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Monday, April 28, 2014



With gratitude to Mary Platt Parmele.
Theee are two kinds of art.

In one the ideal comes into form by accretion, in the other by elimination.

You may lavishly apply pigments until you have built up your ideal, or you may cut away superfluities until you have reached it.

The history of Italy may partake of either or both of these methods.

It may be presented as a sumptuous picture on a generous canvas, rich in color and bewildering in detail, or it may be reached like a cameo, by cutting away every shining particle which obscures the clear simple outline, with perhaps just a sparing use of pigment here and there to intensify the relief.

Whichever method be chosen, failure is always imminent, and the difficulties prodigious.

But as a general proposition, it is easier to say things, than to refrain from saying them, especially if one's theme be "Italy," when no fragment seems superfluous.
To tell the story of the Italian peninsula from the days of AEneas to the present time, in less than three hundred small pages, is not an easy task!
Two dcBmons perpetually attend 3^ou, one whispering that you are omitting matter essential to the narrative ; the other insisting that you are amplifying entirely too much.
To which of these counsellors the writer has given too much heed, must be left to the reader to judge.
The peninsula of Italy has more powerfully influenced the destiny of the human race, in its material aspects, than any other spot upon the earth. Bethlehem of Judea and Greece have flooded the world, the one with spiritual life, and the other with intellectual splendor.

But working upon a lower plane and with coarser implements, Rome seems to have been predestined to open up the channels through which those streams should nourish humanity.

Her appointed task was to lay the foundations for Christendom.
But Rome did not lay the cornerstone of modern civilization.

She is its cornerstone. In the pedigree of nations she is the great progenitor, the cause of causes, and must ever remain the prodigy among earthly empires.

What was the secret of her strength?
To what was she indebted for her amazing preeminence?

It's not to her geographical position, for she had no sea-port, and in a land of exceptional fertility and charm she occupied a spot too sterile to support her own people, and w^as surrounded by malarial marshes uafriendly to human life.

Not to her ancestry, for she had none.

She did not engraft her youthful vigour upon an old pre-existing state ; had not, like Persia and Macedon and Carthage, the stored riches and experience of a parent kingdom with which to build the new.

We, in America, while glorj'ing in our own phenomenal development, should remember that we are not onl}^ the heir of all the ages, but that we started with a great political inheritance, the wisdom and experience which Great Britain had been accumulating for a thousand years.

But Rome first built her city, then by sheer native force peopled it, then compelled all of Italy, and finally all the then existing world, toward the centre she had created.

And when after long ages her temporal sovereignty was slipping from her weakened hands, she gath-
ered to herself a spiritual sovereignty, and remains to-day the supreme ruler over the hearts and consciences of a large part of mankind in an empire which knows no geographical limits.

There may be great world- powers in the futnre, but will there ever be one which will leave such a heritage of strength and political wisdom as did that empire with its throne upon the seven hills
of Rome.

Will there ever be another which even while it is perishing can, out of its superabundant strength create such a group of world-powers, and then bequeath to future ages a judicial system so just, so wise, so perfectly adapted to the needs of human society, that after 2,000 years will still stand the
model for the legislation of Christendom ?
In what sort of a cradle was this giant nourished ?

What were the influences which shaped its childhood?

And what the attributes which enabled it to establish such a dominating influence in the world's affairs?
The cradle for the Roman Empire was commenced in the earliest geologic ages, and was fashioned by titanic forces.

It was circumstances seeminglj^ quite fortuitous which sent that narrow peninsula jutting out into the sea and straggling toward the East.

A few more, or a few less volcanic upheavals and there would have been a different Italy, and then a different history of Rome, and hence of the world.

But when Nature paused, when she had fashioned that curious leg-shaped strip of land with its
rigid skeleton of mountains.

When she had
made it strong, rock-ribbed with her most
ancient limestone, so that the elements and
the sea would strive in vain to devour it,
and tlien when she had sprinkled the de-
pressions and basins with rich black loam
which would blossom into matchless beauty
beneath the sun's rays, she had determined
the course of history as we read it to-day.

And that region between the Alps and the Apennines, watered hy streams from both ranges, the most fertile garden spot in Europe, was that the chosen site for the future lords of Italy and of the world?

Not at all.

On the Tiber, back from the sea, in the most UNINVITING spot in the whole peninsula, where the earth rises in seven irregular hills, there was the rough limestone cradle of the future Roman Empire.
When and how this land was first occupied by man we may never know, nor whence came the aboriginal races which existed there at the early dawn of the European day.

But when it emerges from the region beyond the verge of history there were many strongly
contrasting tribes crowded upon the narrow peninsula, separated from each other by the
natural ramparts of the Apennines, and the no less effectual wall of race antipathy and

These may be roughly divided into the Pelasgians — with marked Hellenic traits — on the east and south (Magna Greecia). the Oscans, Sabellians, and Umbrians, a more indigenous people occupying
Central, Western, and Northern Italy ; last of all the Etruscans, on the western coast, the most interesting of the entire group, whose origin baffles even conjecture ; the remains of their language offering not the slightest clew, and leaving them a companion mystery to that of the Basques in
Spain and Western Europe.

These are the chief primitive divisions roughly drawn.

LAZIO, of more recent origin, seems to have been of both Pelasgian and Oscan descent.

The Latin language has the same Aryan roots and structure as the Greek, but a large vocabulary drawn from the warlike Oscans.

From these facts scholars read, not that the Pelasgians and Latins were descended from the Greeks, but, as is more probable, were offshoots of the same parent stem (Aryan) at nearly the same point, and also that at some remote period there was a conquest of the Pelasgians by the more powerful native Oscans, who then became the dominant race.

How and why the Pelasgian name "Italia" should have gradually extended from the toe of the peninsula until it embraced the whole, may never be known.

Thus far we stand upon conclusions which have the sanction of modern scholarship.

But now we enter upon a more shadowy region — the region of legend and tradition, and
are told that its men and women are phantoms, its facts fables, and that the fascinat-
ing narrative which has been the theme of
poets and has charmed the world for two
thousand years is only fiction.

It was not
until recently that any serious doubts were
entertained of the truth of the early historj^
of Rome.

But in 1811 Niebuhr published a
book of learned and searching criticism which
by revealing fatal inconsistencies undermined
the whole fabric.

But skepticism would go
too far in rejecting the only existing clews to
this interesting problem.

The very existence
of the tradition, true or untrue, illuminates
the dark and inaccessible past. It is a reve-
lation of prehistoric hearts and character
quite as genuine and of more value than the
records we read in the stratifications of rocks.

And however discredited we can never tear
from our histories those first immortal chap-
ters, if for no other reason than that they
have been for a period which cannot be
measured, an inspiration, setting before men
heroic ideals of a supreme type.

There was
not a man in Rome, when Christ came into
the world, who did not know the story of
Horatius holding the bridge ; nor is there a
man in London or N^ew York to-day who can
afford not to know that immortal story.

Even though it be true that ORAZIO the man
never existed, the ideal for which he stood
did ; and that has a more profound signifi-

It matters little whether GIUNIO BRUTO did or did not hand his son over to the
executioners for conspiring with the ene-
mies of Rome.

But it matters much that
this was the type of civic virtue that prehis-
toric Rome delighted in, and this throws a
flood of light upon the genesis of Roman
character, and the stern, untender, uncom-
promising nobility of a later historic Rome.

Regarding the credibility of the legends it
should be remembered that in that ancient
world oral tradition was unwritten history,
and in a state whose very existence depended
upon the truth of family traditions, it must
have been cultivated as an art.

The entire
structure, political and social — the chief gov-
erning body, the Senate — the superior rights
of the patricians — each and all alike existed
by and through ancestral claims.

So we
may imagine that the stories npon which so
much depended were endowed with an im-
perishable vitality.

Besides this, is it not
inconceivable that a political organism so co-
herent and consecutive, in which each step
taken grew out of the one which had gone
before, could have developed without accu-
rate knowledge of legislative and historical
precedents ?

We may not believe that ROMOLO was the son of MARTE, nor that Egeria
whispered to Numa the secret which made him the transmitter of the will of the gods.

But that the main line of development is to
be traced through the legendary history, we
may and must believe.
The legendary history of Rome begins with the flight of AEneas from the burning
city of Troy, bearing upon his shoulders his old father Anchises, and leading his son Ascanius by the hand.

Aeneas also carried away
with him some of the sacred fire from the
altar of Vesta, which must never be extin-
guished, for Vesta was the protectress of the
race ; and the gods had told ^neas that he
was going to found a mighty nation in the

After long wanderings, described a
thousand years later by Virgil, Aeneas was led
to the shores of Italy.

There, Aeneas marries Lavinia, daughter of the King of Lazio,
and in her honor named the city he founded Lavinium, and there he reigned over Latium
and performed many mighty deeds.

when one day he disappeared, because the
gods had taken him, he was worshipped as
Jupiter Indiges, the god of the country.

Then Ascanio (or lulus), his son, built a
new city on a ridge of the Alban hills, which
he called Alba Longa, and there he reigned.

And when Ascanius died, Silvio, son of Enea and Lavinia, also reigned there, as
did eleven Silvian kings, during the next 300 years, each of them bearing the surname
When Procas, the last of this line, died, he left two sons.

The younger, Amulio, seized the inheritance, and drove away his elder
brother Numitor.

Amulio then killed Numitor' s
son and heir, and dedicated his daughter,
Rhea Silvia, to the service of Vesta, to keep
alive the sacred flame brought from Troy,
and be a virgin priestess forever.

But although Rhea Silvia was safe from mortal lovers, the god MARTE loved her, and she bore
him twin boys.

The penalty for Rhea Silva's offence was to be buried alive.

And when this was done, the terrible uncle had ordered the twins to be thrown into the Tiber.

Amulio supposed the danger to his throne was past.

But to fight against the gods is not easy.

The basket containing ROMOLO and REMO floated down the TEVERE, and was finally cast
upon the river bank near the Palatine hill, where the babes were nourished by the historic wolf, and when they had outgrown her tender ministrations, were fed by woodpeckers, creatures forever after sacred to the Romans, and finally were sheltered and grew to young manhood, in the hut of the herdsman, Faustulo.

When Numitor one day chanced to see the two young herdsmen, he was struck by their royal bearing and by their resemblance to his unhappy daughter Rhea Silvia.

Then when FAUSTULO, their foster-father, told NUMITOR the story of the miraculous preservation in infancy of ROMOLO and REMO, he knew they must indeed be RHEA SILVIA's children ; and he declared to them that he
was their grandfather ; and he told them of
their mother and of his own wrongs at the
hand of the wicked Amulius.

A mighty resolve came into the hearts of the youths, that they would restore him to his throne,
and overthrow the wicked usurper ; which they did.

And Numitor reigned at last in his own kingdom.
But ROMOLO and REMO were not content to stay in Albalonga and wait for an inheritance.

They determined to return to the hills on the Tiber, and there found their own city.

As each desired to choose the site and to give it his name, they appealed to the gods to decide, Romulus standing upon the Palatine hill and Remus upon the Aventine, watching the heavens for an omen.

The flight of six vultures over the Aventine seemed to award the choice to REMO, but
a moment later twelve appeared over the Palatine.

RMOLO was the chosen founder.

ROMOLO at once commenced to build his city, and when the envious REMO scornfully leaped over the furrow ploughed around it to mark its limits, he slew him, and was left alone to found his kingdom.

When ROMOLO's city was ready, he sent word to the neighboring tribes that all who were dis-
tressed or fugitives for any reason might find asylum there.

So men fleeing from jus-
tice, slaves escaping from their masters and
outcasts of all sorts found sanctuary on the
Palatine, and Rome was filled with men with
strong arms for its defence.

Then Romulus,
when the neighboring cities scornfully re-
fused to give their daughters in marriage to
outcasts and robbers, cunningly invited the
Sabines, his near neighbors, to come on a
certain day and witness the games in honor
of a religious festival.

At a given signal
each man seized a maiden and bore her off.
To avenge this outrage, known as "The Rape
of the Sabines," the Sabine cities, of which
Cures was the chief, made war upon the
audacious Romans and would finally have
captured their city had not the Sabine wom-
en interposed. They now loved their lords,
and with dishevelled hair and cries and lam-
entations they rushed down the Palatine
hill and threw themselves between their
fathers and husbands ; and there was peace,
and a league was formed uniting the people
of Rome and of Cures into one community ;
it being agreed that Romulus and the Ro-
mans should remain upon the Palatine, and
to the Sabines and Tatius their king should
be assigned the Quirinal, and their city be
called Quirium.

Hence forever after in Roman records the people are known as "Ro-
mans and Quirites." The two kings were to
rule conjointly. But Tatius soon died, and
Romulus reigned, alone. As some of the
Etruscans, his most powerful neighbors, had
aided in the war with the Sabines, in reward
for this they also were assigned to the Caeliau
hill and were given the rights of citizenship.
Romulus now proceeded to organize his
kingdom. He divided it into three tribes ;
Romans, Sabines, and Etruscans, thence-
forth known as the Ramnes, Titles, and
Luceres. This was the three-fold founda-
tion for the Roman state. Each of these
main divisions he divided into ten curiae,
and these again were composed of gentes.
Or to state it more correctly, the gens was
the family, and was the social unit. The
curia was an association of families or
gentes, and ten of these curise formed the
tribe, of which, as has been already said,
there were three, and upon this triple foun-
dation stood the state. These political divi-
sions were the nucleus which, although mod-
ified, remained the core of the Roman state.
Romulus then created a body composed of
the fathers of the families most distinguished
in the founding of Rome. These were called
patres, because they were to the people what
the father was to the gens, that is High Priest
and with power of life and death, and were
also an advisory Council to the King. This
body was the Roman Senate, one hundred in
number before the union with the Sabines,
two hundred after, and later three hundred,
when the third tribe (Etruscan) was repre-
sented. Then when Romulus had created a
militar}^ system and divided it into centuries
and legions (one century to each curia, the
whole forming a legion), and had classified
the people into two great orders, one the
ruling class, and the other the inferior and
dependent, lie had laid the foundation for
Roman institutions, political, military, and
As was fitting, the gods now took him, as
they had his great progenitor ^neas. Dur-
ing a festival on the Field of Mars, they en-
veloped the hills in darkness, and when the
thunder and lightning ceased Romulus was
gone. His father Mars had carried him to
Olympus in his chariot, and he was wor-
shipped as the god Quirinus.
So now there was no king in Rome, and
for one year the fathers in the Senate took
turns in reigning one after another, as
interrex, each for five days, while Romans
and Sabines quarrelled over the right to
choose the king. Finally a compromise was
agreed upon.

The king was to be a Sabine,
but was to be chosen b}^ the Romans.

choice fell upon Numa Pompilius, a wise
and just man. War and plunder had be^n
until now the occupation of the people ;
but Numa was to change all that ; not by
his own but by divine power. He was be-
loved by the nymph Egeria, who taught him
how he might compel Jupiter to reveal to
him the will of the gods. At first the peo-
ple would not believe that the gods spake
through Numa and the}^ mocked him. So
he invited them to a simple feast. At a cer-
tain moment he told them Egeria had come
to visit him ; instantly the water changed
to wine, the coarse food to delicious viands,
and the rough benches to couches covered
with rare and costly stuffs. Then they knew
it was true that a divine power dwelt in
!Numa, and they accepted him as their king
and their priest. He taught them to worship
Jupiter, Mars, and Quirinus, and the sacred
rites and ceremonies which must be used,
the prayers, and the simple offerings of cake
and milk and the fruits of the ground which
the gods loved. There were to be priests to
preside at the altars, but pure virgins to
keep alive the sacred flame on the altar of
Vesta; and he created four augurs whose
duty it was to report the flight of the sacred
birds, and he appointed a chief *'ponti-
fex," learned in all sacred mysteries, who
guarded the service and could properly con-
strue the statutes, and save the people from
incurring the wrath of the gods, through
using wrong prayers or neglecting any rites.
In other words, Numa gathered the diffused
religious sentiment in the nation into a
sacerdotal system, and if thereafter, kings
and magistrates and rulers spake by author-
ity, it was by virtue of the gods who made
them the instruments for their will, and the
channel for their commands.
The Temple of Janus, which was only
opened in time of war, was closed during the
forty-three years of Numa's reign, and all
peaceful arts were encouraged, and the arti-
zans were divided into guilds according to
their occupation ; and the lands conquered
by Romulus were distributed among the
poor ; and altars erected to Terminus, the
god of boundaries, and to Fides, the goddess
of Faith ; the one to make sacred the rights
of property, and the other that honor and
good faith might lie at the foundation of
Society. Then, his work being done, the
good IN'uma died, and was buried on the hill
Janiculus beyond the Tiber.
But Tullus Hostilius, who was next chosen
by the Senate, was not a lover of peace. He
feared the Romans were growing effeminate
and would forget how to fight. He was soon
engaged in a fierce contest with the Albans.
At last it became evident that either Rome
would own Alba, or Alba Rome, and tlie is-
sue rested upon the fate of a final battle.

There chanced to be among the Romans three brothers born at one birth, the Horatii,
and among the Albans three other brothers,
also of the same age, named the Curiatii.

was agreed that a combat between these
champions should decide the fate of the
quarrel. In the presence of both armies they
fought. The three Curiatii were wounded,
but two of the Horatii were slain. Then, the
surviving Horatius pretended to fly. Pur-
sued b}^ the three Curiatii the cunning Ro-
man looked back, and when he saw liis pur-
suers were well separated, swiftly turned
upon them and slew them one at a time,
gathered up their vestments, and was borne
back in triumph to Rome. But his sister
loved and was betrothed to one of the Curia-
tii, and when at sight of his blood-stained
garment she wept and lamented, Horatius
in a rage slew her also. The victor was con-
demned by the judges to be given to the ex-
ecutioner. But by the law of Rome he
might appeal from the sentence of the Sen-
ate to the Roman people, his peers, who, be-
cause he had saved Rome, now saved him.
But always afterward the Horatian gens was
obliged to offer an annual sacrifice in expia-
tion of this sin. The mighty city of Alba
Longa was now destroyed, and the conquered
people were compelled to come and dwell in
Rome and help Tullus in his wars with Etrus-
cans and Sabines. But the Albans were not
like other strangers. Rome was founded by
an Alban prince, so Tullus admitted many of
the noble families into the body of the patri-
cians, the poorer class going to swell the
number of the common people. But the
worship of the gods had been neglected, and
when a plague broke out among the people,
Tullus remembered his sin, and tried to ob-
tain a sign from Jupiter. That wrathful god
answered his prayer with lightnings, and
TuUus and all his house were destroyed.
In the hope of placating heaven, Ancus
Marcins, the grandson of the good Numa,
was now chosen king. He was not unwill-
ing to fight, for he conquered all of Latium
between Rome and the sea, and planted a
colony at the mouth of the Tiber, which he
called Ostia. But he also restored the pu-
rity of the service of the gods. He fortified
the hill Janiculum, where his grandsire was
buried, and connected it with Rome by a
wooden bridge over the Tiber. He distrib-
uted conquered lands among the poor, and
tried to follow in the footsteps of the great
The two orders into which Romulus originally divided the Roman people were com-
posed of patrons and clients.

Each of the
early leading families or gentes had gathered
about itself numerous servants and depend-
ants, thus making a community of lords and

The patrons, or lords, were members
of the three tribes, and hence of the body-
politic, while their clients had nothing what-
ever to do with the state except through their
private relation to their lords as vassals. In
the course of time these patrons, or patricii,
came to be called patricians, as distinguished
from the patres or senators. They alone
could make the laws and choose the king.

They were the Populus Romanus ; and when
the Roman people are. spoken of, it is the
patricians alone who are designated. Then
there came into existence a third class, com-
posed at first probably of unclassified rem-
nants of the earliest people, swelling into
great numbers chiefly through the conquest
of other cities.

They were freemen but not citizens.

They were unlike the clients in that
they were subject to no lord or patron, and
like them in that they had no connection
with the state. These were the plebeians,
the common people.
The two orders, patricians and plebeians, were in the very nature of things hostile to
each other, and the history of their struggle is the history of early Rome.

It was a strug-
gle not for supremacy, but for equality, and
every concession wrung by the plebeians
from the patricians was a step toward the
consummate grandeur attained by Rome ;
and then every encroachment upon the equal-
ity thus gained, was another step toward her
final dissolution.

The history of this strug-
gle maintained for centuries with such mod-
eration and sucli constancy has inscribed it-
self upon that model of human justice, the body of Roman law — composed of enactments wrung from the patricians ; a record which finds its only counterpart in that of
the British Constitution.

Strangely enough
in the annals of Europe it is England, with
no drop of Latin blood in her veins, which
most resembles the Roman state in its per-
sistent pursuit and attainment of an equality
of rights for her commons.
In a state which was growing by conquest
and whose battles they fought, and in which
they were numerically superior, the plebeians
were politically non-existent.
Let us, if we can, imagine the descendants
of the Revolutionary and Colonial families
in the city of New York the ruling class,
and the entire political effacement of all the
rest of the people.

This will give some idea
of the conditions in the Roman state.

was an aristocracy of birth.

The man who
could not trace his lineage to the founders of
the nation had not a single right of citizen-
ship, and his connection with the state was
simply by sufferance.

There was still an-
other class in Rome, which had neither rights
nor freedom.

These were the slaves, which
had constant accessions to their numbers
through conquest. The plebeians were not

They were personally free ; might
own property and regulate their own domes-
tic and municipal affairs in their home upon
the Aventine, where they dwelt, a separate
community outside of the city walls — the
Ager Romanus. Intermarriage or equality
of any sort, with the dwellers in the cit}^,
the patricians, was impossible. They were
subject to the king, and to the laws, and
must fight the battles of the common country
when called upon, but with no share in the
conquered lands, nor the accruing benefits to
the state.
Before leaving this subject it will be inter-
esting to note the traces of the word gens in
our own language. Gentle^ genteel^ gentle-
man^ are all among its descendants — and in
speaking of Jews and Gentiles^ it is Jews and
Koman patricians that are intended. It is
also helpful to know that in Roman names —
usuall}^ composed of three — the first is the
personal name, or prcsnomen, the second
the name of the gens, the nomen, and the
third that of the family, the cognomen ; the
nomen or gens always terminating in ius.

Thus in Cains Julius Caesar, Caius is the
individual name, Julius tliat of the Julian
gens (descended from lulus or Ascanius),
and CcBsar the special branch of that gens to
which he belongs. Every member of the
Julian gens was a Julius, and of tlie Corne-
lian and Horatian, a Cornelius or Horatius.
Without understanding this, the repetition
of names found in Roman history is confus-
From the mythical story of Rome we have thus far been able to read that Romulus (meaning strength) stands for the initial force which first collected the elements of the state.

Numa (meaning law) for the estab-
lishing of religious and civil institutions;
while the third period under Tullus and
Ancus, stands for the beginning of the age
of conquest, by the absorption and assimi-
lation of neighboring tribes and peoples.
Now, in the fourth and last regal period,
there is introduced a foreign influence which
is to be fatal.

The Etruscans, hitherto a
subordinate element, became the dominant

There is not time to tell how an Etrus-
can refugee became King of Rome. But such
was Tarquinius Priscus, who was next chosen
by the Senate. The Romans and Sabines (or
the Ramnes and Titles) had until now been
the controlling races. The third tribe, the
Luceres or Etruscans, belonged to the curise,
but had never been represented in the Senate.

Tarquin appointed 100 new Senators from
tliis tribe — and also two more vestal virgins,
raising the number to six. He then under-
took a still more revolutionary measure.
There was not an equality of condition
among the plebeians. While the mass of
this people was wretchedly poor, some were
rich and some of noble birth in other lands.
These he proposed to add to the body of
patrician gentes, and in the face of fierce
opposition it was done. Whatever were his
motives this was in reality an assault upon
the power of the nobles, and a long step had
been taken toward centralizing the power of
the state in the king, and converting an
oligarchy into an absolute monarchy. The
condition of the plebeians was unchanged
and even more wretched than before, for
upon them fell the task of the great public
works which still exist as a memorial of this
reign. At this time water filled the depres-
sions at the foot of the Quirinal and Palatine
hills. The Cloaca Maxima, the great drain
which carried this body of water into the
Tiber bears witness to-day to the power of
the man who planned it and the marvellous
skill of those who executed it. It was composed of three concentric arches, forming a
semicircular vault fourteen feet in diameter.
Its artificers were doubtless from Etruria,
where similar works are still found, and so
perfect was the workmanship that not a
block has been displaced, and between the
stones, laid without mortar or cement, it is
said a knife-blade cannot be inserted, and
the great cloaca performs its work as thor-
oughly to-day as it did 2,500 years ago.
Upon an irregular strip of ground thus re-
claimed was laid out the cattle market, or
the Forum Boarium, where later were to
stand the arches of Titus and of Severus,
and the Temple of Saturn, of which the
beautiful fragment still remains. The Cloaca
Maxima, with its ramifying branches under-
lying the city, also drained the valley be-
tween the Palatine and Aventine, and there
Tarquin laid out a race-course, the Circus
Maximus, for the chariot-races and Roman
games ; and on the Capitoline he laid the
foundations, still existing, for the great
Temple of Jupiter. But all these works were
less important than his conquests in Etruria,
which probably brought an influx of peo-
ple from that old and exclusively aristo-
cratic state, bringing with them social and religious usages wMcli gave a deep and last-
ing coloring to those of primitive Rome.
What Constantinople was at a later time to
the Russians, that Etruria must have been to
the Roman, who, with no ancestral splendor,
was learning his first lesson in sumptuous-
ness ; for now we first hear of the lictors
and their ivory chairs and purple togas, and
with this elevation came the consequent
degradation and misery of the class below.
We learn that the plebeians, who built the
great drain, were, like the Hebrews in Egypt,
task-workers, and that they frequently
killed themselves in despair over the tasks
they were called upon to perform. And so
when Tarquin the elder fell by the hand of
an assassin he left a stronger and greater
Rome, but one which had become a tyranny.
We cannot dwell upon the circumstances
which brought the good Servius to the throne.
His heart seems to have been set upon alle-
viating the miseries of the plebeians ; and,
wise as well as good, he saw that this could
only be done by striking at the very founda-
tion of the social structure. The only bond
uniting the entire people was a military one.
Servius created a new all-embracing order,
with a classification not tribal, but based upon property.

In other words, he gathered all
the people into a military organization ; an
elaborately graded system of tribes and cen-
turies, in which the wealthiest, richly arm-
ored and with sword and spear were at the
top, and the poorest, with slings and arrows,
at the base. This was the Comitia Centuriata,
or Assembly of the Centuries, a popular
assembly which joined the plebeians to the
body politic. It bestowed not power but
privilege. Some of their order might now
dwell within the city, and all might meet at
one extremity of the Forum, while the curiae
met at the other ; the united bodies on occa-
sions assembling on the Field of Mars. It
was a change in the constitution freighted
with immense consequences, and that it was
possible for Servius so to defy and limit the
authority of the aristocratic class, shows how
despotic had become the kingly power dur-
ing the previous reign. The chief authority
had been hitherto vested in the curiae. It was
the curiae which conferred upon the king his
sovereignty (imperium). He could not make
a single law without the consent of that body,
to which also every patrician sentenced to
death by the king might appeal — as did
Horatius. Now, in a state always at war, and in whicli every man was a soldier, there
had been created a Popular Assembly witti
entire jurisdiction over military affairs. It
is easy to see that this body was destined to
absorb into itself every vestige of authority,
and leave the aristocratic Comitia Curiae an
empty shell. Having broken down the wall
of political separation, Servius then built
another wall of stone and cement which gird-
led the seven hills, and the people on the
Aventine, although not within the sacred en-
closure, shared this protection from hostile
According to the ancient legend the life of
this benefactor terminated in a cruel tragedy.
His son-in-law, the son of Tarquinius, claimed
the throne by right of descent, and caused
him to be slain. Tullia, the daughter of
Servius, driving in her chariot to the Forum
over the dead body of her father and with
his blood upon her skirts, saluted her hus-
band — ' ' Hail to thee, King Tarquinius ! ' ' and
Tarquin the Proud, Tarquinius Superbus,
the last King of Rome, commenced his reign.
Unrestricted power was now in the hands
of a vicious, unscrupulous king, who treated
both assemblies with contempt, acknowledg-
ing no restraining authority. He compelled the people to work without pay upon the
temples he was building on the Capitoline
(the Capitol and Citadel), and so treacherous
and insolent was he to his own order, as well
as cruel to the plebeians, that when a terri-
ble crime was committed by his son Sextus,
the entire people arose to expel him. This
act was a cruel outrage upon Lucre tia, the
daughter of a noble Roman and wife of Col-
latinus, who was prefect of Rome, and a
cousin of the king. Lucretia sent for her
father and for her husband and Lucius
Brutus his kinsman, and clad in mourning
garments she told them of the wrong she had
suffered, and then plunged a knife into her
own heart. They carried the body and the
dripping knife to the Forum, and there Bru-
tus appealed to the people to avenge this
deed. With one accord they arose. King
Tarquin and all of his accursed house were
driven out of the city, and the gates were
closed upon them. The Roman monarchy
after 240 years had come to its end (493 B.C.).
The world then as now was weaving its
future, and then, as it has always done, was
building to-day upon the ruins of yesterdays.
Two spiritual kingdoms had recently been
planted in Asia ; one in the south by Budd-
ha, and another in the East by Confucins.
The great nations of antiquity were crum-
bling. Babylon the mighty had just fallen.
Phoenicia, old and enfeebled, was struggling
with Assyria. Carthage, that vigorous
young PhG8iiician offshoot, was extending
her sturdy branches along the African coast
and the Spanish Peninsula. Persia, after
laying Babylonia low, was girding herself
for her onslaught upon Greece ; while
Greece, with her brilliant cities all along the
shores of the Mediterranean, was serenely
moving toward her splendid meridian. Sy-
baris, Psestum, Cumse, Neapolis, on the
Italian coast, were the abodes of fabulous
luxury. What cared they whether the bar-
barians upon the Tiber were ruled by kings
or consuls ? The passing of the regal period
at Rome was an event too insignificant to be
observed. But Carthage, with her alert trad-
ing instincts, had even at this early day
made a commercial league with the Romans.
The name king had become odious to both
orders. They chose two chief magistrates,
who should rule for one year, and these
should be called praetors, or consuls. Each
should be attended by twelve lictors bearing
as a symbol of power the fasces, bundles of
rods, those with the projecting axe attending
each consul in turn, the supreme power being
vested in them alternately. The first con-
suls chosen were Lucius Junius Brutus and
Collatinus Tarquinius, the husband of Lu-
cretia. It was soon discovered that a band
of patrician j^ouths were plotting for the res-
toration of King Tarquin. When the young
conspirators were brought before the consuls
two sons of Brutus were among them. The
stern Roman father condemned them with
the rest, and himself gave the order to the
lictors to scourge and then behead them with
the axe. The Senate now decreed that not
one of the house of Tarquin must remain in
Rome, and Collatinus, the husband of Lucre-
tia and one of the chief founders of the Re-
public, went into banishment with the rest of
his detested name.
King Tarquin enlisted the aid of the power-
ful Etruscans, and many times Rome seemed
nearly lost. It was to prevent complicity
with these desperate attempts that there was
created a new magistrate, who in times of
great emergency or peril might be elected to
supersede the consuls, with an absolute au-
thority from which there should be no ap-
peal. This was the Dictator. But consul
or dictator when no longer under the official
segis might for unlawful use of authority be
impeached, and suffer like any other citizen.
It was when King Porsenna, of Clusium, the
champion of Tarquin, arrived with his arni}^
at the bridge across the Tiber that Horatius
performed his immortal act of valor. With
two others he held the entrance to the bridge
while it was being broken down behind them.
Just before the destruction was complete his
two companions lied back to the city, but he,
receiving upon his shield the rain of arrows,
waited until the last plank had fallen, then
fully armored, leaped into the Tiber, and
swam to the opposite shore. So a second
time had a Horatian saved Rome.
The last and fiercest battle at Lake Regil-
lus was nearly lost, when suddenly there ap-
peared two youths, on white chargers. The
gods had interposed, for these were Castor
and Pollux, the sacred twins. They turned
the tide of victory, and the grateful Romans
erected a temple for their worship in the
Forum. Tarquin, wearied and disheartened,
now retired to the Greek city of Cumse, and
there he died.
The fourteen years of war since the expul-
sion of Tarquin had brought utter ruin upon
the plebeians. Not alone had their farms
been deserted while they fought, but lying
outside the city, in the Campagna, as most
of them did, they had been ravaged by
hostile bands, their cattle and flocks carried
off, and homesteads burned. The patricians,
who had suffered none of these things, had,
from time to time, loaned them money to re-
stock their farms, and to keep them from
starvation. But now that there was peace,
and they no longer needed the help of the
people, the mask of friendship was torn off.
The time had come when their own order
could be restored to its old supremacy. The
Roman law of debt was of frightful severity.
If the debt was not discharged at the ap-
pointed time, the creditor might sell the
debtor and all his sons to the highest bidder.
Or if the father preferred to spare his children
such a fate, he might be put to death, his
body be hewed in pieces, and distributed in
proper proportion among his creditors ; it
being especially provided, in anticipation of
some future Portia, that a little more or a
little less made no difference. The plebeians
found that the}^ were becoming the bonded
slaves of the patricians, on account of losses
sustained in fighting their battles, and that
all the rights obtained for them by Servius
were trampled upon.
They resolved to bear it no longer. They
solemnly marched in a body to a hill on the
Tiber north of Rome. There they would
build their own city and dwell, and leave the
patricians and their clients and their slaves
to themselves. This meant the dissolution
of the Republic. There was consternation in
Rome. Embassies were sent, offers of con-
cessions made. The plebeians knew what
they wanted ; nothing less would satisfy
them. All debts must be cancelled ; those
already sold into bondage must have their
freedom restored ; and two officials must be
created in their own order, with the authority
and the desire to protect them from patri-
cian injustice. The power and the persons
of these Tribunes, or masters of the tribes,
were to be sacred and inviolable as those of
the consuls ; and in matters touching the
rights of the plebeians, their jurisdiction was
to extend over the patricians themselves, who
could be impeached and must stand trial be-
fore the Assembly of the Tribes.
Not until the last point was yielded would
the determined seceders sign the treaty ; and
the hill where this solemn league was made
was forever called the Mons Sacer or Sa-
cred Hill. The bestowal of the power to ar-
rest legislation shows how desperate was the
situation of the patricians. By the single
word veto, "I forbid it," the tribune could
hold any measure in suspense, and such a
weapon was conceded only because some-
thing worse was feared.
The story of Coriolanus shows how bitter
was the feeling in his order, and what a diffi-
cult task it must have been for the more
moderate spirits to bring about a reconcili-
ation through such sweeping concessions.
Ship-loads of corn had been sent by a Greek
city for the relief of the misery in Rome.
When it was proposed in the Senate to dis-
tribute this among the suffering plebeians,
the haughty patrician exclaimed, contempt-
uously, "Why do they ask for corn?

