The End of a Fatal Triangle
We shall now present a dreadful case which clearly demonstrates how crooked and sinister the ego of jealousy can be during a husband and wife’s married life.
The horrible event occurred in 1180 in Provence. News of it spread all over until in 1250 it eventually became a literary work as something resembling an epic...
“It so happened that William Cabstaing, son of a poor knight of Cabstaing castle, arrived at Lord Raymond of Roussillon’s court and after introducing himself, asked if he would accept him as his Squire. The Baron found him to be refined and consented to his remaining in his court.
“So William stayed. He behaved in such a courteous way that both the lofty and lowly liked him. He became so highly distinguished that Baron Raymond assigned him to serve his wife, Lady Marguerite, as a Page. Now William tried even harder to be worthy in both word and deed; however it became an amorous matter. Lady Marguerite was aroused and fell in love with him.
“The diligence of the Page at her service, his conversation and his conviction pleased her so much, that one day she could not refrain from asking: ‘Tell me William, would you love a woman that showed signs of love for you?’ William answered sincerely: ‘I certainly would, madam, provided that the signs were sincere.’
“‘In the name of Saint John!’ exclaimed the lady, ‘You answer like a perfect gentleman. But now I wish to see if you can discern or recognize the signs to be either truthful or merely to appear so.’
“William answered with these words: ‘Then, let it be as you wish, my lady.’
“He became thoughtful, and instantly Love began to joust with him. The thoughts that Love sent him pierced him through the heart, and from that moment on he became its champion. He began to compose beautiful verses, exquisite songs and poems, all of which pleased very much the one to whom he recited and sang.
“Moreover, Love, which rewards its servants when pleased, wished to reward William. Immediately, the lady began to think of and desire her obsession to such an extent that she could not rest day or night. In William, she saw the sum total of the gifts of courage and heroic deeds.
“So, it happened one day that Lady Marguerite addressed William, asking, ‘Do you know, William, what is or is not true about my appearance at this very moment?’
“William answered, ‘Madam, as sure as God helps me, from the very moment that I became your Page, there was no other thought that I could harbour than you as the most truthful in words and appearance amongst all living beings. This I believe and will believe all my life.’
The lady replied, ‘William, as God also helps me, I tell you that you will not be deceived by me, and your thoughts will not be in vain.’
“And opening her arms, she delicately kissed him, and they sat down in the chamber and began to attend to their love...
“However, not much time passed before malevolent gossip, which must have unleashed God’s wrath, began to spread about William’s love and about the songs that he composed, mutterings that he had his eyes on Lady Marguerite. The gossips talked and talked until the matter finally reached the master’s ears.
“Baron Raymond was most aggrieved because he would lose a fellow rider, but even more so because of his wife’s dishonor. And one day when William, accompanied only by a squire, went hunting with a sparrow hawk, Raymond with weapons concealed upon his person rode until he found the Page.
“‘Welcome, sir,’ William greeted Raymond as soon as he saw him and went over to meet him. ‘Why are you all alone?’
“After beating about the bush Raymond began: ‘Tell me for God’s sake and Holy Faith! Have you a lover to whom you sing and who chains you with love?’
“‘Master,’ answered William, ‘how could I sing otherwise if love did not persuade me? The truth is, sir, that love has completely ensnared me in its trap.’
“‘I should like to know, if you please, who is the lady in question.’
“‘Ah, sir, in God’s name what are you asking of me! You know too well that the lady must never be mentioned.’
“But Raymond kept on pressing him (because the ego of jealousy was devouring him alive) until William said: ‘Sir, you must know that I love the sister of Lady Marguerite, your wife, and I hope to be requited by her (answered the ego of deception), and now that you know, I beg your support or at least do not hurt my chances.’
“‘Here you have my hand and my word,’ said Raymond, ‘as a promise and oath that I will do everything in my power to help you.’
“‘Let us then go to her castle, which is nearby,’ William proposed.
“And so they did, being properly welcomed by Lord Robert of Tarascon, husband of Lady Inez herself. Raymond guided Inez to her chamber and both sat on the bed.
“‘Tell me, sister-in-law,’ Raymond said, ‘by the loyalty which you owe me. Do you love anyone?’
“‘Yes, sir,’ she answered (with her deceitful ego).
“‘Oh, I cannot say,’ she answered, ‘What are you asking me?’
“But he kept pressing her for an answer so much that she had no other alternative but to confess her love for William. “This was her response on seeing him so sad and suspicious, although she knew well that William loved her sister. Her answer brought Raymond much happiness.
“Inez told her husband everything. He considered that she had acted correctly, and gave her complete liberty to say and do whatever she wished, in order to save William (the vile adulterer).
“Inez became an accomplice to the crime. She took the Page to her chamber to be alone with him and stayed in his company so long that Raymond assumed, in effect, that they had been enjoying the sweetness of love.
“This pleased Raymond immensely and he began to think that whatever was rumored about William was nothing but groundless gossip. Inez and William emerged from the chamber, supper was prepared and enjoyed with much animation.” (Such are the farces committed by the pluralized ego).
“After supper, Inez arranged for the chambers of both guests to be quite near her own, and she and William played their roles so well that Raymond thought that the Page was sleeping with the lady.
“The following day and after bidding each other farewell, Raymond left William as soon as he could. He went to his wife and told her what had taken place. In the face of such news, Lady Marguerite spent all night submerged in deep despair. The next day she called William to her and rudely received him, treating him like a false friend and traitor.
“William begged for mercy as a man not guilty of whatever she was accusing him of, and he described everything that had occurred to the letter. The lady requested her sister’s presence and learned from her that William was telling the truth. At this, she ordered the Page to compose a song that demonstrated love for no other woman but her. He composed an epic poem that said: ‘The beautiful machinations that love often inspires...’
“When Raymond of Roussillon heard the poem that William had composed for his wife, he asked William to come and talk with him; then, at a great distance from the castle, he killed him, put the severed head in a hunting bag and wrenched out the heart.
“He returned to the castle with the hunting bag and asked that the heart be roasted and served to his wife at the table. “She ate not knowing what she was savoring.
“When the meal was over, Raymond rose and informed his wife that what she had eaten for lunch was William’s heart and immediately afterwards he showed her the horrifying head.
“He also asked if the heart had tasted good, to which Lady Marguerite replied: ‘Actually it was so delicious that no other dish will take away the taste of William’s heart.’ Enraged with anger, Raymond made desperate by the ego of jealousy, threw himself onto her, the perverse adulteress, with his dagger unsheathed. Marguerite escaped and flung herself from the balcony, smashing her head in the fall.”
This was the catastrophic end to a fatal triangle wherein the egos of jealousy, adultery, deceit, farce, etc. impelled their actors up a blind alley.
Bless my soul and Holy Mary! Both divine beings and humans know well that the powerful Lord Raymond of Roussillon became a murderer because of the demon of jealousy. It would have been better to serve his wife divorce papers.