Sx chat wih no sinin
Undue inllnence of the nobles Tiherius Gracchns .... If somewhat ^'ola- tile in private life, yet, in })ul)lic atlairs, they dis[)layed a wise foresight, and carried out their designs with \igour and constancy.^ Florence, like Athens, united tlie highest culture with the strongest ])olitical insthicts. J3ut the neighbouiing nobles and landowners being en- rolled as citizens, acquired entire control over the government.^ In 1215, a Guelpli and Ghibehne feud di\ ided the nobles into two hostile factions ; and after thirty-three years of civil war, the Guelphs were driven out of the cit3\ The nobles were thus weakened, Avhile the citizens, familiarised with war, and accus- tomed to assert their authority over disturbers of the puljlic peace, now gained the ascendant. ■^ r — - considerable social change was being de^"eloped, which, d.u.'^yof while it added to the strength of the republics, en- dangered their future liberties. They secured the attach- ment of cilizens who might have been leaders of the ])eoj)le, by entrusting to them the govermnent of sul)- jecl citic.-, and olher lucrative oflices, and bv inequitable impo^ls. Lorenzo began to assume the title of Prince of Flore] a'c, or Magnihcent v Signor. CHAP, all the citizens to a share in the government. ;dy tol)e o Nerrun by foreign 1roo])s ; and Xa])oleon"s u Ti V.' memorable campaigns brought a large ])art of her soil under tlu' dominion of France. ihj examples of Dure I'-'hi^'t-kv (lemoj'rae T, in its simplest I'orms, and of carel'nllv eon- i-i'-'"'- ti'i\-ed and durable ]-e[jnbli(jan institutions, to be found in tile annals of ]uiro})e.
o^\•ever dangerous to order and civil hberty, in peace, were e\"cr \ictorious in war.'^ De\'oted as they were to liberty, the Genoese were The Doge, so wearied with the ci\il wars provoked by the rivalries of noble families, that, in 13o9, they followed the ex- ^339. Tlu-ir temperament dis- })osed tlicin to gaiety and pleasure. 299 as coiis])icuoiis parallels, in culture, in freedom, and in cuap. ■— ^ — ' Florence, like other Italian cities, was Q'overned in its consti- early tunes by consuls, chosen from the principal citi- zens, and 1)}^ a Senate, of a hundred members. Their ascendency in Florentine society Avent far to assure their ])olitical power: l)ut they strengthened themselves by those arts of corruption which are generally resorted to by govern- ments seeking to rnnsk tlieir authority under the dis- guise of |)opular institutions. At his death, in 14G0, he was succeeded l)v his two sons, Lorenzo and Julian ; and on the assassination of tlie latter, in 1478. ' Eorlhrcc centuries ii continued to be the destiny i.-,for inr- of l! Fro\[ this r;i])i(l sketch of Itahaii liberties, we may now cii Ai'. ' \' 1 1 1 ]);is.- to tile polilical liislory of Switzei'Iand, w])ic]i pre- ^- — r-— sf M'its some of tlie most interest!
]^]\-en in the cities which had been t Viendlv or neutral, his jf rile republic itself. ri\al factii^ns and familii's continued in ])erpetual war- fare : they brought disorders into the k^tate : they de- tied ihe law ; and refused to submit themse K'es to tlie jurisdiction of the magisi rates. of national independence', have, at the same time, di- \i(h'(l ihi' country, by natural boundaries, into mnnrrous local connnunities, widely se})arated from one another. They were subject to little from their distant so\'ereigns ; and cn)wninu" the rugged heights of this land of mountain and valley whli their ibrdlied castles, they were ever readv tor ^\•ar and plunder. Thest' ])rinces still fnrlher faxonred the forlificalioii of towns, and the nuniicipal pi-i\-ileges of llieir iiiliabilants. Tliey showed lillle jealousv of liie towii'^ which were under their patronage, and contribuled to iheir re Ncnues. and, as yel, there was no approach lo a confcdri Mtion threatening llie general inlluence ol' the nobles.^ And ihus ihe towns con- tinued to grow, and llourish. ma(h' laws for their own government, and swore to oh^^erve them, 'idn'se assemblies A\-('re as priiriiti\'e as those of the ancient (4i'nnans. How far tile earnest spirit of the reformers pi^evai Unl Swiai over I he corruptions which they exposed, it is diff Kaill mwa-. Ihit their appeals were addressed to many willing" listeners, who had Ioul;' re- ])i"o! 373 tlie Thirty Years' War, when its absolute independence ciiai'. Austria and France had lonij been contendhig for a dominant influence in Switzerland : but from this period, France, wliich was the chief employer of its mercenary troops, and was also its nearest and most active neighbour, gradually obtained a decided ascendency ; and, partly by menace, and partly by liberal subsidies, directed the councils of the confederation.