They have got their tribunes. Let them go
back to their Sacred Hill, and leave us to
rule alone!" The tribunes sternly sum-
moned Coriolanus to appear before them on
account of this insolent language. He re-
fused to appear, and then, enraged at finding
he was not sustained by the body of the pa-
tricians, and shaking the dust of the un-
grateful city from his feet, he went into
voluntary exile, offered his services to the
Volscians, the enemies of Rome, and re-
turned at the head of an army. It is said
that when his mother met him with bitter
reproaches he relented, saying, "Oh! my
mother, thou hast saved Rome, but lost thy
son ! " then returned to the Yolscians to be
slain for betraying their cause. The story
is used by Shakespeare for one of his noblest
Although much had been gained there was
still one deep-seated cause for poverty, which
was reducing the most numerous body of
Roman citizens to beggary. They had not
land enough to feed them. A tract which in
the time of the kings had been set apart as a
royal domain, had, since the patricians re-
turned to power, been used by them for past-
urage. When Spurius Cassius, who was
consul in 486 B.C., proposed an agrarian law,
which should divide these public lands
among the people, the patricians, as was
natural, vehemently opposed it. But Cas-
sius was determined and powerful, and the
memory of the Sacred Hill was still fresh.
It would be better to pass the measure now%
and make it a dead letter afterward. So
they bided their time. As soon as the great
consul's term of office expired, a charge was
brought against him of treason. This *' Agra-
rian Law," it was said, was only part of a
wicked design to secure the support of the
people in making himself king. He was tried
by the curiae, found guilty, and condemned
to the death of a traitor, was scourged, then
beheaded, and his house razed to the ground.
The young patricians, in their clubs and
brotherhoods, were always agitators in the
extreme party of their order, and found great
entertainment in forays under the cover of
darkness, when they would commit outrages
in the plebeian quarter. The ringleader
among these young aristocrats was Kseso
Quinctius, son of the great Roman patriot.
Cincinnatus. After some particularly shame-
ful act, tlie plebeian tribune impeached Kse-
so, summoned him to appear before the As-
sembly of the Tribes and he was sent into
exile. When a band of Sabines, led by Ro-
man exiles, a little later surprised the city,
many believed that the young Kseso was one
of the instigators. It was soon after this
that the Romans were defeated in a battle
with the Yolscians and Equians, and their
consul made a prisoner. The great Cincin-
natus, father of Kaeso, was appointed dicta-
tor, swiftly defeated the Volscians, made
them ''pass under the yoke," released the
consul, and then came back to make the
tribunes feel the weight of his displeasure.
No agrarian law, he declared, should go into
effect while he had power to prevent it. And
probably no act in his dictatorship pleased
him more than inflicting condign punishment
upon the accusers of his son Kaeso.
"We strongly suspect that the old hero,
when his triumphs were over, retired to his
farm on the Campagna, not because he so
loved democratic simplicity, as that he so
hated a rising democratic ascendancy, which
was dragging Rome down from her once high
estate ! They were degenerate days indeed
when low-born plebeians had power to ar-
raign and punish patricians ! And we can
imagine the tears of honest shame and hu-
miliation shed by the grand old aristocrat,
whom we revere to-day as the supreme type
of the democratic citizen.
There was one powerful weapon held by
the commons which no ingenuity of the pa-
tricians could take away from them. They
could refuse to serve as soldiers; and this
they were doing with increasing frequency ;
and when they did fight the spirit which had
once made the legions invincible had de-
parted. It was during the consulship of
Kseso Fabius that one of these crises arrived.
The army, supported by the tribunes, refused
to fight. The Fabian gens was one of the
proudest among the patricians. They had
led in the opposition to the agrarian law of
Spurius Cassius, and also in his condemna-
tion. It is not probable that the personal
feelings of Fabius had changed, or that he
felt any less bitterly than Coriolanus and
Cincinnatus about the elevation of the com-
mons. But he had the political wisdom to see
the injury done to the state by withholding
justice from the people whose services were
indispensable to it. He suddenly changed
his whole attitude, and threw the great
weight of his name and influence into the
advocacy of the cause he had tried to defeat.
He insisted that the agrarian law should at
once become operative ; and when his ar-
guments were treated with scorn by the pa-
tricians, the entire Fabian gens, numbering
over three hundred, with their clients and
their slaves, and a few patrician families who
wished to share their fortunes, marched sol-
emnly out of the city gates. Then, as if to
emphasize the nobility of their purpose, they
made a fortified camp on the borders of
Etruria for the protection of Rome ; and
after doing the state good service for one year,
were surprised during a religious festival by
a band of Yeintines and slaughtered to a
man. The plebeians had lost their most
powerful friends. The law of debt was un-
changed. The enormous rate of interest had
been reduced, but the savage penalties were
the same. Soldiers returning from long cam-
paigns and finding their children crying for
bread would make loans from the rich and
then become their slaves. The tribunes were
unceasing in trying to obtain redress for
special cases of oppression, but the main
struggle of each tribunate was for their agra-
rian rights, encouraging the people to refuse
to respond to the levies for troops until Jus-
tice was done. At a time of extreme pressure
the patrician lords made a concession ; they
granted the plebeians the Aventine Hill for
their own possession (under the Icilian Law,
which had long been urged). The land being
insufficient to give one plot to each, several
persons received one allotment, who jointly
built their house, each story being occupied
by a family. Such a residence being called
insulce, while domus is the term for the man-
sion occupied by a single family. But such
concession gave only temporary relief and the
relations of the orders were becoming more
and more embittered. Appius Claudius, when
his soldiers at a critical time refused to take
the field against the Volscians, sternly com-
manded that every tenth man in his legions be
put to death ; and it was done. Then, when
his consulship expired the proud Appius was
summoned to appear before the tribunes, and
realizing the humiliation and condemnation
which awaited him he committed suicide.
It was a time full of peril for Rome. One
tribune had been assassinated and also many
leading plebeians, and there is a fearful story
of eight tribunes being burned alive. Vio-
lence had taken the place of law, and unless
the moderate spirits in both orders could
check the rising tide of passion, civil war
was inevitable. A truce was declared while
some compromise could be considered. It
was finally agreed that the existing troubles
arose from the indefiniteness of the laws con-
trolling the relations of the two orders. It
was also agreed that a commission of ten
should be appointed to draw up a legal code
by which equal justice should be dealt out
to the entire Roman people — patricians and
plebeians alike. It was especially intend-
ed that this code should accurately deter-
mine the limits of authority to be exercised
by magistrates, and the modes of redress
and procedure in the protection of lives and
property (the Terentillian Law). During
these labors the patricians and the plebeians
were to give up their consuls and their trib-
unes, and be entirely subject to the Council
of Ten — which was to be chosen from both
orders, and to be called "The Decemvirate"
(450 B.C.).
Chief among these decemvirs was Appius
Claudius, son of the consul of that name
who executed every tenth man in his legion.
The Code of Laws which was the work of the
first decemvirate is known as the "Twelve
Tables," and it is now the basis of the legal
systems of a large part of Europe, and of
America. It was in the second decemvirate
that the mask was thrown aside. Appius
had made himself so popular that he was
re-elected, and Rome soon found herself in
the hands of a despot, with nine imitators
ready to do his bidding. It was said that
instead of one Tarquin, she now had ten.
She seemed under a spell which she knew
not how to break ; and many citizens fled
and joined the colonists outside.
There was living on the Aventine a wealthy
plebeian named Yirginius, a centurion. His
daughter Virginia, as beautiful as the day,
was betrothed to Icilius, a former tribune.
Appius one morning chanced to see the
young maiden on her way to school. He
quickly ordered Claudius, one of his clients,
to seize her and claim her as his slave.
When her cries and those of her nurse
attracted a crowd, Claudius explained that
this girl was the child of his slave, and when
an infant was stolen to iill the place of a
child who had died in the house of Virginius.
This he could prove. But he would lay his
case before the Decemvir Appius and abide
by his decision. The next morning Yirgin-
ius and Icilius and weeping friends were at
the Forum when the child was brought be-
fore the great Appius ; and when he gave
judgment that she should remain in the
custody of Claudius until Yirginius had
proved his right to her, they knew she was
lost. The lictor advanced to seize her. Yir-
ginius humbly asked if he might speak one
word with her before she was removed.
Then taking her in his arms and whispering
''It is the only way, my daughter," he
plunged a knife into her bosom.
The whole of the Roman populace was
aroused to a state of fury. The Senate called
upon the decemvirs to resign. The commons
without their tribunes were utterly defence-
less, and knew not what fresh tyranny
awaited them. Once more they marched to
the Sacred Hill, there to treat with the am-
bassadors from the Senate, or there to re-
main, if their terms were not accepted.
They demanded three things : That their
tribunes be restored ; that the right of ap-
peal from the sentence of the consuls be
enjoyed by them as by the patricians ; and
that the ten decemvirs be burnt alive!
The last savage demand was abandoned, but
the others were accepted by the Senate. The
first act of the new tribunate, which now
held ten tribunes, was the impeachment of
Appius by Virginius, the charge being a vio-
lation of his own law, just framed in the
Twelve Tables: ''that a person claimed as
slave, should be free until the claim was
established." The proud patrician could
not bear the humiliation of his downfall
and, as his father had done not long before,
committed suicide in prison.
As Lucretia had destroyed the monarchy,
so the fair Roman child Virginia had over-
thrown the decemvirate.
There could be no settled peace until com-
plete equality, social and political, was ac-
corded to the commons. Another agitation
quickly followed. Two laws were simul-
taneously proposed by the tribunes. The
first of these was the Canuleian Law : legal-
izing marriage between the two orders. ''If
we are different races of men," said they, " if
our blood will not mingle, then let us live
apart." It was the old threat of secession ;
and after a storm of opposition the patricians
yielded and the wall of oaste was broken
down. But the other demand attacked the
last stronghold of patrician Home, and eighty
years were to pass before it would be con-
ceded. It was that the consulship should be
thrown open to plebeians. To refuse might
be dangerous. The tribunes were reminded
of the sacred duties belonging to the office,
and that the auspices could only be taken by
those in whose veins coursed pure patrician
blood. And here again was the claim of a
difference in kind, and another reason why,
as the commons said, they should be a sep-
arate people. Finally, a compromise was
reached. Instead of a consulate there should,
during a portion of the time, be a military
tribunate, to which both orders were alike
eligible. This was agreed to in 444 B.C., and
not until 400 did a single plebeian fill the of-
fice ! It was by such empty promises as this
that the patient plebeians were again and
again beguiled ; a thing difficult to reconcile
with that good faith which is the corner-stone
of Eoman character, the key-stone of their
arch. The Koman commons were not con-
tending with an honorable foe, but a foe which
under great pressure, would yield the point in
dispute, and then by legislation deprive the
thing granted of its value, or the office con-
ceded of the authority it had hitherto pes-
sessed, and render the triumph void. The
history ol' the long conflict is a succession
of such tricks and evasions. Their honor and
good faith consisted in fidelity to a code,
not to a sense of right and justice ; and their
code did not recognize the plebeians as
equals, hence promises to them had no bind-
ing power.
Rome was now mistress of all of Latium.

The Equians and Yolscians had also been
driven back by the renewed spirit in the le-
gions ; and there had commenced a life and
death struggle with the great Etrurian city
of Veil. There was an old prediction that
Veil would fall when the Alban Lake flowed
into the sea — which meant — never. So al-
though the city was besieged they were not
dismayed. Then by orders of the Roman
Senate, a tunnel was commenced leading from
the lake to the river Anio. For a distance of
three miles it was cut through volcanic stone,
making an outlet five feet high and three feet
wide ; and the waters of the Alban Lake were
soon flowing to the sea, and are doing so still !
At the same time the great Camillus was
digging a mine which terminated under the
sanctuary in the citadel of the doomed city ;
and when armed Roman soldiers rose from
the floor the prediction was fulfilled and
Veil, like ancient Troy, had fallen. The city-
was thrown open to Roman colonists to the
great relief of the plebeian quarter, and to
the Veintines were assigned homes on the
Cselian hill.
A new and unprecedented storm was about
to break upon the Eternal City. Tlie Gauls,
those barbarians of Western Europe, who
had long been troubling Etruria, were in-
vesting Clusium. That city appealed to
Eome for help, and in response three envoys
from the Senate met Brennus, the barbarian
leader, and announced to him that Clusium
was under Roman protection. But, they did
something more than negotiate ; they fought
and rendered efficient service to their Etrus-
can friends in a battle which was in prog-
ress. Brennus was not so much of a barba-
rian that he did not understand his rights.
He declared that the law of nations had been
violated, and he should take immediate ven-
geance upon Rome. When the Romans
learned that the Gauls were almost at their
gates, there was a panic. They fled by thou-
sands to Veil and other neighboring cities.
Eighty venerable senators and a small force
upon the rocky pinnacle of the capital alone
remained. The Gauls, through open gates,
entered a silent city, and when they reached
the Forum they were awe-stricken. There
sat eighty senators in their ivory chairs, ven-
erable, silent, immovable. They believed a
company of gods had come down from
Heaven. But when one old man fiercely re-
sented a touch upon his beard by a blow with
his ivory staff, the spell was broken ; he was
slain, and then the rest were quickly dis-
patched. While the city was burning, and
for months afterward, the Capitol on its
rock}^ eminence was held by Manlius and his
little band ; every attempt to scale the slip-
pery height being defeated ; until that fa-
mous dawn when the geese gave warning that
the enemy was coming ; and the defenders
had just time to hurl down those in advance
who carried the rest with them. And so for
seven months the Gfauls rioted and waited,
until at last, sated and demoralized, and with
news of the invasion of their own homes in
the North, they withdrew.
Rome was ouly a blackened ruin. With
difficulty were the people dissuaded from
abandoning it, and making Veil their city.
But at last all had returned and were striv-
ing to rebuild and efface the ravages of the
destroying host. Again were the plebeians
plunged in hopeless debt to the superior or-
der ; and again were all the rigors of the law
of debt carried out without mercy. Manlius,
upon seeing some of his bravest soldiers, the
defenders of the Capitol, dragged to prison,
himself paid their debts. So frequently did
he do this, and so bitterly did he reproach
the patricians, that in exasperation they ac-
cused him of seeking popularity with ambi-
tious designs. It was declared that his gen-
erosity was only a part of a treasonable plot
to make himself king. He was tried, con-
demned, and thrown off the Tarpeian rock —
the rock which his valor had held for seven
months, the one spot in Rome he had kept
untouched by barbarian feet.
The old conflict between the orders was
reaching its final stage. Three laws were
proposed by the Tribune Licinius : one miti-
gating the law of debt ; another restricting
the amount of land to be used by any indi-
vidual ; and the third that henceforth there
be, not military tribunes, but two consuls ;
one of whom should always be a plebeian.
These are known as the "Licinian Roga-
It was the iron will and the inflexible pur-
pose of two tribunes, Caius Licinius and
Lucius Sextius, which accomplished the
seemingly impossible task of compelling the
patricians to yield to these demands. For ten
years they labored, being reappointed nine
times, and during all of the last five years
using their right of veto to stop the wheels
of government ; not permitting a single levy
for the army, nor the election of a single
magistrate, consul, military tribune, ques-
tor, or censor. The Senate in despair called
Camillus to the dictatorship. But when
that wise old warrior saw the invincible spirit
of the tribunes, he advised honorable capitu-
lation. The patricians yielded. The long
struggle was ended ; and in 367 B.C., the first
plebeian consul, Lucius Sextius, took his
place in the curule chair. Camillus vowed
a temple to Concord in commemoration of the
great event. He had won his laurel wreath
at the capture of Yeii. But as he who rules
his spirit is greater than he who takes a city,
so the brave Roman's chief title to glory is
as " Camillus the Peace-Maker."
There was the usual attempt to impover-
ish the office by assigning its judicial func-
tions to a prsDtor, an office then created for
that purpose. But this was only delaying
the inevitable ; for in 351 B.C. the censorship
was open to the commons ; in 337 the prse-
torship was obtained ; and in 300, plebeians
filled the priestly offices of ponfcifex and
augur, and by the year 172 B.C. the patric-
ian families had so decreased that both con-
sulships were held by plebeians. Political
power had not been the aim, but b}^ slow
and painful steps it had been attained.
With surprising moderation there had never
been a single demand except for relief from
specific grievances, touching persons and
property. The way had been long, and on
its chief mile-stones we find inscribed :
Tribuneship, 493. — Agrarian Law, 486. —
TerentilUan Law (the new code), 454.— C«?i?^-
leian Law (legalizing intermarriage), 454. —
PuMilian Law (freeing elections from power
of the curiae), 340. — Licinian Law (admis-
sion of plebs to the consulate), 367, followed
by gradual opening of all the curule and
sacred offices, and the union of the assem-
blies of the curiae and the tribes, by the
year 300 B.C.
The equalization of her commons and pa-
tricians is the central nerve in the history of
the Republic. Her far-reaching conquests
were a magnificent display of power. But
it was the core of character created in the
long internal struggle, which made that
power possible, and which was the source of
the enduring mastery of the empire, even
after that character had long departed.
Neither order could have made Rome. Each
needed the other. The commons lacked the
dignit}^ and sense of mastery which comes
from long-established supremacy ; and the
patricians, debauched by the use and abuse
of supreme power, must have perished with-
out the infusion of fresh uncorrupted sh-ength
— the strength which comes from suffering
patiently borne in a long, brave battle with
oppression. This had been for the commons
a political education and a training in the
principles of justice. With strength no
longer wasted at home, and with legions
lighting as they had never fought before, an
age of conquest began. There were some de-
feats (a colossal and bitter one at Caudium,
321), but more victories, and, one by one,
rival and hostile cities were being gathered
into Roman dominion.
These were obscure events in those stirring
times. The healing of a family quarrel at
Rome was not discussed by the gay young
revellers at Syracuse and Tarentum. There
were great actors on the stage then, and mo-
mentous issues. The everlasting drama was
being played. There were great powers, and
lesser powers, and crumbling cities and na-
tions that were no powers at all ; and there
was greed — greed for territory, and for mas-
tery ; and suspicion and fear, and craft, and
cunning, all — all were there, while the struggle
was going on for the grand prize, that dream of
every ambitious nation — universal dominion.
Sometimes Carthage and sometimes Greece
was in the lead for this mastery in the Med-
iterranean world. Etruria, once powerful
on the great stage, had lapsed into obscurity.
Phoenicia, in utter decadence, was making
futile attempts at self-preservation ; Egypt,
Persia, and even Assyria and Chaldea, in
their own decrepitude, making her last days
miserable. Greece and Carthage, in tlie plen-
itude of their strength, were the two gladia-
tors. Mutually antagonistic, one stood for the
supreme type of civilization, the other for the
incarnation of the spirit of trade without one
humanizing trait ; the wicked child of an
even more wicked Asiatic mother. No greater
misfortune could come to the world than for
Carthage to obtain the mastery ; and that
was what many times seemed imminent, as
she battered away at the beautiful old Greek
cities which studded the shores of Southern
Italy and of ^Sicily. It was these incessant
conflicts, and the fatal rivalries among them-
selves which had reduced the splendid con-
stellation of Greek colonies to a few flicker-
ing stars, Sybaris, Psestum, Cumse, already
in ruins. Wherever Greek civilization came,
there came also the life-giving principle ; and
where the cruel grasp of Carthage fastened,
there was arrested life and hopeless sodden
barbarism ; as illustrated by Sicily, the most
brilliant spot in the pre-Eoman world, and
Sardinia and Corsica her Carthaginian sis-
ters, the drudges and slaves of a cruel mistress.
Such were the conditions, and such the act-
ors in the pre-Roman drama ; and when one
of those periodical storms swept over the
Mediterranean, the feeble clutclied tigliter
their precarious kingdoms, and the Russias
and the Englands watched eagerly to see how
thev might emerge from the chaos, richer and
greater than before ; the feeble watching how
they too might pick up a few crumbs where-
with to renew their failing strength.
But Greece, with a fatal political system,
wise in all wisdom except political wisdom,
could never have attained universal domin-
ion. Joined to her tremendous power of will,
Rome had an instinct for organization. IN'ow,
with her fresh accession of military strength,
with a perfect and willing instrument at hand
V) carry out the mandates of her imperious
will, and with a renewed and consolidated
organism to embody her administrative geni-
us, the City of the Seven Hills was uncon-
sciously moving toward that universal mas-
tery of which she had never dreamed. The
mastery even over her own peninsula was
unpremeditated ; like England in India, each
advance made to protect those already made,
and for the preservation of the whole. So
not by her own seeking she was approaching
the frontiers of the great arena.
In the study of history nothing is more
obvious than the unconsciousness with which
men and nations and empires, intent only
upon their own selfish purposes, are develop-
ing vast designs of which they have never
thought Rome's advent upon the great
stage was at the right moment.

It would
have been futile before the recent crisis in
her internal life ; and for the nascent Roman
power to have been overthrown by Carthage
or by Alexander, as it might have been had
he lived, would have removed the founda-
tions of civilization as it exists to-day.

persistently does this thread of divine pur-
pose run through history, ancient and mod-
ern, working out the predetermined plan,
the inference becomes irresistible that the
overturnings of nations for selfish and tem-
porary ends are only stitches in a design so
vast it must be seen through the perspective
of years, or of centuries.
Aided by the Gauls, all of Italy was finally
aroused to a combined effort at self-preser-
vation. It was a terrible school for the le-
gions, they were being welded into men of
steel. Nothing could stand before .hem. One
by one the Northern nations succumbed, and
when the powerful Samnites in the South
were vanquished, all of Italy had become
Eoman (272 B.C.).
Bnt if the Roman legions had vanquished
the Italian States, it was the administrative
genius of Home which retained them in her
tenacious grasp. By converting Tolscians,
Etruscans. Samnites, at once into Romans —
by establishing in the conquered provinces
a vital and intimate relation with Rome, and
Rome alone — by entangling them in the
meshes of an ingeniously woven net of sov-
ereignty from which they could not escape —
once hers, she made them hers forever. The
difference between Greek and Roman coloni-
zation was characteristic. The Greek col-
ony became an independent organism ; the
Roman, only an extension of the metropolis.
Each city was only a smaller Rome, with
its patricians, its Senate, its two chief magis-
trates — and a system of carefully restricted
Roman citizenship. Perfectly unique in its
conception, this was the nucleus of avast em-
pire governed by a single city.
In weaving this magnificent system over
the peninsula, Rome was unconscious of its
wisdom, and that it would serve when her
provinces extended from the British Isles to
Chaldea. The Roman brain was a very sim-
ple affair beside that of the Greek. It had
no subtleties ; was not brilliant nor specula-

Their government was not the result
of theory, but of experiment, always moving
with a sure instinct toward that which made
for power and permanence in institutional
life. There was not a man in the Senate who
could have discussed the theory of govern-
ment with the philosophic Greeks ; but by
intuition they had discovered what the
Greeks would have done well to learn — the
power of the associative principle.
But the collective incapacity of the Greeks
was precisely due to their transcendent indi-
vidual greatness. It would be difficult to
say whether the world could better have
spared Greece or Rome. Both were building
empires indispensable and imperishable.
By the year 480, the invading Persian
hosts had been driven by the Greek States
back into Asia. Then Athens had her peer«
less day under Pericles and her brief age of
supremacy, to be quickly extinguished by
the deadly conflict with envious Sparta — the
Peloponnesian War — when Greek met Greek,
and for thirty-seven years the peninsula was
rent and torn, and finally, when Athens had
surrendered, when her beauty had been de-
faced and trampled upon by scoffing Spar-
tans, the glory of Greece had departed.
Her interior life was gone. In 338 the en-
feebled disorganized States found a mas-
ter. Out of rough untutored Macedon came
Philip, and gathered the struggling incohe-
sive mass into his own strong keeping. In
vain did Demosthenes utter his impassioned
philippics. In vain did he appeal to pride
of race and patriotism. The patriotism and
the vigor of the Senate had been sapped.
Greece was helpless in the grasp of the
Macedonian. Then came Philip's assassina-
tion, and a brief dream of escape when his
son Alexander, a beardless youth of only
twenty, succeeded him (336). But in two
more years this boy, with the face and form
of a god, had riveted the chains tighter than
before, and was sweeping across into Asia to
vanquish the Persians. This done, Tyre,
then Gaza fell before him, and the invincible
youth, after pausing in Egypt and founding
his city, swept on, conquering and capturing
from the Caspian to the Indies, planting
Greek colonies and thickly strewing the
seeds of Hellenic civilization by the way ;
and after only ten years, was sitting at
Babylon, holding his court in Oriental
splendor, receiving embassies and the hom-
age due to a divinity.
Among these embassies it is said there was
one from the Samnites praying for aid in
driving back the Romans, that hitherto
obscure people, who were absorbing the
Italian peninsula, and becoming a menace
to the old Greek cities by the sea. Had this
invincible man lived to return, the course of
history must have been changed. His in-
satiable ambition was already planning an
extension of his empire westward. Italy
and Sicily would have been swallowed up
by the way, and Alexander not Rome w^ould
have performed the task of overthrowing
the Carthaginian Empire. But this was not
to be. In 232, Alexander succumbed to
fever, and died at Babylon, the capital of a
colossal empire which was destined to fall
into pieces when his mighty hand was with-
The ancient Greek city of Tarentum, here-
tofore protected by the warlike Samnites,
now saw herself on the borders of that new
barbaric power with its home upon the Tiber.
Helpless, luxurious, living upon the tradi-
tions of former greatness, the proud city
soon came into collision with Rome. The
Roman Senate was weary of war. But when
their ambassador arrived in Tarentum to ne-
gotiate a peace, the gay young Tarentines,
who were in the midst of a wild religious
festival, received his bad Greek with shouts
of derisive laughter. It was an ill-timed in-
sult. AYar was declared, and Tarentum ap-
pealed to Pyrrhus, young king of Epirus, to
undertake her defence. Full of the spirit of
adventure, and with ambitions dreams of his
own, Pyrrhus gladly responded, and for the
first time the Roman legion met the Greek
phalanx. Unused to the different mode of
warfare, and demoralized by the elephants,
the defeat of the Romans was inevitable.
But Pyrrhus exclaimed, "One more such vic-
tory, and I am undone ! " and again — "Had
I such soldiers, the world would be mine ! "
The Greek Cineas, whom he sent to treat
with the Senate, returning, said : "To fight
these people is like fighting the Hydra."
Amazed at what he saw at Rome, he ex-
claimed, ' ' Their city is a temple, and their Sen-
ate an assembly of kings ! " So, after many
costly and barren victories, this romantic,
chivalrous young king, who so resembles
Charles XII. of Sweden in character and in
career, abandoned the Italian peninsula and
his dream of playing Alexander in the West
(278 B.C.).
Kome was being gradually drawn toward
the vortex of the political whirlpool in the
south, the centre of which vortex had always
been Sicily. Partly Carthaginian and partly
Greek, this island had been for centuries the
storm centre ; the brilliant city of Syracuse,
many times laid low by its Carthaginian
neighbor, Agrigentum, and many times ris-
ing again from its ashes more splendid than
It was in 264 B.C. that Rome passed the
dividing line between obscurity and great-
ness, and entered the great arena by way of
an insignificant door which opened to her in
Sicily. No less heroic, or even less reputable
cause was ever championed, or ever ushered
in a train of events so tremendous. A ma-
rauding band of mercenaries from Campania,
called Mammertines, had taken possession
of the little town of Messana in Sicily, had
murdered the males, and then appropriated
their homes and wives and daughters. When
the Syracusans attempted to dislodge this
community of pirates, the Mammertines ap-
pealed to Rome for protection. The Senate
was not in favor of espousing such a cause.
It was a disreputable one, and would also be
a challenge to either Greeks or Carthaginians.
But the Roman people had acquired an insa-
tiate appetite for military conquests, and the
protection asked for was voted by the popular
assembly. Thus was commenced that series
of wars which were to extend over a period
of 118 years ; and as the Phoenician language
spoken by the Carthaginians was called by
the Romans Punic, these are known as the
Punic Wars.
Carthage, with her wealth and her power
was a prodigious engine of cruelty. She
ruled her colonies with excessive rigor, im-
posing tribute that it required all their
industry to pay. The government was an
oligarch}^ A few aristocratic families de-
scended from Tyrian kings held the power of
the state, which was chiefly vested in a coun-
cil of one hundred, elected by themselves
for life. The military generals, selected not
because of fitness, but on account of personal
relations with the heads of the oligarchy, if
unsuccessful, were beheaded or crucified by
their aristocratic friends. As this latter was
their favorite mode of punishment, it seems
not improbable that crucifixion came into
Rome by way of Carthage. With such a
nation Rome had embarked upon a struggle
which would survive four generations of men.
Herself a novice upon the sea, she had chal-
lenged the greatest maritime power then ex-
isting. It was an untried path, which only a
strange indwelling consciousness of power
could have ventured upon. There were many
defeats. But there was somewhat in these
Komans which made them rise stronger from
defeat than their enemies from victory. Their
fleet might be stranded on the African coast,
its commander, E-egulus, a prisoner. But
the man who could bring back to his city
offers of peace from his captors — advise that
they be not accepted — and then return to
certain death by torture, reveals a source of
strength which cannot be measured. Whether
true or legendary, this story explains the
miracle of Rome's invincibility. When the
first Punic War was finished Sicily was a Ro-
man province ; humiliating terms had been
imposed upon Carthage. Hanno, her unfortu-
nate general, had been crucified, and the great
Hamilcar, with Spain as his military basis,
was planning to recover Sicily, and Sardinia
and Corsica which had also been ceded, his
boy, Hannibal, in camp with him, in training
for his own part in the struggle.
It was when this boy succeeded to the com-
mand in Spain that the conflict began to assume its colossal dimensions.

