Archbishop Turpin, above the rest,
Spurred his steed to a jutting crest.
His sermon thus to the Franks he spake:—
“Lords, we are here for our monarch’s sake;
Hold we for him, though our death should come;
Fight for the succour of Christendom.
The battle approaches — ye know it well,
For ye see the ranks of the infidel.
Cry mea culpa, and lowly kneel;
I will assoil you, you should to heal.
In death ye are holy martyrs crowned.”
The Franks alighted, and knelt on ground;
In God’s high name the host he blessed,
And for penance gave them — to smite their best.
— La Chanson de Roland (The Song of Roland), XCII,
translated into English verse by John O’Hagan.