THE CHRONICLE OF JAMES I OF ARAGON
John Forster, trans.
On the morning that the camp was established the bishops and barons assembled and came to my tent, and the Bishop of Barcelona, En Berenguer de Palou said: "My lord, it is necessary that those bodies of the dead be buried." And I said, "Certainly ; when shall we bury them? " They said, "Now, or tomorrow morning, or after dinner." I said, "It will be best at matins,(1) when no one will be up, and the Saracens will not see us." And the barons said that I said well. At sunset we collected wide and long cloths, and put them up towards the town that the candles at the burial might not be seen. And when it came to burying the bodies, weeping and lamenting and crying out began. And I bid them be silent and listen to what I was about to say, and spoke thus: "Barons, these two nobles died in the service of God, and in mine; if it were possible for me to redeem them so that their death might be turned into life, and God did me so much grace, I would willingly give so much of my land that those who heard of it would think me mad. But since God has brought me and you here on so great a service to Him, let no one mourn or weep. And though your affliction be great let it not appear  externally. I command you by the sovereignty I have over you, that no one weep or lament for I will be a lord unto you; that duty of honour and well doing which they held towards you will I henceforward fill. If any of you happen to lose a horse or aught else I will make it good, and will supply your wants fully: you shall not miss your lords nor perceive their loss ; in such wise will I meet your needs. Your lamentations would discomfort the army and do you no good ; therefore I command you, in virtue of my power as your liege lord, not to lament or weep any more. Do you know what would be a true and proper lamentation over your lords? Rightly to esteem and honour their death, and to serve our Lord in that for which we all came here, so that His name be sanctified for ever." And after that speech the men abstained from lamenting, and buried their lords.
Next morning I held council with the bishops and the barons of the army as to unloading the transport ships. I therefore sent for a "trebuchet" and a "mangonel," and the Saracens saw plainly that we were landing timber from the ships on the sea. And whilst we were getting ready two "trebuchets"  And two "algarradas,"(2) the masters and sailors of the ships from Marseilles, of which there were four or five, came to me and said: "My lord, we came here in the service of God and in yours; we offer on behalf of the men from Marseilles to make you a 'trebuchet' after our own fashion out of the yards and spars of the ships, for the honour of God and yours. We will construct and set up our 'trebuchets' and one 'fonevol' besides, before the Saracens can have theirs ready." And thus the number of war engines both outside and inside the town was twenty ; outside, in our camp, there were two trebuchets, one "fonevol," and one Turkish mangonel. The Saracens, however, made two "trebuchets " and fourteen "algarradas;" one of their algarradas was the best ever seen ; it shot into the  camp over five or six rows of tents, but the "trebuchet" that was brought by sea threw farther than any of theirs. Our people began to shoot at the Saracens inside the town, but they protected their engines as well as they could. En Jaspert then said he would show how to make a mantlet that should go up to the very edge of the moat of the town, in spite of all the engines on the walls, and of the crossbows also. He accordingly, constructed a mantlet to go on wheels ; the hurdles were threefold and had strong good timbers under them ; it was, as I said, upon wheels ; and it was built near the "trebuchets." It moved as they pushed it on with poles, and was covered like a house with a roof of hurdles, and brushwood on the top of it, and earth on the brushwood, so that if a stone from the "algarradas " of the Saracens struck it no harm should be done. And the Count of Ampurias made another mantlet, and had it placed near the moat, with a small body of sappers into it to work under ground, so as to come out at the bottom of the moat. I had another of the same kind made for my men. In this wise we began to make our mines ; and when the three were finished, that of En Jaspert went above ground and the others under ground, at which the army was much pleased, for they saw that the work was going on well. That was, indeed, an army, such that no man in the world ever saw the like of it. So well did they perform what Friar Michael,(3) the.  Dominican, had some time before preached to them, that it was really wonderful. This Friar Michael had been in the army from the beginning ; he was a reader in theology and a companion of Friar Berenguer de Castelbisbal. When he had confessed the men and given them absolution, for which he had power from the bishops, he bade them bring wood or stones for the engines ; the knights them selves did not leave this sort of work for the foot soldiers to do ; they put their own hands to everything, and brought stones for the "fonevols" before them on the saddle, whilst their retainers took stones to the "trebuchets" on frames hanging by cords from their necks. When ordered to keep watch by day or night with their horses, as light horsemen to guard the miners or to do any duty required in the army, if fifty were ordered out for that service a hundred went. And that they who hear this book may know how hard a feat of arms was that which was achieved at Mallorca, I will only tell this one thing, that no foot soldier, sailor, or other, dared lie in the camp for three weeks, except myself, the knights and the esquires who served me; the other foot soldiers and the sailors came early in the morning from their ships and returned at night; the Provost of Tarragona was one of them; all day [142 ] they were with me, and at night they went back to their ships. My camp was fortified with strong palisades and ditches all round. There were two gates in it, and no one could leave without my order.
And while things were thus(4) a Saracen of the island, called Infantilla,(5) collected all the mountaineers, fully five thousand, among them a hundred horsemen; and he came upon a hill, which was a strong position, over the fountain spring of Mallorca; he set his tents there - thirty or thirty-five, or as many as forty - sent his Saracens with spades, cut off the water of the spring from running towards the town, and threw it into a torrent, so that we lost that water and could not have it. And when I saw  that the army could not endure that, and had counsel upon that, I resolved that a captain or two go thither with one hundred horsemen to fight with the Saracens and get back the water. I then addressed myself to Don Nuño, and put him at the head of the force; he got ready and marched off: having under him, of his own people and of those I gave him, fully a hundred knights. The Saracens tried to defend the hill, but our people went against them and routed them; their chief, Infantilla, was overtaken and slain: upwards of five hundred of the Saracens were killed, the others fled to the mountains. Our people took possession of their tents, destroyed the enemy's camp, and brought the head of Infantilla to me; I had it put in the sling of the "almajanech," and threw it into the town(6). The  water came back to the camp, and the army rejoiced that night for the great blow we had given the enemy.
And on this a Saracen of the island named Beanabet(7) sent me a message by another Saracen,  who brought his letter, that he would gladly come to me, and would bring it about that one district to me, and would bring it about that one district out of the twelve into which the island was divided, should furnish as many supplies to the army as they themselves got in the country; and that he was sure that, if I behaved kindly to him, he could mbake the other districts come on to me. I showed the letter to the commanders of the army, and they all said that it was good for us to accept. Then the Saracen told me to send some knights to a safe place, which he named, a league from the camp, and that he himself would go there, trusting in me, and would make an agreement to serve us faithfully and without deceit, that I might see the good service he would do us. I accordingly sent twenty knights, who found the Saracen there. He had come with his present, full twenty beasts laden with barley, kids, fowls, and grapes; the grapes were brought in bags, and were neither broken nor crushed. This angel's present was divided among the barons in the army. I call him an angel, for though a Saracen, I have no doubt that God sent him to us; and he stood us in such good stead, that under such circumstances we likened him to an angel. He asked me for one of my flags, that if his messengers came to the camp my people might not do them hurt, and I gladly gave him one. And then he sent me messages to say that two or three other districts  in the island wished to do as he himself had done; and there did not pass a week without the Saracen sending supplies of barley, flour, fowls, kids, and grapes, to refresh the army with and comfort it; so that in fifteen days' time all the districts of Mallorca belonging to the city, up to the part against the Minorca division, were at my service and paid me obedience. I put my entire trust in that Saracen, for I found him all truth. After that he again came to me, and asked me for a Christian governor (bailli) who should hold those districts for me; and by his advice I made two governors (baillis) to rule over the districts he had brought under my sway. One was En Berenguer Durfort, of Barcelona, and the other En Jaches Sans, both gentlemen of our household, and men who knew what they were about.
