, and made a sign to them with 
his turban. And now they lifted anchor, and took us back 
a full league up the stream towards Babylon. Then we gave 
ourselves up for lost, and many were the tears shed. 


As God, who does not forget His own, so willed, it was 
agreed, at about the setting of the sun, that we should be 
released. So we were brought back, and our four galleys 
drawn to the bank. We demanded to be let go. They said 
they would not let us go till we had eaten, * for it would be 
a shame to our emirs if you left our prisons fasting." So we 
told them to give us meat, and we would eat; and they said 
some had gone to fetch it in the camp. The food they gave 
us was fritters of cheese roasted in the sun so that worms 
should not come therein, and hard-boiled eggs cooked four 
or five days before; and these, in our honour, had been 
painted outside with divers colours. 

They put us on land, and we went towards the king, 
whom they were leading to the river from the pavilion in 
which they had kept him; and there followed him full 
twenty thousand Saracens on foot, with their swords in their 
belts. On the river, before the place where the king stood, 
was a Genoese galley, and it seemed as if there were but one 
single man on board. As soon as he saw the king on the 
bank of the river, he sounded a whistle; and at the sound ol 

Join villa s Chronicle 229 

;he whistle, eighty crossbowmen leapt from the hold of the 
galley, all fully equipped, with their crossbows wound up, and 
n a moment they had the bolts in socket. As soon as the 
Saracens saw them, they took to flight like sheep, so that 
aone remained with the king save two or three. 

A plank was thrown to the land, so that the king might go 
Dn board, as also the count of Anjou, his brother, and my 
Lord Geoffry of Sargines, and my lord Philip of Nemours, the 
Marshal of France, who was called of the Mez, and the Master 
of the Trinity, and I myself. The Count of Poitiers they kept 
in captivity, until such time as the king had paid the two 
hundred thousand livres, which he was to pay as a ransom 
before he left the river. 

On the Saturday (yth May 1250) after Ascension Day 
which Saturday was the day following the day of our deliver 
ance the Count of Flanders, and the Count of Soissons, and 
several other men of note who had been taken in the galleys, 
came to take leave of the king. The king told them he 
thought they would do well to wait till the Count of Poitiers, 
his brother, had been released. But they said they could 
not wait, seeing their galleys were all ready for sea. So they 
embarked on board their galleys, and left for France; and 
they took with them the good Count Peter of Brittany, who 
was so sick that he lived no longer than three weeks, and 
died at sea. 



They began to count 1 the money for the ransom on 
Saturday, in the morning ; and they took for the counting 
the whole of Saturday, and Sunday until night; for they 
reckoned by weight in the balance, and each measure was 
worth ten thousand livres. When it came to the time of 
vespers on Sunday, the king s people who were counting the 
money sent to tell him that they still were short of the sum 
required by full thirty thousand livres. And the king had by 
him only the King of Sicily, and the Marshal of France, and 
the Minister of the Trinity, and I. All the rest were at the 
counting of the money for the payment of the ransom. 

1 Joinville says, " make the payment." But it seems clear from 
what follows that this was only the preliminary counting. 

230 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Then I said to the king that it would be well if he sent for 
the Marshal of the Temple the master being dead and 
asked them to lend him the thirty thousand limes for the 
release of his brother. The king sent to fetch the Templars 
and directed me to lay the matter before them. When I had 
spoken to them, brother Stephen of Otricourt, who was 
Commander of the Temple, answered me thus: " Lord of 
Joinville, this advice that you have given to the king is 
neither good nor reasonable. For you know that we receive 
funds in such sort, that we are bound, by our oaths, not to 
deliver them up, save to those who have entrusted them to 
us," Many were the hard and angry words that passed 
between him and me. 

Then spoke brother Renaud of Vichier, who was Marshal 
of the Temple, and he said this: " Sire, let us set to one side 
this quarrel between the Lord of Joinville and our com 
mander; for indeed, as our commander says, we could not 
advance any of this money without being forsworn. And 
as to what the seneschal advises, viz., that if we will not lend 
you the money, you had better take it why, he says nothing 
that is very outrageous, and you must do as you think best; 
and if you do take what is ours here in Egypt, why, we have 
so much of what is yours at Acre, that you can easily in 
demnify us." 

I said to the king that I would go and take the money, if 
he so ordered; and he ordered me accordingly. So I went 
to one of the galleys belonging to the Temple, the chief 
galley, and when I wished to go down into the hold of the 
galley, where the treasure was, I asked the Commander of the 
Temple to come and see what I took; but he did not deign 
to do so. The marshal said he would come and be a witness 
to the violence I should do him. 

So soon as I had gone down to where the treasure was, I 
asked the Treasurer of the Temple, who was there, to give me 
the keys of a chest that lay before me ; and he, seeing I was 
thin and emaciated with sickness, and had on only such 
clothes as I had worn in prison, said he would give me none 
of them. Then I perceived a hatchet lying there, and lifted 
it, and said I would make of it the king s key. When the 
marshal saw this, he took me by the fist, and said : Lord, 
we see right well that you are using force against us, and we 
will cause the keys to be handed over to you." Then he 

Joinville s Chronicle 231 

ordered the treasurer to give me the keys, which he did. 
And when the marshal told the treasurer who I was, he was 
greatly astonished. 

I found that the chest that I opened belonged to Nicholas 
of Choisi, a sergeant of the king. I threw out the silver I 
found therein, and went and sat on the prow of our little 
vessel that had brought me. And I took the Marshal of 
France, and left him with the silver in the Templar s galley, 
and on the galley I put the Minister of the Trinity. On the 
galley the marshal handed the silver to the minister, and the 
minister gave it over to me on the little vessel where I sat. 
WTien we had ended and came towards the king s galley, I 
began to shout to the king: " Sire, sire, see how well I am 
furnished!" And the saintly man received me right 
willingly and right joyfully. We gave over what I had 
brought to those who were counting the money for the 


When the counting was over, the king s councillors, who 
had effected the counting, came to the king, and said that 
the Saracens would not deliver his brother until the money 
was actually in their possession. There were those of the 
council who thought that the king should not hand over the 
moneys until he had received his brother back. But the king 
replied that he would hand them over, seeing he had cove 
nanted with the Saracens to do so, and as for the Saracens, if 
they wished to deal honestly, they would also hold to the terms 
of their covenant. Then my Lord Philip of Nemours told the 
king that they had mis-counted, by a measure of ten thousand 
livres, to the prejudice of the Saracens. At this the king 
was very wroth, and said it was his will that the ten thousand 
limes should be restored, seeing he had covenanted to pay 
two hundred thousand livres before he left the river. Then 
I touched my Lord Philip with my foot, and told the king 
not to believe him, seeing that the Saracens were the wiliest 
reckoners in the whole world. And my Lord Philip said I 
was saying sooth, for he had only spoken in jest; and the 
king said such jests were unseemly and untoward. " And I 
command you," said the king to my Lord Philip, " by the 
fealty that you owe to me as being my liegeman which you 

232 Memoirs of the Crusades 

are that if these ten thousand livres have not been paid 
you will cause them to be paid without fail." 

Many people had advised the king to withdraw to his ship, 
which waited for him at sea, so as to be no longer in the hands 
of the Saracens. But he would never listen to them, saying 
he should not depart from the river, as he had covenanted, 
until such time as he had paid the two hundred thousand 
livres. So soon, however, as the payment had been made, 
the king, without being urged thereto, said that henceforth 
he was acquitted of his oaths, and that we should depart 
thence, and go to the ship that was on the sea. 

Then our galley was set in motion, and we went a full 
great league before one spoke to another, because of the 
distress in which we were at leaving the Count of Poitiers in 
captivity. 1 Then came my Lord Philip of Montfort in a 
galleon, and cried to the king: " Sire, sire! speak to your 
brother, the Count of Poitiers, who is in this other ship ! * 
Then cried the king: "Light up! light up! And they 
did so. Then was there such rejoicing among us that greater 
could not be. The king went to the count s ship, and we 
went too. A poor fisherman went and told the Countess of 
Poitiers that he had seen the Count of Poitiers released, and 

she caused twenty livres parts-is to be sriven to him. 

j i -> 


I ought not to forget certain things that happened in Egypt 
while we were there. First I will tell you of my Lord 
Gaucher of Chatillon. Now a knight, whose name was my 
Lord John of Monson, told me that he saw my Lord of 
Chatillon in a street of the village where the king was taken; 
and this street ran straight through the village, so that you 
could see the open fields at the one end and the other; and in 
this street was my Lord Gaucher of Chatillon, with his 
naked sword hi his fist. When he saw that the Turks came 
into the street he ran upon them, sword in hand, and sent 
them flying out of the village; and the Turks as they fled 
before him for they could shoot behind as well as before- 
covered him all with darts. When he had driven them out 
of the village, he pulled out the darts that he had upon him, 

1 Literally, " at the captivity of the Count of Poitiers." 

Joinville s Chronicle 233 

,nd then replaced his coat of armour, and rose in his stirrups> 
,nd lifted up his sword-arm, and cried: Chatillon, knight, 
Chatillon, where are my good men? When he turned and 
aw that the Turks had entered the street at the other end, 
ic ran upon them again, sword in hand, and sent them fly- 
ng; and this he did three times in the manner aforesaid. 

When the emir of the galleys took me to join those who 
tad been captured on land, I inquired for the Count of 
Chatillon among those who had been about him; but could 
ind no one to tell me how he was taken ; save that my Lord 
Tohn Fouinon, the good knight, told me that when he was 
dmself taken prisoner to Mansourah, he found a Turk 
Qounted on the horse of my Lord Gaucher of Chatillon; and 
he horse s crupper was all covered with blood. And my 
^ord John inquired of the Turk what he had*done to the man 
o whom that horse belonged? And the Turk replied that 
le had cut his throat, riding upon that horse, as might well 
)e seen from the crupper that was covered with blood. 

There was a very valiant man in the host, whose name 
vas my Lord James of Castel, Bishop of Soissons. When 
ae saw that our people were retreating towards Damietta, 
ic who had a great desire to be with God felt no wish to 
eturn to the country where he was born; so he made haste 
;o be with God, and set spurs to his horse, and fell single- 
landed upon the Turks, who killed him with their swords, 
ind thus set him in God s companionship, and among the 
lumber of the martyrs. 

While the king awaited the payment that was being made 
or the release of his brother, the Count of Poitiers, a Saracen 
fery well apparelled, and a very handsome man of his body, 
:ame to the king and presented him with milk taken in jars, 
ind flowers of divers colours and kinds, on behalf of the 
children of Nasac, who had been Soldan of Babylon; and 
le presented these gifts, speaking in French. 

The king asked him where he had learnt French; and he 
>aid that he had aforetime been a Christian. Then the king 
;aid: " Away, I will speak to you no further !" I drew him 
ipart, and asked what was his story. He told me he was 
Dorn at Provins, and that he had come to Egypt with King 
John, and that he was married in Egypt, and a man of great 
lote. And I said : " Do you not know very well that if you 
die in this condition you will be damned, and go to hell? " 

234 Memoirs oi the Crusades 

And he said " Yes," for he was assured no religion was as 
good as the Christian religion; " but I dare not face the 
poverty in which I should be, and the shame, if I returned 
to you. Every day they would say to me: Look at that 
renegade ! So I like better to live here rich and at ease 
rather than put myself in such a position as I foresee." And 
I told him he would have to suffer greater shame in the day 
of judgment, when his sin would be made manifest to all, 
than the shame of which he spoke. Many good words did I 
speak to him, but little did they avail. So he left me, and 
I never saw him more. 


Now you have heard, hi what has gone before, of the great 
tribulations which the king and all of us endured. From 
such tribulations the queen did not escape, as you shall 
presently be told. For, three days before she was brought to 
bed, came the news that the king was taken; with which 
news she was so affrighted that, as oft as she slept in her bed, 
it seemed to her that the chamber was full of Saracens, and 
she cried out, " Help ! help ! And so that the child she 
bore hi her body should not perish, she caused an ancient 
knight, of eighty years, to lie near her bed, and hold her by 
the hand; and every time she so cried out, he said: " Lady, 
have no fear, for I am here." 

Before she was brought to bed she caused every one to 
leave her chamber, save this knight only, and knelt before 
him, and besought him to do her a service; and the knight 
consented, and gave her his oath. And she said: " I ask 
of you, by the troth you have now pledged me, that if the 
Saracens take this city, you will cut off my head before I fall 
into their hands." And the knight replied: "Be assured 
that I shall do so willingly; for I was already fully minded 
to kill you or ever you should be taken." 

The queen was brought to bed of a son, who had for name 
John; and they called him Tristram for the great sorrow 
and anguish that were about his birth. On the very day that 
she was brought to bed, she was told that those of Pisa, and 
Genoa, and the other free cities, were minded to flee away; 
and on the day following she had them all called before her 
bed, so that the chamber was quite full, and said to them: 

Joinville s Chronicle 235 

Lords, for God s sake do not leave this city; for you see 
lat if this city were lost, my lord the king would be utterly 
>st, and all those who have been taken captive with him. 
nd if this moves you not, yet take pity upon the poor weak 
reature lying here, and wait till I am recovered." 

And they replied: " Lady, what can we do? For we are 
ying of hunger in this city." And she told them that for 
inline they need not depart, " for," said she, " I will cause all 
le food in this city to be bought, and will keep you all from 
enceforth at the king s charges." They advised together, 
ad came back to her, and said they consented to remain 
ght willingly. Then the queen whom may God have in 
[is grace ! caused all the food in the city to be bought at a 
)st of three hundred and sixty thousand limes and more, 
re due time she had to rise from her bed, because the city 
tust needs be surrendered to the Saracens. Then the queen 
ime to Acre to await the king. 


While the king was waiting for the deliverance of his 
rother, he sent brother Raoul, a preaching brother, to an 
:nir, whose name was Faress-Eddin Octay, one of the most 
>yal Saracens I have ever seen. And the king notified to 
ic emir that he greatly marvelled how he and the other 
nairs could have suffered the treaty to be so villainously 
roken; for they had killed the sick whom they were bound 
3 entertain, and made litter of his engines of war, and had 
urned the sick, as well as the salted swine s flesh that they 
rere bound to preserve. 

Faress-Eddin Octay answered brother Raoul, and said: 

Brother Raoul, tell the king that because of my law I am 
nable to help him in this matter, which is grievous to me. 
did tell him also, from me, to show no outward seeming of 
iscontent so long as he remains in our hands ; for that would 
e his death." And the emir was of opinion that so soon as 
be king came to Acre, he might bear the thing in mind." 1 

When the king came to his ship, he found that his people 
.ad prepared nothing for him, neither bed nor clothing. So 
.e had to lie, until we came to Acre, upon the mattresses the 

1 Or " remind him." Meaning obscure. 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

soldan had given him, and to wear the garments that th< 
soldan had caused to be made and given to him, and thes< 
were of black samite lined with minever and grey squirrel : 
fur, and round the said garments were a great quantity o 
buttons made all of fine gold. 

While we were on the sea, for six days, I, who was sick 
sat always beside the king. And he told me then how h< 
had been taken, and how, with the help of God, he ha< 
negotiated for his ransom and ours. And he made me tel 
how I had been taken on the water; and afterwards he tok 
me I owed great thanks to God for having delivered me fron 
so great perils. Much did he sorrow over the death of thi 
Count of Artois, his brother; and he said that the Count o 
Artois would very unwillingly have refrained from coming t( 
see him as the Count of Poitiers had done, and would cer 
tainly have come to see him on board his galleys. 

He also complained to me of the Count of Anjou, who wa; 
on board the same ship, because the Count of Anjou gav< 
him but little of his company. One day he asked what th< 
Count of Anjou was doing; and they told him he was playing 
at tables with my Lord Walter of Nemours. And he wen 
thither tottering, for he was weak by reason of sickness; an( 
he took the dice and the tables, and threw them into the sea 
and he was very wroth with his brother because he had st 
soon taken to playing at dice. But my Lord Walter cann 
off best, for he threw all the moneys on the table into his owi 
lap and they were very many and carried them away. 


Hereinafter you shall be told of many tribulations am 
troubles that I had at Acre, from which God, in Whom ". 
trusted, and still do trust, delivered me. And these thing! 
I shall cause to be written, so that those who hear them ma} 
have trust in God in their tribulation and troubles; and Go( 
will give them His help as also He did to me. 

Let us relate then how, when the king came to Acre, al 
the clergy and people of Acre came down to the sea in pro 
cession, to meet and receive him with very great rejoicings 
They brought me a palfrey. So soon as I was mounted, m? 
heart failed me, and I said to him who had brought th 
palfrey that he should hold me up, lest I should fall. Witl 

Joinville s Chronicle 237 

reat trouble was I taken up the steps of the king s hall. I 
rent and sat at a window, with a child near me: he was 
bout ten years of age, and called Bartholomew, and was the 
astard son of my lord Ami of Montb61iard, Lord of Mont- 
aucon. While I was sitting there, and no man taking heed 
f me, there came to me a varlet wearing a red tunic, with 
wo yellow stripes, and he saluted me and asked whether I 
new him ? and I said nay. And he told me he came from 
Hselay, my uncle s castle. And I asked him whose man he 
/as; and he said he had no master, and that he would 
emain with me, if I so desired. And I said I desired it right 
/ell. Then he went and fetched me white coifs, and combed 
le right well. 

Then the king sent for me to eat with him ; and I went in 
he vest that had been made for me while I was a prisoner, 
ut of the clippings of my coverlet; and my coverlet I left 
o the child Bartholomew, together with four ells of camlet 
hat had been given me, for the love of God, while I was a 
>risoner. Guillemin, my new varlet, came and carved 
>efore me, and obtained food for the child while we were 

My new varlet came and told me he had obtained a lodg- 
ng for me near the baths, where I might wash myself from 
;he filth and sweat I had brought from prison. When night 
:ame, and I was in the bath, my heart failed me, and I 
;wooned; and with great trouble was I taken out of the 
)ath and carried to my bed. The next day an old knight, 
whose name was my Lord Peter of Bourbonne, came to see 
ne, and I retained him by me ; he stood surety for me in the 
ity as regards what was wanted for my clothing and equip 

When I was fittingly arrayed, full four days after we came 
thither, I went to see the king ; and he reproved me, and said 
I had not done well in delaying so long to come and see him ; 
and he commanded me 4 as I valued his love, to eat with him 
every day, night and morning, until such time as he had 
decided what we should do: whether go back to France or 
remain there. 

I told the king that my Lord Peter of Courtenay owed me 
four hundred livres of my wages, which he would not pay to 
me. And the king replied that he would soon cause me to 
be paid out of the coin he owed to the Lord of Courtenay] 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

and so he did. By the advice of my Lord Peter of Bour 
bonne, we took forty limes for our expenses, and the res 
we gave into the keeping of the commander of the palace o 
the Temple. When the time came that I had expended th< 
forty livres, I sent the father of John Caym of Sainte-Mene 
hould, whom I had engaged in my service overseas, to fetcl 
another forty limes. The commander answered him tha 
he had no moneys of mine, and did not know me. 

I went thereon to brother Renaud of Vichiers, who hac 
by the king s help, and on account of the courtesy he hac 
shown to the king when a prisoner as I have already tok 
you been made Master of the Temple, and I complained t( 
him of his commander of the palace, who would not give m( 
back the moneys I had entrusted to him. When he hearc 
this, he was greatly moved, and said: " Lord of Joinville, ! 
love you well; but be assured if you will not desist fron 
urging this claim, I shall love you no more; for you wisl 
to make people believe that our brethren are robbers." An< 
I told him that, please God, I should not desist. 

Four days was I in this trouble of heart, as one who i 
altogether without money to spend. After these four day 
the master came to me laughing, and said he had found nr 
moneys. As to the manner in which they were found, it wa 
because he had changed the commander of the palace, am 
sent him to a village called Sephouri; and this man returnee 
me my moneys. 



The Bishop of Acres who then was he was a native o 
Provins caused the house of the priest of St. Michael to b 
lent to me. I had retained in my service Caym of Sainte 
Menehould, who served me well by the space of two years- 
better than any man I had with me in the land oversea 
and I had retained several other people in my service. An< 
it chanced that there was at my bed s head a closet througl 
which one went into the church. 

Now it happened that a continuous fever laid hold upoi 
me, so that I took to my bed, and all my people also. Anc 
never a day, at that time, had I any one to help me, or t< 
lift me up, and I looked forward to nothing but death 

Joinville s Chronicle 239 

;cause of a warning that was in mine ear continually; for 
-cry day they brought into the church twenty dead men or 
ore, and from my bed, each time they were brought in, I 
. iard the chant: " Liber a me, Domtne" Then would I 
^ep, and render thanks to God, and speak to Him thus: 
Lord, I render to Thee worship for this suffering that Thou 
tst sent me; for much pride and display has there been 
my down-lying and uprising. And I pray Thee, Lord, to 
iliver me from this sickness." And so the Lord did, both 
e and my people. 

After these things I required Guillemin, my new squire, to 
nder me an account, and he did so ; and I found that he 
id done me wrong to the extent of ten livres tournois, and 
ore. And when I demanded them of him, he said he 
Duld return them to me when .he could. I dismissed him, 
id told him I forgave him what he owed me, for he had 
served it well. I afterwards learned from the knights of 
urgundy, when they returned from captivity for they had 
ought him to the lands oversea that he was the most 
urteous thief that ever was ; for whenever a knight wanted 
knife, or a strap, gloves or spurs, or any other thing, he 
ent and stole it, and then gave it to him. 
At the time when the king was in Acre, the king s brothers 
ok to playing at dice; and the Count of Poitiers played so 
urteously that, when he had won he caused the hall to be 
rown open, and the gentlemen to be called in, and the 
dies, if there were any, and gave away handfuls, as well of 
s own money as of what he had won. And when he had 
st, he purchased, by estimate, the money of those with 
horn he had been playing, whether it were his brother the 
>unt of Anjou, or others, and gave away all, his own money 
id that of the other people. 


At the time when we were at Acre, the king sent, one Sun- 
ly, for his brother the Count of Flanders and the other men 
: note, and spoke to them thus : " Lords, my lady the queen, 
.y mother, has sent to me, and beseeches me, as urgently as 
le can, to return to France, because my kingdom is in great 
eril, seeing that I have neither peace nor truce with the 
ling of England. Those belonging to this land, with whom 

240 Memoirs of the Crusades 

I have spoken, tell me that, if I depart, this land is but lost 
for all those who are in Acre will follow after me, none darhij 
to remain when the people are so few. So I pray you," sai< 
he, c to think well upon this matter; and because it is o 
great import, I will give you time, and you shall answer me 
according as you think right, eight days from to-day." 

During these eight days the legate came to me and sai< 
that he did not see how the king could remain oversea ; am 
he besought me, very instantly, to return with him in hi 
ship. And I told him this was not within my power; for 
was without means, having, as he knew, lost all my posses 
sions on the water, when I was taken prisoner. 

And I gave him this answer, not because I would not ver 
willingly have gone with him, but because of a word whid 
my Lord of Bourlemont, my cousin-german God rest hi 
soul ! spoke to me when I was going oversea. " You ar 
going oversea," said he, " now take heed how you come back 
for no knight, be he poor or be he rich, can come back with 
out dishonour if he leaves in the hands of the Saracens th 
meaner folk of our Lord, in whose company he went forth. 
The legate was wroth with me, and told me I should no 
have refused his proposal. 


On the Sunday after, we came again before the king; an 
the king asked his brothers, and the other barons, and th 
Count of Flanders, what advice they gave, whether to go c 
to remain. They all replied, that they had charged my Lor 
Guy of Mauvoisin to state the advice they wished to give t 
the king. The king commanded the Lord Guy to stat 
this advice accordingly ; and he spake as follows : Sire 
your brothers, and the men of note here present, have looke 
to your estate, and seen that you cannot remain in this Ian 
to your own honour, and that of your realm; for of all th 
knights that came in your company of whom you led tw 
thousand eight hundred into Cyprus there are not now, i 
this city, one hundred remaining. So they advise you, sin 
that you go to France, and there procure men and monej 
whereby you may hastily return to this land, and take ver 

Joinville s Chronicle 241 


ance upon the enemies of God, who have had you in 

The king would not rest satisfied with what my Lord Guy 
auvoisin had said; but he inquired of the Count of Anjou, 
.e Count of Poitiers, and the Count of Flanders, and several 
her men of note who sat near them. And all agreed with 
y Lord Guy Mauvoisin. The legate asked Count John of 
iff a, who sat behind them, what he thought. The Count 

Jaffa begged that they would suffer him not to reply to 
is question, " for," said he, " my castle is on the marches, 
id if I advised the king to remain, men would think I did so 

my own profit.-" Then the king asked him, as urgently 

he could, to say what he thought. And the count said 
iat if the king could but hold the field for a year, he would 
> himself great honour by remaining. Then the legate in- 
lired of those who were sitting by the Count of Jaffa, and 
1 agreed with my Lord Guy Mauvoisin. 

I was sitting about the fourteenth in front of the legate, 
e asked me what I thought; and I replied that I agreed 
ith the Count of Jaffa. And the legate asked me, all in 
roth, how the king could hold the field with so few men as 
3 had ? And I replied, all in wroth also, because methought 
iat he said this to anger me : " Sir, I will tell you, as you 
;em to desire it. It is said, sir, but I know not if it be true, 
iat the king has not yet spent any of his own moneys, but 
ily the moneys of the clergy. So let the king bring his 
loneys to the spending, and let the king send to obtain 
nights from Morea, and from oversea; and when they hear 
ill that the king is paying well and largely, the knights will 
)me from all parts, whereby, if God so pleases, he will be 
Die to hold the field for a year. And by his so remaining, 
e will cause to be delivered the poor captives who have been 
iken in the service of God, and in his service, and who will 
ever go free if he departs hence." There was no one in 
iat place who had not near friends in captivity ; so no one 
^proved me, and all began to weep. 

After me, the legate asked my Lord William of Beaumont, 
r ho was then Marshal of France, what he thought; and he 
lid that I had spoken very well, " and I will tell you," said 
e, " the reason why." (At this) my Lord John of Beau- 
lont, the good knight, who was his uncle and had a great 
tesire to return to France, cried out upon him in foul terms 

242 Memoirs of the Crusades 

and said: "What have you got to say, son of the nltt 
tongue? Sit down and keep quiet! " The king said: " ]M 
Lord John, you do wrong. Let him speak." " Certes, sir 
I shall not do so." The marshal however thought it we 
to keep silence; nor did any one afterwards agree with m 
save the Lord of Chatenai. 

Then the king said : " Lords, I have heard you duly ; ar 
I will give you my answer as to what it pleases me to d 
eight days from to-day. 


When we came away from thence they began to fiout n 
on all sides. " Now, Lord of Joinville, the king must hide* 
be crazy if he does not listen to you in preference to tl 
council of all the realm of France ! When the tables we: 
set, the king made me sit beside him during the meal, whe: 
he was always used to make me sit if his brothers were n< 
present. Never a word did he say to me as long as the me 
lasted, which was not according to his custom, for he alwa] 
took note of me when we were eating. And indeed I thougl 
he was wroth with me because I said he had not yet spei 
any of his moneys, and should spend largely. 

While the king was hearing grace, I went to a bam 
window that was in an embrasure towards the head of tl 
king s bed, and I passed my arms through the bars of tl 
window, and thought that if the king went back to France, 
should go to the Prince of Antioch, who held me for his kin 
man, and had asked me to come to him (and there remaii 
until such time as another expedition came out to the Ian 
oversea, whereby the captives might be delivered, accordir 
to the counsel the Lord of Boulaincourt had given me. 

And while I was there, the king came and leant upon m 
shoulders, and placed his two hands upon my head; and 
thought it was my Lord Philip of Nemours, who had alread 
tormented me too much that day because of the advice I ha 
given, and I spoke thus: c Leave me in peace, my Loi 
Philip ! By chance, as I was turning my head, the king 
hand fell upon my face, and I knew it was the king becaus 
of an emerald that he had on his finger. And he saic 
" Keep quite quiet, for I want to ask how you came to be s 

Joinville s Chronicle 243 

old, you who are but a young man, as to advise me to 
emain here, against the advice of all the great men and wise 
f France, who counselled me to depart? 3 
" Sire," said I, " even if I had so ill a thought in my heart, 
should by no means so counsel you." " Do you mean to 
ay," he replied, " that I should be doing wrong if I de- 
larted ? " So God help me, sire, yes," said I. And he 
aid to me: " If I remain, will you remain also? And I 
old him yes, " if I can, either at my own charges or the 
harges of another." " Now be quite easy in your mind," 
aid he, " for I am very well pleased with you for the counsel 
f ou have given; but do not tell this to any one till the week 
5 out." 

I was more at ease after hearing these words, and defended 
lyself with the greater boldness against those who attacked 
ae. Now the peasants of that land are called colts ; and 
laster Peter of Avallon, who lived at Sur, heard tell that I 
*ras being called a colt, because I had advised the king to 
emain among the colts ; so Master Peter of Avallon sent to 
ell me I should defend myself against those who called me 
olt, and say to them that I liked better to be a colt than a 
)roken-down hack, such as they were. 



