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Page 41

CHAPTER II
TWELFTH AND THIRTEENTH CENTURIES - THE NORMAN-ENGLISH PERIOD

Advantages of the Conquest. Nothing better could have happened to England than this Norman conquest. The Englishmen of the eleventh century were courageous and persistent, but the spark of inspiration that gives a people the mastery of itself and the leadership of other nations was wanting. England was like a great vessel rolling in the trough of tne sea, turning broadside to every wave. The country must fall into the hands of either the barbaric north or the civilized south. Happily for England, the victor was of the south.
The Normans were Teutons, who had fallen upon France as their kinsmen had fallen upon England ; but the invaders of France had been thrown among a race superior to them in manners, language, and literature. These northern pirates gave a look about them, and straightway they began to follow the customs of the people whom they had conquered. They embraced the Christian religion and built churches and monasteries as if they had been to the manner born. They forgot their own language and adopted that of France. They intermarried with the Franks ; and in a century and a half a new race had arisen with the bravery and

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