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The Song of Roland

The Song of Roland

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  • SO ENDS THE TALE WHICH TUROLD HATH CONCEIVED

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dating perhaps as early as the middle 11th century. No city walls are left for him to gain. Maley. our Lord and Sovereign. First in prowess. who feareth not God's name.5 gratefully accepts contributions in money. AOI. edited. [Charles Kenneth] Moncreiff Anonymous Old French epic. Killings. I Charles the King. This electronic edition was produced. time. Into this land is come. also his dukes: "My Lords. K. ye that are wise and true.J. III Blancandrins was a pagan very wise. stood. of th' Castle of Val Funde. Nor wards off ills that shall to him attain. Save Sarraguce. public domain etexts. Charles of France the Douce. full twenty thousand.J. Nor have I strength his forces to undo. give ear to our impending doom: That Emperour. Called he forth then his counts. us to confuse. scanning machines. Round him his men. Mahumet's man. OCR software. he invokes Apollin's aid. Killings (DeTroyes@AOL. I have no host in battle him to prove. he stood his lord beside. *END*THE SMALL PRINT! FOR PUBLIC DOMAIN ETEXTS*Ver. . Marsile its King. Counsel me then. II King Marsilies he lay at Sarraguce.93*END* The Song of Roland Translated by C. Can ye ward off this present death and dule?" What word to say no pagan of them knew. Full seven years hath sojourned in Spain. Document scanning provided by R. There on a throne he sate. Went he his way into an orchard cool. royalty free copyright licenses. Save Blancandrin. Money should be paid to "Project Gutenberg Association / Illinois Benedictine College". and won the western main. Now no fortress against him doth remain.29. and prepared by Douglas B.COM). of marble blue. and every other sort of contribution you can think of. Maley and Douglas B.04. that sits on high mountain. August 1995. In vassalage he was a gallant knight. Proofreading by R. Conquered the land.

Thousand mewed hawks. the first-born of our wives. should he demand surety. Silver and gold. And be ourselves brought down to beggary." "That is well said. And Blancandrin. and that King Marsilie Calleth aside Clarun of Balaguee. to each his fair domain. And Priamun and Guarlan of the beard. homeward he will him hie. IV Says Blancandrins: "By my right hand. that is so big with pride. and pass the appointed day. Ten or a score. Proud is that King. Than that we lose honour and dignity. were first in felony. and do him fealty. High festival will hold for Saint Michael. Than that ourselves do suffer grief and pain. four hundred mules load high. that in the wind doth sway. Better by far they go. -An he be slain. When they are gone. to Charlemagne go ye. And Machiner and his uncle Mahee. From th' hostage he'll slice their heads away. Better by far their heads be shorn away. The Frankish host you'll see them all away. our loyal oath to bind. in France. With Jouner. Than that ourselves lose this clear land of Spain. Lions and bears and hounds for him provide. though doomed to die.6 And thus he spoke: "Do not yourself affright! Yield to Carlun." the pagans say. Franks will retire to France their own terrain. and cruel his courage. "Gentle Barons. . To Aix. So be it. Malbien from over sea. his friend and his ally. Stand honour bound. Send hostages. I say. Till with that wealth he pays his soldiery. War hath he waged in Spain too long a time. You shall receive and hold the Christian rite. V The council ends. Faithful service. Tidings of us no Frank will hear or say. Follow him there before Saint Michael's tide. And by this beard. Estramarin and Eudropin his peer. good reason to decree: Ten hath he called. I'll surely furnish mine. Fifty wagons his wrights will need supply. In his Chapelle at Aix will Charles stay." AOI. Send him our sons. Time will go by. sev'n hundred camelry.

In their right hands were olive-branches green. There too Gerin and Geriers are found. Sansun the Duke and Anseis the proud. Hostages too. If you by craft contrive to set me free. Bridled with gold. Gefreid d'Anjou. I shall be with him. Came they to Charle. Bid ye for me that Charlemagne. Great good treasure his knights have placed in pound. to him. my love and faith swearing. saddled in silver clear. Mounted them those that should the message speak. In your right hands bear olive-branches green Which signify Peace and Humility. In his God's name to shew me his mercy. . if so he will. In that city there is no pagan now But he been slain. you'll have your fill of me. The Emperour is in a great orchard ground Where Oliver and Rollant stand around. Manors and fiefs. Cordres he holds. VIII Merry and bold is now that Emperour. Silver and gold and many a jewelled gown. I'll give you all your need. he'll have. my lords." the pagans straight agree." "We have enough. Olive-branches in your right hands bearing. Silver and gold. the King of Suatilie. One thousand men shall be my following. I will receive the rite of christening. VII Ten snow-white mules then ordered Marsilie.7 He is in siege of Cordres the city. VI King Marsilies. his council finishing." Says Blancandrins: "Much good will come of this. Yet cannot guard himself from treachery. the walls are tumbled down. Will be his man. or takes the Christian vow. Ere this new moon wanes." AOI. AOI. the King. AOI. that bears his gonfaloun. Says to his men : "Go now. Gifts of a King. His catapults have battered town and tow'r. that holds all France in fee.

Thousand mewed hawks. Should any seek. Now in this land you've been too long a day Hie you to France.8 Where they are found. or fifteen or a score. fashioned of gold throughout. Wherewith full tale your soldiers you can pay. King Marsilies hath ever been my foe. is seen a mighty crowd. but slow: His custom was. He says to them: "Good tidings have you told. a son of mine shall go. White is his beard. When he looks up. and greyhounds leashed on chain. To your palace seigneurial when you go. Thus saith my Lord. Four hundred mules his silver shall convey. his face is very bold. In what measure of faith am I to hold?" That Sarrazin says. return again to Aix. AOI. no need to point him out. There sits the King. "Hostages he'll show. on foot they get them down. X That Emperour inclined his head full low. Ten shall you take. he'll follow too that way. At the game-boards to pass an idle hour. Lions and bears. his countenance is proud. sev'n hundred dromedrays. and blossoming-white his crown. l Stands a fald-stool. . Though he be slain. The All Glorious. -Chequers the old. Out of his wealth meet presents would he make. Fifteen thousand. These very words you have before me told. such store of proved assay. in eglantine embow'red. at his leisure he spoke. While fence the young and lusty bachelours. Any there be you'll have more nobly born. for wisdom most renowned. Beneath a pine. And to the King: "May God preserve you safe. And in salute full courteously they lout. began to meditate. that holds Douce France in pow'r. Fifty wagons you'll need to bear away Golden besants. The messengers. to Whom ye're bound to pray! Proud Marsilies this message bids me say: Much hath he sought to find salvation's way. Hasty in speech he never was." That Emperour t'wards God his arms he raised Lowered his head. On white carpets those knights have sate them down. Shapely his limbs. come out of France the Douce. IX The foremost word of all Blancandrin spake.

yea more than fifty drawing." AOI. There is he fain the Christian faith to know. that God for you hath wrought. ." says the Emperour then. From Gascony the proof Count Acolin. Four hundred mules with gold Arabian charged. that wrought the treachery. Tedbald of Reims and Milun his cousin: With him there were Gerers. Calls his barons. XII That Emperour. also Gerin. But into France demands he my departure. And Oliver. where is my Castle. Barons he calls. Guenes came there. which ended ill. Charles. good counsel to define. a thousand chivalry.9 At Michael's Feast. AOI. My Lord hath said. He'll follow me to Aix. and his nephew Henry. AOI. Also a tent in the orchard raise on high. That Emperour does with the morning rise. Out of his wealth he'll give me weighty masses. Those ten men's mules in stall he bade them tie. Thousand mewed hawks and seven hundred camels. The Council then began. Greyhounds on leash and bears and lions also. his council to begin: Oger the Duke. XIII "My Lords Barons. Forth goes that King. Richard the old. "King Marsilies hath sent me his messages. and stays beneath a pine. that Archbishop Turpin. beneath a pine he sits. Darkling they lie till comes the clear daylight. Fifty wagons. And among them the Count Rollant came in." Answers him Charles: "Still may he heal his soul. Matins and Mass are said then in his sight. called in periculo. thither will he follow Ev'n to your baths. Franks out of France. Dozen serjeants served after them aright. XI Clear shone the sun in a fair even-tide. For with his Franks he's ever of a mind. Those messengers had lodging for the night. so proof and so gentil.

and with the wise be one. Quick to reply. this bidding be not done. he springs upon his feet." . "Believe not Marsilie. He clasps his chin. save whence your good shall come. Vengeance for those the felon slew to wreak. Since he sends word. Franks hold their peace. Counsel of pride is wrong: we've fought enough. and the other Basilie: Their heads he took on th' hill by Haltilie. And Balaguet. To Sarraguce lead forth your great army. Homage he'll do. ev'n as now. All your life long. War have you waged. My word nor theirs. Two of your Counts did to the pagan speed. Deserves not death. Of his pagans he sent you then fifteen. XV That Emperour he sits with lowering front. by finger and by thumb. his nephew not one. Praised they your words that foolish were in deed. The Count Rollanz. but only Guenelun Springs to his feet." Then say the Franks: "Beseems us act with caution!" AOI. that King Marsiliun. these very words did speak. his beard his fingers tug. and all the land of Pine.10 There he'll receive the law of our Salvation: Christian he'll be." AOI. Basan was one. and Tuele. Leave we the fools. You of your Franks a Council did decree. But I know not what purpose in his heart is. he never will agree. I conquer'd you Noples also Commibles. and comes before Carlun. and Sezilie. since all to death must come. And to the King: "Believe not any one. Bearing in hand their olive-branches green: Who. Right haughtily his reason he's begun. XIV That Emperour hath ended now his speech. Throughout all Spain your writ alone shall run Next he'll receive our rule of Christendom Who shall advise. and hold from me his marches. Traitor in all his ways was Marsilies. And to the King. Good word nor bad. if need be. Seven years since. And took Valterne. lie in siege. when into Spain came we. so on to war proceed.

" says Oliver his friend. that you have seen grow blench. but let it well be heard. With hostages his faith he would secure." XVIII "My lords barons. the third. for none hath called you up. you'll not. to King Marsiliun?" Answers Duke Neimes: "I'll go there for your love. Go sit you down. With catapults his ramparts have you burst." Answers the King: "Old man of wisdom pruff. say whom now can we send To th' Sarrazin that Sarraguce defends?" Answers Rollanz: "I might go very well. say whom shall we send up To Sarraguce. Sinners were they that would to war return. Nay. XVI And after him came Neimes out.11 AOI. Vanquished his men. shall that way wend. I say. XVII "My lords barons. Wisdom was there. Your feet nor his. The dozen peers by that would stand condemned. by this beard. AOI. "For your courage is fierce unto the end. and all his cities burned. I am afraid you would misapprehend. Says to the King: "In peace now leave your Franks. King Marsilies in war is overturned. If the King wills it I might go there well." "Well said the Duke. His castles all in ruin have you hurled." "Certes." Answers the King: "Be silent both on bench. Him who entreats your pity do not spurn. XIX Turpins of Reins is risen from his rank. Let this great war no longer now endure. what answer he returned. and as these cheeks are rough. For seven years you've lingered in this land . By this white beard. You'll not this year so far from me remove. Better vassal there was not in the world. you'd seen them all silent. Franks hold their peace. Give me therefore the wand. also the glove." Franks utter in their turn. And to the King: "Now rightly have you heard Guenes the Count.

12 They have endured much pain and sufferance. Proud face he had. For I believe his thoughts I understand. Says to Rollant: "Fool. sit you down on yonder silken mat." Then says Rollanz: "There's Guenes. So let him go. there's none you should send rather. Then if God grant that I return hereafter. Charles." AOI. Sire." says the Emperour then. I'll follow thee with such a force of passion That will endure so long as life may last thee. until that I command. "Choose ye me out a baron from my marches. And on his feet stands clear in silken garment. AOI. To Sarraguce going to Marsilie. Thou hast decreed. To Marsilie shall carry back my answer. This mighty wrath of mine I'll thus let free. If the King will. I take no thought for slander. And speak no more. XXI Answers him Guene: "Thou shalt not go for me. Thou'rt not my man. his ribs were broadly arched So fair he seemed that all the court regarded. his eyes with colour. began to laugh for glee. wherefore art so wrathful? All men know well that I am thy goodfather. should bear the answer. to Marsiliun I travel." When Rollanz heard. chevaliers. my goodfather. XXII When Guenes sees that Rollant laughs at it. I will seek out the Spanish Sarazand. also the wand. Charles commnds that I do his decree. Fine limbs he had. XX "Franks. There I will work a little trickery. Off from his neck he flings the pelts of marten." AOI." That Emperour answers intolerant: "Go. I'm ready to go rather." Answer the Franks: "For he can wisely manage. sparkled. All men know well. surely. nor am I lord of thee. ." And that count Guenes is very full of anguish. to me the clove. But some wise man. Give." Answers Rollanz: "Thou'rt full of pride and madness.

When I command. he'll look for me in vain." answers Guenes. Sire. I'll not love him. I will your word accomplish. To him I leave my honours and domain. When he should take. why need I linger." XXV His right hand glove that Emperour holds out. yet have I no warrant Basile had none nor his brother Basant. XXIV Then says the King: "Guenes. A false judgement you bore me when you chid. For you have heard. also the wand." Answers him Charles: "Your heart is too humane. Murmur the Franks: "God! What may that mean now? By this message great loss shall come about. Right Emperour. "You'll soon have news enow. Your sister's hand in marriage have I ta'en." Guenes said. And take from me the glove. I?" Then said the King "In Jesu's Name and mine!" . you're chosen by the Franks. and he has lost his wit: Says to that count: "I love you not a bit. you see me where you sit. as you bid. there is no prettier swain: Baldwin." "Lordings. Whence who goes there returns no more again. Since I must go. 'tis plain. AOI." says Guene. "give me your orders. so long as I'm a man." XXVI "Now. for rage he's like to split. time is to start amain." Then says the King: "Over intolerant. it falls upon the ground. Now certainly you go when I command." "Sire. before me stand. for they are of his band." AOI. men say he shews the knightly strain.13 Such grief he has. who goes at his right hand. XXIII "To Sarraguce I must repair. But the count Guenes elsewhere would fain be found . " all this is from Rollanz." "And go I can. All I defy. And I've a son. as in your sight I stand. Care well for him. The dozen peers. A little more. Nor Oliver.

what a man is he.14 With his right hand he has absolved and signed. XXVIII Guenes canters on. they say that have you seen. AOI. He that for you this journey has decreed King Charlemagne will never hold him dear. On my behalf my gentle wife you'll greet. who abides his company. And to his side Murgles his sword of steel. What seeks he now of us in our country?" Then answers Guene "So great courage hath he. On Tachebrun. Into England he crossed the bitter sea. Where Sarrazins assembled he may see.Rides down the road. And Pinabel. Who all exclaim: "Unlucky lord. Cunning and keen they speak then. Who conquered Puille and th'whole of Calabrie. XXVII Guenes the count goes to his hostelry. indeed! In the King's court these many years you've been. Yet a great wrong these dukes do and these counts . Guinemere. To France the Douce. whom you have seen. His rights accord and help him in his need. With Blancandrins. Noble vassal." Then answers Guenes: "Not so. shall he lead. The Count Rollant. my son. you soon shall speed. XXIX Says Blancandrins "Gentle the Franks are found. each to each. Then to his care the wand and brief confides. next he leaps. Then you had seen so many knights to weep. Finds for the road his garments and his gear. All of the best he takes that may appear: Spurs of fine gold he fastens on his feet. His uncle holds the stirrup. his charger. To th' Holy Pope restored again his fee. Knowing you were born of very noble breed. Sire. and halts beneath a tree." After they say: "Us too." AOI. and on his way goes he. the Lord be pleased! Far better one than many knights should bleed. And Baldewin. Never was man against him might succeed. he should not so have deemed. my lords." -. Says Blancandrins: "Charles. who is my friend and peer.

His nephew came. whom shame will yet find out. in sark of iron brown. That would bring down to bondage every man. till they might hear the tale. XXXI Cantered so far then Blancandrins and Guene Till each by each a covenant had made And sought a plan. Held in his hand an apple red and round. Silver and gold he show'rs upon his band. They love him so. Once in the shade the King had sate him down. The King himself holds all by his command. When he be slain. XXX Says Blancandrins: "A cruel man. Nor was there one but did his speech contain. for men he'll never want." said Rollanz as he bowed. shall peace once more abound. And challenges the peace of every land. Him and themselves they harry and confound." AOI. Sire.15 Unto their lord. whose holy laws here run! . Mahum And Apollin. Holding the hand of county Guenelun. Haste into sight then Blancandrins and Guene. fair Sire. beyond by Carcasoune. From hence to the East he'll conquer sea and land. how Rollant might be slain." Guenes replies: "There is none such. Rollant. Spoils he had won. Twenty thousand of Sarrazins his train. There was the King that held the whole of Espain. garments and silken mats. Chargers and mules." His cruel pride must shortly him confound. Enveloped all in Alexandrin veils. With what people takes he this task in hand?" And answers Guene: "The people of the Franks. Cantered so far by valley and by plain To Sarraguce beneath a cliff they came. "Behold. Says to the King "Lord save you. "Of all earth's kings I bring you here the crowns. without Only Rollanz. XXXII Blancandrin comes before Marsiliun." AOI. There a fald-stool stood in a pine-tree's shade. Each day t'wards death he goes a little down. Eager for news. being in counsel proud.

the chiefs. that out of France is come. or none. The All Glorious. Before this King in court we'll so behave. From him you'll hear if peace shall be. Greatest in wealth. you will die in misery and shame. Rather you should listen to hear him speak. Snatching a dart. to whom we're bound to pray Proud Charlemagne this message bids me say: You must receive the holy Christian Faith." "Sire. Judged and condemned you'll be. XXXIV King Marsilies is turn'ed white with rage." King Marsilies was very sore afraid. Yes." Guenes says. And to the King: "May God preserve you safe. AOI. ." says the alcaliph: "When on this Frank your vengeance you would wreak. "Greatly you harm our cause. XXXIII But the count Guenes did deeply meditate. Taken by force and bound in iron chain You will be brought before his throne at Aix." said Marsile: "We'll hear him. and shortly slain. XXXV Then Sarrazins implored him so.16 Your message we delivered to Charlun. every one. And yield in fee one half the lands of Spain. Praising his God. On the faldstoel Marsillies took his seat. but answer made he none." "Let us prevent this fight:" the pagans say. Both his two hands he raised against the sun." AOI." "Speak. His feathered dart he brandishes and shakes. and spake Even as one that knoweth well the way. "to suffer I am meek. Guenes beholds: his sword in hand he takes. If to accord this tribute you disdain. And says to it: "O clear and fair and brave. He sends you here his noblest born barun. He made to strike: they turned aside his aim. Cunning and keen began at length. Two fingers' width from scabbard bares the blade. That the Emperour of France shall never say In a strange land I'd thrown my life away Before these chiefs thy temper had essayed. with golden feathers gay.