The ancient
Greek city of Saguntum, which for centuries
had looked out upon the sea, was in alliance
with Eome. Her destruction was the first
note of defiance. Hannibal then proceeded
to realize his stupendous plan. The Komans
had carried the war into Africa, now he
would carry it into Italy. He would march
through Gaul, across the Alps, there rein-
forced by the Cis- Alpine Gauls — those tire-
less tormentors of Eome — what matter if half
his men perished by the way ! — and on the
plains of Italy he would be met by Hasdru-
bal his brother, with another great Cartha-
ginian army, and Rome would be theirs.
This gigantic plan, as great in execution
as in conception, met its final climax at
Cannse (216). The Consul Fabius who, by
long and skilfully evading a conflict, gave
his name to that policy of delay, was replaced
by the impetuous Varro, and the battle was
fought — and lost. Forty thousand Romans
were lying dead upon the field, and an easy
path seemed open to Rome. Varro was not
crucified, but commended by the undaunted
Roman Senate for his faith in the Republic,
while with lofty courage it levied boys, slaves,
anyone who could carry arms, to fill up the
fresh legions. In tliis hour of Carthaginian
ascendancy, while the fate of the Republic
was trembling in the balance, the lifeless
Greek States, like drift-wood, were swept into
the swiftest current. Macedonia made alli-
ance with Hannibal. This sealed the fate of
Greece. The invading army of Hannibal was
soon acting on the defensive. The great
Scipio had driven the last Carthaginian out of
Spain, and was in Africa. By the year 183
B.C. Hannibal was a fugitive and a suicide.
In 171 the king of Macedonia was adorning
a triumphal procession in fhe streets of Rome
— and by the year 146 every Greek state had
been subjugated. Carthage, as a city or even
as a name, no longer existed, but was known
as the Roman province of Africa.
Rome, the heart and centre of this great
expansion, so wise in all that made for con-
quest and power and authority, failed to rec-
ognize that simple truth which great nations
to-day are so slow to learn — that in order to
be really sound, a nation must be sound in
all its parts ; that for its common people to
be in abject misery while a favored class is
enjoying the fruits of its increased prosper-
ity, is to bear the seeds of dissolution within
itself. Every year the gulf had been grow-
ing wider between the two classes — no longer
patrician and plebeian — but the aristocratic
class and the people. As the thirst for
wealth and political ascendancy grew in the
one, the sense of injustice deepened in the
other. Appius Claudius, he who built the
Appian Way and who was consul during
the war with Pyrrhus, cunningly strove to
offset the majorities of the common people
by bestowing the francliise upon the freed-
men, the children of emancipated slaves, who
were the natural adherents of his order ; at
the same time striving to win the support of
the commons by bringing to the thirsty Av-
entine the first great aqueduct. But much
as they needed water, the dwellers outside
the sacred city limits (the Ager Romanus)
needed land more ; and the entire disregard
of the Idcinian Law, restricting the amount
of public domain to be used by one person,
was engendering destructive forces which
threatened more disaster to the Republic
than had Carthaginians or Macedonians. The
vast wealth which poured into Rome after
the conquest of these nations passed into the
hands of a few, and these few, by still fur-
ther extending the franchise to strangers,
also continued to keep in their own hands
the administration of the affairs of the Re-
public. They alone were reaping the benefit
from the enormous sacrifices borne alike by
all for generations. Thousands of Roman
citizens, men who were soldiers and patriots,
had become beggars and vagrants, and the
wise, even among the nobles, realized that
the Republic was falling into an abyss from
which they might be powerless to extricate
it. A crisis was inevitable. It came in 133,
when the Tribune Tiberius Sempronius Grac-
chus attempted to re-enact the Licinian Law.
In the riots which ensued, Gracchus, with
many of his followers, was slain, and the work
of reform was taken up by his younger
brother, Caius Sempronius Gracchus. The
destructive forces underlying the whole so-
cial condition had begun to escape, and a
revolution had commenced which was to ter-
minate only with the Republic, and with the
advent of the great master — Julius Caesar.
Rome had passed her splendid climacteric
when in native simplicity and with phenom-
enal strength she burst the bonds of her bar-
baric chrysalis and declared herself mistress
of the Mediterranean, and when by sheer
force of ability and of character she compelled
the ancient world to bow down before her, and
to wear the yoke she herself had so skilfully
forged. But when she became debauched
with power and wealth, when avarice and
greed had corrupted her heart, and when un-
digested foreign refinements and learning had
corrupted her morals, the descent was swift.
If ever she had need to be strong and wise
it was when that torrent from the Orient
and from Greece and from Africa was sub-
merging the Roman nation. The nobility for
which the word Roman stands belongs to
the period of her isolation. When the Ro-
man Senate, the greatest representative body
that ever existed, with unexampled wisdom
and dignity was guiding the State and keep-
ing sacred its honor, and when noble Ro-
mans vied with each other in sacrifices for
the Republic. But a different quality was
expressed by the name now, when a despic-
able aristocracy was revelling in coarse splen-
dor and sensuous luxury, and famishing
multitudes were willing to exchange their
manhood and their votes for corn and gladia-
torial shows ; and when all alike were be-
coming brutalized by the passion for human
combats, which popular sentiment demanded
must be fought to the death. Still there were
some who realized the degradation which had
come upon the ancient city, and as Lucullus
stands for the lavish splendor of this age, so
Cato no doubt represents the sentiment of
many in clinging to the austere simplicity of
the Republic in its best days.
Imbedded in the mass of avarice and crime
and cruelty and of unassimilated foreign ele-
ments, we find the Jugurthine War. Called
to defend the people of Numidia from Ju-
gurtha, a criminal usurper, the Roman leaders, corrupted by bribes, were conniring at
his crimes. Xo such disgrace had ever come
upon Roman arms. Metellus, who did what
he could to efface the stain, brought Jugur-
tha to Rome, where he perished, it is said, by
starvation. But out of this Jugurthine in.
famy came Marius, the great leader of the
popular party. Humble in origin, and with
an ability which matched his ambition, he
succeeded Metellus in the command of the
army in the East ; then, burning with hatred
of the aristocratic party, he organized the
revolutionary forces and led them against
the party of oppression under Sulla in a civil
war. a war in which rivers of blood flowed
in vain, and in which tbe Republic virtually
perished. "When the victorious Sulla in 82
was proclaimed dictator for an indefinite
period, the Republic was dead.
The machinery of government might go on
from the old momentum and wars be fought,
but the life of the organism was extinct ; and
the mass of heterogeneous elements was wait-
ing to become the prey of the ablest among
the men to be seen about the Forum. Would
this be Pompey, the successful general who
brought to a close the war with Mithridates,
King of Pontns, and then distributed thrones
in Syria, as it already a king, wearing the
while such a pleasant cloak of humility ? It
was a game in politics the most desperate the
world ever saw, and the most tremendous in
results ; a game in which every player wore
a mask, and with consummate art was seek-
ing the thing he pretended not to want. The
prizes wore the grand old names, consul,
quaestor, prsetor, censor, pontifex maximus ;
but these were only points of vantage by
which to seize the real thing — the reins of
power in the perishing Republic. Foremost
in this group at the Forum are Pompey,
Crassus, Cicero, Catiline, Clodius and Csesar.
Pompey was far in advance of the others, un-
til Cicero, by unmasking and defeating Cati-
line's deep-laid conspiracy, proclaimed him-
self the saviour of his country. The plan of
that young patrician profligate was to extri-
cate himself from a load of debt by setting
fire to the city of Kome, overthrowing the
Constitution, and then, in the general confu-
sion, seizing the reins of government. A large
number of reckless young aristocrats were
drawn by him into the plot, which was un-
masked by Cicero. But if this made the
great orator popular with the people, it had
a contrary effect with a great part of the patricians, more or less involved in the in-
Yet the men engaged in the game for pow-
er did not know that they were playing with
a master, a man supremely great in everything
he undertook. Not more pure than they
in his motives, not more scrupulous in his
methods, Caius Julius Csesar was yet the one
man living who had the ability to lift Rome
out of the abyss into which she had fallen.
Never was the golden thread of divine
purpose more obvious than in placing this
prodigy among men at that gateway between
the past and the future ; behind him the ages
of conflict with the powers of darkness, be-
fore him the kingdom of the Prince of Peace
and of love and of light ! Since the founding
of Rome the trend had been steadily toward
this climax. Rome could not perish, for her
work had only just commenced — a work for
which the ages behind her had been merely
a preparation ; this was, to gather up and to
conserve the priceless riches of Greek culture
and thought, and then to receive and to hold
that other life-creating stream which was
about to come into the world. Greek civili-
zation and Christianity were the mind and
soul of the coming race of man ; and these.
it was the appointed task of Rome to hold as
in a reservoir, and then to open up channels
for their distribution to the nations of the
earth. Csesar's was the mighty hand chosen
to convert the perishing Roman Republic
into a suitable instrument for this task, to
gather up its latent energies stored in the
days of the old republic, to consolidate and
to reconstruct ail of its inchoate elements
into an empire. It would need force of an
appalling nature to accomplish what this
empire would have to do. In that pre-
Christian world love was not an active force.
The empire was to be cruel, pitiless, awe-in-
spiring, adamantine and impregnable, for it
must endure for four centuries, and would
have need of all its vast riches and resources
in order to accomplish its appointed task.
But it would be done, and the five short
years of Caesar's sovereignty would contain
the germs of a future Europe, and of the
world's development as it exists to-day.
But at the time we have reached, Caesar
was only one of many aspirants for leader-
ship. He was a patrician among patricians,
for did he not belong to the great Julian
gens, descended from gods and kings ! But
what he kept most prominently before the
people was his connection with the rough
soldier Marius ; their adored leader, whose
nephew he was by marriage, but whose name
must not be whispered now, in this age of aris-
tocratic supremacy. So, by fearlessly, auda-
ciously, associating himself with the popular
cause, by skilfully ingratiating himself al-
ways with the people, he rose step by step
until he was consul ; the very first act being
the passing of an agrarian law which be-
stowed vast tracts of public lands in Cam-
pania and other provinces, thus relieving the
congested misery which was seven stories
deep in the insulce upon the Aventine. Then
followed his amazing military successes
until the final conquest of Gaul. Pompey
saw his own victories in the east eclipsed by
those of Caesar in the west, and his long as-
cendency slipping into the hands of his rival.
There was only one thing to be done : that
was to disarm him. Not long before this,
Pompey and Caesar and Crassus had formed a
friendly alliance (" the first Triumvirate") to
curb a growing oligarchy in the Senate. But
in the swiftly changing scene, Pompey was
now in high favor and in close alliance with
this senatorial power, and at his instigation
the order was given for Caesar to disband his
army ; Cato standing ready the moment he
arrived in Rome to accuse him, and. to bring
about his impeachment. All was prepared
for his downfall.
In the old time a tribune's veto would have
arrested such a proceeding ; but when the
tribune Mark Antony, friend and adherent
of Caesar, issued his veto, he had to flee from
the wrath of the aristocratic party and take
refuge in the camp of Csesar ; and there the
order from the Senate was received. This
was the crucial moment. Should he obey,
divest himself of all official authority, and
''naked to his enemies," return to Rome a
private citizen ? Or should he refuse to obey,
cross the Rubicon with the Gallic legions he
had taught to conquer or to die, and defy
Pompey and his Senatorial legions, not yet
created ? He took the chances on this des-
perate resolve ; crossed the Rubicon, pursued
the Pompeian forces through Gaul and Spain,
and into the East, until their final overthrow
at Pharsalia in Greece, and the tragic death
of Pompey, which ended the Civil War.
Other triumphs quickly followed, a defeat
of the Egyptian army at Alexandria, whither
he had gone, at the solicitation of Cleopatra,
to act as mediator in a dispute with her
broth ei* Ptolemy. Another in Pontus, where
the son. of Mithridates was leading a revolt,
and whence came the historic dispatch —
*' Ve7ii, Vidi, Vici,^^ and still another in Af-
rica. All of Rome was now ready to pros-
trate itself at the feet of the conqueror ; and
the streets of that city had never beheld any-
thing like the triumph awarded him. Gauls,
Egyptians, Asiatics, Africans in chains, rep-
resented the list of his conquests ; the most
signilicant of all, that of Pompe}^, conspic-
uous in its absence ! A frantic joy took pos-
session of the whole people. The Senate, ab-
ject in flattery, named after him the month
in which he was born — Julius — or July.
They laid at his feet every power, every title,
and dictatorship for life. He asked only to
be consul ; but while wearing this modest title
he was in fact sovereign of a Roman Empire
and of the world. The adulation of a god he
received as if it were only his due, but as if it
wearied him. Vast plans of reconstruction
filled his mind ; the Empire no longer to be
ruled by a single city — Rome, its capital,
not mistress. He was awakening dead pa-
triotism, and opening channels by w^hich it
might give life and warmth to the remotest
parts of the organism ; reforming the calendar ; adapting the ancient code of laws to
new conditions. A man of tlie future, he
was standing amid the wreck of the tradi-
tions of the past, and the world will never
cease to wonder what might have been the
outcome, had a complete system, bearing the
stamp of his genius, been allowed to mature.
Fragmentary and incomplete as it was, it
changed the whole direction of human events.
But a revulsion of feeling was setting in.
This clemency to the people was suspicious,
and this opening of the franchise to his
Gauls, and the Senate to foreign people,
seemed all a part of some gigantic plan of
enslavement. To be adored by the people
had always been reason enough for the de-
struction of a leader. A few jealous senators
and a small number of men influenced, some
by personal spite, and some by the madness
which makes of tyrannicide a sacred duty,
formed a plan for his assassination. Brutus,
"Caesar's angel,'' as Shakespeare calls him,
was reminded that his great progenitor de-
livered them from the Tarquins, did not re-
ceive favors from them ! Of all the blows
which rained upon him that 15th of March,
" when the great Caesar fell" at the foot of
Pompey' s statue, it was that of Brutus which
pained him most ; for *' then his great heart
broke," and he covered his head with his
mantle, and accepted his fate.
They had thought to kill him, but Caesar
dead was more powerful than Csesar living.
Another revulsion set in. His generosity, his
magnanimity were recalled ; and when Mark
Antony in his funeral oration, recited his
gifts to the people, and showed the wounds
inflicted by the "envious Casca," and by
Cassius, it was received with a passion of
grief ; and when he read Csesar' s will, be-
queathing rich provinces to his murderers,
one to Cassius, another to Casca, and to
Brutus Cis-Alpine Gaul and the guardian-
ship of his nephew and heir, Octavius, then
the people were wrought to such a state of
fury that the assassins had to flee from the
Rome was now without a master. Out of
tlie chaos there came a Second Triumvirate,
composed of Octavius, Antony, and Lepi-
dus, who divided the world between them ;
Antony the East, Octavius the West, and
Lepidus Africa. The enemy of one, was to
be the enemy of all. So Cicero, who had
been striving by his philippics to destroy
Antony, was among the multitude of the
proscribed, and was slain in his garden.
Brutus and Cassius, pursued by Antony,
perished at Philippi, and met their victim
and their Judge.
But it was in Egypt that Antony had met
his fate, when he became ensnared by that
Circe of the Nile, Cleopatra. So infatuated did
the once great tribune and general become,
that he divorced his wife, the sister of Octa-
vius ; and when the Senate learned that the
great Triumvir was bestowing Roman terri-
tory upon the children of Cleopatra, he was
deprived of his powers, and Octavius sailed
for the East with a fleet. The defeat at
Actium (31 B.C.) made of Egypt a Roman
province, and was quickly followed by the
suicide of the disgraced Antony ; and then
by that of Cleopatra, who rather than en-
dure the fate of adorning the triumph of
Octavius at Rome, destroyed herself. The
Senate bestowed upon Octavius the name
Augustus — the Illustrious, and the month in
which he had won Egypt was called after
him — August. The other triumvir, Lepidus,
was soon effaced, and Augustus Csesar was
undisputed master of the world.
Politics no longer offered a field for am-
bitious Romans, and their immense activi-
ties flowed into a new channel. Since the
Macedonian conquests had flooded Rome
with Greek scholars, Hellenic learning and
ideals had become a passion. Sitting at the
feet of their slaves, men like Cicero had be-
come not alone learned, but deeply imbued
with Greek culture, and there had com-
menced a splendid imitation of Athenian
thought. Without the creative genius of
their great models, a literature came into be-
ing which makes the Augustan Age second
only to that of Pericles. In the pause be-
tween the old and tlie new, in the tranquil
interval between the passing of the Roman
Republic and the coming of that supreme
factor, Christianity, are found the names
Lucretius, Yirgil, Horace, Ovid, Strabo, to be
soon followed by Pliny, Seneca, Plutarch,
and Juvenal. The name of Csesar heads this
illustrious group. Great in authorship as in
all else, Caesar's Commentaries place him
among the fathers of Roman literature in
the pre- Augustan age.
This golden age in literature was a time
of gilded splendor in all things. There was
luxury, sensuous, gross, and barbaric in ex-
cess ; enough to have made the austere Cato
clothe himself in sackcloth if he had not
already committed suicide over the fall of
Pompey and of the republic. But the ex-
panding thought and the triumphs in litera-
ture had given a deeper meaning and a richer
coloring to life ; and the distempers which
attend imperialism had not yet developed.
Their Caesar had not abused the opportunity
created for him by the great Csesar, and
Rome, content and triumphant, was the blaz-
ing centre of the world.
At this moment, in the small Roman province of Judea, and in Bethlehem, the most
obscure town in Judea, there was born a child.

There was no room for his mother at
the inn, so the stable was his birthplace, and
the manger his cradle. It would be thirty
years before Rome would hear of this child
Jesus, and then only as a harmless fanatic
who had made himself offensive to the Jews.
But in three centuries more, the waning Ro-
man Empire would be trying to reinforce her
strength and hide her decrepitude beneath
his great mantle, and would acknowledge
him King of Kings. And the glory of Rome
would forever after be that it was the throne
of his empire.
As the reign of Augustus was drawing to
its close, and while he was weeping for his
lost legions, lured by Hermann into the
depths of the German forest and slain, — at
this very time the boy Christ was in the
temple at Jerusalem confounding the wisdom
of the wise, while *'his mother sought him
The period between Augustus and Vespa-
sian, which reached its climax in Nero, is one
of unmitigated and revolting atrocities. Men
hitherto gentle and human in their impulses
seem, at the touch of the imperial throne, to
have been converted into monsters. Tiberius, the admirable soldier, wlio succeeded
Augustus, quickly reached this transforma-
tion. In creating the Praetorian Guards, he
converted the empire into a military despot-
ism. This body of ten thousand men was
an instrument for his own use, which at any
moment might be employed against the peo-
pie. The assemblies were abolished, their
functions transferred to the Senate, which
body was now reduced to a mere slavish in-
strument to wreak the personal vengeance of
the emperor ; its chief function being to try
cases of high treason against his person.
Spies and informers were lurking every-
where : death without trial inevitably follow-
ing arrest. The furies seem to have been let
loose in the land ; a being of inconceivable
cruelty on the throne, alternately resigning
himself to debauchery, and to torturing fits
of remorse ; earthquakes, conflagrations, and
disaster abroad ; — it was in such a time of
lurid horror that the Roman Governor Pilate,
in the judgment hall at Jerusalem, was wash-
ing his hands of the responsibility he was
about to assume, saying, — ''I am innocent
of the blood of this just person — see ye to
it." Is it strange that the earth trembled,
and that there was terror and despair, and
that mercy and justice and hope seemed dead
in the Roman Empire, while the Son of Man
was being scourged and crucified !
Upon the death of Tiberius, the Praetorian
Guards, the Senate, and the people united in
calling Caligula, the excellent son of a noble
sire, to the throne. His father was German-
icus, the great general. For nearly a year
he inspired confidence and hope. Then,
seized by a sudden illness, the transforma-
tion came ; and on his recovery, he too was
a monster. The excesses of his cruelties and
of his vices, and his hunger for adulation,
offset b}^ no ability, made him an object of
contempt as well as horror ; and while insist-
ing that he be worshipped as a god, he was
cut down by his own Praetorian Guards ;
to be followed by Claudius, not vicious, but
a weakling. The demons passing him by,
seem to have entered into his two wives;
first Messalina, whose atrocious profligacy
is an explanation, if not a justification, of
her execution by the order of Claudius her
husband ; who then immediately married
the more able and no less vicious Agrippina,
by whom he himself was assassinated in
order to secure the throne for her son Nero ;
she to be in turn assassinated by this very
son, when he had come well under the spell
of madness which inevitably attended such
elevation !
Nero's reign was a climax, and it fittingly
ushered in the persecution of that obscure
Jewish sect — the Christians, whom Tacitus
says had rendered themselves odious "by
their hatred of the human race ! " Rome
was nearly destroyed by a conflagration.
Nero was suspected of having kindled it,
and in order to divert suspicion from
himself, he charged it upon the Christians.
Ingenious cruelties were devised for their
death — it was an opportunity to amuse the
people. They were covered with the skins
of wild beasts and thrown into the arena,
nailed to crosses, and at night were made
human torches to illumine Nero's gardens.
It was in the outburst of fury during this
persecution that Peter and Paul are said to
have perished in Rome. Like that of his
predecessors, the death of Nero was a vio-
lent one and occurred in 68 a.d.
In viewing this horrible century after
Julius Csesar one asks why his agency in
human affairs should be exalted. But his
work had been wrenched from his hand,
fragmentary and incomplete. Csesar would
never have degraded the Roman Senate and
extinguished the voice of the people ; not
because he was beneficent, but because he
was wise, his genius instinct with the spirit
of the future. But the empire, rigid and
inexorable with the strength he had infused
into it, had fallen into the hands of madmen,
and was to remain a soulless engine of pow-
er and cruelty for four centuries.
With the reign of Vespasian better times
came. The building of the Coliseum, and
the fall of Jerusalem mark this period.
Josephus, who was one of the Jewish cap-
tives taken in Galilee, has preserved for us
the details of the great tragedy, when the
city, besieged by Titus, son of Vespasian,
finally fell ; and when the people found
their last refuge in the Temple, and perished
with it (70 A.D.). It was during the succeed-
ing reign of Titus that the eruption of Vesu-
vius occurred which destroyed the old Greek
cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum (79 a.d.).
Roman power had now extended over Brit-
ain and Agricola was building his wall across
the isthmus between England and Scotland.
Trajan's was the most humane and enlight-
ened reign which had yet come ; a wise
statesmanship striving to re-establish some of
the ancient freedom; and Trajan's Column,
erected by a grateful senate and people,
stands to-day as his memorial. The reign of
Marcus Aurelius, ^'a sage upon a throne"
(161-180 A.D.), closed this benign period ;
and was a climax of excellence and virtue,
as Nero's had been one of wickedness. A
love of learning and a passion for morality
joined to a singularly devout nature, made
of this man a shining exemplar of the Stoic
philosophy which so powerfully influenced
Roman thought and life. But although truly
intent upon the happiness and well-being of
all created things, the illustrious pagan did
not rebuke the frightful Christian persecu-
tions, which after long cessation broke out
afresh in his empire.
It is impossible to understand the mental attitude of educated Romans during this period without understanding Stoicism, that Greek exotic which so profoundly penetrated Roman life and institutions.

ancient mythology had long ago become assimilated with that of Greece.

But while their gods were the same, the religion had for the Romans an essentially different

It was for them a compact of mutual obligations between gods and men.

In return for certain rites and observances, these beings, greater than themselves, were
to bestow benefits here, and an immunity from suffering hereafter.

It was a cool, pas-
sionless contract, equally binding upon both.
Its once powerful hold had gradually weak-
ened, and with the influx of Greek thought
and the consequent awakening of Roman
intelligence, augurs and auspices had be-
come of small account, and the whole sacer-
dotal system an empty shell.

But a reliance
upon something outside of, and greater than
ourselves, is a necessity for the human soul ;
and the Roman mind began to search among
the things new and strange which had
poured into Rome— the magic, the astrol-
ogy, the Greek philosophies, the Egyptian
and Oriental mysteries — for something to
satisfy this hunger.

In Stoicism they found
a philosophy precisely suited to the native
Roman character.

It was noble and it was

It was hard, unloving, but it was
courageous and true.

It justified the
Roman to himself, and made of his moral
deficiencies the loftiest virtue.

They had
never known mercy, nor pity, nor any ten-
der emotion.

So a philosophy which made
the absence of these weaknesses its main
tenet was congenial.

Stoicism was a rigid
ethical system under the guidance of human

It was an austere, uncompromising
pursuit of virtue without hope of reward,
here or hereafter. And this virtue must
proceed from the will, not the emotions.

Clemency was a virtue, but pity a weakness.

Death, sickness, loss, were not evils, only
opportunity for more virtue in despising
their efforts to torment you.

Anaxagoras on being told of the death of his son simply
said, "I never supposed I had begotten an

The fountain of benevolence,
of tears for others' woes, would inevitably be
dried by such a system. It was a moral
monstrosity ; but it had within it a regenera-
ting principle, and a profound basic truth.
Yirtue in Rome, where all existed for the
state, meant political virtue ; and this meant
an awakening of character, and the enormous
power attained by Stoicism in that period
of deepest corruption, from Cato to Marcus
Aurelius, was a natural effort toward the
rehabilitation of character; and is a proof of
the inherent tendency toward moral health,
still existing in the nation.

It is the strangest of anomalies to see this stream of austere
virtue threading its way through the mass
of loathsome licentiousness, gathering up
volume and strength and entering into the
structure of Roman Institutions.

It is found
to-day imbedded in Roman jurisprudence.

The principle underlying Stoic philosophy,
and which was its life, was that of the
universal brotherhood of humanity, a unity
by virtue of a law of nature, knitting men
into one body ; and added to this a recogni-
tion of the inherent dignity of man, which
circumstances could not impair or touch.
These lay at the very basis of the question
of human rights and of equity ; and Roman
law ; as formulated by its great expounders
in those days, in its language and in its
spirit, bears the unmistakable impress of
But while profoundly true in its basic prin-
ciples Stoicism was an unnatural, passion-
less system to live by.

It was a deliberate
attempt to eliminate the divine and the spon-
taneous, to dry up the springs of hope and
love and pity and of joy. It is remembered
only as one of the diseased phases of the hu-
man soul on its way toward peace ; and it is
a significant fact that Greece fed upon the
dry husks of Stoicism in the days of her in-
tellectual decline, and Rome in the period
of her moral decay. It was a rugged staff
which both used as a support in times of
desperate need and indigence, and then
threw away.
Understanding his philosophy, we can also
understand why the gentle and devout Mar-
cus Aurelius was not moved by the torturing
of Christians at Lyons, and are not surprised
that poets and writers who constantly lauded
virtue and decried vice, found their recrea-
tion in witnessing the horrible sufferings in
the arena.

Nor does it appear so inconceiv-
able that in the reign of the excellent Titus,
three thousand gladiators perished for the
entertainment of Rome, and in that of the
good and beneficent Trajan — ten thousand !
Epicureanism, which made pleasure, not virtue, its end, never attained such an influence.

It was moving with the popular stream, so had not the power which attends
a reaction.

But both Greek Platonism and
oriental mysticism strongly appealed to
many minds.

Platonism, which was mono-
theistic, included a belief in a system of
spiritual daemons or divinities which were the
agents of the divine will. It was this belief
which linked it with oriental mysticism,
which claimed that there was a divine in-
dwelling which was the all-good, and which
could be invited into the soul by austerities
and meditation, inducing a state of spiritual
exaltation. So these two blended into a
Neo-Platonism which was destined to super-
sede Stoicism. Stoicism and Neo-Platonism
were as wide apart as Ptolemaic and Coper-
nican astronomy. Stoicism made man the
active centre, Neo-Platonism made him the
passive recipient from the divine centre.
Stoicism made human reason the sole guide,

Neo-Platonism discarded the teachings of
reason, and listened for the voice of the di-
vine indwelling ; silence and meditation its
teachers. It was the same ancient wisdom
as that now taught by men from the East,
who doubtless walked the streets of Rome,
olive-skinned, turbanned, serene in their
orientalism, just as they do here to-day, ex-
pounding the philosophy of existence which
was old before Eome or ^neas or Troy
Far down beneath this ferment of thought,
and this turbid mingling of Roman depravity
and eastern subtleties, there were flowing
unseen rivulets of truth, the simplest ever
presented to man ; truths uttered in Galilee
by Him who was scourged and crucified at
Jerusalem. As Greek and Asiatic slaves
had brought their system and taught them to
their masters, so Judsean slaves, especially
since the fall of Jerusalem, had brought the
story of the life and death of their Christ,
for whom so many had already suffered
and died during the early days of the em-
pire. Founded upon miraculous stories con-
cerning a Nazarene carpenter, stories un-
supported by evidence, is it strange that the
learned heard nothing of this ** still small
voice/' and heeded not if they heard ? They
were listening for the whirlwind. But the
gentle teachings of the new religion, its pure
and noble system of ethics — the compassion
and love it offered from One who was Him-
self ' ' a Man of Sorrows and acquainted with
grief" and *' touched with a feeling for our
infirmities," — all this sank deep into sin-sick
hearts. The simplicity of the message, and
the peace it brought was winning disciples —
disciples who would spread the glad tidings,
and in their rapture court death and beg the
privilege of martyrdom. This religion con-
tained all that was best in Stoicism and in
Neo-Platonism, but with an animating prin-
ciple of spiritual life absent in both. Roman
literature said not a word of it. But while the
learned were contemptuous and incredulous
it was creeping into households and hearts
and silently winning disciples throughout
the empire. Stoicism itself had been uncon-
sciously modified by it, and was in fact ex-
piring when Marcus Aurelius was writing
his profoundly religious ^'Meditations."
This philosopher had need of all his stoicism
in his unhappy domestic relations, with his
perverse and dissolute wife Faustina instigating rebellion in the east, and striving to win
the love of Spartacus the gladiator, who was
the idol of the hour in Rome ; while his son
and heir Commodus had no higher ambition
than himself to enter the arena, after the
fashion of many patrician youths of the
The reign of Commodus is recognized as
the beginning of the political decline of the
empire. The loathsome vice and brutality of
this son of the great moralist could not be
written ; and when he was strangled by one
of his discarded favorites there was rejoicing
in Rome. Of the twenty-five emperors who
succeeded him ten were slain by their soldiers.
It was the Prsetorian Guards, after Commo-
dus, who appointed the wearers of the Impe-
rial purple, and if they might make emper-
ors, they believed they might also unmake
them, by slaying them, and when they com-
menced the practice of giving the throne to
the highest bidder, political degradation
could go no farther. The reign of Septimius
Severus, which was a period of wholesome
military despotism, is a relief. The wall he
built in Britain still stands as his memorial.
He died at York while engaged in tliis work,
and there soon followed the reign of his son,
Caracalla, of hideous memory (211-217 a.d.),
whose first act was by one stroke of the pen
to proscribe twenty thousand victims, because
they wept for his brother and rival, Geta,
over whose dead body he had climbed to the
throne. We will not pause over the malig-
nant cruelty of this being, who might have in-
structed Nero in the art ; nor over Helioga-
balus his successor (218-222 a. D.), of whom it
was said, he could feel no appetite for his
dinner, unless witnessing the shedding of
human blood.
Under Decius (250-268 a.d.) the Christian
persecutions were recommenced with greater
severity than ever before. The early Chris-
tians had found an asylum in the catacombs
of Rome ; now again those vast subterranean
corridors lined with tombs became the ref-
uge and the abode of thousands of the hunt-
ed sect, traces of whom may still be found
in the small mortuary chapels where they
worshipped and sang their triumphant song
— ^'Though He slay me, yet will I praise
While this was happening the Goths were
invading the empire on its northern frontier,
Persia hostile in the east, and also many small
centres of rebellion in Asia were claiming independence. At Palmyra the learned and
fascinating Zenobia, after the death of her
husband, had reigned with great ability and
splendor, assuming to be not alone Queen of
Palmyra and Syria, but of the eastern divi-
sion of the Roman Empire. It was under
Aurelian (270-275 a.d.) that Palmyra fell
after a long siege, and the fleeing queen was
captured and carried to Rome, where she
adorned the magnificent triumph. Fettered
with gold chains, the proud captive walked
before the triumphal car of her captor, who
then gallantly bestowed upon her a splendid
villa at Tivoli, where she dwelt in sumptu-
ous retirement.
Rome no longer had the abounding vigor
of her prime, when with her right hand she
grasped Gaul, Spain, Africa, and Britain ;
and with her left gathered in all the fruits of
Alexander's triumphs. Since the Goths had
begun to press down upon her like a torrent ;
since she was defending, not extending her
borders, she began to find that her life-cur-
rent was not swift and strong enough to
keep her distant provinces in subjection.
Zenobia was not the only rebel against her
authority. And if the Prsetorian Guards in
the West might create emperors, the legions
in the East thought they also might do so.
Anarchy and threatened dissolution led to
an extraordinary measure, the decentraliza-
tion of authority. Diocletian, for administra-
tive purposes, divided the empire into four
parts (284), three other cities sharing the au-
thority with Rome. Although this was only
temporary, it presaged the end. The prin-
ciple of unity was the life of Rome, and
when that was impaired or abandoned, as it
was soon to be, the empire might by ingen-
ious devices be reinforced, and its existence
prolonged, but the life of the organism was
departing ; its gigantic framework was be-
ginning to weaken and to yield.
The Emperor having restored the integrity
of the empire in the East, determined to
complete his work by a less difficult task at
home — the extirpation of that mischievous
Christian sect which was spreading with as-
tonishing rapidity. A systematic persecu-
tion was commenced. The one under De-
cius had been cruel, but it did not approach
in severity this final effort to exterminate the
new religion. But it was in vain. Pano-
plied in their sustaining faith, the ranks of
the slain were immediately filled with men,
women, and even children, who courted mar-
tyrdom as the open door to heaven ; and
when Diocletian became ill, and then abdi-
cated, the attempt was abandoned.
Constantine succeeded him, first as joint
ruler in the East with Licinius ; but by the
year 314 he was sole master of the empire.
It is not probable that it was the caprice
of a single man which converted the pagan
empire into a Christian one. Here, in this
strange faith, there existed a tremendous
constructive force, an embodiment of unity,
and of the associative principle. These had
been the secret of the strength of Rome ; and
she was dissolving because she had lost them.
There was a power in this Christianity which
bound men together, not as by bands of steel,
but as if by an irresistible, self-recruiting
force of nature.
They could not destroy it, and so men wise
in statesmanship doubtless saw the political
expediency of adopting it. Whether Con-
stantine had really learned to rely upon the
God of the Christians, and whether he really
saw a luminous cross in the heavens, who can
tell? We only know that early in his reign
the religion of the despised ISazarene was
accepted by him, and the great Roman Em-
pire became the standard-bearer of the Cross.
And when Cons tan tine removed the seat of
his empire to Byzantium, the newly chris-
tened city of Constantinople was the capital
of a Christianized Roman Empire.
The Roman nation, with its cravings un-
satisfied by Greek and Oriental philosophies,
and sick and weary with a sense of moral
degradation, embraced the new faith with

Steeped to the lips in iniquity,
they still might be cleansed ! By the waters
of baptism, though their sins were as scarlet,
they might be made white as snow. A great
wave of reaction carried men into asceticism,
some fleeing to the deserts, there to find re-
generation by austerities ; and so in time
monasticism was born.
The Apostolic Church had first been or-
ganized into communities under the rule of
elders. In the second century, as it grew in
numbers and in extent, there were created
bishops, with a supervising care and an au-
thority superior to that of the elders. From
this nucleus started the organization of the
Church of Rome. There were now bishops
of Rome, and of Antioch, and of Alexandria.
But as Peter when he perished at Rome was
the head of the Apostolic Church, so the
bishops of Rome were his successors, and
had a precedence over the others. In this
way, the hierarchy grew into form, and upon
this historic relation to Peter, the founder of
the Church, was based the claim of headship,
which finally sundered the Greek and Ro-
man churches.
A triumphant Christianity had entered
through two doors. One was the heart of
the people, the other a political door. To
the great, the powerful, those who were go-
ing to control its destinies, the Christian
faith meant a new source of strength for the
empire. It was a coat of mail for its de-
fence, and a weapon with which to smite its
enemies. Emperors and their subordinates,
fed and nourished on cruelty, were going to
use the same ferocity in maintaining it that
they had once used for its destruction.
When historians express wonder that the
gentle and persecuted Christians were so
soon transformed into persecutors, they
seem to forget that the faith of Christ
was wrenched from the hands of His lowly
followers and converted into an engine to
be used for political ends. And one of the
greatest miracles attending the history of
Christianity is that so mucli of its purity and
sanctity has survived this process of degra-
dation. But however corrupt, however
cruel, however perverted from its original
simplicity in belief and form, there were al-
ways flowing, deep below the surface, uncon-
taminated streams of religious fervor ; men
and women with a faith as pure and as ex-
alted as that of the first Disciples ; for which
they were ready, like them, to die. This
miracle of divine persistence never failed,
and through ages of corruption has safely
brought the living waters which nourish
Christendom to-day.
A time of unprecedented overturnings was
at hand. The Huns had appeared in Europe
(375 A.D.), and, like wolves, were driving be-
fore them even the Goths, who poured down
upon the Italian frontiers. It became evi-
dent that the western division of the empire,
including Italy, Gaul, Spain, Africa, and
Britain, could no longer be afforded protec-
tion by Constantinople. In 395 a.d. the dis-
memberment took place. There was an East-
ern Empire and a Western Empire. The
Eastern or Byzantine Empire, with compara-
tive internal and external tranquillity, was
going to stand in shining petrifaction for
nearly a thousand years. But the Western
Empire was crumbling — decay within and
foes without.