And that they who shall see this book may know how many districts there are in Mallorca, they are fifteen. The first is Andrayig, and Santa Ponça, Bunyola, Soler, Almerug, and Polença; these are the greatest mountains of Mallorca, looking towards Catalonia. And these are the districts in the plain: Montueri, Canarossa, Incha, Petra, Muro, Ffelenig, where the castle of Santtueri is, Manacor, and  Arta.(8)
In the district of the city are now fifteen markets; in the time of the Saracens there were twelve. [But to return to the narrative.] The mines were ready in three different places, one above, the others under, ground, till they got under the rampart. The enemy attacked these mines, but we defended them, some of our men going through the mines and others above, till we drove the enemy from the rampart once, and many times. The miners with picks and tools got to the towers, and began to mine them in despite of the Saracens, who could not hinder it. In this manner they first got one of the towers on props of wood, and when that tower was resting on the props, they set fire to them, till the tower came down. When the Saracens saw what mischief was being done, they came down from the other towers; but in the same way three more were thrown down at once. Before the first of these was thrown down, the Provost of Tarragona said, "My lord, will you let us have some fun?" "Yes," said I, "what is it?" "I will have," said he, "a cable put under yonder tower,(9) and they in the mine shall draw it, and the props will come from under the ruined tower." As he said, so it was done; and when  the tower fell three Saracens came down with it; my people went out of the mines, and brought them in prisoners to the camp.
Then came two men from Lerida, named En Prohet, and En Johan Rixo, besides a third in their company, and said, "My lord, if you let us, we will so level the moat that heavy-armed horse can go into it." I said, "Are you sure of that?" "Yes," said they, "by God's will we can do it, if you will only have us properly protected." This pleased me well; I thanked them for their offer, and told them to begin the work at once, and that I would give them guards for protection. And they began levelling the moat in this way; they first put on a layer of timber in it, and then one of earth. When that work of levelling the moat had lasted for fifteen days, the Saracens could not possibly hinder it, so close to the town had our people got. One Sunday I dressed myself well and carefully, and looked well to the duties in the camp, the cooking, the victuals, and the working of the slinging engines. The Bishop of Barcelona was near me at the time, as well as En Carroç and other knights. I saw the smoking from a mine which the Saracens had made under it to the mound; and when I saw that, it vexed me mortally that all the labour applied and  all the time bestowed on it should be lost in one moment. I had trusted that by that work the town would be taken; that our chance should see it lost in so short a time vexed me immensely. All round me were silent. I myself remained thinking for a time until God gave me a thought, which was to turn the water again into the moat. I accordingly ordered one hundred men, armed with shields and lances and their full equipments, to go with spades, but so that the Saracens should not see them, and to turn the water from the higher ground to where the mound of earth was, and let it soak in there so as to put the fire out; and so it was done. The Moors did not repeat the attempt, but turned their attention to the mines that were being dug under ground, and made one counter-mine against each of ours, so contrived that they actually encountered our people in the mine, and drove them out. When the news came to me that the Saracens had driven our people from the mine, and that they were in possession of it, I sent for a windlass crossbow, and it so hit two Saracens, who were in front in the mine, that it killed them both at one shot, piercing their shields. When they in the mine saw that shot they abandoned it altogether; and in this way the mines under ground were completed while the moat was being filled up.(10) 
After that, when the Saracens saw that they could not maintain the defence, they sent us a message to say that they wished to speak with a messenger of ours, provided he were one in whom I and they could put trust. So after taking the advice of the bishops and the barons in the camp, they said to me  that since the Saracens wished to parley, I could not refuse, and that it was good that some one should go to them. I then sent thither Don Nuño, with ten of his own retainers on horseback, and a Jew of Saragossa, who knew Arabic, as interpreter; the name of this latter was Don Bahihel.(11) When they got there, the Saracens asked Don Nuño what he wanted, and if he wished to say anything to them. Don Nuño said, "I did not come here on my own account; but you sent a message to my lord, the King, to send to you a messenger in whom he could trust, and he chose me. I am, moreover, his relative, and the king, to honour you and to hear what you had to say, sent me here." The King of Mallorca then answered him: "You had better go back, for I have nothing to say to you." Don Nuño therefore came back, and I at once sent for all the members of my Privy Council, for the bishops and the nobles, that they might hear Don Nuño's account. However before Don Nuño began what he had to say, he burst into a laugh. I asked him, "Why do you laugh, Don Nuño?" "I have good cause for it," replied he; "for the King of Mallorca said nothing to me; he only asked what I wanted, and I answered that I marvelled much that so wise a man as he was should have sent a  message asking for one of the army in whom we put full trust, and then ask me, point blank, what I wished to say to him. He had sent a message to say he wanted to speak to the King or to his delegate; one had been appointed; and therefore I, Don Nuño, would say nothing to him unless he told me first what his errand was." Whereupon the councillors deliberated, and unanimously agreed that the time would come when the King of Mallorca would be glad to speak and come to terms. And so we broke up.
A little time after this, Don Pero Corneyl, who had been at the Council, said to me, "Guil Dalagó,(12) surnamed Mahomet, has twice sent me word that he wishes to speak with me; if you please, I will listen to what he has to say, and peradventure he may disclose something of advantage to us all." I said, "Let it be so;" and Don Pero went away on his business. Next day, early, he came and told me all that Guil Dalagó had said to him; he had been first a Christian and a knight, and had then become a Mohammedan; he fancied that on that account, and owing to his knowledge of the language, he could arrange with the King of Mallorca, and with  the sheikhs of the town and country and with all the Saracens of the island, that they should give me all that I and the barons had spent in the expedition, let us retire home safe and sound; and that they would besides give us such surety as might be asked. When I had heard this, I said to him: "Don Pero Corneyl, I marvel much that you speak of such a bargain to me; for I take my pledge to God, by the faith that He has commanded and given, that should any one offer me to pave with gold the space between yonder mountain and this camp, for me to leave this island, I would not take it, nor can they (the Saracens) enter into any agreement about Mallorca, save my getting the town itself and the whole of the island; for never will I return to Catalonia unless I pass first through Mallorca. I therefore command you, on pain of losing my love, never to speak to me again of such a proposal as that."
