Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Chapter 113 [part 2 of 4]

[How Nasciano spoke to King Lisuarte and convinced him that what he said was true.]

[Saint Benedict of Nursia, depicted by Fra Angelico in a fresco made between 1437-1446, at the Museo di San Marco, Florence.]

Upon entering the camp, he asked where King Lisuarte’s tents were, and he went to them without pausing to rest. When the King saw Nasciano, he immediately recognized him and was very surprised because, given his great age, he did not believe he could have left his hermitage. And he also surmised that a man like him, so ill and of such a holy life, had only come for some great purpose. He went to receive him, and when he arrived, he knelt and said:

“Father Nasciano, friend and servant of God, give me your blessing.”

The hermit raised his hand and said:

“May the Lord whom I serve and whom everyone is obliged to serve, protect you and give you such wisdom that instead of holding dear the perishable things of this world, ye may disdain them and do such work by which your soul may possess and achieve the glory and repose for which it was created, if by your own fault ye do not lose it.”

Then he gave him a blessing, raised him up by the hands, and knelt to kiss them, but the King embraced him and would not let him. He took him by the hand and had him sit beside him. He ordered that he immediately be brought something to eat, which was done, and after he had eaten, he went with him to a private area of the tent and asked him why he had come, saying how very amazed he was that he had been able to travel there so far from his dwelling given his age and retreat from the world.

The hermit answered:

“My lord, everything ye have said may rightly be believed, for truly, given the great age both of my body and of my will, I am not in a state to do more than leave my cell to go to the altar. But it falls upon those who wish to serve our Lord Jesus Christ and who wish to follow his holy teachings and footsteps, that at no time due to their age or labor and fatigue may they weaken even a moment, remembering how God is the true Creator of all things, and nothing may compel Him except His holy pity and mercy, and Who wished to come to give us paradise, which had been closed to us in this world where, after so many injuries and insults from dishonorable men, He received cruel suffering and death. And what can we do, for all our efforts to serve him, that could reach the height of his shoelace, as his great friend and servant [Saint John the Baptist] said?

“And considering this, leaving behind the fear of danger to my small life, thinking that better here than where I was I could follow His service, I decided with great labor to my person and great will in my desire to make this trip, in which He was pleased to guide me to you, my lord, to receive my message, placing aside all wrath and passion, and above all the vile pride that is the enemy of all virtue and conscience, so that following His service, all the things are forgotten in this world that seem to be worth so much and that in the other more real world are abhorred.

“And coming to the point, my Lord, I say that when I was in that hermitage where fate guided you through thick forest and high mountain and where ye spoke with me about everything involving that very handsome and high-born childe Esplandian, I learned about this great confrontation and cruel war where I now find you, and the reason and cause behind it. And I know very well that what ye wish, my good lord, is to have your daughter marry the Emperor of Rome, and from it so much evil in harm has come, but this cannot be done, and not only for what the greater and lesser men of your kingdom have told you many times, that the Princess is your legitimate heir and successor after the end of your days. This was and is a very legitimate reason for which very rightly and in good conscience the wedding must be averted, but there is another reason that is hidden from you and others and is made manifest to me, which is an even more mighty reason according to human and divine law to avert it: your daughter is joined in matrimony with the husband that our Lord Jesus Christ considered good, and it is in His service that she is wed.”

When he heard this, the King thought that as this good man was now very elderly, his mind and discretion were troubled, or that someone had instructed him very well in what to say. And he answered:

“Nasciano, my good friend, my daughter Oriana never had a husband nor has one now, except the Emperor to whom I gave her, because with him, although she would be separated from my kingdom, she would be placed in much greater honor and much higher estate. And God is witness that my intention was never to disinherit her and make my other daughter the heir, as some say; instead I believed that, if my kingdom were united through love with the Empire of Rome, the holy Catholic faith could be greatly extolled. If I had known or imagined that this would have resulted in such enormity, with very little urging I would have changed my wish and will and taken other counsel. But since my intention was just and good, I believe that neither what has happened nor what shall come can be considered my responsibility.”

