Song of Roland Summary

For seven years, the valiant Christian king Charlemagne has actually made war against the Saracens in Spain. Only one Moslem stronghold stays, the city of Saragossa, under the rule of King Marsile and Queen Bramimonde. Marsile, certain that defeat is inevitable, hatches a plot to rid Spain of Charlemagne. He will promise to be Charlemagne’s vassal and a Christian convert in exchange for Charlemagne’s departure. But once Charlemagne is back in France, Marsile will break his guarantees. Charlemagne and his vassals, weary of the long war, receive Marsile’s messengers and attempt to choose an envoy to work out at Marsile’s court on Charlemagne’s behalf.

Roland, a bold knight and Charlemagne’s right-hand guy, nominates his stepfather, Ganelon. Ganelon is angered, believing that Roland has actually chosen him for this unsafe mission in an attempt to be rid of him for great. Ganelon has actually long been jealous of Roland, and on his diplomatic objective he plots with the pagans, telling them that they could assail Charlemagne’s rearguard as Charlemagne leaves Spain. Roland will certainly lead the rearguard, and Ganelon assures that with Roland dead Charlemagne will lose the will to eliminate.

After Ganelon returns with guarantees of Marsile’s great faith, Roland, as he predicted, winds up leading the rearguard. The twelve peers, Charlemagne’s biggest and most cherished vassals, choose him. Among them is Oliver, a smart and sensible guy and Roland’s friend. Likewise in the rearguard is the fiery Archbishop Turin, a clergymen who likewise is an excellent warrior. At the pass of Rencesvals, the twenty thousand Christians of the rearguard are assailed by a vastly exceptional force, numbering in the numerous thousands. Oliver counsels Roland to blow his oliphant horn, to recall Charlemagne’s primary force, however Roland refuses. The Franks fight valiantly, but in the end they are eliminated to the guy. Roland blows his oliphant so that Charlemagne will return and avenge them. His temples burst from the force needed, and he passes away soon later. He dies dealing with the enemy’s land, and his soul is accompanied to heaven by saints and angels.

Charlemagne gets here, and he and his men are overwhelmed with grief at the sight of the massacre. He pursues the pagan force, assisted by a wonder of God: the sun is held in place in the sky, so that the opponent will not have cover of night. The Franks push the Saracens into the river Ebro, where those who are not chopped to pieces are drowned.

Marsile has gotten away and returned to Saragossa, where the staying Saracens are plunged into anguish by their losses. However Baligant, the extremely effective emir of Babylon, has actually gotten here to help his vassal. The emir goes to Rencesvals, where the Franks are grieving and burying their dead. There is a dreadful fight, climaxing with an individually clash in between Baligant and Charlemagne. With a touch of divine help, Charlemagne kills Baligant, and the Saracens retreat. The Franks take Saragossa, where the damage all Jewish and Moslem religious products and require the conversion of everybody in the city, with the exception of Queen Bramimonde. Charlemagne wants her to come to Christ of her own accord. With her captive, the Franks go back to their capitol, Aix.

Ganelon is prosecuted for treason. Pinabel, Ganelon’s kinsman and a talented speaker, nearly sways the jury to let Ganelon go. However Thierry, a brave however physically unimposing knight, says that Ganelon’s vengeance need to not have been taken versus a man in Charlemagne’s serve: that makes up treason. To decide the matter, Pinabel and Thierry fight. Though Pinabel is without a doubt the stronger guy, God steps in and Thierry triumphs. The Franks draw and quarter Ganelon (tie each limb to among 4 horses running in opposite directions, which tears the victim to pieces). They also hang thirty of his kinsmen.

Charlemagne announces to all that Bramimonde has actually decided to end up being a Christian. Her baptism is celebrated, and all seems well.

But that night, the angel Gabriel comes to Charlemagne in a dream, and informs him that he must leave for a new war versus the pagans. Weary and weeping, however completely obedient to God, Charlemagne gets ready for yet another bloody war.