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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.


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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The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.
page 504

A.D. 997. Sigar, bishop of Wells, died, and was succeeded by jElfwin. The same year, the provinces of North Wales, Dorsetshire, Devonshire, and Cornwall, were desolated by the Danes with fire and sword, with slaughter of men, and pillage, without being able to offer any resistance. Also, the monastery which is called Cfjabfctoiu was burnt with fire. A.D. 998. John was elected pope, and filled the Roman chair for ten months. And, in àie course of the same year, he was succeeded by Silvester, who is also called Gerebert, and who governed the see four years and one month. This Gerebert was born in Gaul, and from his boyhood lived as a monk at Floriacum ; afterwards, being influenced either by weariness or by cupidity, he fled by night into Spain, in order to learn astrology. And when he had arrived in Spain, he applied himself to a person skilful in that art, who gave him some astronomical books to copy out ; but among the books, there was one book which contained a complete system of the whole art, and this he could not by any contrivance get from the hands of his master : on the other hand, Gerebert was very earnest in his desire for the book, and as, when he had had recourse to entreaties, he had not succeeded, he now offered many gifts down, and promised many more. But, as all his promises were despised by his master, Gerebert devised a nocturnal stratagem, that if he could not get it by any other means, he might become master of it by theft. Therefore, he persuaded his master's daughter, with whom he was in love, to aid him when her father had been put to bed drunk, after a banquet ; and then he took the book, which was placed beneath the pillow on which he was snoring, and fled with it. The master, when he had shaken off sleep, pursued the fugitive, by means of the information which he got from the stars, in whose movements he was so skilful. Gerebert, also, ascertaining by the inspection of the stars, that his master was pursuing him, concealed himself, hanging to a wooden bridge which was in his neighbourhood, and clinging to it in such manner that he was touching neither earth nor water. And by these means, the eagerness of the seeker was frustrated, and his master returned home in confusion. Then, Gerebert proceeded swiftly on his journey, and came to the sea, where, having summoned the devil by his incantations, he did him homage, to persuade him to convey him safely beyond the sea, out of the power of his master, who was pursuiug him. And the devil did so.

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