The good man told him:

“My lord, that is why I tell you that what is hidden from you is manifest to me. And leaving aside what ye told me about your sincere and noble will, which can and must be believed given your great discretion and the high honor in which God has placed you, I want you to know from me what would be very hard to find out from anyone else. And I speak of that day in which by your orders I arrived at the tents in the forest where the Queen and her daughter Oriana were with many ladies and damsels, and ye with many knights, when I brought with me that blessed child Esplandian, who had led a lioness on a leash, and to whom the Lord has promised much, as ye have heard, my good lord.

“The Queen and Oriana told me all the secrets of their consciences so that in the name of He who created them and must save them I might give them the penance that the health of their souls required. I learned from your daughter Oriana about the day that Amadis of Gaul rescued her from Arcalaus the Sorcerer and four other knights who were carrying her away as a prisoner. At the same time ye were tricked by the damsel who brought you from London using the boon that ye had promised her, and ye were taken prisoner and were in great danger of losing your life and your entire kingdom, from which his brother Sir Galaor freed you at great danger to his own life.

“For the great service that Amadis did for her as well as what his brother did for you, as reward she promised to marry that noble knight, who has rescued so many people in peril and is the height and example for all the knights in the world, both in his lineage as in his courage and all the other good qualities that a knight should have. From what followed, by the grace and will of God, was engendered Esplandian, whom He wished to make so exalted and outstanding over all others alive, for we can truly say that in many great epochs in the past and that are yet to come, no one has known of a mortal person who was raised with such a wonderful miracle. Regarding what the great wisdom of Urganda the Unrecognized has made publicly known, ye know far better than I, my lord.

“And so we can say that although it took place fortuitously, it seems in fact that it was none other than a mystery of our Lord, whom it pleased to have it occur. And since it pleases Him, it should not give sorrow to you, my good lord. Instead, considering it to be His will, and considering the nobility and great valor of this knight, ye should deem it good to take him, as well as all his great lineage, as your servant and son, ordering, as ye can, that your honor be protected in the present danger, and in what is to come it may take such form that people of good conscience will determine it as service to the Lord in whose service we are born into this world, and to you, for after Him ye are his minister in temporal affairs.

“And now, great King Lisuarte, I wish to see if the great discretion that God has wished to embellish you with is well employed in your elevated and high estate, where more by his infinite goodness then by your merit He has placed you. And since He has given you more than ye deserve, you will not deem it much to do some of what His holy doctrines teach you.”

When the King heard this, he was stunned, and he said:

“Oh, Father Nasciano! Is it true that my daughter is married to Amadis?”

“It is certainly true,” he said. “He is the husband of your daughter, and the childe Esplandian is your grandson.”

“Oh, holy Mary, help me!” the King said. “How dangerous it was to keep that secret from me for so long, for if I had known it or suspected it, so many unfortunate men would not have been lost and killed who did not deserve it. And I would wish that ye, my good friend, had let me know about it in time that this could have been prevented.”

“That could not be,” the good man said, “because what is said in confession must not be revealed, and it has been told to you now with the permission of the Princess, whom I have just seen and who was pleased to have it revealed. And I have faith that if the present situation can be made right, it would be in the service to the Savior of the world, so He will forgive the past with small penance since the deed rather than the intention seems to have caused harm.”

The King spent some time thinking in silence. He recalled Amadis’s great courage and how he deserved to be lord of great lands, which he was, and to be married to someone who was a great lady in the world, as well as the great love he had for his daughter Oriana, and how he would be using virtue and good conscience to make her his heir, which by right was hers. And he thought of the love he had always had for Sir Galaor and the services that he and all his lineage had done for him, and how many times, after God, he was rescued by them when only death and the destruction of all of his estate awaited him.

And above all he thought about his grandson, that very handsome childe Esplandian, in whom he had so much hope that if God were to protect him and he became a knight, according to what Urganda had written, he would have no equal in the world. And he also thought about how in that same letter it was written that this childe would bring peace between himself and Amadis. And he also remembered that the Emperor was dead, and if with him and his family he were to have gained honor, he would gain much more with the family of Amadis, as he had seen many times through experience, and with it, in addition to bringing about peace both for himself and for his kingdom, his honor would grow such that no one in the world would be his equal. And after he had finished thinking about all this, he said:

“Father Nasciano, friend of God, although my heart and will were subject to pride and I did not wish to receive anything else but death or to give it to many other men until my honor was satisfied, your holy words have possessed such virtue that I have decided to retract my wishes in such a way that if peace and accord do not come into effect, ye shall be witness before God that it is not my fault or blame. For that reason, do not fail to speak with Amadis, but do not share with him anything of my intent. Find out what he wishes in this situation, and then tell me. And if his intention conforms with mine, I shall be able to give such an order so that the present and future troubles will be prevented in such a way that the advantage in honor of both sides will be fulfilled.”

