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Les Quatre Grans Cròniques

Jaume I
Now we will relate the manner of our conception and of our birth. Firstly, the manner of our conception: Our father, King Don Peter, did not wish to see the queen, our mother. And it happened that one time the king, our father, was at Lattes, and the queen, our mother, was at Mireval. But a noble by the name of Guillermo de Alcalá came to the king and besought him so insistently that he persuaded him to go to Mireval, where the queen, our mother, was staying. That night, when they were both at Mireval, Our Lord willed that we should be conceived.
When the queen, our mother, found out that she was pregnant, she went to Montpellier. And here Our Lord willed us to be born in the house of Tornamira, on the eve of Our Lady Saint Mary of Candlemas.
As soon as we were born, our mother sent us to Santa Maria and they carried us there in their arms. In the church of Our Lady they were saying matins, and at the very moment they brought us through the porch, those inside began to sing Te Deum Laudamus. And the clergy did not know that we were to enter there, but we entered while they sang that canticle. And afterwards they carried us to Saint Firmin, and when those who carried us entered the church of Saint Firmin, those inside were singing Benedictus Dominus Deus Israel. When they returned us to the house of our mother, she rejoiced at all the good signs that had befallen us. And she ordered twelve candles to be made, all of equal size and measure, and had them all lit at the same time. On each one she placed the name of an apostle, and she promised Our Lord that whichever candle burned longest would be the name we would receive. And that of Saint James lasted a full three fingers breadth longer than the others. Thus, for this reason, and through the grace of God, we have the name James.
And that is how we descend from our mother’s side and from King Peter, our father. Moreover, it would seem to be God’s work, in that the agreement that our grandfather had made to marry was fulfilled. A woman of the line of the Emperor Manuel married our father King Peter, and, through that marriage the wrong that had taken place concerning the other marriage was undone.
And later, while we were lying in the cradle, someone threw a rock down on us through a trapdoor, and it fell near the cradle, but God wished to protect us so that we should not die.
Traduït per Damian J. Smith and Helena Buffery
Jaume I, . The Book of Deeds of James I of Aragon: a translation of the Medieval Catalan Llibre dels Fets, translated and annotated by Damian J. Smith and Helena Buffer
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