European - A Saracen. King of Spain. Husband of Bramimonde. He invaded France when Charlemagne was out of the country but was driven back when Charlemagne attacked, supported by Guerin. At the instigation of Gano, a traitor in the Emperor's court, Marsilius made a second incursion, combining forces with Agramant, emperor of Africa, another invader. After he had defeated these forces, Charlemagne overran Spain and exacted tribute to be paid to France. Marsilius agreed terms for the withdrawal of the Franks from Spain but reneged on his promises. In some versions he laid a trap for the rearguard of the withdrawing army, in others the trap was laid for a party led by Roland who returned after the withdrawal to collect the tribute. In either event, a famous battle ensued at Roncesvalles during which Oliver, Roland and many other Paladins were killed but the main army of Franks, arriving too late to save these heroes, routed the Spanish and Moorish forces. Marsilius and Gano were hanged by Charlemagne; others say that Roland cut off the right hand of Marsilius in battle and the Saracen withdrew from the fight, dying later of this wound. Occasionally referred to as Marsilius, Marsiglio, Marsiglio, Marsile, Marsile, Marsillus or Marsillus.

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