Bidden to hold the Christians' right belief. . his nephew. I will that wrong requite. I bear in mind his bitter grief and ire. Our Emperour has sent you here this brief." When Guenes hears. and bind you hands and feet. he'll not leave hold of it. To you he'll come." AOI. Says to the King: "In madness spoke this wight. You will not then on palfrey nor on steed. 'Tis of Basan and 's brother Basilye. he draws his sword outright. shall receive. Tried there and judged.17 I will not fail. One half of Spain he'll render as your fief The rest Rollanz." Guenes had on a cloke of sable skin. These he throws down. is turn'ed white with ire. If I would save my body now alive. Leave him to me. sees what the King did write: "Charles commands. Flung you will be on a vile sumpter-beast. of Franks the chief. But I will tell. XXXVII Now Marsilies. to spare him were not right. If you will not to Charles this tribute cede. Whose heads I took on th' hill by Haltilye. The pagans say. your head you will not keep. beneath that pine. So wrong he was. Nay. they're held by Blancandrin. there speaks his son to Marsilye. by Charles. wherefore this rage and fear? Seeing you are. Proud parcener in him you'll have indeed. and Sarraguce besiege. come cantering in your speed. And over it a veil Alexandrin. But not his sword." After. He breaks the seal and casts the wax aside. Take you by force. What Charlemagne. XXXVI Before the King's face Guenes drawing near Says to him "Sire. Against the trunk he stands. Jennet nor mule. Bear you outright ev'n unto Aix his seat. this. who holds all France by might. so long as I be free. Looks in the brief. "A noble baron. should this land its treasure pile in heaps." He's given it into the pagan's nief. I must despatch my uncle the alcalyph. In his right hand he grasps the golden hilt. that Royal Majesty. for all the gold God keeps. Charles will not love me ever otherwise. Bids me inform his mortal enemy.

me. his uncle and his friend. In our service his faith to me he's pledged. as 'tis said. Minded I am to love you very well." AOI. honour and goodness yet." Guene answers him: "I'll not refuse it. There is no man that sees and knows him well But will proclaim the Emperour's hardihead. AOI. his time is nearly spent. when all is said. Through many lands his armies he has led. He's very old." He's taken Guenes by his right finger-ends. With him he takes the best among his men. Two hundred years he's lived now. And Blancandrins there shews his snowy hair. These sable skins take as amends from me. His great valour how can it be counted? Him with such grace hath God illumined. And through the orchard straight to the King they wend. And the alcaliph. What time from war will he draw back instead?" And answers Guenes: "Not so was Charles bred. Five hundred pounds would not their worth redeem." says then King Marsilie. XL Then says Marsile "Guenes. Making to strike.18 XXXVIII The King is gone into that orchard then. "I did you now a little trickery. XXXIX "Fair Master Guenes. And Jursalet." XLI The pagan says: "You make me marvel sore . the truth to ken. Remain untold. Better to die than leave his banneret. Of Charlemagne I wish to hear you tell. And so rich kings he's brought to beg their bread." Then says the King: "So let him now be fetched. was the King's son and heir. So many blows his buckled shield has shed. To-morrow night the gift shall ready be. Of treason there make lawless parliament. I shewed my great fury. May God be pleased to shew you His mercy. Praise him as best I may. Says Blancandrins: "Summon the Frank again.

" AOI." Answers him Guenes: "Not on this journeying Save of pagans a great loss suffering. So many lands he's led his armies o'er. with twenty thousand Franks." says Marsilies the King. And Oliver. And so rich kings brought down to beg and sorn. wise counsel following. as I think. "Such men are mine. For battle then he'll have no more the skill. fairer than tongue can sing. . When will time come that he draws back from war?" "Never. Of knights I can four hundred thousand bring So I may fight with Franks and with their King. XLII Says Sarrazin: "My wonder yet is grand At Charlemagne. XLIII "Fair Master Guenes. I understand. The dozen peers he cherishes at hand. who is so old and hoar. "so long as lives Rollanz. that courteous paladin. he fears no living man. And proof also is Oliver his henchman. Charles is secure. who hoary is and blanched. Oliver his comrade. These are his guards. Vanquished and slain of kings so rich a band. "so long as lives his nephew. These are his guard. Charles is secure. The dozen peers." AOI. No such vassal goes neath the dome of heaven. that King. count Rollant." says Guene. Two hundred years. From hence to the East there is no such vassal. he holds no man in terror." says Guenes. with other thousands twenty. In the rereward will follow after him Both his nephew. believe me if you will. To the Emperour such wealth of treasure give That every Frank at once is marvelling. Dead are the counts. When will time come that he from war draws back?" "Never. Such blows hath borne from many a trenchant lance. Leave you the fools.19 At Charlemagne. For twenty men that you shall now send in To France the Douce he will repair. He has gone forth and conquered many a land. Two hundred years and more. So many blows from spears and lances borne. they say. And proof also. whom Charl'es holds so precious. Charles will behold his great pride perishing. he's lived and more.

And Oliver. He's sworn thereby." Marsile has heard. I do not say. in whom he well believes. Twenty thousand Franks in their company Five score thousand pagans upon them lead. Franks unawares in battle you shall meet. he's kissed him on the throat. XLVII Was a fald-stool there." Answers him Guenes: "That will I soon make clear The King will cross by the good pass of Size. Mahum's and Tervagant's. His nephew there.20 AOI. So. made of olifant. AOI. You will have wrought a high chivalrous deed. Charle's right arm were from his body torn. that rich peer. Next he begins to undo his treasure-store. the Spanish Sarazand. XLVI Said Marsilie -. He'ld not again assemble in such force. first or last. Nor all your life know war again. XLIV Fair Master Guene." On the relics." Then answered Guene: "So be it. AOI. how Rollant slain may be. count Rollant. Terra Major would languish in repose. "Shew the device. but yours shall also bleed. XLV "Could one achieve that Rollant's life was lost. A guard he'll set behind him. In it their laws. and with speed." says then King Marsilie. from Rollant you'll be freed. forsworn his faith away. are in his sword Murgles. in the rear. . A book thereon Marsilies bade them plant. Bruised and bled white the race of Franks shall be. as you say. Swear me the death of Rollant on that day.but now what more said they? -"No faith in words by oath unbound I lay. Battle again deliver. Though there remained his marvellous great host. but peace. AOI. Treason he's sworn.

" said she to the count. To you. Here for your wife I have two brooches found. More worth are they than all the wealth of Roum. "For prize you dear my lord and all around. as you command!" AOI. "I love you well. and in his hosen pouched. "Tribute for Charles. Climorins. for here is plenty Silver and gold on hundred camels seven. "Take now this sword. the gentlest under heaven. LI The King now calls Malduiz." "It shall be done. I offer it in love. And answered Guenes: "So be it. kissed each the other one. sir. fair sir." He's taken them. Amethysts and jacynths in golden mount. Smiling and clear. Into the hilt a thousand coins are run. But give us aid." Count Guenes answered him. Your Emperour has none such. and better sword has none." . Warden had been to King Marsiliun." Then. That in rereward against him we may come. Bramimound. better is none than this. On mouth and cheek then each the other kissed." Guenes the count answers: "It shall-be done. he's said to Guenelun. Smiling and clear to Guenelun begins: "Take now my helm. L In haste there came the Queen forth. I'll be bound. AOI. is it now made ready?" He answers him: "Ay. AOI. Battle to himself and all his band. Sire.21 In the rereward if he shall find Rollant. say. XLIX After there came a pagan. And verily he'll slay him if he can. on Rollant the marquis. cheek and chin. And twenty men. Give us your aid from Rollant the barun. that guards his treasure. By what device we may dishonour bring. XLVIII In haste there came a pagan Valdabrun.

AOI. LIV In morning time is risen the Emperere. by the law that you most sacred hold. you must spare. and on his journey starts. LIII That Emperour draws near to his domain. He is come down unto the city Gailne. look after them with care. Now. And twenty men. and made his prayer. and many others there. Says to the King: "God keep you. the felon perjurer. In hauberks dressed. Charging ten mules with fine Arabian gold. On the green grass before the tent his chair. Tribute I bring you. Let not your heart in our behalf grow cold! Out of my store I'll give you wealth untold. very great and rare. This great tribute present you first to Charles. his uncle. And golden hilts upon their swords they bare. new year and old. Guenes arrived. Then get me placed Rollanz in the rereward. If him I find in valley or in pass. Proud Marsilies bade me this word declare That alcaliph. The Count Rollanz had broken it and ta'en." His charger mounts. My own eyes saw four hundred thousand there. Sire. Neimes the Duke. Take then the keys of this city so large. An hundred years its ruins shall remain. I swear! Of Sarraguce the keys to you I bear. Into their camp is come the county Guene. Begins to speak." Answers him Guenes: "My time is nearly past. Battle I'll give him that shall be the last. He's said to him: "You are both wise and bold. At dawn of day. just as the light grows plain. closed helms that gleamed in the air. Mattins and Mass he's heard. Where Rollant stood and that bold Oliver. I'll do the same for you. with very cunning air. LII Marsilie's arm Guene's shoulder doth enfold. And for tribute from the great land of Spain.22 AOI. . Of Guenelun the King for news is fain. AOI.

Hauberks they wore and sarks with iron plated. Joining his hands. In his two hands his ashen spear he sees. Kingdom of Spain will hold as you declare.23 They followed him. Marsile they left. his war was now abated. He will accept the laws you hold and fear. Her castles ta'en. For Christendom they've neither wish nor care. Lances made sharp. I swear! Well have you wrought. Then were they drowned. LVI Passes the day. that would their faith forswear. Dreams that he stands in the great pass of Size. Towards Douce France that Emperour has hasted. God! what a grief. Ere you have seen one month pass of this year He'll follow you to France. High on a cliff against the sky 'twas placed. Upon a lance Rollant his ensign raised. Franks leave their lines. their helms were laced. to your Empire. Were he alive. Guenes the count that spear from him doth seize. ere Brake from the North tempest and storm in the air. they will no more appear. The pagan king." Then says the King: "Now God be praised. Swords to their sides were girt. LV Charles the Great that land of Spain had wasted. bids you hear. Franks know not what is fated. the darkness is grown deep. rich Charles. That Emperour. her cities violated. Brandishes it and twists it with such ease. Cantered pagans. right to the sea they'll fare. LVII . AOI. Then said the King. through those wide valleys raced. and rich reward shall wear. escutcheons newly painted: There in the mists beyond the peaks remained The day of doom four hundred thousand waited. AOI. lies asleep. Sire. the sumpter-beasts are yare T'wards France the Douce all on their way repair. The Franks in camp through all that country baited. in truth. Charles sleeps on nor wakens from his dream. But the fourth league they had not compassed. That flown into the sky the flinders seem. will do you homage there." Bids through the host a thousand trumpets blare. I should have brought him here.

" AOI. LX When Rollant heard that he should be rerewarden ." When the King hears. "My lords barons." Answers him Guenes: "I know. he looks upon him straight. "You've no baron whose valour is as great. And furiously the leopard next he fought. 'tis true in-deed. nor charger nor palfrey." AOI. "You've no baron were better in that place. Leaping in the air he sped to Charles call." answers Guenes. Speaks then to Guenes by rule of courtesy: "Good-father. "Ye see the pass along these valleys strait. Jennet nor mule that canter can with speed." at length doth Charles say. I ought to hold you dear. But my sword's point shall first exact their meed. LIX The count Rollanz hath heard himself decreed. But then there dashed a harrier from the hall. LVIII Passes the night and opens the clear day. Since the rereward you have for me decreed. Looks through the host often and everyway. Into your heart is come a mortal hate. His body dear did savagely assault. Sir. That his right arm an evil bear did gnaw. Yet which might win they knew not. Rollanz. First the right ear of that grim bear he caught. As I know well. And says to him: "You devil incarnate. Judge for me now. Out of Ardennes he saw a leopard stalk. in his Chapelle once more. who shall in rereward wait." "There's my good-son. AOI. of Denmark. And who shall go before me in the gate?" "Oger is here. Nor sumpter-horse will lose.24 And after this another vision saw. Of battle great the Franks then seemed to talk. Charles the King will never lose by me. at Aix." then answers Guenes. in his thought. nor any steed. That Emperour canters in brave array. Charles sleeps on. nor wakens he for aught. In France.

For that on him the rereward is conferred. ." Gives it. While I'm alive there's no man you need fear. know this in verity. and also Berengiers. Retain you them. me I Confound me God. Give him the bow your hands have bent. his chin is in his hand Tears fill his eyes. As then from thee the wand fell before Charles?" AOI. Also Gerins and the proud count Geriers. and Sansun too came there. I know." AOI. Old Anseis. LXIII That Emperour. "Give me the bow you carry in your hand. Go through the pass in all security. And Otes came." Then says the count: "I will not have them. Gerart also of Rossillon the fierce. (Better vassal there was not upon earth) Says to the King: "Right well now have you heard The count Rollanz to bitter wrath is stirred. Neer in reproach. He tugs his beard. if I fail in the deed! Good valiant Franks. Half of my host I leave you presently. a thousand score I'll keep. Rollanz then calleth he: "Fair nephew mine." That Emperour with lowered front doth stand. the King. his company are worth. LXIV The count Rollanz has mounted his charger. Thinkest the glove will slip from me hereafter. LXI "Right Emperour. As Guenes let fall. when he received the wand. will any man Say that it fell and lay upon the land. your safeguard this shall be. Then find him men. would do that work." says the baron Rollanz. begotten of a bastard.25 Furiously he spoke to his good-father: "Aha! culvert. LXII And after that is come duke Neimes furth. Beside him came his comrade Oliver. at first. he cannot them command. and Rollant bears it furth. No baron else have you.

26 And there is come the Gascon Engeliers. "Now by my head I'll go!" the Archbishop swears. "And I'm with you," says then the count Gualtiers, "I'm Rollant's man, I may not leave him there." A thousand score they choose of chevaliers. AOI. LXV Gualter del Hum he calls, that Count Rollanz; "A thousand Franks take, out of France our land; Dispose them so, among ravines and crags, That the Emperour lose not a single man." Gualter replies: "I'll do as you command." A thousand Franks, come out of France their land, At Gualter's word they scour ravines and crags; They'll not come down, howe'er the news be bad, Ere from their sheaths swords seven hundred flash. King Almaris, Belserne for kingdom had, On the evil day he met them in combat. AOI. LXVI High are the peaks, the valleys shadowful, Swarthy the rocks, the narrows wonderful. Franks passed that day all very sorrowful, Fifteen leagues round the rumour of them grew. When they were come, and Terra Major knew, Saw Gascony their land and their seigneur's, Remembering their fiefs and their honours, Their little maids, their gentle wives and true; There was not one that shed not tears for rue. Beyond the rest Charles was of anguish full, In Spanish Pass he'd left his dear nephew; Pity him seized; he could but weep for rue. AOI. LXVII The dozen peers are left behind in Spain, Franks in their band a thousand score remain, No fear have these, death hold they in disdain. That Emperour goes into France apace; Under his cloke he fain would hide his face. Up to his side comes cantering Duke Neimes, Says to the King: "What grief upon you weighs?" Charles answers him: "He's wrong that question makes. So great my grief I cannot but complain.

27 France is destroyed, by the device of Guene: This night I saw, by an angel's vision plain, Between my hands he brake my spear in twain; Great fear I have, since Rollant must remain: I've left him there, upon a border strange. God! If he's lost, I'll not outlive that shame." AOI. LXVIII Charles the great, he cannot but deplore. And with him Franks an hundred thousand mourn, Who for Rollanz have marvellous remorse. The felon Guenes had treacherously wrought; From pagan kin has had his rich reward, Silver and gold, and veils and silken cloths, Camels, lions, with many a mule and horse. Barons from Spain King Marsilies hath called, Counts and viscounts and dukes and almacours, And the admirals, and cadets nobly born; Within three days come hundreds thousands four. In Sarraguce they sound the drums of war; Mahum they raise upon their highest tow'r, Pagan is none, that does not him adore. They canter then with great contention Through Certeine land, valleys and mountains, on, Till of the Franks they see the gonfalons, Being in rereward those dozen companions; They will not fail battle to do anon. LXIX Marsile's nephew is come before the band, Riding a mule, he goads it with a wand, Smiling and clear, his uncle's ear demands: "Fair Lord and King, since, in your service, glad, I have endured sorrow and sufferance, Have fought in field, and victories have had. Give me a fee: the right to smite Rollanz! I'll slay him clean with my good trenchant lance, If Mahumet will be my sure warrant; Spain I'll set free, deliver all her land From Pass of Aspre even unto Durestant. Charles will grow faint, and recreant the Franks; There'll be no war while you're a living man." Marsilie gives the glove into his hand. AOI. LXX

28 Marsile's nephew, holding in hand the glove, His uncle calls, with reason proud enough: "Fair Lord and King, great gift from you I've won. Choose now for me eleven more baruns, So I may fight those dozen companions." First before all there answers Falfarun; -- Brother he was to King Marsiliun -"Fair sir nephew, go you and I at once Then verily this battle shall be done; The rereward of the great host of Carlun, It is decreed we deal them now their doom." AOI. LXXI King Corsablis is come from the other part, Barbarian, and steeped in evil art. He's spoken then as fits a good vassal, For all God's gold he would not seem coward. Hastes into view Malprimis of Brigal, Faster than a horse, upon his feet can dart, Before Marsile he cries with all his heart: "My body I will shew at Rencesvals; Find I Rollanz, I'll slay him without fault." LXXII An admiral is there of Balaguet; Clear face and proud, and body nobly bred; Since first he was upon his horse mounted, His arms to bear has shewn great lustihead; In vassalage he is well famoused; Christian were he, he'd shewn good baronhead. Before Marsile aloud has he shouted: "To Rencesvals my body shall be led; Find I Rollanz, then is he surely dead, And Oliver, and all the other twelve; Franks shall be slain in grief and wretchedness. Charles the great is old now and doted, Weary will be and make no war again; Spain shall be ours, in peace and quietness." King Marsilies has heard and thanks him well. AOI. LXXIII An almacour is there of Moriane, More felon none in all the land of Spain. Before Marsile his vaunting boast hath made: "To Rencesvals my company I'll take,

and France lie deserted. The dozen peers from death have no warrant. Before Marsile he cries amid the press: "To Rencesvals I go. and traitors miscreant. Christians he would them massacre. Find I Rollanz. The dozen peers condemned are to death. Franks shall be slain. Find I Rollanz. From death he'll find his warranty in none. Ye'll hear betimes to which the prize is gone. To Rencesvals. to meet Rollanz I'll go. Of good vassals will Charles be richly bled. and Chares be right sad. he'll not bear thence his head. Estramariz also. with shields and lances brave. Felons were these. Serve we him well. a pagan Esturganz. Franks shall be slain." LXXV From the other part. Turgis of Turtelose. Franks shall be slain. Charles the old will suffer grief and wrong. whom we descend upon. then fame in field we'll own. with death I'll him acquaint. pride to make less. For these our swords are trusty and trenchant. even as you command. Day shall not dawn but Charles will make his plaint." They answer him: "Sire. See here my sword. . every one. before me stand! Into the pass ye'll go to Rencesvals. that land was his as well. He was a count. LXXVI From the other part. Before Marsile among the rest is gone. and thither lead my band. No more on earth his crown will he put on. was his comrade." AOI. Then said Marsile: "My Lords.29 A thousand score. Says to the King: "Let not dismay be shewn! Mahum's more worth than Saint Peter of Rome. In scalding blood we'll dye their blades scarlat. Escremiz of Valtrenne. that is both good and long With Durendal I'll lay it well across. Nor Oliver that hath the others led. We will assault Olivier and Rollant. Give me your aid. that city was his own." AOI. LXXIV From the other part. A Sarrazin.

with him her heart is pleased. she can but smile for glee. Right to the ground his hair swept either way. AOI. at this word. Five score thousand of Sarrazins they take. the Emperour we'll give into your hand. And Durendal I'll conquer with this blade. Sir King. Till we can lie in th' burgh of Saint Denise. with his great blossoming beard. nor grew there any grain. away. In a fir-wood their gear they ready make. See here the sword. nor any shower of rain. Who keenly press. That land he had. Come there. LXXVIII From the other part. No dew fell there. Says Chemubles "My sword is in its place. No sun shone there. Chemubles of Muneigre. Who holds the land by Cadiz. "Be not at all dismayed. beneath their load that strain. In scarlat blood I pledge it shall be steeped. Franks shall be slain." The pagan king has bowed his head down deep. When she beholds. Comes through the press. or trust me not again. above them all cries he. Find I Rollanz the proud upon my way. LXXIX . And many say that devils there remain. all France we shall have seized." The dozen peers are. truly you'll see all that Yea. At Rencesvals scarlat I will it stain. whose hilt is gold indeed. The dozen peers are doomed to martyry. Franks shall be slain. To Charles the old." LXXVII Running there came Margariz of Sibile. He for a jest would bear a heavier weight Than four yoked mules. I'll fall on him. Was no pagan of such high chivalry. and Rollanz. I got in gift from the admiral of Primes. to the sea.30 Terra Major we'll give into your hand. he Nor Oliver may scape alive from me. Day shall not dawn but brings him rage and grief. and France a desert made. Ere a year pass. For his beauty the ladies hold him dear. and on to battle haste. God's curse on it was plain. King Marsilie! To Rencesvals I go. and France abased be. Who looks on him. The very stones were black upon that plain.