The following Sunday we all came back again before the 
:ing; and when the king saw we were all assembled, he 
nade the sign of the cross upon his mouth (invoking thereby, 
;<is I think, the aid of the Holy Spirit, for my lady mother 
mce told me that every time I wished to say aught, I should 
nvoke the aid of the Holy Spirit, and make the holy sign 
ipon my mouth). And the words which the king spoke were 
hese: " Lords, I greatly thank those who have advised me 
;o return to France, and I thank also those who have advised 
ne to remain here. But I bethink me that if I remain there 
vill be no danger of loss to my realm ; for my lady the queen 
las people enough to defend it; and I consider also that the 
rarons of this land tell me that if I depart hence, the kingdom 
)f Jerusalem is lost, for none will dare to remain after I have 
eft. I have therefore decided that I will by no means 
ibandon the kingdom of Jerusalem, which I came hither to 

244 Memoirs of the Crusades 

>guard and re-conquer. So my conclusion is, that for tin 
present I remain here. And I say to you all, you men o 
note that are here, as also to such other knights as may wisl 
to remain with me, that you come and speak to me boldly 
and I will give you so much that the fault will not be mine 
but yours, if you be not willing to remain." Many tha 
heard these words were filled with amazement, and maor 

J m 

there were that wept. 


The king ordered, so it is said, that his brothers shoul< 
return to France. Whether this was at their own request 
or by the king s will, I know not. The words that the kin; 
had spoken with regard to his remaining oversea were spoke] 
about the feast of St. John. Now it happened that on th 
day of the feast of St. James, 1 whose pilgrim I was, an< 
who had conferred great benefits upon me the king wen 
back to the chamber in which his mass was said, and calle< 
together his council, who had remained with him, viz., m; 
Lord Peter the chamberlain, who was the most loyal ant 
upright man I ever saw in the king s household; my Lor< 
Geoffrey of Sargines, the good knight and right worthy man 
my Lord Giles le Brun, good knight and right worthy mar 
to whom the king had given the constableship of Franc 
after the death of my Lord Imbert of Beaujeu, the righ 
worthy man. 

To these the king spoke after the following manner, in ; 
loud voice, and as one not well pleased : Lords, it is alread; 
a month past that men know I have settled to remain here 
and I have not yet heard tell that you have retained an; 
knights in my service." " Sire," said they, we can non 
other; for all rate their services so high, because they wis! 
to return to their own land, that we dare not give them wha 
they ask." " And whom," said the king, " would you b 
able to obtain cheapest? " " Certainly," they replied, " th 
Seneschal of Champagne, " but we dare not give him wha 
he asks." 

I was in the king s chamber, and heard these words. The: 
the king said: " Call me the seneschal." I went to him, an* 

1 The 25th July 1250. 

Joinville s Chronicle 245 

nelt before him. He caused me be seated, and spoke thus i 
Seneschal, you know that I have loved you much; and my 
sople tell me they find you hard to deal with. How is 
lis? " " Sire," I replied, " I can none other; for as you 
now, I was taken prisoner on the water, and none of my 
Dssessions were then left to me ; I lost all." And he asked 
ie what I demanded ; and I said I demanded two thousand 
vres till Easter, for the two-thirds of the year. 
" Now tell me," said he, " have you tried to make a bar- 
iin with any knights? and I said, Yes, with my Lord 
eter of Pontmolain, the third of three knights-banneret, 
ho would each cost four hundred limes till Easter." He 
jckoned on his fingers: " That makes twelve hundred livres 
rat your new knights will cost you." " Now bethink you, 
re," said I, " if it will not cost me full eight hundred limes 

> procure horse and armour for myself, and to get food for 
ty knights; for you would not have us eat in your house." 
hen he said to his people : In truth, I see nothing out- 
tgeous in this; and I retain your services," said he to me. 


After these things the king s brothers got their ships ready, 

> did also the other men of note and wealth that were in 
ere. At the time of their departing, the Count of Poitiers 
arrowed jewels from those who were going back to France; 
id to us, who remained, he gave of them freely and liberally. 
!uch did the one and the other brother beseech me to have 
Dod care of the king ; and they told me there was none other 
jmaining with him on whom they placed such reliance, 
fhen the Count of Anjou saw the time had come when he 
iust embark, he showed such sorrow that all were astonished, 
evertheless he went back to France. 

Not long after the king s brothers had left Acre, there came 
woys to the king from the Emperor Frederic, bringing 
tters of credence, and saying to the king that the emperor 
id sent them to effect our deliverance. They showed the 
ing the letter which the emperor was sending to the soldan 
ho was dead for the emperor did not know of his death 
id telling the soldan to give ear to what the envoys had to 
iy with regard to the deliverance of the king. Many said 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

it would not have been well for us if the envoys had found us 
in captivity; for they thought the emperor had sent the 
envoys rather to embarrass us than to set us free. The 
envoys found us free, so they went their way. 

While the king was at Acre, the Soldan of Damascus sent 
envoys to the king, and complained greatly of the emirs of 
Egypt, who had killed his cousin; and he promised the king 
that, if he would help him, he would deliver up to him the 
kingdom of Jerusalem, which was in his the soldan s 
hand. The king decided to make answer to the Soldan of 
Damascus through envoys of his own, whom he sent to the 
soldan. With these envoys went Brother Yves le Breton, of 
the order of the Preaching Brothers, who knew the Saracen 

While they were going from their hostel to the palace of 
the soldan, Brother Yves saw an old woman going across the 
street, and she bore in her right hand a dish full of fire, and 
in her left a phial full of water. Brother Yves asked her: 
"What are you doing with these? 3 And she answered 
that with the fire she was minded to burn up paradise, 
so that there should be none remaining; and with the 
water to quench hell, so that there should be none 
remaining. And he asked: "Why wilt thou do this? 
" Because I would that none should do good to have the 
guerdon of paradise, or because of the fear of hell, but solely 
for the love of God, who is all-worthy and can do for us what 
soever is best." 


John the Armenian, who was artilleryman to the king, went 
at that time to Damascus, to buy horn and glue for the 
making of crossbows; and he saw an old man, very aged, 
seated in the bazaar of Damascus. This aged man called to 
him and asked him if he were a Christian; and he said " Yes/ 3 
And the aged man said to him: " Much must you Christians 
hate one another; for once upon a time I saw King Baldwin 
of Jerusalem, who was a leper, discomfiting Saladin, and 
Baldwin had with him but three hundred men-at-arms, 
whereas Saladin had three thousand; but now you have been 
brought to so low estate by your sins that we take you in the 
fields as if you were wild beasts." 

Joinville s Chronicle 247 

Then John the Armenian said he would do well to hold his 
ace with regard to the sins of the Christians, seeing that * 
ie sins committed by the Saracens were far greater. And 
ie Saracen replied that he had answered foolishly. And 
)hn asked why? And the Saracen said he would tell him 
hy; but first he would ask him a question. So he asked 
m if he had any child? And John said: "Yes, a son." 
tid he asked which would annoy him most, if he received a 
iflet that that buffet should be administered by his son, 
by him, the Saracen ? And John said, he would be more 
igry with his son, if he did this thing, than with the Saracen. 
" Then I will tell thee why," said the Saracen; " it is after 
is manner: you Christians hold yourselves to be sons of 
Dd, and after His name of Christ you are called Christians; 
id such has been His courtesy towards you, that He has 
ven you teachers by whom you may know when you do 
2ll and when you do evil. Therefore God is more wroth 
ith you for a little sin that you may commit than with us 
r a great sin, seeing we commit it in ignorance, and are so 
ind that we think we shall be free of all our sins if we wash 
irselves with water before we die; because Mahomet told 
that by water we shall be saved at our deaths." 
John the Armenian was once in my company, after I 
turned from overseas and was going to Paris. While we 
*re at meat in the pavilion, a great crowd of poor folk came 
beg of us for God s sake, and made a great clamour. One 
our people who was there gave orders to a varlet, saying : 
Up, up, and drive out these wretches ! " " Ah ! " said 
>hn the Armenian, " you have spoken very ill; for if the 
ing of France were presently to send to each one of us by 
s messengers one hundred marks of silver, we should not 
ive those messengers away ; and yet you drive away these 
essengers who offer the utmost than can be given. For 
ey ask you to give to them for God s sake, which means 
at you will give them what is yours, and they (in return) 
11 give you God Himself. For God has said out of His 
m mouth that the poor have power to make gift of Him- 
If to us, and the saints say that the poor can bring us into 
reement with Him; for like as water extinguishes fire, so 
alms extinguish sin. Let it never therefore happen," said 
hn, that you drive away the poor thus. But give unto 
em, and God will give unto you." 

K 333 


Memoirs of the Crusades 


While the king was sojourning at Acre, envoys came 1 
him from the Old Man of the Mountain. When the kir 
returned from his mass, he caused them to be brought befo 
him. The king had them seated in such manner that the: 
was, in front, an emir well clothed and well appointed, ar 
behind the emir, a young bachelor, well appointed, who he 
in his fist three knives, of which the one entered into tl 
handle of the other; and these knives, if the emir s pr 
posals were rejected, he was to present to the king in toke 
of defiance. Behind the bachelor who held the three knive 
was another, and he had a strong (winding) sheet wour 
round about his arm, and this he was to present to the kii 
for his burial, if he refused the demands of the Old Man 
the Mountain. 

The king told the emu: to say what was his will; and tl 
emir presented his letters of credence, and spoke thus: " IV! 
lord sends me to ask if you know him ? 3 And the kii 
answered that he did not know him, for he had never set 
him ; but that he had often heard tell of him. " And seeii 
that you have heard tell of my lord," said the emir, " 
marvel greatly that you have not sent him so much of yoi 
substance as would keep him for your friend like as tl 
Emperor of Germany, the King of Hungary, the Soldan 
Babylon, and the rest do year by year, because they knc 
of a certainty that they can only keep their lives as long 
my lord pleases. And if it does not suit you to do this, th< 
cause him to be acquitted of the tribute that he owes to tl 
Hospital and to the Temple, and he will cry quits with you 
(Now at that time the Old Man of the Mountain paid a tribu 
to the Temple and to the Hospital, for the Templars ar 
Hospitallers stood in no fear of the Assassins, seeing that tl 
Old Man had nothing to gain by the death of the Master 
the Temple or of the Hospital, inasmuch as he knew vei 
well that if he caused one to be killed, another, equally goo 
would be put in his place. Wherefore he had no wish i 
sacrifice his Assassins in a service where there was nothing i 
be gained.) 

Joinville s Chronicle 249 

The king answered the emir that he would see him again 
the afternoon. 

When the emir returned, he found the king seated so that 
le Master of the Hospital was on the one side of him and 
le Master of the Temple on the other. Then the king told 
te emir to say again what he had said in the morning. And 
ie emir replied he had no intention of repeating what he 
id said save in the presence of those who had been with the 
jig in the morning. Then the two masters said: "We 
)mmand you to repeat what you said." And he answered 
lat as they commanded it he would do so. Then the two 
asters caused him to be told, in the Saracen tongue, that he 
lould come on the morrow and speak to them at the 

When he came to them on the morrow the two masters 
tused him to be told that his lord was very rash in daring 
> address such rude words to the king; and they caused 
m to be told further, that if it were not for the king s 
)nour, to whom they had come as envoys, they should have 
?en drowned in the foul sea of Acre, in their lord s despite. 
And we command you to return to your lord, and to come 
ick here within fifteen days, bringing to the king, on the 
irt of your lord, such letters, and such jewels, that the king 
ay hold himself appeased, and have you in his good grace. 3 


Within fifteen days the envoys of the Old Man of the 
ountain returned to Acre, and brought to the king the Old 
an s shirt; and they told the king, on the Old Man s part, 
lat this signified that as the shirt is nearer to the body than 
ly other garment, so did the Old Man hold the king to be 
^arer to himself in love than any other king. And the Old 
an sent to the king his ring, which was of very fine gold, 
ith his name written thereon; and he sent word that with 
us ring he espoused the king, wishing that henceforward 
ley should be as one. Among the other jewels that he 
;nt to the king, he sent an elephant of crystal, very well 
.shioned, and a beast called a giraffe, of crystal also, and 
Dples of divers kinds of crystal, and games of tables and 

250 Memoirs of the Crusades 

chess. And all these things were embowered in ambergris 
and the ambergris was tied to the crystal with delicately 
wrought fastenings of good fine gold. And you must kno^ 
that when the envoys opened the caskets containing thes 
things, it seemed as if the whole chamber were full of balm 
so sweet was the odour that came therefrom. 

The king sent back the envoys to the Old Man, and wit) 
them a great foison of jewels, cloths of scarlet, cups of gold 
and horses bits of silver; and with the envoys the king sen 
Brother Yves le Breton, who knew the Saracen tongue. An* 
Brother Yves found that the Old Man of the Mountain di 
not believe in Mahomet, but believed in the law of Ali, wh 
was uncle to Mahomet. 

This Ali raised Mahomet to the place of honour which h 
held; and when Mahomet had obtained lordship over th 
people, he despised his uncle, and withdrew himself fror 
him. And when Ali saw this, he gathered to him as man 
people as he could, and taught them another belief tha 
Mahomet had taught; whence it still comes that all wh 
believe in the law of Ali say that those who believe in the la 1 
of Mahomet are miscreants; while contrariwise those wh 
believe in the law of Mahomet say that those who believe i 
the law of Ali are miscreants. 

One of the points taught by the law of Ali is, that when 
man gets himself killed doing the commands of his lord, hi 
soul goes into a pleasanter body than before; and therefor 
the Assassins do not hesitate to get themselves killed whe 
their lord so orders, because they believe they will then be i 
better case after they are dead. 

Another point is this : that they believe no man can di 
until the day appointed for him; and this belief no ma 
should hold, seeing that God has power to prolong our live: 
or to shorten them. And on this point the Bedouins accep 
the law of Ali, for which reason they will not put on armoi 
when they go into battle, since by so doing they think the 
would be acting contrary to the commandment of their lav 
And when they curse their children they say: Let thei 
be upon thee the curse of the Frank, who puts on armov 
for fear of death." 

Brother Yves found a book by the head of the Old Man 
bed, and in that book were written many words that our Lor 
when on earth had said to St. Peter. And Brother Yves sai 

Joinville s Chronicle 251 

to him: " Ah! for God s sake, sire, read often in this book, 
for these are vervgood words/ 3 And the Old Man said he 
ofttimes did so/^^inoenollrt^ 

rery d<ear"to"nie; for at the beginning of the world the soul 
of Abel, when he was killed, went into the body of Noah; 
ind when Noah died it returned into the body of Abraham; 
md from the body of Abraham, when he died, it came into 

:^.at that tim^jwhenj^d^camejon-earth^ 
Brother Yves heard this, he showed him that his 
:reed was not sound, and taught him with many good words; 
out the Old Man would not listen to him. And these things 
Brother Yves told to the king, when he came back to us. 

When the Old Man rode abroad, a crier went before him 
bearing a Danish axe, with a long haft all covered with silver, 
md many knives affixed to the haft; and the crier cried: 
" Turn aside from before him who bears in his hands the 
death of kings ! 


I had forgotten to tell you of the reply that the king made 
to the Soldan of Damascus which was this : that he had no 
intent to join with the soldan until such time as he knew 
whether the emirs of Egypt would do him right for the treaty 
they had broken ; and that he would send to the emirs, and 
if they would not do him right for the broken treaty, then 
he would willingly help the soldan to avenge his cousin, the 
Soldan of Babylon, whom they had slain. 

While the king was at Acre he sent my Lord John of 
Valenciennes into Egypt, who demanded of the emirs that 
they should make reparation for the outrages and wrongs 
they had done to the king. And they said they would do so 
willingly, provided the king would enter into an alliance 
with them against the Soldan of Damascus. My Lord John 
of Valenciennes blamed them greatly for the wrongs done to 
the king, which have been stated above ; and he advised that 
it would be well, in order to dispose the heart of the king 
to kindness towards them, if they sent him all the knights 
they held in captivity. And this they did; and. of further 

252 Memoirs of the Crusades 

courtesy, they sent all the bones of Count Walter of Brienne, 
so that they might be buried in holy earth. 

When my Lord John of Valenciennes was come back to 
Acre, with two hundred knights that he brought from cap 
tivity, not counting the other people, my Lady of Sayette, 
who was cousin to Count Walter and sister to my Lord 
Walter, Lord of Reynel whose daughter John, Lord of 
Joinville, took to wife after his return from overseas then 
my Lady of Sayette, I say, took the bones of Count Walter 
and caused them to be buried in the Church of the 
Hospitallers in Acre. And she caused the service to be done 
in such manner that each knight offered a taper and a 
denier of silver, and the king offered a taper and a besant of 
gold, and all at the charges of my Lady of Sayette. And 
much the people marvelled when the king did this, for he had 
never before been seen to offer money not his own. But 
this he did of his courtesy. 


Among the knights that my Lord John of Valenciennes 
had brought back, I found full forty who belonged to the 
court of Champagne. I caused tunics and surcoats of green 
cloth to be fashioned for them, and led them before the king, 
and begged him to deal with them in such sort that they 
should remain in his service. The king heard what they 
asked for, and held his peace. 

And one of the knights of his council said I did not well 
when I brought such proposals to the king, seeing that the 
king had already full seven thousand men too many wearing 
his livery. 1 And I told him it was great pity he should 
speak thus ; and that among us, the men of Champagne, we 
had lost at least thirty-five knights, all bannerets, and of the 
court of Champagne; and I said further: " The king will not 
do well if he listens to you, seeing in what need he is of 
knights." After these words I began to weep very bitterly; 
and the king told me to hold my peace, and that he would 

1 M. de Wailly translates livree into modern French as livre, the 
coin. I agree, however, with Miss Wedgwood in thinking that Join 
ville used the term as meaning what indeed it is livree, a livery. 

Joinville s Chronicle 253 

ive these knights all I had asked. So the king engaged 
hem as I wished, and placed them in my battalion. 

The king gave answer to the envoys from Egypt that he 
/ould make no treaty with them, unless they sent him all 
he heads of Christians that they had hung round the walls 
>f Cairo since the time when the Count of Bar and the Count 
f Montf ort were taken prisoners ; and unless they delivered 
ip all the children who had been taken young and had denied 
heir faith; and unless they gave him quittance for the two 
lundred thousand livres that he still owed them. Together 
nth the envoys of the emirs of Egypt, the king sent to 
Babylon my Lord John of Valenciennes, a wise man and a 

At the beginning of Lent the king prepared, with all the 
orces he had, to go and fortify Csesarea, which the Saracens 
tad destroyed, and which was twelve leagues from Acre, on 
he way towards Jerusalem. My Lord Raoul of Soissons, 
vho had remained sick in Acre, went with the king to fortify 
.sesarea, I know not how it was, save that such was God s 
vill, but the Saracens never did us harm during the whole 
ear. While the king was fortifying Csesarea, the envoys of 
he Tartars returned, and we will now tell you of the news 
hey brought. 


As I have told you before, while the king was sojourning 
n Cyprus, envoys came from the Tartars and gave him to 
inderstand that they would help him to conquer the king- 
lorn of Jerusalem from the Saracens. The king sent back 
shese envoys, and sent with him, by his own envoys, a 
chapel which he had caused to be fashioned all in scarlet; 
ind in order to draw the Tartars to our faith, he had caused 
ill our faith to be imaged in the chapel: the Annunciation of 
the angel, the Nativity, the baptism that God was baptised 
withal, and all the Passion, and the Ascension, and the 
coming of the Holy Ghost; and with the chapel he sent also 
cups, books, and all things needful for the chanting of the 
mass, and two Preaching Brothers to sing the mass before 
the Tartars. 

The king s envoys arrived at the port of Antioch; and 

254 Memoirs of the Crusades 

from Antioch it took them full a year s journeying, riding ten 
leagues a day, to reach the great King of the Tartars. They 
found all the land subject to the Tartars, and many cities 
that they had destroyed, and great heaps of dead men s 

They inquired how the Tartars had arrived at such 
authority, and killed and utterly confounded so many 
people; and this was how, as the envoys reported it to the 
king: The Tartars came, being there creajted, from a great 
plain of sand where no good thing would grow. This plain 
began from certain rocks, very great antl marvellous, which 
are at the world s end, towards the East; and the said rocks 
have never been passed by man, as tXe Tartars testify. And 
they said that within these rocks #re enclosed the people of 
Gog and Magog, who are to conW at the end of the world, 
when Antichrist shall come to destroy all things. 

In this plain dwelt the people of the Tartars; and they 
were subject to Prester John, and to the Emperor of Persia, 
whose land came next to his, and to several other misbeliev 
ing kings, to whom they rendered tribute and service every 
year, for the pasturage of their beasts, seeing they had no 
other means of livelihood. This Prester John, and the King 
of Persia, and the other kings, held the Tartars in such con 
tempt that when they brought their rents they would not 
receive them face-wise, but turned their backs upon them. 

Among the Tartars was a wise man, who journeyed over 
all the plains, and spoke with the wise men of the plains, and 
of the different places, and showed them in what bondage 
they stood, and prayed them all to consider how best they 
might find a way of escape from the bondage in which they 
were held. He wrought so effectually that he gathered 
them all together at the end of the plain, over against the 
land of Prester John, and explained matters to them. And 
they answered that whatever he desired, that they would do. 
And he said that they would achieve nothing unless they had 
a king and lord over them. And he taught them after what 
manner they might obtain a king; and they agreed. 

And this was the manner: out of the fifty-two tribes that 
there were, each tribe was to bring an arrow marked with its 
name ; and by consent of all the people it was agreed that 
the fifty-two arrows so brought should be placed before a 
child aged five years; and the arrow that the child took first 

Joinville s Chronicle 255 

i r ould mark the tribe from which the king would be chosen, 
ftien the child had so lifted up one of the arrows, the wise men 
aused all the other tribes to draw back; and it was settled 
lat the tribe from which the king was to be chosen should 
sleet among themselves fifty-two of the wisest and best men 
lat they had. When these were elected, each one brought 

^;n arrow marked with his name. Then was it agreed that 
le man whose arrow the child lifted up should be made king, 
jid the child lifted up one of the arrows, and it was that of 

: ic wise man by whom the people had been instructed, 
"hen were the people glad, and each rejoiced greatly. And 
le wise man bade them all be silent, and said: " Lords, if 

ou would have me to be your king, swear to me by Him who 

| lade the heavens and the earth, that you will keep my com- 
landments." And they swore it. 

The ordinances that he established had for purpose the 
laintenance of peace among the people; and they were to 
lis effect: that none should steal another man s goods, nor 
ay man strike another, on penalty of losing his fist; that 

man should have company with another s wife or 
aughter, on penalty of losing his fist, or his life. Many 
ther good ordinances did he establish among them for the 
taintenance of peace. 


After he had established order and arrayed them, the 
ing spoke in this wise: " Lords, the most powerful enemy 
latwe have is Prester John. And I command you to be all 
&dy, on the morrow, to fall upon him ; and if it so happens 
lat he defeats us which God forbid ! let each do as best 
3 can. And if we defeat him, I order that the slaying last 
iree days and three nights, and that none, during that 
>ace, be so rash as to lay hand on the booty, but all be bent 

1 slaying the people ; for after we have obtained the victory, 
will distribute the booty, duly and loyally, so that each . 
lall hold himself well paid." To this they all agreed. 

On the morrow they fell upon their enemies, and, as God 
) willed, discomfited them. All those whom they found in 
rms, and capable of defence, they put to the sword; and 
lose whom they found in religious garb, the priests and 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

other religiouses, they slew not. The other people belonging 
to Prester John s land, who were not in that battle, made 
themselves subject unto the Tartars. 

One of the princes of the tribes spoken of above,, was lost 
for three months, so that no one had news of him ; and when 
he came back he was neither athirst nor an hungered, for he 
thought he had remained away no more than one night at 
the most. The news that he brought back was this : that he 
had gone to the top of a tall hillock and had found thereon 
a great many folk, the fairest folk that he had ever seen, the 
best clothed and the best adorned; and at the end of the 
hillock he saw sitting, a king, fairer than the rest, and bettei 
clothed, and better adorned ; and this king sat upon a throne 
of gold. At his right sat six kings, crowned, richly adornec 
with precious stones, and at his left six kings. Near him 
at his right hand, was a queen kneeling, and she prayed anc 
besought him to think upon her people ; at his left hand kneli 
a man of exceeding beauty, and he had two wings resplendem 
as the sun. And round the king were a great foison of fai: 
folk with wings. Then the king called the prince to him, anc 
said: " Thou art come from the host of the Tartars." Anc 
he replied: " Sire, that is so, truly." And the king said 
" Thou shalt go to thy king and tell him that thou hast seer 
me, who am lord of heaven and earth; and thou shalt tel 
him to render thanks to me for the victory I have given hin 
over Prester John, and over his people. And thou shalt tel 
him also, as from me, that I give him power to bring th< 
whole earth under his subjection." ( Sire," said the prince 
" how will he then believe me? " Thou shalt tell him t( 
believe thee by these signs: that thou shalt go and figh 
against the Emperor of Persia, with three hundred of th> 
people, and no more ; and in order that your great king ma] 
believe that I have power to do all things, I shall give the< 
the victory over the Emperor of Persia, who will do battlt 
against thee with three hundred thousand armed men, anc 
more; and before thou goest to do battle against him, thoi 
shalt ask of thy king to give thee the priests and men o 
religion whom he has taken in the (late) battle; and wha; 
these teach, that thou shalt firmly believe, thou and all thj 
people." " Sire," said the prince, " I cannot go hence, il 
thou dost not cause me to be shown the way." 

Then the king turned towards a great multitude of knights 

Joinville s Chronicle 257 

so well armed that it was a marvel to see them; and he 
called one of them, and said: " George, come hither." And 
the knight came and knelt before him. Then the king said 
to him: " Rise, and lead me this man safe and sound to his 
tent." And this the knight did at the dawning of a certain 

As soon as all his people saw the prince, they made such 
joy of him, as did all the host likewise, that it was past the 
telling. He asked the great king to give him the priests, and 
he gave them to him ; and then the prince and all his people 
received the priests teaching so favourably that they were 
all baptised. After these things the prince took three 
hundred men-at-arms, and caused them to be confessed and 
to make ready for battle, and then went and fought against 
the Emperor of Persia, and defeated him, and drove him 
from his kingdom, so that the said emperor came flying to 
the kingdom of Jerusalem; and this was the same emperor 
who discomfited our people, and took Count Walter of 
Brienne prisoner, as shall be told to you hereinafter. 



The people of this Christian prince were so numerous that 
the king s envoys told us that he had in his camp eight 
hundred chapels on waggons. Their manner of living is 
such that they eat no bread, and live on meat and milk. 
The best meat they have is horseflesh; and they put it to lie 
in brine and dry it afterwards, so that they can cut it as they 
would black bread. The best beverage they have, and the 
strongest, is mare s milk, flavoured with herbs. There was 
presented to the great king of the Tartars a horse laden with 
flour, who had come a three-months journey s distance; and 
he gave it to the envoys of the king. 

There are among them a great many Christian folk who 
hold the creed of the Greeks, and there are, besides, the 
Christians of whom we have already spoken, and others. 
These Christians the Tartars send against the Saracens when 
they wish to make war on the Saracens; and contrariwise 
they use the Saracens in any war against the Christians. All 
manner of childless women go with them to war, and they 
give pay to such women as they would do to men, according 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

to their strength and vigour. And the king s envoys told 
us that the men and women soldiers ate together in the 
quarters of the chiefs under whom they served; and that 
the men dared not touch the women in any sort, because of 
the law that their first king had given them. 

The flesh of all manner of beasts dying in the camp is 
eaten. The women who have children see after them, and 
take care of them; and also prepare the food of the people 
who go to battle. They put the raw meat between their 
saddles and the lappets of their clothing, and when the blood 
is well pressed out, they eat it quite raw. What they cannot 
eat, there and then, they throw into a leather bag; and 
when they are hungry they open the bag and always eat 
the oldest bits first. Thus I saw a Khorasmin, one of the 
Emperor of Persia s people, who guarded us in our imprison 
ment, and when he opened his bag we held our noses, for 
we could not bear it, because of the stink that came out of 
his bag. 

But now let us go back to the matter in hand, and tell how 
the great King of the Tartars, after he had received the 
king s envoys and presents, sent to gather together, under 
safe conduct, several kings who had not as yet submitted to 
him ; and when they were come he caused the king s chapel 
to be pitched, and spoke to them after this manner : " Lords, 
the King of France has sued for mercy, and submitted him 
self to us, and behold here is the tribute he has sent us ; and 
if you do not submit yourselves to us we will send and fetch 
him for your destruction." Many there were who, through 
fear of the French king, placed themselves in subjection to 
that Tartar king. 

With the king s envoys returned other envoys from the 
great King of the Tartars, and these brought letters to the 
King of France, saying: " A good thing is peace; for in the 
land where peace reigns those that go about on four feet eat 
the grass of peace; and those that go about on two feet till 
the earth from which good things do proceed in peace 
also. And this thing we tell thee for thy advertisement; for 
thou canst not have peace save thou have it with us. For 
Prester John rose up against us, and such and such kings 
and he named a great many " and we have put them all 
to the sword. So we admonish thee to send us, year by 
year, of thy gold and of thy silver, and thus keep us to be thy 

Joinville s Chronicle 259 

iend; and if thou wilt not do this, we will destroy thee and 
ty people, as we have done to the kings already named." 
nd you must know that it repented the king sorely that he 
id ever sent envoys to the great King of the Tartars. 


