Ivanhoe (Chapter 4, page 1 of 7)


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Chapter 4

With sheep and shaggy goats the porkers bled,
And the proud steer was on the marble spread;
With fire prepared, they deal the morsels round,
Wine rosy bright the brimming goblets crown'd.


Disposed apart, Ulysses shares the treat;
A trivet table and ignobler seat,
The Prince assigns--

--Odyssey, Book XXI

The Prior Aymer had taken the opportunity afforded him, of changing his
riding robe for one of yet more costly materials, over which he wore
a cope curiously embroidered. Besides the massive golden signet ring,
which marked his ecclesiastical dignity, his fingers, though contrary
to the canon, were loaded with precious gems; his sandals were of the
finest leather which was imported from Spain; his beard trimmed to as
small dimensions as his order would possibly permit, and his shaven
crown concealed by a scarlet cap richly embroidered.

The appearance of the Knight Templar was also changed; and, though
less studiously bedecked with ornament, his dress was as rich, and
his appearance far more commanding, than that of his companion. He had
exchanged his shirt of mail for an under tunic of dark purple silk,
garnished with furs, over which flowed his long robe of spotless white,
in ample folds. The eight-pointed cross of his order was cut on the
shoulder of his mantle in black velvet. The high cap no longer invested
his brows, which were only shaded by short and thick curled hair of
a raven blackness, corresponding to his unusually swart complexion.
Nothing could be more gracefully majestic than his step and manner,
had they not been marked by a predominant air of haughtiness, easily
acquired by the exercise of unresisted authority.

These two dignified persons were followed by their respective
attendants, and at a more humble distance by their guide, whose figure
had nothing more remarkable than it derived from the usual weeds of a
pilgrim. A cloak or mantle of coarse black serge, enveloped his whole
body. It was in shape something like the cloak of a modern hussar,
having similar flaps for covering the arms, and was called a "Sclaveyn",
or "Sclavonian".

Coarse sandals, bound with thongs, on his bare feet;
a broad and shadowy hat, with cockle-shells stitched on its brim, and
a long staff shod with iron, to the upper end of which was attached a
branch of palm, completed the palmer's attire. He followed modestly the
last of the train which entered the hall, and, observing that the lower
table scarce afforded room sufficient for the domestics of Cedric and
the retinue of his guests, he withdrew to a settle placed beside and
almost under one of the large chimneys, and seemed to employ himself in
drying his garments, until the retreat of some one should make room
at the board, or the hospitality of the steward should supply him with
refreshments in the place he had chosen apart.

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