Page:Historical Works of Venerable Bede vol. 2.djvu/288

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collect the tribute from the people of the Saint, but they, unwilling to consent, implored as usual the aid of St. Cuthbert. Wherefore, as the night before he was going to exact payment was drawing to a close, the Holy Saint stood by him in a dream, and striking him with his pastoral staff which he held in his hand, rebuked him with pontifical authority and with a threatening look, saying that his presumption should not go unpunished, and unless he departed it should be still worse for him. When he awoke from his sleep, he felt such weakness in all his limbs, that he could not rise from his bed. Afterwards, in presence of all, he related what he had seen and heard, and begged them to intercede with the Holy Father in his behalf; he sent also a mantle to his tomb, and promised to be his faithful and devoted servant if the Saint would forgive him his offence, and remit its punishment. But as his infirmity continued at its height, he caused himself to be carried about through all the diocese in a litter, and showed to all the crime which he had committed, and the vengeance it had drawn down. As long as he remained at any place belonging to the bishoprick, he suffered from this malady, but, when he left it and returned home, he immediately recovered.

Murder of Bp. Walcher.§ 38. After the horrible and well-known murder of Walcher, Bishop of Durham, the glorious King William sent an army to avenge such an atrocious deed; but all the ringleaders and murderers hid themselves in the woods and mountains. The common people, trusting in their innocence, (as it is written, "The just man hath the confidence of a lion,") sought, as usual, the trusty patronage of the Holy Confessor, and carried their effects into the monastery. Meanwhile, one of those who were in the castle, by birth a Frenchman, seeing so many chests, with no one to guard them,Punishment of sacrilege. (for the guards had other matters to attend to in the inner part of the monastery, and did not suppose that any one would steal in the temple of the Lord, whatever they might do