lie banished all the inhabitants of JMilan, licli and ])oor, destroyed t Ju-ir houses, and rased tlie walls of their city. Tlie nobles, if united, miu'ht still t'le" lia\e retained nuich of their former iniluence : but class. Sucii being the character of the Swiss peo])le, the Cm-i-a- great mountain chains of the Alps, while serving as cidoiits .,f barriers against foreign States, and encouraging a spirit The greater dukes and counts domi- nated over the lesser nobles ; and scourged theii' neigh- bours with constant exactions. )y the Emperoi" to the dukes of the house of Zicfingen. — electing their oavu chief magistrate or ' Land- anunan ' and their judges, and dt-ciding all questions affecting the interests of the commune, by the imani- nioiis \()te of a general assembly of the people." '''■■''"■ It was the simplest form of democracv recorded in III ;lic '- '"'■'■~» the historv of the world. chiefs, or ])riests, the hardv monntaineers assembled, ill tlu' open air. in unmeasured terms, the .scandals of foreign pi'iisions, and the venality of those whom (u)(l had placed in authoi'ity over their fellow- citizens.
In se\-t'ral other cantt)ns, of which Zilrich aud ' I'binla, Ili-ft.
If any profession of political faith is ex})ected from the author, as a pledge of the spirit in ^vliich this history is ^vritten, it is this: — I hail the development of })Opular power, as an essential condition of the social ad\'ancement of nations : I am an ardent admirer of })olitical libcrt}', — of rational and enlightened liberty, sucli as most Englishmen approve; and I condcmiiany violation of its princi})k's, whether by a despotic king, or by an ill- ordered republic. Soleure was the last of the aristo- iralic cantons, and maiulaiued a close alliance with I'.eriu' and the other cai Uous gowrned upon the like principles.
She was at once foremost in intellectual resources, and in freedom. Meanwhile, tliey had increased in wealth and enlightenment, but still retaini'd the sim[)le and frugal habits of their forefathers.'"^ Such men as these, goaded by furtlu T troubles and op- pression, Avere soon to found an ad\'aiiced democracy.^ After tliis brief sketch of the chief Italian cities, ^ve must now revert to their general history. llii); citin-na.^ They needed all the streno-th that union could if Wo to iheir divided forces : for their liberties were tlu'eatened by foreign enemies and domestic foes. The ueighbouring nol)les, who had been their rivals, and often their foes, graduall}' left their fortified castles and enrolled them- selves as citizens of the republics. which sjiai-ed the rich and Liid heavy burthens on the poor.- The [)ower t)f the oligarchy was furthci- maintained by the banishment of dangerous ri\-als : ai:d this odious exercise^ of ai-bilrary pov/cr Avas left to tlie ' Pliilip]. lie also made an essential change in the constitution, ])y inducing a l^'arliament to transfer its ])(_)wers to a council of se\'emv, entirely in liis interests. Eight ■ — .-'— ' linndred citizens assemhled in a general council, ^vhieh assmned the sovereignty of the State. Every [)re\ious in\-asiou ' • Soii M'iit i''t',-t la lilx'iti' qu"i)ii acf-nsi' de.s souirrar.ct'-; ct dos (■ri! The natiu'al e(.)n figuration of Switzerland is sueli as to x..,t„,-,ii ■proiiiote a, lo\e of freedom, and inde})endenee, in its in- s-'Vv '',■-''' habitants. j,],, .■;.-,, ]ii.; ](,(;_ 04,; ■'• Moiuiard, ///s'.