Nasciano knelt before him weeping from the great pleasure he felt, and said:

“Oh blessed King, may the Lord who came to save us thank you for what ye have told me, because I cannot.”

The King raised him up and told him:

“Father, what I have told you I have decided without any hidden intention.”

“Then I ought to leave now,” the good man said, “and before the truce is over, I must labor so that this in which our Lord will be served is brought to its conclusion.”


Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Chapter 113 [part 1 of 4]

How the saintly hermit Nasciano, who had raised the handsome childe Esplandian, learned about the rupture between the Kings and decided to make peace between them, and what he did to bring that about. 

[The chapel of Santa Maria del Grau in Fonollosa, Spain, built in the 12th or 13th century. Photo by Maria Rosa Ferre.]

This story tells how the saintly Nasciano, who had raised Esplandian, as the third part of this story recounts, had been in his hermitage in a great forest, as ye have heard, for more than forty years. Because the place was very rough and remote, rarely did anyone visit, and he always kept provisions to last a long time. It is not known whether by the grace of God or by any news that might have reached him, he learned that those Kings and great lords were in a dangerous confrontation both to themselves and to all those in their service, which caused his heart great pain and suffering.

And because at this time he was ill and could barely stand and walk, he constantly prayed to God to give him health and strength so he could be the remedy to those who shared His holy law, because, as he had heard the confession of Oriana and from her was made fully aware of the secret involving Amadis and that Esplandian was his son, he well understood the great danger that having her marry another man would entail.

And for that reason he thought that since Oriana was where she need not fear her father’s wrath, it would be proper, although he was very old and feeble, to begin to travel to Firm Island, because with her permission, for it could be done in no other way, he could tell King Lisuarte the truth about things he did not know, and to strive to create peace and concord and bring about the marriage between her and Amadis.

With that thought and desire, when he felt a little better, he took with him two men from the village where his sister lived, who was the mother of Sarguil, Esplandian’s companion. He rode on his donkey, although he was very weak, and with short days of travel and a great deal of effort he arrived at Firm Island after King Perion and all his men had already left for the battle, which gave him great sorrow.

When he had arrived, he sent word to Oriana that he had come. When she learned this, she was very happy for two reasons. First, because the saintly hermit had raised and given, after God, life to her son Esplandian; and second, because she could be counseled by him as her soul and conscience required. She immediately ordered the damsel of Denmark to go to him and bring him to where she was, which she did. When Oriana saw him come through the door, she went to him and knelt before him, began to weep bitterly and told him:

“Oh saintly man, give your blessing to this unfortunate and very sinful woman, who to the ill fate of herself and many others was born into this world.”

Tears came to the eyes of the hermit because of the pity he had for her, and he raised his hand to bless her and said:

“May the Lord who is restorative and powerful in all things bless you and be the protection and aid in everything you need.”

Then he took her by the hands, raised her up, and told her:

“My good lady and beloved child, with great fatigue and labor I have come to speak to you, and when ye please, order me to be heard because I cannot wait, for neither the manner of my life nor my faith permits me to do so.”

Oriana, who was still weeping, took him by the hand without a word in response, for her great sobbing did not let her speak, and brought him to her chamber and ordered them to be left alone, and so it was done. When the hermit saw that he could say what he wished without reserve, he told her:

“My good lady, as I was in that hermitage where for such a long time I have sought to have our Lord God take mercy on my soul, setting aside all the things of the world so I would not suffer any obstacle to my purpose, I came to know that your father the King and the Emperor of Rome had come with many men to do battle with Amadis of Gaul. He and his father, with other princes and knights of high estate, had also raised many men to fight. What from this shall follow anyone could know: that for certain, given the large number of men and the great determination with which they seek to challenge each other, nothing can result from this except a great loss of life and the great offense to our Lord God.