Now let us return to the matter in hand, and tell how, 
hile the king was fortifying Csesarea, there came to the 
imp my Lord Alcnard of Senaingan, and he told us he had 
iiilt his ship in the realm of Norway, which is at the world s 
id, towards the west, and how, in coming to the king, he 
ad gone all round Spain, and passed through the Straits of 
[orocco. Great perils had he undergone before he came to 
s. The king retained him in his service and nine of his 
nights. And this lord Alenard told us that, in the land of 
forway, the nights were so short in summer that every 
ight you saw at one time the light of the day that was pass- 
ig and the light of the day that was dawning. 
And he betook himself, he and his people, to the hunting 
f lions; and they took several very perilously; for they 
rould go forward to shoot at the lions, spurring as hard as 
hey could; and when they had shot their shafts, the lions 
prang at them; and now would they have been seized and 
levoured if they had not let fall a piece of ragged cloth, 
yhich the lion leapt upon, tore and devoured, thinking he 
lad hold of a man. While the lion was thus tearing the 
loth, another hunter went and shot at him, and the lion 
eft tearing the cloth, and sprang after this hunter; and he 
n turn let fall another piece of cloth, and again the lion 
)ounced upon it. And thus they killed the lion with their 



While the king was fortifying Caesarea, my Lord Philip of 
Toucy came to him. And the king said he was his cousin, 
because he was descended from one of the sisters of King 
Philip which sister the Emperor (of Constantinople) had 
to wife. The king retained him in his service, with nine of 
his knights, for a year; and afterwards he departed, and 

260 Memoirs of the Crusades 

went back to Constantinople, whence he had come. He told 
the king that the Emperor of Constantinople, and the other 
men of note in Constantinople, had allied themselves with a 
people that were called Comans, so as to have their help 
against Vataces, the Emperor of the Greeks. 

And in order that the one party should help the other in 
all good faith, the emperor and the other men of note that 
were with him suffered themselves to be bled, and put their 
blood into a great bowl o/ silver. And the King of the 
Comans, and the other men of note that were with him, did 
likewise, and mingled their blood with the blood of our 
people, and mixed therewith wine and water, and drank 
thereof, and our people also; and then they said they were 
brothers in blood. Then they caused a dog to pass between 
their people and our people, and cut the dog in pieces with 
their swords, our people doing the same; and they said that 
whoso failed the other in this alliance on either side should 
thus be cut in pieces. / 

Again my Lord Philip told us of a great marvel that he had 
seen when in the camp of the Comans ; for one of their rich 
knights being dead, they had made a very large and wide 
grave in the earth, and had seated him therein, very nobly 
apparelled, in a chair; and with him they put into the grave 
the best horse that he had, and best sergeant, both alive. 
The sergeant, before he was put in the grave with his lord, 
took leave of the King of the Comans and of the other rich 
lords; and while he was taking leave of them, they put into 
his scarf a great f oison of gold and silver, and said : When 
I come into the other world, thou shalt give me back what I 
here entrust to thee." And the sergeant said: That shall 
I do right willingly." The great King of the Comans then 
gave him a letter, addressed to the first of their kings, notify 
ing that the right worthy sergeant had lived well, and served 
him right well, and ought to be duly rewarded. When this 
was done, they placed the sergeant in the grave with his lord, 
and with the live horse; and then they threw over the 
mouth of the grave boards, closely fitted, and all the host ran 
for stones and for earth, and ere they slept that night they 
had made a great mound in memory of those whom they 
had thus buried. 

Joinville s Chronicle 261 



While the king was fortifying Caesarea, I went upon a day 
to his quarters, to see him. He was talking to the legate, 
td as soon as he saw me enter into his chamber he rose, and 
ok me aside, and said: " You know that I only retained 
>ur services till Easter, so I pray you to tell me what I shall 
ve you to remain with me for a year beyond Easter." 
nd I told him I did not wish him to give me more of his 
oneys than he had already given me ; but that I wished to 
[ ake with him another bargain. " Because," said I, " you 
ax wroth when one asks you for anything; so I wish you 
make a covenant with me, that if I ask you for anything 
iring the whole of the year, you will not be wroth, and if 
)u refuse it, I on my side will not be wroth either." When 
le king heard this he began to laugh aloud, and said he 
ould keep me in his service on this covenant; and he took 
ie by the hand, and led me to the legate and to his coun- 
llors, and told them of the bargain we had made ; and they 
ere greatly rejoiced, because I was the man of most note 
id substance in the host. 

, A VA W7 V**- *~*f *-* Vww* *^^^^ A.Jk* VJk<Ob^^ *..*- W *~r W 

Hereinafter will I tell you how I planned and arranged my 
[fairs during the four years that I remained in the land 
versea, after the king s brothers had departed. I had two 
laplains, who said my hours to me. The one chanted my 
lass as soon as the dawn of day appeared; the other waited 
11 my knights, and the knights belonging to my division, 
ad risen. When I had heard my mass, I went to the king, 
f the king wished to ride abroad, I kept him company. 
Ometimes it chanced that messengers came, so that we had 
luch business during the morning. 

My bed was laid in my pavilion after such a manner that 
tone could enter in without seeing me as I lay in my bed; 
.nd this I did so that there should be no ill suspicion as con- 
srning women. When it came to the feast of St. Remigius, I 
:aused pigs to be bought for my styes, and sheep for my 
heepfolds, and flour and wine for the provisioning of my 
quarters during the whole winter; and this I did because 
provisions became dearer in winter, seeing that the sea is 
nore treacherous in winter than in the summer. And I 

262 Memoirs of the Crusades 

bought full a hundred tuns of wine, and always caused th 
best to be drunk first; and the wine of the varkts I cause* 
to be mixed with water, and the wine of the squires with les 
water. At my own table were served before each knight ; 
large phial of wine and a large phial of water, and each mixe< 
according to his will. 

The king had given me for my battalion fifty knights 
Every time that I ate, I had ten knights at my table wit] 
my own ten knights; and they ate, one fronting the other 
according to the custom of the land, and sat upon mats 01 
the ground. Every time that there was a call to arms, ! 
sent thither fifty-four knights, who were called dizeniers 
because each commanded ten men. Every time that w 
rode out armed, all the fifty knights ate in my quarters 01 
their return. At all the annual festivals I asked to nr 
table all the men of note in the host, whereby it sometime; 
happened that the king had to borrow some of my guests. 


Hereinafter you shall hear tell of the justice and judg 
ments that I saw rendered at Csesarea while the king wa: 
sojourning there. First we will tell of a knight who wa; 
taken in a brothel, and to whom a certain choice was left 
according to the customs of the country. And the choia 
was this: that either the wanton woman should lead hin* 
through the camp, in his shirt, and shamefully bound witl 
a rope, or that he should lose his horse and arms and tx 
driven from the host. The knight gave up his horse to th< 
king, and his arms, and left the host. Then I went anc 
asked the king to give me the horse for a poor gentleman whc 
was in the host. And the king answered me that this re 
quest was not reasonable, seeing that the horse was stil 
worth eighty livres. And I replied : " Now have you broker 
our covenant, for you are wroth with me for my request. 
And he said to me, laughing merrily: " Say what you like, 1 
am not wroth with you." Nevertheless I did not get the 
horse for the poor gentleman. 

The second judgment was this : the knights of our battalion 
were hunting a wild animal that is called a gazelle, and is 
like a deer. The brethren of the Hospital leapt out upon 
our knights, and hustled them and drove them away. So I 

Joinvillc s Chronicle 263 

:omplained to the Master of the Hospital; and the Master of 
;he Hospital answered that he would do me right according 
;o the customs of the Holy Land, which were such that he 
vould cause the brethren who had committed the outrage, 
o eat sitting on their mantles, until such time as those on 
yhom the outrage had been committed should raise them up. 

The master dealt with them according to his promise; 
,nd when we saw that they had eaten for a while sitting on 
heir mantles, I went to the master, and found him at meat, 

d asked him to cause the brethren to rise who were eating 
>efore him sitting on their mantles; and the knights on 
irhom the outrage had been committed begged him also, 
le answered that he would do nothing of the kind, for he 
/ould not suffer it that the brethren should evil entreat 
hose who came on pilgrimage to the Holy Land. When I 
.eard this I sat down with the brethren and began to eat 
ath them, and I told him I should not rise till the brethren 
.ad risen. And he told me this was forcing his hand, and 
ranted my request; and he caused me and the knights 
hat were with me to eat with him, while the brethren went 
nd ate with the others at a table. 

The third judgment that I saw rendered at Caesarea was 
has: A certain sergeant of the king, whose name was Le 
roulu, laid his hand on one of the knights in my battalion, 
went and complained to the king. The king said that, as 
; seemed to him, I might well leave the matter where it 
tood, seeing that the sergeant had given my knight no more 
lan a push. And I said I would not leave the matter where 
; stood; and if he did not do me right, I should leave his 
srvice, seeing that his sergeants were suffered to push 
nights. Then he caused right to be done to me, and in 
lis wise, according to the customs of the land: the ser- 
eant came to my quarters, barefoot, clothed only in his 
lirt and drawers, and with a naked sword in his hand ; and 
e knelt before the knight, took the sword by its point and 
anded the pommel to the knight, and said: " Lord, I make 
mends for that I laid my hand upon you, and I have 
rought you this sword so that you may cut off my fist, if 
ich is your pleasure." And I asked the knight to forgive 
im his offence, and he did so. 

The fourth penalty was as follows : Brother Hugh of Jouy, 
r ho was Marshal of the Temple, was sent to the Soldan of 

264 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Damascus by the Master of the Temple to negotiate an 
agreement respecting a large tract of land which the Temple 
had been used to hold, but which the soldan wished to divide, 
so that the Temple should have one half and the soldan the 
other. The agreement was made accordingly, subject to 
the king s consent. And Brother Hugh brought back with 
him an emir from the Soldan of Damascus, together with the 
agreement in writing, duly executed. 

The master told these things to the king; and the king 
was greatly surprised, and said the master had been over 
bold in holding speech or negotiating with the soldan without 
first speaking to him, the king; and the king added that 
reparation should be made. And the reparation was made 
in this wise: The king caused the flaps of three of his pavilions 
to be raised ; and all the commonalty of the host who would, 
had leave to assemble there and see what was toward. 
And thither came the Master of the Temple, and all his 
brotherhood of knights, all barefoot, right through the 
camp, because their quarters were outside. And the king 
caused the Master of the Temple to sit in front of him, and 
also the soldan s envoy; and the king said to the master, in 
a loud voice: " Master, you will tell the soldan s envoy that 
it repents you that you have made any treaty with the 
soldan without first speaking to me; and because you did 
not first so speak to me, you must hold the soldan discharged 
from what he has covenanted, and return him all his cove 
nants." Thereupon the master took the written agreements 
and gave them to the emir; and then the master said: c I 
give you back the agreements that I entered into wrong 
fully; whereof it repenteth me." Then the king told the 
master to rise, and to cause all the brethren to rise; and he 
did so. And the king said: " Now kneel, and make repara 
tion, because you have gone to the soldan against my will." 
The master knelt, and handed the end of his mantle to the 
king, and gave over to the king all that they possessed tc 
take therefrom such fine and penalty as the king might 
determine. " And I declare in the first place," said the 
king, " that Brother Hugh, who made these agreements, 
shall be banished from all the realm of Jerusalem." Neither 
the master, who was godfather with the king to the Count oi 
Alen9on, born at Castle Pilgrim, nor even the queen, noi 
any other, was able to do aught on behalf of Brother Hugh 

Joinville s Chronicle 265 

id he had to avoid the Holy Land and the kingdom of 



While the king was fortifying the city of Csesarea, his 
i 1 ivoys returned from Egypt, and brought with them the 
eaty, as devised by the king, in the manner already told. 
I nd the covenants between the king and the emirs were such 
| tat the king was to go, on a day therein named, to Jaffa; 
id on the day that the king went to Jaffa the Egyptian 
airs were bound by their oaths to be at Gaza to deliver up 
the king the kingdom of Jerusalem. The treaty, such 
V the envoys brought it, was sworn to by the king, and by 
e men of note in the host; and by our oaths we were bound 
help the emirs against the Soldan of Damascus. 
When the Soldan of Damascus knew that we had allied 
irselves with those in Egypt, he sent full four thousand 
irks, well appointed, to Gaza, whither those from Egypt 
sre to come ; and this he did because he knew full well that 
the host from Egypt could join us, it would be to his loss, 
svertheless the king did not desist from marching on Jaffa, 
hen the Count of Jaffa saw that the king was coming, he 
epared his castle in such wise that it seemed to be a town 
ill capable of defence; for at each of the battlements of 
lich there were full five hundred he set a shield, with his 
ms, and a pennon; and this thing was fair to see, for his 
ms were or with a cross of gules patte. 
We encamped in the fields round the castle, and sur- 
unded the castle, which lies on the sea, from the one sea 
the other. Forthwith the king betook himself to fortify 
new burgh, all round the old castle, and going from the one 
a to the other. Oftentimes I saw the king himself carry- 
g a hod to the trenches so as to gain the promised indul- 

The Egyptian emirs failed us in their covenants; for they 
d not dare to come to Gaza because of the people of the 
>ldan of Damascus who were there. Nevertheless they 
>served their covenant in so far that they sent to the king 
I the heads of the Christians hung on the walls of the castle 
Cairo, at the time when the Count of Bar and the Count 

266 Memoirs of the Crusades 

of Montfort were taken; and these the king caused to be 
buried in holy ground. And they also sent the children whc 
had been taken when the king was taken; which thing they 
did regretfully, for the children had already denied theii 
faith. And with these they sent to the king an elephant 
which the king sent to France. 

While we sojourned at Jaffa an emir, belonging to the 
party of the Soldan of Damascus, came to reap the corn a1 
a village three leagues from the camp. It was agreed that 
we should attack him. When he saw us coming he took tc 
flight. While he was flying, a young gentleman varlet took 
to chasing after him, and bore two of his knights to the 
earth without breaking his spear, and then struck the emii 
in such sort that the lance broke in his body. 

Envoys from the Egyptian emirs besought the king tc 
appoint a day on which they might come to him ; when they 
would come without fail. The king decided that he would 
not refuse, and appointed them a day; and they made a 
covenant with him, on oath, that on the day appointed the) 
would be at Gaza. 


While we were waiting for the day that the king had ap 
pointed for the meeting with the Egyptian emirs, the Counl 
of Eu, who was a squire, came to the camp; and he broughl 
with him my Lord Arnoul of Guines, the good knight, and 
his two brothers, he being in command of nine knights. The 
Count of Eu remained in the service of the king, and the king 
made him a knight. 

At this point the Prince of Antioch returned to the camp 
and the princess his mother; and the king did him greal 
honour, and made him a knight very honourably. His age 
was not more than sixteen years; but never have I seen 
child of such discernment. He asked the king to give hiir 
hearing before his mother; and the king consented. Anc 
the words that he spoke to the king before his mother were 
these: " Sire, it is no doubt true that my mother should stil 
keep me for four years in her tutelage; but that is no reasor 
why she should suffer my land to be lost, and go to decay 
And this I say, sire, because the city of Antioch is perishing 

Joinville s Chronicle 267 

her hands. Wherefore I beseech you, sire, that you ask 
er to grant me money and men, so that I may go and suc- 
3ur my people who are there and give them help. And, 
re, rightly should she do this; for if I remain with her in 
ic city of Tripoli, needs is it that great expense should be 
icurred; and the great expense I shall so incur will be 
icurred for nothing." 

The king heard him right willingly, and did all in his power 
> bring his mother to give him as much as could be ex- 
acted from her. As soon as he parted from the king, he 
ent to Antioch, and there obtained favour. With the 
ing s consent he quartered his arms, which are gules, with 
le arms of France, because the king had made him a knight. 

With the prince came three gleemen from Great Armenia, 
hey were brothers and were going to Jerusalem on pilgrim- 
*e; and they had three horns, and these horns were so 
evised that the sound came from the side of their faces. 

hen they began to sound their horns, you would have said 
; was the voice of swans coming from a mere ; for they made 
le sweetest music and the most melodious, so that it was 
larvellous to hear them. They all three also leapt mar- 
ellously ; for a mat was put under their feet, and they made 

somersault standing, so that their feet came back upon 
le mat. Two made the somersault with their heads 
ackwards, and the eldest also; and when they caused him 
D jump with his head forward, he signed himself with the 
ross, for he was af eared lest he should break his neck as he 


Because it is a good thing that the memory of the Count of 
trienne, who was Count of Jaffa, should not be forgotten, 
re will speak of him here, for he held Jaffa for many years, 
nd defended it a long while by his prowess; and he lived, 
Dr the most part, by what he gained from the Saracens and 
tie enemies of the faith. Thus it happened on a time 
hat he discomfited a great number of Saracens who were 
onveying a great foison of cloth of gold and silk; and he 

268 Memoirs of the Crusades 

captured it all. And when he had brought it to Jaffa 1 
divided it among his knights, so that none was left over f< 
himself. His manner of life was such that, when he parte 
from his knights, he shut himself up in his chapel, and w; 
long at his orisons or ever he went at night to sleep with h 
wife, who was a very good lady, and a wise, and sister to tl 
King of Cyprus. 

The Emperor of Persia, whose name was Barbaquan, ar 
whom one of the Tartar princes had discomfited, as I has 
already told you, came with all his host into the kingdom 
Jerusalem, and took the Castle of Tabarie, which had bee 
fortified by my Lord Odo of Montbeliard, the constable, wt 
was Lord of Tabarie through his wife. Much evil did tl 
Emperor of Persia work upon our people, for he destroyc 
whatever he could find outside Castle-Pilgrim, and outsic 
Acre, and outside Safad, and outside Jaffa also. And whe 
he had wrought this destruction, he betook himself to Gaz; 
there to join himself to the Soldan of Babylon, who was 1 
come thither to harry and oppress our people. 

The barons of the land decided, and the patriarch, th; 
they would go and attack the emperor before the Soldan < 
Babylon arrived. And in order to obtain help, they sent 1 
fetch the Soldan of la Chamelle, one of the best knights in a 
paynimry, to whom they showed such great honour in Aa 
that they spread cloths of gold and silk before him wheres< 
ever he was to pass. Thus they came to Jaffa, our peop 
and the soldan with them. 

The patriarch had excommunicated Count Walter becaus 
he would not give up a tower that he held in Jaffa, an 
that was called the patriarch s tower. Our people besougl 
Count Walter to go with them and fight against the Empen 
of Persia; and he said he would do so willingly provided tl: 
patriarch would give him absolution till their return. Th 
patriarch would none of it; nevertheless Count Walter wei 
with them. Our people formed three divisions, of whic 
one was under Count Walter, another under the Soldan < 
la Chamelle, while the patriarch and those belonging to tl 
land formed the third. In the division of the Count ( 
Brienne were the Hospitallers. 

They rode forward until they came within sight of the 
enemies. As soon as our people saw them, they halted, an 
their enemies formed themselves in three divisions likewis* 

Joinville s Chronicle 269 

Vhile the Khorasmins were setting their division in array, 
x)unt Walter came to our people, and cried: " Lords, for 
jod s sake, let us fall upon them, for we are giving them 
ime, in that we have halted." But no one would listen to 

When Count Walter saw this, he came to the patriarcl 
i,nd begged for absolution, in the manner aforesaid; but; 
he patriarch would none of it. Now with the Count oi 
Brienne was a valiant clerk, who was Bishop of Ramleh, and 
lad done many fine deeds of chivalry in company of the, 
:ount, and he said to Count Walter: Be not troubled ii 
conscience because the patriarch will not give you absoli 
ion, for he is in the wrong, and you are in the right ; and 
ibsolve you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, anci 
>f the Holy Ghost. Let us at them ! 

So they dug their spurs into their horses and fell upon the 
iivision of the Emperor of Persia, which was the last. Very 
nany were the people killed on the one side and on the other; 
iind there was Count Walter taken, for all our people fled so 
ihamefully that many in their despair drowned themselves 
n the sea. And they were thus panic-stricken because one 
rf the battalions of the Emperor of Persia attacked the Soldan 
Df la Chamelle, and though the soldan defended himself right 
well, yet of two thousand Turks that he led into battle, only 
fourteen score remained when he left the field. 1 

The emperor decided that he would besiege the soldan in 
the castle of la Chamelle, because he thought the soldan 
could not long hold out after he had lost so many of his 
people. When the soldan saw this, he came to his people 
and told them that he would go out and fight against the 
emperor, for if he suffered himself to be besieged, he would 
be lost. He so arranged matters that he sent out all his 
people who were ill armed by a hidden valley; and as soon, 
as they heard the soldan s drums beating, they fell upon the 
emperor s camp from behind, and began to slay the women / 
and children. 

Now the emperor had gone into the field to fight the 
soldan, whom he saw there before his eyes; but when he 
heard the cry raised in the rear by his own people, he re 
turned into his camp to succour the women and children. 
Then the soldan fell upon him and upon his people, and that 

1 This battle took place in 1244. 

270 Memoirs of the Crusades 

so well and to such good purpose, that out of the twenty 
five thousand there present of the emperor s people neithei 
man nor woman remained; all were either killed in fight 01 
given to the sword. 

Before the Emperor of Persia came to la Chamelle, he hac 
taken Count Walter prisoner before Jaffa; and they hun 
him by the arms to a forked pole, and told him they woulc 
not take him down till the Castle of Jaffa was theirs. Whil< 
he was thus hanging by the arms he cried to those in the 
castle not to surrender for any hurt that might be done t( 
him, and that if they did surrender, he would slay their 
with his own hands. 

When the emperor saw this, he sent Count Walter ft 
Babylon, as a present to the soldan, and likewise the Mastei 
of the Temple and several other prisoners whom he hac 
taken. Those who led the count into Babylon were full three 
hundred men, and these were not killed when the emperoi 
was slain before la Chamelle. 

And these three hundred men, who were Khorasmins 
were among those who afterwards attacked us on the Friday 
when we were on foot. Their banners were red and indentec 
up towards the lance ; and on their lances they had f ashionec 
heads with hair, that seemed like the heads of devils. 

Several of the merchants of Babylon cried to the soldar 

that he should do them justice against Count Walter for the 

great losses they had suffered at his hands, and the soldar 

suffered them to go and take vengeance upon him. So the} 

; %ent and slew him hi prison, where he was killed for the 

I Lord s sake; whence we may well believe that he is ir 

; heaven, and among the number of the martyrs. 



The Soldan of Damascus took his people that were at Gaza 
and entered into Egypt. The emirs came and fought against 
him. The division immediately under the soldan defeated 
the emirs with whom they engaged, and on the other side the 
division of the emirs of Egypt defeated the rear division of 
the Soldan of Damascus. So the Soldan of Damascus went 
back to Gaza, wounded in the head and in the hand. And 

Joinville s Chronicle 271 

efore he left Gaza the emirs of Egypt sent their envoys 

i nd made peace with him, and failed in all the covenants 

ley had made with us; and thenceforward we had neither 

nee nor peace either with those of Damascus or those of 

[ labylon. And you must know that the greatest number of 

: len-at-arms that ever we had was no more than fourteen 


While the king was encamped before Jaffa, the Master of 

t. Lazarus espied, towards Ramleh, at three great leagues 

[stance, certain beasts, and various things whereof he 

: lought to make great booty; and so he, who held rio rank 

i the host, and thus did what seemed best in his own eyes, 

> -ent thither without speaking to the king. When he had 

[ athered together his spoils, the Saracens fell upon him, and 

: iscomfited him in such sort that of all the people he had in 

is company, no more than four escaped. 

So soon as he came back into the camp, he began to cry to 

t rms. I went and armed myself, and begged the king to 

iffer me to go to the place; and he gave me leave, and 

rdered that I should take with me the knights of the Temple 

ad of the Hospital. When we came thither, we found that 

>rtain stranger Saracens had come down into the valley 

here the Master of St. Lazarus had been discomfited. 

/hile these stranger Saracens were looking upon the dead, 

le master of the king s crossbowmen ran upon them; and 

sfore we came up, our people had discomfited them and 

illed several. 

One of the king s sergeants and one of the Saracens bore 
ich the other to the earth at one stroke with their lances, 
nother of the king s sergeants, when he saw this, took their 
vo horses, and was leading them away to steal them; and 
> that no one might see him, he got between the walls of the 
ty of Ramleh. While he was leading the horses away, an 
d cistern, over which he passed, gave way under him. The 
iree horses, and he himself, fell to the bottom, and I was 
>ld of it. I went to see, and found that the cistern was still 
Aling in upon them, and that, with a little more, they would 
ive been all buried. So we returned without loss, except 
ich loss as had been incurred by the Master of St. Lazarus. 

272 Memoirs of the Crusades 


So soon as the Soldan of Damascus had made peace wit 
the emirs of Egypt, he ordered such of his people as were a 
Gaza to return to him. They passed before our camp a 
less than two leagues distance, nor did they ever venture t 
attack us, though they were, in number, full twenty thousan 
Saracens, and ten thousand Bedouins. Before they cam 
over against our camp the master of the king s crossbow 
men and his division observed them for three days and thre 
nights, lest they should fall upon us unawares. 

On St. John s Day (6th May 1253), that was after Easte 
the king heard his sermon. During the sermon a sergean 
belonging to the master of the crossbowmen, entered tt 
king s chapel, fully armed, and told him that the Saracer 
had surrounded the master crossbowmen. I begged tt 
king to let me go thither, and he granted my request, an 
told me to take with me four or five hundred men-at-arm 
and named those whom he wished me to take. As soon j \ 
we issued from the camp, the Saracens, who had put then 
selves between the master of the crossbowmen and tl 
camp, went off to join an emir who was on a hillock in fror 
of the master of the crossbowmen, with full a thousac 

Then began a fight between the Saracens and the mast< 
of the crossbowmen s sergeants, of whom there were fu ! 
fourteen score. And as soon as the emir saw that his peop 
were hard pressed, he sent them help, and in such numbe 
that they drove our sergeants back upon the master s troop 
When the master saw that his people were being hai t 
pressed, he sent to their help a hundred or six score men-a 
arms, who drove back the assailants upon the troops of tl 

While we were there, the legate and the barons of the Ian 
who had remained with the king, told the king that he he 
acted very foolishly in putting me in danger; and by the 
advice the king sent to recall me, and the master of the cros 
bowmen also. The Turks departed, and we returned to tl 
camp. Many people wondered why they did not come 1 
attack us, and certain people said that if they did not do s< 

Joinville s Chronicle 273 

was because they and their horses had been famished at 
iza, where they had sojourned nearly a year. 


When these Saracens had departed from before Jaffa and 
me before Acre, they sent word to the Lord of Assur, who 
is constable of the kingdom of Jerusalem, that they would 
stroy the gardens of the city if he did not send them fifty 
ousand besants; and he made answer that he would send 
em none. Then they arrayed their battalions, and came 
( along the sands of Acre, and so near to the city as to be 
ill within the shot of a swivel-crossbow. The Lord of 
;sur issued from the town, and set himself on Mount St. 
hn, there where the cemetery of St. Nicholas is, to defend 
e gardens. Our foot sergeants issued from Acre, and began 
harass the Saracens with bows- and crossbows. 
The Lord of Assur called to him a knight of Genoa, whose 
,me was my Lord John le Grand, and ordered him to go 
.d recall the lesser people who had issued from the town of 
:re, so that they should not put themselves in peril. While 
: was bringing them back, a Saracen began to cry out to 
m, in the Saracen tongue, that he would joust with him, if 
at were his pleasure; and my Lord John told him he 
)uld do so willingly. While my Lord John was going 
wards the Saracen to joust, he looked to his left hand, and 
w a little troop of Turks, full eight in number, who had 
Ited to see the joust. He left the jousting with the 
-racen, and went towards the little troop of Turks, who 
3re stopping quite still, to see the joust, and ran one of 
em through the body with his lance, and laid him dead, 
hen the others saw this, they ran upon him as he was 
turning towards our people, and one of them struck him a 
eat blow with his mace on his steel cap; and as this Turk 
k issed, my Lord John with his sword struck him on the 
rban that was wrapped round his head, and caused the 
.rban to fly off into the field. (They wear turbans when they 
;ht, because the turbans will ward off the heavy blow of a 
/ord.) Another Turk spurred upon him, and would have 
mist his spear between his shoulders; but my Lord John 
,w the spear coming and inclined to the left; then as the 

274 Memoirs of the Crusades 

Saracen passed, my Lord John gave him a back-hande 
stroke with the sword across the arm, so that his spear fie 
into the midst of the field. And so my Lord John returnee 
and brought back his foot people. And these fine strob 
were struck before the Lord of Assur, and the men of noi 
that were in Acre, and before all the women who were lool 
ing on upon the walls. 


When this great foison of Saracens, who were before Acr 
and had not dared to fight against us, as you have heard, n 
against those at Acre, when they heard tell and it w,- 
sooth that the king was fortifying the city of Sayett 
and with very few good men, they set themselves to dra 
thither. My Lord Simon of Montbeliard, who was master 
the king s crossbowmen, and chief of the king s people 
Sayette, heard that the Saracens were coming, and he r 
treated into the castle of Sayette, which is very strong ar 
surrounded by the sea on all sides; and this he did becau 
he saw right well that he had no power to resist the comii 
Saracens. He took with him into the castle as many peop 
as he could, but these were only a few, seeing that the cast 
was too small. 

The Saracens threw themselves into the town, and four 
no resistance, for it was not all enclosed. They killed mo 
than two thousand of our people; and with the booty the 
gained went off to Damascus. When the king heard the 
tidings he was greatly angered. Ah ! could he only redre 
what had been done! And the barons of the land turin 
this feeling of his to their advantage; because the king tu 
before been minded to go and fortify a hillock on the wa 
from Jaffa to Jerusalem on which hillock there had stO( 
an ancient stronghold in the days of the Maccabees. Nc 
the barons of oversea were not of opinion that this old casl 
should be rebuilt, because it was five leagues from the se 
so that no provisions could be sent thither from the sea wit i 
out falling into the hands of the Saracens, who were strong 
than we were. When therefore the news came to the can- 
that the burgh of Sayette had been destroyed, the barons 
the land came to the king, and told him it would be mo -i 
honourable to re-fortify Sayette, which the Saracens h 

Joinville s Chronicle 275 

destroyed, than to build a new fortress; and the king agreed 


While the king was at Jaffa, it was told him that the 
Soldan of Damascus would be willing that he should go to 
Jerusalem, and under a sure and safe conduct. The king held 
i great council thereon; and the conclusion of the council was 
that no one advised the king to go, since he would have (in 
the end) to leave the city in the hands of the Saracens. 