The Moors were threatening
Africa. The Picts and Scots called for a
strong hand in Britain, and most terrible of
all, the Visigoths under Alaric were boldly
invading northern Italy; besieging Milan,
attacking Florence, then plundering, destroy-
ing, burning, as they made their way to the
Eternal City. Never but once — 600 years
before — had foreign feet profaned the streets
of Rome. Slaves within the city opened a
gate to their kinsmen encamped without ;
and at midnight the awful moment arrived
when, with a wild shout, the Goths were in
Rome. The horrors of the sacking and the
burning need not be dwelt upon.
The scattering of patrician families conse-
quent upon this pillage and devastation, for-
ever dispersed the traditional elements which
made Rome so sacred. All of Ital}^ was sub-
ject to the Visigoths, who were also in Gaul
and in Spain. The Angles and the Saxons
were in Britain, and the Vandals in Africa.
Rome, herself almost submerged, saw the
dark waters of this northern deluge flowing
over the entke empire in the West.
The death of Alaric in 410, and the advent
of Ataulf, his brother and successor, as
head of the Visigoths, temporarily stayed the
course of events. Ataulf loved and had car-
ried away Placidia, sister of the recent Em-
peror Honorius. He was an admirer of Ro-
man civilization, and approved of preserving
it as a foundation for a Gothic structure,
rather than destroying it. So he restored the
empire in name, and withdrew with his Ro-
man bride, Placidia, to Spain, there to found
a Visigoth Empire. So for some decades
longer emperors bearing the name, but with
no actual power, liit like ghosts across the
page of history, the barbarians deciding
who should and who should not wear the im-
perial purple.
Rome was not defiled by the feet of Attila
and his Huns, although they fiercely ravaged
Italy. But the Vandals visited it with fire
and with sword and ins alt. Genseric, fol-
lowing the lines of the old Carthaginian Em-
pire, was creating a huge Vandal Empire, and
was master of the Mediterranean — that prize
for which ancient nations had once so fiercely
struggled. He, with his Vandals and his
Moors, visited Rome with destruction and
degrading insult (455 a.b.), and after four-
teen devastating days, they carried all the
portable treasure to Carthage, leaving only
what was rooted to the ground. This final humiliation extinguished the flickering spark
of life in the expiring empire, and in 495 a.d.
the Roman Senate performed its last act.
It transferred the supreme authority to
Odoacer, chief of a German tribe, and a
Goth was King of Rome and Sovereign of
The time had passed when ^'E-ome was
the whole world, and all the world was
Rome." That crater through which had
poured the volcanic energies of the mighty
empire was awfully still. But those ener-
gies were sleeping, not dead. The instinct
for power, the old thirst for mastery, the
same genius for organization, were finding
a new pathway, and were preparing to
convert the forlorn, dismantled city into the
throne of a universal empire.
The least spiritual of nations was creat-
ing a spiritual kingdom, into which it would
inject its own dominating strength. By con-
trolling the sources of action, it might be
master of men and of events. By holding
the consciences and hearts of humanity in
one hand, and the keys to heaven and hell in
the other, a power might be wielded deep as
human consciousness, and wide as the earth
itself. There existed no such plan in the
minds of the devout early bishops of Rome.
But such was the instinctive process at work,
as surely and as irresistibly as a mighty
river if obstructed will find a new way to
the sea. When before trembling souls were
held up the horrors of eternal punishment,
which might be remitted, and the tortures of
purgatory shortened by gifts to the Church,
money poured in great streams into the
treasury. Dying sinners, even if half pa-
gan, would leave their all, for the chance of
purchasing forgiveness. This meant wealth
and power never before possessed by a single
organization. Ecclesiasticism was the road
to success, and to be Bishop of Rome the
richest prize offered to ambition, men still
pagans at heart entering the lists to obtain
it. The bishop, the custodian of this wealth,
which he lavishly dispensed in charity and in
deeds of mercy, w^as to the common people
the adored father, or, as he began to be
called, Papa (from the Greek), the word as-
suming in English the form "Pope."
The Greek and Oriental spirit which had
come to pervade the Eastern Empire was
making of Eastern Christianity sometliing
quite different from that of the West. There
were different ideas of church government,
and finally a different understanding of the
dogmas of the Church concerning the nature
of the Trinity. The assumption of headship
by the Bishop of Eome, by virtue of an
apostolic succession, was indignantly repu-
diated, and when the Pope asserted his
authority by virtue of this headship to de-
cide what were the dogmas of the faith, the
Eastern Christians resolved upon a separa-
tion ; and the Church of Christ on earth fell
apart into two bodies — the Gfreek Church,
with its seat at Constantinople, and the Ro-
man, to be enthroned at Rome.
It was a period of transition and of prepa-
ration. The rough foundations of future
Europe were being laid. A Visigoth king-
dom, established by Ataulf, held in subjection
Romanized Spain. The Angles and Saxons
had divided the Roman province of Britain
between themselves and created a heptarchy
which was to become a monarchy ; Clovis,
newly Christianized, had fastened a Frank-
ish kingdom upon the Romanized and still
pagan Gauls, and crowded the Visigoths
over the Pyrenees. In Central Europe was
a surging mass of Germanic tribes, never at
rest, but with a general movement always
toward the South, where their kinsmen, the
Goths and Vandals, had already found
homes of bewildering luxury ready for their
use, and were fast acquiring the arts of civ-
ilization. In the region beyond, in the East,
was another tumultuous mass of tribes, of
which nothing was known yet — Slavonic,
Finnish, Bulgarian, and strange Asiatic bar-
barians — all beginning to be drawn like
moths toward the blazing illumination at
Constantinople, the centre of that Byzantine
Empire about which would revolve the am-
bitions and aspirations of what was to be-
come Russia.
Although sundered in its spiritual life
from the Empire of the West, Constantino-
ple still claimed a shadowy political unity,
and asserted an unsubstantial authority over
the destinies of Rome and of Italy, which
was for two centuries represented by an ex-
arch at Ravenna, this exarchate being the
nominal centre of Byzantine authority in
the West.
But the Goths, barbarians though they
were, did not learn of Christianity from Rome.

More than a century before the fall of the
empire they had received it in its primitive
simplicity from Ulfilas, the Christian boy
from Syria v^hom they had captured, and
who created a Gothic alphabet and then
translated his Bible into their tongue, ex-
plaining its truths in his own artless fashion,
as they had been taught in his native land by

The Roman Church had accepted,
at the Council of Nice (327), the truth as ex-
pounded by Athanasius, making the Trinity
the most sacred of its dogmas. So the Chris-
tianity of the Goths, which rejected the idea
of the Trinity, was by Roman standards a
very abominable heresy, and rivers of blood
were to flow in Italy and in Spain before it
was washed out by a triumphant trinita-
The Gothic nation, like the Roman Empire,
had separated into a Western and an Eastern
division. And while the Visigoths had long
since overrun Italy, Gaul, and Spain, the
home of the Ostrogoths was still far north of
the Danube. On the day of a great victory
over the Huns, a son had been born to the
King of the Ostrogoths. So the child of this
good omen was called Theodoric — gift of
God. When Odoacer became King of Italy,
Theodoric was twenty-one years old. Seven
hundred miles stretched between him and
the throne of Italy, but he determined to
possess it. By the year 492 he had wrenched
the prize from Odoacer. He had not mis-
taken his strength nor his ability. Theo-
doric's is one of the few names to which by
common consent has been attached the word
*^ Great." When we compare this wise, en-
lightened, and humane reign with that of
some of the human tigers who had worn the
name of Caesar, we conclude that the barbar-
ians brought something more than rugged
strength into the expiring civilization. They
brought some human elements which had
been fatally lacking in the Romans. Terri-
ble in wrath and in vengeance, the Goths
had capacity for gentle emotions. Cruelty
was their weapon, not their pastime. They
did not with epicurean pleasure taste human
blood with their wine. If Theodoric ordered
the execution of his friend Boethius, the
learned scholar, musician, and mathemati-
cian, it was because he believed he was trying
to undermine the Arian faith, the religion of
his people ; but the remorse whicli overtook
the barbarian king was the cause of his
death (526 a.d.). The wife of this remarkable
man was a sister of Clovis, and the magnificent monument erected by his daughter over
his sarcophagus still remains at Ravenna.
With the strong hand of the king re-
moved, Justinian, Emperor of the East, saw
his opportunity to reconquer Italy. He
sent his army under Belisarius, and first
captured Sicilj^ A few soldiers crawling
through an abandoned aqueduct entered the
city of Naples, and then opened the gates
to the besieging army. Rome quickly sur-
rendered, and the keys of the city were sent
as a trophy to Constantinople (537). The
Goths then in turn besieged Rome, and then
it was that Hadrian's tomb, now the castle
of St. Angelo, was first used as a fortress,
and priceless statues (four thousand it is
said), the work of famous Greek sculptors,
were hurled from the walls, and fell crash-
ing down upon the heads of the besieging
Goths, so terrifying them that they fled.
When Justinian died, in 56o, Italy was
practically recovered. But the rule was op-
pressive, and some even desired a return of
the Goths.
The Lombards were a fierce Germanic
tribe originally from Northern Prussia,
which had been, like all the others, gravitat-
ing toward Italy, watching an opportunity
to slip inside that tempting garden through
some open door. In the present conditions
they saw their opportunity. Their descent
into Northern Italy is still kept in remem-
brance by the name Lombardy, that beauti-
ful region lying between the Alps and the
Apennines. It was another instance of
rugged untamed power coming out of the
North to subdue the South. The terrified
people fled before them, and by the end of
the century these last barbarians had di-
vided the peninsula with the Greek Empire.
During the following century (the seventh)
there were three centres of power in Italy —
the Eastern Empire, which held Southern
Italy and the eastern coast ; the Lombards,
who were supreme in Northern Italy to the
borders of Yenetia ; and the Pope. Among
these three, it was the power of the Pope
which was ascending. It knew no geo-
graphical, no political limits. It was as
powerful in the Prankish kingdom and in
Christianized Britain as at Rome. From the
king on the throne to the humblest of the
people, wherever there were true children
of the Church, wherever there were stricken
consciences or aching hearts, there were his
subjects. The presence of Arianism was
the greatest difficulty in the path, and the
Church had be^n greatly strengthened by
the conversion of Theodolinda, the wife of the
King of the Lombards, to the true faith, and
the consequent rejection of the Arian heresy
by the Lombards. The famous ''Iron Crown
of Lombardy," now preserved near Milan,
was a gift to the Lombard Queen from Greg-
ory the Great in recognition of this service.
Precisely at this time there came into the
world one of the greatest factors in shaping
human events. Since Rome had raised the
cross as a symbol of empire, the world had
discovered the enormous power which might
be wielded by holding the spiritual con-
sciousness of man. The sincere purpose of
Mahomet to replace a corrupt polytheism
with a simple belief in one God, of whom he
was the prophet, was seized upon by the wise
and crafty Saracens. With the Koran in one
hand, the sword in the other, and the cres-
cent as their emblem, they determined to
proselyte the world. They conquered Per-
sia, Syria, and Egypt, and then swept along
the African coast, effacing the Vandal Em-
pire, not pausing until they reached the
ocean. Their purpose of universal domin-
ion was as much greater than Alexander's
as the world was greater than the one in his
time. The Church of Christ, which was the
object of Saracen hatred, had two heads,
and their plan included the destruction of
both. They would enter Europe by the way
of Spain, then cross the Pyrenees into
France. Another Saracen host, after con-
quering Constantinople, would flow west-
ward ; and when the two streams met at
Rome, the world would be theirs.
In 709 the movement began. The Visigoth
Kingdom in Spain, now three centuries old,
was swept out of existence, and a Moorish
occupation of the Spanish peninsula began,
which was to last seven hundred years.
But at the Pyrenees the Saracens, or Moors
as they are now called, were met by a Prank-
ish army led by Charles Martel, which drove
them back with such fury that there was
never another attempt made to cross that
barrier. Six hundred years were to elapse
before the crescent would wave over Con-
stantinople. But in all those years the
shadow of the coming disaster would rest
upon the Eastern Empire, which would be
gradually weakened and exhausted by con-
flicts with her future destroyer.
Near the end of the eighth century the
King of the Lombards captured Eavenna,
and in annexing the territory which was the
nominal seat of the imperial government,
put an end to the exarchate which had ex-
isted for two centuries. Alboin's ambition
was now fired to achieve a greater triumph,
i.e.^ a complete ascendancy in the peninsula.
This attempt, in itself so fruitless, changed
the whole course of European history. The
Merovingian kings were faithful sons of the
Church, so the Pope appealed to the Franks
to protect him from the Lombard encroach-
ments, and Pepin, the son of Charles Martel,
came twice across the Alps with an army,
checked the ambition of the Lombards by a
conquest which made him virtual sovereign,
then, upon leaving, cast an imperial gift into
the lap of the Church — five cities and a vast
extent of territory. This, known as the '' Do-
nation of Pepin," was the beginning of the
temporal kingdom of the popes in Italy.

Pepin, Maire du Palais of the last Mero-
vingian king, resolved, since he held the king-
ly power, also to assume the kingly crown.
Pope Zacharias, in gratitude for his gift to
the Church, sanctioned the audacious act,
and sent his representative to place the sym-
bol of power upon the head of his faithful son.
When Pope Adrian I. again needed pro-
tection from the Lombards, a greater than
Pepin wore the crown he had snatched from
the Merovingian. His son Charlemagne was
King of the Pranks. The tie uniting the
Eastern Empire and the "Western was w^orn
to a frail thread ; with hostile religions, and
characters which had grown utterly diver-
gent, the union was a mockery. The wretch-
ed Irene, who put out the eyes of her own son
in order that she might reign, was disgracing
the throne. Charlemagne's services to the
Church were unequalled. A man who could
compel a whole army of pagan Saxons to be
baptized in an afternoon, and Christianize a
nation in a campaign, was the sort of ally the
Pope needed. So when Pope Adrian I. asked
for protection, Charlemagne, with fully ma-
tured plans, came himself, and with the con-
sent and acquiescence of the Pope, he took
formal possession of Italy, and the centre of
power returned from the East to the West.
On Christmas Day in the year 800, Charle-
magne knelt before the high altar at St.
Peter's in Rome, while Leo III. placed upon
his head the crown which made him ''By
the Grace of God, Emperor of the Romans
and of the Holy Roman Empire." By these
words the present was deftly linked to the
past, and Charlemagne had become the suc-
cessor of Augustus and of Constantine.
The line of Csesar which had been prolonged
in the East would be continued through
Charlemagne's successors in the West. The
Roman Church, instead of being politically
joined to its enemy, was in natural alliance
with its most ardent and powerful defender.
In the compact formed between the Emperor
and the Pope there was a mutual dependence.
The election of the Pope required the sanc-
tion of the Emperor. Nor was the King of
the Franks emperor until crowned by the
Pope. In this friendly clause there lurked
material for many troubled centuries, and
the writing of many histories 1 The wonder
is that a statesman as astute as Charlemagne
did not, as a condition, then and there fix
the question of supremacy. But he did not
realize the extraordinary nature of the power
with which he was in alliance, any more
than did the Pope suspect the turn of events
which would make him the vassal of Ger-
man emperors. Upon the death of Charle-
magne, his empire was divided among his
sons into three parts. Louis took the East-
ern and German Pranks, Charles the West-
ern and Latinized Franks, and to Lothar was
assigned the imperial title together with
Italy, and a long narrow strip of territory
extending to the North Sea. Instead of
being in natural and close alliance with Lat-
inized Prance, Italy found herself irrevoca-
bly tied to the Germans, a Teutonic people
with which she had nothing in common.
The great states of modern Europe had now
all come into being. Italy, Prance, Spain,
from their infancy nourished by currents
from the ancient world, were the children
and the heirs of Latin civilization.

Germany, Russia, all born in this pregnant
century, were in no way linked with the

They were children of new and obscure parentage.

Of the Roman occupation in Britain there remained not a trace after the coming of the Angles and Saxons.

Germany, the one state where Roman power
in Gei
their st
tending i
grown int
dom ; whilt,
and disorders
league with a
. ideas
.e papal
irch, and
jr of inves-
,pal dignity
i, but prized
Pope Gregory
yiT., a still larger purpose developed. He
it was who first made the monstrous claim
that not alone German emperors, but all
sovereigns, were subject to the Pope, and
bound by his decisions. Christ was the
King of Kings ; and so, as his vicegerent, the
Pope's authority was absolute in Christen-
dom, and from it there was no appeal.
Henry lY., Emperor of Germany, in some
dispute had asked Pope Gregory's interposi-
tion. In reply, the Pope imperiously com-
manded the Emperor's immediate presence
at Rome to answer charges against himself.
The long-impending crisis had come. The
point Charlemagne had failed to determine,
whether Pope or Emperor was the greater,
Hildebrand was going to decide for all time.
Henry not only indignantly refused to
obey, but deposed the Pope. Whereupon
the Pope excommunicated Henry.
One can scarcely realize now what this
meant at that time. Excommunication was
a word before which the strongest quailed.
It was not only eternal torture hereafter,
but a living death here. The excommuni-
cated was cut off from human association ;
people approached him at their peril ; the
clothes he wore, the dishes from which he
ate, were polluted. He was a moral leper.
Henry's subjects threatened to elect a new
emperor unless he made his peace at once
with the offended Church. So, as has been
often told, the royal penitent started in mid-
winter upon his famous pilgrimage to Ca-
nossa, in coarsest garb, bare-headed, bare-
footed, standing for three days outside the
castle walls waiting for forgiveness and abso-
lution (1073 A.D.).
Such was the power of the Church when
in 1095 the kingdoms of Europe enrolled
themselves under its banners to recover
the Holy Sepulchre from the Saracens. The
principle of unity of which ancient Rome
was the monstrous embodiment had passed
into the spiritual empire which was its suc-
cessor. How could there be political growth
in Italy with a man arrogating to himself
divine powers enthroned in the very heart
of the peninsula, before whose authority
kings and armies trembled ? What political
organization could stand with a papal king-
dom as its centre? There might be king-
doms and principalities and small centres of
power outside of it — if not too ambitious and
outreaching. And that is just what there
were going to be for nif^.ny centuries
At this period the restless people who
had for a century occupied the province
of Normandy in France under promise of
good behavior, vrere looking about for new-
fields of adventure. While William, Duke of
Normandy, was eagerly watching the turn
of affairs just across the channel in Eng-
land, his knights were roaming the Mediter-
ranean shores, offering their services some-
times to the Greek Empire in fighting the
Saracens, sometimes to Southern Italy in re-
pelling the Greek Empire. A certain Tan-
cred d' Hauteville had ten of these advent-
urous sons, who had in this way become prac-
tically masters of Magna Grsecia, all the
fruits of their knightly adventures finally
coming into the hands of one son, Robert,
known as Robert Guiscard (or the crafty),
who, as head of a great dukedom embracing
all of Southern Italy, now became a power
to be reckoned with. When his younger
brother, Roger, wrested Sicily from the Sara-
cens (1702 A.D.), the fair island was reunited
with Italy, forming one kingdom with Na-
ples, over which a later Roger Guiscard was
crowned by the Pope, King of Naples, or, as
it was thereafter known, "the kingdom of
the two Sicilies." While the host of Norman
knights were following William into Eng-
land, a smaller host were streaming south-
ward, bringing the same brilliant receptive-
ness and masterful energy into Italy, where
they were going to survive as in France, and
in England, and in Russia, not as a race,
but as an element.
So in the twelfth century, with the Nor-
man Kingdom in the south, and the Lom-
bard Kingdom in the north of Italy, the
Papal Territory and the independent state
of Venice represented all of authority that
was Italian.
Since the crusades the European states
had been drawn into a closer relation ; the
currents of political sentiment in one countrj^
would flow into another, and thus great
tides or waves of tendency would roll over
the Continent as if it were one organism.
One of these movements was the rise of free
cities in Spain, France, Germ.any, and Italy.
It had its origin in a desire for some refuge
from the everlasting unrest, from the eter-
nal conflict, where small communities, still
acknowledging the paramount authority,
might behind their own walls work out their
own problem of government and develop-
ment. A remarkable group of free cities
liad formed in Lombardy. The burghers
shut themselves behind their walls from the
general political storm, and also from the
exactions and oppressions of feudal lords,
whose fortresses studded the country ; then
they would cautiously open the gates to
someone among the superior class whom
they believed would strengthen them, and
bestow upon him a seat or an office in their
government council. Such was the process
by which they had grown. Milan, which
was the oldest, largest, and most important
of the group, assumed a headship. No idea
of combination existed. The disintegrating
fires of envy, jealousy, and hatred were at
work keeping the cities as far apart from
each other as had been Athens and Sparta.
Milan tried to annihilate Lodi, and the little
Cremona had a still smaller victim in the
little city of Crema. It was the old story of
the Greek republics. Times had been bad
enough without this needless civil war,
with twelve armed invasions by the em-
perors of Grermany in two centuries, putting
down as many attempts to set up their own
Italian kings in Lombardy ! A crisis finally
came when Lodi in desperation appealed to
the Emperor Frederick I. — the great Barbarossa. When the Emperor sustained Lodi
in her quarrel with Milan, that imperious
city refused to submit to his dictation. The
Emperor had been watching these small cen-
tres of political freedom, which had cast off
their feudal allegiance, and the allegiance to
their bishop. Now they were defying him.
He meant to teach a lesson which would not
be forgotten. He marched down to the re-
bellious city and literally tore it to pieces ;
then invited the neighboring cities to come
and help themselves to the fragments ;
which they did with such ferocious zeal
that nothing remained. Milan, the beauti-
ful city, the pride of Lombardy, was effaced.
Such extravagant vengeance produced a
sympathetic reaction. The Milanese were
assisted to rebuild their city, and to guard
against future tyrannical interference from
Emperor Frederick, there was formed a
league of twenty-five cities. This is the fa-
mous Lombard League to which the great
Barbarossa yielded in 1113, when he con-
ceded the rights of individual cities to gov-
ern themselves, the general sovereignty of
the Emperor at the same time remaining un-
The life of the Norman Kingdom in Italy-
was brief as it was brilliant. Constance, the
daughter of King Roger I., married Henry,
son of Barbarossa. So in the absence of
a male heir, before the end of the twelfth
century, the whole territory acquired by the
Guiscard brothers was transferred to Henry
VI., then Emperor of Germany, who now
claimed to hold in his hand all of Italy ex-
cepting only the papal dominions, the inde-
pendent state of Venice, and the free cities
of the IN'orth. Pope Urban IV., after a
prolonged and fruitless attempt to prevent
such a calamity, invited Charles, Duke of
Anjou, brother of Louis IX. of France (the
saint), to come and wear the crown of
Naples and Sicily. Charles accepted the in-
vitation, drove out Manfred, the illegitimate
son of Frederick II., and was proclaimed
king of the Two Sicilies. The wretched
chapter closes with two tragedies — one pathetic, the other colossal. The last of the
Holienstaufens, Conradin, a boy sixteen
years old, came with an army and with ban-
ners and with enthusiasm to claim his own
and drive out the usurper. He was de-
feated and delivered to Charles, who dared
not take the chances of leaving alive so
winning and so just a claimant to his throne.
On the shore of the Bay of Naples the scaf-
fold was erected. After a brief prayer the
boy threw his glove among the weeping
friends near him, as if it were a charge to
avenge his death, then gave himself to the
So detested did the rule of the French be-
come that it needed only a spark to start a
conHagration. An insult offered by a French
officer to a Sicilian maiden on her way to
vespers with her affianced husband precipi-
tated the outbreak which had been for some
time preparing. The officer was killed on
the spot, and a massacre of the French in
Palermo instantly began, the contagion
spreading to other towns, until not a French-
man remained in the island. This, known
as the " Sicilian Vespers," occurred in 1282.
The island of Sicily was taken away from
Charles, and bestowed by the Pope upon
Pedro III., King of Arragon, Naples remain-
ing to Charles.
So now there were three foreign masters in
Italy, and the free cities instead of drawing
closer together for mutual protection were
wasting their strength in embittered rival-
ries, each of these cities at the same time be-
ing rent asunder by strife between the two
political parties, the Guelfs and Ghibellines.
There had arisen in the twelfth century two
political parties — the party of the Pope, and
the party of the Emperor. The adherents
of the Pope were called Guelfs, and those
of the Emperor, Ghibellines. These names
gradually outgrew their original significance
and came to express two opposing tenden-
cies ; tendencies which we should now call
conservative and radical. The Guelfs stood
for a new Italy, with feudalism effaced,
commerce fostered, and a leaning toward
republicanism. The name Ghibelline stood
for a protest against any changes in the old
order of things. But what these names
chiefly represented was an unintelligent
destructive force. They afforded hammers
under which people could enroll themselves
in carrying on traditional feuds and private
hatreds, joining this or that faction as it
would help them to build up or to ruin.
The long and purposeless struggle between
Guelfs and Ghibellines was even more det-
rimental to Italy than foreign oppression,
because it was disintegrating, a quality
which opens the shortest road to dissolu-
While the history of the Italian peninsula
in ancient times is a single thread, it had now
become a strand composed of many threads of
almost equal value. Venice, Florence, Pisa,
Genoa, and Milan formed a group of auton-
omous states which seemed more like the
children of Greece than of Rome. Each was
an intense expression of political individual-
ism. Each was grasping for power and wealth
and territory, and with a strange instinct
for beauty, lavish in expenditure for embel-
lishment, they were vying with each other in
the growing splendor of their cities. In Flor-
ence, Pisano and Cimabue were already
teaching the principles of the art of beauty,
and the stately group of buildings which men
still travel far to see were rearing their
heads. Venice, looking across the Adriatic
toward Greece and the Orient, had for two
centuries been studying art at the feet of
the greatest masters. As ''she sat in state
throned on her hundred isles," the Church
of St. Mark's and a multitude of shining
palaces had already arisen from the waves,
which gave back their shimmering reflec-
tions just as they do to-day. These marvel-
lous creations were clothed in the garment
of an ancient civilization, the " spoils of na-
tions," from *'the exhaustless East," which
the conquering Venetians had brought bodi-
ly to make their city beautiful, as should be
the*' Bride of the Sea" ! This splendor of
adornment tells the story of conquest and
outreaching power and of commercial suc-
cess which made it possible, and which made
Venice the object of jealous hatred to Pisa,
her sister city on the Mediterranean, who
also had her own brilliant conquests and
prosperity, owning the islands of Sardinia
(taken from the Moors), Elba, and a large
part of Corsica, besides colonies in the East,
all of which riches, on the other hand, excited
the envious hatred of Genoa, which was to be
the cause of her final downfall.
The situation of Florence was less favor-
able for the extension of her borders than
for development within herself. The fer-
tility of her soil, the perfection of her cli-
mate, and perhaps the slight retirement from
the restless sea, centred her energies in the
productive industries which were the source
of her enormous wealth and lasting vitality.
As the merchants, the wealth-producing
class, were not noble, there was a constant
recruiting of the energies of the state from
below, a process which always insures long
life, so that a plebeian plutocracy, although
a present evil, is apt to be a future good.
All these cities had in their administration
a shadowy survival of ancient Rome, with
their two consuls, and a senate elected by
the people. But on account of the distract-
ing quarrels of the Guelfs and Ghibellines
it became necessary to devise a new system,
and then came into existence a chief magis-
trate with dictatorial powers, called podesta.
This official was always a stranger, who on
account of known probity and wisdom was
invited to come and govern them for one
year. During this period he must not enter
the house of any private citizen, nor must
he bring with him his family. This solitary
person was expected by these restrictions to
be kept safe from pernicious local influences.
While ingenious and perhaps to some ex-
tent wise, this was, however, teaching the
people to be submissive to a possible tyrant.
Later, in order to defend themselves from
the insolence of the nobility, the people
created another singular functionar}^, called
the gonfalonier, or bearer of the standard
(gonfalon). His duty, like that of the
tribunes, was to suppress attacks on the
liberties of the people, an army of men al-
ways standing ready the instant he hung
out his gonfalon, to rush to his aid against
any refractory noble.
In no other city did party feeling run so
high between Guelf and Ghibelline as in
Florence, the victory of one faction meaning
unsparing vengeance upon the other. Of
course the conflict of classes and private
feuds and personal aims became intermin-
gled and entangled with the larger classifi-
cation. A system devised to hold the tur-
bulent elements in check was finally adopted,
which lasted for two centuries. Twelve men,
called the Signoria, were elected once in two
months, who acted as aids to the podesta.
The Florence of this period had its learned
class, who, under the shadow of the rising
Duomo, and the Baptistery, discussed the
opposing views of Aquinas and Duns Scotus,
or, as is even more likely, the marvellous
tales brought from the fabled East by the
Venetian traveller Marco Polo, or the latest
utterance of their hot-headed and erratic
townsman, Dante. As the sympathies of
the present day naturally turn to the Guelfic
party of that time, it is something of a
shock to learn that Dante was intensely
Ghibelline or imperialistic. He was elected
in 1300 one of the priors of the republic ;
that is, a member of the Signoria or grand
council. While he was at one time absent
at Rome upon official business, the Guelfic
party triumphed, and he, with the rest, was
condemned to have his property confiscated,
and for him was added the promise that he
would be burnt alive if he ever returned to
Florence. So, homeless, and in poverty, and
in bitterness of heart, the exile completed the
Divine Comedy which he had commenced,
in rage deep but impotent using his pen,
the only weapon with which he could strike
back, by holding up to execration forever
the men who had ruined him, and who, as he
believed, were destroying his beloved Flor-
Pisa had also her duomo, baptistery, and
her leaning tower proudly rearing their

The story of Count Ugolino shows
what sort of hearts dwelt in this Ghibelline

This nobleman to whom had been
confided the state at a time of great peril,
improved the opportunity to establish a
tyranny of his own. His treachery was dis-
covered, and the wrath of the people may be
measured by the punishment inflicted, which
Dante has pictured with such fearful power.
Ugolino, his two sons and two grandsons
were thrown into prison.