So many there. and canter knee by knee. Most bitter cold endure. And white. so many gathered. cease. Evil example will never come of me. That man is my good-father. to see: "What sound is this. Also their shields. his companion. Gird on their swords of tried steel Viennese. What hauberks bright. He knew it. the greater part. So evil songs neer sung of us shall be. Also their swords. the day is bright and clear. and burning heat. Light bums again from all their polished gear. Fast as he could. their ensigns take the breeze. Pagans are wrong: Christians are right indeed. Kingdom of Spain he sees before him spread. Fair shines the sun. His hair and skin should offer up at need. the traitor and the thief. Who chose us out before the King our chief. Their chargers mount. the Franks its echo hear. They've left their mules behind. Looks to his right along the valley green. what helmets these that gleam? They'll smite our Franks with fury past belief. red. Rank beyond rank could not be numbered. we hear." Answers the count Rollanz: "Olivier.31 Ready they make hauberks Sarrazinese. I believe. in three. Great is the noise. hold thy peace. Now must we each lay on most hardily. ensigns on spears fixed. And they lace on good helms Sarragucese." AOI. no measure could he set." LXXXI Upon a peak is Oliver mounted. And Sarrazins. He calls Rollanz. Says Oliver: "Companion. come out of Spain. and spears Valentinese. Man for his lord should suffer great disease. more proud to seem. down from the peak hath sped . blue. A thousand horns they sound. with gold are jewelled. and their palfreys. Their helmets gleam. Guenes. The pagan tribes approaching there appear. LXXX Oliver mounts upon a lofty peak. their hauberks orfreyed." Answers Rollanz :"God grant us then the fee! For our King's sake well must we quit us here. That folded are. In his own heart he's sore astonished. Fine shields they have. Sarrazins now in battle must we meet.

Gainst us their shields an hundred thousand bore. Felon pagans to th' pass shall not come down. we be not overborne!" Then say the Franks "Shame take him that goes off: If we must die. . where in the pass he stands. he'll turn his armies round." "Never. I say. to death they all are bound.32 Comes to the Franks. In France the Douce would perish my renown. to them his tale hath said. they'll turn again. the Franks. your horn I pray you sound! If Charles hear. bolt upright. LXXXIII Says Oliver: "Pagans in force abound. Battle we'll have as never was before. to its golden hilt. LXXXII Says Oliver: "Pagans from there I saw. I pledge you now. LXXXIV "Comrade Rollanz. God keep you in valour! So hold your ground. In blood the blade." AOI. once sound your olifant! If Charles hear." then answers him Rollanz. the host he'll turn again. For my misdeed shall kinsmen hear the blame." Answers Rollanz: "A fool I should be found. Nor France the Douce fall into evil fame! Rather stout blows with Durendal I'll lay. by God. I pray. then perish one and all." Answers Rollanz: "Never. With Durendal I'll lay on thick and stout. their bright brown spearheads shone. Never on earth did any man see more. If Charles hear. That laced helms and shining hauberks wore. Till bloodied o'er you shall behold the blade. Will succour us our King and baronage. by God. sound the olifant. While of us Franks but very few I count. to death they're doomed to-day. I pledge you now. I pledge you now. And. I'll drown. AOI. Felon pagans are gathered to their shame. Lords of the Franks. With my good sword that by my side doth sway. Comrade Rollanz." LXXXV "Comrade Rollanz.

nor thou. but Charles is very far. Good are the counts. the Emperour's love to gain. Of Durendal bloodied you'll see the brand. we should not fear damage. Who does this deed. More fierce he's found than lion or leopard. That for pagans I took my horn in hand! Never by me shall men reproach my clan. by thousand. Says Oliver: "Behold and see. A muster great they've made. The wastes I saw. Therefore strike on. comrade. does no more afterward. by hundred. this people strange. I have beheld the Sarrazins of Spain. the mountains and the vales. Felon pagans come cantering in their wrath. Franks are good men. once they have donned their arms. Spanish men from death have no warrant." AOI. please God His Angels and His Saints. Rollanz. from us the assault. Never by me shall Frankish valour fail! Rather I'll die than shame shall me attain. and lofty their language. Covered with them. The Franks he calls." Answers Rollanz: "My anger is inflamed. In sorrow there you'll see the whole rereward. my friends. That Emperour. Were the King here. We have of men a very little tale. wisdom Olivier hath. LXXXVIII When Rollant sees that now must be combat. From us the blows shall come." LXXXVI Says Oliver: "In this I see no blame. who left us Franks on guard. When I am come into the battle grand. Once they are horsed. and Oliver commands: "Now say no more. Never. and all the farthest plains. On the olifant deign now to sound a blast. Only look up towards the Pass of Aspre. like vassals brave they'll stand." Answers Rollanz: "Utter not such outrage! Evil his heart that is in thought coward! We shall remain firm in our place installed.33 "Shall it be said by any living man. Nay." LXXXVII Pride hath Rollanz. And blows lay on. . These are right near. And both of them shew marvellous courage. Rather they'd die than from the battle pass.

not one will prove coward. galloping. He goes. Man for his lord should suffer with good heart. much wealth is his to keep. confessing Him your sins! For your souls' health. and stand upon their feet. and from their sins made clean. He pricks his horse and mounts upon a hill. For their penance. Pray for God's grace. For with your eyes you see the Sarrazins. now clearly have you seen That Guenelun hath got us by deceit.34 A thousand score stout men he set apart. and speaks "Comrade and friend. The count Rollant calls Oliver. Battle you'll have. That Emperour vengeance for us must wreak. Thrones you shall win in the great Paradis." AOI. Calling the Franks. who has it afterward Noble vassal's he well may say it was. pride is in his bearing. if I die. Of bitter cold and great heat bear the smart. so brave. upon the ground are lit. Charles left us here for this. I'll absolution give So. For battle all apparelled as is meet. And the Archbishop has signed them with God's seal. Gold hath he ta'en. his good steed. Strike with thy lance." LXXXIX From the other part is the Archbishop Turpin. So. though you die. well may we die for him: To Christendom good service offering. XC The Franks arise. He is well armed. blest martyrs shall you live. By rule of knights they have put on their gear. and all his flesh be scarred. With my good sword that was the King's reward. His blood let drain." The Franks dismount. At the sword's point he yet shall pay our meed. He is our King. and I with Durendal. good blows to strike he bids. sermon to them begins: "My lords barons. XCI To Spanish pass is Rollanz now going On Veillantif. And next they mount upon their chargers keen. his spear in hand holding. And well he knows. . That Archbishop God's Benediction gives. you all are bound to it. They're well absolved. King Marsilies hath bargained for us cheap.

Pagans and Franks. you'ld see them now engaged. to give as you shall take. He goes. Mad is the King who left you in this post. his face clear and smiling. XCIII Marsile's nephew. no fault of his. XCII Speaks Oliver: "No more now will I say. following. God! with what proud parade. himself humbling. . And to the Franks sweetly. First of them all canters before the host. with what prowess you may! Lords and barons. to strike with all his force. So canter on. by God! His steed he spurs. so here on us you close! Betrayed you has he that to guard you ought. that count. Who then had heard them all "Monjoie!" acclaim Of vassalage might well recall the tale. the hauberk's seam unsews. so brave. The shield he breaks. And courteously has said to them this thing: "My lords barons. AOI. its point against the sky turning." When Rollant hears. His companion goes after. Noble and fair reward this day shall bring. And the right arm from Charles body torn. They canter forth. Says of our Franks these ill words as he goes: "Felons of France. Since from Carlun you'll never more have aid. to sound it do not deign." Upon this word the Franks cry out amain. gallops with great effort. A gonfalon all white thereon he's pinned. the better speed to gain. go now your pace holding! Pagans are come great martyrdom seeking. Was never won by any Frankish King. Stout blows to strike. Pricking their spurs. He has not heard. Forget the cry of Charles we never may.what other thing could they? -But Sarrazins are not at all afraid. firmly your ground maintain! Be minded well. They go to strike." Upon these words the hosts are come touching. The men of France their warrant find in him. Down to his hand flutters the golden fringe: Noble his limbs.35 He goes. So shall the fame of France the Douce be lost. what rage he has. I pray you in God's Name. his name is Aelroth. Proudly he looks towards the Sarrazins. Those with him there are never to be blamed.-. Your olifant.

his name was Corsablix. sees glutton lying thus. XCIV A duke there was. His nephew dead he's seen with grief enough. Comes through the press and wildly forth he runs. Proudly he did. he shakes in the air that corse. we should account them cheap. And to the Franks is right contrarious: "Honour of France the Douce shall fall to us!" Hears Oliver. but rather spoke: "Avaunt.36 Slices the heart. And those are here. From Charles not one has any warranty. and of a strange country. Between his eyes so broad was he in front A great half-foot you'ld measure there in full. And says to him. The shield he breaks and through the hauberk cuts. On his spear's hilt he's flung it dead in dust." AOI. He's called aloud to the other Sarrazins: "Well may we join battle upon this field. the Franks! Right well we'll overcome. All of the spine he severs with that blow. On his spear's hilt he's flung it from the horse: So in two halves Aeroth's neck he broke. No treachery was ever in his thought. XCV A king there was. Barbarian. the Franks! Ours are the foremost blows. culvert! A madman Charles is not. AOI. Brother was he to King Marsiliun. Nor left him yet. his name was Falfarun." "Monjoie. ev'n as a baron doth. Strike on. His ensign's fringe into the carcass thrusts. Strike on. he's very furious. Aloud he shouts their cry the pagans use. The fame of France the Douce shall not be lost. Looks on the ground. Dathan's and Abirun's. your mouth I've shut. He held their land. 'twas the ensign of Carlun." he shouts. culvert. And with his spear the soul from body throws So well he's pinned. but these gluttons are wrong. with reason proud enough: "From threatening. Beneath the sky no more encrimed felun. they say. His horse he pricks with both his golden spurs. who left us in this post. And goes to strike. . For of the Franks but very few are here. For we are right. and shatters up the bones.

Right to the flesh has through his hauberk torn. And flung him dead. that glutton lying sees. but rather speaks: "Culvert pagan. with golden flowers tooled. the lungs and liver through. Looks on the ground. The shield he breaks. you lied now in your teeth. And with one blow that pagan downward falls. None of our Franks hath any mind to flee. Your companions all on this spot we'll keep. to God the glory be!" "Monjoie!" he cries. He's sliced the heart. for all the camp to hear. was fashioned of crystal. AOI. death shall ye suffer here. One half of it downward to earth flies off. The hauberk all unfastens. Dead on the field he's flung him from his hand. That good hauberk for him is nothing proof. I tell you news. To strike that king by virtue great goes he. clean through the carcass. And his good spear drives into his vitals. Says the Archbishop: "A baron's stroke. the hauberk unmetals. as well or ill may prove. XCVI And Gerins strikes Malprimis of Brigal So his good shield is nothing worth at all.37 This is the day when they their death shall meet. The shield he breaks. Spurs of fine gold he pricks into his steed." Has heard him well that Archbishop Turpin. Charles my lord our warrant is indeed. Thrusts his great spear in through the carcass clean. No man he'ld hate so much the sky beneath. So well he's pinned him. Pins it so well he shakes it in its seat." XCIX . breaks the shield. the Franks! Fail none of you at need! Ours the first blow. On his good spear he has the carcass caught. XCVII And his comrade Gerers strikes the admiral. Nor leaves him yet. Says Oliver: "Now is our battle grand. Dead in the road he's flung it from his spear. in truth. they say. The soul of him Satan away hath borne. Strike on." XCVIII Sansun the Duke goes strike that almacour. Shatters the boss.

and swift he is and light. lets fall the reins as well. his body has respite. ev'n as the horse goes past. After he says "So are you turned to hell. The hauberk too. goes Oliver to strike. And flings it dead. CIII Margariz is a very gallant knight. by th'golden buckle bright. Being Chernuble. and the count Margariz.38 And Anseis has let his charger run. God's his warrant. its golden boss above. And from the hilt he's thrown him dead in dust. Thrusts his stout spear through's middle. The shield he breaks. has torn its folds apart. Of their dozen peers ten have now been killed. On his spear's hilt from saddle throws him dead. CI And Otes strikes a pagan Estorgant Upon the shield. he strikes Estramariz. the hauberk tears and splits. he has its chinguard rent." C And Engelers the Gascoin of Burdele Spurs on his horse. So well he's thrust. The hauberk too. He says: "You have no warrant afterward. Between the arm-pits has pierced him through the breast. . He spurs his horse. its doubled mail undoes. and him flings Down dead among a thousand Sarrazins. Oliver stays upright. naught stays him in his flight. His good spear's point into the carcass runs. And his good spear thrusts clean through the carcass. That other goes. Slices it through. the white with the scarlat. The shield he breaks and shatters on his neck. clean through the whole steel comes. Then says Rollant: "Great prowess in that thrust. He goes to strike Turgis of Turtelus. Along his ribs the pagan's spear doth glide. Both fair and strong." AOI. The shaft breaks off. The hauberk too. And breaks his shield." CII And Berenger. He goes to strike Escremiz of Valtrene. The shield he breaks. No more than two remain alive and quick. before its leathern band.

no join there any knew. long as the shaft endures. is gone to strike Chemuble. the call of Charles repeats. Slices also the eyes and the features.39 His trumpet sounds. Holds Durendal. For all the Franks they strike and slay with heat. he well can thrust and wield. Going to strike a pagan Malsarun. Pagans are slain." CV The count Rollanz. the truncheon still he thrusts. his steed. . Then sliced its spine. he canters through the field. he cuts. He flings him dead. And bloodied o'er. dead in heaps. From Mahumet your help will not come soon. Upon the horse that sword a moment stood. Down to the groin cuts all his body through To the saddle. AOI. whose mail was close of woof. And all the brains are fallen in the dust. Dead in the field among thick grass them threw. Strikes with his spear. By fifteen blows it is clean broken through Then Durendal he bares. Slices the cap and shears the locks in two. No victory for gluttons such as you. sev'n hundred else amongst. Broken his spear. are on the shield. And Oliver goes on to strike with speed. one on other. CIV Common the fight is now and marvellous. Then has he slain Turgin and Esturgus. Through all that place their blood was flowing clear! In blood his arms were and his hauberk steeped. Out of the head both the two eyes have burst. Flowers and gold. Right great damage he's done the Sarrazines You'd seen them. The hauberk white. No blame that way deserve the dozen peers. false step you moved. with beaten gold 'twas tooled. rallies his tribe to fight. some swoon there in their seats. CVI And Oliver has cantered through the crush. The helmet breaks. his sabre good Spurs on his horse. After he said "Culvert. shoulders and neck. where bright carbuncles grew. Says the Archbishop: "Good baronage indeed!" "Monjoie" he cries. his spear in flinders flew. The count Rollanz no way himself secures. Right to the hilt.

CVIII That count Gerins sate on his horse Sorel. A fallow field amidst they've thrown him dead. the broidered sark has torn. Says Rollant: "Now my brother I you call. Time left to strike enough good blows and true. I do not know. on hauberk the other fell. Then Turpin says "To us he's forfeited. The enchanter. what do you? In such a fight. And through the spine has sliced that pagan's horse. Esperveris was there. On Passe-Cerf was Gerers there. whereon a crystal grew." On every side "Monjoie" you'ld hear them roar. together spurred and sped. All of his head has down the middle shorn. that Iron Valley's lord. CVII Then Oliver has drawn his mighty sword As his comrade had bidden and implored. Dead in the field before his feet they fall. if I drew." Answers Rollanz: "The culvert is bested. Justin he strikes. One on the shield. Where is your sword. brother Olivier. He'll love us for such blows. Where Jupiter bore him by a magic spell. And the Archbishop. who before had been in hell. Each other strike and each himself defends. AOI. Franks and pagans. son of Borel. that Halteclere I knew? Golden its hilt. And him there slew Engelers of Burdel. our Emperor. I never heard it said Which of the two was nimbler as they went." CIX The battle grows more hard and harder yet.40 Then says Rollant: "Companion." AOI. his friend. Iron and steel should here their valour prove. The good saddle that was with old adorned. Such blows. They've loosed their reins. In knightly wise the blade to him has shewed. I like well. And go to strike a pagan Timozel. there's little strength in wood. with marvellous onset. . he slew them Siglorel." Says Oliver: "I had not. The carcass sliced. And their two spears went through the carcass well.

of his kindred. in crowds. Olivier and Rollant. AOI. Beheld these things with terror every man. CXI The Franks strike on. by thousand. no light was in the land. The dozen peers are nothing short of that. Guenes rendered them. Who'll see no more their mothers nor their friends. from death has no warrant. From Besencun to the harbour of Guitsand. right marvellous. his own to sell. The end of time is presently at hand. Nor hosts of France. The Franks have lost the foremost of their band. And thirty more with him. of wind and thunder black. To Sarraguce going. Left of five score are not two thousands now. Evil service.41 So many shafts bloodstained and shattered. After he lost his members and his head. Says the Archbishop: "Our men are very proud. their hearts are good and stout. What profits that? No succour shall they get. Right well they strike. to gallows-tree condemned. Save the sky split. at Aix. And verily the earth quaked in answer back From Saint Michael of Peril unto Sanz. in France. A thousand blows come from the Archbishop's hand. Pagans are slain. 'Twas the great day of mourning for Rollant. They'll see no more their fathers nor their clans. CX Now marvellous and weighty the combat. Pagans are slain by hundred. No house stood there but straight its walls must crack: In full mid-day the darkness was so grand. Will he or nill. Torment arose. where in the pass he stands. that in the pass attend. so much could not be spanned. And many said: "We in the Judgement stand. With rain and hail. Fell thunderbolts often on every hand. So many Franks lose their young lustihead. . they did not understand." They spake no truth. No man on earth has more nor better found. Nor Charlemagne. Who flies not then. So many flags and ensigns tattered. In court. Were hanged. a thing they never did expect. a thousandfold. Tempest there was. foregoes the allotted span. Charles the Great weeps therefor with regret. that day. With one accord join battle all the Franks.

our end is near at hand. to be their safe warrant. By the Innocents your thrones you there shall have. pagans. Certain it is. Battles with them so many brought to end. These swords in lands so many have we held. by hearty friendship bound. But of one thing I give you good warrant: Blest Paradise to you now open stands. The dozen peers. Battle we'll have." Upon these words grow bold again the Franks. No evil song shall e'er be sung or said. Sounded the charge seven thousand trumpets. brother. King Marsilies and his great host draw round. Often they call Olivier and Rollant. Then said Rollanz: "Olivier. friend. AOI. What vassalage he had. That felon Guenes hath sworn to achieve our death. Great was the noise through all that country went. With gleaminag gold their helms were jewelled. Right great vengeance our Emperour will get. Beyond this day shall no more live one man. And the Archbishop speaks to them. Shone too their shields and sarks embroidered. And their eyes weep with grief and pain profound For kinsmen dear. their friends seek out. CXII King Marsilies along a valley led The mighty host that he had gathered. Lest evil songs of our valour men chant! Far better t'were to perish in the van. . both long and keenly set.42 In Chronicles of Franks is written down. as he can: "My lords barons." AOI. Twenty columns that king had numbered." Then through the field they go. CXIII When the Franks see so many there. On every side covering all the land. With Durendal my sword I'll strike again. There is not one but he "Monjoie" demands. our Emperour. For his treason no longer is secret. you shall strike with Halteclere. AOI. go thinking nothing bad! For God I pray you fly not hence but stand. And. Never has man beheld such armies met. comrade.

