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And as he saylyd toward Surryep,
' Rob. Brun. Chron. p. 170. a So Fabyan of Rosamond's bower, The kynge's owne galeie he cald it "that no creature, man or woman, myght Trencthemere. wynne to her."i. e. go in, by contraction, · Thus R. de Brunne
“ he fonWin. Chron. vol. i. p. 320. col. i. edit. dred the Sarazyns otuynne." p. 574. He 1533 (pinnan A. S. to labour, strive at, forced the Saracens into two parties.and hence attain to by labour.-Edit. s (Vid. supra, p. 76. Note ®.]
? [“ Trenchemere, so saith the boke.-
And for joye off this dede,
The see brent all off fyr Gregeys". This fyr Gregeys, or Grecian fire, seems to be a composition belonging to the Arabian chemistry. It is frequently mentioned by the Byzantine historians, and was very much used in the wars of the middle ages, both by sea and land. It was a sort of wild-fire, said to be inextinguishable by water, and chiefly used for burning ships, against which it was thrown in pots or phials by the hand. In land engagements it seems to have been discharged by machines constructed on purpose. The oriental Greeks pretended that this artificial fire was invented by Callinicus, an architect of Heliopolis, under Constantine; and that Constantine prohibited them from communicating the manner of making it to any foreign people. It was however in common use among the nations confederated with the Byzantines: and Anna Comnena has given an account of its ingredients w, which were bitumen, sulphur, and naphtha. It is called feu gregois in the French chronicles and romances. Our minstrel, I believe, is singular in saying that Richard scattered this fire on Saladin's ships: many monkish historians of the holy war, in describing the siege of Acon, relate that it was employed on that occasion, and many others, by the Saracens against the
* See Du Cange, Not. ad Joinvil. p. 71. And Gl. Lat. V. Ignis GRÆCUS.
% [shalmys, shawrns. ]
Christians*. Procopius, in his history of the Goths, calls it Medea's Oil, as if it had been a preparation used in the sorceries of that enchantress y
The quantity of huge battering rams and other military engines, now unknown, which Richard is said to have transported into the Holy Land, was prodigious. The names of some of them are given in another part of this romancez. It is an historical fact, that Richard was killed by the French from the shot of an arcubalist, a machine which he often worked skillfully with his own hands: and Guillaume le Briton, a Frenchman, in his Latin poem called Philippeis, introduces Atropos making a decree, that Richard should die by no other means than by a wound from this destructive instrument; the use of which, after it had been interdicted by the Pope in the year 1139, he revived, and is supposed to have shewn the French in the Crusades 2
Sunnes he hadde, on wondyr wyse;
Mangneleso off gret queintyse“; * See more particularly Chron. Rob. Abb. p. 621. ed. Hearn. sub ann. 1190. Brun. p. 170. And Benedict. Abb. Robert de Brunne mentions this engine p. 652. And Joinv. Hist. L. p. 39. 46. from our romance. Chron. p. 157. 52. 53. 62. 70.
The romancer it sais Richarde did make Y iv. 11.
a pele, ? Twenty grete gynnes for the nones On kastelle wise allwais wrought of tre Kynge Richard sent for to cast ful wele.
In schip he ded it lede, &c. ---Among these were the Mategriffon and His pele from that dai forward he cald it the Robynet. Sign. N. iii. The former
Mate-griffon. of these is thus described. Sign. E. üïïi.
Pele is a house (a castle, fortification). I have a castell I understonde
Archbishop Turpin mentionsCharleIs made of tembre of Englonde magne's wooden castles at the siege of a With syxe stages full of tourelles
city in France. cap. ix. Well flouryshed with cornelles, &c.