After this the King of Mallorca again sent a message, begging that I should send Don Nuño to speak with him. I accordingly sent him, and Don Nuño went. The King of Mallorca came outside the Port Tupi(13) gate, and had a tent pitched there, with  seats for himself and Don Nuño. Don Nuño's followers were quiet whilst the interview lasted; they did nothing against those in the town, nor did the town's people do anything against those outside. When the King of Mallorca and Don Nuño met, they went into the tent, and spoke there for some time; the king, with two of his sheikhs only, and Don Nuño, with the Alfaqui, who went as interpreter, the mounted retainers of Don Nuño remaining without with some Saracens. Then Don Nuño asked the King of Mallorca why he had sent for him. And the King said, "It is for this reason, because I do not call to mind having ever done wrong to your king; therefore, I marvel that he so rages against me that he wants to take from me this kingdom which God gave me; wherefore I would pray him, and you also, to counsel him, not to try and take my land from me. If he or you, who have come here with him, have made any outlay for that purpose, I will make it good to him, and to you, I and the people of the land; and do you go back, he and you, who have come here with him, in peace and good will; for I will do nothing to you but good and love. And so let the king go back, and name the sum that I and the people of this land will have to pay, and that within five days. By the grace of God, I have here provision of arms, and meat and food of all kinds, and anything that is needed for a city's defence;  and that you may better believe what I tell ye, let your lord, the King, send two or three trusty men, and let them come on my pledge that they shall come and go safe and sound, and I will show them the stores of provisions and the arms that I have in this place; and should it not be as I have said, let there be no agreement at all, and let my proposal be rejected. Know further, that I do not care for the towers you have overthrown; I have no fear at all of your entering the city on that side."
And when Don Nuño heard the king's speech, he answered and said, "As to what, you say, that you have done no wrong to our king, you certainly did do him wrong, when you took a ship belonging to his realm with great store of merchandise, which merchants carried in it. The King, my master, sent you his message about it,(14) and prayed you  lovingly by a man of his household, named En Jaques, and you answered him very fiercely and harshly, asking, 'Who was that king that asked for the ship? ' The ambassador replied, 'that he was the son of the king who won the pitched battle of Ubeda.'(15) And thereupon you were offended  with the ambassador, and much enraged at him, and told him that if he were not an ambassador, it had been ill for him that he said that. Whereupon the ambassador replied to you that he had come relying on your faith, and that you could do with him as you pleased. You must know (he said) the name of his lord; all the men in the world knew it, and knew how powerful among Christians he was, and how high; wherefore you should not say of him in scorn that you did not know his name. I say this to you, for the evil answer you made him. For the rest I reply to you that our lord, the King, is young, not more than twenty years old. This is the first great undertaking he has begun, and you must know that it is his heart and his will that for nothing in the world will he go hence till he have the kingdom and land of Mallorca; and if we should advise him to accept your proposals, we know for certain that he would never do it. You may now talk of something else; for what you propose is not worth talking about; that he would never do, nor would we advise him to it."
Thereupon the King of Mallorca said: "Since you will not take the terms I have proposed, I  will do this; I will give five besants(16) for every head, man, woman, and child, and I will leave the town on condition that you give us ships and transports in which we may cross over to Barbary, and let those who choose remain here." When Don Nuño heard what the King said, he return to me in great glee. No one knew the news except he and the Alfaqui, who had acted as interpreter. He said in my ear that he would soon tell me good news. "Let me then (said I) send for the bishops and the barons, that they may be present when you announce the good tidings; since they are to be made public sooner or later, it is better that you should speak them out before everybody." Don Nuño thought that right; I sent for the councillors, and while they were coming he told us all that had passed.
When the councillors came, Don Nuño said how he had spoken with the King of Mallorca and what he had replied. He summed up by saying that the King would surrender the town, and would besides give for every person inside, man, woman, or child, five besants, and would make the delivery within five days, and that we should pass him over  into Barbary, him and his family and all his household, men and women; the ships should put them on shore, and they would be content with that. The Count of Ampurias, who, as above stated, was with the army, would not come to the council: he was in a mine, and had declared that he would certainly not leave it till the town was taken, and therefore that he could not attend. There remained of the kindred of En P. de Muntcada En R. Alaman and En Gardu de Cerveyló, a son of En G. de Cerveyló and a nephew of En R. Alaman and En G. de Clarmunt; all these had a seat in the council. The Bishop of Barcelona was also one of them, as well as the Bishop of Gerona, the Provost of Tarragona, and the Abbot of Sant Ffeliu. All asked the Bishop of Barcelona to give his opinion. The Bishop answered and said, that they had suffered great loss in the island, so many noble and good men had been slain whilst serving God there, whose death ought to be revenged. That vengeance (he said) would be good and just, but he (the bishop) declined giving his opinion; the nobles and knights knew more of military affairs than he did; they had usage of arms and should speak first. Then they told Don Nuño to speak, and he spoke thus: "Barons, we have all come here to serve God and our lord, the King, here present; he came here and we with him to take Mallorca. It seems to me that if our lord, the King, makes the treaty  that the king of this island proposes, our master will achieve that for which he came here. I will say no more; I was the messenger of the news; do you give your opinions on them." Thereupon spoke En Ramon Alaman, and said: "You, my lord, crossed over here, and we with you, to serve God, and you have lost here, slain in your service, vassals than whom no king had better. God has given you an opportunity for taking vengeance for them, and in so doing you will gain the whole land. But the King of Mallorca has such skill and such knowledge of this country that if he be allowed to pass into Barbary nobody can tell what he is capable of doing. What with what he can tell there, and with the skill he undoubtedly has, he can bring so many Saracens into this land that, though you have gained it with the help of God and of us, you will be unable to retain possession of the island though you were able to take it. Therefore, since you have your opportunity, avenge yourself of them, and keep the land to yourself, and then you need not fear Barbary." And En Guerau de Cerveyló and En G. de Clarmunt said with one voice: "My lord, we pray you for God's sake to remember En G. de Muntcada, who loved and served you so well, and En Remon, and the other barons and knights who together with them died in the field." 
And when I had heard their counsels I said: "As to the death of the nobles (richs homens) who fell in battle I have nothing to say. What God Almighty ordains has to be fulfilled; but for the rest, I can say that it was my design to come to this land to serve God and conquer it. Our Lord has granted my wish, since the proposal has been made of giving me exactly what I came here for, namely, to get the land and great wealth besides. It seems to me as if it were really a thing to accept. Though I have gained land and riches, those who are dead have better reward than myself; they have the glory of God. This advice I submit to you; let me know what your opinion is." All the barons and bishops then said with one voice that it was far better to take the town by force, than to accept such a proposal. So I sent word to the King of Mallorca that his terms were rejected; he might do what he could, we should do what we could. When the parley was over and the Saracens learned the resolution taken, they went away in consternation, and when the King of Mallorca saw them in that state he held a general council, and said to them in his Arabic: -
"Barons, you know well that the Miramamolin(17)  has held this land more than a hundred years; it was his pleasure that I should be your lord it has been held despite of the Christians, who never dared to attack it till now. Here we have our wives, our children, and our kindred, and now they bid us give up the land, so that we become their slaves; and what is still worse than slavery, they will search our women and our daughters and see that they carry nothing away. And when we all are in their power, they will do violence to our women and daughters, and treat them at their pleasure. I, who am here among you, rather than bear so hard a thing against our law, I would willingly lose my head; I desire to know of you what seems fit to you under the circumstances, and wish that you tell me your mind." All the people cried with one voice, that they would die rather than suffer such great shame. And the king said: "Then since I see you of so good mind, let us think of well defending ourselves, in such wise that one man be as good as two." Thereupon they separated, and went back to the walls, and one Saracen after that was better than two had been before.
