Page:A History of the Inquisition of the Middle Ages-Volume I .pdf/220

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ulate. Considering the customs of the age, the terms were not hard. They agreed to satisfy the king and Church, they paid a considerable ransom, their walls were thrown down and three hundred fortified houses in the town were dismantled, and they received as bishop, at the hands of the legate, Nicholas de Corbie, who instituted laws for the suppression of heresy. It was fortunate for Louis that the submission came when it did, for a few days later there occurred an inundation of the Durance which would have drowned his camp.[1]

From Avignon Louis marched westward, everywhere receiving the submission of nobles and cities until within a few leagues of Toulouse. The reduction of that obstinate focus of heresy was apparently all that remained to complete the ruin of Raymond and the success of the crusade, when Louis suddenly turned his face homeward. No explanation of this unlooked-for termination of the campaign is furnished by any of the chroniclers, but it is probably to be sought in the sickness which pursued the Crusaders, and possibly in the commencement of the disease which terminated the march and the life of the king at Montpensier on November 8 — fulfilling the prophecy of Merlin, "In ventris monte morietur leo pacificus" — and not without suspicion of poisoning by Thibaut of Champagne. Throughout Europe, however, the retreat was regarded as the result of serious military reverses. Louis had designed to return the following year, and had left garrisons in the places which had submitted to him, with Humbert de Beaujeu, a renowned captain, in supreme command, and Gui de Montfort under him, but their feats of arms were few, though the burning of heretics was not neglected, when occasion offered, if only to maintain the sacred character of the war.[2]

Saved as by a miracle from the ruin which had seemed inevitable, Raymond lost no time in recovering a portion of his dominions. The death of Louis had worked a complete revolution in the situa-

  1. Matt. Paris ann. 1226.— Teulet, Layettes, II. 71, 78, 81, 84, 85, 87, 89, 90, 91, 648-9.— Guillel. de Pod. Laurent, c. 35.— Vaissette, IIL 354, 364.— Chron..Turonens. ann. 1226. — Guillel. Nangiac. ann. 1226. — Gesta Ludovici VIIL ann. 1226.
    The city of Agen seems to have remained faithful to Raymond (Teulet, 11. 82).
  2. Gesta Ludovici VII. ann. 1226.— Matt. Paris ann. 1226.— Chron. Turonens. ann. 1226. — Guillel. de Pod. Laurent, c. 36, 38.— Alberti Stadens. Chron. ann. 1226.— Vaissette, IIL 363.