Medieval Quotes

In the month of July of the year 1348, between the feasts of St. Benedict and St. Swithin, a strange thing came upon England, for out of the east there drifted a monstrous cloud, purple and piled, heavy with evil climbing slowly up the hushed heaven. ~ Sir Nigel

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Yet it was there, in that steam of death, in that reek of corruption, that the brighter and freer England was born. There in that dark hour the first streak of the new dawn was seen. For in no way save but a great upheaval and change could the nation break away from that iron feudal system which held her limbs. ~ Sir Nigel

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In those simple times there was a great wonder and mystery in life. Man walked in fear and solemnity, with Heaven very close above his head, and Hell below his very feet. ~ Sir Nigel

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Dame Ermyntrude Loring, wife, and mother of warriors, was herself a formidable figure. Tall and gaunt, with hard craggy features and intolerant dark eyes, even her snow-white hair and stooping back could not entirely remove the sense of fear which she inspired in those around her. Her thoughts and memories went back to harsher times, and she looked upon the England around her as a degenerate and effeminate land which had fallen away for the old standard of knightly courtesy and valor. ~ Sir Nigel

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To his pure and knightly soul not Edith alone, but every woman, sat high and aloof, enthroned and exalted, with a thousand mystic excellencies and virtues which raised her far above the rude world of man. There was joy in contact with them; and yet there was fear, fear lest his own unworthiness, his untrained tongue or rougher ways should in some way break rudely upon this delicate and tender thing. ~ Sir Nigel

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A gruff murmur from the others showed that they were of one mind with the prince. The light of the torches from the walls beat upon the line of stern faces at the high table. They had sat like flint, and the Italian shrank from their inexorable eyes. He looked swiftly round, but armed men choked every entrance. The shadow of death had fallen athwart his soul. ~ Sir Nigel

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"Listen to me while I lay a curse upon you and yours!" she cries, as she raised her shriveled arms and blighted him with her flashing eyes: "As you have done to the house of Loring, so may God do to you, until your power is swept from the land of England, and of your great Abbey of Waverley there is nothing left but a pile of grey stones in a green meadow! I see it! With my old eyes I see it! From scullion to abbot and from cellar to tower, may Waverley and all within it droop and wither from this night on!" ~ Sir Nigel

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"The Scotch knights have no masters in the world, and he who can hold his own with the best of them, be it a Douglas, a Murray or a Seaton, has nothing more to learn." ~ Sir Nigel

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Between these two there lay a broad zone comprising all the centre of the country which was a land of blood and violence, where no law prevailed save that of the sword. ~ Sir Nigel

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"Nay," said she, "the saints in Heaven cannot help me now until they take me to my rest. There is no place for me in the world beyond, and all my friends were slain on the day I was taken. Leave me, brave men, and let me care for myself. Already it lightens in the east, and black will be your fate if you are taken. Go, and may the blessing of one who was once a holy nun go with you and guard you from danger." ~ Sir Nigel

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