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The high merits and distinguished character of the 
original Grerman work by Professor Kohbausch, of which 
this is a translation, have long been acknowledged. A work 
which during a period of thirty years has enjoyed so much 
popularity as to have gone through several editions, em- 
bracing a circulation of many thousands of copies; a pro- 
duction which has extended and estabUshed its good repute, 
even in its original form, far beyond its native cUme, to 
England, France, Belgium, Italy, America, &c. (in several of 
which countries it has been reprinted in German), and has 
thus become a standard book of reference in almost all the 
universities and principal public, as well as private edu- 
cational institutions — such a publication possesses ample 
testimony proving it able to create a lasting interest, and 
confirming its cboms to consideration and esteem. 

The aim of the distinguished author in this valuable 
history is thus simply but distinctly expressed by him- 
self: " My sole object," he says, " has been to produce a 
succinct and connected development of the vivid and 
eventftd course of our country's history, written in a style 
calculated to excite the interest and sympathy of my 
readers, and of such especially who, not seeking to enter 
upon a very profoimd study of the sources and more ela- 
borate works connected with the annals of our empire, are 
nevertheless anxious to have presented to them the means 
of acquiring an accurate knowledge of the records of our 
Fatherland, in such a form as to leave upon the mind and 
heart an enduring, indelible impression." 

o c itzoo °'^' ''^"^ ^^ Google 

»3 C "-J. U 'W 'W 


That our industrious historian has attained his object, 
the intelligent reader will find in the interest excited, the 
clear views imparted, and the deep impression effected by 
his animated portrayals of both events and individuals. 
This has been the original and acknowledged characteris- 
tic of Herr Kohlrausch's work throughout its entire ex- 
istence; but in the new edition from which this translation 
has been rendered, he has endeavoured to make it as 
perfect as possible, both in matter and style, and besides 
this has enriched it with many valuable notes not con- 
tained in the former editions; thus making it in reality 
a concise, yet, in every respect, a complete history of Ger- 

It is important to remark, that Professor Eohlrausch is 
a Protestant, and one distinguished not less for his freedora 
from prejudice and partiality, than for the comprehensive- 
ness of his views and the high tone of his philosophy. The 
general adoption of the work — ahke by I^otestant and Ro- 
manist — ^is proof suflSiciently convincing of the impartiality 
of his statements, and of the justice of his reflections and 



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The Sources of the most ancient German History — The Nature of the Conntnr 
—The Natives— The Germanic Races— Manners and Customs— Civil Insti- 
tntioDs— War— Regolations.and Arms — Religion— Arts and Manufactures 
—The Germanic Tribes 1-41 




486 iuD. 


B.C. 113 — 6 iuD. 

The (^hfi and Teatonl, 118-101 B.C.— Cesar and Ariovistus, 58 b.c.— Julius 
Cbesar on the Rhine— Commencement of the Great German Wars— Drusus in 
Genaanj — ^Marbodius,Eingof theMaroomanni 42-58 


7— «74 

Armhiias or Hermann — Arminins and Varus— Arminius and Germanicns — 
llie Death of Arminius, 21 a.d. — ^Further Wars hetween the Germans and 
Romans— War with the Marcomanni, 167-180 — ^The Germanic Confederations 
—Hie Alemanni^The Franks — The Saxon Confederation — ^The Goths — 
The Decline of the Roman Empire 58-78 



The Emms— Commencement of the Great Migration, 875— Irruption of the 
Weitem Goths, Vandals, Suevi, Burgundians, and other Tribes into the 
Wertem Roman Empire— Alaric—Attih^ God's Scourge, 451— The Fall of 
the Roman Empire in the West, 476 79-92 



QoTis, Emg of the Franks, 482-511— Theodoric, sumamed Dieterich of Berne, 
488-5S6— The Longobardi in Italy, 568— Changes in the Customs and Insti- 
tutions of the Germans— The Language— Constitution— Feudal System- 
laws— Pastimes— Christianity in Germany— The Grand Chamherhdns— 
Chalks Martd against the Arabs, 732— Pepin the Little— The Carlo- 
lin^ans 94-111 

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Charlemagne, 768-814— The State in which Charlemagne fonnd the Empire — 
The East-Roman, or GredanEmpire— England— The North of Enrope— The 
Spanish Peninsular— Italy— Anstria and HungaiT'— Germany— The Wan of 
Charlemagne— The Saxons— The Longobardi— The Arabs — TheBaTaiians 
— ^The Empire of Charlemagne— Charlemagne, Emperor of Rome, 800— The 
Death of Charlemagne, 814— His Portraiture 113-137 



Louis the Pious, 814-840— Division of the Empire among his Sons, Louis, 
Lothaire, and Charles the Bald, 843— The German Sovereigns of the Race of 
the Carlovingians, 843-911— Louis, or Ludwig, the German— Charles the Fat 

. — ^Amulf— Ix>uis the Child — The later and concluding P^od of the Carlo- 
vingians— C<Mirad I., of Franconia, 911-918 138-151 





Henxy L, 919*936— His Wan— The Hungarians— The Sdavomans— New Insti- 
tutions— Otho L, 936-973— The Hungarians— Battle of the Lechfeld— The 
Western Empire renewed, 962— Greece— Otho H, 973-983— Otho IIL, 983- 
1003— His Religious Devotion— His Partiality for Roman and Grecian Man- 
ners and Customs — Henry IL, 1003-1024 — ^Italy — ^Pavia — ^Bamburg— His 
Dt^ith, 1024— End of the Sazcm Dynasty 155-185 



Assemblage of the Ducal States— The Election— Conrad H, 1024-1039— 
Re-establishes Internal Peace — ^Italy — Canute, King of England and Den- 
mark— Burgundy— Ernest, Duke of Swabiflr— The Faust-Recht— Conrad's 
Death, 1039— Henry HI., 1039-1056— The Popes— Henry's Zeal for the 
Church— His Death, 1056— Henry IV^ 1056, 1106— His Mmority— The 
Archbishops — ^Albert of Bremen — Henry and the Saxons— Their Hostility — 
Henry's Revenge— Pope Gregory VH. — His Ambition— The Right of In- 
vestiture — ^Rupture with the Emperor — ^Henry Excommunicated — The Em- 
peror a Fugitive— The Rival Emperors and Popes— Rudolphus of Swabia 
and Pope Qement HI.- Henry's Death, 1106— Henry V., 1106-1125— Rome 
— Pope Pascal IL— The Investiture Contest — Sanguinary Battle— Henry 
Crowned Emperor— His Death, 1125— The First Crusade, 1096-1099— Lo- 
thaire the Saxon, 1125-1137 185-216 


113&— 1190. 

Conrad m., 1138-1152— The Guelphsand GhibeUnes— Wemsberg— The Faith- 
fiil Wives— Conrad's Crusade— Disastrous Resultsr-His DeaUi, 1152— Fre- 
derick L, or BarbaroBsa, 1152-1190— His Noble Character and Distinguished 
Qualities— Extends his Dominions— The Cities of Lombardy and AGlan— 
Pavia— Pope Adrian IV.— The Emperor's Homage— Otho of Wittelsbach— 
Dispute between the Pope and the Emperor— Mihin Taken and Razed— Tlie 
Confederation of the Lombardian Towns— The Battle of lignano— Frederick 
Defeated— Pope Alexander and Frederick— Venice — ^Henry, tiie lion of 
Brunswick— His Rise and Fall— Reconciliaticm and Peace— Lonibardy—- 
Frederick's Crusade and Death in Palestine, 1190 216-233 

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Bcniy VL, 1190-1197— Hi« Mercenary and Cruel Character— -mcbard L of 
England— Ib Seixed and Impruoned by Henry— Naples and Sicily— The 
Gnndeea — ^Th^ Barboioiu Treatment by the Emperor— His Death, 1197— 
The Biral SoTereigns— Phillip of Swabia» 1197-1208, and Otho IV., 1197- 
1215— Their Death— Frederick H., 1215-1250— His Noble Qualities— Love 
Dor the Arts and Sciences— His Sarcastic Poetry— P^ereooe for Italy— Dis- 
putes with the Popes— Is Excommunicated— His Crusade to the Holy Land 
—Crowned King of Jerusalem — ^Marries a Princess of England^Italy — 
Pope Gregory IX. — ^Frederick Denounced and Deposed— Dissoisions in Ger- 
many— The Biyal Kinga— Death of Frederick IL, 1250— His eztraordinaiy 
Geam and Talents — ^His Zeal for Science and Education— A Glance at the 
East and Nortii-Eastem Parts of Germany — ^Progress in CiTilisation — 
WiOiam of HoOand, 1247-1256— Conrad IV., 1250-1254— Their Death— 
Thelnterr^^mun, 1256-1273— Progress of the Germanic Constitution ... 234-252 



CluTOlry— The Cities— The Peasantry— The Arts and Sciences— Tlie Clergy 
and Ecclesiastical Institutions — The Monasteries and Convents — The Faust- 
Ibecht— The Adminjrtration of Justice— The Vehm-Gericht, or Secret 
Mnmal 253-285 




Bndolphus L, of Hapsburg, 1273-1291— Adolphus I., of Nassau, 1292-1298— 
Aibot L, of Auatr^A, 1298-1308— Switzerland— Confederation of the Swiss 
-Oesalei^WilliamTell-HenTyVIL, of Luxemburg, 1308-1313— Frederick 
of Austria, 1314-1380, and Lewis of Bararia, 1314-1347— Switzerland— The 
Battle of Morgarten, 1315— The Battle of Miihldorf; 1322— The First Elec- 
tonlAUiaaoe,13da— Death of Lewis, 1347 288-304 




Charles IV., 1847-1878— Wcnceslas, 1378-1400— Switzerland— The Battle of 
Sempach, 1386— Leopold of Austria— Arnold of Wlnkelzied— His Heroism 
and Setf-deyotion— Wenoeslas Deposed— Rupert of the Palatinate, 1400- 
UlO—Sigismund, 1410-1437— Grand Coundl of Constance— John Huss, 
andtheHossiteWars- Deathof 8]giBmund,1437 305-820 



Albert IL, 1438-1439— His Death— Frederick m., 1440-1493— The Council of 
Basle, 1448— .aineas Sylvius— The Turks— Belgrade— Defeat of the Turks 
--The Diets— The Emperor besieged m Vienna— His Resdution— His Bro- 
»^« Doke Albert— The Count Palatine of the Rhine— His Hostility^ 
Defeats the Imperialists— Albert of Brandenburg, the Achilles of Germany 
-^Feads of the Nobles and aties— Nuremberg— The Nobles Defeated— 
Amtda and Burgundy— Charies the Rash— His Ambitionr— Attacks the 
S^w-Defeated at Murten— The Battle of Nancy— His Death— Mary of 

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Burgondy— Marries MaximiKiin of Austria—Her Death— The Emperor 
Frederick a FugitiTe— His Return— Maximilian, Roman King- The Laws 
— Their Improyement— Frederick's Obstinacy and Refusal — Maximilian Ap- 
pealed to — The Swabian League— Death of Frederick HL, 1493— Prussia — 
The Teutonic Knights — Their Decline and Fall— Prussia under Pdish 
Sway, 1466 321—323 


Maximilian L, 1493-1519 — His Mental Acquirements and Chivalric Character — 
His Government — ^Italy — Charles VIIL and Louis XH. of France — Switzer- 
land—The Venetian Repubtic — ^The League of Cambray^-Maximilian's Ho- 
nourable and Consistent Conduct— The Battle of the Spurs— Union of Hun- 
gary and Boh^nia — ^Internal Administration of Affairs — Perpetual Peace of 
the Land — End of the Faust-Recht— The Imperial Chamber and Aulic 
Council — Opposition of the States — ^The Emperor Triumphant— State of the 
Country — The Nobles, Cities, and Peasantry — Ootz von Berlichingen, &c. — 
Death of the Emperor Maximilian, 1519 — ^Events of his Reign, and End of 
the Middle Ages — ^Disoorery and Use of Gunpowder — ^Artillery and Fire- 
Arms— Inyention of Printing, 1457 332-350 



State of the Empire— Internal Anarchy— Charles V. of Spain, and Frands L of 
France— Frederick the Wise, Elector of Saxony — Charles V. elected Emperor 
of Germany— His Character— Jealousy and Discontent of the Spaniards — 
Try to dissuade Charles from accepting the Imperial Crown— New Spain — 
Discoyery of Mexico — Arrival of Charles in Germany — ^His Coronation, 1520 
— Schism in the Church— Causes which produced it— Ignorance of the\ 
Clergy— Their Vices — Murmurs and Discontent of the People— A Reforma- ) 
tion in the Church unlrersally demanded — Scholastic Wisdom — ^Theology— y 
Enlightenment of Sdence-nJohn Reuchlin 354-362 


Outbreak of the Reformation, 1517— Abuses in the Church— Letters of Indul- 
gence — ^Martin Luther, the Reformer — His Exposure and Condemnation oi 
these Proceedings— Is summoned to appear in Rome— Withheld from going 
by the Elector of Saxony— The Pope's Nuncio, Cardinal Cajetan and Luther at 
the Diet of Augsburg, 1518— Refusal of Luther to retract— Luther's Appeal to 
the Pope for a fur Hearing— Controversial Discussion between Luther and 
Dr. Eck— Luther maintrfiins his Ground— The Pope's Bull against Luther — 
The Reformer bums the Bull, with the Canon Law and Eck's Writings — 
Propagation of the New Doctrine— Luther addresses the People— Ulric of 
Hiitten, and Francis of Sickingen— Frederick the Wise of Saxony and the 
Princes in favour of Reform— The Grand Diet at Worms, 1521— Charles V. 
— ^The Pope's Legate, Cardinal Alexander— Luther's Appearance and Exami- 
nation there — Solemn Refusal not to retract— The Emperor's Declaration — 
Luther Excommunicated and his Writings burnt— Conveyed by the Elector 
of Saxony for Safety to the Castle of Wartburg— His TransUtion of the New 

, Testament — ^Tumults and Revolutions of the Peasantry— Miinzer the Fanatic 
-Battle of Frankenhausen— Miinzer's Death— Tranquillity Restored.... 363-377 


Foreign Relations of Charles V.— Francis I. of France— War between these two 
rival Monarchs— Italy— Mihm— The Duke of Bourbon— The Chevalier 
Bayard— The Battle of Pavia, 1525— Defeat of the French— Francis L taken 
Prisoner— Madrid— The King of France liberated— His dishonourable Breach 
of Stipulation— The Imperialists in Rome— The Pope a Prisoner— His Ran- 
som—War with France resumed— Andrew Doria— Peace of Cambray, 1529 

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^ PAGB. 

—OutttesV. crowned Emperor and King of Lombardy in Bologna— HiB 6e- 
namiy — Ketom to Grermaoj— First Loigae of the Protestant Princes, 1526 
-The Angsbaxg Ck>iife88ion, 1530— Melancthon— His Character of Charles 
V.-John» Elector of Saxony— His Determination— The Imperial Council- 
Hie Emperor's Declaration— lieply of the Protestant Princes— Ferdinand, 
King of Rome, 1531— Religious Peace— The Turks in Hungary— Their 
Defisat— .Ulric, I>ake of Wnrtemberg— Restored to his Possessions by Philip 
of Hesse— Insiirrection of the Anabaptists— Their Defeat— The Emperor in 
Afiicar— Tunis— His Triumph and Liberation of 22,000 Christian Slaves — 
^ tnas I. attacks Italy — Charles V. enters France—Suspension of Arms— 
iDterriew between the two Monarchs at Aigues-Martcs — Revolt in Ghent — 
Progress of Charles V. through France and Ghent — Hospitality received — 
^eice restored in Ghent— The Diet at Ratisbon, 1541— Charles V. in Al- 
giers— Disastrous Expedition— His Fortitude— Return to Italy— Francis I. 
resumes Hostilities — ffis Dl-success— Charles V. on the Rhine — Attacks the 
Duke of Cleves — Overcomes and Pardons him — Marches into France — ^Ad- 
^ance upon Ftois — ^The Peace ofCrepi, 1544 ^ 378-397 


State of Religious Affairs in Germany, from 1534 to 1546— Vain Attempts at 
HeoondKation — ^Rapid Propagation of the New Doctrine— Henry, Duke of 
Branswick— Death of Martin Luther, 1546— Charles V. and the Pope— Their 
Alliance— Fteparations for War— The League of Schmalkald— The Elector 
of Saxony and the Landgrave of Hesse — Their Characters contrasted — 
ibnrioe, Duke of Saxony — ^His extraordinary Genius — His Adherence to 
the Emperor — ^Thc Pope's BuU— The Holy War- The Schmalkaldian Army, 
1546-1547 — General Schartlin — Division among the Protestant Leaders — 
Insurious Results — The Imperial Camp besieged — Charles triumphant — 
I>oke Maurice and the Elector of Saxony — Treachery of Duke Maurice — 
The Emperor in Upper Grermany— Conquers the Imperial Free Cities — 
Saxony— The Battle of Miihlberg— The Saxons cefeated— The Elector taken 
ftisoner— Deposed and condemned to Death— The Game of Chess— The 
Elector's firmness and Resignation — His life spared — Duke Maurice made 
Elector of Saxony— Wittenberg— Charles V. and Philip of Hesse— The Land- 
grave's Submission and Humiliation — ^Detained a Prisoner, and his Lands 
>eued by the £mperor — The Elector Maurice — His Mortification and Projects 
"Cunst the Bmperor — ^The Spanish Troops in Germany — Their Insolence and 
C^resrion 397-421 


The Conndl of Trent- Rupture between the Emperor and the Pope— The 
Interim or Temporary Code of Doctrines— Its Condemnation by both Parties 
—The Captive Elector of Saxony— Refuses to adhere to the Interim — His 
^declaration — Shameful Treatment in consequence— The Elector Maurice — 
Magdeburg — ^Maurice marches against that City — The Emperor and Maurice 
—Maurice deaerts the Emperor, and with Albert of Brandenburg joins the 
^^^n>testants — Their Declaration against the Emperor— His Reply — Albert's 
^depredations — Maurice's Separation from him — Charles V. at Inspruck — ^Pur- 
«^by Manrice — The Emperor a Fugitive in the Mountains of the Tyrol— His 
I^esolate and Forlorn Condition — His Return to Augsburg— Release of the 
Elector John Frederick— His Welcome Home— Jena— Treaty of Passau — 
liberation of Philip of Hesse— Charles V. in France— Metz— Unsuccessful 
Campaign — ^Albert of Brandenburg— Defeated at Liineburg by Maurice— 
^th of Maurice and Albert — Rdigious Peace of Augsburg— Final Sepa- 
^«tioQ of the Two Religious Parties— Abdication of Charles V.— Retreat to a 
Hemut's Cell— Rehearsal of his Funeral Procession— His Death, 1558... 422-437 


^erfioand I., 1556-1564— His industrious Habits— Moderation and Tolerance— 
^ Calvinists and Lutherans— Their Hostility towards each other— Ferdi- 
^^ and Ptotestantism— The Foundation of the Order of Jesuits by Igna- 
tioB Loyola, 1540— Its rapid and universal Dissemination- The Council of 

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Trent— Eerdinand's Aml>nwiidor« Their FropoflitioiiB leftued— Thdr Lettear 
to the Emperor— Death of Ferdmand L, 1564 — Mazhmlian IL, 1564-1576 — 
Ss QnalificatioiiB and Good Character^Bohemifr— Poland— ^tate <tf Tna- 
quillitj — ^William of Gmmbach in Franronia ■ Hiw Bercdt and Exfionmnini* 
cation— QoUiar- The ToungFrinoe of Saxony— Joins Gmmbach— Hia per- 
petnal CaptiTity and Death in Styriar— Gmmbach's Execution — The mer- 
cenary Troopa— EviJa they produce— German Soldiers in Eordgn Senrioe — 
Death of Maximilian H, 1576— Bndolphns IL, 1576-1612— His Indolence 
and IneKilntion— Bad Coondllon — ^Beligioiis Excitement roiewed — ^Tlie 
Netherlands— The Dnke of Albar-The Elector GeUiazd of Cologne and 
Agnes of Mansfeld, Canoness of Gerresheim — Gehbard exconmranicated — 
John Gasimir, the Count Fdatine— CalTinism — ^Donauwerth — ^Anstriar— Ra- 
dolphns against the Protestants— Deprives them of their Clmrches — Hnnguy 
— Revolt of Stephen Botscbkai — ^Tbe Emperor an Astrologist and Alchymist 
— Neglects his GoTemment more and more — ^Tycho Brahe and Keppler— 
Rudolphus resigns Hungary to his Brother Matthias — ^Bohemia— ^The Letter 
of Migesty — ^Ilie Palatinate — The ErangelicaL Union— Juliers — ^Henxy IV. 
of France joins the Union— The Catholic League — ^Prague— Revolt — The 
Emperor a Prisoner— His Death, 1612 437-450 


Matthias L, 1612-1619^His Coronation — Its Pomp and Splendour < 
The Protestants — ^Increase of general Discontent — ^Austriar— Aix-la-Cfa 
—Cologne— The Prince Palatine Wolfgang William, and the Elector of 
Brandenburg^— Their Quarrel— Box on the Ear — ^Baneful Conseq[uenceB— 
Foreign Allies — ^The Young Archduke Ferdinand — ^Elected King of Bohemia 
—His Character— His Deyotion to Catholicism and Hi^a«d of the Protestants 
—Banishes the New Faith fhim his Lands— The Electoral Princes— Ferdinand 
warned against his Proceedings by the Elector of Saxony — ^Bohemia— The 
Letter of Majesty shameftdly infringed— The Protestant Churches destroyed 
— ^Indignation and Revolt of the Protestants — ^Their Defender, Count 'Mat^ 
thias, of Thum— Counts Martinitz and Shnratar-Their Hostility to the Pro- 
testants — ^Prague — The Council Hall — Martinitz and Slavata thrown out of 
the Window — General Rerolution — The Emperor's Alarm and Desire for 
Peao&— Ferdinand's Declaration in reply — Commencement of the Thirty 
Years' War— Connt Ernest of Mansfeld, the Leader of the Protestants— Hjb 
great military Genius and heroic Character— Death of Matthias L, 1619 — 
Ferdinand XL, 1619 -1637— Count Thum and the Bohemians in Vienna — 
Surround the Emperor in his Palace— Ferdinand unexpectedly rescued — ^The 
Bohemians depose him— The Elector Palatine, Fredmck V., Son-in-Law of 
James I. of England, King of Bohemia, 1619— His Irresolution and Pnsill^ 
nimity— Ferdinand and Maximilian of Bayaria — ^Tbeir Alliance— Superiority 
of the Imperialists over the Bohemians— Battle of Weissenbeig, near Pragne, 
1620— The Bohemians defeated and their King put to Flight— His AJadi* 
cation— Prague capitulates— Bohemia severely punished by Ferdinand — 
Thirty thousand Families banished the Country 451-464 


Military Expeditions in Germany, 1621-1624 — Generals Mansfeld and Tilly — 
Successes of Mansfeld— Joined by the Margraye of Baden— Durlach and 
Christian— Duke of Brunswick- Tilly— The Palatinate— The Heidelberg 
Library— Ferdinand resolyes to continue the War — ^Tlie Duke of Bavaria 
made Elector Palatine — Tilly defeats the Duke of Brunswick in Miinster — 
War with Denmark, 1624-1629— The Protestant Forces under Christian IV. 
of Denmark— The Duke of Brunswick and Mansfeld— The Emperor without 
a Leader— Count Wallenstein — His extraordinary Character— Ambition- 
Astrological Studies— Faith in Destiny— His Bravery— Weissenberg- Wal- 
lenstein, Duke ^of Friedland — His stately Palace and regal Style of living — 
Raises an Imperial Army — His Appearance— Pursues Mansfeld — ^Death of 
Mansfeld, 1626— Death of the Duke ^Brunswick- Christian IV. of Denmark 
—His Flight— Dukes Adolphus and John of Mecklenburg banished— Their 
Estates sdzed by WaUenstein— Created Duke of Mecklenburg and a Prince 

Digitized by 


coNTEirrs. ai 


of the Empire, l628--Pbmeraiua~-StraUn]nd--Bes]eged by WaUenstein— lis 
braTe Besutanoe — ^ForoeB WaUenstein to retire— Peace between the King of 
Beomark and the Emperor, 1629—The Edict of Bestitation, 1639— Its Effect 
— Angsbnrg^-The Catholic League— Tyxaanj and Crwiij of WaUenstem 
and hia Army— Comphunta of the GathoUcs and Brotestants against WaUen- 
Stein to the Emperor— The Frineea and the Nation insist upon his Dismissal 
—His Resignation 464*474 


GnstaTiis Adolpbns, Kmg of Sweden, in Germany, 1630-1632— His Character 
—Motives and Flans in faronr of Protestantism— Stralsnnd-^nstayns de- 
dares War against Ferdinand— Lands with his Army in Pomeranian-Stettin 
—The Plrotestant Princes hesitate to join Giutarus— Ciistrin and Spandan — 
Hie Slectar of Brandenburg— The Elector of Saxony—Siege of Mbigdebarg 
Omat m^—'Conquers and bums the City— Dreadful Massacre— Gustayns 
and Taiy— Battle of Leipsic— Defiaat of the Imperialists— Glorious Besults to 
GustBTua— Sumnder of the Cities— Ingdstadt—'nily wounded— His Death 
—Munich— Fragoe—Feidmand and Wallenstein- Begal splendour of Wal« 
lensfton— His Palaee— Be««ssembie8 an Army for the Empecor— Extravagant 
OonditiQna— Appointed Generalisshno— The Camp of Nuremberg— The Swe« 
dish and Imperial Annies— Gostsms in Saxony— Battle of Liit2sen, 1632— 
GnstaTua kiUed— His Death rerenged by the Swedeik— Total Defeat of 
Walknstein— Portraiture of GnstaTOsAdolphus 475-491 


CoDthiuatian of the War» 1632-1635— Chancellor Oxenstiem— Wallenstein's 
Inaction— Court Martial over his Oflloers— Military Executions— Coimt of 
Thum taken Prisoner and released by Wallenstein— The Emperor^s Bemon- 
stranoe and Wallenstein's Beply— The Swedes in Bayoria— Wallenstein 
withholds Assistance— Prohibits his Officers from obeying the Imperial Com- 
mands— FQsen — ^Military Council, and Compact between Wallenstein and 
his Officers— Counts Terzka, Bio, and Piccolomini— The Emperor diTests 
Wancnstem of all Command— Italian-Spanish Conspiracy against Wallen- 
stein— Piocdomini marches against WaUenstem— Wallenstein negotiates with 
France and Sweden for his Serrices — The Crown of Bohemia offered to him 
— ^Retreats to Eger — ^The Supper in the Citadel — ^Murder of Counts Terzka, 
IBo, and Kinsky, by Dereroux and Gersldin— Assassination of Wallenstein, 
1634— His Estates confiscated— Succeeded in Command by Ferdinand, King 
of Bome— The Battle of Noidlingen— The Elector of Saxony— Peace of 
Fragne, 1685— Dreadfol Condition of Germany— Cardinal Richelieu and 
ChnceDor Oxenstiem— ^French and Swedish Alliance against the Emperor — 
Ingkxriooa Character of the War— Death (^Ferdinand IL, 1637 492-498 


Ferdhumd IIL, 1637-1657— Continuation of the War— Duke Bernard of 
Weimar on the Rhine— BSs Death— Cardinal Richelieu- The Swedish Gene- 
rals— Banner— Torstenson—Wrangel-Negotiations for Peace— Tedious Pro- 
gress—French and Swedish Claims of Indemnification— Humiliation and 
Dismemberment of the Empire— Territorial Sorereignty of the Princes — 
Switzerland— The Netherlands— ilnal Arrangement and Conclusion of the 
Peace of Westphalia, 1648 499-607 




General Observations- State of the Empire— Agriculture— Commerce— The 
Nofaihty— French Langnage, Fashions, and Customs— Decline of National 
Feelmg in Germany— Death of Ferdinand IIL, 1657— Leopold L, 1658-1705 
—The Rheniah League— Lonis XIV., of France— His ambitious and aggran- 
dising Spirit— Ccmquers the Netherlands— The Elector Frederick William of 
Bnada&nirg^Westphalia^The Rhhie— War between France and Germany 
— BatUe of FWirbellin, 1675— Successes of the Elector of Brandenburg— His t 



energetic Character— Extends and impioyes Mb Territoriefl — ^Berlin^Konigs- 
berg — Generalfl Montecucoli and Tnraine— Peace of Nimwegen, 1678 — ^^Die 
four French Chambers of JReviiKm— Treachery and Diahones^ of Loois 
XrV. towards Germany ^Claims and takes Possession of Strasburg and other 
German Towns on the Rhine— Enters Strasborg in Triumph, 1681— Pusilla- 
nimity and disgraceM Inertness of the Germans — ^The TuriDi in Hmigary — 
Advance and lay siege to Vienna, 1683— Flight of Leopold and his Court — 
Brave Defence of the Viennese under Count Biidiger of Stahrenberg— Beliered 
by Duke Charles of Lorraine and Sobiesld, King of Poland— Heroism of So- 
bieski— Battle of Naussdorf— Total Overthrow and Flight of the Turks by 
Sobieski— His Letter to his Queen— Description of the Battle 511-527 


Fresh War with France, 1688-1697— Alliance of Enghmd, Holland, and Spain, 
against Louis XIV. — The French in Germany — DreadAil Devastation and 
unheard of Cruelties committed by Orders of Louis XIV.^Cottflagration and 
complete Destruction of Heidellxarg, Worms, and Spues— Deplorable Condi- 
tion of the Inhabitants — The Tombs of the Emperors pillaged— ^Peaoe of 
Byswick, 1697— Compensation demanded for Germany-— Insolence of the 
French Ambassadors— Elevation of the German Princes— The First Elector 
of Hanover— Frederick, Elector of Saxony, ascends the Throne of Poland, 
1696— Frederick, Elector of Brandenburg, places the Crown on his own 
Head as King of Prussia, 1701 — ^War of the Spanish Succession, between 
France and the House of Aus^a, 1701-1714 — ^William IIL, of England — 
Louis XIV. Procliums his Grandson, Philip of Ax\jou, King of Spain—* 
Prince Eug^ie — His military Genius and private Character— Appointed 
Commander-in-Chief of the Imperial Army — His Reply to Louis XIV. — 
Marches into Italy — Defeats the French at Carpi and Chiari— England — 
Louis XIV. and the Exiled Stuarts— The Duke of Marlborough, General of 
of the Allied Army— The Elector of Bavaria— The Bavarians in the Tyrol— 
Their Overthrow by the Tyrolese— Battle of Hochstiidt— Blenheim— Tri- 
umphant Victory gained by the Duke of Marlborough and Prince Eugene, 
1704— The Duke of Marlborough created a Prince of the Empire— Death of 
Leopold L, 1705 527-538 


Joseph L, 1705-1711— Continuation of the War— Riots in Bavaria— The Elec- 
tor outlawed— Marshal Villeroi— Battles of Ramillies and Turin, 1706— 
Triumph of Marlborough and Eugene — Complete Overthrow of the French — 
Creneral Capitulation— Naples— Spain — Battles of Oudenarde and Malplaquet, 
1708-1709— Defeat of the French under Bourgoyne, Vendome, and Villius — 
Humiliation of Louis XIV. — ^England— Queen Anne — Marlborough re- 
called and dismissed— Death of Joseph L, 1711— Charles VI., 1711-1740— 
Peace of Utrecht, 1713— Peace of Rastadt and Baden, 1714— Death of Louis 
XIV., 1715 — ^The House of Austria in its Relations with the Germanic Em- 
pire-Peaceful Reign of Charles VI.— His Death, 1740— Maria Theresa of 
Austria— Her Title to the Imperial Throne disputed by Charles Albert of Ba- 
varian-Frederick n. of Prussia — His extraordinary Genius and energetic 
Character— His Army — ^Invades Austrisr— The First Silesian War, 1740- 
1 742— Glogau — Sangniuary Battle of Molwitz — Defeat of the Austrians — Al- 
liance of Ftance, Spain, Bavaria, and Saxony, against Austria in Support of 
Charles Albert — Hanover — George II. of England — Charles Albert, King of 
Poland— Election of Emperor in Frankfort 539-555 i 


Charles VIL, Emperor of Germany, 1742-1745— Maria Theresa in Hungary— i 

Her Appeal to the Nobles— Their Devotion to her Cause— March into Ba- I 

varia^Seize that Country and banish its Elector— Charles VIL a Fugitive 
— ^Battle of Czaslau, between the Austrians and Prussians, 1742— Treaty of 
Peace, between Maria Theresa and Frederick IL— Continuation of the Aus- 
trian Succession War, 1742-1744— The French in Prague under Marshal 
Belle-Isle— Prague besieged by the Austrians— Absndoned by the French- 
Charles VIL in Bavariar— Again a Fugitive— George IL of En^^d in Ger- 



many— Battle of Dettingeii, 174d~-Defeat of the French— Alliance of Saxony 
uid Austria— Second Silesian War, 1744-1745— Ill-«acces8 of Frederick- 
Death of Charles VIL, 1745— Sileiia— Battle of Hohenfriedherg— Frederick 
▼ictorkms — ^Battle of Scvr^— The Princes of Bmnswick— Frederick triam- 
phant — Bottle of Kenddorf— Frederick conquers and enters Dresden — 
Peace of Dresden and End of the Second Silesian War— Francis I. elected 
Emperor, 1745-1765— Austria and France— Peace of Aiz-la-Chapelle, 1748— 
Brief Interval of Bepose, 1748-1756— State of Affairs— Alliance of England 
and Pnusia, 1756 — Alliance between France and Austria, 1756— Saxony — 
Bnsflia — Sweden— Combination of Powers against Prussia— The Seven Years* 
War, 1756-1768— Frederick in Saxony —Battle of Losowitz, 1756— Frederick 
victonoiis— The Saxons lay down their Arms— Frederick Conqueror of 
Saxony — ^Imniense Annies opposed to Frederick— His Presence of Mind — 
Desperate Battle of Prague— Charles of Lorraine— Death of the Prussian 
General Schwerin and the Austrian General Brown— Frederick victorious — 
Battle of Eolfin— General Daun— Frederick's grand ManoBuvre— Generals 
Zkethen and Hulsen— Frederick and Prince Maurice of Dessau— Defeat of 
Frederick — Shameful Conduct of the Duke of Cumberland — Convention of 
CloBter-Seren between him and the French-^Battle between the Russians and 
ProaaiaQs at Grosfjagersdorf— Defeat of the Prussians— Withdrawal of the 
Rnasiana — ^The Empress Elizabeth of Russiar— The Grand Chancellor Bestus- 
chef— Retreat of the Swedes 555-571 


CoDtlniiatkm of the Seven Years' War, 1757-1760— Battle of Rossbach, 1757— 
Total Defeat of the French— General Seidiitz and the Prussian Cavaby— 
Reverses of Frederick— Silesiar— Battle of Lenthen, 1757— Frederick's Appeal 
to his Officers and Army— Their Enthusiasm— Complete Overthrow of the 
Austrians— Glorious Results to Frederick — ^His Proposals of Peace rejected 
by Maria Theresa— France — ^Russui^-England's Enthusiasm for Frederick — 
Wmiam Pitt— England supports Frederick— Treaty of CkMter-Seven dis- 
avowed—Duke Ferdinand of Brunswick General-in-Chief of the Allied Army 
— ^Defeats and drives away the French from Germany— Frederick in Silesia— 
Schweidnitz— Frederick's rapid March into Moravia — Olmiitz — ^Bohemia — 
Pomerania — ^Battle between ibe Russians and Prussians at Zomdorf, 1758 — 
Dreadful Slaughter and Defeat of tt^e Russians— The Prussians attacked and 
defeated by the Austrians at Hochklrch, 1758— Frederick's Presence of Mind 
—The Prussian Army- The Imperial Diet — ^The Prince of Mecklenburg— 
The Imperial Ban against Frederick proposed- Negatived— The Allied and 
Frendi Annies— Battle of Bergen, 1759— Partial Success of the French— 
Battfeof Mmden— Shameful Conduct of the English General, SackviUe— 
Defeat of the French— Battle of Elay and Kunersdorf, 1759— Total Defeat 
of the Prussians— Frederick's Misforteiee— His Despaur— Prince Henry of 
Pnusia — Continued Reverses of Frederick — ^Battle of Liegnitz, 1760 — The 
Prnssiana defeat the Austrians— Beneficial Results to Frederick— Battle of 
Toigau, 1760 — Total Defeat of the Austrians— Frederick in Leipsic 572-593 


Conclusion of the Seven Years* War, 1761-1762— The Austrian and Russian 
Annies — ^The Camp of Bunzelwitz— F^erick's difficult Position — Jealousy 
between Centals Butterlin and Laudon— Schweidnitz, Glatz, and Colberg— 
Saxony — Berlin threatened by the Russians — The Prussians rise en masse to 
expel them— Death of Elizabeth of Russia— Peter III.— Peace and Alliance 
between Russia and Prussia— Sweden— Battle of Reichenbach— Frederick 
victorious^-Schweidnitz— Final Battle and Defeat of the Austrians at Frei- 
berg—Peace between France and England, 1763 — Peace between Prussia and 
Austria at Hubertsburg, 1763— Observations— The Age of Frederick the 
Great — His Army— Exerts himself to repair the Calamities of his Country— 
His indefatigable Industry— His Labours and Recreations— Genius for Poetry 
and Music— His Early Years— His Father's Tyranny— Its sad EflFects even- 
tually proved — ^His Predilection for French Education and Literature- 
Voltaire— Helvetius, 6cc— His Anti-German Feelings and Neglect of Na- 

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tional G«iiiu»—Lening—Elopfltock— Goethe— Kant— Fidite-^acobi, &c.,— 
Joseph II. 1765-1790— Dismembenneiit of PoUiid, 1773— Pruana and Russia 
— Stanislaus Poniatowski— BavarianWarof Suooessioa, 1778— DeAthofMana 
T&eresa, 1780— Innoratioas and intolerant Measures of Joseph II.— Frederick 
and the Allied Princes of Germany against Joseph IL— Death of Frederick 
the Great, 1786— Death of Joseph IL, 1790— Leopold II., 1790-1792 594-615 


Leopold n. and the State of France— France declares War against Austria, 
the Imperial States, Holland, Spain, &c, 1792 — ^Francis JL Emperor of Ger- 
many, 1792-1806— Prus8ia^--Sucoe88es of the Allies — General Dumouriez and 
the Republican Army — The Auatrians defeated at Jemappes — ^The Nether- 
lands republicaniced— Defeat of Dumouriez at Neerwinden, 1793— Joins the 
Allies — Continued Successes of the Allies under the Didces of York and 
Coburg — Camot — Generals Pichegru and Jourdan — ^Battles of Toumay and 
Fleurus — Jourdan's Aerial Reoonnoitering Messenger, or the Adjutant in the 
Balloon — ^Defeat of the Allies — Successes of the fVench — Conquests in 
Flanders, Holland, and the Rhine — ^Kaiserslautem — ^Peace'of Basle, 1795— 
England and Austria — France — The Austrian Generals Beaulieu, Wurmser, 
and Archduke Charles — Napoleon Buonaparte, 1796 — ^Appointed General 
in Italy— His Army- His Conquests and rich Booty made in Italy— The 
French in Germany — ^Archduke Charies — Moreau— His famous Retreat — 
Mantua — Buonaparte in Germany — His rapid Marches — Vienna — ^Peace of 
Campo-Formio, 1797 — Shameftd Conditions — State of Europe — Alliance of 
England, Russia, Austria, and Turkey— Hostilities resumed, 1798— Buona- 
parte in Egypt — Cairo — ^Aboukir — ^His Fleet destroyed by Nelson— Italy — 
General Suwaroff— His Successes in Italy — Grenoa — Switzeriand — Suwaroflfs 
Passage across the Alps— His desperate Appeal to his Soldiers— His Recall — 
The Emperor Paul and England— Buonaparte First Consul, 1799— Genoa — 
Battle or Marengo, 1800 — General Desaiz — Moreau in Germany — Peace of 
Lun^yille, 1801 — Sad Results to, and Sacrifices made by, Germany— Resig- 
nation of William Pitt — Peace of Amiens, 1802 — ^England declares War 
against France, 1803— Buonaparte takes Possession of Hanoyei>-The Ger- 
man Legion 615-634 


Napoleon's Consulship— Gains the Nation's Confidence— Restores internal 
Tranquillity and improves the Institutions — Napoleon Emperor of the 
French, 1804— His Usurpations— Alliance of Austna, Russia, and England 
— War declared— Napoleon in Germany, 1805— Defeats the Austrians — 
Ulm— General Mack— Battle of Austerlitz— The Allies defeated— Peace of 
Presburg — Dismemberment of the States of Germany — ^Naples— Joseph Buo- 
naparte — Holland— Louis Buonaparte^Rhenish Confederation, or League of 
the German Princes— Their Dc^neration— The Emperor of Austria lays 
down his Title of Emperor of Germany, 1806— Prussia^Declares War 
against France— The Prussian Army- Battle of Saalfeld- Death of Prince 
Lewis Ferdinand of Prussiar-^Battles of Jena and Auerstadt— Defeat of the 
IVussians— Napoleon enters Berlin— The Russian and Prussian Alliance 
—Battles of Eylau and Friedland— Defeat of the Allies— Peace of Tilsit 
between Russia and France, 1807 — Prussia's Dismemberment— Westphalia 
— Hesse — Jerome Buonaparte — Plrussiar-Lieutenant Schill — Napoleon's 
triumphant Return to Paris 634-644 


Austria declares War against France, 1809— BaUles of Gross-Aspem and 
Esslingen — Arohduke Charles — The Austrians Tictorious — Lieutenant 
Schill killed— Execution of Palm, the Bookseller— The Tyrolese— Battle of 
Wagram— Defeat of the Austriana— Peace of Vienna— The French in the 
Tyrol— The Moimtaineers overpowered— Execution of Hofer, the Tyrolese 

Patriot— The Duke of Brunswick— His Territory seized— His bold March 

Embarks for England— His Heroic Death— Napoleon at the Height of his 
Power — Marriage with the Archduchess Maria Louisa of Austria, 1810 — 

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Hi« contin q ed Umirpatioiis in Germany— His Campaign in Russia, 1812— 
GooflagTation of Moscow— The Erench Annj destroyed— Napoleon's Flight 
ud Return to Paris — The King of Prossia's Declaration and general Arming 
of his Nation against the Inyaders, 1813— Napoleon's Pleparations — The 
French in Germany 645-655 


Soccessesof the Prussians— The Duke of Mecklenbnrg-Strelitz— His Daughter, 
tbe Queen of Pmssia — ^ErAirt — Russia unites with Prussian-Battle of LUtzen 
— NapdeoQ in Dresden — ^The King of Saxony— Battle of Bautzen — Hamburg 
tiken by Marshal Davoust— Heayy Contributions — ^The Armistice — Prussia 
—Hie Liitzow Free Corps — Theodore Komer — ^Austria endeavours to nego- 
tiate a Peace hetween France and the Allies— The Congr^ at Prague — 
Napoleon reliises all Concession — ^The Emperor of Austria declares War, 
and joins Russia and Prussia^Dresden— Renewal of Hostilities — Strength 
and Position of the Allied Forces— Bemadotte—Bliicher— Prince Schwartz- 
enberg— Marshal Oudinot— Battle of Gross-Beeren— Defeat of the French.655-667 


Glorious Victory of the Prussians under Bliicher at Katzbach — Bliicher 
created Prince of Wahlstadt— Battle of Dresden— Defeat of the Austrians— 
Death of General Moreau— Battle of Kuhn— General Kleist— Generals Yan- 
teome and Haxo made Prisoners — ^Battle of Dennewitz — ^Battle of War- 
tenbnrg — Genoral York— Preparations for the Battle of Leipsic-The French 
Army — Hononrs and Promotions conferred by Napoleon— The Allied Forces 
—Prince Schwartzenberg 667-675 


TlieTfareeDays'BattleofLeipsic— Murat— The Austrian General Meerveldt 
tsken Ihrisoner— Battle of Mockem — Marshals Marmont and Bliicher— Ge- 
neral Horn — ^Total Defeat of the French— Buonaparte's Offers to negotiate 
rejected— Breitenfeld—Bemadotte—Bennigsen— The Prince of Hesse-Hom- 
fcurg- Prince Poniatowsky— Probstheyda— The Saxon Army deserts Buo- 
lAparte and joins the Allies — The Allied Soyereignfl — ^Night Scene on the 
field of Battle— Buonaparte's Slumber— Retreat of the French— Destruction 
of the Elster Bridge— Prince Poniatowsky's Death— Triumphant Entry of 
the Ames into Ldpsic 676-685 


Napoleon's Retreat across the Rhine— Bavaria^— General Wrede— Hanau— The 
Allied Forces mrade France— Their rapid March — Napoleon against Bliicher 
—Battle of Bridnne— Battle of Rothidre-7Repulse of the French— Temporary 
Successes of Napoleon— The Congress of Chatillon— Napoleon's Confidence 
restorod — His Declaration — ^Bliicber's bold Moyement— Soissons- Laon— 
Napoleon against Schwartzenberg — Rheims — ^Ards — ^Napoleon's desperate 
Courage and final Charge with his Cavahy 686-693 


^ French and Allied Armies in Battle Array— Napoleon's Sudden and Mys- 
terious Retreat before Action — ^His secret Designs for the Destruction of the 
Allies— His Plot DiscoTeredr— The Allies before Paris— Its Capituhition— 
Triumphant Entry of the Allies into that City— Napoleon deposed— Louis 
XVIH. Kingof France— Napoleon at Fontainebleau— His Abdication— Ba- 
^bment to Elba— Fteaoe Signed at Paris— Conclusion 694-700 

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Hie Somoes of the most aiicient German Hiftoiy— The Nature at the Country— 
The NmtiTea — ^The Germanic Baoes — ^Maanera and Cuatoms— Giyil Inatitutions — 
War— BegnlatioDa and Axma— Religion— Arts and Mannfactorea— The Ger- 
manic Tribes. 


The histoiy of the origin, and of the earliest state of the German 
nation, is inyolved in impenetrable obscnritj. No records tell us 
when, and under what circumstances, our ancestors migrated out 
of Asia, the cradle of the human race, into our fatherland; -what 
causes urged them to seek the re^ons of the north, or what allied 
bnmches they left behind them m the countries they quitted. A 
few scattered and obscure historical traces, as well as a resemblance 
in various customs and regulations, but more distinctly the affinities 
of language, indicate a relationship with the Indians, Servians, and 
the Greeks.* 

Tins obscurity of our earliest history must not surprise us; for 
every nation, as long as it lives in a half savage state, without a 
written language, neglects every record of its history beyond mere 
traditions and songs, which pass down from generation to genera- 
tion. But as these, even in their vety origin, blend fiction with 
truth, they naturally become, in the course of centuries, so much 
disfigured, that scarcely the least thread of historical &ct is to be 
found in tliem. Not a syllable or sound of even those traditions and 
songs, wherein, according to the testimony of the Romans, our an- 
cestors also delighted to celebrate the deeds and fate of their people, 
has, however, descended to posterity. 

Our authentic history, consequently, commences at the period 
when our ancestors, possibly after they had dwelt for centimes, or 
even a thousand years, in our native country, first came into con- 
tact with a nation that already knew and practised the art of his- 

* Aooording to more recent researchea, it is concluded that the ancient Sanacrit 
and Zaad langnagea may haye formed likewise the baaia of the Grerman tongue, 
or at leaat have approximated more doaelj with the common primitiTe dialect 


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2 ' • •• .♦ INTRODUCTION. 

torioal ^t^f iij»g.\ ;Tii8 happened through the incursion of the Cum- 
brians and Teutonians into the country of the Romans, in the year 
113 before the birth of Christ. But this intercourse was too tran- 
sitory, and the strangers were too unknown, and too foreign to tlie 
Romans, for them, wno were sufficiently occupied with themselves, 
and besides which, looked haughtily upon all that was alien, to in- 
quire very particularly into their ongin and history. 

And even the relation of this contest against the Grerman tribes, 
howsoever important it was to the RomanSi we are obliged to seek 
laboriously from numy authors ; for the source whence we should 
draw most copiously, is precisely here dried up, the books of the 
Roman author, Livy, which treated of this war in detail, having 
been lost, together with many others; and we only possess— wbicn 
we may even consider as very fortunate — thm mere table of con- 
tents, by means whereof, viz., those of the 63 — 68 books, we can 
at least trace the couise of the chief events of the war. Beyond 
this, we derive scune solitary facts from Roman historians of the 
second and third class, who give but a short and partially mutilated 
account, and collectively lived too long after this period to be con- 
sidered as authentic sources. To those belong — 1, the " Epit. Rer. 
Bom.'' of Florua (aceoiding to some, a book of the Augustan age, 
but according to others, the work of L. Ajmseus Floras, who lived 
at the commencement of the second century under Adrian) ; 2, the 
" History of the World" of Velleius Paterculus, in a brief outHne, 
down to the period of Tiberius, who lived about the time of the birth 
of Christ; 3, the *^ De Stiate^matibus'* of Frontinus (about 150 
years softer Christ) contains some ^ood notices of the Cimbrian war; 
4, the ** Dicta et Facta Memorabilia'^ of Valerius Mazimus (about 
20 years after Christ); 5, the '* Historv of the World" of Jus- 
tin (about the year 150) ; and 6, the *^ Sketch of the R<Hnan His- 
toiy" of Eutropius (about the year 375), -present us with much — 
and again much is supplied us, incidentally, by the Roman writers 
who md not directly write history. 

Among those wno wrote in Grieek, must stand: 1, Plutarch, 
(about 100 years B. c), in his biography of '* Marius," beddes 
whom, good details may be gleaned m>m: 2, Diodorus Siculus 
(about the period of the birth oi Christ), in his *' Historical Library;" 
3, Appian (about the year 160), in his ethnographically arranTCd 
'^ History of the Romans," (particulariy in the cap., '' DeKeb. C^t." 
and '' De Reb. Blyr."); 4, Dio Casdus (about the year 222), in the 
fragments which are preserved of his '* Koman History;" and among 
l^ose who treat of geography, Strabo (about the penod of the birth 
of Christ) especially. 

After the Cimbrian era, another half century passes before the 
Romans again mention the Grermans. It was towards the middle of 
the last century before the birth of Christ, when JuliusCsesar adyanced 
to the frontderB of what may be truly considered Germany. He him- 
self mentaons having fought with Ariovistus in Gaul, and afterwards 

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vi& some Gennan tribes on the left bank of the Rhine, and that 
be twice tmited the banks of this rirer by means of a bridge, and 
set foot upon the opposite side; besides which, heaves us aU the in- 
filiation he oould obtain from the Gauls, traveUin^ merchants, or 
Gemian captives, relative to the nature and condition of Germany 
and its people. His in&nnation is invaluable to us, although it is 
bat scanty, fia^entary, and, to a certain extent, not to be depended 
npoiL For tms great ccmunander, who strove for absolute rule; 
who used mankind— be cazmot be freed from the charge — as the 
means to his end; who, from the depth of an already corrupted 
state of civilization, could not possibly estimate the simple, natural 
dignity of such a nation; and who, lastly, in order to be considered 
WQstkj o£ belief in every thin^' he relates, too well understood the 
art of leparesenting events to his own advantage, — such a writer, we 
say, caanot truly be regarded by us without some degree of mistrust. 
A&esz him there ooguib another interval of about fifty years, 
donng which the obscurity of our history is scarcely illuminated by 
A sm^ rajr of fbreim observation, unm about the period of the 
biith c^ Christ, and when, immediately after, the Romans again set foot 
upon, and, for a longer period, traversed the German soiL They then 
became tolerably w w acq^oainted with the south-west and north-west 
of Germany; or, rather, they might have become well acquainted 
therewith, had their prejudiced and selGah minds, which were barred 
against all foreign peculiarities, been properly competent to it, and 
had not the diffieult extremities to which they were reduced in Ger- 
many too much occupied them, and rendered them unjust in their 
judgment of the country and its inhabitants. In order to expose 
themselves to less shame for being several times severely cut up by 
the very force of arms borne by those they called barbarians, by 
whom they were freguently surpassed in prudence and warlike su^ 
tlety; they necessarily, notwithstanding the decisive victories of 
wbch they boasted, when driven from tne German soil, extenuated 
their own misfortunes, and exaggerated those of their opponents, 
whom they accused occasionally of deceit, when probably, on the 
contrary, the most op&a. conduct prevailed, and generally, in fact, 
they heaped upon the Germans and their country the most oppro- 
hrioua chaiges. No impartial man among them, who was an eye- 
witness of tneir incursions, describes to us faithfully the events them- 
selves, and the German nation generally. The only historian of the 
period who mijght have done so, Velleius Faterculus, the servant of 
the Einperor liberius, and l^e friend of his favourite, Sejanus, who, ' 
in the years immediately preceding and succeeding the birth of 
Christ was himself in Germany— that is to say, on the banks of the 
Elbe, with the army of the emperor— shows himself, in the very 
scan^ notices he j^ves, only as a flatterer of his despotic lord, whose 
deeds he elevates to the skies in inflated and extravagant language. 

A second Banian writer, who also had seen Germany, Puny 
the elder, (and who died in the year 79 A. P.,) had been upon 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


the northern coast of Germany, among the Chanei^ but certainljr 
did not trayel &r into the land. In his '* Hist. Nat/' which is ai^t 
Encyclopaedia of general knowledge, he gives us several valuable 
notices of the natural condition of our country, and of its tribes and 
nations. His information and iudffment, however, must be used with 
precaution, as his critical sa^i^ is often questionable. But we have 
suffered an irreparable loss m his twenty books, which treated of all 
the wars of the Romans with the Germans, not the least fragment 
of which has come down to us. He lived so near the period that he 
might have collected the information as correcdy as it was to be ob- 
tained. We may, however, in some de^^ree console ourselves that 
Tacitus (about ido years A. D.), who cites his precursors as testi- 
monies, availed himself of the work of Pliny; but Tacitus only 
relates the German wars in part, and does not treat them as the prin- 
cipal subject, whilst, also, much from him that was important is lost 
to us. His "Annals," which relate the Roman history from the 
death of Augustus to the death of Nero, commence after the ^eat 
German battle of liberty with Varus; but of these annals all m>m 
the seventh to the tenth book is also wanting, and the fifth and six- 
teenth books have come down to us only in an imperfect state. We, 
nevertheless, acknowledge him to be by far the chief and most im- 
portant author as regards our earlier German history, and revere his 
elevated feeling for moral dignity, for truth and justice, in what he 
also relates of the contests between the Romans and Germans, al- 
though, faultlessly on his part, he does not always draw his infor- 
mation from a pure source. But we value him for the treasure he has 
left us in his description of Grermany and its people, (" De Situ ac 
Moribus Germ."). His deep feeling for simphcity of manners, and 
healthy energy of nature, Imd maae him a warm friend towards 
the German natives; and it appeared to him that a faithful descrip- 
tion of the German nation would be a work worthy of his pen, 
so that, when placed before his corrupted countrymen, it should 
present to their view a picture which might bring manv of those 
whose minds were as yet not quite unsusceptible, to acknowledge 
their own unnatural condition. For this purpose he collected all I 
that he could obtain from the earlier authors, from the oral infonna- 
tion of the Romans who had been in Germany, and from the Ger- 
mans who were in the Roman service. Thus arose this invaluable 
book, which may be called a temple of honour to the German na- 
tion, and which illuminates, like a bright star, the commencement 
of their otherwise obscure path. Some things, indeed, through too 
^reat a predilection, may be placed by him in too favourable a light; 
but, even if much be deducted, still sufficient that is praiseworthy 
remains, and that the material portion is true, we may be assured of 
by the incorruptible love of truth of the noble Roman, which speaks 
so triumphantly in all his works. 

Among the remainder of the less important historians who con- 
tributed to our earliest historyi and are already mentioned in the 

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notice of the Gimbrian war, Dio Casslus maj be included aa im- 
portant; for the later wars may be named, Suetonius QIC years 
AJ)., esteemed by Trajan and Adrian), in his biograpny of the 
tvdve first Caesars; the " Scriptores Hist. Augustce," towards the 
esd of the third century; j£tius Spartianus, Julius Capitolinus, 
and Flavins Vopiscus; Aurelius Victor (330), in his bio^phy of 
tiie Caesars, from Augustus to Constantine; and Faulus Orosius (417), 
in his history. Among the geographical writers, besides Strabo and 
Pomponius Mela (48), we may name in particular Claudius Ptolo- 
maeus (140), who constructed a system of geography upon a lost 
work of Tyrian Marinos, and was particularly careful in the deter- 
miimtion of longitude and latitude. 

But even wben we have brought together all of the best that ancient 
authors supply us with upon Germany, and console ourselves over the 
great chasms they leave, with the idea that still something has de- 
scended to us both great and important, we must neverthdess con- 
ader it but as the testimony of strangers, — of the people of the South, 
diffeiing essentially from the Germans in nature and character, igno- 
lant of their language, and, with the exception of one instance, 
IndifFerent, or rather inimically-minded, towards them. Not a 
aagle German word, correcting the judgment of the Romans, or 
elucidating the thread of events which the Romans could neither 
^ nor understand, resounds to us from yonder period. How much 
richer, and certainly more honourable, would the picture develop 
Itself before us, did we also possess German reoords ! 

But it was not until many centuries later, after multifarious con- 
^oJaons had taken place, and most of die constituent parts of 
ancient times had disappeared from their seat, that isolated and 
^<^ty sources of history commenced flowing from original German 
^^stimony, by writers who, driven with their coimtrymen to foreign 
lands, there endeavoured to relate their career and fate. Their names 
will be mentioned at the commencement of the second period. 

After what is stated above, we must rest contented with giving as 
^e a picture as possibleof ancient German history, derived as it is from 
the Roman and Greek writers, and by conclusions drawn from later 
^mony upon earUer times, admitting that much must necessarily 
appear obscure, firaffmentary, and contradictory, and that upon many 
points opinions will for ever remain divided. The period to which 
the following description belongs, is about the time of the birth of 
Christ, and the few immediately succeeding centuries. 

AccordiBg to the description of the Romans, Germany was, at 
the time they fifet became acquainted with it, a rude and inhos- 
pitable land, full of immense forests, marshes, and desert tracts, 
fhe great Hercynian forest, by Caesar'^s accoimt, extended from the 
^ps over a space, that in its length occupied sixty, and in its width 
^e days' journey; consequently, all the chief mountain chains and 

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forests of the present Germany, mnst be the remnants of that one 
stupendous wooded range. But Caesar^ from the indefinite informa- 
tion he received, owing to his ignorance of the German language, 
appKed the general German word, Hart^ or Hcarz^ for mountain, to 
the collective mountain forests of the land, which, however, tlie 
natives certainlj^ ahreadj distinguished by different appellations. 
Later authors, viz., Pliny and Tacitus, circumscribe the Hercyniaa 
forests to those chains of mountains which, to the south of the 
Thuringian forest, enclose Bohemia, and in the east extend to Mo- 
ravia and Hungary. They also, as well as Ptolemy, subsequently^ 
mention many mdividual mountains by peculiar names; forezample. 
Mom AJmabuy the Black Forest, (Ptolemy seems to injpjy by tJaisy 
the mountains between the Maine, the Rmne, and the Weser); the 
Mehbokos mountains, the present Harz; the Semana forest, to the 
south of the Harz, towards the Thuringian forest; the Sudeta forest, 
a portion of the Thtiringian forest; the Gabreta forest, the Bohe- 
mian forest; the AsMburgish mountains, according to some the jErr, 
or rather the jBic5«i-Gebirg ; the Taunus^ the heights between 
Wiesbaden and Homburg; the Teutshurger forest, tne mountain 
and forest tracts which extend from the Weser through Paderbom^ 
as &r as Osnaburg. Caesar mentions besides, the Bacenis forest^ 
probably the western portion of the Thuringian forest, which ex- 
tends into Fulda, and in the middle ages was called Bocauna, or 
Buchonia; and Tacitus names the Sihia C^esia, between the Ems 
and the Issel, the remains of which may be the Haser forest, and 
the Baumberge, near CJoesfeld; and that town itself may probably 
have preserved the name. Many other less important or imcertain 
names we pass over. 

The laige German forests consisted probably, as now, principally of 
oaks, beeches, and pines. The Romans admired, above all, the immense 
oaks, which seemed to them coeval with the earth itself. Pliny, 
who had been personally in the north of Westphalia, in the country 
of the Chauci, expresses himself thus upon them: " Created with 
the earth itself, untouched by centuries, the monstrous trunks sur- 
pass, by their powerful vitality, all other wonders of nature." 

The Romans were also acquainted with the majority of German 
rivers: Danubius^ the Danube; Rhenus^ the Rmne; MoermSy the 
Maine; AUns^ the Elbe; Visurgis^ the Weser; Viadrus^ the Oder; 
the Vistula; Nicer ^ the Necker; Luppia^ the Lippe; Amina^ the 
Ems; Adrana, the Eder; Salas (in Strabo alone), the Saale; and 
some others. It is remarkable that the Romans do not mention the 
Lahn and the Ruhr, although they must surely have become ac- 
quainted with them in their campaigns in the north of Germany. 
The German rivers were not at that period made passable by means 
of bridges, which the native did not require, as he easily swam 
across the former, and for wider transits he had his boats. 

The soil of the land was not cultivated as now, although the 
Romans call portions of it extremely fertile, and agriculture and 

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pastmage were the chief oecupstioxis of the Germanfl. Bje, barle]^, 
OAte, and, aocardixig to the opinions of some, wLeat also, wexe culti- 
fited; £ax was everywhere distributed; various sorts of carrots and 
feiiniips it certainly prodnoed; the Romans admired radishes of the 
aae m a duld's head, and mention aspara^, whidi they, indeed, did 
Bot praise, and a species of parsley, which pleased ihem mudi. The 
mpeaxx fruits of southern climates which have been subsequentlv 
tnmsplanted among them, might probably not then thrive, althougk 
Flioy mentiaBS a spedeB of cherry found near the Rhine, and Ta- 
citiu names among the food of the Germans wild-tree fiiiits {agrestia 
f«Mi\ which must certainly have been better than ova crab-applea. 

Hk pastorea w^re rich and beautiful, and the homed cattle as 
vdl as the horses, although small and inconsiderable, yet of a good 
tod durable kind. 

The most important of all condiments, salt, the Germans found 
iqua their native soil, nor did it recuse them that most useful of all 
lAetals, iron, and they understood the art of procuring and manuiac- 
tunng it; they do not, howevra, appear to have dug for silver. 

or the many strengthening mineral springs wmch the country 
number, the Romans already mention Spa and Wiesbaden. 

The climate, in cooDBequence of the immense forests, whose density 
vas impervions to the rays of the sun, and owing to the un- 
^nmed fens and marshes, was colder, more foggy and inclement 
tltta at present, was nevertheless not quite so bad perhaps as repre- 
sented by the Romans, spoiUas they were by the lururious climate of 
I^' AooQsdingto them thetrees were without leaves foreightmonths 
intae year, and the laige rivers were reffularly so deeply and firmly 
^iotoi that th^ could bear upon them tae heavy fiela-equipages of 
tiic army. « The Germans," says Pliny, " know only three seasons, 
^ter, spring, and summer; of autumn they know neither the name 
iKff its fimts. The Romans found the countiy in general so un- 
genial, that they considered it quite imposdlble that any one should 
quit Italy to dwell in Germany. 

Bot the ancient Germans loved this country beyond all, because, 
tt fiee men, they were bom in it, and the nature of the climate 
^Ipei them to defend this freedom. The forests and marshes ap- 
palled the enemv; the severity of the air as well as the chase of wild 
spimals, strengthened the bodies of the men, and nourished b^ a 
>naple diet, diejr eiew to so stately a size that other nations admued 
them with astanimment. 

The Romans justly considered the Grerman nation as an abori^nal, 
pnie, and uxmuxed race of people. They resembled themselves alone ; 
and fike the specifically similar plants of the field, which sprin^g from 
5 pure seed, not raised in the hotbed of a garden, but germinating 
in the healdiy, free, unsheltered soil, do not differ from each other 
hy varieties, so also, among the thousands of the ample German race, 

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therewasbut one determined and equal form of bodj. Their chest ^^^s 
wide and strong ; thdr hair yellow, and with yomig children it was of a 
dazzling white. Their skin was also white, their eyes blue, and tlieir 
glance bold and piercing. Their powerfiil, gigantic bodies, which 
the Romans and Grauls could not behold without fear, displayed the 
strength that nature had given to this people, for accormng to the 
testimony of some of the ancient writers their usual height -was 
seven feet. 

From thdr earliest youth upwards they hardened their bodies by- 
all devisable means. New-bom infants were dipped in cold water, 
and the cold bath was continued during their whole lives as the 
strengthening renovator by both boys and girls, men and women. 
Their dress was a broad short manfle fastened by a girdle, or the 
skins of wild animals, the trophies of the successful (mace; in both 
sexes a great portion of the body was left imcovered, and the winter 
did not induce them to clothe themselves warmer. The children 
ran about almost naked, and effeminate nations, who with dij£culty 
reared their children during the earliest infancy, wondered how 
those of the Germans, without cradles or swaddling bands, should 
grow up to the very fullest bloom of health. 

The Komans called our nation, from its warlike and valiant mode of 
thinking, Gekmans;* a name which the T\mffi, —a body of German 
warriors, who, at an earlier period, crossed the Rhine, and colonized, 
with arms in hand, among the Gauls, — first bore, and subsequently 
applied to all their race, to express thereby their warlike manners, and 
thus to impress their enemies with terror. This name was willingly 
adopted, as a name of honour, by all Germans, and thus it remained. 

The aboriginal name of ihe people is, however, without doubt 
the same which they bear to the present day. It springs from the 
word Diot (in the Gothic, Tkiudu)^ which signifies Nation. A 
Teutscher or Deutscher, according to the harder or softer pronim- 
ciation, was, therefore, one belonging to the nation^ which styled 
itself so prerogatively. 

According to history, it was some centuries after the decline of 
the Roman dominion, that the name of the nation of Germans was 
again heard of, and it is found in but few records prior to Otto I., the 
earliest of which bears the date of the year 813. 

It must not appear remarkable to us, that the original collective 
name of the people was little used in the earlier periods, and was 
probably imknown to the Romans. In the intercourse with a nation 
composed of so many septs, the names of only those septs transpired 

* Most probably from tbe word gar, spear or lanoe, and the word man — ^the man, the 
lord or chief. Therefore, in any case, a warlike titie of honour, which disting^iiahed 
the manliness and valour of the nation. It is worthy of remark, that the name 
Crermanen, which, before Cssar, no Roman author mentions, appears on a marble 
slab discovered in the year 1547, and which is connected with the celebrated Faxtk 
CapitoUnis, in the year, before the birth of Christ, 223. The consul Marcellus gained 
in that year a victory over the Gallic chief Viridomar, who is inscribed upon that 
captured slab a leader of the Gauls and Gemumen, 

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with wliom that conunumcatioii took place, because each held Itself 
to be a nation (Diot); and so also later, when various tribes asso- 
ciated together in bodies, merely the name of the imion appeared: 
S&, the Suevi, the Marcomanni, the Allemanni, the Gotns, the 
f iBnks, and the Saxons. It is, however, remarkable enough, that 
we meet with the original national name in that of the Teu- 
tonians» which is already used by P^theas, 300 years before the birth 
of Christ, and which again recurs m the Cimbrian war. 

Ancient authors mention several Grerman tribes, as weU as their 
dwelling-places, with greater or less precision. Several of them also 
5peak of tne chief tribessLmong^ which the single septs united them- 
selves. But their statements are not sufficienUv unanimous or pre- 
cise, to give us that clear view which we would, however, so wil- 
lingly obtain. For how desirable would it not be for us to be able, 
even in the very cradle of our histoiy, to point out the original dis- 
tinctions of the races as yet discovered, and which display them- 
selves in the different dialects of the German language, as well as 
in many essential differences in the manners of the people, particu- 
laily in those of the less sophisticated peasantry ! But we are here 
upon too insecure a foundation, although it still yields us some few 
f eatoies always important. 

The most obscure account presented to us is the fivefold division 
o{ tribes given by Pliny. Beginning at the extreme north coast, 
towards the estuary of tne Vistula, he first mentions the Vimlians or 
WindUer; farther westward, towards the East Sea coast, and beyond 
the Gimbiian peninsula, towards the North Sea, as far as the mouth 
of the Ems, the Inffovonians ; in the neighbourhood of the Rhine, 
as far as the Maine, and higher up on tbe left bank of the Rhine, the 
IxUaxmians; and in the middle of Germany , particularly in the high- 
lands along the Upper Weser, the Werra, Fulda, and towards the 
south, as far as the Hercynian forest, the HermUmian tribes. He gives 
no general name to the fifth tribe, but includes therein the Peu- 
cimans and BastarmanM in the districts of the Lower Danube, as far 

Tacitus also mentions three of these names, but he derives them 
fiom the mythical origin of the people. Man, the son of Tuisko, 
luid three sons, Ingavon, Istavon, and Hermion, whose descendants 
formed the three principal tribes of the Ingavonians, the Istavonians, 
and the Hermionians. 