They gave the king an example as follows: When the great 
King Philip departed from Acre to go to France, he suffered 
ill his people to remain in the host with Duke Hugh of Bur 
gundy, the grandsire of the duke lately deceased. While 
the duke sojourned at Acre, and King Richard of England 
ilso, news came to them that they could take Jerusalem on 
the morrow, if they so desired, seeing that all the chivalry of 
the Soldan of Damascus had gone to rejoin him elsewhere, 
Decause of a war that he had with another soldan. So they 
irrayed their people, and the King of England formed the 
irst division of the forces, and the Duke of Burgundy, with 
ill the people belonging to the King of France, the second 
division. While they were thus thinking to take the city, 
tford came to the King of England from the duke s camp 
:hat he should proceed no further, because the duke was re 
creating, and retreating for this reason and none other, so 
;hat it might not be said that the English had taken Jeru 
salem. While they were speaking of this, one of his knights 
:ried: " Sire, sire, come so far hither, and I will show you 
Jerusalem 1 And when the king heard this he threw his 
:oat-armour before his eyes, all in tears, and said to our 
Saviour: " Fair Lord God, I pray Thee suffer me not to see 
Thy Holy City since I cannot deliver it from the hands of 
Thine enemies ! 

This example they showed to the king; for if he, the 
greatest Christian king, went on pilgrimage without deliver 
ing the city from God s enemies, then would all other kings 
and pilgrims, coming thereafter, rest content with going on 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

pilgrimage after the same manner as the King of France 
and give no thought to the deliverance of Jerusalem. 

King Richard did so many -doughty deeds when he was 
overseas that when the horses of the Saracens were afraid oi 
any bush, their master would say: " Do you think " sc 
would they say to their horses " Do you think that is 
King Richard of England ? And when the children of the 
Saracen women cried, they said to them: " Wisht, wisht! 
or I will go and fetch King Richard, and he will kill thee ! 

The Duke of Burgundy, of whom I have just spoken to you, 
was a very good knight with his hands, but he was never 
accounted wise, either towards God or towards this world, 
And this may well appear from what has just been related, 
And because of this, the great King Philip, when they told 
him that Count John of Chalon had a son, who had been 
called Hugh after the Duke of Burgundy, said he hoped that 
God would make him as valiant (preux) a man as the duke, 
And they asked him why he had not said as right worthy a 
man (prud -homme). " Because," said he, " there is a great 
difference between a valiant man (preux-homme) and a right 
worthy man (prud -homme). For there are many valiant 
knights in Christian lands, and in the lands of the Saracens, 
who never believed in God nor in His mother. Whence ] 
tell you," said he, " that God grants a great gift, and a very 
special grace, to the Christian knight whom He suffers to be 
valiant of body, and at the same time keeps in His service, 
guarding him from mortal sin. And the knight who thus 
governs himself should be called right worthy (prud -homme] 
because that prowess comes to him by the gift of God. Anc 
those of whom I spoke before may be called valiant (preux- 
homme) because they are valiant of their body, and yet 
neither fear God nor are afraid of sin." 


Of the great sums which the king spent in fortifying Jaffa 
it is not convenient that I should speak, for they cannot be 
counted. He fortified the burgh from the one sea to the 
other, and set there full twenty-four towers, and the fosses 
were puddled with mud within and without. There were 


Joinville s Chronicle 277 

iree gates, of which the legate built one, together with a 
ortion of the wall. 

And to show you the cost that the king incurred, you must 
now that I inquired of the legate how much this gate and 
le portion of wall had cost. And he asked me how much I 
lought? and I reckoned that the gate had cost full five 
undred livres, and the portion of the wall three hundred 
vres. And he told me so might God help him!- -that 
ate and wall together had cost him full thirty thousand 

When the king had finished fortifying the burgh of Jaffa, he 
ecided to go and re-fortify the city of Sayette, which the 
aracens had destroyed. He started on the day of the feast 
f the Apostles St. Peter and St. Paul (29th June 1253); and 
aat night the king and his host lay before the castle of Assur, 
r hich was very strong. The same night the king called his 
eople together and told them that if they agreed he would 

and take a city of the Saracens called Naplouse; which 
ity the ancient Scriptures called Samaria. 

The Templars and the Hospitallers and the barons of the 

ind answered him, with one accord, that it would be well to 

t ry and take the city; but that he ought not to go thither 

1 person, because, if anything happened to him, all the land 
i rould be lost. And he said that they should not go unless 
Le went with them. Therefore this enterprise remained un- 

chieved, because the lords of the land would not consent 
i tiat he should go in person. 

Journeying day by day we came to the sands of Acre, 

t rhere the king and the host encamped. At that place came 

t D me a great troop of people from Great Armenia, who were 

roing on pilgrimage to Jerusalem, having paid a great tribute 

D the Saracens, by whom they were conducted. By an 

iterpreter, who knew their language and OUFS, they be- 

> ought me to show them the sainted king. I went to the 

> ing there where he sat in a pavilion, leaning against the pole 
f the pavilion ; and he sat upon the sand, without a carpet, 

und without anything else under him. I said to him : Sire, 
here is here outside a great troop of people from Great 
Armenia, going to Jerusalem; and they pray me, sire, to 
ause the sainted king to be shown to them; but I have no 
lesire as yet to kiss your bones." He laughed aloud, and 
old me to go and fetch them; and so I did. And when 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

they had seen the king they commended him to God, and the 
king commended them to God likewise. 

On the following day the host lay at a place called the 
" Colt s Crossing/ where the water is very good, and there 
with they water the plants from which sugar comes. When 
we were encamped, one of my knights came to me and 
said: Lord, I have lodged you in a fairer place than you 
were lodged in yesterday." Another knight, who had 
chosen my yesterday s camping-ground, sprang upon him in 
wrath, and cried: " You are over-bold in speaking of any 
thing I may have done ! And he sprang upon him and 
took him by the hair. Then I sprang upon him in turn, and 
hit him with my fist between the two shoulders, and he let go. 
And I said to him: " Quick, out of my quarters, for, so help 
me God, you shall never again be follower of mine." 

The knight went away, showing great dole and sorrow, 
and brought to me my Lord Giles le Brun, the Constable of 
France; and for the great repentance that my Lord Giles 
saw in the knight on account of the folly he had wrought, he 
besought me, as instantly as he could, to take him back into 
my household. And I replied that I would not take him 
back unless the legate released me from my oath. To the 
legate they went, and told him of the matter; and the legate 
answered that he had not power to release me, because the 
oath was reasonable; for the knight had well deserved his 
punishment. And these things I relate to you so that you 
may keep from taking any oath which in reason it were not 
convenient to take; for, as the wise man says, " Who 
swears lightly, lightly forswears himself." 


On the following day the king went and encamped before 
the city of Assur, which in the Bible is called Tyre. There 
the king called together the men of note in the host, and 
asked them if it would be well to go and take the city of 
Belinas before he went to Sayette. We all thought it would 
be well if the king sent his people thither; but no one advised 
that he should go thither himself; and with great difficulty 
was he dissuaded therefrom. Finally it was decided that 
the Count of Eu should go, and my Lord Philip of Montfort, 
the Lord of Assur, my Lord Giles le Brun, Constable of 

Joinville s Chronicle 279 

ranee, my Lord Peter the Chamberlain, the Master of the 
^emple and his brethren, and the Master of the Hospital and 
is brethren also. 

We armed ourselves at nightfall, and came, a little after 
aybreak, to a plain lying before the city which is called 
Jelinas; and the ancient Scriptures call it Csesarea Philippi. 
n this city there springs up a fountain which is called Jor ; 
nd in the midst of the plain that lies before the city springs 
p another very beautiful fountain which is called Dan* 
it is so, that when the two rivulets issuing from these 
fountains come together, they call the river Jordan ; 
ad it is in that river that God was baptised. 
By agreement between the Templars, Count Eu, the 
[ospitallers, and the barons of the land there present, it was 
1 scided that the king s division in which division I then 
as, because the king had retained in his service the forty 
nights that were in my division and my Lord Geoffry of 
f argines, the right worthy man also, should set ourselves 
tween the castle and the city; that the barons of the land 
lould enter into the city by the left, and the Hospitallers 
y the right, and that the Templars should enter the city 
raight in front of us by the road from which we had come. 
We then moved forward so far, that we came before the 
ty; and we found that the Saracens that were in the city 
id discomfited the king s sergeants, and driven them from 
ic city. When I saw this I came to the right worthy men 
ho were with the Count of Eu, and said to them: " Lords, 
you do not go where we have been ordered to go, between 
le city and the castle, the Saracens will slay all our people 
ho have entered into the city." Our way was very perilous, 
id the place to which we had to go was fraught with danger; 
tere were three pairs of dry walls that must needs be passed, 
id the slope was so steep that the horses could scarcely 
>ep their footing; and the hillock we had to gain was 
owded with Turks on horseback. 

While I was speaking to the Count of Eu and his knights, 
saw that our foot sergeants were breaking down the walls. 
r hen I saw this, I said to those I was addressing that it had 
jen ordered that the king s division should go thither, 
here the Turks were; and that as this had been ordered, I 
lould go. I turned, I and my two knights, towards those 
ho were pulling down the walls, and I saw a mounted ser- 

L 333 


28 o Memoirs of the Crusades 

geant who thought to pass over the wall, and his horse fel 
upon him. When I saw this I dismounted, and took m] 
horse by the bridle. But, as God willed, when the Turk: 
saw us coming, they abandoned the position we had t< 
occupy. From this position the rock went down sheer int< 
the city. 

When we got there, and the Turks had gone, the Saracen 
who were in the city held themselves for beaten, an< 
abandoned the city to our people without resistance 
While I stood in that place, the Marshal of the Tempi 
heard tell that I was in peril, and he came up to the top c 
the mound towards me. The Germans, who were in th 
division of the Count of Eu, also came after me; and whe: 
they saw the Turks on horseback flying towards the castk 
they moved to go after them, and I said: " Lords, you ar 
not doing well; for we are here where we have been ordere 
to be, and you are going beyond your orders." 

The castle that stands above the city is called Subeib< 
and it is full half a league up in the mountains of Lebanon 
and the slope that leads up to the castle is bestrewn wit 
great rocks as big as hutches. When the Germans saw ths 
their pursuit was but folly, they turned back, and when tfc 
Saracens saw that they thus turned back, they attacke 
them on foot, and gave them from the tops of the roci 
great blows with their maces, and dragged away the housing \ 
from their horses. 

The sergeants who were with us, seeing how the Germar \ 
were mishandled, began to be affrighted; so I told thei 
that if they went off I would have them struck off the king 
wages for ever. And they said to me: Lord, the game 
not equal between us; for, if it comes to flight, you are c 
horseback, while we are on foot; and the Saracens will k: 
us." And I said to them: " Lords, I swear to you that 
will not fly, for I will remain with you on foot." So I di 
mounted, and sent away my horse to the Templars, wl 
were a full crossbow shot behind. 

During the retreat that the Germans were making, tl 
Saracens shot one of my knights, whose name was my Loi 
John of Bussey, with a quarrel, in the throat; and he f< 
dead right before me. My Lord Hugh of Escot, who 
nephew he was, and who approved himself right well in tl 
Holy Land, said to me: " Lord, come and help us to car 

Joinville s Chronicle 281 

ay nephew back here." " 111 befall whomsoever helps 
r ou! " said I, " for you went up there without my orders; 
nd if mischance has come upon you, you have deserved it. 
!arry him down there into the ditch. I shall not depart 
ence till they send to fetch me." 

When my Lord John of Valenciennes heard of the peril in 
r hich we were, he came to my Lord Oliver of Termes, and to 
le other chiefs of Languedoc, and said: " Lords, I beseech 
nd command you, in the king s name, to help me to bring 
ack the seneschaL" While he was exerting himself thus, 
ly Lord William of Beaumont came to him and said: " You 
:re troubling yourself in vain, for the seneschal is dead. 3 
nd he answered: " Whether he be dead or alive I will carry 
iws of him to the king ! Then he started, and came to 
i >, there where we had gone up on the mountain; and as 
>on as he drew near to us, he sent word that I should come 
id speak to him; and so I did. 

Then Oliver of Termes said to me that we were there in 
eat peril, for if we went down by the way we had gone 
p we must needs suffer very great loss, because the hill was 
o steep, and the Saracens would fall upon us; " but if you 
ill listen to me," said he, I will show you a way of escape 
ithout loss." And I told him to say on, and I would do as 
5 wished. 

c I will tell you," said he, " how we may escape. We will 
all along this slope, as if we were going towards Damascus ; 
id the Saracens you see before you will think we wish to 
ke them in the rear. And so soon as we are in those 
ains we will spur round the city; and we shall have 
,ssed over the brook before they can come up with us ; and 
thai we shall do them great harm, for we will set fire to 
e threshed corn that is lying in yon fields." 
We did as he proposed; and he caused canes to be taken, 
ch as are used for the making of flutes, and live coals to be 
; therein, and the canes to be thrust in among the threshed 
rn. And thus, by the counsel of Oliver of Termes, God 
ought us back in safety. And you must know that when 
; came back to the camp where our people were, we found 
at all had put off their armour; for none there had given 
a thought. So we returned on the following day to 
yette, where the king was. 

282 Memoirs of the Crusades 


We found that the king in person had caused the bodies 
of the Christians whom the Saracens had killed (at Sayette) 
as has been told above to be duly buried; and he him 
self, in person, bore the decayed and evil-smelling corpses to 
the trenches in which they were to be buried; and he did 
this without ever holding his nostrils, as others did. He 
also caused workmen to come from all parts, and set himself 
to fortify the city with high walls and great towers. And 
when we came to the camp we found that he, in person, had 
meted out the places where we were to be quartered. My 
place he had set near to that of the Count of Eu, because he 
knew that the Count of Eu loved my company. 

I will tell you of the jests that the Count of Eu played 
upon us. I had made a house in which I was wont to eat, 
I and my knights, by the light of the door. Now the door 
stood towards the Count of Eu s quarters; and he, who was 
very ingenious, made a little engine with which he coulc 
throw (stones) into my house; and he would spy out wher 
we sat down to meat, and arrange his engine so as to com 
mand the length of our table, and then throw (stones) there 
with, and so break our pots and our glasses. Again I hac : 
furnished myself with fowls and capons, and some one, . 
know not who, had given him a young bear: and this bea 
he suffered to get at my fowls, and it had killed a dozen o 
them before any one came to the place; and the womai 
who kept the fowls beat the bear with her distaff. 


While the king was fortifying Sayette, certain merchant 
came to the camp and related to us how the King of th 
Tartars had taken the city of Bagdad, as also the pope of tfc 
Saracens, who was lord of the city, and called the Caliph ( 
Bagdad. The merchants told us in what manner the kin 
had taken the city of Bagdad and the caliph, and it was i 
this wise : When they had besieged the caliph s city, the kir 
made known to the caliph that he would willingly arrans 
for a marriage between their children; and the caliph s coui 

Joinville s Chronicle 283 

sellers advised him to agree to the marriage. Then the King 
:>f the Tartars desired the caliph to send as many as forty 
persons of his council, and of his men of most note, to swear 
to the marriage; and the caliph did so. Again the King of 
;he Tartars desired him to send forty of the richest and most 
lotable men that he had; and the caliph did so. The third 
;ime he desired him to send forty of the best men in his 
:ompany; and he did so. When the King of the Tartars 
>aw that all the chief men of the town were in his power, he 
)ethought himself that the lesser people in the town could 
lot defend themselves without leaders; so he caused the 
leads of these six score men of note to be smitten off, and 
hen caused the town to be assaulted, and took it, and the 
:aliph also. 

In order to cover his treachery, and to throw on the caliph 
he blame for the capture of the city, he caused the caliph to 
>e taken and put into a cage of iron, and to be made to fas 4 - 
^o far as a man can fast without dying; and then he asked 
I dm if he were hungry. And/the caliph said " Yes; 5 nor 
/as that to be wondered at. /Then the King of the Tartars 
aused a great charger of gold, loaded with jewels and 
recious stones, to be brought to him, and said: " Dost thou 
now these jewels? /And the caliph said, " Yes, they 
rere mine. 3 And he asked him if he loved them well? 
jid he answered " Yes. 3 " As thou loves t them so much/ 
lid the King of the Tartars, " now take such a portion as 
semeth good to thee, and eat. 3 The caliph replied that he 
Duld not, since these were not meats that could be eaten, 
hen the King of the Tartars said to him: " Now mayest 
lou see what were thy means of defence; for if thou hadst 
estowed thy treasure which, at this hour, is of no use to 
lee upon thy men-at-arms, then, by so spending thy 
easure thou mightest have defended thyself against us; 
hereas now it faileth thee in thy very direst need. 3 


While the king was fortifying Sayette, I went to his mass 
; the point of day, and he told me to wait for him, as he 
ished to ride abroad; and I did so. When we were in the 
ilds we came before a little church, and saw, being on 
)rseback, a priest singing mass. The king told me that 

284 Memoirs of the Crusades 

jfhis church had been built in honour of the miracle that God 
performed upon the Devil, when He drove him out of the 
body of the widow s daughter; and he said to me that, if I 
were willing, he would hear the mass that the priest had begun; 
and I told him that meseemed this were a good thing to do. 

When it came to the giving of the " peace/ I saw that the 
clerk who helped at the singing of the mass was big, black, 
lean and shaggy, and I feared that if he brought the " peace 
to the king, he might perchance prove to be an Assassin, a 
wicked man, and kill the king. So I went and took the 
" peace," and brought it to the king. When the mass was 
sung, and we had remounted, we found the legate in the 
fields; and the king went to him, and called me, and said to 
the legate : I complain to you of the seneschal, who brought 
me the peace/ and would not suffer the poor clerk to bring 
it me." 

And I told the legate the reason why I had so done; and 
the legate said I had done right well. And the king replied, 
" Truly, nol Great debate was then between them; and 
I held my peace. And this story have I told you so that you 
may see the great humility of the king. 

Of this miracle that God performed on the widow s 
daughter does the Gospel speak, which says that God was, 
when he performed the miracle, in parte Tyri et Sidonis ; for 
then the city which I have called Sur was called Tyre, and 
the city that I have herein called Sayette was called Sidon. 



While the king was fortifying Sayette there came to him 
envoys from a great lord in the depths of Greece, who called 
himself the great Comnenus and the Lord of Trebisond 
They brought to the king divers jewels as a present. Among 
other things they brought to the king bows of cornel-wood 
and the notches of the bolts were screwed into the bows, anc 
when the bolts were shot out, one saw that they were ver} 
sharp, and very well fashioned. 1 

1 This passage is probably corrupt in the MSS. and very obscure, an* 
it has given rise to much disquisition. The " cornel-wood " may b 
horn, and my impression is that the bows were crossbows; nor is i 
easy to understand the mechanism suggested. 

Joinville s Chronicle 285 

These envoys asked the king to send a maiden from his 
palace so that their lord might take her to wife. And the 
king replied that he had brought none from oversea; and 
he advised them to go to Constantinople, to the emperor, 
who was the king s cousin, and ask him to give them for their 
lord a wife of the king s lineage and of the emperor s lineage. 
And this the king advised so that the Emperor of Constanti 
nople might have the alliance of this great and wealthy man 
against Vataces, who was then the Emperor of the Greeks. 

The queen, who had but lately recovered after the birth 
of the Lady Blanche of whom she had been confined at 
Jaffa arrived at Sayette; and she had come by sea. When 
I heard tell that she was come, I rose from before the king, 
and went to meet her, and led her to the castle. And when 
i[ came back to the king, who was in his chapel, he asked me 
if the queen and his children were well ; and I told him, yes. 
And he said: " I knew when you rose from before me that 
you were going to meet the queen, and so I have caused the 
>ermon to wait for you. 3 And these things I tell you be 
muse I had then been five years with the king, and never 
oefore had he spoken to me, nor, so far as ever I heard, to 
my one else, of the queen and of his children; and, so itv, 
appears to me, it was not seemly to be thus a stranger to 
3ne s wife and children. ^ 


On All Saints Day (ist November 1253), I invited all the 
nen of note in the camp to my quarters, which were by the 
;ea. And while we were at meat there came in a ship a poor 
might with his wife, and four children that they had. I 
caused them to partake of food in my quarters. When we 
lad eaten, I called together the men of note who were there, 
and said to them: " Let us do here a great alms, and relieve 
;his poor man of his children, and each take one, and I will 
ake one. 3 So each took one, and quarrelled to have him. 
Yhen the poor knight saw this, he and his wife, they began 
:o weep for joy. 

Now it so happened that when the Count of Eu returned 
rom eating in the king s quarters, he came to see the men 
>f note who were in my quarters, and he took away my child, 
srho was of the age of twelve years. This child served the 

286 Memoirs of the Crusades 

count so well and loyally that when we returned to France 
the count saw to his marriage and made him a knight. And 
every time I was there where the count was, this knight! 
could scarce keep away from me, and would say: " Lord, 
may God reward you ! for this honour that I enjoy I owe it 
to you." As to his other three brothers, I know not what 
became of them. 


I asked the king to suffer me to go on pilgrimage to our 
Lady of Tortosa: a very great place of pilgrimage, because 
it was there that the first altar had been made on earth in 
honour of the Mother of God. And our Lady performed 
there many great miracles ; and the following among others: 
There was a man, out of his wits, who had the devil in his 
body. While his friends, who had brought him thither, 
were praying to the Mother of God to give him health, the 
Enemy, who was within him, answered them : " Our Lady 
is not here. She is in Egypt affording help to the King of 
France, and to the Christians, who will come to land this 
day, they on foot against the paynim who are on horseback." 
The day was set in writing, and the writing brought to the 
legate, who himself, with his own mouth, told me of it. And 
be assured that our Lady did help us that very day, and 
would have helped us more if we had not angered her, hex 
and her Son, as I have told you before. 

The king gave me leave to go, and told me, in full council, 
to buy a hundred pieces of camlet of divers colours, to be 
given to the Franciscans when we returned to France, 
Then was my heart comforted, for I thought he would no1 
tarry oversea much longer. 

When we came to Tripoli, my knights asked me what ] 
intended to do with the camlets, and prayed me to tell them 
" Perchance," said I, " I have stolen them for profit." The 
Prince of Tripoli whom God have in His grace! receivec 
us with great joy, and did us all the honour he could; anc 
he would have given to me and to my knights great gifts, i; 
so be that we would have taken them. But we would take 
nothing save some of his relics, whereof I took some to the 
king, together with the camlet I had bought for him. 

Joinville s Chronicle 287 

Moreover I sent to my lady the queen four pieces of camlet. 
The knight who presented them to her carried them wrapped 
up in a white cloth. When the queen saw him enter the 
chamber where she was, she knelt before him, and he knelt 
before her; and the queen said : " Rise up, sir knight; you 
ought not to kneel, who are the bearer of relics. " But the 
knight said: " Lady, these are not relics; these are pieces 
of camlet that my lord sends you." When the queen heard 
this, and her ladies, they began to laugh; and the queen 
said to my knight: " Tell your lord that I wish him an evil 
day, since he has caused me to kneel to his camlet." 

While the king was at Sayette they brought him a stone 
that broke in flakes, the most marvellous stone in the world ; 
and when you scaled off one of the flakes, you found, between 
the two stones, the form of a sea-fish. The fish was of stone ; 
but it wanted nothing in form, eyes, bones, nor colour, nor 
anything else, to make it otherwise than if it were alive. 
The king gave me one of these stones, and I found therein a 
tench, brown of colour, and of such fashion as a tench ought 
to be. 


To Sayette came news to the king that his mother was 
dead. He made such lamentation that, for two days, no one 
could speak to him. After that he sent one of the varlets of 
his chamber to summon me. When I came before him in 
his chamber, where he was alone, and he saw me, he stretched 
out his arms, and said: Ah, seneschal, I have lost my 
mother! " Sire," said I, " I do not marvel at that, since 
she had to die; but I do marvel that you, who are a wise 
man, should have made such great mourning; for you know 
what the sage says : that whatever grief a man may have in 
his heart, none should appear on his countenance, because 
he who shows his grief causes his enemies to rejoice and 
afflicts his friends." He caused many fine services to be 
held for the queen overseas; and afterwards sent to France 
a chest full of letters to the churches, asking them to pray 
for her. 

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My Lady Mary of Vertus, a very good lady and a saintly 
woman, came to tell me that the queen was making great 
lamentation, and asked me to go to her and comfort her. 
And when I came there, I found her weeping; and I told her 
that he spake sooth who said that none should put faith in 
woman. " For," said I, " she that is dead is the woman that 
you most hated, and yet you are showing such sorrow." 
And she told me it was not for the queen that she was weep 
ing, but because of the king s sorrow in the mourning that he 
made, and because of her daughter, afterwards the Queen of 
Navarre, who had remained in men s keeping. 

The unkindness that the Queen Blanche showed to the 
Queen Margaret was such that she would not suffer, in so far 
as she could help it, that her son should be in his wife s com 
pany, except at night when he went to sleep with her. The 
palace where the king and his queen liked most to dwell was 
at Pontoise, because there the king s chamber was above and 
the queen s chamber below; and they had so arranged 
matters between them that they held their converse in a 
turning staircase that went from the one chamber to the 
other; and they had further arranged that when the ushers 
saw the Queen Blanche coming to her son s chamber, they 
l struck the door with their rods, and the king would come 
running into his chamber so that his mother might find him 
there; and the ushers of Queen Margaret s chamber did the 
same when Queen Blanche went thither, so that she might 
find Queen Margaret there. 

Once the king was by his wife s side, and she was in great 
peril of death, being hurt for a child that she had borne. 
Queen Blanche came thither, and took her son by the hand, 
and said: " Come away; you have nothing to do here! 
When Queen Margaret saw that the mother was leading her 
son away, she cried: "Alas! whether dead or alive, you will 
not suffer me to see my lord! Then she fainted, and they 
thought she was dead; and the king, who thought she was 
dying, turned back; and with great trouble they brought 
her round. 

Joinville s Chronicle 289 


When the city of Sayette was nearly all fortified, the king 
caused several processions to be made throughout the camp; 
and after the processions the legate caused prayers to be 
made that God should, according to His will, so order the 
king s matters that the king should do what was most agree 
able to God, either in returning to France or remaining where 
he was. 

After the processions had been made the king called me, 
as I was sitting with the men of note of the land, and took 
me into a courtyard, and made me turn my back towards 
them. Then the legate said to me: Seneschal, the king 
is greatly pleased with your services, and would right 
willingly procure you profit and honour; and in order to set 
your heart at rest, he desires me to tell you that he has 
settled to go to France at this coming Easter. 3 And I 
replied: " God grant that he may carry out his wish. 3 

Then the legate rose, and told me to go with him to 
his quarters; which I did. Then he shut me into his privy 
chamber he and I, and none other and put my two hands 
between both his, and began to weep very bitterly; and 
when he could speak, he said: Seneschal, I am greatly 
rejoiced, and I give thanks to God that the king, and you, 
and the other pilgrims should escape from the great peril in 
which you have been in this land. And much am I in dis 
tress of heart that I shall have to leave your saintly com 
pany, and go to the court of Rome, amid the treacherous 
people who are there. But I will tell you what I think to do. 
I think to remain here a year after you have left, and to spend 
all that I have in fortifying the suburbs of Acre. So will I 
show them clearly that I bring back no monies with me ; and 
then, my hands being empty, they will not pursue me." 

I once told the legate of two sins that one of my priests 
had related to me; and he answered me in this manner: 
" No one knows as I do of all the treacherous sins committed 
in Acre : wherefore it behoves that God avenge them in such 
sort that the city of Acre be washed clean in the blood of its 
inhabitants, and that other people come hereafter to dwell 
there." This prophecy of the right worthy man has in part 

290 Memoirs of the Crusades 

been brought to pass, for the city has been well washed in the 
blood of its inhabitants; 1 but those have not yet come who 
are to dwell there; and when they do come, God grant that 
they be righteous, and govern themselves according to the 
will of the Lord 1 



After these things the king sent for me and ordered me to 
arm myself, I and my knights. I asked him why; and he 
told me I was to conduct the queen and his children to Sur, 
some seven leagues distant. I answered him not a word; 
and yet his command was fraught with peril, for we had 
then neither truce nor peace with the Saracens of Egypt or 
those of Damascus. God be thanked, we gat to Sur all 
peacefully, and without hindrance, at nightfall, though we 
had twice to dismount, in our enemies land, for the purpose 
of making a fire and cooking our meat, and of feeding the 
children and causing them to take suck. 

When the king departed from the city of Sayette, which 
he had fortified with great walls and great towers, and with 
great fosses puddled within and without, the patriarch and 
barons came to him, and spoke in this wise : Sire, you have 
fortified the city of Sayette, and that of Csesarea, and the 
burgh of Jaffa all to the very great advantage of the Holy 
Land; and you have greatly strengthened the city of Acre 
with the walls and towers that you have built. Sire, we 
have considered among ourselves, and we do not see that 
henceforward your sojourn here will bring profit to the 
kingdom of Jerusalem: wherefore we advise and counsel 
you to go to Acre in the coming Lent, and prepare for your 
passage, so that you may be able to return to France after 
Easter." By the advice of the patriarch and of the barons, 
the king departed from Sayette, and came to Sur, where the 
queen was; and from thence they came to Acre at the 
beginning of Lent. 