After the lock
had been turned upon them, the key was
thrown into the Arno, and the five were left
to perish slowly by starvation.

It needed
not the imagination of a Dante to make
an "Inferno'^ of such a lingering tragedy.

The power of Pisa had been sapped by a
long struggle with Genoa, and in 1241, after
a naval defeat at the mouth of the Arno, so
completely was she stripped of her former
glory, that it was said, '' If you would see
Pisa, you must go to Genoa."
After the fourth crusade, one might truly
have said, If you would see Constantinople,
you must go to Venice. A great Christian
host which had gathered with the purpose
of making one more attempt to recover Pal-
estine had assembled at Venice, where they
awaited the money required for the expedi-
tion. Finally, as it did not come, Dandolo,
the Doge of Venice, offered to supply the re-
quired amount if instead of Palestine they
would make Zara, a rebellious Venetian town
on the eastern coast of the Adriatic, their
first objective point. This having been done,
the infamous proposition was next artfully
made, as they still needed money, that they
join the Venetians in an attack upon Con-
stantinople, where there was an empty
throne standing between two contestants.
The result of this was that an army of cru-
saders with the avowed purpose of pillage
took possession of Constantinople, and after
committing every outrage which can attend
the sacking of a city, they bore away to
Venice an amount of plunder which cannot
be estimated, and which still clothes the city
of the winged lion with gold and silver and
jewels and priceless works of art. The four
bronze horses, which adorn the portal to St.
Mark's Church, were a part of this disgrace-
ful spoil. They are said to have been made
during the reign of either Nero or Trajan by
Roman workmanship.
Venice, which was the oldest of the autono-
mous states, had hitherto cared little for
extension in Italy, her ambitions and desires
all turning toward the East, which possessed
for her such a fascination. But in the thir-
teenth century a struggle commenced with
Genoa, which lasted for thirty years. Her
Duke, or Doge, was elected by the people, as
was also, the Senate, which shared his author-
ities. Gradually the democratic principle
had been disappearing, and an aristocratic
body called the "Grand Council" was by
degrees absorbing the powers of government,
the Senate finally becoming hereditary in a
few families. It was when not yet fully in
the clutches of her aristocracy, when her
merchant princes were the carriers for the
world, and when, sitting at the gateway lead-
ing to the East, she was taking toll for the
traffic of Europe, that Venice reached the
height of her glory.
The century just closing liad wrought
many changes in Europe. It had given
to England the foundation for her liberties
in the Magna Charta. In France the period
of free cities had passed, and the principle
of monarchy was gaining upon a waning
feudalism. The descendants of the Yisigoth
kings of Spain as they fought their long
crusade of centuries, were slowly crowding
the Moors down toward their last strong-
hold in the province of Granada, In Ger-
many the house of Hohenstaufen had given
place to the house of Hapsburg. Russia
was in the grasp of the Mongols, but with a
steady impulse toward power of a phenome-
nal sort, tlie nebulous mass was preparing
to revolve about its new centre at Moscow.
To none had the thirteenth century been
more significant than to the papal empire at
Rome. When Pope Innocent III. brought
that odious tyrant, King John of England,
cringing to his feet, Hildebrand's claim of
papal supremacy had been established.
That contumacious King refused to accept
an Archbishop of Canterbury appointed
by the Pope. Then Innocent III. absolved
John's subjects from their allegiance to him,
and handed his kingdom over to the King of
France (1212 a.d.). When the terrified John
came crouching before him, whether the
Pope was or was not king of kings was no
longer a question. But the papal power had
reached its climax and the fourteenth cen-
tury saw a rapid decline which there was no
Gregory VII. nor Innocent III. to arrest. A
long wrangle between Philip lY. of France
and Pope Boniface VIII., over the papal pre-
rogatives, was terminated by the accession of
a French archbishop to the chair of St. Peter,
under the name of Clement V. Faithful to
the cause of his sovereign, Clement removed
the papal residence from Rome to Avignon, a
town within the French borders, where seven
popes successively lived and ruled directly
under French influences. This in the annals
of the Church is known as the ''Babylonian
Captivity," a curious hiatus which lasted just
seventy years (1309-79), and which cast a
dark cloud over the Church for a century.
Henry YII., who had just succeeded to
the throne of Germany (1311 a.d.), thought
this a favorable time to go to Rome for his
imperial crown. He could at the same time
strengthen the bonds of amity with his Ital-
ian kingdom, and also aid his Guelfic
friends in trying to drive out the Ghibel-
lines, who now had possession in Florence.
Before the attack upon Florence the Emper-
or suddenly and mysteriously died. The
Guelfs asserted that poison had been put
into a cup of sacramental wine offered him
after his coronation by the papal legate.
However this may be, his death was the
signal for hostilities fiercer than had ever be-
fore existed, a frantic hatred driving Guelfs
and Ghibellines to the most extravagant ex-
cesses. King Robert of Naples also saw in
the absence of the Pope and the prevailing
disorder an opportunity to subjugate all of
Italy to Angevine rule by using Guelfs and
Ghibellines to destroy each other, thus fight-
ing the nation with its own fires. But he
was not strong enough for so ambitious a
In the midst of this general anarchy,
Rome had her own special type of disorder.
Her government (so called) consisted of a
chief magistrate, or '^senator," with powers
similar to the podesta, and a council some-
what like the ancient Senate. Guelfs and
Ghibellines at Rome were neither for the
Pope nor against him. They were for the
Colonnas, or the Orsinis. The politics of the
city revolved about the eternal strife exist-
ing between these two noble families. Like
all the great nobles in Rome, these families
were descended from robber barons, some
Scandinavian, some from the Rhine, some
from Southern Italy. With no patrician
blood, they were the apex of that pyramid
which feudalism had planted upon Rome,
and represented the system which it was the
aim of the Guelfs to exterminate.
Petrarch, who was admitted to the closest
intimacy with the Colonnas, has made the
world well acquainted with them, so we
know what refinements, grace, and charm
there were in the ladies of that princely
house, and also what noble princely virtues
existed in t\ie men. But as they fought
with the Orsinis for the grand prize, the sen-
atorship, there was not a throb of patriotism,
not a single thought of Rome or Romans
in the breasts of these splendid mediaeval
princes. So when the popes were exiled to
Avignon, the city was given up to lawlessness.
Scenes of violence and terror were of common
occurrence upon the streets. Not a woman
or a child was safe in the city at night, nor
was anyone safe at any time outside the
walls, where the Campagna was infested
with robbers, and the Tiber with pirates.
There was a youth growing up in Rome at
this time, who was pondering upon these
things. He was the son of an inn-keeper and
of a washerwoman, but eager to know, and
with keen intelligence he read, and read again
the story of the ancient republic, its heroes,
its triumphs, its noble ideals. This was
Cola di Rienzi. Gradually there formed in
his mind a dream, the dream of a rebirth of
the splendid ancient Rome — which would be
a new Rome with a soul, a Christian soul —
which might again be mistress of the world !
He must first arouse the people to a sense of
their degradation — then he would lead them
to the great consummation. He — Cola di
Rienzi — would be the liberator, and lift Rome
from her degradation to a throne — higher
than ever before, because it would be a Chris-
tian throne. He had the gift of eloquence,
and perhaps another mysterious gift which
w^e now call personal magnetism. His enthu-
siasm, his intensity, the magic of his speech,
gained listeners to his vague exalted dream
about what he called the "good estate,"
when law and order should prevail, and all
men have justice in a city which had taken
her place again as mistress of the world. By
painted allegories which he displayed upon
the streets, and by juggling with the imagina-
tions of the people, and by persistence and
eloquent speech, he rose step by step, inspir-
ing even the Pope with a belief in his ability
to accomplish a miracle, and completely
capturing the heart and the imagination of
Petrarch. It seemed as if he were inspired,
and as if his audacious plan developed by
magic. Without a drop of blood, or a blow,
the revolution was effected. The nobles, al-
though angry and sullen, seemed awed by a
mysterious force, and offered no resistance.
A republic was proclaimed, with Kienzi at its
head, under the modest title of Tribune.
The golden age seemed to have come.
Every promise was fulfilled. The roads were
cleared of highwaymen, and the river of
pirates. Peace reigned in the city. E-ienzi,
robed in scarlet, sat in the Capitol, his pal-
ace, and listened to complaints from high
and low, dealing impartial justice to all. The
Pope at Avignon was pleased, and tlie people
at Rome seemed mad with joy, and believed
the millennium was at hand. The news
spread over Europe and into Asia. The Great
Potentate at Babylon, hearing that a man of
wonderful justice had arisen in Rome, made
supplication to Mahomet to protect Jerusa-
lem from this new danger !
Dreamy visionary though he may have
been, unbalanced though he certainly was,
Rienzi had sent an electric thrill throughout
the world. If only a kind fate could have
taken him then ! The intoxication of power
began to work and to manifest itself in more
severity, more splendor, more confiscations
of the treasures of the nobles to adorn his
own palace. The great barons were now
obliged to stand uncovered in his presence
while he sat, and the people began to trem-
ble before him. He devised strange fantas-
tic ceremonies investing himself with higher
and higher dignities, and finally with a sil-
ver crown and sceptre, the nobles and the
Pope's legate, still under his spell, assisting
in the splendid pageant. The strange story
of self-intoxication and extravagant preten-
sion, in fantastic theatrical garb, begins to
seem more like the libretto of a comic opera
than sober history ; and yet all was taken
seriously by the Pope, and by sovereigns in
Europe. But his friends were alarmed.
Petrarch, who had almost severed his inti-
mate friendship with the Colonnas for his
sake, no longer wrote him daily letters telling
him he was greater than Eomulus, greater
than Brutus, or Camillus ! He solemnly
warned him — entreated him to pause and to
remember that he was "not lord, but simply
minister, of the republic."
Rome was tranquil, but it was cowed,
and beneath the adulation there was an
undertone of anger. But Rienzi heard it
not, and prepared for the climax. He an-
nounced to the Italian cities that henceforth
they would be governed from Rome alone,
and he conferred Roman citizenship upon
every native of Italy. This was a splendid
dream of empire and of a united Italy, which
was to be realized ^ve centuries later. But
Rienzi' s dream was more than that : it was
of an unlimited and impossible empire of
which he in some mystic way was to be the
head, not of Italy but of Christendom. The
early nobility of his purpose had vanished.
Instead of the "wise and clement," as he
was once called, he was changing into a
blood-thirsty tyrant who gloated over the
dead bodies of two Colonnas slain in an
affray with his troops. His treatment of the
nobles became atrocious. The Pope was
alarmed and angry, and deposed him. At
the signs of a popular uprising, the fallen
Tribune lied to the Apennines. Seven years
later he made his peace with the Pope, who
once more commissioned him to restore dis-
tracted Rome to tranquillity. He put on the
airs of an emperor, drank heavily, became
gross and arrogant. As he sat in his palace
one morning, flushed with wine, a strange
sound reached his ears, the noise of a tumult
below, then he heard the terrible words,
"Death to the traitor, Rienzi ! " He at-
tempted flight disguised as a shepherd,
stained his face, mingled with the shouting
crowd of people below, joining his voice with
theirs in execration of himself. But the
light flashed upon his jewelled bracelets
which he had forgotten to remove. He was
recognized, dragged to the great stair, and
at the foot of the Lion where death sen-
tences were usually read, was stabbed to
That great region lying south of the Alps
known as Lombardy was composed of an
imposing group of principalities — Milan,
Verona, Mantua, Padua, and the duchies of
Ferrara and Modena. Milan, the most pow-
erful of these, had for over a century been
arbitrarily and mercilessly ruled by one fam-
ily, the Viscontis. The city of Milan, and
also Yerona, with no ambitions beyond the
peninsula, were, like that other inland city of
Florence, the opulent centres of trade and
manufacture, their aims and policy entirely
different from .the two great cities lying
south of them.
Genoa and Venice had grown by foreign
conquest ; were both majestic maritime pow-
ers, both seeking the same markets b}^ the
same great highways. Both had factories
skirting the entire circuit of the Black Sea,
and both were bringing spices from Arabia,
and precious merchandise from India, and
grain and furs from R-ussia. Separated
from each other by the whole width of Italy,
it was in the eastern waters that these rival
cities fought their long battle of a half cen-
tury, sometimes Venice on her knees to
Genoa, and sometimes Genoa supplicating
Venice for mercy. It was in the earlier
days of this struggle that Marco Polo, upon
returning from his twenty-five-year trip in
Cathay, threw his fortune and himself into
the contest with the Genoese, and after a
calamitous defeat was carried with ship-loads
of other prisoners to Genoa. One year spent
in the Genoese dungeon gave to the world an
epoch-making book. His marvellous stories
would soon have faded from the memory of
man, had not a fellow-prisoner pieced to-
getlier the wonder-tale as it was simply and
unaffectedly told by the traveller, and thus
produced the book which so profoundly af-
fected the imaginations of men for centuries,
and which lured Columbus into his audacious
attempt to reach the great Kublai Khan by
sailing into the West !
Venice, as ''Queen of the Adriatic,"
claimed the right of exclusive navigation in
that sea, her sovereignty being every year
renewed and proclaimed by an imposing
symbolic ceremony in which the Doge, rep.
resenting Yenice, wedded the Adriatic with
a ring. Genoa resisted this claim of exclu-
sive ownership of the sea, and it was a proud
moment for her in 1352 when she destroyed
the Venetian fleet and the humbled Doge sent
ambassadors to the Genoese admiral with a
blank sheet of paper, begging him to dictate
his own terms for peace. But the too-con-
fident victor replied contemptuously, '' You
shall have no peace till we have bridled those
horses of yours on the place of St. Mark."
The Venetians gathered themselves for a
supreme effort. The Genoese standard was
already floating from the towers of Chioggia
near Venice, with the Lion of St. Mark re-
versed in token of defeat. Precious works
of art, those spoils of Constantinople, were
melted for the gold and silver. The Vene-
tian women gave their jewels, and the nobles
their plate. After a long and brave struggle
the Genoese fleet was at their mercy, and
instead of ''bridling the horses" at St.
Mark's, Genoa fell to the position of a
second-rate maritime power in Italy, from
which she never again arose. In her con-
sternation she appealed to Milan for protec-
tion, and a Milanese governor took the
humiliated city in charge.
With Milan as an ally, the coniiict with
Yenice was renewed, and the Venetian lieet
destroyed. The great Yisconti who was then
lord of Milan, flushed with this triumph, be-
gan to extend his mailed hand over the rest
of the principalities, and was by 1385 master
of Lombardy. To escape this hard fate the
Lombard states combined with Venice in an
appeal to the German Emperor. So when
the curtain again rises upon this troubled
stage, we see one more source of devastation —
Charles IV. with his soldiers tramping over
the depleted and exhausted Italian states,
and while on his way to Rome to receive his
imperial crown, wearing that oft-transferred
and rather mysterious symbol of power, the
*' Iron Crown of Lombardy ! "
Out of the fratricidal strife Venice had
emerged stronger than before, Milan had
arisen with greatly augmented prestige, while
Genoa had fallen from her great elevation to
the rank of a second-rate power. Venice
during the prolonged struggle had passed
completely into the hands of her aristocracy.
The people had already been excluded from
her Grand Council. But the meshes were
to be drawn still closer. From this body
was selected a "Council of Ten" (1311 a.d.),
a mysterious organization, the functions of
whicli have never been fully understood. But
with their methods the world is entirely fa-
miliar. The secrecy of the trials, the absence
of witnesses, the ignorance of the victims of
the charges brought against them, has made
the very name of this tribunal a synonym
for mysterious horror and cruelty. Men and
women occupying the highest positions would
disappear to be heard of never more. And
no one dared ask whither they had gone, or
why ! Impartial as fate, it struck the power-
ful as well as the weak. Indeed it seems to
have been at first designed as a check upon
ambitious and conspiring nobles, and then to
have extended its scope indefinitely. But a
succession of conspiracies for the overthrow
of the government probably led to the crea-
tion of this monstrous court of justice, so-
The memory of one of the latest and most
celebrated of these conspirators is still kept
alive in the Ducal Palace at Venice, where
among a series of portraits representing
seventy-six Doges, one empty panel painted
black bears this inscription: ''This is the
place of Marino Faliero, beheaded for his
crimes (1335)." "Crime" is an ugly com-
panion to a name in an epitaph! But the
meaning of the word is relative. The loftiest
virtue in one land is sometimes crime in
another. In Venice, in the fourteenth cen-
tury, a revolt against the tya^anny of the
Council of Ten was treason and the blackest
crime. When Faliero, who had brilliantly
served Venice in foreign lands all his life,
was recalled from Avignon, where he was
Ambassador at the Court of the Pope, to fill
the office of Doge, and when the ducal cap,
with its circlet of gold, was placed upon his
head, and the ducal ring upon his finger, he
believed he was receiving the crowning re-
ward for a life-long devotion to the state.
But when he found that he was a mere lay-
figure in liumiliating bondage to that secret
tribunal, in the hands of younger men, and
when he received taunts and slights and in-
sult from those who should have trembled in
his presence, his indignant fury seemed to
turn his brain. An insane impulse seized him
to overthrow the whole odious tyranny which
was ruining his city. It ended as we have
seen. The old man met his doom at the head
of the stairs in the Ducal Palace, and there
the empty panel has proclaimed his disgrace
ever since. But it might be a grim satis-
faction to the proud old Venetian could he
know that, for that very reason, his name
among the other seventy-six Doges is al-
most the only one the world will never for-
get ! One other, the name Foscari, has also
attained a tragic immortality ; Francesco
Foscari, after wearing the ducal cap for
a number of years, was compelled by the
Council of Ten to preside over the torture of
his only son. The obdurate tribunal refus-
ing to receive his resignation, and insisting
upon the unproved guilt of the young man,
three times compelled him to sit in the tort-
ure-chamber and see his adored son broken
to pieces upon the rack. All this he hero-
ically bore. But when the Council tried to
disgrace him by taking the ducal ring from
his finger and breaking it in pieces, and then
drove him from the Palace, the old man's
heart broke, and he died as the bells were
ringing in his successor (1425). Then they
bore him back to the Palace from which they
had just expelled him, placed the ducal cap
again on his dead brow, gave him the most
magnificent funeral the Republic could be-
stow, and covered him with sculptured mar-
ble in the Church of the Frari, where he still
The city of Milan, already populous and
powerful, was now taking on a new splendor
which would make her forever great in the
architectural world. Her matchless cathe-
dral, with its wilderness of statues, was in
process of erection. Cimabue and Giotto
and their followers had for almost a century
been making Florence beautiful, and laying
the foundations of the Italian school of
painting. Those delicate flowers, poesy and
art, with their strange tendency to adorn
rough and unlovel}^ places with their tender
grace, were beginning to weave a filmy deli-
cate mantle over Italy. While that awful
pestilence, the ''Black Death," was stalking
over the land, Boccaccio wrote his ''Decam-
eron," and was reciting its hundred stories for
the diversion of panic-stricken Florentines
(1347 A.D.). And in the midst of distracting
political agitations, with the earth perpetu-
ally trembling beneath his feet in Rome and
in Florence (1304-74), Petrarch, proudly
wearing the laureate's crown, was writing
sonnets and striving to create a new intel-
lectual life by infusing into the people his
own passionate ardor for the literature of
past ages, and was thus sowing the first
seeds for a coming Renaissance.
The prolonged absence from Rome had
greatly impaired the dignity and the authority
of the Church, but in spite of protests and
entreaties the popes still lingered in France.
Its remoteness from the perpetual agitations
at Rome, its luxurious repose and isolation,
made Avignon a fascinating abode to the car-
dinals, who resisted all attempts to re-estab-
lish the papal residence in the Eternal City.
But in 1367, Pope Gregory XI., moved by the
prayers of a saintly woman, St. Catharine of
Siena, went to Rome and survived the change
just one year. There then commenced a dis-
graceful quarrel between popes and cardinals
which lasted for half a century. The cardi-
nals, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit,
had placed Urban VI. in the vacant chair at
Rome. But when they discovered that he
was arrogant, domineering, and intractable,
and perhaps — that he would not return to
Avignon — they also discovered that the
Holy Spirit had this time made a mistake.
They repudiated him and elected another —
Clement YII. So now there were two in-
fallible popes, one at Rome and another at
Avignon, each claiming universal dominion
by virtue of his being the one and only vice-
gerent of Christ upon earth ! While the air
was vibrating with anathemas and excom-
munications hurled from Rome to Avignon,
and from Avignon back again to Rome, a
church council was called which took upon
itself the settlement of the dispute by de-
posing both popes, and electing another
under the title of Alexander Y. So now
there were three infallible and only vicars
of Christ reigning over His kingdom upon
earth, and Europe was divided in allegiance,
its conscience confused, and its religious
enthusiasm chilled. This is known as " the
great Schism of the West." Not until the
lifteenth century was the disgraceful breach
healed, when, at the church council at Con-
stance in 1414, all three popes were formally
deposed and Martin V., a prince of the great
house of Colonna, was solemnly placed in
the papal chair at Rome.
The important point established by the
action of this council was, not that Martin
y. was the rightful Pope, but that the su-
preme ecclesiastical power was vested in the
council ; and that the decisions of a collective
episcopate, composed of prelates from all the
Catholic states of Europe, was the court of
last appeal to which even popes must bow ;
a limitation of papal prerogative which would
have been startling to Gregory YII., or to
Innocent III. when he was deposing kings
in England and in France, and claiming an
authority with no visible frontier. But this
was only a spasmodic reform, as later events
In the south of Italy at this time a young
queen was on the throne of Naples, whose
troubled life-story bears some curious points
of resemblance to that of Mary Queen of
Scots two hundred years later. While only
a child of sixteen, she was a queen, and al-
ready married to her cousin, who was mak-
ing himself odious by insisting that he should
share her authority. This troublesome con-
sort was one day invited into an upper cham-
ber, a silken noose was deftly thrown about
his neck, and he was pushed out of the
window. Then, before the clamor over his
murder had died away, the beautiful Joanna
was wedded to the man believed to be the
chief instigator of the plot. Interest in this
romance is enhanced by the knowledge that
Boccaccio was one of the fascinating Queen's
many adorers, and warmly championed her
during her stormy career, which was tragi-
cally ended in 1382, by her being smothered
by pillows in her bed.
As the fourteenth centuiywas closing, the
popes were ruling at Rome. In the south
the Angevines were holding a luxurious and
voluptuous court at Naples, and the Ar-
ragonese were reigning in Sicily. In the
north, Milan was grasping all within her
reach, and Florence beginning to tremble
before her, she herself being engaged the
while in humbling beautiful and brave Pisa.
Genoa's star was declining, while Venice sat
triumphant upon her throne on the shining
There had been wars, and desolation, and
pestilence, and tumultuous changes at every
point — no rest, no repose. And yet a country
which in one century had been given a Dante,
a Giotto, a Petrarch, and a Boccaccio, had
not been entirely forgotten by the gods !
In this story of Italy a name destined more than any other to shape her ultimate future
has not yet been heard.

Lying in the sun
under the shadow of the Alps, and back from
the sea in safe, noiseless obscurity, was the
little province of Savoy.

Possessing nothing
that others wanted, and with no extravagant
outreaching desires of its own, this bit of ter-
ritory had been quietly expanding since the
beginning of the eleventh century, when a cer-
tain Humbert, a German count, obtained it as
a gift from the Duke of Burgundy. By judi-
cious marriages, and by gradual encroach-
ments upon his neighbors, the tract had ex-
panded into quite a large state, and in 1388 the
province of Nice, lying between it and the
sea, needing protection from French encroach-
ments, voluntarily annexed herself to her
sturdy mountaineer neighbor in the north,
and so to the realm of mountains, and forest,
and ravines, was now added a much-needed
line of seacoast. The state of Savoy had thus
at once become important, and a factor in
the affairs of the peninsula. So in the year
1413 the Emperor Sigismund dignified the
territory with the name of duchy, and Count
Amadeus YIII., the descendant of the first
Humbert, became Duke of Savoy, the new
duchy of course becoming a fief of the em-
pire. Duke Amadeus, realizing the peril of
his position in being so near to the grasping
Duke of Milan, at once formed an alliance
with Florence and Yenice which was mutu-
ally advantageous, and from this time the
dukes of Savoy, the "janitors of the Alps,"
as they have been called, appear, disappear,
and reappear again with telling effect in
the story of Italy. Upon the deposition of
Eugenius TV., Duke Amadeus was offered
the papal chair with the title Felix V. He
abdicated his dukedom in favor of his son
and reigned over the pontificate for a brief
period, then prudently resigned in favor of
a more popular candidate. In proof of the
high esteem in which he was held, he was
always thereafter permitted to wear a part
of the pontifical dress, and had the special
privilege of giving the Pope a fraternal kiss
upon the cheek, instead of kissing his toe.
All of which is interesting as evidence of the
ability and adroitness which distinguished
the first Duke of Savoy, and also showing
the brilliant debut which the new duchy
made into the great world.
During the last century another compli-
cating network of circumstances had been
spun over Italy. Bands of adventurers had
swarmed into the peninsula from other
lands, offering to fight the battles of anyone
who would pay for their service. Known as
free lances in other countries, these in Italy
were called condottieri. What had at first
been a disorderly vagrant host, plundering
right and left, had now become a regularly
organized system of mercenaries. Wars were
incessant, and were an interruption to in-
dustrj^ and hence to prosperity, something
dearer than aught else to the Italian cities.
By employing the condottieri, the merchant
princes in Florence, and Venice, and Milan,
need have no conscription arresting peaceful
pursuits, and might still go on piling up
riches, while their paid servants fought their
battles. The story of Carmagnola shows to
what heights these soldiers of fortune might
climb, and to what depths they might also
fall. A rustic from the mountains of Pied-
mont, Carmagnola, while only a boy, joined
the condotUeri. His genius for military
affairs advanced him rapidly, and early in
the fifteenth century he was the commander-
in-chief of the Milanese army. When the
stern old conquering Duke Gian Galeazzo
died, and the smaller Lombard cities, Parma,
Cremona, Lodi, Piacenza, struggled out of
the grasp of his son Philip, he it was who
brought them back into subjection and made
Milan stronger than before. So now the
Piedmontese peasant was a great general,
and the terror of Florentines and Venetians,
and of all the enemies of Milan. For his re-
ward he was given a Yisconti for his bride,
and dwelt in a palace, and was treated as a
prince. This awoke envy, and ways of un-
dermining him were discovered. The Duke's
attitude toward him suddenly changed. His
feelings wounded, stung to madness by a
sense of ingratitude, in a sudden access of
rage Carmagnola turned his back upon
Milan and rode across the frontier into
Savoy. There he offered his services to
Duke Amadeus, his native prince, suggest-
ing ways in which he could extend his fron-
tier on the side toward Milan !
But the Duke was too prudent to accept
the opportunity, and Carmagnola then pre-
sented himself before the Senate in Venice
with a similar offer. Who so well as he
knew the strength and the weakness of their
terrible enemy, Milan? Nothing better
could have come to Venice at this time while
in league with Florence and Savoy against
the terrible power in the north. She hated
Florence only a little less than Milan, and
would not have been displeased to leave her
to her fate. So the great condottiere was
invested with absolute authority and lived
again in a palace and like a prince, basking
in the friendship of the Doge, Francesco
Foscari, he also not yet under the shadow of
tragedy 1 And there were many victories,
and Duke Philip of Milan saw his armies de-
stroyed by the general whose strategy and
invincibility he so well knew. But the time
came when in a struggle over Cremona there
was a crushing defeat for the Venetians,
Carmagnola said because his advice had not
been followed. There were no reproaches.
Carmagnola, on the contrary, was assured
by the Senate of their continued confidence
— might he not some day ride back to Milan
in the same way he had come to them % A
flattering invitation came for him to return
to Venice for a conference with the "Most
Serene Prince and the illustrious Senators."
When he arrived he was conducted by his
courtier-attendants directly to the Doge's
Palace. He was led through a labyrinth of
halls, growing dimmer and dimmer, until
a door was opened and he realized his fate —
he was in a dungeon. The fatal doors were
only to open again as he passed from day to
day to the torture-chamber, where in the
presence of the Secret Council it was expect-
ed to wring from him a confession of having
betrayed them at Cremona to the Duke of
Milan. Whether the month of torture ac-
complished this, no one knew. It is only
known that on May 5, 1432, the great chief
was led out, with his mouth gagged, to his
execution on the plaza. In this way was
justice administered in beautiful Venice !
Perhaps when the aged and stricken Doge
was witnessing his own son's tortures, not
long after, he may have recalled Carmagnola
and the "torture-chamber," and the last
scene "between the columns."
But the defeat at Cremona so fatal to
Carmagnola made the fortune of another
great condottiere. Francesco Sforza's star
steadily rose after that day in 1431, when
he was the victorious general in com-
mand of the Milanese army, and when Duke
Philip died without an heir and there was
no Visconti to succeed him, the brilliant
soldier of fortune, as commander-in-chief,
controlled the situation. By finesse and by
audacity he seized the vacant throne and
planted the dynasty of the Sforzas (1450).
This asurper, who ruled wisely for those
times, was the grandson of a peasant, but
claimed descent from a person no less dis-
tinguished than Porsenna, King of Etruria,
the champion of the exiled King Tarquin !
The genius for statecraft and the soaring
ambition of this man prepared the way for
the line of dukes which was to follow him.
They had not the wolf -like qualities of the
Yiscontis, did not find entertainment in
hunting their peasants with bloodhounds,
but with more refined methods, while a little
less cruel, proved more dangerous to Italy.
IiS" Florence a new family had come into
control of the Republic. The name "dei
Medici" indicates that their ancestors had
been members of one of the ancient city
guilds — not necessarily as practising the pro-
fession of medicine, but as a qualification
for participating in the government. By
mercantile pursuits this family had amassed
great wealth, and by lavish liberality and
integrity and by intelligence had acquired
popularity and influence. Cosimo de' Medici
(1389-1404 A.D.), the son of a long line of mer-
chants, by his talent for administration and
his affability, and by his princely generosity,
had attained the position of an untitled
prince. His power became almost supreme.
Whom he would he raised, and whom he
would he abased. Of course the ruling oligar-
chy was jealous and tried to destroy him. He
was accused, it mattered little of what, ban-
ished, and then recalled triumphant, because
they could not get along without his sus-
taining and guiding hand, which kept the
people in the path of peace, prosperity and
wealth. He gathered about him great ar-
tists, commissioned Brunelleschi to complete
the plans for the Duomo, and employed
Ghiberti, Donatello and Luca della E-obbia
to adorn buildings with their matchless
sculptures. In this founder of the house of
Medici, we see all the traits which so dis-
tinguished this epoch-making family, — the
passion for learning and for art and for all
that makes for supreme culture and intel-
lectual refinement, and joined to this that
subtle quality which made him the despotic
master of the people without their knowing
it. The friend of the democracy and its
munificent benefactor, what more could they
ask ? Holding no office, no title, he left to
his descendants a legacy of power, a firm
grasp upon the state which it would not find
easy to shake off.
In 1453 an event of transcendent impor-
tance occurred. The capture of Constanti-
nople by the Turks thrilled Europe with a
tide of new intellectual life. Greek scholars
and Greek literature carried into ever}^ land
the thought and the ideals of the great past.
The Turks in freeing these hoarded treasures
were the unconscious benefactors of Europe,
and Christendom while weeping for Constan-
tinople was just as unconsciously enriched
by its loss ! But for Ital}^ a Renaissance had
been in progress for a century. A passion
for ancient G-reek manuscripts, and for Greek
culture and ideals, was not new ; it had ex-
isted since Petrarch taught the Colonnas the
subtle charm of these things. And Florence
was already instinct with the spirit of the
Renaissance when its transforming tide swept
over the rest of Europe. So, as was natural,
it was the Florentines who were the most
influential in guiding this new impulse, and
it was the Medicean famil}^ which stood at
the g?tteway between the old and the new
It was Lorenzo de' Medici, the grandson of
Cosimo, who gave the final impress to the
character of the Medicean policy. Florence
was to be a personal despotism, and he,
its magnificent ruler and patron. His own
fortune was great, but not great enough to
carry out his princely designs, so he drew
upon the public treasury. Here was an
opportunity for his downfall, which was
carefully planned by the Pope and a family
of jealous Florentine nobles — the Pazzis.