“And because the cause, as I have heard, is the marriage by which your father wishes to unite you and the Emperor of Rome, my lady, I decided to make this trip to see you, as the one who knows the great secret of your conscience is in this matter and the great danger to your person and reputation if the wishes of your father the King were to be carried out. And, my good child, because I knew of this from your confession, I did not have license to put into practice the remedy for the great harm that can come from this. Now that I see the present situation, it would be a greater sin to be quiet than to speak. I come so that ye, my beloved child, may consider it well for your father to know what has happened and that he can give you to no other husband than the one you have, for not knowing this, thinking that what he wishes could justly be done, his tenacity may be such that he carries out his purpose to the great destruction of his army and the other. In the end it may be made public, just as the Gospel says: nothing can be so hidden that it can never be known.”

Oriana, who found her spirit a little more reposed, took him by the hands and kissed them many times against his wishes, and told him:

“Oh very holy man and servant of God, I place and put all my troubles and anguish at your wishes and volition so ye may do what serves my soul best, and may the Lord whom ye serve and Whom I have so deeply offended be pleased by His holy pity to guide you, not as I deserve, being such a sinner, but as He in his infinite goodness so often does with those who have erred if they ask for his mercy with all their heart, as I do now.”

The good man answered, pleased:

“My beloved child, since as ye say the Lord never fails anyone in their great needs if they call upon Him with a genuine heart and contrition, have great faith. It befalls me as he who can and must act with propriety to put into practice that remedy at your service and to protect your honor with the security that your soul’s conscience requires. And because great harm and evil could come from delay, my good lady, it is best that ye immediately give me permission to depart so that my labors, if they can, will reap the fruit that I desire.”

Oriana told him:

“My lord Nasciano, I commend you to pray for that childe whom, after God, ye gave life, and if ye return here, strive to bring him with you. May you go with God and may He guide you so that your good desire will be fulfilled in His holy service.”

And so the saintly hermit said farewell, and with great fatigue in his spirit and great hope to fulfill his goodwill, took the road on which he knew the troops had traveled. But because he was so old, as this story recounts, he could only travel on his donkey, and his journey was so slow that he did not arrive until after the two battles had already been fought, as has been recounted. As the armies, with a truce, were burying their dead and caring for their wounded, this very saintly man arrived at King Lisuarte’s camp. When he saw so many dead men and so many others with a variety of injuries, for which great mourning was being made everywhere, he was horrified and raised his hands to the heavens, weeping with great pity, and said:

“Oh Lord of the world, I pray to Thee that by Thy holy pity and the passion Thou underwent for us sinners, looking not on our great errors and sins, give me grace so I may prevent the great evil and harm that Thy servants are prepared to do.”


Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Chapter 112

How King Lisuarte had the body of the Emperor of Rome brought to a monastery and spoke to the Romans about the situation he was in, and the answer they gave him.
[Funeral procession of King Edward to Westminster Abbey, from the Bayeux Tapestry.]

King Lisuarte came to his tent and asked King Cildadan to dismount and disarm so that, before they rested, they could decide what ought to be done with the body of the Emperor. And when they were disarmed, although they were badly bruised and very tired, they both went to the tent where the dead Emperor was, and they found all his most important knights around his body mourning deeply.

Although the Emperor by nature was arrogant and disagreeable, which for good reason those who behave like him should be unloved, he was very free and generous in both gifts and concessions to his men, which concealed many of his defects. While naturally everyone is very happy with someone who receives those who come to him with grace and courtesy, they are much happier with those who, although they may be a bit surly, carry out what is asked of them, because the true effect lies in doing virtue and not talking about it.

When the two Kings had arrived, they had the knights cease mourning and asked them to go to their tents and disarm and get care for their injuries, for they had not wished to leave until the body was placed where such a great prince should lie. So they all left, and only the royal officials remained, and King Lisuarte ordered the Emperor’s body be prepared so it could be carried to a monastery a day’s travel away at a town named Lubaina, because from there it could be taken with less haste to Rome to the chapel of the emperors.