All during Lent the king caused his vessels to be made 
ready to return to France; and there were thirteen of them, 
as well ships as galleys. The ships and galleys were got 
ready in such sort that the king and queen embarked on board 

1 It was sacked by the Saracens in 1291. 

Joinville s Chronicle 291 

their ships on the vigil of St. Mark, after Easter (24th April 
1254); and we had a fair wind for our departing. On St. 
Mark s day the king told me that on that day he had been 
born; and I told him that henceforward he might well say 
that on that day he had been re-born, for certes he was well 
re-born when he escaped from that perilous land. 


On the Saturday we came in sight of the isle of Cyprus, 
and of a mountain in Cyprus which is called the Mountain of 
the Cross. That Saturday a mist pose from the land, and 
descended from the land to the sea; and by this our mariners 
thought we were further from the isle of Cyprus than we 
were, because they did not see the mountain above the mist. 
Wherefore they sailed forward freely, and so it happened 
that our ship struck a reef of sand below the water; and if 
we had not found that little sandbank where we struck, we 
should have struck against a great mass of sunken rocks, 
where our ship would have been broken in pieces, and we all 
shipwrecked and drowned. 

As soon as our ship struck, a great cry rose in the ship, 
for each one cried " Alas! " and the mariners and the rest 
wrung their hands, because each was in fear of drowning. 
When I heard this, I rose from my bed, where I was lying, 
and went to the ship s castle with the mariners. As I came 
there, Brother Raymond, who was a Templar and master of 
the mariners, said to one of his varlets: " Throw down the 
lead." And he did so. And as soon as he had thrown it he 
cried out, and said: "Alas! we are a-ground! J When 
Brother Raymond heard that he rent his clothes to the belt, 
and took to tearing out his beard, and to crying: " Ay me! 
Ay me ! " 

At this point one of my knights, whose name was my Lord 
John of Monson, the father of the Abbot William of St. 
Michael, did me a great kindness, for he brought me, without 
a word, a lined surcoat of mine, and threw it on my back, 
because I had donned my tunic only. And I cried out to 
him and said : What do I want with your surcoat, that you 
bring me, when we are drowning? And he said to me: 
" By my soul, lord, I should like better to see us all drowned 


92 Memoirs of the Crusades 

than that you should take some sickness from the cold, and 
so come to your death." 

The mariners cried: "Ho! galleys, come and take the 
king ! " But of the four galleys that the king had there, 
never a galley came near; and in this they acted wisely, 
for there were full eight hundred persons on board the ship 
who would have jumped into the galleys to save their lives, 
and thus have caused the galleys to sink. 

The varlet who had the lead thiew it a second time, and 
came back to Brother Raymond, and told him that the ship 
was no longer a-ground. Then Brother Raymond went and 
told it to the king, who was lying cross-wise on the deck of 
the ship, barefoot, in his tunic only, and all dishevelled 
before the body of our Lord which was on the ship and he 
lay there as one who fully thought to be drowned. 

So soon as it was day, we saw before us the rock on which 
we would have struck if the ship had not caught the end of 
the sand-reef. 

In the morning the king sent to fetch the master mariners 
of the ships; and they sent four divers to the bottom of the 
sea. And these dived into the sea; and when they came 
out, the king and the master mariners heard them one after 
the other separately, so that one diver did not know what the 
other had said. Nevertheless they learned from the four 
divers that, in the scraping of our ship against the sand, the 
sand had knocked off full four fathoms of the keel on which 
the ship was built. 

Then the king called the master mariners before us, and 
asked them what advice they gave as concerning the blow 
the ship had received. They consulted together, and advised 
the king to leave his ship and go into another ship. " And 
we give you this advice," said they, because we believe for 
certain that all the timbers of your ship are dislocated: 
wherefore we are in doubt whether, when your ship gets into 
the high sea, she will be able to stand the blows of the waves, 
and not go to pieces. For so it chanced, when you came 
from France, a ship struck in like manner; and when she 
came into the high seas she was unable to stand the blows of 
the waves, and broke up, and all perished, so many as were 
in the ship, save one woman and her child, who were saved 
upon a piece of the ship." And I can bear you witness that 
he spoke sooth, for I saw the woman and the child at Baffe, 

Joinville s Chronicle 293 

n the quarters of the Count of Joigny ; and the count enter- 
;ained them for the love of God. 

Then the king asked my Lord Peter the Chamberlain, and 
ny Lord Giles le Brun, Constable of France, and my Lord 
jervais of Escraines, who was master cook to the king, and 
she archdeacon of Nicosia, who bore his seal, and was after 
wards cardinal, and myself, what we advised concerning 
shese things. And we replied that as regards all worldly 
natters one ought to believe those who are most conversant 
with them. " Therefore," said we, " we counsel you, for 
Dur parts, to do what the seamen advise. 3 

Then the king said to the mariners: " I ask you, on your 
fealty, whether if the ship were your own, and freighted 
with your own merchandise, you would leave her? And 
they replied, all together, " No," for they liked better to 
put their bodies in peril of drowning rather than to buy a 
new ship at a cost of four thousand limes and more. 6 And 
why do you then advise me to leave the ship ? " " Because," 
said they, " the stakes are not equal. For neither gold nor 
silver can be set against your person, and the persons of your 
wife and children, who are here; therefore we advise you not 
to put yourself, or them, in jeopardy." Then the king said 
to them: " Lords, I have heard your opinion, and that of 
my people; and now I will tell you mine, which is this: If I 
leave the ship, there are in her five hundred people and more 
who will land in this isle of Cyprus, for fear of peril to their 
body since there is none that does not love his life as much 
as I love mine and these, peradventure, will never return 
to their own land. Therefore I like better to place my own 
person, and my wife, and my children in God s hands than 
do this harm to the many people who are here." 

The great harm that the king would have done to the 
people in his ship may be plainly seen by what happened to 
Oliver of Termes, who was in the king s ship. Now he was 
one of the boldest men I have ever seen, and had so approved 
himself in the Holy Land; but he did not dare to stay with 
us for fear of drowning, and remained in Cyprus; and he 
was there so let and hindered that he did not return to the 
king for a year and a half; and yet he was a man of note, and 
a wealthy man, and could well pay for his passage. Now 
bethink you how the lesser folk would have fared who had 
not the wherewithal to pay for their passages, when such a 
man was so hindered and delayed ! 

294 Memoirs of the Crusades 


Out of this danger, from which God caused us to escape, 
we fell into another; for the wind, which had driven us on to 
the coast of Cyprus, where we had thought to drown, now 
arose, so strong and violent, that it beat us back upon the 
island once more. The mariners threw out their anchors 
against the wind, but were never able to stop the ship till 
they had thrown out five. It became necessary to take 
down the sides of the king s chamber; 1 nor was there any 
one who ventured to remain therein, for fear lest the wind 
should carry him into the sea. At this moment the Con 
stable of France, my Lord Giles le Brun, and I were lying in 
the king s chamber, and the queen opened the door of the 
chamber, and thought to find the king there. And I asked 
her what she came seeking. And she said she had come to 
speak to the king, to ask him to make promise to God, or to 
His saints, of some pilgrimage, so that God might deliver us 
from the peril in which we were; for the mariners had said 
we were like to drown. And I said: " Lady, promise to 
make a journey to the shrine of my Lord St. Nicholas of 
Varangeville, and I will be warrant for him that God will 
bring you back to France, you and the king, and your 
children." " Seneschal," she said, " I would do so right 
willingly; but the king is so strange that if he knew I had 
made this promise without his privity, he would never let me 
go." " At least," I said, " you will do one thing: If God 
brings you back to France, you will promise to give a ship of 
silver, worth five marks, for the king, for yourself, and for 
your three children; and I will be warrant that God will 
bring you back to France; for I made a vow to St. Nicholas 
that if he saved us from the peril in which we were last night, 
I should go from Joinville, on foot and unshod, to seek him 
at Varangeville." And she said that, as for the ship of 
silver, of the value of five marks, she promised it to St. 
Nicholas, and that I was to be his warrant; and I replied: 
"That shall I be right willingly." So she departed and 
stayed away but a little while; and then she came back to 

1 The passage is obscure. I translate as the words stand. The 
" chamber," I take it, was a kind of deck cabin. 

Joinville s Chronicle 295 

s and said to me: St. Nicholas has saved us from this 
eril; for the wind has fallen." 

When the queen whom God have in His mercy! was 
ome back to France, she caused the ship of silver to be 
ishioned in Paris. And there were in the ship the king, the 
ueen, and the three children, all in silver; and the mariners, 
he mast, the rudder, the cordage, all of silver; and the sails 
fere all sewn with silver thread. And the queen told me 
hat the fashioning of it had cost one hundred limes. When 
he ship was made, the queen sent it to me at Joinville, so 
hat I might cause it to be taken to St. Nicholas; which 
Iso I did. And I saw it still at St. Nicholas when we con- 
.ucted the king s sister 1 to (be married to the son of) the 
- Ling of Germany, at Haguenau. 


Now let us return to our subject, and proceed. After we 
tad escaped from these two perils, the king sat himself on 
he bulwark of the ship, and made me sit at his feet, and spoke 
hus: "Seneschal, our God has shown us His great power 
a this : that a little wind not one of the four great master 
rinds! has come near to drowning the King of France, 
ds wife, and his children, and all his company. Now are we 
>ound to give Him grace and thanks for the peril from which 
ie has delivered us. Seneschal," said the king, " such 
ribulations, when they come to people, or great sicknesses, 
r great presecutions, are, as the saints tell us, the threaten- 
ngs of our Saviour. For just as God says to those who 
scape from great sicknesses : ^ow see how I might have 
>rought your life to an end, had/such been My will/ even so 
ould He now say to us : f You see how I might have drowned 
ou all, had such been My will/ Now ought we/ continued 
he king, " to look to ourselves, and see if there is anything 
n us that displeases Him, and on account whereof He has 
hus placed us in fear and joopardy; and if we find anything 
in us that displeases Him, we should cast it out. For if we 
lo otherwise, after the warning He has given us, He will 
mite us with death, or with some other great tribulation, to 
he destruction of our bodies and of our souls." And the 

1 The present king, i.e., Philip the Fair, whose sister Blanche 
aarried Rudolph, the son of the King or Emperor of Germany. 


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king added: Seneschal, the saint says: Lord God, why 
dost thou threaten us ? For if thou destroyest us all, Thou 
wilt be none the poorer; and if Thou savest as alive Thou 
wilt be none the richer. Whereby we may see/ says the 
saint, that the warnings that God gives us can neither be to 
His advantage, nor save Him from harm; and that it is only 
out of His great love that He sends His warnings to awaken 
us, so that we may see our defects clearly, and remove from 
us all that is displeasing to Him. Now let us do this/ said 
the king, " and we shall be acting wisely." 


We left the island of Cyprus after we had watered there 
and taken in such other things as we required. Then we 
came to an isle called Lampedousa, where we took a greal 
quantity of conies; and we found an ancient hermitage ir 
the rocks, and found the garden that the hermits who dwell 
there had made of old time : where were olives, and figs, anc 
vines, and other trees. The stream from the fountain rar 
through the garden. The king, and we all, went to the enc 
of the garden, and found an oratory in the first cave, white 
washed with lime, and there was there a cross of red earth 
We entered into the second cave, and found two bodies oi 
dead men, with the flesh all decayed; the ribs yet held al 
together, and the bones of the hands were on their breasts 
and they were laid towards the East, in the same mannei 
that bodies are laid in the earth. When we got back to oui 
ship, we found that one of our mariners was missing; anc 
the master of the ship thought he had remained there to be 
a hermit: wherefore Nicholas of Soisi, who was the king s 
master sergeant, left three bags of biscuit on the shore, sc 
that the mariner might find them, and subsist thereon. 


When we came away from thence, we saw a great islanc 
in the sea, called Pentelaria, and it was peopled by Saracem 
who were subject to the King of Sicily and the King of Tunis, 
The queen begged the king to send thither three galleys tc 
get fruit for the children; and the king consented, and 

Joinville s Chronicle 297 

rdered the masters of the galleys to go thither, and be ready 
3 come back to him when his ship passed before the island, 
he galleys entered into a little port that was in the island; 
nd it chanced that when the king s ship passed before the 
ort, we got no tidings of our galleys. 

Then did the mariners begin to murmur among them- 
Ives. The king caused them to be summoned, and asked 
lem what they thought of the matter. The mariners said 
: seemed to them that the Saracens had captured his people 
nd his galleys. " But we advise and counsel you, sire, not 
) wait for them; for you are between the kingdom of Sicily 
nd the kingdom of Tunis, which both the one and the 
ther of them love you not at all; if, however, you suffer us 
) sail forward, we shall, during the night, have delivered 
ou from peril; for we shall have passed through this 

" Truly/* said the king, " I shall not listen to you, and 
;ave my people in the hands of the Saracens without at 
:ast doing all in my power to deliver them. I command 
DU to turn your sails, and we will fall upon them." And 
hen the queen heard this, she began to make great lamen- 
ition, and said: " Alas! this is all my doing! 

While they were turning the sails of the king s ship, and 
: the other ships, we saw the galleys coming from the island. 
Hien they came to the king, the king asked the mariners 
hy they had tarried; and they replied that they could not 
sip themselves, but that the fault lay with certain sons of 
argesses of Paris, of whom there were six, who stayed eating 
le fruit of the gardens ; wherefore they had been unable to 
it them off, nor could they leave them behind. Then the 
ing commanded that the six burghers sons should be put 
ito the barge a-stern; at which they began to cry and to 
Dwl, saying : " Sire, for God s sake, take for ransom all 
lat we have; but do not put us there where murderers and 
deves are put; for we shall be shamed to all time." 

The queen and all of us did what we could to move the 
ing ; but the king would listen to none of us. So they were 
at into the barge, and remained there till we came to land, 
nd they were there in such danger and distress that when the 
.a rose, the waves flew over their heads, and they had to sit 
3wn lest the wind should carry them into the sea. And it 
:rved them right; for their gluttony caused us such mis- 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

chief that we were delayed for eight good days, because th< 
king had caused the ships to turn right about. 


Another adventure befell us at sea, before we came to land 
and it happened thus : One of the queen s bedeswomen, whei 
she had put the queen to bed, was heedless, and taking th 
kerchief that had been wound about her head, threw it on t 
the iron stove on which the queen s candle was burning; an< 
when she had gone to bed in the cabin where the wome: 
slept, below the queen s chamber, the candle burnt on, ti 
the kerchief caught fire, and from the kerchief the fire passe- 
to the cloths with which the queen s garments were covered. 

When the queen awoke, she saw her cabin all in flame! 
and jumped up quite naked, and took the kerchief, and thre^ 
it all burning into the sea, and took the cloths and extir 
guished them. Those who were in the barge behind the shi 
cried, but not very loud: "Fire! fire! I lifted up m 
head and saw that the kerchief still burned with a clea 
flame on the sea, which was very still. I put on my tun: 
as quickly as I could, and went and sat with the mariners. 

While I sat there my squire, who slept before me, carr 
to me and said that the king was awake, and asked where 
was. " And I told him," said he, that you were in yoi 
cabin; and the king said to me, <; Thou liest. While \* 
were thus speaking, behold the queen s clerk appeare* ! 
Master Geoffry, and said to me: "Be not afraid; nothir , 
has happened." And I said: Master Geoffry, go and te 
the queen that the king is awake, and that she should go 1 
him and set his mind at ease. 3 

On the following day the Constable of France, and my Loi 
Peter the chamberlain, and my Lord Gervais, the master >. 
the pantry, said to the king : What happened in the nig] 
that we heard mention of fire? And I said not a wor 
Then said the king: " What happened was by mischanc 
and the seneschal is more reticent than I. Now I will tf 
you," said he, " how it came about that we might all ha 1 
been burned this night." And he told them what fo 
befallen, and said to me: "I command you henceforwai 
not to go to rest till you have put out all fires, except tl 
great fire that is in the hold of the ship. And take note th 

Joinville s Chronicle 299 

shall not go to rest till you come back to me." And I did 
as long as we were at sea; and it was only after I had gone 
>ck to the king that he would go to rest. 


Another adventure befell us at sea. My Lord Dragonet, 
man of note of Provence, was asleep one morning in his 
ip, which was a full league in front of ours; and waking he 
lied to a squire of his and said to him: " Go and stop up 
.at opening, for the sun strikes on my face." The squire 
w that he could not stop up the opening unless he got out- 
le the ship, so he got outside. While he was going to stop 
) the opening, his foot slipped, and he fell into the water, 
ow the ship had no barge in tow, for it was small; and very 
on he was left behind, a long way from the ship. We who 
2re on the king s ship saw him, and fancied it was a bundle 

1a barrel, because he who had fallen into the water made 
> effort to help himself. One of the king s galleys picked 
m up, and brought him to our ship, where he told us how 
is had befallen him. I asked him how it was he had taken 
) thought to save himself, either by swimming, or in any 
her manner. He answered me that there was no reason, 
need, why he should thus take thought, because, so soon 
he began to fall, he commended himself to our Lady of 
auvert, and she held him up by the shoulders from the time 
.at he fell until the king s galley picked him up. In 
mour of this miracle, I have caused it to be depicted in my 
lapel at Joinville, and in the glass windows at Blecourt. 



After we had been six weeks at sea, we came to a port at 

>-yo leagues distance from a castle called Hyres, which 

longed to the Count of Provence, who afterwards became 

j Ing of Sicily. The queen and all the council were agreed 

lat the king should disembark there, because the land be- 

nged to his brother. The king answered us that he would 

3t leave his ship till we came to Aigues-Mortes, which was 

i his own land. On this point the king held firm against us 

300 Memoirs of the Crusades 

on the Wednesday and the Thursday, nor could we prevs 
against him to decide otherwise. 

In the Marseilles ships there are two rudders attached i 
two tillers in such marvellous fashion that you can turn tl 
ship to the right hand, or to the left, as quickly as you ce 
turn a saddle horse. On the Friday the king was sittir 
upon one of these tillers, and he called me to him, and sai< 
Seneschal, what do you think of this matter? " And 
said to him: " Sire, it would be but right if that chanced 
you that chanced to my Lady of Bourbon, who would n< 
disembark at this port, but set out to sea again to go 
Aigues-Mortes, and remained at sea for six weeks." 

Then the king called his council together, and told the 
what I had said, and asked what they advised; and they E 
advised that he should disembark presently, since it wou 
not be wise on his part if he again put his own person, h 
wife, and his children, in peril by the sea after having escape 
therefrom. The king accepted the advice we gave hin 
whereby the queen was greatly rejoiced. 


The king and his wife and children disembarked therefo 
at the castle of Hyeres. While the king was waiting : 
Hydres in order to obtain horses to come into France, tl 
Abbot of Cluny, who afterwards was Bishop of Olive, pr 
sented him with two palfreys, which would to-day be we 
worth five hundred limes one for the king himself, and tl 
other for the queen. When the abbot had presented ther 
he said to the king : Sire, I will come again to-morrow 
speak to you about my affairs." When the morrow cam 
the abbot returned. The king heard him with great diligen 
and at great length. When the abbot had departed, I can 
to the king, and said: I should like to ask, if it so pleas 
you, whether you have given ear to the Abbot of Cluny wi" 
the more favour because of those two palfreys that he ga 1 
you yesterday? " The king thought a long time, and fht 
said: " Truly, yes." " Sire," I continued, " do you kno 
why I have asked you this question? " Why? " said h 
" Because, sire," I replied, " I advise and counsel that, wh( 
you return to France, you forbid all your sworn councillo 
to accept aught from those who have matters to brii 

Joinville s Chronicle 301 

fore you; for you may rest assured that, if they -accept 
ght, they will listen more willingly, and with greater dili- 
nce, to those who have bestowed somewhat upon them; 
e as you have done to the Abbot of Cluny." The king 
lied all his council together, and incontinently told them 
lat I had said; and they answered that the advice I had 
/en him was good. 


The king heard tell of a Franciscan whose name was 
other Hugh; and because of the great fame of this Fran- 
;can, the king sent to summon him, for he desired to see 
m and hear him speak. The day on which Brother Hugh 
me to Hy6res, we looked out upon the road by which he 
is coming, and saw that a great crowd of people were 
Uowing him on foot, both men and women. The king 
.used him to preach. The beginning of his sermon was on 
ie religiouses, and he spoke thus: " Lords, I see too many 
ligiouses in the king s court, and in his company." And 
these words he added: " And in the first place I myself 
n one too many here; and this I say because the religiouses 
ire are in no condition to be saved unless the Holy Scrip- 
ires lie to us, which cannot be. For the Holy Scriptures 
ill us that a monk cannot live out of his cloister without 
.ortal sin, any more than a fish can live out of water. And 
the religiouses who are with the king say that his court is 
cloister, then I say unto them that it is the very largest 
oister that ever I saw, for it extends from this side of the 
sa to the other. And if they say that in that cloister they 
in lead a hard life for the salvation of their souls, then I do 
ot believe them ; for I tell you that I have eaten with them 
ere of divers meats in great foison, and drunk good wines 
oth strong and clear. Wherefore I am certain that if they 
ad been in their cloisters, they would not have lived in such 
ase as they now live with the king." 
In his sermon he told the king how he should govern for 
tie good of his people; and at the end of the sermon he 
aid that he had read the Bible and the books that go with 
tie Bible, and that he had never seen, neither in the books of 
<elievers nor in the books of unbelievers, that any kingdom, 
r lordship, was lost, or passed from one lord to another, or 

302 Memoirs of the Crusades 

one king to another, unless there had first been default o 
right and justice. " Now let the king," -said he, " have i 
care, since he is going into France, that he execute right an< 
justice among his people, and remain thereby in the love o 
God, so that God do not take from him both his kingdom am 
his life." 

I said to the king that he should keep Brother Hugh in hi 
company as long as he could. He told me he had already S( 
besought the brother, but that he would not remain at hi 
bidding. Then the king took me by the hand and said 
Let us go and beseech him." We came to him, and I said 
Sir, do what my lord asks you, and stay with him so lon[ 
as he is in Provence." And he answered me angrily: " 
a truth, sir, I shall not do so. I shall go whither God wil 
love me better than in the king s company." One day hi 
stayed with us, and the next he went his way. It has sine 
been told me that he lies buried in the city of Marseilles, ant 
there works many fair miracles. 


On the day that the king left Hyeres, he went down fron 
the castle on foot, because the hill was steep; and he wen 
so far on foot, not being able to come at his own palfrey, tha 
he had to mount on mine. And when his own palfrey cam 
up, he turned very angrily on Ponce, the squire; and afte 
he had mis-said him well, I said: " Sire, you ought to forgiv 
much to Ponce, the squire; for he has served your grand 
father, and your father, and yourself." " Seneschal," sai( 
he, " he has not served us, but we have served him, in suffer 
ing him to remain near our persons considering his evi 
qualities. For King Philip, my grandfather, told me tha 
we ought to reward our servants, one more and the othe 
less, according to their service; and he used to say agaii 
that none can govern a country well if he does not kno\ 
how to refuse as boldly, and with as much hardihood, as h 
knows how to give. And I teach you these things," said th 
king, " becauseyfiie world is so eager to ask and acquire, tha 
there are few people who look\to the salvation of their souls 
and their personal honour, provided they can draw to them 
selves the goods of others, whether rightfully or wrongfully. 3 

Joinville s Chronic* 303 


The king passed through the county of Provence to a city 
. lied Aix in Provence, where it was said that the body of 
e Magdalen lay; and we went to a very high cave in a 
ck, where, so it was related, she had lived in hermitage for 
venteen years. When the king came to Beaucaire, and I 
w him in his own land, and his own dominions, I took 
ive of him, and went to the Dauphiness of Vienne, my 
ece, and to the Count of Chalon, my uncle, and to the Count 

r Burgundy, his son. 
And when I had sojourned a space at Joinville, and had 
ranged my affairs, I went back to the king, whom I found 
Soissons; and he made such joy of me that all who were 
.ere marvelled. There I found Count John of Brittany, 
j id his wife, the daughter of King Thibaut, who offered to 

> homage to the king for all such rights as she might have 
Champagne; and the king adjourned the matter, and 

ferred her, as also King Thibaut II., to the parliament of 
iris, where they might be heard, and justice done to the 

To this parliament came the King of Navarre and his 
>uncil, and the Count of Brittany also. At this parliament 
ing Thibaut asked for my Lady Isabel, the king s daughter, 

> have her to wife. Notwithstanding the words that our 
3ople of Champagne spoke behind my back, because of the 
ve they had seen the king show to me at Soissons, I did not 
>rbear to go to the king and speak to him about this 
Larriage. 1 " Go," said the king, " and get the Count of 
rittany to agree, and then we will conclude our marriage. M 
nd I told him that he ought not to give up the marriage on 
lat ground (i. e., if the count objected). But he said that 
a no account would he conclude the marriage until such 
.me as an agreement had been come to; for no one should 
ver say that he had married his children by depriving his 
arons of their heritage. 

I reported these words to Queen Margaret of Navarre, and 
o the king her son, and to their other counsellors; and when 

1 Sense a little obscure, and MSS. not quite agreed. 

304 Memoirs of the Crusades 

they heard them they hastened to come to an agreement 
And so soon as they were agreed, the King of France gav< 
his daughter to King Thibaut; and the nuptials were cele 
brated at Melun, largely and with full pomp; and fron 
thence King Thibaut led his bride to Provins, where the; 
made their entry amid a great number of barons. 


f After the king returned from overseas, he lived in sue! 
devotion that never did he wear fur of beaver or grey squirrel 
nor scarlet, nor gilded stirrups and spurs. His clothing wa 
of camlet and blue cloth; the fur on his coverlets ant 
clothing was deer s hide, or the skin from the hare s legs, o 
lambskin. He was so sober in his eating that he neve 
ordered special meats outside what his cook prepared; wha 
was set before him that did he eat. He put water to hi 
wine in a glass goblet, and according to the strength of th 
wine he added water thereto by measure; and would hol< 
the goblet in his hand while they mixed water with his win 
behind his table. He always caused food to be given to hi 
poor, and after they had eaten, caused money to be give] 
to them. <j*g*<* 

When the minstrels of the men of note came in after h 
had eaten, and brought their viols, he would wait before h 
heard grace until the minstrel had ended his song; then h< 
would rise, and the priests stand before him to say grace 
When we were private with him, he would sit at the foot o 
his bed; and when the Preaching Brothers and Dominican 
who were there brought to his mind some book which h 
might like to hear read, he would say: " You shall not rea< 
it to me ; for there is no book so good after eating as to tall 
freely, that is to say, so to talk that every one says wha 
best pleases him." When strangers of note ate with him, h 
made them very good company. 

Of his wisdom will I now speak to you^ There were time 
when people bore witness that no one of his council was a 
wise as he. And this appeared in that when people spoke t< 
him of any matter, he did not say: I will take advic 
thereon; " but if he saw the right clearly and evidently h 
answered without appeal to his councillors, and at once. L 

I Joinville s Chronicle 305 

I j wise I heard that he gave answer to all the prelates of 
I kingdom of France regarding a petition they made to 

I i in the following case. 

The Bishop Guy of Auxerre spake to him for all of them, 

I 1 said: "Sire, these archbishops and bishops here 
] sent have charged me to tell you that Christendom 
[ :ays and melts in your hands, and that it will decay still 
I ther unless you give thought thereto, because no man 
L nds in fear of excommunication. We require you there- 
I 3 to command your bailiffs and your sergeants to compel 

excommunicate persons who have been under sentence 
a year and a day, to make satisfaction to the Church. 33 
d the king replied, without taking any advice, that he 
aid willingly order his bailiffs and sergeants to constrain 
:ommunicate persons in the manner desired, provided 
I cognisance of the sentence were given to him in each 
e, so that he might judge whether the sentence were 
hteous or not. 

\nd they consulted together, and answered the king that 
;y would not give him such cognisance, because the 
.tters involved were spiritual. And the king replied in 
n that he would not give them cognisance of such matters 
pertained to him, nor order his sergeants to constrain 
:ommunicate persons to obtain absolution, whether such 
:ommunication were rightful or wrongful. " For if I did 
said the king, " I should be acting contrary to God and 
ainst right. And I will give you an example, which is 
s : that the bishops of Brittany held the Count of Brittany 
seven years under sentence of excommunication; and 
m the count obtained absolution from the court of Rome; 
d if I had constrained him at the end of the first year, I 
3uld have constrained him wrongfully." 


It happened, after we had returned from overseas, that 
e monks of St. Urban elected two abbots. The Bishop 
jter of Chalons,, on whom God have mercy! drove 
em both out, and consecrated as abbot my Lord John of 
yrneri, and gave him the crozier. I would not acknow- 
ige the said John of Mymeri as abbot, because he had 
ronged the Abbot Geoffry, who had appealed against him, 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

and gone to Rome. I held the abbey so long in my hand 
that the said Geoffry won the crozier, and the monk to whoD 
it had been given by the bishop did not get it; and while th 
contention lasted, the bishop caused me to be excommuni 
cated. Therefore there was, at a parliament held in Paris 
much quarrelling between me and the Bishop Peter o 
Chalons, and between the Countess Margaret of Flanders an< 
the Archbishop of Rheims, to whom she gave the lie. 