Going to strike Engelier of Gascune. CXV The count Rollanz called upon Oliver: "Sir companion. he said. which he called Barbamusche. a man was nothing proof. Held Halteclere. And kissed his mouth in amity and truth. Then said Rollanz: "My comrade shews anger. So in my sight he makes me prize him well. After he said: "Good are they to confuse. "Grief. By Guenelun the count an oath he took. Warden he'd been to king Marsilion. by sea. and down the reins he threw. CXVI From the other part a pagan Valdabron. No sailor was but called his name upon. the chevaliers!" AOI. He spurred him well. From the Emperour his crown he would remove. such a man to lose!" AOI. of four hundred dromonds. dead now is Engeler. Next he has slain the duke Alphaien. The Adversaries of God his soul bare thence. Nor shield nor sark him any warrant proved. By virtue great to strike that pagan went. Than whom we'd no more valiant chevalier. From the hilt flung him dead beneath his foot. He pinned him well. The pagan spear's point did his body wound." Aloud he's cried: "Strike on. And has unhorsed some seven Arabs else. and so this press set loose!" "God!" say the Franks. And lord. . to shame he'ld put. No good for those to go to war again. and all the steel sent through. strike on. He sate his horse. Of that city one half was his by use.43 CXIV A Sarrazin was there. of Sarraguce. Never so swift sparrow nor swallow flew. let me him avenge!" Spurs of fine gold into his horse drove then. Brandished his blade. And sliced away Escababi his head. Terra Major. with blood its steel was red. More dear by Charles for such blows are we held. the Sarrazin upset. Pagans. Gave him his sword and his carbuncle too." Answered that count: "God. 'Twas Climborins.

The steel and stock has through his body thrust. With beaten gold was all his armour done. The pagans say: "'Twas hard on us. Sanson. The scarlat with the blue he sliced it up. the sark. CXVIII Out of Affrike an Affrican was come. Going to strike e'en that rich Duke. a thousand coins thereon. His horse he spurs. that was embossed with gold. 'Twas Malquiant. great grief he had therefor. Goes as he may to strike that baron bold Above the helm. that blow. Then say the Franks: "Baron. his hauberk has undone. gallops with great effort. when Sansun dead he saw. Never so swift was any beast could run. with sharp spurs he had on. he's no more time to run. He's pricked him well." AOI. love you I can not. an evil luck!" CXIX . He'd pledged his oath by county Guenelon. And cuts deep through the backbone of his horse." Answers Rollanz: "Nay. "Grief for a brave baron!" AOI. You may believe. The good saddle.44 Jerusalem he'd taken by treason. For on your side is arrogance and wrong. Of his hauberk he's torn the folds and cut. His shield has split. And Anseis upon the shield he struck. Gave him his sword. the son of king Malcud. was worth fine gold and more. which he called Salt-Perdut. Dead is that count. He's slain them both. that was embossed with gold. Never so swift flew in the air falcon. The ensign's folds have through his body gone. strike on. He sate his horse. for well we'll overcome!" "God!" say the Franks. He sate his horse. Fore all men's else it shone beneath the sun. which he called Gramimond. Dead from the hilt out of his seat he's dropt: "Pagans. Wields Durendal. Violated the Temple of Salomon. blame him for that or laud. Slices the head. The Partiarch had slain before the fonts. and all the corse. CXVII The count Rollanz.

his sword with blood is stained. By the proud face and those fine limbs he had." CXXI The count Rollanz. And all his sark thereafter has he torn. that on with speed doth strain. He sate his horse. they both together came. He's flung him dead. Which should forfeit. And Berenger. nothing avail he can. By his regard. His companion Gerer he's slain also. Sliced through the nose and mouth and teeth he has. . yet knew him at a glance. Never so swift was any bird in course. and by his contenance. Such shaven-crown has never else sung Mass Who with his limbs such prowess might compass. Until he flings him dead." So his good horse forth at his bidding ran. And virtuous. on a high rock. He's struck him then on his shield Toledan. and spurring on that horse He's gone to strike Gerin with all his force. the which he called Marmore. CXXII Grandonie was both proof and valiant. The ensign blue clean through his body's gone. He's loosed the reins." He spurs his horse. Hauberk close-mailed. with so great virtue. The scarlat shield from's neck he's broken off. Such grief he has. great joy the pagans shew. Son of Capuel. To th'pagan said "God send thee all that's bad! One thou hast slain for whom my heart is sad. CXX From the other part was a pagan Grandones. Then say the Franks: "Of ours how many fall. Upon the way there. Next a rich duke he's gone to strike. He could not help but he grew faint thereat. Austore. and Guiun of Santone. He would escape. That held Valence and the Honour of the Rhone. He'd never seen. Well has he heard what way the Franks complained. Struck him the count. his heart would split in twain: To the pagan says: "God send thee every shame! One hast thou slain that dearly thou'lt repay. and all the whole carcass. a vassal combatant. Until he flings him dead on the green grass. that To the nose-plate he's all the helmet cracked. the king of Capadoce.45 Swift through the field Turpin the Archbishop passed. he has met Rollant.

from off the field draw back. or piled there on their backs! The Sarrazins cannot such loss withstand. Seeing him there. So he bids sound his horns and his buccines. he. to which his tribe rally. the Son of Saint Mary. . Terra Major. Black is that man as molten pitch that seethes. with plates of silver flanked. and great folly. CXXV Their martyrdom. Then had you seen such sorrowing of clans. Through garments to the lively flesh beneath. their good brown spears in hand. O king." CXXIII Marvellous is the battle in its speed. By lively force chase them away the Franks. More felon none was in that company. Abisme. Canters before a Sarrazin. "Alack!" Then say the Franks: "He strikes well. Mahummet's curse on thee! Beyond all men thy people are hardy!" There was not one but cried then: "Marsilie. Never has man beheld him sport for glee. Cutting through wrists and ribs and chines in-deed. He's slain them both. shattered and bleeding man! Biting the earth. Dragon he bears. his men's. And of his horse has deeply scarred the back. Then canters forth with all his great army. thy succour now we need!" CXXIV Marvellous is the battle now and grand.46 Saddle of gold. Canter. they'll make no more attack: The Spanish men in sorrow cry. Marsile has seen. On the green grass the clear blood runs in streams. The Franks there strike with vigour and with heat. Yet vassalage he's shown. Better he loves murder and treachery Than to have all the gold of Galicie. we. Within himself he says all quietly: "This Sarrazin great heretick meseems. So many a slain. AOI. So is he dear to th' felon king Marsile. The Franks there strike. our warrant. to strike he's very keen. Cankered with guile and every felony. That Archbishop could never love him. The pagans say: "No more we'll suffer. He fears not God. Will they or nill.

and tawny all his face. Hard are the blows. Four thousand fell. They all are slain. amethyst and topaze. surely the Cross is safe. Gainst four assaults easily did they fare.47 Rather I'ld die. -That charger is swift and of noble race. witness you'll freely bear. Long are his ribs. In charters and in briefs is written clear. is wonderfully arrayed. those Frankish chevaliers. So flings him down dead in an empty place. rib from rib away. Fine are his hooves. That Archbishop spurs on by vassalage. Who could had seen Rollanz and Oliver With their good swords to strike and to slaughter! And the Archbishop lays on there with his spear. slaughter and suffering there. Neer did I love coward nor cowardice. most bitter grief and care." Answers that count: "Support to him we'll bear!" Upon that word the Franks again make yare. So strikes that shield. his legs are smooth and straight. The Archbishop is a right good chevalier. The carcass he's sliced. For Christians too." AOI. the tales declare. Little his ears. Who handed it to the admiral Galafes. broad crupper he displays. No beast is there. He will not pause ere Abisme he assail. men well may hold them dear. But then the fifth brought heavy griefs to bear. whom God was pleased to spare. Whereon are stones. aloft his spine is raised. spares him not anyway. can match him in a race. A devil's gift it was. So Turpin strikes. . White is his tail and yellow is his mane. None better is neath Heaven anywhere. Esterminals and carbuncles that blaze. and more. Short are his thighs. Only three-score. Then say the Franks: "He has great vassalage. Sitting the horse which he took from Grossaille -." CXXVII The count Rollanz calls upon Oliver: "Sir companion. in Val Metase. CXXVI That Archbishop begins the fight again. than not slay him clean. After that blow. Those that are dead. he's worth no penny wage. With the Archbishop.That was a king he had in Denmark slain. Well can he strike with lance and well with spear.

can we achieve? And by what means our news to him repeat?" Says Oliver: "I know not how to seek. so the King hears it. Nor should we blame those with him there.48 Before these die. shall never clasp you." Says Oliver: "That act were not a vassal's. and speaks: "Sir and comrade. CXXX Then says Rollant: "Strong it is now. That you keeps. where in the pass he stands. When I implored." Says Oliver: "Now by my beard. Seeing that both your arms with blood are splashed. comrade. Rather I'ld die than shame come of this feat. His companion Olivier calls. CXXVIII The count Rollant great loss of his men sees. I swear. his army. She in her arms. we had not borne such damage. wherefore are you not here? How. Doing it now." AOI. Of such barons long desolate she'll be." AOI. in God's Name. no raise from me you'll have: So wind your horn but not by courage rash. Were the King here. may we weep. hereafter If I may see my gentle sister Alde. If Charles hear. Ah! King and friend. For France the Douce. fair country. Oliver. AOI." Answers that count: "Fine blows I've struck them back. CXXXI . CXXIX Then says Rollanz: "I'll wind this olifant. That shall endure while each lives in the land. our battle. Such good vassals you see lie here in heaps." AOI. I pledge you now they will return. When I implored you. your clan. the Franks." Says Oliver: "Great shame would come of that And a reproach on every one. brother. you were wrathful. Charles. I'll wind my horn. they'll sell them very dear. you would not do this act.

afar it rings and loud." AOI. had you trusted me. contrarious: "That were a lie. Thirty great leagues they hear its echoes mount. it may be better so. With pity and with grief for us they'll mourn. do not each other scold! No help it were to us. in any other mouth. it was your deed: Vassalage comes by sense. none the less. Taken or slain were the king Marsilie. CXXXII That Archbishop has heard them. High are those peaks." AOI. Will find us dead. -Here must you die. Our Franks here. For God I pray. with vengeance that he owes. My lord were here now. They'll take us hence. how they spoke. our counts!" And Guenelun answered. So Charles heard. on biers and litters borne. Coming to them he takes up his reproach: "Sir Oliver. Then said that King: "Battle they do. He grasps it well. very well you spoke.49 Then says Rollanz: "Wherefore so wroth with me?" He answers him: "Comrade. and all his comrades round. Here perishes our loyal company. both. No more service to Carlun may we yield. and you. And fought and won this battle then had we. the horn to blow. Rollanz. The King will come. Before this night great severance and grief. His horse he pricks with his fine spurs of gold. and France in shame be steeped. Prudence more worth is than stupidity. and not folly. No wolf nor swine nor dog shall gnaw our bones. CXXXIII Rollant hath set the olifant to his mouth. Sir Rollant. In your prowess. They'll bury each in some old minster-close." AOI. and limb from body torn. all for your trickery. . each descending from his horse. and with great virtue sounds. But. These Spanish men never away shall go. Here are Franks dead." Answers Rollant: "Sir. no good we've seen! Charles the great in vain your aid will seek -None such as he till God His Judgement speak.

" CXXVI That Emperour hath bid them sound their horns." AOI. helmets and golden swords. Fine shields they have. "hath a mighty strain!" Answers Duke Neimes: "A baron blows with pain! Battle is there. Put hauberks on. Now are you old. and dress themselves for war. though blood his mouth doth stain. sir. Noples he took. by one that still doth feign. with Durendal his brand. with sorrow and with pangs. indeed I see it plain. So canter on! Nay. And Neimes hears." the King says. That noble band. He'ld never sound. our land. and spears of length and force Scarlat and blue and white their ensigns float." Answers him Guenes "It is no battle. blossoming white and blanched. Rollant's. Then says the King: "I hear his horn. So what he'd done might not be seen of man. A He slew them first. . And burst are both the temples of his brain. He is betrayed. Then washed their blood with water from the land. Charles hath heard. God stays so tolerant. cry out your old refrain. Loud is its voice. No race neath heav'n in field him dare attack. Thence issued forth the Sarrazins. wherefore hold we back? Terra Major is far away. About his brain the very temples cracked. Charles hath heard. He for a hare goes all day. His olifant he sounds with grief and pain. Yet by such words you still appear infant. a band With vassalage had fought against Rollant. and listen all the Franks. that. listen the Franks again. not waiting your command. CXXXV The count Rollanz. but he were in combat. And with great pain sounded his olifant: Out of his mouth the clear blood leaped and ran. horn in hand. Before his peers in foolish jest he brags. You know full well the great pride of Rollant Marvel it is. that horn he holds in hand. where in the pass he stands. The Franks dismount. "That horn. go succour them amain! Enough you've heard how Rollant doth complain. Equip you.50 CXXIV The Count Rollanz.

may we see Rollant. And for Rollant they're very sore afraid. The master-cook he's called. That Emperour canters with fury mad. And on his neck they clasped an iron chain. AOI. And all the Franks dismay and wonder have. There by his side they'll strike as well they can. flowered in bright array. And blazoned shields.51 His charger mounts each baron of the host. CCXXXVII That even-tide is light as was the day. Then Guenes beard and both his cheeks they shaved. both good and evil knaves. The King has bid them seize that county Guene. The valleys deep. But what avail? No good there is in that. Nor was there one but thus to 's neighbour spoke: "Now. They're not in time. So like a bear enchained they held him safe. CXXXVIII High were the peaks and shadowy and grand. Also their spears. That Emperour. Their armour shines beneath the sun's clear ray. ere he die. They trounced him well with cudgels and with staves. On a pack-mule they set him in his shame: Kept him till Charles should call for him again. with golden ensigns gay. Till all again answered that olifant. and a hundred others takes From the kitchen. And all the Franks with wonder and dismay. his felony is plain. And four blows each with their closed fists they gave. he canters on with rage. too long have they held back. Who in my house vile treachery has made." He holds him. AOI. the rivers swiftly ran. . They spur with haste as through the pass they go. And charged with him the scullions of his train. Trumpets they blew in rear and in the van. so Ranged by his side we'll give some goodly blows. There is not one but weeps and waxes sad And all pray God that He will guard Rollant Till in the field together they may stand. Hauberks and helms throw off a dazzling flame." But what avail? They've stayed too long below. Besgun by name: "Guard me him well. There is not one can bitter tears restrain.

for me I've seen you die. Sir companion. no warrant could I find. CXL Rollant regards the barren mountain-sides. Should be a monk in one of those old minsters. brother. Who never yet hath lied! I must not fail now. With twenty-four of all they rated highest. If he be struck. he'ld pray for us poor sinners. That Emperour reared you for evil plight! Douce land of France. Says the Archbishop: "You deal now very wisely! Such valour should he shew that is bred knightly. Where. o very precious clime. Save I be slain. Ever you've served me. -. will not one soul remain. Over his sark his beard is flowing plain. by your side. back to the field then hieing Holds Durendal. Even as a stag before the hounds goes flying. And weeps for them as fits a gentle knight: "Lords and barons. for vengeance shewed such liking. By you Carlon hath conquered kingdoms wide. Or otherwise he is not worth a shilling. no quarter give them!" . AOI. and a good charger rideth. Barons of France. let us again go strike!" CXLI The count Rollanz. and like a vassal striking Faldrun of Pui has through the middle sliced. Was never man. for sorrow shall I die. And beareth arms." Answers Rollant: "Strike on. God be your aid. frightened. And no support. In battle should be strong and proud and sprightly. Dead men of France. and so long a time. by day. day.God! Sixty men are all now in his train! Never a king had better Capitains. may God to you be kind! And all your souls redeem for Paradise! And let you there mid holy flowers lie! Better vassals than you saw never I. Laid desolate by such a sour exile! Barons of France. in haste they spur and strain. Before Rollanz the pagans scatter. he sees so many lie. Whereas he fights the Sarrazins of Spain. There is not one that can his wrath contain That they are not with Rollant the Captain.52 CXXXIX In his great rage on canters Charlemagne.

Call them who may. Also with them Gerard of Russillon. I know it well. These canter forth with arrogance and heat. his hauberk has undone. ere we apart be gone. being not far him from. CXLII The man who knows. . Contest each inch your life and death between. AOI. That was the son of king Marsilion. Marsile you'd seen go as a brave baron. He spurs it well. The blackamoors from there are in his keep. Next he hath slain Yvoerie and Ivon. with burnished swords and keen. That neer by us Douce France in shame be steeped. for him there's no prison. have we. Garmalie. CXLIII But what avail? Though fled be Marsilies. So flings him dead." Says each to each: "Nay let us fly!" Upon That word. And his right hand the count clean slices off. they'll never more come on. That was the lord of Beaune and of Dijon. Kartagene.53 Upon these words Franks are again beginning. And Ethiope. To th'pagan says: "Confound thee our Lord God! So wrongfully you've slain my companions. they're fled. And of my sword the name I'll bid you con. a cursed land indeed. Pagans cry out "Assist us now. going to strike Bevon. A blow you'll take. as a brave baron. my lords. the which he calls Gaignon. without condition. the Christians. He's left behind his uncle. The count Rollanz. Wherefore the Franks are fiercer than lions. Felon he's named that sells his body cheap! Strike on. His shield he breaks. Broad in the nose they are and flat in the ear." He goes to strike him. In such a fight with keen defence lays on. Then they cry out the pagans' rallying-cheer. Very great loss they suffer then. And Rollant says: "Martyrdom we'll receive. Not long to live. Then takes the head of Jursaleu the blond. the alcaliph Who holds Alferne. an hundred thousand gone. Sitting his horse. Mahom! God of our race. Fifty thousand and more in company. avenge us on Carlon! Into this land he's sent us such felons That will not leave the fight before they drop.

CXLVII . nor any dame thou'st found. For one of ours he'll find them dead fifteen. Slices his head. I've well avenged all ours on you alone. Nor to thy wife. Such discipline of Sarrazins he'll see. After he said: "You've borne a mighty blow. After he says: "Pagan. So brandishes his blade and flings him down." AOI." CXLVI Oliver feels that he to die is bound. Thou'lt never boast.54 When Charles my lord shall come into this field. One pennyworth from me thou'st taken out. whose steel is rough and brown. for aid. CXLIV When Rollant sees those misbegotten men. but bless us all in peace. behind. "Rollant!" he cries aloud. CXLV Franks are but few. Strike on. only their teeth except. is condemned!" Upon those words." Their alcaliph upon a sorrel rode." After. accurst be thou! Thou'lt never say that Charles forsakes me now. Holds Halteclere." Says Oliver: "Who holds back. Who are more black than ink is on the pen With no part white. in lands where thou wast crowned. His hauberk white into his body broke. Clean through his breast the thrusting spear he drove. Nor damage wrought on me nor any around. Struck Oliver. Strikes the alcaliph on his helm's golden mount. on the back-bone. Then says that count: "I know now very well That here to die we're bound. when the pagans know. He's done us wrong. as I can tell. small thanks to him we owe. Charles the great should not have left you so. And pricked it well with both his spurs of gold. which. the Franks to strike again. to th'small teeth in his mouth. Among themselves comfort and pride they shew. Says each to each: "Wrong was that Emperor. He will not fail. Flowers and stones fall clattering to the ground. AOI. the Franks! For so I recommend.

their fists. henceforth art thou made waste Of vassals brave. And no mistrust was ever us between. AOI. in gentle tones and sweet: "To do this thing. To recognise whatever man he sees. their buckled shields doth slice. While the clear blood. who unto death doth bleed. who ever held you dear. his eyes are dim and weak. Nor clear enough his vision. his friend and peer. Which was all wan and colourless and pale. come hither to my side. . Aloud and clear "Monjoie" again he cries. Slicing it down from there to the nose-piece. He breaks their spears. I see you not: may the Lord God you keep! I struck you now: and for your pardon plead. he's touched not brow nor cheek. far or near. So much he's bled." Says Oliver: "Now can I hear you speak." Answers Rollanz: "I am not hurt. And Oliver. His companion. my comrade. Dead in the field one on another piled.55 Oliver feels that death is drawing nigh. "What shall I do or say? My companion. At such a blow Rollant regards him keen. "God!" said that count. Charles ensign he'll not forget it quite. CXLIX You'd seen Rollant aswoon there in his seat. their shoulders and their sides. he tries: "My companion." And with these words upon his horse he faints. With bitter grief we must us now divide. But not his head. when each the other meets. Upon the ground gushed forth and ran away. against thee could prevail. And asks of him. Their feet. confounded and disgraced! Our Emperour shall suffer damage great. out of his body sprayed. Above the helm jewelled with gold he beats. To avenge himself he hath no longer time. To call Rollanz. CXLVIII Then Rollant looked upon Olivier's face. gallant for such ill fate! Neer shall man be. Dismembers them: whoso had seen that sigh." AOI. Ah! France the Douce. did you mean? This is Rollanz. Through the great press most gallantly he strikes. Remember well a vassal brave he might. indeed.