We would willingly, as before mentioned, brin^ the fourth or fifth- 
fold division of the tribes of Pliny, in conjunction with the subse- 
quent times, and, on this head, we are not altogether without some 
Instoricalindicalions,— as,viz., when the Vandals, of their own accord, 
^tum later and join in thegreat Gothic imion; when the Suevi, the 
nower of the Allemannic alliance, as the inhabitants of the internal 

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Eadsouth-weBteni parte of Oeixnaiiy, this bring to mind the Her- 
mioniaiiB, the Ingavonians and IrtaYomans thezefore remaining for 
the north and north-weBtem pordonB ; 00 that as, even in the 
earlier times of the Romans, an essentaal differenoe, nay, a de- 
cided contrast, in comparison with the inhabitante of the North 
Sea, the Treaians and Ooaucians, evidentlj occurs between the inha- 
bitante of the Middle and Lower Rhine, eictending itself onwards to- 
wards the mountain districte of the Weaer and the Harz, and which, 
in the subsequent league of the Franks and Saxons, becomes con- 
firmed, we have thence fttmished to us abready the third and fourth 
principd tribes of Pliny. 

The fifth he refers to as before-mentioned. Prooeedinff further on- 
wards we may find again in Bavaria the remnant of the Gothic tribe, 
which, after the period of the magration of the pe(^[>Ie, remained sta- 
tionary in Germany, 00 that between the later four principal nations in 
Grennany, the Franks, the Saxons, the Swabians, and Bavarians, a 
oonnexion is formed and establifihed even to the original tribes of 
Pliny. Such links of connexion convey assuredly a great charm; 
but we, nevertheleBS, wajider upon ^tmd too uncertain to enable ub 
to succeed in acquiring authentic historical data. 

Much more importance attaches, on the contrary, to what the 
anciente, but more distinctly Gaosar and Tacitus, relate of the pecu- 
liarities of one Grerman chief tribe, which included many individual 
eqpts, namely the Sueoi. From the combination of the picture 
sketched by them, in conjunction with other descriptions of German 
manners and institutions, we can define, with toleraUe safety, the 
peculiarities of a second tribe, although the Romans give it no 
general name. We will first pourtray the Suem, as Oumx and Ta- 
jdtaB described them: 

1. The nations forming the Suevic race dwelt in the large semi- 
cirde tzaoed by the upper and middle Rhine and the Danube, 
through the middle of Germany, and fiirther towards the north to 
the £^ Sea, so that they occupied the country of the Necker, the 
Maine, the Saale, and then the right Elbe bank of the Havel, Spree, 
and Oder. Nay, Tacitus even places Suevic tribes beyond the 
Vistula, as w^ll in the interior as on the coasto of the Baltic, and 
beyond it in Sweden. Grounds of probability, admit, indeed, of 
our placing a third — the Gothic-Vandal tribe, between the Oder and 
the Vistula, and along the latter stream; but as distinct information 
is wanting, we can but allude to it, of which more below. The 
Suevi, as Caesar informs us, had early formed themsdres into one 
large union, whose principles were distinctly warlike. The love of 
arms was assiduously chenshed in all, that they might be always 
xeadv for any undertaking. Thence it was that individuals had no 
.fixed landed possessions ; but the princes and leaders yearly divided 
the land among the fiunilies just as it pleased them; and none were 
allowed even to select the same pastures for two consecutive years, 

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hitwerefaiced to exchange with each other, thatneitherof them might 
aocoBtam himself to the ground, and, acqtiiiing a love for his dwelling* 
^oe, be thus induced to exchange the love of war for agiicultoxe. 
Tkey were a&aid that, if an individual were pennitted to acquire aa 
ateosive tract, the powerfid mi^ht chase away the poor, build 
luge and impooiQg dwelling, and that the lust of wealth might 
nreriBe to iaotionB and divisions. Besides which, thej were oblirai, 
from eadi of their hundred districts, to supply the warswith a l£oii- 
■nd men Tearij, and those who remained at home.cultivated the 
had for aU. The following year, on the other hand, the latter 
marched under arms, and tli^e former remained at home, so that 
agncoteore aa well as the art of war were in constant exerdse. 

They considered it a proof of glory when the whole tract 
beyond -dieir frontiers lay waste, as a sign that the neighbourii^ 
nationa were not able to resist their force. They might also have 
omsidered it perhaps as a greater security against suddai invasion. 

In these, ahhough rode pindples of the Suevic union^ a great 
idea manifests itself, and proves that the ancient Grennans, aboot 
the period of the birth of Christ, were by no means to be reckoned 
among the savage tribes. What Lycurgus wished to effect by 
ineans of his led^lation among the Spartans, and for the same 
Keason that he allowed his citizens no nxed and exclusive posses- 
SCO, seems to have been a principle and combining power of the 
Sneyic union, viz: a public spirit, so general and operative, that the 
mdi^dual should submit himself to the common ^ood, and for which 
and in which he should only Hve; and not bv sdfifihness, Action, or 
by idleness, demre to separate Imnself from the rest, or consider his 
own weal aa more important than that of the collective body. 

2. The Romans mention many individual tribes in the nordh 
west of Germany, between the lower Elbe and the lower Rhine, con- 
sequently about the Alkr, the Seine, the Harz, the Weaer, the Lippe, 
the Rum*, and the Ems, as high up as the coasts of the Baltic, (later 
bIso on the opposite side of the Rhine, in the vicinity of the Mouse 
and Scheldt,) without distinguishing them by a collective name. Sub- 
sequently, in the second century after the birth of Christ, the name of 
SaxoK occurs in these districts, and in still later times it becomes the 
^/ommant title in the above-mentioned tracts of land; for in the third 
century, the tribe of Saxons q>read forth from Holstein over Lower 
Gennany, andgave its own nametoall those tribes which it conquered 
<n^ united by aSiance. It has been customary to apply the name of 
Sttona, for even the earlier periods, as the collective appdlation of 
^ ibe tribes of lower Germany, and thereby to eroress the very op- 
Mite character they presented in their whole mode of living to the 
Suevi. For as these unwillingly confined themselves to a fixed spot, 
ttid by their greater exercise and activity, kept themselves con- 
B^BHtly ready f<^ every warlike undertaking, so, on the other hand, 
d^ aatioDs of Lower Germany had early accustomed themselves to 
settled dweUinga^ and had made agriculture their principal occupo- 

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tion. They dwelt upon scattered farms; each farm had its boun* 
daries around it, and was enclosed by a hedge and bank of earth. 
The owner was lord and priest within his farm, and by voluntary 
union with a number of other proprietors was attached to a com- 
munity; and several communities a^ain were bound to a Gau or dis- 
trict. The name of Saxon^ which is derived &om sUzen^ to sit, and 
has the same signification as to occupy, or hold, appeared effectively 
io characterise the peculiarity of this people; wnilst on the other 
hand, the name of Stuvi would indicate the roaming life led by the 
others. But these derivations are more iageniously than historically 
founded. The name of Saxon is, according to aU probability, to be 
derived from the short swords, called Saxens (Sahs), of this people; 
but that of the Suevi in its derivation is not as yet thorougnly ex- 
plained. Meantime, however, the contrast between the Suevi and 
the non-Suevi is not to be mistaken. In the latter we find the greatest 
freedom and independence of the mdwidual; in the former we 
perceive the combined power and unity of the whole^ wherein the 
individual self is merged ; in the latter again, domestic life in its entire 
privacy, and in the former, je>tfft&c life in the — although as yet rude — 
accomplishment of an acutely formed idea. 

Saxon institutions were not the most favourable for the exercise 
of the strength of a nation against the enemy. But it gives a 
strong and self-dependent mind to the individual man, to find him- 
self sole lord and master upon his own property, and knowing that 
it is his own power that must protect wife and child. In villages, 
or even in towns where man dwells amidst a mass, he depends upon 
the protection of others, and thereby easilj becomes indolent or cow- 
ardly. But the isolated inhabitant, in his, frequently, defiance-bid- 
ding retreat, is nevertheless humane and hospitably minded, and 
offers to his neighbour and his fiiend, and even to the stranger, an 
ever welcome seat by his hearth. For he feels more intensely the 
pleasure derived firom the friendly glances of man, and the reiresh- 
ment of social intercourse; whilst, on the contrary, the townsman, 
who meets a multitude at every step, accustoms himself to view the 
human coimtenance with indifference. When the Saxon, with his 
hunting-spear in his hand, had traversed, through snow and storm, 
the wilderness and forest, the huts of his friends smiled hospitably 
towards him, like the happy islands of a desert sea. 

We shall enumerate subsequently the individual tribes of both 
branches, as well as the others mentioned by the authors of antiquity. 
It appeared necessary to notice thus early the chief distinction 
between the German nations, for many of the descriptions given by 
the ancients of their manners and customs, accord only with the one 
or the other branch, and their apparent contradictions are to be ex- 

!>lained only by the confused mixture of the information. CsBsar, 
or example, notices chiefly the Suevi; and Tacitus, the Saxon tribes. 
Yet in the detail which we now enter upon, it will be perceived that 
the essential fundamental character of both was the same. 

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Tie Germans loved the open country above every thing. They 
did not build towns, they likened them to piisons. The few places 
vhich occur in the Roman writers called towns — ^the later Ptolemy 
names the most — were probably nothing more than the dwellings of 
the chie&, somewliat larger, and more artificially built, than those of 
the common freemen, and in the vicinity of which the servitors 
fixed their buts ; the whole might possibly^ have been surrounded by 
i wall and ditch to secure them from the incursions of the enemy. 

Hie Saxon tribes did not even willingly build connecting villages, 
so great was their love for unlimited freedom. The huts lay, as is 
already mentioned, in the midst of the inclosure that belonged to 
them, and which was surrounded by a hedge. The construction of 
these huts was most inartificial. Lqgs shaped by the axe were raised 
and joined together, the sides fiUea with plaited withy, and made 
into a firm wall by the addition of straw and lime. A thatched roof 
covered the whole, which (as is still found in Westphalia) contained 
&e cattle also; and by way of ornament they decorated the walls 
'With brilliant colours. 

Tacitus says, they selected their dwelling wherever a grove or 
spring attracted them. Advantage and comfort were consequently 
nequently sacrificed to their love of open and beautiful scenery, and 
it 13 probable, that they so ardently loved their country from its pre- 
senting them with so great a variety of hiU and dale, wood and 
plains, and rivers in every part. 

This strong love of nature, which may be traced from the very 
first in our forefathers, is a ^rand feature of the German character. 
As long as we retain it, it will preserve us from sensual ener- 
vation and the corruption of manners, wherein the most cultivated 
nations of antiquity, by excess of civilization and luxury, and com- 
pression into large cities, gradually sunk. 

Next to war Sie most favourite occupation of the Grermans was 
the chace; and that itself was a kind of warlike exercise. For 
the forests concealed, besides the usual deer, also wolves, bears, 
nrocks, bisons, elks, wild boars, and many species of the larger 
birds of prey. The youth was, therefore, practised in the use of 
Anns from childhood, and to him the greatest festival of his life was 
when his fiither first took him forth to hunt wild animals. 

*' Agriculture, the herdsman's business and domestic occupa- 

.tions,** says Tacitus, *' they leave to the women and slaves; for it is 

easier to prevail upon the Germans to attack their enemies than to 

cultivate tiie earth and await the harvest ; nay, it even appears 

cowardly to them to earn by the sweat of the brow, what the san- 

Siinaty conflict would procure." But this description of our fore- 
thers, as is so often tne case with the narratives of the Roman 
anthers, represents the individual feature as tiie general charac- 
teristic. Tne small proprietor, no doubt, like our peasant, neces- 

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sarily applied Us own hand to the ctdtivation of his land, while the 
great land-owner reserved time for hunting, for festivities, and for 
all the pleasures of social interoourse. 

And with respect to the description of their dominant warlike 
propensities, which preferred earning the neoessaries of life hj blood 
rather than by the sweat of the brow, this must be understood to refer 
more particukrly to the conquering warlike trains df bold leaders, such 
as an Ariovistus, or to the firontier safeguards of the Germjuis against 
the Romans, as, for instance, the MarcomaanL For when once 
amongst a nation a^culture and nasfeurage have become prominent 
occupations, and without which life could not be supported, they 
can no longer belong to those employments despised by the &ee 
man, and ^vniich as such he leaves solely to the care and attention of 
women and slaves. 

It is, however, no doubt true, that among the Grennans of 
the more ancient period, warlike desires, and powerful na* 
tural inclinations for bold imdertakings, and in particular for 
the display of an untamed strength with its violent concomitants, 
were a ruling passion. But the ennobliuj^ features of higher vir- 
tues are seen through these defects. Hmory reoards no people 
who, in conjunction with the &ults of an unresmcted natural power, 
possessed nobler capabilities and qualifications, rule and oraer, a 
aublime patriotism, fideUty, and chastity, in a greater proportion 
thiem the Germans. '* Thmj' says the noble Roman, who had pre- 
served a mind capable of appreciating the dimity of uncorrupted 
nature; ''there no one smiles at vice, and to s^uce or be seduced, 
is not csiledfashianabk; far among the Germans^ good morals effect 
mare than elsewhere good laws." 

This moral worlh of the (xermans, which beams through all their 
rudeness, has its true source and basis in the sanctity of marriage, 
and the consequent concentration of domestic hairiness; for it is 
these two features chiefly which most decidedly determine the mora- 
lity of a nation. The young man, at a period when his form had 
taken its perfect growm, in the full energy of youth, like the 
sturdy oaks of his native forests, and preserv^by diastity and tem- 
perance from enervating desires, at the time that his pnysical and 
moral nature had attamed their equilibrium, selected then the 
maiden for his wife, little differing in age from himself. The 
exceptions were few, says Tacitus, and that only perchance — as in the 
case of a prince, who might wish to increase his own importance bj 
an alliance with another powerfol house — ^that a secoiKl wife was 

It was not the woman who brought the portion to the man, but 
ihe latter to the former, and who indicated tae value he attached to 
his alliance with her by the quality of the present he made, aocord- 
iiu; to the extent of his means; and even this custom displays the con- 
flideration the German nation had for the gentler sex. The bridal giii 
comprised, besides a team of oxeui a war-horse, a shield and arms; » 

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^not useless among people with whom, particukilj in long ezcur- 
sons, the wife, ffenenulj, accompanied hor nnsband to the field. She 
iss dins reminded not to conaiaer valour, war, and arms, as whoUj 
stnioge to her, but these sacred symbols of the opening marriage told 
kr to consider herself as the companion of the labours and dangers of 
Iier husband^ in war as well as in peace, and as such to live and die. 
Sbe received what she was bound to transfer uncontaminated to her 
eluldien, and what her daughter-in-law was to inherit in turn, in 
<nkt to transmit to her grand-children. And this gift, as Tacitus 
mp, was, as it were, the mystic holy consecration and guardian 
^ty of mazxiage. 

Such an alliance founded upon love and virtue, and calculated to 
contiime for better for worse» in firm union unto death, must indeed be 
Wy and inviolable; and in &et, the iofiingemait of the marriage vow 
was, according to the testimony of Tacitus, almost unheard of^ The 
demst and most universal contempt foUowed a crime so very rare. 

The children of such a marriage were to their parents the dearest 
pledges of love. From their very Urth they were treated as ficee 
BmsoL beings. No trace was to lie found in Uermany of the tyran* 
nical power of the Roman father over his children. The mother 
leaied her in&nts at her own breast; thev were not left to the care 
of nurses and servants. The Grermans, therefore, hishly venerated 
virtuous women; they even superstitiously believed there was some«- 
diing holy and prophetic in them, and they occasionally followed 
their advice in important and decisive moments. 

This veneration for the female sex in its human dignity, com- 
bined with their strongly impressed love of arms, of war, and man- 
hood, this noble feature in the Grerman nature, which elevates him 
8D Ugh above the— in other senses, so gifted — Gre^ and Romans, 
shows most clearly that nature had reso&ed her German son to be the 
entire man, who, by the imiversal cultivation of the human powers, 
^ould at some fiiture period produce an age, which as now, in its 
liberal and xnany-rided or multifarious views, should &r surpass that 
of the Greeks and Romans. 

The ancient German dress and food were dmple, and agreeable to 
nature. Female decoration consisted in thdr long ydlow hair, in the 
fresh colour of their pure sldn, and in their linen robes, spun and 
iroven by their own hands, ornamented with a purple bandas a girdle; 
the man knew no other ornament than his warlike weapons; the 
shield and his helmet, when he wore one, he adorned as weU aa he 
could. Amcmg the Suevi the hair was worn tiedin abundle on the 
top of the hcadnn: the sake of its warlike eSect« Amoi^ the Saxons 
it was jparted, and hung down the shoulders, cut at a moderate length. 

Their simple fare consisted chiefly of meat and milk. They pre- 
pued their mvourite drink, beer, from barley and oats. They made 
n^ead also firom honey and water. Their noney was collected by 
the wild bees in great quanti^, and good quality. Upon the Rhine 
they did not demise or neglect the cultivation of the vme introduced 
there by the Romans. ogtzedbyGoogk 


No nation respected tlie laws of hospitality more than the GrermanB 
To refuse a stranger, whoever he might be, admission to the house, 
would have been disgraceful. His table was free and open to all, 
according to his means. If his own provisions were exhausted^ he 
who was but recently the host, would become the guide and con- 
ductor of his guest, and together they would enter, uninvited, the 
first best house. There also they were hospitably received. When 
the stranger took his leave, he received as a parting present whatever 
he desired, and the giver asked as candidly on his side for what he 
wished. This goodnatured people rejoiced in presents. But they 
neither estimated the gift they made too highly, nor held themselves 
much bound by that which they had received in return. 

At these banquets the Germans not un&equently took council upon 
their most important affairs, upon the conciliation of enemies, upon al- 
liances, and friendships, upon the election of princes, even upon war 
and peace; for the joyousness of the feast and society opened the 
secrets of the breast. But on the following day they reconsidered 
what had been discussed, so that they might view it coolly and 
dispassionately; they took counsel when they could not deceive, and 
fixed their resolution when fitted for quiet consideration. 

During these banauets they had also a peculiar kind of festival. 
Naked youths dancea between drawn swords and raised spears; not 
for reward and gain; but the compensation for this ahnost rash feat 
consisted in the pleasure produced in the spectator, and the honour 
reaped by the display of such a dangerous art. 

They gambled with dice, as Tacitus with astonishment informs us, 
in a sober state, and as a serious occupation, and with so much eager- 
ness for gain, that when they had lost their all, they hazarded their &ee- 
dom, and even their very persons upon the last cast. The loser freely 
delivered himself up to slavery, although even younger and stronger 
than his adversary, and patiently allowed himself to be bound and 
sold as a dave ; thus steadfastly did they keep their word, even in a 
bad case : ^^ they call this good faith" says the Roman writer. 

The entire people consisted of freemen and slaves. Among the 
latter there seems even to have been an essential difference. The 
one class, which may be compared to the vassals pertaining to the 
land of the lord of the manor, and among whom the freedmen 
of Tacitus msLj be also reckoned, received from the land proprie- 
tor house ana home, and yielded him in return a certain ac- 
knowledgment in com or cattle, or in the woven cloth which 
was made under every roof. The second class, on the contrary, 
the true slaves, who were bought and sold, and were mostly pri- 
soners of war, were employed in the more menial services of the 
house, and the labours of agrictdture. But their lot even waB en* 
durable, for their children grew up with those of their master, with 
scarcely any distinction, and thus in the simplicity of their living 
there was formed a relation of mutual adhere^c^. (^ut the slave was 


held incapable of bearing anns ; these wiere alone the privilege and pre- 
log^ye of the Free*mm. 

Iley were dLvided into the nobles, nobiks^ as Tacitus calls them, 
snl the common Free-men, ingenid. In laterperiods the Gennan lan- 
guape distinguishes AdeUnge and FriHnge. The fonner word is pro- 
bab^ derived from Od, Estate, and therefore denoted the large pro- 
prietor, who reckoned in his estate bondsmen and vassals, and who 
possessed already in his domains the means of exercising a more ex- 
tensive inflaence. The Friling was, on the contrary, the common 
free man, who cultivated his small possessions with nis own hands, 
or \fj the assistance of but a few slaves. If Tacitus, as is probable, 
uuhcates this distinction bj his term nobiles and ingenvi^ we may 
therein trace the ori^ of the Glerman nobilitjr, founded as it is in 
the nature of all social relations. From the importance given by 
possessions and merit, individual as well as ancestral, those privile^s 
may be adduced, which are held over the poorer, unnoticed famihes, 
and which in the course of time, and as it were by the antiquit;]^ of 

Cssion, pass into rights. But the information ^ven by Tacitus 
not, however, speak absolutely of rt^Ats,— imjplymg, for instance, 
the offices of director and president in communities and districts,-^ 
but merely of the custom of filling them from the superior fiunilies. 

A nimiber of farms of great and smaU landowners, spedallj united 
hjdose ties, constituted a community {Gemeinde); several commu* 
nities a league of the hundred {Markgenassenschaft)^ which exercised 
within a larger circuit the common riffht of herd and pasture; and, 
hsdy, a number of these formed the krger confederacy of a district 
(Gau), formally united for protection against every enemy, and for 
internal security both of life and property. 

As chief of the district, a judge was elected firom amon^ the 
oldest and most experienced, who probably may have borne m an- 
cient times the name GrafJ^ Gents or hundreds were subdivisions 
of the district, probably consisting originally of a himdred farms, 
whose chiefs were the centners or Ceniffrafen. These gave judgment 
in trifling affidrs; and in matters of more importance they were the 
assistants of the Gaugrafen. The occupation of these functionaries was 
not limited to their judicial emplojrments, but they had the guidance 
&1m of other affidrs in the community; and together, they formed the 
Prineipes of the district, the foremost and first amongst their equak, 
whence is derived the German word Furst (prince). The recompence 
for their trouble did not consist in a regular stipend, but in presents 
i<H%ived from the chiefs of fiimilies. • 
But the National assembly was at the head of all, and counselled and 

decided upon the most important affairs. Every fireeman, high as 

well as low, was a member of the national assembly, and took his 

part in the welfare of the whole. 
In earlier times, perhaps, there never existed in many circuits, and 

* The deriTation of the word Graf or Gray is uncertain. That firom grau, gray, 
u veil M from ak^ old, is not tenable.^ 

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during peaceM relati<ms, a more eztenaiTe and firm eonfedraacy than 
that of the Gau. But danger from without, and the relatunifihip 
of the septSy chiefly produced, without doubt, the establidunent of 
Unions of whole tribe»y whidi maj poesiblj have ^vea to their eol- 
lective body a form Taiioudy fi^osed. A muItifimoaBaiieas of so- 
cial regulations wasweloometo the heredzfcarj love of freedom of the 
Germans. The majority of these tribes appear to have had a very- 
simple constitution of confedeiacy in the time of peace, inasnmdi as 
all transactions in common were determined and regulated by the 
national community. In the individual districts all oonldniied ac- 
cording to the customary mode of administration, and it consequently 
did not require the permanent appointment of a superior executive 
government. In war, on the contrary, an deetion was made, of the 
common Herzog^ or duke, according to valour and manly virtue^ 
whose office closed wi&the war. (Duces ex virtnte sunrant.— T«ff.} 
Among other tribes peace had also its chie&or diieetois, selected 
originally by the community from the most meritorious of the people, 
which election, in the course oi time, when a natural feeling placed 
the son in the situation of the fivther, became invested wim an al- 
most hereditaiy right. (Reffes ex nobifitate sumuot. — Tac^ We 
cannot ascertain whether l£ese chidb bore ererywhere, or merely 
among some tribes, the title of ISnff; the Romans called them Reaes, 
because they found this name most applicable, and in contradistmc* 
tion to the transitory ducal dignity, which terminated with the war. 
The king could also naturally be the leader in war, in which case 
the duke was superfluous; not in smaller expeditions, which were 
not to be consiaered in the Hght of a national war, or when the 
king, by reason of age or natural infirmity, was unable to act, a 
duke may have been appointed as his substitute. 

Among some tribes we see a change of constitution. Among 
the Gherusci, when they fought against the Romans, there appears 
to have been no king ; Armmius was the leader appointed by the 
people. Later, however, in the year 47 after the birth of Christ, 
the Gherusci appointed ItaUcuSy the son of the brother of FlavmSy 
who was brought up among the Romans, to be their king, in order 
to adjust the internal &ctiotis. 

The peculiarity of the Saxon j>eople consisted altogether in their 
iree form of government, a constitution most conformable to their 
ori^, springing as they did from the union of the heads of free 
fiunilies, each of whom ruled his domain according to the ancient 
patriarchal form. A common general was required only during war, 
which, in general, was defensive, and consequently national Among 
the Suevi, on the contrary, whose constitution was one warlike 
throughout, wherein the individual was early accustomed to consider 
himself but a portion of the whole, a monarchical government be- 
came the natural form of the constitution, and we consequently find 
among them an Ariovistus, a Marbodius, and a Vannius, as kings of 
a warlike state. 

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Tkae dxflferenceB mAT Bsmst in ezplammg the vaiioiis dbazac- 
tendcB and forms of the pubHc institutions which the Romans 
aentioii, aaKl which it is not alwa^rs easy to distingnish^ firom theii 
knag ocmfoonded and mixed the mdiyidual details. 

hi the hoger confederations there also ocdined ^eneial as- 
semblies, althou^ more seldom than in the individual distiicts, and 
Bach that the Komans relate refers to these said larger assemblies, 
riulst on the eontzair the leading subjects were coimmon to both 
Inge and small assemblies. 

ihese were generallj held at a retain of the fiiU moon and new 
Boon; as tb^ considered those the most happj momenta for any 
tcDttcdon. They cameaimed — armsbeingthesymbolof £ceedom,and 
^ pvefened exposing themselves to the possibility of their misuse, 
other than come without them. The rimit ^ijoyed by the youth 
of beanng them as an ornament when ne had attained a nttmg 
>ge, and was adjudged worthy, even in tunes of peace, was im- 
ported by the national assembly itself; he was there solemnly in- 
^(^esled by one c^ the piinceSy his &ther or a relative, with snield 
^ q)ear» This was deemed amcmg them the clothing of man- 
^Knd, the ornament of youth; previous to this the youth was con- 
fidered only as a member of the domestic hearth, but henceforth he 
vu leoeived as the representative of the common fatherland. 

Priests ruled the communities; Gt)d only was the universally 
^iued lord, whom it was no breach of freedom to obey; and in his 
22^e the priests kept the multitude in order. They commanded 
olcnee; the kings, dukes, counts, who derived experience firom years 
"^ nobles, who leamt firom their ancestors how the district was 
to be governed — ^the most valiant, who, by their deeds in war, stood 
m gettoal respect, spcke in turn simply, briefly, and impressively, and 
M in a commanding tone, but by the force of reason. If the pro* 
portion diseased them, it was rejected by the multitude with hissea 
^d nninnurs; but if ax>{>roved, they signined their satis&ction by the 
dsshingof diexrarmff, thmmosthonourablemode of testifyi^ 

hi important af&irs, the king and princes first counselled together, 
pQc^ to the matter being brought before the people; a custom 
conastent with good government, for the multitude can form con- 
chsioiis only upon a transaction being simply and clearly eiqplained. 

^^lese few tndts of aboriginal Grerman institutions display the 
<^Hiig sense <^ oiir forefiithers, who therein sought to establish the 
pnncaue, that the foundations of every community should be based 
^ uidividual good fedin^, obedience to l^e laws, and respect for re- 
l^pa. Thus an internal durability was given to the whole structure, 
^1^ no external means could replace, howsoever artificially applied. 

Wehaveyetawordtosayuponthelargerunionsof several tribes. 
^ a CQttinon danger, th^ formed themsehres into a Confedereetian, at 
*k« Head of which stood one of the more powerful tribes. Thus it was 
^A tbe Gherusci alliance against the Komans; thus the Suevi, at 
^066 head,in earfiertimes, stood the Semnoni ; and later, the confede* 

C 2 Digitized by Google 


rations of the Goths, Franks, and AUemanni. In all that concerned 
the universal league, the laws were very severe. The slightest breach, 
of &ith, and treachery as well as cowardice, were punished by death.. 
Their principle was, '' One for aU and all for one, for life or- 
death I" May this through every century be the motto of all Germans I 


When the nation was threatened by impending danger, or the 
country of the enemy was to 'be invaded by a large force, all the 
freemen were summoned to arms by what was called the HeerbannJ^ 
The army thus proceeded under the banner of the national god, 
borne bv the priests in advance. The princes and judges of each Gaiz 
or district were also its leaders in war ; the confederates of one mark or 
hundred, and of one race or sept, fought united; and when the inva- 
sion became a regular migration, or when the invading foe chased all 
from their hearths, the women and children followed them. Thus 
was all combined lliat could excite their valour; each warrior stood 
side by side to his nearest relations, companions, and friends, and in 
the rear of the order of battle were placed their wives and children, 
whose appeals could not fail to reach their ear. When wounded, they 
retired to the matrons and females, who fearlessly investigated and 
numbered their wounds. We read, indeed, of the women having- 
occasionally restored a faltering battle by their incessant supplications, 
from the <£:ead of slavery, and even by forcing, with arms in hand, 
the fugitives back to the contest. 

Besides the general summons of the Heerbann, there was a Ccfm- 
paruonship in arms, founded upon a volimtary union, which was called 
the Gefoige, the reserve phalanx or sacred battalion. Warlike youths 
collected themselves around their most tried and esteemed leader, and 
swore in imion with him to live and die. There was much contention 
among this G^folge who should take the first place next to theleader, for 
this corps had its grades. It was high fame for a leader, not merely 
among hisown tribes, but among all the adjacent ones, when he was dis- 
tinffuished by the number and valour of his Gefolge. He was appe Jed 
to for assistance ; embassies were sent to him, he was honoured by pre- 
sents, and the mere celebrity of his name would frequently check a 
war. In battle it was considered a disgrace to the chief to be outvied 
in valour, and to the Gefolge not to equal that of their leader; 
but to return alive from battle, after the death of his chieftain, was 
a stigma that attached for life to the individual, and their fidelity was 
so great, that scarcely an instance of this occurs. It was considered 
the most sacred duty to protect and defend their brave brother in 
arms, and to attribute their own valorous deeds to his fame. The 
leaders contended for victory, and the Gefolge for the leaders. 

• In the language of the earlier tunes Heerbann^ {HeribannvSy') the penalty, which 
was inflicted upon those who, at the general summons to the war, neglected their 
duty. This word, however, for its ohject, is at once so usual and significant, whilst 
it is so difficult to replace with another, that it may be here retained in its original 
fbrm. ^ T 

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Wben the tribe to wbicli thejr belonged continued in a state of long and 
jsonotonous peace, the majority of these bold youths, led by their cap- 
tsin, voluntarily joined those tribes which were at war. ilepose was 
batdiil to them; and, amidst danger, the valiant acquired fime and 
booty. The Gefolge received fix)m the leader their war-horse, and 
tbeir conquerixig and deadly spear; a large Gefolge, consequently, 
^pported itseir most easily by war and booty. It is thus thiat 
Tiatus describes the military institutions of the Germans. He 
VTote, however, at a period when lon^ wars and their attendant 
chances may possibly nave altered much. Originally, perhaps, the 
alliance between the Grefolge and their chieftain was bmding only 
dming dngle excurdons, and ceased at their termination. For it is 
not probable that a people so jealous of its liberty would have 
lUowed individual princes to have surrounded themselves with such 
a troop, as with a body-guard. But when the dangers of war con- 
tUHwdfor a longer period, it became desirable, and even necessary, to 
le prepared for every casualty. The Gefolge remained long united| 
and they formed the experienced and ^lite portion of the army for 
attack, defence, or pursuit. In the migratory period, kingdoms were 
founded by these Gefolges, and &om the essence of their internal 
^organization, the laws sprung which regulated these new states 
(feudal ffjnstem). 

The chief arms of the ancient Germans were the shield and the 
q«ar, called by them Frcanen (Frameay^ with a narrow and short 
^lade, but so sharp and weU adapted for use, that they could employ 
the same weapon, according to necessity, both far and near. Long, 
heavy lances are also spoken of in the description of many battles. 
For close combat, the stone battle-axe, which is still frequently dug 
^P, and the common club, were certainly used. From the scarcity 
of iron, few wore body-armour, and but here and there a helmet; 
even swords were scarce, and the shield was formed of wood, or of 
^e plaited twigs of the withy. Nevertheless, it was with these 
simple weapons that they achieved so much that was grand, inas- 
mnch as natural courage and strength of Hmb effect more than arti- 
ficial weapons. 

Their horses were neither distinguished by beauty or speed, but 
*tey were very durable, and the Germans knew so well to manage 
tkem that they frequently overthrew the fully-armed and moimted 
^^^'ouui and Grallic cavalry. They held the latter in contempt because 
they used saddles, which appeared to them unmanly and effeminate ; 
^ey themselves sat upon the naked back of the horse. But the chief 
^^''^ligth of their army lay in their infantry, and they placed the 
holdc«t and strongest of their youth, mixed with their cavalry, in the 
^^1 in order to give an additional solidity to the ranks. The 
cavahy themselves selected their companions from among the in- 
™toy, and thus, even in the rude pursuit of war, esteem and affec- 
tion exerted their influence. They thus held together in the 

• RfOm/«,««^tOtlmm. oigitlzedbyGoOgle 


tumult of the fight, and came to each other's assistanoe when tlx4 
contest was desperate. If a horseman fell heavily wounded fix^zx: 
his steed, the foot . soldiers immediately surrounded and shieLd&d 
him. When sudden and rapid movements either in advaadng os* 
retreating were necessaiy, iiud quickneBB of those on foot, by mean£» 
of incessant pracdce, was so great, that holding by the main of thi^ 
horse, they equalled the swiftest in their course. 

Their Older of battle was generally wedge-shaped, that they miglr^ 
the more speedily break the ranks of me enemy. Bef<»e battle 
they sang the war-song relating the deeds of their ancestors and th.^ 
celebrity of their fatherland. W arlike instruments also, horns of brass 
or of the wild bull, and large drums, formed of hides expanded cvexr 
hampers, beat the measure to their joined shields; and as they pro* 
oeeded they became more and more excited. In the march against tlie 
enemy the song became ruder and wilder, a courageous and stimulatiTig 
cry, which was called Barrit; at first deep sounding, then stronser* 
and fuller, and ^ovring to a roar at the moment of meeting Sia 
foe. The chieftain felt excited with hope or fear, according to the 
louder or weaker tone of the Barrit. Frequently, to make the sound 
more strikingly fearfiil, they held their hollow shields brfore their 
mouths. This terrific war-song, combined with the sight of the 
^gantic figures, and the fearful threatening eyes of the Germana 
tnemselves, was so terrible in its edicts upon the Romans and the 
Gauls, that it was Ions before they could accustom themselves to it. 

To leave their shield behind them was to the Germans an inex- 
piable di^race; he who had so debased himself duist not attend ve- 
ligious worship nor appear in the national assembly, and many who 
had thus effected their escape firom the field of battle could not en*- 
dure so miserable a Hfe, but »ided it by a voluntary death. 

The relipous worship of the Germans attached itsdf to, and was as- 
sociated with nature. It was a veneration of her great powers and phe- 
nomena ; but withal it was more simple and sublime than the worship of 
other ancient nations, and bore the impress of its immediate and pro- 
found feeling for nature. Although but rudely so, they yet had the 
prseentiment of an infinite and eternal divine power in th^ breasts; 
for they considered it at variance with the dignity of the divinity to 
Aldose him within walls, or to conceive and represent himinahuman 
shape. They built no temples, but thejr consecrated to holy purposes 
groves and woods, of which nature had formed the pillars, and whose 
canopy was the infinite heaven itself; and thev named after thdr 
divinity the mystery which their fiiith alone allowed them to con- 
template. Even their abori^al poetical descriptions of their divir 
nities display the nobler sentunente of the Germans, who did not, like 
the Greeks and Romans, attribute to their deities all the infirmities 
9f human nature, but represented in them the portraiture of strength, 
valour^ magnanimity, and sublimitv. And they stiU more atronglj 
distinguish themselves itovt all other ancient nations by their firm 


nd cfaeeEfol belief in the xmmarfcality of the soul, which entirely 
Jbqiited every fear of death; and in tne confidence of a future state 
isey oommitted snididey when life itself could foe purchased only by 

TioB suUinie natural feeling, and this purity of their religioiua 
ideas, made thenar in after times, better adapted for the reception of 
Chnstiamty. Tliey were the vessel which God had selected for the 
pine preservatioii of his doctrines. For Jews, Gredcs and Romans 
vere already enerv^ated by sensuality and vice; they could neither com- 
]xehepd nor retain the new doctrines, just as, according to the scrip* 
tozal inage, the old dnmkard could not retain the new wine. The 
ancient Germans revered, like the Persians, the sun and fire; but war- 
Aippedastlieirsuperior God, fraibi,(Gticirf^^ 
Ihey(»Jledbinia3bobyabea4itiM They 

^'t, in their sacred groves, white hoises for the sun, which were har- 
nesed to the consecrated chariot and driven by the priest or prince, 
who paid particular attentixm to their neighing, which they consi- 
dered, as md the Persians, fHophetic of the future, and indicative of 
w win of theix divinitjr. 

They venerated the mother earth as their most beneficent deity; 
tliey called her Nerthus (the nourishing),* and we have the fol- 
fcwinff relation of her worship: " In the midst of an island in the 
Kaf tbtere was a sacred grove, in whic^ was a consecrated chariot, 
covered with tapestry. Sometimes (as noticed by the priests) the god- 
^ descended nom the sacred dweUin^ above, and drove tl^ cluuaot, 
^wn by consec r ated cows, accompanied by the priests in the dew)- 
^ xevQEence. The days were then cheer&l, and the places whichshe 
honoured with her presence, solemn and holy; they then entered 
mtc no war, sei£ed no arms, and the iron q)ear reposed in conceal- 
'^t; peace and tranquillily then rei^gned in every bosom, until the 
iriests reconducted the goddess, satiated with her intercourse with 
BK>itals, back into the temple. The chariot and carpet were immersed, 
nul the goddess too, if we may believe it, bathed in a secret lake; 
slaves perfeimed the offices of service, whom the same lake immedi-* 
^yawallowed up. Thence arose a mysterious fear and holy ignorance 
of what that might be which only those bdield who were to die." 

IheGermans placed great fidth in prophecies and indications of the 
^le, as aho^m already in the neighing of the sacred horses of the sun. 
When thej were at war they often selected a ij^ffisoner taken from their 
^^'^ci&T, anid caused him to fight with one oi their countzymen, eadi 
^inieoi with his national weapons; the vict(»:y of the one or the other 
^as received as prophetic, or as a divine judgment. They considered 
we laven and we owl as harbingers of evil; the cuckoo announced 
''i^th of life. They prophesied of the future also with small staves 
^t irozn a fruit tiee, having peculiar or runic signs carved upon eadi 
"^ and these were then strewed upcma white raiment, ^dthen, 

* IWitiu, Oenn. zl. 

T Much here indicates Iftie island to l)e Bugen; Inittiiere are importaiitgrcn^ 

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on public occasions, the priest, but in private the father of the family, 

5 rayed to the divinity, and, v^ith upraised eyes, took up each in— 
ividual rod thrice, the characters upon which mdicated the event. 
The holy prophetesses were highly esteemed, and history names 
some to whom tiie credulity of the tnbes attached great influence iix 
the determination of pubhc affairs. Tacitus names Aurinia (per— 
haps Alruna, conversant with the mystic runic characters); a^ain, the^ 
celebrated Veleda, who, from a tower on the banks of the lappe, di- 
rected the movements of the tribes of the Lower Rhine; and, lastly , 
a certain Gauna, in the time of Domitian. In the incursions of the 
Cimbri, and in the army of Ariovistus, notice is taken of prophesy- 
ing females. 

There was no ceremony at their funerals; only the bodies of the 
most distinguished were burnt with costly wood, and with each, at the 
same time, were offered up his arms or war horse. The tomb which 
covered the ashes and the bones of the deceased was a mound of turf. 
Splendid monuments they despised as oppressive to their dead. La- 
ments and tears they speedily gave over, but grief they indulged in 
much longer. Lamentations mey considered as appropriate to females, 
but to men Remembrance alone was deemed suitable. 

Should we after all that has preceded, inquire concerning the pro- 
gress made by the ancient Germans in the arts of life, we shall find 
upon that subject the information of the Roman writers unfortu- 
nately very scanty. Looking down from the point of their very- 
superior culture, they did not consider it worth their trouble to 
attend to the origin of the arts, trades, and knowledge, foimd 
among those nations which they conridered as barbarians. This 
rilence has misled to the supposition, that the Germans, about the 
period of the birth of Christ, were to be considered as half savages, 
resembling the North American Hurons. But history may, where 
she finds no express testimony, draw conclusions from uncontested 
facts. Therefore we can, with certainty, infer that about the time, 
and shortly after the birth of Christ, the Germans — who in arms and 
warlike skill could contest with an enemy who had acquired in a war 
of five hundred years, with all the nationsof the earth, thehighest grade 
in the art of war and consequent subjugation; these Grermans, who 
had already far advanced in their civil institutions; to whom marriage 
and the domestic hearth, and the honour of their nation, and their an- 
cestors, were sacred; who in their reUgious symbols displayed a deep 
feeling for the most profound ideas of the human mind ; and who, 
1^^7» ^7 & dignified natural capacity, and exquisite moral traits, in 
spite of the undeniable ferocity of unbridled passions, were enabled 
to inspire that noble Roman, m whom dwelt a deep sense of all that 
was great and elevated in human nature — ^these Germans, we say, could 
not have been the rude barbarians described as resembling North Ame* 
rican savages. Their cultivation, as far as their wild life and dia- 

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persed mode of dwelling admitted, advanced to a degree worthy of 

AgTicultuie and pastoiage united, consequently a regulated and 
settled rural economy, pre-supposes the use of the necessary imple^ 
ments, howsoever simple they might be. The German made them 
himself. The iron necessary for that purpose, as well as for his 
weapons, he must have known how to work, and the manipulation 
of hard-melting iron is not easy ; presuming they were only able to use 
that vrhich lay upon the surface without understanding or practising 
the art of mining. Yet Tacitus names iron-mines among tne Goths, 
m the present Silesia. That the preparation of iron utensils must 
indicate already a higher degree of skill in art, in the earUest ages 
of nations, is shown oy the very frequent use of copper in such in- 
stnunents for which iron is much better adapted. Copper is much 
easier to manufacture. 

In the irruptions and battles of the Germans, namely, among the 
CSmbri and Teutoni, chariots and cars are named, wluch conv^ed 
the YTomen and children, and which were placed aroimd to defend 
the camp. The Germans appear also upon their rivers, and upon 
the coasts of their seas in ships, and contest also with the Romans in 
lUKval battles. Tribes which could build structures of this descrip-* 
tion, need no longer be considered savage. 

The art of spinning and weaving is also not possible without compli- 
cated machinery, and this formed the daily occupation of the females. 

Although the art of building houses was not carried to anv 
extent, yet the towers or burgs of the superior classes, some of which 
are mentioned in the records of history, must have been essentially 
cKfferent from the huts of the community; and that walls of stone 
were used in their construction, we may infer from the subterranean 
excavations in which provisions were preserved, and wherein the 
women generally wove their linen, and which must therefore have 
been waJ&ed in. 

Trade and commerce were not foreign to the ancient Germans ; 
they were even acquainted with that pivot of all commerce, a general 
medium of barter — ^monev, Tacitus remarks that they knew well 
how to distinguish the ola good coins of the Romans, and took silv^ 
in preference to gold in their retail transactions. The great multi* 
tnde of Roman coins, which by degrees have been dug out of the 
German earth, proves that their commercial intercourse was not 
trifling, although much may have fallen into the hands of the Ger* 
nansas booty upon the defeat of the Romans. Arminius, before the bat- 
tie of Idistavisus, offered to every Roman deserter daily 200 sesterces. 
Their music was no doubt limited to their war-song, and the rude 
warlike instruments previously named, and to the neroic song at 
festivals. German antiquity had without doubt its inspired singers, 
equally as the Greeks had their Homerides ; the testimony of Tacitus 
tells us so, and the inclination of the people for all that was great, 
and worthy of &me, as it evinces itself in their deeds, would eveUf 
irithout that testimony, have convinced us. 

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It has been disputed whether the Germans, about the tiine of the 
birth of Christ, had a written character. Tacitus expresslj fiays^ 
that men nor womai understood writing (liteiarum secreta 
Tiri pariter ac f^nime ignorant. — Germ. 19). And although this 
passage might be interpreted in a more zestaicted sense, wra» thexe 
escpress witnesses to the contrary extant; still, for the want of them, 
it IS sufficiently condusive of the ignorance of writing among^ the 
joicient Gennans. There are, inoeed, letters mentioned of J&Car- 
bodius and Adgandaster, a prince of the Ghatti, to Rome; but these 
were certainly written in !uitin, and only prove, if they were written 
by the princes themselves, that the upper classes, who had inter- 
course with the Romans, and perhaps lived a long time in Ronie 
itself, learnt there the Roman art of writing. The people geiiermll j, 
however, were, without doubt, ignorant of the art. 


The seats of the Saxcm tribes am already gemerally stated in the 
fourth division; the following are the names and situations of the 
individual septs: 

1« The Siffambri, a considerable tribe in theneighbouriiood <^the 
Sieff^ whence they probably derived their name; and &rther in- 
wards towards the mountainous districts of Westphalia, which was 
called, later, the SUderland, or Sauorland. CsBsar found tbem here 
about the year 56, and Drusus in the year 12, before the birth of 
CSuist, at which time their domain extended as far as the lippe. 
Weakened by the attacks of the Romans, to yNhom thev were most 
exposed, a portion of them were driven by Tiberius to the left bank 
of the Rhine, as &r as its mouths, as wdl as that of ti^ Ind; 
another ^rtion remained in their ancient dweUing-places, and 
fought with the Gi^nsci against (xennanicus. In the subsequent 
centurm, the name was retained only bv that portion which 
dwelt at the mouths of the Rhine, and which constituted the Salic 
Franks, and formed a leading tribe in the con&deration of the 

S. The Usipetri and Tenchieri, almost always neighbours, and 
charing the same caaialties. Driven by the Suevi, about the 
jjrear 56 befoie the birth of Ghrist, from their original seat, probably 
m the Wederau (the district between the Maine, the Rhme, and 
die LfthnV farther towards the north, they were, upon their cross* 
ing the Rhine, beat bac^ again by Geesar, and pardy destroy^ The 
sonainder were received by the Sigambrians; and in the time of 
Ihitsas, the Usipetrians dwelt north of the lippe, on the Rhin& 
But the Toichterians had already, about the year 36 before the 
birth of CSirist, when the Ubierians were driv^i to ihe left bank of 
ihe Rhine, occupied their domain upon its right bank, so that bolli 

* Claud. Qatidiunui (aboat 400 yean after the Inrth of Christ) de ir. Cods. 
Honor. 449; Gregoiy of Tours, H., 81; andoUien. Okms, on beiog bajptixed, iras 
addressed I7 the Bisbop Bemigins: mUk Steamier. 

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tlie tzibes became again neigkbaurs, and dwelt in the duchy of 
Berg and in a portion of Cleves. Finally, the Tenchterians appear 
to luLve formed a portion of the Franks.* 

^ The Brvktm^ a powerful tribe in the coimtry north of the 
lijppe, as far afi the more central fkns, and £x>m the vicinity of the 
Bmme near the Weser, consequently more properly in the preseiit 
Miinster land, and some of the approximate mstncts. According to 
tlie most recent investigations, the country in the south of the Lippe, 
as fiir as the mountains of Sauerland, therefore, the so-called Hellweg, 
is conadeied a portion of the country of the Brukterians. Thej 
vcxe divided into larger and less^ bodies, toc^ an active part 
as the confederates of the Cherusci, in the war of freed(»n against 
the JEtomans, and they received as their booty, after the battle with 
Varna, one of the three conquered eagles. About the year 98 after 
the birth of Christ, in an internal war with their nei^bours, thej 
were almost annihilated, so that Tacitus divides th^ir domain be- 
tiieen the Qiamavrians and the Angrivarians. But this account is 
certainly eamggerated, as their name occurs in Ptolemy mudi later 
121 the same district; and even afterwards they appear as a portion 
of the Frankish confederation. After the alliimce of ihe Saxons had 
more aad more widely extended itsdf towards Westphalia, the 
ocmntiy and tribe of the Brukterians became equally included 
theran; but whether by &rce of arms, or by alliance, is not to be 
decided. The Brukterians may possibly have derived their name 
from the marshes (bruchen) in their country. 

4. The Marsi, nd^hfoours of the Brukterians, also present them- 
selves as active enemies of the Romans, about the time of the birth 
of Christ In the battle with Varus they seized an eagle, which 6er- 
maniciis afierwaids ^recooquered; and tnis same leader commenced 
his campaign againrt Lower Germany, in the year 14 after the birth 
<^ Christ, by an incursion from Vetera Ceutra ^near Xanten) through 
the Cbesian forest, into the land of the Marsi, in which he destroyed 
the oelebrafted sanctuary of Tanfiuu. These events show us the 
Marsi bb a Westphalian tribe, dwelling not &x from the Rhine. 
B^ond this, we cannot determine wiui certainty their dwdling 
fdaioey and antiquarians consequently aitertain different opinions 
with reroect to it Some place them on the Lippe, others eastward 
of the Ems, towards Tecklenburg and Osnaburg, which latter is 
the most probable. The sanctuary of Tanfima, which has been 
sought for in di£^nt jplaoes, and among the rest near Miinster, 
would, therefore, henceforth be conridsied to lie in the land of 

5. The I^ibmii, likewise neighbours of the Brukterians, are 
placed by some in the cotmtiy between Paderbom, Hamur and the 
Amsbeig forest (the Soe$ter jBih-de); by others, and with greater pro- 
Idbilitjy on the, oj^osite side of the country of the Bruktenana, noith- 

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west of the Rhine, and the Vechte, the Twente of the present 

6. Southward of the Tubanti, on the Rhine, dwelt the Cheancnn, 
and bordered farther southward on the Usipetrians, to whom they 
had yielded a portion of the pasturage on tne Rhine and the Issel, 
even before the time of Drusus. About the year 98 after the birth 
of Christ, they deprived the Brukterians of a portion of their 
country, and they appear later as forming a part of the confedera- 
tion of the Franks, la the middle ages, their domain was called 
the Hamaland. Ptolemy mentions ^e Chamavi, as well as the 
Cherusci, at the foot of the Harz mountains, but which former were 
probably a very different tribe. 

7. The Ansibari or AmsivarianSy northward from the Bruk- 
terians on the Ems Tthence called Emsgauer or Emsbauer). In the 
year 59 after the birth of Christ, a portion of them were driven 
away by the powerful Chauci; they long sought, in vain, another 
dwelling among the neighbouring tribes, and they at last vanish 
among the Cherusci. A portion, however, must have remained in 
their ancient dwelling place, as they appear later, forming part of the 
Frankish confederation. 

8. The Chasuari and Chattuart were, according to some, two 
tribes, the first of which dwelt upon the Haase, northward of the 
Marsi, and were thence called Hasegauer, but the latter at the mouth of 
the Ruhr, where the Grau or district Hatterun gave testimony of them 
in the middle ages; but, according to others, they were but one 
tribe, which had their dwelling northward of the Chatti, on the 

9. The Dulaibim are placed, with probability, in the neighbour- 
hood of the Weser, pernaps precisely in the district of the Lippe, 
where the legions of Varus were destroyed, and where the name still 
exists on the heath of Dolger. In a stricter sense they belonged to 
the confederation of the Cherusci. Ptolemy places them on the 
right bank of the Weser; therefore, they very probably occupied 
both its banks. In this neighbourhood Ptolemy also names Tu" 
Usurgium^ perhaps wrongly copied for Teutiburgium^ in the vici- 
nity of Detmold, and Tropcsa Drusi^ the monument of the vic- 
tory of Drusus on the Weser, perhaps in the neighbourhood of 

The- foflowinff are some other places, mentioned by Ptolemy, in 
Westphalia, unfortunately without indicating the domain wherein 
thejr were, and which are, consequently, very variously referred to by 

a. Boff odium — Munster, according to some, but according to others, 
Bochold, or also Beckum; according to Ledebur, Beckum on the 
Lippe, upon the great Roman road between Vetera and AUso. 

b. M^iolardum — Also supposed to be Miinster, but now, pro- 
bably, Metelu on the Vechte. 

c. MufdHum — is either Osnaburff, the Castle Ravensberg, or 
Stromberg in the neighbourhood of Miinster. ^ , 



d. SUreontium — Warendorf, Stromberg, Steinfort or Steveien, 
all in the land of MUnster. 

e. Anuisia — ^probably the same place as the Andgia of Tacitus, the 
hold on the left bank of the Ems, not far from its estuaiy, which 
WBS built b J Dmsus. 

f. Asca Ungium^ near Minden oil the Weser. 

g. With respect to AKso^ the castle built by Drusus, in the second 
jear before the birth of Christ, at the confluence of the Aliso and 
the Lippe, according to the information of Dio Cassius, opinions are 
80 far unanimous that it was situated upon the upper Lipp^y i^ot very 
&r from the entrance of the Teutoburgian forest. The majority 
again have decided for EUen^ near Paderbom, not far from the con- 
fluence of the Alme and the Lippe; the most recent, rery careful 
investigation of Ledebur, however, has raised it to the highest pro- 
bability that Aliso lay in the present parish or district of Liesbam^ 
in the space which is formed between the junction of the Liese and 
the Glenne, and that of the Glenne and the Lippe, near the reli- 
gious foundation of Cappeln. 

h. Arbalo — ^where Drusus was pressed hard by the Germans, upon 
the frontiers of the country of the Cherusci, Sigambri, and Chatti, 
was, very probably, between Nuhden and Gesecke, where the Haar 
mountains gradually dwindle into the plains of the Hellweg, and 
where in the Middle A^es a Cfau or district, Arpesfeld, was situated. 
The syllable ending with lo in the name, implies & forest; Feld, in. 
contradistinction to fFald, indicates old forest land made arable. 

CSlofle to the lefk bank of the Weser, beyond the Dulgibini, dwelt 
also the remaining smaller tribes of the confederation of me Cherusci ; 
and on the opposite side of this river: 

10. The CAtfnwci themselves, the most celebrated Germanic tribe 
of ancient times, when in their most flourishing state. About the 
period of the birth of Christ they possessed an extensive domain, 
but of which it cannot be exactly stated how much was properly 
their own hereditary land, and how much of the land belonged to 
their more closely attached confederates, who are often called by the 
Romans, off-hanaedly, Cherusci. This domain extended from the 
Harz, its centre, eastward as far as the Saale and the Elbe, north- 
ward nearly as fitr as the Aller, westward as far as the Weser, and 
southward as far as the Werra and the Thurin^n forest. From 
the time of Drusus to the generalship of Varus, m the twenty years 
during which the Romans were almost settled in Lower Germany, 
and weady spoke of a Roman province, the Cherusci were on 
friendly terms with them; the sons of their princes entered the 
Roman armies, Augustus had a German body guard, and all seemed 
neaceable. But under Varus the Cherusci placed themselves at the 
nead of almost all the tribes between the Rhine and the Weser; the 
smaller tribes, particularly on the lefi bank of the Weser, united them- 
selves with them, whom the Romans oflen called clients of the Cherusci, 
naming them often absolutely Cherusci, whence has arisen the error 

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tliat the Cherufld dwelt cm haUx ades of the Weser. Later, when 
Axxninius went forth against MarbodiiiB, the Lon^obardi and 
Senmoni, their powerful neighbours in the East, united thanselres 
with them. Butai^rthedeamof ArmininsthesaperiorityoftheCfae* 
rusci diminished. Thejbecame enervated in a protracted state of inao- 
tivity, and were by degrees so weakened bjthe Longobardi, Qiauciy 
andQiatti tribes, that the shadow alone of their former greatness re- 
mained. Once again only does their name appear as a oonstitu^it 
poftkmoftheamfederstion of the Franks. PtcJemy mentions in their 
domain Layia or Latpta^ now Eimbeck, CaOagri^ Halle on the Saale, 
Brieurdium, Erfurt. 

With the Cherusd sank also dieir confederates, tiz.: 

11. The Fast on the Fuse, (x Brunswick of the present day, 

12. The Angrioari, on both sides of the Weser, below Minden, 
the neightx>ui8 and faithful eonlederates of the Chauei, with whom 
thej aj^pear again later as a constituent portion of the Saxon con- 
federation under the name of JSngem. The Saxon district on the 
Weser was called Angaria. • 

13. The Chauei dweh on the BaMc, from the estuary of the 
Ems to &e Elbe, surrounding the Weser, bj whidi they were di-* 
Tided into the greater and the lesser classes.* PHn j, who had per- 
sonallj Tisited their country, sketches a mdkncho^r picture of the in- 
habitants on the coast : ^' The ocean, twice a day," he says, " orerfiowB 
an extensive district, and produces a constant contest in nature, so that 
we must continue doubtful whether to call this part land or sea. 
The miserable natives dwell upon the hilb of the coast, or rather 
heaps of earth, thrown up by the hand upon the margin of the 
highest side. They dwell there at flood tiae like maxiners, and at 
its ebb like shipwrecked beings. The fish driven hither by the sea 
they catch with nets of reeds and sea-grass. Th^ have no cattle, and 
do not, like their neighbours, feed upon milk. They are not allowed 
even to hunt for game, for not a shrub grows near tnem. The turf, 
secured by hand, they dry more in the air than in the sun, where- 
with to cook their food, and thereby to warm their bowels frozen by 
the north wind. They have no otner drink than rain wata, pre- 
served in holes; and yet had these tribes been conquered by the 
Romans, they would nave called themselves slaves V* Tacitus, on 
the contrary, who had more in view the extensive tribe of the Chauei 
in the interior of the cotmtry , celebrates them as the most consider- 
able tribe of the Grermans, peaceably minded and yet warlike and 
valiant. They were long the faithM allies of the Romans, who fre- 
quently traversed their country, against the tribes on the more central 
Weser, probably emanating m an original feud with the Qierusci. 
Indeed, mthe reign of Nero th^ pressed hard upon the Wehrmanni 

* Their name appears to liaTebeea denred from the naitiixe of tiior ooBntEj; 
kauketiy quaketij means, in the vnlgar language, to quake; and the marahj ground 
of the ooontiy quakes imder the feet Quakenbruch still retains the original de- 

Tiniininat iftH> 

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of the Cheraaciaxi aUiance — ^the Anaibaxians, and spread themselves 
80 tax towarda -the south, that Tacitus makes them eren ezt^id as 
in as the Chatti. In the third century they devastated Gaul in the 

Xof ihe Smperor Didius JulianuSy and at last thej disappear 
ike oonfederate name of Saxons. 
Ptolemy m/entioiis some of the towns of l^e Chanei: Tuderhtm^ 
pnibably Meppene; TkuHphmrduMj Veiden; JPhabiranum^ Bremen. 
orBiEevieiiLTOTdeT; X«»pAaaa, Luneborg, and others. 

14. The Frimi^ (Xi the Baltic, ficom the months of the Rhine,, 
to the Ems, alkieB of the Romans in the Gvecnan wars. In the 
famtk aaiid. fif^ centimes thej again appear in the Saxon alii- 
laee, aik&eireakenibark with these for Bzitam.* The Romans call the 
idand Boxkom, Bwrehama^ and Ameland, Austeraxiay on their 
tQaaty toid in their country: Fletam or Flammy on the DoUart. 

ISL The SaxanSj afterwards so important, are first mentioned by 
¥lokemy in the middle of the second oentory as inhabitants of the 
' DRsettt Holfiteuu They were skilful sailors, and in the fourth and 
fifidi centmiea became dreaded £rom their piracies. Tadtns and 
IKnj do not name them, probably because they comprise them 
under the name of Cimbri. We shall speak further on of the con«- 
fedenitiain they founded and eaUed hj their name. 

16. The Cimbri remained for many centuries after their sreat 
irmplioin, with which our history b^ins, still in their old dwemng- 
^aoe, called the Cimbrian peninmih, styled the present Jutland; 
Strabo expressly says, '^ they still dwelt in their old seat."t 

Betvreen the Saxon and Suevic septs is found one of the most 
lemaikable of the German tribes, which appears to belong to neither 
fliide ; «tr.. 

The Chatii or KaUij in high probability the Hessians of the 
piisa i mt day (Chatten, Chassen, Hessen). They frequently came in 
contact with the Romans, up<Hi whom they bordered, and are ofben 
named by them. Caesar himself even knew them, for the Suevi, 
against whom he de&nded the Ubeiians, and whom he threatened 
by his paamge across the Rhine, must, according to the locality of 
the dwelling-pkce, have been the Chatti. They even then, probably 
belonged to the great Suevic confederation. Tacitus, on the con- 
tnuy, expressly separates them from the Suevi, and we may, therefore, 
most i^htly consider them as a self-dependent tribe, forming a 
separation between the two great tribes, the Suevi and Saxons. At 
the time of these great wars under Augustus, their country was 
of^ visited by the Romans; but in the age of Tacitus, after the 
entire reduction of the Gherusci, their domain seems to have 
acqubed its greatest esctent, for they spread themselves from the 
neighbourhood of Hanau, and where they bordered upon the Roman 
tithe-land beyond the Spessart and the mountains of the Rhine as fir 

* Pkooop.CkitIi,iy.SO. ^ Qeogr.yiL,^l 

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as the Thuringian forest, and towards the south-west as &r as the 
Franconian Saale, then towards the north, somewhat beyond the 
country where the Werra and Fulda join, and north-west as &r as 
the heights of the Wester forest. 

Tacitus celebrates the Chatti especially for their valour and pru- 
dent management of war. Their in£mtry was the best of all the 
Gisrmans. They were more accustomed than all the rest to disci- 

5 line and order, and knew how to form defensiye camps; besides, 
ley were larce-formed, powerM, and fearless, and their warlike 
glance was intmiidatin^. ^^ They can all fight," says Tacitus, ** but 
le Chatti alone know how to conduct a war; and what is very rare 
in savage nations, they depend more upon their leader than upon 
the army. Gi>od fortune thetf reckon amorist the casualy valour 
amongst the certain thxngs^^ Their youths allowed their hair and 
beard to ^row long, and the^ wore an iron rinff upon their arm, the 
sign of mmority, until a slain enemy proved meir manliness; over 
wnose body, and captured arms, they freed their &ce from the 
abimdance of hair, and onl^ then first boasted of having paid the 
reward for their tenure of life, and of being worthy of their father- 
land and ancestors. 

At a later period the Chatti joined the extensive confederation of 
the Franks. 

The ancient metropolis of the Chatti was Mattium^ which many 
consider to be Marburg; but it is probably the present village 
Maden^ near Gudensber^, on the river Eder. 

The Matttaci^ a brancn of the Chatti, which, in the expeditions 
of Drusus and Germanicus, appear only under this latter name, but 
by Tacitus are called by their individual name, dwelt between the 
Lahn and the Maine, as fitr as the Rhine, therefore in the present 
Nassau. The Romans located themselves very early in their country, 
constructed defences upon the Taurus mountains, and treated the 
Matdaci as a conquered tribe. In the revolt of Civilis they took 
a part, and invested Mentz. Subsequently, their name disappears, 
and the AUemanni occupy their land. Pliny mentions warm springs 
here, which he calls Pontes Matiaci^ doubtless Wiesbaden, where 
many remains of Roman buildings, baths, &c., have been found; and 
Arctaunum^ the Roman fort upon the heights near Homburg, of 
which traces are yet extant. Ptolemy names also Mattiacum, pro- 
bably the present Marburg. 

1. The Semnoni are called by Tacitus the most ancient and con- 
siderable among the Suevi ; and Ptolemy fixes their seat between the 
Elbe and the Oder, in the southern part of Brandenburg, and in 
the Lausitz as far as the Bohemian firontiers. It is said that in 
their country the sanctuary of the confederation was a holy grove, 
wherein the confederate sacrifices were solemnized. They, conse- 
quently, appear to have stood, in more ancient times, in peculiar re- 

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gizd among all the Suevic tribes. After the second centuiy of the 
Chnsdan era, however, theb name does not again occur in the an- 
oils of history ; of the causes for this disappearance, we are ignorant. 

2. The Longobardiy few in number, but the most warlike of all 
tlie Suevi. They dwdt, when history first becomes acquainted with 
tiiem, about the periodof the birth of Christ, westward from themiddle 
Elbe, opposite the Semnoni in the Alt-Mark and Liineburg districts, 
where the name of the city, Bardewik, the villages of Barleben and 
Bartensleben, and the Bardengau, still preserve their recollection. 
Iliey thence spread to the eastern banks of the Elbe, as far as the 
HaTeL Under Arminius, they fought against Marbodius, but subse- 
qnently they assisted towazdsthe reduction of the Cherusci, who appear 
to have been, for a period, in a certain degree of dependancy on them. 
Ptoleny gives them, in the second centuiy, a very extensive do- 
laain, fiom the Elbe over the countrv of the Cherusci, the Tubanti, 
md Maiai, as far as the Rhine. They may possibly, if Ptolemy's 
lelation be true, have made successful, but short invasive expeditions, 
ffistory then becomes silent concerning them, until towards the end 
of the fifth century, when they appear upon the Danube, in Hun- 
euy; and in the sixth, they establish their kingdom in Italy. They 
aenved their name, according to their ancient legend (as handed down 
of king Rothari), from their long beards, but according to others, 
fwffli &dr HeUebarden or Halberts; more probably, however, from 
th^ dwellinff-place, on the borders of the Elbe, where a tract of 
land is still cfuled the lonff Barde, or firuitful plain. Ptolemy names 
Metittum among them, perhaps the present Magdeburg. 

3. Northwards firom the Lonffobardi and Semnoni, m the present 
Lauenbuig, Mecklenburg, and Pommerania, dwelt, accorcUng to 
Tadtus, the Suevic tribes of the Varini, Anffeli, Reudingi^ Avioni, 
Eudagit Suardanif and Ntdthoni; but Httle known or remarkable. We 
nave already referred to their common worship of the goddess Nerthus. 

Ihe name of the Varini reminds us of the river Vame, in Meck- 
lenburg; and, indeed, Ptolemy mentions, in their domain, a series of 
towns, which, according to his geographical determination, are com- 
pnaed in the district on the north of the Elbe, from Hamburg as 
w as the estuary of the Vame. Hamburg itself appears under the 
J^me of Marunds ; Liibeck under that of Marioms Altera. Loci- 

S?""* may be Wismar, and AKstuSy Schwerin. 

The AngeKj neighbours of the Varini, appear later in union with 
% Saxons, with whom they seem to have joined themselves, in the 
vicinity of Silesia and upon the neighbouring islands ; thenin England, 
^hich has preserved their name nobly down to the present day. 

On the coasts of the Baltic, extending farther towards the east, 
Tacitus names a series of tribes, which he refers to the Suevic 
^« Perhaps we may recognize in them a third, namely, the 
^^^0^, and we therefore quit, for the present, that direction, to 
tamoQtselves towards the undisputed Suevic tribes in the interior 
w Germany. Here first we meet : 

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4. The Hermtmduri. The infonnatioii of the dwelling-places of 
this tribe, which, besides, is named by almost all the writers who 
mention the Germans, from Yell, raterculus to Dio CassiuB 
(with the exception of Ptolemy), is very contradictory, but which ma^^, 
perhaps, be owing to their fre<^uent cmange of locality. Tacitus is 
aequamted with wem as the friends and neighbours of the Romans 
on the northern shore of the Danube, whence they stood with the 
Romans in a peaceful commercial intercourse, namely, in the capital 
of RhoBtia, Augusta VmdeUcorum^ Augsburg, and ne makes tnera 
contend with theChatd, on the Francoman Saale, for the possession of 
the salt springs, so that their domain, consequently, stretched between 
the Danube and the Maine, across the present Franconia. They had 
arrived here about the time of the Christian era, when the Marco- 
manni, under Marbodius, were moving towards Bohemia. They 
were received by the Roman general, Domitius .£nobarbus. Thence 
arose their frienaship with the Romans. They probably dwelt, pre- 
viously) farther north-eastward, in the Franconian and Bohemian 
mountains, as far as the Elbe. The Hermunduri, from the middle 
of the second century^ appear only under the collective name of 
Suevi; and it is they, probably, who, carrying it farther to the 
south-west) have preserved and brought it down to the present day 
under the name of Swabians. 