() i Ja'saiue re[)r(_'ssi\ e jui'isdicliou.'' There was humour ' Si-! I'Vom i'eudal subjeciiou the Swiss gradutdly escaped, Growm or , . National unity was needed, to perfeet the uses of confederation. Uy the Borroniean Leaj^nie, or Golden Alliance, as it was soniethnes called, the seven Catholic cantons recoii'iiised each other as l)i-ethren, and bound tlieniselves to sup])ort the ancient faith, au'aiiist the Protestant cantons. The finances of the cantons were carefully and thriftily administered. Th(ir exclusi\-e power was sometimes resisted : but could not be overthrown.
the si^'noiia, \vas a.ulhoi'i^ed to ciiiiob K' them, and so suljjecl thcin ! Their ini^'ssant ^varfare \-as training a brave and advent in'ous people to arms ; while the vigour of a noble race, and the •-jiirilual iulluence of the C'hurcli, were promoting the ci\ilisati(n of the people, and preparing ihem for the future assertion of libi M'ty. The difliculties of union were greatly increased by tlu^ licformation, which alienated the Catholic and Pro- testant cantons, and introduced divided courisds into the confederation. At till' close of the period of the Reforination, si;veii t of the cantons adhered to tlieir ancient Catholic faith : ' ha-'iu' P)erne, Jjasle, Zuricli and k^chairiiausen had ado[)1e(l tin reformed reli Li'ion ; and Appenzel and Glarusreco_i'nised both these ibrins of worship. Eoads and bridges througliout these mountain regions were skilfully constructed and vigilantly n'])aired. In Jjcrne, wlicre the n()l)les had always been in the R^^f"''- ascendant, the entire administration liad fdlen into the hands of a few families,- Avith Avhoni it liad become licreditary.
Freedom of thijught Avas repressed in ^e(ai]ar studies, as in religion. Many .-iiuilar fxaniplc- \\\ lie f^unid in Ln ihnirc franndsv an Mui/iii-ch/e. Tlie maritime entca* ])rise of these thi'ee re[)iil)lics (h'veloped the Aigoiir. and intelligence of their citizens, and encouraged their lo\'e of liberty. h)oth were less given to culture than tlicir m()r(^ democratic contemporaries. Mil""- Milan claimed great antiquity among Italian cities. the cork-tre(\ the mulberry, and the cvjiri'ss ; the heights of Fiesole, the winding Arno, the rich vege- tation of its flowery vale, the hill of San Minialo, and the sharp ridges of C'ai Tara, formed a ])i'nuiv which could not fail to iiis})ire them with a love of nature, and a creative sense of the l)eautiful. i'''"'"p"f'^ And truly, if Venice may be compared yith Si)arta, witii Florence may fitly bear com])arison with the most emi- nent of the Greek republics. Ain.ii- These measures displayed the I'csolution of the re- estabii. How great must have been their wealth of able citizens. meml KTs, and one of tlie com]nnn(\ composed of 125 \-) 1. by the genius and highej' (Mih ix'ation of their own I'ace. If thev ^'"""' had loyally associated themselves with their fellow- ciiizens. fiction, and disorders, the citizens were ready to the hand^ of I heir .v/'v/y-'/w. 'riie\' prel'erred [)ronipl juslici' to anai'chv : but their eon- was generally abnsed ; and the men Ashoin lliey irnsled, if they re|)res-ed tnnuills, were, loo ot'ien. '1\ tljese strifes and factions must be added the nevei-endin Lf feuds betwcciu I'ival families, in Av Jiich tlie liapless citizens became embroiled. cruelty, craft, treachery, and unrelenting vengeance, and Avere rarely redeemed by any act of c Jiivah'v or nobleness. In its past hisioj T, ;uid in its present political life, we may find illustrati(^n"/(;_)'■.?