At the following parliament, all the prelates besought th 
king to come and speak to them privily. When he returne< 
from speaking to the prelates, he came to us, who were wait 
ing for him in the judgment chamber, and told us, laughinj 
heartily, of the trouble he had had with the prelates; for, ii 
the first place, the Archbishop of Rheims had said to th 
king : Sire, what will you do for me on account of th 
wardship of St. Remigius of Rheims, which you are takinj 
from me? For by the relics that are here before us, I swea 
I would not have upon my conscience such a sin as there i 
upon yours, for all the kingdom of France." " By the relic; 
that are here before -is," said the king, " I swear that fo 
Compi^gne alone you would take that sin upon your con 
science, because of the covetousness that is in you. So nov 
one of us two is foresworn ! Then the Bishop of Chartrei 
. demanded of me," said the king, : that I should cause wha 
I had of his in my possession to be returned to him. And . 
told him I should not do it, until such time as my dues hac 
been paid. And I told him too that he had done me homag< 
with his hands in mine, and that he was dealing with m< 
neither well nor loyally when he endeavoured to depriv< 
me of what was mine by inheritance. The Bishop o 
Chalons," continued the king, u said to me: Sire, what d( 
you propose to do for me as concerning the Lord of Joinvillt 
who deprives that poor monk of the abbey of St. Urban ? 
" Sir bishop," the king had replied, " you have settled ii 
among you that no excommunicate person is to be heard ir 
a lay court; and I have seen a letter, sealed with thirty-twc 
seals, to the effect that you are excommunicate: therefore 
I will not hear you till you have got yourself absolved. 
And these things I tell you so that you may see clearly ho^ 
the king could settle such matters as he had to settle, alone 
and by his own good counsel. 
The Abbot Geoffry of St. Urban, after I had settled this 

Joinville s Chronicle 307 

atter for him, returned me evil for good, and lodged an 
: >peal against me. He gave the saintly king to understand 
:at he was in the king s wardship. I thereon asked the king 
i cause enquiry to be made whether the wardship of the 
>bey was the king s or mine. " Sire/ said the abbot, " please 
od you shall not do this; but so arrange that the question 
itween us and the Lord of Joinville be settled by due 
ocess of law; for we to whom the abbey belongs by in- 
jritance would rather have it in your wardship than in his. 3 
hen the king said to me: " Do they speak sooth that the 
ardship of the abbey is mine? " " Certainly not, sire/ I 
:plied, " it is mine. 3 

Then the king said to the abbot: " It may be that the in 
stance is yours; but as to the wardship, from what you 
41 me, and from what the seneschal tells me, that is a matter 
stween him and me only. Nor shall I forbear, for aught 
mt you have said, to endeavour to arrive at the truth of the 
latter, for if I compelled him to plead at law, I should be 
oing a wrong to him, who is my liegeman, for I should put 
is right to the issue of law, whereas he offers to let me know 
le truth clearly." So he caused the truth to be enquired 
ito, and when the truth was made clear, he handed over to 
le the wardship of the abbey, and gave me sealed letters 
lereto. 1 


Now it happened that the saintly king laboured so effec- 
ually that the King of England, 2 his wife, and his children, 
ame to France to treat of a peace between them and him. 
o this peace his council were strongly opposed, and they 
poke to him thus: " Sire, we marvel greatly that you are 
linded to give to the King of England a great portion of the 
ind which you and your predecessors have won from him, 
nd which he has forfeited by misfeasance. Now it seems 
o us that if you believe you have no right to the land, you 
re not making full restitution unless you restore all the con- 
pests that you and your predecessors have made; while if 

1 This passage is in parts obscure, and the text may be corrupt. I 
.gree with Miss Wedgwood as to l\ie sense given in. her version, which 
eems to me to render Joinville s intention better than the version (into 
elatively modern French) of M. de Waillv. 

* Henry III. 

3 o8 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

you believe that you have a right to the land, it seems to us 
that whatever you restore is restored to your loss." 

To this the saintly king replied after the following manner: 
Lords, I am convinced that the King of England s pre 
decessors were rightfully dispossessed of all the conquered 
land that I hold; and the land that I am giving him I do no1 
give as a thing that I am bound to give either to himself 01 
to his heirs ; but I give it so that there may be love between 
my children and his, who are cousins-german. And me- 
seems that what I give him is given to good purpose, since 
he has not hitherto been my liegeman, but will now have tc 
do me homage. 3 

No man in the world laboured more to maintain peace 
among his subjects, and specially among the great men who 
were neighbours, and the princes of the realm; as, for in 
stance, between the Count of Chalon, uncle of the Lord ol 
Joinville, and his son the Count of Burgundy, who were at 
war when we came back from overseas. And in order to 
make peace between the father and the son he sent men oi 
his council, at his own charges, into Burgundy; and by his 
efforts peace was established between the father and the son. 

There was at that time war between King Thibaut the 
Second, of Champagne, and Count John of Chalon, and the 
Count of Burgundy, his son, regarding the abbey of Luxeuil. 
To appease this war my lord the king sent Gervais of 
Escraines, who was then master of the meats in France ; and 
by his efforts he reconciled them. 

After this war, which the king appeased, arose another 
war between the Count Thibaut of Bar and Count Henry of 
Luxemburg, who had the sister of Count Thibaut to wife. 
And so it happened that they fought together near Preny, 
and Count Thibaut of Bar made Count Henry of Luxemburg 
prisoner, and took the castle of Ligny, which belonged to 
the Count of Luxemburg in right of his wife. In order to 
appease this war the king sent, at his own charges, my Lord 
Peter the chamberlain, the man in the world in whom he 
had greatest faith; and the king laboured so effectually that 
they were reconciled. 

As to the foreigners whom the king had reconciled, there 
were some of his council who said he would have done better 
to let them fight; for if he suffered them to impoverish 
themselves, they would attack him less readily than if they 

Joinville s Chronicle 309 

r ere rich. And to this the king made answer, and said that 
iey spoke unwisely. " For if the neighbouring princes saw 
aat I let them fight together, they might consult and say: 
It is from malice that he lets us fight together.thus. And 
D, perchance, out of hatred, they would come and fall upon 
le, which might be greatly to my loss, to say nothing of the 
nmity of God that I should incur, who has said: Blessed 
re the peacemakers. 

Whence it also came that the people of Burgundy and 
x>rraine, whom he had pacified, loved and obeyed him so 
rell that I have seen them come and plead their suits before 
dm at his courts of Rheims, Paris and Orleans. 



The king so loved God and His sweet Mother that he 
aused all those to be grievously punished who were con- 
r inced of speaking of them evilly or lightly, or with a profane 
ath. Thus I saw him cause a goldsmith, at Csesarea, to be 
>ound to a ladder, in his drawers and shirt, with a pig s gut 
,nd haslet round his neck, and in such quantity that they 
cached up to his nose. I heard tell that, since I came from 
rverseas, he caused, on this account, a citizen of Paris to be 
mimed in the nose and lip ; but this I did not myself witness. 
And the saintly king was used to say: " I would consent to 
>e branded with a hot iron on condition that all profane 
>aths were removed out of my realm." 

I was full twenty-two years in his company, and never 
icard him swear by God, nor His Mother, nor His saints. 
iVhen he wished to affirm anything, he would say: " Truly 
;hat was so," or " Truly that is so." 

Never did I hear him name the Devil, unless the name 
me in some book, where it was right that it should come, or 
n the life of the saints where the book made mention thereof. 
And great shame it is to the realm of France, and to the king 
who suffers it, that scarcely can any one speak without say- 
ng: " May the Devil take it! " And it is a great sin of 
speech to devote to the Devil men or women who were given 
to God as soon as they were baptised. In the house of Join- 
ville whosoever speaks such a word receives a buffet or 
pummel, and bad language is nearly outrooted. 

3 1 o Memoirs of the Crusades 


He asked me if I washed the feet of the poor on Hoi) 
Thursday; and I answered him " No/ for such an ac 
appeared to me unseemly. And he told me I should no 
hold the act in disdain, seeing that God had so done. " Verj 
unwillingly then would you do what the King of Englanc 
does who washes the feet of lepers, and kisses them." 

Before he lay down in his bed he would cause his childrer 
to come to him, and bring to their minds the deeds of gooc 
kings and good emperors, telling them it was of such mei 
they should take example. And he would bring to thei: 
minds also the deeds of great men who were wicked, and b) 
their ill-living, and their rapine, and their avarice, hac 
brought their kingdoms to ruin. " And these things," h< 
would say, " I bring to your minds, so that you may avoic 
them, and that God s anger be not kindled against you. 
He made them learn the hours of our Lady, and say befor< 
him the hours of the day, so as to accustom them to heai 
the hours when they ruled over their own lands. 

The king was such a large alms-giver that wherever h< 
went in his kingdom he caused money to be given to the poo; 
churches, to the lazar houses, to the alms-houses, to th< 
hospitals, and to the poor gentlemen and gentlewomen 
Every day he gave food to a great number of poor folk 
beside those who ate in his chamber; and ofttimes have . 
seen him cutting their bread and giving them drink. 

Many abbeys were built in his time, viz., Royaumont 
the abbey of St. Anthony, by Paris, the abbey of the Lis 
the abbey of Maubuisson, and many other religious house! 
of Preachers and Franciscans. He built the almshouse o: 
Pontoise, the alms-house of Vernon, the house of the blind it 
Paris, the nunnery of the Franciscan sisters at Saint-Cloud 
which his sister, my Lady Isabel, founded by his sanction. 

When any benefice in holy Church fell to the king s gift 
he first, before bestowing it, consulted good men of religioi 
and others; and when he had fully informed himself, he 
bestowed the benefices of holy Church, in good faith, loyally 
and as in the sight of God. In every town of his realm 

Joinville s Chronicle 311 

here he had never been before, he went to the Preachers 
id Franciscans, if there were any there, to ask for their 


After King Lewis had returned to France from overseas, 
5 bore himself very devoutly towards our Saviour, and 
>ry justly towards his subjects; wherefore he considered 
id thought it would be a fair thing, and a good, to reform 
.e realm of France. First he established a general ordin- 
ice for all his subjects throughout the realm of France, in 
.e manner following : 

" We, Lewis, by the grace of God King of France, ordain 
.at Our bailiffs, viscounts, provosts, mayors, and all others, 
whatever matter it may be, and whatever office they may 
>ld, shall make oath that, so long as they hold the said 
free, or perform the functions of bailiffs, they shall do 
stice to all, without acceptation of persons, as well to the 
>or as to the rich, and to strangers as to those who are 
btive-born; and that they shall observe such uses and 
stoms as are good and have been approved. 
" And if it happens that the bailiffs, or viscounts, or others, 
the sergeants or foresters, do aught contrary to their oaths, 
id are convicted thereof, we order that they be punished 

their goods, or in their persons, if the misfeasance so 
quire ; and the bailiffs shall be punished by Ourselves, and 
hers by the bailiffs. 

" Henceforward the other provosts, the bailiffs and the 
rgeants shall make oath to loyally keep and uphold Our 
nts and Our rights, and not to suffer Our rights to lapse or 

be suppressed or diminished; and with this they shall 

rear not to take or receive, by themselves or through others, 

>ld, nor silver, nor any indirect benefit, nor any other 

ing, save fruit, or bread, or wine, or other present, to the 

idue of ten sous, the said sum not being exceeded. 

And besides this, they shall make oath not to take, or 
use to be taken, any gift, of whatever kind, through their 
ives, or their children, or their brothers, or their sisters, or 
ly other persons connected with them ; and so soon as they 

M 333 

3 1 2 Memoirs of the Crusades 

have knowledge that any such gifts have been received, the 
will cause them to be returned as soon as may be possibl 
And, besides this, they shall make oath not to receive an 
gift, of whatever kind, from any man belonging to the 
bailiwicks, nor from any others who have a suit or may plea 
before them. 

" Henceforth they shall make oath not to bestow any gi 
upon anv men who are of Our council, nor upon their wive 
or children, or any person belonging to them; nor upc 
those who shall receive the said officers accounts on Oi 
behalf, nor to any persons whom we may send to their bai. 
wicks, or to their provostships, to enquire into their doing 
And with this they shall swear to take no profit out of ar 
sale that may be made of Our rents, Our bailiwicks, Oi 
coinage, or aught else to Us belonging. 

" And they shall swear and promise, that if they ha 1 
knowledge of any official, sergeant, or provost, serving und 
them, who is unfaithful, given to robbery and usury, 
addicted to other vices whereby he ought to vacate 
service, then they will not uphold him for any gift, 
promise, or private affection, or any other cause, but puni: 
and judge him in all good faith. 

" Henceforward Our provosts, Our viscounts, Our mayoi 
Our foresters, and Our other sergeants, mounted and d: 
mounted, shall make oath not to bestow any gift upon the 
superiors, nor upon their superiors wives, nor children, n 
upon any one belonging to them. 

" And because We desire that these oaths be fairly esta 
lished. We order that they be taken in full assize, before i 
men, by clerks and laymen, knights and sergeants, notwit 
standing that any such may have already made oath befc 
Us; and this We ordain so that those who take the oat 
may avoid the guilt and the sin of perjury, not only from t 
fear of God and of Ourselves, but also for shame before t 

" We will and ordain that all Our provosts and baili 
abstain from saying any word that would bring into contem 
God, or our Lady, or the saints ; and also that they absta 
from the game of dice and keep away from taverns. We orda 
that the making of dice be forbidden throughout Our reah 
and that lewd women be turned out of every house; and wh 
soever shall rent a house to a lewd woman shall forfeit to t 

Joinville s Chronicle 3 1 3 

>rovost, or the bailiff, the rent of the said house for a year. 
" Moreover, We forbid Our bailiffs to purchase wrongfully, 
r to cause to be purchased, either directly, or through 
>thers, any possession or lands that may be in their baili- 
vick, or in any other, so long as they remain in Our service, 
,nd without Our express permission; and if any such pur- 
hases are made, We ordain that the lands in question be, 
,nd remain, in Our hands. 

" We forbid Our bailiffs, so long as they shall be in Our 
ervice, to marry any sons or daughters that they may have, 
r any other person belonging to them, to any other person 
; a their bailiwick, without Our special sanction; and more- 
<ver We forbid that they put any such into a religious house 
n their bailiwick, or purvey them with any benefice of holy 
!hurch, or any other possession; and moreover We forbid 
hat they obtain provisions or lodgings from any religious 
,ouse, or near by, at the expense of the religouses. This 
rohibition as concerns marriages and the acquisition of 
oods, as stated above, does not apply to provosts, or mayors, 
or to others holding minor offices. 

" We order that no bailiff, provost, or any other, shall 
eep too many sergeants or beadles, to the burdening of our 
eople; and We ordain that the beadles be appointed in full 
ssize, or else be not regarded as beadles. When sergeants 
re sent to a distant place, or to a strange county, We ordain 
hat they be not received without letters from their superiors. 
" We order that no bailiff or provost in Our service shall 
urden the good people in his jurisdiction beyond what is 
iwful and right; and that none of Our subjects be put in 
rison for any debt save in so far as such debt may be due to 
)urselves only. 

" We ordain that no bailiff levy a fine for a debt due by any 
f Our subjects, or for any offence, save in full and open 
ourt, where the amount of such fine may be adjudged and 
stimated, with the advice of worthy and competent persons, 
ven when the fine has already been considered by them (in- 
Drmally? passage obscure). And if it happens that the 
ccused will not wait for the judgment of Our court, which 
> offered him, but offers for the fine a certain sum of money, 
uch as has been commonly received aforetime, we ordain 
bat the court accept such sum of money if it be reasonable 
nd convenient; and, if not, we ordain that the fine be 

314 Memoirs of the Crusades 

adjudicated upon, as aforesaid,, even though the delinquent 
place himself in the hands of the court. We forbid that the 
bailiffs, or the mayors, or the provosts, should compel Our 
subjects, either by threats, or intimidation, or any chicanery, 
to pay a fine in secret or in public, or accuse any save foi 
reasonable cause. 

And We ordain that those who hold the office of provost 
viscount, or any other office, do not sell such office to others 
without Our consent; and if several persons buy jointly anj 
of the said offices, We order that one of the purchasers shal 
perform the duties of the office for all the rest, and alone 
enjoy such of its privileges in respect of journeyings, taxes 
and common charges, as have been customary aforetime. 

" And We forbid that they sell the said offices to thei: 
brothers, nephews, or cousins, after they have bought then 
from Us ; and that they claim any debts that may be due t< 
themselves, save such debts as appertain to their office. A 
regards their own personal debts, they will recover them b] 
authority of the bailiff, just as if they were not in Our service 

" We forbid Our bailiffs and provosts to weary our sub 
jects, in the causes brought before them, by moving th 
venue from place to place. They shall hear the matter 
brought before them in the place where they have been won 
to hear them, so that Our subjects may not be induced t 
forego their just rights for fear of trouble and expense. 

From henceforth we command that Our provosts an< i 
bailiffs dispossess no man from the seisin which he holds 
without full enquiry, or Our own especial order; and tha 
they impose upon Our people no new exactions, taxes an 
imposts; and that they compel no one to come forth to d 
service in arms, for the purpose of exacting money from him 
for We order that none who owes Us service in arms shall b 
summoned to join the host without sufficient cause, and tha 
those who would desire to come to the host in person shoul 
not be compelled to purchase exemption by money paymen 

" Moreover, we forbid Our bailiffs and provosts to preven 
corn, wine and other merchandise from being taken out c 
Our kingdom, save for sufficient cause; and when it is cor 
venient that these goods should not be taken out of th 
kingdom, the ordinance shall be made publicly, in th 
council of worthy and competent elders, and without suj 
picion of fraud or misdoing. 

Joinville s Chronicle 315 

" Similarly We ordain that all bailiffs, viscounts, provosts, 
nd mayors do remain, after they have left office, for the 
f pace of forty days in the land where such office has been 
xercised remaining there in person, or by deputy so that 
I hey may answer to the new bailiffs in respect of any wrong 
one to such as may wish to bring a complaint against them/ 3 
By these ordinances the king did much to improve the 
ondition of. the kingdom. 


The provostship of Paris was at that time sold to the 
itizens of Paris, or indeed to any one; and those who bought 
tie office upheld their children and nephews in wrongdoing; 
nd the young folk relied in their misdoings on those who 
ccupied the provostship. For which reason the mean 
eople were greatly downtrodden; nor could they obtain 
jstice against the rich, because of the great presents and 
ifts that the latter made to the provosts. 

Whenever at that time any one spoke the truth before the 
rovost, and wished to keep his oath, refusing to perjure 
imself regarding any debt, or other matter on which he was 
ound to give evidence, then the provost levied a fine upon 
hat person, and he was punished. And because of the great 
ijustice that was done, and the great robberies perpetrated 
i the provostship, the mean people did not dare to sojourn 
i the king s land, but went and sojourned in other provost- 
ftips and other lordships. And the king s land was so de- 
srted that when the provost held his court, no more than 
en or twelve people came thereto. 

With all this there were so many malefactors and thieves 
i Paris and the country adjoining that all the land was full 
f them. The king, who was very diligent to enquire how 
he mean people were governed and protected, soon knew 
he truth of this matter. So he forbade that the office of 
rovost in Paris should be sold; and he gave great and good 
rages to those who henceforward should hold the said office, 
aid he abolished all the evil customs harmful to the people; 
nd he caused enquiry to be made throughout the kingdom 
o find men who would execute good and strict justice, and 
ot spare the rich any more than the poor. 

Then was brought to his notice Stephen Boileau, who so 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

maintained and upheld the office of provost that no maL 
factor, nor thief, nor murderer dared to remain in Paris, se< 
ing that if he did, he was soon hung or exterminated : neitto 
parentage, nor lineage, nor gold, nor silver could save hin 
So the king s land began to amend, and people resorte 
thither for the good justice that prevailed. And the peop 
so multiplied, and things so amended, that sales, seisine 
purchases, and other matters were doubled in value, as con 
pared with what the king had received aforetime. 

" In all these matters which We have ordained for tl 
advantage of Our subjects, and of Our realm, we reserve t 
Ourselves the right to elucidate, amend, adjust, or diminisl 
according as We may determine." 

By this ordinance also the king did much to reform tl 
kingdom of France, as many wise and ancient persons be* 



From the time of his childhood, the king had pity on tl 
poor and suffering; and the custom was that, wherever tr 
king went, six score poor persons were always fed every da; 
in his house, with bread and wine, and meat or fish. ] 
Lent and Advent the number of the poor was increased ; an 
ofttimes it happened that the king served them, and set the 
food before them, and carved the meat before them, ar 
gave them money with his own hand at their departing. 

Particularly at the great vigils, before the solemn festival 
he served the poor in all matters as aforesaid, before he hin 
self either ate or drank. Besides all this he had, every da; 
to dine or sup near him, old and broken men, and cause 
them to be fed with the same meats of which he himself pa 
took; and when they had eaten they took away a certa: 
sum of money. 

Besides all this the king gave, day by day, large and grej 
alms to the poor religiouses, to the poor in hospitals, to tl 
poor sick, and to poor communities, also to poor gentlerm 
and ladies, and girls, and to fallen women, and to po 
widows, and to women who were lying in, and to poor wor] 
men, who through age or sickness could no longer work \ 
their crafts; so that hardly would it be possible to numb- 

Joinville s Chronicle 317 

is alms. Therefore may it well be said that he was more 

>rtunate than Titus, the Emperor of Rome, of whom old 

Things tell that he was sad and discomforted for any day on 

liich he had not been able to confer some benefit. 

From the first that he came to his kingdom and knew 

here he stood he began to erect churches, and many 

sligious houses, among which the abbey of Royaumont 

ears the palm for honour and magnificence. He caused 

lany almshouses to be erected: the almshouse of Paris, 

rat of Pontoise, that of Compiegne and of Vernon, and 

i ssigned to them large rents. He founded the abbey of St. 

[atthew at Rouen, where he set women of the order of the 

reaching Brothers; and he founded that of Longchamp, 

f here he set women of the order of the Minorist Brothers, 

ad assigned to them large rents for their livelihood. 

And he allowed his mother to found the abbey of the Lis 

ear Melun-sur-Seine, and the abbey near Pontoise, which is 

illed Maubuisson, and there assigned to them large rents 

nd possessions. And he caused to be built the House of 

le Blind, near Paris, for the reception of the poor blind of 

le city; and caused a chapel to be built for them, so that 

icy might hear the service of God. And the good king 

lused the house of the Carthusians, which is called Vauvert, 

) be built outside Paris, and assigned sufficient rents to the 

lonks who there served our Saviour. 

Pretty soon after he caused another house to be built out- 

de Paris, on the way to St. Denis, and it was called the 

ouse of the Filles-Dieu ; and he caused to be placed there 

great multitude of women who, through poverty, had 

ipsed into the sin of incontinence; and he gave them, for 

heir maintenance, four hundred limes a year. And in 

rany places of his kingdom he instituted houses for, 

eguines?- and gave them rents for their livelihood, and com- 

landed that any should be received therein who were 

linded to live in chastity. 

There were some of his familiars who murmured at his 
iving such large alms, and because he expended so much; 
nd he would say : I like better that the great and exces- 
tve expenditure which I incur should be incurred in alms- 
Women living by rule, but without religious vows. I imagine that 
i this passage, Joinville attached an idea of repentance to these 
articular beguines. 

Memoirs of the Crusades 

giving for the love of God, than in pomp and splendour and 
for the vainglory of this world." Yet, notwithstanding 
that the king spent so largely in almsgiving, he did not for 
bear to incur daily great expenditure in his household. 
Largely and liberally did the king behave to the parliaments 
and assemblies of his barons and knights; and he caused his 
court to be served courteously, and largely, and without 
stint, and in more liberal fashion than aforetime in the 
court of his predecessors. 



The king loved all people who set themselves to serve 
God, and took on them the religious habit; nor did an} 
come to him but he gave them what they needed for 
living. He provided for the brothers of Carmel, anc 
bought them land on the Seine, towards Charenton, anc 
caused a house to be built for them, and purchased for then 
vestments, chalices, and such other things as aie needful foi 
the service of our Saviour. And after he provided for th< 
brothers of St. Augustine, and bought them the grange of 
citizen of Paris, and all its appurtenances, and caused J 
church to be built for them outside the gate of Montmartre 

The brothers of the "Sacks he provided for, and h- 
gave them a site on the Seine, towards Saint-Germain de - 
Pres, where they established themselves; but they remaine< 
there no long time, for they were shortly suppressed. Afte 
the brothers of the " Sacks J> had been lodged came anothe 
kind of brothers, who were called the order of the : Whit 
Mantles," and they begged the king to give them help s. 
that they might remain in Paris. The king bought ther 
a house and certain old buildings lying round where the 
might lodge near the old gate of the Temple in Paris, rathe 
near to the Weavers house. These White Mantles " wer 
suppressed at the Council of Lyons, held by Gregory X. 

Afterwards came yet another kind of brothers, who ha 
themselves called brothers of the Holy Cross, and wore 
cross upon their breasts; and they asked the king to hel 
them. The king did so willingly, and lodged them in 
street called the Cross-roads of the Temple, and now calle 
the street of the Holy Cross. 

Joinville s Chronicle 3 1 9 

hThus did the good king surround the city of Paris with 
ople of religion. : 


After the things above stated, it happened that the king 
immoned all his barons to Paris during a certain Lent 

267). I excused myself on account of a quartan fever 
hich I then had, and begged him to suffer me to remain 
way. But he sent me word that he insisted that I should 
)me, because he had with him good physicians who well 
new how to cure quartan fever. 

To Paris I went. When I came thither on the night of the 
[gil of our Lady in March, I found no one, neither the queen 
ar any other, who could tell me why I had been summoned 
y the king. Now it chanced, as God so willed, that I slept 
uring matins; and meseemed, while I slept, that I saw the 
ing before an altar, on his knees; and meseemed further 
lat many prelates, duly vested, were vesting him with a 
;d chasuble of Rheims serge. 

After seeing this vision I called my Lord William, my, 
riest, who was very wise, and told him of the vision. And \ 
Q said to me: " Lord, you will see that the king will take 
le cross to-morrow." I asked him why he thought so. < 
nd he told me he thought so because of the dream that I 
ad dreamed; for the chasuble of red serge signified the 
-oss, which was red with the blood that God shed from His 
de, and His feet, and His hands. " And for that the 
lasuble is of Rheims serge," said he, " that signifies that 
le Crusade shall be of little profit, as you shall see if God 
ives you life." 

When I had heard mass at the Magdalen in Paris, I went 
D the king s chapel and found the king, who had gone up the 
:affolding where were the relics, and was causing the true 
ross to be taken down. While the king was coming down, 
wo knights, who were of his council, began to speak to one 
nother; and the one said: " Never believe me if the king 
J not crossing himself here." And the other made answer: 

If the king crosses himself, this will be one of the most 
olorous days that ever were in France. For if we do not 
ake the cross, we shall lose the king s favour; and if we 

320 Memoirs of the Crusades 

j/j take the cross we shall lose God s favour, because we shal 
not take it for His sake, but for the sake of the king." 

So it happened that on the following day the king tool 
the cross, and his three sons with him; and afterwards i 
befell that the Crusade was of little profit, according to th 
prophecy of my priest. 

Much was I pressed by the King of France, and the Kin; 
of Navarre, to take the cross. To this I replied that whil 
I was in the service of God and of the king overseas, am 
since I had returned, the sergeants of the King of France am 
of the King of Navarre had ruined and impoverished m; 
people, so that, to all time, I and they would be the poore 
for it. And I told them this, that if I wished to do wha 
was pleasing to God, I should remain here, to help an< 
defend my people; and if I put my body in danger in th 
pilgrimage of the cross, while seeing quite clearly that thi 
would be to the hurt and damage of my people, I shoul 
move God to anger, Who gave His body to save His people 

I held that all those who advised the king to go on thi 
expedition committed mortal sin; for at the point at whic. 
France then was, all the kingdom was at good peace wit 
itself and with its neighbours, while ever since he departed 
the state of the kingdom has done nothing but go from ba< 
to worse. 

Great was the sin of those who advised the king to go, see 
ing how weak he was of his body, for he could bear neither t 
be drawn in a chariot, nor to fide. So great was his weal 
ness that- he suffered me to -Carry him in my arms from th 
mansion of the Count of Auxerre, where I took leave of hin 
to the abbey of the Franciscans. And yet, weak as he was, 
he had remained in France he might have lived longer, an 
done much good, and many good works. 


Of the king s journey to Tunis will I say and tell nothinj 
forasmuch as, thank God ! I was not there, and have no wis 
to put in my book anything of which I am not certain, 
we will speak only of our saintly king, and tell how, after r 
had landed at Tunis, before the castle of Carthage, he fe 
sick of a flux in the stomach, and Philip, his eldest son, w* 

Joinville s Chronicle 321 


ick of a quartan fever, and of the same flux in the stomach 
s the king; and the king took to his bed, and felt that he 
nust shortly pass out of this world into the other. 

Then he called my Lord Philip, his son, and commanded 
dm, as if by testament, to observe all the teachings he had 
eft him, which are hereinafter set down in French, and 
yere, so it is said, written with the king s own saintly hand : 

" Fair son, the first thing I would teach thee is to set 
hine heart to love God; for unless he love God none can be 
aved. Keep thyself from doing aught that is displeasing 

God, that is to say, from mortal sin. Contrariwise thou 
houldst suffer every manner of torment rather than commit 
. mortal sin. 

" If God send thee adversity, receive it in patience, and 

^ive thanks to our Saviour, and bethink thee that thou hast 

leserved it, and that He will make it turn to thine advantage. 