No harmful thing twixt thee and me has been. Blessings on Charles. and all my life a grief. Will he or nill. his helmet nods and bows. Dismounting then. CLII Soon as Rollant his senses won and knew. Prays God himself in Paradise to allow. And nephew was to hoary old Drouin. Now thou art dead. Proclaims his sins both firmly and aloud. . He cannot fall. Dead are his men. Nothing he sees. CLI So Rollant's friend is dead whom when he sees Face to the ground. who conquered Maelgut. Gualter it is. Begins to mourn in language very sweet: "Unlucky. whichever way he lean. he'd all of them to lose. along the vales he flew. and save Gualter del Hum. Bitter great loss appeared there in his view: Dead are the Franks. may stay no more. And in such love you had their parting seen. to whom he's bound. and on Douce France he vows. to bring him succour soon: "Ah! Gentle count. Rollanz the brave mourns him with grief profound. friend. he hears not any sound. He is come down out of the mountains. CL Oliver feels death's anguish on him now. And his comrade. Rollanz. And in his head his two eyes swimming round. he kneels upon the ground." Upon these words. which he calls Veillantif. Upon his horse. that chief. each to the other leans. Upon the earth he lays his whole length out: And he is dead. And called Rollant. Stirrups of gold support him underneath. before God's Throne and here.56 I pardon you. and biting it with's teeth. Save the Archbishop. where are you? For By thy side no fear I ever knew. who Gainst Spanish men made there a great ado. Then his heart fails. heavenwards holds them out. that count. Clasps his two hands. brave soldier. for those the pagans slew. Recovering and turning from that swoon. My vassalage thou ever thoughtest good." And with these words again he swoons. your courage was indeed! Together we have spent such days and years. Nowhere on earth so sad a man you'd found.

of felon kind! Lordings. From his hauberk the woven mail they tear. the Archbishop other five. Gualter del Hum's a right good chevalier. pagans they strike again. Gone is the mail that on my hauberk grew. who lets them any safety find!" And so once more begin the hue and cry. Gualter has six. take care they go not hence alive! Felon he's named that does not break their line. This body of mine eight lances have gone through. Yet full price for life I took. AOI. With the first flight they've slain our Gualtier. Since that four spears have through his body come. and on towards him drew. to approach they never dare. I'm dying. But well I know. The pagans say: "Men. And cracked his helm. CLIII Grief gives Rollanz intolerance and pride. From every part they come to break the line. Come on afoot a thousand Sarrazens. he's wounded in the head. In his body four spear-wounds doth he bear. and then towards him runs. Great grief it was. and split my shield in two. Turpin of Reims has all his shield broken." Rollant has heard these words and understood. AOI. darts and javelins in the air. Lances and spears they poise to hurl at them. And on horseback some forty thousand men. Through the great press. barbs. To slay a score of Spaniards he contrives. CLI Count Rollant is a noble and brave soldier. Beneath him too his charger's fallen dead. AOI. Looks for Rollant. Has spurred his horse. Nimble and bold upon his feet he jumps. .57 Broken my spear. Recreant. CLV Turpin of Reims hath felt himself undone. None of them falls behind the other pair. That Archbishop hath shewn good prowess there. when that Archbishop fell. Through the great press he goes again to strike. Arrows. these.

Great pain he has. and feebly sounds again. The brave Saint Giles. CLVI The count Rollanz has nobly fought and well. "Right evilly we fare! This day Rollanz. whose steel was brown and rough. Who charters wrote for th' Minster at Loum." said he. Also there were from whom the heads he'd cut: So tells the tale. The best of them that might be in their ranks Make on Rollanz a grim and fierce attack. he that was there says thus. Says each to each: "Carlum doth us bestead." AOI. my nephew shall be dead: I hear his horn. Wounded the most. Through the great press a thousand blows he's struck: As Charles said. CLVII The pagans say: "That Emperour's at hand. and all his body sweats. That Emperour stood still and listened then: "My lords. Takes the olifant. the trumpets of the Franks. speared through the middle some. And wars renewed. If Charles come. whom God made marvellous. Nimbly canter. The pagans hear." Four hundred men of them in helmets stand. CLVIII The count Rollanz. Gainst these the count had well enough in hand. great loss we then shall stand. as many as ye bear!" Sixty thousand so loud together blare. and trouble in his head. with scarcely any breath. The mountains ring. the valleys answer them. quarter he gave to none. But he would know if Charles will come to them." He's drawn Almace. He found him there. AOI.58 Saying this word: "I am not overcome. While life remains. four hundred else among. they think it not a jest. whoever would be there! Your trumpets sound. when their approach he sees Is grown so bold and manifest and fierce . His temples burst when he the horn sounded. unless we slay Rollant. But he is hot. All Spain we'll lose. We hear their sound. no good vassal gives up. Nothing he's heard that does not know this much. our own clear father-land.

that King in Majesty. But not himself. The count Rollant stands on his feet once more. That Archbishop. Through the great press he goes. for no incarnate man: We'll give again these pagans their attack. And by his side is the Archbishop Turpin. I'll leave you not. Count Rollant's shield they've broken through and bored." Says the Archbishop: "Shame on him that holds back! Charle is at hand. The woven mail have from his hauberk torn. and great is their uproar. Nor arrogant. The count Rollanz." CLIX The count Rollanz has never loved cowards. and I my charger have. nor men of evil heart. begone!" say pagans. AOI. that horse. Of Frankish men we plainly hear the horns. Charles his great host once more upon us draws. which men call Veillantif. Pagans are fled. Home into Spain with speed they make their way. Pricking him well with golden spurs beneath. Together we'll endure things good and bad." CLX The pagans say: "Unlucky were we born! An evil day for us did this day dawn! For we have lost our peers and all our lords. The count Rollant is of such pride and force He'll never yield to man of woman born. their line to meet. their horns we plainly hear Charle is at hand. full vengeance he'll exact. "Monjoie " they cry. Beneath the count he's fallen dead. CLXI Pagans are fled. The better blows are those from Durendal. . He sits his horse. each to each. "These Frankish men. Let's aim at him. friend. and leave him on the spot. "Now. they've never touched his corse. enangered and enraged. here will I take my stand. For love of you. Veillantif is in thirty places gored.59 So long as he's alive he will not yield. you're afoot. Nor chevalier that was not good vassal. Lances and spears and feathered javelots. then leave him on the spot!" And aim they did: with arrows long and short. he calls apart: "Sir. Turpins. he has not given chase.

of Rossillon. And from hauberks the mail to break and tear. they have slain. and prudent counsel share. To the Archbishop returns as he can best. through the field. Gerers his companion." Said the Archbishop: "Go. his charger. Then says Rollanz: "Fair comrade Olivier. your lot! But all your souls He'll lay. There too he finds Anseis and Sanson. I say. our rich Emperor. And the Archbishop has them absolved and blest: Whereon his grief and pity grow afresh. he cannot help but sob. goes through the field in quest. His holy flowers upon! For my own death such anguish now I've got. I will go seek and bring them to this place. On his great wounds the pieces of it placed. Will he or nill. That Archbishop. Most sweetly then to him has Rollant prayed: "Ah! Gentle sir. . On the green grass he has him softly laid. He lifts his hand. he is gone." CLXIII So Rollant turns. give me your leave. Upon a shield he's laid him. Then to his heart has caught him and embraced. I He's from his head the golden helm unlaced. His companion Olivier finds at length. Who held the march by th' Vale of Runier. Also he finds Berenger and Otton. Turpins. To shatter spears. Arrange them here in ranks. he goes with aid. Lords. God be praised!" CLXII So Rollanz turns. gives benediction. by the rest. whom we so dear appraised. Searching the vales and mountains. was round his waist. After he's said: "Unlucky. Taken from him his white hauberk away. and return again. Proof men to lead. all alone. He has embraced him close against his breast. He finds Gerin. through buckled shields to bear. To the Archbishop with each of them he comes.60 For Veillantif. Are now all dead. I shall not see him. before your face. Before his knees arranges every one. our Glorious God. And cut the gown in strips. You were the son of the good count Reinier. And finds Gerard the old. on foot he must remain. By one and one he's taken those barons. To the Archbishop. In Paradise. Our companions. we cannot let them stay. This field is yours and mine now.

to Heaven holds them forth. and began to shed a tear. CLXVI The count Rollanz wakes from his swoon once more. Grew tender. For too much blood he's lost. . beyond his companions. On the green grass. Between his two arm-pits. the warrior of Charlon. He would go there. looks to the hills above. Ere he has crossed an acre of the land.61 Gluttons in field to frighten and conquer. God grant him now His Benediction! AOI. Will he or nill. he held so very dear. His heart grows faint. Climbs to his feet. whom in His name wrought God. Out of his face the colour disappeared. And Paradise prays God to him to accord. Never before such bitter grief he'd had. Went step by step. No longer could he stand. indeed!" CLXV When the Archbishop beheld him swoon. And sees the brains that surge from his forehead. Through Rencesvals a little river ran. that noble old baron. Rollant. CLXVII The count Rollant sees the Archbishop lie dead. And Oliver. and no strength has. 'Tis the Archbishop. to stumble soon began. he falls down forwards and Death comes to him with very cruel pangs. for so much grief. He sees him lie. no further fare he can. upon his breast. No land has known a better chevalier. when dead he saw his peers. Said the Archbishop: "Unlucky lord. In battles great and very rare sermons Against pagans ever a champion. he swooned upon the field. his pains are very sore. There he proclaims his sins. Looks down the vale. fetch water for Rollant. he took that olifant. and looks above. Sees the bowels out of his body shed." CLXIV The count Rollanz. Dead is Turpin. So feeble he is. Joins his two hands. Crossways he folds those hands so white and fair. Stretching his hand.

A Sarrazin him all the time espies. He's seized Rollant. Further than might a cross-bow's arrow speed Goes towards Spain into a fallow-field. Blood hath his face and all his body dyed. that jewelled was with gold. Finding the gates of Paradise open!" CLXVIII Then Rollanz feels that death to him draws near. as was the custom there: "Thee. Four terraces. On the green grass count Rollant swoons thereby. that will Him serve so well. Now may your soul no pain nor sorrow ken. and the arms. chevalier nobly bred." Took the olifant. Climbs on a cliff. his skull and all his bones. Fair was he. for death is very near. Neer shall man be. He swoons again. something the count descried. of marble wrought. "Charles nephew. under two fair trees. Who feigning death among the others hides. "here conquered lies. To Araby I'll bear this sword as prize. Dead at his feet he has the pagan thrown: After he's said: "Culvert. To hold the laws and draw the hearts of men." he's said. were at his side. He prays to God that He will call the peers. t' himself appear. gentle sir. full well I know. that he would not let go. Takes the olifant. To the Glorious Celestial I commend. CLXIX High are the peaks.62 Then mourns aloud. CLXX So Rollant felt his sword was taken forth. A mortal hate he's kindled in his pride. For all his brain is issued from his ears. of my sword seizing hold! . and lies upon the green. and this word to him spoke "Thou'rt never one of ours. he sees. There he falls down. the trees are very high. running towards him hies. strong and of a courage high. Or right or wrong. And broke its steel. Four terraces of polished marble shine. thou wert too bold. Opened his eyes. the angel. where. He gets afoot. Bids Gabriel. And Durendal in the other hand he wields. Struck him on th' helm. Since the Apostles was never such prophet. that no reproach shall hear." As he drew it. Out of his head both the two eyes he drove.

uses what strength he might. England also. And Lumbardie and all the whole Romaigne. be my guide Good Durendal. Costentinnople. all Flanders in the plain. Lord God Father. whose beard is hoary white! Be you not his that turns from any in flight! A good vassal has held you this long time. Climbs to his feet. spent is my pride! We in the field have won so many fights. But my great one. Won I with thee so many countries strange That Charles holds. So when he sees he never can it break. And Normandy the free for him I gained. And won for him with thee Peitou. but broken is no ways. Combating through so many regions wide That Charles holds. I won Baivere. And the count says: "Saint Mary. Whereon ten blows with grief and rage he strikes. In all his face the colour is grown white. Rather I'ld die. Bretaigne. With thee I won him Scotland. that homage to him pays. to whom the tale is told. Wales. in the vale.63 They'll dub thee fool. Within himself begins he to complain: "Ah! Durendal. Ireland. In Saisonie all is as he ordains. unlucky is your plight! I've need of you no more. Also Burguigne and all the whole Puillane. never let France be shamed!" CLXXIII . Girt thee on me that noble King and great. In front of him a great brown boulder lies. but does not break outright. Fallen from it the crystal and the gold. than it mid pagans stay." CLXXI Then Rollanz feels that he has lost his sight. where he his chamber makes. my olifant I broke. white art thou. The steel cries out. whose beard is white with age! For this sword's sake sorrow upon me weighs. I won for him with thee Anjou. Also with thee Provence and Equitaigne. the Maine. When from heaven God by His angel bade Him give thee to a count and capitain. clear of stain! Beneath the sun reflecting back his rays! In Moriane was Charles." CLXXII Rollant hath struck the sardonyx terrace. Never shall France the Free behold his like. The steel cries out.

-'Ah. in truth.. CLXXV But Rollant feels he's no more time to seek. was worn by Saint Mary. Destroy it can he not. Looking to Spain. Within himself he makes a plaint most sweet. CLXXVI The count Rollanz. And with one hand upon his breast he beats: "Mea Culpa! God. Nor any man's that worketh cowardice! Many broad lands with you have I retrieved Which Charles holds. yet breaks not in the least. "Ah! Durendal. Saint Denise. Which from the hour that I was born have been Until this day. Some of the Hairs of my Lord. conquering he was slain!' -He owned his faults often and every way. For Christian men your use shall ever be. as he speaks Angels descend from heaven on that scene. by Thy Virtues clean Me from my sins. It is not right that pagans should thee seize. the mortal and the mean. Turning his head towards the pagan race. Now this he did. who hath the great white beard. And for his sins his glove to God upraised. Beneath a pine running in haste he came. The sword cries out. On the green grass he lay there on his face. he begins . Back from the blow into the air it leaps. AOI. And more of it breaks off than I can speak. His olifant and sword beneath him placed. that Charles might say (As he desired) and all the Franks his race. Wherefore that King so proud and rich is he. which when he sees. he lies on a sharp peak. the Blood of Saint Basile. AOI.64 Rollant his stroke on a dark stone repeats. Some of the Robe. beneath a pine he sits. most holy. when life is ended here!" Holds out his glove towards God. gentle count. Turning his eyes towards Spain." CLXXIV But Rollant felt that death had made a way Down from his head till on his heart it lay. fair indeed! Relics enough thy golden hilt conceals: Saint Peter's Tooth.

God sent him down His angel cherubin. Saint Lazaron from death Thou didst remit. . where The dozen peers I left behind me here?" But what avail. in Whom no falsehood is. That Emperour to Rencesvals doth fare. And France the Douce. his lord who nourished him. He joins his hands: and so is life finish'd. Charles cries aloud: "Where are you. his soul to heav'n God bare.65 Remembering so many divers things: So many lands where he went conquering. their nephews. Weep from their eyes barons and chevaliers. Duke Neimes for them was moved with pity rare. So the count's soul they bare to Paradis. and the count Berengiers And Ivorie. so dear they were? What is become of Gascon Engelier. And Daniel save from the lions' pit. and Ive. They mourn their sons. But his own self. And Saint Michael. since none can answer bear? "God!" says the King. "Now well may I despair. oh. and God's forgiveness bids: "Very Father. My soul in me preserve from all perils And from the sins I did in life commit!" His right-hand glove. Nor can he help but weep and sigh at this. his beard the King doth tear. And by their side Saint Gabriel alit. Over his arm his head bows down and slips. Sansun the Duke and Anseis the fierce? Where's old Gerard of Russillun. And their liege lords. A thousand score. and trusty friends and true. And Charlemagne. CLXXVII Rollant is dead. nephew fair? Where's the Archbishop and that count Oliviers? Where is Gerins and his comrade Gerers? Otes the Duke. There was no path nor passage anywhere Nor of waste ground no ell nor foot to spare Without a Frank or pagan lying there. we worship in peril. Upon the ground a many of them swoon. who Pitifully weeps not for grief and dule. He owns his faults. I was not here the first assault to share!" Seeming enraged. the heroes of his kin. he's not forgotten him. CLXXVIII No chevalier nor baron is there. to God he offers it Saint Gabriel from's hand hath taken it. they swoon upon the earth. their brothers.

" Upon that word mounts the Emperour again. Pagans are there. close in hand. He kneels aground. Thou canst be avenged upon that crimeful race. Nimbly enough appeared to him and spake: "Charles. to God the Lord doth pray That the sun's course He will for him delay. Let not approach lion. all as they are. AOI. When the King sees the light at even fade. Canter therefore! Vengeance upon them do!" "Ah." A thousand knights they keep in retinue. and many them. nor any groom. whose backs are turned their way. Then canters forth with his great host so brave.66 Thereon Duke Neimes doth act with wisdom proof. CLXXIX That Emperour bids trumpets sound again. canter on! Light needst not thou await. and chased them well the Franks Through the Valley of Shadows. So pagans fled. "so far are they re-moved! Do right by me. unmoved. Franks one and all continue in their chase. also the count Milun: "Guard me this field." These answer him sweetly. God!" says Charles. dear Sire. Until God will that we return anew. First before all he's said to the Emperour: "See beforehand. And as they went with killing blows attacked: Barred their highways and every path they had. with him should reason make. An angel then. as God knows well. The flower of France. . AOI. Tedbalt of Reims. Let the dead lie. For I forbid that any come thereto. their love to prove: "Right Emperour. these hills and valleys too. and still prolong the day. Let not approach esquire. so will we do. Towards Sarraguce by force they chased them back. From the highways dust rising in our view. too. is slain. Put off the night. Of Spanish men. a league from us or two." The King commands Gebuin and Otun. my honour still renew! They've torn from me the flower of France the Douce. CLXXX For Charlemagne a great marvel God planned: Making the sun still in his course to stand. nor any brute. On the green grass dismounting as he may.

(Whereby great spoils his chevaliers collect) That gentle King upon his feet descends. Downstream the rest floated as they might hap. with broidery. Kneels on the ground. Upon this night no sentinels keep watch. CLXXXIII That Emperour is lying in a mead." AOI. save that.67 The River Sebre before them reared its bank. you have spoken well. All of us know that lance. Has laced his helm. with marvellous keen pangs. there never was its peer. but there no warrant had. there is enough fresh grass -No service can they render them. That all were drowned. Whereon each day thirty fresh hues appear." Answer the Franks: "Sire. by God's grace. So much water the luckiest of them drank. Many of them down to the bottom sank. take bridles from their heads." cry Franks. jewelled with golden beads. Girt on Joiuse. Says the Emperour "Time is to pitch our tents. Their saddles take from off their horses' backs. his thanks to God presents. CLXXXII That Emperour hath chosen his bivouac. the sun is set. Who is most tired sleeps on the ground stretched flat. so brave. marvellous current ran. By's head. the greater part drowned. A god of theirs invoked they. The armed men more weighty were for that. When he once more rise. Our horses are worn out and foundered: Unsaddle them. 'Twas very deep. To Rencesvals too late to go again. And then leaped in. Let them go free. possessed its point of steel! . No barge thereon nor dromond nor caland. Bridles of gold from off their heads unstrap. Tervagant. On such a night unarmed he will not be. The Franks dismount in those deserted tracts. he's placed his mighty spear. "ye saw Rollant!" CLXXXI When Charles sees that pagans all are dead. "An evil day. and well may speak Whereby Our Lord was wounded on the Tree: Charles. He's donned his white hauberk. Some of them slain. And through these meads let them refreshment get.

