Page 1335

1335 THE CRUSADES-TEE FIRST CRUSADE.

he should possess a province of his own.

Just in proportion as this ambitious sentiment was warmed and nurtured among

the knights, their horror of the atrocious

Turk, sitting on the Holy Sepulcher, was

mitigated into a mild sort of hatred which

might well be postponed. But the multitude clamored to be led on against Jerusalem, and the princes were obliged to frame

excuses for spending the summer at Antioch. The horses taken from the Turks must

be trained to service under warriors of heavy

armor. The season was too hot for a campaign through Syria-the autumn would be

fitter for the enterprise.

The stay in the city, however, proved

unfortunate. Raymond of Toulouse, to whom

the citadel had been surrendered just after

the battle, quarreled with Boemund, and

the army was distracted with their feud.

The luxurious living of Antioch proved

too much for the rough men of the West.

A contagion broke out, and fifty thousand

Christians were carried off before its ravages

were stayed. Among, those who perished

was Adhemar, bishop of Puy and legate

of the Pope, a man scarcely less important

in rank and influence than Godfrey and Boemund. So the summer of 1098 was wasted

in enterprises of personal ambition, little

conducive to the reputation of the Western

princes.

What with battle, what with famine, what

with pestilence and desertion, the army of the

First Crusade was now reduced to fifty thousand men. It was perceived by the warrior

pilgrims that their chiefs were busy with their

own affairs, and neglectful of the great object

for which the Holy War had been undertaken.

Their discontent at this state of affairs broke

into murmurs, and murmurs into threats. The

Crusaders declared that they would discard the

old and choose new leaders, who would bring

them to the city and tomb of Christ. This

ominous word broke the spell, and Godfrey,

Raymond, Short Hose, and Tancred agreed to

march at once on Palestine. As for Stephen

of Blois and Hugh of Vermandois, they had

already given over the war and returned to

Europe.

It was evident on the march from Antioch

to Jerusalem that already the furious zeal

with which the Crusade had been begun had

somewhat abated. Now a petty expedition against the Saracens of a neighboring province,

and now a quarrel between Arnold de Robes,

chaplain of Robert Short Hose, and Peter

Barthelemy, relative to the sacred spear-head found in the church at Antioch, distracted the attention of the warriors from the prime object of the war. The whole

winter was thus consumed, and it was not

until the 29th of May, 1099, that the remnant of the great army, ascending the Heights

of Emaus, came at early morning in sight

of the City of David.

Then followed a scene of indescribable

emotion. There lay the walls and towers of

that holy but now profaned place, where

the Son of Mary and the Carpenter had

walked among men. To the Crusaders, the

thought was overpowering. They uncovered

their heads. They put off their sandals.

They fell upon their faces. They wept.

They threw up their hands and cried: "Jerusalem! Jerusalem!" Then they seized their

swords, and would fain rush to an immediate

assault. In a short time Tancred secured

possession of Bethlehem, and, when a body

of Saracen cavalry came forth to stay the

progress of the Christians, he chased them

furiously to and through the gates of the

city. The main army encamped on the

north side of Jerusalem-that part of the

rampart being most accessible to assault.

The leaders present to share in the toil and

glory of the siege were Godfrey of Bouillon

and his brother Eustace, Raymond of Toulouse, Baldwin du Bourg, Robert of Flanders,

Robert Short Hose of Normandy, and Edgar

Atheling of England, who, after settling the

affairs of Scotland with the usurper Donald

Bane, had led his Saxon Knights to the

East and joined the Christian army in Laodicea.

While the preparations were making for

the siege an anchorite came out of the hermitage on Mount Olivet and harangued

the princes. He exhorted them to take the

city by storm, assuring them of the aid of

heaven. Great was the enthusiasm inspired

by his presence in the camp. Soldiers and

chiefs were swayed by the appeal, and it

was resolved to make an immediate assault.

Poorly as they were supplied with the necessary implements and machines for such

an undertaking, the Crusaders pressed their

way to the outer wall and broke an opening