Presentation on theme: "Document B By Edward Grim Grim was an eyewitness to the death of Becket, and was injured during the course of the struggle between Becket and the Knights."— Presentation transcript:
Document B By Edward Grim Grim was an eyewitness to the death of Becket, and was injured during the course of the struggle between Becket and the Knights. He was actually a visitor to Canterbury, coming to see Becket on his return from France. This account picks up the story as the knights enter the church, looking for Becket a.In a spirit of mad fury the knights called out, b.“Where is Thomas Becket, traitor to the king and realm?” c.When he returned no answer, they cried out more loudly and insistently: d.“Where is the archbishop.” e.At this quite undaunted, as it is written, f.“The righteous shall be bold as a lion and without fear,”
Document B contd. g.He described from the steps, whither he had been dragged by the monks through their fear of the knights, and in a perfectly clear voice answered: h.“Lo! Here I am no traitor to the king, but a priest. What do you seek from me? Behold, I am ready to suffer in his Name who redeemed me by his Blood. Far be it from me to flee your swords or to depart from righteousness.” i.He then turned aside to the right, under a pillar, having on one side the altar of the blessed mother of God, the Virgin Mary, on the other, that of the holy confessor Benedict. The murderers pursued him. j.“Absolve and restore to communion those who you have excommunicated and the functions of their office to the others who have been suspended” they cried. k.Becket answered: l.“There has been no satisfaction made, and I will not absolve them.”
Document B contd. “Then you shall die this instant and receive your deserts” they cried. m.“I too am ready to die for my Lord, and in my blood the Church may obtain peace and liberty; but in the name of Almighty God I forbid you to harm any of my men, whether clerk or lay.” n.Thus did the noble martyr make sure that no one standing near should be hurt nor the innocent oppressed. Then the knights made a rush at him and laid sacrilegious hands upon him, pulling and dragging him roughly and violently, trying to get him outside the walls of the church and there slay him, or bind him and carry him off prisoner, as they afterwards confessed was their intention. o.But as he could not be easily moved from the pillar, one of them seized hold of him and clung to him more closely. The archbishop shook him off vigorously saying:
Document B contd p.“Touch me not Reginald; you owe me fealty and obedience, you are acting like a madman, you and your accomplices.” q.The knight brandished his sword and said: r.“Neither faith nor obedience do I owe you against my fealty to my lord the King.” s.Then Becket, unconquered martyr, understood that the hour was approaching that should release him from the miseries of this mortal life. Whereupon, inclining his head as one in prayer and joining his hands together and uplifting them, he commended his cause and that of the Church of God and St. Mary. Then the wicked knight, fearing that he should be rescued by the people and escape alive, leapt suddenly upon him and wounded the sacrificial lamb of God in the head, cutting off the crown…and by the same stroke he almost cut off the arm of him who tells the story.
Document B contd t.For he, when all the others, both monks and clerks had fled, steadfastly stood by the scared archbishop and held his arms around him, till the one he opposed to the blow was almost severed. Next he received a second blow on the head, but still he stood firm and immovable. At the third blow, he fell on his knees and elbows, offering himself a living sacrifice and saying in a low voice: u.“For the Name of Jesus and the protection of the Church I am ready to embrace death.” v.But the third knight inflicted a terrible wound, as he lay prostrate. By this stroke the sword cut his head in such a way that the blood white with brain and the brain no less red from the blood, dyed the floor of the cathedral…. The fourth knight warded off any who sought to intervene, so that the others might with greater freedom and license perpetrate the crime. But the fifth, not a knight, but a clerk who had entered with the knights…placed his foot on the neck of the holy priest and precious martyr and, horrible to relate, scattered the brains and blood about the pavement, crying out to the others,
Document B contd w.“Let us away, knights; this fellow will rise no more.” x.Neither in hand nor robe did Becket oppose the fatal stroke. Nor did he utter a single word, neither cry nor groan, nor make any sound of pain. But he held motionless the head which had bent to meet the uplifted sword until, bespattered with blood and brains, as though in prayer, his body lay on the pavement, while his soul rested.