In the person of Saint Louis, we see the loyalty of a knight

June 2, 2016

By Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira

The Life of King St. Louis by Alexandre Cabanel

The knight is a loyal warrior. He is loyal even with his adversaries. Saint Louis, King of France, was arrested in a war against the Mohammedans because of a mistake by a brother of his. His brother was leader of a part of the Crusader army and carried out a maneuver different from the one Saint Louis had ordered. As a result, the battle was lost and Saint Louis was made prisoner.

King St. Louis IX refuses his freedom to Emir Octaï. Painting by Guillaume Guillon-Lethière

As a prisoner, he was there obeying orders. But he was so loyal, so dignified and so courteous but also so categorical! They demanded that he surrender such and such things from France. He would simply answer, “I will not surrender them!” as if saying, “You can kill me but I will not cave in! I am unarmed, but I am not a traitor and I will give nothing of the land of Christendom to any of you!” They ended up respecting him so much that when they fought among themselves they would ask him to be their arbiter! This is a knight!


(Excerpt from a Palavrinha, Sept. 25, 1989 – translation)

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