That being done, the Kings returned to the tent they had left, and there dinner had been prepared for them. They ate, and to those who were there, they seemed to have good countenances, but one man was secretly felt otherwise. Instead, his spirit was deeply afflicted and troubled, and this man was King Lisuarte, because, once the truce was over, he had no hope for himself. Given the advantage his enemies had held in the two previous battles and the great weakness they had discovered in his men, especially the Romans, who were the greater part of his forces, and having seen the great courage of their opponents, he took it for granted that they were in no situation to withstand a third battle. He expected nothing else in it except to be dishonored, defeated, and most certainly killed, because he only wished for life when he could uphold his honor. And having eaten, King Cildadan went to his tent and King Lisuarte remained in his own.

So they passed that night, having placed a great many guards around their camp, and when morning came, the King got up, and after he heard Mass, took King Cildadan with him and went to the Emperor’s tent, whose body had been taken, accompanied by Floyan, to the monastery that I have told you of. They had Arquisil and Flamineo called, and all the great lords who were in their company, and when they had come, he spoke to them this way:

“My good friends, of the pain and sorrow that I have from this loss and the urge and will to avenge it, no one other than God knows. But as these things are very common in the world and cannot be avoided, as each one of you will have seen and heard, no other choice remains except, leaving aside the dead, those who remain alive must remedy their honor, so it will not seem that their natural deaths bring about an artificial death in those who live.

“The past is beyond remedy. For the present and future, by the goodness of God, enough of us remain that if we avail ourselves to the love and willpower that good men can and must have, I have faith in Him that we shall recover with great glory and advantage what has so far been lost. And I want you to know that if all of the world were against me and everyone were to abandon me, I would not leave this place unless I was victorious or dead. And so, my good friends, consider who ye are and the lineage ye come from, and act in such a way that all the world shall know that the death of a lord is not the death of all his men.”

When King Lisuarte had finished speaking, Arquisil, as he was the most principal of all of them, both in courage and in lineage, because as I have told you many times, he was in direct line to the succession of the Empire, stood up where he was and answered the King, saying:

“It is well known to everyone, since Rome was founded, of the great deeds and undertakings that Romans accomplished to their great honor in the past. History is full of such achievements, and their outstanding deeds are famous throughout the world like the morning star in the heavens. And since we come from such excellent blood, do not believe, my good lord King Lisuarte or anyone else, anything other than now more than ever and with more courage and care, ignoring any danger or fear that might come, we shall continue to act as our famous ancestors did, for which they left this world with such fame that they have always been remembered and praised. And as the virtuous must carry on their work and so that ye shall not fail nor your heart be made weak, on behalf of myself and all these lords and the other men whom I have been charged to govern and command, I promise that when the truce is over, we shall take the vanguard in the battle, and with greater courage and spirit we shall resist and attack our enemies as if our lord the Emperor were before us.”

What this knight said seemed very good to all those who were there, especially King Lisuarte, and it was made very clear that Arquisil would rightly deserve the honor and great sovereignty that God had given him, as shall be spoken of further on. With this answer, King Lisuarte left very content, and said to King Cildadan:

“My good lord, with such assurances that we have found in the Romans and such goodwill to help us, which I would not have believed possible, and having such a fine and courageous knight for their leader as Arquisil, it is very right and just for us to undertake this affair as reason obliges us, ignoring all danger. And I tell you that when the treaty is over, there shall be nothing but battle, in which, if God does not give me victory, I do not wish Him to give me life, for the greater honor for me would be death.”

King Cildadan, as he was a fine knight with great courage, although in his heart he always wept over the great sorrow he felt to be a tributary to that King, considered that what he had promised and sworn obliged him more than contenting his will and desire, and he told him:

“My lord, I am very happy with what has been found in the Romans, and even more in having been shown the strength of your heart. Such things like this that happened in the past, and those that we await in the present shall be the means by which virtue is tested and revealed. And as for me, have faith, for alive or dead, where ye shall be, my body shall be.”

When the King heard this, he thanked him sincerely, and at that hour, as Cildadan learned later, he decided that, whatever prosperous or adverse fortune might come to him, he would release him from the sovereignty he had over him, which he did, as ye shall hear farther on.

