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ROGER OF WENDOVER Flowers of history. The history of England from the descent of the saxons to A.D. 1235. vol.1


Sir John Froissart's Chronicles of England, France, Spain and the Ajoining Countries from the latter part of the reign of Edward II to the coronation of Henry IV in 12 volumes 

Chronicles of Enguerrand De Monstrelet (Sir John Froissart's Chronicles continuation) in 13 volumes 

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Flowers of history. The history of England from the descent of the saxons to A.D. 1235. vol.1
page 337

332 BOGEB OF WENDOVER. [A.D. 10S6. morning advanced against the enemy in a state of intoxication, all the foot soldiers armed with battle-axes, and holding their shields in front, presented an impenetrable mass; which would doubtless have secured the fortune of the day, had not the Normans, after their usual custom, pretended to fly, and so dissolved their close array. King Harold stood on foot near a standard with his brothers, that, sharing the common danger, no one might think of flying. On the other side, the Normans had spent the whole night in confessing their sins, and in the morning, after strengthening themselves by partaking of the body and blood of the Lord, boldly awaited the attack of the enemy. Placing his foot soldiers and bowmen in the first line, William stationed his cavalry on either wing behind them. Then with a serene countenance and loud voice declaring that God would favour his righteous cause, the duke called for his arms, and his attendants having in their haste put on his tunic the wrong way, he altered it with a smile, saying, " The might of my duchy shall be changed into that of a kingdom." Then, singing the song of Roland to kindle the courage of his men, and invoking the aid of God, they began the battle. They fought bravely on both sides great part of the day, neither giving way ; till at last William signified to his men, that they should pretend to fly, and retire from the field ; on seeing which, the English army broke their ranks to pursue and cut down the fugitives, and thus hastened their own destruction ; for the Normans turned again, and, attacking the English, speedily put them to flight. The latter took post on a hillock, and hurling their weapons and throwing stones from the upper ground, easily repulsed the hot attack of the Normans, and slew numbers of them. Then making way by a path known to themselves to an eminence surrounded with a steep trench, they slew there such a number of Normans, that the inequalities of the ground were filled with corpses. In this way fortune alternated from one side to the other, as long as Harold's soul and body kept together. Not content with exhorting the rest to play the part of a good soldier, he would engage hand to hand with the assailants, suffering none to approach with impunity, and severing horse and rider at a blow. William, on the other hand, moved everywhere among the foremost, encouraging his men with his voice, and not suffering them to

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