And after a few days I said to Don Nuño: "Don Nuño, it seems to me as if our barons were wishing  that they had not given the counsel they did give the other day; now perhaps they would listen to a capitulation, whereas formerly they would not." And I said to those who had sat with me in council on the capitulation, "Think you not that it would have been better to accept the terms offered, now that the Saracens are defending themselves so stoutly?" All were silent, and ashamed of what they had said, and at vespers there came to me two of those who had been of that opinion, the Bishop of Barcelona and En Ramon Alaman, and they said to me: "Why do you not accept the capitulation of the other day? " I said to them: "Would it not have been much better that you had agreed to it then, than now come to me and say that I should have accepted it? I now say to you, that it does not behove me to move in this affair, as it would be a sign of weakness. If the Moors again propose the terms they offered the other day, would you think it well to accept them?" They replied: "Not only shall we deem it rightly done, but will make those who formerly opposed agree to it. If the Saracens send again a proposal, and you think it acceptable, we will agree, and act wholly on your opinion."(18) So we parted; but our Lord who upholds those who  follow His paths, did not will that the enemy should again treat with us, and ordered things a better way. The thing happened thus, that just as the Saracens were strengthened by the word of the King of Mallorca, so it was God's will that the Christians themselves should be equally strengthened and encouraged, in proportion as the Saracens grew weaker. Though the mines and trenches were completed, all were given up, with the exception of one, into which we put so strong a force that it was finished in spite of them.
Four days before the general assault on the city, the barons and the bishops agreed to hold a general council with me, and that in that council all should swear on the Holy Gospels and on the Cross that on entering Mallorca no noble, horseman, or foot-soldier should turn back, nor should he stop unless he had received a mortal wound. If a man received a mortal stroke, and no relative of his or soldier of the army was near him, he should put himself apart, or in a place to rest against; whilst all the rest should go forward entering the town by force, not turning head or body back; and that he who acted otherwise should be held as a traitor, like those who kill their Lord. I myself wished to take that oath, as the men were about to  do and actually did; but the barons forbade me to swear it. I nevertheless told them that I would act as if I had sworn it. When the oath was taken, the bishops and barons went aside with me, and one of my train, I do not recollect who he was, said: "Lords, if we do not do one thing we shall have done nothing; for if the Saracens of the country resolve on breaking the agreement they have made with our lord, the king, and if peradventure there enter into the city from the country a thousand, or two, or three, or four, or five thousand of them, it will not be so easy to take Mallorca; for they have plenty of food inside, and if their numbers are increased, they will easily defend the city against us; wherefore I would advise you to look closely that no one gets into the city from the outside." And all with one voice said, that the knight gave good advice, and that it should be followed.
Next day the lieutenants (batles), whom I had sent into the district of Mallorca, En Jaques and En Berenguer Durfort, came back, for they dared not remain longer there for fear of the Saracens. When the men saw them come, they said one to another, "The plan we have now agreed on is certainly better than it was before." I then proceeded to  establish three watches; the first for the engines and the lines of attack; another one opposite the gate of Barbolec(19) near the castle, which was entrusted to the Temple; the third against the gate of Portupi. Each guard or watch to consist of a hundred horsemen clad in armour. It was then between Christmas and New Year's Day, and so cold the weather that when men went outside of the camp, and marched a league or two, they immediately came back to their tents and huts on account of the cold, and had to send out scouts to watch for any coming to the camp. And one night I happened to send out people to report whether the sentinels I had placed were still at their post; I was told that they were not. Upon which I rose, scolded them for their ill behaviour, and put new sentinels taken from the followers of the barons and from my own household. This lasted for five consecutive days, during which I slept neither by day nor by night; if anything was wanted in the mines and in the approaches by which the town was to be entered they sent to me for it, as well as for advice as to what had to be done, as no one would do anything, however trifling, without consulting me.(20) And besides I had got from merchants in the camp sixty thousand  "libres," to be repaid when the town was taken, wherewith to furnish things necessary for the army and for me; as I considered the town to be near capture. I was, therefore, awake for three consecutive days and three nights; for when I thought that I could sleep messages came from those who wanted directions, and even when I wished to sleep I could not, and was so wakeful that when any one came near the tent I heard him approach.
The night before the last day of the year came, and it was ordered through the camp that at dawn all should hear mass, take the Sacrament, and arm for battle. And in the first watch of that night Lop Xemeniç da Luziá came to my bed, called to me, and said: "My lord, I come from the mines; I ordered two of my esquires to enter the town and they have entered it; they saw many dead lying in the streets, and found that there was no Saracen on watch between the fifth and the sixth towers. My advice is that you order the camp to arms, for the town in my opinion is as good as taken; there is no one to defend the place; a thousand and more of our men can enter before a single Saracen knows of it." I said: "Ah, my old friend,(21) how can you give me such advice as to  enter a city by night, and by a dark night too! Even by daylight men are often not ashamed of behaving badly under arms; would you send them thither by night when one man could not know another? For if the soldiers enter the town and are driven out, we shall never take Mallorca afterwards." Don Lop saw that I spoke the truth, and admitted it.
At dawn orders were given for the men to hear mass and take the Sacrament. Having myself done the same, I bade all to arm, and each to take the arms he was to bear. And we all went out before the town, in the space between us and the enemy. At that time the day was becoming light; I went to the footmen, who were ranged before the knights, and said to them, "Ho, my men, go on in Our Lady's name!" Even for that no one stirred, and yet the knights heard it as well as the footmen. When I saw that the men did not stir, great care came on me, since they disobeyed my command. I turned myself to the Mother of God, and said: "Lo, Mother of our Lord God, I came here that the Sacrifice of your Son might be celebrated here; pray to him that we may not come to shame, I and those who serve me in your name and that of your dear Son." Again I called to  them, saying: "Up, my men, in God's name; why do ye delay?" And I said this three times, and then my men began to move on slowly. When all then my were in motion, the knights and the men-at-arms approached the breach in the walls, and then all the army with one voice began to call, "Saint Mary! Saint Mary!" Those words never left their mouths, and once pronounced they went on repeating them; the more they uttered the words the louder arose the cry, and they called it thirty times and more. When the armed horse had entered by the breach, the cry ceased, and by the time the passage was cleared for the horsemen there were fully five hundred footmen inside the city.(22) The king and all the force of Saracens in the city were pressing so sorely on the footmen who had got in, that had not the men-at-arms got in all would have been killed. And as the Saracens themselves afterwards told us, they saw a knight on horseback with white armour on enter first. My belief was that it must have been Saint George, for I find in history that in many other battles of Christians and Saracens he has frequently been seen. Of the knights, the first who entered was Johan Martinez Deslava, of my household; after him En Berenguer de Gurp; and after him a knight who was with Sire Guilleumes,  whose nickname was Soyrot,(23) an appellative given him in jest. After these three, Don Ferran Peris de Pina entered, but I do not remember went in after. Each got in when and where he could, and there were besides in the army hundred or more men who, had they been able enter among the first, would certainly have done so.