Ptolemy mentions, in the present land of Franconia, Segodunum^ 
perhaps Wiirzburg; Bergium^ Bamberg; Menotgada, Baireuth, &c. 

6. The Nariskij in the Upper Pftlatmate, between the Hermun- 
duri and the Marcomanni. 

6. The Marcomanni^ the most important of the southern Suevic 
tribes, or perhaps, more properly, the advanced Wehrmannei of the 
Suevic confederation against the Gkuls, and later, against the Ro- 
mans—thence called mark or frontier-men— guarded tne boundaries 
of Grermany between the Rhine, the Maine, and the Danube. Upon 
the increasmg weakness of the Grauls, they endeavoured to make 
conquests in the country of their enemies. Ariovistus was, accord- 
ing to all probability, a Marcoman. History will inform us how 
about the commencement of the Christian era, they, under Mar- 
bodius, advanced, in front of the Romans, towards Bohemia; and 
how, subsequently, they became the terriiSc enemies of the latter. 
Their name disappears m the miction, probably merging in that 
of the Suevi, under which collective name theymay have wandered, 
with other Suevic tribes, to Spain. 

7. The Quadif the most south-eastern Suevic tribe, seated upon 
the Danube, in Austria and Moravia, as far as the river Gran, in 
Hungary, where they joined the Sarmatian tribe of the Jasygi. 
They lived in peace with the Romans until the great Marcomanmc 
war, under Mark Aurelius, in which they took a share. From this 
time they always remained the enemies ot the Romans. In the fifth 
century, their name likewise disappears, and merges in that of the 
Suevi, among whom they are agam mentioned inl^ain. Ptolemy 



nunes many towns in their country, as a ereat commercial road led 
from CtarnrntuMy Pressburg, through the land of the Quadi, and by 
this means conveyed life and spirit mto it. We name only Phurfft- 
satiSj Coridorffisj sad Philecia, probably Znaim, Briinn, ana Olmlitz. 

8. Behind these, towards the east, ancient writers mention the 
names of many other tribes, without, however, giving more particular 
infbrmataon about them, or even being able to state precisely that 
they were of German origin. Thus it is with the Gbthini and Osi, 
in tlie mountains which bolder upon Moravia and Bohemia, running 
towuds Upper Silesia, of whom Tacitus himself says, that the for* 
mer spoke tlie Gallic, and the latter the Pannonian, accordingly, the 
Sarmalian tongue. 

The Marsmffi^ are mentioned by Tacitus alone ; according to whom, 
their dwelling place seems to have occupied a portion of Lower Silesia, 
eastwards from the Riesengebirge. It is, however, doubtftil whe- 
ther the Marwingi of Tacitus were not a branch of the Vandals. In 
the disbict of the abovementioned tribes, belong many of the names of 
towns which occur in Ptolemy; viz., Stremntaj in the vicinity of 
Neiflse; Quurgit^ in that of Glatz. 

9. Thei^^', a powerful union of tribes in the eastern portion of 
Sileflia, and m that part of Poland which is inclosed by the elbow 
of tlie Vistula, from its source as &r as Bromberg. Tacitus con- 
sdeis them, perhaps rightly, as Suevi, although their manners 
and mode of life partake much of that of their savage Sarmatian 
neighbours, on which account several modem historians class them 
wil^ the Sclavonic tribes. They belonged, when we first hear of 
them, to Marbodius' confederation of tribes, and their alliance with 
the Maicomanni and Hermunduri, seems to have continued even 
much later. In the third century, they appear with the Buigundians 
on the Rhine, and are defeated by the Emperor Probus.* The chief 
stem, however, i^ch remained behind, probably attached itself 
at the time of the great migration, to the Goths, the name being no 
kofier mentioned. 

Among the Lygian tribes, Tacitus names the Ari, the Hdve* 
coni, Manimi, Elysi, and Naharvali; his Buri also, which he does 
not join to the Lygian union, belonged probably to it; thev dwelt 
at the sources of the Oder and the vistuk. Tacitus describes the 
Ari as the most powerful, but also the most savace of the Lygians. 
They painted theur shields black, coloured their bodies, selected dark 
nights for their battles, and excited terror in their enemies by the fear- 
ful and almost infernal appearance of their ghastly, death-hke ranks. 

In the country of the NakarvaU^ there was a sacred grove, where- 
in a youthful pair of twins, similar to Castor and Pollux, were wor- 
shipped under the name of Aldus, and were attended by a priest in 
feinale ndmentt 

The whole domain of the JElysi^ who dwelt probably in Silesia, 

I i, 67. 
t IWituscaUsittiieSaiictaaiyordeityAlcu, probably the QoihicAlfaf, t 

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and perhaps gave its name to the principality of Oek, was certainly 
traversed oy a Roman commercial road, which is proved by the 
many Roman coins that have been, and still continue to be found 
buried there in the earth. 

In the great Lygian domain, Ptolemy mentions many names oF 
towns ; among others, Budorgisy probably Ratibor ; Lygidunum^ 
Liegnitz; Caligia^ Kalisch, &c. 

10. The Goths. Tacitus, who only knew the Suevi and non- 
Suevi among the German tribes, considers this tribe also, which he 
calls Goths, as Suevi. Pliny, on the contrary, who makes a fivefold 
division of the tribes, regards them as belonging to the stem of 
the Windili, namely, to that of the Vandals. Tliat the tribes of this 
stem dwelt, collectively, in the extreme east of ancient Germany, these 
two, as well as the rest of the ancient authors who mention theirnames, 
are in opinion unanimous. Later history finds many of these tribes 
likewise in combination, or, at least, actmg under the same impulses 
and towards the same piurpose ; and it was by them that the first grand 
blow was struck against the Roman colossus. If, therefore, nothing 
decided can be said upon these obscure relations, to the elucidation of 
which the light of history is wholly wanting, it will not be objection- 
able, but rather contribute to the easier survey of this manifold mix- 
ture, if we here collect these tribes together, as belonging, probably, 
to a third chief stem, allied to the Suevi, which, with Phny, we may 
call the Vand<diany or, according to the title of the later principal 
tribe, the Gothic branch. 

a. The true Goths, or Gothcnes, were known to Pytheas, about 
the year 300 before the birth of Christ, on the Amber-coast, near 
the estuary of the Vistula. Tacitus places them beyond the Lygi, 
therefore still on the Vistula, but no longer extending to the sea; 
for on the coast he names the Rugi and the Lemovi. Ptolemy, 
nearly fifty years later, places them hkewise on the Vistula, in the 
intenor of the coustrjr, and mentions, by name, the Venedi, or 
Wendi upon the coast. We may thence conclude that, even at this 
period, the great movement of the Wendian and Sclavonian nations, 
from the north-east towards the south-west, had already commenced, 
whereby the Germans were impelled forward in the same direction. 
At the beginning of the third century, we already find the Goths 
again farther southward, namely, in Dacia, where they fixed them- 
selves. At this time, also, they appear divided into two great 
branches, the Ostro-Goths and Westro-Goths, or East and West- 
Goths. Their progress and fate, at the time of the great migration, 
will be further related in the history itself. 

As sinffle tribes, the Gepidi, Mosogothi, Therwingi and Greuthungi 
are named as branches of the Gothic stem, upon whose aflSmity and 
position towards each other a variety of opinions are still maintained. 

b. The Bnrffundians are placed by Pliny at the head of the Van- 
dal stem, but they are not named by Tacitus. Ptolemy points out 
as their dwclling-pkcc the country between the Oder and Vistula, 

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riere the Netze and iihe Warthe flow. Driven by the Gepidi from 
lias district, a portion of them turned towards the north and located 
tkonselves upon the island Bomhohn (Burganda-hohn) between 
Sweden and Denmark ; but the greater portion drew oflF to the south* 
west, attacked Graul, were beaten back by the Emperor Probus, dwelt 
ioTi space of time in the vicinity of the Maine, then upon the upper 
Bliine, and received from the Koman governor, Aeldus, at the oe- 
pming of the fifth century, a dwelling-place in the south-east of 
Gaul, where their name still continues. In their ancient domain 
ftolCTay names the city Ascaucalis, where Bromberg now exists. 

c. The Htiffi axe placed by Tacitus on the Baltic ; he attaches close 
to them the Lemovi, who are mentioned by no one else, and who 
4) not even a^in appear in the great migration. The name of the 
Ku^ survives in the island of Riigen and some neighbouring places 
Tacitus does not enumerate them among the tribes who took part in 
Ae Nerthus worship on the isle of RUgen; but it was, perhaps, after 
^ age of Tacitus that they spread themselves so wide towards the 
west, and gave its name to the island Riigen, with which he was un- 
acquainted. At the lime of the great migration they appear in the 
army of Attila, when he advanced against the Gauls; after his death 
they settled themselves upon the northern banks of the Danube in 
Austria and Hungary, which coimtry was called Rugiland; and, 
^^^^7 afterwards, Odoacer, king of the Heruli, Rugi, Sciri, and 
Turciiingi (he being sometimes called by one and sometimes by the 
other of these titles, although by birth a Scirian), came forth and des- 
troyed, in the year 476, the west Roman empire. The said four named 
tribes were, according to all probability, closely allied, originatinff from 
the vicinity of the Baltic, between the Vistula and the Oder ; and who, 
*«tt several separations and a variety of adventures, of which isolated 
^tices occur in history, are again found united under Odoacer. The 
BeniUans are, next to the Ruri, the most remarkable. They ap- 
^r as a portion of the great iangdom of the Ostro-Gothic ting, 
nemanrich, and form, after Attila's death, a powerful empire on the 
^ks of the Danube, at last vanishing on oifferent sides, after en- 
^untering the most adventurous fortunes.* A portion seems to have 
^ited itself into a nation with the Bojoarians or Bavarians. 

i The Vandah appear as an individual tribe in Dio Cassius only, 
who calls the Riesengebirge the Vandalian mountains, whence the 
l^be has its source, and we indeed find upon its north-east side the 
onoinal dwelling-place of the Vandalian tribes. We have already 
noticed that the Wendili race of Pliny is the Vandalian, and that 
^^\^ speaks really of the Vandalian as received by some others; 
«ter writers expressly say, that the Vandals were of the same stem as 
^ Goths, had a similar appearance, the same laws and institutions. 
^i^eBhaU further relate their history at the period of the migration. 

Tacitus does not allow his country of the Suevi to end with the 
*^^^^ of the Baltic only, as far as the estuary of the Vistula, but 

• belL Goth. iL, 11 and 12. ^ j 

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oonv^ Ilia readers to the iEstyi, on the Amber coasto. They, 
accordiiig to their xnannen and dress, were Suevi, but approach^ 
nearer to the Britons by their language. They zealously iniltiYBted 
grain, and collected amber, which they called hesum (glass), and 
receiyed with astonishment the high price Roman luxury ofiered 
for it. Tacitus describes amber yery distinctly and rightly. 

12. Also, on the other side of the Baltic, in the present Sweden, 
according to him, are found Sueyi, yiz.: the Suioni. ^^ Equally 
strong," says Tacitus, '* by their fleets as by their men and arms, 
kings rule oyer them widi unlimited power. Beyond the Suioni 
th^ is another sea, calm and almost motionless. It is belieyed 
that this sea limits the earth, &om the circumstance that the last 
d;^g splendour of the settmg sun continues until its rise, and so 
bri^ntly, that it obscures the stars." Thus it is evident that they 
haa intelligence of the Polar circle. Tacitus also seems to hint at 
the great northern lights, by citing the tradition that particular rays 
are seen in the skies, and tones heard at the same tune. To the 
Suioni are attached the races of the Sitom, oyer whom a woman 
reigns. *^ Thus fitr," says Tacitus, '* they are not only degenerated 
from freedom, but fedlen into slavery. Here is the end of the Suevi.'* 

That the Swedes are of German origin, may be considered as de- 
cided, and that they were closely related to the Goths is extremely 
probable. The name of the island Gbtland, and many other names 
m Sweden, corroborate this. The Gothic historian, Jordanis, de* 
scribes the Goths as having migrated and shipped themselves direct 
fix>m Scandia (Scandinavia, the general name given by the ancients 
to the northern countries), and settled on the banks of the Vistula. 
But what he states assumes more the form of heroic tradition than 
a history of his peonle; and it may be received as equally correct, 
that the Goths passea over to Sweden from our coasts. 


In the west, the Rhine was not properly the boundary of the 
German tribes, but many of them had passed over it already, before 
the period of the birth of Christ, and had located themselves on its 
lefl bank. To these belonged : 

1. The Vanffioni, the Nemeti^ and the Tribady in the district on 
the left bank of the Rhine from Bingen, below Mentz, as far as 
Breisach. In their domain are many towns, which either owe their 
origin or enlargement to the Romans; viz., Mongiaitiacwn^ Mentz, 
an ancient Game city in the country of the Vangioni; under the 
Romans an important citadel. Already, in the year 70 after the 
birth of Christ, the 22d legion, which, on returning from the con- 
quest of Jerusalem, was quartered in this place, brought with them 
probably, and introduced Christianity there. Banconica^ Oppen- 
heim ; Borhetomagua^ Worms ; Nomomagus^ chief seat of the Nemeti, 
Spires; Tabemaj Rheinzabern; Argentorahany Strasburg, iq the 
country of the Triboci, containing the chief arsena^ throughout Gaul. 

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2. Tlie Ubi dwelt earlier on the light bank of the Bhine, but 
vere bo liard piessed by the Suevi, that they applied to JuliuB 
Gnsar for help, and after he had procured them peace for a «bort 
time, they allowed themselyes, in the year 36 before the birth of 
Chiiafc, to be tranaplanted to the left bank by the Roman general Yu^ 
fomuM Affrippa. They were always the faithful allies of the Bo^ 
mana. lElieiT country commenced at the confluence of the Nahe 
with llie Rhine, and here was founded Bingiune^ Bingen, the first 
seat of their domain; further, Bimtobrioe^ Boppart; Coi^uewUt^ 
Cobknts; Antunnacum^ Andernach; Bonna, Boim; on the oppoBite 
ade, as a bridge head or sconce, built by Drusus, was estabushed 
Gemnda^ the present village Geusen; Cohrnia Agrippma^ Cologne, % 
diief city of the Bomans on the Bhine, named after the daughter 
of Gennaiiicus, and consort of the emperor Claudius, Agrippina, who 
was bom in thos city of the Ubi, ana in the year 50, after the lirth 
of Christ, sent hither a colony of veterans in order to distinguish 
her birth-place. Constantine also caused a bridge to be built here 
overthenver, the remains of which are still to be seen at low wateri 
on the light side was Divitia^ the present Deutz, the bridge head. 
Nocesium^ Neuss; Gelduba^ (often named by the Bomans), the 
preaait village Gelb, near the little town of TJerdingen. 

3. The Gtifferm, northwards from the Ubi, commencing not far 
itoax Geldtibaj down the Rhine to where the Waal divides itself from 
it. Places: AMcUmrgium^ Asburg, near Meurs; V^^a (caatra)^ 
Xanticn or Buderich, opposite Wescl. 

4. Hie Batavi and Canninefatij both of the Chattic race were» 
sooording to Tacitus, driven uom their country hj a revolt, and 
settled themselves near the mouth of the Bhine, in that part of 
the land surrounded by water, which was called the island of the 
Batavians. They were allies of the Bomans until they revolted 
imder Civilis in the year 70, after the birth of Christ. In thei? 
domain lay Lvgdunum^ Leyden; Ultnyectum^ Utrecht | NovUh 
maguMf Nimwegen. 

Besides these tribes there were several others in the Trans-Bhenish 
countries who had fonuer ly wandered thither, and were still proud of 
their German origin, as if the celebrity of their race separated them 
from a connexion with, and a resemblance to the weak and cowardly 
Gauls. The chief among them were the Treviri, with the capital 
Augusta Trevirarum, the present Treves, the most important city 
of the Boman empire in our northern countries; and the Nervi^ 
between the Meuse and the Scheldt 

The south of the Danube was no longer inhabited by the pure Ger- 
man tribes, but such as had become mixed with Gallic and other 
emigrants. The Danube may be considered as the boundarv of Ger- 
many at that period, and the Boman provinces on its soutnem side 
from 3witzer]and to beyond Carinthia, and Camiola, were called: 
Helvetia, BbeUa, Vindelicia, Noricum and Pannonia. 

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But more important for the ancient geography of our country is 
the consideration of the southern part of Germany, from the Rhine 
downwards beyond the Maine, according to others still further north.- 
wardsy and which was called the Roman titheland, {agii decumates^. 
From these districts the Germans, pressed hard by the superiority of 
the Romans, who threatened them from the Rhine and the Danube, 
had retired more and more into the interior — amongst the rest the 
Marcomanni especially — and the Romans considering the land now 
as a portion of tneir own provinces, allowed Gallic and other colonists 
to cultivate it, upon the payment of a tithe. Thence the country 
which was now considered as a frontier or foreland against the barba- 
rians, received its Roman name ; and as such it was already known to 
Tacitus. To secure it from the predatory irruptions of the Germans, 
a long line of fortresses, walls, ditches, walls with towers, and other 
defences, were by degrees constructed, the traces whereof by un- 
wearied research have been discovered in the whole of the south 
and middle of Germany, so that we are enabled to follow these 
Roman frontier-defences almost uninterruptedly. 

Their commencement is foimd in consideraole remains of defen- 
sive works, three miles beyond Ratisbon, near the influx of the 
Altmiihl into the Danube. The intrenchment, weU known to the 
natives under the name of the Devil's Wall and the moat of piles, 
runs from here, for twelve miles iminterruptedly, towards the north- 
west, sometimes raised three or four feet above the ^und, then 
again south-west and west into Wurtemberg, in the vicini^ of the 
Neckar, and at the distance of some miles from this river constantly 
northward, as far as the Oden forest. This wall was built of a stone 
found in the earth near the spot, and at every half leamie was almost 
regularly provided with towers. If here and there perhaps the traces 
of the fine have become indistinct, we soon again meet yrith them 
more perfect In the Oden forest we only discover the ruins of solitary 
towers more distinctly marked; and it is highly probable that here, 
where there was such an abundance of wood, Siey were connected by a 
fence of piles, or a row of pallisades, all traces of which have 
naturally disappeared. But if we follow the remains of these isolated 
fortifications, we find at last that near Obemburg and eastward fix)m 
AschafFenburg, the line joins on the Maine, alter it has completed 
from the Danube onwards a distance of nearly two hundred miles. 

Northward from the Maine, the traces of the line are very slirfit, 
yet it traverses Hanau and Darmstadt, to the north of the Nidda, 
where the moat of piles begins to be a^ain visible, and runs past Butz- 
bach towards Honiburg. Here lies the Salburg, probably the fort or 
citadel of Arctaunum, erected by Drusus on the Taunus mountains. 
In this part the frontier wall is twenty feet high, and closed in by 
trees as old as the forest itself. It runs over the whole of the 
Taunus mountains, then through the latter on the right bank of the 

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Bhuie, as far as the EmB, and ihence again over moimtain and through 
fofiesl to the neighbourhood of Neuwied. Its traces are lost be- 
lund the Seven mountains. This Roman boundary line extended no 
doabt, as far as the Sieg, near Siegburg, perhaps also still farther 
noidiwaids. Tiberius, at least, according to Tacitus, built a border 
waU/fijiief , also in the Gesarean forest; but no trace of any connexion 
between this and the southern defences has been discovered. It is 
dear that even imder the later emperors, the defensive works were 
OHistantly being extended, imtil the repeated irruptions of the Al- 
lemaunic hordes destroyed them. At the commencement of the 
fourth century the Allemanni were in possession of the former' 

As Roman colonies within the boimdary line of defences, besides 
those in the north already mentioned, the f oUoyring are further cited : 

1. CasteUum VakjUmiani^ in the neighbourhood of Manheim. 

2. CwUoB AureUa A^punsis^ called also merely Aqua, the present 
B«den; it is not cited, it is true, in Roman authors, but from mscrip- 
tioDB that have been found, it is at least clear that a Roman gar- 
lison and baths were here, already at the end of the second century. 

3. Tarodunumf near Friburg, in Breisgau, where the Mark or 
boundary, Zarten, is still found. 

4. Ara Fkaria^ Rotweil, together with several others. The 
wbole titheland is full of the remains of Roman buildings, forts, 
dtadels, and temples, bridges, streets, towers, pillars, and baths. 

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486 A-D. 


B. C. 113—6, ▲. D. 

The CHmbri and Tentoni, llS-101 aa— Caaiar and AriOTistua, 68 iuc.«-^iiliua Csaar 
on the Rhine— Commencement of the great Gennan Wara— Dnuus in German/ 
— Marbodius, King of the Marcomanni. 

The Roman and Greek writers who give information upon this 
period of our history, have ahreadj been mentioned at the commence- 
ment of the Introduction. In addition to those, we may include 
here the subsequent chronicles of Prosper and his continuators, Marius 
especially, Idacius and Marcellinus, which are collected together 
by Roncallius, in his " Vetustiora Latinorum Chronica," 2 vols. 
Further, is to be named Beda Venerabilis, a very learned English 
monk, who died in the year 735, and who has left behind him a chro- 
nicle, " De Sex ^tatibus Mundi," to 726, and a ** Hist. Eccles. Grentis 
An^licansB." Finally, we have likewise collected largely, for this 
eaxher epoch, from Jordanis, who will be referred to m the second 

Efforts have been made to trace back the signs of migrations and 
contests of German tribes on Roman and Greek ground to very early 
times, and especially to the invasion of the Grauls imder Brennus 
into Italy in the year 389 B. C, and the incursion of the Gauls 
again, imder a second Brennus, through Thracia and Macedonia, 
as &r as Delphi, in the year 278, as referring to German tribes 
from the vicmity of the Alps. But these indications are much 
too obscure and fragmentary, and to pursue the inquiry would pro- 
duce no essential contribution towards a knowledge of our national 
records. We shall therefore commence the running thread of our 
history, after, as before, with the incursion of the Gmbri and Teutoni. 

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It waB in the year 113 B.C. that a wild and unknown tribe eroMied 
the Danube, and appeared upon the Alps, where the Romans 
raaided the passes into Itdy. In this same year they defeated the 
Aoman consul Papirius CSurbo, who commanded the army here, 
near Noreja, in the mountains of the present Styria. Garbo had 
proved treacherous to them, for upon their request to remain on 
ineEidly terms yrith him, he had provided ihem with false guides, 
who led them astray among the mountains, whilst he advanced by 
a shorter road and tell unexpectedly upon them. For this breach of 
&ith they punished him severely, and he and all his troops would 
have been utterly destroyed had not a heavy storm intervened and 
asBSted his flight 

No one knew whence these fearftil hordes originally came; they 
called themsdves, according to the accoimt of the Romans, Cvmbri 
and Teutonic Upon collecting together the isolated narratives of 
wTiterB, it appears that the CSimbri had already, for a length of time, 
been wandermg about, and had fought yrith many nations, especially 
with the jBoi, and now, quitting tne Danube, appeared upon the 
Roman frontiers. Whether they are to be considered as collective 
tribes intuit upon migrating, or only as troops of warriors seeking 
adventures (as was subsequently the practice of the Suevic warriors 
under Ariovistus), or, forming themselves by degrees into one entire 
mass by the junction of women and children, they required a country 
wherein to settle, we cannot, owing to the deficiency of precise in- 
formation, positively decide. If the Cimbri, as is the general opinion, 
proceeded from the Cimbrian peninsula, so called bjr the Ei)mans, 
but which now is the present Jutland, it is very certain that only a 
portion of the tribe could 'have left it, as it was still occupied by that 
tribe at a much later period. But if the name Kimber, as others have 
surmised, implied merely Kdmpfer, fighters, (Kamper, Strenuus), 
they may then have belonged to other (%rman tribes, probably to the 
Suevi. Opinions likewise differ upon the name of the Teutoni. Some 
believe it was not the name of an individual tribe, but that the Ro- 
mans, hearing that these Cimbri were Teuten or Teutones, imagined 
that they had a second tribe to contend ¥rith, which they called 
Teutoni. According to the opinion of others, the Teutoni were 
wanderers of several tribes between the Vistula and the Elbe, who, 
urged forward by the eruption of the CSmbri from their northern 
peninsula, formed themselves into an individual horde, and called 
themselves Teuten, or Teutones, the collective name of all the German 
races. Others fix the home of the Teutoni in the northern Scandi- 
navia, in favour of which their iron armour appears to say xnuch 
already. But we shall follow the accounts of the ancient writers, 
who always name the Teutoni as an individual tribe, and remind us 
that Pytheas had already, more than three hundred years B.C., heard 
the name of the Teutom on our northern coasts. 

After the Cimbri had fought near Noreia, they advanced 
through the fruitful district that lies between the Danube and the 

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Alps, towards southem Gaul^ wliich appears originally to have beeii 
the aim of their exertions, and many tnbes fix>m Germany, Gaul, and 
Switzerland, strengthened their numbers, particularly the Ambroni 
from the Emmegau, and the Tigurini (Zurichers), a valiant tribe at 
the foot of the Alps. They demanded a country from the Romans, 
for which they promised military assistance for every war. The Ro- 
mans, however, refused their request, when they determined to obtain 
by valour and the sword what they could not acquire by treaty. 
Four Roman armies, one after the other, were defeated ana almost 
annihilated by them amd their confederates — the first under the 
consul Junius Silanus, the second under the consul Cassius Longinus, 
who fell in the battle, the third under the legate AureUus Scaurus, 
who was taken prisoner. When he was brought before the council 
of the Germans, in order to give them intelligence respecting the 
passage over the Alps, he advised them to forego their intention, call- 
ing ihe Romans imconquerable. Angered at this, a young German 
pnnce> Bojorix, stood lorth and struck Scaurus to the ground with 
his sword. 

The Romans, who already thought of conquering the whole earth, 
but saw themselves now defeated by a horde whose name they scarcely 
knew, collected together another large army, under the consul Marcus 
Manlius, and sent it to the assistance of the consul Scipio; whose le- 
gate, Scaurus, had just been vanquished. But envy and dissension 
existed between the generals, and the Germans taking advantage of 
this, gave such battle to this large army, that 80,000 of the Romans 
and their allies were left dead upon the field, with 40,000 of their 
slaves. Manlius fell with his two sons, but Scipio escaped, with, it 
is said, but ten men. This day was, henceforth, consiaered by the 
Romans as one of the most imlucky in their calendar, and the city 
of Rome, as well as the whole country were seized with such a panic 
that in Rome for a very long time after, any uncommon alarm was 
called, a " Cimbrian panic" The enemy, however, did not take ad- 
vantage of this opportunity, the reason for which neglect is not known ; 
but, instead of advancing upon Italy, they turned aside towards the 
south of France and Spain, and gave the Romans time to recover 

- The Romans possessed but one man who still sustained their hopes, 
this was Caius Marius, a rude, proud man, but a valiant wamor. 
He was of low origin, and had raised himself by his talents alone; 
he was, therefore, hated by the patricians, but they were obliged, in 
opposition to all hitherto followed rules and against the laws, to make 
him consul several years in succession, in order that he might free 
them £rom their terrific German foes. 

Marius collected his army and conducted it over the Alps towards 
Gaul, as far as the river Rhodanus (the Rhone), and formed there a de- 
fenfflve camp. He re-established the ancient discipline and order in 
his armv, which had been long neglected, and to which was to be at- 
tributed the mischances that had befallen them. He, therefore, kept 
himself for a long time quiet in his camp, that he might accustom 


Lis warriors to the view of the large s;igantic forms of these stran- 
gers, and to the tone of their fearfui voices. And when ever he 
observed that a small troop of his enemies were alone, he quickly took 
advanta^ of the favourable opportunity, and made a sortie upon 
than with great strength and superiority, that his troops might 
kam to conouer them by degrees. This delay was irksome to the 
war-hunting Germans, and they often came to the very walls of the 
camp, mocked at the Roman army, and called them out to battle, 
bat Mazius was not to be diverted from his plan. 

The Germans had now divided themselves into two bodies. The 
Cimbri had passed up the Rhodanus through Syritzerland and the 
Tyrol towards Italy, but the Teutoni remained opposed to Marius. 
When these latter perceived that their challenge was not accepted by 
their opponents, they also broke up, marched past his camp on the 
road to Italy, and called out jeeiingly to the Roman soldiers, asking 
them *^ if tney had any commissions to send to their wives?" The 
multitude was so great that they were six days passing the camp in 
uninterrupted ranks. 

Marius followed at their side, continuing always upon the heights, 
that they might not unexpectedly attack mm; he then re-encamped 
himsdf opposite to ihem near Aquae Sextiae, or which is the present 
town of AJoLj in the south of France. In the spot he had selected 
there was but little water, and when his warriors complained of thirst, 
he pointed with his hand to a river that ran close by the enemy's 
(^mp, and said, '^ Behold, yonder is drink offered you — but only to be 
purchased with blood." They rei)lied, " Why do you not then 
lead us at once against them whilst our blood still flows ?" He 
however returned, in a steady voice, '' The camp must first be 
secured/' — ^And liie warriors, although unwillingly, obeyed his 
orders; to such an extent had this strict leader been able to re- 
^tablish military discipline. Of the baggage men, however, 
many hastened in a multitude to the river to procure water for them- 
selves and the beasts of burden, when, meeting with a few of the 
enemy who were indulging in bathing, they speedily came to 
bbws with them, and as the cries of the combatants drew to 
their aid more from both sides, there arose a sharp skirmish with 
the ArnbroTu^ whose camp lay on the Roman side of the river. The 
Ambroni were driven back into their camp of waggons, and then a 
severe battle took place with the women, who burst forth with swords 
and axes, attackii^ as well their own countrymen who retreated, as 
the pursuing Romans. Night separated the combatants. But this 
night was in many ways terrific and dreadful. There arose from the 
camp of the Germans a strange mixture of voices, not like lamenta- 
tion and sorrow — ^although it miffht have meant a mourning-cry for 
the dead — but resembling a dea&ned roar as of wild beasts, which 
was re-echoed by the mountains around, and by the shores of the 
stream. Terror seized the Romans ; they feared the enemy might make 
a night attack, which would easily have thrown all into confusion; 
for their camp, owing to the battle, was stiU without walls and 


ditches. But the enemy stiiied not; they remained ^et, and 
continued so up to daybreak. Marius now laid down his plana for 
battle. He placed the infantry before the camp, but the cavalry he 
sent down into the plain, andhe despatdied his lieutenant-general, 
Claudius Marcellus, with 3O00 heavy armed soldiers forward to oc- 
cupy the wooded heights behind the enemy, with the command to 
advance from his ambush at the commencement of the fiay. 

When the Teutoni observed the Romans place themselves in 
order of battle, they were seized with such a desire for the fight that 
they did not await them in the plain, but clambered the heights 
agamst them. But as they arrived, breathless and panting, the 
^mans received them courageously and with closed ranks, and 
drove them back again into the plain. Marcellus did not waste this 
decisive moment, but broke forth in full gallop, and shouting from 
the wood with his three thousand horsemen, fell upon the rear of 
the enemy, who, 'm:essed on both sides, soon got into disorder, and 
took to night The Romans pursued them, and either killed or 
took prisoners more than one hundred thousand. Shortly after- 
wards the prince of the Teutoni, Teutobody was also taken prisoner 
in his flight across the mountains, and was subsequently forced 
to form in Rome the chief ornament in the triumphant train of 
Marius; and according to the accoimt of the Romans, he was so tall 
and lofty that his figure rose above all the trophies, and so active, 
that he could leap over from four to six horses. But Marius 
burnt the arms and entire booty as a great and splendid sacrifice 
to the gods, excepting only what he selected and preserved of 
the most costly and rare. This battle, near Aquas oextiae, took 

?lace in the year 102 B. c, and eleven years after the battle of 
The exultation of Marius and his troops was speedily damped by 
the intelligence that the consul Catulus had been repulsed oy the 
Oimbri in Upper Italy. These latter had, although late in the year, 
crossed the Alps, and drove before them the enemy, who guarded 
the mountain passes. The latter looked with astonishment upon 
these powerful strangers, who, in their delight at their native snow 
and ice, as well as in the consciousness of their hardy powers of endur- 
ance, revelled naked in the snow, ascended over ice and deep snow 
to the summits of the mountains, and then sitting upon their broad 
shields, slid down from the peaks of the most precipitous declivities. 
The consul was obliged to retreat behind the river Atnesis (the Etsch), 
but erected defences on each side of the bridge he had built. When 
the Cimbri, advancing closer, had surveyed the river, they com- 
menced, ffiant-like, to break rocks from me surrounding summits, 
and cast mem, with stones and earth, into the stream, in ordet to 
check its course; they loosened the piles of the Roman bridge with 
great weights, which were driven cradling against them t>y the 
floods, so that the Romans, in their toxor, deserted their defences 
and their camp, and took to flight; and not until they had crossed 
the river Po did they again take up a poeitio^.^, ,^ Google 


Tke CSmbii now spread theanaelveB over the rich and beautiful 
phinB of Upper Italy, and delayed going at once and direct, as they 
ihoold have done, upon Rome ; the charms of the country completely 
enchantiTig them. Instead of their rude camp beneath the open sky, 
they now accustomed themselves to the shelter of aroof and itsoom- 
forte; instead of their cold baths, they now took warm; instead of 
plain meat, they indulged in choice dishes; but, above all, they sank 
mto intemperance by wine drinking. Catulus, in the meantime, 
waited beyond the Po until Marius returned £rom Ghul with his vie- 
torious army and joined him; when they both advanced forwards 
over the river* As soon as the Cimbri were apprised of this, they 
collected their troops, and, in expectation ot the Teutoni, whose 
misfortane they were either ignorant of or did not believe, they sent 
to Marius once more to demand of the Romans a country for them- 
sdves and their brethren. When they named their brethren, the 
Tenloni, Marius ridiculed them, and said, ** Think no more of your 
brethren ; they have their land already, and you Ukewise shall receive 
quite sufficient from us." The ambassadors censured him for his 
ndicule, and said he would q>eedily receive his punishment from the 
Cimbri on that very spot, as also &om the Teutoni the moment they 
arrived. ** They are here already," said Marius; '' and it would not 
be right to allow you to retire without having greeted your bre* 
thrai.*' And with that he ordered the captive princes of the Teutoni 
to be brought forward in their fetters. 

Struck with amazement, the ambassadors returned to their camp, 
and the Cimbri immediately broke up; Bojoriz, their pnnce, roue 
to the Roman camp, and challenged Marius, with the Romans, to 
battle, at any place which he might appoint. Marius replied, " It 
was not usual for the Romans to make their enemies acquainted be- 
forehand vdth the day of battle, yet even in that he would show him* 
self agreeable to the Cimbri;" and he accordingly appointed the 
Bamdum plain, between Vercelke and Verona, as me place of battbi 
and fixed the time for the third day following. 

After the lapse of this interval, the Cimbn quitted their camp in 
good order; they placed their infantry in a square, but the cavalry, 
16,000 moi strong, turned to the right, and endeavoured, by this ma- 
noeuvre, to bring the Romans between themselves and ^e infantry. 
Their cavalry, for the mater portion, was equipped in the most 
Bomptuons manner posrible; they wore helmets which were made 
to resemble the throats of terrific animals, or other frightftd ob- 
jects, with a full waving crest, which increased the size of their gi* 
gantic figures, and theur iron armour and shining shields glittered 
afiff. Every rider had a double javelin, and for close combat a large 
heavy sword. They had obtained these choice arms very probably 
inrictorious battles during their long incursions. The infantry, 
however, poured itself forth upon the plain like an immeasurable and 
moving sea. Marius, at this moment^ washed his hands, raised them 
to the godsy and vowed to them a great sacrifice, should he conquer; 

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Catulus also, with raised hands, made a vow for the sucoess of this 
day. And when the entrails of the slaughtered animal were shown 
to Marius by the priests, he exclaimed, with a loud voice, so that the 
midtitude might hear him, *^ Mine is the victory T 

A severe and bloody battle now began. The heat and the mm 
which shone in the eyes of the Germans, aided the Romans. For 
the former, brought up in cold and shady parts, could endure the 
cold but not the heat; profuse perspiration enervated thdr bodies^ 
and they held up their shields to shelter their eyes from the sun. It 
was precisely in the month of July, when the summer's heat is most 
intense, that the battle was fought. The dust also was opposed to 
them, for it completelv enveloped them, and concealed trom the 
Romans both their numbers and their terrific aspect, so that the latter, 
not being previously alarmed by their appearance, fell at once upon 
the ranks of their enemies. The most dreadful dose conflict ensued, 
wherein the Romans derived a vast advantage over their enemies fix>m 
their short broad swords. They had also so accustomed their bodies 
to the labours and discipline of war, that not a single Roman was 
observed to perspire or to lose his breath, even in the most suffocating 
heat. Besides, Marius had invented a new weapon, a kind of long 
barbed spear, which the Romans hurled against the shields of their 
enemies, and with which they forced these down, so that the indi- 
vidual remained exposed. 

Thus it happened that the largest and most warlike portion of the 
Cimbri were killed. The foremost rank had bound tnemselves to- 
gether with long chains or cords, fixed to their girdles, that they 
might not be forcibly sep^ted; and they now lay on the field as it 
were strung together. When the Romans, pursumg those who fled, 
arrived at tneir waggon-camp, their eyes beheld a sad and mournful 
scene. The wives of the Grermans stood, dressed in black, upon their 
waggons, and themselves destroyed the fugitives as they arrived, nay, 
even their own little children they cast beneath the wheels of the 
wagffons, and under the feet of the beasts of burden, that they might 
not rail into the hands of the Romans; and they then killed them- 
selves. Many of the men also slew themselves, for they feared slaveiy 
more than death. Sixty thousand were, however, taken prisoners, 
and as many more upon this fatal day were exterminated. 

Thus was concluded this severe and bitter war, which the Romans 
considered equally as critical as the earlier one, nearly three hun- 
dred years before, when the Gauls under Brennus burnt Rome; and 
thence they called Marius the third founder of the city. But the boys 
and youths of the Cimbri and Teutoni, who were made prisoners m 
these battles, and conveyed away as slaves, amply revenged hereafter 
the blood of their fathers and tneir brothers in that of thousands of 
Romans, whom they slew in the servile war under their leader, 

Notquite fifty years had passed aft;er this first essay at arms of the 
Germanswith theRomans,wheniheformeragainadvanoedtoward8tlie 

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fiomaii frontiers, in smaller numbers, certainly, than at the first 
nine, and perhaps not with the clearly defined purpose of invading 
Italy; but conquest and the prospect of booty probably -would 
^eedily have increased their forces, and the fruitful pastures, as 
veil as the full granaries, of the natives, would have allured them 
from province to province, until the fame of the smiling country 
bejond the Alps might have suggested to them the path over these 
towering frontier walls, had they not found an opponent who knew 
at lesst the art of war as well as Marius. 

AriooUtuSj a king of the Marcomannic Suevi, between the Danube 
snd the Neckar, was appealed to for assistance by a Gallic tribe, the 
Stjuani^ against another tribe, the j^klui; in the vear 72 B. c, he 
pased over the Rhine at the head of an army, and obtained a victory 
for the Sequani; but the beautiful plains of the present Burgundy 
pleased him so much, that he would not again quit them. At en- 
loity equally with the conquerors and conquered, he seized a space 
of land, and when the Gauls had united against him he put them to 
%ht near Magetobria (now Mumpelgard). He, perhaps, originally 
went forth upon this adventure as a duke with his warlike tram, but 
nioie and more Germans flocked to him, attracted by the celebrity 
of this beautiful country, so that he speedily had under him an army 
of 120,000 men. The whole of Gaul trembled before him ; the tribes 
Wieved themselves already vanquished or driven from their ancient 
wats. The Romans, however, who possessed already in Southern 
Guiil a subjected province, acknowledged Ariovistus as king in his 
conquered territoiy, and called him iriend. 

But speedily atlerwards Julius Csesar, one of the greatest and 
boldest of Roman leaders, appeared in (raul. Burning ambition 
exdted him to great warlike imdertakings, and he had arrived in 
tkese districts with no other view than to subject the whole of Gaul 
to the Romans. The iEdui and other Gallic tribes, now turned to 
Urn and demanded aid of him against the Germans. Csesar gladly 
profited by this opportunity of advancing farther into Graul, promised 
them help, and demanded an interview with Ariovistus. 

Atiovistus answered proudly and boldly, that, '' If he himself de- 
^led aught of Csesar he should come to him, and if Caesar desired 
&ught of him he must do the same. Besides, he could not under- 
stand what Caesar or the Roman people in general had to do in Aw 
Govl, which he had conquered by the force of arms?" 

Caesar replied to him: '* As he had refused his invitation to an 
interview, he at once would briefly state what he desired of him, 
^: in the first place, that he should not bring any more Germans 
^'^ the Rhine; and, secondly, that he should return to the Gallic 
tribes their hostages, and treat them no longer as enemies. If he 
fulfilled these conditions, the Roman people would hold constant 
P^ and friendship with him ; if not, Cs^r would not behold the 
«ijurieB of the JSdm with indifference." 

Ariovistus, in his reply to this, referred boldly and candidly to the 

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right of anns, according to which the conqueror might treat the 
conquered as he pleased. It was thus the Romans themselves were 
likewise accustomed to act, who well knew too how to make use of 
their r^hts; he only required therefore to be left to do the same. 
And with regard to Gae^r's announcement, that he would not let 
the injuries of the .^!dui remain unrevenged, Ariovistus replied: 
" No one had hitherto contended with him but to their ruin. If 
CssBax wished, he might begin the contest; he would then learn to 
know what unconquered Germans, perfectly practised in the use of 
arms, and whom no roof had sheltered for fourteen years, could 
I>erform." Truly, the language of a hero of the great tribes-migra- 
tion; to whom ms sword stood in lieu of hereditary right and title 
deeds, and who, with his brethren in arms, was determined to rejposc 
under no roof until he had conquered the sought-for country of his 
new home I 

With any other opponent this bold declaration might have pro* 
duced its influence, and been effective; but Csesar, who even in 
Borne itself could not endure to be the second, felt thereby the 
more excited to measure himself with such an enemy. He ad- 
vanced against him and occupied Vesantio (Besan^^n), the chief 
city of the Sequani, which was very strong and richly provided 
wiw all the munitions of war. Whilst he remained here a few days, 
a very dangerous despondency suddenly overpowered his army. 
The statements of the Grauls who had been so often beaten by the 
Germans, the descriptions ^ven by the traders who had travelled 
through their country, the close proidmily of the terrific enemy him- 
self, tended, combined altogether, to present before the soul of the 
Bomans so fearftd a picture of the stren^, the valour and ferocity 
of the Germans, within whose annihilatmg glance it was impossible 
to stand, that many who had thus far voluntarily followed Caesar, did 
not hesitate inventing anj excuse to enable them to return home. 
Others whom shame retamed, could however so little govern them- 
selves, that they frequently broke forth in tears, and in their tents 
sorrowfully mourned their ill-fortune. Throughout the whole camp 
all were engaged making their wills publicly; and at last even those 
became tainted by the panic, to whom the dangers of war were by 
no means strange. And, in fiict, there was a general murmur against 
their rash leader, for thus unnecessarily seeking so perilous a battle. 
Caesar, in order to subdue this impression in his army, summoned 
forth the whole force of his eloquence. He collected together the 
leaders of his host, and represented to them that a war with Ario- 
vistus was as yet by no means certain; he much more expected that 
the latter would listen to the voice of justice and of peace. But 
should he, fix>m a mad love of battle, absolutely desire it, they had 
only to remember the defeat of the Cimbri and Teutoni, and the ser- 
vile warjust ended, wherein the Germans also were conquered as well 
as the BLelvetians, not being able to resist the Roman arms. But if, 
notwithstanding, all these reasons could not serve to tranquillize them , 

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lud none wonld* follow him, he would at once advance against the 
foe widi the tenth legion alone, for on their fidelity he could de- 

This address made a deep impression upon their minds. The 
tEQth legion thanked him immediately for his confidence, and all 
the rest emulated each other in displaying their readiness. Csesar 
broke up forthwith, and adyanced nearer to the German army. An 
interview which he held with Ariovistus at his desire, was as firuit- 
las as the previous n^otiations, and Gsosar now wished for nothing 
bat a battle. But Axiovistus took up a position in which he cut off 
&Qm the Romans all the supplies, and caused his cavaLry, which by its 
miztoie with the light infantry, was superior to that of the Romans, 
to make skirmishes. But the battle, alwough daily offered by Csesar, 
he did not accept. 

Cieaar then learnt from some prisoners the cause of 'this delay, 
which otherwise was not in accordance with (xerman custom, llie 
prophetic toomeny according to whose oracles the army acted, had 
announced misfortune shouH they fight before the new moon. Csesar 
now sought a battle more zealously than ever, and advanced dose up 
to the (%rman camp. They then at last drew forth their troops, 
and each tribe took up its position— the Harudi, Marcomanni, Tri* 
bocki, Vangioni, Nemeti, Sedusi, and Suevi; they surrounded their 
battle array with waggons and chariots, whereon sat the women with 
wild and loosely flowmg hair, supplicating all the ranks as they passed 
by, not to allow them to fall into the bondage of the Romans. The 
battle commenced, and they were soon furiously engaged on all 
sides. The Germans rushed forward with so much speed, that the 
Romans had not time to cast their javelins, and their left wing was 
driven to flight; but their right wing conquered on its side, and now 
were dUis^layed the advantage and superionty of perfect warlike order 
and disciphne. The broken wing of the Romans was re-formed, 
when the third division advanced to its aid; the ranks of the Ger^ 
mans, however, remained in confusion, for their army, although 
extremely valiant, was deficient in strict discipline and order. They 
were therefore at last driven to flight on all sides, and hastened 
towards the Rhine. But the Roman cavalry overtook the greater 
part, and but few, among whom was Ariovistus, saved themselves 
by swimming or bv traversing the river in small boats. His two 
wives were kill^ m the flight, and of his two daughters one was 
likewise slain, and the other taken prisoner. Of Axiovistus himself 
history sajB nothing further. 

When Cfesar had driven Ariovistus across the Rhine he began the 
subjection of the Grallic tribes, who were not equal to the Germans 
in valour. He conquered one after the other, and kept constantly 
advancing to the lower Rhine. Intelligence then came to him that 
two German tribes of the lower Rhine, the Unpeti and Tenckteri^ 
pressed by the Suevi, had passed over the Rhine to seek a new set- 
tlement m Gaul. They had with them their wives and children, 

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their slaves and herds, as well as the rest of their property, and Yrere 
upwards of 430,000 strong. As Cssar now, however, considered 
Gaul to belong to him, ne desired them to retrace their steps. 
They, however, replied " That they had been forced by the Suevi 
to wander from their homes; they desired nothing but a land to 
dwell in; he ought therefore to leave them the fields they had con- 
quered with ther arms, or give them others instead. Besides, it was 
not German fashion to avert a battle by intreaties, but to make a stand 
against those who desired the contest ; he was therefore free to choose 
their friendship or war. They yielded to none but the Suevi, to 
whom in battle even the immortol gods themselves were not equal ; 
but excepting those there dwelt none on earth whom they could 
not conquer.' 

They nevertheless were conquered by Cassar, but only by Italian 
cunning, for as their princes and chieftains came to an arranged inter- 
view with him, he suadenly seized them as prisoners, fell immediately 
upon their camps, and beat and scattered tne whole tribe, which was 
now without a leader. Some of them fled back across the Rhine to the 
Sigambri. Caesar required them to be delivered up. The Sigambri 
answered : '' The Rhme at least was the limits of the Roman empire ; 
if he did not wish the Germans to cross the Rhine against hiB will, 
why did he presume to give orders on their side of the river?" 

iSuch language vexed the proud Roman. He likevrise still bore 
fresh in mind, that the Suevi imder Ariovistus had already fallen 
upon Gaul ; therefore, he determined to build a bridge over the Rhine, 
and make the German tribes feel in their own country the power of 
the Romans. In ten days he constructed with much ingenuity, in 
the country of the Dbij below the place where the Moselle falls into 
the Rhine (according to some near Bonn, according to others near 
Andemach) a large wooden bridge, and passed wiw his army over 
Germany's noble stream. This was in the year 55 B. C. He wished 
to attack the powerAil confederation of the Suevi ; these, however, re- 
moved their whole property and their wives and children far back 
into the interior of tne forests, and collected all their warlike forces 
in the middle of their domain, there to await their enemy. It appears 
they had selected their ground with great prudence, for Caesar did not j 
consider it even advisable to follow them thus far. He baited only i 
eighteen days on the right bank of the Rhine^ devastated with fire < 
and sword the vicinity of the Sieg, where the Sigambri then dwelt, 
and then returned across the river. To the Ubi, who upon this \ 
occasion had been his faithful adherents, he gave the name of Roman 

But the Suevi had so little fear of the Romans, that they shortly 
afterwards sent assistance to the Treviri against diem. Caesar then 
determined to cross the Rhine a second time. He built a second 
bridge a little above the former place (according to the opinion of 
some near NeuwiedJ but scarcely placed a foot in Ghermany, for the 
Suevi had made their arrangements this time as prudently as before. 
According to the connexion of events, and of the locality where 




Caesar crossed the Rhine, those whom he called Suevi must have 
been the Chatti, and these either then have belonged to the Suevic 
oonfederation, or Caesar, in his ignorance of the German relations, 
Lis included them as such. 

After this period Caesar did not again pass into Germany, but he had 
(eoome so well acquainted with the Germans, as being such strong and 
Tiliant men, that he endeavoured to raise troops from among them to 
senre in his lemons. This was easy to him amongst such a brave 
people, where mere were always bold men ready to go forth for pay, 
booty, and the love of war. Caesar was likewise a hero who well un- 
derstood hovr to win the hearts of his warriors ; he led them always to 
^ory. Grennan subsidies helped him henceforth to win his battles, 
and at Pharstdtu^ where he fought the last battle against Pompey , and 
where it was decided which of the two should rule the world, they 
afforded him important aid. After the battle had been hard fought, 
Pompey despatcned his cavalry against the enemy, that they might 

tve decision to the battle; but these horsemen were chiefly proud 
Oman youths, of the superior classes, who idly thought they coidd 
not be defeated. Caesar then gave command to his German infantry 
to drive back the cavalry, and called out to them : ** Comrades, strike 
only at the face I" He well knew that the vain youths of the metro- 
poUs preferred their smooth faces to scars. And the Germans, who 
were sufficiently tall and strong, rushed against the cavaliers as if they 
irere themselves mounted, and not on foot, and frightened them 
80 much that they speedily took to flight. Thus the day was 
by them won for Caesar. Henceforward, there were constantly German 
soldiers in the Roman service, and ihe succeeding emperors even 
formed of them their body-guard. 

Julius Caesar was murdered as he was about to make himself sole 
master of Rome; but the Romans were no longer worthy of being 
*fcee people; they therefore speedily fell into 3ie hands of masters 
who were worse than Caesar. The first among them was the Em- 
ptor Augustus, whose reign lasted from the year 30 b. C. to the year 
14 A. n. 

During this time the Romans had subjected a greater portion of 
the then Known earth. Of Europe, besides Italy, Greece and Mace- 
<lonia, Hispania, and (Jaul, were also subject to them; with that they 
^re not nowever satisfied, but coveted other countries which lay 
^joni the Alps and the Rhine; for the ambition and avarice 
of the Romans knew no limits, and no doubt it appeared very desir- 
able to them to gain dominion over the powerful men of the German 
jace according to their own will, and to form the^fiower of their armies 
from their ranks, and by their aid to hold the rest of the world in 
^Wience. They at first attacked those tribes which dwelt upon the 
fiidea of the Alps towards Germany, in the mountains of Graubiinden, 
tte Tyrol, Saltzburg, and Austria: wild tribes, partly of Gallic and 

Ktly of unknown origin, who could not resist the superiority of the 
mans, and who were not only conquered, but exterminated or 
sold as slaves. This contest was concluded in the .j|£^r(J^gUJ^ 


Henceforward the river Danube was on thtf side the boimdaiy be- 
tween the Romans and the Germans. From the other side, however^ 
the river Bhine was no longer to remain so, and Augustus therefore, 
sent his step-son, Claudius Drusus, to Gaul, to attack the Germans 
in their own country, and he was certainly a hero competent to ac- 
complish what was great. 

Drusus undertook four campaigns in Germany, ill the years 12 
—9 B. c. He warred with the Suevi, Chatti, Sigambri, Usipeti, 
Tenchteri, Brukteri, and Oherusci. He passed on from the lower 
Rhine to the rivers Lippe and Ems, as &r as the Weser, 
and in his fourth incursion advanced even to the Elbe. But his 
irruptions were no conquests. The Germans well understood how- 
to conduct war against such an enemy. They retreated £rom their 
isolated dwellings into the forests on both sides of the road he took, 
destroyed the supplies they could not take with them, J^aced their 
families in safety, and stayed there until the autumn. The Romans 
were then obliged once again to return, as they could not winter in 
the desert country, from the deficiency of provisions ; and that was the 
moment the Germans had awaited with impatience. They now an- 
noyed the enemy at every step he took; attacked solitary troops, 
rushing upon them suddenly from the forests, in the most dan- 
gerous places, destroyed the wearied stragglers, seized upon their 
baggage and allowed them no rest either hj night or day; and thus 
the Romans never returned to the Rhine without considerable loss. 

The rapid and extensive incursions of Drusus into Germany gave 
him^ therefore, great fame among the Romans, but did little harm to 
the Germans. In the auturon, winter, and spring, they dwelt quietly 
in the places which the enemy had again quitted. But Drusus would 
certainly have found at last tne means of establishing his dominion in 
Lower Germany had he lived longer. He had made one commence- 
ment towards it already. He buHt strong forts at the mouths of the 
rivers which flowed into the Rhine and the North Sea, that he might 
retain in his power all their navigation; thus being enabled to convey 
into the coimtry a portion of his army with greater security upon a 
fleet of small vessels, and to transport their provisions convemently 
after. For this purpose he also commenced a canal, which was called 
after him the Drusus ditch (and is still called the Drusus Vaart) and 
united the Rhine between Doesberg and Isselort with the Issel. By 
means of this canal the Rhine was brought into connexion with the 
Zuider Zee, the flevum ostium of the ancients, and the Romans hence- 
forth, by means of this outlet, were enabled to have communication 
with the North Sea flrom all their holds unon the Rhine. Drusus 
himself took this mode of imiting himself witn the Friesi, and of reach- 
ing the mouth of the Ems by sea, and where he likewise built a fort, 
probably opposite to the present Emden. On the Rhine he built as 
many as fifty of these forts, strongly fortified, especially Bonn and 
Mentz, the last upon the border-limits against the Suevi, and pro- 
vided them with bridges and flotillas for their defence; and upon 

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the Taimus mountains, on the heights near the present Hombnrg, he 
built the fort Arctaunum, intended against the Chatti. Had he, 
therefore, firom year to year advanced more and more with such for- 
tresses into Grermany , and so at last have prevented his being^obliged 
to quit the land again in autumn, the dominion of the Komans, 
together with the adoption of their language and manners might, 
perhans, have maintained a firm around in Germany. But his course 
was already stopped in the fourth year of his impeUent irruptions. 

Wc will here give a brief sketch of these incursions. The first he 
made was after his legate had revenged himself upon the Sigambri 
for the defeat of LoUius, with his fleet down the Rhine, through his 
canal and the Zuider Zee into the Northern Sea, entering the mouth 
of the Ems. The Friesi were allies; however, the Brukteri had col« 
lected a fleet in the Ems and opposed him, but they were beaten. Here 
Dnisus built his fort at the mouth of the river, and then continued 
his course along the Oldenburg coast, as far as the afflux of the Tade, 
where his ships ^ot stranded, but hj the aid of the Friesi and the 
flood were set afloat again. The wmter, however, obliged him to 

In the second campaign Drusus gained the shore across the Lippe, 
as fiir as the Weser, in the vicinity of Hoxter; but a revolt of the 
tribes in his rear forced him to make a retreat, when he found him- 
self suddenly surrounded near Arbalo by the Germans. Their too ^reat 
confidence mgainin^ a victory, which misled them to make an irre- 
gular attack, as well as their thirst for booty, were the means of his 
rescue. He built here, at the junction of the Aliso and Lippe, the 
fort or casde AHso*, in order to nave a point iappui {ox his incursions 
against the tribes on the Weser. 

^ The third campaign he made was against the Chatd, who, jxre- 
viously peaceable, had now united with the Sigambri against him, 
because he had bmlt opposite to them the fort upon the Taunus 
mountains; they were beaten but not subdued. 

In the fourth campaim Drusus advanced from the fort on the 
Taunus mountaiQS into tne land of the Chatti, beat them, as well as 
the Marcomanni under Marbodius, and forced the latter to retreat &r • 
ther eastwards. These attacked the Bopians and forced them to yield. 
Thus did Drusus himself assist in causm^ the G-ermans to completely 
drive before them the GraUic tribes, and to extend their own settle- 
ments. Upon this Drusus turned again to the left against the 
Cherusci, marched oh across the mountains to the Saale, and along 
this river downwards as far as the Elbe (perhaps in the vicinity of 
Barby). It was whilst one day he was here standing alone on the 
banks of the Elbe, which in his mind was not yet to Ibe the liinits of 
liis progress, that, as it is related, a supernatural figure in the 
form of a female, appeared before him, ana with a lofty, threatening 
air, addressed him thus: " How much farther wilt thou advance, 

* Bespecting the locality of Arbalo and Aliso, eee the Introduction. 

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insatiable Drusus? It is not appointed for thee to behold all theso 
countries. Depart hence ! the term of thy deeds and of thy life is 
at hand!" 

Whether this was the creation of his imagination, or was de- 
vised by the craft of one of the prophetic women among the Grer- 

mans, mwardly bemoaning the late of her country, is uncertain ; 

suffice it, that Drusus, on his return, fell from his horse, and died a. 
few weeks afterwards in consequence. 

After him his brother Tiberius commanded the legions whicli 
were opposed to the Germans. He was of an artful and deceptive dis- 
position; and besides arms, he employed other and worse means 
against them. Bv craft he caused disputes among the tribes, and. 
by want of faith he led them into ruin. The Sigambri who were 
one of the strongest and most valiant tribes upon the Rhine, he could 
not conquer with arms. He therefore demanded an embassy from 
them to nim for the sake of peace, as he said; and as the princes and 
leaders came in great numbers, he caused them to be taken prisoners 
and dispersed among the Gallic cities, transplanting also of the 
tribe, which was thus robbed of its chieftains, 40,000 towards the 
estuaries of the Rhine and the Issel.* The princes, however, to 
whom life among a strange people was an insupportable burden, and 
who would not, that onmeir account, their people should be with- 
held from a retributive war against the Romans, killed themselves. 

By such means, indeed, it was not difficult to hold in trammels 
those districts which bordered on the Rhine, or on the rivers which 
flowed into it; and by the aid of the strong forts j)laced there, 
and of the frontier walls or land defences (Umites), which enclosed 
the occupied country, the north-western portion of Germany 
as far nearly as the Weser, appeared even already subdued, and, as it 
were, a Roman province. DomiHiis JEnobarbus^ tne grandfather of the 
subsequent Emperor Nero, who held the command in the years 
immediately preceding the birth of Christ, pressed forward, even 
across the Elbe. No one hitherto had been so far. He also built a 
road between the Rhine and the Ems, called pontes hmgi^ namely 
dykes and morass bridges, which led from vetera castra, near Wesel, 
onwards to the vicinity of the Ems, over moors and marshes. 

When Tiberius came a second time to Germany, about the year 
3 A. D., he completely subdued a recent rebellion among the lower 
German tribes, embarked upon theoceaujandsailingas far as the mouth 
of the Elbe, fought with the Longobardi, and took up his winter 
quarters among Sie quieted tribes near the sources of the Lippe, 
probably near the fort Aliso. Henceforth this place was the 
point whence the Romans directed' all their undertakings against 
the middle of Germany, upon the frontiers of which they had 

♦ 'fhia transplantation of the Sigambri, by which Tiberins thought to extermi- 
nate the tribe, only produced their salvation; for from these new settlements arose 
afterwards the Issel-Franks, who laid the foundation for the greatness of the king- 
dom of the Franks. 

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now arriYed; and with the nearest tribe therein, the Cheruseij 
th^ had just formed an alliance tinder the name of friendship 
uid confederation; which kind of union had, more safely than 
the fbfice of arms, led to the subjection of the tribes. The internal 
organizationoftlus province app«ured to bea task possible now to be 
put into operation. 3ut under this great oppression of their country, 
the courage of the Grermans did not sleep; ior^ the same as in all times, 
although it was possible to bend their proud spirit, still it had never 
yet been broken. The sources of their aid sprung &om among them- 

A multitude of noble German youths had by a variety of events ar- 
rived at Rome; some in the Roman service, others as deputies, or as 
hostages; some again perhaps from ambition. But in the metropolis of 
the world they beheld neither jopreatness nor freedom, on the contrary, 
only slavery, which carries with it these sins:— meanness by the side 
ofant^ance, flattery, dissipation, enervation^ and idleness. To be ruled 
by so(£ masters as the Romans then were, seemed to them the most 
disgraceful of all things. At the same time, however, they became 
acquainted with Roman military affairs, their art of government, and 
their crafl; and what the former had applied to the oppression of their 
country, they determined to employ lor its redemption. 

Marbodius, a noble Suevian of the frontier tnbe of the Marco- 
manni, was a youth of this stamp. The Romans describe him as tall 
and stately, sdf-willed in disposition, and more by birth than intel- 
lect a barbarian, which name they in their pride gave to all who were 
not Romans or Grreeks. He had been sent yoim^ to Rome, and at 
the court of the Emperor Augustus he was particularly honoured. 
When however, he had seen sufficient of Kome, he returned to 
his own country, and as he saw that they could not, in their present 
settlements upon the Neckar and the Rhine, well maintain themselves 
gainst the great power of the Romans, which threatened them after 
the conquest of the Alps from the side of the Danube, and, since the 
almost completed subjection of the north of Germany, menaced them 
also from the Maine, he persuaded his people to quit their districts, and 
to withdraw to other settlements towards the east. The Marcomanni, 
who, by their warlike constitution, were speedily ready and resolved 
for any movement, broke up, and Marbomus lea them to Bohemia, a 
country well defended on all sides by mountains; they drove hence 
the Grallic tribe of the Boji, which had for generations past wandered 
thither, subjected many tribes around, and founded a great, well- 
r^ulated I^rcomannic kingdom. His capital was Bubienum , called 
also Marobudum, according to some the present Prague, according 
to others Budweis. The Hermunduri, Longobardi, and Senoni, the 
flower of the Suevi, became dependent, and thus his power extended 
from the Danube across the centre of Germany to the Elbe. Hence- 
forward he addressed the Roman emperors not humbly as one sub- 
ordinate and weak, but as their equal. 

He had thus &r conducted his affairs laudably, and he might now 
have become, as it were, a frontier defence for the freedom pit Afi 


whole of Gennany; but it almost appears as if he had learnt too 
much in Rome. He had acquired the love of dominion also firom tho 
Roman emperors, and had at the same time perceived the art whereb v 
the exercise of power over men otherwise £ree bom, may be confirmed. 
He maintained a body ^uard, introduced all other Aoman regula- 
tions, and hitherto no smgle individual had ever practised so much, 
authority among the German tribes. His army consisted of 70,000 in- 
fantry and 4000 cavalry, andhe kept it in constant practice by his con- 
tinual wars with his neighbours, so thatit could be well seen that he was 
preparing it for still greater purposes. This, however, constituted the 
condemnable and distinctive feature in his characteri whence^ in truth, 
he cannot be called a great man; inasmuch as all this was accom- 
plished, not for the freedom and happiness of his people, but solely 
lor himself, and in order that he might alone be called great and 
powerful, and become honoured and ^red. 

He had already appeared so dangerous to the Romans, that Tiberius, 
the son of the emperor, in the year 7 A. n., advanced against him with 
a large army. He intended to attack him from two sides with 
twenly-two legions, and he was already in full march, when intelli- 
gence reached him that a great rebellion had broken out in Hun- 
g^, Dalmatia, and Illyria, and that all the tribes from the Adriatic 
to the Black Sea, who dwelt upon the Danube and among tho 
mountains, had conspired against the Romans, and had collected an 
army of 200,000 infantry and 9000 calvary, with which they were 
determined to invade Italy. Fright and terror seized upon all in 
Rome, and the Emperor Augustus exclaimed in the senate, ^' Ten 
dap hence the enemy may be within right of Rome !" 

Tiberius immediately concluded a peace with Marbodius, which 
was favourable to the latter, and hastened with his whole army 
against the Pannonian tribes; and, afW three years of the most ob- 
durate war, he succeeded in diverting the great danger, and brought 
these tribes again under the dominion of nis father. The latter re- 
joiced, however, but little in this good fortune; for, on another side 
of his empire, the Germans had caused him the greatest loss, and 
had involved him in calamities the most serious ne had ever ex- 
perienced during his whole life. 



Arminitu, or Hermaon— ArminioB and Yunu— Arminitu and Gennanicofl— The 
death of AnxuniuB, 21a. d.— Further Wan between the Germans and Bomaiu— 
War with the Marcomanni, 167 — 180 — The Gennanic Confederationf — The Ale- 
manni— -The Franks — ^The Saxon Confederation— The Goths— The BecUne of the 
Itoman Empire. 

The campaigns and forts of Drusus, and the crafty, cunningly- 
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dened sxia of Tiberiufl, liad effected so much in Lower Geimanj, 
S3 we have above seen, that as iar as the Weser, no armed tribe any 
IcHt^er openly opposed the Romans. All was bowed down, the imions 
cjffthe tubes were sundered, and the minds of many of the leading 
men had been poisoned by the seductions of the Romans. They 
already began to appear a different race of men, habit and intercourse 
with the strangers commenced already to obliterate their national 
manners. Markets sprau^ up and were established around the Ro- 
man camps, and enticed the Germans to purchase and barter. Even 
^e earth and heayens, says a Roman writer, appeared to be more gentle 
iod mUdy for the forests had become penetrated and passable, and 
bridges and dykes were built across the morasses. Three complete 
I^ons, the best of the Roman army, kept guard in the numerous forts 
and camps, and in the midst of our lofty forests of oak, a Roman Prsetor- 
^x> was established^ together with Koman laws, legal institutions, 
sna appointed functionaries. The Roman governor, Sentiui Satur- 
nixuB^ who was in Germany in the year 5 or 6 a. d., contributed 
much to these changes; he was a man who united old Roman honesty 
with affiibility. He took pleasure in feats and enjoyments, and im- 
parted to the Germans a greater love for the renned mode of hfe 
among the Romans. QuintiHtis Varus succeeded him in the autumn 
of the year 6 ; a man of a weak mind, who was more adapted for the 
occupations of peace than of war, and besides which, was addicted 
to avarice. For it was said of him, that he entered the rich pro- 
vince of Syria, where he had just been governor, a poor man; but 
when he quitted it, he himself had become rich and had left the 
province itself poor. The Germans, to this weak-minded man, ap- 

Sred thoroughly subjected, because they were tranquil, and he en- 
voured to fix slavery among them by those gentle but effective 
means, which are more pernicious and destructive than the j)ower of 
Ae Bword, because they assume an innocent garb. He sat in judg- 
ment upon the Germans, as among Romans; decided upon the 
fineedom and property of Germans, and the Roman lawyers, instead 
of the straightforward and simple German custom, sought to intro- 
duce the sid)tle and perplexing arts of Roman jurisprudence. If it 
be desired to fix within the heart of a nation, a secretly devouring 
and destructive worm, which shall gradually reduce it to that stat6 
of d^radation that it becomes careless to all magnanimous ideas, the 
love of country and compatriots — substituting instead, the more de- 
basing, petty, selfish considerations — it is only necessary to imbue it 
with a love of law and disputation, that all may become embittered 

r" St each other, and that every one shall know nothing greater 
his own advantage. And as all ludicial proceedings were con- 
ducted in the Roman knguage, it was likewise intended thus to intro- 
duce and establish that tongue among the Germans. For, in order 
to thoroughly annihilate ike idiocrasj, freedom, and independent 
feelings of a people, and to mould it into an entirely new form, it 
is only necessary to deprive it likewise of its peculiar hereditary 
possession — its mother tongue. Digitized by Google 


Varus, however, had much miscalcukted when he supposed the 
rude (xennans were insensible to these cunning arts. The understand- 
ing of uncultivated nations is keenly alive to those who wish to en- 
close them within nets, and the Germans were supplied by nature 
with ahealthymind andgood discernment. They quietly perceived the 
source and central point of ruin, and they were beyond all things filled, 
with inward ra^e at the view of the lictors' rods or fasces of the KomarL 
governor, which were the attributes of his power of awarding corpo- 
real punishment, or even death itself. Nothing was more degrading to 
the free German than corporeal pxmishment, the disgrace of the most 
abject slavery; and the power of punishing with death, they did not 
even allow to their own princes, but conceded it to the divinity- 
alone, who proclaimed the sentence through the voice of his priests. 