This is the most outstanding thing that should be noted carefully by whomever reads it, for King Lisuarte, merely by knowing the great affection with which this King offered to die in his service, although that did not come to happen, held it good to free him from the vassalage he had over him. From that, it should be understood that good and true will, both spiritual and temporal, deserves an equal prize as if the deed were actually done, because from it is born and put into effect what is good, and from the contrary, what is evil.

These Kings arrived at their tents, ate, and rested, ordering every necessary preparation to put an end to this great and renowned confrontation on which their honor and lives depended.

But now we shall leave one side and the other in their camps, as ye have heard, hoping that the third battle would bring glory and victory to one of them, although the certainty of one side was well and clearly known; and we must tell you what happened in the meantime. From it ye shall know that great arrogance and rage, and the danger so close and so near that these men meant to each other, could not obstruct what God, powerful in all things, had pledged to bring about.


Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Chapter 111 [part 2 of 2]

[How Amadis killed the Emperor of Rome but prevented the killing of King Lisuarte.]  

[Battle scene from the Bayeux Tapestry.]


And into this press of battle, as ye hear, came the very courageous knight Amadis, who had been fighting on the right-hand area of the battle, had killed Constancio with a single blow, and had brought to ruin everything else there. He carried in his hand his good sword stained with blood up to the hilt. And with him came Count Galtines, Gandalin, and Trion. When he saw so many men attacking his father and saw the Emperor ahead of him fighting against the men of his side as if he had already won, he spurred the horse that he had earlier taken from one of his father’s pages and was well rested, and entered into the fight with such fury and daring it was a wonder to behold.

Floyan, who recognized his insignia, was worried he would reach the Emperor, and then all of them together would not be enough to protect or defend him. As fast as he could he rode forward, risking his life to save the life of the Emperor. Sir Florestan, who found himself in that area, attacked along with Amadis, and when he saw Floyan, he charged at him as quickly as he could, and they gave each other great blows with their swords on top of their helmets. Floyan was stunned and could not remain on his horse, fell to the earth, and died there both from the great fall and from the many horses that trampled him.

Amadis paid no attention to their fight. Instead, with his eyes fixed on the Emperor and his heart set on killing him if he could, because the Emperor was surrounded by men from his own side, he rode into them enraged to attack him, and although he was struck with great blows from all sides by those defending him, they were unable to stop him from reaching him. And when he arrived, he raised his sword and struck the Emperor with all his strength and gave him such a great blow on the top of his helmet that it left him powerless, and he let his sword fall from his hand. When Amadis saw that the Emperor was going to fall from his horse, he quickly gave him another blow to his shoulder, which cut through all his armor and flesh to the armpit, so that portion of his body with the arm was dangling, and he fell from his horse and very quickly died.

When the Romans nearby saw that, they gave great shouts, so many other knights came and revived the battle. Arquisil and Flamineo quickly arrived with many other knights to where Amadis and Sir Florestan were, delivering great and mighty blows everywhere. But Count Galtines, Gandalin, and Trion shouted to Sir Bruneo and Angriote to join together to rescue them, and all five, despite their attackers, came to their aid, causing great damage.

King Perion was with Sir Cuadragante and Agrajes and many other knights in the area where King Lisuarte and King Cildadan and many other men were fighting with fury. There occurred the bravest battle of the day and the greatest mortality among the men. But at this time Sir Brian of Monjaste and Sir Gandales intervened, who had assembled from among their men fully six hundred knights, and they charged bravely into the area where Amadis and his companions were, for they had been fighting for a while there. King Arban of North Wales turned to see what all the shouting was about and saw the Romans in retreat, and said to King Lisuarte:

“My lord, draw back. If not, ye shall be lost.”

When the King heard this, he looked and realized it was true. Then he told King Cildadan to help him withdraw his men in a way that they would not be lost, and so they did, always in tumult with their enemies and giving great blows, retreating with them until they were alongside the Romans, and there they all stopped. Norandel, Sir Guilan, Cendil of Ganota, Landasin, and many others with them went to reinforce the Romans, but it did no good because they were losing.

The battle being in the state that ye hear, Amadis saw that King Lisuarte’s side was losing beyond all hope, and that if things went on, he would not be able to save him or any of his great friends. And above all he remembered that this man was the father of his lady Oriana, whom he loved and held more dearly than anything else in the world, and he remembered the great honors that he and his lineage in times past had received from him, which deserved to take precedence over the affronts, and that everything which could be done in that situation would be of great glory for him and considered more as extraordinary virtue than as slight effort. And he saw that many of the Romans were carrying away their lord with great mourning, and the men were dispersing.