Meantime the King of Mallorca riding on a white steed came up. His name was Sheikh Abohehie;(24) and he called to his people "Roddo," - Roddo meaning "steady."(25) There were [in the breach] twenty or thirty Christian footmen with shields, and some men-at-arms among them. On the other side were the Saracens with their bucklers, and swords drawn on a line, but neither dared to close. When the knights with their armoured horses got in, they at once charged the  Saracens; but so great was the multitude of the latter, that their lances stopped the horses, and they reared up as they could not get through the thick ranks of the enemy. So they had to turn. And by turning back a little, more horsemen managed to enter the breach till there were forty fifty of them; still horsemen and footmen with their shields were so mixed up, and so close to the Saracens, that they could strike one another with their swords, and no one dared put out his arm for fear the sword should reach his hand from the other side. Presently, however, there were from forty to fifty knights with their horses all clad in armour, and they went against the Saracens, and cried with one voice, "Help us, Saint Mary, Mother of our Lord!" And I cried, "Shame, knights !"(26) and so they attacked the Saracens, and drove them back.
When the Saracens of the town saw that the city was being conquered, full thirty thousand of them, men and women, went out through two gates, the gate of Berbelet(27) and the gate of Portupi, and took to the hills. And so great were  the goods and booty that the knights and footmen found inside the city, that they took no heed of those who went away. The last Saracen who left the breach was the King of Mallorca himself. As to the other Saracens, when they saw that the knights with their armoured horses had got within the breach, they hid themselves in the houses of the city, each as best he could: they did not hide themselves so well as that twenty thousand were not killed at the taking of the city. When we got to the gate of the Almudaina,(28) we found fully three hundred dead, against whom the others had closed the gate at their trying to get in; our Christians had come up, and killed them all. When our men got there, there was some resistance, but a Saracen, who knew our Romance tongue, said they would surrender the Almudaina if we gave men to protect them from death.
And while we were in this parley, there came to me two men of Tortosa, and said they wished to tell me something very important and of great advantage to us all. I went aside and heard them, and they said that they would put in  my hands the King of Mallorca. And I said to them, "What do you ask for that service?" They said they wanted two thousand "libres." I said to them, "You ask too much; since the king is inside the town, we must have him in the end; but to insure his not being hurt, I would willingly give a thousand 'libres.' " They said they were content with that. I left one of the nobles to command in my place, and gave orders that no one should attack the Almudaina till my return. I then sent for Don Nuño, and told him that I had found the King of Mallorca, and to come to me immediately. His answer was that he was delighted, and that he would come forthwith. Don Nuño came, and the men took us to the house where the king was. Don Nuño and I dismounted, clad in armour as we were, and went in. There was the king standing with three "exortins" (or men of his guard) by his side(29) armed with javelins. When we got near him he stood up in his white bornus; he wore besides a quilted coat under his cloak, and  under that a robe (guardacors) of white damite.(30) And I made one of the two men of Tortosa say to him in his Arabic, that I would leave him in charge of two knights of my train, and to have no fear, as he should not die, since he was in my power(31). Thereon I left there some of my people to protect him, and went back to the gate of the  Almudaina, and told them to give me hostages, and come out to the old wall, and parley with us. They then brought out the son of the King of Mallorca, a lad about thirteen years old,(32) and said he was the pledge they gave us; they would open the gate, but we ought to look well whom we put at it as guard. To protect the king's house and treasury, as well as guard the Almudaina, and those who were inside, I appointed two Dominican friars, escorted by ten knights, all good and prudent men; for I was wearied out, and wanted to go to sleep. The sun was already set.
Next morning I examined the state of things, to put matters in order. Lo ! our Lord had so dealt with us, that every man in the army found so much spoil that no one had occasion to quarrel with his neighbour; each thought he was better off than his comrade. Don Ladró, a noble of my train, then invited me, saying that one of his men had told him of a good house, with every accommodation; he had had cooked some good beef, and I might be housed there, if I chose. I told him  that I thanked him much, and would go to it. When day came, all the men of my household went away, not one came back for eight days; each held to what he had taken in the city, and was so pleased with it that not one would return.
After the taking of the city, the bishops and barons met, and said they wanted to speak with me. There should be a sale by auction, they suggested, of all the Moors taken, and of the goods, and of everything. I said that I did not approve of that, because the auction would last a long time, and it would be better, while fear was on the Saracens, to conquer the hill country, and then quietly divide the booty. They asked me how I intended to divide the booty? "By gangs or troops,(33) (said I); the Saracens and all their property will be so divided that the army will be content." That could well be done in eight days; after that we could go against the Saracens outside, and conquer them, and keep their goods till the galleys came to fetch them; that would be the best to do. But En Nuño, En Berenguer de Santa Eugenia, the Bishop of Barcelona, and the Sacristan [of Tarragona], wanted the sale by auction above all things; they acted together so  that they made every one else partake of their opinion, for they were craftier than the rest of the army, who did not see their intention. I said to them; "Look here; the auction you speak of will not be an auction, but a cheating transaction,(34) and besides a blunder; I fear it will delay us so much that the Saracens will fortify themselves, and then we shall not conquer them so easily as we could now; if we give them time to recover, God knows what may happen." But the barons persisted, and adhered to their plan, saying it was a better one. I yielded, and said, "May it please God! but you will repent it."
The auction commenced; it began in the Carnival and lasted till Easter. And while the auction was going on, the knights and the common people expected each to have their share; every man bought something, but would not pay for it. The knights then joined the common people, and said all over the town, "This is wrong, this is wrong!" Then they put themselves in motion, and cried with one voice, "Let us sack Gil Dalago's house." They went and sacked it. When I arrived  on the spot the mischief had been done; I could not help it. I said to them: "Who ordered you to sack the house of any one, where I am residing, before laying a complaint against him?" They answered, "My lord, each of us deserves his share of the prize; others have had it, we have not we are dying of hunger here, and would go back home to our people; that is the reason of our doing this." I said to them, "Good men, you have done wrong, and will be sorry for it; do it not again, for we will not allow it. Much worse would it be for you were I to call you to judgment for your misdemeanour; you would suffer grievously, and I should have to lament the evils that fell on you."