Their wrath, however, durst not give itself utterance, but it re- 
mained long concealed in the breasts of individuals, for there was no 
one near, who with a bold mind could collect and fan the glimmering 
sparks into a broad flame. But it was Rome itself that was chosen to 
nurture and bring up to maturity the saviour of German freedom. 
This was Armirdus^ (whom we are accustomed to call Hermann) the 
son of Segimer, prince of the Cherusci; a youth of vaHant heart and 
arm, of a clear, quick mind, whose eyes proclaimed the fire of his soul. 
By distinguished miUtary service he had acquired the right and 
dignity of a Roman citizen and knight, and had returned to his 
country well instructed and practised in all the arts of war and peace. 
He here perceived the disgrace and ruin which was being prepared 
for his native country; and his mind pondered upon the great means 
of remedy. He speedily discovered a similar feeling to reign among 
the noblest of the Cherusci and the neighbouring tnbes; his inflam- 
ing word inspired their courage; they prepared the grand blow of 
deliverance, and in order to destroy the Romans the more securely, 
they enticed Varus by a planned rebeUion to the frontiers — as it 
is related by the Roman 'svriters — still farther away from the Rhine, 
into the depths of the Teutoburger forest, which flanked the districts 
towards the Weser. 

Varus, however, might still have escaped his fate, through 
treachery: the traitor bemg found amongst the Germans themselves, 
in the person of Segestes, aprinceof the Cherusci, who was an enemy to 
Segimer ; whilst he was envious also of Arminius's great reputation, and 
jealous because this much younger man, by the powers of his mind 
and his heroic virtues, attracted the eyes of all the tribes upon him. 
Even the day before the breaking out of the conspiracy, when Varus 
had collected the princes at a banquet, Segestus entreated him most 
earnestly to take Arminius prisoner on the spot; but a bUnd confi- 
dence in his own power, concealed from the governor the abyss that 
yawned beneath his feet. He advanced still deeper into the forest 
which covered the country of the Weser, and the princes quitted 
him with the promise of immediately joining him with their auxiliary 
troops. They came — their plan being well and happily laid— and in 

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the midst of the Teutoburger forest (in the present principality of 
lippe-Detmol), where there are on all sides mountaiQS and narrow val- 
]tjs, they met him. Nowhere around was a beaten path visible, no- 
thing but athickly grown and impenetrable wood. Trees were obliged 
to benewn, pits and morasses filled up, and bridges built. It was in the 
stonoy autumn season — the month of September; — heavy rains had 
made the ground slipperjr and every step unsafe, whilst the tempest 
roared at the summits of the oaks, whence the tutelary deities of 
the country seemed wrathfully to threaten. Warriors, beasts of 
burden, loaded with baggage and munition, all passed heedlessly on, 
as in perfect security. 

Amidst these terrors of nature, appeared suddenly, on all sides, 
occupying the heights, the Germans as foes, hurling forth their 
destructive weapons against the compressed masses of Romans. 
These could but little defend themselves in their heavy armour, upon 
a slippery ground, and with arms which were spoilt for use by the 
oontinuea rain. They, however, continued their course under con- 
tinual attacks, and arrived in the evening at a spot where a camp 
might be constructed. Fatigued as all were, they nevertheless 
exerted their utmost powers to raise defences whicn should keep 
the enemy off, in order to provide themselves with at least one quiet 
night, were it even to be tneir last. Thus they awaited the &wn 
of day between hope and fear. In the morning every thing unne- 
cessary was burnt; the soldiers were thereby made lighter for battle, 
and the baggage was also diminished; this, together with the women 
and children, of whom there was a great number with the expe- 
dition (as no war had been anticipated), they placed in their centre, 
and commenced their retreat, probably in the direction of their fort 
AKso. Their fate seemed to brighten; they came to a more open 
space, where they could muster and regulate their ranks, and where 
tne Gennans did not venture to attack them; but this was to be no 
resting-place for them, they were to resume their inarch forward, and 
the terrific forest once more received them. The enemy renewed 
and increased his attacks; the tempest still continued, at which the 
Germans exclaimed as they pursued the Romans: '* Behold this is 
done by our God, who wiu this day revenge our wrongs upon our 
enemies." Many of the most valiant Romans sank beneath their 
wrathful, and unceasingly emboldened attacks. 

In this desperate position night appeared a second time, and they 
again endeavoured to construct defences. But the attacking enemy, 
^th his cries of victory, left them no time, and then, when heaven 
and earth seemed to oppose them, and there was no hope of salva- 
tion, the courage of tne bravest sank. Varus, seeing now that all 
was lost, and having already received several wounds, cast himself 
upon his sword; man]^ of tne leaders followed his example, whilst 
the whole army was either made prisoners or killed, very few escap- 
ing. This last battle took place, according to the most recent re- 
searches, very probably between the present Horn and Lippe spring, 

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on the Bouthem borders of ilie Lippe."^ Thus was annihilated the 
finest and most valiant of all the Roman armies, with the auxiliaries, 
40,000 men strong. Hiis was the hour of the heavy retaliation that 
was to be expected upon some such day, from the fury of a severely- 
oppressed, freedom-loving, but still savage people. Many of the 
most distinguished prisoners bled as saoifices upon the altars of 
the native divinities, others who retained their lives, were used 
for the most degrading services; and as tlie Romans themselves in- 
form us, several of their distinguished countrymen, to whom at home, 
the gates of entrance into the senate were open, concluded their 
miserable Hves as the herdsmen of German flocJoB, or as the keepers or 
porters of Grerman gates. It is also related, how embittered the Ger- 
mans showed themselves towards the Roman judicial functionaries, 
with the feeling, as it were, that it was by their arts that the greatest 
danger was prepared against fireedom and independence ; and further, 
that a German tore out the tongue of one of these functionaries 
with the caustic words, ** Now cease hissinff, adder !" Such is the 
account of the great German battie of freedom, according to the re- 
lation of our enemies themselves. In what a different hght should 
we not behold it, had we the testimony thereupon of even one 
German historian I 

But the opinion of all is unanimous and fixed, and it is confirmed 
by the conrcssion of the Romans themselves, that our fatherland 
owes its freedom to this ffreat victory in the Teutoburger forest, and 
we, the descendants of those races, are indebted to it for the un- 
mixed German blood which flows in our veins, and for the pure 
German sounds pronounced by our tongue. But in Rome tiiere 
was universal alarm and mourning; wmlst the Germans were full 
of rejoicing, and^ storming the forts on this side of the Rhine,f 
cleared the whole countij of the Romans. The Emperor Augustus 
was beside himself; in his fury he struck his head against the wall, 
and constantiy exclaimed: '^ Oh, Varus, Varus, restore me my le- 
mons !" For some months he allowed his beard and hair to grow, 
tne guards of the city were doubled, and that no riot might occur, the 
Germans were despatched from Rome, and even the German body- 
guard was conveyed across the sea into the islands. At last Augustus 
vowed great festivals to his god Jupiter, *' Should his empire attain 
a more flourishing state."-— Thus did it happen in the Oimbrian war. 

In order to meet the more extensive incursions of the Grermans 
which were now expected as certain, consequent upon this victory, 
Tiberius was hastily despatched to the Rhine with a rapidly collected 
army; to his astonishment, however, he found every tmng quiet. 

* The thiee days of battle have been calculated by M. Schmidt, not without inge- 
nuity, to have taken place about the 9th, 10th, and 11th of September. 

t .^1^ held out the longest. It was so strong, that the Germans, being without 
a knowledge of the art of besieging and the neoessary instruments, could not con- 
quer it by force. They had, therefore, recourse to famine; but the Boman garrison, 
managed, in an tmwatched moment, by a nue de guerre^ to slip out, and, although 
with loss, they nevertheless succeeded in reaching the Khine. 

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Tke Gexmans did not desire conquest, they wished only to protect 
ihar fineedom, and according to the very nature of their alliance, 
after the danger was removed each returned to his home. Tiberius 
held the vBcillating Qaul in obedience, and passed again across the 
Bhine but without proceeding very far into the country, and as in a 
&w years afterwards he succeeded Augustus in the empire, he trans- 
ferred to his nephew, Germanicut^ the son of Drusus, the management 
of the war against the Grermans. 

Gcrmanicus, a ^oung and ardent hero, had before his mind the 
|reat example of ms father, and he resolved to revenge the defeat of 
Varus. He imdertook three grand campaigns in lower Germany, 
in the same districts where war had previoiwlyraged on the Lippe, 
and from the sea up the Ems towards the Weser and the Elbe. 
Germany was now again menaced with £:esh danger, for Grermanicus 
was a warrior worthy of the best ages of Rome. But equally as 
Arminius had obtained victory over bad leaders, so did he now with 
so much craft and valour resist those better chiefs who advanced 
with large armies, that although he was not always victorious in his 
battlesy he obliged his opponent at the end of every campaign to 
wididiaw to his fortresses on the Rhine. And thus, on these occa- 
sions, he did not less for the freedom of his &therland than he had 
previously done in the annihilation of the legions of Varus. 

Germanicus made his first campaign in the year 14 A. D., with 
12,000 Romftns and a multitude of allies from the Rhine, where 
B iiderich and Wesel now He, through the Ca^sarean forest in the vici- 
nity of the Marsi, and fell craftily from several sides upon the un- 
prepared enemy (who, thinking themselves in the midst of peace, 
were at the time celebrating a great festival), and destroyed the 
country for fifty miles around with fire and sword. No age, no 
sex were spared, and a widely celebrated temple — that of Taufana — 
(according to some in Tecklenburg, according to others in the neigh- 
bourhood of the present Miinster) was destroyed. He did not press 
farther into Lower Germany, for now the Brukteri, the Tubanti, 
and Usipeti, speedily collected themselves to revenge the mis- 
fortune of their friends. The retreat of the Romans was not unac- 
companied by difficulties. It was dhly by prudence and strict 
order that Grermanicus led his legions successfully back across the 

In the following year, after he had first attacked the Chatti, who 
had joined the confederation of the tribes under Arminius, he rescued 
Segestes, who was hated by his own tribe, and who applied to him 
for assistance and rescue from the hands of his opponents. The feud 
between the two hostile houses had i^ain broke out. Arminius, who 
loved Thusnelda, third daughter of Segestes, and whom the father re- 
fused to j[ive to him in marriage, had eloped with, and made her his 
wife. Hfer father, however, recaptured her, and brought her back to 
hia castle. Here he was besieged by Arminius, in order to recover his 
wife; but Germanicus meantime aelivered Segestes^ and upon this 

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occasion he took prisoner Arminius's consort, Thusnelda, and con- 
ducted her to Rome. But she never forgot her husband or her high 
rank, and in her sentiments she fortunately more resembled him than 
her father. Segestes, on the contrary, who had now found a pro- 
tector, addressed the Romans in the same sense as at all times is usual 
from such as have betrayed their country : '* This is not the first day 
of my fidelity and constancy towards the Roman people !" — ^he ex- 
claimed : ^' Since I was made a Roman citizen by the divme Augustus, 
I have, in the selection of my friends and enemies, had solely your 
advantage in view; not from hatred towards my country — for 
traitors are hateful to those to whom they twin — ^but from me con- 
viction that the same thin^ is beneficial to both Romans and Grer- 
mans, and because I prefer peace to war, the old order of things 
to the newy and tranquillity to turmoil. And now that I am wim 
you, I can become to the German people a useful advocate — ^should 
they choose repentance instead of ruin." 

Thus spoke Segestes. Augustus promised him protection, and se- 
lected a dwelling for him on the Rnine. Arminius, however, felt 
the most violent ra^ and indignation, and above all it pained liim 
most deeply, to think, that the child with which his consort whs 
pregnant, must first behold the light of day in slavery amon^ 
the Romans. Acting upon these leehngs, he forthwith traversed 
the land of the Cherusci, summoning them all to the war against 
Segestes, and against the Romans. His words are rife with the 
most bitter energy: "The noble father! the great leader! the 
valiant army !" he exclaimed, ironically, " who aU combined together 
to carry off a weak woman ! Before me three legions, and as many 
leaders have fallen; / do not conduct war by treachery and against 
pregnant women, but openly against the armed; and in our German 
groves are now to be seen the Roman banners which I have there 
consecrated to our native divinities. Let Segestes continue to 
dweU upon the subjected banks of the Rhine. Let him there ob- 
tain the priestly dignity for his son; but let him know that the 
Germans will never forgive him, or forget that they have seen be- 
tween the Rhine and the Elbe the Roman fasces and the Roman 
toga. If, therefore, my countrymen, your fatherland and fa- 
milies, and our ancient Grerman manners are dearer to you than alien 
mlers and their followers, then join Arminius, who will lead you to 

flory and freedom, rather than obey Segestes, who will only con- 
uct you to disgrace and slavery !" 
By such fierv language he excited and collected together the 
Cherusci and allied tribes, and at their head appeared at his side 
his uncle, Inguiomar, as the Romans call him, who stood in great 
reroect and esteem among the people. 

Germanicus had already retired with his legions to the Rhine; 
upon receiving intelligence, however, of this fresh and great rismg 
of the German tribes, he resolved upon another expedition that same 
year so as to prevent them from making an attack upon the Rhine. 

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In order to pass more rapidly, and from several sides into the heart 
of the country of the enemy, he, according to his father's example, 
led a poitioii of his army by sea to the estuary of the Ems; two 
other divisions under CoBcina and Pedo advanced from the Rhine 
thiQugli the interior of the country, and thus the in£mtry, cavahry, 
lod we flotilla met together in Westphalia. Unfortunatdy the 
Romans were not "^thout German auxiliaries; they had Batavian 
cavalry with them— and besides these, troops from the Tyrol and 
Salzburg, as also from the left bank of the Rhine. The country 
that lay between the Ems and the Lippe was devastated; the Bruk- 
ten destroyed their own country themselves, that a waste might lie be- 
fore the Romans; but the latter pressed onward, re-captured in their 
Eursuit of the Brukteri the ea^le of the (19th) legion, which the 
liter had taken in the battle with Varus, and arrived in the neigh- 
bourhood of the Teutoburger forest, where Varus had been de- 
stroyed. Germanicus glowed with the desire to show the last 
honour to the fallen leader and his army ; he sent Ccecina forward 
to inspect the mountains and passes, and to lay bridges and dams 
over the deceptive morasses; and then he himself advanced and 
marched over the melancholy scene, ghastly and terrific in its 
appearance as well as in its associations. The vestiges of the first 
camp of Varus might still be recognised by the larger circuit of 
ground, capable of containing three complete legions; the second 
encampment was smaller, the wall half demolish^, and the trench 
filled up and level. It was perceptible that the last remnant of the 
army had encamped itself there until they were at length overpowered. 
In tne middle of the plain heaps of whitening bones, the remains of 
the vanquished army, lay strewed around, and beside them were 
scattered about the fragments of lances, the bones of horses, and 
even heads transfixed to the trunks of trees. In the neighbouring 
groves the altars still remained, upon which the commanders and most 
distinguished leaders had been sacrificed to the gods. And some few, 
who, having survived the battle and escaped from slavery, had joined 
the present army, pointed out here a spot where a leader fell, there 
where an eagle was seized — ^yonder wnere Varus received his first 
wound, and finally, where, ftirther on, he gave himself his death 

The Roman army then, in the sixth year after this defeat, buried 
the bones of the three legions without any one of them knowing 
whether he covered with earth the remains of his friend or enemy; 
the commander himself planting the first turf upon the mound. The 
army now advanced witn increased fury agaSnst the enemy. Armi- 
nius had well understood his own advantage, and retired into the 
forests and morasses ; and when the Romans incautiously followed him, 
he broke forth, repulsed the cavalry, and drove them back upon the 
in&ntry. ButwhenGermanicusadvancedwith the disciplined legions, 
he retired, and the contest remained undecided. The results, how- 
ever, were nevertheless those of a victory; the Romans commenced 

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their retreat: Codcina, one of the before-xnentioiied leaders, serving 
under Germanicus, proceeded with four legions across the country 
towards the Rhine; VitcJlius, another leader, marched with two le- 
gions towards the shores of the sea; and Geimanicus himself -with 
uie third body, embarked upon the ships. 

The road taken by CcBcina was that of the formerly noticed pontes 
hngi, or long bridges, a narrow dam road which ran across immense 
morasses. All around were gently rising wooded heights;* these 
heights Arminius now occupied, whence ne courageoudy attacked 
the Romans, and but little was wanting for Coecina to suffer the same 
fate as Varus. The dams and bridges had become so ruined with 
fl^, that it was found necessary to repair them, whilst at the same 
time a camp was formed, and efforts made to keep the enemy off. 
Many of the Romans sank into the morass, for the Cherusci, who 
knew the locality well, drove them to the most dangerous parts, and 
as these people were accustomed to fight amongst bogs, they, by their 
great length of body, and their monstrous javelins which they knew 
well how to cast from a distance, brought the Romans into great diffi- 
culties. Niffht alone saved the already wavering legions j&om the 
ruinous batUe. But the Germans even then indulged in no repose, 
for they guided the courses of the spring which rose among those 
hiUs, direct upon the Romans encamped oelow. 

This was the 40th year that Coecma had either served or com- 
manded as a Roman warrior; to him the chances of war were well 
known, and his mind, therefore, continued unalanned in all situa- 
tions. He accordingly gave his orders, and with presence of mind 
commanded what was most expedient in this necessity. The night 
was in a variety of ways most tumultuous. The (Germans with their 
rejoicings and shouts made the veiy valleys below resound, so that 
even the ravines re-echoed with them ; among the Romans there were 
only to be seen isolated small fires, and here and there was heard an 
abrupt voice, they themselves lying dispersed along the walls, or 
ffliding about the tents, more because they were sleepless, than that 
they were watchful. Coecina himself was alarmed by a bad dream. 
He thought he saw Varus rise spotted with blood, from the morass, 
and beckon to him; but the Roman did not follow him, and when 
the former extended his hand towards him he struck it back. 

At break of day the march was continued as Ccecina had arranged 
it, so that he was covered by two legions on each side. They, how- 
ever, quitted their position upon the Gtermans attacking them with 
renewed fury, led dv Arminius, who called out to them, " Here, 
Varus ! here are the legions already conquered by a like fiite 1" The 
battle was severe and ammated. Co^cinahimselffell with his wounded 
horse, and must have been destroyed had not the first legion thrown 
themselves before him. The baggage and munition fell into the hands 

* IVo bably the forest heights of Mont Canus, the so-called Banmherge, between 
Hontmar, Schapdetten, and CMfeld, vhere the sources of the Aa, Stewer, Berckel, 

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of the enem^y and ihe loss of these was the salvation of the Romans, 
fcr tbejr enticed the boot^-loving Germans from slaughter to pillage, 
and the l^ions thus at last anived on the open plain, where they 
eacunped.* Their condition was nevertheless deplorable, and the 
aoUieis alxeadj began to complain aloud, that only one day was now 
left far so n&any tnousands to live; and so great was their terror 
that, when a horse which had escaped, ran towards a few soldiers 
ttaading in its way, they all thought the Germans had now broken 
ioto the camp, and they fled towards its back gates. Goecina, to 
hin^ them to a stand, used intreaties, commands, and threats of 
panuhmentf but in vain; and as a last resource, he cast himself down 
icrosB the gate, so that the fugitives could pass only over his body, 
and thiB desperate state of their old and honoured leader, brought 
them at once to their senses and stopped their flight. 

In the mean time the Germans nad surroun^d the camp. Ar- 
nining, who knew ihe firmness of a Roman encampment, would 
not venture to storm it, but preferred conquering the enemy by 
Sunine. His uncle, Inguiomar, on the contrary, insisted upon a 
speedy attack, and his advice, because it was bolder, pleased the 
uennans better. They stormed the camp accordingly, but just in the 
decuire moment Coecma caused his troops to saUy out, beat back 
the bedegers, and forced them to flight. Arminius left the battle 
without a wound, but Inguiomar, his uncle, was severely wounded, and 
the I^ons, as many as were left of them, arrived safely on the Rhine. 
For the third campaign, in the 16th year, A. D., Germanicus made 
still greater preparations than he had for the former. A fleet of a 
thouamd vessels, small and large, with deep and broad holds, and 
others with flat bottoms for koiding, were collected to carry the 
whole army, without exposing it to the dangers previously expe- 
rienced by an expedition by land, into the heart of northern Germany, 
and if necessai^, so fitted as to bring them also back a^ain. During 
these prepaxatians Germanicus mi^e a rapid expedition with six 
l^ons, probably upon the road from the W esel towards Lippstadt, 
on die northern banks of the Lippe, as far as Aliso, to raise the sie^e 
of this fort, which had been re-taken from the Germans and repaired, 
and which they were now again besieging. It succeeded, lor the 
enemy dispersed on his approach, and ne strengthened the highway 
between Aliso and the Rhine with new defences and dams. But as 
the chief attack was to be made firom a different side, he marched 
back again to the Rhine, and thence embarked his whole army 
of not less than 90,000 men, and passing through the fossa Dm- 
tiana into the North Sea, landed at the mouth of the Ems. The 
Chauci were oblij^ed to supply an auxiliary army, and the Angri- 
vari were forced mto subjection on the Lower Weser. The Roman 
simy advanced as far as the present Minden. Arminius, at the head 
of the Cherusci confederation, opposed it, and abattle ensuedat Idista- 

^ Fonibfy between Coesfeld and Veien. 

T2 Digitized by Google 


vims^ on the Weser (probably between Prussian Minden and Vlotho). 
After a long and warm contest, the Germans were obliged to yield 
the field to the Romans, after the latter had gained the hiUs which 
commanded the plain. But the Romans could only attribute their 
victory chiefly to the German auxiliaries who were with them, 
from the North Sea and from the Danube ; and thus, even at the very 
commencement of our history, it appears that Germans aided 
aliens in the subjection of their compatriots. But in those rude ages 
this must not be severely censured, for these tribes from the Danube 
had probably never heard of the name of the Cherusci. In this battle 
Arminius mmself was wounded, and escaped only by the speed of 
his horse; and so great was the slaughter, that from mid-day to the 
very depth of nighty the work of murder was continued, and the land 
was covered with bodies and arms to the extent of fifty thousand feet. 

The subjected tribes of these districts had already determined to 
quit their seat between the Weser and the Elbe, and retire beyond 
the latter river, when they perceived the trophies^ which the Ro- 
mans had raised after the battle, and inscribed with the names 
of the conquered tribes; the sight of this inflamed their wrath more 
than their own wounds and the remembrance of their fallen friends. 
The populace, the nobles, the young and the old, all seized arms, 
and again advanced against the Romans. A second bloody battle 
took place in a wood^ district between the Weser and the Steinhu- 
der Lake, which mroved that the nations' force was not yet broken; 
for although the Komans ascribed the victory to themselves, they 
nevertheless immediately afterwards commenced their retreat, and ' 
Germany was saved. Henceforth the Weser never again saw a 
Roman army. 

The greatest portion of his warriors, Germanicus led back by 
water down the Ems to the North Sea. But a tremendous storm 
overtook his fleet, destroyed a multitude of his vessels, and dispersed 
them on the coasts of Britain. He, himself, was shortly afterwards 
recalled from the command of the armies on the Rhine, by the Em- 
peror Tiberius, who was jealous of his miUtary fame, and he was 
sent to Asia, where he was destroyed by poison in the bloom of 

Thus did this truly German hero, Arminius, who was equally 
great whether in victory or in a doubtful battle, behold his countir 
freed from the danger of a foreign yoke. The rapidity and strength 
with which he roused himselT in misfortune, and instilled new 
courage into his people, produced its salvation. And be it remem* 
bered, he had not to contend merely with the rising or sinking 
power of the Romans, but whilst it stood in its highest perfection 
and extent. Such an army as fought against the Uerman forces in 
most beautifullv regulated military array at Idistavisus, and near the 
Steinhuder Lake, even the most powerful empires of the earth 
could not, up to that time, have resisted. 

After he knew that the frontiers were secured, he turned against 
an internal enemy, who had remained indifferent to the contest for 


Gcnnan liberty, and whose manners, aped from the Romans, together 
with his despotism, made him doubly hateful to his own tribe, as well 
as to ins ne%hbouis. This was Marbodius, the king of the Marco- 
nuuini. Amr the battle of the Teutoburger Forest, Arminius had 
sent the head of Varus to Marbodius, prolwtbly as a token of victory, 
10 diaxne him, because he had not taken part in tlie league against 
Rome; perhaps, also, as an appeal to his patriotism to break forth, at 
this deosiTe moment, from his position, so favourable to the Ger- 
mans, Ixom its being so near and dangerous to the best Roman pro* 
Tinces. But Marbodius remained inert. The Emperor Tiberius, 
may likewise, perhaps, have employed his usual ingenuity — in order 
to conquer ihe Germans more oy stratagem than arms — and have 
oontnbated his share also in this case, to produce a division between 
the two German princes. 

The power of Arminius was now strengthened by the Senoni and 
Lonsobardi, who, wearied with the system of dominion exercised by 
Marbodius, at once renounced him, and joinod the Gherusci; but, 
on the other hand, Arminius was forced to behold his uncle, In- 

Sdomar, desert his own ranks, and pass over to those of the enemy. 
ostilities appear to have been commenced by Marbodius, inasmuch 
as he was the first to advance beyond the frontiers; very probably in 
order to overtake and chastise the renegade Senoni and Lon^bardi. 
A severe and sanguinary battle was fought, in which, as Tacitus 
states, they did not fight in irregular array, but with perfect mili- 
tary order and discipline. The result of the action was against Mar- 
bodius; he was forced to retire back to his country, and tncreby lost 
still more the confidence of his people; and, finally, driven away by 
the Grothic prince, Katualda, he ned to the Romans. The latter 
granted him a pension, perhaps as a reward for having remained neu- 
tral instead of joining Arminius; and, eighteen years afterwards, he 
concluded his life — tne means for prolongmg which had been fur- 
nished by Roman charity— ingloriously at Ravenna. 

We have no records of the last years of Arminius, except what 
Tacitus relates in a few words, viz.: that he himself having oecome 
suspected of indulj^ng a desire to rule despotically, a conspiracy was 
formed against htm, in which his relatives (possibly Segestes and 
Inguiomar) participated, and he was murdered in the year 21, in 
the thirty-seventh year of his age, and in the twelfth of his chief 
command. But we must not forget that the Romans had this talc, 
probably, from the assassins of Arminius, and, perhaps, from their 
old friend, Segestes, himself; for the whole spirit and tenour of his 
great Ufe testi^ that he certainly desired nothing more for himself 
than what was justly his due. He may, however, have endeavoured 
to havegiventothe north German confederacy — whose chief in war he 
was— a permanency and stability likewise during peace, and thus have 
drawn tne confederation closer together, in order that a new enemy 
should not take them unprepared; and as his great object in this was 
misunderstood, his old enemy, Segestes, and nis imcle, who was per- 

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haps envious of the great fame of a nephew, io much his junior ini 
may haveavailed themselves of the generalfeeling toprbmotehisdoi 
fal. The testimony of the great historian of his enemies, does espedaX 
honour to the memory of our hero ; for, after the short narrative of lus 
death, he thus speaks of him : '^ Arminius was, without dispute, tlxo 
emancipator of 6ermany. In battles not always the victor, he never- 
theless remained in war unconquered; and he is still celebrated in tho 
heroic songs of the Germans. He is unknown in the chronicles of* 
the Greeks, for they admire themselves alone; neither among us 
Romans does his &me stand high enough, for we elevate and dig-- 
nify only that which is ancient, and have but too little regard for 
that which is modem." * 

Henceforth, the Romans thought no more of subduing Grermaniy , 
but applied themselves solely to me means of securing their fixmtierB 
£rom the incursions of the German tribes. Thev therefore continued 
to add to the strength of the banks of the Rhme and the Danube, 
and kept a considerable finnYi consisting of their best legions, as & 
guard upon the borders. Tlie Emperor Claudius granted to the 
chief seat of the Ubi the distinction of a colony of veterans, and, 
subsequently, in honour of his consort Agrippina, bom in that 
spot, it was called, Colonia Agrippina (Cologne). Tlie strong camp 
upon the Taunus mountains, which the Romans likewise considered 
as one of the most important points in the district of the Rhine, 
was re-established also bv Claumus. 

In the ^ear 69, another serious revolt again broke forth in the 
Lower Rmne, imder Claudius Civilis, a leaoer of the Batavian aux- 
iliary tribes, and of roj^al birth. Like Hannibal, one-eyed, and of inde- 
pendent, haughty spirit, he nourished the greatest hatred towards the 
Romans, and, under Nero, had been dragged in chains to Rome, where 
he narrowlv escaped death. When, therefore, now a tribute was 
demanded from the Batavians, aldiough they were only bound to do 
military service, Civilis invited all the chiefs to a festival in the sacred 
grove, where he communicated to them his plans, and, by his elo- 
quence, gained over the whole body to join m the revolt. Messen- 
gers were despatched to all the neighbouring tribes, nay, even across 
to Ghreat Britain; and Civilis, without fur£er delay, forthwith at- 
tacked and defeated a Roman encampment, and conquered the fleet 
on the Rhine; but not content with small results, he swore not to 
cut his beard, or the hair of his head, before he had gained a gieat 
and signal victory. He was now joined by the Caninefati, Friesi, 
and several tribes of the Saxon race; and as soon as he had con- 
quered the CoMtra Vetera, and had d^troyed or made caj^tives several 
legions, the whole bodv of Germans, dwelling on the nght bank of 
the Rhine, rose up ana joined him, as well as uie Brukteri and other 
tribes on the left Dank; for their prophetess, Velleda, a Brukterian 
virgin of high rank, had predicted that the power of Rome was now 
approaching its end. Civilis sent her the most valuable portion of 
tne booty he made; and from her isolated tower, in the zorest near 

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tlie lippe, ahe herself dizeded the war. All the fortreaies beyond 
MentflE were taken, Cologne was made to pledge itself to abolish the 
Rlienish dues, at the deciee pronounced by Velleda, diat die Ger- 
man trade should be open ana fi:ee £rom taxation. Gallic tribes, also, 
joined the oonfedezation« The Emperor Vespasian who had, mean- 
time, Boooeeded to the imperial throne, now despatched Gerealis, an 
es^erienced and active geneial, to the head-quarters, where, on his 
aniYal, he at once proceeded to sow dissension, and produce sus- 
picioQ amongst the army of Civilis against their leador; and the 
Gauls, in accordance with their usual chanmable character, with* 
drew themselves; whilst Civilis, twice defeated, was forced to retreat 
amon^the marshes, and wade through the dykes. Numbers deserted 
him; V elleda was taken prisoner; and Cerealis, who gained over to 
him the passions of the majority, partly by mildness, partly by cun- 
lung, as well as by mysterious promises, offered terms of peace. Ci- 
viKs then yielded; the generals met on a river, according to the ancient 
German custom, and peace was a^ain restored under the old con- 
dilions of furnishing military service only. Of the subsequent iate 
of Claudius Civihs, nothing more is known. 

After these fresh trials at superiority of arms, it was but occarion- 
ally that any emperor essayed to obtain military fame against his un- 
oonqiiered neighbours, and these endeavours were generally very un- 
sucoeosfbl, but m order to conceal the shame thereof, they were obliged 
to inTent a variety of plausible excuses. No one, however, had con- 
ducted himself more shamelessly and ridiculously than the Emperor 
Domitianus, who reigned between the years 80 and 90. He com- 
menced awarwith theCSiatti but did not venture to attack them se- 
riously, for he quickly retired, leaving his purpose unfinished, and in 
order that he might not return to Rome with dic^race and obloquy, he 
purchased tall and strong grown slaves in Graul, mressed them like Ger- 
mans, caused their hair to be died yellow and arranffed in the Ger- 
man &ahion, and then led them as if they had been German captives 
in triumph into Rome. In the second century after the birth of 
Christ, tne Romans had to endure a very severe war with the Grer- 
mans which they called the Marcomannic toar, because the Mar- 
comanni were best known to them &om time immemorial, and 
because their attack, combined with that of the tribes of the Danube, 
most immediately threatened Italy. But a yet more extensive al- 
liance of the tribes Seems to have taken place, for also on the Rhine, 
and even on the coasts of the Baltic, the Romans had to endure hard 
contests. But, unfortunately, the accounts which we must collect 
from &e later historians, (Jul. Capitolinus, ArL Spartianus, Dio Cas- 
aus, as extracted from liUphilinus, Amm. Marccdlinus, Orosius and 
others,) are very imperfect. The Emperor Marcus Aurelius well 
understood the greatness of the danger; he caused the priests to be 
collected from all parts, prayers and large sacrifices to be made, and the 
oracles questioned respecting the issue of the war. It is also related 
by Lucian, that a wise man from Egypt, of the name of Alexander, 

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who had acquired great fame, was questioned respecting the Mar- 
comannic war. He replied that two lions, well anointed with fra- 
grant herbs and spices, should be made to swim across the Danube 
into the enemy's country, and that victory would not then fail. His 
advice was followed. The Germans, however, who held these lions 
to be foreign dogs, killed them with clubs, and immediately after- 
wards gained a great victory over the Romans. 

The war now became so desperate that the emperor was neces- 
dtated to receive into his army slaves, gladiators, and others, who 
were previously considered unworthy to bear arms. Even a band of 
robbers from Dalmatia were included in the service; and the em- 
peror, that he might find means to carry on this severe war, sold every 
thing most precious in his treasury, together with his pictures, and 
his gold ana silver vessels, the sale of which lasted two months. 

Tne Marcomanni nevertheless pressed forward as far as Aquileja, 
which lies on the frontier of Italy, causing a similar panic and con- 
fusion in Rome as at the time when the Cimbri crossed the Alps. 

Had a weak emperor then governed the Roman empire, its fate 
would probably have been decided. But Marcus Aurdius was 
a wise and valiant man^ and saved Rome once more from &:reat dan- 
ger. He maintained a war for thirteen years against the allied tribes, 
and had to endure several san^inary battles, being even obliged to 
maintain a warm skirmish wim the Jazy^ on the frozen Danube; 
and although he brought many of the tnbes individually to peace 
and thereby weakened the enemy, and succeeded in irritating Ger- 
man tribes against each other, he, nevertheless, did not survive the 
end of the war, but died from his exertions during the campaign at 
Whfdobona^ the present Vienna, in the year 180. 

It now fell upon his son, Commodus, to lead the army against the 
enemy, and he made a speech to the soldiers, even over the body of 
his father, of what great things he purposed doin^, and that the ocean 
alone should set liimts to his conquests; but his heart longed for the 
pleasures of Italy and for the sensualities of his metropolis. This was 
well known to his flatterers and courtiers, and as they themselves were 
weary of the fatigues of the camp, they thus addressed him : *^ How 
much longer will you exchange Rome for the rude banks of the Da- 
nube, where nothing is to be met with but cold, rain, and eternal 
winter, where not a fruit-bearing tree is to be seen and nothing to be 
met with to exhilarate life? When will you cease to drink the frozen 
water of the Danube whilst others indulge in the warm wells and baths 
of Italy?" To such speeches Commoduslistened eagerly and said, "It 
is true what you say, and if I preserve my life, I can assuredly more 
effectually weaken the enemy than if I expose it to the dangers of war." 
Some of the tribes were so reduced by his father that thejr willingly 
concluded a peace with him, but from others he purchased it in a dis- 
graceful manner by means of large presents, and then he hastened back 
to Rome. So vatiantly, however, had these tribes fought tliat, upon 
peace being concluded, the Quadi alone gave back 50,000, and the 

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Jazjgi 100,000 Roman prisoners; and all that the Romans had 
gamed by the effusion of so much blood was, that things now 
Temained for a short period tranquil upon these frontiers of their 

The proximity of the Romans on the Rhine, the Danube, and 
the Neckar, had by degrees effected alterations in the manners of 
the Grermans. They had become acquainted with many new things, 
both good and bad. By means of the former they became 
acquainted with money, and many luxuries. The Romans had 

Silaated the vine on the Rhine, and constructed roads, cities, manu- 
ketones, theatres, fortresses, temples, and altars; Roman merchants 
brought their wares to Oermany, and fetched thence ambers, fea- 
thers,* furs, slaves, and the very hair of the Germans, for it was now 
the fashion to wear light flaxen wigs, instead of natural hair. Of 
the cities which the Iu>mans built there are many yet remaining, as 
Salzburg, Ratisbonne, Augsburg, Basle, Strasburg, Baden, Spires, 
Worms, Mentz, Treves, Cologne, Boim, &c. But in the interior 
of Germany, neither the Romans nor their habits and manners 
had found friends, nor were cities built there according to the 
Roman style. 

The most im{>ortant alteration that took place among the Get* 
mans at this period, was their concentration into several extensive 
confederations of the tribes. The more ancient example of the 
Suevi, the later combination of the Marcomanni and Cherusci, and 
periiaps various successful results in other German districts, chiefly, 
nowever, the character presented by the great Roman empire, which, 
notwithstanding its great corruption, was yet strong by its union : all 
this, as welTas the predominant power of individual tribes, and perhaps 
many other unknown causes, produced four great confederations of 
the tribes, which probably arose from small beginnings, and had ex- 
fflsted perhaps for some time, but had only become known and formi- 
dable to the Romans in the third century after Christ. Their origin 
will probably always remain obscure to us. The Roman writers 
here leave us entirely, or are so scanty and uncertain in their indi- 
cations, that we cannot build upon them; and the historians who 
afterwards arose among the German tribes themselves, were so 
iffnorant of their earlier history, that they were only able to pro- 
duce old traditions, and often placed them in the most wonderful 
fashion in connexion with the narratives of the ancient writers; and 
thus they connected the origin of the German tribes with the Trojan 
war, the expeditions of Alexander the Great, and other specially 
celebrated events of the ancient world. The confederations of the 
tribes as they occur in history, and as they arc actually treated 
therein, are as follow: 

1. llie Alamanm^ afterwards called the Alemanni, and AUe- 

* The BomaiiB celebrated the white Gennan goose, which they even called by its 
GecmaD name, poM«— Flin. Nat EL, x. 27. 

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manni, between ilie Danube and ihe Maine ; and aabeequently, 
after they bad won back ihe Roman tithe^land, alao upon the Upper 
Rhine and Neckar. They spread themaelyes later northwaxda aa 
£ax as the Lahn. They were a confederation of Suevic tribes, whoee 
formation perhaps emanated from the Hermmiduri, and, according 
to the opinion, erroneously foxmed, of some ancients^ derived their 
name from their being composed of all kinds of men, or manni. 
But it is perhaps more correct to consider the name AUemanni as a 
warlike, confederative name, equally as the Maicomanni signifies the 
War-manni on the frontiers, Crermani, the army or Ger-manni in 
general; the Allemanni may therefore mean the Manni, who formed 
uie defence for the whole. They were warlike, wild, and valiant, 
and gave the Romans no little uneasiness. Dio Gassius first men- 
tions them in the histonr of the Emperor Garacalla; accordingly, 
at the beginning of the third century mm this period — particularly 
after they had penetrated the Umesj and towards the end of the 
third centuiy, alter the death of the Emperor Frobus, when they 
had conquered the tithe-land — they fell upon the efieminate Gauls 
(who henceforward, from terror, called all Germans Alkmandt)^ at 
another time made incursions across the Danube, and even across 
the Alps into Italy, and each time returned home with rich spoil. 
Northwards from these dwelt: 

2. The Franks, on the lower Rhine, as far as the Netherlands 
and the North Sea; likewise a confederation collected fix>m dif- 
ferent tribes of the north-west of Germany: the Sigambri, on the 
Issel, which appears to have been the chief tribe (the subsequent 
salic franks), the Chamavi, Amsibari, Tenchteri, Usipeti, Brukteri, 
Chatti, Cherusci, Tubanti, and others. The Friesi and Chaud 
also joined them afWtrards. The name of Frank is variously 
derived by ancient and modem learned men. The broadest deriva- 
tion is that they wished to be Jrank Bxxdfree people, and thence 
called their confederation. The name of x ranks is much more pro^ 
bably 8uj>po6ed to be derived from their peculiar weapon, a javelin 
armed with a barbed hook, which writers call Franziska (perhaps 
the ancient/ramea of the Germans). History mentions the Franks 
to us for the first time distinctly about the middle of the third cen- 
tury, as a union of north Genoan tribes. Flavins Vopisous first 
names them in the life of the Emperor Aurelian, about 242; af^r 
which the Emperor Julian and other later writers. They were also 
veiy strong and bold. Their hidi opinion of themselves is ex- 
pressed in the introduction to the Salic law, where it states: '' The 
high-jGuned nation of the Franks, who have God for their judge, 
are brave in war, profound in council, firm in union, noble, manly in 
form, bold, prompt, firm; such is the nation, which, small in num- 
ber, by strenffth and courage, burst the yoke of the Romans.'' 
They traversed many Roman countries, particularly Graul, from one 
end to the other, whenever they were eaccited by the lust of prey 

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and booty. ,Th£y even crofleed the Pyienees into Spain, and con- 
quered the city Tarragona. The Romans in the third century had 
so frail a tenure of these countries, that the Franks and other Ger* 
man warlike hordes, among whom are named the Bur^undians and 
Vandals, had possession of seventy considerable cities in Gaul. 
After a long period a hero again appeared among the Roman 
rulers, in the Emperor Probus (276 — ^282); he drove the Germans 
beyond the Rhine, fell upon their country, and conquered so many 
of them, that in order to reduce them, he was enabled to transplant 
many thousands into other portions of his empire. He conveyed a 
body of the Franks, who Imd their seat upon the North Sea, more 
than a thousand miles into a distant country, to the coasts of the 
Black Sea. He expected the Germans would nere forget their bleidc 
fatherland, for here they dwelt in a most beautiful and warm cli- 
mate, and in a rich and delightful country. They, however, could 
not banish from their recollection the cold shores of the stormy North 
Sea, but only planned how they could return. They attacked and 
took possession of several ships, and in them passed, amidst a thou- 
sand dangers and difficulties, through unknown waters, across the 
seas of Greece and Africa, and by we coasts of Italy, Spain, and 
France, towards their home. Tliey were often obliged to land, and 
fi^ht with the natives for provisions; they even conquered the large 
city of Syracuse in Sicily, which the Athenians m ancient times 
had vainly invested for thiree years; and they at last came through 
the great Ocean into the North Sea, and back to their German 
coasts. This took place in the year 280.* 

3. The Saxon confederation is named, together with the Franks, as 
early as the year 288, by Eutropius, and was formed of the remaining 
Lower German tribes who had not joined the Franks, or had a^ain 
separated themselves from them. Amm. Marcellinus next mentions 
tl^ Saxons as the neighbours of the Franks about the middle of 
the fourth century, and after him thev are named by many others. 
The greatest territorial extension which they attained in the course 
of the following centuries up to the time of Charlemagne, was from 
the Danes, from whom they were separated by the Eider, over 
Lower Saxony and the greatest portion of Westphalia, and in addi- 
tion they occupied the banks of the Elbe, Weser, AUer, Seine, Ems, 
Lippe, and Ruhr. The history of this command of territory by 
the Saxons is entirely unknown to us. If we fix ui>on the name 
of the small tribe of the Saxons which is mentioned in the second 
century by Ptolemy alone, and who places them at the mouth of 
the Elbe, and towards Holstein, it then becomes probable, that 
these, together with the Chaud, Brukteri, Gberusci, and Friesi, 
(who agam detached themselves from the Franconian league), the 
Angrivari, the Fosi, and* other tribes, formed an alliance against 
the powerful confederation of the Franks, and drove these who 

* ZosimiiB, L, 71} Eomenias in Panegyr., ir., IS. 

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previously occupied the greater portion of Westphalia, farther to- 
i¥ards the Rhine. 

The Saxons appear subsequently divided into three circles: that of 
the EastphaUans^ beyond the Weser, in the country of Hanover and 
Brunswick; the fFestphoHtms on the Ems, and the Lippe in Mun- 
ster, OsnabrUck, &c., as far as the Rhine, and the Engeriansy in the 
centre between both, in the vicinity of the Weser, continuing per- 
hap the name of the Angrivari in an abridged form. 

The Saxons likewise well understood navigation, although in the 
earlier times tliey possessed but poor ships, formed as they were 
principally of twisted branches and boughs of trees lashed together, 
and then covered over with hides ot oxen and bullocks — they 
were called by the name of Ate/.* They committed many piracies 
and became nrst known to the Romans at the end of the third 
century, as pirates on the (Jallic coasts. We shall find, subsequently, 
that they crossed over to England, and there founded new king- 
doms. They placed themselves only during the wars tmder the 
leadership of dukes, who afterwards immediately withdrew into 
the ranks of the nobility. In times of peace they legislated by 
representation, and sent from each of the three circles an equal 
number of chosen deputies to their assembly, whose decisions were 
valid for all. Thus the idea of a representative parHament, of 
which the ancient nations knew nothing, originated with the 

But still more powerful than all these tribes were: 

4. The Goths. Their name we have already found on the 
banks of the Vistula. Subsequently, however, it is mentioned from 
the shores of the Black Sea as far as the East Sea. They were evi- 
dently a union of many mixed nations, as it appears, belonging 
hereditarily to the Gothic race, and perhaps founded already at 
the period of the great war of the Eastern tribes against Mark 
Aurelius. And wmlst on the one hand the Alemanni, Franks, 
and Saxons, attacked the country of the Romans, which lay to- 
wards the west, the Goths, on the other, turned their attacks to- 
wards the south and the cast, the Black Sea and the Danube. 
Already, in the third century, the Romans had to maintain severe 
contests with them. The Gothic king, Eniva, crossing the Danube, 
invaded Moesia and Thracia, conquered several cities, laid the country 
waste, and when the Emperor Dedus advanced to meet him, he 
gained so great a victory over him at Abrutum, that the emperor 
himself and his son remained slain upon the field. From this battle, 
in the year 251, the superiority of the Germans, and the weakness 
of the Romans, became more and more evident, although several 
powerful emperors gained victories over them. Even the successor 
of Decius, the Emperor Gallus, was obliged to purchase peace with 
the Goths, by leaving them all the booty, as well as all the distin- 

* Kid, a Danish port, stiU bears this sign in its city arms. 

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guisbed prifloners, and promising them besides a yearly tribute. At a 
later penod they made, in conj unction with the Herulians, several bold 
and dangerous piratic expeditions, from the northern coasts of the 
Black Sea, as well as l^yond it, to those of the Mediterranean. 
Athens, with many moniunents of its flourishing period, the vicinity 
of Troy, and the splendid temple of Diana at Ephesus, were overrun 
by them, and the latter wholly destroyed. 

Tlie great prince of the Goths, who, of all others, spread their do- 
minion the most extensively, was Armanarich, or Hermanrich, 
who lived in the fourth century. He ruled over them for more 
than two generations, and attained himself the age of a hundred and 
ten years. His empire extended from the Black Sea and the Da- 
nube over Moldavia, Wallachia, Hungary, Poland, and Prussia, to 
the Baltic. 

The Goths early divided themselves into two head divisions, which 
afterwards, after many changes, appear in the history under the titles 
of the Eastern Goths and the Western Goths. Kings of the race of 
the AmaUans (probably the pure, without stain) ruled over the 
Eastern Goths; and the Western Gk>ths were governed by the royal 
race of the Baitians (from balt^ bold). Among the Eastern Gotns, 
the Greuthungi, and among the Western Goths, the Thervingi, were 
the cliief tribes. 

The Goths belonged to the noblest and most civilized German 
tribes, and had adopted Christianity at a very early period. Their 
bishop, Ulphilas or Wulfila (Wcilflein), as early as the fourth cen- 
tury, undertook the truly wonderful task of translating the Bible* 
into their la^ua^e, until then but little cultivated; and thus was 
speedily diffiised among them, together with the belief in the 
oaviour of the world, both gentler feelings and manners. 

Besides these confederations, there were other isolated tribes in 
Germany, ^particularly two, who will speedily appear among the 
rest, as distmguished for power and dignity, viz.: the Burgundi^ 
earlier on the V istula, and the Longobardi^ on the Elbe. 

At the period that the German tribes flourished in their prime, 
and collected and combined their power in large unions, the Uoman 
empire, in its declining strength, oecame daily more and more re- 
duced within itself, and its magnitude was a burden to it. The ma- 
jority of the Roman emperors, &om the year 180 downwards, became 
in a greater degree enervated, and with their effeminacy, grew likewise 
either more and more malignant and suspicious, or they were avowed 
tyrants, and shed the blood of the best men without reserve or shame. 
But even if a good ruler happened to appear, and sought to maintain 

* This traiislation is the most ancient, and for us, an invaluable monument of our 
language. For a long period, there only existed two MS. copies thereof: the so-called 
Codex AraeHtim»(pt the silver letters), in Upsala, and the Codex CaroUnui, in Wolfen- 
btttteL These, however, contain only the four Evangelists and a portion of the Bo- 
man Epistles; whilst Ulphilas translated the whole Bible, with the exception of 
the hooks of Samuel and the Kings. In recent times, however, considerable portions 
of the xemaming translatkm have been discovered and made known in^iUan. 

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rifflit and order, he was speedily murdered by the tlrild horde of 
soldiers; for they it was irao, in &ct, ruled the empire. Accord- 
ing to Iheir pleasure, they elevated or deposed the emp^x>r8; and 
to such shameless extent did tiiey carry their swa^^, that they pub- 
licly offered the imperial crown for sale, and placed it upon the head 
of nim who gave them the most money. In the course of one hun- 
dred and twenty years, from 180-300, in which period — ^in the 
ordinary course ot things — six rulers would have succeeded each 
other, no less than six-and-thirty emperors governed the Roman 
empire, of whom twenty-seven were murdered, three fell in war, 
and only six died a natural death. 

It did not, however, suffice that an eniperor was destroyed every 
moment, but the murderers slew aU his adherents with him; so that 
blood was shed in streams, and the majority, in their selfishness, took 
especial care not to adhere too faithfully to their princes to the last. 
In such times, tiie Romans necessarily became a corrupted, reckless, 
and contemptible people, who only cared to pass their days in idleness, 
luxury, and sensuality. For when man beholds before nim no secu- 
rity for the future, and knows not if the fruits of his industry will 
descend to his children, he then only considers how he himsell shall 
enjoy the present moment; and thus, in his sensual voracity and 
brutality, he places himself upon a level with the irrational beasts, 
no longer thinking of a future judgment and a retribution. 

It is true that the doctrine of Jesus had calmly diffiised itself like- 
wise among the Romans, and had certainly saved many from the 
general ruin. The Emperor Constantino himself even, who removed 
the seat of empire from Rome to Constantinople, made it, in the 
year 311, the established religion of his empire; and, indeed, from 
that time, Roman affairs took for a period a more favourable turn, 
but the improvement was not fundamental. The Romans during 
the dominion of vice had lost the higher moral power of the soul, 
in which alone the divine word can take deep root; the former sin- 
fulness became intermixed with the modem doctrines, and thus, as 
pure spring water when flowing into a morass, becomes as bad as the 
stagnant pool itself, so did the admixture of die andent wickedness 
with the new light of Christian virtue destroy completely all bene- 
ficial results. \ 

In this condition of the world it is easy to understand, that the at- 
tacks of the German nations upon the Roman empire must, neces- 
sarily, have become daily more successfiil, and it also explams how 
they were ur^ed by an irreastible natural impulse to overpower such 
miserable neighbours, by whom they themselves had been first at- 
tacked, and who, notwithstanding their enervation and corruption, 
considered themselves a nobler race than the unpolished Germans, 
whom they called barbarians. And thus in nature also it may be 
observed as a rule, that where there* is a vacuum, the active, agitated 
powers of air and water forthwith strive to break in. 

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The Hiiimi--€kimm6DC6ment of the Graat Migratioii, 376— Imptum of the Western 

Goths, Vandals, Siievi, Burgondians, and other tribes, into the Western Roman 
Em^re— Alaric— Attila, God's Soonrge, 451-«The Eall of the Boman Empire m 
the west, 476. 

About the year 376, when the Emperor Valens reigned in Con- 
stantinople, and the western empire was under the dominion of his 
nephew, the youthfiil Gratian, a new tribe, ahnost unknown and 
exoeedinglv savage, broke forth from Asia. Thejr were not of Ger- 
man but 01 Mongolian origin, and were called Hunns. Terror and 
diead preceded them, and those who had seen them described them 
in theiollowing terms* : " The tribe called Hunns surpass every deffree 
of sava^eness. They have firm-set limbs and thick necks, and their 
whole ^ure is so mis-shapen and broad, that ihey might be consi- 
dered as two-l^^ed monsters, or as posts that have been roughlv hewn 
to sup^rt the balustrades cf bridges. And as, immediately after 
their mrth, deep incisions are made in the cheeks of their cluldrcn, 
so that the growth of hair may be hindered by cicatrising the 
wounds, they remain beardless and most hateful to behold, even 
to the most advanced period of life. In addition to their ill- 
&voured and repulsive shapes they are so savage that they neither 
need fire, nor cook their victuals; but the roots of wild plants and 
the half raw flesh of the first good animal they meet with, and which 
they place beneath them upon the backs of their horses and thus ride 
it somewhat tender, is their whole sustenance. They enter houses 
only when they are forced by the most extreme necessity; they 
avoid them as the separated ^ves of life, but wandering through 
mountains and valle^rs, they learn to endure, firom their infancy, 
frost, hunger, and tmrst. lliey clothe themselves with a linen ^r- 
ment or in furs, consisting of the skins of mice sewn together; they 
cover their heads with overhanging caps, and their legs with the 
skins of goats. Their rous^h and dumsy boots prevent them from 
walking freely, and, theretore, they cannot fight on foot; but are 
almost grown, as it were, to their horses, which are durable, but, in 
keeping with their masters, as characteristically u^ly. All their 
business is transacted upon horseback, and thus this people buy 
and sell, eat and drink; and, leaning upon the neck of his swilt 
animal, the rider mnks into a deep sleep, even to the very phantasma 
of dreams; and if a council is to be held upon serious matters, it is 
conducted in this same manner. 

"Iliey commence battle with a terrific howl; with the rapidity 
of lightning they advance and purposely disperse themselves m tne 

MaroelL, xxi, 9} Dordanis, S4. 

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same moment; return rapidly again, hover about in irregular array, 
destroying heedlessly whatever they meet with here and there; and 
from their extraordinary speed, almost before they are observed, they 
are already engaged in storming the wall, or plundering the camp of 
the enemy. At a distance they fight with javelins, whose points are 
furnished with polished bones, prepared with extraordinary skill; but 
in close combat vrith the sabre, whilst the enemy parries the thrust, 
they cast a noose over him and carry him off. 

** Agriculture is not practised among them, and none touch the 
plough, for all roam about without a dwelUng, without a home, 
without laws and fixed customs, always wanderers; the women 
dwell in waggons, where they weave their x^oarse garments and 
bring up their children. If Viq question be put to tnem, whence 
they come, none can return an answer; for they are begot at one 
place, bom at another, and brought up again elsewhere. Adherence 
to contracts the^ know not, and like insensible animals, they scarcely 
know aught of justice or injustice, but they precipitate themselves 
with all the impetuosity of their desires upon an object, and they 
waver at every newly raised hope or prospect; nay, they are so 
changeable and irritable, that even sometimes in the same diay with- 
out me least offence, they fall out with their allies, and again without 
anyjpersuasion, they return and become friends with them again." 

This lightly*equipped and uncontrollable race, burning with a 
fearful and determined desire of booty from strangers, broke forth 
from the sea of Asov, whither they were driven much earlier from 
their ancient pastures on the fix)ntiers of Cliina, and fell first upon 
the Alanij thought by some to be an Asiatic tribe, by others a^rain 
considered to be a branch of the Goths ; but it is probably a collec- 
tive name, by which the Romans signify the tribes eastward of the 
Goths on the Wolga and the Don, who may possibly have been of 
different races. The Hunns are said to have sacrificed their first 
European prisoners to the manes of their ancient princes. This im- 
mense swarm then rushed onwards upon the Goths. Hermanrich, 
a brave old warrior, upwards of a hundred years of age, and still suf- 
fering from a severe wound received in battle, when he saw he 
could not resist the Himns, would not survive his formerly acquired 
fame, and therefore, in despair, killed himself. His people were 
obliged to subject themselves to the power of these savages, and 
the 'ihervingians considering resistance useless, quitted their ancient 
seats, and sent messengers to the Emperor Valens, at Constan- 
tinople, with a petition: '* that if he would give them land and pas- 
turage beyond the Danube, they would be the defenders of the 
frontiers." As mediator for the Thervingians, it is very probable, 
that much was effected by the Gothic Bishop Ulphilas, who, in a 
persecution made against the Christians by the pagan Gothic princes, 
had, some time previously together with several Gothic Christians, 
taken refuge, and been granted an asylum on Roman ground, at 
the foot ot the Hoemus. This pious and patrioticj>relate had, in- 

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deed, dunng a space, of forty years, been continually occupied in 
worUng for the benefit of his people. The emperor received them 
kindly. They were not pursued by the Hunns, who now followed 
pasturage, hunting, and pillage, for more than fifty yeaxs in the 
oteppes and forests of the present southern Russia, Poland, and 
Hungary, by which means they came into frequent intercourse with 
the Komans, whom they often served in war ; and humanized by 
this communication with the latter and the Germans, much of the 
imoouthness in their manners was removed. 

The new seat of the Western Goths in Msesia became very soon 
too narrow for them ; and as their herds did not supply them with 
sofl&cient support, they begged permission to barter for their necessary 
wants. The Roman rulers, however, Lupicinus and Maximus, took 
such shameful advantage of their necessities, that for a loaf and 
about ten poimds of miserable meat (frequently the flesh of dogs), 
they demanded a dave in return. The majority of their herds were 
consumed, their slaves gone, and famine induced many to give up 
even their children for bread. While the people suffered from these 
mievances, Fridigem, the Gothic prince, was mvited as a ^est by 
Lupicinus to MarcianopoUs. He was a valiant youth, fuU of the 
heroic courage of his ancestors; and on this occasion many young 
men, his brethren in arms and other friends, accompanied him. 
Whilst he was eating, the cries of his followers outside rose suddenly 
upon his ear, for the Romans had fallen upon them and were murdering 
them. With his eyes sparkling with vengeance, and his sword in 
hand, he sprang up, and rushing out, saved his friends, and hastened 
away with them.* The Goths, embittered at the treachery of the 
Romans, broke up, defeated Lupicinus, and traversed the nearest 
provinces with fire and sword; and from the walls of Constantinople 
were seen the flames of the villages and country-seats which they 
had lighted. 

The Emperor Valens advanced against Fridigem with an army; 
the assistance which his nepihew, Gratian, was bringing to his aid from 
the westy he would not wait for, in order to retain alone the honour 
of victory; and he precipitately ventured a battle near Adrianople. 
It was severely contested; but the Gothic in&ntry repulsed, at last, 
the Roman cavaliy ,and then the lemons. The emi>eror fled wounded ; 
his horse falling, he had scarcely time to save himself in a neigh- 
bouring peasant's hut The Goths, far from thinking that the Ko- 
man emperor was concealed beneath a thatched roof, set fire to this 
as well as other huts; and Valens found his death in this miserable 
manner in the year 378. 

In this pitiable state the empire was once more warded from its 
fall by the vigorous and prudent Emperor Theodosius, a Spaniard 
by birth. lie contrived to weaken the Goths by divisions, and 
made Fridigem's successor, Athanaric, conclude a peace. He pro- 

• Amm. MaioelL, zzxL 5, and Jordazds, 26. 

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xniaed tbe Goths a oonuderable supplj of provmcm^ and ikej, m 
return, lent him 40,000 men as aiuobanes. 

Tlu8 emperor died in the year 395, and his two eons, Hone- 
riu8 and Axci^us, divided the empire between them; Arcadius 
took his seat at Constantinople, Honorius in Italj, and the first divi- 
aon was called the eosfem, and the second the wettem empire. 

The sons did not resemble the father; too indolent to undertake 
the goTemment themselves, ihej allowed their chanceUois, the 
Gaul, Rufimus^ snd the Vandal, Stilichoj tomle. Bufinius, who wa» 
chancellor in Constantinople, corrupt and selfish, thought bj war 
and daring adventures to exalt himself and increase his power; 
accordingly he excited the Goths under Alaric to make an immtioiu 
The presents promised them by Theodosius were not delivered, and 
Alaric devastated Thracia throughout ; and Stilicho advanced against 
him, but was driven back by the jealous Rufinius, who was mur^ 
dered by the embitteied army. JJuoa this, Alaric turned against 
Greece, then quite defenceless, which he robbed of its last treasures 
and glories. ' oudd»dy, Stilicho attacked and pressed hard u{K>n 
the Goths; but Arcadius ordered him to retire, negotiated with 
Alaric, and made him general of Slyria, that is — gave it up to him 
in 396. The Goths broke up firom here in the year 402, and 
advanced uctcm the Alps. Stilicho, neverthdess, once more sue* 
ceeded, by a determined reostance, in fbrcinf^ his dang^x>us en^ny 
to retire beyond the boundary line of mountams. And in the same 
manner he saved Italy in me year 405 &om the attack of a large 
mixed army of German tribes, which, under Radajgaisns, endok- 
Touied to break across the Alps from a different side, and were 
perhaps in alliance with Alaric The history of these times is very 
c(m£used, and it is therefore not dear if tnat body was destroyed 
near Foesulae, as some historians relate, or whether Stilicho was 
enabled to remove them by treaty, and direct them to Gaul. 
But it appears that Stilicho also pursiaed ambitious projects; for he 
had combined with Alaric to make an attack upon the eastern 
empire, but was accused of treachery by his enemies, and by com- 
mand of the Emperor Honorius, his own son*in-law, he was assas- 
sinated in the year 408. As soon as Alaric heard of the death of 
Stilicho, he once more advanced against Italy, pressed through the 
passes of the Alps, crossed the Po, and went direct to Rome; he left 
the emperor in Ravenna, for he despised this weak prince. In Rome 
all was terror and confusion; for since 600 years the Romans had 
seen no enemy before, nor during 800 years had they beheld an 
enemy within their walls, thence the city was called the eternal 
city. They, nevertheless, once more gave voice to theb ancient 
haughtiness, and thus addressed Alaric:* '^The Roman people are 
numerous and strong, and by their constant practice in arms are so 
bold and courageous that they have no dread of war." But Alaric 

* Zotimus, v.. Si. 

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only laaghed aloud at thu, and replied: '* Thickly standing grasB k 
much easier mowed than thin." The ambaflaadors then asked the 
oonditioiiB of peace. He demanded all the cold and silyer, together 
With the whole of the rich plate contained in we city, and all the slaves 
of Gexman origin. On which they asked, ^' What, will you then leave 
hb?' *^ Your souls I" said he. Thus insolently spoke a man, bom 
amcmg a barbaric tribe, upon the island of Pence (at the mouth of 
the Dairabe) to that city which, for centuries, had ruled the habit- 
aUe earth, and through the gates and streets of which the proudest 
herocB had marched in triumph, crowned with victories gained over 
foreign nations, and loaded with booty fSrom Europe, Asia, and 

At this moment, certain prophets (ram Tuscany, who were in the 
city, offered themselves to drive Alaric back from Rome by pro- 
phetic threats, if, in return, they might be allowed to institute feasts 
and aacrifices to their ancient divinities. Doubtless, when he heard 
oi radi weak and futile proposals being made, the valorous Alaric 
treated the matter with mented contempt and derision. 

When now the Romans discovered no hopes of bein^ rescued, 
they were obliged to fulfil the wishes of their enemy, and promise 
him 5000 pounds of mid and 30,000 of silver, liesides a multi- 
plicity of rare and cosuy articles. But so much gold and silver was 
not to be found in the possesion of the inhabitants. They were, 
dierefofe, obliged to have recourse to the ornaments and decorations 
of the ancient temples; and it is said that, among the statues of their 
divinities, diat of Valour was also melted down — ^it thus appearing as 
if all that still remained in Rome of ihat noble quality in man was 
now annihilated for ever. 

Tlie Emperor Hanorius refused to enter into any negotiaticn 
whatever with Alaric, who, therefore, returned next year to Rome, 
and appointed another emperor, of the name of Attalus, as rival to 
Hononus; but as, after one year's trial, he also proved himself to be 
wholly worthless, Alaric reduced him again to the dust &om which 
he had raised him, and the dty of Rome, which held out against 
him^ he now took by storm. Tnis happened on the 23d of August, 
in the year 410. llie Goths entered the imperial palace and plun- 
dered It, as well as the houses of the nobles; but they so far mode- 
rated their ire, that they did not bum the city, u was a happy 
thing for the R(»nans that the Goths were Christians; for those who 
fled to the churches were not molested or touched; nay, a singular 
occuiraioe, which is related to us, displays very evidently the pious 
feeUng of diese people. A warrior, who entered the house of a fe- 
male, found gold and silver vessels there. She told him that they 
belonged to tl^ holy uKMtle St. Peter, and were given to her 
in diarge for the church; he might, therefore, act as he thought 
proper. Hie soldier communicated this to Alaric, who sent imme- 
diately thither, and caused the sacred vessels to be carried with so- 
knmi^ back to tiie church. The RomauSi animated by such gene- 

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rous tolerance, accompanied the train, chanting solemn hymns; and 
the Gothic warriors, astonished at the unexpected spectacle, ceased 
to plunder, joined the procession themselves, and thus was the fury 
of war transformed into genial peace bj mere Christian emotion. 

Alaric remained only a few days in Rome ; he then advanced towards 
lower Italy, indulging his ima^nation with magnificent plans, for, 
as it appears, he purposed embarking for the beautiful island of Sicily, 
and thence to proceed to Africa, in order to conquer likewise this 
granary of Italy. But death overtook him at Cosenza, in his 34tli 
year. The entire Westro-Gothic nation bewailed his loss, and pre- 
pared a remarkable and memorable grave for him. They dug ano- 
ther bed for the river Busento, conducting the water through it, 
and then buried their king, fully armed and equipped, in the onginal 
bed of the river, accompanied oy his war-horse and the trophies of 
his victories. They then conducted the course of the river back 
again, in order that neither Roman covetousness nor revenge should 
desecrate or disturb the great Alaric, in the grave where he reposed 
from his victories. Upon his death, the Goths elected for their king 
the most handsome of their young nobles, the youth Athaulf^ or 
Adolplius^ the brother-in-law of Alaric. He advanced from Lower 
Italy to Rome, where he obliged the Emperor Honorius to give 
him his own sister, Placidia, as consort; he then quitted Italy, 
passed with his nation into Gaul and Spain, and he and his suc- 
cessor, Walliay were the founders of the extensive Westro-Gothic 
kingdom, which comprised the south of France as far as the Loire, 
and speedily embraced Spain also, the metropolis of which was 
Toulouse, on the river Gkronne. In the year 419, the Romans for- 
mally delivered Southern Gaul up to Wallia. The commencement 
of the fifth century was therefore in the highest degree turbulent, 
from the violent movements of the various nations. Almost all 
the German tribes sent out hordes of troops upon excursions of 
pillage or conquest; or they themselves, pressed forward by the 
superior attacks of other tribes, broke up their abode, that they 
might, arms in hand, seek elsewhere for new dwellings. Tlie 
weak alone, who could or would not quit their paternal dwelling, 
remained behind, and became mingled with and lost amidst the 
immediately succeeding race. Besides the Goths, the Vandals 
and Alans were pressed forward by the Hunns, and advanced from 
the east gradually towards the west. In their advance, the Bur- 
gundians, who likewise had quitted their dwelling-place on the 
Vistula and had arrived as far as the Upper Danube, with a portion 
of the Suevi, namely, the Quadi, and other tribes joined them. 
It was probably a swarm of these mixed tribes which, under Ra- 
dagaisus, or Radigast, made the attack upon Italy in the year 405, 
and which by great good fortune was warded off by Stilicho. 
This isolated horde disappears, as well as the name of its leader, 
without leaving a trace in mstory. But in their attacks upon Graul 
and Spain the beforementioned tribes were more fortunate. Stilicho 

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bad opened to them the road thither, by withdrawing the legions from 
the Rhine and fSrom Graul for the defence of Italy. They now 
desolated the country from Strasburg to Amiens. Treves was 
four times plundered, Mentz and Worms destroyed, the inhabitants 
of Strasburg, Spires, Rheims, and other cities driven forth as 
slaves. Aiter these swarms had at last been driven back into the 
south of France by the Romans and the Franks, they, in the 
year 408, were called into Spain by the rebellious Roman governor, 
Gervatius. Hitherto this country had been spared during these 
fearfid times, but its turn came at last. The Vandals, Alani, and 
Suevi, crossed the Pyrenees, and speedily conquered the greatest 
part of the country. A portion of the Alani remained in Gaul, and 
are found later on the side of the Romans, in the great battle with 
Attila; after which they disappear. The Burgundians also remained 
under their king, Gkindikar (GUnther), and first founded their king- 
dom in Alsace, where it speedily extended towards the Rhone 
and Soane into Switzerland, and from thence it spread to Savoy. 
In northern Graul, however, the Franks appear about this time to 
have made themselves masters, so that all that lies towards the 
north, fiom Boulogne on one side, to Cologne on the other, was 
subject to their sway. Before the middle of that century Treves 
also, which they had four times conquered, remained in their ]>ower. 