68 His golden hilt he enshrined it underneath. By that honour and by that sanctity The name Joiuse was for that sword decreed. Barons of France may not forgetful be Whence comes the ensign "Monjoie," they cry at need; Wherefore no race against them can succeed. CLXXXIV Clear was the night, the moon shone radiant. Charles laid him down, but sorrow for Rollant And Oliver, most heavy on him he had, For's dozen peers, for all the Frankish band He had left dead in bloody Rencesvals; He could not help, but wept and waxed mad, And prayed to God to be their souls' Warrant. Weary that King, or grief he's very sad; He falls on sleep, he can no more withstand. Through all those meads they slumber then, the Franks; Is not a horse can any longer stand, Who would eat grass, he takes it lying flat. He has learned much, can understand their pangs. CLXXXV Charles, like a man worn out with labour, slept. Saint Gabriel the Lord to him hath sent, Whom as a guard o'er the Emperour he set; Stood all night long that angel by his head. In a vision announced he to him then A battle, should be fought against him yet, Significance of griefs demonstrated. Charles looked up towards the sky, and there Thunders and winds and blowing gales beheld, And hurricanes and marvellous tempests; Lightnings and flames he saw in readiness, That speedily on all his people fell; Apple and ash, their spear-shafts all burned, Also their shields, e'en the golden bosses, Crumbled the shafts of their trenchant lances, Crushed their hauberks and all their steel helmets. His chevaliers he saw in great distress. Bears and leopards would feed upon them next; Adversaries, dragons, wyverns, serpents, Griffins were there, thirty thousand, no less, Nor was there one but on some Frank it set. And the Franks cried: "Ah! Charlemagne, give help!" Wherefore the King much grief and pity felt, He'ld go to them but was in duress kept: Out of a wood came a great lion then, 'Twas very proud and fierce and terrible; His body dear sought out, and on him leapt,

69 Each in his arms, wrestling, the other held; But he knew not which conquered, nor which fell. That Emperour woke not at all, but slept. CLXXXVI And, after that, another vision came: Himseemed in France, at Aix, on a terrace, And that he held a bruin by two chains; Out of Ardenne saw thirty bears that came, And each of them words, as a man might, spake Said to him: "Sire, give him to us again! It is not right that he with you remain, He's of our kin, and we must lend him aid." A harrier fair ran out of his palace, Among them all the greatest bear assailed On the green grass, beyond his friends some way. There saw the King marvellous give and take; But he knew not which fell, nor which o'ercame. The angel of God so much to him made plain. Charles slept on till the clear dawn of day. CLXXXVII King Marsilies, fleeing to Sarraguce, Dismounted there beneath an olive cool; His sword and sark and helm aside he put, On the green grass lay down in shame and gloom; For his right hand he'd lost, 'twas clean cut through; Such blood he'd shed, in anguish keen he swooned. Before his face his lady Bramimunde Bewailed and cried, with very bitter rue; Twenty thousand and more around him stood, All of them cursed Carlun and France the Douce. Then Apollin in's grotto they surround, And threaten him, and ugly words pronounce: "Such shame on us, vile god!, why bringest thou? This is our king; wherefore dost him confound? Who served thee oft, ill recompense hath found." Then they take off his sceptre and his crown, With their hands hang him from a column down, Among their feet trample him on the ground, With great cudgels they batter him and trounce. From Tervagant his carbuncle they impound, And Mahumet into a ditch fling out, Where swine and dogs defile him and devour. CLXXXVIII Out of his swoon awakens Marsilies, And has him borne his vaulted roof beneath; Many colours were painted there to see,

70 And Bramimunde laments for him, the queen, Tearing her hair; caitiff herself she clepes; Also these words cries very loud and clear: "Ah! Sarraguce, henceforth forlorn thou'lt be Of the fair king that had thee in his keep! All those our gods have wrought great felony, Who in battle this morning failed at need. That admiral will shew his cowardice, Unless he fight against that race hardy, Who are so fierce, for life they take no heed. That Emperour, with his blossoming beard, Hath vassalage, and very high folly; Battle to fight, he will not ever flee. Great grief it is, no man may slay him clean." CLXXXIX That Emperour, by his great Majesty, I Full seven years in Spain now has he been, And castles there, and many cities seized. King Marsilies was therefore sore displeased; In the first year he sealed and sent his brief To Baligant, into Babilonie: ('Twas the admiral, old in antiquity, That clean outlived Omer and Virgilie,) To Sarraguce, with succour bade him speed, For, if he failed, Marsile his gods would leave, All his idols he worshipped formerly; He would receive blest Christianity And reconciled to Charlemagne would be. Long time that one came not, far off was he. Through forty realms he did his tribes rally; His great dromonds, he made them all ready, Barges and skiffs and ships and galleries; Neath Alexandre, a haven next the sea, In readiness he gat his whole navy. That was in May, first summer of the year, All of his hosts he launched upon the sea. CXC Great are the hosts of that opposed race; With speed they sail, they steer and navigate. High on their yards, at their mast-heads they place Lanterns enough, and carbuncles so great Thence, from above, such light they dissipate The sea's more clear at midnight than by day. And when they come into the land of Spain All that country lightens and shines again: Of their coming Marsile has heard the tale. AOI.

Freely was. free knights and valiant! Charles the King. Counts too. One Clarifan. save when that I command. where Charles court is held: His men applaud. He will not fail. Upon that day they come to Sarragus. Where in a field. or fall between my hands. On the green grass they spread a white silk mat. Espaneliz goes forth at his right hand. Till be slain. On his right hand let it be worn and held. the Emperour of the Franks. Sits him thereon the pagan Baligant. I will go seek him now. into Douce France. Throughout all Spain great war with me he's had." Upon his knee his right-hand glove he slaps. That all night long and very clearly burn. Set a fald-stool there. Upstream by Sebre doth all their navy turn. But go to Aix. where the sweet waters run. midway. Out of his barge issues their admiral. Bid him come here. while I'm a living man. CXCII Clear is that day. for all the gold neath heav'n. Marsiliun on my part you shall tell Against the Franks I'm come to give him help. for so they counselled. Find I their host. . The lord of them speaks before any man: "Listen to me. They leave Marbris. and the other Clarien: "You are the sons of king Maltraien. You I command to Sarraguce to fare. Give him this glove. and dukes. This little wand of fine gold take as well. After he called two of his chevaliers. wont my messages to bear. Seventeen kings follow him in a band. that's stitched with golden thread. a laurel stands. Lanterns they have. made of olifant. great battle shall be there. and the sun radiant.71 CXCI The pagan race would never rest. his homage to declare. And all the rest in rows about him stand. I cannot tell of that. but come Out of the sea. I will not cease. AOI. and carbuncles enough. Shall not eat bread. they leave behind Marbrus. CXCIII He is fast bound by all that he has said.

" CXCIV Said Baligant: "But canter now. from whom no help is come. hath made him bleed. king and guard from harm the queen!" Says Bramimunde "Great foolishness I hear: Those gods of ours in cowardice are steeped. and the other one the glove!" These answer him: "Dear lord. Our chevaliers they let be slain in heaps. . Rollanz. barons. his son. In Rencesvals they wrought an evil deed. Now have we lost our king Marsiliun. Which by the reins two Sarrazins do lead. you say very well." Canter so far. From the palace they hear a mighty sound. When they're come in. We'll have no more Fair Jursaleu. For that rich count. and mercy beg. wherein the burghers crowd. CXCV Horses they leave under an olive tree. and war with Charles again. it shall be done. Save all the laws of Christians he forget. who all of us doth keep. Says each to each: "Caitiffs! What shall be done? For upon us confusion vile is come. Through all the streets. across four bridges run. Those messengers have wrapped them in their weeds. with grief are waxen wood. the vaulted roof beneath. All our whole Spain shall be for Charles to keep. to Sarraguce they come." Answer pagans: "Sire. Marsilium with courtesy they greet: "May Mahumet.72 To France I'll go. I'll take away the crown from off his head. My lord they failed in battle. When they draw nigh the citadel above. For yesterday his hand count Rollanz cut." Both messengers on the terrace dismount. Never again will he his right hand see. Save at my feet he kneel. And Tervagan. Take one the wand. To the palace they climb the topmost steep. Tervagan and Mahum And Apolin. in his need. Miserable! What shall become of me? Alas! That I've no man to slay me clean!" AOI. and our lord Apoline Preserve the. Who weep and cry. And curse their gods. Pass through ten gates. About that place are seen pagans enough. The whole of Spain henceforward is undone.

My cities are broken and violate. I yield. And Charlemagne he will go seek through France And quittance give him. So sends him here his glove. CXCVIII Then says Marsile: "The Emperour. and turn away. Gainst Charlemagne I'll shew him strategy. also this wand. they slew him yester-eve. say not that! We're messengers from pagan Baligant. Charles the Great Hath slain my men and all my land laid waste. pray you. Dromonds are there -. He lay this night upon the river Sebre. Do battle here. Of Sarraguce ye'll carry him the keys. Within a month from now he'll conquered be. Our admiral is wealthy and puissant." Gives them the keys of Sarraguce her gates. are moored by Sebres bank. Charles hath no fear for any living man. I am held fast by death. Upon that word bow down. Rights over Spain that admiral hath he. Rather he'ld die than from the field draw back. dead or recreant. To Marsilies. CXCVII Says Marsilies the king: "Now let that be. he come to see me here." To th'messengers: "Sirs. That one I had. 'tis seven leagues away. No king neath heav'n above a child he ranks. speak to me. leading his host this way. if he trusts in me. as ye may see. . For seven years he's stayed now in this land." AOI. he'll be warrant. Both messengers their leave of him do take. say. 'tis the truth you speak. I've counted well." They answer him: "Sir. this word to him convey.I cannot speak of that. that! Far nearer here you'll light upon the Franks. He'll go not hence. Barges and skiffs and gallies four thousand." Says Bramimunde: "Unlucky journey. Bid the admiral. No son have I nor daughter to succeed. That Emperour is bold and combatant. if he will take't. Bid you my lord. he says. My claim to him. Vessels we have. But from the Franks he then must set her free.73 CXCVI Says Clarien: "My lady.

sore afraid. too long ye've slept. Yields to you Spain. Marsile the king fought with them there. what have ye found? Where's Marsilies. The king implores.74 CXCIX Both messengers did on their horses mount. "In Rencesvals was yesterday battle. And Oliver. But. Forth from your ships issue." . Rereward he set. his kingdom and his crown. AOI. Rollanz the count. With Durendal he dealt him such a clout From his body he cut the right hand down." said to him Clariens. King Marsilie's of his right hand bereft. that Charlemagne the eld. But he be slain. A thousand score of Franks in armour found. To France the Douce he would be homeward-bound. Then cried aloud: "Barons. mount. That Emperour has chased him well enow. to come to me was bound?" Says Clarien : "To death he's stricken down. And the Emperour chased him enow from thence. His son is dead. or drowned in Sebres bed. Then. so proud. And of their Franks are twenty thousand dead. Into this land so near to us they've crept." And Baligant begins to think. in whom his heart was bound. And the barons that service to him vowed. Fleeing he came. to save his great honour: His nephew there installed. the dozen peers around. their admiral they sought. Dead is Rollanz and that count Oliver. That Emperour was in the pass but now. He and Rollanz upon that field did joust. Says Baligant: "Speak now. From that city nimbly they issued out. Such grief he has. To whom the keys of Sarraguce they brought. doth nearly him confound. Throughout this land no chevalier is left. he could no more hold out. In his courage grew joyous and content. The dozen peers whom Charle so cherished." And Baligant looked on him proudly then. if you will. King Marsilies shall somehow be avenged. grief shall go with them hence. From the fald-stool upon his feet he leapt. CC "Sir admiral. canter well! If he flee not. you'll hasten with succour. By river side the Franks have pitched their tents. For his right hand I'll pay him back an head. and frowns.

to's people gallopped back. Raises his hand. Then mount upon their horses and their mules. that admiral her took. Awakened is that Emperour Charles. when he sees Baligant. when the dawn breaks at last. in spite of that. . That in such shame my sovran lord I lose! Fell at his feet. and the honour thereto hangs. CCIII In morning time. Dismounted on a floor of marble blue. his arms aside he's cast. Down by the steps. And in his train he took with him four dukes. Full well I know. and so lift up my back. And canter forth. Saint Gabriel. Charles waits not our attack. Myself I've lost. Where four counts were. he came to Sarraguce. who on God's part him guards. he sang: "Pagans. With Sarraguce. as he was used. To meet him there came running Bramimunde. as he went. the palace came into." He answers him: "Therefore the more I'm sad. Called up to him Gemalfin. Cantered so far. Calls to him then two Spanish Sarazands: "Take me by the arms. whom he knew: "I give command of all my hosts to you." On a brown horse mounted." One of his gloves he takes in his left hand. I take the glove from you. he came before his band. No long discourse together may we have. king and admiral. Cantered so far. (nay. out of the palace ran. From hour to hour then. what more might they do?) Their admiral. who by his stirrup stood. CCII King Marsilies. by whom they all were ruled. AOI. Quittance I give you here of all my land. every man. In grief they came up into Marsile's room. come on: already flee the Franks!" AOI. my army. Then says Marsile: "Sire." He turned away in tears. Up by the steps. Who said to him: "Accursed from the womb. the Sign upon him marks. such grief he had. Mounted his horse.75 CCI Pagan Arabs out of their ships issue. Rises the King.

Beneath two trees he climbed the hill and looked. And Rollant's strokes on three terraces knew. Conqueringly his gallant life he'ld end. Naimes the Duke. and through those roads so large. Turned scarlat. `Tis nothing strange that Charles anger grew. may God to thee be kind! Never beheld any man such a knight So to engage and so to end a fight. upon the feast Noel. With reason thus I heard Rollant speak then: He would not die in any foreign realm Ere he'd surpassed his peers and all his men. Pity he felt. CCV When the Emperour went seeking his nephew. Now my honour is turned into decline!" . he could but weep for rue. and every flower that bloomed. bear him beneath a pine. Says to the Franks: "My lords. Since I myself alone should go ahead. with our barons' blood imbrued. At Aix I was. Vaunted them there my valiant chevaliers. Before the rest he's on a peak mounted. Dismounted then. restrain your steps.his heart was full. Gefrei d'Anjou and his brother Tierry. AOI. my friend. On the green grass saw lying his nephew. Begins to weep for those he finds there dead. and the count Aceline. CCIV In Rencesvals is Charles entered. For my nephew. CCVI That Emperour is from his swoon revived. Take up the King. whom I would find again. They go to see the marvellous damage In Rencesvals. disarm.76 The others then. and went -. by virtue canter fast Through those long ways. Most sweetly then begins he to repine: "Rollant. To the foes' land he would have turned his head. There on the ground he sees his nephew lie. With anguish keen he fell on him and swooned. there where the battle was. In his two hands the count's body he took." Further than one a little wand could send. through all the host. He found the grass. After they mount. Of battles great and very hot contests.

AOI. Hungar. and those in Califerne. my friend. were very shadowful. Romain. I'll say to them: `Marvellous news and fell. My nephew's dead. among the glorious! Thou cam'st to Spain in evil tide. He turned his eyes. I'm in my hall again. CCVII Charles the King returned out of his swoon. that all our days us led? Ah! France the Douce. Puillain. in my Chapelle. Bulgar. seigneur! Day shall not dawn." He tore his locks. He looked to the earth. Strange men will come from many far domains. for thee I've no dolour. Kinsmen I have. and many hostile men. When he is slain. who won for me such realms!' Against me then the Saxon will rebel. the Capitain.77 Charle swoons again. How perishes my strength and my valour! None shall I have now to sustain my honour. I weep not nor complain. Charles complained in amity and truth: "Rollant. In bitter grief henceforward shall I reign. When at Loum. When I arrive at Aix. now art thou deserted! Such grief I have that I would fain be dead. saw lying his nephew. Afresh then will my pain and suffrance swell. fair youth that bar'st the bell. CCVIII "Rollant. I think I've not one friend neath heaven's roof. Day shall not dawn. he cannot stand upright. all those are in Palerne." . Him in their hands four of his barons took. Who'll ask me. my friend. to France I will away. Five score thousand Franks had such great dolour There was not one but sorely wept for rue. CCIX "Rollant. Men coming there will ask what news I tell. till both his hands were full. but none of them's so proof. God lay thee mid the blooms Of Paradise. And in Affrike. I'll say to them that he is dead in Spain. All colourless his lusty body grew. my friend. AOI. For who will lead my armies with such strength. where's that count.

all the Franks dismount. Duke Naimes says: "His wrath is great indeed. who have been slain for me. and abbots there enow. Incense and myrrh with precious gums they've ground. what else might they do now? AOI. vicars with shaven crowns." AOI. Bid that our men through all this field be sought. Ere I am come to th' master-pass of Size. They've left them there. With honour great they've laid them in the ground. CCXII Gefreid d'Anjou upon his trumpet sounds. From my body my soul at length go free! Among their souls let mine in glory be. Bishops there are. As Charles bade them. my friend. Canons and monks. Whom those of Spain have in the battle caught. Absolution in God's name they've pronounced. CCX "Rollant. I'ld live no more. And lustily they've swung the censers round. so bitter is my grief For my household. Emperour." Gefrei d'Anjou implored." AOI. "Let not your grief to such excess be wrought.78 All his white beard he hath begun to rend. CCXIII That Emperour sets Rollant on one side And Oliver. exile for France decreed. Five score thousand Franks swooned on the earth and fell. . In a charnel command that they be borne. Tore with both hands the hair out of his head. CCXI "Sire. God shew thee His mercy! In Paradise repose the soul of thee! Who hath thee slain." Answered the King: "Sound then upon your horn. whose bodies they have found To a charnel speedily the bring down. All of their friends. And let my flesh upon their flesh be heaped. the Son of Saint Mary. and his eyes weep. and the Archbishop Turpine. God grant me this." Still his white beard he tears.

Tencendur. After. Marquis Otun. From the admiral bring challenge to combat: "'Tis not yet time. They're covered well with carpets Galazine. Nimbly enough his iron sark indued. Baligant comes cantering afterward. CCXC First before all was armed that Emperour. Lo. And all their hearts in silken veils to wind. girt on his sword Joiuse. . Which he had won at th'ford below Marsune When he flung dead Malpalin of Nerbune." Charles the King his snowy beard has clasped. to horse. They're washen well in allspice and in wine. to arms!" AOI. Haughtily then his people all regards. Five-score thousand and more. Each of the three is wrapped in a deer's hide. Milun the count besides: Along the road in three wagons to drive. was fashioned at Blandune. Remembering his sorrow and damage. This day we'll see if thou hast vassalage. And set them in coffers of marble white. And took his spear. The King commands Tedbalt and Gebuin. Two messengers come from their ranks forward. Laced up his helm. they take the bodies of those knights. they arm themselves. AOI. spurred him with either foot. CCXIV Now to be off would that Emperour Charles. AOI. Let go the reins. CCXVI Through all the field dismount the Frankish men. In a loud voice he cries with all his heart: "Barons and Franks. proud King. I say. lo! comes surging the vanguard. On his good horse then mounted.79 Their bodies bids open before his eyes. Outshone the sun that dazzling light it threw. Calling on God and the Apostle of Roum. that thou de-part. When pagans. was of Girunde. Five score thousand behind him as he flew. Great are the hosts he leads from Arab parts. Hung from his neck a shield.