Two days after this they rose again, and raised the cry, "To the Provost of Tarragona's, and let us sack his house!" The men went thither, and plundered the house as they had plundered that of Gil Dalagó, and took away all the good things he had in it; so that nothing was left but two horses he rode, which happened to be in our quarters. Then the nobles and the bishops came to us; and I said to them: "Barons, this is not to be borne; I might submit to such things till not one of you would remain alive, or not  plundered of what you have. But I will give you a piece of advice; let us keep ourselves in readiness, and when next they begin with their readiness, and when us arm ourselves and our horses, and fall on the delinquents in the square, where there is no barricade or chain, and hang twenty of those we find at this sort of mischief. If we do not succeed in capturing any at it, let us take the first we find in the streets, and hang them as a warning for the others. Unless we do that, we shall be all of us in great trouble. Let us move our share of the prize from the Almudaina to the Temple, and put our followers there, and make a stand in it." Then I addressed the people of the town, and said to them: "Good men, you have begun the newest work that ever was, such as plundering houses, and especially of those who have done you no wrong, neither much nor little; I would have you know that henceforth it will not be borne; I will first hang so many of you in the streets that the town will stink of them. I, and the barons, who are here, desire that you should have your share, as well as of the goods as of the lands." When they heard those good words I uttered, they came to their senses, and stopped the mischief they had begun; but I did not give courage to the Bishops and to the Provost so that they dared leave the Almudaina in all that day, till the people were pacified; and I told them that  I would make a reckoning, and give them their share. At night, when the people were quiet, they went away, each one to his house.
When Easter was over, Don Nuño fitted out a ship and two galleys to cruise on the coast of Barbary. And while he was fitting out the ship En G. de Clarmont fell ill, and in eight days from the beginning of his illness he died. At his burial, En R. Alaman fell ill, and Don Garcia Perez de Meytats, who was of Aragon, and a man of good descent and one of my household, and in eight days both were dead. And when both these were dead, En Garau de Cerveylo, son of En G. de Cerveyló, elder brother of En R. Alaman, also fell ill, and eight days after he died. And Count de Ampurias, when he saw the death of those three, said that all those of the house of Muntcada had to die, and he was ill only eight days, and at the end of that time he likewise died. All four were barons, and great men in Catalonia, and they died within a month. The mortality among such great men of the army grieved me much. Don Pero Corneyl said he would go to Aragon, and that if I gave him one hundred thousand sols he would bring me one hundred and fifty knights, that  is, one hundred for the money received, and fifty for the "honor" or fief he held of me. I gave him the money, and besides, a passage free to Aragon.
It had been agreed with Don Nuño, who remained with me and with the Bishop of Barcelona, that as those knights, En Guillen and En Remon de Muntcada, and the nobles already named, were dead, I should send letters to Don Atho de Foces and to Don Rodrigo de Licana in Aragon summoning them to do service for the honours and fiefs they held of me. I sent accordingly for them, and they wrote letters saying that they would come with good will. While they were making ready to come, I determined to make an expedition; the Saracens had got into the mountains of Soller, Almerug, and Bayalbahar, the whole of which they held; they moreover kept the Christians back as far as Pollenca. I left Mallorca, and went along a valley called Bunyola with what knights and footmen I could collect, - for the greater part were already gone, some to Catalonia, others to Aragon. I therefore set on the expedition with those I could get, passing by a castle called Alaro, close to the mountain range, and the strongest in all the island on the right-hand side.
When I had got on the mountain, the leader of the van sent word to say that the footmen would  not take up quarters where he had ordered them, but were decidedly going towards Incha.(35) I then left the rearguard in charge of En Guillen de Muntcada, son of En R. de Muntcada, intending to overtake and stop them. When I got up the mountain, I saw the men below going towards farm called Incha, but I dared not leave the company, for the Moors had captured two or three beasts of burthen (asembles) from us. I went with all speed to the rearguard, followed by three knights who were then with me, but when I got there the rearguard had already attacked and driven the Saracens over a slope there, and recovered the beasts.
When I arrived on the spot I found that the men were already on the march, and that six hundred Saracens, or more, were watching from a hill for an opportunity of hurting them. Indeed they had already attacked the moment they saw the vanguard separate from the rear. All of us in a body went to the place where we intended taking up quarters, and there consulted as to what we should do. En G. de Muntcada, the son of En Remon, Don Nuño, and Don P. Corneyl, who had come back, besides other knights well skilled in arms, told me that it would  not be wise to take up quarters so near the enemy, for they were fully three thousand, and the mules and the greater part of the convoy and the footmen had all gone off, so that it would not be prudent to remain where we were. I therefore determined to go that very night to Incha. I put such of the mules and beasts of burthen in front as remained, and when they were down below, at the botton of the hill, I descended slowly and gently. There were not in the whole rearguard at the time forty knights. When the Saracens saw that I marshalled my men so well, they dared not come against me, and we went to quarters in Incha, which is the largest farm and village in the island, and returned thence to Mallorca.
On our return to the city the Master of the Hospital, En Huch de Fuylalquier came to me, followed by fifteen of his brethren; he was not at the taking of Mallorca, but when he heard of it he came with fifteen knights of his order. I had made this En Huch de Fuylalquier master of the Hospital in my dominions, after asking leave of the Grand Master beyond the seas. He was a man whom I loved much, and he loved me. When he came he said he wished to speak to me in the presence of his brethren only, and he prayed me very  earnestly, by the love I had for him and the faith he himself had in me, to consent ourselves, and procure of the bishops and the nobles, that the Hospital should have its share in the island, urging that the Order would be shamed for ever that in so good a feat as that of taking Mallorca it had had no participation; "for (said he), you who have been our lord, and you are the king to whom God has given to take this island; should the Hospital have no part in it, people will hereafter say, the Hospital and the Master took no part in that great feat of arms at Mallorca, which the King of Aragon accomplished by the grace of God, and we ourselves should be dead and shamed for ever." My answer was that he would very soon know that I had ever loved and honoured both him and his Order, and that I would do that which he asked for willingly and gladly, as it pleased us much. But that it would be the hardest thing I ever had to do, for the land and the goods were already divided; many of those who had got their shares had gone away, otherwise it were easy to do, "but for all that, I said, "I will not fail to help you, so that you shall depart from me content."
I got together the Bishop of Barcelona, Don Nuño, En Guillen de Muntcada, and as many as I  could of the councillors remaining in the island, and entreated them very earnestly to give the Master a share of what we had gained thereat. I found them very hard on this point; they said to me, "How can that be? for all is already divided. To take away what is already divided is not a thing that can be done, especially as the barons who had their share, have gone away and are no longer here." I said, "Barons, I know of a way to let the Master and his Order have what they want." What is the way? said they. "I myself have half the land as my own; I will give them out of my share a good and honourable farm. Here is Remon de Ampurias who knows well what the shares of each of you are; I would not take away from you or the others what has fallen to your lot, but each man could proportionally give some small portion of his share, and with that and the farm that I am ready to give the Master he will have a suitable share. So if it please you, let us make this arrangement, for it is not well to offend such a man and such an Order as his, but to content their desire. As to me, it will not matter what I give up." These words of mine had the desired effect, for the councillors said: "Since you wish for that, so let it be; we will do as you desire."
1. "L'endemá mati, al alba." Immediately after midnight.