The Vandals, who with the Alani had taken their seat in the 
south of Spain, passed thence in the year 420, under their king, 
Geiserich or Genserich, upon the invitation of the discontented 
Roman mvemor, Bonifacius, over into Africa, and conquering there 
the whole of the northern coast, founded for a century a flourish- 
ing kingdom, the chief dty of which was Carthage. What a mi- 
gration, from the very shores of the Baltic, where these tribes first 
appear in historv, even to the borders of the African deserts! Gei- 
sench, one of the sreat men of his age, but of a savi^e disposition, 
ruled for 50 years, fiom 428 — 477. After him the kingdom of the 
Vandals fell, in the luxuriant climate of the country, produced by 
internal disturbances, and by the enervation of this otherwise powerful 
tribe- The emperor of Constantinople, Justinian, took advantage of 
their reduced state? and in the year 653 sent his general, Belisarius, 
to AiBrica with an army* who overcame them in eight months. Their 
last king, Gelimer, was led by him in chains on his triumphant entry 
into Constantinople. 

Tbe Suevi remained in Spain, but became, by degrees, more and 
more pressed upon by the Westro-Goths under W aUia and his succes- 
BOTs, being soon limited to the north-western portion of Spain and 
Portugal; and at last, in the year 585, they were entirely united 
with toe Westro-Gothic kingdom. 

In the middle of the fifth century, 449, the Angeli, Saxons and 
Futi, passed over into England, and there founded new dynasties. 
Under the Emperor Honorius, and immediately after him, the Ro- 
mans had entirely quitted Britain. The Britons had, however, be- 

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come 80 enervated under dieir sway, that after the withdiamd of the 
Roman garrisons, thej felt themselves incompetent to protect their 
freedom. Their neighbours in the Scotch Highlands, the warlike 
Picts and Scots, breaking forth irom their momitaina with iindi- 
ininished power, pressed hard upon them; andihej foimd no other 
alternative but to call strangers once more to their defence. Their 
choice fell upon the tribes of Saxon origin who inhabited the coasts 
of the North Sea, and whose valour they had often had occasion to 
know when these fell in with their piratic squadrons on the coasts of 
Britain. Two Saxon brothers, Hengist and Horst, or Hoisa, heroea 
of a noble race, who derived their origin from Wodan, accepted the 
invitation of the British kin^, Vortigem, and with only three ahips, 
which bore 1600 warriors, they landed. Their valour alone snpphed 
the place of numbers; thev beat the Picts near Stamford, and speedilj 
afterwards large troops of their countrymen followed them overfiom 
the continent. The Britons then would willingly have been freed 
of their new guests; they, however, pref^red remaining, subjected 
the whole of England as far as Wales, and founded the weU-koowa 
Anglo-Saxon kin^oms or heptarchy, of which Kmt, established by 
Hengist, formed tne first 

In a large village, seated in a plain between the Danube and the 
Theiss, in Hungary, and surrounded by pallisades, which had origi« 
nated in a camp, there stood, in the midst of a spadoua court, an 
extensive wooden mansion, adorned with many passages and halls, 
and which formed the dwelling of Attila or Etzel, Icing of the Hunns. 
He hadimitedhispeoj^le — ^until then dispersed under many leadenh— 
under his own dominion; and in eflfecting this had not hesitated 
even to slay his own brother, Bleda. All the tribes of tlie Hunna 
and their subjected nations, distributed from the Wolga to Hungaiy, 
reverenced his command. He was brd of the Gepi£, Longobanu, 
Avari, Ostrogoths, and many nations in the south of Germany; they, 
however, retained their Imguages, their customs, and their laws, 
and were ruled by their own j>rinces; so that thev were to be con- 
sidered more as allies than subjects; and besides the language of the 
Hunns, that of the Croths, or German, was spoken at the court of 

He himself was small of stature, had a hum head, deeply-seated 
eyes, which he proudly cast around, a broad diest, much animatioii, 
and a manner and bearing which thoroughly dirolayed the ruler. 
His most &vourite name, indeed, was God^esel, the scourge of 
God, for the punishment of the world. 

But as it may be assumed generally with r^ard to rulers, the 
founders of mighty empires, that tbuey have not alone to thank 
their conquering swords for their acquired power, so also on his part 
King Attila gave undoubted proofs that for governing he possesed 
capacities more mild and intellectual than the mere rude courage 
and skill of a warrior. For if he was terrible towards his enemies, 
and in bis wrath severe and exterminating, still, on. the other haiid| 

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he 'was gentle and kind to thoee he took under his protection. And 
if m war he himself alwa js led on his people to battle, he was never- 
th^eas, in timesof peace, always to be found seated at their head be- 
fiune his palace gates, performing the office of mediator and judge be- 
tween each and all who came to him, without distinction. 

He loYed splendour around him, but he himself lived in a simple 
and plain style, as if his greatness did not require this foil. The trap- 
pings of his horse were unadorned and but litde costly; at his ban- 
qoela, gold and silver vessels were placed before his ^ests, whilst he 
akHie had those of wood; he ate but little meat, despising, according 
to the custom of his nation, even bread. After each dish was served, 
the cup or wassail-bowl was handed round, and his health and pros- 
perity drank ; whilst minstrels sang heroic songs in praise of his valor- 
ous deeds. The court jester then followed with his wit and fun, and 
hilarity and merriment ruled at the board of the royal host; but he 
akme never intermitted his strict seriousness. He remained through- 
out grave and thoughtful; and it was only when his youngest son, 
Imack, entered the hall and approached him, that his features re- 
laxed into a smile, and whom ne greeted vrith affection; for of this 
son it had been prophesied, that he alone would be the means of pre- 
serving the succession of the race of Attila.* 

This powerful ruler, of whom it has been said that, when with 
his mysterious sword-^ which had been found by a shepherd in the 
steppes of Icythia, and was considered to be the sword of the god 
of war — ^he struck the earth, a hundred nations trembled, and even 
Bcme and Constantinople shook to their foundations, arose with his 
anny in the year 451, and turned his course towards the west He 
advanced with 700,000 men, all under him as chief ruler, and every 
tribe under its particular prince; and although the princes them- 
selves trembled before him, his whole army had but one soul, and 
his nod alone directed every movement. His path was called de- 
struction; for what could not fly, or was not destroyed, as he pro- 
gzessed in his road, was forced to follow in his train. 

He advanced through Austria and the Allemannic country, across 
the Rhine, overcame the Burgundian King Gundikar (O'unther), 
even to the destruction of his whole tribe; conquered and plimder^ 
the cities of Strasburg, Spire, Worms, Mentz, Treves, and others, 
and vowed not to stop until he reached the ocean itself The military 
portion of the countries he traversed joined him either spontaneously 
or by foioe, and the gigantic horde increased at ever j step like aa 

But the Romans and several German nations had now armed 
theaaelveB against the great danger which threatened the west; for it 
was now to be decided whether Europe should be German or Mon- 

* ThJi deflcriptum of Attilaaad his court u handed down to lu by an eye-witneMr 
file sophist, Frisnu, who attended in the snite of on emhassy from the Bmperor 
Thcodosina Hat the eoort of AttUatBysant. hist script L Jocdaals idso describes 
▲ttflaesfw BBXVy-^fi^th xelate also aboat the sword of UbiB. 

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Solian, whether Geirnan races were to found new kingdoms npon 
le tottering ruins of the Roman Empire or the great King of the 
Hunns. The Romans had at this time once again a good leader of 
the name of -ZEtius, who had formerly, when banished by Valen- 
tinian, sought refuge at the court of Attila; he collected an army in 
Gaul, and applied for aid to the Westro-Gothic king, Theodoric or 
Dicterich, who dwelt in Toulouse, and whose kingdom also was in 
great danger. To him Dieterich repUed, although, in earlier times, 
JEtius had been his enemy: *' A just war has never appeared to fall 

too heavy upon any king of the Westro-Goths; and never has anj 
such king been known to fear when it depended upon a glorious deea. 
Even thus think the nobles of my kingdom also ; and the entire 
nation of the Westro-Goths will, at the call, cheerfully seize their 
well-tried arms, at all times victorious." The Burgundians had also 
promised assistance, besides Sangipan, the Alanian, who ruled upon 
the Loire; a portion of the Franks also, together with the city of 
Paris itself, and even a branch of the Saxons, which had colonisedy 
it is unknown at what period, at the mouths of the Loire, or perhaps 
had landed there direct from a maritime expedition — all these united 
together for the same purpose. 

In the broad plain of France, through which the Mame flows, 
and which was called by the ancients me Catalaunian Plain, where 
the city of Chalons now lies, there rises near Mury, in the viciniw 
of Troyes, a moderately high hill, which commands the district. It 
was here that the army of the West met the forces of the Hunns, 
and a severe battle was fought. It may be called a battle of the 
nations, for the majority of me European nations stood here opposed 
to each other. The left wing of the Roman army was commanded 
by iBtius, the right by Theodoric; between them they posted 
King Sangipan, who was the least to be trusted. The hordes of the 
Hunns, on the opposite side, appeared innumerable; one wing was 
commanded by Arderic, the King of the Grepidi ; the others by 
Theudimer, Widemir, and Walamir, theprinces of the Ostro-Goths. 
Attila was in the centre of the whole. The multitude of petty kings 
obeyed his least nod, and they fulfilled his commands in silence and 
terror; he alone, the chief of all these kings, thought and acted for 
all. When the battle was about to begin, he summoned his leaders 
before him, and said, *' It does not become me to say conmion-place 
things to you, or for you to listen to such. Be men; attack, break 
through, cast all down; despise the Roman array and their shields. 
Fall upon the Western Goths and Alani, in whom lies the strength 
of the enemy. If you must die, you will die even when you nee. 
Direct your eyes to me, for I shall go first; he who does not follow 
— shall be a corpse 1" 

Both armies strove to obtain the hill; the battle was very furious, 
and there was terrible slaughter. The Hunns soon broke through 
the centre, where the Romans were stationed, and whom they put 
to flight; and soon afterwards the Westro-Goths gave way before the 

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Ostro-Gotlis. Whilst the Westro-Gothic king was addressing his 
people he fell, but gloriously, for his death inflamed his nation to 
revenge it; and his son Thorismund leading them on, put the 
enemy to flight, and thus decided the battle. Upon the approach 
of night, Attila was obliged to retire within his camp of waggons. 
As he did not know but the enemy might pursue him, he caused 
innumerable saddles and wooden shields to be piled up, in case of 
necessity to set fire to them and die in the flames; at the same time, 
to terrify the enemy, he commanded a noise to be made all night 
with arms, drums, trumpets, and songs; but they did not at- 
tack him. Amongst the piled heaps of the slain, they sought the 
body of the Westro-Gothic king, and celebrated his funeral by a 
procession, amidst laments and warlike instruments sounding, taking 
with them the spoils of the Hunns in their verypresence, who how- 
ever did not venture to interrupt the ceremony. Thorismund followed 
the body of his father, and wished to return and renew the attack; 
but he was dissuaded from this by iBtius, who advised him to re- 
turn to his kingdom, that his brother might not take first possession 
of the crown. He was anxious not to destroy the power of the 
Hunns completely, in order, perhaps, to be enabled to use it subse- 
quently against the Goths. 

In tne following year, Attila, who was thus enabled to recroes the 
Rhine unpursued, made a second incursion into Italy, and destroyed 
in a temble manner Aquileja, Milan,* and other cities. Rome 
itself was alone saved frpm a similar &te by the supplications of 
Pope Leo, and the rich ransom he offered to him. Want of sup- 
plies and disease amongst his army, forced him to retreat across the 
Alps; he nevertheless threatened to return a^in, and had al- 
ready prepared another expedition, but amidst nis preparations he 
died, in the year 453. He was mourned over, and buried according 
to the customs of his people. The Hunns slashed their faces with 
wounds, and shaved away their hair, and upon a broad plain, be- 
neath a silken tent, his body lay in state. About it coursed the 
cavafay^ singing his deeds as they galloped around, and vaunting 
the good fortune, that the great Attik, auer immortal victories, in 
the most clorious moment of his nation's history, and without pain, 
had dosed his life, and had transferred himself to the spirits of the 
ancient heroes. In the night he was laid in a golden coffin; this 
was placed in a silver one, which was inclosed in an iron one; the 
caparison of his horses, his arms, and costly ornaments being buried 
with him. Afler the ceremony, the workmen were immediately 
slanghtered on his grave, that none of them might betray where the 
hero of the Hunns reposed.! 

* Soennos rdates that, at this place, Attila met with a picture, in which were re- 
pntented ■ome Scythian men kneeling hefore the Roman emperor; and that there, 
oppotite to it, be had hia own flgore painted, seated upon the imperial throne, and 
tt hif feet the Roman emperors, throwing down hefore him hags of gold. 

t The iHine of AttOa, or Etzel, was sflerwaids mentioned in the German legends; ' 

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As soon as the tenor of his name no lon^ bound die nations 
together, they separated; many refused obedience; and afber bis 
first-born son, EllJak, had fallen in a great battle against Arderic^ 
the king of the Gepidi, the whole power of the Hunns disappeared, 
and they dispersed farther towards the east. The head ot one of 
the sons of^ Attila — such are the changes in human fate — ^was 
shortly afterwards seen held up for display, at one of the race- 
courses in Constantinople I Arderic occupied the country of the 
Lower Danube, and the Ostro-Goths took possession of Hungary, 
towards Vienna. The remaining portion of the German tribes wno 
had been subject to the power of tne Hunns, no doubt Hkewise took 
advantaffe of this moment of renewed independence, to return to 
their old, or to take possession of new dwelling-places. This peiiod 
may therefore be considered as decisiye of the form of the imme- 
diate future, until the entire destruction of the Roman power in 
Italy produced new revolutions for a portion of Europe. 

The Western Roman Empire now consisting of Italy alone, de- 
clined more and more towards its utter extinction, llie wretched 
emperor, Valentanian HI., murdered with his own hand ^tius, 
who had been the suj^rt of the empire, and who had once more 
saved it in the Catalaunian plains, against Attila, because he had 
been made to suspect him. Valentinian himself was slain, at the in- 
stigation of Petronius Maximus, who now became emperor, and 
forced Eudocia, the widow of the murdered monarch, to marry 
him. She however, out of revenge, invited the Vandal king, 
Geiserich, from Africa. He came, conquered in 455 the city of 
Rome, plundered and devastated it in a dreadful manner for the 
space of fourteen days, as if, by him, Fate retaliated upon the 
Romans, for their terrible destruction of Carthage six nundred 
years before. He then embarked again for Africa, with a fleet of 
many ships, loaded with costly booty and prisoners of all clasBes* 
who were sold as slaves. 

After Valentinian, nine sovereims, in the short space of twenty 
years, bore the degraded title of £lmpeior of Rome. At last, in 
the year 476, Odoacer, a prince of Scyiic descent, commander of 
an a&ied horde of Scyri, Herulians, Rugians, and Turcilingi, a man 
equally distinguished for his mental powers imd phyaicaf strength, 
thrust the last of those shadowy emperors, Romulus MomyUus 
ot Augustulus, as yet a boy, from the tluone, and called himadf 
King of Italy. Ine tend^ age of the young emperor when he 
kid aside the purple lobes, the crown and arms, and came and 
deposited them in the cam|>, caused him to be siMuted, and he was 
sent by Odoacer to a castle in Campania. The above-named tribes, 
who doubtlessly belonged to the Gothic confederation, had gra- 
dually advanced from their earlier dwellings on the Baltic tovraids 

hewMthere araoped with Hemuuuurich and the mbieiiiiuit Theodoric (Dietench^of 
Berne). He does not, howevwv aspear them m n eMB^ lo the Q«nn^ 
iB|gb^TaliaBtnikriBlhasist4 ^ 

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lihe soath, until they found a dwelling on the Danube and the 
firaoitieis of Italy, and there served the Komans firequently for pay. 
This small band, therefore, at last extinguished the Roman empirQ, 
ID. the year 476, and in the 123(Hh year since the foundation oi the 

AlxHit this period the following was the manner in which the 
c ^ 'w iairi ftB of the western empire were divided among foreign tribeSf 
tlie lesult of the great migration which had taken place a century 

Italy was under the dominion of Odoacer, and his kingdom ex- 
tended itself towards the north, across the Alps, as iar as the 
Danube. In Hungary the Ostre-Goths were powerfiil, and the 
liongobardi had long before advanced from their seats upon the Elbe, 
and nxed themselves to the north of the Danube, towards the Theiss. 
Ja. Bayaria was formed by degrees, (without history giving a de- 
tailed account of it) from remnants of the Rugi, Heruli, Scyn, Tur- 
cilingi, and certainly from Suevic tribes, particularly theMarcomanni 
—the nation of Bojoarians'under the royal race of the Affilolfi. The 
name more particularly indicates the descent from llie Marcomanni, 
coming firom Bohemia, inasmuch as the more ancient name of this 
eounftry, Boja or Bojos, has been transferred to Bmoheim, Baiheim, 
cff Belieim. The Marcomanni, who had previously wandered back 
to this country, after the Danube districts had become &ee, fixed 
themselves in Fxanconia and Bavaria, and called themselves Bojoari 
or BajovarL 

The AUemanni dwek in the eastern part of Switzerland, in 
Swabia, and down both banks of the Rhine, as &r as the Lahn and 
Colome. On the left bank of the Rhine they were afterwards 
called Alsatians. The name of Suevi also appears about this time 
among them, and has preserved itself to this day in the name of the 
country: Swabia. 

In the centre of Germany, from the present Harz mountains to 
Franconia, the powerful Thuringians held their sway, whose earlier 
history is very obscure. They first appear noticed about the middle 
of the fifth century, without our autnor mentioning their origin or 
earlier state. 

In Lower Saxony and Westphalia the Saxons retained their 
ancient seats and constitution, and close to them on the North Sea 
were the Friesi. 

On the Lower Rhine, on the Maas and the Scheldt, as far as the 
Netherlands, and in the north of France, dwelt the branches of the 
Franks; the most considerable of which were the Salians,' in the 
Netherlands, and the Ripuarians, dwelling along the coasts of the 

Close to them, on the Seine, a Roman governor, of the name of 
Syagrius, maintained his power for ten years longer, until the year 
486, when already there was no longer an emperor in Rome. The 
nortk-westem pomt of France, the present Britany, had already 

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been occupied much earlier by fugitives from Britain, who had fled 
before the Picts, and then formed under the name of Armoricae an 
alliance of free cities. 

South-eastern France, Savoy and western Switzerland belonged 
now to the Burgundians. Their chief cities were Geneva, Be- 
san9on, Lyons, and Vienne. The Burgundians were certainly 
the mildest of the conquering tribes of this period, being early 
attached to Christianity, cultivation, and art; and to them that 
portion of France is mdebtcd for its many remains of ancient 
Roman works of art. In Switzerland the French language still 
marks its ancient boundaries against the AUemanni, for the Bur- 

endians mixed more with the Romans, and adopted much of their 

boutn-westem France, from the Loire and Rhone to the Pyxa- 
nees, as well as a great portion of Spain, was subject to the Western 
Goths, but north-western Spain to uie Suevi. 

The north-western coast of Africa was Vandalian. In Britain the 
Angeli and Saxons by degrees retained their power and augmented 
it more and more. 

The east and north-eastern portion of Germany was lejR; com- 
paratively bare by the advance of the tribes towards the south and 
west, and Slavonic tribes migrated increasingly thither, who had 
been seated on those boundanes from time immemorial, and who 
had also perhaps been partly subject to the Germans. Those foreign 
branches now gained the suj^noritj, and the remains of the Ger- 
mans who would not quit their original dwelling-place, became sub- 
ject to, and were dispersed amongst them. 

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Thb bistorical writers of this period form bat a yery limited claM, and are dTyefj 
qnpqnal estimation. What they relate of the earlier times is mostly founded on tra- 
ditioo, and can scarcely be placed in cMQunction with what has been ftimished by 
the Roman authors; still, in reference to the history of their own period, and those 
immediately preceding, they are neyertheless of high importance: 

1. For the "History of the Franks,'* we may consider as a principal writer, Gre- 
gory, bishop of Tonrs (Gregorins Turonensis), who died in the year 595. He calls 
his book, an ecclesiastical histoiy, but therein he describes generally the acts and pro- 
ceedings of the Franks, in ten books, until the ^ear 591. His language, charac- 
teristic of his time, is undribzed, his description confhsed and interrupted by 
le^eodsoy wonders, going, howeyer, yeiy deeply into the details, and in reference to 
subseqiieDt years, as the record of a contemporary, it is yery exact, and thus renders 
him equally instructiye; he likewise possesses the merit of being honest and a loyer 
of truth. He has been styled the Herodotus of this period. 

Fredegar, about the year 650, made from Gregory s work a short abridgment, in- 
terspersed with fables, (**Historia Francorum Epitomata,") which proceeds as far as 
the year 584, and then continues the history in a ** Chronicum*' until 641. This ** Chro- 
mcum" was again taken up and resumed by three other men, but with certain chasms, 
until 768; yery meagre and without connection, but still important because the 
writers were chiefly witnesses of the eyents described. The ** Gesta regum Fran- 
cormn," are, likewise, in part, extracted from Gregory, whose description they 
continue to the year 720, yery briefly and not without many inaocurades. 

With these and later are, the " Annals," short sketches which were made annually 
in the monasteries, of the most important eyents, and thus, at least, in part originate 
from eye-witnesses. They were afterwards copied and communicated from the one 
monastery to the other, often augmented there, then subsequently yariousportions 
corrected and prepared, and thus they acquired greater extent and yalue. The most 
important are those which bear the simple title ^'Annalis Laurissenses,'* from a 
monastery in the Upper Rhine proyince, which go on from 741 to 788, and wero 
aoontinued by Eginhardt, fh>m 778 to 829. They haye been partially published in 
the older collections, but moro completely giyen in the " Monumenta Germaniie His- 
torica,'* collected by Fertz. 
2. For the ** History of the Goths** aro to be mentioned: 

a. Ounbdbruf, inyested with high ofllces of state, under Odoaoer, Theodoric, and 
their successors, and who died in the year 565, in the oonyent Yiyarosa; he wrote a 
history of the Goths, which, unfortunately, was lost. There haye, howeyer, been 
presenred his " XH Libri Variorum," a yery important work, because it contams 
edicts, instructions, and documents, which were written in the names of the kings; 
ksmed, elegant, but yain and yerbose. 

h The monk Jordanis (thus he is called, and not Jomandes, in the moro ancient 
documents, and by himself likewiseX a Goth, liying about the middle of the sixth 
century, has brought into an abridgment— de rebus Getids — ^the lost history of 
Cassiodorus, but has disfigured it by the interlineation of eyery thing he knew or heard 
of bc^des. Still, idthough without judgment and historical knowledge, his book is of 
the highest yalue, inasmuch as for many eyents that is nearly our only source. It 
extends to the year 540. 

c The parallel of *' Fiocopii Caesarensis Vandalica et Gothica" may in the details 
explain much, because the Greek proceeds upon yezy different yiews to those of the 
voteru writers. 

d. Uidor, Bishop of SeyiUe, (Isidorus Hispalensis), who died fai 636, wrote a short 
hiitofy of the Goths, Yaadal*, and Sueyians, to the year 628, but which again ex- 

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jlainfl nothing aboat the earlier history of these nations, and refers more properly to 
Spain alone. 

3. The chief writer on the history of the Longobardi is Paul Diaamus, the son odt 
Wamefried, one of the first men of his age, liying at the courts of Desiderius andl 
Charlemagne, and who died as a monk on Monnt Cassino in the year 799. In his 
** De Gestis Langobardorom libri vi." he describes the deeds of his nation with a greats 
pieiUlecUon for tradition; the commencement is quite unhistoriosl, but subsequently 
he becomes more careM and exact, and presents ns with detailed information ez^ 
trem^y yaluable. 

4. For German history likewise ave of great importance the Biographies of tho 
Boman Pontiflb, at least from the eighth century, composed by contemporary writers ^ 
they continue to the beginniug of the nsntii century. 

5. Extremely important also are the letters of distinguished men which have been 
handed down to ns flrom that period, especially those of Saint Booifiice, as weU as the 
Uo^nmhies of him and other holy men (Vitae Sanctorum) which often present the 
most nilMil picttire of Iftieir times, and bare preserred for ne the most Taluabie 

6. and lastly; for onr reeeaidi into the relations dT life, llie manners, costoma, and 
institntions, are very important, the ** Laws of the German nations or tribes,** who 
bdonged to the Franoonian empire: the Salians, Ripoarians, Allemannians, Bor* 
gund&ins, and BaTarians, and later, the Saxons and Thoringians. But there remaiHA 
much therein which is very obscure, inasmudi as they oontain prindpally only the 
penal law of these people, and cannot therefore yield us the desired information re* 
specting the other rebiions, are not regolated according to general principles, contain 
nothing of the oonstitntion of the empbe beyond what refers to the administratioQ q£ 
tiie law, and present efen in that portion what to our eye appears Yvy fragmentaxy. 




Cknris, Kfaigof the Franks, 482-511— Theodoric, somamedBieterich of Berue, 488- 
526 — The Longobardi in Italy, 568 — Changes in the Customs and Institutions of 
the Germans — ^Tbe langnage— Constitution— Feudal System — ^Laws — ^Pastimes — 

Christianity in Germany—The Grand Chamberlains — Chaiies Martel against the 
Arabs, 732— Pepin the litae— The Carlovingiana. 

During the ^reat movements of the tribes, wUch we have just 
related, the Fxaus had not, like the Goths, Bargmidions, and other 
nations, migrated from their dwellings to settle themselves elsewhere, 
but thej remained in their own seat, and from thence conquered only 
that portion of Gaul which lies to the north of the Forest of Ar- 
dennes. And this forest also sheltered them from being drawn into the 
great stream of migration. Hieir division also into several branches, 
each of which had its own king or prince, prevented them from 
making extensive and general expeditions. 

But their time came. About tne year 482, Clovis, or as we should 
say Lewis, the son of Gilderich, became Prince of the Salian Franks ; 
and he soon prepared himself to execute the plans of his bold and 
comprehendve mind, for the bent of his ardent spirit was to make 
war and conquest. Clovis belongs to that class of rulers in the his- 
tory of the world, who think all ways good that lead to dominion. 

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Be has sullied the cdebritf of his miliiaiy fame by the most des- 
picable want of £uth to his leUtayes and aUies. He at fiist condaded 
with the princes of the Franks, who were his equals, and for the 
majoritj His lektires, alliances of war against other tribes, and after 
be bad conquered them by their assistance and had become powerful, 
be then also despatched tnose very friends oat of his waj by poison, 
tbe dagger, and treachery. By this means he became eventually 
King ca all the Franks. 

Qt his f<Mreign enemies, he first attacked, when only twenty, the 
Roman governor Syagrius, whom we mentioned above, effectually 
beat him at Soissons (Suessiones), and occupied the country as far 
is the Loire. Syagrius, who fled to the Western Goths, was obliged 
to be delivered up to Clovis and was executed. This commencement 
of the oonqnests c^ Clovis took place in the year 486, ten years after 
Bomxdua Augustuhis was deposed. 

He then advanced with ms army against the Allemanni, who in 

tbe meantime had fallen upon the country of the Bipuarian Franks, 

for both nations having their boundaries up<»i the river Lahn, had 

been enemies for years. They met in the year 496, near Zulpich, 

in the district of Juliers, and fought bitteriy against each other, and 

tbe victory already inclined to the side of the Allemanni, when in the 

beat of tlie battle, his soul excited by anxiety, Clovis fell upon his 

bnees and vowed to become a Christian; andas victory now absolutely 

tamed on his aide, he caused himself and three thousand of his Franl» 

to be baptized in Rheims, at the subsequent Easter festival, by the 

Bishm Kemigius. This was the commencement of the introduction of 

the CnrisUan fidth amonff the Franks, and Clovis was hencdGsrward 

called the eldest son of the church and the most Christian king. His 

consort Clotilda, the daughter of a Burmmdian prince, had long 

inshed to convert him to the better faith by the force of gentle per- 

suasicm; he, however, had always despised it until the necessity of the 

battle overpowered him, and it was indeed very evident both in him 

and in the Franks in general, that their conversion was a work of 

mere compulsion. For Clovis murdered his relatives afier as well 

as hefort^ and subdued one Christian nation after the other, whilst the 

Franks for several centuries bore the character of being the most 

treacherous of all the German nations. 

After the Allemanni were reduced and the kingdom of the Franks 
bad spread itself along the Rhine to Switzerland, and after the Bur- 
gundians were obliged to.nromise tribute, Clovis bent his eyes to* 
^fards the kingdom of the W est Groths^ who possessed the most beau* 
tiful portion of France in the south. Thus although he had only 
^bortl^ before had a conference with their king, Alaric, and had sworn 
frien<tehip to him, he yet determined to attack him as an enemy. 

Tbe wise Ostro-Gothic king, Theodoric, who previously to this had 
founded his dominion in Italy, counselled the unruly Olovis, whose 
^fter, Andofleda, was his consort, in the most urgent manner from 
^ vnjust expedition against Alaric, and reminded him that peace 

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and union became Christian nations. But Clovis, who knew only 
the language of the sword and of rude force, gave no ear to him; he 
attacked the Westro-Gothic kingdom; and, in the year 507, in a 
plain of the river Yienne, near Vougle or Vironne, fought and won 
a great battle in which Alaric himself fell, transpierced by the spear 
of Clovis, who took possession of the chief cities of his country, and 
would, no doubt, have destroyed the whole kingdom, had not the 
great Theodoric stepped between and driven him back with a strong 
hand. He was, therefore, obliged to content himself with the coun- 
try between the Loire and the Garonne. 

Clovis did not live long after this, but died at Paris, in the year 
511, in the forty-third year of his age, and his empire was divided 
between his four sons. 

His successors to the throne of the Franks, who are called the 
Merovingians, were in general worthy of their founder. It appeared 
as if vice and tyranny, unheard of cruelty, and savage revenge were 
hereditary in this family, and as if a curse had from the beginning 
been poured over them. In the space of forty years six Merovingian 
kings were destroyed by poison or the sword; and the intrigues and 
revengeful passions of malicious women form an important feature 
in these horrid scenes. It cannot, therefore, suit the purport of this 
history to penetrate further into the details of these events, which 
are equally as unnourishing to the mind, as the^r are unfruitful in re- 
gard to the knowledge it is so desirable to obtain from the great en- 
tirety of our history. The nation of the Franks, under such princes, 
could not possibly be raised from its state of moral rudeness and 
degradation, but necessarily became plunged more deeply in vice. 
Tlieir power, however, continued to extend itself more and more. 
They by degrees subjected the Burgundians, and in Germany the 
powerful nation of the Thuringians, and the dukes of Bavaria sought 
their protection. About the middle of the sixth century all the 
German nations from the frontiers of the Saxons to the Alps allied 
themselves with the kingdom of the Franks; Franks, Thunngians, 
AUemans or Swabians, and Bavarians. The Saxons alone and the 
Friesi still remained independent in their north-western dwellings. 

When, after king Attik's death, the kingdom of the Hunns fell 
asunder, the Ostro-Goths, as has been already mentioned, became 

r'n free, and dwelt in Hungary and the neighbouring countries of 
Danube. They had frequent disputes with the emperor, in Con- 
stantinople, and upon one of these occasions Theodoric or Dieterich, 
a son of one of their princes, was sent as hostage to that city, and 
there he saw, as had Marbodius and Arminius formerly, in Kome, 
the institutions of a great empire. He remained there ten years, 
and was instructed in the Grecian arts and sciences, so that no Ger- 
man prince of his time equalled him in accomplishments. After the 
death of his father, Theodemir, and. of his uncles, he became sole 
kinff of the Ostro-Goths, and now resolved, like other rulers, to found 
for his people a large and beautiful kingdom, for they longed to be 

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led to more denrable lands than the wastes near the Saa and the 
Danube. The Emperor of Constantinople, Zeno, who considered 
himself now as the sole inheritor of the entire ancient empire of 
the Romans, upon this presented him with the land of Italy as the 
leward for services rendered, and instead of his promised subsidies 
in money. Italy was still imder the rule of Odoacer, but his king- 
dom was not properly to be conadered German, because the Heru- 
fians and Rugians formed but a small portion of his people. 

Tkeodoric broke up with his nation in the year 488, pressed 
throii^li the passes of Italy and encountered Odoacer near Aquileja 
and Verona. But the Italians fought with little zeal for their king, 
and he was both times obliged to fly. King Theodoric, from this 
last battle, was styled in legendary songs andbaUads, in a multitude 
of wUch his fame was recorded, the great heio^ jDzeterich of Berne 
(which signifies Verona). Immediately after this, Odoacer was a 
^rd time defeated near the Adda, after his own city, Rome, had 
abut its gates against him, and for three years he was besieged in 
Ravenna until, m the year 493, he was at last forced to yield, and 
his lands fell into the hands of Theodoric, by whom he was killed. 
His kingdom had lasted seventeen years. Theodoric became lord of 
Italy, and ruler over the countries beyond the Alps to the Danube, 
and in th^ wars of the Franks and Westro-Goths he made himself 
master of the provinces as far as the Rh6ne, an extensive and beaur 
tifiil kingdom, which might have existed to the present day if his 
successors had equalled him in wisdom and virtue. His chief cities 
were Ravenna and Verona. 

He himself reigned more than thirty years, and was not only a 
kind and mild master to his Goths, but dso a gentle ruler over his 
Roman subjects and all who dwelt in Italy; so much so, that this 
country had not enjoyed so happy a time for many centuries as under 
him, tne foreign prince. Agriculture and trade again flourished. 
Art and science found in him a protector, and ancient cities, lying 
in ruins, were rebuilt. Italy enjoyed under, and subsequent to his 
reign, for a period of forty years, continued peace, and was so dili- 
gently cultivated, that it not only grew sufficient grain for its own 
consumption, but could even export it to Graul, whilst formerly, 
under the Roman emperors, it was always necessary to procure a 
sujj^ly from Sicily and A&ica. 

Jdis wisdom and justice raised him above all the kin^ of his time. 
He stepped among them like the father of a larse family and an in- 
stitutor of peace; and the most distant tribes had recourse to his 
counsel, and honoured him with presents. To the other kin^s of 
German origin, with almost all of whom he had allied himself by 
marriage, he' wrote as a father thus: '* You all possess proofs of my 
good-will. You are young heroes, and it is my duty to counsel you. 
Your disorder and irregularities grieve me; it is not a matter of in- 
difierence to me to behold how you allow yourselves to be go- 
verned by your passions, for the passions of kings are the ruin of 

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naticma; whilst, on tbe contEaiy, your friendship and unity together 
aie, as it were, the veins through which the wishes of nations flow 
into each other." 

He placed such principles before their eyes, and showed thereby 
that his mind had formed the conception of a great alliance, founded 
iipon justice and wisdom, between all the Christian nations of 
German origin, who had fixed their seat in Europe. An alliance, 
such as reason has depicted before the eyes of all ages as a sublime 
picture; and as it has displayed itself, from time to time, by the 
mouths of enlightened men, so that justice and order, and especially 
the spirit of (Smstian unity, should i>redominate, and hatred and 
thirst after prey be reined in— evils wnich, alas I through the want 
of such an alliance, have ravaged Europe &om one end to the other* 
Had Theodoric heen enabled to form such a noble union, he would 
have founded more of that which is truly grand than the ancient 
Romans, over whose possessions he had now become ruler, and whose 
empire he was anxidus to restore, not hj the rude force of arms, but 
in the form of a peaceful alliance of nations. But as the mild force 
of truth and justice always finds its enemv in the selfishness of those 
who only seek their own advantage and the indulgence of their pas- 
sions, llieodoric, consequently, experienced that the world was not 
then yet rife enough for the fruction of his great ideas; for whilst he 
preached peace wiw earnestness and love, Clovis, the Frank, ra^ed 
war with his sword, despiainff his doctrine, and seeking only to brmg 
a multitude of tribes under his dominion. 

The great Theodoric died in the year 526. His monarchy had 
now no duration; for his son, Athalaric, was but just ten years old, 
and died shortly after his father. The nobles of his kingdom were 
no longer imanimous, but devated and deposed several kings 
after eadi other. The Roman subjects, also, could not forget that 
their rulers were Goths, and attached to ihe Arian faith. They * 
wished themselves again under the Grreek emperors, who dwelt in 
Constantinople, and were members of the orthodox church, al- 
though the dominion of these emperors had become lamentably bad, 
and was in a ruinous state. It was then that the Emperor Justmian, 
who was one of the best of the series, took advantage of this dis- 
content, and sent his general, Beli^arius, and after him Narses, into 
Italy, to subject this country again to. his rule. A long and severe 
war arose, conducted by the Goths with their usual valour, but with- 
out success, and which destroyed the country, and almost depopu- 
lated Rome by several sieges, so that no trace was left of its ancient 

The Groths raised themselves once more, after four of their sove- 
reigns had been destroyed, under their king, Totilas, who was worthy 
of rulingthedominions of Theodoric; but as ne also,after he had fought 
with &me for eleven years, was killed in the year 552, in a battle 
against Narses. and ten months afterwards, his successor, Tejas, fell like- 
wise in the three days' desperate battle near Cuma, the Gotmc kingdom 

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sunk into sook a nunous state that twenty-aevenyean after the death 
ci Ilieodoiic, and in the year 563, tlie Ostro-Gotha were not only 
Tuqiuflbedt but also almoit entirely annihilated. A few only escaped 
over the Alpa to seek an asylum among other German nations. 

Fifteen jreatB tStex the fall of the Ostro-Goths, another yaliant 
German nation, the Lonffobardi, who had taken possession of the earlier 
dwdling-places of the former on the Danube, executed an act of re* 
taliation, justly timed for them, on the Greeks. The Greek g^eral, 
Naraes, upon mllinff under the displeasure of the Emperor Justinian, 
bd hiinaelf caUed forward their king, Alboni or Albwin, who 
bad already OTercome the Gepidi, and now ruled in Hungary, Au8-> 
tm, GaiTuthia, and eyen in a portion of Bayaria. This Idnff pos- 
Ksed that keroio courage whicm ^ves itself deeply in the hearts 
of nations. Not only hi? own nation, but those of the Saxons and 
Bavarianfl aang his praise for centuries after his death. 

On the second day of April, in the year 568, the King Alboni 
broke up firom Hungary with all his Longobardian men, their 
^omen and children, accompanied by 20,000 Saxons, The country 
tbey hitherto possessed was left by them to their allies, the Ayan^ 
vl^ were found still there by Charlemagne subsequently. It was a 
moming fuU of qdendour wnen, from the heights of one of thead* 
^oed mountains of the Alps, which was afterwards called the 
King's Mountain, the astonished strangers cast their eyes down upon 
^eir new and beautiful country. Whereyer Alboni passed he 
ahowed his veneration for the church, and sought, on every ooca- 
Bicn, the affection of the people. By the conquest of Pavia, at the 
confluence of the Ticino and the Po, he founded his dominion in 
Upper Italy, which, to the present day, has been called Lombardy, 
from the Lionffobardi, and he made it the chief city of those districts. 
In Lower Italy, also, this nation conquered beauUful tracts of land, 
' »nd founded the prinoipaUty Benevento, which comprises the greatest 
portion of the present tcingdom of Naples. But Rome and Ravenna 
i^^Qiained in we hands of the Greets, who gained the Franks to 
tlieir side by- presents, in order that they might, by their means, pre- 
vent the Longobardi from taking possession of the whole of Italy, 
and consolidate it into one powerful and strong kingdom. And, un- 
fortunately for the country, in this object wey succeeded. From 
^t period to this day, Italy has remained disunited, and has endured 
^« aeyere fate of a mvided country, internally rent. Strangers have, 
irom time immemorial, contested for its possession, and its ground 
Aas been debited with streams of native and foreign blood. 
U.l^ Longobardi cultivated their newly-acquired country so ad- 
iniiably, that the melanchol}^ traces of former devastation became 
^ly IssB discernible. The king also procured his supplies from the 
• pnxluoe of his possessions; and from one farm to another he was re- 
gular in his visits of inspection; hying, in fact, with all the flimpUcity 
^ft palziarch, combined with the dignity of a great military leader, 
^dr free-men, as among the ancient Romans, kboured of their 

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own accord to turn the desert and waste tracts into arable land, thua 
distinguishing themselves from other German nations. Agriculture 
flouriSied particularly around monasteries, whose chronicles, says a 
great German writer, contain the less dazzling but more satisfactory 
history, of the way in which they almost overcame, or, at least, 
assisted Nature, and how cheerful gardens and smiling fields covered 
the ruins of ancient Italy. 

The majority of Grerman nations, at the time of the great migra- 
tion, had come into new countries wholly different from their for- 
mer settlements, and there found inhabitants of a different race, with 
other languages, manners, and laws. They, consequently, could not 
themselves continue to exist stationary in their new country upon the 
same footing that they had been used to in their former homes ; and it 
is important that we should place before our view, in its broad outline, 
the great difference presented between the tribes which had wandered 
forth as conquerors, and those which had remained behind adhering 
to their ancient simple customs. 

The German conquerors found in Gaul, Spain, Italy, and Eng- 
land, inhabitants consisting of Romans and natives mixed. They 
left them, it is true, after they had appropriated to themselves a por- 
tion of their possessions, in their dwelling-places, but generally as an 
ignoble and degenerate race. By the laws of the Franks, the fine 
for killing a Roman or a Gaul was only the half, and in some cases 
but one fourth, of what it was for a free Frank. Afterwards, not- 
withstanding their original separation and distinctive character, it 
could not well be otherwise but that the Germans by degrees became 
mixed with the natives, and that many of the latter, who were su- 
perior to the Germans in knowledge, as well as in cunning and re- 
finement, speedily obtained, under weak kings, distinguished offices, 
and now ruled their former lords. They even obtained, as services 
were paid only with land, grants of possession as feudal tenures, and 
became thereby partakers m the feudal rights. Romans and Gauls 
were seen to rank among the counts, dukes, and grand stewards, and 
thence arose, although perhaps but slowly, a mixture of nations, and 
accordingly of manners, languages, and forms of ideas. 

The ancient vigorous nature of those Germans who came into 
warm and luxurious countries, became enervated by effeminacy and 
sensuality. Thus the Vandals in Africa, and the Ostro-Goths in 
Italy, in the course of twenty years after their arrival, had become so 
much transformed and degenerated, that they submitted to enemies 
who previously could scarcely bear their powerful glance. The 
tribes, however, which remained in Germany, continued as firm and 
vigorous as ever; and if afterwards, they became by degrees, more 
mud, like their climate, their forests were nevertheless cleared so 
gradually, that the change in the people took place without too 
rapid, and thereby injurious a transition. 

But the greatest change that happened to the migrated German 
branches, was in reference to their language. For, as in the con- 
quered countries, the Roman or Latin language was chiefly spoken. 


and aa this yrss at that time much more culliyBted than the Gennan, 
it oould not he supplanted hj the latter; but there arose a mixture 
of both^ whereby they became changed, and the indigenous Ian* 
gnage of the country before the Roman period, often formed a third 
component of this medley. Consequently in France, Spain, For- 
tujgad, Italy, and England, a language is spoken formed by a mixture 
with the Koman, which may perhaps fall more gently upon the ear 
than the German, which yet retains much of its former roughness 
£rozn the ancient forests ; whilst, however, the former tongue is neither 
80 energetic, so hearty, and honest, nor so rich in peculiar words. The 
German language remains ever fresh and florid, and is open to con- 
tannal improvement in beauty and richness. It is a language en- 
tirely original, the roots of which ramify into the aboriginal founda^ 
tions of German national idiosyncrasy, and draws its nourishment 
bom. the rich fountain of life with which nature has endowed the 
nation; it may be compared to the living plant in a fruitful soil, and 
the labour bestowed upon it, is as that of the gardener who watches 
and carefully attends to the development of the favourite tree. But 
the language formed by a composition of many others, is but the 
wotIl of man, like the artificial web which the hand of man pre- 
pares firom the plants of the field. It is true this may be beautifully 
and richly worked ; but it is then and for all times finished, and 
possesses no further internal power of life and growth. 

The constitution of the conquering German nations necessarily 
became also essentially changed. At home, in their original cx>ndi- 
tion, the power of royalty in peace was but insignificant. The 
dders or counts, as the appointed judges in every ^u or district, 
regulated the usual affairs, adjudged disputes according to custom, 
and upon more important and general affairs the national assembly 
was convened. But in war the power of the leader surpassed every 
thing else, and justly so, as it then depended upon prompt decisions. 
The king or prince was the unlimited lord, and the most faithful 
of his suite or Gefolge ranked next to him. When such a war had 
speedily passed away, the prince again retired into the insignificance 
of a state of peace; but in the many years of the incursions, amidst 
constant warmre, his power became nnnly established. The whole 
nation became an army, and it accustomed itself to the obedience ne- 
cessary in war. The institutions of peace lost much of their force, and 
as in their incursive movements they had no country they could call 
their own, their whole confidence and attachment were necessarily 
concentrated in their leader, who led them to victory and jpillage, 
and the forcible possession of a new country. He was the safeguard 
and hope of the nation ; he stood to them in lieu of home and father- 
land, and those who stood next to him, as his suite, were the most 

To these latter, when conquest was completed, he apportioned 
first their share of booty and of land, as in ancient times he had 
given them only their horse, arms, and entertainment. But without 

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102. -, . *:.•:.'-:: Jthe -constitution. 

.'•'. * '-* t .•'' '• - *• : , - '•'• . .' 
doiibt he took to lumself t]ie most desirable and connderaUe share^ 
and particularly the lands of the conquered or slain pxinces; his 
power being thus founds by his possessions and stionff adher»its. 
The Qoths, the Bur^ndians, and the Lon^bardi, who came sis 
migrating nations, with their wives and children, must certainly 
have exacted from the conquered a consideiable portion of theb poe^ 
sessions. The Ostro-Godis in Italy demanded one-third of the land^ 
whilst the Westro-Goths and Burgundians required from the Gauls bb 
much as two-thirds. The Franks, on the contrary, made their con* 
quests in excursions from home, not only as a nation, but as the 
suite of their prince. Their numbers were not great, thence they 
did not require to take from the Gktuls and Romans any portion o£ 
thdr land, although, aocording to their ideas of the ri^ts of con- 
querors, they considered the whole as their property; and in many 
cases, no doubt, they seized much of private property, so that the 
chance of the Gauls became often much more ^tal, inasmuch as they 
were more immediately exposed to the wild and arbitrary demand^ 
made.* But altogether, they still found in what the Romans had 
jireviously possessed as natumid property^ a sufficiency of land; be- 
sides, in those portions of Graul which they took from the Westro- 
Goths, the majority of those land possessions fell to them which 
the latter, upon the conquest j had appropriated to themselves; for 
many of them were killed in the war, and many likewise quitted 
the country and advanced into Spain, that they might not become 
slaves to die Franks. The whole mass of the conquered state- 
lands above mentioned (aocording to the Roman expression Jiscus\ 
formed now, after the king had received his chief portion, the 
common property of the conquerors. It was thence, so long as they 
held together as an army, that their support was furnished ; af- 
terwards, when they began to domicile themselves among their 
new subjects, and, accordmg to the original disposition of German 
nations, desired to obtain ^itire possession, they received this 
£rom the mass of fiscal lands, as a reward (benefieium) for the mili* 
tary services rendered; and for which they remained obUgated to 
affiard further military duty at the command of the king, holding, 
however, possession of the land merely as a fief, or loan (Jehen), 
during their lives. 

From this commencement was developed the entire ctmsdtutiony 
af^rwards so important and influential, and which was called the 
feudal state. In the following centuries it obtained, by degrees, its 
full perfection, particularly -v^en it extended itself backwards to 
the ancient seats of the Franks, and the other German nations sub* 
jected to them. The exertions to obtain fiefs, and procure appoint- 
ment for the services connected therewith under the sovereign, be- 
came increasingly predominant, for thereby was attained influence 
and power; and to gain this many gave up their freedom. The 

* ''Kec olhismTittixe oaram lis andebtt,** says Giegozyof Tdun. 

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iendatorieB took the name of li^ sabjects {Jtddts)y and people 
(Imdeg) of the piince, or vaflsab Jvam)y idience teu»]£ is derivecL 
Tbe fendal lord was called senior (whence seigneurs), or dominus. 
The name antnutb (confidential) signified the^ liesfe subject, 
kader of a troop, or arimanie of the escort or train, in which quality 
be had to talce a particular oath of fidelity, and then stood trusie 
immdca. Those nege subjects who stood in dose service to the 
prinoe T^ere called administrators. 

The great -vassals oould distribute from their own land fiefs to 
other poorer individuals, who engaged in their service, and thus 
became after, or ani^re vassals. Iney were obliged, with these their 
fiddes to follow the keerbann of the prince, whilst the common fi^ee- 
man, ivho had only an alodial or free inheritance (in contradistinc* 
tion to /eudum*\ was only obliged to attend in great national wars, 
and £or -whicb the heerbann, in the ancient German sense, was pro- 
dumed. Nothwithstanding which, the feudatories soon began to 
look down upon the freeman as upon one much their inferior, and to 
ocmnder themselves on the other hand, as the nobility of the nation 
— even when they were not descended from the original nobility of the 
nation, for Crauls were likewise enabled to receive fiefe ; nay, abready, 
vnder Clovis, these were elevated beyond the Franks in honours, 
&r they more easily yielded obedience than the latter, and were 
thus more agreeable to the king. The law also made a distinction 
prejudicial to the free possessor. The liege subjects {in truste donti" 
Med) had a higher amount of fine-money allowea them; it amounted 
to three-fourths of that of the common fi^eeman; and even when the 
liege Buhject was merely of Roman descent,the sum was higher than that 
of the free Frank, it being 300 solidis, whilst that of the latter was 200. 
The feods originally were not hereditary; the lord could with- 
draw, and invest others with them; but in the course of time, and 
particularly under weak governments, the vassals found means, in 
one way or the other, to obtain hereditary possession, and make it 
nearly independent; the royal power being thus again restricted, 
by those whom it had previously elevated for its support. The ma- 
jority of vassals were also powerful by their inherited property; 
«nd who would deprive the powerful man or his son of his feod? 
Property and feoos became mixed, because he who inherited the 
ptoperty inherited also the feod. 

The power of the kings was, therefore, not unlimited, and the 
i^p^ent freedom not annihilated, inasmuch as the nation still parti- 
cipated in the decision of important national affidrs. Regular assem- 
bues were still held, and by the Franks at first, in March, afterwards 
iHMier Pepin the Little, in May, whence the names of March and May 
Vlttas. But ihe greatest diflference from ancient times was that these 
Mjemblies consisted no longer of the majority of all the freemen, but 
^Iricfly of feudatories, so that the nobility gave the decision. 

* 0!bew«d/€wiM, however, does wyt preKnt itfdf before the second caottniy. 

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The laws of the Gennan nations of this age show that their state 
was still very rude. The punishment of death was scarcely awarded, 
to any crime except treason and infidelity. The Gennan regarded. 
personal liberty so highly, that he would not yield to any other 
the right to his life. Murder might be compounded for with money 
or goods, and the compensation obtained by relatives, who, ac- 
cording to the ancient right of the retribution of blood, could 
have demanded the blood of the offender. Accordingly, the in- 
jured family possessed the right of feud or hostility against the 
other, until satisfaction was given. Expiation for the non-exercised 
family revenge was, therefore, the original signification of the retri- 
bution or fine-money. The punishment of death, however, would 
not have withheld these passionate nations, who instantly grasped 
the sword, and had but little fear of death, from the momentary sa« 
tisfaction of revenge; the pecuniary penalty was, on the contrary, 
very high for that period, and therefore more felt, and he who could 
not pay it lost his freedom, and became the slave of the offended 
party. Many poor freemen thus lost their liberty because their 
possessions were esteemed of but little value, as for instance, an ox 
by the Salic laws was worth two gold shillings, a cow but one, a stal- 
lion six, and a mare three ; therefore, an opprobrious word cost a con- 
siderable sum, for he who called another a liar was obliged to give 
him six shillings or two oxen; he who called him knave or scoun- 
drel as much as fifteen shillings. The extent of the punishment 
certainly conduced to their frequentljr making arrangements, in order 
that they might not, through the excitement of a passionate moment, 
involve each other in deep misfortune. As each went armed and could 
always defend himself, the murder of a man, according to the Alle- 
mannic law, was only half as heavily punished as that of a woman, 
who was defenceless. But theft was more abhorred than murder, 
because a coward may also attack defenceless objects. According to 
the Saxon law, he who had stolen a horse was punished with death» 
but every murder, even that of a noble, money could buy off. The 
highest fines Inflicted were, first, that of a Bavarian duke, of 960 
shillings, and secondly, that of a bishop of 900 shillings. There 
was no fine fixed for a king, for his person was considered sacred and 
unassailable. With the Franks the nne-money of the royal AntrusHo^ 
if he was a Frank, was equal to that of a count, 600 shillings ; of the 
freeman 200, and the Litus 100. For the Romans it was fixed at 
half these amounts, in the same proportion: so that the Bamanus 
conviva regis paid 300 shillings, the Romanus possessor 100, but the 
Romanus tributarms instead of 50 paid only 45. Among ihe other 
nations, according to their laws, there were many variations. Every 
corporeal wound was very precisely fixed by a money rate; the mu- 
tilation of the hand for instance cost 100 shillings, of a thumb 45; the 
nose the same, the fore finger 35, and any of t£e others 15 shillings. 
Judgment was held under the open firmament, in an enclosed 
place, called Mallum (Malstatte, or Malberg), and before an elevated 

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shield. The judges chosen under the presidency of the count 
were, in all cases, for freemen also freemen themselves, and called 
in judicial language Ractdmburgiy or boni homines. These were 
nominated \>j coimts, usually to the number of seven. In cases 
where the Kachimburgi could not find judgment, the so-called 
Ssgibarones who were appointed as especial coimcillors or magis- 
trates, stepped in to dedae. The regular tribimal which met at cer- 
tain fixed periods, was called roallum legitimum. It was attended 
hj the entire population, and the whole community gave its de- 
cision and not tlie judges (Rachimburgi), who merely found the 
judpnent. In the especial or summoned tribunals, however, at 
which only few assisted besides the counts and judges, the latter 
decided at once; the others present did not act as a community, but 
only attended as audience, and as such had nothing to say. 

To arrive at the guilt or innocence of an accused person appeared 
to the Grermans, with their acute feeling for the sacredness of justice, 
to be one of the most indispensable duties. When, therefore, the 
truth was not to be obtained by means of witnesses, they sought 
higher aid, by having recourse to the so-called judgments of God. 
The innocence of the accused party seemed confirmed if they re- 
mained unharmed, upon being exposed to the dangers which, in the 
ordinary course of things, are injurious; if, for instance, upon eroos- 
iog the hand or foot to boiling water or a glowing iron, it remained 
unmarked, or if in sii^le combat he conquered his opponent. They 
had confidence that God would not allow innocence to fall, and no 
doubt in the single combat, at least, the consciousness of innocence 
would frequently give the victory. 

Their chief pleasures were still the chace and war. The former 
^y loved so much, and so highly prized all that pertained to it, 
that the Alemanni estimated a stolen lime hound at twelve shillings, 
while a horse could be compensated at six, and a cow only at one 
shilling. A common trained hawk was valued at three, and one 
that had taken a stork at six shillings. 

The whole moral and civil condition of the German tribes, in the 
centuries immediately^ after the great migration, was in certain re- 
fpects worse than their ancient simple state, when they followed the 
uumediate impulses of their nature. They were now on the transit from 
the unconscious life of nature to a consequent progress in civilization, 
ftnd this period of a nation is the worst, because the consciousness of 
paoral dignity b^ns to awaken before the power of self-government 
^ present to subdue the active impulses of passion. 

The Goths, Burgundians, Longobardians, and Franks, had, as 
Imw been related, much earlier adopted Christianity; in Grermany 
proper it made its appearance a couple of centuries later. For al- 
though the Allemanm, lliuringians, and Bavarians, were subject to 
the Franks, the latter did not give themselves much trouble to dis- 
"^ixunate the holy doctrines amongst them ; although, by such a boon, 
they might have given them a compensation for the loss of liberty. 
It appeared indeed as if they, who nad adopted Christianity in need 


and in ibe tumult of iMttie, son^t and dedxed only to promulgate it 
mththeswoid. OntheotherhandytkeapostleBwhoplantedihesemilcl 
doctnnes among the Grennan fexests, came fitnn distant countries — 
from England, ocotland^ and Ireland. The Angli and Saxons, who 
bad landed there as headiens, were dowlj oonTCNrted to CSiristianity*, 
not by force, but by instruction and oonTiction. And it, therefore, 
strcick 80 deep a root in their minds, that speedily a multitude o£ 
inured and Christian men travelled from those coimtries as teachers 
of the heathens. They bad not to expect either rich abbe^ or much 
honour and reward among them, but, on the contraiy, ridicule, con- 
tempt, want, and the most extreme danger. 

ouch men were the holy Columban and Gallus, in the sixth oen- 
tuiy; Eilian, Ebnmeran, Kupertus, and Willibrod, in the seventh 
and eighth centuries; and, at last, the Englishman Winefred, who 
afterwards received the honourable name of Boni&cius (the Benefi- 
cent). He laboured from the year 716 to 755 with inexhaustible 
courage for Christianity. In Franoonia, Thuringia, on the Rhine, and 
among the Saxons and Friesi, his zeal planted the divine doctrines; 
and whilst he introduced and established the Christian worship, so 
humanizing to the manners, he collected the communities into villages, 
and this laid a foundation for towns. For the strengthening of the 
new &ith, he fixed bishoprics here and there, or regulated those al- 
ready ex]sting,as in Salzburg, Passau, Frdsingen, Ratisbonne, Wurtz- 
buig, Eichstadt, and Erfiirt; the celebrated abbey Fulda was founded 
by ms follower Sturm, and at Ohrdruf he planted a school for fu- 
ture teachers, who, according to the rule of their institution, not 
only zealously propagated Christianity, but also the arts of agricul- 
ture and horticulture. 

In addition to all this, he did not hesitate, aldiou^h at great per^ 
sonal danger, to contend against the rude disposition of the people with 
the force of his fidth. He overturned their altars, and cut down dieir 
sacied trees, beneath which they sacrificed to their gods. One amon^ 
these, at Geissmar in Hessia, was particularly celebrated; but Boni« 
£skce himself seized the axe and helped to hew it down. The sur- 
rounding heathens firmly believed tnat the god who dwelt in the 
tree would speedily come forth with fire, and consume the culprit 
and all his companions. But the tree fell without the fire coming, 
and with it droj^ed their former confidence in their sod. 

But Bonifiu^e oom^ained even more of the bad Christian priests 
ihemsdves, whom he found among the Franks, than of the savage* 
ness of the heathens. They lived in all kinds of vice, and made no 
conscience of sacrificing to the £dae gods, as well as to baptise howso- 
ever was required fix>m them for the money ofiered for so doing. And 
even the best among them took as much deHght in arms and the chace 
as in &e duties of their spiritual office: '^ Religion has now been 
TOOstrated fiill sixtv or seventv years," says he in an epistle to Pope 
Zadiarias; '' and ihe Franks for more than eighty yeara have had 
neitlier an assembly in council of thechurdi nor an archbiahop. The 

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Indiopiics axe in the hands chiefly of greed jkjmen or mminal ehnidx'* 
men, who peroeive profit in nothing but temporalities." Thence one of 
his chief cares was, that councils should be held by the Fianconiaa 
deigj to restore ^ood morals and the ancient church discipline, and 
Aat the <^ersj should participate in the assemblies of tne Mardi 
plains (Martii Campi), that the weal of die church might also be 
there taken into consideration; and towards this he accomplished 
much, for ifrhich he made himself greatly distingui^ed. 

In the year 746, Boni&ce was made archbidiop of Mentz, and 88 
such he stood at the head of the East-Franoonian clergy, which he 
accustomed to unconditicmal obedience towards the Roman bishop, 
who no^w as pope stood incontestedly at the head of the western 
church. Boniface, however, would not remain inactiye and pass his 
later years in quiet, for the conversion of the heathens was now, as 
formerly, still the labour and aim of his life; and at last his seal was 
rewarded with the martyr's fate. Upon his return to the Friesi, 
in order solemnly to consecrate some newly-baptized Christians, he 
was fallen upon by a troop of barbarians, who expected to gain 
booty from him. £[is servants seized their arms to repel the attack; 
he, however, forbade l^m to shed blood, and was therefore at once 
murdered with all his companions by the furious band. 

The religious foundations, churches, and cloisters which Boniface 
and others built in Germany, became not only the sparks whence 
the light of reKgion and intellectual cultivation proceeded, but many 
of them formed also the nucleus of new towns and villages which, 
by d^rees, arose around them. Not only the bondsmen Duilt th^ 
huts close to them, but others also sought ^e protection of their 
walk, and merchants and traders proceeded thither in the hopes of 
making profit fix)m the multitude of strangers who flocked there for 
the sake of worship. The name of the festival, Kirchmesse or 
Churchwake, derived thence its origin. 

The kingdom of the Franks was divided into two ^reat portions, 
Neustria and Austrasia, or the Western and Eastern kmgdoms; and 
ihe former was again frequently divided into several parts. In the 
Western kingdom, the Roman manners and language maintained 
the superiority; but in the East those of the Germans were p!?e- 
d<»!iinant. Both nations were frequently at war and discontented 
"with each other. 

In the year 613, Clothaire II. once again united the two divisions 
of the kingdom, but soon afterwards resigned that of Austrasia into 
the hands of his son Dasobert, who, on the death of his father in 
flie year 628, again combined the whole together. Under these two 
governments, which may be included in the series as the most happy, 
u\e kingdom became strengthened, and the internal relations, by the 
exertions of Amolph, bishop of Metz, and the great chamberlam or 
Tnme minister, Pepin of Landen (Grand&ther of Pepin of Heris- 
tal), were greatly improved, and rendered more perfisct and settled. 
The judicial system how assumed more of the Christian chaaraoterp 

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for, aooording to the original pasan law, every act of murder, with, 
the exception of that committea against the king, could be com- 
pounded for with money and land, whereas now it was decreed that 
each premeditated murder should be pimished with death. The 
clergy likewise were placed upon a more elevated and distinct foot^ 
ing, and which, indeed, was extremely necessary and desirable, so 
that Christianity might not again sink and fall into neglect la 
order that the bishops should, as far as possible, consist of the most 
worthy men, the ecclesiastics received, with the co-operation of the 
people, the right of election (clerus cum populoV The jurisdiction 
of the clergy was likewise, at the great synod oi Paris in 614, esta- 
blished upon a more firm and secure basis; and at the grand con- 
ferences, Its influence became more important, inasmuch as they ap- 
peared tliere almost alone with the great vassals or higher officers of 
the crown. The ancient assemblies of the people bad, under Clovis, 
entirely ceased to exist. 

Dagobert resided chiefly in Paris. We find that under him con- 
tinual wars were carried on between the Franks and Slavi, which 
produced against them a friendly leamie between the Franks and 
Saxons. Dagobert released the Saxons irom their tribute of five hun- 
dred cows. 

After the death of Dagobert in 637, the decline of the Merovin- 
gian dynasty commenced anew, and we find seven kings ruled like 
puppets by guardians, acting as prime ministers or mayors of the 
palace, thus producing the complete fall of the race. These mayors 
got the entire sway of the kingdom. Originally, the major-domus 
was only steward ; ne stood at the head of the royal house and of the 
royal people ^Leudes), and was leader of the feudal retinue in war, 
next to the kmg. The heerbann of free-men was not imder him. 
But when the retinue obtained, by degrees, the precedence, and be- 
came properly the statCi the heerbann fell into msuse, and the inde- 
pendent freemen becoming reduced in number, the grand steward then 
rose to be effectually the first officer of the kingdom, and under weak 
kings was their ruler. When a war was to be conducted, the grand 
steward placed himself at the head of the troop, and showed him- 
self prepared for warlike feats; in peace also, he exercised the pri- 
vilege of mercy, disposed of offices, distributed vacant sinecures, and 
left to the king merely the honour of his name and that of the crown, 
and the indulgence of his sensuality in the inner apartments of the 
palace. It was only at the March assembly that the king appeared 
personally amidst liis people. There he sat publicly upon the seat of 
his ancestors, greeted his nobles, and was saluted in return by them; 
he received the presents brought by the nation, and handed them over 
to the grand chamberlain or steward standing beside the throne, distri- 
buting, according to his reconmiendation, the vacant places, and con- 
firming those he had already disposed of. He then mounted his chariot, 
which, according to ancient custom, was drawn by four oxen, drove 
to his palace, and remained there until the following March assembly. 

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Such was the condition of the great conqueror Clovis's de- 
scendants, before two hundred years had passed since his death. 
About the year 700, the grand steward over the whole kingdom of 
the FrankSf Neustria, as well as Austrasia, was Pepin of Henstal 
(near Li^ce) ; a very careful and prudent man, who restored order and 

Cstice, held the old March assem olies regularly, and won so much the 
ve and confidence of the people, by restoring in this manner their 
lights against the encroacnments of the homes, that he was en- 
abled to make the oiBce hereditair to his family. His son, Charles 
Martel, who was grand steward alter him, saved the whole of Chris- 
^nity at this moment from a ^reat impending danger. 

A savage horde had arrived from the south, and had in a short time 
traversed extensive tractswith fire and sword, and subjected all to iheir 
dominion. No nation could set limits to them, their arm was irresisti- 
ble, and struck their opponents hke lightning. These strangers were 
the Arabs; they came from Asia, and they derived their great power 
from the new rnith. For he whom they called their prophet, Ma- 
homet, had annoimced to them much from the doctrines of Moses 
and of our Saviour; besides which he promised to this people, who 
were addicted to sensual pleasures beyond every thing, great re- 
wards and an ever-during bliss in Paradise, if they fought zealously 
for their new faith, and extended it over all countries. Mahomet 
lived about the year 622. Thej had now rapidly conquered several 
lands in Asia and Africa, and m less than a hundred years afler the 
death of Mahomet, in the year 711, they had already crossed the 
Straits of Gibraltar to Spain. Roderic, king of the West Goths, 
who ruled in Spain, opposed them near Xeres de la Frontera; he 
strove for his crown, for the freedom and religion of the West 
Goths; long and severe was the battle. Roderic fought heroically, 
until a treacherous count, who called the Arabs across the straits, 
passed over to the enemy. The kin^ then fell, and with him the 
flower of his army. The kingdom of the West Goths was subjected 
to the Arabs, and they soon ruled from the sea to the Pyrenees, so 
that only a very small spot to the north-west of Spain, in the moun- 
tains of GraUicia, remained a free possession in the hands of the 

After the Arabs had conquered Spain, they cast their eyes upon 
France, and, crossing the Pyrenees, fell upon that country. At the 
same time they showed themselves below Constantinople with a large 
army and a fleet: so that they embraced the whole of Europe from 
east to west, determined upon conquering it and extinguishing Chris^ 
tianity. And had they obtained the victory on both sides they would 
have advanced still farther, and the two great armies would have met 
and united in Germany and have completed the work. But Pro- 
vidence had determined otherwise. The city of Constantinople held 
firm against the attack, with its strong walls and Greek fire, which 
the inhabitants used against the ships of their enemy. But in France 
they were opposed by the powerful hero Charles Martel, the son of 

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Pepin; he was called Martel or the hammer, because bj his brarerjr 
he struck his enemies down, as it were, like a hammer. With lxi3 
Franks he crossed the rivw Loire to meet the enemy, and came upon, 
them between the cities of Tours and Poitiers, where a wide ptaia 
spread itself out. The battle here took place on a Saturday in October, 
in the year 732. Close and impassable, and covered with an advanced 
wall of shields, the Franks stood immoveable, and aaduzed their first 
violent attack, for this was always the most furious. The Franks, 
however, then suddenly broke forth, precipitated themselves upon the 
Arabs, repulsed them, and it is said that more than 300,000 fell, to* 
gether with theirjgenecal, Abderachman, slaughtered by the sworda 
of the Franks. Tnose who remained fled towards southern France, 
whence Charles soon drove them forth, and placed for ever a boundary 
against them on this side. Charles, who, for this deed, was highly 
honoured throughout all countries, died in the year 741. 

