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even Moors. Also, he added, that he could not say that the Englishman
had intended to kill the soldier.
Then Castell and Margaret gave their evidence, the latter with much
modest sweetness. Indeed, when she explained that Peter was her
affianced husband, to whom she was to have been wed on the day after she
had been stolen away from England, and that she had cried out to him
for help when the dead soldier caught hold of her and rent away her
veil, there was a murmur of sympathy, and the king and queen began to
talk with each other without paying much heed to her further words.
Next they spoke to two of the judges who sat with them, after which the
king held up his hand and announced that they had come to a decision on
the case. It was, that, under the circumstances, the Englishman was
justified in cutting down the soldier, especially as there was nothing
to show that he meant to kill him, or that he knew that he belonged to
the Holy Hermandad. He would, therefore, be discharged on the condition
that he paid a sum of money, which, indeed, it appeared had already been
paid to the man's widow, in compensation for the man's death, and a
further small sum for Masses to be said for the welfare of his soul.
Peter began to give thanks for this judgment; but while he was still
speaking the king asked if any of those present wished to proceed in
further suits. Instantly Betty rose and said that she did. Then, through
her interpreter, she stated that she had received the royal commands to
attend before their Majesties, and was now prepared to answer any
questions or charges that might be laid against her.
"What is your name, Senora?" asked the king.
"Elizabeth, Marchioness of Morella, born Elizabeth Dene, of the ancient
and gentle family of Dene, a native of England," answered Betty in a
clear and decided voice.
The king bowed, then asked:
"Does any one dispute this title and description?"
"I do," answered the Marquis of Morella, speaking for the first time.
"On what grounds, Marquis?"
"On every ground," he answered. "She is not the Marchioness of Morella,
inasmuch as I went through the ceremony of marriage with her believing
her to be another woman. She is not of ancient and gentle family, since
she was a servant in the house of the merchant Castell yonder,
"That proves nothing, Marquis," interrupted the king. "My family may, I
think, be called ancient and gentle, which you will be the last to deny,
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