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creased, yet the eyes of men began to turn towards her son Henry, who having now reached sixteen years of age, displayed the promise of great abilities, and already possessed many graces of person and demeanour. An invitation to return to England was accordingly sent to him; and many motives induced him to comply. He felt certain of support from the Pope and the Archbishop of Canterbury, who had now risen superior to the Bishop of Winchester ; the Earls of Chester and Hereford, with the young Earl of Gloucester, called eagerly for his presence, and promised him their fealty; and his mother's uncle, David, King of Scotland, held out to him hopes of still more important assistance; though this was coupled with a demand, that he should not be disturbed in possession of the three Northern counties which he had obtained during the struggle between Stephen and Matilda. Everything promised him success; and escorted by a chosen body of troops, he landed on the coast of England—it is supposed in Dorsetshire; and proceeded to join the King of Scotland at Carlisle. From the hand of that monarch he received the honour of knighthood, and nothing was thought of during the winter months but the invasion of England.
Henry, however, had either accepted the invitation too soon, or his friends were timid or faithless. Stephen advanced with an army to York, and his son, Prince Eustace, made incursions upon the terri
tories of the inimical Barons. David remained at Carlisle with a force strong enough to protect his own territories, but not sufficiently numerous to attempt the invasion of England. The noblemen who had promised Henry their full support failed to join him. The King of Scotland would not march without them; and Henry, after seeing great part of the year wasted in inactivity, returned to Normandy in 1150, though not till he had created a srong interest in his favour amongst the Barons of England and Scotland.
His return to the continent was very soon followed by an act which affected the fortunes of Henry during his whole life; and a few preliminary words are necessary in order to explain the events which succeeded. Not many years before, the well known Crusade under Louis the Young had taken place, the French King being moved to the enterprise both by remorse for some acts of inhuman barbarity which he had committed, and by the preaching of St. Bernard, one of the most singular and eloquent men of his age. Some years previous to the period of his taking the Cross, Louis had married Eleanor, eldest daughter of the Duke of Aquitaine, a princess of beauty, wit, and talent, eager passions and flexible principles; who readily agreed to accompany her husband to the Holy Land, determined, as it would appear, from the very first, to turn the whole crusade into a matter of gallantry and amusement. She was accompanied by almost all the ladies of her court;
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mode of persuasion the Prince of Antioch employed, we do not know; but it is certain that Louis became jealous of Raymond's favour with his Queen, and assured his council, that he had discovered a design on the part of the former to deprive him of Eleanor by force, to which scheme he asserted Eleanor throughout was a consenting party.
Whatever cause of jealousy might really exist in regard to Raymond of Poitiers, there can be no doubt whatever, if the concurring testimony of all the writers of the day may be believed, that Eleanor's incontinence, while in the east, was great and notorious. She is not only generally supposed to have entered into a criminal intrigue with her uncle, but she is accused of the same crime with a young convert from Mahommedism, and also with a Mahometan, named Saladin. In regard to the latter, however, it may be necessary to remark, that if the writers who made the charge, intended to designate the famous Saladin as the lover of Eleanor, they committed a great error; as it is proved by the Arabic, as well as the European writers, that not the slightest communication could ever have taken place between Saladin and the French princess; and even if it had, it must necessarily have been of a very innocent nature, as Saladin was at that time under eleven years of age. The fact of her incontinence, however, is placed beyond all doubt, by the testimony of William of Tyre, who would not have
. Though his situation seemed somewhat difficult, from the fact of his having served both parties, the Bishop of Winchester, formidable alike to each, easily prevailed upon Stephen to regard his late services as full compensation for his former defection. At the same time, to the people and the clergy he justified his political variations, in a manner not very complimentary to either of the candidates for the throne. He said, in effect, that although Stephen's conduct had been so bad as to induce him, notwithstanding their affinity, to abandon his cause, yet Matilda's had proved so much worse, that he was fully justified in quitting her party likewise. He added, moreover, that he had been compelled by circumstances to support the Empress for a time, not led by inclination ; and that since then, God had manifestly shown his disapprobation of Matilda's cause, by the misfortunes with which he had visited her.
It is an extraordinary thing, that the quality of the human mind which seems the most completely independent of all adventitious aids—I mean common sense—should be found so very often wanting in barbarous ages. This reasoning on the part of the legate was received as perfectly satisfactory by a great part of his audience, and he proceeded with an unblushing face to adjure the clergy to excommunicate the supporters of her whom he had himself so lately served. .
Before the struggle in the field, which had been