6 Robert d’Arbrissel, the founder of the abbey of Fontevrault (see ante, p. 74), was accused of this practice.—See the article Fontevraud in Desoer’s edition of Bayle’s Dictionary, vi. 508, 519.—M.
7 Queen Margaret possibly refers to some incidents which occurred at Milan in the early part of the fourteenth century, when Matteo and Galeazzo Visconti ruled the city. In Signor Tullio Dandolo’s work, Sui xxiii. libri delta Histories Patrice di Giuseppe Ripamonti ragionamento (Milano, 1856, pp. 52-60), will be found the story of a woman of the people, Guglielmina, and her accomplice, Andrea Saramita, who under some religious pretext founded a secret society of females. The debauchery practised by its members being discovered, Saramita was burnt alive, and Guglielmina’s bones were disinterred and thrown into the fire. The Bishop of Milan at this time (1296-1308) was Francesco Fontana.—M.
“Truly,” said Geburon, “it were the extremity of folly to seek to become sinless by one’s own efforts, and at the same time to seek out opportunities for sin.”
“There are some,” said Saffredent, “who do the very opposite, and flee opportunities for sin as carefully as they are able; nevertheless, concupiscence pursues them. Thus the good Saint Jerome, after scourging and hiding himself in the desert, confessed that he could not escape from the fire that consumed his marrow. We ought, therefore, to recommend ourselves to God, for unless He uphold us by His power, we are greatly prone to fall.”
“You do not notice what I do,” said Hircan. “While we were telling our stories, the monks behind the hedge here heard nothing of the vesper-bell; whereas, now that we have begun to speak about God, they have taken themselves off, and are at this moment ringing the second bell.”
“We shall do well to follow them,” said Oisille, “and praise God for enabling us to spend this day in the happiest manner imaginable.”
Hereat they rose and went to the church, where they piously heard vespers; after which they went to supper, discussing the discourses they had heard, and calling to mind divers adventures that had come to pass in their own day, in order to determine which of them were worthy to be recounted. And after spending the whole evening in gladness, they betook themselves to their gentle rest, hoping on the morrow to continue this pastime which was so agreeable to them.
And so was the Third Day brought to an end.
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A. (Tale XX., Page 21.)
Brantome alludes as follows to this tale, in the Fourth Discourse of his Vies des Dames Galantes:—