By a preconcerted plot he and his brother, while at high mass in the Duomo, were
attacked by assassins.

His brother was slain, but Lorenzo survived to witness the effacement of the Pazzi family by the enraged Florentines, and his own exaltation far beyond what it had been before the

A hideous fringe of dead conspirators hung from the windows of the Signoria, an archbishop and two priests were among the slain, and the people were not appeased until the last of the enemies of their
benefactor had been slaughtered.

Pope Sixtus lY. enlisted the King of Naples to aid in avenging the death of his archbishop.

But the persuasive and wily Lorenzo went himself to Naples and in one interview in-
duced the King to abandon his purpose, cun-
ningly showing him how much more advan-
tageous would be the friendship of Florence
than her enmity.

Then, this diplomatic
triumph accomplished, Lorenzo returned to
bury out of sight the liberties of the republic
by converting the elective body of the state
into a permanent council appointed by him-

It was a delightful enslavement.

Their city, like a second Athens, was growing
splendid and drawing to itself the learning
and culture and art of all Italy. It had
Michel Angelo, the greatest genius that ever
wrought in marble, to sculpture its monu-
ments and to adorn its walls, and Ghirlandajo
and Ghiberti and della Eobbia to embellish
its palaces. The age of Pericles had come
again. They still exulted in the name of Re-
public, and so lightly did their chains rest
upon them, that they believed they were
free !
But beneath these splendid refinements,
and the scholarship and the fastidious taste
and breeding, tliere was a morass of wicked-
ness. Religion and morality, as we under-
stand them, did not exist, nor did nobility
of character, nor truth, nor honor, nor even
decency in the conduct of life. Yet Florence,
selfish, sordid, sensual, was chosen for the
strangest outpouring of genius that, with a
single exception, ever came to one city. Bru-
nelleschi, Ghiberti, Ghirlandajo, Angelico,
Robbia, Leonardo, Raphael and Micliel
Angelo, — such is a partial list of the names
enrolled in one century — a century of incred-
ible corruption and a climax in the moral
degradation of Italy !
What are we to think of the magnificent
patron of a new culture who writes ribald
songs and choruses for the people to sing
upon the streets ? and what of the people
who take pleasure in these things? One
asks in bewilderment whether the putrid ele-
ments of decomposing character are what
genius feeds upon ! And whether it be true
that art and spiritual elevation are antago-
nistic, and that art and morals must dwell in
different realms ! However this may be,
Florence under Lorenzo " the Magnificent "
reached the sublimest heights in art, and a
perfection of sesthetic development which
was to be a model for the world — and yet
she was base !
Italy's moral condition at this time is like
the negative of a photograph. It precisely
reverses the standards of to-day. It makes
high-lights of shadows, and shadows of high-
lights. What they called virtuous we consider
infamous. What to us is essential to decency
of character, to them would have been com-
promising, and even fatal to social or political
reputation. The standing of a man was not
injured b}'^ his being considered vicious or
perfidious, but nothing could be worse than a
reputation for simplicity ! One might lie and
use fraud and deception, but to be incapable,
or to sin against taste — these were crimes for
which no genius would atone.
In the evolution of the Italian republics
not one elevating influence had been at
work. Intensely narrow in their patriotism,
the well-being of each state demanded the
destruction of the rest. The prosperity of
Florence required that she should sap the
life of Pisa, and that of Venice, that she
should destroy her competitor Genoa, and
Milan, that she should devour all within her
reach. A policy so debasing to national
character would have extinguished native
nobility had it existed. Instead of wisely
drawing together for mutual protection and
advantage, they were always driven apart by
fierce antagonisms. Italy was in fact a dis-
integrated mass held together by perfectly
artificial systems needing only a touch from
a more firmly compacted body to fall into
ruin. She was not an organism, but an
ingenious mechanism. Nothing had devel-
oped from a life principle within ; all was
artificially imposed from without, and was
held together by that vicious combination
of fraud, violence, and subtle wickedness,
called statecraft.
The source of the poison which was coursing in the veins of Italy was the Papal King-
dom. When an open profligate could buy
the suffrages of the cardinals and become
the primate of Christendom, and when he
could publicly acknowledge his illegitimate
, sons and daughters, could set his price upon
sin, and then for his own enrichment estab-
lish an organized system for the sale of
pardons, how could virtue exist in the land ?
This is what Innocent III. was doing, his
traffic in crime having, it is said, filled
the Campagna with brigands and assassins.
Keligion, instead of a renovating, purifying,
spiritual influence, had become simply a sys-
tem by which men might placate a wratliful
God by gifts, and if these were frequent and
rich enough, they might sin to the bent of
their desires. It w^as for revolt against such
a church as this that the Inquisition was
torturing and burning heretics, and that
John Huss and Jerome of Prague had suf-
fered martyrdom, and that the Waldenses
were to be slaughtered like sheep in the
shambles !
But good breeding and taste demanded
that the Church be sustained, and nowhere
in Italy was the martyr's crown in great
request ! The mental energies of Italy were
fully occupied with the Renaissance.

FIRENZE had a great work in hand.

She was
laying the foundations of modern cul-

It would be too much to expect
that she should at the same time be con-
ducting a spiritual reformation.

She had
her own mission, and was performing it with
supreme excellence, and if under the des-
potic sway of Lorenzo, that magnificent
pagan, she was being emancipated some-
what from the Church which had excom-
municated her on his account, we are com-
pelled to think that paganism was not a
bad exchange for a religion which had be-
come so depraved and so debasing to the
conscience of its children. But the truth
pure and undefiled still existed ; not in the
hierarchy, not at Rome, but in the deep re-
cesses of human hearts. In Italy and every-
where were men and w^omen in whose souls
the sacred flame was burning with undimin-
ished ardor, and untarnished purity, and
this it was which brought the living waters
safely through the centuries, and through the
unspeakable defilements of ecclesiasticism.
There was one such soul now in Italy
struggling with the problem of sin. Savon-
arola, a Dominican friar born in Ferrara, had
from liis childhood been oppressed with a
sense of the sinfulness of Italy. Sent to preach
to the Florentines, he found their city given
up to sensual pleasures. Under the influence
of its splendid tyrant, the worship of beauty
and of pagan culture was its religion. He
tried to tell them of their peril, but it was the
voice of one crying in the wilderness. It was
Lorenzo de' Medici, the man who had taken
away their liberties, he it was who had thus
perverted their hearts with paganism! If Flor-
ence was to be saved he must be destroyed.
A warning voice within gave him no peace ;
night and day it said, ' ' Cry aloud and spare
not." He seemed to be taken possession of
by something not of himself, and the spirit
of prophecy came upon him. He saw a for-
eign host sweeping through the land, Italy
ravaged, and blood flowing in the streets of
Florence, and then a purified Church rising-
over a penitent and stricken Italy. In
visions and in trances again and again he
saw these things. He must tell the people
of their coming doom. "Repent — repent —
while there is yet time!" That was the
burden of his cry. Crowds began to throng
the Duomo to catch the rushing torrent of
his words. He laid bare the wickedness of
their hearts and the iniquity of their lives
with such an unsparing hand that men
trembled and women cried aloud in terror.
A scribe who preserved portions of these ser-
mons breaks off in his narrative with these
words, "Here I was so overcome with weep-
ing that I could not go on." Another one
says, "His words caused such terror, alarm,
sobbing and tears that everyone passed out
into the streets without speaking, more dead
than alive."
Lorenzo, wishing the best of everything
for Florence, was pleased to have the great
preacher remain.

Perhaps it touched his
aesthetic sense to listen to his strange in-
spired eloquence, like a prophet of old, and
to watch that austere, haggard face, with the
deep- set eyes, burning and flashing from
beneath his cowl. But when the darts be-
gan to strike him, when the preacher would
not meet him, because he was the enemy of
Florence, then his feelings changed. Per-
fectly antagonistic, these men represented
hostile principles. But the paganism of
which Lorenzo was the incarnation, was
quite as much a revolt against a corrupt
church as was Savonarola's dream of a new
spiritual baptism, and it was intended in
the evolutionary process to accomplish the
spiritual resurrection he sought, not by
methods such as the impassioned reformer
would have chosen, but by the emancipa-
tion of human thought from the tram-
mels he venerated and upheld. The great
preacher, inspired seer though he was, did
not understand the solution of the problem.
The Renaissance was a necessary highway
in human progress which led directly to
Still another mind different in quality from
both of these was in Florence at this time,
forecasting the future, and pointing out the
path of safety. Righteousness was not
upon his banner, nor did he call upon people
to "repent.'' This was Machiavelli, states-
man, cynic, and philosopher. His acute
mind grasped the idea of unity as the hope
of Italy, and also clearly traced the corrup-
tion and prevailing disunion to the Church
as its source. The Church must be held sub-
ordinate in the state, rivalries and antago-
nisms must cease, and all must come under
one prince — that prince to be Lorenzo de'
Medici. Such was the plan outlined in his
famous work "The Prince" — the most saga-
cious and at the same time the most auda-
cious and infamous book ever given to the

Dedicated to Lorenzo, it is intended
as a hand-book for princes — shov^ing hovr to
acquire power, and how to keep it. It meas-
ures with scientific accuracy the amount of
cruelty needed under different conditions
to make a city helpless. In speaking of free
cities, in view of the troublesome vitality in
the idea of liberty, he says — " to speak the
truth, the only safe way, is to ruin them."
Men may sometimes be managed by caress-
ing ; if not, they should "be trampled out."
He sneers at Baglioni, because he had not
the courage to strangle his guest, Julius II.,
after dinner. The only despicable quality is
weakness. So with refreshing frankness he
proceeds to lay bare Italian political methods.
Everyone knew that such were the means
used by the Venetian Council, and the Papal
Court, and the Sforzas, but that it should be
calmly and philosophically stated, that du-
plicity and fraud and cold-blooded cruelty
were the proper path to power, and the
essential weapons after it was acquired — this
it is which has astonished the world for five
centuries ! The corrupting influence of "The
Prince" upon France and Spain at the time is
undoubted, and we are not surprised to hear
that the Spanish princes and the sons of
Catharine de' Medici were at a later period
careful students of this manual of political
crime. Machiavelli' s strictures upon the
Church sound like Satan reproving sin.
But while he must have admired the Christian
hierarchy as the finest specimen of his art,
yet viewed in its relation to the political con-
dition of Italy, he disapproved of it, because
he had the wisdom to see that the hope of
Italy lay in making the Church subordinate
to a central authority. Savonarola, on the
other hand, thinking only of righteousness
and attacking the sins of the Pope as fiercely
as those of the people, would have thought it
impious to impair the authority of the Church,
or alter its structure one iota.
The day came when Lorenzo needed the
preacher. He was dying, and sent to Savon-
arola to come and open the door of Heaven
for him by the sacraments of the Church,
and by absolution. He would have none
but the Dominican, for none other was
honest. The friar, standing by the dying
man, required three things as the condition
for absolving him. He must throw himself
upon God's mercy, which he was willing to
do ; must restore all property unjustly ac-
quired, to which he also consented ; and
he must give Florence back her liberty !
The friar had asked too much of the dying
sinner with only minutes to live. He silently
turned his face to the wall, and died un^
The year of Lorenzo's death, 1492. was
great in the world' s chronology. It witnessed
the expulsion of the Moors from G-ranada,
and the final triumph of Spain after her
struggle of 700 years. It saw the European
states, every one, held under the dominion
of a strong centralized authority which had
forever effaced feudalism. But greater than
all else, another world was revealed, be-
yond the mysterious Western Ocean. The
full significance of this was not suspected ;
but Queen Isabella's gold, and kindness, and
proselyting spirit had forged the most im-
portant link in the chain of circumstances
since the birth of Christ. Then, as always,
however, the emphasis was placedupon events
which would become invisible through the
perspective of centuries. The death of Lo-
renzo and of the reigning Pope seemed vastly
more important than the discovery made by
the Genoese. Who would wear the tiara,
was the all-absorbing question. It was a
great opportunity for the cardinals. They
had bought their red hats with gold, and
now might get the price back by selling their
suffrages ! Roderigo Borgia, from Valencia,
Spain, was the richest, wisest, and most cun-
ning of the candidates. He knew the price
of every one of the conclave : that Cardinal
Sforza, brother of the Duke of Milan, wanted
to be Vice Chancellor ; that Cardinal Orsini
had long had his eye upon the Borgia
palaces in Rome ; that while Cardinal Co-
lonna preferred the Abbey of Subiaco with
its fortresses, another thirsted for the Bishop-
ric of Porto, with its palace and well-stocked
wine-cellars ; others again being satisfied
with gold. And so it was that in 1492 the
mantle of St. Peter was placed upon Roderigo
Borgia, who assumed the title Alexander YI.
The reign of isevo among the emperors was
not a greater climax than this first Borgia's
among the popes. iSTo less sensual, no less
grasping of power than Nero, he claimed an
unlimited authority — which even included
the hemisphere just discovered by Columbus,
which he generously divided between Spain
and Portugal — and also just as unlimited in-
dulgence in his own private and personal life.
His hand was strong, and guided by craft
and sagacity. So his first work was to hum-
ble the great princes — and to destroy the
faction between Colonnas and Orsinis. So
active was the sale of indulgences and par-
dons that an epigram then current says :
"Alexander sells the keys, the altars, and
Christ. Well — he bought them, so has he not
the right to sell them !" But if he gave a
heavy price for his tiara, he cunningly got it
back in creating forty-three new cardinals,
each of whom paid him a fortune for his hat !
Twelve of these, it is said, were sold at auction
in one day.
The one man he could not buy was Savon-
arola. He tried it with honeyed words and
blandishments, offering him a cardinal's hat
if he would come to Rome. But the friar
replied that he preferred the red crown of
martyrdom. A crusade against sin was not
pleasant to a pope steeped in crime and prof-
ligacy, who was showering benefits upon his
illegitimate children, making Cesar Borgia
at eighteen a cardinal, and contracting a
royal alliance for his daughter Lucrezia. He
could easily have silenced the voice of the
preacher at Kome, but as the friar would
not walk into his trap, he suspended him.
Savonaroia had struck a new note in his in-
spired declamation. He was the champion of
liberty. Political freedom was inseparable
from righteousness, and, like Ezekiel and
Jeremiah and Jonah and all the prophets of
old, he believed it was his mission to over-
throw tyranny and to destroy wicked rulers
and constitutions. So, without ceasing, he
incited the people to cast off the rule of the
Medici, which had descended to Piero, the
feeble son of Lorenzo.
Ludovico Sforza for his own purposes
invited Charles VIII., King of France, to
invade Italy with the purpose of establish-
ing a shadowy claim upon Naples, offering
the assistance of Lombardy in the enter-
prise. And in 1494 Savonarola's prophecy
was fulfilled. A French army entering
by the territories of the Duke of Milan,
marched southward, and achieved a blood-
less triumph over Italy. Florence and
Rome, without resistance, were handed over
to him by Piero de' Medici and Alexander
YI. After proclaiming himself King of
Naples, Charles returned to France, and
Italy, except for the humiliation, and the
discovery of her weakness by Europe, re^
mained much as before.
Savonarola' s words had been verified !

The excited Florentines believing he alone
could save them, he became practically a

Piero and his house were driven
out, and the preacher planned a new consti-
tution for a new Florence.

A spiritual
madness seized the people.

Instead of vile
songs, hymns were sung upon the streets,
and young and old pledged themselves to
lives of piety and austerity.

A day was
appointed for the "burning of vanities,"
when there was a great holocaust of finery
and adornments and books ; Boccaccio, and
the classic poets, and MSS., and rare paint-
ings were given to the flames. It was a
revival — the greatest the world ever saw. It
was Puritanism run mad in Florence ! This
was the climax. The burning of works of
art, the insult to the new culture, roused the
fury of its adherents.

They joined hands
with the Pope to destroy this prophet of
evil who was holding Florence in his hand.

A reaction from the tense emotional strain
also came, and when the city was under an
interdict by the Pope, and no sacraments
could be administered for the living or rites
for the dead, some of Savonarola' s followers
fell away from him.

The ordeal by fire was
proposed to learn whether or no he really
was of God, as he claimed.

The furnace was
prepared, the Franciscan who had offered
to join him in the test was ready, and the
people assembled to witness a miracle.

Savonarola did not come — and at last a
heavy rain extinguished the fires.

The faith
of the people was shaken, and a prison (in
the tower of the Signoria Palace) closed
upon the fallen dictator.

There are vague
rumors of prolonged tortures, and of con-
fessions and retractions shrieked by him
while in the delirium of the i^ck.

much is true no one knows — only that on the
23d of May, 1498, he came before the peo-
ple for the last time.

As the fires were
lighted beneath him, and the noose adjust-
ed about his neck, a jeering voice cried,
^'Prophet — now is the time for a miracle ! "

The only words he uttered were, ''The Lord
has suffered as much for me," — and the
rope and the fire did their work.
The French invasion by Charles, barren of
immediate results, was the showy prelude
to the real performance. It was the noisy,
harmless shower preceding the deluge. Eu-
rope had found out that Italy was an easy
prey for any adventurous kingdom. But
there was a still deeper cause for theover-
turnings which were at hand. In tlie path of
progress Europe had moved from the rule
of many masters into the strong keeping of
four or five. Feudalism was dead. Diver-
sity liad had its day and accomplished its
work, and the hour had struck for unity.
Europe contained a group of firmly com-
pacted absolutisms, each despotically gov-
erned by a central authority, and all bound
together again into a larger unity by diplo-
matic threads. What was done by Ferdi-
nand and Isabella in Spain, thrilled the
Court of Maximilian at Vienna ; every move
of England and France in like manner vi-
brated through the entire group of despot-
isms. A tide bearing the principle of unity,
had moved over the face of Europe, even
Russia, remote and separated, keeping step
with the general advance. Italy alone was
left behind, and in a Europe ruled b}^ kings
and parliaments there lingered five mediaeval
states, with dukes and doges, and gonfalo-
niers, and signorias, and grand councils, all
crowded together in a small area, upon a small
peninsula. Engaged in deadly rivalry with
one another, they were playing an antiquated
game upon an absurdly small field. They
were an auaclironism in Europe. That the
wave should sweep over them was just as
inevitable as that the tide should cover a
low-lying strip of land. It might be as
snrely prophesied as that the sun should
rise after the dawn. The intellectual awa-
kening of the Renaissance, so hateful to
Savonarola, was the first streak of light in
the dawn of the new day — a day which
would reach its high noon when not alone
the intellect but the conscience was eman-
cipated, and when men had learned to know
the height, the depth, and the breadth of
the word — liberty ! The discovery of new
sources of wealth in the West, the diverting of
the trade energies from the old Eastern high-
waj^s, this and all the circumstances pointing
to the downfall of the proud mediseval repub-
lics, were only acting under a more compre-
hensive law of progress, which majestically
moves on its appointed way through the
centuries. The republics had lost their
golden opportunity ; and since they would
not conform to the prevailing spirit, would
not of their own will combine, and centralize,
they were to be ground in the mills of the
gods for three centuries, until they were
fused, every trace of the old rigid land-
marks obliterated, and Italy prepared to be
a homogeneous nation.
In 1499 a new energetic king, Louis XII.
of France, invaded the peninsula, in alli-
ance, not with the intriguing Duke of Milan,
but with Ferdinand, the King of Naples, with
whom he was to divide the spoil, the Pope
consenting to the unholy league. The work
was quickly accomplished, and then the
crafty Spaniard took all the fruits of the
victory for himself, and ruled Naples and
Sicily under one crown. The aggrieved
Louis turned to the Emperor Maximilian.
They formed an alliance to subjugate Venice,
Louis seemingly unconscious that a Charles
V. was soon coming on the stage, who would
be joint heir to the German Empire and
Spain, and the overwhelming rival of France.
So by 1515 Spain, France, and Germany
were trampling over the soil of Italy, the in-
fatuated states the while pursuing their petty
animosities just as before, each still thinking
only of its own peril or advantage.
Alexander YI., the Infamous, had died by
a cup of poison which it is said he and his
son Cesar had prepared for some trouble-
some cardinals. This may not be true. But
one crime more or less makes little differ-
ence in the record left by Cesar Borgia,
which has probably not been exceeded even
in Italy. He it is who is held up by Machia-
velli as the perfect specimen of the art of
statecraft. It was Cesar Borgia alone who
satisfied the artistic sense of this fastidious
anatomist of political villany. With no
vulgar impulsiveness, with perfect self-com-
mand, he could be deliberately cruel with
definite ends in view. With a steady hand he
could assassinate his brother, or strangle a
group of friends, not because he disliked them,
but because they were an obstruction. It was
the splendid intelligence of his cruelty which
charmed Machiavelli, the supreme subtlety
with which he established himself in the
seat his father carved out for him, and
played his game for power with Spain and
with France, by bribes and promises, and
perfidy within perfidy, meeting every ob-
struction, not with coarse violence, but with
quiet stranglings, and poison, which he
would compel his agents to administer for
him, and then execute them for the crime with
a show of indignation. His cruelty was never
purposeless, but intended to terrify and thus
to subjugate. There was this intention even
in that famous incident, when he entertained
his father and sister Lucrezia for an after-
noon by shooting arrows at condemned
criminals brought into the court of the
palace for that purpose. He knew the tem-
per of the Italian people, and that terror
accomplished more than blandishments, and
in anticipation of his father's death, he was
firmly establishing himself in his new terri-
Such was the man held up by a sagacious
Florentine patriot as a model for the imita-
tion of Lorenzo, in ruling a republic !
Alexander VI. was succeeded by Julius
II., a man with fewer vices and larger
ambitions. At first favoring the alliance
against Venice, he became alarmed for his
own kingdom, and conceived a plan of a
federation of all the Italian states, which
should then be ruled by his own progeny.
With important European powers he formed
a ''Holy League," for the expulsion of the
French and Germans, which led to the battle
of Ravenna (1512).
Julius is best remembered as a patron
of art. He it was who created the Vatican
museum. The Apollo of the Belvidere had
been recently unearthed, and also the Lao-
coon had just been found buried beneath the
Batlis of Titus. He employed Bramante to
lay the foundations of St. Peters at Rome,
and then Raphael and Michel Angel o to con-
tinue the work. It is his connection with the
incomparable masterpieces of these two men
which invests the name of Julius with inter-
est. Michel Angelo's "Moses" was one of
the figures created for his monument. Leo X.,
who succeeded Julius in 1513, was one of the
Medici family. He immediately employed
the great sculptor to design and decorate
the chapel of the Medici at Florence, where
he had re-established the authority of his
family. It was in fulfilment of this com-
mission that the great work commemorative
of Lorenzo de' Medici in that city was
The building of St. Peter's, the magnificent
plans for its embellishment, the decorating of
the Sistine Chapel of the Vatican, and other
art projects, required a great deal of money,
more than Leo could command. So he pro-
claimed a sale of special indulgences and
sent his messengers into Germany to collect
the golden stream which was sure to come
from this traflac in sin and crime.
Martin Luther, originally a monk, but
then a professor in the University at Witten-
berg, already burning with indignation at
the impurities of the Church, wrote a sting-
ing denunciation of this last infamy, which
he nailed upon the door of the old Castle
Church (1517). This seemed a small matter
at Rome, but it was going to shake the
Church to its centre. The smothered fires
burst into an uncontrollable conflagration,
and Europe was convulsed with the Refor-
While Protestantism was overturning
Europe and wearing out the heart of the
overburdened Charles V., in Germany, it
made little difference in Italy. Charles, the
grandson of Isabella and Ferdinand, and
also of Maximilian, in 1519 bore the weight
of two crowns, his power extending over two
hemispheres. He determined to settle mat-
ters in Italy. He received his Imperial crown
from the Pope, then as their master sum-
moned the Italian princes to meet him at
Milan. Florence was secured to the Medici,
who were to rule under the title of Dukes of
Florence. A Spanish viceroy was placed at
Milan, and another in Naples, and the whole
peninsula was left in a condition of inglori-
ous servitude to his agents.
From 1530 to 1796 Italy has no history of
its own. Would you know its perturbations
and overturnings during three centuries,
you must look for them in the histories of
Spain, France, and Germany. It was the
battle-ground for alien armies fighting over
issues with which it had nothing to do, the
people driven like dumb cattle before Haps-
burgs and Bourbons and drinking the cup
of humiliation to the dregs. Francis I. and
Charles V. fought out their long battle
on Italian soil. When Francis was taken
prisoner and carried to Spain, and the army
of Charles had possession, scaling ladders
were planted against the walls of Rome
(1527 A.D.), and again was that city the scene
of horror, ravaged by a German mob, the Pope
hiding in the castle of St. Angelo, while the
worst passions of a ferocious and brutal
army were let loose upon the inhabitants,
rivalling in horror the sacking by Goths and
Vandals. After this came another Medicean
Pope, Olement YIL, he who drove Henry
VIII. into Protestantism by his indecision
over the matter of the divorce, Catliarine,
the wife Henry wished to repudiate, being
the aunt of Charles V., whom he must not
Again did the Florentines attempt a re-
public, this time under a gonfalonier ap-
pointed for life, and again were the Medicis
driven out. Catharine, grand-daughter of
Piero, son of Lorenzo, was the wife of the
Dauphin of France, who upon the death of
Francis I. would be Henry II. Until this
intriguing family in alliance with despot-
ism was expelled, there could be no liberty
for Florence, so once more the city was
closed upon them, only to see them soon
return again as Grand Dukes of Tuscany,
more powerful than ever. It was in 1580
that one of these sumptuous Grand Dukes
gave fco Vasari the commission to build the
gallery which connects the Uffizi and Pitti
All this concerns sovereigns and pontiffs
and princes. Of the people there is little to
say except that wretchedness reigned. The
plains once fertile and blooming were a
desert — prosperity was destroyed and towns
depopulated. The attempt of Genoa to
establish a republic under Andrew Doria,
a son of one of her ancient families, in 1528,
was not unsuccessful. It continued in force
until the French Revolution. Of just such
unrelated fragments as these does the his-
tory of this period consist. Nothing that
happens seems connected with what precedes
nor what succeeds it. Things done are just
as speedily undone, the changes in the shift-
ing scene being no more significant than
those made by the turning of a kaleidoscope.
It is a story of ineffectual popes striring to
cope with a deluge, and to reinforce the
crumbling foundations of the Church ; and
of waning cities trying to hide their de-
cay, and to keep up the semblance of
their ancient glories. The order of Jesuits
was founded, and the Council of Trent
solemnly proclaimed a statement of Catholic
doctrine, intended to reform and yet to
strengthen the authority of the popes, and
the foundations of the venerated structure.
After the abdication of Charles V. came the
reign of his son, Philip II., the champion of
the faith, reinvigorating the assaults upon
Protestantism in his own remorseless fash-
ion, with Ms efficient aid, the Duke of
The pontificate of Gregory XIIL (1572-
85 A.D.) is marked by the reform in the cal-
endar which was finally adopted by all of
Christendom, except where the Greek Church
prevailed, so that to-daj^ Russia and Greece
are twelve days in advance of the rest
of Europe. This was the period of the
religious wars in France, which were termi-
nated when Henry IV. was received into the
Church by Clement YIIL Pope Clement is
also remembered in connection with the burn-
ing, for alleged heresy, of Giordano Bruno,
the most learned and distinguished scholar
of his age ; and also with the torture and
death of Beatrice Cenci, for the crime of
parricide — an act which, although deserved,
was never proved.
The Duchy of Savoy, remote and unob-
served, continued to grow. Her dukes, by
ambitious marriages and by a silently aggres-
sive policy, were becoming a power. The
reign of Victor Amadeus I., who married the
daughter of Henry lY., is remembered by
the extinction of that religious sect called
the Waldenses, a form of Protestantism, so
named for its founder, one Peter Waldo. To
escape persecution these people had hidden
under the shadow of the Alps in Savoy and
Piedmont, where, unobserved, they built
their villages, and worshipped unmolest-
ed. After the Revocation of the Edict of
Nantes, Victor Amadeus was ordered by Louis
XIY. to compel his Waldensian subjects to
become Catholics, and between the armies of
France and of Savoy, this picturesque and
defenceless people were awakened from their
dream and annihilated. It was soon after
this that Louis also, upon a shallow pretext,
bombarded and captured Genoa, converted
its palaces into ruins, and then compelled
the Doge and four chief senators to come
in robes of state, kneel at his feet, and beg
for pardon. When centralized authority had
reached this point, it seems as if the time
should have been ripe for something better
than absolutism ! And that something was
already on its way, and making good prog-
ress, while Louis XIY. and Louis XY. were
inviting the inevitable crisis which must at-
tend overstrained authority. In the game
of shuttlecock being played in Italy, when
cities and states were tossed without ceas-
ing from one to another, Nice was at this
time also torn by Louis from Savoy, thus
changing masters for the eighth time since
A vacant throne in Spain was for Italy of
more importance than events nearer home.
With the peace of Utrecht and the accession
of Louis's grandson, Philip Y., the astute
Amadeus II., Duke of Savoy, still further
strengthened his house by the marriage of
his two daughters, one with the new King of
Spain and the other with the Duke of Bur-
gundy, son and heir of Louis XIY. The
settlement of this question of the Spanish
succession at Utrecht, 1713, again upset the
established boundaries in Italy. Spain had
to give up Naples, which, with Milan and the
island of Sardinia, was assigned to the disap-
pointed Emperor of Germany. The Duke of
Savoy, always on the winning side, in spite
of the domestic ties uniting their families,
had joined the grand alliance against Louis
XIV. in the day of his decline. He had
earned a reward, and so in the final distribu-
tion a long-coveted strip of territory between
Milan and Genoa fell to him, and also the
island of Sicily, with the title of King of
Sicily. This he was induced in 1720 to ex-
change with the German Emperor for Sar-
dinia, the regal title being changed to ''King
of Sardinia." It was in 1735, after tiie war
of the Polish Succession, that IS'aples was re-
turned to Spain and for twenty-one years
ruled by Charles III., son of Philip Y., and
it was during this reign that the cities of
Herculaneum and Pompeii were uncovered
(1738 A.D.) after having been hidden for
seventeen hundred years.
One seemingly unimportant exchange of
territory at the time profoundly affected the
future of Europe. The island of Corsica be-
longed to Genoa, and had for generations
been struggling to free itself from the
tyranny it hated. The impoverished and
expiring republic in 1768, being in desperate
need of money, sold her troublesome depen-
dency to France ; and so the Great Corsican,
Napoleon Bonaparte, instead of being born
an Italian, as he would have been, or a Ger-
man, or a Spaniard, as he might have been,
was a Frenchman !
The French people were the most plastic
and receptive of any European nation, and
required a steady hand to govern them'. It
is the effervescent wines and the volatile
drugs that have to be tightly corked ! But
while kings and ministers could repress the
manifestation of discontent, they could not
prevent its existence, nor the increasing
volume of vicious energies it generated.
The problem set for each succeeding reign
was to find the amount of external force
required to imprison the forces within ; each
reign needing an increase of rigidity on the
surface, and this in turn generating a greater
volume of resistance from below, where de-
structive energies were looking for opportu-
nity to escape. Such was the process from
the death of Henry lY. to Louis XYL
Kichelieu, Mazarin, and Louis XIV., great
and wise though they were, seem to have
been ignorant of one philosophic truth —
that nothing that is rigid endures !
A handful of people across the Atlantic,
because of infringements upon their rights
and liberties which would have seemed small
indeed in France, had been measuring their
strength with England — had cast off her
yoke and joined the nations of the earth
as a free and independent people. This
was an object-lesson which made despots
tremble and which wrought changes terrible
but beneficent. The catastrophe long im-
pending in France came in 1789, shaking
Europe to its centre. The reign of abso-
lutism was passing, and the day ushered in
by a Eenaissance was approaching its high
It is characteristic of genius to see oppor-
tunity where to others is only a blank.
Napoleon Bonaparte, with instinctive con-
sciousness, saw the path to power. The air
was vibrating with the word liberty. If he
would capture the sympathies of France and
of the world, he must move along the line
of political freedom. The note to be struck
is freedom for oppressed peoples. Where
would he find chains more galling, servitude
more unnatural, than in Italy ? It mattered
not whether kings liked it or not, there was
a power abroad stronger than kings !
Without money, with an unpaid, un-
clothed army, he obeyed the inspiration. In
1796, with the unexpectedness of a tornado,
he swept down upon the plains of Lom-
bardy. The battles of Lodi, Areola, Rivoli,
were won, and in ten months Napoleon was
master of Italy, something no one man had
been before since the fall of the Empire !
By the treaty of Campo Formio, Northern
Italy was divided into four republics — the
Cisalpine, Ligurian, Cispadane, and Tiberine,
with their capitals respectively at Milan,
Genoa, Bologna, and Rome. Yenetia, that
is, Venice and its surrounding territory,
was thrown into the lap of Austria, while
what had been the Neapolitan Kingdom, or
Southern Italy, had become the Partheno-
pean Republic, with its capital at Naples.
When we see what this young, inexperi-
enced general accomplished as if by magic,
how by a few phrases about " Liberty," and
the "breaking of chains," addressed to Ital-
ians, and a few startling victories addressed
to the Austrians, he had in ten months made
himself master of all Italy, we are filled
with wonder — not so much that he did it, as
that neither Spaniard, Gferman, nor French-
man, singly or in alliance, had been able to
do it, although trying for three centu-
What an opportunity was here for this
man, in whose veins there coursed only Ital-
ian blood, to accomplish the dream of centu-
ries — the unification of Italy ! But his am-
bitions were too colossal for such an object,
Italy was only the stepping-stone to a larger
mastery. The people whose *' chains" he
had "come to break," were at once required
to surrender territory, money, jewels, plate,
horses, equipments, besides the choicest of
their art-collections and rare MSS. In a pri-
vate letter to a member of the Directory, Na-
poleon writes: "I sliall send you twenty
pictures by the first masters — b}^ Correggio
and Michel Angelo.'' And later he says:
"Join all these to what will be sent from
Rome, and we shall have all that is beauti-
ful in Ital}^, except a small number of objects
at Turin and Naples ! * ' Pius YI., without a
protest, had surrendered his millions of francs
and his MSS. and his ancient bronzes, and a
part of Romagna — the papal territory. But
he absolutely refused to recognize the exist-
ence of a " Tiberine Republic." Such recog-
nition meant a renunciation of his temporal
sovereignty^. So the old man, trembling un-
der the burden of years, was escorted over
the border into France, where, after less than
a year of captivity, he died (1799 a.d.). In
1804, after having himself proclaimed Emper-
or of the French, Napoleon came to Milan and
placed upon his own head the Iron Crown of
Lombardy. If Charlemagne was a successor
of the Csesars, he was now the successor of
Charlemagne, and Italy was his kingdom.
He might do with his own as he liked. So,
instead of consolidating, he broke it up once
more into fragments. Eugene Beauharnais,
his stepson, as viceroy of the Ligurian and
Cisalpine republics (Lombardy and Pied-
mont), wore the title, King of Italy. The
throne of Naples he gave to his brother, Jo-
seph Bonaparte, to be transferred to his broth-
er-in-law, Marshal Joachim Murat, when
to Joseph at a later time was assigned the
throne of Spain. The Grand Duchy of Tus-
cany became a kingdom of Etruria with a
Bourbon prince upon its throne. Ancient
boundaries and landmarks were obliterated,
geographical lines of separation removed,
political divisions redistributed and rechris-
tened, so that mediaeval Italy had disap-
peared. In other words. Napoleon accom-
plished in Italy just what he did later in
Germany. In breaking down the revered old
enclosures and tyrannies, he performed in
a decade the work of centuries, and swiftly
prepared the soil for a new order of things.
Pius yiL, like his predecessor, refused to
recognize the authority of the empire in his
papal territory, so he, too, was carried into
France, and Romagna was declared a part of
the French Empire. But the period of a Na-
poleonic despotism was beneficent. Uniform
laws were administered and equal rights con-
ceded. Public works gave employment to the
poor and public offices were open to aU ^tal-
ians, while to Jews and Protestants was given
protection. An honest effort was made to
reform the wretched peninsula, although at
the same time draining it of its wealth and
its youth by taxes, and conscription for
Napoleon' s colossal wars.
By the year 1815 Waterloo had been
fought, Napoleon was at St. Helena, and the
Allies were tearing down the temporary-
thrones and decorations. The proclamation
of the Austrian general to the people of Italy
in 1814, sounds as if it might have been
copied from Napoleon' s in 1796 ! ' ' Italians !
You have groaned long enough under the
yoke of oppression. We have come to free
you. Behold in us your liberators ! Soon
your lot will be envied. It is time the Alps
should proudly raise an insurmountable bar-
rier against oppression ! " In the following
way were these promises fulfilled : The
statesmen assembled at the Congress at Vi-
enna as far as possible restored the worst of
the old tyrannies, with the addition of a few
new ones. The Neapolitan Bourbons were
replaced on the throne of Naples, including
Sicily as before. The papal sovereignty and
territory were restored. The old Hapsburg
House returned to the Grand Duchy of Tus-
cany — Parma and Modena reappeared as in-
dependent duchies. Savoy was returned to
King Victor Emmanuel I. of Piedmont, who
also received, in addition, the territory be-
longing to the ancient Republic of Genoa.
Venice had already been bestowed upon
Austria by ISTapoleon — to this was now add-
ed Milan, making the Lombardo-Venetian
Kingdom. While the duchy of Parma was
given to the Austrian Princess Marie Louise,
Modena was restored to the Austrian ty-
rant Francis IV., who had trampled upon
it long before the Napoleonic era. So over'
a great region comprising the fairest and
richest part of Italy was written the name
of the Austrian Empire, and for the domina-
tion of a Napoleon there was substituted the
dominion of Austria — the most autocratic
despotism in Europe.
Two parties arose in Italy, the Liberals and
the Carbonari. The overthrow of Austrian
tyranny was the object of both, the one by
moderate measures, the other anarchistic.
The Carbonari, with only indefinite ideas of
the form of government to be substituted,
pledged themselves to obey their leaders,
and if necessary by violence and treachery to
accomplisli their freedom. This contributed
the unthinking element which served to
keep alive the tires of revolt, while the Lib-
erals more reasonablj^ and intelligentl}^ di-
vided upon the relative wisdom of con-
stitutional monarch}^, or a republic, and the
question of the temporal rule of the Pope.
In opposition to these two parties was cre-
ated another, the " Sanfedesti," or uphold-
ers of the Holy Faith, which taught absolute
devotion to the Pope and death to Liber-
These \vere the three standards under
which the battle was fought, while Austrian
tyranny was striving to extinguish every
aspiration toward liberty in the peninsula,
the sovereigns in the states not absolutely
hers being in fact simply her agents. When
the feeble King of Naples yielded to a de-
mand for a constitutional government, for
which his people had been "teasing him,"
an Austrian army promptly appeared, took
possession of the city, eight hundred Neapol-
itans were condemned to death, and many
times that number sent to prisons and the
galleys, the executioners becoming exhausted
in their tasks ! In this way was the promise
made by the Austrian general in 1814 ful-
filled in 1820 ! In this way was " the yoke of
oppression" broken by their "Liberators I "
At this same time (1820) there was a pop-
ular uprising in Piedmont. The cities de-
manded two things : a constitution, and
freedom from Austria. King Victor Emman-
uel I. was sternly forbidden by Austria to
yield a single point. His people were in re-
bellion. Rather than take up arms against
them, he abdicated. In the absence of his
brother, Charles Felix, his cousin, Charles
Albert, was appointed Regent. The sympa-
thies of the Regent were with the people, and
he granted the constitution they prayed for.
Charles Felix returned, repudiated the act,
ordered his cousin to leave Turin and to go
to the Austrian camp at Novara, where the
officers received him with the shout intended
to be derisive, but which was in fact so pro-
phetic — "Behold the King of Italy ! " Vic-
tor Emmanuel II., the Liberator, and the first
real king of Italy since Theodoric, then an
infant one year old in his cradle, was the
son of this Charles Albert ! The story of
Naples was repeated. Instead of freedom
and a constitution, death and imprison-
ment and exile were liberally bestowed until
"quiet" was restored in Piedmont.
In the Romagna there had been worse
Popes than Leo XII., but his ferocity may
be imagined when it is said that in the year
1825 fire hundred and eight persons were
beheaded for real or suspected Liberalism.
The month of August witnessed the heaviest
part of this butchery, no less than three
hundred executions taking place in that
month, the list of victims including nobles,
men of various professions, priests, and
farmers. He also forbade vaccination while
small-pox was raging, and set up the In-
quisition txy purge his kingdom of Jews and
The Ghetto, to which the Jews had long
been restricted, was a district on the banks
of the Tiber separated from the city by walls.
From the frequent overflow of the river and
from neglect, its condition was indescribablj^
shocking. Within this enclosure all the
Jews were locked every evening, never, even
in times of inundation, being permitted to
sleep outside. These unfortunate people
were not allowed to forget that they were
only the offscourings of creation ! At the
opening of the carnival every year a deputa-
tion composed of Jews were compelled to
present themselves at the capital, kneel ab-
jectly at tlie feet of the "senator," and ask
if they might be permitted to live ! To
which, after spurning them with his foot,
the Christian magistrate answered with the
usual formula: ''Go; for this year we will
tolerate you ! " The walls of this inferno,
in which the unfortunate beings were con-
fined, had become decayed, and the enforce-
ment of the rules lax. So Leo XII. re-
paired the G-hetto and restored the waning
discipline and the old order — as he would
have done in every place where the air of free-
dom was getting access, in the land he would
have liked to carry back into medievalism.
The Duke of Modena, Francis lY., was an-
other incarnation of tyranny. When a con-
stitutional uprising appeared in his duchy in
the form of a mild request, he sent the fol-
lowing note to the Austrian governor nearest
him : "A terrible conspiracy against me has
broken out. The conspirators are in my
hands. Send me the hangman. Francis."
In Bologna an uprising against the temporal
authority of the Pope was successful — but
the omnipresent Austrian was there in time
to stamp it out. The teachings of the Sanfe-
desti may be inferred by the following ex-
tract from a manual introduced into Italian
schools, entitled, "Duties of Subjects toward
tlieir Sovereigns."

