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In The Song of Roland, Baligant is the Emir of Babylon (i.e., Cairo, not the Mesopotamian Babylon), who tries to aid the defense of Zaragoza (sometimes spelled "Saragossa") from Charlemagne. He is sometimes described as a man from ancient times. He is killed in the ensuing battle. He comes to the aid of his vassal King Marsile (a.k.a. "Marsillion") and brings an immense army to fight Charlemagne. He is often seen as the parallel of Charlemagne, both being old, handsome and skillful with a sword. One might say they were equals, except that Charlemagne had the help of Saint Gabriel.

He carried a sword named Précieuse.