One bear the sword and the other the olifant. where they were: Charles for no race neath heaven hath more care.80 The gear they have enhances much their strength. AOI. I think. we'll dearly sell. Olivier and Rollant. Their gonfalons flutter above their helms. And in your train take fifteen thousand Franks. Then Rollant's life. Whom Gebuins shall lead. As many more shall after them advance. who realms for him conquered. Find they that host. CCXVIII Of Franks the first columns made ready there. you I command To take their place." Answers Duke Neimes: "God grant us his consent!" AOI. Their horses swift. CCXVII Charles hath called Rabel and Guineman. also Lorains. Shall lead that troop. AOI. Naimon the Duke. Thus said the King: "My lords. their arms are fashioned well. Whom not to trust were surely want of sense. After those two a third they next prepare. Unless the Arabs of coming here repent." Naimes the Duke and the count Jozerans Go to adjust these columns in their ranks. before the van. the warrior count Oger. Never was lost the battle. Young bachelors. battle they'll render them. CCXIX Three columns now. Save those of France. endowed with vassalage. the Emperour Charles. they'll make a grand attack. Naimes the Duke a fourth next sets apart Of good barons. he has. Mounted they are. . In it are set the vassals of Baiviere. When Charles sees the fair aspect of them. Find they that host. He calls to him Jozeran of Provence. with Antelme of Maience: "In such vassals should man have confidence. The Danish chief. and fight with great science. So canter forth ahead. for haughty is their air. Some thousand score high-prized chevaliers. that are most valiant.

Who'll die before he's any way coward. Well armed are they. CCXXI The sixth column is mustered of Bretons. their ensigns fastened on. Who doth command the county Nevelon. their arms are all most fair. Forty thousand chevaliers might be there. CCXXII That Emperour hath now six columns yare Naimes the Duke the seventh next prepares Of Peitevins and barons from Alverne. or so say all the Franks. The overlord of them is named Oedon. lead them in th'field he shall." AOI. their horses charge and prance. Duke of Trace. Tis of Flamengs. CCXX Naimes the Duke and the count Jozerans The fifth column have mustered. With his right hand King Charles hath them blessed. come from the German March. These canter in the manner of barons. of Normans. Rather they'll die than from the battle pass. AOI.81 Germans they are. Richard the old. Their horses good. A thousand score. He'll strike hard there with his good trenchant lance. by my commission. Rather they'ld die. and barons out of Frise. AOI. AOI. They're neath a cliff. also Godselmes. They shall be led by Hermans. as all said afterward. Them Jozerans shall lead. No race neath heav'n can more in th'field compass. in a vale by themselves. Thirty thousand chevaliers therein come. They're well equipped with horses and with arms. Tedbald of Reims and the marquis Oton: "Lead ye my men. Upright their spears. than eer be recreant. CCXXIII And the eighth column hath Naimes made ready. . A thousand score.

CCXXV The tenth column is of barons of France. it gat. the battle they demand. Strong are their spears. To the green grass. Snowy their heads are. and their beards are blanched. where he was pent. AOI. And who didst spare the king of Niniven. If the Arrabits demur not. Of Lotherengs and those out of Borgoune. short are the shafts cut down. kneeling. for all their chivalry. Tierris the Duke shall lead them. Nor lost by them has any battle been. Fifty thousand good knights they are. And the King says: "These shall do my service. all in a fire ardent: ." Between Rembalt and Hamon of Galice Shall they be led. Girt on their sides Frankish and Spanish brands And noble shields of divers cognisance. "Monjoie" they cry. Lusty of limb. Gefreid d'Anjou carries that oriflamme. CCXXIV Between Naimon and Jozeran the count Are prudent men for the ninth column found. CCXXVI That Emperour down from his horse descends. AOI. AOI. And three children. In doubled sarks. Saint Peter's twas. But on that day Monjoie. his face he bends. and bare the name Roman. Who to Jonas succour didst truly send Out of the whale's belly. In helmets laced and sarks of iron brown. Then turns his eyes towards the Orient. And Daniel from marvellous torment When he was caged within the lions' den. they'll strike them down. but come out And trust themselves to these. With them goes Charlemagne. Calls upon God with heartiest intent: "Very Father. this day do me defend. and proud of countenance. by count. and in hauberks they're clad. Soon as they mount.82 Forty thousand and more good knights are these. of Argoune. Five score thousand of our best capitans. by change.

Upon his swift charger the King mounted While Jozerans and Neimes his stirrup held. A halt they've made.) He grasps his spear. very clear trumpets. Pagans dismount. Clear was his face and filled with good intent. they have no mind to fail. those rocks and those mountains. In Thy Mercy. The strap of it was a good silken web. Above them all boomed the olifant again. upon his feet he stepped. the which he calls Maltet. His chevaliers'." Says Baligant: "Mine is great vassalage. that they may arm themselves. he gave that cry to them. consent That my nephew Rollant I may avenge. His own broad shield he hangs upon his neck. Then issue from the passes and the wastes Till they are come into the March of Spain." CCXXVIII Through all the host they have their drums sounded. both gallant and well set. Vigorously he cantered onward thence.83 Thy gracious Love to me be here present. and those deep vales. Laces his helm. Five score thousand Franks are thereby made plain. his sword on his left side he's set. (Round its gold boss a band of crystal went. So Preciuse he bad his own be clept. as he has heard it said. they sounded their trumpets. that is with gold begemmed. Their admiral will stay no longer then. After. Twas their ensign when they to battle went. and. embroidered in the hems. all others do the same. They pass those peaks. Those terrible narrows. Arm yourself then: Battle you'll have to-day. He took his shield. if it please Thee. To Baligant his vanguard comes again A Sulian hath told him his message: "We have seen Charles. Then all the Franks for pity of Rollant wept. his trenchant spear he kept. When he had prayed. that haughty sovereign. Puts on a sark. Let horns this news to my pagans proclaim. -- . Fierce are his men. CCXXVII That Emperour canters in noble array. And their bugles. In front. For love of him. in th'middle of a plain. Fine limbs he had. in rear. Over his sark all of his beard displays. With the strong mark of virtue signed his head. Out of his pride a name for it he's spelt Like to Carlun's.

CCXXX "Fair son Malprimes. whom Charles so cherished. Great was his breast. White as a flow'r in summer was his head. the clear blood issued. "Was slain yestreen the good vassal Rollanz. his hair was ringleted. He'll have no strength to stay in fight with us. for he's very pruff. his ribs of wide extent. his sister's son. And in battle he's proud and arduous. Beneath its steel alone. For all the rest I'ld not unglove my hand. from over seas. the proof and valiant. He's gallopped on." AOI." AOI. -.So tells me now my man. White is his beard as flowers by summer burnt. And Oliver. . with a great stride he stepped. of wisdom hath he much. were he a Christian yet! His horse he's spurred. his stirrup held. The dozen peers. In many tales honour to him is done. that Sulian -Ten great columns he's set them in their ranks. He hath no more Rollant. -. Proud was his face. There is no Frank. In his own laws. Says to his sire: "To canter then let us! I marvel much that soon we'll see Carlun.84 So great its shaft as is a stout cudgel. that he departs not hence. and Twenty thousand more Frankish combatants. That warrior. a mule had bent. God! what a knight. Charles is mad. With a clear call he rallies his comrades." Says Baligant: " Yea. Will he or nill. On his charger is Baligant mounted. He's a proof man who sounds that olifant. Full fifty feet a man might mark its breadth. With shoulders broad and very clear aspect. CCXXIX That admiral to a baron's like enough. His vassalage had often been proved. Small were his thighs. His son Malprimes is very chivalrous. his life he'll soon have spent.his ancestors were thus. Pagans cry out: "Our Marches shall be held." then says t'him Baligant. He's great and strong. over a ditch he's leapt. and finely fashioned. But the Emperour is verily come back. Marcules. may once with him contest.

whose heads are gross. As they were hogs. "I grant it you. Of my domains a slice to you I'll give From Cheriant unto the Vale Marquis." AOI. his virtues and his bones: "Charles of France is mad to canter so. Also with them are fifteen thousand Franks. The sixth is raised from Ermines and from Mors. The first is raised of men from Butenrot." says Baligant to him." CCXXXIII . Their arrogance if you can humble it. They've chevaliers in marvellous great force. Young bachelors. Against the Franks go now." Then says Malprimes: "The first blow I demand. was held by king Flurit. The seventh is the men of Jericho. above their spinal bones. That admiral hath sworn. whom Charles calls Infants. That is a tribe no goodwill ever shews. The fourth is raised from Bruns and Esclavoz. And take with you Torleu. and smite them quick. Micenes. Along their backs.85 These at the head come cantering in advance. As many again come following that band. as you have asked me this. Going before. another king Leutish. After. The fifth is raised from Sorbres and from Sorz. After that hour he never looked on it. CCXXXII That admiral canters among his hosts. Investiture gat never. great bristles on them grow. and the king Dapamort. Sire!" Malprimes answers him. unless he take him home. The third is raised from Nubles and from Blos. after. The tenth is raised from Balide the stronghold. Thirty columns most speedily they form. The next. 'Tis of that land. the Persian king And Dapamort. No more he'll wear on's head that crown of gold. Battle he'll have. By Mahumet. Negroes are the eighth. Torleus the king. the ninth are men of Gros. the way he knows. Fifty thousand the smallest column holds. CCXXXI "Fair son Malprimes. his son with's great body follows. Who will lay on with utmost arrogance." "I thank you. he takes delivery. nor seizin.

This day shall bring you vile confusion! Give warranty. Hard is their hide." Pagans awhile their heads and faces on Their breasts abase. is the first. The next of Huns. unto Carlon! And in his name this victory be won!" . no love of God e'er knew. the third a Hungar crew. The sixth is raised of tribesmen from Maruse. Of Canelious. right ugly. The seventh is from Leus and Astrimunes. The tenth is from Occiant. And from Baldise the Long the fourth have trooped. That is a tribe. Great are the hosts. their horns come sounding through. The tenth is raised of beardsmen from Val-Frunde. The fourth is raised of desperate Pinceners. He makes them bear before him his dragon. And their standard. In the battle they're felon murderers. AOI. That is a tribe. CCXXXV That admiral hath great possessions. Wherefore of helm or hauberk they've no care. The seventh is the tribe of Samuel. their polished helmets doff. And his image.86 Ten great columns they marshal thereafter. Pagans canter as men of valour should. the ninth is from Clarbune. The eighth from Argoilles. CCXXXIV That admiral ten columns more reviews. Tervagan's and Mahom's. Who from Val-Fuit came across country there. The next's of Turks. Serve them and pray with great affliction. And very loud the cry out this sermon: "Let who would from our gods have garrison. And the Franks say: "Now shall you die. the desert. Of such felons you never else have heard. The sixth is from Ormaleus and Eugez. Ten Canelious canter in the environs. The eighth is from Bruise. the ninth from Esclavers. Apollin the felon. our God. Gesta Francor' these thirty columns prove. The fifth is raised from Soltras and Avers. of Persians is the third. The first is raised of Giants from Malpruse. The fifth is raised of men from Val-Penuse. do not the Lord God serve. as though it iron were. AOI. gluttons.

canter ye now ahead!" Carries the ensign Amboires of Oluferne. And Occiant's. No peak nor vale nor cliff between them there. And the third is the Giants of Malpreis. That Emperour canters right haughtily. He may be sure naught else for him's decreed. Battle to seek. He's shewn to him Carlun's ten companies: "The pride of France. That Emperour has bid them sound trumpets. the king of Floredee. Until with Charles and with the Franks they meet. beforehand canter ye. by Preciuse they swear. Pagans cry out. Then the admiral. The trumpets sound. That Emperour. if he combat with me." AOI. AOI.87 AOI. All my columns together shall you lead. 'Tis Canabeus. And the olifant sounds over all its knell. they'll also stay with me. nor ambush anywhere. CCXXXVII Great are the hosts. bitter and keenly set. his brother calleth he. And the Franks say: "Great hurt this day you'll get!" And very loud "Monjoie!" they cry again. And the olifant its echoing music speaks. But of the best I'll keep beside me three: One is of Turks. And the ensigns fixed on all their burnished spears. CCXXXVI That admiral hath wisdom great indeed. Thicket nor wood. Across the plain they see each other well. The pagans say: "Carlun's people are fair. Also their sarks embroidered and their shields. Battle we'll have. cut from his shoulders clean. His son to him and those two kings calls he: My lords barons. CCXXXVIII Great is that plain. Their helmets shine with golden jewellery. their voice is very clear. the next of Ormaleis. renowned land. Who holds the land unto the Vale Sevree. and wide is that country. you see. Says Baligant: "My pagan tribes adverse. and all the columns fair. . Must lose his head.

the companies are grand. The first columns are come now hand to hand." CCXL Clear is the day. Never has man beheld such armies meet. AOI. Strike us they will with lances and with spears: Battle with them we'll have. good vassals are ye all. my lords. The count Rabel and the count Guinemans Let fall the reins on their swift horses' backs.88 His bearded men are with him in the rear." Further than one might cast a rod that's peeled Goes Baligant before his companies.) The King of France in a loud voice has called: "Barons and Franks. each with his trenchant lance. Canter. The Persian king. Towards Carlun has turned the point of steel. No pennyworth is there in all their laws. ." Next with both spurs he's gored his horse's flanks. Torleu. they're felons and cowards. Then say the Franks: "This King's a good vassal. His reason then he's shewn to them." His spear in hand he brandishes and wields. then on rush all the Franks. And go to strike. AOI. and the sun radiant. who'ld fail me in the attack. Nor shield nor sark could such a blow abide. for now I take the field. Over their sarks they have thrown out their beards Which are as white as driven snows that freeze. And Tencendor has made four bounds thereat. he went to strike. The hosts are fair. -(In such great strength are mustered those Arabs Of that country they've covered every part Save only that whereon the Emperour was. what matters that? Let him go hence. for none of us holds back. come on. See the pagans. his ensign and standard. CCXLI That count Rabel. Spurring in haste. brave lord. and speaks: "Pagans. Though they've great hosts. prolonged and keen. when he sees the admiral And the dragon. CCXXXIX Charles the Great. he was a hardy knight. Ye in the field have fought so great combats. He pricked his horse with spurs of gold so fine.

long time I've fed you at my hand. God sent us here his justice to complete. Upon that blow. his cause is right. the companies in pride Come touching. And. Better vassal than him I'll not demand. dead one upon others packed. Hour in. hour out. So flings him dead. CCXLIII Pure white the horse whereon Malprimes sate. and sarks with mail untwined! So spattered all the earth there would you find That through the field the grass so green and fine With men's life-blood is all vermilion dyed. be Thou our Guide! Charles we must not fail. CCXLII And Guineman tilts with the king Leutice. AOI.89 The golden spear his carcass passed inside. So many shafts. That admiral rallies once more his tribe: "Barons. all the breadth of either side. Has broken all the flowers on his shield. by God! in pieces lie And crumpled shields. strike on. baron. Guided his corse amid the press of Franks." . ever. each with his trenchant lance!" Upon that word the pagans all advance." AOI. Next of his sark he has undone the seam. Before them all has cried out Baligant: "Barons." AOI. the Franks cry out with heat: "Strike on. CCXLIV Great are the hosts. And the pagans do marvellously strike. Flung down upon a little bush. Go. succour him. shatter the Christian line. who goes on Carlun's track. And marvellous and weighty the combat: Before nor since was never such attack. Then say the Franks: "Lord God. nor slacken in your speed! Charle's in the right against the pagan breed. the slaughter's very grand. Ye see my son. he died. Grim blows they strike. great blows he struck them back. All his ensign thrust through the carcass clean. let any laugh or weep. And with his arms so many lords attacks.

" With mighty blows they shatter all their spears. AOI. So many great battles you've fought for me. AOI." Twenty thousand beside him Charles leads. my body are yours to keep. Slaughter then. I promise you honours and lands and fiefs. In straits of death they never will him leave. Tears both the sides of his embroidered ha'berk. For sons. came you not therefore here? I promise you noble women and dear. strike on. Who of the Franks hath wrought there much great damage. So dead among sev'n hundred else he casts him. 'tis the truth you speak. There is not one thenceforth employs his spear. Who with one voice have sworn him fealty. for heirs. And of his shield breaks all the upper margin. But with their swords they strike in company. ye know. AOI. And goes to strike him. Five score thousand swords from their scabbards leap. My lands. I know it well indeed. unless he die. Naimes the Duke right haughtily regards him. for brothers wreak Who in Rencesvals were slaughtered yester-eve! Mine is the right. grim and sorrowful. CCXLVII Across that field the bold Malprimes canters. Kings overthrown. gainst pagan breeds. before or since that time.90 Now very keen and lasting is the fight. you'd seen. that stood those hosts between. The battle is straitened marvellously. The finish none shall reach. CCXLV That admiral to all his race appeals: "Pagans. . As never was. CCXLVI That Emperour calls on his Franks and speaks: "I love you." Answer the Franks: "Sire. and kingdoms have redeemed! Guerdon I owe. lords. like a man of valour. Battle he saw. my wealth. in whom I well believe." Answer pagans: "We must do well indeed. Through the carcass thrusts all his yellow banner.

Came there to him. No pennyworth the hood is after that. . against his heart he breaks it. His charger's neck he clasped with both his hands. the Duke. strikes and kills. whose hilt is of crystal. brother of the admiral. And the pagan. Great was the blow. Against his heart his argent shield he cracked. Who Duke Naimun before him sees lying. On the green grass all his clear blood shedding. but aid from God he had. that had you straitly pinned. One piece of it he's flung upon the land. Going to strike the county Guineman. to strike him. true love and faith swearing. I believe it. Had fallen ev'n. that Duke Naimes. Has pricked his horse with spurs in either flank. "Culvert. Five of the links his brand of steel hath knapped. Through his carcass my spear I thrust once in. He's drawn his sword. AOI.91 CCXLVIII King Canabeus. if I live. "You'll get now as you gave him!" With vassalage he goes to strike that pagan. AOI. A thousand score of Franks surround them still. canter with me to win! The glutton's dead. And strikes Naimun on's helmet principal." says Charles. CCL Bitter great grief has Charlemagne the King. Tears the chin-guard above his hauberk mailed. So flings him dead: his saddle shall be wasted. Then the Emperour to him this counsel gives: "Fair master Naimes. Had the pagan but once renewed the attack. CCLI Then through the field cantered that admiral. but slaughters. Charles of France. this." They 'ngage them then. Then was he slain. Away from it he's broken off one half. Right to the flesh he slices through the cap. with succour." Answers the Duke: "Sire. Great proof you'll have of valour. CCXLIX Keen anguish then he suffers. amazed thereat. Nor is there one. Shatters his shield. that noble old vassal. hotly hastens.

That Emperour was one. White is his beard as flowers in April. Grief shall be there ere the two hosts be scattered. Against Carlun give me your warranty!" Comes before him his dear friend Gemalfin. slain is he. And heard those shields on iron helmets beat. Whoso had heard those shining hauberks creak. from Argoille and from Bascle! And well they strike and slaughter with their lances. so great his grief. dying upon that field. Barons of France do suffer much great damage. this day in shame you're steeped. Till even-tide 'tis very strong. Two of his ribs out of his side he hacked. Your images. And heard men groan. Whoso had seen that shattering of shields. So flung him dead. while still his charger ran. But Franks. And Canabeus. as I have seen." That admiral has bent his head down deep. both Franks and Arrabies. strike on.92 The folds of his hauberk apart he slashed. And thereafter lowers his face and weeps. Whoso had seen fall down those chevaliers. "Preciuse. the lord of those Normans. even Malprime. CCLII Who then had seen those Arrabit chevaliers. I've done you much service. And the admiral calls upon Apollin And Tervagan and Mahum. here have we our warrant!" AOI. Fain would he die at once. prays and speaks: "My lords and gods. Evil the news he brings to him and speaks: "Sir Baliganz. That battle is most hard to endure. AOI." cry pagans. CCLIII Right well they strike. On either side dead men to the earth fall crashing. in gold I'll fashion each. Some memory of bitter pains might keep. . Richard the old. your brother. he's every way Marquis. indeed. to escape they think it no great matter. From Occiant. Fairly two Franks have got the victory. Great limbs he has. After. Breaking the shafts of all their burnished spears. he slew Gebuin and Lorain. "is valiant! Baron. For you have lost your son. He calls to him Jangleu from over sea. that battle.

who. strook. AOI. Shall we from hence victorious go back?" He answers him: "Slain are you. speak. Throughout the field rally his companies. Naimes the Duke. CCLIV Says the admiral. beside me stand! For you are proof. CCLVII Now very well strikes the King Charlemagne. the thickest press they meet Dead from that shock they've seven thousand heaped. their columns broken through. of Argune. so all the pagans hear. And. their horses let run loose. And from Argoille. and vengeance on them do!" And not one word to answer him he knew. those men who bray and bleat. Better vassal hath not his sark indued. also Oger the Dane. He sees the Franks. "Jangleu. Seek out the Franks with such a high folly. He'll no way hide. CCLVI The count Oger no cowardice e'er knew. and how your men they slew! Now from your head please God the crown remove Unless you strike. his men so valiant. How seems it you. And clearly sounds. Then to his mouth he sets a trumpet clear. But call upon barons of Occiant.93 AOI. like dogs barking. Baligant! For from your gods you'll never have warrant. Counsel from you I've ever sought to have. Turks and Enfruns. of Arrabits and Franks. of Anjou. and Gefreid. Arrabits and Giants." CCLV That admiral has shaken out his beard That ev'n so white as thorn in blossom seems. From Occiant. wheresoeer they met the pagans. . They spurred in haste. And to Carlun most proud his reason proves: "Behold pagans. Never saw I a race so combatant. and greatly understand. So calls to him Duke Tierris. whateer his fate may be. Count Jozeran. Break through their line. No more delay: what must be. So proud is Charles. take in hand.