It proceeds in the form
of a catechism, thus :


How should subjects behave toward their sovereign?

Subjects should behave like faithful slaves toward their master.

Why should subjects behave like slaves?
A. Because the sovereign is their master,
and has as much power over their possessions
as over their lives.
By such means as this did Austria try to
secure the loyalty of a people chafing under
her yoke, a people who were for the first time
being drawn into a fraternal union wdth
each other by the bond of a common hatred
and a common aim — an emancipation from
In 1830 the hopes of patriots everywhere
were strengthened, when Charles X., the last
Bourbon king in France, was driven out, and
Louis Philippe, a constitutional king, as-
scended the throne. There were at this time
in Piedmont four youths whom Italy and the
world could ill have spared ! The kingdom
over which that lover of Austria, Charles
Felix, reigned, was the birthplace of liberty.
Mazzini, the so-called Prophet of the Eevolu-
tion, was born at Genoa, 1805 ; Garibaldi, its
Soldier, at Nice, 1808 ; Cavour, its Statesman,
at Turin, 1810, and Victor Emmanuel, the
future ** Re Galantuomo," also at Turin, in
1820. Charles Felix, or Carlo Feroce (Charles
the Ferocious), as he was derisively called,
died leaving no heir. Charles Albert had
the nearest hereditary claim, but his liberal
tendencies made him objectionable. Prince
Metternich, the Austrian Minister, tried to
arrange a marriage which would bring the
troublesome kingdom of Piedmont into sub-
jection. If the daughter of the deceased king
married Francis lY. of Modena, the Salic law
might easily be abrogated, and Piedmont
would have a safe conservative guardian in
the Duke of Modena, the most arbitrary ruler
in Italy. The plan was a very ingenious one,
but Talleyrand, Minister to Louis Philippe,
did not approve of it, and so it came about
that Charles Albert, who since the affair of
the Constitution, in 1820, had been quietly at
home teaching his boys ' ' to ride, and speak
the truth," ascended the throne of his ances-
tors. But, unhappily, Charles Albert had
permitted his hands to be tied before he took
the reins, by a promise to the dying king
that he would not disturb the form of govern-
ment. Unconscious of this, Mazzini, believ-
ing the time was now ripe, called together
his " Young Italy," to meet the Austrian
onslaught which would undoubtedly come ;
never dreaming that the Mng would hesitate
to grant the Constitution he so readily be-
stowed in 1820, as regent. The disappoint-
ment was bitter. The army of ** Young
Italy" found itself fighting not the Aus-
trians, but the liberal King on whom their
hopes had rested. Executions and imprison-
ments, and a price set upon Mazzini' s head,
were the punishment for trying to force a
constitution upon a king who was under a
pledge not to grant it, a secret compact which
was to make the esLvly part of his reign in-
comprehensible to patriots, and miserable to
himself. But the time was coming when this
well-intentioned and liberty-loving sovereign
would free himseif from the Austrian web
spun about his throne, and would boldly
ally himself with the cause of " Italy for
The fifteen years of the pontificate of Greg*
oiy XYI. was a dreary period for patriots
— Mazzini in England, and Garibaldi in South
America, each with a price upon his head,
Austrian bayonets always within call to quell
uprisings : it needed faith of no common sort
to believe the future held anything for Italy
but degrading servitude to the Hapsburgs.
In 1846 the conservative Gregory, the ar-
dent upholder of Hapsburg rule, died. Who
should be selected as his successor was
a burning question. The choice fell upon
Cardinal Feretti so unexpectedly to him that
it was said when the result became certain
he exclaimed, ''Gentlemen, what have you
done?" and then fainted. Agracious, smil-
ing pope with liberal tendencies was received
by the people with frantic joy. The ambassa-
dor hastening from Vienna with the Emper-
or's veto, arrived too late. Pius IX. was in
the chair of St. Peter, and had commenced
the pontificate which was to be a struggle
between generous inclinations and what he
considered his paramount duty as the cus-
todian of the honor and sanctity of the
Church, a natural dislike of foreign dom-
ination feebly clashing with an unwilling-
ness to take up arms against a state so in-
flexibly loyal to the Church as Austria, and
a determination that, come what would to
the spiritual, the temporal authority of his
office must be held intact. It was this eager
grasp upon the temporalities which tainted
all of this Pope' s mental processes, and which
made the long pontificate of Pius IX., cov-
ering one of the most critical periods, a tissue
of unfortunate mistakes.
The new pontiff came at a time when, more
than ever before, the hands of Italian patriots
needed to be strengthened. Poland had been
effaced in her despairing struggle with Rus-
sia, and Polish exiles were scattering seeds
of rebellion wherever there were souls thirst-
ing for freedom. There was something in
the air of Europe which made despots un-
easy. Patriots had grown bold not alone
in Poland but in Hungary, and Italy was
catching the contagion. Mazzini and Gari-
baldi were watching from afar for signs that
the}^ might return and join in the rescue. At
this moment the fall of the monarchy and
establishing of a republic in France sent an
electric thrill throughout Europe. It was
the French mode of saying that their govern-
ment should Lave aided the cause of freedom
in Poland and in Italy, and a warning to des-
potisms not to go too far ! News of an insur-
rection in Vienna and the expulsion of Prince
Metternich aroused the Milanese to make an
attempt for their escape. "The time has
come!" were the words with which they
called upon the people to make a bold strike
for liberty. Then it was that Charles Albert
freed himself from his entanglement. A con-
stitution was given to his people, and with
his two sons, the Dukes of Savoy and Genoa,
he threw himself into the struggle with Aus-
tria for the freedom of the Lombardo-Vene-
tian Kingdom. The patriotic contagion
spread, Tuscany, and even Rome, and at last
Naples, sending troops to defend their Lom-
bard brothers and the frontier of Italy. This
is the sort of thing that makes patriotism !
Never had a united Italy seemed so near. It
needed only a great militar}^ leader — Napo-
leon in a day could have made Italy free.
But there was no Napoleon, and there came
a defeat at Custozza, and then a retreat to
Milan — one red-shir ted band of patriots, led
by Garibaldi and Mazzini, stubbornly refus-
ing to lay down tlieir arms.
Pope Pius IX. had not yet given his sanc-
tion to the movement, although none doubt-
ed that he would. Great was the shock when
he issued an encyclical, April 29, 1848, say-
ing he could take no part in a contest against
Austria ! The cause had received a terrible
blow. The excitement at Rome was intense,
the Pope's Minister was assassinated, and
Pius IX. fled in disguise under cover of the
darkness to Gaeta, a fortified city on the
coast near Naples.
Charles Albert resolved to make one more
effort for the expulsion of Austrian troops
from Lombardy. He met a crushing defeat
at Novara, March 23, 1849. The Austrians
followed the retreating army into Piedmont,
with victory still more overwhelming upon
his own soil. Charles Albert, unable to en-
dure his humiliation and disappointment,
abdicated, before he left the battle-field, in
favor of his son, Victor Emmanuel, leaving
to younger and stronger shoulders the bur-
den too difficult ^nd too heavy for him. The
youth of only twenty-nine upon whom had
descended tins burden, undaunted by defeat
and by his father's despair, with set face
looking out on the gloomy battle-field, ut-
tered the words he was going to make true
after twenty-one years of unceasing effort —
*' And yet, Italy shall be ! "
Austria was in high spirits, and her ef-
ficient General Haynau was despatched to
settle matters with the people in Lombardy.
The town of Brescia, which had also evinced
a taste for liberty, received the first lesson.
The details of the burnings, and whippings,
and wholesale slaughter so horrified people in
England, that on the occasion of his visit there
at a later time, when he had still further
distinguished himself in Hungary, a mob
took him in charge and thrashed him until
he was rescued by the police ; Tuscany,
which now had its constitution and had been
aiding in the war against Lombardy, was
suddenly abandoned by her Grand Duke
Leopold, who fled from Florence and joined
the Pope and the King of Naples at Gaeta.

The astonished people implored him to re.
turn, which he did only at a later time, when
Florence was garrisoned by Austrian troops,
and the constitution and all the concessions
to the spirit of freedom had vanished. Mrs.
Browning's "Casa Guidi Windows" tells
the story of Florence at this period, when a
wave of returning despotism was the natural
result of the overwhelming defeat of Charles
Albert in Lombardy.