1 He send thee prosperity, then thank Him humbly, so that 
hou become not worse from pride, or any other cause, when 
hou oughtest to be better. For we should not fight against 
rod with His own gifts. 

" Confess thyself often, and choose for confessor a right 
vorthy man who knows how to teach thee what to do, and 
vhat not to do; and bear thyself in such sort that thy con- 
essor and thy friends shall dare to reprove thee for thy 
nisdoings. Listen to the services of holy Church devoutly, 
ind without chattering; and pray to God with thy heart 
ind with thy lips, and especially at mass when the consecra- 
ion takes place. Let thy heart be tender and full of pity 
owards those who are poor, miserable and afflicted; and 
:omfort and help them to the utmost of thy power. 

" Maintain the good customs of thy realm, and abolish 
he bad. Be not covetous against thy people; and do not 
mrden them with taxes and imposts save when thou art in 
jreat need. 

" If thou hast any great burden weighing upon thy heart, 
ell it to thy confessor or to some right worthy man who is 
lot full of vain words. Then shalt thou be able to bear it 
:he more easily. 

See that thou hast in thy company men, whether religious 
>r lay, who are right worthy, and loyal, and not full of covet- 
msness, and confer with them oft; and fly and eschew the 
company of the wicked. Hearken willingly to the Word of 

322 Memoirs of the Crusades 

God, and keep it in thine heart; and seek diligently after 
prayers and indulgences. Love all that is good and profit 
able, and hate all that is evil wheresoever it may be. 

: Let none be so bold as to say before thee any word that 
would draw and move to sin, or so bold as to speak evil behind 
another s back for pleasure s sake; nor do thou suffer any 
word in disparagement of God and of His saints to be spoken 
in thy presence. Give often thanks to God for all the good 
things He has bestowed upon thee, so that thou be accounted 
worthy to receive more. 

" In order to do justice and right to thy subjects, be up 
right and firm, turning neither to the right hand nor to 
the left, but always to what is just; and do thou maintain 
the cause of the poor until such time as the truth is made 
clear. And if any one has an action against thee, make full 
inquisition until thou knowest the truth; for thus shall thy 
counsellors judge the more boldly according to the truth, 
whether for thee or against. 

" If thou boldest aught that belongeth to another, whether 
by thine own act or the act of thy predecessors, and the 
matter be certain, make restoration without delay. If the 
matter be doubtful, cause enquiry to be made by wise men, 
diligently and promptly. 

" Give heed that thy servants and thy subjects live under 
thee in peace and uprightness. Especially maintain the 
good cities and commons of thy realm in the same estate and 
with the same franchises as they enjoyed under thy prede 
cessors; and if there be aught to amend, amend and set it 
right, and keep them in thy favour and love. For because 
of the power and wealth of the great cities, thine own sub 
jects, and specially thy peers and thy barons, and foreigners 
also, will fear to undertake aught against thee. 

" Love and honour all persons belonging to holy Church, 
and see that no one take away, or diminish, the gifts and 
alms made to them by thy predecessors. It is related of 
King Philip, my grandfather, that one of his counsellors 
once told him that those of holy Church did him much harm 
and damage, in that they deprived him of his rights, and 
diminished his jurisdiction, and that it was a great marvel 
that he suffered it; and the good king replied that he believed 
this might well be so, but he had regard to the benefits and 
courtesies that God had bestowed upon him, and so thought 

Joinville s Chronicle 323 

t better to abandon some of his rights than to have any con- 
;ention with the people of holy Church. 

" To thy father and mother thou shalt give honour and 
reverence, and thou shalt obey their commandments. 
Bestow the benefices of holy Church on persons who are 
righteous and of a clean life, and do it on the advice of men 
3f worth and uprightness. 

" Beware of undertaking a war against any Christian 
prince without great deliberation; and if it has to be under 
taken, see that thou do no hurt to holy Church, and to 
those who have done thee no injury. If wars and dissen 
sions arise among thy subjects, see that thou appease them 
as soon as thou art able. 

" Use diligence to have good provosts and bailiffs, and 
enquire often of them, and of those of thy household, how 
they conduct themselves, and if there be found in them any 
vice of inordinate covetousness, or falsehood, or trickery. 
Labour to free thy land from all vile iniquity, and especially 
strike down with all thy power evil swearing and heresy. 
See to it that the expense of thy household be reasonable. 

Finally, my very dear son, cause masses to be sung for 
my soul, and prayers to be said throughout thy realm; and 
give to me a special share and full part in all the good thou 
doest. Fair dear son, I give thee all the blessings that a 
good father can give to his son. And may the blessed 
Trinity and all the saints keep and defend thee from all 
evils; and God give thee grace to do His will always, so that 
He be honoured in thee, and that thou and I may both, after 
this mortal life is ended, be with Him together, and praise 
Him everlastingly. Amen/ 3 


When the good king had so taught his son, my Lord 
Philip, the infirmity that was upon him began to grow apace; 
and he asked for the sacraments of holy Church, and received 
them, being clear of thought and of sound understanding, as 
appeared duly, for when they anointed him with oil and said 
the seven Psalms, he repeated the verses in turn. 

And I heard my Lord, the Count of Alenyon, his son, tell 
that when the king came near to death he called upon the 

324 Memoirs of the Crusades 

saints to help and succour him, and especially upon my Lord 
St. James, saying St. James s orison, which begins: " Esto, 
Domine" that is to say, God, be the sanctifier and 
guardian of thy people." Then he called to his aid my Lord 
St. Denis of France, saying St. Denis s orison, which is to 
this effect: * Lord God, grant that we may despise the pros 
perity of this world, and not stand in fear of any adversity." 

And I then heard my Lord of Alengon on whom God 
have mercy ! relate how his father called on my Lady St. 
Genevteve. After that, the saintly king caused himself to 
be laid on a bed covered with ashes, and put his hands across 
his breast, and, looking towards heaven, rendered up his 
, spirit to our Creator; and it was at the same hour that the 
Son of God died upon the cross for the world s salvation. 
**A piteous thing, and worthy of tears, is the death of this 
saintly prince, who kept and guarded his realm so holily and 
loyally, and gave alms there so largely, and set therein so 
many fair foundations. And like as the scribe who, writing 
his book, illuminates it with gold and azure, so did the said 
king illuminate his realm with the fair abbeys that he built, 
and the great number of almshouses, and the houses for 
Preachers and Franciscans, and other religious orders, as 
named above./ 

On the day after the feast of St. Bartholomew the Apostle 
did the good King Lewis pass out of this world, and in the 
year of the Incarnation of our Saviour, the year of grace 
1270 (the 25th August). And his bones were put in a 
casket, and borne thence, and buried at St. Denis in France, 
where he had chosen his place of sepulture ; and in the place 
where they were buried God has sithence performed many 
fair miracles in his honour, and by his merit. 


After this, at the instance of the King of France, and by 
command of the Pope, 1 came the Archbishop of Rouen, and 
Brother John of Samois, who has since been made bishop, 
they came to St. Denis in France, and there remained a long 
space to make inquisition into the life, the works, and the 
miracles of the saintly king. And I was summoned to come 

1 Martin IV. 

Joinville s Chronicle 325 

D them, and they kept me two days. And after they had 
uestioned me and others, what they had ascertained and 
et down was sent to the court of Rome; and the Pope and 
he cardinals looked diligently into what had been sent to 
hem, and according to what they saw there they did right 
o the king, and set him among the number of the confessors. 
Hence was there, and ought there to be, great joy in all the 
ealm of France; and great honour to those of his lineage 
rtio are like him in doing well, and equal dishonour to those 
if his lineage who will not follow him in good works: great 
lishonour, I say, to those of his lineage who would do evil; 
or men will point a finger at them, and say that the saintly 
;ing, from whom they sprang, would have scorned to commit 
o foul an act. 

After the good news had come from Rome, the king 
ippointed a day, on the morrow of St. Bartholomew (25th 
Vugust 1298), when the holy body should be raised. When 
,he body was raised, the Archbishop of Rheims that then 
vas on whom God have mercy ! and my Lord Henry of 
fillers, my nephew, who was then Archbishop of Lyons, bore 
t first in hand; and afterwards it was borne by many others, 
is well archbishops as bishops, more than I can name: they 
>ore it to a platform that had been erected. 

Then preached Brother John of Samois; and among the 
)ther great feats that our saintly king had performed, he 
elated one of the worthy deeds to which I had borne testi- 
nony in my sworn declaration, and of which I had been 
witness; and he spoke thus: " So that you may see that he 
was the most loyal and upright man in his time, I will tell 
you that he was so loyal that he held a covenant he had made 
with the Saracens, though he had made it by simple word of 
mouth only, and if so be that he had not held it, he would 
have gained ten thousand limes and more." He told them all 
the story as I have already told it above. And when he had 
told them all, he said : Do not think I am lying to you, for 
I see before me such a man as testified to us of this thing, and 
did so on oath." 

After the sermon was ended the king and his brothers bore 
back the holy body to the church, with the help of their 
lineage to whom this honour was due; for a great honour 
had been done them, if so be that they approve themselves 
worthy of it, as I have said above. Let us pray to the 


Memoirs of the Crusades 

sainted king to ask God to give us what is needful for ou 
souls and bodies. Amen ! 



I will tell you yet again of things that are to the honour c 
our saintly king, viz., what I saw when I was in my be 
asleep; and it seemed to me, in my dream, that I behel 
him before my chapel at Joinville; and he was, so I though 
marvellously joyous and glad at heart, and I myself WE 
right glad to see him in my castle; and I said to him : " Sir* 
when you go hence, I will lodge you in a house of mine, thz 
is in a city of mine called Chevillon." " And he answered m 
laughing, and said to me: " Lord of Joinville, by the fait 
I owe you, I have no wish so soon to go hence. 3 

When I awoke I set myself thinking; and meseemed 
would be pleasing both to God and to the king if I lodge 
him in my chapel ; and so I did, for I built him an altar, 1 
the honour of God, and to his honour, and there masses sha 
be sung in his honour for ever; and a rent has been estal 
lished in perpetuity that this may be done. And thes 
things have I told to my Lord King Lewis, who is the ii 
heritor of his name; and methinks he would do what 
agreeable to God, and agreeable to our sainted King Lewi 
if he procured relics of the true holy body, and sent them 1 
the said chapel of St. Lawrence at Joinville, so that thos 
who come hereafter to the saintly king s altar may have tl 
greater devotion. 


I would make known to all that I myself saw and heard 
great portion of what is here related concerning the saint] 
king; and that a great portion I found in a book, 1 writte 

1 Joinville seems to have had knowledge of certain books relatii 
to St. Lewis, and it is difficult to identify the one to which he he 
refers. The question is discussed by M. de Wailly see pp. 488-491 
his edition. See also M. Viollet s paper, " Les Enseignements de Sai] 
Louis a son fils," Bibliotheque de FEcole des Chartes, tome xxxv., 187 
There is, however, little practical difficulty, when reading the Chronicl 
in distinguishing between what Joinville relates as an eye-witness an 
what he relates on the authority of others. 

Joinville s Chronicle 327 

n French which latter portion I have caused to be written 
n this book. And I tell you of these things, so that those 
vho hear this book read may give full credence to what the 
)ook says that I myself saw and heard; while as to the other 
;hings here written, I do not certify to you that they are 
rue, because I myself, in person, neither saw nor heard 

This was written in the year of grace 1309, in the month 
>f October. 


Abbot of Cluny, 300, 301 

Abel, 251 

Abraham, 251 

Abydos, 29, 31, 81, 84, 100, 121; 

passage of, 30, 126, 127 
Acre, 83, 137, 155, 169, 172, 230, 

235, 236, 239, 240, 245, 246, 

248, 249, 268, 273, 275, 289, 


Acres, Bishop of, 238 
Achard of Verdun, 90 
Adam, Abbot, of Saint- Urbain, 


Adramittium, 89 
Adrianople, 71, 72, 74 ff- 88 ff., 

95, 96, 98, ioo, 101, 103, 104, 

107, 112 ff., 117 ff., 122, 125 ff. 
Advent, 316 
Agnes, daughter of Boniface of 

Montferrat, 119, 121 
Agnes, sister of Philip Augustus, 

64, 106 

Agnes, St., 223 
Aigues-Mortes, 299, 300 
Aimery of Villeroe, 3, 79 
Aix, in Provence, 303 
Alard Maquereau, 4, 9 
Albigenses, the, 147 
Aleaume of Clari, 61, 62 
Alenard of Senaingan, 259 
Alencon, Count of, 264, 323 
Aleppo, Soldan of, 185 
Alexander of Villers, 18 
Alexandria, 180, 183 
Alexius (Alexio) the elder, 34, 37, 

38, 42 ff., 70 ff., 82 
Alexius (the younger), son of 

Isaac, 17, 22, 23, 27, 30, 35, 

47 ff., 64, 69, 80 
Alfonse, Count of Poitiers, 163 
Alice, Queen of Cyprus, 155, 157, 


Ali, uncle of Mahomet, 179, 250 
All Saints, Feast of, 120 
Ami of Montbeliard, 237 
Ancona, 18 

Andrew of Urboise, 61, 108 
Andronicus, 64 

Andros, island of, 29, 30 
Anjou, 154; Count of, 163, 190, 
191, 202, 209, 210, 229, 236, 

238, 239, 241, 245 
Anseau of Cayeux, 3, 36, 84, 106, 

in, 114, 116, 120, 127, 131 
Anseau of Courcelles, ioo 
Anseau of Remi, 129 
Anselm, St., 144 
Anthony, St., abbey of, 310 
Antioch, 58, 254, 267; Prince of 

242, 266 

Apostles, Church of the, 69 
Apremont, Lord of, 203 
Apulia, 9, 13, 14, 20 
Aquilo, 1 20 
Arcadiopolis, 88 ff., 102, io6 ? 

Archamband of Bourbon, Lord, 

Aries, 1 66 

Armenia, 171, 267; King of, 170, 

171, 206; Pilgrims from, 276 
Armenians, 58, 81, 84, ioo, 101 
Arnoul of Guines, 266 
Arta, river, 116 
Artaud of Nogent, 158, 159 
Arthe (? Durazzo), 79 
Artois, Count of, 159, 180, 181 

185, 188 ff., 193, 196, 200, 207, 


Ascension Day, 221, 226, 229 
Assassins, 197, 198, 248, 283, 
Assur, 278; castle of, 277; Lord 

of, 273, 274, 278 
Athyra, in 
Atramittium, 84, ioo 
Aubert of Narcy, Lord, 179 
1 Aubigpiz, a knight named, 187 
Augustine, St., brothers of, 318 
Autun, Bishop of, 12, 13 
Auxonne (Ausonne), 166 
Auxerre, Count of, 320 

Babylon (Cairo), 8, 23, 24, 50, 
180, 181, 185, 190, 201, 202, 
208, 224, 226, 228, 258, 265, 

3 2 9 



270; Soldan of, 171, 172, 175, 
182, 185, 201, 226, 248, 268 

Baffe, 292 

Bagdad, 282 

Bahariz (folk from the sea) , 205 

Bale, 100 

Baldwin, Count of Flanders and 
Hainault, 3, 4 10, 13 flf., 24, 26, 

28, 30, 36, 38, 41, 43, 50, 56, 57, 

63, 67; elected Emperor, 68 ff., 

76, 77, 79 ff-> 88 ff., 97, 100 ff., 

105, in, 112, 114, 116, 132 
Baldwin of Aubigny, 98 
Baldwin of Beauvoir, 3, 36, 43, 

56, 114, 115 
Baldwin of Belvoir, 84 
Baldwin, King, of Jerusalem, 

Baldwin, Lord, brother of Guy 

of Ibelin, 202, 219, 220, 223, 


Baldwin of Neuville, 94 
Baldwin of Rheims, Lord, 174 
Barbary, 167 
Barbaquan, 268 
Bar, Count of, 206, 207, 221, 253, 


Bartholomew, St., feast of, 324 
Bartholomew, natural son of the 

Lord of Montfaucon, 217, 237 
Beaucaire, 303 
Bedouins, 155, 197, 198, 201, 214, 

250, 272 

Begue of Fransures, 109 
Bcguines, 317 
Belinas (Caesarea Philippi), 278, 

Bernard of Moreuil, 3, 13, 58 

Bernard of Somergen, 3 

Bernicles, 219 

Bertrand of Katzenelenbogen, 18, 

Beyrout, the Lady of, 173 

Bible, the, 149, 278 
Bibliotheque de VEcole des Chartes, 


Bigue of Fransures, 77 
Bizye, 102, 106, in, 113 
Blache, 73 
Blachernae, 43; gate of, 62, 63; 

Palace of, 39 ff-> 45, 46, 52, 53, 

59, 63, 65, 7o, 74J shrine of our 

Lady of, 109 
Blanche, Lady, daughter of Lewis, 


Blanche, Queen, 160, 287, 288 
Blanche, sister of Philip the Fair, 


Blanche, wife of Count Thibaut, 

of Champagne, 10 
Blecourt, 166, 299 
Bliaud, John, 102 
Blisonon, 118 
Blois, 158 

Boemond, castle of, 40 
Boemond, Prince of Antioch and 

Count of Tripoli, 58 
Boileau, Stephen, 311, 315 
Bondocdar, 206 
Boniface, Marquis of Montferrat, 

n, 18, 19, 22, 24, 28, 30, 34, 35, 

37, 4i, 45, 50, 52, 63 ff., 67 ff., 

71 ff., 77 ff., 81, 85, 87, 105, 119, 

121, 132, 133 
Bouchet s, M., Notice, n 
Boulaincourt, Lord of, 242 
Bourlemont, Lord of, 240 
Boulogne, Count of, 154, 160; 

Countess of, 151 
Bourbon, Lady of, 300 
Branas, Theodore, 64 
Brie, 156, 158 
Brienne, Count of, 2, 9, 28, 158, 

252, 257, 267 ff. 
Brittany, 305; Count of, 143, 151, 

303, 35J prelates of, 151 
Bruges, 3 
Bucoleon, castle of, 62 ; palace of, 

59, 64, 65, 69, 70, 121 
Bulgarians, 92, 132, 133 
Bulgaropolis, 90 
Burgundians, 40, 41 
Burgundy, 12, 13, 37, 308; Couni 

of, 303, 308; Duke of, 156, 157 

172, 188, 192, 194, 201, 204 

208, 275, 276 

Cairo, see Babylon 

Csesarea, 169, 253, 259, 261 fi. 

265, 290, 309 
Candlemas, 57, 107 ff. 
Cariopolis, 98 
Carmel, brothers of, 319 
Carthage, 153; castle of, 320 
Cartopolis, 100 
Castle- Pilgrim, 264, 268 
Causeries du Lundi, 142 
Cetros, 73, 76 
Ceres, 132 
Chalcedon, 32, 33 
Chalemate, castle called, 87 
Chalon, Count of, 204, 276, 303 

308, 309 

Chamelle, Soldan of, 268, 269 
Champagne, 2, 156, 253, 303 
Chaource, 157 


33 1 

Charax, 128; a castle at, 122 

Charente, La, river, 161 

Charles, Count of Anjou, see 


Charles of the Frene, 108 
Chartres, 158 
Chateaudun, 158 
Chateau-Thierry, 156 
Chatenai, Lord of, 242 
Cheininon, Abbot of, 166 
Chevillon, 326 
Christmas, 121, 184 
Christopolis, castle called, 73 
Chronicle of Robert of Clari, The, 

Chroniques Greco-romanes inedites 

ou peu connues (Hopf s), 63 
Church, Holy, 146, 147, 150, 305 
Cibotos, 122, 123, 124, 125 
Cistercians, 20, 23, 27, 52, 160, 

1 66 

Clteaux, Chapter held at, 12 
Citeaux, white monks of the order 

of, 24 

Clairvaux, 166 
Clerembaud, nephew of Guy of 

Chappes, 2, 36 
Clerembeau, nephew of Guy of 

Chappes, 28 

Cluny, Monastery of, 148 
Colts, 243 

Colt s Crossing, 278 
Column, marble, at Constanti 
nople, 80, 8 1 
Comans, 93 ff., 101, 102, 107 ff., 

in, 122, 259; King of the, 260 
Comnenus, 284 
Compiegne, 4, 306 
Conclusion, 326 
Conon of Bethune, 3, 4, 35, 53, 

70, 75, 79 ff-, 88 ff., 96, 99, 114, 

116, 124, 127, 132 
Conrad of Montferrat, n 
Constantine Lascaris, 40 
Constantinople, 5, u, 17, 22, 

27 ff-, 3i ff, 35, 38 ff., 45, 47 ff., 
57, 58, 63 ff., 69 ff., 74, 75, 77, 
78, 96 ff., 101 ff., 106, 107, 109, 

III ff., 120 ff., 169, 170, 260, 


Corbeil, 143, 154 

Corfu, 49 

Corinth, 79, 8 5, 87 

Coron, 86 

Courtenay, Lord, 179, 187, 194 

Credo, Joinville s, 218 

Creed, the, 146 

Cross, Mountain of the, 291 

Cross-roads of the Temple, 318 

Crusade against the Albigenses, 
The, i 

Crusade, the first preaching of 
the, i 

Crusades [of the Fourth Crusade] 
send six envoys to Venice, 4; 
conditions proposed by the 
Doge to the envoys of the, 4; 
conclusion of the treaty, 5; 
seek another chief after the 
death of Thibaut, 10; elect 
Boniface of Montferrat chief, 
ii ; set out for Venice, 12; un 
able to pay the Venetians, 14; 
obtain a respite by promising 
to help retake Zara, 16; gained 
by the Doge and a number of 
Venetians, 16; leave Venice, 
19; establish themselves in 
Zara, 20; help of the, sought by 
Alexius, 22; discord among 
the, 23; many leave the, 24; 
obtain the Pope s absolution for 
the capture of Zara, 26; de 
part for Corfu, 27; capture 
Duras, 27; leave Corfu, capture 
Andros and Abydos, 29; 
arrive at St. Stephen, 31; land 
at Chalcedon and Scutari, 32; 
reply to the Emperor Alexius, 
34; prepare for battle at Con 
stantinople, 35; take the port 
of Constantinople, 37; capture 
the Tower of Galata, 38; cap 
ture twenty-five towers, 42; 
take Constantinople, 45; enter 
Constantinople, 47; asked by 
Alexius to prolong their stay, 
48 ; Alexius breaks his promises 
to the, 52; defy the Emperors 
Isaac and Alexius, 53; fleet of 
the, attacked by the Greeks, 
54 ; occupy Constantinople, 64 ; 
divide the spoil, 65; elect 
Baldwin, Count of Flanders, 
emperor, 67; disagreement 
among the leaders of the, 72; 
message of the, to Boniface, 74 ; 
to Baldwin, 75; Baldwin s 
reply to the, 77 ; leaders of the, 
reconciled, 78; division of the 
land amongst the, 79 ; decide to 
march on Adrianople, 89, 90; 
lay siege to Adrianople, 91; 
are defeated, 94; retreat, 96; 
reach Rodosto, 98 ; seven thou 
sand desert the, 98; return t* 

33 2 


Constantinople, 101; appeal to 
the Pope, and to France for 
help, 101; capture Napoli, 
103; surrender Seres to Johan- 
nizza, 103; suffer defeat near 
Rusium, 107; Greeks recon 
ciled to the, 112; march to the 
relief of Demotica, 113; Johan- 
nizza retreats before the, 114; 
ravage the land of Johannizza, 
119; renew the war with 
Theodore Lascaris, 120; attack 
the fleet of Theodore Lascaris, 
124; deliver Skiza, 126 

Cyprus, 137, 138, 140, 144, * 68, 
169, 171, 172, 240, 253, 268, 
291, 293, 294, 296 

Cypsela, 132 

Damascus, 246, 271, 274, 281; 

Soldan of, 245, 246, 251, 264 ff., 

270, 272, 273, 275 
Damietta, 136, 172, 173, *75, 176, 

178 ff., 183 ff., 208, 210, 213, 

220 ff., 224, 226, 227, 233, 234 
Dammartin, in Gouelle, 151 
Dandolo, Henry, Doge of Venice, 

5 ff., 16, 20 ff., 25, 27, 31, 35, 

42 ff., 48, 53, 56, 60, 65, 68, 70, 

74, 75, 77, 78, 82, 89, 92, 95 ff., 

99, 101, 102 
Danes, 41, 46 
Daonium, in 
Dardanelles, 30 
Day, All Saints , 285 
Demotica, 72 ff., 78, 88, 103, 104, 

107, 112 ff., 117 ff. 
Denis, Flag of St., 192 
Denis s orison, St., 324 
Denis, St., 174, 175 
Devil, the (and The Enemy), 139, 

141, 142, 145, 146, 284, 286, 

Dizeniers, 262 

Doge of Venice, see Dandolo 
Dominicans, 304 
Donjeux, 166 
Doulevant, 214 
Dragonet, Lord, 299 
Dreux of Beaurain, 3, 115 
Dreux, Count of, 159 
Dreux of Cressonsacq, 3, 27 
Dreux of Estruen, 87 
Duras, 27 

Easter, 12, 21, 27, 49, 5o, 65, 112, 
153, 163, 208, 210, 245, 
272, 289, 290 

Eastern Question, The, i 

Ecri, castle, 2 

Edmond, brother of Guy of 

Pesmes, 12, 28, 37 
Egypt, 136, 153, 168, 170, 172, 

180, 183, 198, 204, 206, 230, 

232, 233, 246, 251, 253, 265, 

270 ff., 290 
Egyptians, 227 
Eikon of Our Lady, 57 
Eleanor, wife of Henry III., 151 
Elizabeth of Thuringia, St., 160 
Emeric, King of Hungary, 16, 24, 

27, 46, 53, 64, 68, 69 
Emessa, 184; Soldan of, 171 
Enguerrand of Boves, 3, 27 
Enguerrand of Coucy, 159 
Englishmen, 41, 46, 161 
Epernay, 157 
Estanpr, 47 
Escurion, admiral of the galleys 

of Theodore Lascaris, 126, 127 
Esto, Domine, 324 
Eu, Count of, 170, 266, 278 ff., 

282, 285 
Euloi, 130 
Eustace, brother of Emperor 

Henry, 118, 121, 127 
Eustace of Canteleu, 3, 36, 79 
Eustace of Conflans, 2, 9 
Eustace of Heumont, 94 
Eustace of Marchais, 41 
Eustace of Sobruic, 3, 72, 74 
Everard, Lord, of Brienne, 155, 

169, 173 

Everard of Montigny, 2 
Everard of Siverey, Lord, 190, 

Everard of Valery, 208 

Faress-Eddin Octay, 223, 235 
Ferine, 120 
Ferri of Yerres, 3, 94 
Filles-Dieu, house of the, St. 

Denis, 317 
Finepopolis, 90 
Fire, Greek, 186 ff., 195, 202, 213, 

Flanders, 13, 25, 57, 72, 102, no, 

Flanders, Count William of, 193, 

203, 208, 220, 223, 224, 229, 

239 ff- 
Fontainebleau, 139 

Fontaine-PArcheveque, 166 
Foucand of Merle, Lord, 189 
Fraim, castle called, 115 
France. 5, 7, 9, 64, 102, 137, 



147, 153, 169, 170, 237, 245, 

266, 289, 290, 294, 302, 325; 

barons of, 154 
Franciscans, 286, 310, 311, 324; 

abbey of the, 320 
Franciscan sisters at Saint-Cloud, 

Francis of Colemi, 3 

Franks, 21, 22, 24, 54, 55, 57 ff., 

64, 66, 75, 83 fi., 87 ff., 103, 
105, 108, 112 ff., 118, 125, 128 

Frederic II., of Germany, 214, 

216, 245, 248 
French, 33, 39, 48, 50, 52, 56, 

104, no, in, 120, 131 
Frenchmen, 43 
Fulk of Neuilly, i, 2, 12, 17, 18 

Galatas, 47 

Galata, tower of, 38, 39, 61 

Gamier, Bishop of Troyes, 2 

Gamier of Borland, 18, 25 

Gascony, 161 

Gaucher, Lord of Chatillon, 163, 

196, 198, 211, 232, 233 
Gaza, 265, 266, 270, 271 
Genevieve, St., 153, 324 
Genoa, 9, 234, 273 
Geoffry, brother of Hugh of Cor- 

meray, 3 
Geoffry, nephew of Geoffry of 

Villehardouin, 2, 85, 86, 100 
Geoffry of Beaumont, 3, 25 
Geoffry of Joinville (father of 

the Chronicler), 2 
Geofiry of Joinville (seneschal), 10 
Geoffry of la Chapelle, Lord, 156 
Geoffry of Mussambourc, 209 
Geoffry of Rancon, Lord, 162 
Geoffry of Sargines, Lord, 178, 

210 ff., 227, 229, 244 
Geoffry of the Perche, 3, 10 ff., 

Geoffry of Villehardouin, 2, 4, 7, 

9, 10, 14, 29, 36, 43, 46, 53, 55, 

65, 70, 74, 75, 78, 89 ff., 95 ff., 

IOI, 114, Il6, 121, 122, 124, 

127, 131, 132 

Geoffry of Villette, 150 

George of Mangana, Church of 
St., 88 

George, Straits of St. (Dar 
danelles), 30, 31, 33, 51, 80, 82, 
102, 127 ff. 