His son was called Pepin the Little, or the Short; he was also 
grand steward until 752, and ruled the kiiijsdom according to his 
pleasure but with wisdom and justice, whilst king Childeric III., 
sat in his palace like a shadow, and took not the least care of his 
government When Pepin saw the disposition of the Franks favour- 
able to him, he caused an ass^nbly of them to take place in the 
year 751, when it was determined to send an embassy to Rome, 
with this question: ''Is he justly called king who has the royal 
power in his hands, or he who merely bears the name?' To which 
pope Zacharias replied, '' He must also be called king, who possesses 
the royal power." 

The holy Boniface had accustomed the Franks, in certain cases of 
conscience, to apply to the pope for advice as their spiritual &ther, 
and the papal reply is to be r^arded as ooimsel and opinion, as an 
answer to such a question, but not as a deposal of kin^ Childeric, by 
virtue of the power existing in the pope. Upon this, the Franks 
assembled a^am at Soissons, and took the crown fiom Childerio, the 
last of the Merovingians, cut off his long hair, the mark of honour 
with the Frankish km^s, and had him removed to a cloister, 
there to end his days; whilst Pepin, the son of Charles Martel, and 
grandson of Pepin of Heristal, was in the year 752 solemnljr anointed 
and crowned king of the Franks by the archbishop Boniface, 266 
years after Clovis the Merovingian had, by his victory over Sya- 
grius, upon this same field of Soissons, first founded the kingdom. 
r^ Pepin by his courage and wisdom augmented the power of bis 
nation. At this time, in 753, pope Stephen crossed the Alps (he 
being the first pope who since the foundation of the church had 
undertaken this journey) to demand the assistance of Pepin against 
the Longobardian king Aistulph, who had conquered Ravenna, 
and demanded tribute and submission from the pope. Pepin pro- 
mised him aid, and retained him through the winter at his court in 
Miinster. Here the pope repeated the anointment of the king, as 
already performed by the holy Boni&cci anointing also his two son)i» 

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Cailoman and Charles (after he had himself lifted the latter, then 
twelve years old, from the font), and then presented to the Franks 
these members of the newlj-cieated dynasty as alone legitimate. In 
the spring of the year 754 the kingadvanced against Italy, defeated 
Aistulph at Snsa, re-conqnered Kavenna, with the surromidinff 
country, which had previously belonged to the Greek emnerors, ana 
presented it to the pope. Tms formed the beginxung of the papal 

Pepin died in 768» in the fifty-fourth vear of his age, and the 
Franks mourned his death as mudi as if ne had sprung from the 
ancient royal race. In stature he was short, but very strong. It is 
related of Tiiin, that once, upon the occafdon of a combat of wild 
beasts, aoxne one jested about nis £dze, upon which he stepped into 
the arena, drew his sword, and with one blow struck off the head of 
a lion: ** I am not tall," said he, *' but my arm is strong !" 

His sons, Charles and Garloman, were elected kings by ihe nation 
of the Fraoiks, in a solemn assembly, and regularly divided the 
kingdom between them. 

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The ereQts of the rdgn of Charlenuigiie called forth the eoergy of the historical 

I. The annals and chronicles, of which mention has heen made preTiooslj, hecame 
angmented, and proyed for diis period more and more important; whilst edncation, 
so much promoted h^ Charlemagne, is therein displayed both in the language aod 
treatment of the subject. 

S. In reference to the history of Charlemagne, the works of Einhard or Eginhard 
will always remain the most important, being written by a man who was in imme- 
diate communication with that sorereign. His **Annales,'' from 741 — 829, treat 
more particularly of this period than the continuation of the ** Annal Lanrissensesv" 
before mentioned. The ** Vita Caroli Magni," after giving a brief account of the 
wars of Chariemagne, describes especially every other particular connected with his 
life and its erents; and must be read by all with pleasure. In addition to this we 
possess also his letters. 

S. Theganus, bishop of Treves, who died in 848, wrote the life of Louis the pious, 
— ** Degesds Ludovici pii**— certainly not very impartially, and rather too briefly, 
yet written with sincerity and exact information. 

4. The ** Vita Hludo rid Pii auctore anonymo,** is much more complete, written 
by a member of the emperor's household; this is rich in fiicts, and is expressed with 

5. Equally important is the poetical representation of a contemporary, Ermoldus 
Nigellus, in his degiac poem, " in honorem Hludorici Caesaris.** 

6. Nithard, grandson of the emperor, who died in 858, describes most completely 
the disputes among the sons of Louis, in his ^ IV Libris de dissensionibus iUIonim 
LudoTici Pii;" he shows himself to be deddedly on the side of Charles the Bald. 

7. The ** Vita Sti- Anskarii,'* by Rimbert, Archbishop of Hamburg, written under 
Louis the German, treats more espedaliy upon the North German relations. 

8. £nhard*s and Rudolphus's ** Annals of Fulda," and their continuators, are, after 
the condusion of Einhard, yery important in German history. In his work, 
Budolphus giyes a yery interesting description of the Saxons; he is the only 
writer who was acquainted with the writings of Tacitus, and finom the Utter's 
Cfermania he has quoted seyeral chapters litorally. With respect to the western 
moiety of the Frankish kingdom, the " Annales Bertiniani" (so called from the 
Abbey St. Bertinbd Gent) of 822, giye the best information. The last moiety was 
perhaps written by the celebrated Archbishop Hincmar of Rheims. 

9. A monk of St. Gallen, Manachus SangaUensis, has described in two books *' de 
Gestis Car. Magni," the hfe of the emperor in a peculiar fashion, according to 
communications recdyed and popular legends, mostly without historical fidelity, but 
still not without grace. 

10. Abbo, a monk of St Germain, was present at the siege of Paris by the Nor- 
mans in 885, and has described the eyents of that period in a poem, *' de bdlis Parii- 
ads,** in a yery animated style. 

II. The so-called PoSta &lxoC900), has rendered into yersewhat Einhards Annals 
relate of the emperor, and has partly succeeded in his work, although he can neyer, 
or but rardy be used as a reference. 

12. The Chronides of the Abbot Begino, who died in 915, and which extend to the 
year 907, are yery important for the latter period of the Carolingians. 

13. The letters of the popes, soyerdgns, princes, &c., of this period are also yery 
important, particularly tiiose whidi are contained in the Codex Carolinus; likewise 
the letters and works of Alcuin, as also the letters of Serratus Lupus, Eginhard's 
friend, and Hincmar, archbishop of Bheims. 

14. Fmally, it is quite certain that the " Capitularia Begum Erancorum," the 
laws of the realm, and general decrees of the kings, form a prindpal source of re- 
ference for our Idstory. They were collected by Baluzius, and haye been recently 
published by Pertz, in the third yohime of the ** Monumenta," 

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Charifmagpe^ 768 — 814 — The ttate in which Charlemagne found the Empire — 
The East-Roman or Grecian Empire— England — The North of Europe — The 
Spanish Peninsnlar— Italj — ^Austria and Hungary — Germanj — ^The Wars of 
Charlemagne— The Saxons— The Longobardi — ^The Arabs — The Bayarians — 
The £mp&e of Charlemagne— Charlemagne, Emperor of Rome, 800 — The Death 
of Charlemagne, 814— His Portraiture. 

It lias been the late of Cliarlemagiie, as well as the majority of 
estraoidiiiaiy historical characteiSi to be subjected to the ordeal of 
a very different, and irequently a veiy opposite criticism. By many 
he has been classed with the noblest neroes and sages of the human 
race, by some, however, he has been rejected as a blood-thirsty ty- 
rant, wnose whole object and desire was war and destruction. It is 
true that he led his armies from one end of his extensive empire to 
the other in constant warlike expeditions, and subjected many nations 
by force of arms to his dominion, thus giving Europe an entirely 
dmerent form. The question therefore to be solved is, whether his- 
tory shall bless or curse him for these extraordinary deeds. 

A &\se judgment must necessarily be passed upon great men and 
the great events of nations, by those who cannot transport themselves 
from their own times back into those whereof the picture is to be drawn. 
In periods when society id in a ferment, and Imrbarism and civilisa- 
tion are in contest with each other; when from the existing compo* 
nent parts something new and great is to germinate, towards which 
the tranquil course of things, as handed down will not suffice — 
Providence sends forth mighty individuals, who are destined to lead 
a whole age many steps onward in its development, and, according 
to the object which they are to accomplish, it furnishes them wita 
adequate vigour of intellect and strength of will. But because such 
chosen spirits do not follow the beaten track, and because, perhaps, 
whilst their eye is fixed upon the distant mountain summit, many a 
flower is crushed beneatn their feet, and they in the impatient 
struggle, which in the short space of the life of one man is to deter- 
mine the plan of the course of centuries, wound imconsciously many 
a sacred right; the easy, indolent spirit of the lover of repose, 
therefore, to which the sanctity of rights forms the foundation* stone 
of life, is loud in execration against the vessel in which was compressed 
such gigantic, mighty powers, and the judmnent thence pronounced 
is frequently severe and unjust. But who snail censure the mountain 
stream because it flows not like the meadowy brook, but drags forth 
even stones and trees, bearing them onwards with it in its course? It 
is true it tears forth by the roots the decayed and rotten stems, but 
thereby the light of heaven is opened to cheer the progress of the 
more yoimg and tender plants. 

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Let this, Kowever, by no means be considered as an apology for the 
violence of tyrannical rulers, wbose actions'flow from an mipure source. 
Man is a free agent, and presents himself as the ready instrument 
of Providence in its great plans. The manner in which he executes 
his office depends upon himself, and either justifies or condemns him. 
It is not the great deeds he has performed, nor the thousands who 
have bled in battle, whilst others in the intoxication of victory have 
profanely worshipped him, that decide upon his merits or demerits, 
but it is the obfet^ by which he was governed, and the purpose for 
which he accomplished his extraordinary plans : whether he has been, 
guided by great thoughts towards a worthy and noble end, or only 
by his own pride, his ambitic»,'aBd vanitj^, or to speak figuratively, 
whether in the mirror of his life the infinite creation and its worlds, 
or only his own proud ima^e be reflected. This may be observed from 
many signs, but it is especially to be recognised therein, viz., when he 
has revered the dignity of humanity as a sacred object, even in its 
details, or not observing or acknowledging it, but despising men, he 
has merely used them as instruments to his purposes. 

This should be our rule of judgment, in order that we may not 
allow ourselves on the one side to bestow admiration upon mere 
power without intrinsic goodness, nor on the other to prejudge un« 
justly all those names which are inscribed in the volume, too fre* 
quently perhaps in characters of blood and fire. 

The work of a great man derives its proper light fix)m the condi* 
tion of the world when he appeared upon the stage; it is therefore 
necessary to take a short review of the state of Europe at the time 
Charles attained the empire. 

1. The East-Roman, or Greek empire, still existed; but only in the 
strange mixture of old and new relations, of splendour and misery, of 
presumption and weakness, as it had existed for a thousand years — 
m the history of the world a riddle. For it is scarcely to be con- 
ceived how the mere shadow of an ancient, great, and splendid state, 
or as it were the gaudily ^decorated corpse of antiquity, as that empire 
has been happily called, should have preserved itself so long without in- 
ternal life. The change of rulers and the inconstancy of all conditions 
were so great, that for an emperor of Constantinople no title was more 
flattering than being styled, ** the imperial son oi a father bom in the 

►urple robe" (porphyrogenitus porphyrogeniti). For the throne came 
y turns to men wno had been bom amongthe dregsof society, and who 
owed their elevation to some crime. To Charlemagne this distant 
and extensive, but wealthy empire, could not be immediately either 
an object of dread or ambition. He maintained friendship with the 
Grreek emperors, and they mutually honoured each other with em- 
bassies and presents, for it was desirable to the Greeks to be upon 
good terms with him. ^* Retain the Frank for thy friend, but pre- 
vent him from being thy neighbour," was an established proverb 
among the Ghreeks. 

2. England, at the commencement of Charlemagne's reign, was 

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etin divided among sereral Anglo-Saxon kings, and foimed a se- 
duded woild of its own, without posseesing any influence upon the 
natioiis of the continent. Charlemagne's name, however, was speed- 
ily known and highly esteemed. One of his most confidential friends, 
Alciiifi, was an Englishman, and by his means he often caused the 
piinoes there to be written to, and persuaded them to be tmited and 
lepeL the attacks of the valiant Danes. Even the Thanes, or petty 
kmgs of Scotland, called him no otherwise than their lord. 

3. The north of Europe was stiU but little known. It is true it 
was the cradle of valiant men, who knew how to wield the iron of 
their soil with a powerftd arm^ and who, after the rei^ of Charle- 
magne, by their maritime expeditions gained themsdves a terrific 
name tipon all the coasts of Europe. They were yet, however, with- 
out importance to the Frankish empire. ISTevertheless, with his comr 
prehensive mind, Charlemagne perceived the danger which threa- 
tened from them. It is related that being once at a seaport, (it is 
said at Narbonne,) some ships approached the coast but their crews 
were not known. Charlemagne's quick eye detected them to be 
Noiman pirates by their shape and rapid motions. They hastily re- 
tired when l^ey heard that the great em|)eror was there. Afiier they 
had disappeared he turned sorrowfully fiom the window, shed tears^ 
and at last said to those around him, *^ You would fain know, my 
fiiends, why I wept? Not from fear, no! but it vexes me that, 
dmin^ my hfe, they have ventured to this shore, and with grief 
do I loresee, alas ! the mischief they will bring to my successors." 

4. The Spanish Peninsula was subjected to the Arabians with the 
exception ot some Westro-Gothic places among the mountains, but 
their religious zeal had already cooled, and their power was tamed by 
internal dissensions. Charlemagne's grandfather had deterred them 
from the con(]uest of Europe, and they thought only of maintaining 
th^ own existence in Spain. But Charlemagne could not behold 
with indifference the enemies of the Christian name as his neighbours. 

5. Italy was divided into three dominions, the Longobardian in 
upper and a portion of lower Italy; the Grecian in lower Italy and 
Sicily; and the Roman in middle Italy. Rome was in a mixed 
state, for the power was divided between the Pope, the senate, and 
the people, but the pope daily acquired more impcnrtance. The su- 
perior protective dommion of the city had passed from the Greek 
emperors to the kings of the Franks, for Pope Stephen, in the name 
of me Roman senate and people, had, in the year 754, conv^ed the 
dignity of a Roman Patrician to King Pepin and his sons, ^tween 
the Romans and the Longobards there arose a bitter hatred and im- 
plaeable enmity, which were the immediate cause of Charlemagne 
mtdfering in the afl^rs of Italy. He had, indeed, endeavoured to 
remove the ancient jealousy which prevailed between the Franks and 
the Longobards by marrying the cbughter of King Desiderius, but 
upon this occasion Pope Stephen wrote to him thus :^ What madness 
in the most excellent son of a gre^ king to sully his noble Frankish 

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race by an alliance with tkat most faithless and most fulsome nation, 
the Longobardi, who should not be named among the multitude 
of nations, and from whom doubtlessly the race of lepeis had their 
oriffin. What community of feeling lias light with darkness, or a 
behever with an imbeliever." The Longobards richly returned this 
hatred of the Romans; one of their bishops says of tnem: ** Under 
the name of a Roman we comprehend all that is mean, cowardly, 
avaricious, and lying, nay, even all vices combined." C!harlemagne's 
imion with the roy^ house of the Longobards was not durable, for 
two years afterwards he sent back the daughter of King Desiderius; 
whether it arose from the ill-will of the pope to this marriage, or 
whether other unknown reasons urged him we cannot say, but we 
shall speedily see that greater causes arose for the enmity between 

6. To the south-east of Charles's possessions in Austria andHunffary,, 
dwelt the Avari, a Mongolian nation from Asia, which had long 
warred with and plundered the provinces of the eastern empire, but 
now quietly but anxiously yarded the treasures amassed during two 
centuries. These lay heaped up in nine particular places, surrounded 
by walls and ditches, and which were called circles, appearing to 
mvite, as it were, every one to retake them from their possessors, 
who themselves did not know how to enjoy them. 

7. The remaining portion of the eastern German borders was oc- 
cupied b^ the different branches of the Slavonians and Vandals, 
rude nations of a less noble, natural disposition than the Germans. 
In Germany they possessed Holstein, Mecklenburg, Brandenburg, 
Pomerania, a portion of Saxony, the Lausitz, Silesia, Bohemia, and 
Moravia. In Holstein were the Wagrians; in Mecklenburg, the 
Obotriti; in a portion of Brandenburg, the Wilzen; in another part 
the Hevellers and Ukems; the Pomeranians in the province which 
has received their name — collective branches of the Vandals. In 
the district of Meissen, the Sclavonian Sorbi; in Lausitz, the Lau- 
sitzers; in Bohemia, the Ezechi; and the Moravians in Moravia. 

8. In Germany itself Charlemagne found greater tranauillity. The 
Septs, who had been subjected to the Fnmks, the Allemanni, Ba- 
varians, and Thuringians had by degrees accustomed themselves to 
the foreign dominion, which was not only not oppressive, but had 
even left them their manners, laws, and peculiar customs. But with 
the exception of the Bavarians, they were no longer ruled according 
to ancient custom by their own dukes, but according to the Frankish 
institutions, by counts without hereditary power in distinct districts. 
Thence they wanted a central point of union, and the ancient love 
of independence survived most firmly among the Bavarians alone. 
The bishops in all these provinces were very much attached to the 
Carlovingian d jrnasty. 

But on the borders of his empire, in the north of Germany, dwelt 
neighbours who offered the first object for the trial of his strength, 
namely, the Saxons, unconquered and free, fixed in their boundaries 

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from the Grerman Ocean to Thuringia, and from the Elbe to the 
Ticini^ of the Rhine. Whilst among the Franks, the old German 
institutions had been much altered, and the warriors in the Gefolge 
or suite of the king, had assumed the order of nobility, and occupied 
the place of the frcemen, the Saxons still lived in the ancient man- 
ners of their ancestors, without a common chieftain, each Grau or 
district under its own head, and only during war, under a self-elected 
leader. It was a community of freemen in free dwellings. The in- 
terior of tbeir country was defended by forests and morasses^ and 
itrong places for the defence of the boundaries were erected on the 
Lippe, Ruhr, Weser, Dimel, and Elbe. In their groves of a 
thousand years' growth, they still sacrificed to the gods of their 
Others, whilst the other German tribes had all adopted Christianity; 
Bay, they were even accused of still celebrating human sacrifices. The 
franks considered themselves so superior to them by reason of their 
Christianity, as well as the general superiority of their cultivation, 
that their historians can scarcely deprecate sufficiently the rudeness 
uid wildneas of the Saxons. But they were not so much dangerous 
83 burdensome neighbours of the Franks, because, according to the 
Muaent German practice, they did not wish to make conquests, but 
merely roved in predatory incursions into neighbouring countries. 
But a well-guarded frontier would have been a sufficient protection 
against them as well as against the Slavonians and Avan, and we 
see from this sketched description, that Charles might have re- 
Dwined, like the Merovingians, in quiet possession of his inheritance 
^thout conductinff such great external wars. The Frankish em- 

Ke extended in self-sufficient strength, from the Pyrenees to the 
wer Rhine, and from the English Channel to the Ens, in Austria, 
and had nothing to fear from any of its neighbours. 

But a mind satisfied with mere tranqml possession was not ac- 
corded to Charles; its internal power was used to vent itself in new 
fonns for this was the law implanted in his nature. The condition of 
the world demanded great creative powers in order not to remain for 
J^ituries longer waste and confused. We dare not censure Charles 
^^cauae he foUowed this impulse of his nature, but the way in which 
?e followed it and modelled his new creation, gives the measure of 
JTidgment against him. Were high and noble thoughts his guide, 
and was his own genius great, or was it petty, and directed to vain 
*™gs? Upon that the history of his life must decide. 

^er Charles (who ascended the throne in his twenty-sixth year) 
*pd his brother Carloman had reigned together some years, the latter 
oied in 77 1. The nobles of Carloman's possessions desired his brother 
*or their king also, and cast out the two sons of Carloman from suc- 
^^on to the throne, with whom the widow fled, and took refuge at 
"le court of Desiderius, king of the Longobardi. Thus was Charles 
^^ ruler of the Franks. Upon this he assembled at Worms an im- 
penal diet in 772, where he represented to the assembly the re- 
puted offences of the Saxons and the merit of their conversion to 

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Chrisdanity; upon whicli the nation declared war agauist the Saxons 
— the first and iongeit war that Charles was engaged in — (or it con- 
tinued with sevenJ interruptions to the year 803, consequently for 
thirty-two years. During this time Cluurles firequently conquered 
the Saxons in open field, and forced them to conclude peace, but; 
when he again quitted their country, and was obliged to withdraw to 
ihe farther end of his empire, they broke the peace, rebelled against; 
the obnoxious dominion, chased away the Frankish garrisons, and 
made incursions into the country of the Franks, until Charles agaiiL 
app^red and forced them anew to submission. 

The first irruption made in their country, in the year 772, was 
successful and short. He proceeded from Worms, through Hessia to 
the Weser, and Dimel. Efe conquered the burg of Eresberg (the pre- 
sent Statberg,in the bishopric of Paderbom), the Saxon place of re* 
treat not &r from the Weser, in a rude neighbourhood, and upon a 
precipitous height; and destroyed the celebrated Irminsul (or statue 
of Irmin), an object regarded with the most sacred veneration by 
the Saxons, but of which we do not precisely know whether it was 
an ima^e of a god, or perhaps a monument of Arminius, thus revered 
with divine honours. The Saxons concluded peace upon the banks 
of the Weser, and ^ve twelve chiefs as hostages. 

Charles was rejoiced at having so speedily concluded an advan- 

S;eou8 peace, for already other afiairs called him into Italy. De* 
erius, who by the reception of the widow of Carloman had al- 
ready shown himself as an enemy, required of the new pope, Adrian^ 
that he should anoint the sons of Carloman as kings of tne Franks ; 
and upon Adrian's refusal, he threatened him with war. The pope 
demanded aid from Charles, who at once advanced, crossed the 
Alps, marched round the passes, of which the Longobardi had 
taken |)ossession, and encamped before Pavia in the year 774. 
Desiderius purposed defending his metropolis until sickness and 
want should force the Franks to retire. But Charles was not of a 
disposition to be so soon fatigued; he let his army lie six months be- 
fore Pavia, went himself to the Easter festival at Rome, which he 
for the first time witnessed, and there confirmed the deed of eift 
made by his father. He then returaed to Pavia, which soon yielded 
to him, received Desiderius as a prisoner, and sent him, after shaving 
his head for the cowl, to the monastery at Corvey in France, where, 
after a short time, he died. Charles now called himself king of the 
Lombards, and caused himself to be crowned at Monza. 

As the Saxons had in the meantime recommenced war, he on 
his return, and after he had held a diet at Diiren, made in 775, a 
new incursion into their country, conquered Sigberg, restored the 
Eresbe:^ destroyed by the Saxons, pressed onwards over the Weser 
to the Oker, there receiving hostages from the Eastphalians, and on 
his return, near Buckeburg (Buchi), obtaining also those of the An- 
gravarians. But as, in the meantime, the Longobardian, Duke Rot- 
gaud, of Frioul, to whom, as vassal of the empire, he had entrusted the 

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lof the Alps, decided uposiiakiiigadTaiitage of the moment, and 
rebelled, Charles was already a^ain in Italy (776), and punished the 
■eoedors before they thought him even appiued of their plans. This 
time, also, he was about to advance to Kome, when a message ar- 
nved with intdligence that the Saxons had again reyolted, had retaken 
^esbeig, and laid sie^e to Sigsberff . He speedily returned back 
into Grermany, forced his way through all their forest-defiences as &r 
as Lipproring, when the Saxons agam yielded, and many vowed to 
WoQEme GhrisdaDS, and offered themselves to be baptised. He built a 
finrtrefls on the lippe, perhaps wheie Li{q)68tadt at present stands. 

In llie following year (777), he was already enabled to hold a 
diet at Paderbom, in the country of the Saxons, where the majority 
of the nation swore fidelity. Their boldest leader, however, Wit- 
tekind (Saxon, Widukind), had fled to the Danish king, Sigfried. 
It was at this diet that the ambassadors of the Arabian governors 
of Saraeossa and Huesca, in Spain, appeared before Chiurles, and 
entreated his assistance against the King, Abderam. He consi- 
dered it worthy of his di^ty not to allow those who placed them- 
■elves under his protection to entreat in vain; besides, these unbe- 
fievexs, who had pressed onwards into Europe, were his most hated 
enemies. Accordingly he advanced in the following ]^ear (778), 
into Spain; the petty Christian princes in the mountains of Na- 
varre, who had maintained themselves independent of the Moors, 
here joined him; he conquered Pampeluna, Saragossa, Barcelona, and 
Girona; and the country as far as tne Ebro swore allegiance to him. 
Henceforward it form^ part of his empire, imder the name of 
the Spanish marches or hmits, and was a land of protection for 
the Christians remaining in Spain. 

Upon his return, however, with his army, winding itself, as it 
18 poetically described, like a long braaen serpent among the rough 
rocks of the Pyrenees, and through the obscure forests and narrow 
paths, the rear-guard became separated from the main body, and in 
an ambuscade Md by the mountaineers, fell into the ravines of Ron- 
oesvaUes. The Franks could not fight in their heavy armour, and 
they fell with their leader Rutland, me Count de la Manche. This 
18 the celebrated knight, Roland, who later, as well as his king — 
Charles, is so much sung in the legends and heroic lays of Europe. 

Meanwhile the Saxons, according to custom, when the king was 
at a distance, had again seized arms. Under Wittekind they fell 
upon tiie country of the Franks, and devastated it with fire and 
sword as far as Deuz, opposite Cologne. This, like the earlier revolts 
of the Saxons, was not so much a war of the nation and of the heads 
of families, but of individual leaders with their suite or Gefolge, who 
did not consider themselves bound by the treaties. Charles returned, 
drove the enemy fiar back into their country, and in 780 constructed 
ferinesses on the Elbe to fix a strong rein upon them. And now 
thiittrug h im p^^f qiiitA secured in that quarter, he made a journey in 
TSltoKome to cause his sons Pepin and Louis to be anointed by the 

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Pope, the former King of Italy, the ktter King of Acquitaine (Soatli 

The Saxons in the interim had maintained themselTes perfectly 
quiet, but the remembrance of their ancient freedom would not quite 
die within them, and Christianity, which had been brought to them 
with the sword by their hated neighbours, gained no power over 
their hearts. It appeared insupportable to them that a man should not 
himself revenge a contumely, and that a hero should not have a par- 
ticular heaven. The impost of tithes which they were obUged topay 
to the church, appeared also excessively oppressive to them. As W it- 
tekind had, therefore, now returned and placed himself at their head, 
they thought the present was the best moment for them to shake off 
the yoke, and, the same as formerly, when their nation fell upon Varus 
in the Teutoburger forest, they now surrounded the Frankish leaders 
Geilo and Adalgis, upon Mount Suntel, on the Weser, just as they 
were about to march against the predatory Serbians dwelling on the 
Saale, and destroyed them as well as the greatest portion of their army. 

This deed inflamed the wrath of the king (who was already ex- 
cessively irritated at their repeated rebellion) to the degree, that 
he broke into the country, desolated it far and wide, and caused 
4500 imprisoned Saxons to be beheaded near Verden on the Aller, 
as a terrible example to the rest, and as a sacrifice for his army de- 
stroyed — as it appeared to him, by treachery; a stain in his history 
which cannot be justified, but may partly be excused by the rasn 
and turbulent manners of those times, and the excited passions of the 
king. As a consequence of this severe act, Charles, m 783, beheld 
the whole nation of the Saxons, imder Wittekind and Alboin, rise 
simultaneously in such furious rage and madness as had never 
before heea evinced. Two severe battles were fought near Thiet- 
melle, now Detmold, and on the river Hase in Osnaburg; the first 
was undecided, but the second so unfortunate for the Saxons, that 
Charles advanced as far as the Elbe, and in this and the next year, 
when with his wife and children he passed the winter campaign at 
Eresburg, he proffrcMively strengthened his power in their country. 
Wittekind and Alboin then saw that heaven had decided the fate of 
their nation, and that a longer resistance would completely annihi- 
late it. They promised submission to the powerful king, and took an 
oath to go themselves to France, and be there baptised ; and they kept 
their word. In the year 785 they came to Attigny, and Charles him- 
self was spNonsor to the Saxon diike^ Wittekind, and his wife Gera. 

From this time henceforward Saxony became more tranquil, and sub- 
mitted to the Frankish institutions as well as to those of Christianity. 
Charles, for the purpose of strengthening this doctrine among them, 
likewise founded, by degrees, several bishoprics and religious foun- 
dations, which continued to spread Ught around, viz. : in Osnaburg, in 
783; Verden, in 786; Bremen, in 788; Paderbom, in 795; Halber- 
stadt ; Elze (which was removed in 822 to Hildesheim), and Munster, 
in 806. Yet the seeds of disquiet were not quite destroyed; small dis- 

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putes still frequently arose, and we shall shortly come to one of 
greater import. 

Charles's next dispute was with Duke Tassilo of Bavaria, of the an- 
dent race of the Agitolfingi. Tassilo had still old offences to answer 
for, inasmuch as he had never supplied Pepin or Charles with troops, 
and he was now charged with havmg incited the Avari of Hungary 
to ¥rar with the king. His consort Luitberga, a daughter of the 
Longobardian king, Desiderius, may have enacted her part likewise in 
these designs. Tassilo was condemned to death by the assembled no- 
bles at the diet of Ligelheim, 778, but pardoned by Charles; and 
by his own wish, together with his son Theodore, banished to a mo- 
nastery. Bavaria became now, like the other Frankish countries, 
ruled by royal counts or governors, and the bishopric of Salzburg 
was raised to an archbishopric over the whole of Bavaria. 

In the year 787, Arechis, the Longobardian Duke of Benevento 
in Lower Italy, also yielded allegiance to the king as his superior 
feudal lord. He ruled that beautiful country as far as Naples and 
Brindisi. He made it a condition, however, that he himselt should 
not come to Germany and appear before Charles, which was granted. 
The duke received the amoassadors of the kin^ at Salerno; his 
army surrounded the palace, young nobles with the falcon on their 
gauntlet, formed rows upon the grand steps leading up to the Burg, 
whilst the hall was filled with the provosts of cities, and their coun- 
cil in state dresses, &c. The duke, seated upon the gorgeous, golden 
chair of state, stood up, and swore to be faithful to the king, to 
maintain peace, and to perform feudal service to the extent of a 
league beyond the frontiers of Benevento. 

After this, Charles formed the resolution to pimish the Avari in 
Austria and Hungary for their earlier predatory expeditions. Ac- 
cordingly, he marched asainst them in the year 791 ; the Franks 
advanced on the south side of the Danube; the Saxons, with the 
Friesi, who were both obUged to yield feudal service, advanced upon 
its northern bank; and upon the river itself a flotilla conveyed an- 
other portion of the army. Their appearance alone drove the Avari 
away lull of tenor; they left to the enemy the immense booty of 
their treasures, and Charles subjected the country to his dominion as 
far as the river Raab. 

In the following years, he merely sent detached forces against 
tiiem. His nudn anny remained, meanwhile, in South Germany, and 
worked at a canal to form the jxmction of the Altmiihl with the Red- 
nitz rivers, between the Maine and the Danube, which, had it been com- 
pleted, would have united the North Sea, by means of the Rhine, with 
the Danube to the Black Sea; an important work, replete with rich 
commercial prospects. Levantine merchandize would thus have 
found a direct course from their repository at Constantinople to the 
very heart of Charles's states. But unfavourable weather, and the dif- 
ficulties of the ground, but chiefly the want of skill in his workmen, 
who Imew not how to drain the water fix)m the places that were dug, 

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nor to secaie the banks of the canal from falling in, rendered the 
-work nugatory-* Charles, therefore, abandoned the undertakmg; but 
the honour of completing this great plan, originating with him, has 
been handed down and conferred in our days upon another sovereign 
of the German race. And the cause why he did not now again at- 
tack the Avari, and thus open to himself the road to Gonstantinopley 
was produced by a fresh rebellion of the Saxons, who, not liking long 
warlike expeditions, but only short-excursions, found the hard march* 
ing feudal service in such distant parts particularly trying. They re- 
ffisted it and mutinied, and induced the Friesl to do the same. The 
king was, therefore, obliged to make several incursions into their 
country, in the course of which, in 797, he advanced as far as the 
ocean between the mouths of the Elbe and Weser. Meantime, ihe 
war against the Avari was continued successfully by his generals, 
and then by his son Pepin, to the year 796 ; the seat of their Chagan 
or chief, the main circle of their land, with all its treasures were con- 
quered, and the country thus wrested from them was taken possession 
of by fresh inhabitants, conveyed from other German states, but chiefljr 
from Bavaria. Charles distributed the immense booty amongst his 
army, by which means the quantity of noble metals became sud- 
denly very much increased in the Frankish country. 

The object of Charles in this expedition against the Avari, as well 
as in those a^inst the Sclavonian nations, was chiefly to secure the 
eastern frontiers of the kingdom. Thence arose a long Hne of fron- 
tier provinces, from the Adriatic Sea to the Elbe, along the ancient 
boundaries of the Liongobardi, Bavarians, Swabians, Franks, Thu- 
lingians, and Saxons. To these were appointed margraves, who 
bore the title of marchio (dux limitis]), and who had their seats ori^- 
nally fixed in the most strongly fortified burgs of the ancient dis- 
tricts. The inhabitants of these frontier provinces, through wars 
and repeated revolts, became gradually destroyed, and were replaced 
by German colonists, for whose protection the burgs were usefully 
aaapted, as well as for bringing either into subjection or alhance the 
neighbouring Slavonic princes. Several of these princes entered, 
sul»equently, the ranks of the princes of the empire; for Charles's 
plans and regulations in these countries operated late in after years 
with beneficial efiect. 

The disputes with the Saxons continued until the ninth century; 
but the strength of these people became more and more weakened, 
and especially after Charles, forced, by their obstinate resistance, to 
adopt such extreme measures, transplcuited some thousands of them 
from their native land into other parts of his kingdom. Thus they 
were gradually reduced to a state of peace, even without any for- 
mal treaty bem^ concluded — ^the peace of Sek in 803, as hitherto 
accepted, not bemg admissible as a proof of treaty — and Charles was 
enabled to commence upon his plans and arrangements in Saxony. 
He nrooeeded at once to strengthen Christianity amongst them more 
finnly, whilst, however, he granted them greater independence than 

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]ie liad to the ATlemanni and Bavaiiana. They retained their an- 
eient privileges, and were chiefly governed by native counts, who 
weze. It is true, chosen by Charles, and were placed under the im- 
perial envoys. This, therefore, may rather be called a union of the 
Saxcm nation with that of the Franks, as Einhard himself terms it, 
than a sabjection; and, indeed, they well merited, by the petse- 
vezing consistency with which they conducted it, so honourable a 
conclnsion to their long struggle for freedom. But, on the other hand, 
Charles's perseverance is also to be admired, for although he had the 
advantage of numbers and great superiority in the art of war on his 
ode, still the Saxons had the benefit of their country, and the forests 
and morasses as formerly in their battles with the Komans. 

Charles, to confirm tranquillity for ever among them, transplanted 
about 10,000 of the most violent from the Elbe and the coasts of the 
North Sea into the country of the Franks, as cultivators of the im- 
perial farms; and fix)m that transplantation, no doubt, is derived the 
names of Sachsenhausen near Frankfort, as well as Sachsenheim 
and Sachsenflur, in Franconia. The places left thus void on the 
Elbe he save over to his allies the Vandal Obotriti, in Mecklen- 
burg, and the Yagrian Sclavi, fix>m whom this part of Holstein has 
received and preserved the name of Vagria. 

If we cast back our glance upon these first thirty years of the 
lei^ of Charles thus filled with wars, we must admire the great ra- 
pidity with which he marched from Saxony to Italy, from there back 
to the Weser, and then back again twice the same road: then into 
Spain along the Ebro, and back to the Elbe, proceeding on to Hun- 
gary, to the Raab, and again returning* into his own country; and 
wherever he arrived, his presence immediately deciding the contest. 
Herein we have at once the true character of a hero ; this boldness and 
rapidity of thought, resolution, and action ; this impression of innate 
personal greatness, which nothing could resist, and which greatness 
nobody has sought to deny. But still more than all this, it was not ab- 
solutely thelove of war and conquest, and the honourof his name, which 
inspire him to drive his armies on so breathlessly through the countries 
of Europe, but his plans were regulated by one grand creative idea 
for whion he considered himself called upon to make these sacrifices. 

What already the great Ostro-Gothic king, Theodoric, had in con- 
templation, prospective, as it were, of future times, but which it was not 
allowed him to accompUsh, viz., the union of the Christian Ger^ 
manic nations into one empire, Charlemagne executed ; not certainly 
in Theodoric's manner, by the gentle force of persuasion and convic- 
tion, for by that means the end was not to be attained, but accord- 
ing to the custom of his nation and of lus a^e, by the terror of arms. 
Yet, he cannot be charged with having capncioudy aou^t war more 
nrgratly than was necessary for the attainment of his object. 

The central pointof this great Germanic empire was to be the bean- 
tifiil country of the Rhine, and Ingelheim near Mentz, was, therefore, 
madetheroyalseat,butwhich wasafterwardstransferredto Aix-larCha* 

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pelle and Nimwegen. No doubt he might have found richer and 
more attractive spots in Italy and France, to induce him to fix his 
residence there, but his constant mind was more attached to his an- 
cient fatherland than to the most beautiful countries of the earth. 
He was no Frankish king as it has frequently been wished to repre- 
sent him ; but he belonged to the Austrasian Franks, which is the 
country of the Rhine, and where the Franks had their chief inter- 
course with the Germans still remaining there, and thus continuing 
most pure and unmixed. This country he intended should form the 
main and central seat of his empire, and the noble stream of his 
fatherland, as it were, its great vital artery, which should unite all 
its diiferent sections. This is indicated by the canal by means of 
which he purposed connecting the Rhine and the Danube. 

But if tlie Lower Rhine and Aix-la-Chapelle were to form the 
centre and scat of his empire, it becomes eviaent that his chief con- 
test must be with the Saxons, who were here too close and unquiet 
neighbours of his residence for him to tolerate. He necessarily, there- 
fore, extended the limits of his empire farther to the north and north- 
east. But his war with the Saxons had a still different but equally 
serious obiect; it being essentially a religious war, for the honour 
and diffusion of the Christian faith. Charles was eminently a cham- 

{ion of the church, and therein a type of the chivalric middle ages, 
t is true the mild doctrines of Clmstianity should not be diffused 
by fire and the sword; and Charles sufliciently experienced how httle 
durable was the conversion when at his command hundreds at the 
same moment stepped into a river and had water poured over them 
in sign of baptism; but in this he followed less his own wishes than 
the character of his nation, which had itself been converted suddenly 
and during the external excitement of the tumult of battle. To 
him, however, belongs the fame and glory that he also knew and ho- 
noured the right mode of igniting the ught of faith. For besides 
this, he founded monasteries, churches, and bishoprics in Saxony, and 
that these doctrines might be more fully developed and propagated, 
he caused also all the young Saxons, received as hostages, to be as- 
siduously instructed with others, that they might, as teachers, en- 
lighten their nation. And so perfectly did he succeed in his plans, 
that this same Saxon nation, which had hitherto so obstinately re- 
sisted Christianity, was speedily fiUed with the greatest zeal for it, 
and made in every respect a flourishing progress. 

The confidential and beloved friend of tne king. Pope Adrian, 
died in 795. Charles mourned for him as for a father, and caused an 
inscription to be placed over his tomb which contains the expression of 
his veneration. His successor, Pope Leo lU., was misused m a revolt 
of the Romans, and sought protection from Charles, who received him 
in solemn state at Paderbom,* whither the pope came in 799, amidst 
an almost incredible concourse of venerating people, when he gave 

* Pope Leo consecrated at Paderbom, amongst other objects, the altar of St Ste- 
phen, which is Btiil to be found in the vault under the choir of the oathedraL 

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liiin Ids promise to go himself to Rome to punish the evil-doers; and 
which promise he fulfilled in the year 800. At the Christmas fes- 
tival of that same year, Charles was present at the service in St. 
Peter's church at Rome. On this great occasion individuals from 
almost every nation of the west, were collected together in the me- 
tropolis of the Christian church, and an innumerable concourse of 
people fiUed the temple. After high mass, when Charles knelt at 
the altar, Pope Leo Drought forth an imperial crown and placed it 
upon his head, when the whole assembled multitude exclaimed: 
^* Charles Augustus, crowned by the Almighty, the great and peace- 
bringing emperor of the Romans. Hail, all haal, and victoiy r At 
the same time the pope knelt down before him.* 

Thus in 324, the year after Romulus Aumistulus had lost the Ro- 
man imperial dignity, it was a^ain renewed, by Charlema^e, who, 
as a patrician, was already chief protector of Rome. He himself 
attributed so much importance to the imperial coronation, that all his 
subjects, from twelve years of age upwards, were obhged to renew 
their oath of allegiance. His power was now extended over Italy, 
France, Catalonia, the Balearic islands, and on the other side as rar 

* Eginhard, the biographer and friend of Charles, says indeed — and we may pre- 
sume as receiYed direct from the mouth of the emperor himself— that the latter had, 
at first, adopted the title, Augustas Imperator, with very great reluctance, and that 
he assured him he would not even have entered the walls of the church on that grand 
day of festival, had he foreseen the Intention of the pope. Nevertheless, it is scarcely 
to'be concdTed that a proceeding so graye and highly important could have been 
arranged without the Imowledge and concurrence of Charles, who, indeed, in all his 
actions nerer allowed himself to be led by others. Besides, it is already evident, 
frt)m what is shown by other good testimonies (Annul Lauris. ham), that the renewal 
of the imperial dignity had been discussed and resolved upon, for Alcuin himself 
knew of it beforehand, he having given to one of his pupils a bible and a letter, both 
of which he was deputed to present to the emperor at the Christmas festival in 
Bome, and in which letter the learned master wished the mighty sovereign aU happi- 
ness ad splendorem imperialis potentia. But what struck Charles, no doubt, with 
sudden surprise and momentary vexation was, that the pope should merely have 
pretemted to km the imperial craum, and that it had not been left to him, the sovereign, 
to place it upon his own head himself, or to command it to be done by the pope (as 
his bishop), as was the custom with the Greek emperors, who were crowned by their 
patriarchs; ^ence, there is little doubt, arose the expressions attributed to him by 
£^hard. This, indeed, is clearly shown subsequently, when, st Aix-la-Chapelle, 
he ordered Louis to place the crown upon his own head. Charles always considered 
himself as chief ruler over Rome, styled the Romans in his decrees as his subjects, 
and included Rome in his will amongst the chief cities of his empire. The popes 
sgain, on their part, placed his own name, as well as those of his successors, on their 
coins, and included them in their bulls. In his letters, Charles henceforth calls him- 
letf: *'Carolns serenissimus augustus a Deo coronatus magnus pacificus imperator 
Bomanum gubemans imperium, qui et per misericordiam Dei rex Francorum et 
Langobardomm.*' To him it was important to hold dominion over those other na- 
tions which had not devolved upon him by hereditary right, by some other means 
than the mere sway of conquest, and he well knew that among the German tribes 
tbe title of Roman emperor always connected itself with the idea of supreme govern- 
ment. Besides, to the emperor all were equally bound to yield allegiance — counts, 
bishops, freemen, and servitors; whilst in obedienoe to the king, the fr-eemen varied 
materially fi^nn the vassal, and the bishop from the layman. It likewise established 
his position towards tho clergy, for the pope became now the first bishop of the em- 
pire, and Akuin says distmctly (cap. IL), that the imperial power is higher than any 
other, even that of the pope. 

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as the north sea, the Elbe, the Bohemian forest, the Raab, and the 
mountains of Croatia, thus even over the greatest portion of the an- 
cient Roman empire in Europe. 

By this solemn act, Charles s grand undertaking was completed, ac- 
oordmg to its outwardform. All me Christian nations of German origin , 
exceptmg England, were united in one large body, and Charles, as 
their temporal chief, was crowned under the ancient and, by God'a 
guidance renewed title cf Roman emperor. As such, he was the chief 
protector of the church — ^by the Franconian synod he was styled the 
regent of true religion — as well as the guardian of justice and peace 
in Europe; and under his powerful protection, the recently planted 
germ ot fresh life and new moral cultiyation could safely develope 
itself, without being trampled upon by the destructiye contention of 
nations. Accordingly, this was the great idm and purpose of the 
Roman imperial dignity, as renewed by the Germans, and as The- 
odoric had contempkted, which Charles alone, however, was enabled, 
by his power, to call into existence — an object which has ever con- 
tinued to be fostered in the heart of eveiy noble and magnanimous 
emperor succeeding to the throne of the Germanic empire. 

C/harles's empire was therefore not what it has been endeavoured 
by a new name to call — ^a universal monarchy ; not one empire wherein 
all the nations and countries within his reach were subject to his, the 
individual's will, and by one law, custom, and language, united 
into one uniform, circumscribed whole. Such was not Charles's 
wish. He honoured the peculiarities of nations, left them their 
laws, which were based upon their ancient customs and modes of 
living ; he left them their manners and their language, which a nation 
could not be deprived of without inflicting the most grievous woimd. 
He was even so widely distant from the idea of an empire strongly 
and despotically ruled by the will of one individual, that during his 
Ufe, in the year 806, at Dietenhofen, he divided his countries be- 
tween his three sons, so that Pepin should take Italy, Louis, 
Aquitine, and Charles the remainder, consisting chiefly of German 
coimtries. They and their successors were bound to consider them- 
selves as the members of one race, and under the superior guidance of 
the emperor for the time being, or the head of the family, hold fra- 
ternally together, and accustom their nations to a similar unity. 

His soul was full of such good and noble thoughts, that Europe 
would soon have flourished upon the basis he thus laid, had but a 
portion of his spirit fallen to the share of his descendants. 

But Charles partially foresaw with his own eyes the destruction of 
his plans. Botn of his most promising sons died shortly after each 
other, even before their father, and Louis, the weakest, alone re- 
mained. The eldest, Charles, had made several successftd cam- 
paigns apiinst the Serbians beyond the Elbe. The father hoped 
every thmg from this son, but unhappily these hopes were frus- 

As Charles now felt his own end approaching more and more 

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near, he sent for his son Louia to come to him in the year 813 to 
Aix-la-Chapelle, and there cm a Sunday, when in the cathedral to- 
gether, he reminded him of all the dutiea of a good monarch and 
he tbeaoL caused Louis to place the golden crown (which lay upon 
the altar) ujxm his head, and thus crowned, his venerable fi^ther 
pseeented him to the assembljr as the future king of all the 
Franks. By this act Charka wished to show that his ocown waa 
independent of the pjapal chair, and the Franks were greatly pleased 
with this determination evinced by their prince at l£e close of his 

The venerable emperor, however, remained still active; he conti- 
Bued to hold imperial diets and church convocations, and regulated 
all other affidrs of the state. 

In January of the year 814 he was attacked by a fever, which 
was followed by pleurisy. Charles, who up to his latter days had 
never been ill, and was always an enemy to medicine, wished to 
cure himself by his usual remedy of &stm^, but his body had now 
become too weak. About five o'clock on me morning of the eighth 
day of his illness (the 28th of January), he felt the approach of death, 
and energetically raising his right hand, marked upon his forehead^ 
bosom, and even to the leet, the sign of the cross. He then stretched 
forth his arms once more, folded them over his bosom, closed his eyes, 
and murmuiing softly and in broken tones, ''Lord, into thy hands do 
I commit my soul,'' he breathed his last sigh in the seventy-second 
year of his age, and the forty-sixth of his reign. On. the very dav 
of his deadi l£e body of the deceased emperor was solemnly deanse^ 
laid out, and anointed, and conveyed amidst the sorrow and mourn- 
ing of the whole nation, to the vault of the church built by himself. 
He was there clothed in all the imperial robes, with a golden gospel 
spread out on his knees, a piece oi the original holy cross upon nis 
head, and a pilgrim's golden scrip around ms loins, and placed thus 
in an upright position upon a marble chair; when, filling the vault 
with firanuncense, spices, balsam, and many costly articles, they 
closed and sealed it up. 

So much veneration for the emperor existed throughout all his 
dominions, and so much were all eyes directed upon him, that 
every thing, which during the last few years of his existence, had 
happened to him either wonderful or extraordinary, was considered 
as prophetic of his death. His biographer, Eginhard, mentions 
many such phenomena. During the three years preceding his death, 
there were nequent eclipses of the sun and moon; the arcade of 
columns, which Charles had caused to be erected between the min- 
ster and the imperial palace, sank by a sudden revolution of nature, 
upon Ascension Day, into the earth, and was destroyed to its ver^ 
foundation. Besides which the Rhine bridge, near Mentz, which 
in the course of ten yearshe had built of wood with great ingenuity 
and art, so that it was rendered fit to last for ages, was entirely 
destroyed by fire in the short space of three hours. He himself in 

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his last campaign against Gt)dfi:ey, king of the Danes, upon marck- 
ing forth one day before sunrise, beheld a fiery meteor fall suddenly 
from heaven, passing from the right to the left, through the clear 
air. At this moment his horse plunged, and falling to the earth, 
overthew him so violently that tne cksp of his mantle broke, his 
sword-belt was torn asunder, so that he was lifted from the ground 
by his alarmed attendants without a mantle and without his sword. 
To which may be added a variety of other signs, equally alarming 
in their indication, but in which the great emperor was too wise to 
place any faith. 

In order that we may completely comprehend the extraordinary 
man whose history thus calls forth our admiration, we necessarily desire 
to be acquainted with his outward form, wherein the mighty spirit 
was encased. We are anxious to know how the eye reflected the 
internal sentiments; whether the brow and countenance depicted 
dignity and repose, or whether they expressed the animated, im« 
petuous emotions of the mind; and finally, whether the elevation 
and power of the spirit were equally dispkyed throughout the en- 
tire corporeal form. Eginhard, the friend of Charlemagne, and 
whom the latter had brought up in his palace as his adopted son, 
has drawn up for us a beautiful and affectionate description of his 
noble fosterfather: 

" In person," he says, " the emperor was robust and strong, and 
of great height, for he measured seven of his own feet * His head 
was round, his eyes large and animated; his nose somewhat exceeded 
moderate proportions; nis grey hair was beautiful to behold, and his 
countenance joyous and cheerful, whence his figure derived peculiar 
dignity and charm. He had a firm step, and a perfect manly bearing. 
He practised riding and hunting incessantly, according to the cus- 
tomary habits of his nation, for scarcely a people existed upon earth 
that could rival the Franks in these arts. Besides this, he was such 
a skilful swimmer, that none could justly be said to surpass him. 

*' He enjoyed constant good health, with the exception of the 
last four years of his life, when he was frequendy attacked by 
fever, which at last occasioned him to limp slightly on one foot. 
During these attacks, he continued nevertheless to follow his own 
counsel, rather than the advice of his doctors, with whom, in feet, 
he was sorely vexed, for they prohibited him from eating roasted 
meat, which ne himself considered the most wholesome of all food. 

'* He was exceedingly temperate in both eating and drinking, 
but especially so in the fatter, for intoxication was his abhorrence, 
in any person, and particularly in his own palace. His daily meal 
consisted of four dishes only, exclusive of the roasted joint, which 
his yagers or squires brought upon the spit, and which he preferred 
and relished before every other dish. During his meals he listened 

* A staff or lanoe of iron has been preserved, which is said to gire the exact 
height of Charlemagne, and according to which he m^aanred ax feet three inches 
bj the Rhenish measuiement ^^^^^^^ ^^ GoOglc 


with great pleasure to the lays of his minstrels on the lute, or to a 
reader, the subjects sune: or read being always the histories and 
events of heroic men. He also took much delight in the books 
of St. Augustine, particularly in those on the divme government of 

" In summer it was his custom after dinner, to enjoy a little fruit, 
and to drink once; then to undress himself as at mght, and thus 
repose for three or four hours. His nights were very restless, not 
merely by his awaking up several times, but likewise by his getting 
up from his couch and walking about. During his toilet, not only 
were his friends admitted, but likewise, if his Count Palatine had 
to present to him any appeal, which could not be decided without 
his opinion and determination thereupon, he forthwith caused the 
disputants to be brought before him, and then investigated the affair 
and gave judgment at once. 

" His dress consisted of the national costume, and was but little 
different from. that of the common people. He wore, next his skin, 
a linen shirt, over which a garment with a silken cord, and long 
hose. His feet were enclosed in laced shoes, and in winter, for the 
protection of his shoulders and chest, he wore a waistcoat of otter 
skin. As upper garment, he wore a mantle, and had always his 
sword girded on, the haft and defence of which were of gold and 
silver; and at times he wore a sword inlaid with jewels, but only 
on particular festivals, or when he gave audience to foreign ambas- 
sadors. His raiment likewise, on these occasions, was of golden cloth, 
and he wore a crown adorned with ffold and precious stones. Fo- 
Tdgn dress, even the most beautiful, he disliked and despised, and 
would never clothe himself in such; except wheli at Rome, where, 
firstly at the express wish of Pope Adrian, and secondly, at the re- 
quest of Leo, his successor, he wore a dress with a long train, and a 
broad mantle, with shoes made according to the Roman fashion. 

" Charles possessed a style of rich and flowing eloquence, and 
whatever he wished, was expressed by him in the most clear and 
concise manner. He did not content himself with his mother tongue 
alone, but applied himself industriously to the acquirement of the 
clasncal ana foreign languages generally. Of the former, he was so 
perfectly master of the Latm, that he spoke it equally as well as his 
i^tive tongue ; and the Grreek, although he did not speak it, he 
^nevertheless, perfectly well imderstood, and was so proficient in it, 
^t he coula himself have become its teacher. He practised the 
Bopetior arts very zealously, and was extremely Uberal in the 
Wours and rewards he conferred upon their professors. In leam- 
"^ grammar, he had the attendance of the venerable deacon, Peter 
ofRsa; and in other sciences, his instructor was Albin, with the 
suniaine of Alcuin, who was a native of Britain, but of Saxon origin ; 
a very learned man, and Charles devoted much labour and tune 
^ acquiring from him a knowledge of astronomy. He also endea- 

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Totcred to attain the art of imtm^, and iras erea aocuatomed to 
liave his tablets under liis pillow m bed, so that when he had a 
leisure moment he might practise his hand in the imitation of 
letters. In this, however, owing to his commencing it at ao late a 
period, he made but little progress. 

" The minster at Aix-k-Chapdle, which is of extreme beautj, is a 
monument of his Iotc for the arts, as also of his great piety, and 
which he caused after he had it built, to be ornamented with gdd 
and silver, together with windows, lattices, and gates of soUd brass. 
He had all the pillars and marble stones used for its constructbn^ 
brought from Rome and Ravenna, as he could not obtain them in 
any other quarter.* His piety displayed itself in the support of the 
poor, and in gifts and donations which he sent to distant lands across 
the sea, and wherever he heard Christians to be in want; and thence 
it was that he sought the friendship of princes ruling in those dis- 
tant countries, in order that some portion of nourislmient might be 
dispensed to the Christians living under their dominion. It was thus 
he maintained a cordial friendsnip vrith Aaron, the J^ins of the 
Persians (Haroun al Raschid, Cahph of Bagdad), who n^ed over 
nearly the whole of the east, with the exception of -India. Wlien, 
therefore, Charles sent his envojrs vrith ricn offerings to the holy 
tomb of our Lord and Saviour, uiey were not cmly very kindly re» 
ceiTed by Aaron, but, on their return, he sent with them his own 
ambassador to accompany them to the court of Charles, and who^ 
conveyed from him the choicest of the shawls, spices, and other costlj 
rarities of the east, as presents to the emperor, to whom be it men- 
tioned, he had already, in proof of their good understanding, sent 
some few years previously, the only dejdiant he then had in ms pos- 

From another source we learn that this elephant, which was called 
Abulabaz, or the destroyer, by its monstrous and unexampled size» 
amazed the whole world, and was Charles's especial fiivourite ; and that 
amon^ the presents sent with it there was a eoslly tent, toother with 
a clock made of brass with astonishing skill and ingenuity. Thislatter 
contained a hand or indicator moved round, duEing twdve hours, by 
the power of water, together with an equal quantity of brass bam 
which, when the hours were completed, dropped into a braas cup 

£ laced beneath, by their fallindicatuig the hour, upon which mounted 
nights, frilly armed, according to the number of hours, gall<^)ed 
forth from twelve windows — a work assuxedly of great and extract* 
dinary ingenuity for that period. Charles, on his part, made presenita 
in return to the Persian nder, of Spanish horaes, mules, and freaiaa 
mantles, which in the east were very rare and expenaiTe, and finally, 

* The cbmch of the Tivgin Ifny and the imperial piiaoe axe^ as fhr at ire know; 
the fint eiteiinye bailcUnga foooded by a German prince. C!harieB*t structorea 
axe based npon the Roman ftyle of NorUi Italy and South France, whence he pro- 
cured Ub aichitects. The pieJace in Aixrla-ChapeOe has; with iA» ezoeptioa of a 
&w lemaining itoues, entirely disappeared, but St Mary's church itiU ezistB. 

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adcled to these a nmnber of dogs for kuating the lion and tig^r, 
THisiffpaiSBed for swiftness and ferocity. 

We hare previously mentioned his friendly connexion with the 
emperor in Constantinople, and his amicable re&tions with the princes 
of Ki^land and Scotland, by whom he was highly esteemea ; and 
lihiis the impression of his personal greatness was reflected throughout 
Ae age in which he liTed, as well m the descriptions ffiven by those 
who were about him, as also in the veneration of distant nations* 
H]» own grandson, Nithard, who has described the disputes of the 
aoBB of Louis the Kous, says of him with great justice: '* Charles, 
jisdy called by aU nations the great emperor; a man who by tnse 
wisdom and virtue rises so high above the human race of his own 
age, that whilst he appears to all equally awe-striking and amiable, 
18 at the same time universally acknowledged to be wonderful and 

la the subsequent generations, still filled with veneration towards 
him, his figure became so eradiated bj tradition and fiction, that its 
ortions appear gigantically magnified. Thus, for instance, in a 
' of Low Germany he is described as follows : " The Emperor 
rles was a handsome, tall, strong man, with powerful arms and 
1^: his face w^ a span and a half long, and his beard a foot in 
length. His eyes, to those at whom he attentively looked, appeared 
so hiight and searching, that the effect therefi?om was to strike with 
atwe and terror; whilst his strenglli was so mighty, that with one 
hand he could raise a fiiUy-armed man above his head," 

Anoth^ ancient chromcle says of his expedition a^inst Desi- 
derius: '^When the Lon^bardian king from his castle in Pkvia 
observed the entire body of the Franlddi army in fuU march against 
him, Ids eye searched everywhere among the ranks to find the 
long. At lenglii the majestic monarch appeared to view, mounted 
on his war-horse (which both in durability and colour resembled 
iron Itself), with a brazen helmet on his head, his entire lofty figure 
encased in iron armour, and a shining breast-plate spread over his 
chest. Li his \eh hand he held his heavy iron spear, and his right 
grasped his massive sword ; and when at this moment Nosker, a noble^ 
exiled by Charles, and who was standing near the King of the Lon- 
gobardiaais, pointed to him, and said, ^behold, O kin^, there is he 
whom thou hast sought,' Desiderius almost fell to the ground in 
wonder and dread, faintly exclaiming, 'Away, away! Let us 
descend and bury ourselves in the earth from the wrathful counte- 
nsnee of that terrible and mighty foe !"^ 

As a testimony that the admiration excited by true fatness ex* 
tends &r beyond the present and immediately sncceeoing periods, 
and maintains its estimation in all susceptible and glowing minds, 
even to- the latest a^es, we will here quote the opinion of a modem 
writo* upon the 3iaracter of the great Charles: " The whole ap' 

* IC. Surem: " AMiandhmg fiber Kaxi der Grosse." 

K 2 Digitized by CiOOgle 


pearance and bearing of the emperor evince the true and original 
model of his energetic age — full of manly, yet cheerful virtue. Com- 
bined v?ith the exuberance of power, which remodelled an entire 
world, were united mildness and placidity, and with all his dignity 
and elevation, we find consorted, simplicity, purity of mind, and a 
profound and noble fire of feeling. The mixture of serenity and 
childlike mildness in his deportment was the mystery whereby he 
filled all at the same time with veneration and love; retaining in. 
faithful adherence to him even those who had been severely provoked, 
so exquisitely shown by the act of the noble Frank, Isenbart, who, 
although deprived by Charles of all honours and possessions, be- 
came, nevertheless, the unexpected but sole saviour of his life whea 
threatened with great danger. There lay in the fire of his piercing 
eye so much power, that a punishing glance prostrated the object, so 
that to him might be applied the words of scripture : ' The king when, 
he sits upon the throne of his majesty, chases by a dance of his coun- 
tenance every evil thing;' whilst in the thunder of nis voice there was 
such force, that it struck to the earth whomsoever he addressed in an- 
ger. On the other hand, again, we find that his countenance reflected 
such unutterable pleasure and gladness, and his voice was so har- 
monious and of such delightful clearness, that a writer styles him 
the joyful king of the Germans, assuring us that he was always so 
full ojf grace and gentleness, that he who came before his presence in 
sorrowtul mood, was by a mere look and a few words so completely 
changed, that he departed joyful and happy. In his coimtenance 
was reflected the full expression of a tranquil and clear mind, and in 
all these outlines of his character he is the perfect ideal of a true Grer- 
man hero and prince, worthy to be called, what he really was, the 
father and creator of the Germanic age, which he brought upon the 
stage of history, after it had attained ripeness and perfection in the 
womb of humanity. It was not merely in his works and external 
creations that he founded the Germanic age, but its greatness and 
simplicity, its heroism in war and friendship in peace, were ingrafted 
in his profound soul entire !" 

We have already spoken of his friendship with Pope Adrian, 
founded on mutual esteem, and his paternal devotion to Einhard. 
But to none was he attached so affectionately as to Angilbert, or 
Engelbert, a yoimg man of noble family, who was his constant com- 
panion in all his traveb and campaigns, and to whom he confided 
his most important affidrs. Engelbert was an excellent poet, and 
for some time appointed prime minister in Italy; he then became 
Charles's private secretary, and likewise married his daughter 
Bertha, from which mamage descended the before-named histo- 
rian, Nithard. Charles was a reverential son to his mother Ber- 
trande, a faithful brother to his only sister Gisla, and of his consorts 
he chiefly loved the second, Hildegarde, who bore him his three sons, 
besides three daughters. He cau^ his children to have the best 
education, and he even dedicated much of his own time to them 

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with paternal watchfulness. His sons learnt not only all chLvalric 
accomplishments, but studied also the sciences. The daughters were 
taught to work in wool, sewing, and spinning, according to the 
prevalent simple German custom. He never took his meals without 
his children; they accompanied him in all his traveb, his sons riding 
beade him, and his daughters following him. His heart was so at- 
tached to these, that he could never prevail upon himself to part 
with ihem. He superintended his domestic economy most care- 
fiiUy. To him even, the legislator of an extensive empire^ it did 
not ajppear too trifling to overlook with prudent care his estates 
and farms, so that an^ father of a fSunily might have learnt from 
him how to regulate his household affidrs. oome of his laws are 
still extant, and therein we find especially indicated, how many of 
every description of domestic animals, and how many peacocks and 
pheasants shall be reared and maintained for ornament on his farms; 
as likewise how wine and beer were to be prepared, and how the 
cultivation of bees, fisheries, orchards, and plantations, was to be 

" If Charles's general greatness impresses us with reverence and 
admiration,^' so says the modem historian of his life, ''this partici- 
pation in the infenor concerns of life, not smothered by higher cares, 
Drings him more closely in connexion with us; this especial care of 
the aomestic hearth, so peculiar to the genuine German, wherein he 
has grown up as the plant in the earth which bears and nourishes it, 
whilst his active power strives outwards into the world of deeds and 
works, and his bold mind soars towards heaven, as the plant shoots its 
blossom forth towards the sun.^' And in truth, Charles's mind was 
directed towards the light of truth ; he was animated with the love of 
the glorious and the beautiful, and planted both wherever he was able, 
and by all the means in his power.* He had formed with the wise 
Englishman, Alcmn, and other learned men a scientific society, and he 
maintained with them a regular correspondence, which was rendered 
more free and intellectual, inasmuch as a happy idea from Alcuin ena- 
bled it to be conducted without any interrerence with personal rela- 
tions. The communications were not made in the ordinary names of 
the members, but in those of adoption, in which Charles himself bore 
the name of King David, his friend Engelbert that of Homer, Alcuin 
that of Horace, hginhard that of Bezaleel, and the rest, other equally 
select names, whence the cheerful disposition of this imion, breaking 
the restrictive chains of ordinary life, sufficiently displays itself. Its 
immediate purpose, besides the cultivation of both the ancient lan- 
guages, may possibly have been to reanimate and draw forth from its 
obscurity the ancient German language and its poetry. Charles himself 

* As regards the lieneflts produced by Charles's zeal for education and science, we 
find ahready that in the years 650 to 770, there were in Germany and France some 
twenty-six writers, whilst in the years 770 to 850, there were already in Charles's 
kingdom more than one hundred. 

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«ttlier flketohed, or caused to be fiketohed, a Germaa mmsoBi^ gave 
to the manthB and the eeasonfi Grerman names, and oollected tibe abo^ 
xiginal songs, wherein were recited the noble deeds and the wars of 
jmcient beroes (as formerly Ljcurgus and Pisistratus oollected tbe 
BOfiigs of Homer). But there k Bot a more affecting trait of bis owa. 
love for the sciences extant than that alxeadj related, when in es:— 
Ixeme age be endeavoured carefully to accustom his once powerful 
band, uniich bad been used only to wield the sword, to the practice o£ 
twiiting, and that even during the sleepless hours of the night. And 
bow far he esteemed educated and scienti&c men is proved, besides the 
ixistanoes already cited, by bis example shown towards the LongobardiaxL 
historian, Paul Diaconus. He was private secretary to King Deside- 
tins, and after the latter was conquered, the former participated in the 
subsequent revolt of the Lombards, upon which he was sentenoed t» 
have bis bands chopped off. Charles, however, interfered and said^ 
^^ If these bands are chopped off who will, like him, be able to writs 
Its such charming histories?" and accordingly be pardoned himu 
The learned Alcuin, already mentioned — in possessing whom at bis 
court Charles feh moise pride than in having a kingdom — had been 
pEevioufily provost of the ba^h school of York in England, where 
ahnost au the learned men of that period bad received their educa- 
tion and had imbibed their meal for the sciences, and vwhich contained 
one of the few then (existkog libraries of the west of Europe. Ibl 
793 he was induced by the repeated entreaties of the king to go over 
to France, where he foimded the celebrated school of Tours. Gharlep 
esteemed him so much that be called him his beloved instoructor m 
GhriBt, and presented him as his friend to the grand imperial diet 
and church convocation at Frankfort. And Alcuin proved himflelf 
worthy of this honour, for when all, from fear or doubt, were silenl^ 
be alone candidly told the king the truth. The correspondence of 
Charles with Aicuin is worthy of high estimation, and of which, 
happily, we still possess a conaideiable portion. Charles, on his part, 
there expresses the greatest respect and friendship for Alcuin, and 
the latter is full of true affection, nay, at times, of inspirsdon to- 
wards his king and fidend. Charles's wife aaid his soids and daughfeera, 
areceived instruction from Alcuin, and he was styled by them ul their 
master and father, he, on his part, calling them his sons and daugfatera. 
Combined with his anxiety for the affairs of the church, Qiarliet 
likewise, with proper foresight and penetration, felt deep interest for 
the instruction of the people; thence, wherever it was possible, he 
foimded schools and investigated their progress with great solidtade 
himself. It is related that he once entered the school which was 
eBtabhshed at his own court, and examined the studies of the boys. 
The skilful he placed on his right and the unskilful on his left, 
and then it was found that the latter consisted chiefly of tbe sons of 
noble families. Charles then turned to the industrious class, praised 
them much, and assured them of his particular regard; the others h& 
admonished and scolded severely, threatening them, notwithstanding 

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diear noble desoent, to reduce them to the lowest rank in the Bchool 
xmleflB tfa^j speedily zepaiied, by zealous industry, the negligence 


The stody of the Latin tongue was especially promoted by Charles 
£cn: the sake of the church; but, at the same time, he acknowledged 
tiiie vahie of the Greek language, as he proved by founding in O^ia- 
]mb^ a Greek school. In a royal decree adcfressed to all monas* 
tezies, in which he exhorts them to apply themselves to the sciences, 
he says expressly, that he has been led to make this exhortation, be- 
eaose theb communications are written in such bad Latin. Another 
important result arising from the scientific labours of Charles and his 
£sends, was the estabhshment of Ubraries in the chief schools. Al- 
cnin laid the foundation of such a one in the school at Tours, by send- 
ing Bcholais to York for the purpose of making copies from the books 
there, and thus '^ transplanting the flowers of Bntain to Francoaxia.'' 
This example was soon followed, the desire to possess books awoke, 
the office of extracting from writings now became a favourite oocu- 
pation and duty in the monasteries and schools, and indeed, we have 
to thank this industry of the copyists for what has been preserved to 
OS from ancient times.* 

The sacied dignity of divine worship concerned him much ; he gave 
himself particular trouble to introduce a good psalmody, and caused 
&r that purpose organ players and singers to come fipm Italy; and 
«t Soiasons and Metz he instituted singmg schools. Besides this, he 
ordered a number of good sermcms by the Greek &thexs to be trans- 
lated into the Frankish tongue, ana read to the people ;t and he 
made a general reflation, that sermons should be preached in the 
national language, for King Charles well knew that civil order re- 
posed upon riie religious and moral dignity of the people, and with- 
out which it can have no solid basis. He considered church and 
state not as separated from, or inimical to each other, but conceived 
that they both had one great aim, that of the ennoblement and per- 
fection of mankind. He, therefore, in his extensive empire, linked 
both these institudons still more closely together. 