Patriotism again be-
gan to hide its head, and the day of inde-
pendence was farther off than ever. That
antiquated despotism at Vienna believed that
by fastening down all the valves, and per-
mitting no steam to escape, the danger was
averted ! An uprising in Naples was put
down with horrible barbarities. Houses were
set on fire and women and children leaping
from the windows were butchered in the
streets below, which were actually running
with blood, the Bourbon King Ferdinand
making not the slightest effort to stay the
massacre. Austria with her new young
King, Francis Joseph, had her hands full at
this time, with a great rebellion in Hungary
incited by Polish exiles. The Czar helped
him to stamp out this fire which had been
kindled by his own revolted subjects, and
then the vanquished Hungarian patriots
were turned over to Haynau to be taught
loyalty to Austria.
At this dark hour in Italy, and when aban-
doned by the Pope, a temporary government
was formed at Kome, for tlie conduct of the
war with Austria, Mazzini and Garibaldi
aiding in its organization. The abolition of
the Inquisition was its first measure. As
the emaciated victims were borne out into
the blinding sunlight, a great cry arose,
*'Down with the Pope ! Long live the Re-
public ! " It was many centuries since that
cry had been heard in Rome !
A Triumvirate was elected by the Assem-
bly, composed of Mazzini, Armellini, and
Saffi. After years of waiting in exile, Maz-
zini' s hour had come ! He was virtual dicta-
tor of a Roman Republic. Calm, patient with
opposition, never petulant nor melodramatic,
his was not the low order of passion which
expends itself in noise and fury. Extrava-
gant he certainly was, and intense. But it
was the intellectual and fine intensity of an
idealist and an enthusiast, who knew no way-
station between tyranny and perfect liberty ;
no compromise with political expediency.
In his hatred for Monarchy he would not
have regretted the overthrow of a Constitu-
tional Government in Piedmont, provided it
could lead the people to rise in mass and
to achieve complete Republican freedom.
If he had hitherto been a dreamer of im-
possible dreams, Mazzini's speculative ten-
dency was now held in check by an impera-
tive demand for the practical. The young
republic must vindicate itself, must by
its wisdom and its fruits prove its right to
exist, and leave no pretext for intervention
from jealous European despotisms.
The Roman Republic with high hopes ap-
pealed to England and to France to sustain
it. Louis Napoleon sent 8,000 men to Civita
Yecchia not to "sustain the republic," but
to effect a reconciliation with the Pope ! It
soon became apparent that French soldiers
were there not as rescuers, but as jailers.
While there was great satisfaction at Gaeta
when news came that General Oudinot was
attacking Rome, in France, so intense was
the popular indignation, that Louis Napoleon
was obliged to send M. de Lesseps to patch
up a peace which would be acceptable to the
Pope, to General Oudinot, to the republic,
and to the French Assembly ! This difficult
negotiation failed, Oudinot being determined
to reinstate the Pope without conditions.
Which presents the nobler picture — Pius IX.
surrounded by emissaries from all of Europe,
the centre of Machiavellian diplomacy, and
rejoicing in a foreign invasion which was
mutilating the dome of St. Peter's, and the
gallery of the Vatican — or Mazzini and Gari-
baldi and their small band of patriots, with
desperate courage defending the city from a
French army sent to coerce them back into
servitude to Austria !
Garibaldi's 19,000 men, making up in en-
thusiasm what they lacked in experience, with
splendid valor for one month defended the
city against 35,000 trained veterans. On
July 3, 1849, the brave leader was hastily
summoned before the Assembly, and in an-
swer to their question, was compelled to ad-
mit that the defence could no longer be con-
tinued. The Assembly ordered a surrender,
then with stately gravity, and as if it were a
dying bequest, they conferred Roman citizen-
ship upon all who had aided in the defence
of the republic, and after this their last act,
solemnly and calmly, like the Roman Sena-
tors of old at the first Gaulic invasion, they
remained at their posts until they should be
driven out by French bayonets. Then, be-
fore the entry of the French army. Garibaldi
assembled his soldiers, and dramatically in-
vited whoever would to follow him to the
end of the struggle. He said, " I have only
hunger and danger to offer you, the earth for
a bed, and the sun for a fire, let whosoever
does not despair of the fortunes of Italy fol-
low me!" Of the three or four thousand
patriots who accepted these stern conditions
and passed out of the gates of Rome that
night, only a handful survived to witness
Italian independence. Proclaimed as out-
laws, most of them were captured and shot
before they reached Piedmont. Garibaldi' s
faithful and adored wife, Anita, whom he
had romantically married in South America
and who insisted upon sharing his hardships,
died from exhaustion by the way. Even at
Piedmont the hunted patriot could find no
safe asylum, and his wanderings did not
cease until he reached America.
It is a sad picture we have of Mazzini, pal-
lid with suppressed excitement, and wander-
ing aimlessly like one in a dream amid the
wreck of his hopes, until hurried across the
frontier by friends.
Venice, which in the general uprising had
declared herself a republic, was the last to
surrender. The terrible Haynau with 30,000
Austrians invested the city, in which 2,500
beleaguered patriots held out until famine
and pestilence compelled a capitulation. The
triumph of Austria was complete. Every
place in the fair peninsula, except that little
state in the northwest, had given up the
struggle. Pius IX., victorious and content,
returned to Rome (1850), Cardinal Antonelli,
the implacable enemy of free institutions,
was appointed his chief adviser, and the brief
career of the Roman Republic was over.
The reign of Victor Emmanuel 11. com-
menced in deep shadow. Not a ripple of en-
thusiasm greeted his coming. At Turin, his
capital, he was received with frigid coldness.
His father was dying of a broken heart in
Portugal, and there was nothing to make him
glad but his Queen and his two little boys,
Humbert and Amadeus. His army was de-
moralized and chafing under defeat, his peo-
ple bitterly disappointed and angry, an un-
friendly parliament criticising his every act,
with extreme radicals exasperated at his
conservatism, and extreme reactionists de-
nouncing the liberal tendencies which had
brought ruin to the state. It needed a stout
heart to take up the burden, and no little ad-
dress to reconcile his people to the galling
terms he had been obliged to accept — 20,000
Austrian s quartered in Piedmont, and a
heavy money indemnity to be paid. It is
not strange that the young man of thirty
years became grave and abstracted, and
there came into his face that expression of
deep sadness which grew to be habitual in
after years. He one day told his Minister
d'Azeglio, that of all the professions, that
of king was the last he would have chosen.
D'Azeglio replied, "But there have been so
few honest kings, what a grand thing it
would be to head the list as Re G-alantuomo ? ' '
(Honest king.) The words struck Victor
Emmanuel's fancy, and soon after when the
Census-Register was brought him for his
signature, under the head ''Profession" he
wrote — "Re Galantuomo," and thus gave
himself the title by which he will always be
The assumption of the title of emperor by
Louis Napoleon in 1852 extinguished all
hope of aid from France to the cause of free-
dom in Italy, while it produced a corre-
sponding elation at Vienna and St. Peters-
burg. It was intimated to Victor Emmanuel
that two systems of government on the pen-
insula, one absolute and the other constitu-
tional, was an "inconvenience" which Aus-
tria and Prussia could not much longer
tolerate. D'Azeglio' s spirited reply was, in
effect, that the King was master in his own
kingdom, and wished for no advice in what
concerned the welfare of his people.
When this able Minister gave up his port-
folio in 1852, one no less able took his place.
Count Camillo di Cavour had from his
young manhood been identified with the Lib-
eral Party. He was not impetuous, not a
fiery leader of armed patriots like Garibaldi,
not an impassioned dreamer like Mazzini.
He was a wary student of men and of con-
ditions, who with a patriotism no less intense
than theirs was going to deal with the sources
of things. If the force of the steam is neces-
sary to drive the engine, the hand of the
skilled engineer is no less needed to open or
to close the valves as changing conditions
demand. Garibaldi's headlong patriotism
blazed the way to freedom, but that freedom
and Italian unity would never have been
consummated without the inflexible stead-
iness of purpose and the calm, wise states-
manship of two men, Victor Emmanuel and
Cavour, his Minister.
Perfectly in accord, these two determined
at once upon a measure of reform in the
Church which should include the suppres-
sion of monastic institutions, and the amen-
ability of the clergy to civil instead of eccle-
siastical courts, thus sharply defining the
position of the King on the side of the anti-
clerical party. Pope Pius IX., undeterred
by these assaults upon his temporal author-
ity, and wishing to proclaim his unimpaired
supremacy, ventured upon an unprecedented
act. When in 1854, alone, without the ad-
vice of a Church council, he promulgated
the dogma of the Immaculate Conception of
the Virgin, he made the first addition to the
doctrine of the Church since the Council of
Trent (1563 a.d.).
All the conditions were thus becoming in-
tensified. Not only between clericals and
non-clericals was the chasm widening, but
also the greater one between Austria and the
King of Sardinia. A protest from Cavour
on account of merciless severities carried on
against suspected Liberals in Lombardy,
who were pursued even into Piedmont, re-
'ceived no attention from Austria, and diplo-
matic intercourse was broken off. The ad-
vent of the Austrian Archduke Maximilian
as Viceroy of the Lombardo-Venetian King-
dom is interesting only on account of his
subsequent tragic career in Mexico. Ap-
pointed to take the post made vacant by the
retirement of Field-Marshal Radetsky, the
interesting and accomplished yontli brought
his young and lovely bride Carlotta, Princess
of Belgium, to Milan. Two years were spent
in the fruitless endeavor to do justice and
show mercy, with a power behind him thwart-
ing his large-minded and amiable purposes,
Milan was only one of the way-stations in the
pathetic life-journey of a prince unfitted by
nature to represent a merciless despotism.
The Crimean War was in many ways a
crisis in the affairs of Europe. France and
England in 1854 joined the Sultan in a war to
prevent Russian encroachments upon Turk-
ish soil. Victor Emmanuel hoped more from
constitutional England than from any other
source. It was true that Lord Palmerston
had studiously refrained from giving even a
moral support to the Italian cause, but a
recent incident awakened hope. When the
Duke of Genoa, the brother of the King, vis-
ited England during the previous year, the
gracious Queen Victoria presented him with
a horse, saying : ''I hope you will ride this
in fighting the battles for the liberation of
Italy ! " Significant and encouraging words
to take back to his royal brother at that
time ! One can only surmise that among the
mixed motives impelling the King and Ca-
vour to join in the struggle for Ottoman in-
tegrity was a natural desire to secure the
friendship, and perhaps the gratitude, of Eng-
land. But the astute Cavour also saw the
advantage to little Piedmont from partici-
pating in a great international war. It was
a bold but successful move. When the King
of Sardinia's contingent of 15,000 men re-
ceived the congratulations of Queen Victoria
after the battle of Tchernaj^a, and when at
the Congress of Paris, where the treaty was
signed, Piedmont was accorded the same
footing as the live great powers, Austria re-
alized that times and conditions had changed
in the peninsula, and that her despised neigh-
bor had been admitted to the circle of the
great family of nations.
The gallant young Duke of Genoa, who had
expected to command the Sardinian troops
in the Crimea, died of consumption while the
war was in progress, leaving an infant daugh-
ter, Margherita, who was to be the future
wife of Prince Humbert and the adored Queen
of Italy. When in one month the King lost
his mother, his wife, and his brother, and was
thus overwhelmed with private griefs, the
Church construed it into a swift punishment
for his wicked anti-clerical policy. Even
Cavour hesitated and urged a more gradual
extinction of the monastic houses, earning
by his moderation the hatred of the radicals.
But Victor Emmanuel was firm and the fa-
mous " Ratazzi bill" was passed.
A visit to Paris, where the King was hon-
ored with the most tlattering reception from
Louis Napoleon, and another to England, no
less flattering, when Queen Victoria bestowed
upon him the Order of the Garter, and the
air resounded with his praises, doubtless
strengthened the expectation of aid from
those governments. But w^hen all these be-
guiling courtesies were over, the French em-
peror could not be brought to a decision by
the skilful Cavour, while Lord Palmerstor
frankly told him that England would not
consider any proposition unfriendly to Aus-
tria ! The blow had fallen. If Italy was to
^' be," she must work out her own problem of
unity. The clerical party in the kingdom was
growing and outnumbered the party of the
King. '' What will become of us," said Ca-
vour, ' * if they undo the work of eight years ? "
The King replied: *' Rather than yield,
rather than beat a retreat now, I would go to
America and become plain M. de Savoie." If
France would not aid them for love of their
cause, she must be bought. The relations
with Austria were becoming every day more
strained. While massing 200,000 men on
the borders of Lombardy, she was insolently
protesting against the king's increasing his
forces beyond what was required for a peace-
footing. There could be no peace and no
starting-point for Italy's redemption until
Victor Emmanuel was King of all Northern
Louis Napoleon needed two things to so-
lidify his empire at home and abroad. He
must have brilliant military successes to
make Frenchmen forget the republic, and he
must make distinguished royal alliances for
his famih' to increase its prestige among
other nations. A marriage between his cousin
Jerome Bonaparte and the young Princess
Clotilde, the daughter of Victor Emmanuel,
just fifteen years old, was worth considering.
So when privately sounded by Cavour as to
the price he would ask for armed assistance
to Sardinia, he named the two things most
sacred and dear to the King, his ancestral
duchy of Savoy and his daughter ! In re-
turn for these, if the war was successful, the
kingdom of Sardinia would include Lom-
bardv and Venetia.
The King consented to tlie sacrifice, and in
an address from the throne at Turin a few
days later he uttered words which were cor-
rectly construed by an astonished Parlia-
ment as an announcement that he was about
to call the nation to arms. The people were*
electrified. The applause in Parliament was
frantic, men springing to their feet and shout-
ing until they were hoarse, ''Long live the
King ! " When he uttered the words, " we
have heard the cry of anguish" {grido di
dolor e\ men wept, and grido di dolor e^ words
so eloquent of sympathy, and of pity and
determined rescue, were caught up as a
watchword throughout the peninsula. Vic-
tor Emmanuel, no longer distrusted, had
conquered the hearts of his own people, and
was the hope of every patriot in Italy.
The condition of the marriage was the one
over which the King struggled longest, and
not until his daughter's free consent was ob-
tained did he accede to it, his Ministers as-
suring him the while that without it there
would be no aid from France. So in the
month of January, 1859, the nuptials were
Italy was astir with expectancy and
preparation. Francis Joseph peremptorily
demanded that Victor Emmanuel should at
once disband the Piedmontese army, allow-
ing three days for a reply. This precipitated
the crisis for which all were longing. Within
a week the Austrian army had crossed the
Ticino and a division of the French army
was in Turin. Louis Napoleon, in his dra-
matic proclamation, said he came to ''give
Italy to herself," and that she was to be
free "from the Alps to the Adriatic ! "
With such a glorious promise what won-
der that Garibaldi's volunteers drove the
retreating Austrians through the detiles of
the Lombard hills, and that the field at
Magenta was won with an overwhelming
victory ! Never had Milan witnessed such
a scene of wild rejoicing as when Louis Na-
poleon and Victor Emmanuel, with their vic-
torious armies, entered the city adorned as
for a bridal, with wreaths of flowers and gor-
geous draperies of gold and silver brocade
hanging from windows and balconies, the air
ringing with shouts of a people rejoicing at
their liberation. When the news of these vic-
tories was received, Leopold, Grand Duke of
Tuscany, Francis, Duke of Modena, and the
Duchess of Parma all fled to the protection
of the Austrians, and the three rejoicing
states immediately offered their allegiance
to the "King of Italy." All the states in
the papal territory which were governed by
papal legates— that is, all except Rome and
its immediate vicinity — in similar manner de-
clared their desire for annexation. Nothing
could have been swifter or more spontaneous
than this obedience to the principle of unity
in a new Italy, every freed atom at once try-
ing to ally itself to the central authority.
In three weeks after Magenta came the
crucial battle of Solferino. The fate of Italy
hung upon that day — a day of long and des-
perate struggle. When the sun went down,
Francis Joseph had been defeated. The
quarters he had occupied in the morning
were occupied at night by Louis Napoleon
and his staif, the Emperor of Austria weep-
ing it is said over the ruin of his hopes.
The rest of the way was easy. There was
now only Yenetia lying just before them,
which there was no chance that the demoral-
ized Austrians could hold, and the glorious
promise would be fulfilled — Italy would be
free "from the Alps to the Adriatic ! "
But it was the unexpected that happened !
Napoleon III., without consulting Victor
Emmanuel, asked the vanquished Emperor
Francis Joseph for an armistice.
"But, sire," said his marshal, ''an armis-
tice means peace."
"That is nothing to you," was the reply.
"But, sire," persisted the astonished mar-
shal, "you promised to make Italy free from
the Alps to the Adriatic."
" I repeat, sir, that is nothing to you."
No explanation was ever vouchsafed for
this shameless betrayal of Italy by the man
posing as her liberator ; the man who had
said the night before Magenta, "Be soldiers
to-day, to-morrow you will be citizens of a
great country ! "
With brutal abruptness and with the
brevity of a dictator, Louis Napoleon made
known his terms to Victor Emmanuel. The
King of Sardinia might have Lombardy, but
Venetia remained with Austria, and Savoy
and I^ice must belong to France. The peo-
ple were frantic. ' ' We have been betrayed ! "
they shrieked.
'^Betrayed and insulted,'' said Cavour.
The Minister, usually so calm, so self-con-
tained, paced the floor, his face white and
drawn with the intensity of his anger. " Re-
fuse Lombardy," he said to the King. "Bet-
ter to cut loose from the traitor at once and
let him take the consequences."
The King alone was firm and calm. Pro-
foundly disappointed, profoundly miserable,
he yet saw clearly that the path of wisdom
was in the decision he was about to make.
When the stormy interview of two hours
was ended, the terms of the French Emperor
were accepted and Cavour had resigned his
And so the peace of Villafranca was signed,
and the Emperor, Louis l^apoleon, surprised
at the coldness of his reception as he passed
through the cities, returned to France im-
pressed with the ingratitude of the Italians,
to whom he had given Lombardy !
The study of human motives, always a com-
plex and difficult one, is doubly so in a char-
acter so inscrutable as Louis Napoleon's,
where the straight path was never taken
and all things were done by indirection.
Whether his amazing conduct was the result
of political foresight and designed to prevent
a European coalition against a too victorious
France, or whether he concluded that two
great victories were sufficient to give him the
prestige he needed, none will ever be able to
say. Statesmanship and philanthropy do
not often go hand in hand in such transac-
tions, but we do know that the parting
effort of this "Liberator" was to force back
Tuscany, Modena, Parma, and the Romagna
into their old servitude to Austrian agents.
On this point Victor Emmanuel was inflex-
ible. He wrote to the Emperor : '' We can
succumb, but never betray. Rather than be
unworthy of the love and confidence these
noble and unfortunate people have reposed
in me, I will break my sword and throw the
crown away, as did my august father ! " It
would not have surprised him at this junct-
ure, if his late ally had joined with Austria
to crush him. The situation needed steadi-
ness and caution, and with admirable calm-
ness and with perfect dignity he submitted
to the cruel exigencies of a dangerous crisis.
One can imagine how Garibaldi's heart was
wrung, and how he impulsively resigned his
commission in contempt for such a cold-
blooded king, and then as impulsively took
it up again, vaguely intending to attack some-
body, he knew not whom ; somewhere, he
knew not how ; and then, impatient at being
held in check, again threw down his sword,
went to weep upon his adored Anita's grave,
and retired to the little island of Caprera,
which he had bought as a refuge with a
small legacy left him by his brother. The
fate of the central states was the first matter
to be adjusted. Victor Emmanuel, with his
usual calmness of judgment, was slow to
open the door at which they were knocking.
There must be no loop-hole for suspicion
which could be used against him by the wily
agents of Austria, Prussia, France, and the
Pope, who were whispering and conspiring
at Naples to prevent the proposed annexa-
tion. But it was the embittered reproaches
of Pius IX. which most disturbed the King.
He wrote assuring the Holy Father of his
undying devotion to him as a spiritual ruler,
at the same time respectfully protesting
against his policy in temporal matters, in
defeating the desire of his subjects for a
constitutional government. But with the
King of Naples, his trusted confidant, and
witli Cardinal Antonelli, his counsellor, both
whisperiEg encouragement in his ear, Pius
IX. stood firm and earned the admiration
of haters of liberty everywhere. As time
passed, the European states, wearied per-
haps, or it may be moved by the logic of
events, relaxed in their opposition. It was
finally suggested by Cavour that they
should settle the matter by recourse to a
'' plebiscite," a method in high favor with
the Emperor of the French. The plan was
accepted. A vote of the people in Tuscany,
Modena, Parma, and the Papal States (those
under legates) was overwhelmingly in favor
of annexation, which was at once carried
into effect. The temporal sovereignty of the
Pope was now restricted to a small territory
about Rome, and Victor Emmanuel was king
of an Italy which extended not ''from the
Alps to the Adriatic," but from the Alps
to the borders of the Papal and the Nea-
politan kingdoms ; an Italy which, as he
said in his opening speech to his enlarged
Parliament, was "not the Italy of the
Romans, nor of the Middle Ages, but the
Italy of the Italians." These borders did
not satisfy the impatient patriot at Caprera,
who was devising his own plans for their
extension. Cavour, who had wisely resumed
his portfolio, and had patiently labored
with the Parliament to secure its consent to
the treaty with the clause so odious to him-
self—the abandonment of Nice — was never
forgiven by the uncompromising soldier,
who bitterly said, '' That man has made me
a stranger in my own house." It was a
kind fate which gave to Victor Emmanuel so
wise a counsellor in those critical years, of
whom Prince Metternich said : " There is
but one statesman in Europe and he is
against us. That one is M. de Cavour."
King Ferdinand of Naples, known as King
Bomba, was dead and had been succeeded by
his son, Francis IL, because of his close imi-
tation of his father's methods called "Bom-
bina." So scandalous was the corruption
in his government, so flagrant and so shame-
less the methods of the despotism at Naples,
that France, Spain, and even autocratic Rus-
sia, urged him to pause and make peace with
his outraged people before it was too late.
We need not stop to tell the sickening details
of imprisonment of suspects in dungeons,
without light, without air, in an Italian mid-
summer, fighting in the darkness with rats —
and this for a whispered criticism of the gov-
ernment, or a suspected inclination to liberal-
ism, or a desire to unite their fortunes with
the new kingdom in the North. It is not
strange that Garibaldi, chafing in his soli-
tude at Caprera, was roused to a desperate
This extraordinary man who had led the
picturesque legion in the defence of the Ro-
man Republic and had shown himself master
of guerilla warfare in Lombardy, had also
given no little anxiety to the King and Ca-
vour. An eye had been constantly kept upon
him since Xovara, and a check-rein held al-
ways in hand to arrest headlong dashes
toward centres of tyranny, to which he was
addicted at most critical times. But if his
methods were displeasing to them, theirs
were exasperating to him. Diplomacy he de-
spised. He would have cut every knot with
the sword. Equally frank in his loves and
his hatreds, he was as transparent as a child.
Generous, simple, ardent, he possessed in a
superlative degree those qualities which
arouse a passionate devotion, and which con-
vert followers into worshippers. Tossed
from Italy to America, from America back
to Italy, and thence to South America, what-
ever the vicissitudes of his life, it was always
invested with a romantic charm. If he en-
tered Montevideo as a drover of cattle, he left
it the hero of daring exploits, of a romantic
wooing, and the leader of armies against
Spanish tyranny. If he was the maker of
soap and of candles in Staten Island, he re-
turned to his own land to accomplish the
liberation of one-half of Italy by an act un-
matched since the days of Roland or the Cid !
No soldier of fortune in the Renaissance,
not Sforza, nor Carmagnola, cast a greater
spell over his followers than did this red-
shirted leader over his adoring veterans, as,
in the same strange South American garb,
they sat at night about their bivouac-fires, or
lassoed their untethered horses, apparently as
undisciplined as wild colts, and yet alertly
watching for a glance or a nod, and ready on
the instant to do or to dare anything at his
How Piedmont sympathized with the Nea-
politans it need not be said. But a single
move toward their emancipation might bring
France and Austria in combination against
the growing power of the King of Sardinia.
Garibaldi had no fear of consequences and
no policies to embarrass him ! His first
purpose of recovering Nice was abandoned
for that of freeing the kingdom of Naples.
The Sardinian government wisely refrained
from knowing much about the audacious en-
terprise, and in 1860, with his thousand vol-
unteers, he embarked from Genoa. In two
weeks he was inside the walls of Palermo,
the people, frantic with jo}^, beating the bells
with hammers all the day long, the royalists
having removed the clappers to prevent such
a demonstration of rejoicing. Garibaldi,
now assuming the title of Dictator, pressed
on, his little force growing with recruits and
royalist troops melting away before him un-
til he reached Messina, and the island was
Francis II. was panic-stricken. He an-
nounced instantly his intention of giving a
constitution to his people, and also wished
to form an alliance with Piedmont. It was
a death-bed repentance which came too late.
He told the Dictator he might have Sicily,
and he would also give him 50,000,000
francs to aid in the liberation of Venice, if
he would leave the mainland alone. Victor
Emmanuel, who had received an urgent letter
from Louis Napoleon asking him to recall
his imprudent general, wrote the Dictator
that he thought they "should be content with
Sicilv," and instructed him to desist from an
attack upon Naples. Garibaldi replied that,
for just this once, he should disobey his
orders, adding, "but when I shall have
made you King of Italy, I will lay my sword
at your feet, and obey you for the rest of
my life." So, almost without money, except
Mazzini's last 30,000 francs which he sent
Garibaldi to convey his troops to Naples,
and with a handful of men, and by sheer au-
dacity and force of purpose, the kingdom of
Naples was swept to the feet of the King of
Sardinia. Austria, bankrupt and harassed
by the Hungarians, offered no opposition, so
there was no pretext for interference from
Louis Napoleon. Francis II. for a time
held out at Gaeta, that old refuge for tyrants
in extremity, then with a proclamation full
of pathos, and with a dignity worthy of a
better cause, he disappeared from view,
dying in obscurity at Paris in 1895.
The 80,000 Neapolitan troops had disap-
peared like the snow before the sun. When
Garibaldi entered Naples the people acted
as if they had gone mad. For eight hours
he had to appear and reappear on the bal-
cony in response to their wild shouts and
clamor, until, from sheer exhaustion, he re-
tired for rest. Then like little children
they whispered, "Our father sleeps,'* and
hushed and silent went about the streets
holding their hands high above their heads
with one finger pointing upward, a panto-
mime which had the glad meaning — "Italy
While this was taking place, Victor Em-
manuel was attacking an enemy nearer home.
Probably knowing the time was favorable
for the undertaking, he sent an envoy to the
Pope, respectfully but positively demand-
ing the retirement of the foreign troops
which he had called to his aid under General
Lamoriciere. Pius IX. refused to consider
the request. Without hesitation, the King
sent troops down into the papal territory
and after a short campaign Lamoriciere and
his foreigners were driven out. Catholic Eu-
rope was much scandalized by such a pro-
ceeding. Austria and Prussia and Russia
joined in a chorus of angry protest, Louis
Napoleon withdrew his Minister from Turin,
and even from Gaeta there came a feeble
little voice — that of Francis II., late King of
It was toward Gaeta that the King's army
turned when matters were settled with
Lamoriciere and his men. Near Naples
Victor Emmanuel and Garibaldi met for the
first time since the wonderful achievement.
As they clasped each others hands. Gari-
baldi, his voice choked with emotion, said,
^'King of Italy!" To which the King
simply answered, "Grazie ! " (thanks). Then
later gratefully telling the gallant soldier
that his daring had hastened Italian unity
by ten years. To which Garibaldi replied,
" But, Sire, it could not have been done had
not Victor Emmanuel been the most noble
and generous of kings ! "
Hoping for a republic no less eagerly than
Mazzini, Garibaldi always yielded his own
ardent and impatient desires to the necessi-
ties of the situation, while Mazzini, never
diverted from his lofty ideal, hating a mon-
archy almost as much as he did Austrian
tyranny, had for years embarrassed the
government at every step. Again and again
had he kindled revolutionary fires, leaving
behind him a trail of conspiracies and re-
volts, followed by executions and exile, seri-
ously damaging the cause for which he would
have been glad to die. So this hour of exul-
tation was one of bitterness and defeat to the
brooding and disappointed idealist. When
the more plastic Garibaldi, finding a repub-
lic was impossible, bestowed his splendid
prize upon King Victor Emmanuel, the great
opportunity was lost !
A plebiscite was taken and the desire of
the people was unanimously expressed for
annexation. So the soldier laid down his
Dictatorship, left to Victor Emmanuel the
kingdom he had captured, then returned to
Caprera, as someone happily says, "to dig
up in the fall the potatoes he had planted in
the spring." It is an amusing picture we
get of the hero' s home — of his red shirts and
gray trousers hung over a rope stretched
across his bedroom, and a framed lock of
Anita's hair hanging over his bed, and —
most delicious touch of all — his three don-
keys in the courtyard, named respectively
Francis Joseph, Louis Napoleon, and Pio
Nono !
In 1861 Victor Emmanuel opened his new
Parliament, representing all of Italy except
Venetia and Rome. It was only twelve years
since Novara — since unloved and unwel-
comed he came to Turin, and now, the centre
of the hopes of the nation, he was "By the
grace of God, and bp the will of the people
(the addition is his own). King of Italy ! "
His was not yet a bed of roses. The task
imposed by the enormous addition of illiter-
acy and of helplessness and crime was not a
simple one. The new census revealed the
appalling fact that out of the 22,000,000 sub-
jects now ruled by Victor Emmanuel, 17,000,-
000 could neither read nor write, while brig-
andage, incited and encouraged by royalists
and by the agents of Francis 11. , prevailed to
a frightful extent in the newly acquired ter-
ritory. Cavour grasped all these difficulties
and problems with the hand of a master, not
the least of his tasks being to keep in check
the irrepressible Garibaldi, always in conflict
with sober methods, never forgetting that
Cavour had given Nice, his native city, to
France, and losing no opportunity to re-
proach him with words not easy to bear.
But with sublime patience Cavour bore it all
and strove to bring order out of a chaos
of financial, military, and economic affairs,
these complicated b}^ the ever-persistent ir-
ritation arising from a Pope at Rome sup-
ported by a French garrison. The strain was
prodigious, and within a year Cavour showed
signs of breaking under it. It was with over-
whelming grief that Victor Emmanuel stood
at the bedside of his dying Minister in 1861.
** Better for Italy if it were I who had died ! "
were his words when all was over.
The impatient leader at Caprera was in the
meantime planning a settlement of the vexed
Roman question. When the King heard that
he was in Sicily raising an army with the
watchword "Rome or Death!" he immedi-
ately sent an armed force to stop the reck-
less proceeding. Garibaldi, wounded by
Italian soldiers and under the displeasure
of his King, in the very territory he had
bestowed upon him, presents a spectacle
confusing to the sensibilities and to the
conscience of beholders ! But it was an ad-
ditional proof of Victor Emmanuel's calm-
ness of judgment that he could deal promptly
and wisely with a situation so painful. And
a general amnesty proclaimed upon the mar-
riage of his daughter, Maria Pia, with the
young King of Portugal, relieved him of the
necessity of punishing the soldier to whom
he owed so much.
This reckless attempt increased the com-
plication at Rome, Louis Napoleon strength-
ened his garrison, and Pius IX. took a fresh
hold upon his temporal sovereignty. And
when there came a petition signed by priests,
praying the Holy Father to yield to the
entreaties of his children and make peace
with Victor Emmanuel, Cardinal Antonelli
scornfully replied that his Holiness made no
terms with robbers, and so could not treat
with the "Robber King" at Turin. The
new ministry went on with the work of
reform. Schools were established, and a
railway, that messenger of civilization, ex-
tended all the way down to Brindisi, the
ancient city of Brundisium, just as the
Appian Way that messenger of an an-
cient civilization had done long centuries
If Garibaldi had left his beloved Italy
once more under a cloud, the cloud lifted
when he arrived in London, and was given
an ovation such as few heroes have received.
He found himself the idol of the hour, and
children and young maidens, in England
and in America, were wearing the scarlet-
flannel blouse which bore his name. Per-
haps it was this voice of approval which
encouraged the reckless hero again and
again to make the attempt, from wliich he
only desisted when he saw his infatuated
boys mowed down by French chassepots
at the gates of Rome, having accomplished
nothing except to greatly increase Victor
Emmanuel's burden by rendering negotia-
tions with Louis Napoleon impossible.
By the year 1866 the situation in Europe
had been changed by the advent of a new
and potent factor. Count Bismarck believed
the time was ripe for Prussia to throw off
the Austrian yoke, that antiquated assump-
tion of headship which was the last surviv-
ing relic of a "Holy Roman Empire! " The
old despotism at Vienna was much shaken
since its conflicts with Hungary and Italy,
and was not carrying things with so high a
hand as i^ used to do. Bismarck rightly
judged that a war at this time would result
happily for Prussia. It mattered little what
it was about. Fortune favored him by a
dispute over the Danish duchies of Schles-
wig and Holstein, Austria claiming Hol-
stein as her share of the spoils, after the
defeat of Denmark by Austria and Prussia
in 1864. So war was declared, Bismarck in
advance having made a secret alliance, offen-
sive and defensive, with Italy. Prince Hum-
bert and his brother Amadeus, Duke of
Aosta, did valiant service, but the Italians
were badly beaten at Custozza. This was of
little consequence, however. The event so
long desired was coming through an unex-
pected door. The Austrians were totally
defeated at Sadowa. Louis Napoleon was
asked by Francis Joseph to act as mediator,
receiving from him at the same time Venetia,
to dispose of as he would. Here was an op-
portunity for the amende honorable. Sev-
enty years before the great Napoleon had
given the hapless Venice to Austria. Louis
Napoleon himself had bitterly disappointed
the Italians in failing to recover it in 1859.
Now, seven years later, he offered it as a
free gift to the country so wronged. So,
with the consent of Count Bismarck, which
Victor Emmanuel made a condition of its ac-
ceptance, Venetia was at last joined to Italy.
Now there remained only the Eternal City
from which came the grido di dolore. Eu-
rope was getting very tired of the subject of
the ''Papal Captivity." The relations be-
tween . Austria and the Vatican had become
less intimate, and as Francis Joseph with-
drew his active sympathies from Pius IX. he
made friendly overtures toward Italy. Pius
IX. while promulgating his new dogma of
Papal Infallibility (1870), and thus increas-
ing the defences about his position, still
made it plain that it was only the man
who claimed to be King of Italy to whom
he refused Ms friendship ; that for Victor
Emmanuel, the King of Sardinia, he felt the
deepest regard. At the same time Victor
Emmanuel lost no opportunity to assure the
Holy Father of his undying devotion to him
as the spiritual head of his kingdom and of
Christendom. In the midst of these inter-
changes and the general softening of embit-
tered hearts, the end was approaching, as it
so often does, from an entirely unexpected
Napoleon III. declared war against Prus-
sia. The balance had been disturbed by the
humiliation of his old ally, Austria, and he
was going to restore it by vanquishing the
victor — this Protestant Prussia, which stood
for all that he was not. In seven weeks
came Sedan (1870). The French Emperor
was a prisoner and the French Empire had
ceased to exist. There was no longer a
French garrison at Rome.
In the correspondence which followed be-
tween Victor Emmanuel and the Pope, one
respectfully expressed his determination to
take possession of his capital, and the other
an equal resolve to yield it only to superior
force. Pius IX. gave orders to his few
French zouaves to capitulate as soon as a
breach was made in the walls. That hour
quickly arrived, and a white handkerchief
fluttering from the point of a bayonet an-
nounced that the end had come — that Rome
was joined to Italy, and the unification
which iiad been the dream of centuries was
In the altered European conditions not one
state remained to protest against this climax.
The French Empire had vanished, Prussia
was now the ally of Italy, and when the Pope
appealed to his old friend and champion,
Austria, to protect him from this invasion of
his rights and territory, the reply promptly
came that Austria could do nothing to inter-
rupt the friendly relations with Italy which
she was happy to say had existed since their
reconciliation. So Pius IX. proclaimed him
self a prisoner, and during the seven years of
life remaining to him never stepped be3^ond
the precincts of the Vatican. By what is
known as "The Law of the Papal Guaran-
tees," the sovereign pontiff is accorded royal
honors and a revenue of $645,000. His
person is as inviolable as the King's. The
Vatican and Lateran palaces, with their
grounds and all the works of art contained
in them, are for his exclusive use, as is also
the Casfcel Gandolfo, his summer palace.
These places are sacredly his own. No offi-
cial under any circumstances can enter them
without his permission. The jurisdiction
thus afforded by the Papal Guarantees is
over the church property in the city of
Rome, and six suburban sees which were re-
served by the government for the papal use.
To these limits is the '^ temporal sovereignty "
of the Pope restricted.
In 1869 a son was born to Prince Humbert
and Margherita, the charming cousin he had
married the year before. The boy was chris-
tened Vittorio Emanuele and received the
title of Prince of Naples. The King's other
son, Amadeus, Duke of Aosta, had been in-
vited to fill a vacant throne in Spain and had
commenced his dreary experiment of playing
the part of He Galantiiomo in that country.
In July, 1871, the royal residence was re-
moved from the temporary capital at Flor-
ence, and amid great rejoicings was estab-
lished at the Quirinal palace in Rome. An
incident is described in connection with this
event which brings into strong and pathetic
relief characters who have since passed off
the stage of human events. Emperor Fred-
erick of Germany, at that time the adored
Unser Fritz, had been invited to make one
of the party at the Qiihinal on thai occasion.
When the royal family appeared upon the
balcony he impulsively snatched up the lit-
tle prince,- who is now the King of Italy, and
to the terror of his mother, held him up high
in his arms in view of the tumultuous, shout-
ing throng below.
One by one the principal actors in the
drama of Italy's unification dropped by the
way. In 1872 Mazzini, the irreconcilable pa-
triot and the ''prophet of the Revolution,"
died at Pisa. In 1879 an unexpected and
stunning blow fell upon the people. Victor
Emmanuel was stricken with a fatal illness.
Pope Pius IX., deeply moved, sent word
that he was only prevented by age and in-
firmities from coming himself to administer
the last rites, which he sent a cardinal to per-
form. Princess Clo tilde and Amadeus were
quickly summoned, but arrived too late.
The Re Galantuomo was no more. A cry
of poignant grief ascended from the whole of
Italy. People wept as for a father. King
Humbert's proclamation, issued a few hours
after the death of the King, closed with these
words: "Italians — Your first King is dead.
His successor pledges himself to prove to
you that constitutions do not die ! " Modern Rome bad witnessed nothing like the scene
at the funeral as their dead King passed
from the Quirinal to the Pantheon — the
" Iron Crown of Lombardy " borne on a
cushion behind the coffin.
Just one month later Pius IX, the " pris-
oner of the Vatican," was dead, and, lying
in his splendid vestments, was borne to St.
Peter's, and placed in the niche which for
thirty-two years had been occupied by
Gregory XVI. Cardinal Pecci, who was
chosen by the Conclave, assumed the name
Leo XIII and commenced the pontificate
which was to last twenty-four years.
With a deep sense of responsibility King
Humbert succeeded to the throne his father
had created ; and the love he won from Italy
was attested when on July 29, 1900, he was
cruelly assassinated by the anarchist Bres-
cia. A cry of horror and of grief arose
from his entire kingdom. It was not an
easy thing to succeed Victor Emmanuel,
and Humbert had borne himself well for
twenty-two years under tiying difficulties.
With no great sources of wealth such as are
possessed by other lands, with an unde-
veloped peasant population disproportion-
ately large, with a burdensome taxation necessary to meet the expenses of the gov-
ernment, and with earthquakes, and floods,
and cholera, the King of Italy had no sine-
cure. The national finances demanded wis-
dom in the rulers, and patient sacrifice
from the people. The maintenance of a
sovereign pontiff in royal state at Eome is
a heavy burden for a state so encumbered
to bear. And as their guest is an unwilling
one, the usual compensations for expensive
entertainment do not exist ! The many irri-
tations growing out of this hostility be-
tween the Quirinal and the Vatican neces-
sarily make the throne of Italy a very un-
easy seat. For two luminaries to try to
shine in close proximity to each other in
a small corner of the heavens, would be a
similar experiment. Rome is not large
enough for two thrones, especially if one of
these claims the earth !
A small cloud in 1891 obscured the peace-
ful relations which have always subsisted
between Italy and the United States. Eleven
Italians belonging to the secret society of
the " Mafia '' were murdered by an exasper-
ated mob in New Orleans. It was discov-
ered that only two of these men were Ital-
ian citizens, and the matter was finally adjusted by Marquis di Eudini and Secre-
tary Blaine, through the skilful mediation of
Baron Fava, the sum of $25,000 being paid
by the United States to the families of the
two murdered men. The name Mafia is
said to have come from the initials of the
war-cry at the time of the Sicilian Vespers
— " Morta Alia Francesi Italia Ancla."
M. A. F. I. A. . A mixture apparently of
Italian with Sicilian dialect. The word
Mafia has degenerated until it signifies any
association for purposes of vengeance.
Upon the tragic death of Humbert, the
infant held aloft in the strong arms of
" Unser Fritz ^' twenty-nine years before be-
came Victor Emmanuel III, King of Italy.
The young King's marriage with the beau-
tiful Montenegrin princess, had all the
charm of a romance in private life; and
Queen Helena's ready sympathy with the
calamities and sorrows which have come to
her people, and the simplicity of the life at
the Quirinal, have endeared her and helped
to make this reign a most acceptable one.
The death of Pope Leo XIII occurred
July 26, 1903. In his ninety-fourth year,
this remarkable man still grasped the po-
litical problems of the day with the vigor of bis prime, and with the comprehensive-
ness of an astute statesman; guiding and
restraining his people in two hemispheres,
with a wisdom which made his death a ca-
lamity for the world. And yet, the course
marked ont by Pius IX, a man with no com-
prehension of the time in which he lived,
was never materially altered. Leo XIII
lived and died a " Prisoner of the Vati-
can " ; and the chasm between his palace
and the Quirinal remained as wide and deep
as ever.
The splendid intelligence of this pope,
and the modernness of his ''^tellectual
spirit, had many times led people to believe
he was on the verge of tearing down some
of the walls of separation, and letting the
currents of the modern world course
through the veins of the church. But just
as many times was the world disappointed.
Few men, be they popes, emperors, or
kings, are strong enough to defy the tra-
ditions of the exalted place to which they
have been called. Whether there was such
a conflict as is implied by this in the mind
of the venerable and extraordinary man
who occupied the chair of St. Peter for
twenty-four years, no one knows. But to some it has seemed so; and also, that a
great opportunity was lost. The recon-
ciliation with the Quirinal, and that other
reconciliation with the scientific spirit of the
age, whch would have made this pontificate
so remarkable, did not come.
After long deliberation in the Conclave
the choice for the papal chair fell upon Car-
dinal Giuseppe Sarto, a Venetian, who, Au-
gTist 4, 1903, with much apparent reluc-
tance exchanged his free life in Venice for
that of the " Prisoner of the Vatican." It
was on account of his known liberal ten-
dencies that he was opposed in the Conclave,
and this, together with wann personal re-
lations which he held with the reigning
family, led to the belief that a reconciliation
was at hand. Perhaps the choice of the
title by which he should reign foreshad-
owed the course he had resolved to pur-
sue. It would not be quite seemly for Pius
X to undo the work and cast reproach upon
Pius IX!
It is an interesting fact that Austria still
holds the power of veto in the Conclave,
which was hers by virtue of h^r headship
in the " Holy Eoman Empire," and amid
the crumbling ruin of the past this fragmerit suggestively survives. That it was
not used in the last meeting of the Conclave
perhaps indicates an understanding re-
garding the pohtical course which would be
followed by Cardinal SartO; who has, in the
five years of his pontificate, been entirely
faithful to the traditions of his predecessors.
In the year 1905 an Act, called ''The Law
of Associations,'^ was passed by the French
Government, the purpose of which was to
restrict the political power of the Church by
means of the suppression of rehgious orders
of men and women upon the soil of France.
In support of this extreme measure, it was
claimed that the French clergj^ had always
been in sympathy with every reactionary
attempt in France; that the religious orders
were, in fact, a nursery for aristocratic con-
spiracies; that every intrigue against the
life of the Republic had been instigated by
Clericahsm acting within these orders; and
hence their expulsion had become essential
to the safety of the State. It was also ex-
pressly declared that the Act of Associations
was aimed not at Religion, not at the Church,
but at Clericalism, a powerful element within
the Church, which was converting it into a
political as well as a spiritual power.
At a time when the agitation resulting
from this contention had reached its most
acute stage, a Papal Encychcal, addressed
to the Church in France, made compromise
with the Government an impossibihty.
When Pius X. sent a mandatory syllabus
to Frenchmen regarding their pohtical rela-
tions with the Government under v/hich they
hved, he mistook his century.
A bill providing for the immediate separa-
tion of Church and State, and the transfer of
all Church properties to the Government, was
quickly passed by the French Senate. The
calmness in which this revolutionary measure
was debated in the French Parhament made
it manifest that the highest intelHgence
of the nation had become convinced of its
necessity. The power derived from the
ownership of valuable ecclesiastical estates
was no longer in the hands of men in sym-
pathy with the enemies of the existing form
of government. And France, in many ways
the nearest and dearest of the daughters of
the Church, w^as now officially separated
from her.
If this proved Pius X. to be deficient in the dehcate arts of diplomacy and states-
manship which had characterized his great predecessor, the year 1907 emphasized still
more the difference in their methods, when
another EncycHcal addressed to the Roman
Catholic Church Universal was issued from
the Vatican.

The avowed purpose of this
second Syllabus was to warn the Church
against the spirit of Modernism, meaning, of
course, the conclusions of modern science
and research so far as they conflict with the
infallibility of the Church dogmas, and the
free handling of religious subjects by profane

All Bishops of the Church are com-
manded to treat ^' Modernism^' as a disease;
to forbid the reading of literature infected
with its germs; the printing and circulation
of hterature so infected to be suppressed by
censors appointed for that purpose; every
Bishop being ordered to report to the Vatican,
under oath, the conditions in his diocese
revealed by such censorship.
Whatever might have been the personal opinions and desires of Leo XIII. regarding th^e things, he was too wise, too astute, to have placed his Chm'ch in open conflict with the expanding intellectual hfe of the world, and the spirit of the age, and, it may be added, too much of a statesman to have permitted France to be lost to the Church.  
Xow the chasm between the Quirinal and the Vatican is wider than ever before.

Not since PIO IX., not since the Papal Captivity, have they been so far apart, or the hope of
a reconcihation so remote.

A pontificate which seemed to give promise of hberal reforms and of reconcihation has proved a
chsappointment ; and the gentle Cardinal whose simphcity and sanctity awoke these hopes, seems transfonned into an intransigent of adamantine t^-pe.

The longed-for reconcihation can only come now through the accessions to the King's party in Italy,
consequent upon the unexpected attitude of the Vatican toward the world of to-day.
Marconi's contribution to that world, in the practical apphcation of a new science, places his coimtr}^ in the van of modern progress.

And the brilliant explorations of another son, the Duke of the Abruzzi, prove that the spirit of the great Genoese still survives in Italy.
Italy, threatened by internal fires, shaken by earthquakes, titanic, but picturesque even in her calamities has had more than her share of rich human experiences, any one of which would have bestowed immortality.

The list is an imposing one.

A Roman Republic, a Roman Empire, the triumphs of her mediaeval cities, when her merchant princes ruled the commerce of the world, the emancipation of human thought by the Renaissance, the production of the world's masterpieces in art, and last of all, the most dramatic of modern epics,
the struggle which resulted in the unification of Italy!

Do the annals of the Italian peninsula record anything nobler than this achievement!