Roncesvalles

(4 syl.). A defile in the Pyrenees, famous for the diaster which here befell the rear of Charlemagne's army, on the return march from Saragossa. Ganelon betrayed Roland, out of jealousy, to Marsillus, King of the Saracens, and an ambuscade attacking the Franks, killed every man of them. Amongst the slain were Roland, Oliver, Turpin, and Mitaine, the emperor's godchild. An account of this attack is given in the epilogue of Croquemitaine; but the historical narrative is derived from Eginhard.

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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