Gerard, Count, of Lombardy, 96 

Gerard of Mancicourt, 76 

Germans, 37, 280 

Germany, 18, 22, 25 

Gervais of Chatel, 2, 78, 92 
Gervais of Escraines, 293, 308 
Gervais, Lord, 298 
Giles, brother of Renier of Trit, 


Giles, Count of St., 67 
Giles le Brun, Lord, 141, 244, 278 

293, 294 

Giles, nephew of Miles of Bra 
bant, 123 

Giles of Aunoy, 77 

Giles of Landas, 22 

Giles of Trasegnies, 14, 58 

Girard, Count of Lombardy, 34 

Girard of Manicicourt, 3 

Gleemen, Armenian, 266 

Gobert of Apremont, Lord, 163 

Godfrey of Bouillon, 67 

Golden Gate, 64 

Goulu, Le, 263 

Grandpr6, Count of, 163 

Greece, 24, 7o, 284 

Greek Empire, 5, n 

Greeks, passim 

Gregory X., 318 

Guignes, Count of Forez, 12, 13 


Guillemin, 237, 239 
Guy of Auxerre, 150, 305 
Guy, Castellan of Coucy, 3, 28 


Guy of Chappes, 2, 28, 36 
Guy of Conflans, 12, 28, 108 
Guy of Hondain, 3 
Guy of Ibelin, 202, 219, 220, 223 
Guy of Mauvoisin, 179, 203, 240, 


Guy of Montfort, 27 
Guy of Pesmes, 12, 28, 77 
Guy of Plessis, 2 

Haguenau, 295 
Halberstadt, Bishop of, 18 
Halca, or Guard of the Soldan, 

205, 206, 207, 222 
Ham, in Vermandois, 96 
Henry of Arzillieres, 2, 14 
Henry II. of England, 160, 307 
Henry III. of England, 147, 151, 


Henry, brother of Baldwin of 
Flanders, 3, 36, 41, 43, 50, 56, 
57, 63, 65, 70, 8r, 83, 84, 89, 
91, 100 ff.; made Regent, in, 
112, 114 ff.; crowned Emperor, 
117 ff. 

Henry, brother of Count Philip ol 
Flanders, 13 



Henry, brother of Walter of 

Saint-Denis, 3 
Henry, Lord, son of Josserand of 

Brandon, 204 
Henry of Araines, 13 
Henry of Cone, Lord, 204 
Henry of Longchamp, 14 
Henry of Luxembourg, Count, 308 
Henry of Montreuil, 2 
Henry of Orme, 18 
Henry of Ronnay, Provost of 

Hospitallers, 196 
Henry of Villers, Lord, 325 
Henry the Large, Count, 155, 158 
Heraclea, no 

Hervee, Count, of Nevers, 92 
Hervee of the Chastel, 25 
Hervee, son of Gervais of Chatel, 


Holy Cross, 35, 319 

Holy Cross, brothers of the, 318 

Holy Cross Day, 12 

Holy Cross, street of the, 318 

Holy Land, 7, , 14, 35, *37, 155, 

164, 168, 177, 209, 263, 265, 

293, 322 

Holy Scripture, 301 
Holy Thursday, 141, 310 
Hopf s, Chroniques Greco-romanes 

inedites ou peu connues, 63 
Hospitallers, 196, 248, 268, 279; 

church of the, 252 
Hospital, Master of the, 263, 279 
Hospital of St. John of Jeru 
salem, 50, 218, 219, 248, 271 
Hugh, Brother, a Franciscan, 301 
Hugh, brother of Enguerrand, of 

Boves, 27 
Hugh, brother of Peter of Bra- 

cieux, 3 
Hugh, brother of Walter of 

Saint-Denis, 13 
Hugh, Count, of St. Paul, 3, 10, 

14, 15, 24, 28, 36, 41, 160, 163 
Hugh, Duke of Burgundy, see 


Hugh Le Brun, Lord, 163 
Hugh of Beaumetz, 3, 114, 115 
Hugh of Bergi, 12 
Hugh of Chaumont, 13 
Hugh of Colemi, 12, 50, 73, 75, 


Hugh of Cormeray, 3 
Hugh of Ecot, 191, 280 
Hugh of Jouy, Marshal of the 

Temple, 263, 264 
Hugh of Landricourt, 209 
Hugh of Tabarie, 82 

Hugh of Trichatel, Lord, 190 
Hugh of Vaucouleurs, Lord, 163, 


Hungary, 103, 104 
Hyeres, 299, 301; castle of, 149, 


Iconium, Soldan of, 171, 172 
Imbert of Beaujeu, Lord, 159, 

178, 188, 193, 244 
Indulgence, Papal, r 
Innocent the Great, an Essay on 

his Life and Times, i 
Innocent III., Pope, i, 8, 20, 26, 

56, 66, 96, 99, 102, 113, 151 
Isaac, Emperor of Constantinople, 

17, 18, 27, 30, 35, 45, 46, 54 

56, 64, 68, 80, 81 
Isabella of Angouleme, 161 
Isabel, Lady, 310 
Isabel of France, 303 
Isle of France, i, 3, n, 157 
Isle of Greece, 67, 69 
Island of St Nicholas, 13, 14 
Ives of la Jaille, 3, 20 

Jaffa, 265, 266, 268, 270, 271, 

273 ff., 285, 290; Castle of, 270; 

Count of, 174, 175, 265 
James, feast of St., 244 
James of Avesnes, 3, 28, 38, 50, 

56, 73, 75, 85, 87 
James of Bon dies, 90 
James of Castel, Bishop of 

Soissons, 12, 232, 233 
James s orison, St., 324 
James, St., 153 
Jerusalem, i, 5, 7, 67, 168, 177, 

198, 210, 225, 243, 253, 257, 264, 

265, 268, 273, 274, 276, 290; 

King of, ii ; Queen of, 155 
Jesus Christ, i, 5, 7, 8, 19, 29, 69, 

105, 117, 133 
Jewry (S tenon), 38 
Jews, 147, 148 
Joan of Navarre, 135, 138 
Jocelin of Cornaut, 183 " 
Johannizza, King of Wallachia 

and Bulgaria (John), 51, 72, 

82, 87 fi., 91 ff., 97, 98, ioi ff., 

no ff., 125, 129, 130, 133 
John Bliaud, 131 
John, brother of Eustace of 

Heumont, 94 
John, brother of Ferri of Yerres, 

3, 94 
John, Count, of Soissons, 159, 

220, 224, 229 
John, Feast of St., 159, 244 



John Foisnous, 2, 36 
John Fouinon, 233 
John le Grand, 273 
John, Lord, of Acre, 170 
John, Lord, of Ancerville, 
John, Lord of Apremont and 

Count of Sarrebruck, 164 
John, Lord of Beaumont, 173, 


John, Lord of Joinville, and 
Seneschal of Champagne, 135, 
139, 142, 163, 165, 190 
John, Lord of Orleans, 189 
~ohn, St., Mount, 273 

ohn of Bussey, 280 
ohn of Choisy, 108 
John of Friaize, 3, 4, 26, 94 
John of Frouville, 25 

ohn of Gamaches, 195 

ohn of Maseroles, 96 

ohn of Monson, 232, 291 
_ohn of Mymeri, 305 
John of NSle, Castellan of Bruges, 

3, 13, 25 

John of Noyon, 26, 76 
John of Pompone, 108 
John of Samois, Brother, 324, 

John of Valenciennes, 251 ff., 

John of Valery, 192, 193, 196, 

208, 219 

John of Villers, 13, 58 
John of Virsin, 2, 98, 99 
Jehn of Voisey, 200 
John s Day, St., 8, 272 
John the Armenian, 246, 247 
John the Baptist, Feast of St., 

32, 113 
John the Baptist s Eve, St., 

John (Tristram), infant son of the 
King, 234 

Joigny, Count of, 158, 293 

Joinville, 166 

Joinville s Chronicle of the Crusade 
of St. Lewis, 135 

Joinville, John, Lord of (Seneschal 
of Champagne), 135-236 passim 

Jordan, the river; for, a foun 
tain; Dan, another fountain, 


Josselin of Cornaut, 210 
Josserand of Brancion, 203 
Josserand of Nanton, 204 
Jully, 157 

Khorasmins, 258, 269, 270 

Lagni-sur-Marne, I 

Lagny, 158 

Laignes, 157 

Lampedousa, Isle of, 296 

Lascaris, Constantine, 83, 84 

Lascaris, Theodore, 81 ff., 102, 
120 if., 126 ff. 

Latins, 80, 109, 123, 126, 133 

Lawrence, Chapel of St., 326 

Lazarus, Master of St., 271 

Lebanon, 280 

Lent, 57, 112, 205, 253, 290, 316 

Leon Sgure, 79, 85, 87 

Leon, King, Lord of the Armeni 
ans, 58 

" Les Enseignements de Saint 
Louis a son fils " (Viollet), 326 

Lewis, Count of Blois and Chartres, 
2, 4, 10, 14 15, 24, 25, 28, 36, 41, 
63, 69, 7o, 74 ff-, 80, 82, 88, 89, 
91, 92, 94, 95, 97, ioo 

Lewis (afterwards Lewis X., 
King of France), 135 

Lewis, St., examples of the devo 
tion of, 136; principal virtues 
of, 139; his horror of sin, 140; 
his love for the poor, 140, 310, 
316; his regard for worth and 
uprightness, 141; how, thought 
men should clothe themselves, 
143; his thought about faith, 
145; the devotions of how 
he did justice, 148; refuses an 
unjust demand of the bishops, 
150; uprightness of, 151; 
birth and coronation of, 153; 
first troubles in the reign of, 
153; holds full court at Sau- 
mur, 159; his dress at a ban 
quet at Saumur, 160; falls ill, 
takes the Cross, 1244, 162; the 
crusaders embark, 167; dis 
embark in front of the Saracens, 
174; takes Damietta, 175; a 
mistake of, 176; made prisoner, 
21 1 ; threatened with torture, 
219; new treaty with, 223; 
adjourns his claim against the 
Saracens, 235; decides to 
remain in the Holy Land, 243; 
decides to send away his 
brothers, 244; repents of 
having sent an envoy to the 
King of Tartars, 257; fortifies 
Jaffa, 265; refuses to behold 
Jerusalem, 275; departs for 
Sayette, 276; buries the corpses 
of Christians, 282; decides to 

33 6 


return to France, 289; sets 
sail, 290; his ship strikes a 
sandbank, 291; decides to dis 
embark at Hyeres, 299 ; counsels 
given by Philip Augustus to, 
302; habits and customs of, 
304; firmness and justice of, 
305; his love of peace, 307; 
horror of, for all blasphemy, 
309 ; how he taught his children, 
his alms, 310; his reform of the 
Prpvostship of Paris, 315; re 
ligious orders established by, 
318; assumes the Cross for the 
second time, 319; falls sick, 
320; his death, 323; canonisa 
tion, 324; a vision of, 326 

Libera me, Domine, 239 

Li Estoires d<t chiaus qut conquisent 
Constantinople, de Robert de 
Clari en aminois, chevalier, 63 

Ligny, castle of, 308 

Limassol, 169; Point of, 172 

Lis, abbey of the, 310, 317 

Lombards, 37, 96, 119 

Lombardy, 13, 18, 34 

Longchamp, 517 

Loos, abbot of, 24, 52 

Lopadion, 83 

Lopadium, 89 

Lorraine, 164; Duke of, 157 

Luchaire, M. Achille, i 

Lusignan, 161 

Luxeuil, abbey of, 308 

Lyons, 37, 166; Council of, 318 

Macaire of Sainte-Menehould, 2, 

36, 82, 89, 91, 109, in, 114, 116, 

118, 122, 123, 127, 128 
Maccabees, 274 
Macre, 100 

Magdalen [Mary], 303 
Magdalen the, in Paris, 319 
Mahomet, 179, 224, 226 ff., 247, 


Malea, 30 
Manasses of 1 Isle, 2, 34, 36, 70, 

74, 75, 89, 90, 93, 95 
Mangonels, 19, 21 
Man of the Mountain, Old, 197, 

198, 248 ff. 
Mansourah, 136, 190, 193, 194, 

196, 217, 218, 233 
Marcel, a sergeant, 212 
Marche, Count of la, 159, 161 ff. 
Margaret of Navarre, Queen, 303 
Margaret of Flanders, Countess, 


Margaret, sister of King of 

Hungary, 64 
Margaret, wife of St. Lewis, 151, 

287, 288 
Mark, St., Chapel of, 7, 16; day 

of, 153, 291; Standard of, 42, 


Marmora, 127 
Marseilles, 13, 25, 30, 57, 83, 149, 

164, 300, 302 
Martin s, St., Day, 52 
Martin, St., Eve of, 19, 29; feast 

of, 20, 8 1 

Martin IV., Pope, 324 
Maty of Vertus, Lady, 288 
Mary, Virgin, 148, 299 
Mary, Countess, wife of Baldwin 

of Flanders and Hainault, 3, 

82, 83, 155, 169 
Matt. chap. vi. ver. 33, 135 
Matthew, abbey of St., Rouen, 

Matthew of Marly, Lord, 178 
Matthew of Montmorency, 3, 10, 

19, 22, 36, 41, 46, 49, 50 
Matthew of Wallincourt, 3, 36, 

41, 43, 82, 89, 91, 94 
Maubuisson, abbey of, 310 
Mauritania, 227 
Maurupt, Dean of, 167, 180 
Mecca, 224 
Melun, 304 

Messinople, 69, 71, 72 
Messinopolis, 131, 132 
Metz, 164 

Michael, Feast of St., 49, 50 
Michael, a Greek, 79, 86 
Michaelmas, 50 
Miles the Brebant, 2, 4, 36, 53, 

96,99, 114, 116, 121 ff., 127 
Minorist Brothers, 317 
Modem, 85, 86 

Moniac, castle called, 115, 116 
Montbeliard, 173 ; Count of, 


Mont Cenis, 9, 13, 37 

Montferrat, 81 

Montfort, Count of, 147, 206, 207, 

253, 265; Countess of, 170 
Mont Joux (? Jura), 13 
Montlheri, castle of, 147, 154 
Montmartre, 318 
Morea, 172, 174; Prince of, 172 
Morocco, straits of, 13 
Mourzuphles, 55 ff., 61 ff., 69 ff., 

80, 8 1 

Naplouse (Samaria), 277 



Napoli, 79, 85, 87, 102, 103, 106, 

109, no 

Nasac, Soldan of Babylon, 233 
Navarre, King of, 10, 138, 154, 

159, 320 

Neguise, 90; castle of, 91 
Nesle, Lord of, 149 
Neuilly, i 
Nevelon, Bishop of Soissons, 3, 

26, 68, 102 

Nevers, Count of, 94, 157 
Nice the Great, 121, 122, 128 
Nicholas Day, St., 181 
Nicholas, St., 199, 273; feast of, 

Nicholas of Acre, 224, 225 

Nicholas of Choisi, 231 
Nicholas of Jenlain, 38 
Nicholas of Mailly, 3, 13, 25, 84, 


Nicholas of Soisi, 296 
Nicholas of VarangeVille, St., 


Nicholas Roiix, 34 
Nicomedia, 82, 89, 91, 121, 122, 

128, 129 
Nicomia, 81 

Nicosia, 169; Archdeacon of, 293 
Nigra (Negropont), 30 
Nile, the, 181 
Noah, 251 

Nogent 1 Artaud, castle of, 158 
Norway, 259 

Odo, brother of Richard of 

Dampierre, 12, 28, 37 
Odo, Duke of Burgundy, 10 
Odo of Ham, 3, 96 
Odo of Montb61iard, Lord of 

Tabarie, 268 
Odo the Champenois of Champ- 

litte, 12, 28, 33, 37, 56, 68 
Oger of Saint- Cheron, 2, 28, 33, 


Oiselay, 237 

Olive, Bishop of, 300 

Oliver of Rochefort, 2 

Oliver of Termes, 138, 281, 293 

Orri of Tlsle, 3, 108 

Otho of La Roche, 37, 119 

Palm Sunday, 63, 65 

Pamphyle (Pamphylia) 97, 104, 

1 06 

Panedor, no 

Papacy and the Empire, The, i 
Paphos, 169 
Paradise, the, 61 

Paria, in Lombardy, 14 

Paris, i, 150, 154, 161, 163, 164, 

295, 303, 306, 309, 315, 319 
Paris, House of the Blind, 310, 

Paul, Hugh, Count of St., 66, 76, 

82, 88 

Paulicians, an Eastern sect, 105 
Payen of Orleans, 3, 80, 83, 89, 

97, in, 114, n6, 120, 123, 126, 


Peutace, castle called, 92 
Pentecost, 102, 143, 172, 173 
Pentelaria, Isle of, 296 
Perche, 154 
Persia, Emperor of, 253, 256 ff., 

267, 268, 270 

Peter, Bishop, of Bethleem, 94 
Peter Bromont, 12, 13 
Peter, brother of John of Frou- 

ville, 25, 99 

Peter, Cardinal, of Capua, i, 96, 99 
Peter Coiseau, 28 
Peter, Count, of Alencon, 135 
Peter, Count, of Brittany, 154, 

155, 159, 179, 180, 194, 218, 

220, 223, 224, 229 

Peter of Amiens, 3, 28, 36, 76 
Peter of Auberive, 192 
Peter of Avallon, Lord, 184, 243 
Peter of Bracieux, 3, 22, 41, 80, 

83, 89, 97, 104, 114, 116, 120, 
123, 126, 127, 130 

Peter of Bracuel, 62 

Peter of Bourbonne, 237, 238 

Peter of Chalons, Bishop, 305, 306 

Peter of Courtenay, 237 

Peter of Fontaines, 150 

Peter of Nele, 3 

Peter of Neuville (" Caier "), 194, 


Peter of Pontmolain, Lord, 245 
Peter of Radinghem, 120, 123 
Peter, St., feast of, 48 
Peter the Chamberlain, 279, 293, 

298, 308 

Petit- Pont, Paris, 176 
Petraries, 19, 21, 113, 186, 188 
Philadelphia, duchy of, 83 
Phile, 57 
Philip Augustus, 64, 83, 106, 109, 


hilip, called Philippe le Bel, 135 
Philip, Count of Flanders, 3, 25 
Philip, King of France, i, 2, n, 

ii2, 322 
Philip, King of Germany, 17, 18, 

22, 27, 28, 47 



Philip, Lord of Nanteuil, 170 
Philip of Montfort, 212, 219, 23 1, 

233, 278 
Philip of Nemours (of the Mez), 

Master of the Trinity, 229, 231 


Philip of Toucy, 259 
Philippopolis, 80, 81, 91, 100, 105, 

Philip (son of Lewis), 320, 321, 

D hilip the Fair, 295 

Philopas, palace called, 44 

Piga, 80, 83, 89 

Pilgrim, the, 61 

Pine-Gordon, Mr., i 

Pisa, 9, 234 

Pisans, 124 

Placentia, in Lombardy, 9, 14 

Plonquet (a knight named), 173 

Poemaninon, castle called, 83, 84 

Poitiers, 161, 162, 288; Countess 
of, 232; Count of, 159, 161, 
179, 180, 185, 193, 203, 210, 
229, 232, 233, 236, 239, 241, 245 

Polychna, 84 

Pontoise, almshouse of, 310, 317 

Preachers of Provins, 143 

Preachers, order of, 169 

Preaching Brothers, 246, 253, 
304, 310, 311, 317, 324 

Preaching of the Crusade, the first, 

Premontr6, abbey of (Val-Secret), 

Prester John, 253 ff. 

Princess of A chaia, 5 

Provence, 12, 302, 303; Count of, 

151, 299 

Provins, 233, 238, 299, 304 
Prutf-homme, 142, and preux- 

homme, 276 
Ps. cvt, ver. 21 and 24, 176 

Ramleh, 271 ; Bishop of, 269 
Raoul, a preaching brother, 235 
Raoul, brother of Hugh of 

Tabarie, 82 

Raoul, Lord of Couci, 190 
Raoul, Lord, of Soissons, 253 
Raoul of Wanou, Lord, 190 ff., 215 
Raymond, a Templar, 291, 292 
Reginald of Dampierre, 2, 14, 58 
Reginald of Mons, 3, 76, 79 
Reginald of Trit, 3, 78, 80 ff., 90, 

91, 100, 105, 106 
Regnier, brother of Boniface of 

Montferrat, n 

Remigius, St., 180, 182, 261; 

feast of, 19 

Remigius of Rheims, St., 306 
Renaud of Montmirail, 2, 25, 82, 

94, 191 

Renaud of Trie, 151, 152 
Renaud of Vichiers, Marshal of 

the Temple, 181, 230, 238 
Renier of Trit, 115, 116 
Render, son of Renier of Trit, 3, 90 
Requests, gate of, 149 
Requiem mass, 148 
Rheims, Archbishop of, 306, 325 
Rhone, the, 37, 166 
Richard Coeur-de-Lion, i, 155, 

275, 276 

Richard of Dampierre, 12, 28, 37 
Robert, brother of Enguerrand 

of Boves, 3 
Robert, brother of Geoffry of 

Joinville, 2 
Robert, Count of Artois, 163, 187, 

188, 229, 296 
Robert Manvoisin, 3, 27 
Robert of Boves, 20, 26 
Robert of Clari, 61, 62, 63 
Robert of Dreux, Count, 156 
Robert of Joinville, 9 
Robert of Quartier, 3 
Robert of Ronsoi, 3, 36, 82, 89, 

9i, 94 
Roche-de-Glun, castle called, 166 

Roche-de-Marseille, 167 
Rochelle, in Poitou, castle of la, 

Rodosto, 96, 98, too, 101, 104. 

108, no, 115 
Rodd, Sir Rennell, 5 
Roger de Suitre, 18 
Roger, Lord of Roche-de-Glun, 


Roger of Marck, 3 
Rome, 8, 23, 26, 46, 56, 289, 305, 

306, 325 

Rome and Italy, i 
Rotrou of Montfort, 3, 20 
Rouen, Archbishop of, 324 
Roumania, 23, 25, 27, 46, 74, 8 

84, 107 ff., 112, 113, 133 
Royaumont, abbey of, 310, 317 
Rudolph, son of the Emperor of 

Germany, 295 
Rusium, 106, 108 
Russia, sea of, 57 
Rexi, 183, 184, 185, 201 

" Sacks," 318 
Safad, 268 



Saillenay, John of, 194 

Sainte-Beuve, 142 

Saintes, 161 

Saint-Germain des Pr6s, 318 

Saint Urbain, 166 

Saladin, n, 246 

Salonica (Salonika), n, 68, 69, 

72 ff., 76, 78, 79, 81, 85, 102, 

103, 105, 119, 121 
Salyinbria (Selynibria), 101, 109, 

TIT, 113, 130 
Samaria, 277 
Sancerre, 158 
Sa6ne, 166 
Saracens, passim 
Sarrasin, John, 152 
Sarrebruck, Count of. 163, 165 
Saumur in Anjou, 159, 160 
Sayette (Sidon), 274, 276 ff., 

281 ff., 287, 289, 290; Lady of, 


Scecedin, Saracen chief, 184 
Sclavonia, 19, 25 
Scotland, 139 

Scutari, 32, 33; palace of, 34 
Sebastian, Feast of St., 185 
Sebreci, a Saracen, 227 
Seine, 318 
Sephouri, 238 
Sepulchre, 35 
Seres, 103, 105, 121, 131 
Sezanne, 157 
Sharmesah, 184 
Shrove Tuesday, 200, 209, 215 
Sicily, King of, see Robert, 

Count of Artois 
Simon (father of John of Join- 

ville), 146 

Simon of Joinville, 157 
Simen of Montbeliard, 274 
Simon de Montfort, 2, TO, 27 
Simon of Nauphle, 27 
Skiza, 120, 121, 122, 123, 126, 

127, 128, 130 
Smith, T., 6 
Soissons, 4, 10, 303; Count of, 

149, 194 fi. ; abbey of our Lady 

of, IT, 12 

Sophia, Church of St. Constanti 
nople, 51, 56, 69, 102, 117, 121, 

128 fi. 

Spiga, castle of, 102 
Stanimac, 91, 105, 106, 115, 116 
Stephen, brother of Geoffry of the 

Perche, 3, 12, 19, 82, 83, 92, 

Stephen, Church of St., Troyes, 

10, 158 

Stephen, Count of Sancerre, 158, 

Stephen of Otricourt, Commander 

of the Temple, 230 
Stephen, St., 31; abbey of, 31, 


Stone, a marvellous, 286 
Subeibe, 280 
Syria, IT, 20, 23 ft., 29, 30, 49, 

50, 57, 82, 85, 168 

Tabarie, Castle of, 268 
Taillebourg, Battle of, 160; castle 

called, 161 
Tancred, King, 9 
Tanis, 183 
Tartars, 168, 169, 171, 254 ff., 

283, see Turks, and Saracens; 

King of the, 168, 171, 254, 

258, 282, 283 
Tay, 3 
Tchorlu, 70 

Te Deum laudamus, 176 
Templars, 181, 184, 189, 190, 199, 

202, 229, 230, 248, 279, 280 
Temple, the, 190, 203, 218, 219, 

238, 248, 264, 271, 318 
Thibaut, Count (Father of Henry, 

Thibaut, and Stephen), 158 
Thibaut, Count of Blois (son of 

Thibaut), 154, 155, 158, 159 
Thibaut, Count of Bon-le-Duc, 

Thibaut, Count of Champagne 

and Brie, 2, 4, 9, n, 155, 156 
rhibaut of Bar, Count, 308 
Thibaut II., King of Navarre, 

143, 303, 304, 308 
Thierre, nephew of Baldwin of 

Flanders, 3 
Thierri of Diest, 18 
Thierri of Flanders, 131 
Thierri of Loos, 18, 80, 84, 106, 

107, 114, Il6, 121, 128 ff. 

Thierri of Tenremonde, 82, 84. 

106 ff. 
Thierri, son of Count Philip of 

Flanders, 13, 25 
Titus, 317 

Tortosa, our Lady of, 286 
Trajanopolis, 100 
Trinity, Minister of the, 229 
Tripoli, 286; Prince of, 286 
Troyes, 9, 156, 157, 158 
.Tunis, 136, 320; King of, 296 
Turcoples, 116 
Turkey, 31, 33, 67, 69, 70, 80, 120, 




Turks, passim, see Tartars and 

Tuscans, 37 
Tyre (Sur), 278, 284 
Tzurulum, 88, 89, 90, in 

Ulric of Tone, 18 

Urban, St., 305; abbey of, 307 

Valery, John of, 177 
Varangeville, 294 

Vataces, Emperor of the Greeks, 

Vauvert, house of the Carthu 
sians, 317 

Vauvert, our Lady of, 299 

Vaux, abbot of, 20, 23, 27 

Venetians, 14, 15, 16, 17, 20, 21, 
22, 27, 39 ff., 48, 49, 55, 59, 60, 
65, 66, 79, 88, 101, 106, 109, 
no, 112, no, 124, 127 

Venice, 4, 6, 8, 9, 12, 13, 14, 18, 
19, 48, 57, 58, 82, 98 

Veni Creator Spiritus, 167 

Vernas, 106, 109, 112, 113, 117 

Vernon, almshouse of, 310, 317 

Veroi, 118 

Verona, 18 

Versey, Lord Villain of, 173 

Vertus, 157 

Vienne, Dauphiness of, 303 

Villain, brother of Thierri of Loos, 
107, 108 

Villain of Neuilly, 2, 14, 58 

Villehardouin s Chronicle of the 
Fourth Crusade and the Con 
quest of Constantinople, i 

ViUehardouin, 5, 9, 142 

Vincennes, 149, 150 

Viollet, M., 326 

Vuissiers (flat-bottomed vessels), 

Wailly, M. de, i, 252, 307, 326 

Wallachia, 104, 130 

Wallachians, 92, 94, 95, 107 fi., 

Ill, 122 

Walter, Count of Brienne, see 

Walter, Lord of Reynel, 252 

Walter of Autreche, 178, 179 
Walter of Bonsies, 3 
Walter of ChfitiUon, 202, 208 
Walter of Ecurey, Lord, 186 
Walter of Escprnai, 114, 131, 
Walter of Fuligny, 2 
Walter of Gaudonyille, 3, 4 
Walter of Montbeliard, 2, 9 
Walter of Nele, 3 
Walter of Nemours, 236 
Walter of Neuilli, 94 
Walter of Saint-Denis, 3, 13 
Walter of the Horgne, 203 
Walter of the Tombes, 3 
Walter of Vignory, 2 
Weaver s house, Paris, 318 
Wedgwood, Miss, 252, 307 
1 White Mantles," 318 
Whitsuntide, 12 
William, advocate of Bethune 
W T illiam, Bishop of Paris, 146 
William, brother of Odo 

Champlitte), 12, 33, 37, 41, 

57, 68, 73, 75, 86 
William of Aries, 103 
William of Aunoi, 3, 28 
William of Beaumont, 241, 28 
William of Blanvel, 88, 90 
William of Boon, 195 
William of Dammartin, Lord, 
William of Flanders, see Flanx 
William of Gommegnies, 3, n 
William of Mello, 150 
William of Montferrat, u 
William of Neuilly, 40, 58 
William of Nully, 2 
William of Perchoi, 116, 127, ] 


William of Sains, 3, 122, 123 
William of Sonnac, Master of 

Temple, 197, 202 
William of St. Michael, abbot, : 
William of the Gi, 41 
William of the Long Sword, n 
William, vidame of Chartres, 2. 

Yves le Breton, 246, 249 ff. 

Zara, in Sclavonia, 16, 19, 20, 
24, 26, 27 






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717 Heimskringla : The Olaf Sagas. Trans, by Samuel L 
Intro, and Notes by John Beveridge 




D 164 .A3 V4813 1908 

c.2 SMC 
Vi 1 lehardou i n, Geoffroi 

de, d. ca. 1212. 
Memoirs of the crusades 

AKM-4865 (mcsk)