Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions - Charles Mackay - Страница 1 из 386


"Il est bon de connaitre les delires de l'esprit humain. Chaque people
a ses folies plus ou moins grossieres."
MILLOT
MEMORIES OF EXTRAORDINARY POPULAR DELUSIONS
VOL II.
BY
CHARLES MACKAY
CONTENTS OF THE SECOND VOLUME.
THE CRUSADES
THE WITCH MANIA
THE SLOW POISONERS
HAUNTED HOUSES
THE CRUSADES ....
They heard, and up they sprung upon the wing
Innumerable. As when the potent rod
Of Amram's son, in Egypt's evil day,
Waved round the coast, up call'd a pitchy cloud
Of locusts, warping on the eastern wind
That o'er the realm of impious Pharaoh hung
Like night, and darken'd all the realm of Nile,
So numberless were they. * * *
* * * * * * * *
All in a moment through the gloom were seen
Ten thousand banners rise into the air,
With orient colours waving. With them rose
A forest huge of spears; and thronging helms
Appear'd, and serried shields, in thick array,
Of depth immeasurable.
Paradise Lost.
Every age has its peculiar folly--some scheme, project, or phantasy
into which it plunges, spurred on either by the love of gain, the
necessity of excitement, or the mere force of imitation. Failing in
these, it has some madness, to which it is goaded by political or
religious causes, or both combined. Every one of these causes
influenced the Crusades, and conspired to render them the most
extraordinary instance upon record of the extent to which popular
enthusiasm can be carried. History in her solemn page informs us, that


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