Charlemagne (shahr-leh-MAHN-yeh), the king of the Franks and emperor of the West. When his wife declares that Hugo, the emperor of Greece, is the more handsome of the two kings, Charlemagne angrily sets forth, with his Twelve Peers, on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. After the pilgrims sit in the chairs of Christ and His apostles in the great cathedral in Jerusalem and receive many relics from the Patriarch, they depart for Constantinople and are received as guests by the magnificent Hugo. In the bedchamber, the Franks drink their wine and each makes a boast concerning his host. When Charlemagne is challenged to prove the boasts true or be beheaded with his peers, he and his men, assisted by an angel, overcome Hugo and return to France, where Charlemagne forgives his wife for her unfortunate comparison.
Hugo (ew-GOH), the emperor of Greece and Constantinople.
William of Orange
William of Orange,
Ogier of Denmark
Ogier of Denmark (oh-ZHYAY),
Turpin the Archbishop
Turpin the Archbishop (tewr-PA[N]),
Bernard of Brusban
Bernard of Brusban (behr-NAHR, brews-BAH[N]), and
Bertram (behr-TRAHM), Charlemagne’s Twelve Peers, who boast of the ways each will overcome King Hugo. When confronted with the demand that they prove their boasts or lose their heads, they are aided by prayer and an angel, who warns them never to boast in such a way again.