Programming / to stage
I’ve been on the hunt lately to find texts that would be great to adapt into video games.
So I came across a very old favorite – the 7th Crusade – the one carried out by Saint Louis from 1249 to 1254.
From our modern point of view, this war is an unbelievable catastrophe.
But the Knights were not modern at all.
They believed first of all in God – then they accepted the objections of reason – but later.
In front of them, the Muslim kingdoms – the Sultans – the Ottomans – who believed in God –
In the middle, the Hachichins – the Assassins/the murderers, who said that they believed in God, but it was neither the God of the Christians, nor the God of the Muslims.
They were the followers of the Old Man of the Mountain – the one who had taken up residence in Alamut.
So, in my treasures, there are more than 200 pages of chronicles of this crusade.
It is not a novel.
It is not a great epic adventure as writers have written.
No – this is the real life of the real knights of that time.
And there, then there, when one speaks about taking a good old big slap in the face, this book is not bad to try.
I’ve never seen people waste so much time.
I never imagined that armies could behave so implausibly.
Neither one side nor the other.
Can you imagine that when they saw the coast of Egypt, many knights threw themselves into the sea, with their horses, all armed?
They sank to the bottom.
They thought that God would save them.
And Saint Louis told them that God was not there to save fools.
Can you imagine that instead of looking for a ford in the tributaries of the Nile, the army of the Crusaders, with God’s help they thought, crossed like that, with talent?
It took a lot of deaths for them to agree to look for a passage.
Do you imagine that knights’ battles were really done according to honor? If you had, even unintentionally, injured an opponent unfairly – behind his back – you were responsible for his fight and his life. And you found yourself fighting on his side. On both sides.
The chronicler gives so many amazing details – at one point the Crusader army was losing all its battles.
St. Louis thought God was against them.
He looked for the reason.
In the Crusader camp, there were, at the end of the camp, tents… tents.
In these tents, there were women who earned their living.
Saint Louis entered.
He found a knight dishonoring himself with a lady who was not his wife.
The punishment was… incredible.
Madam was asked to walk Monsieur, shirtless and barefoot, through the entire Crusader camp, “by the place where Monsieur had erred” – I wouldn’t have read that, never would have believed it.
This done, the Crusaders won a battle.
It was a coincidence no doubt – but St. Louis was convinced that he was right and that God heard him.
I give them to you like that, in bulk, there are too many to imagine a show.
But there are more than enough to imagine a show.
The esteem in which they held each other is, to a modern mind, quite puzzling.
These battles were an opportunity for them to be men of honor and to honor their God, without – and here it is strange for us – without insulting the God of the other.
Those were the times before the ones we remember.
Then it would be a show in which I believe that all the spectators would be literally stunned. Of course, there is the terrible epic dimension of the battles told – of course – I think it was in this text that I learned to be so afraid of the Hachichins – they are terrifying – invisible – they strike like wild beasts – disloyal in this world where loyalty was the greatest value, on both sides.
But in addition, there are extravagances like the ones I just told you.
And the two combined? It’s a blast!
It will be – a blast.