See Carpentier's Suppl. Du Cange, See Du Cange Not. Joinv. p. 68. Mate- Lat. Gl. tom. i. p. 434. And Du Cange GRYFFON is the Terror or plague of the ad Ann. Alex. p. 357. Greeks. Du Cange, in his Gallo-Byzan. See supr. p. 71. Note“. It is observ. tine history, mentions a castle of this able, that Manganum, Mangonell, was name in Peloponnesus. Benedict says, not known among the Roman military that Richard erected a strong castle, machines, but existed first in Byzantine which he called Max-kryffon, on the brow Greek Mayyavor, a circumstance which of a steep mountain without the walls of seems to point out its inventors, at least the city of Messina in Sicily. Benedict. to shew that it belonged to the Oriental
8 [gynnes, engines.]
Arwblast bowe, and with gynne
Out of the eye ran red blood art of war, It occurs often in the By- CHRISTIANA mentions a vast area at Conzantine Tactics, although at the same stantinople in which the machines of time it was perhaps derived from the war were kept. p. 155. Latin Machina : yet the Romans do not See supr. p. 166. Note 5, appear to have used in their wars so for e This device is thus related by Robert midable and complicated an engine, as of Brunne, Chron. p. 175. 176. this is described to have been in the Richard als suithe did raise his engyns writers of the dark ages. It was the The Inglis wer than bly:he, Normans capital machine of the wars of those ages.
and Petevyns : Du Cange in his CONSTANTINOPOLIS
10 [With spryngelles of fyre they dyde honde.)-Espringalles, Fr. engines. See Du Cange, Gl. Lat. SPINGARDA, QUADRELLUS. And Not. Joinv. p. 78. Perhaps he means pellets of tow dipped in the Grecian fire, which sometimes were thrown from a sort of mortar. Joinville says, that the Greek fire thrown from a mortar looked like a huge dragon flying through the air, and that at midnight the flashes of it illuminated the Christian camp, as if it had been broad day. When Louis's army was encamped on the banks of the Thanis in Ægypt, says the same curious historian, about the year 1249, they erected two chats chaleils, or covered galleries, to shelter their workmen, and at the end of them two befrois, or vast moveable wooden towers, full of crossbow men, who kept a continual discharge on the opposite shore. Besides eighteen other new-invented engines for throwing stones and bolts. But in one night, the deluge of Greek fire ejected from the Saracen camp utterly destroyed these enormous machines. This was a common disaster; but Joinville says, that his pious monarch sometimes averted the danger, by prostrating himself on the ground, and invoking our Saviour with the appellation of Beau Sire. p. 37. 39.
Beffore the trowgh there stood on;
Sarezynes theroff hadde gret drede'. The last circumstance recalls a fiend-like appearance drawn by Shakespeare; in which, exclusive of the application, he has converted ideas of deformity into the true sublime, and rendered an image terrible, which in other hands would have probably been ridiculous.
Methought his eyes
It was some fiend At the touch of this powerful magician, to speak in Milton's language, “ The griesly terror grows tenfold more dreadful and deform."
The moving castles described by our minstrel, which seem to be so many fabrics of romance, but are founded in real history, afforded suitable materials for poets who deal in the marvellous. Accordingly they could not escape the fabling genius of Tasso, who has made them instruments of enchantment, and accommodated them, with great propriety, to the operations of infernal spirits.
At the siege of Babylon, the soldan Saladin sends king Richard a horse. The messenger says,
“ Thou sayest thy God is ful of myght:
Wylt thou graunt, with spere and scheeld, In bargeis and galeis he set mylnes to go, Rynes is the river Rhine, whose shores The sailes, as men sais, som were blak or bottom supplied the stones shot from and blo,
their military engines. The Normans, Som were rede and grene, the wynde a barbarous people, appear to have used about them blewe.
machines of immense and very artificial The stones were of Rynes, the noyse construction at the siege of Paris in 885 dreadfull and grete
See the last note. And Vit. Saladin. per It affraicd the Sarazins, as leven the fyre Schultens, p. 135. 141. 167, &c. out schete.
line 2631. The noye was unride, &c.
* King Lear, iv. vi.