" renowned word of pride. Still they struck on. bare from their sheaths they drew. Nimbly enough upon their feet they rise. Broken their girths. Both in the field before his feet he breaks That king's ensign and dragon. That admiral at once perceives it plain. great blows on either side They with their spears on their round targes strike. Down fell the nails. and lets him run in haste. AOI. CCLVIII Passes that day. as they go. The leather pierced. Never have they forgotten their ensigns. Then. bare in their sarks they stood. beneath their buckles wide. wound them they never might. and doubled core of wood. Brave vassals they. turns into vesper-tide. both abased. of France the Douce. downwards their saddles slide. Pagan Arabs coyly themselves contain. So strikes that man who the dragon displays. who that ensign displays. That he is wrong. barons. Most vassal-like they draw their swords outright.94 Geifreid d'Anjou. themselves aground do find. CCLIX A great vassal was Charles. Exceeding proof is Don Oger. without that one man die. From their bright helms the light shone forth anew. From this battle they'll ne'er be turned aside Nor make an end. the buckles brake in two. That Emperour calls on his Franks again: "Say. And Mahumet's standard thrown from its place. the Dane. He spurs his horse. no. All felon he that dares not exploits brave!" AOI. come. and right is Charlemain. . Charles "Monjoie. That admiral still "Preciuse" doth cry. And all the folds of their hauberks divide. That admiral no fear nor caution knew. Baligant sees his gonfalon disgraced. Those swords they had. But bodies. in God's Name!" Answer the Franks. who brought those hosts to fight. Amid the field they're both come into sight. And shatter them. Many great blows on 's shield each gave and took. Each the other knows by his clear voice and high. Franks and pagans still with their swords do strike. "Question you make in vain. support me. Both those Kings fall.

above his brow. think. Charles. what doest thou?" CCLXII Charles. Had fear of death no longer. to scatter all his brains. And counsel take that t'wards me thou repent! Thou'st slain my son.95 Finish nor fail that battle never could But one of them must in the wrong be proved. Saint Gabriel once more to him comes down. And questions him "Great King. Upon that word is come to him Duke Naimes. Charles tottereth. Slices his head. AOI. are on their belts. and then I'll love thee well. I know that very well. God wills not he be slain or overpow'red. a fief from me thou'lt get. Pagans turn back. Remembrance and a fresh vigour he's gained. Has broken it and rent. AOI. falls nearly to the ground." cries Charles. A great palm's breadth and more of flesh cuts out. So that all bare the bone is. serving me. down unto the white beard. Through his thick hair the sword goes glancing round. Become my man. And. Serve and believe the King Omnipotent!" Says Baligant: "Evil sermon thou saist. So the admiral he strikes with France's blade. Receive the Law that God to us presents. Holds Tencendur. Most wrongfully my land thou challengest. God wills not they remain. whereon the jewels blaze. CCLXI In the admiral is much great virtue found. He strikes Carlun on his steel helm so brown. hearing how that holy Angel spake. CCLX Says the admiral: "Nay. So he falls dead. No peace nor love may I to pagan lend. in that wound. from here to the Orient!" Charle answers him: "That were most vile offence. be that what may. And Franks have all their wish. all his face. . nor dismay. "Monjoie. bids mount that King so Great. Come. Christianity. His helmet breaks. I beg." They go to strikewith th'swords. recovers not again. that all may know the tale.

With sins he's so corrupt. So died of grief. the darkness is grown deep. even so we will. this morn." Then such great blows. Says the King then: "My Lords. Great exploits his whom the Lord God endows! CCLXVI Passes the day. Mahume! Ah! Noble king. he gives That few escape. On her tower.96 CCLXIII Pagans are fled. The soul of him to Hell live devils took. with 's hoary beard. Around her there the clerks and canons stood Of the false law. he occupies that town. Of Sarraguce the gates he's battered down. whom God ne'er loved nor knew. Still pagans fled. the rest are put to rout Whom Charles hath in battle overpowered. With iron malls and axes which they wield They break the idols and all the imageries. But ten ere great. conquered are all our troops." Answer the Franks: "Sir. ev'n as the Lord God wills. CCLXV Pagans are slain. The chase endured from there to Sarraguce. avenge your ills. Fierce is that King. and lesser fifty around. And all that night they lie there in their pow'r. and proud. I saw your eyes did spill. nor were their heads tonsured. as each may strike. Unto your hearts' content. For tears. For well he knows there's no defence there now. And Sarraguce is in the Emperour's keep. do what you will!. The synagogues and the mahumeries. of those remain there still. and all his body stooped. And the admiral to shameful slaughter put!" When Marsile heard. towards the wall he looked. And Bramimunde hath yielded up her towers. But all the stars burn. In come his men. Chase them the Franks. and the Emperour therewith. CCLXIV Great was the heat. Orders they'd none. high up clomb Bramimunde. and the moon shines clear. Wept from his eyes. A thousand Franks he bids seek through the streets. the dust arose and blew. and hotly Franks pursued. . So there remain no fraud nor falsity. And when she saw those Arrabits confused Aloud she cried: "Give us your aid.

Of Sarraguce Charles garrisons the tow'rs. who was so wise and proud. And those in France that are the sagest found. And pagans bring into the baptistry. No harm to her. with golden pieces bound. They pass Nerbone by force and by vigour. that city of high valour. but only good he's vowed. Was come to him there Alde. If any Charles with contradiction meet Then hanged or burned or slaughtered shall he be.97 That King fears God. his noble companioun. When he is come into his lofty house. on th'terrace he dismounts. Said to the King: "Where's Rollanz the Captain. with joy and gladness out. at Aix. the King and all his army mount. and also calls Borgounds. Baivers. into the hall he came. Lotherencs and Frisouns. CCLXVII Passes the night. A thousand knights he's left there. Charles canters on. On water then Bishops their blessing speak. And the Archbishop. returning out of Spain. and would do His service. who thither crowd. Saxons. From Normandy. Not before Aix will he not make sojourn. Thereon begins the cause of Gueneloun. to Saint Sevrin endowed. he'ld have me for his mate?" Then upon Charles a heavy sorrow weighed. Stands the olifant. Clomb to th' Palace. from Brittany and Poitou. So are they come. All the pilgrims may see it. In white coffers he bids them lay those counts At Saint Romain: So rest they in that ground. Very Christians. Who guard that town as bids their Emperour. Above the altar. fighters stout. by valleys and by mounts. Arrived in France. After. Germans he calls. that fair dame. And Bramimunde a prisoner is bound. Five score thousand and more are thus redeemed. Come to Burdele. Canters so far. By messengers he seeks his judges out. Passing Girunde in great ships. Franks them to God and to His Angels vow. there abound. Ev'n unto Blaive he's brought his nephew down And Oliver. save that alone the queen To France the Douce goes in captivity. By love the King will her conversion seek. Who sware to me. CCLXVIII That Emperour. in his chief seat. the clear day opens now. .

and wept. CCLXIX Alde the fair is gone now to her rest. Thereon began the trial and defence Of Guenelun. Her memory the King with honour kept. he tore his beard again: "Sister. I'll give you one far better in exchange. Saint Silvester's that baron's. before the King's Palace.98 And his eyes wept. and in an ancient geste How Charles called from many lands his men. . AOI. When Rollant's dead shall I alive remain!" Her colour fails. dear friend. His Angels and His Saints. Never. many tell. Those serfs have bound him. When Charles saw that she was truly dead Four countesses at once he summoned. AOI. Before the altar her tomb was fashioned well. CCLXXI Written it is. of a dead man you spake. Assembled them at Aix. In deer-hide thongs his hands they've helpless made. for some chief feast was held. Holy that day. The felon Guene. and shall my marches take. That is Loewis. To a monast'ry of nuns they bare her thence. Her soul God's Mercy awaits! Barons of France weep therefore and complain. She falls. what further can I say. she's dead. raised her from th'earth again." Alde answered him: "That word to me is strange. please God. all in his iron chains Is in that town. In bitter grief his trial there he awaits. in his Chapelle. Before himself the Emperour has him led. With clubs and whips they trounce him well and baste: He has deserved not any better fate. at th' feet of Charlemain. Pity he had. fast upon his stake. our Emperour. who had the treason spelt. CCLXX That Emperour is now returned to Aix. Yet the King thought she was but swooning then. Took her in's hands. All night their watch until the dawn they held. On her shoulders her head still drooped and leant. He is my son.

his voice was full: "For th' Love of God. right baron-like he'd looked. There of my Franks a thousand score did steal. he cried aloud. To Oliver. . before the King there. By my cunning I held myself secure. and all who'ld judge his doom. and all their comrades too. his great cause is beginning. soundly his reasons giving." Guenes the count kneels at his feet to kiss them. listen to me. Thirty he has around him of his kinsmen. CCLXXIV When Guenes sees. And Oliver. Were he loyal. baruns! I was in th' host." said Guenes. whom never more you'll see. his nephew. To that fighter Rollant my challenge threw. Message I bare to king Marsiliun. whose arm to fight is stiffened. beside our Emperour.99 CCLXXII "Lords and barons. Charles heard that. A good vassal." Says Pinabel: "Straightway you'll be delivered. So he decreed death for me and dolour. And my nephew." "Felon be I. that you to hang committeth? Let the Emperour but once together bring us." Answered the Franks: "Now go we to the moot. Hatred of me had Rollant. I vow there's not the least. Lusty his limbs. "aught to conceal! He did from me much gold and wealth forfeit. Vengeance I gat. After. Says to him Guenes: "In you my faith is fixed. But treason." Answer the Franks: "Take counsel now must we. stood. no. betrayed the dozen peers. but there's no treason proved. Save me this day from death. his face of gentle hue. Is there one Frank. who in Sorence castle liveth. 'Tis Pinabel." CCLXXIII So Guenelun. There's one of them to whom the others listen. "Of Guenelun judge what the right may be! He was in th'host. wealth to gain. in 's pride and courtesy. And by his side his thirty kinsmen knew. also from prison. With my steel brand he shall be smartly chidden. Well can he speak. Service I did him there in faith and truth. And. Whence to destroy and slay him did I seek. and his noble baruns. He saw those Franks." Charles the King doth speak. even in Spain with me.

Says each to each: "'Twere well to let it stand. with Poitevins and Franks. Tierris. Felon is Guene. and yet was hardly great. And. before him came. Gefrei's brother. And if Rollant was forfeited to Guenes Still your service to him full warrant gave. So he may serve you still in love and truth. returning to Carlun. Black was his hair and somewhat brown his face. towards you. Nor any wealth nor gold may win him back. With love and faith he'll serve him after that. Deep down he bowed his head and all his face For th' grief he had. Rollant is dead.100 CCLXXV To th' counsel go those of Bavier and Saxe." Then says the King: "You're felons all of you!" AOI. Tierri. Those of Alverne the greatest court'sy have. no more ye'll see Rollanz. Nor for no wealth may we his life renew. is perjured and ashamed: Wherefore I judge that he be hanged and slain. so noble a man 's he proved. CCLXXVI Then his barons. 's that man. no longer in our view. AOI." There is but one agrees not to their plan. Lean were his limbs. Nay let him live. . brother to Don Geifreit. And courteously to the Emperour he spake: "Fair' Lord and King. and of the King demand That he cry quits with Guenes for this act. that Duke of Anjou famed. Normans also. From Pinabel most quietly draw back. Was not too small. Leave we this cause. we beseech of you That you cry quits with county Guenelun. do not yourself dismay! You know that I have served you many ways: By my ancestors should I this cause maintain. caitiff himself proclaimed. Since he is dead. One of his knights. and lengthy and delicate. would do combat. CCLXXVII When Charles saw that all of them did fail. Enough there are of Tudese and Germans. Most foolish then is he. since th' hour that he betrayed. Say to their King: "Sire. His carcass flung to th' dogs beside the way.

See Tierri here." Thirty kinsmen offer their loyal pledge. on you this cause depends. Upon their heads they've laced their helmets clear. Command therefore this noise be made an end. from sin set free. Next they demand their horses and their armour. with pure gold hilted each. . vassalous and nimble. Until the right be shewn. They're well confessed. CCLXXX For battle. At last they mount on their swift coursing steeds." CCLXXVIII Before the King is come now Pinabel. absolved. Masses they've heard. For Rollant's sake pity for Tierri feel. His right hand glove he offereth to Chares. bids guard them well. Five score thousand chevaliers therefor weep. In their right hands they grasp their trenchant spears. who hath his judgment dealt. AOI. Rich offerings to those minsters they leave." Answer the Franks: "Now very well you spake." the King has said.101 As a felon who felony did make. And from their necks hang down their quartered shields. Great is he. Four benches then upon the place he marshals Where sit them down champions of either party. Who bears his blow has no more time to dwell: Says to him: "Sire. Says the Emperour: "Good pledges must I get. And girt on swords. Communion received. Oger the Dane between them made the parley. "I'll do the same for you. But. And. light and strong. They're chos'n aright. are fastened on their feet. AOI. and will the cause contest. as the others' judgement cast them. has he a friend that would dispute my claim With this my sword which I have girt in place My judgement will I warrant every way. I cry him false. Before Carlun now both the two appear: They have their spurs. ready you might them see. strong. their hauberks brightly gleam. That Emperour by way of hostage guards it. now." His deer-hide glove in the King's hand he's left. CCLXXIX When Tierri sees that battle shall come after.

I pray thee. Nimbly enough upon their feet they rise. the reins aside they cast. They spur them well. Nimble and strong is Pinabels. But with those swords whose hilts with gold are lined Upon those helms of steel they beat and strike: Great are the blows. AOI. "I would sustain the cause of my kindred . and fall upon the grass. unwearied.102 God knows full well which way the end shall be. Pure felon I. not so!" said Pinabel. With virtue great. CCLXXXII Upon the ground are fallen both the knights. who that sight regard. Proof men are these. yield: I'll be thy man. For the pleasure my wealth I'll give to thee. dart. the girths asunder start. The saddles slip. us between!" AOI. Pinabel." Answers Tierri: "Such counsel's not for me. Each the other seeks. For vassalage thy peers esteem thee well: Of this battle let us now make an end! With Charlemagne I soon will have thee friends. All of their shields shatter and rend apart. Thou'rt great and strong. But make the King with Guenelun agree. "O God!" says Charles. "Make plain to us the right!" CCLXXXIII Says Pinabel "Tierri. those helmets to divide. To Guenelun such justice shall be dealt Day shall not dawn but men of it will tell. Their hauberks tear. and light. CCLXXXIV Then said Tierri "Bold art thou. CCLXXXI Down under Aix there is a pasture large Which for the fight of th' two barons is marked. Five score thousand weep. in love and fealty. with body finely bred. if e'er I that concede! God shall this day the right shew. and of great vassalage." "Please the Lord God. The chevaliers of France do much repine. to strike each other. gallop fast. And their horses. horses are out of mind.

Leaps such a spark. Franks cry aloud: "God hath great virtue done. Geifrei d'Anjou. CCLXXXVII Now that Tierris the battle fairly wins. And his right cheek in flowing blood is drenched." Then with their swords began to strike again Upon those helms that were with gold begemmed Into the sky the bright sparks rained and fell. on 's helmet of Provence. Forty barons are in his following. The chevaliers most sweetly disarm him. and others then they bring. And those his kin. without one man be dead. CCLXXXVI Sees Tierris then 'that in the face he's struck. over his belly. It is proved right that Guenelun be hung. the King takes in his arms to kiss. till dead he's flung. Rather I'ld die than hear reproaches said. It cannot be that they be sundered. Tierri. Nor make an end. AOI. And his hauberk. Of his steel brand the point he then presents. And wipes his face with his great marten-skins. On grassy field runs clear his flowing blood. An Arab mule they've brought. rent. On Tierri's brow the helmet has he wrenched So down his face its broken halves descend. Naimes the Duke. Oger that Danish Prince. Brandishes him on th' sword. To the nose-piece he's broken it and cut. That Emperour Charles is come to him. Upon that blow is all the battle won. whereon he sits. Who death from him prevents. AOI. Strikes Pinabel on 's helmet brown and rough. Pinabel of Sorence. With baronage and joy they bring him in.103 No mortal man is there from whom I've fled. ." AOI. God's his warrant. And from his head scatters his brains in th' dust. CCLXXXV He's very proof. the grass is kindled thence. He lays them down. that in his cause are come. Willalme of Blaive therewith. Tierri he strikes.

and of a temper mad." The King commands his provost then. Basbrun: "Go hang them all on th' tree of cursed wood! Nay." They answer him: "Sponsors the rite demands. himself and 's friends undoes. by their heads. She would fear God. Dames of estate and long inheritance. led forward four sejeants Towards a stream that flowed amid that land. Fore all the rest. that straight are hung. advise what shall be done. If one escape. save thus?" With an hundred serjeants by force they come. so God her soul may have. All his sinews were strained until they snapped. need make no boast of that. Guenes is dead. There they baptised the Queen of Sarazands. He called to him the Bishops out of France. So oft she's heard sermons and reprimands.104 They come to Aix. by this beard. Which. whose hairs are white enough. CCXC When the Emperour had made his whole vengeance." The baths at Aix great companies attract. So to lead forth four stallions they bade. The punishment of the others then begins. AOI. to death and shame thou'rt struck!" He answers him: "How could I act. 'twas voted by the Franks That Guenes die with marvellous great pangs. halt and dismount therein. CCLXXXVIII His counts and Dukes then calls to him Carlun: "With these I guard. Hither they came because of Guenelun. as pledges gave them up. and christening demands. On the green grass his clear blood gushed and ran. Who betrays man. For Pinabel. Those of Baviere and also the Germans: "A dame free-born lies captive in my hands. And all the limbs were from his body dragged. Who betrays man. Sones fell Gue into perdition black. a felon recreant. Baptise her then." Answer the Franks: "Shall not of them live one. CCLXXXIX Then turned away the Baivers and Germans And Poitevins and Bretons and Normans. Thirty of them there are. After. . Those steeds were swift. they bound his feet and both his hands.

he tore his snowy beard. In the city which pagans have besieged." Right loth to go. Saint Gabriel is come from God. And now that King in 's vaulted chamber sleeps. SO ENDS THE TALE WHICH TUROLD HATH CONCEIVED. and speaks: "Summon the hosts. King Vivien thou'lt succour there. Go thou by force into the land of Bire. that Emperour was he: "God!" said the King: "My life is hard indeed!" Tears filled his eyes.net/ . Christian is she by very cognisance. at Imphe. The Christians there implore thee and beseech. Charles. of thine Empire. His mighty wrath's abated from its heat. the darkness is grown deep. CCXCI When the Emperour his justice hath achieved.105 And found for her the name of Juliane. End of The Project Gutenberg Etext of The Song of Roland from http://manybooks. Passes the day. And Bramimunde has christening received.

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