During the time that Louis was in the Holy Land his mother ruled France as regent. When she died he returned immediately to his kingdom and devoted himself to governing it.
In 1252 he took part in the founding of the Sorbonne, the most famous theological college of Europe from the days of St. Louis down to the time of the French Revolution.
He ruled his people so wisely and justly that it is hard to find any better king or even one equally as good in the whole line of French kings. He never wronged any man himself, or knowingly allowed any man to be wronged by others.
Near his palace there was a grand oak with wide-spreading branches, under which he used to sit on pleasant days in summer. There he received all persons who had complaints to make, rich and poor alike. Every one who came was allowed to tell his story without hindrance.
For hours Louis would listen patiently to all the tales of wrong-doing, of hardships and misery that were told him, and he would do what he could to right the wrongs of those who suffered.
When news came of some more dreadful persecutions of Christians by the Moslems in Palestine, Louis again raised an army of Crusaders and started with them for Tunis, although he was sick and feeble — so sick, indeed, that he had to be carried on a litter. Upon his arrival at Tunis he was attacked by fever and died in a few days.
He is better known to the world as Saint Louis than as Louis IX, because some years after his death Pope Boniface VIII canonized him on account of his pious life and his efforts to rescue the Holy Land from the Turks.