2. This distinction between trebuchets, almajanachs, fonevols, and algarradas, all slinging machines, appears to have consisted principally in their size and the weight of the stones they threw. Possibly there was some difference in the way of stretching and discharging them. All these "nevroballistic" engines of the thirteenth century, as they have been called from vpov (cord) and (I throw) may be reduced to the funevol, or fonevol (fundibulus), which threw large stoneballs ; to the trebuch and trebuquets, a kind of catapult; the manganell (French, mangonneau turquesque) supposed to be the same as the almajanec, (Arabic letters in book), of the Arabs. The Algarrada, (Arabic letters in book), was a "ballista" of small dimensions, and yet powerful enough to be able to shoot at a very long distance, and with great force, javelins and big stones. As to the "mantelet," called also the she-cat (gala), I find it used as synonymous of the musculus, in later times catus, cat or chat; it was a sort of house built with large beams of wood, and covered with a triple roof of planks generally lined with branches of trees and mud, so as to deaden the shock of the enemy's projectiles.
3. The name of this Dominican seems to have been Fabre ; as to his companion, Berenguer de Castelbisbal, he became bishop of Gerona, and died at Naples in 1254.
4. "En tant nos estan axi torna nostre frau e un sarraz." I cannot conjecture what the three words in italics mean. Marsilio (cap. xxv.) has, "Levá's un fil del diable per nom ifantilla," whilst Desclot (xliii. 383) says: "En aquesta sahó exí de la ciutat un sarrahi molt valent qui havia nom En Fatilla."
5. I should say that Infantilla is an erratum for infantillo, the diminutive of "infante," that is, the son, brother, or nephew of a king according to Spanish fashion, for since the fourteenth century such is the appellative or title under which the younger members of the royal family are designated. But, notwithstanding that, I am inclined to think, as Romey in his Histoire d'Espagne, vol. vi. p. 406, that Infantilla is but a corruption of Fatillah (see Desclot, p. 43), to which name the prefix En was added. The conjecture appears to me the more plausible that (Arabic letters in book), Fatih-billah or the "conqueror by the grace of God," is an Arabic title assumed by several Mussulman warriors of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries.
6. Desclot, who wrote sixty or seventy years after these events, says (Hist. de Cataluña, f. 43), that all Infantilla's party were killed, and that King James had the heads of all, four hundred and twelve in number, thrown from engines into the city: that the Moors, doubting if Infantilla's was really one of them, sent out a party of forty men to get certain news, who were all killed in their turn, excepting three, who got back, and whose report greatly discouraged those in the city. These additions, made at a period so near the time, seem to confirm faith in the earlier date of the more simple and probable narrative. Another instance, in confirmation of this remark, may be given from Desclot himself (f. 41): "The Moors, seeing their 'trebuchets' broken to pieces, and the walls ruined in many places, in despair of other remedies, invented one of their wonted cruelties, which they thought would hinder the attack. The next night they tied up all the Christian prisoners they had in the city, naked, on crosses on the part of the walls the Christians were battering with their 'trebuchets.' When morning came, and the Christians saw so sad a sight, with great wonder and anger they went to the moat to hear what those Christians might have to say, which was, that they earnestly entreated the army to: continue battering and throwing down the wall, without regard to the hurt they themselves might receive; since, relying on God, they themselves would endure with great patience that trial and death, knowing that the city would be difficult to win, if they did not take it on that side; and it would not be right for their sake not to take it. The King of Aragon wished to take counsel of his barons as to what should be done in such a case; all were of opinion that the battery should not be slackened on that side; for if those Christians died in so good a cause, God would receive their souls, giving them the reward for their torment; whereas the Moors would not remain without punishment in soul and body for such cruelty. With this resolution the battering was resumed, directing the shots to where the Christians were tied; but though the stones of the 'trebuchets' struck so near to them that sometimes they grazed their bodies, taking off their very hair off their heads, yet a just God hindered their hitting any of them, so that not one was killed or maimed. When night came on, the Moors, seeing their artifice was of no avail, took the prisoners off the wall, returning them to their dungeons."
Among Desclot's additions to, and embellishments of, the story of this siege, repeated mention is made of the hurdles (hourdes) or wooden galleries, for a knowledge of which in modern times we are indebted to M. Viollet-le Duc, Essai sur l'architecture militaire au moyen age, who (f. 45) speaks of an inner line of defence, built by the Moors, of stone and lime, "with many turrets of wood, and niches for cross bowmen" (ballesteras), and (f. 49) of the fall of a wall, "with all the scaffoldings and turrets of wood."
7. Benahabet in Marsilio (cap. xxvii. (Arabic letters in book).
8. The edition 1557 gives these names thus: Andraig, Sancta Ponça, Bunyola, Soller, Almaliug, Pollença; Montueri, Canarrossa, Inqua, Petra, Muro, Felanix, hon es lo castell de sent Tueri, e Manacor, e Artha.
9. And fastened to the props.
10. Villaroya (p. 134) gives, in support of his assertion that S. Pedro Nolasco was "the author and mover" of the king's con quests, the following letter, said by him to be preserved in a convent at Barcelona, the Mercedes. It refers to this stage of the siege. The reader will not perhaps think it proves more than that the king was in communication with the saint, as with a friend. Villaroya gives a Spanish version of the Catalan original.
"Reverend Father. - It has pleased God that we should lay siege to Mallorca; as you are so powerful with our Lord that He sent you the Holy Virgin through your prayers, you will continue them that the Saracens may surrender to us, and that He may remove all obstacles to our siege. But your prayers are good for thus much, that all may fall into our hands; for they put themselves in arms because the Christians had made a mine in the wall. The Saracens perceived it through the lights that were in it one night, and saw that a subterranean digging or mine was being made to overthrow the walls: they began to dig from the city towards that loophole, eyelet, or breathing-place they had seen, till they reached the Christians' mine, so that a great battle ensued between the Christians and Saracens, till the Aragonese were actually forced to depart and leave the place. But it happened as you had told me, that God was on our side. And God will have mercy on us, as we have heard from you. I tell you the truth, and put myself wholly in the hands of the Virgin Mary, that I will not raise the siege of Mallorca till her praise is sung in it: to that I have sworn. Do you, who have so much power with Heaven, gain favour for me against the Saracens, and I will remember you and your religion. - In the camp of Aragon, 8th Sept. 1229; of the Religion of the Virgin XI." (that is the eleventh year from the foundation of S. Pedro Nolasco's Order of Mercy).
11. Habrel, Bachiel, and Bahiel, for the readings vary in the Chronicle, as well as in Marsilio and Desclot; his true name was Rabbi Babiel. He had a brother called Selomoh; both were natives of Saragossa.