Even under the earher Frankish kings, the clergy formed an es- 

* AJcain took especial pains to fonn and establish dasses far t)ie improyement 
and po&ction of writing. In Tours, Fnlda, and Treyes, particular and distinct 
balls were appropriated for transcribers, provided with inscriptions, which impressed 
upon the mind the important duties of a writer. In fact, the art of writing in booka 
and aacieDt documents appears, under Charles, to have undergone a change, com- 
jifetel^ sodden, in improvement. For, to the unsightly Merovingian style of italic 
character previously in use — even to the first years of Charles's reign — ^we find suc- 
ceeding, as it were, with one spring, a fine and legible form of round hand, called 
the Caraiiiigian minuakel, or neat^ reduced writing. This style became the legiti- 
mate aooioe whence we derived aU our present forms, both in writing and printing, 
in German as well as Latin. In the coinB of the year 774, we likewise find displayed 
an improvement equally striking, thus showing that, even in mmor oljects, the 
^Rst Charles operated efficaciously. 

f He directed Paiilus Diaoonus to prepare extracts from the fathers, in the form 
<tf a collection of homilies throughout the year. This collection, from the usual 
qpemng cf the pieces, ^ post iUa,'* received, subsequently, the name postffle. 

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sential portion of the constitution of the kingdom. The bishops, 
as well as the dukes, participated in state affairs, and had a seat and 
voice in the national assembly. Charles made this a fixed principle, 
and this raised the clerical body to rank as one of the orders of the 
state. The constitution had already now formed two of its chief 
orders, that of the clergy and nobility ; the civil order, as the third 
component, did not yet exist; later centuries brought it to perfection, 
and thereby completed the constitution of the state. But it was im- 
portant for that period, that the feudal nobility, which had already 
become too powerful, should receive a counterbalance in the clerical 
order, which must necessarily become the preservation of Christian, 
cultivation throughout Europe, and thereby unite Europe into one 
great whole. Besides, Charles felt himself sufficiently powerful to 
fear no misuse of such spiritual influence in his realms. Although he 
increased the possessions and the consideration of the clergy, he yet 
maintained his imperial power so much above them, that his quick 
eye was everywhere feared, so much so, that one of his historians 
calls him the bishop of bishops. 

We frequently find in his decrees reproaches made against the 
clergy, when they commenced exceeding the limits of their power, 
and many of his laws generally allude to an ameliorated state of dis- 
cipline amongst the ecclesiastical body, to a restraint being put to 
their worldhness, and commanding them to perform the duties of their 
office with zeal and activity. In fact, he may be regarded as the true 
reformer of the cler^, especially when we refer to the condition of 
that body under the Merovingians. Of the tithes which were to be 
paid to the church, he appointed for the bishops one fourth, for the 
inferior clergy one fourth, for the poor one fourth, and for the church it- 
self one fourth, especially towards the building of fresh edifices. And 
as these taxes were altogether hateful alike both to the Franks and 
Saxons, he at once set the example himself, of subscribing to them, 
by having them levied equally upon the royal estates. They were 
rendered less obnoxious and more moderate likewise by his subse- 
quent decrees, that all church offices, such as baptisms, communions, 
and burials, should be performed gratuitously. 

With respect to the administration of the state, Charles dispensed 
with the power of the grand dukes as governors of entire provinces, and 
divided the latter into smaller districts, causing them to be ruled by 
counts, whose chief occupation was the superintendence of the judi- 
cial office; but the dignity of count was not hereditary. The dukes, 
whom he himself appointed, were merely his lieutenant-generals in 
war and leaders of the arri^re ban of a province. Besides which he 
des|>atched, as often as he thought it necessary, royal envoys (missi 
regii) into the provinces, who mspected their condition, and exa- 
mined how they were governed, and were obhged to draw up writ- 
ten reports thereof. These envoys consisted generally of a bishop 
and a count, as the proceedings of the spiritual as well as temporal 
adminifgfators were to be examined at the same time. The district 

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of a Missus -was called Missaticum. When any person believed 
ie had experienced an avoidance in law from the count, he could 
appeal to me Missus; and again from this there was an appeal to the 
Comes paJatU. The appointment of the judges in the courts was re- 
moved from the power of the counts by Charles, and transferred to 
the Misstis, 

He expressly and earnestly exhorted all his officials, and par- 
ticularly the judges, to the ftilfilment of their duties, as in fact the 
grand endeavour, shown throughout his entire government, had for 
Its object the improvement of the administration of justice, and es- 
pecially the protection of the poorer classes and the common free peo- 
ple, against the pressure of the higher ranks. It seemed as if in the lat- 
ter period of his reign he had more and more perceived the danger 
wi& which the common freedom of his subjects was threatened by the 
feudal system. All administration of justice, however, was in vain. 
He was forced himself to attend in person, twice in the year, national 
assembUes or diets, the one in spring, called the May field (^Campus 
Madms) in which the king, with his estates, gave the decisions; the 
other in autumn, composed of the most distinguished of his nobles and 
confidential friends, with whom he regulated the most urgent mat- 
ters, and prepared those affairs to be setUed at the ensuing May meet- 
ing. The regulations made at these diets, particularly those passed in 
the Spring meetings, which, after their division into chapters, became 
known nnder the name of capitulars^ produced for the entire king- 
dom a great combining power. 

The envoys, each in tneir division, called together the communi- 
ties four times every year, who, besides attending to their own 
matters, had to approve and confirm the resolutions passed at the 
grand assemblies, if they concerned the interests of the people: so 
nttle power had the king and his nobles to affect or alter their rights. 
Thus by means of all these institutions Charles, who was still greater 
as a legislator than a warrior, was enabled to keep in order without 
garrisons and a standing army, all the people subjected to obedience, 
as well as his whole extensive empire, although composed of such a 
variety of nations. He himself remained within the boxmdaries of 
the constitution, honoured the laws, listened willingly to the voice 
of his people, and showed in every thing, but especiaU}^ in this, his 
noble genius and magnanimity, and the dignified superiority of his 

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Louis the Pious, 814-840— Division of the Empire among his Sons, Louis, Lothaire, 
and Charles the Bald, 843— The German Sovereigns of the Race of the Carlo- 
Tingians, 848 -911 — ^Louis, or Ludwig, the Gennan — Charles the Pat — Amalf — 
Xoois the Child— The later and conchiding Period of the Carolingiann ■Conrad. X. 
of Eranconia, 911-918. 

After the raee of the Oarolingians had produoed <5onaecutively 
foiar great jnea — a rare occurreuce in history — its energy seemed to 
l)ecome exhausted. Louis the Pious did not resemble ms ancestors. 
However, his personal appearance was by no means insignificant, for 
he is descariibea as well made, with a prepossessing countenance, of a 
Strong frame, and so well practised in archery and the wielding of 
!the lance, that none about him equalled him. But he was weak in 
mind and will, and his by-name, ** the Pious," implies not only that 
jhe was religious, but principally that he was so easy temjjereo, that 
it required much to displease mm. A ruler of this description was 
not adapted to hold in union liie vast empire of his father; neverthe- 
less, the chief misfortunes of his wlxole me arose rsolely &Gm his own 

He had three sons by the first marnage, Lothaire, Pq)in, and 
Louis; and he very early drvided his empire between these three, re- 
taining for himself nothing but the tide of emperor. He, however, 
«oon afterwards espoused as second consort, Judith, of the family of 
(the Guelfs, who boore to him his fourth son, Charles, and was a proud, 
jonbitious woman, who would willingly have transferred all to her 
<awn child. Upon her persuasion Louis was induced to take a portiaBL 
of .the countries from his other sons, and give it to Charles. Where- 
upon open war arose between the emperor and his children, who 
took their father twice prisoner. The last time it occurred was near Col- 
mar, in Alsace, and because most of the nobles of Louis's suite, who 
had sworn aUegiance to him, passed over to his sons, the place has re- 
tained the name of Liigenfeld, or the Field of Lies. The good-natured 
Louis, turning to those who remained stUl with him, said, ^' Groye,al80, 
to my sons ; I will not allow that even a single individual lose, on my ac^ 
^count, life or hmb." They wept and departed, and Louis fell again imto 
the hands of his sons. Lothaire, who was the worst among than, had 
him conveyed to a cloister at Soissons in France, and urged him so 
incessantly, until he at last resolved to do public penance in the 
chapel. Lothaire's object in this was, that his father might thereby 
be made incompetent to take arms, for it was ordained by the 
canon law, that any one who had done penance was rendered inca- 
pable of bearing arms, and the Franks could not endure among them 
• a king without a sword. 

The pious Louis, who was easily persuaded that his own sins were 
the cause of all his misfortunes, absolutely allowed himself to be 
conducted into the chapel of the monastery, and after he had been 


divested of luB oword and milkaiy acooutiemeKta, he wtm clothed im 
A flack of penance, and was farced to read a mper aloud, wkereon 
his 8Qii and lus aceomplioes had infloribed all nis sins, thus: *' That 
he bad unworthily filled his office, fxequenthr ofiended God, vexed 
the church, was a perjurer, the originatar of diasensians and turhu- 
lenoee, and, at last, had even wished to make war upon his sons." And 
whilst he made this canfession, the der^, conaiBting of the Arch- 
bishop Ebho, of Rheims, whom Loius himself had raised £ram 
A servitor to an archfaishop, and with him thirty hishope, epread out 
their hands over him, and chanted penitential psalms; Lothaire 
himself sitting dose by upon a throne, and feasting his eyes upon the 
degradation of his £itner, who was immediately afterwards led away 
in the garment of repentance, and immured within a solitary oelf, 
where he was left to remain, without any consolation. 

This misuaage of the emperor emnged his son, Lotus of Bavaria, 
who was afterwards called Ludwi^ the German, and who was the best 
of the boos; he conferred with his brother Pepin, and they foioed 
XfOthaire to .emancipate their father, who was lormaUy absolved by 
ihe bishopsy and received from their hands his sword and acoouJae- 
ments backagaio. 

But his misfortunes had not made him wiser, for, on the contraiy:, 
he allowed himself to he immediately persuaded by Judith to preter 
his son GhaaJes before the rest, and to give him his most beauti- 
ful coimtries, causing him to be crowned King of Neustiia. He 
treated his best son, Louis, the worst, who oonsequenctly, in his irri* 
tation, seized arms against his father, and the old king could nowhere 
£nd a tranquil spot lor his dealh-bed; for, as he was proceeding to 
Worms, to hold a diet doere against his son, and was iust pasmng 
over the Rhine, near Meortz, he suddenly fdt his quickly-approach- 
ing end. He remained upon an island of the BJbine, near Ingelheim, 
caused a tent to be there pitched for him, and sank down upon his 
death-bed. He pardoned iiis son before his death, in these words: 
^' As he cannot come to me to otEex satiafaction, I acquit myself thus 
towards him, and take God and all of you to witness, that I forgive 
him every thing. But it will be your office to remind him, that 
ahhough I have so often pardoned him, he must not foi^et that he 
has brought the grey hairs of his &ther to the grave in bitter grief.'* 
Thus died, in the year 840, !King Louis, who was of a kind dis- 
position, but whose life was one continued scene of trouble and 
affliddan, because he knew not how to govern his own house, 
tnniffili less hiB emmre. 

The most celebrated acts of his life .condst in the foundation of two 
religions institutions; viz., the monastery of Corvey, and the arch- 
bi^opiic of Hamburg. The first originated from the cloister of the 
same name, at Amiens in France. It was hither that Gharlemi^ne 
caused many of the imprisoned Saxons to be brought, that they 
might be instructed in the Christian reHgion, and become thereby 
tbe £atiaie teachers of thdr fellow-countiymen in the same doc- 
Innea. Louis the Pious caused a religious colony of these JSaxonSite 


settle in their natiTe country, on the Weser, and he commenced 
building the new monastery as early as the year 815. It was com- 
pleted in 822, and the abbey was enriched with many crown endow- 
ments. It speedily became the best school for education in that countrr- 

Louis founded the archbishopric of Hamburg in 832, principally 
for the conversion of the heathens of the north. The first bishop was 
Ansgar, from the abbey of CJorvcy, one of the most zealous propa- 
gators of the Christian religion, and who had aheady taught the 
doctrine in Denmark and Sweden. But Hamburg, unfortunately^ 
was destroyed by the Romans, in 845, on which account the arcn- 
bishopric was transferred to Bremen. 

The brothers, who had not hesitated to take up arms against 
their own father, coidd much less remain united among themselves. 
In particular, Lothaire assumed, as emperor, great privileges over 
his brothers. Louis and Charles, Pepin being already dead, conse- 
quently armed themselves against him ; and as he would not agree 
to a treaty of peace, a battle was fought in 841, near Fontenay, in 
France. It was very sanguinary; forty thousand, according to 
others a himdred thousand, men were left on the field. Lothaire 
was conquered, and his great pretensions were thus dissipated, and 
in consequence, in the course of two years, an important treaty took 
place, which divided the great Franlash empire, and separated Ger- 
many for ever from France. This is callea the treaty of Verdun, 
concluded on the 11th of August, 843. 

1. Louis received Germany as &r as the Rhine; and across the 
Shine, Mentz, Spires, and W orms, for the sake of the culture of the 
vine (propter vim copiam), as it is said in the original record. Thus 
were united all the countries wherein a pure German race, unmixed 
with the Romans, had remained, and the Germans may consider 
the treaty of Verdun as a ^reat national benefit. For had that 
cotmtry remained tmited with France, and had the king made 
Paris, perhaps, the metropolis, or even changed about in the chief 
cities of that country, it is probable that, in the course of time, a 
ruinous mixture of the German and French languages, manners, modes 
of life, and idiosyncracies of the two nations would have taken place. 

2. Lothaire retained the imperial dignity and Italy, and acquired 
besides, a long narrow strip of land between Germany and France, 
from the Alps as far as tne Netherlands, namely, the country of 
Valais and Vaud in Switzerland, the south-east of France, as far as 
the Rhone; and on the left bank of the Rhine, Alsace, and the 
districts of the Moselle, Meuse, and Scheldt. This long and narrow 
strip between the two other brothers was probably apportioned to 
the emperor that he might be near them both, and that according to 
the wisn of the father and grandfather, the imperial control mi^ht 
tend to preserve the unity of the whole. It Hkewise seemed that 
Italy and the ancient city of Rome, as well as ancient Austrasia, 
namely, the Rhenish districts, which Charlemagne had selected for 
his residence, with his capital, Aix-la-Chapelle, were not separable 
from the imperial dignity. But although Lothaire received beautiful 


and productive provinces, yet his portion was the weakest, for his empire 
on this side of tne Alps had no natural frontiers, either in mountains 
or in a distinct natioiml race. The inhabitants of his countries on the 
Rhone and down the Rhine were composed of very different tribes; 
thenoe as there was no natural necessity for this division of coun- 
tries, it was merely produced by human caprice, consequently, there 
was no durability in it. On the contrary, it became the source of great 
misfortune. After the Emperor Lothaire, pursued as it were by the 
spirit of his injured &ther, against whom he nad chiefly offended, had 
laid down the sceptre and retired into a convent, where he died in 862, 
his three sons took up arms in contest for the land, and divided it 
among themselves; but neither of them transmitted it to his descend- 
ants. The countries of Burgundy, Alsace, and the province of Lor- 
raine proper, which Lothaire II. had received, and which had from 
him received its name was, after his early death, divided by his two 
uncles, Louis the German, and the French king, Charles; so that 
the land to the east of the Meuse, with the cities of Utrecht, Aix-la- 
Chapelle, Liege, Metz, Treves, Cologne, Strasburg, Basle, &c., fell 
to Germany. But this division did not terminate the dispute for the 
Lorraine inheritance, for it has remained through every century 
a bone of contention between the Germans and the French, and many 
sanguinary wars have taken place in consequence. 

3. Charles the Bald, received lastly, the western division of tiie 
whole Frankish kingdom, and which has continued to preserve its 

Louis theGerman(840 — 876), who was an energetic prince, of lofty 
stature and noble figure, with a fiery eje and a penetrating mind, and 
who also possessed an active disposition for education and science 
(which tlie schools of eloquence that he foimded at Frankfort and 
Ratisbonne have proved), had constantiy to contend for the tranquillity 
of his realm; for the Slavonian tribes made incursions on the eastern 
frontiers, and the Normans on the north and north-west. These bold 
sailors, of ancient German origin, wild as their sea and its northern 
coasts, coming from the Norwegian, Swedish, and Danish waters, 
appeared with the rapidity of the wind, at the mouths of tiie rivers, 
and frequently advanced deep into the country. They ascended the 
Seine as far as Paris, flew along tiie Graronne to Toulouse, and sailed 
up the Rhine to Cologne and Bonn. And it was not the banks merely 
of these rivers which suffered from their devastations, but they knew 
also how to convey their vesseb many tiiousand paces across the 
country into other rivers, so that no place afforded security Against 
them. So ffreat was tiie terror of their name, tiiat the mere report 
of their commg drove to flight all before them. Their numbers were 
generally small, for a fleet of the small ships of that period could not 
convey laxge armies; but their courage, as well as their strength of 
body and their weapons, testified to their true northern origin; whilst 
in wielding tiie powerful spear, no race equalled them. A few ships, 
manned witii valiant men, formed frequently tiie equipment of their 
rojal princes ; and as in ancient Germany, a noble leader with his coif^ 


Ittxiy, in bold esnxisioiie, aequired honotiT and booty, aaid with Mis 
suite, ev«n contested for ike poeBeflnon of a whole eoiintiy; so, on 
the other hand, the Bquadron of the bold searhero, maimed witli 
wudike and pillage-seeking adventcnera, was the source of his riches, 
forming often the moving basis u^a which he erected his krng'-- 
dom. It was thus they rounded siinilar kingdoms in Normandy-, 
France, Sicily, and in Russia. Louis the German succeeded in. 
protecting his kingdom against them, and against the Slavonians, 
but not so his son, Louis the Fat (876 — 8B7), who, afW the death 
of his brothers, Carloman and Louis, by the intervention of particu- 
lar ciicomstances, again united for a short time the three portions o£ 
Ihe Fraokisii empire, in Italy, Germany, and France. In France, 
there was a minor king, Charles the Simple, six years of age, for 
whom he was to have protected the country against the Normans; 
but not possesnng the qualifications necessary, this he was not able 
to do, and thence he was forced twice to purchase peace from them 
at the price of many pounds of gold: the first time when they had 
adyanoed upon the Meuse as fitr as HaslofF, and the second time* 
when, with 700 vessels, they had ascended the Seine as fiir as Paris- 
itsd^ and closely besieged that dty. Such cowardly conduct, and 
tlie weakness of his whole government, broudit him into contempt, 
and was the cause which {m)duced his formal deposition, in a great 
and nwdonal assembly held at Tribur in tibie year 887. To his great 
good fortune, he died the following year. 

In Germany he was succeeded (887 — 899) by Amulf, a son of 
his brother Carloman, consequently a grandson of Louis the Ger- 
man, a valiant and worthy king. He beat the Normans at Louvain, 
in the Netherlands, where they had erected a fortified camp, which 
victory made him very c^brated, for those Normans formed the- 
most valiant race of the north, and had never previously been knownr 
to fly before an enemy.* 

Arnulf now marched also into Italy to bring that disunited coun- 
try — ^where many pretenders contested for supremacy — again under 
German dominion. He advanced, in 896, as far as Rome; but his- 
army had been so much weakened by sickness and foul weatber^ 
that he dared not attempt to attack the strong walls of the dty, and 
was about to turn back. Upon this, the Romans hooted and in- 
sulted the Gennans so grossly, that, without awaiting the word of 

* About this time, in the Bouth-eaatem frontiers of Grennany, a SLavonic fnno^ 
Zwentibolt, had established a considerable dominion in Moraria. In order to gain 
his friendship, Anmlf gave him the yacant Duchy of Bohemia as a fle^ and ehose* 
him as godfather to his son, whom he named after him. But the Mocsa?ian prineo 
became mmdy* and strore for independence; and Amulf soon saw himself entaoglad 
in a severe war against him. In order, theiefhre, to gain allies, he had leoourae to 
the Magyars, w^ rose against Zwmtibrit, and, fldling upon Moravia, completely 
overthrew his dominion, and established themselves there instead, iHiHst the bte 
ruler withdrew, and sought reftige in a monastery. Amulf; in order to extend the 
power of his house, now took advantage of some f^Tourable circumstances presented 
in Lonradae, m order to piociixe for his son, Zwenlibolt, the duchy of that ommtiy. 
In this he ■noaeedcd, after several enoounters with the nobility; sad la 895 his mn 
took the title of king, but he held it but for a short time, being soon afterwards kiUed 
m a battle against his vassals, immediately after the death of his &ther. 


eammaiid, tiiey tamed back, adrsnoedy and, atonniag ike gartes, 
filled the ditches, mounted the wallB, and carried the citj. The 
Roman people were obliged to swear fidelitj to him. Bot they 
knew not how to observe the oaih thej took; and as they had not 
been able to oTerconie the powerfiil Germans by open force, they had 
leeonrae to poison ; thence Amulf was, most probably , secretly dru^^d 
by them, tor he returned ill to Gennany, and diea, after a longsLck* 
nesB, in the year 8^, much too early £or his kingdom, and mourned 
hy all Cremums; for he was yet young, and Gennany never moser 
than at that moment recpaired his pow^ul arm. 

A new savage tribe, m ferocity equal to the ancient Hunns, had 
now fixed themselves in Hungary, and extended their incursions ta> 
Germany. They were properly odled Madschari or Magyars, and 
belongea to the Calmuc race o{ the Asiatic wanderers, but they weie 
called Hunns (also Hungarian, after the countiy they henceforward: 
occupied), because it was then customary to call all those tribes Huzmv 
who were savage and terrible to behold, and who came from die 
east. They also, like the former Hunns, lived always on horse-badr,, 
and suddenly appeared where they were not awaited. They unex- 
pectedly attacked, aai as suddenly fled, and in flying they alwaysediot 
their arrows backward?, and turned quickly round when all was con- 
sidered safe. They shot their arrows from bows, formed of bone^ 
-wiik so much force and precision, that it was scarcely possible to 
avoid them; but they were igncxrant of the art of fighting at close 
quarters, or of besi^mg cities. They were small in stature, ngly in 
countenance, with deep sunken eyes, of barbaric manners, and witk 
a coane and discordant language; so that an ancient writer who* 
Kved at that period, says: ^ We must be astonished that Diviiae Pro- 
vidence should have given so delightful a country to be inhabited 
— not by such men, but by such moastess in human shape !'' 

These terrific enemies desolated in an unheard-of manner the 
German countries, during the period wh^i Amulf 's son, Louis the 
Child, who was still a minor, was called King of Grermany £rom the 
year 899'-911. These were probably the most miserable years that 
Germany had ever witnessed. With almost every year these HuBr- 
garians suddenly precipitated tiiemselves in masses upon one or 
other of the provinces, desolated it with fire and sword, and drove' 
flioasands of the inhabitants back with them as slaves, whilst the 
Germans, valiant as they were, knew not the mode of conductzng- 
sQch a war, and could not defend themselves; besides which, thOT 
possessed as yet no waBed towns wherein they might have shet 
tered their wives and children. Bavaria was first attacked by 
them, and made a prey to their devastations, and all llie court and 
noUes cut to pieces^ The foUowiag years tike same happened U> 
Saxony and Tmiringia, and the two concluding years xraaconia 
and Suabia wese in tnm devastated. The words of Solomon may 
be applied to lihese horrors of Germany: ''Woe to the eooBtry 
whose kmg is a child." But, fbctaaalely fer the salvation of hia owm 
aod other coonttieff, this dbold now died eady in the^year SIL. j 


After the race of the Carolingians, which had commenced witlx 
80 much lustre, became extinct in Germany, it still existed a short; 
time longer, although but weak, and witnout any power or autho- 
rity in France; it soon, however, disappeared there also — like a tor- 
rent which at first springs forth majestically, and dashes down all 
before it, but at last dividing itself into various isolated arms, its 
power becomes reduced, and gradually absorbed by the sand. 

Meanwhile in Germany much had become changed that proved of 
great importance to futurity. Charles the Great, as we have seen, 
made the royal power superior to all other; he did away with the 
great dukes' reigning over entire provinces, and substituted royal 
officials, with smaller circuits of government; and had his successors 
followed his example in this, the Sjrstem might have been established 
in Germany, as it was in France and other countries — ^namely, that 
but one loid should rule with imlimited power throughout tlie 
whole empire, and no prince besides. But fate ordered it other- 
wise, and caused many rulers to spring up among us, which has 
given an impulse to the development and cultivation of die German 
mind, and nas been only then Tiot dangerous to the country with, 
respect to its exterior relations, when all who called themselves Ger- 
mans held together in love and unity, and in that disposition con- 
stituted a firm and soUd German empire. 

The foundation of this polygarchy, or division of dominions, may- 
be traced chieflj to the times subseq^uent to the treaty of Verdun. 
On almost all sides formidable enemies threatened the frontiers: the 
Hungarians, the Slavonians, the Yenedians, and the Normans. The 
kings themselves were unfortunately too weak, and unable, like 
Charlemagne, to fly with assistance from one end of the realm to 
the other. They were therefore obliged to permit and authorize 
the German tribes, for the defence of the frontiers, to choose 
powerful chiefs raised among themselves, who continued to remain 
at the head of their troops, and led them against the enemy. The 
efforts made to establish a fresh foundation for the ducal power, be- 
comes more and more visible in the last moiety of the ninth century 
and very soon we find the royal Missi or Margraves, together with 
other proprietors of land, and influential men, raising themselves to 
the ducal dignity. 

It lies in the nature of things, that the development of these rela- 
tions could not be eveirwhere the same. We find oflen the go- 
vernor of a province still called in the old records Graf {Cames\ 
because he already possessed more of the ducal power than in 
another province was commanded by him who was ordinarily styled 
Dux. All research made into this subject is extremely difficult, 
and opinions thereupon are even yet not united. Thus much is 
certain, that if we consider and acknowledge in general those 

fovemors as owners of the ducal power, who posseted an over- 
alancing influence in their provinces, and who represented the 
kin^ himself in war, and in the highest courts of jurisdiction, we 
find that, at the end of the ninth and commencement of the tenth 


century, th^ again appear, and gradually became dukes of Saxony, 
Hiuiingia, Fianconia, mvana, owabia, and Lorraine. 

In Saxony, the Ludolphic race, as it appears, acquired at a very 
early date a power which we may call ducal. Eckbert, related to the 
house of C3harlemagne, was placed by the latter at the head of all 
the Saxons between the Rhine and Vistula, as count and chief 
of the heerbann; his son Ludolph held also this rank, and pos- 
sessed, in effect, already ducal newer. His son Bruno, and, after 
ins death, in 880, Otho, the father of King Henry, must be con- 
sidered in every sense as dukes. Saxony became, by degrees, the 
most powerful and extensive duchy, for it embraced, at the time of 
its greatest development, the coimtry from the Lower Rhine to the 
Oder, and from the North Sea and me Eider to the Fichtel moun- 
tains and the Wetterau. 

Thuringia had, it is true, counts also, who at times were called 
herzoge (duces limitis Sorabici); but their power, owing to the fre- 
quent changes occurring among the owners, did not completely 
£>nn itself into a ducal power. Burchard, whom we find mentioned 
as duke, fell in 908, against the Hungarians; his power was trans- 
ferred to Otho of Saxony, who already possessed a province giving 
him the title of count (Graugrafschaft) m the northern part of Thu- 
xingia. King Henry retained Thuringia united with his duchy. 

in Franconia, which besides the ancient Frankish land on the 
Lower Rhine, comprised likewise Hessia and the countries of the 
Central Rhine, the title of duke could not otherwise appear then 
much later, because the countrjr, as long as the kings continued of 
tke Frankish family, was considered kings' land; still the administra- 
tion of the country was performed by powerful counts, and two 
families, the Babenbergenans in the eastern, and the Conradinians 
at Worms, in the western part, divided the power, until they broke 
out into a deadly dispute and fight, in which the former were com- 
pletely defeated. Count Conrad, soon afterwards King Conrad I., 
became, therefore, potentisaimus comes in Franconia, and possessed 
in reality ducal power. Widukind styles him likewise Duke of the 
Franks, although he, as well as his brother Eberhard, is called by 
others also comes. It cannot, however, be doubted but that imder 
Henry L Eberhard possessed the ducal dignity. 

In Bavaria, Luitpold, who had to defend the eastern frontiers 
against the Slavonians and Hungarians, is styled dux in a diploma 
of King Louis, of the year 901, and his son Amulf calls himself duke 
in the year 908. 

In S wabia, where the defence of the frontiers was not so necessary, 
the ducal dignity appears to have connected itself gradually with the 
power of the royal missus, and to have developed itself later. Bur- 
chard, however, imder Conrad I. appears nevertheless as Duke of 
In Lorraine finally, it became more easy to the nobles of the land 


Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


by means of its doubtful and critical positioii between France and 
(xermanjin the later Carolingian period, to Tnaintain a state at 
greater independence, and we thus find upon record abeady in the 
year 901 a Duke Kebehart, and later, under King Henry, the Duke 

The dukes were not^ it is true, regarded as lords of ihdr people 
and lands, but as ministers and representatiyes of their king, in whose 
name they regulated in peace the afi^rs of justice and order, and 
in war led the army of their race to battle. But soon becoming 
large landed proprietors, and being no longer imder the surveil- 
lance of royal envoys, the dukes took advantage of the weakness 
of the kin^, and by degrees arrogated to themselves an increase of 
power, ana brought the lesser vassals under their dominion; nay, 
they even gradually made their di^ty, granted to them only as 
imperial crown officers, hereditary m their families, as well as the 
revenues of the crown lands, which they had only received as the 
salary for their service. 

Like the great dukes, the inferior imperial officers, the counts^ 
margraves, and others, established themselves more and more firmly 
in their dignities, and the estates attached thereto. The spiritual 
lords, archbishops, bishops, and abbots, were, like the temporal lords^ 
members and vassals of the empire, and like them augmented their 
secular power and possessions; and all these became by degrees 
from the mere deputies of royal authority, independent princes of 
the German nation. 

Besides this, in some individuals, the love of fi^eedom and per* 
sonal independence began already, as early as this period, to de^- 
nerate often into licence. He who thought himself offended by 
another, and conceived he possessed sufficient strength to revenge 
himself, did not seek the establishment of his rights in the usual 
way, namely, through the judges of the land^ but with arms and the 
strength of the fist. Thence that period wherein the appeal to the 
fist was so generally adopted, was called the period odiiefaust-rechtj 
the fist or club law. It commenced, already, under the later Carolin* 
gians, but it was long afterwards that it reached its highest extent. 

The evilbecame necessarily great, for the manners of the nation were 
still rude. Arms and the chace remained their fayourite occupations, 
and the sword and the falcon were the greatest treasures of the Ger- 
man. He could calmly see all taken from him, says an author, but 
if his sword and falcon came into any danger, he would not hesitate 
to save them even with a false oath. The hunting fStes were superb, 
and were included among the highest festivities oflife. Ladies, &om 
gorgeously ornamented tents, bdield the destruction of the game. In 
the evening they feasted imder tents in the forest, and the company, 
with their suites, returned amidst the music of the hunting horns. 
For the sake of the chace, the kings and nobles preferred remaining 
at their country seats, and on this account for a long time, despised 
dwelling in cities. 

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During the later period of the Carolingians, besides the wars 
-within and beyond tne land, which they so much desolated, what 
Tras matlj to be deplored was, that the germs of cultivation which 
Chailemagney in his exertions for science, had planted in his schools 
for instruction, became again almost entirely destroyed. No period in 
the whole history of Glermany is darker, more superstitious and igno- 
rant, than that of Louis the German, to the end of the Carolingian dy« 
zuiety , and a short time beyond it— despite of the Germans being, from 
time immemorial, so susceptible of cultivation, and by their serious 
application and profound meditation so well adapted for the acquire- 
ment of art and science. An example of this is to be found even in 
that dark age. In the days of Pepm and Charlemagne the first or- 
gans were brought to Germany from Greece, and Charles took everv 
pains to introduce the Latin psalmody and church music among his 
subjects. At first he had butlittle success ; at least an Italian of that 
time complains that their natural rudeness was their great obstruc- 
tion: " Great in body like mountains," says he, " their voice rolls 
forth like thunder, and cannot be modulated into gentler tones; and 
when their barbaric throats endeavour gently to produce the soft tran- 
sitions and flexibilities of the music, the hard tones pour forth their vo-^ 
lume in a rattling sound, Uke a coach rolling over the stones, so that the 
feelings of the hearer, which should be gently moved, are, on the 
contrary, completely startled and terrified." Thus was pronoimced 
originally a cnticism upon their disposition and qualification for har- 
mony. And yet by industry and exercise they advanced so far in a 
short time, tliat Pope John VIII., who lived about the year 870, 
besought Anthony, bishop of Freisingen, to send him a good organ 
from Germany, and with it a person who was equally well able to 
play upon as to make it. 

in this century a pupil of Rhabanus Maurus, the monk Otfned of 
Weiflsenburg, gave a very remarkable example of his love for his 
mother*tongue, by translating the gospel into German verse, in 
order that the people might be enabled to read it. Charlemagne 
had, indeed, commenced to improve and cultivate the German lan- 
guage, but after him no one thought further about it. Otfried now 
zealously endeavoured to make it a written language, although it 
was very diiScult to express by letters its hard and strange sounds. 
He strongly and justly contended against those who, indifferent to- 
wards their native-tongue, preferred learning, with excessive labour, 
and usin^ the languages of the Latins and Greeks. *' They call the 
Grerman knguage," he says, " boorish, and vet do not endeavour by 
their writings or study to make it more perfect. They carefully avoid 
writing badly in Latin and Greek, and yet do not care for doing so 
in their own language; they are ashamed to offend against good 
taste by even a letter in those languages, but in their own tongue it 
happens with every word. Truly a singular fact this, that such great 
and learned men do all this for the honour of Ibreign languages, and 
yet cannot even write their own !" 

L 2 

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The condition of the common freemen was the saddest of all in 
these times, and they, consequently, decreased so much that they 
scarcely fonned a distinct order in the nation. Much earlier, 
already when the feudal system gradually developed itself, and ele- 
vated the vassals above all those who cultivated their own inherit- 
ance, their numbers had decreased considerably, but the worst time 
came after Charlemagne. 

Charles knew well that the strength of a nation consists in the great 
preponderance of freemen, and that it is upon their courage and 
their animated love for their country that must depend the general 
weal and its security from all danger; he therefore ap{>lied great care 
and vigilance to the restoration oi the arri^reban, which had also by 
the influence of the feudal system fallen into disuse. In this, how- 
ever, he attained his aim but partially, because his wars, far from 
being real national wars, for the defence of the country, were only 
conquering excursions in distant coimtries. These were very op- 
pressive to the common man, who, from the day that the army 
stepped upon the land of the enemy, was obliged to provide himself, 
at his own expense, for three months with provisions, as well as with 
clothes and arms. Many, therefore,' endeavoured to avoid the duties 
of this servile military service. They gave themselves up both in 
body and possessions to the service or guardianship of the church, 
or to the patronage of a noble, either as arriere or under vassals, be- 
cause, as such, they were not bound to yield so much service as to 
the king in the arriere ban, or even as bondmen, and as such no 
longer belonging to the class of freemen. They were called the 
Lidi (Leute, people) of the seigneur, and remained, it is true, the 
possessors of their own inheritance, which they themselves cultivated, 
but they were subject to pay tax, and were held in soccage, and 
could neither quit the land nor sell it; but with their children and 
descendants they were bound to the soil, and were the property of 
their lord. This was severe; but they were at the same time ex- 
empted from doing any mihtary service in distant expeditions; for, 
as bondsmen, they were not considered worthy of bearing arms, but 
remained all their lives in tranquillity with their families. At the 
most they were only obligated, imder the most urgent circumstances, 
to repair to a short distance, within the immediate vicinity of their ter- 
ritory, there to fight, on foot, with stick or club ; the lance and sword 
being forbidden to them. Had they rightly considered that men 
who are not allowed to bear arms, also speedily lose both courage 
and power, and if they are not absolutely called slaves, soon adopt 
slavish sentiments, they would, no doubt, much rather have remained 
poor and oppressed, but still freemen and warriors; but, alas I in ne- 
cessity the nearest and most immediate aid appears the best to him 
who suffers, and the eye loses the power of perceiving the distant 

Besides the oppressive service of the arriere ban, which brought 
many freemen into slavery, there were other causes which contribu- 
ted to decrease their numbers, among which may be classed the ter- 


zific incursions of the Avari, the Normans, the Slavonians, and 
Hungarians, in which thousands of them were killed or carried off 
as staves; and later, the disorders and oppressions o{ the faust-recht^oi 
dub-law, which likewise obliged manjr of the poor freemen to give 
themselves up to the service of some neighbouring powerful noble, to 
secure themselves from the robberies of those who made a trade of 
pillage. Besides, in those times of disorder, when laying up maga- 
snes of provisions was not thought of, countries were often visited 
with desolating &mine and pestilence; in such necessities many free- 
men, that they might not die of starvation, gave themselves up, with 
their children and property, to nobles or spiritual foundations for 
bread. And, lastly, many became servitors to cloisters and eccle- 
siastical establishments; and from piety, or for the salvation of their 
souls, they gave their dl to the altar of God. For the church already, 
at this period, possessed and maintained the privileges, by which an 
individual might give to it his whole possessions, and thus entirely 
pass by the just inheritors. Thence, from all these causes, it happeaea 
that, at the end of this period, not only the ancient pride ana cou- 
lage, but also the majority of the freemen — accordingly the inde- 
pendence of the Germans — had disappeared, and scarcely any but 
noblemen and their feudatories remained, thus threatening the coun- 
try with the sad prospect of decay and ruin. But whenever neces- 
sity has been great, God has always sent to the German nation unex- 
pected aid and support. Accordingly, at this moment, it was precisely 
the devastation spread everywhere by the Hungarians which laid 
the foundation for the renewed elevation of the common freemen to 
a civic state, and re-established later the condition of the peasant. 

Af^r the death of Louis the Child, the principal German branches 
assembled, and looked about them for the most worthy among their 

Irinces to be their king. The election fell upon Otho the Illustrious, 
>uke of Saxony and Thurin^, who was related, on the maternal 
side, to the Carolingians, and dj the power of his house, as well as 
by a^e and wisdom, was held m great esteem by all. On the pa- 
ternal side, he descended from Count Eckbert, whom Charlemagne 
had placed in Saxony against the Normans, in 810. Otho, however, 
le&sed the crown, because the cares of the empire were too great 
for his age, and advised rather that Conrad, the Duke of the Franks 
(according to some writers, he was only a coimt), be made king. 
For this act, Otho merits the greater praise, as Conrad was truly 
worthy to rule as king, and the race of the Franks still continued 
the most esteemed among the German nations; for hitherto it was 
from that race that the king had commanded over the whole of Ger- 
many. Otho, therefore, wisely considered it better that the rule 
of the empire should remain with them, and, in so doing, entirely 
dismissed irom his mind the enmity which always had, and still par- 
tially existed between the Saxons and the Franks. 

Conrad was accordingly elected king on the 8th of November, 

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911, at Pforzlielm. He is described as being a man of great merit, 
both at borne and abroad ; valiant and prudent, kind and Hberal. His 
first care was to elevate, from its sunken state, the royal authoritjr, 
forupon it depended the order of the whole empire. But the confusion 
was too great, and Conrad's rei^ too short, to render his e£Ports com- 
pletely successful. The Lothnngians, or Lorrainers, who only, since 
the time of Louis the German, had belonged to Germany, were not 
contented with his election, and separated tnemselves, nor could Con- 
rad bring them back a^n to the empire. After the death of Otho 
the Illustrious, he had to contend with his son, Henry of Saxony; 
for, misguided by the advice of Hatto, Archbishop of Mentz, he 
wi^ed to deprive Henry of some great fiefi which he owned, besides 
his dukedom of Saxony, in order that no prince of the empire 
should be too powerful; probably these were the northern districts of 
Thurineia, which Otho had already possessed; but Henry was va- 
liantly defended by his Saxons. He completely defeated the king's 
brother, Eberhard, who had advanced against him with an army, 
near Eresburg (now Stadberg) so that he retained the fiefs in the 
subsequent treaty, which terminated the war; naj, he even appears 
to have conquered also the southern portion of Thuringia, and to 
have maintained the ducal dignity over the whole of Thuringia. 

Conrad confirmed Count Bturkhard in Swabia, afler some contest, 
as Duke of the AUemanni. Amulf of Bavaria, however, who also 
revolted, and so far forgot himself as to call in the Hungarians to 
his assistance, was condemned to death by the princes of the empire 
as a traitor to the country, and was obliged to take refuge among 
the Hungarians. 

Thus, by energetic measures and timely concessions, the general 
tranquillity and imperial dignity were re-established, and the unit^ 
of Germany maintamed. But Conrad well fdit how difficult the task 
was for him, and that the power of the Frankish dukes alone was not 
sufficient to curb the over-powerful nobles. It also required greater 
strength to protect the empire against the Slavonians and Hunga- 
rians, who still repeated, without ceasing, their incursions. At tne 
same time, perhaps, he did not perceive in his brother, Eberhard, 
who pretended to possess the greatest claim to the crown, the proper 
qualities of a king; whilst, on the other hand, his earlier ana now 
conciliated opponent, Henry of Saxony, was, in all respects, irre* 
proachable, endowed with ffieat energy of mind and body, and, by 
Lis power and influence, ranJ^ed at the nead of all the German princes. 
When, therefore, Conrad lay sick of a woimd at Limburg, on the 
Lahn, which he had received in his last expedition against the 
Hungarians, and felt death approaching, he thought of the example 
whic^ Otho the Illustrious had given at his election, and forgettm^ 
all jealousy, and with his thoughts directed only for the weal of his 
country, he called his brother, Eberhard, to his bedside, and thus 
addre^ed him: << We command, it is true, great means, my dear 

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Eberhaicl; we can collect great armies, and know how to lead them. 
We are not wanting in fortified cities and defences, nor in any of 
the attributes of royal dignity. Yet greater power, influence, and 
wisdom^ dwell with Henry, and upon him alone depends the welfare 
of the empire. Take, therefore, these jewels, this lance and sword, 
together with the chain and crown of the ancient kings, and carry 
diem to Henry the Saxon. Be at peace with him, that you may 
hare him for your constant strong alnr. Annoimce to him that Con- 
rad, on his death-bed, has chosen and recommended him as king, in 
preference to all the other princes." He died in December, 918. 

Eberhard did what his brother had commanded, and was the first 
who did fealty to King Henry. A kingdom wherein such senti- 
ments were found, might truly and without danger, remain electoral 

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The tenth century is bv no means rich in historical works: 

1. The clironide of Hegino, already mentioned in the preceding epoch, was con* 
tinned by another writer as far as the year 967, abridged, but mostly careful and 
exact, and altogether well written. 

2. Luitprand of Pavia, private secretary to King Beranger II. of Italy, afterwards 
in the service of King Otho L, and finally Bishop of Cremona, wrote the history o£ 
his time not without spirit, and, especially in his history of Italy, very instructive, 
although partial and enthusiastic. His style is far-fetched and bombastic, showing 
much of the courtier, and a great love for anecdote and illustration in his narrative. 
This history goes from c. 886 — 948, and a supplement from 961 — 964. He wrote 
also, in another distinct work, an account of his emlMissy to the court of the Em- 
peror Nicephorus. 

3. Horoswitha, a nun of Gandersheim, wrote a poem, '* De Gestis Ottonimi Pa- 
negyris," from 919 — 964; as the title indicates, a poem in praise of Otho the Great, 
accordingly not always faithful to truth, and, of course, partial or one-sided; never- 
theless, not without some proportionate merit here and there. She treats upon the 
later years rather fugitively. 

4. Widukind, usually called Wittekind, a monk of Corvey, who died about the 
year 1000, wrote a history of the Saxons (Rerum Saxinocarum, Hbri iii) as far as 
973. As the first historian of his time, he presents his record of the events in a 
form equally agreeable and happy, devoted to the house of Saxony, but still with a 
desire after truth ; and the second part of his work is of invaluable merit The first 
portion is, in part, based upon the legends and traditions of the people. 

5. Amongst the chronicles on the history of Grermany, especially the relations of 
the Lotharingians, Flodoard of ^eims is particularly important, who wrote a his* 
tory from 919 to 966. 

6. Richer, a monk of St. Remy, near Rheims, studied medicine,'and was a pupil of 
the celebrated Gesbert; and encouraged by his master to write history, he com- 

red, in the years 995 to 998, his " Historiarum, libros iv.," from 888 — ^995, which 
dedicated to Gesbert. His history is, for France, partial, and he often adapts the 
events to the advantage of that country. Nevertheless, amidst the dearth of his- 
torical source in his time, he is certainly of great value. His narrative is based upon 
a close study of the ancients. The middle ages being only taken up by Ekkehard, 
Richer was quite lost sight of, until Pertz discovered in Bamberg the only autho- 
graphic document still existing by him, which has been published in the *' Monu- 

7. Detached and extremely interesting communications are given to us in the 
biographies of Bruno, Archbishop of Cologne, the brother of Otho I.; of Udalrich, 
Bishop of Augsburg; and other ecclesiastics of that time. 

In the eleventh century, we find more important and a greater number of historians, 
who, in their descriptions, distinguish themselves especially: 

1. The life of Queen Matilda, written by command of King Henry K, by an un- 
known author, between the years 1002 and 1014; agreeably written, and not unim- 
portant as regards the history of Henry I. 

2. Ditmar, or Thietmar, Bishop of Merseburg, who died in 1018, wrote a history 
of the German kings from 876 — 1018. His narrative is confused, his language ob- 
scure, being neither pure nor agreeable, and his description in the first books not 
impartial Nevertheless, he is of great importance to us, rich in information of the 
most varied nature, and forms our principle source for the history oi Otho IIL and 
Henry II. He was a friend and relation of the Saxon emperors. 

3. Besides the last-mentioned writer, we find the best detuled and correct infor- 

Digitized by 


H£NRT I.— RUDOLPHUS OF HAP8BURG, 919—1273. 153 

matioa retpeciing the end of the tenth and oommencement of the eleTenth century 
in the ** Annales Qnedlinburgensia," to 10S5. 

4. The life of Henry IL by Adelbold, Bishop of Utrecht, is incomplete, and nearly 
all borrowed from Ditmar, but well written. The ** V it»" of both the Bishopa of 
Hildeahcim, Beraward and Grodeluurd, are, as regards the history of Saxony, of great 
consequence; the Meinwercs of Paderbom merit being mentioned likewise. 

5. Wippo, chaplain to the Emperor Ck)nrad IL, whose life he has written in a pom- 
pons style, " Vita Ck)nradi SaUo." He was a man of ecience and lett^s, and of a 
lemaikable mind. 

6. Hermannus Contractus (the lame), of the fiunily of the Counts of Yehringen, 
and a ISenedictine monk of Beichenau, who died in 1054. He wrote a chronicle 
from 1000 — 1054, continued to 1100 by Berthold and Bemold, of Constance. 

7. Adam of Bremen (bom at Meissen, and canon and rector of the college of Bre« 
men), who died in 1076. He wrote a good ecclesiastical histoiy of the Korth, from 
the middle of the eighth century to 1076; important for the history of North Qer- 
many, especially of the time of Henry IV. 

8. Bruno of Conrey (de Belle Saxonico), a passionate adversary of Henry IV., and 
who exaggerates and disfigures much; yet he is important and indispensable for the 
kistory of the war. 

9. Lambert of Aschaifenburg, a monk of Hersfeld, wrote a chronicle from the 
earlier times to 1077. A work of great genius, full of spirit^ well written, and an 
important source for the period in which he Uved; he is especially the best historian 
of the middle ages. 

10. Marianus Scotus, who died in 1086; a monk of Fulda and Mentz, who wrote 
a chronicle to 1083, which was continued by Dodechin to 1200. 

11. Sigbert,amonkof Gemblours (Sigeb. GemblacensisX who died in 1112, wrote 
a chronicle; learned, written with great industry, and rich in information, but which 
is nerertbeless confused and not altogether authentic His work has been continued 
by sereral writers, and in the subsequent middle ages much resorted to. 

12. Ekkehardus Uraugiensis wrote a chronicle ta 1126, likewise yery learned, 
carefully written, of great value in the particular history of his own times, and more 
impartial than most of the historians of that pmod. who all wrote for or against the 
emperors and popes. There are several continuations of this work, of which the 
most known is that by the Abbot of Ursperg (Chron. Ursperg^ to 1229. 

13. The letters of the popes and other distinguished men, collected by an ecclesi- 
astic, Ulrich of Bamberg, in the twelfth century, are extremely valuable. 

14. It is likewise very interesting, in order to catch the spirit of those times when 
the dispute between Henry and Gregory excited the pens of various distinguished 
men, to write in defence of both those parties, to know the various controversial 
productions which appeared on this subject, wi^ the different opinions therein con- 
tained. The partisans of the pope had their central point in the monasteries 
of St. Blaise, Schaffhausen, and Hirschau ; whilst, however, many learned and esti- 
mable men, of irreproachable character, wrote against the pope and in favour of the 
emperor. We cannot here give the names of these opposite writers, but their cha- 
racter will be found fully drawn in Stenzel's excellent work on the history of Ger- 
many under the Frankish emperors.* 

^ 15. The Biography of Benno, Bishop of Osnaburg, a friend of Henry IV. by 
Korbert, Abbot of the Convent of Iburg, which was built by Benno, contains im- 
portant information. 

16. The historians of the Crusades are more especially numerous ; the importance 
of the subject, the universal interest taken ther^n, the peculiar nature of the expe- 
dition in a foreign country and at such a distance, together with the surprising and 
wonderfnl deeds performed, excited many, and particularly those who were present, 
to give their records of the scenes witnessed, for the perusal of those left behind at 
the time and their successors. The majority of the chronicles have been collected 
by Bongars, under the title: '* Gesta Dei per Francos, Hanoviae 1611, fol." 

In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, the impetus given by the Crusades pro- 
duced its influence, and operated beneficially upon the historians. They became 
more particular in t^e selection and arrangement of the subject-matter, thus showing 
a c(»mnencement in the art of historical writing. Amongst the most distinguished 
writers are: 

1. Otho^ Bishop of Freisingen, who died in 1158, son of the Margrave Leopold of 

* Geschichte Deutschlands unter den Friinkischen Kaisem. 1827-1828. 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 

154 H£NRT L— RUDOLPHUS OF HAP8BURG, 919—1273. 

Anrtria, a pfailoiapher, of independent feding, and toXk dt eloquence. He wrote a nni* 
Tenal faistory to the year 1152, well continiied as &r as 1209, bj Otho of Sainte 
Sbiae ; and the life of the Emperor Frederic I. to 1156, which waa continued as far 
as 1160 byBadewich, Canon of Freisingen; both works equally interesting and, 
feaned, and written with inteUigenoe and discernment. 

2. The History of Frederic I reoelTes important elucidations from the Chronicles 
ef Yincenz of Prague, 1140—1167; the mstory of Lodi 1153—1178, by Otho and 
Acerbus Morena; the History of Bomuald, Archbishop of Salerno, to 1168; the 
Poem of Giinther : ligurinus and the book of the so-called Sire Baul of Milan: ** de 
Bebns gestis Frederic! in Italia." 

3. The Chronicle of the Slavi, by Helmold, an ecclesiastic of Lubeck, to 1170, and 
by Arnold to 1209; important for the history of Henry the lion and the house of 
the Guelphs. 

4. Valuable information is given upon the same subject by Gerhard, Provost oeT 
Btederbuch, in his Chronicles cf the Monastery, and by the Monk of Weingarten in 
his book ** de Guelfis,'* and his Chronicles. 

5. The so-called ** Annalista Saxo" and*' Chrooagraphus Saxo^" mostly compila- 
tions, but the former for the eleventh and the latter for the twelfth oenturieB, in the 
detail, are both very interesting. 

Nearly all the bishoprics, cJiurclies, and monasteries of Germany, now received 
tiieir appointed historians, who we find touch more or less upon general matten, and 
are often more important than the universal chronicles selected for general circula- 
tioo. Such are for instance: 

6. Albert Ton Stade, whose dmmide goes as &r as 1256, and is continued by a 
stranger to 1324 — also a compilation. 

7. Gotfiied vonVitertw to 1186; the monk Alberich, Job. Titoduranus, &c. 

8. A collectkm of letters by cdebrated men of that period is very important, 
especially those of Bope Innocent HL and Petrus de Tinea, ChanoeUor of the Em- 
peror Frederic IL, and who died in 1249. 

9. The most complete collection of letters to and from the popes, of the transac- 
tions of their ambassadors and other similar documents, has been preserved in the 
archives of the Vatican in Rome, which, as maybe easily conceived, are of the highest 
importance for the history of this period, but it is extremely difficult to gain access 
to them. A great part of them, however, has been transcribed in Home by Pertz, 
and already the commencement of thehr publication has been made in the fourth 
volume of the " Monumenta Germaniae Historica." 

10. A work of very great importance for the history of the Emperor Frederic IL, 
is the History of England, by Matthieu-Paxis, who, together with the events of the 
Engtish nation from 1 066 — 1259, treats also occasionally upon the affairs of the other 
nations of Europe. So likewise various Italian historians, of whom we need only 
here refer espedally to Bichard de Saint Germano and Kioolas de Jamsilla (both 
in the CoUection of Muratori). 

11. All the great writers who form the source of history have been brought toge- 
iher in the great Collections of Ihicheene, Bouquet (for France), Muratori (for Italy), 
Schard, Beuber, Urstisius, Pistorius, Freher, Goldast, Schilter, Meibom, Leibnitz, 
Ekkard, &c., (for Germany). 

I» 12. EquaUy important as were for the history of the jirecedlng epoch the coOeetion 
of the ancient laws of the Franks and the nations subjected to them, are likewise for 
the history of the Middle Ages redthough much abridged J the collections of the later 
laws, known under the names of uie SachBengpiegd or Mirror of Saxony, the Schwabtn- 
Spiegel or Mirror of Swabia, and Kauerrechtf or the Imperial Law. 

Digitized by 





Baay L, 919-936— Bis Waz»— The Hnngariaiu— The SlaTooiaiuH- New Institu- 
tioDft— CKho L, 936-973— The Hungarians— Battle of the Lechfeld— The Western 
Irngsre renewed 962— Greece— Otho IL, 973-983— Italy— Otho ILL, 983-1003— 
His BeHgiouB Derotion — Bia Partiality for Boman and Grecian Manners and 
Costoins— Heoxy IL, 1008-1024— Italy— PaTiar-Bamberg— His Death, 1024— 
£ndaf the Sazon Dynasty. 

Thb accounts we possess respectmg the electdon of Heniy vaij 
mnch, and axe liere and there yeiy erroneous. If we follow — as ur 
hit just — the statements of the most ancient writers, Widukind and 
Ktmar, we shall find that the princes and elders of the Franks, 
gelding to the counsel of Conrad their kin^, ffiven on his death-bed, 
asKmhled together at the summons of their duke, Eberhard, at Fritz- 
kr, in the beginningof the year 919, and there, in the presence of 
ibe two nations, the Franks and the Saxons, elected Henry for their 
ttrereign. The whole assembly with uplifted hands proclsamed and 
tthited with loud shouts their chosen king. Thus the choice was 
i&ore properly made by the nobles of Franconia, whilst the Saxona 
iiatorally accepted the election made of their own duke. As yet, how- 
ler, it could not be known what measures might be adopted by the 
other nations, and we shall soon learn in what way Henry speedily 
l>i0Qffht the Swabians and Bavarians to acknowledge his sovereignty. 
Subsequent authorities relate that the envoys despatched to ofier 
^ crown to Henry, met him on his estates of die Hartz Moun* 
W8, amon^ his Moons, occupied in catching birds, whence 
le derived the byname of the Fowler. It is possible that this tra- 
oition may have been preserved among the people, still the aforesaid 
^^er wnters make no mention of it, whilst it is only in the middle 
of the eleventh century that we for the first time meet in the chro" 
^'^^ and other historical works, with this byname Henricus auceps. 
Henry's reign becan, it is true, with some internal agitations, but 
"^ese were soon quelled, for the anxious wish both of Otho the Ulustri- 
^and King Conrad became now fulfilled, and the Franks and the 
^^08 lived accordingly in harmony together. Duke Burkhard of 
^^ia, and Duke Amulf of Bavaria, who had returned from the 
flungariana, refiised him homage; but he speedily brought them by 
™ power of his arms and the gentler force of peaceful and friendly 
I^r^oaaion, back to their duty. Tlius, from the year 921, the whole 
^Germany obeyed Henry, and no internal war disturbed the peace 
^hia empire, although it was only afler several batdes that he con- 
JJieted Lorraine, wnich had still wavered between France and 
vetznany. Soon afterwards he strengthened his union with that 

Digitized by CjOOQ IC 


country by giving liis daughter Grerberga in marriage to its duke, 
Giselbert, and during seven centuries tnat beautiful land remained 
united with Grermany. 

Henry could now occupy himself with his foreign enemies, the 
Slavonians and Hungarians. The latter thought they could still 
continue their old system of destruction in the German countries, 
but they now found an opponent who arrested their progress. At 
first, indeed, Henry was obliged to peld to their furious attacks (in 
924), and they advanced into the very heart of Saxony. He was, 
however, fortunate enough, in a sally he made from the fortified 
Castle of Werle, or Werlaon,* to capture one of their most distin- 
guished princes ; for his ransom and Henry's promise of a tribute the 
Hungarians concluded a truce for nine years, and engaged during 
that time not to attack Grermany. They probably purposed after 
that to make doubly good the lost time, but Heniy profited so well 
by those nine years that when they did return they found a very 
different coimtry to contend with. 

He now commenced suppressing with much severity and justice in- 
ternal turbulence and depredation, so that the greater zeal might be 
excited against foreign enemies. For under the reign of the last 
Garolingians, as we have already seen, the spirit for war and rapine 
was cherished everywhere, even amongst the nobles. Henry pur- 
sued and punished these robbers wherever they were taken; but 
he pardoiied those in whom he found the better spirit to exist, and 
gave them arms and land on the eastern frontiers of the empire, in 
order that they might thus have a fidr opportunity for the exercise 
of their passion for war against his enemies. Merseburg, which 
served as one of the quarters for such a troop, thus became a sort of 
bulwark or protecting wall against the Slavonians, until Henry 
himself advanced farther into me country of that nation. 

He then exercised his German soldiers, who until then only knew 
howtocontend on foot, in the art of fighting on horseback, so that they 
might be better enabled to resist the hordes of moimted Hungarians; 
ana as the Germans were always willing to learn, and were likewise 
skilful in the acquirement of the art of arms generally, they were 
speedily made perfect in the cavalry evolutions. He practised them 
to attack in close ranks ; to await the first arrow of the enemy, and to 
receive it on the shield, and then suddenly to dash upon them before 
they had time to discharge the second. Combined with this reform in 
the cavalry exercise, he likewise introduced a more strict discipline ; 
the eldest brother in every family, as it appears, was forced to do 
dutv as a horse soldier, and all capable of bearing arms were obliged 
at the general summons (according to the ancient law, which he re- 
newed) to join the ranks. 

• The position of Werle (called by Widukind, Werlaon) has been varioualy dU- 
cuBsed; endeavours having been made to trace it in Westphalia, Brunswick, Hildes- 
heim, and other districts ; but most probably it wa« in the palatinAte of the same name^ 
oear Goslar, aa appears in the ** Mirror of the Saxons." 

Digitized by 



Finally, as he well saw that the enemy could still do much mis- 
chief, even if they were put to flight — ^for, hke a flash of lightning they 
appealed now h^re, now there, pillaging and murdering and then 
Tanished before they could be overt^en — he in this interval, con- 
verted with great industry a number of unemployed buildings into 
fortified castles, placed at certain distances from each other, so that the 
inhabitants of the surrounding country, upon the first intelligence of 
the enemy's approach, might take refuge there with their property. 
The Hungarians knew nothing of besieging cities, and if they made 
but little booty in their incursions they did not very soon appear 
again. Heniy s hereditary lands — as in fact generally the north of 
Germany— were very poor in those larger settlements which might 
be compared with towns; in those parts the custom of Uving in iso- 
lated localities was preserved later tnan elsewhere. Accordingly, as 
Widukind relates, aU were busily occupied, day and night, with the 
construction of these burghs, and every one without distinction of 
lank or other claims to independence, was forced to join in this 
^rand work. Henry built these fortified castles and cities chiefly 
in his hereditary lands, Saxony and Thuringia, and among others 
Goslar, Duderstadt, Nordhausen, Quedlinburg, Merseburg, and 
Sleissen are named. But that he might also have inhabitants and 
garrisons in these places he ordered, that of all the men who were 
bound to do service in war, every ninth man should dwell in the city, 
and these were obliged to occupy themselves with the building of 
houses, which might serve as places of refuge, upon the attacks of the 
enemy, and the others were bound to supply them yearly with the 
third portion of their produce, in order that they might have where- 
with to live, and preserve the rest for all in time of danger. 

When Henry had passed some years in making these preparations 
he resolved to exercise his warriors, by subduing the neighbours of 
the (jermans in the east and north, who although not so dangerous as 
the Hungarians, were still not less disposed to be hostile. 

He attacked and beat the Slavonians (the Hevellers on the Havel) 
in the Marches of Brandenburg, and conquered their city Brennaburg 
(Brandenburg), which he b^eged in the most severe winter, so 
severe that his army encamped on the ice of the river Havel. He then 
subjected the Daleminziens or Dalmatians, who inhabited the banks 
of the Elbe, from Meissen to Bohemia. He also undertook an expe- 
dition against the Bohemians, besieged Duke Wenzeslaus in Prague^ 
the capital, and forced him to 3aela obedience. From this time the 
kings of Grermany have continued to demand fealty from the dukes 
of Bohemia. 

These events took place in all probability in the years 928 and 
929. But in this latter year a Slavonic race, the Kedarians, en- 
couraged no doubt by the absence of the king when on his Bohe- 
mian expedition^ united with their neighbouring tribes, and sud- 
denly revolted, and it was necessary to summon together all the 
Saxons^ in one entire mass, to advance against them. The king's 

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generals laid aege to the town of Lukini (Lenzen), near ihe Elbe. 
A great army of the Slavonians advanced to its relief and a j?rand 
battle was fought^ in which they ware completely annihilated, 
Widukind states iheir loss at 200,000; even if this number is 
exaggerated, it is quite certain that this victory of the Saxons pro- 
duced the lasting subjection of the Slavonians. 

No doubt it was in order to guarantee these new con<]^uests against 
the Slavonians, that Henry extended the already existmg defences 
on the Slavonian fix>ntiers, and thence were formed gradually the 
Margraviate of Nordsachsen (the present Altmark), and the JMs.r- 
graviate Meissen, on the Elbe, where he founded the same-named 
city and fortification. Credit may not be given to him, it is true, for 
the complete establishment of both these margraviates, because that 
occurs in the time of the Ottomans; nevertheless they owe to him 
their foundation. Neither is it proved that in order to promul- 

fate Christianity among the Slavonians, he had already founded 
ishoprics, the turbulence of the times may have prevented him during 
the rest of his reign from doing so; but his son Otho completed 
afterwards what his father projected, by introducing ecclesiastical 
institutions there. 

Meantime the nine years' truce with the Hungarians having ex- 
pired, they sent an embassy to Germany to demand the ancient tri« 
Bute which that country had disgracefully been obliged to pay 
them. But Henry, to show them the contempt in which the Ger- 
mans now held them^ delivered to the ambassaaors this time^ in the 
form of a tribute, a man^ dog, deprived of its tail and ears, that 
bein^ a very ancient symbol of the most utter contempt. At this 
the Hungarians were roused into fury, and prepared themselves 
to take bitter revenge for it; but King Henry now addressed his 
people thus: 

'^ You know from what dangers our formerly-desolated kingdom 
is now free, for it was torn to pieces by internal dissensions, and 
external wars. But now, by the protection of God, by our efforts, and 
hj your valour, one enemy, the Slavonians, being brought to subjec- 
tion, nothing remains for us but to raise ourselves just as uni- 
tedly, and in one mass against the common enemy, the savage Avari 
(thus he styled the Himgarians). Hitherto we have been obliged 
to give up all our possessions to enrich them, and now to satisfy them 
further we must plunder our churches, for we have nothing else to give 
them. Choose now yourselves; will vou admit that I shall take 
away what is appointed for the service of God to purchase our 
peace from the enemies of that Gt)d, or will you, as it Deseems Ger- 
mans, firmly confide that He will save us, who in truth is our Lord 
and Saviour?' On this the people raised their hands and voices to 
heaven, and swore to fight. 

The Hungarians now advanced in two strong divisions. The first 
attacked Thuringia and devastated the country, to the "Weser dis- 
tricts, as far as it was not defended by its fortified towns. But an 

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flimy, foimed of the Saxons and Thuiin^ians, attacked this di^i- 
sion, defeated it, destroyed its leaders, and pursuing it through the 
whole of Thuiingia, annihilated it completely. 

The other division of the Hun^trians which had remained sta- 
tionary in the eastern districts, received the tidings of the overthrow 
of then brethren at the moment they were la;pig si^ to the seat 
of Henry's sister, married to Wido of Thuringia. Wnat place this 
was, we have mifortunatelj not been able to learn. Some have 
thought it to be Merseburg, which liutprand names as the enemyVi 
place of encampment, others again pronounce it to be Wittenberg. 
Hie king, as W idukind relates, encamped near Eiade, the situation 
of which it is equally impossible to determine. Still it is extremely 
probable that the battle took place in the vidniiy of the Saale, not 
£ir from Merseburg, in the Hassgau. 

Hie enemy abandoned their camp, and according to their custom, 
lighted large fires as a signal to all the rest of their troops, dispersed 
around in plundering, to collect together. The followmg morning 
Semj advanced wiu his army, and exhorted his troops in the most 
glowing language on that day to take ample revenge tat the wrongs 
of theb country and their relations and fhends slain, or carried off as 
slayes. Thus he marched through the ranks of his warriors, bearing 
in his hand the holy lance,* preceded by the banner of the army 
waving before him, which was consecrated as the angel's banner, 
it being decorated with the figure of the archangel Michael. Thence 
the German warriors felt within them the full confidence of victory, 
and awaited the signal for battle with impatience. The king, how* 
ever, who already perceived by the motions of the enemy that they 
would not msJke a stand, sent forward a portion of the Thuringian 
militia, or Landwehr, with a few lightly-armed horsemen, in order 
that the enemy might pursue these almost unarmed troops, and then 
be seduced onwards to attack his main body. And this took place; but 
they so speedily turned their backs upon viewing the well-armed 
nmks of the Germans, that it scarcely became a regular battle. 
They were pursued, and the greater part were either hewn down or 
taken prisoners; the camp of the enemy, with all the treasures 
stolen, was captured, and what to the feeUngs was most of all af- 
fectii^ and delightful was, that the prisoners whom the Hunga- 
rians had already forced along as slaves, now saw themselves so provi- 
dentially fireedirom bondage. Henry then fell down on his knees, 
together with his whole army, and thanked God for the victory 
gamed. The tribute which he had hitherto been forced to pay over 
to the enemy he now devoted to the service of the church, as well as 

* This holy lance was handed to Henry by Rnddlphiu of Burgundy, as a pre- 
sent : it was ftimished with a cross, formed of nails, with which, as was belieTed, the 
hands and feet of our Saviour had been fixed when crucified. King Heniy and his 
successors held this sacred weapon in high yeneration, and always used it on im- 
portant occasions. 

