Nonfiction > Harvard Classics > Ambroise Paré > Journeys in Diverse Places
Ambroise Paré (1510–90).  Journeys in Diverse Places.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
The Journey to Boulogne. 1545
A LITTLE while after, we went to Boulogne; where the English, seeing our army, left the forts which they were holding, Moulambert, le petit Paradis, Monplaisir, the fort of Chastillon, le Portet, the fort of Dardelot. One day, as I was going through the camp to dress my wounded men, the enemy who were in the Tour d’Ordre fired a cannon against us, thinking to kill two men-at-arms who had stopped to talk together. It happened that the ball passed quite close to one of them, which threw him to the ground, and it was thought the ball had touched him, which it did not; but only the wind of the ball full against his corselet, with such force that all the outer part of his thigh became livid and black, and he could hardly stand. I dressed him, and made diverse scarifications to let out the bruised blood made by the wind of the ball; and by the rebounds that it made on the ground it killed four soldiers, who remained dead where they fell.  1
  I was not far from this shot, so that I could just feel the moved air, without its doing me any harm save a fright, which made me duck my head low enough; but the ball was already far away. The soldiers laughed at me, to be afraid of a ball which had already passed. Mon petit maistre, I think if you had been there, I should not have been afraid all alone, and you would have had your share of it.  2
  Monseigneur the Duc de Guise, François de Lorraine, was wounded before Boulogne with a thrust of a lance, which entered above the right eye, toward the nose, and passed out on the other side between the ear and the back of the neck, with so great violence that the head of the lance, with a piece of the wood, was broken and remained fast; so that it could not be drawn out save with extreme force, with smith’s pincers. Yet notwithstanding the great violence of the blow, which was not without fracture of bones, nerves, veins, and arteries, and other parts torn and broken, my lord, by the grace of God, was healed. He was used to go into battle always with his vizard raised: that is why the lance passed right out on the other side.  3


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