12. Gil de Alagon, a renegade, who had taken the name of Mohammad.
13. Portopi, Portupi, Port Opi.
14. Desclot (Hist. de Cataluña, f. 45) tells the story thus: "A little after" (the unsuccessful attack on Peñiscola in 1225) "it happened that two Catalan corsairs, cruising in the Mediterranean, came to Iviça, where there were a galley and a transport of the Moorish king of Mallorca, demanding the two vessels, captured the transport and the galley escaped to Mallorca. … A few days afterwards a Barcelona ship arriving at Mallorca, the King captured it, its cargo and crew, and immediately sent his galley to Iviça, where there was another Barcelona ship, with a valuable cargo for Ceuta, and brought her to Mallorca. The King of Aragon then sent to Mallorca, demanding the two vessels. The King of Mallorca called together the Pisan, Genoese, and Provençal merchants, of whom there were many in the island, and asked 'what power the King of Aragon had, and if he should be afraid of him, or if it seemed to them better to give up the ships than to irritate him?' A Genoese, who was very rich and experienced, answered for all, that he 'need not fear the King of Aragon, nor his little and feeble power, since it was not enough to take the castle of Peñiscola, though so small, and besieged by him a long time; so it did not seem to them that he (the King of Mallorca) should give up anything of what he had taken, for no harm could come of keeping it.' The reason of his giving such bad advice (good for the King of Aragon), was that the Catalans might not be able to sail in those seas, the kings being at war, and they themselves might have the field open to buy and sell their merchandise everywhere. Relying on this advice, the King of Mallorca had replied to the King of Aragon's messenger, that he would not give up the ships, persons, and goods; he of Aragon might do what he could, for he did not fear his defiance or his power. This answer put King James in such anger, that he swore before God not to rest nor to deem himself a true monarch till he had destroyed the Moorish king, conquered him by force of arms, seized his person, and taken him by the beard in insult and vengeance for his ill behaviour and discourtesy."
Beuter, a chronicler of the sixteenth century (Chron. de España, lib. ii., f. 10), tells the incident thus, making no mention of any previous consultation of the Moorish king with the Italian merchants: he says that the Mallorcan "replied with great scorn: 'Who is this king, your master, who sends you here? I know no such king.' Then some Pisan traders said, 'This is a king who went against Peñiscola, a castle in the kingdom of Valencia, and could not take it.' He (James's envoy) made answer, and said: 'The King, my master, is son of the king who won the battle of Ubeda, and vanquished all the power of the Moors of Spain and Africa.' "
15. The battle of Ubeda, or rather of Las Navas de Tolosa, was fought in 1212 by the combined forces of Castille, Aragon, and Navarre, against Abu Abdillah Mohammad, Sultan of Africa and Mohammedan Spain. Pedro II., James's father, was in it, and contributed most efficiently to the taking of Ubeda.
16. The besant was at this time, and up to the sixteenth century, worth three sols and four deniers of those of Barcelona, or about l 1/2 reales (forty centimes) at the present day. The city of Mallorca having then, according to Desclot, 80,000 inhabitants, that would make 650l. of our English money, no insignificant sum for the Amir of the Balearic islands to offer.
17. Miramamolin is a corruption of Amira-l-mumenin, or "Prince of the true believers," the title assumed by the khalifs of Cordoba of the house of Umeyya, from Abde-r-rahman downwards, and after them by the Almowahedin or Almohades.
18. "E faerense les caues, mas totes les desempararen ala derreria sino aquela que anaua sobre terra, e en aquela metem nostra punya tan fort que a pesar dels se feu."
19. Elsewhere "Bab-el-beled," (Arabic letters in book), or the "gate of the fields."
20. "Si que valent de xii diners nuyl hom no volia fer en la ost si a nos non demanassen."
21. Don Veyl.
22. "E quan los caualls armats començaren dentrar cessa la uou: e quan fo feyt lo pas on deuien entrar los caualls armats, hauia ja be lains D. homens de peu."
23. The edition of 1557 has: "E apres ell en Berenguer de Gurb e prop en Berenguer de Gurb un cavaller queanaba ab sire Guillen qui hauia nom Sirot, e aquest nom li havien mes per scarni." The copy used by the modern translators (Bofarull and Brocá) reads no doubt Soyrot, but neither reading helps me; I cannot explain the joke, unless sirot be meant for the diminutive of sire, which in French as well as in Catalonian is the equivalent of lord, master, &c.
24. Retabohihe, in the edition of 1557. ShejAbuYahye, (Arabic letters in book), as has been said elsewhere, was the king's name.
25. Rodo, (Arabic letters in book), the imperative of radda, (Arabic letters in book), which means "to stand firm, to resist or repel the attack of an enemy."
26. "Vergonya, cavalers," meaning, "Beware of shame."
27. Berbelet might well be a corruption from (Arabic letters in book), beb-el-beled, the gate of the country, or that leading outside the town.
28. Almudaina, i.e. the small city (citadel), comes from the Arabic (Arabic letters in book), the diminutive of "Medina."
29. "Qui estaua al cap de la casa, e stauan li iii. exortins denant ab lur atzagayes." I suppose the word exortins to be derived from the Arabic word (Arabic letters in book), ex-xorta, meaning the body-guard of a king. Sáhib-ex-xorta was under the Umayya Khalifs of Cordoba, the "captain of the royal guard." The Spanish translators changed "exortins" into exortiquins, having, no doubt, found the word thus written in the two copies of the Chronicle preserved at Barcelona, but exortins, as above stated, can only be the plural of (Arabic letters in book), xorti, a guard with the article Ax-xorti or Exorti. As to Atzagayes, I believe it to be a Berber word, meaning a javelin or short spear.
30. In Spanish "albornoz," (Arabic letters in book), which, however, is not an Arabic, but a Berber word. "Et quant fom prop dell lleuas ab sa capa blanca e bernuz, pero vestia un gonyio de ius un guardacors que vestia de amit blanch." On the meaning of the word gonyjo, or gonyo, as elsewhere written, see note at page 24. Amit, from the Latin "amietus," might be the shirt or inner garment, unless the reading samit (samitum) be adopted, as the Spanish translators have done, in which case a thin silken cloth of Syrian manufacture is meant.
31. Muntaner's Chronicle, cc. 7 and 8, after a very brief summary of the incidents of the siege of Mallorca, gives an account of the capture of the king as follows: "And the lord king knew the Saracen king, and by force of arms got up to him, and took him by the beard. And that he did because he had sworn, that he would never depart from that place till he had taken the Saracen king by the beard. And he wished thus to make good his oath. That oath the said lord king made, because the said Saracen king had thrown into the camp from trebuchets Christian captives; wherefore it pleased our Lord Jesus Christ, that he should take vengeance for it." On comparing this story, which is known to have been written about fifty years after the king's death, with that which is given in the text, it will be seen that it shows the natural growth of fable and the influence of a love of the marvellous, in such times; and furnishes a strong presumption that the simple narrative given in the king's name was really of his time, and furnished by a witness on the spot. I may add that Desclot, writing thirty or forty years before Muntaner, says simply (cap. xxxiv.) that "some Tortosa men gave up to him" (James) "the Moorish king, whom they found in a courtyard; the king handed him to the Count Don Nuño." However this may be, to "seize a man by the beard" or "beard a man" was considered in the middle ages the greatest affront that could be made.
32. James had him brought up at his court, under the tutorship of a Dominican friar, who converted him to Christianity, the king himself acting as godfather at the baptism. Later on he married him to a lady of the house of Alagon, and gave him the baronias or baronetages of Illueca and Gotor.
33. Per cadrelles. The word cadrelles in Castillian "quadrillas."
34. A kind of pun; "aquest encant no sera encant, que engan sera;" encant meaning a sale by auction and engan a mistake, an imposition, falsehood, fraud, &c.
35. Inca, eighteen miles N.E. of Palma, as the capital of Mallorca is called now-a-days.