Every hi- quirv and speculation Avas cinamrscribed by her tenets and tradilious. di V,„rzi sent forth her armies against rival Itali m cities, and lier fleets from the Adriatic to Syrii and Egypt, ;^]le made conquests in Istria and Dalmati'i.- and on tlie eastern sliores of the Adriatic, ."^iie contended wiili Geiuja and Eis;i i V)r llie (anpire of the seas. degenerated into \in- dicti\e jealousies and disastrous wars. In ]().")2, lie was obliij-f^d lo consulr a council of illustrious citizens, chosen bv him- s.'lf. the I'o^^''-', ten ..'..(■t-d aiiiiually 1a tile Great Couiicil, and .-ix by the Si-'-noria. 29.'5 ros(^liitioii : viixorous in action : ])riiirely in its ambition (Hap. Both were close aristocracies : both were remarkable for their tenacity of ])urpose, their secresy, and the long duration of their power. They made terms with their new- ruler : l)ut in the crafty and resolute churchman they found a tyrant. The pirr[)le slo})es of the Apennines, clothed with the ches Tnut. Its VII spirited and enlightened citizens aspired to raise their fau- city to the honours of an Itahan Athens. For the maiiiteiiance of the public peace tlui citizens were divided into t Avenly armed companies, of two hundred : and were ])laced vmder the orders of the li'oidalonier, who, like the priors, was elected for two months, and became tlie chief of the siii'uoria. udied WAV in ]•' ranee or Germany, and had improved upon the tactics they liad leai'ued. iiii\"t'lli a]i]ic;u'\-ervwlua'e tlie turbulc Mice of the n()l)les was the Turimicnc'e aiul .■iiiihi- chiet' (^ause of the fall of tlu^ Italian rei)ul)hcs. At the same lime, their victorious leaders, commandinir at once an army and a ])ohtical faction, naturally exer- cised a sway, incompatible with po])ular freedom. popes, and iiobles, alike conspired against Italian freedom. It liad long been tlic rule for led(-r;i] (hicgalcs to vcie in the Diet, iiot a; ructic»us : thc A' A\'ere canional ambassador- ra/ji'-r dian repi'esenlatiws.- jjy tile fetf'ral coustituiion oi' 184S. fundamental ])riuciple of the Swiss confederation ; ;md il satisfies at once tlie democratic tradition^ of tlie people, and the natural jealou^ie- of the several canton-. It has ]:)resented examples of tlie purest democracy, of aristocratic encroachments, of po])nlar agitation, of ancient franchises recovered, and of repub- lican institutions restored and consolidated. Animals ' j Oiucn's Coniparati Ne .\natomy and I'h.ysiology .
Search for Sx chat wih no sinin:
The ignorance of this period, however, cannot be charged mainly on the Church. .-hnuld lia\"i' a pai't in the :j'o\-ernnit Mit,' '()aliquani part-'Ui lialjiv'itit in pi'iiicijwitu : ' Sihiiiiki Tliiuluuid. Ikit S])arta, as well from its g('Ogra])liical position, as from its narrow policy, dis- coui Mged commerce: whik^ Venice, from its marithne situation, and natural instincts, was prc-eminentlv com- mercial. And -^o this favoiu'ed city ih)urished in com- merce and manuf ictures. lis streets were adorned with churches, ])ala(H's, and towers : its Hood-swohen river Ava'^ embanked ^vilh 1 'Of all ill" t'aii l U'p. The government was popvdar, and its principles were democratic. which secured a -^hare in the _^' nc-ia.-y ' ' in Fliir- 'I'he rnliii L! Doubtless, they Avould ha\'e aerpiii'cd the chief intlueuce in the go\'ernment : but they could have wielded the force of a free people, instead of being (b'i\eu tbilh in disgi-aee. In sewral cities, her cause contributed totii( in- n''i-'i ovei'i'nrow I'f their free institutions. not unworthy of illustration bv the genius of P)oecaccio and ^^hakes|)ea]"e.-^ lut cold- blooded murders were the chief incidents of these hateful feuds. (lark, niid i■^^i^\^ him ^villi tlic liidden ciiai'. ", ofclnssicil the lunival of chissical learning, m the fourteenth learning-. 1)v ilie aid of a Farliameut, secaired tlie ])ani-]mient of his ri\;i]. His powers were those of a dictator, rene^Ncd from time to time : his ri\'als were banished from the State ; and his owii adherents were placed in all the magistracies. llu'if citizens, ;)iid tlidr struggles for liberty, in an age • r^ — - wlien it "was unknown in otlier realms, claim the admi- I'alioii of |)osterit3\ Jkit tlie state of society, and tlie ])i)litical condition of Europe, forbad the success of democratic institutions ; and if there is much to admire in tilt; history of these celebrated cities, there is yet more to condemn and to regret. irreconcilalde opposition of the French and national Swiss parties, prevented tlie ado])tion of ;inv conslitulion L'^enerally acce])table to tin; people. ' It would he ])ainfu],' he said, ' to tliink that destiny had sin^Lded out this epoch, \vliieh has called to life so inany republics, as the lioiir of destruction to one of the oldest commonweahh.s in Europe.' But the tone in whir-h la; addressed tlu^ Swiss ^vas that of a die-tator rather tliaii a mediator.