Because night was falling, he decided that although he might face some shame, he would see if he could serve his lady in such an important matter. He took with him Count Galtines, whom he had alongside him, and rode amid the battles with great urgency as best he could despite the many men and the great press, for those on his side, recognizing their advantage, attacked their enemies with courage, and those on the other side hardly defended themselves except for King Lisuarte and King Cildadan and other worthy knights. He and the Count reached his father King Perion, and he told him:

“My lord, night is coming, and very soon we will not be able to recognize one side or the other, and if the contention continues, it will be very dangerous because given the crowd of men, we could kill our friends as well as our enemies and they could kill us. It seems to me that it would be good to pull back the men, for given the damage that our enemies have received, I believe that tomorrow they will not dare to make a stand against us.”

The King, whose heart was heavy for having seen so many men die without fault, told him:

“My son, do as thou thinkest best, both for what thou sayest and so that more men do not die, and so the Lord who knows all things may see that this was brought to an end more in His service than for any other reason, for it is in our hand the complete destruction of those who have been defeated.”

Agrajes, whom Amadis had not seen, was near the King and heard everything that had been said, and he came with great fury to Amadis and told him:

“What, my lord cousin! Now ye have your enemies defeated and scattered, and ye could become the most honored prince in the world, and ye want to save them?”

“My lord cousin,” Amadis said, “I want to save our men, so that in the night they do not kill each other, and I consider our enemies defeated, because they can offer no defense.”

Agrajes, as he was very reasonable, recognized his intent and told him:

“Since ye do not wish to defeat them and ye do not wish power, ye shall always be a knight errant, since at such an opportunity mercy has overcome you and subjected you. But do as ye hold best.”

Then King Perion and Sir Cuadragante, who was not troubled by this because he was so closely related to King Cildadan and loved him dearly, on one hand, and Amadis and Gastiles, on the other, began to pull back the men, and they did it with little difficulty since night was already dispersing them.

King Lisuarte, who had no hope to recover what he had lost and was determined to die before being defeated, when he saw those knights withdrawing all their men, was amazed and fully believed it was only being done as some sort of trick. He waited to see if anything could be done. When King Cildadan saw what the other side was doing, he told the King:

“It seems to me that those men will not follow us, and they are doing us an honor. And since that is so, let us collect our men and go to rest, for it is time.”

So it was done, and King Arban of North Wales, Sir Guilan the Pensive, Arquisil, Flamineo, and all the Romans had their men retreat. And so the battle ended, as ye hear: when this great story began, it was founded on the great love King Perion had for Queen Elisena, by which was engendered the knight Amadis, his son, and that love and the love Amadis had for his lady Oriana has produced and is producing this great and grand account. Although some of it may seem unrelated, the reason for it is to forgive those who loved in such a disorderly fashion and others who love like them: thus it can be said what a great force love is over all else.

In such a great event so outstanding throughout the world as this is where so many men of such great estate came together and so many were killed, and such great and grand honor was won by the victors, setting aside all else amid the ire and rage and great arrogance with such long enmity that the least of it is sufficient to blind and agitate anyone, however discrete and courageous they may be, there the love that this knight had for his lady held such strength that forgetting the greatest glory that he could achieve in this world, which is victory, he instead offered restraint by which his enemies might receive the benefit that ye have heard, for without any doubt ye may believe that Amadis and those on his side had at hand and in their will the opportunity for the complete destruction of King Lisuarte and his men, who could not defend themselves.

But this is not the cause to which it should be attributed but instead to the Lord Who restores all things, and it may well be believed that He permitted this to be done, given the great peace and agreement that came to pass from this great enmity, as we shall tell farther on.

Once the men were separated and returned to their camps, they made a truce for two days because so many had died, and they agreed that each side could carry off their dead in safety. The labor required to bury them and the lamentation over them need not be said, because the death of the Emperor, given the sorrow it caused, made the rest forgotten. But it shall not be recounted what took place on one side and the other because it would be very long and tedious, as well as falling outside of our purpose.