Turks Franks Cumans and Manichaeans part 30

For the three stood there sharpening each other’s wits, as if they were boar’s teeth, intent upon rending the Emperor’s arguments. And if any objection escaped Cusinus, Culeon would take it up; and il Culeon was at a loss, Pholus in his turn would rise in opposition; or they would, one after the other, rouse themselves against [388] the Emperor’s premises and refutations, just like very large waves following up other large waves. But the Emperor swept away all their objections as if they were a spider’s web and quickly closed their impious mouths.

But as he could not convince them at all, he finally wearied of these men’s silliness and dispatched them to the Queen City, allotting to them as their abode the verandahs which surrounded the great palace. And yet his hunting had not been all in vain in spite of his not having captured those leaders by his words; for every day he brought to God, maybe a hundred, maybe even more than a hundred; so that the sum total of those he had captured before and those whom he won now by the words of his mouth would amount to thousands and ten thousand souls.

Near Philippopolis on the other side of the river Eurus

But why should I linger to speak of that which the whole world knows and to which the East and West bear testimony? for whole towns and districts infected by various heresies he brought back by divers means to our orthodox faith. Upon the more eminent Manicbmans he bestowed great gifts and enrolled them among the picked soldiery. But the more vulgar, such as were diggers or had to do with ploughing and cattle, he gathered together and transplanted them with their wives and children to a town he built for them near Philippopolis on the other side of the river Eurus. There he settled them and called the town Alexiopolis, or a name more generally used, Neocastrum, and to one and all he distributed plough-lands and vineyards, horses and immovable property.

Nor did he leave these gifts unsecured, so that like the gardens of Adonis they should bear flowers one day and fall away the next, but by Golden Bulls he confirmed these gifts to them and he did not limit his benefactions to them only but made them transmissible to their sons and sons’ sons; and, in case the males failed, the women could succeed to the inheritance. In this wise did the great man confer his benefits. Let this be sufficient on this subject, although a great deal has been omitted; and let no one revile this history as if it were corrupt. For many of the people still living can testify to the truth of what I have related and I could not be convicted of falsehood.

After arranging all matters as was best the Emperor left Philippopolis and went back to the Queen City. And there he renewed his continual discussions and arguments with Culeon and Cusinus and their followers. And he captured Culeon, for he, I fancy, was the more intelligent and able to follow the true arguments closely, and he became a very tame lamb in our fold.

But Cusinus and Pholus became savage and, like iron, they were hammered upon by the Emperor’s frequent discourses and yet they remained of iron and turned away from him and would not be led by him. Therefore as they were the most blasphemous of all the Manichaeans and clearly drifting into melancholy madness, he had them cast into the prison called Elephantine, and while supplying them liberally with all necessaries, he allowed them to die in company with their sins alone.

Read More about The Revolt of the Comneni part 17

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