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to charitable gifts -v^hich he made to the poor; and the king himselT, 
eays Widnldnd, was henceforward called by his inspired warriors, 
"The father of his country," their "sovereign lord," and their 
^'emperor;" whilst the fame of his great virtue and valour extended, 
over the whole country. 

This action took place in the year 933, in the neighbourhood o£ 
Merseburg, and was what was usually styled the M erseburger engage- 
ment or the battle of the Hassgau. In remembrance of the event, Henry^ 
as is related hj Liutprand, had a painting of the battle drawn in the 
dining hall of his palace in Merseburg, which represented the tri- 
umphant scene with nearly all the truth and animation of life itself. 

The year 934 presented to King Henry another opportunity by 
which to gain great glory, by an expedition against the Danes, 
who were ravaging and laying waste the coasts of Friesland and 
Saxony. He mcuched into their own country, at the head of his 
armr, forced their kinff, Gorm (usually sumamed the old), to con- 
clude a peace, established at Silesia, on the frontiers of the empire, 
a fortified barrier, and founded there a margraviate, wherein he left 
a colony of Saxons. He also succeeded in converting one of the 
members of the royal fitmilj — ^probably Knud, the son of Grorm, 
but, according to others, his second son, Harold — ^to Christianity. 
Thus was re-established bv Henrv I. the Margraviate Schlei and 
Trenne, which had previously served as a bulwark tor theimperial fron- 
tiers, and which the Danes liad again possessed and destroyed. This 
good prince therefore had now the happiness to behold, when on the 
eve of his glorious life, these enemies of the north who, during; an entire 
century, had spread terror throughout the countries of Europe, retire 
before him, and, confining then^ves within the limits of tneir own 
territory, acknowledge his power.* 

At home, in his own domestic circle, King Henry exercised the 
virtues and duties of an excellent husband and a good father. His 

Sueen, tiie pious and ^ntie Matilda, was the model of wives; 
>r, possessing great influence over the king, she availed her- 
self thereof, wherever it was possible, to obtain his grace and 
pardon for tiie guilty; and his kind and noble heart was always 
sadly pained when the stem command of public justice forced him to 
refuse her appeals for mercy. By her he had five children^ Otho, 
Gerber^, Haduin, and subsequentiy Henry and Bruno. By his 
first wife, Hathberga (who, having originall]^ been destined for a 
convent, was never looked upon as his lawful wife, and soon left him) 
he had a son, called Tancmar, but who was not acknowledged as a 
legitimate child. 

He gave Otho, his eldest son and successor, in marriage to Edge- 
iha, daughter of Edward, King of England; and by that act, set tno 
first example which the kings of the Saxon dynasty followed so fre- 

* This piece of land, between Schlei and Eider, remained thenceforward united 
with Grermany for nearly a centuiT', until the emperor, Conrad IL, resigned it to King 

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quently afterwards, of seeking to unite themselves with all the other 
lojal nouses of Europe. Tnis fonns a distinguished feature in this 
noble lace. 

Towards the end of his life, according to Widukind, after having 
so gloriously succeeded in his devoted object, of producing for his 
country peace internally, and from all other nations respect exter- 
nally, Heniy had it in contemplation to proceed to Italy, in order 
to re-unite that country with the empire of Germany. Whether or 
not this statement rests upon any good foundation, is not known; but 
the execution of this desi^, if redly intended, was suddenly inter- 
rupted by nckneas, he being attacked with a fit of apoplexy whilst 
staying at Bothfeld, in the autunm of 935, from which he suffered 
a long and severe illness. When he did recover sufficiently, he felt 
the necessity of at once attending to the means of securing the tran- 
Qinllity of nis empire, and he accordingly convoked an assembly of 
tke nobles at Erfurt He had long perceived in his eldest son 
Otho, all that energy and greatness of mmd so suitable and necessary 
for a soverei^; but the mother was more in favour of Henry, the 
second son, oecause he was more mild than his passionate brother; 
besides which, she held him to possess a greater right to the succession 
of the crown, because he was the first-bom son after his father had 
been invested with the imperial dignity. The will of the fether, how- 
ever, determined all the nobles to recognise Otho as successor. 

More easy now in his mind, Henryvleft Erfurt and proceeded to 
Memleben. There he experienced a second attack of apoplexy, 
and, after having taken an affecting, but resigned farewell of ms 
amiable wife, he died on Sunday the 2nd of July, in the year 936, 
at the age of sixty, in the presence of his sons and different princes 
of the empire. His remains were buried in the church of St. Peter, 
before the altar, in Quedlinburg, the city he had himself founded. 

Henry had reigned only eighteen years, and yet during that time 
he had not only raised the empire irom a fallen state, but had ele- 
vated it to the highest degjree of power and command. He was 
strong and mighty against his enemies, and towards his friends and 
subjects, kind, just, and mild. He is represented as having been of 
a handsome, chivalric form, skilful and bold as a himter, and so 
adroit in all the exercises of the body and warlike arms, that he was 
the terror of his adversaries. He was extremely bland and affable 
in his manner, but still preserved so well his dignity that he kept 
every one within the bounds of respect. 

Henry may, with justice, be styled one of the greatest of all Ger- 
man prmces; for that which proves the greatness of a king is not so 
much the actions by which he astonishes the world, but the works he 
leaves behind him, and which bear in themselves the living germ of 
a new epoch. 

Unfortimately, the most ancient and authentic writers in reference 
to King Henry are very imperfect and unsatisfactory, so much so, 
that it is impossible to place entire confidence in the subsequent state- 

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xnents. Still it is already mncli -when we &ad at least, that all the 
writers of the middle ages agree in looking upon him as the insti- 
tutor of chivalry and the ennobling reformer of the nobility, as wdl 
as being the founder of cities and citizenship, and, with one word, of 
all the noble institutions which became developed afler him. This tes- 
timony proves that his works have had the greatest influence, and, 
accormngly, that his memory, as it has been, should continue to be 
honoured, among mankind. But even if we retain only what is 
clearly proved in history, enough will remain to establish his daims 
to glory and honour. 

Henry became a still greater benefactor to Germany by founding, 
in the construction of cities, new mimicipalities. For although the im- 
mediate object of these strong places was to protect the country against 
the pillaging hordes of the Hungarians, it was one only secondary, izi- 
asmuch as they were far more important as the cradle of a new con- 
dition of life. The order of common fireemen towards the end of 
the Carolingian period was, as already stated, very much reduced or 
nearly extinct. The German people were upon the high road of be- 
coming, like those other nations where there are but two classes, lords 
and slaves; two conditions between which that pride and energr 
given by freedom are never recovered. Already the country itself 
was chiefly cultivated by mere mercenaries, and industrial employ- 
ments as well as trade were almost entirely in the hands of the Jewsr. 
The nobles considered these occupations beneath their dignity; nay, 
they were very often dependant on the Jews, who had accumidated 
immense riches, because m their necessity they were forced to borrow 
money from them. As early as in the last period of the Roman 
empire the laws had already commenced to favour the Israelites, and 
by Honorius among others, they were entirely freed from all miUtary 
service. Their chief dwelling places were the cities on the Rhine 
and the Danube, which originated in the time of the Romans, (Co- 
logne, Coblentz, Treves, Mentz, Worms, Spire, Strasburg, Basle, 
Constance, Augsburg, Ratisbonne, Passau, &c.), and in these cities 
they lived in such great numbers, that they prevented all competi- 
tion and obstructed all increase of trade and mdustry. 

But King Henry now built, as we have seen, a number of cities 
in Saxony and Thuringia, and placed in them inhabitants &om the 
country, to serve not merely, as has been supposed, during the time 
of war, but as constant dweUmg places; he also found means to over- 
come the ancient repugnance telt by the Saxons to living in towns. 
He promised to those who dwelt in them the security of justice; and 
it is not improbable that each town received its own count, who, in 
time of war was the leader, and in peace was the immediate judge 
and president, although in gradation he may have ranked under the 
count of the gau or district in which the town lay. 

Afterwards he ordered, as is expressly stated by Widukind, that 
all councils, assemblies, and festivals of the inhabitants of the neigh- 
boming districts, should be held and celebrated in the cities; and 

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lhat all trade-faiiB in their turn, followed and joined in these regular 
ticns, and that industry and traffic found in the cities their central 
poabnt of union, is to be infeired as a natural and important result. 
whatever had been formerly executed in isolated dwellings, by the 
fionily or serjb, soon became, under the new order of things, worked 
and mushed in quantities, and in a superior style, by the artizans and 
medianics of the cities. And as the master and his men, in turns, 
prepared only one, to each allotted part of the work, wherein each was 
skilled and had been exercised from youth upwards, such a division 
of labour proved, as it always must, the foundation of all civilization 
among the people ; and thence Henry was again the founder of indus- 
try, moral cultivation, and the development of the civil order of life. 

And with the same motives that had caused him to give to chivalij 
a nobler aim and a more illustrious title for the exercise of arms, so 
did Henry now seek to introduce the practice of arms for the inha- 
bitants of the cities, so that they mi^ht be skilled in the defence of 
their walls, and thus become a defensive and honourable body of the 
state. By this he succeeded in attracting inhabitants for his fortified 
places, in such great numbens, that as these, in their original state, 
soon became too narrow to hold them, the new comers, as they ar- 
lived, built themselves houses around the fortified place, so that ano- 
ther city, as it were, was speedily completed, which was subsequently 
surrounded with strong walls, likewise as a defence against the at- 
tacks of the enemy. 

By what, however, has just been said, it is not meant to convey 
that these institutions of King Henry had at once changed the 
whole course of existing customs and manners in Northern Ger- 
many, and substituted an extensive and independent order of civil 
institutions; on the contrary, owing to the ever-repugnant feelings of 
the Saxons against a confined life in towns, as is shewn in subsequent 
times, this new order of things progressed but slowly. Tet he had 
laid ihe foundation, the commencement was made, he ^ve it an 
impetus, and more could not be demanded from him. His merit 
lies therein, that he perceived and acknowledged the necessary re- 
forms required by the march of events, and he promoted their pro- 
gress; but it was the course of human development which was 
to ocHnbine and complete, in an extended form, what was merely 
b^an by him. This course, however, is not measured by years, but 
1^ centuries, and thus we shall find, that it is only in the subsequent 
period of ihe middle a^ that the result of the great Henry^s noble 
designs are made manifest in the flourishing state of the existence of 
the cities. 

Already, before the death of Henry, the princes had j^romised 
Um to recognise his son Otho as his successor to the empire;^ and 
this recognition was now confirmed in a great assembly at Aiz-la^ 
CbtLV^, where Otho was solemnly crowned. Two of the great 
archoishops on the Rhine ccmtended for the honour of the corona- 
tion. He of Cologne claimed it from Aix-la-Chapelle being in his 



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diocese; and the other, of Treves, becaiise his archbishopric was 
the most ancient. HowevcT, it was at last concluded that neither 
of them, but that Hildebert, Archbishop of Mentz, should perform 
Ae ceremony. Griselbrecht, Duke of Lorraine, in whose duchy Aix- 
la-Chapelle lay, was charged, as high chamberlain, with the office 
of providing for the lodging and entertainment of the strangers, 
of whom a vast number attended. Eberhard, Duke of Franconia, 
as high steward, supplied the tables and the viands; Duke Herman 
of Swabia, acted as hi^h seneschal, and Amulf, Duke of Bavaria, 
as hig h-marshal, provided for the horses and the camp. 

When the people were assembled in the grand cathedral of Aix- 
la-Chapelle, the archbishop led the young king forward by the 
hand, and spoke thus to the multitude: " Behold, I here present to 
you the king, Otho, elected by God, proposed by King Henry, and 
nominated b}r all the princes f If this choice be acceptable to you, 
you will signify it by raising your right hand towards heaven !" 

The whole multitude then neld up their hands and hailed the new 
king with loud and joyful acclamations. The archbishop then stepped 
with him to the altar, whereon the imperial insi^a lay — the sword 
and belt, the imperial mantle, the armlets and the staff, together 
with the sceptre and the crown. The sword he handed to liim with 
these words: **Take this sword, destined to repulse all the enemies 
of Christ, and to confirm, with most lasting power, the peace of all 
Christians;" and he handed to his majesty the other articles, with 
a similar address. He then placed the crown upon his head and 
led him to the throne, which was erected between two marble 
columns, where Otho continued to sit until the solemn ceremony 
was concluded. All eyes were turned with astonishment to the young 
king, whose countenance filled every one with veneration. His 
lofty, princely form, his broad manly chest, his large sparkling 
eyes, and beautiful flaxen hair, which flowed down to nis shoulders 
in long locks — ^all seemed to announce him as being bom to rule. 
The days of festival and ceremony having ended, Otho commenced 
his new reign with vigorous power, and it was speedily shewn that 
outward appearances had not deceived. 

But Otho did not gain over the hearts of men that same mild 
power which Henry nis father had obtained. He has often been 
called a lion from his proud and terrific look and manner, and be- 
cause like the lion he cast all enemies down before him, whenever 
and however numerous in force they appeared against him, whether 
at home or abroad. He was a great and powerful monarch, and was 
soon considered the first prince m Christendom. He had placed upon 
his head the imperial crown of Charlemagne, and even rendered the 
Germanic empire and its name so celebrated amongst all nations, that 
none could venture to claim comparison with it. Such powerful re- 
sults cannot be accomplished by a man of ordinary mind, and who 
lives only for tranquillity and peace, but by him alone, to whom like 
Otho, the fame of his nation stands ever before his eyes as an elevated 
glory-beaming image, and if even the haughtiness of his soul raised 


Biany enemies against him, and even if in his wrath with which his 
maniy breast was often excited, he acted with harshness towards his 
adrersaries, still in his noble dignity of mind, he may be compared 
witli the lion, inasmuch as he pitied and spared many times those 
weaker enemies who besought nis mercy and pardon. Anger and 
severity indeed never carried him beyond the limits of justice, for 
with him the law ever maintained its mfiuence and authority. 

Our country, which before these two great kings, Henry and Otho, 
was rapidly approaching its own ruin, l^in^ rent by internal anarchy 
and surrounded extemsdly by enemies who m their contempt, accord- 
ing to their caprice, laid it desolate wherever they could, now rose 
again suddenly, and became as it were a new-bom empire. Not only 
were the enemies struck to the ground, but even new countries were 
acquired, and all other nations which had previously mocked, now 
bent low before us. In the time of peace, when no danger threatens, 
and justice and order hold predominance everywhere, a nation may 
rejoice in a king who sits upon the throne of lus fathers, intent upon 
continuing that state of peace; but when the world is violently agi- 
tated, and personal freedom and independence are in danger, or 
when a nation has become completely enervated by a long peace, 
and is thus rendered indifferent to honour and glory, then a king is 
required bold and proud as King Otho the First. His royal patriotic 
&llier had commenced the work, and he, the son, felt himself in 
possession of the power to perform its completion. 

It is true that at the commencement of his reign many princes rose 
against him, as for instance: theFranks under Elberhard, and theLoth- 
rmgians or Lorrainers under Giselbrecht, who still could not forget 
that a Saxon possessed the royal dimity; Tankmar, his step-brother, 
and even his own younger brother HenrVt the mother's favourite, who 
considered he had a greater right to the crown than Otho, because 
he was bom when his father was already a king, whilst Otho, on 
the contrary, was bom whilst he was a duke. But the Franks and 
Lothringians were reduced by arms to tranquillity, after the Dukes 
Eberhard and Giselbrecht were both slain ; Tankmar was also killed in 
the contest; and Henry, who had been allied with them, repaired to 
Frankfurt, and at the Christmas festival, in 942, during mass in the 
night, cast himself at the feet of his brother, and received full pardon, 
although he had three times risen against him, and had even joined 
in a conspiracy to take his Ufe. Nay, in 945, he was presented by 
Otho with the vacant duchy of Bavaria, and thenceforward they re- 
mained trae friends until their death. 

The king now tumed his attention towards his external enemies. 
Witii his north-eastem neighbours, the Slavonians, he had long and 
sanguinary wars, but he made them tributary as far as the Oder, 
and in onier to confirm Christianity among them, he erected the 
Bishoprics of Haselberg:, Brandenberg, and Meissen, and subjected 
them later to the Archbishopric of Magdeburg, which he had estab- 
lished in the year 968. TheDukesof Bohemiaand Poland were obliged 
to acknowledge his authority, and by the foundation of the^i^wDno 


of Posen he fsought to extend the mild doctrines of Chrifltiamt7 to 
those distant countries. He drove back the Danes, who had 
shcMTtlj before desolated the Mamaviate of Sleswig, founded by his 
father, as far as the point of Jut^md, and an arm of the sea on this 
coast derived from him the name of the Otho-Sound, because he 
fixed his lance there in the ground, as a token of hisaziivaL Harold 
caused himsdfas well as his consort Grunelda and his son Sveno to 
be baptised, and bishc^rics were erected in Sleswig, Ripen, and 
Aarhaus. Otho felt within himself that he was appointed to per- 
form the part of a Christian German king, the same as Charles the 
Great; he spread Christianity around with a national feeling for its 
coltivation, by planting in the conquered countries German colonies. 

Meanwhile, m Italy, circumstances had occurred which attracted 
the eyes of Otho to that country, lon^g as he did to perform great 
deeds there. Ever since the extincticm of the Carohngian branch 
numerous pretenders to its dominion had started up, scatteriDjg dia* 
order and destruction throughout that beautiful land, in addition to 
-Vfdiich bands of plundering strangers had either taken up their 
quarters or made continual mcursions throughout the country. Here 
and there the Saracens were foimd regularly housed amongst the 
rocks of the seacoast, whilst the hordes of the Hungarians or Mag- 
yars, frequently overrun the rich and fertile plains of Upper Italy, m 
the south of Italy, the dominion of the Ginsek emperors still main- 
tained itself, and extended almost to Rome, and whose mercenaries^ 
consisting of many nations, were a scourge to the land. 

In Upper Italy, the native princes at one moment, and the kings 
of Burgundy in ihe next, took possession of the rdns of govern- 
ment, and to a certain extent assumed the imperial title. Lothaiie^ 
the last king of the Burgundian race, died in the year 950, and the 
Margrave, Beren^ of Ivrea, took forcible possession of the authority. 
In order to fix himself more securely in the government, he tried 
to force the young and beautiful widow of Lothaire, the Princess 
Adelaide, to marry his son Adelbert. But this she steadily and 
firmly refused, and was imprisoned by the kin^; but with the assist- 
ance of an ecclesiastic she escaped, and took refuge at the court 
of Adelhard, Bishop of Reggio. This event save occasion for 
Otho to interfere with his influence, in order to acg ust this sad state 
of confusion in that part of Italy, and especially as he was appealed 
to by many nobles of that land, as also by the persecuted Adelaide 
herself. Accordingly in 951 he crossed the Alps with a well-ap- 
pointed army, besieged and took possession of Pavia, and as his first 
wife Edigatna had died in the year 946, he concluded by pving 
his hand to the beautiful Adelaide^ whom he had thus so cnival- 
xously delivered from her base persecutor. In the course of the 
following year he became reconciled with Berengar at Augsburg, 
and gave him Lombardy as a fief under German dominion. Y erona 
and Aquisl^a however he yielded to Henry of Bavaria. 

These events however produced shortly aflerwards great disputes 

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m Germany. Otho was affedionatdij attached to his queen, Ade- 
laide and DJB brother Heniy of Bayaiia, and they both acquired 
great influ^koe with him. Ludolf, Otho's son by his former mar- 
liage, felt himself, perhaps not nnjustlj, to be neglected, said was 
a&aid he would be excluded from succession to the throne by the 
diildrai his fid^her might have by Adelaide He was joined by 
Otho's son-in-law, Conrad, Duke of Lorraine, Frederic, Archbishop 
of Mentz, the Palatine Ainulf of BaTaria, and several other nobles, 
indoced e8|>ecially, as it would seem, by hatred to Henry of Bavana, 
iriiose deceitful character had embittered them gainst him. It was 
only with the greatest trouble and difficulty that Otho was enabled in 
thecouiBe of tbs years 953 and 954, to suppress the revolt. lObstinate 
and seveie battles were fought in Saxony, Lorraine, Franconia, and 
Bavaiia; and it was in vain that Otho besieged his adversaries in 
Meatz, as well as afterwards in Ratisbonne. Even the Hungarians 
leaewed their destructive attacks, and were supported in them by 
^ revolotionary forces; they punraed their incursions through Bar 
Taiia, Franconia, Lorraine, a part of France, and finally returned 
^ugh Burgundy and Italy. But it was just these very devasta- 
tions committed by this arch-enemy of the empire which at last put 
an end to the revolutionary war. Punished by their conscience, 
Conrad and the Archbishop of Mentz returned to their allegiance 
aad humbled themselves before the king, by whom they were par- 
doned and received again into favour, and although in his obstinacy 
Lndolf for a time continued the contest, he nevertheless in the end, 
after the Palatine Amulf had been killed before Ratisbonne, Ukewise 
yielded submission to his father, whose kindled wrath had been 
softened down by the intercession of the princes. Ludolf and Conrad, 
However, were not granted the restoration of their lost dukedoms, 
^ of Lorraine being given to Otho's faithful brother Bruno, who 
Ittd likewise been already appointed to the Archbishopric of Cologne, 
whilst BuTchard, Henry of Bavaria's son-in-law, was raised to the 
iWkedom of Swabia. 
Thus internal peace was happily restored, when in the year 955, 
. Hungarians m still greater force, again invaded Bavaria, and 
^^ged Augsburg. Uaalrich, the bishop of that city, defended it 
H^cally, until the king advanced to its assistance and encamped 
along the river Lech. l£s army was divided into eight battalions, 
^ which the first three consisted of Bavarians; the fourth of the 
flanks under Conrad ; the fifth of the elite troops of warriors, selected 
fipm the entire army, at the head of which noble division Otho 
feiself commanded; the sixth and seventh were composed of the 
SwabiaoB, and the eighth consisted of a thousand picked Bohemian 
^}^*Bemen in chaige of the military stores and baggage, as from this 
*de no attack was anticipated. Scarcely had the Hungarians, how- 
ler, caught a glimpse of the army, when, with their usual rapi- 
Jty, they spread out their innumerable hordes of cavalry, swam across 
*« lech, and attacked the camp behind the army; throwing the 

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Bohemians and the Swabians Into such disorder that the baggage 
became lost. The valiant Conrad, however, with his Franks, nas- 
tened to their assistance and restored order. The decisive battle was 
fixed to takeplace on the following day, it being the day of St. 
Lawrence. The whole army prepared itself for the contest by 
prayer; the king received the holy sacrament, and he and the entire 
army swore to remain true to each other unto death. Otho then 
raised the holy lance, the banner of the angel which had led to vic- 
tory at Merseburg, waving also now in iront; the king himself 
Sve the siraal for attack, and was the first to fall upon the enemy, 
e himself, with his chosen troop, and Conrad, who felt anxious 
to recover by splendid deeds the good name he had lost in his rebel- 
lion, decided tne battle. Thus a great and glorious victory was 
gained; the enemy's troops completely defeated^ and put to flight, 
nearly all being destroyed or made prisoners, and three of their 
leaders hung up like chiefs of robbers. Their own writer, Keza, 
assures us that out of both their large armies, consisting of 60,000 
men, only seven stragglers returned — ^with their ears shorn. 

But the victory of the Germans was dearly purchased. Many 
brave leaders fell; and the heroic Conrad, who, during the great 
heat, had loosened his armour to cool himself a little, was mortally 
wounded in the neck by a stray arrow, and died — ^thus repaying 
with his blood the debt he owed to his country. The Hunganans, 
however, after the battle, did not venture to appear a^n m Ger- 
many; and the whole of that beautiful country along the Danube, 
the subsequent margraviate of Austria, was torn from them, and by 
degrees repopidated with Germans, so that eventually it flourished 

Otho gained, in the same year, a victory not less important over 
the Slavonians, who, in conjimction with numerous discontented 
Saxons, renewed their attacks constantly. The Margrave Gero, one 
of the most important men under the reign of Otho I., and who had 
for many years continued to protect the eastern frontiers against the 
Slavonians, now, together with the valiant Hermann Bilbur^, op- 
posed them with great vigoui: and success, imtil the king himself 
was enabled to advance to their aid ; and in a battle fought on the 
16th of October, and which has been compared with that of Augs- 
burg, he completely conquered them. The brave Hermann Bilburg 
was subsequently created a duke of Saxony by Otho, although, as 
it appears, without having attained the government of the entire 
country, and the full power of the other dukes. 

Meanwhile, Berengar, the ungrateful King of Italy, to whom 
Otho had shown great kindness, again rebelled a^inst him, and 
cruelly persecuted all who held with the King of Germany; and 
in their trouble they entreated assistance from Otho. lie first 
sent his son, Ludolf, with an army across the Alps; its force was 
indeed but small, but the valiant son of Otho preyed the traitor 
BO closely, that he must have been destroyed, if Ludolf had not sud- 

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denlj died in the bloom of youth, and, as it is supposed, by poison, 
in the year 957. Some few years elapsed, when m the year 961, 
King Otho liimself, invited by the pope, John XII., the Archbishop 
of Milan, and others, accompanied by Adelaide, his queen, marched 
himself a second time into Italy, after he had caused his son, Otho, 
yet an infant, to be elected ana crowned king. Berengar concealed 
himself among his castles, whilst his son Adelbert took refuge in 
Corsica ; but Otho proceeded direct to Rome, During his progress 
towards the capital, the gates of every town were thrown open be- 
fore the mighty King of the Germans, and everywhere the inha- 
bitants were struck with amazement and admiration, when they 
beheld the powerful and lofty figures of the northern strangers. 

Otho considered it worthy of his own glory, as well as of the 
dignity of the German nation, to replace upon his head, on the 
2nd of February, 962, the Roman imperial crown, which Charle- 
magne had transferred to the Germans, therebj testifying to the 
whole world, that strength and power were ¥^th that people, and 
that their monarch was the first of all Christian rulers. It was 
under his protection and support, that the church and its spiritual 
head, the pope, were to exercise their influence over the people; 
and in him, the emperor, every enemy of order and justice would 
find a stem and implacable judge. Thus had, likewise, Charles the 
Great founded anew the imperial dignity, and thus it was renewed 
by Otho I. It is true, the condition of Europe had changed since 
ObarWs time; then almost all the Christian nations were imder his 
dominion; whilst there were various independent kings who were 
not subject to him, the German kin^. Yet not one of them all 
could compare himself with him; the imperial crown had ever been 
justly r^arded as belonging to the Germans, and the ancestors of 
Otho had none of them given up their claim to it. Otho was espe- 
cially the protector of the Christian faith towards the north and 
east; he ruled in Burgundy; his authority was the ruling one in 
France, where his brother, Bruno, of Lorraine, acted as arbitrator and 
jud^e, and as which he was acknowledged by all; and now, having 
subjected Italy, to him alone belonged the dignity of Emperor of 
the Western Christendom. 

Many have spoken ^gainst the renewal of the empire, and have 
partacularly censured King Otho, that he cast this great burden 
upon Germany. The union of the two countries was the source of the 
greatest misfortune to Germany, which sacrificed so many men for 
3ie foreign ally, whilst at home it was itself entirely neglected by 
its own hereditary rulers. But what God had prepared as a ereat 
transition in the fate of a nation, and what a number of excellent 
inen in former times acknowledged as necessary and good, cannot be 
i<ejected by the judgment of later descendants. It has been the 
same with the papacy; many have expended their gall against it, as 
having only contributed to the diffusion of darkness, superstition, 
^ spiritual slavery. But those who thus express themselves, mix 

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in ihdr censure all ages, and are unable to transport tliemselves 
into those wherein the imperial throne and the papal chair were 
necessary links in the great chain of historical development. 

It is not difficult for the unprejudiced and candid nund to perceive 
the grand idea which servea as the foundation of both. In those 
limes when rude force exercised its dominicm, the emperor, with 
the scales of justice in his hand, presided as judge between Chris- 
tian nations, and exerted himself for the peace of the world exter- 
nally; whilst, on his part, the pope mdded the empire of internal 
peace, piety, and virtue. As the condition of life was yet rude, and 
civil institutions still so imperfect, that the state could not of itself 
imdertake to superintend mental cultivation; therefore, the church 
and schools, the clergy and teachers, necessarily stood under the 
Bupranacjr of the head of the church, whose care it was that the 
truth and gentleness of the divine word should illumine all Chris- 
tian nations, and imite them into one empire of faith. 

Widi respect to the danger which might threaten — ^viz. : that, in 
die first place, the one of these two powers might bring under its 
dominion the body by means of the sword, and thence require what 
was unjust; and that, in the second place, the other would so bind 
the conscience, that it might force it not to put faith in truth itself, 
but merely in the word as given — a sufficient protection was pro* 
vided, in either case, inasmuch as the said jpower, both of the em- 
peror and the pope, was less an external than an internal power, 
founded solely upon the veneration of nations. Such an authority 
can never be lastmgly misused without destroying itself. 

It is true that not all emperors have truly seized the idea of their 
dignity, or else, perhaps, such great obstructions stood in their way 
that tney could not execute it; and thus, also, the popes not having 
always retained themselves within the limits of those rights whicn 
were accorded to them alone in the dominion of the church, both 
powers, which should have worked in unity together, and the one 
nave made the other perfect, have, in their enmity, at last destroyed 
each other. But — and this is the chief point — the grand idea itself 
must above all things be well distinguished from its execution. The 
more glorious it is, the ^ater is its contradiction to the fallibility of 
human nature, and the low bias of many ages; and the ill-success of 
its accomplishment cannot detract from its own dignity or fxom the 
greatness of those who have c(»itended for it. 

With respect to the sacrifice of men in the Italian expedition, it 
depends upon the question, whether the object to be obtained was 
great and important or not. If it was so, the sacrifice must not be 
taken into consideration, if batitle and war may be allowed for a high 
and necessary purpose. And the emperors who with noble-minded 
dispositions and intentions, made this sacrifice for the idea of an 
empire, and the honour of their naticm, are not, therefore, to be 

The noble pride, however, felt by the Germans in the thought, that 

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tbejand their rulers should be the central point of Christiaiiiiy; the 
conviction of their strength, made manifest by the daring courage of 
the small forces, composed of their countrymen, in venturing across 
die Alps, and who, when reaching their destination, by the superiority 
of their nature gave laws to a numerous and populous nation; these 
lecoUections of the ancient glory of our nation, still existing in ns 
the later descendants — all this is the reward for the sacrifice made. 

Other advantages, becoming more and more immediately manifest, 
arising from the union of Grermany with Italy, will be shown in the 
course of our history. We only mention in advance the great influence 
which the example of the free Italian cities, and, in particular, the 
flourishing state of commerce there, had upon the rise and successful 
progress of German towns, an advantage the importance of which 
cannot be too highly estimated. 

Otho speedily exercised his right of protect(»:ship over the church, 
and his office of superior Christian ruler, against the same pope who 
had crowned him. John XII. had recalled from Corsica the son of 
Berengar, for the purpose of placing him in opposition against the em- 
peror ; and, in addition to this was charged by the Roman people, and 
the clergy, with the most serious critnes. John sprang from a very cor- 
rupt race, and had become pope as early as in his eighteenth year. 
Otbo hereupon convoked a council, consisting of forty bishops and 
seventeen cardinals, and as John, upon the emperor's citation, refused 
to appear before these assembled fathers, he was deposed from his dig- 
nity, and Leo VIII. chosen instead. The Roman people, as well as the 
deigy, now swore to dect no pope in future without tiie consent of 
the emperor. The popes from tnis time again called the emperor their 
lord, and in acknowledgment of his supremacy, placed his name upon 
their coins, and marked the years of his reign upon their bulls. 

But the Romans soon forgot their oath, drove away Pope Leo^ 
and recalled the deposed John, afler whose death, which speedily 
followed, they elected another pope, Benedict, in opposition. Thie 
patience of the]emperor was now exhausted, and he exercised a heavy 
Punishment upon the peijured Romans. He returned again with 
^s army, laid waste the country around Rome, surrounded and be- 
Ei^ed the city, and forced the inhabitants to surrender and open the 
g&tes, and to give up the pope, Benedict, into his hands. He then 
<x>nvoked a lar^ assembly of the bishops and clergy, and in their 
pi€sence Benemct was divested of his insignia, and at once banished, 
'''hilst Leo was replaced upon the throne 

Meantime Berengar, with his wife, Willa, had been taken pri- 
soners by the emperor's generals, and were conveyed to Bamberg, 
where after their imprisonment they shortly died. The emperor 
^8^, after he had thus estabtidbed his dominion, returned in the 
"^ginning of the year, 965, to Germany, and celebrated at Cologne, 
"^th his beloved brother, Bruno, his mother, his son Otho, and 
^hews, together with a numerous assemblage of the nobles of his 

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empire, the joyful event of liis return among them after a long and 
trymg time of absence. 

But already in the following year, 966, his nresence was again re- 
quired in Italy through the disturbances causea by Adelbert, the son 
of Berengar, and the revolt of the Romans against their pope. His 
appearance, however, once more produced order and peace; and he 
was now enabled to turn his attention to Lower Italy, where the em- 
peror of Grreece still had his governor, and then to Sicily, whence 
the Saracens threatened entire Italy. It was now Otho*s wuh to form 
an aUiance with the family of the Greek emperor, in order, thereby, 
to open a prospect for his own house upon Lower Italy, as well as to 
become enabled to ward off more effectually the inroads of the un- 

He sent for his son Otho from Germany, and had him crowned 
as future emperor by the pope, and then despatched an embassy to 
Constantinople, for the purpose of demaniung Theophania, the 
daughter of the emperor, in marriage for his son. Connected with 
this embassy Luitprand, whom Otho had made Bishop of Cremona, 
relates a smgular circumstance, althou^, from his natred of the 
Gbeeks, with evident exaggeration : " VVe arrived here," he says, 
'* in June, and were immediately supplied with a guard of honour, 
80 that we could not go anywhere without an escort. On the second 
day of our arrival we proceeded on horseback to the audience. 
The Emperor Nicephorus is a short, stout man, so brown that, in a 
forest, he would strike us with terror. He said, * he lamented that 
our lord and ruler had shown the daring boldness to assume and ap- 
propriate Rome to himself^ and to destroy two such honourable men 
as ^rengar and Adelbert, and then to carry fire and sword even into 
Ghredan countries : ' he added ' that he knew we had counselled our 
lord to it.' We replied: ' Our lord, the emperor, has deUvered Rome 
from tyranny and sinners, which he has come from the end of the 
earth into Italy to accomplish, whilst others have remained indolently 
sleeping upon their thrones, and deemed such great confusion and 
anarchybeneath their dignity to notice. Besides which, 'we added, 'we 
have amongst us those brave and loyal knights, who are always ready 
and prepared to maintain, by single combat at arms, the justice and 
virtue of our master. Yet we have come here with views and 
intentions of peace, and for the purpose of demanding the Princess 
Theophania in marriage for Otho, our prince, and eldest son of our 
lord and emperor.* To which ihe emperor observed: *It is now 
time to go to the procession. We will attend to this matter at a more 
convenient moment.' The grand procession, wherein the king ap- 
peared, attired in a long mantle, escorted by soldiers or city volun- 
teers, without halberts, passed along slowly amidst the acclamations 
of the people. 

*^ When at table, he wished to censure our mode of warfare, saying 
our arms were much too heavy, whilst the Germans appeared to be 
only valiant when they were drunk; and that the true Komans were 

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0THO*S son's marriage WITH A GRECIAN PRINCESS. 173 

onlj now to be found in Constantinople. Wlien he said this, he made 
a Eign to me with his hand that I should be silent. At another time 
he spoke of the affairs of the church, and asked, mockingly, whether 
any council had ever been convoked in Saxony? I replied, ' that 
where there was most sickness, there was most need of the greatest 
nmnber of doctors; that all heresies had originated with the Greeks, 
and therefore church councils were more necessary to be held 
amongst them. Nevertheless I knew of one council bemg assembled 
in Saxony, where it had been pronounced that it was more glorious 
to fidbtt with the sword in hand than with the pen.' 

''The emperor is surrounded with flatterers and sycophants; the 
whole catj floats in sensuali^, and even on holy da^i^ of festival 
there are plays performed. Their power reposes not in their own 
strength, but is dependent upon the mercenary forces of Amalfi, and 
upon Venetian and Russian sailors. I believe firmly that four hun- 
dred Germans in open field would put the whole Grreek army com- 
pletely to flight." 

Nicephorus would not consent to the marriage, and Otho, as 
emperor, now sought to extend his dominion over the whole of 
Lower Italy, which was divided amongst the Greeks, Saracens, and 
native princes. The history of these expeditions is not clearly given ; 
but altogether it appears the imperial arms were victorious, although 
it was not possible to gain any durable advantage in that difiicult 
country. In December, 969, the Emperor Nicephorus was mur- 
dered in a revolt, when his successor very wilungly formed an 
alliance with the Emperor of Germany. The Princess Theophania 
was crowned in Rome in the year 972, hj the Pope, John iOU., 
and united to the young prince, Otho. The emperor himself now 
returned to Germany, after an absence of six years, in order that he 
might enjoy some little peace at the close of a life so rich in striking 

The great influence which Otho had acquired throughout the en- 
tire western world, was satisfactorily proved to the German nation 
during the last few months of his life. Having gone to Quedlin- 
burg to visit the grave of his mother, Matilda, he was there waited 
upon by the rulers of the Poles and Bohemians, the chiefs Mjesko and 
Boleslas, in order to receive his opinion and judgment in their affairs ; 
and these were immediately followed by the ambassadors of the Ro- 
mans, Beneventanians, Greeks, Bulgarians, Slavonians, Danes, and 
Hungarians, and the whole completed by an embassy from the Sa- 
racens in Africa, which arrived snortly afterwards at Merseburg. 

Just at this time, however, he was very much affected by the 
death of his faithful friend, Herman, Duke of Saxony, who died 
in Quedlinburg on the 27th of March, 973. Grieved at the loss of 
tliat good man, says Widukind, he wandered solitary and dejected 
amongst the graves of those he had held so dear. Alas, how many 
of these had already preceded him in their departure from this life, 

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reminding him of Im own past career, so troubled, so eventful, but 
yet in many respects so glorious ! 

Wben on the 6th of May he arrived at his castle in Memleben^ 
where his £either had died, he felt himself extremely weak. Never- 
theless he attended service in the chapel on the following momin^, 
£ve his usual alms to the poor, and then reposed again. At mid- 
y he again appeared, and at the appelated time he took his meal 
8t dinner with cneerfulness and enjoyment, upon which he attended 
the evening service. It was then he suddenly felt overcome with a 
burning fever, and he was assisted to a chair by the princes in attend* 
ance. But his head sunk; he felt his approaching end, and indicat- 
ing his .wishes by signs, he was immeoiately assisted in the solemn 
service of the holy communion. Just after he had received it, and 
when the holy ceremony was over, as Widukind states, he ended 
his mortal career, and without a sigh, tranquilly breathed his last, on 
the 7th of May, 973, aged sixty-one years, and in the thirty-eighth 
of his reign. 

His body was conveyed to Magdeburg, his favourite city, and 
bein^ deposited in a marble coffin, was placed as he had wished, on 
the aide of his beloved Ed^tha, in the cnurch of St. Maurice. 

Otho n., who, in the eighteenth year of his age, now succeeded 
to the throne, very soon had reason to find that the task which. 
had thus early devolved upon his shoulders, of maintaining, in all 
its supremacv, the powerful empire of his father, extending, as it 
did, from the boundaries of the Danish coimtry to nearly the ex- 
tensive points of Lower Italy, was not a little arduous and difficult. 
For in the north and east, the Danes and Slavonians continued still 
unwilling subjects or neighbours; in the west, the French lulera 
were jealous rivals; in the south of Italy, the Greeks and Arabs 
were anxiouslv watching for an opportumty to extend their power; 
whilst, in the interior of Germany itself, many parties stood in a 
condition of direct hostility towards each other. 

In this critical position, the necessary strength and energy of body 
were certainly not wanting in the young monarch, as was sufficiently 
shown by his figure, which, although rather short, was, nevertheless, 
strong and firmly knit together, whilst his healthy constitution was 
indicated by the florid, ruddy hue of his cheeks, and which, in fact, 
procured for him the by-name of Otho the Florid, or Red. But 
wisdom and forethought were not as yet at his command; and it 
was for him a misfortune that, even asa child, he had been designated as 
the soverei^; for he thus became proud and violent, extreme and 
unequal in his conduct; whilst mildness and severity were with him 
in constant interchange, and his liberality at times bordered upon 
extravagance itself. Had time, however, enabled him to moderate 
these strong passions of youth, and thus, by the experience of in- 
creased yeais, have rip^iied and brought to perfection his nobler 
qualities, he might then have been included in the list of the most 

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jdstmgoished rcQen of our country. But fate ordained otherwise; 
and he was struck down, in the bloom of manhood, at ^e age of 
twenty-eight years. 

The very fest years of his reign were ak^dy ftdly occupied with 
the di£ferent disputes and dissensions in the empire, but more 
especially with that produced by his cousin Henry, the second 
Duke of Bavaria or the Turbuk^t, who had revolted against the 
joung emperor, but who, however, was taken prisoner, and deprived 
of his duchy; as likewise by the rising of Harold of Denmark against 
Otho, who was forced to march against him, and comjdetely sub- 
dued him. 

Soon afterwards, France made an attanpt to acquire the Lorraine 
dominion, which, by the division of Verdun, was fixed in the centre 
between Germany and France, but had now become muted with 
Germany. The king, Lothaire, secretly collected his army, and 
whilst Otho, completely unprepared, was holding a court cm the 
occamon of the feast of St. John, in 978, in the andent in^- 

terial palatinate at Aix-la-Chapelle, he suddenly advanc^, and, 
J forced marches, without even announcing hostilities, hastened 
on to that city, in order to take the emperor prisoner. Forta- 
iiately, Otho received intelligence of the enemy's approach in time 
to eoable him to c[uit the phce on the day beiore nis arrival. Lo- 
thaire took possession of Aix-la-Chapelle, and plundered it, whilst 
at the same time he commanded the eagle, erected in the grand 
square of Charles the Great, to be turned towards the west, in mm 
that Lorraine now belonged to France. But Otho forthwith held a 
diet of the piinces and noUes at Dortmund, represented to them, 
with the most impressive eloquence, the fidtMessness of the French 
king, and summoned them to march against the presumptuous enemy. 
They all imanimously promised their assistance, forgetting every in- 
ternal dispute, for it now ccmcemed the hcmour of the country. 

Accordingly, an the 1st of October, 978, a considerable army 
marched into France, and without meeting with much (^position, 
advanced, by Rheims and Soissons, as far as Paris. Here, on the 
right bank of the Seine, around the Montmartre, the Germans en- 
camped, and their moimted troops scoured the whole of the country 
around, committing devastation everywhere. The city itself was 
ganiaoned by the duke, Hugo Capet; dbte Seine divided the two 
annies, but the French did not venture out to give battle. Otho, 
however, could not succeed in taking the cit^, which was strongly 
fortified; and as winter now advanced — ^it bemg the end of Novem- 
her— and sickness very generally prevailed amongst the troops, he 
commenced a retreat. This expeoition was one of the first uzider- 
taken by the Germans against nris; the treacherous attack of the 
French king was now punished, nor did he venture to make an- 
other. Li the treaty of peace subsequently conchided, Loradne 
^M secured to Geimany for ever. 

Ift llie year 980, Otho set out cm his first ezpeditkm to Italy, 

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fix)m which, however, as it turned out, he was never to return. He 
was in hopes of being able to conquer the possessions in Lower Italy, 
which the Greek emperors still maintained, and to which Otho, by 
his mandate with Theophania, laid claim The Grreeks, however, 
called to their aid the Arabs, both of Africa and Sicily. At first, 
Otho gained some advantages, and, after a siege of nearly two 
months, he made himself master of Salerno. He then took Bari 
and Taranto, in Apulia, and pressed forward, in the snring of 982, 
to the mountains of Calabria. He beat the combinea army of the 
Greeks and Arabs, first at Rossano, where they had waited for 
him in a strong position, and then overthrowing them at Cotema, 
pursued them as far as Squillace, where another decisive battle was 
fought on the 13th of July, 982. The imperial troops rushed 
with the greatest impetuosity upon the ranks of the Greeks, 
who held out bravely until mid-day, when they fell back upon 
Squillace. The successful troops, abandoning themselves now 
too eagerly to their elated hopes of victoiy and pillage, felt so 
secure, that they laid aside their arms, and marched leisurely and 
confidently alons the banks of the river Corace. But here they 
were suddenly fallen upon by an ambuscade of the Arabs, hitherto 
concealed behind the rocks, and were speedily surrounded on every 
dde by iimumerable hordes of these swift warriors. The scattered 
troops were completely overpowered, and either cut to pieces or 
made prisoners Dy the enemy; and only a very small number of 
that army, but a short time before so triumphant, were enabled to 
save themselves. The emperor himself, as it were, by a miracle, 
escaped by plunging into the sea, moimted as he was on his trusty 
steed, and swimming towards a Greek vessel. The crew received 
him on board, not knowing the high rank of the imperial fugitive, 
yet hoping to receive a handsome ransom from him as a distin- 
guished knight, for which they held him to be. By means of a 
slave on board, who had recognised, but not betrayed nim, he saved 
himself a second time, near Rossano, by sprin^g from this ship, 
and swimming on shore; and, after Mfely reaching land, he entered 
that city, and there joined his queen. 

In this disastrous scene, many German and Italian princes and no- 
bles perished, amongst whom were Udo, Duke of Franconia, the 
Margraves Berthold and Giinther, Henry, Bishop of Augsburg (who 
had ukewise fought in the ranks), together with numerous others; 
and all the conquered portions of the coimtry in Lower Italy fell 
again into the hands of the enemy. 

Full of sorrow and vexation, the emperor proceeded to Upper 
Italy, in order to collect another army. He held a ^rand assembly 
in Verona, consisting of both German and Italian princes and no- 
bles, and his mother, together with his queen and infant son, Otho, 
then only three years old, were likewise present; he succeeded in 
having the latter at once elected by all the princes as his successor. 
It was, at the same time, determined that the child should be taken 

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back to Gennaiij, under the charge of Willigis, Archbishop of 
Mentz, and be crowned on the following Christaias (983), in the 
ancient imperial city of Aix-la-Chapelle. 

The emperor, himself, however, after he had regulated the affidrs 
of Upper Italy, repaired to Rome. There he arranged to have hia 
chancellor, Peter of Pavia, elected as pope (John XIV.); and this 
was his last public act. Overwhelmed with the important plans he 
nourished in his heart for his next campai^ in Lower Italy, as well 
as with the excitement produced upon his impatient and nervous 
mind, by the sad reverses of the previous year, and the multifarious 
cares of his government, he was, m a few aa^s, attacked by a raginff 
fever, of which he died, in the presence of his queen, the pope, and 
several of his faithful adherents, on the 7th of December, 983, in 
the 28th year of his age. He was buried in the church of St Peter, 
in Rome. The news of his death reached Aix-la-Chapelle the day 
afler the coronation of his infant son had been celebrated in the as- 
sembly of all the princes. 

The very tender age of the new sovereign, Otho HI., would have 
been a great misfortune for Germany, had not his mother. Queen 
Theophania, a woman of extraordinary genius, been enabled to under- 
take, during his minority, the direction and control of the affairs of 
the imperial government with adequate spirit and energy, and if, 
likewise, amons the greater portion of the German princes there had 
not existed a fiuthful adherence towards the imperial house, and a 
general desire for peace and order. For immediately after the death 
of Otho II., Henry, the deposed Duke of Bavaria, mei having been 
set at liberty by Poppo, Bishop of Utrecht, into whose custody he 
had been given, came forward again wiih his pretensions, and 
even demanded, as nearest relation, to have the sole guardianship 
of the young kin^. The Archbishop of Cologne, Worin, under 
whose protection tne infant had been placed, actually delivered him 
np to Henry, who held him under his control during a whole year. 
The queen-mother, Theophania, who, according to her deceased hus- 
band*s wiU, was to have the guardianship of tne child, was still in 
Italy; and when she returned, Henry had already so strengthened 
his party, that he contemplated taking possession of the government 
himself. He had lost no time in forming a league with those no- 
bles who were devoted to his interests, and had already agreed with 
ihem under what conditions they should give their assistance and 
support towards raising him to the throne. At the same time, the 
French king, Lothaire, availing himself of the disunion in Germany, 
had again stretched out his hand to grasp the Lorraine country, and 
had got possession of the important town and fortress of Verdun. 

The Slavonians on the northern and eastern frontiers who, during 
the years that Otho II. was in Italy, had, by their united strength, 
almost entirely shaken off the German dominion, re-established pa- 
ganism, and made many successful depredatory incursions in the 
various German possessions, now, together with the Dukes of Poland 

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and Bohemia on their part, promised the rebel, Heoiy of Bavaria, 
their assistance in his revolutionary plans. Thus the condition of 
the Germanic empire had at this moment become extremely critical. 

But the alliance of Henry with the barbarians only served to bring 
back to their proper recollection all those nobles of Saxony and 
Thuringia who nad hitherto formed the majority of the renegade's 
partisans, and they turned from him and joined the ranks of the 
ultimate party, headed by the Dukes Conrad of Swabia^ Bernard 
of Saxony, ana the newly created Duke of Bavaria (recently elected 
by Otho n.), Henry the younger, of the house of Babenberg ; 
the whole of whom, with Willigis,* Archbishop of Mentz, had still 
maintained their fidelity towards the young monarch and his royal 
mother. In Lorraine, also, a party rose up to defend the cause of 
Otho, the heart and soul of which was the distinguished ecclesiastic, 
Gerbert, the most learned man of his time ; possessing a knowled^ 
of all the sciences, but, more especially, so profoimdly read m 
natural philosophy, that he was regarded as a magician. At the same 
time he possessed ^eat powers of mind, with the necessary ener- 
getic ana penetrating capacity for action in all political matters; 
and in his office of tutor to the young emperor, to which he was 
appointed subsequently, he continued to assist him with his valuable 
counsel imtil his death. 

Thence, by means of this combined operation on the part of all 
his faithful friends and stanch adherents of the imperial house, 
Henry the Turbulent, was forced, at a grand diet held at Rora,* 
in the month of Jime, 984, to surrender into the hands of the 
queen-mother and grandmother, who were both present, the infant 
emperor. In the same year, also, the desired union of peace and 
friendship between Henry and the guardians was completely re- 
stored and firmly estabUsned at the diet of Worms ; Henry and 
his friends swearing fealty to the sovereign, and which he continued 
to hold sacred from that day ; nay, through leading subsequently, a 
life of peace, piety, and charity, he earnea for himself the by-name 
of the peaceful, mstead of the turbulent Henry. In the follow- 
ing year he received again his long wished-for duchy of Bava- 
ria, in return for resigning which, Henry the younger, was indem- 
nified with the Duchy of Garintlua, wmch had bea)me again sepa- 
rated from Bavaria, together with the Yeronian marches. Other 
nobles were bound to the new eovemment by presents and gifls of 
land. The margraviates, erected to oppose the Slavonians and Hun- 

ffarians, were fortified anew, and supplied with faithful guards; the 
Dukes Micialas of Poland and Boleslaa of Bohemia returned to 
their alliance, and thus, by wisdom, prudence, and firmness, both 
the empresses restored once more the order and tranquillity of the 
German empire internally, and again promoted and established its in- 
fluential claims for respect externally. 

* The exact site of tbis place cannot he tnoedL 

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In the year 987, after the death of Lothaire, France likewise 
concluded a treaty of peace, and his son and successor, Louis V., 
surrendered to Germany the bishopric of Verdun. He was the 
last of the race of the Carlovingians on the throne of France; and, 
after his deaths in the same year, the house of the Capetingians 
followed in the person of Hugo Capet, his successor. 

In Rome, aner the Empress Theophania had returned to G-er- 
many, great disturbances broke out, and the patrician Crescentius, 
especiaUy, exercised the greatest tyranny in the city. The empress, 
however, having beheld Germany tranquillised, and the dominion 
of her son established, returned in 988 to Rome, and with her 
innate power and wisdom, caused the authority of Crescentius to 
be checked and restricted within its proper limits. Unhappily, this 
distinguished woman died too soon for the times ^e lived in, her 
death taking place already in the year 991, at Nimwegen. 

The education of the young emperor, now eleven years old, 
henceforward devolved more especially upon Bemward, of Hildes- 
heim, a most excellent, and, for his time, a very learned man, into 
whose hands Queen Theophania had already confided her son. He 
treated the boy with mildness, but at the same time with firmness, 
and gained his entire good-will and confidence. Bemward's position 
became one of yery great and decided importance, in connexion with 
the relations of the goverxunent subsequently, rarticularly after he 
was appointed in the year 993, Bishop of Hildesheim; tor in the 
northern frontiers of uie empire there was continually fresh cause, 
even from year to year, for contention with the Slavonians or Nor- 
mans, either by warding off their attacks at home, or in order to 
punish them, by sending expeditions into their own land. 

When the youthful monarch had attained his sixteenth year, his 
grandmother, Queen Adelaide, expressed a desire to behold the 
head of her grandson decorated likewise with the imperial crown. 
Accordingly, m February, 996, he commenced his first Roman ex- 
pedition, and all the nations of the Germans, Saxons, Franks, Bava- 
rians, Swabians, and Lorrainians, yielded on this occasion military 
service, and joined in the ranks of the multitudinous train. He waa 
crowned emperor on Ascension-day, the 21st of May in that year, 
by Grregory V., the first pope of German origin who had, as yet, 
presided on the papal dudr, and who exerted himself with great 
perseverance to Drin^ into order the confused state of the Roman 
relations. The patrician, Crescentius, was pardoned for the turbu- 
lent proceedings he had hitherto pursued; but scarcely had the 
emperor returned to Germany, when the ungrateftil Roman again 
revolted, and banished Pope Gregory from the capital. Otho was 
forced, therefore, to march an army into Italy a second time in 
the year 997, and conducting the pope back again to Rome, he 
besieged Crescent i us, in the fortress of Engelsburg, which he took 
by storm, and the traitor was forthwith beheaded on the battlements 
of the burg, in yiew of the whole army and people. ^ t 

° 1!^ 2 jitizedbyCiOOgle 


Pope Gregory died in the year 999, and Otho caused his 
esteemed instructor and councillor, Gerbert, to be elected to the papal 
chair, who adopted the title of Sylvester II. 

Otho, who always felt a great preference for Rome and Italy 
generally, would fain have wished to remain longer there, but he 
was not able to bear the enervating effects of tnat hot climate. 
Altogether, he did not enjoy the strongest constitution, and his 
health was not always in the best condition; besides which, durinep 
the period between youth and manhood, he evinced a very marked 
expression of sadness and melancholy, and which often exercised 
upon his mind such an influence, that, completely overcome, he re- 
sorted to the most severe self-inflicted punishments and penalties. 
Thus he now made a pilmmage to Monte Gargano, in Apulia, and 
sojourned for a considerable time in the monastery of St. Michael, 
imdergoing the most severe exercise of expiatory penance. Thence 
he visited the holy abbot, Nilus, near Garta, wno, with his monks, 
lived there in wretched cells, and in the most secluded state of strict 
devotion and humility. Here, likewise, Otho joined in the exercise of 
prayer, and severe and rigid repentance. Afterwards, we again find 
nim following the same course of extreme self-punishment in Ra- 
venna, for whole days together; and at one time he is said to have 
passed whole weeks with the hermits in the caves around, fiisting and 

It was these Italian monks, and especially Nilus the holy, a 
venerable man, ninety years of age, who had succeeded in pro- 
ducing within tiie prince this melancholy view of life, and filled nim 
with such continual desires to indulge in gloomy fits of abstinence 
and penitential sacrifices. He was particularly intimate with Adal- 
bert, the apostle of the Prussians, who, after the period of the first 
Roman campaign, had become his constant companion, not quitting 
the imperial apartments either by night or day, and who, partly by the 
wish of Otho, proceeded to the north, in order to preach the holy 
gospel to the pagan Prussians, where he died a martyr's death, in the 
year 999. When the religious emperor returned, in the followinff 
year, to Germany, he was urged, by his afiection towards this friend, 
to visit his grave in Gnesen. As soon as he came in view of the 
town, he dismoimted from his steed, and continued the rest of his 
pilgrimage to the sacred spot barefooted. Deeply aflfected, he poured 
foi% his devotions over the tomb of his much-lamented friend, and 
in recollection of the scene, he raised the bishopric of Gnesen, on the 
spot, into an archbishopric, placing under its authority the bishoprics 
of Breslaw, Cracovie and Colberg, promoting Adalbert's brother, 
Gaudentius, to the sacred office. 

Combined with the emotions origiiiating in Christian humility 
and worldly sacrifice, we find, however, likewise excited within Otho s 
soul, (which appears to have been subjected to sensations of the most 
varied nature,) a high aspiring desire and aim, and, especially, an 
elevated idea of the supremacy of the imperial digni^. As the son 

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of a Roman-Gennanic emperor and the erandaon of a Greek em- 
peror; already chosen as reigning king from the first moment of 
self-conscionsnefls, and, likewise, almost immediately afterwards de- 
corated with the imperial crown; educated by the most learned and 
accomplished men ot his time — a Gerbert, a Bemward, a Meinwerk, 
(of Paderbom), and by the Calabrian Grreek, John of Placentia-^ 
he held himself in high respect, and far beyond the Germans, who, in 
his opinion, were still uncouth and savage. He tried to persuade them 
to lay aside their Saxon barbarism, and exhorted ihem to imitate and 
adopt the more refined and elegant manners of the Greeks, and he 
even introduced the customs and usages of the latter, amongst the rest, 
which he himself adopted, that of dining alone from a table more ele- 
vated than the others, and to arrange the different places of honour ac- 
cording to rank and distinction. His tutor, Gerbert, had himself 
formed a high idea of the imperial dignity, which he had taken 
great pains to instil in the youthful mmd of his pupil. " Thou 
art our Caesar, Imperator, and Augustus," he wrote to him, ** and 
descended £rom the noblest blood of the Greeks ; thou art superior to 
them all in power and dominion,'* &c. Otho had indeed contemplated 
the restoration of the Roman empire, in its entire dominion, and no 
doubt he would have carried his intentions into effect, by making 
Rome the central point and the imperial seat of government, had he 
only been able to endure the climate. 

He regarded the founder of the Germanic-Roman empire, the 
great Charles, as his model, and when, in the year 1000, he visited 
Aix-Ia-Chapelle, he felt a desire to elevate his mind by tfie contem- 
plation of his ancestor's earthly remains. Accordingly he caused the 
vault to be imclosed, and descended its steps, accompanied by two 
bishops. He found the embalmed body still in the position it was 
placed, sitting in the golden chair, covered with the imperial robes, 
together with the sceptre and shield. Otho bent his knee in prayer, 
then took the golden cross from the breast of the emperor, and 
placed it upon his own. After which, before leaving, he had 
the bodv covered with fresh raiment, and then again solemnly closed 
the vault.* 

Otho's strong predeliction for Italy drew him once more into that 
country. Rome and the Romans appeared to him in all the splen- 
dour of their ancient dominion of the world; but they ill-returned 
the preference he showed for them. Whilst he was sojourning in 
Rome in the spring of the year 1001, the Romans revolted against 
him because he had exercised his lenity towards the Tiburtinians, 
who, as in ancient times, still remained their hated enemies; they 
kept him a dose prisoner in his own palace during three days, so 
that he could obtain neither food nor drink. Then it was that the 
emperor experienced that German fidelity and rude virtue were still 
better than the smooth but slippery words and more accomplished 

* The emperor, Frederick L, caused the vault to he unclosed again in the ^ear 1 165 
and had the hod^ deposited in a superb tomb. 

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manners of His favourite Italians. Bemward, the Bishop of Hildes- 
heim, placed himself, with the sacred royal lance, under the portico 
of the palace, and, as his biographer states, thundered against it most 
dreadfully; and thus, through the bishop's resolution and the aid of 
his faithud adherents, the emperor was at length rescued from the • 
Romans. Nevertheless, he looked over their bad conduct, and peace 
was resumed for a short time longer, but they soon agam broke out 
against him. He then prepared at once to punish this false and 
treacherous people; but his spirits were now broken, and he weak- 
ened and reduced his body still more by nocturnal watchings and 
praying, often fasting, too, tne entire week, with the single exceptioi]^ 
of the Thursday. He was attacked by a severe and inflammatory dis- 
ease, (according to Dietmar, the small-pox,) and died on the 23d of 
January, 1002, at Patemo, in the twenty-second year of his age» 
The body was placed under the charge and protection of the few 
German princes and nobles who had accompamed the emperor, and 
they lost no time in conveying it away from that hateful country into 
their native land. In the course of its march, however, the funeral 
procession was frequently attacked by the Italians, who were eager 
to get possession of. the corpse, and it was only by the imited efforts 
of the orave and valiant band of noble warriors that formed its escort, 
that the enemy was successfully repulsed, and that, at length, afler 
great difficulty, it arrived safely at its destination in Aix-k-Chapelle. 
Thus all the male descendants of Otho the Great, his two sons, 
Ludolf and Otho II., and his two grandsons, Otho HI. and Otho^ 
the son of Ludolf, died in Italy in £e bloom of their youth; whilst 
of the imperial Saxon family, the great-grandson of Henry I., Duke 
Henry of Bavaria, alone remained. The Germans were not at all 
inclined towards the Bavarian race; but Henry, who had, by means 
of his generous gifts, already enlisted the clergy on his ade, and had, 
likewise, in his possession the crown jewels and insignia,, succeeded 
by degrees in gaining over one by one the individual German states^ 
so that, without a general electoral assembly taking place, each trans- 
ferred to him the royal authority with the sacred lance. 

Henry II. has received the title of saint from his strict and pious 
life, as also from his liberality towards the clergy, already men- 
tioned. The latter had acquired extensive possessions unaer the 
Saxon emperors, who were all very generous towards them, and 
thence many of the leading members became powerful princes of the 
empire. Like Charlemagne, the kings saw with pleasure their increase 
of power, in order that they might use it as a counterpoise to that of the 
temporal lords, and at this period too, the spiritual power held chiefly 
with the kings. Otho I. had already began to unite the lordships 
with the bishoprics, and Henry II. transferred to many churches two, 
even three lordships, and to that of Gandersheim he even made over 
seven. The partiality and attachment shown by the emperor to- 
wards the clergy was, no doubt, taken advantage of by many; still 
among that body there were likewise at this period many men wha 

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were perfectly sensible of the peculiar dignity of their calling, and 
asealously sought the spiritual welfare of their commiinity, as well as 
the juro^reas of the human mind in the arts and sciences, and all true 
cultivation; of which the tenth centuiy, eq>ecially, presents ns with 
several illustrious instances. Bishop Bemward, of Hildefiheim, who^ 
in the urgent danger of the emperor, Otho HI., in Rome, displayed 
80 much resolution, was a man of great intellectual mind, and 
nouiished the most profound feeling for all that was good and beau- 
lafuL During his many voyages, chiefly in Italy, he took young 
peisona with nim for the purpose of exerdsing their taste in the ob- 
servation of works of art, and m their imitation. He caused the pave- 
ments and churches to be decorated with mosaic embellishment, and 
oosthrvessels of a beautiful form to be cast in metal, with whichhe 
was mmished by the mines of gold and silver in the Hartz, discovered 
under the Emperor Otho I. Thus did Bemward nobly exert him- 
self for his diocese, and the school of Hildesheim was one of the 
most celebrated of that period. 

When in Italy, the Emperor Henry received a second by-name 
— that of Huffeholz or the lame. For fresh disturbances hav- 
ing arisen there after the death of Otho HI., and the Italians hav- 
ing made a margrave, Ardovine, their king, Henry, in order to 
restore order, advanced thither in the year 1004, put Ardovine to 
flight, and caused himself to be crowned, with the iron crown, at 
Pavia. Out of regard for the city, and in order to show his con- 
fidence towards the citizens, he retained merely a small body-^uard, 
and caused the rest of the army to remain outside the dty m the 
camp. The capricious and inconstant disposition of the Italians im- 
mediatelv became manifested. They rose in revolt, stormed the 
palace of the emperor, and threatened his life. It was then, in q>rinff- 
mg from a winoow, that he lamed his foot. His companions, al- 
though but few, fought like valiant men, and successfully resbted 
the attacks of the enemy until the Germans beyond the city, hearing 
the tumult within, stormed the walls, and afW severe fighting, broke 
through, paved their way to the palace and saved the king. The balde 
still continued most furiously in the streets and houses, whence the in- 
habitants hurled forth stones and other missiles upon the troops, who 
set fire to the whole city, and which destruction continued until the 
king put a stop to the fury of his soldiers, and saved the rest of the 
inhabitants. It was in this battle that the queen's brother, Giselbert, a 
valiant youth, being killed by the Lombards, a biave knight, Wolfram, 
his companion in arms, rushed upon the enemy, struck one of them 
such a powerful blow with his sword that, passing through the hel- 
met, it separated his head and neck down to the shoulders; and 
having thus revenged the death of his noble fidend, he returned, un- 
wounded, back to his comrades. 

This conduct of the Pavians produced great disgust upon the 
opeo-hewried and honest feelings of the king, and as nothing could 

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induce him to remain longer in Italy, he returned to Grermanj as 
speedily as possible. 

Here, also, many disturbances arose during his reign, for the em* 
peror, who, with his good and pious qualities, was much too weak to 
hold the reins of his government, could not possibly maintain his 
authority. In particuhr the neighbouring Pohsh duke, Boleslas, an 
ambitious, turbulent man, who had conquered and partially retained 
Bohemia and Silesia, gave him much trouble, ror these coun- 
tries, howeyer, the usurper swore allegiance to the German emperor, 
but beyond this he maintained himself independently, and made 
himself feared on the other side even by the Russians and the Greek 

Henry yiaited Italy a second time in 1013, and re-established the 
pope, Benedict VIIL, in the papal chair; he swore to protect him 
faithfully, and was by him crowned emperor. Returmng to Ger- 
many, he was especially occupied with foimdin^ the bishopric of 
Bamberg, his favourite seat, which he richly endowed, and had de- 
termined it shoiild serve as a monument of his own piety as well as 
of that of his empress, Cunegunde. In the year 1020 he was much 
gratified by a journey which Pope Benedict made to Germany, who 
visited him in Bamberg, and consecrated his holy foundation. 

The object of the pope's presence in Germany was more especially 
to induce the emperor to undertake another expedition to Italy, in 
order to prevent the Greeks, who threatened Rome from Lower 
ItaW, from attacking and taking possession of that capital. 

And Henrvi who at once perceived the danger to which the church 
of Southern Italy was exposed of being robbed by the Greeks of its 
central point of operation, marched rorth, for the third time, in 
the year 1021, for that country, drove the Greeks easily back to 
the most extreme points of their possessions in Lower Italy, con- 
quered Benevento, Salerno, and Naples, and was everywhere greeted 
and hailed as king. But as he never liked to remain long m that 
country he returned to Germany in 1022, and devoted lumself to 
the exercise of devotional and peaceful works. 

Henry died in the year 1024, aged fifty-two, at his fortress, Grrone, 
in the Leingau (near Gotdngen), which had often been the seat of 
the Saxon emperors. His body was conveyed to Bamberg and there 
interred. Subse(]^uently, 122 years after his death, he was added to 
the calendar of saints by Pope Eugene III. With him the house of 
Saxony became extinct, whicn, like that of the Cdrlovingians, had com- 
menced powerftiUy but ended weakly. Germany now required once 
again a vigorous and great-minded ruler, in order to save it from in- 
t^al dissolution, as well as to preserve it from losing its dignity 
among the other nations; for, during the minority of Otho IH. and 
under Henry H., the imperial vassak had committed many usurpa- 
tions based upon the imperial prerogatives. The sons of the nobles, 
endowed witn imperial feods, retained them as if by right of inhe- 

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litanoe, and maay disputes were settled only bj an appeal to the 
sword without any r^fard being paid to the emperor's supreme judi* 
cial power. These wars devastated in particular the south of Grer- 

Meanwhile the Christian countries wherein, together with the do- 
minion of the church, a regard for the imperial cugnity was dissemi- 
nated, were now become considerably increased in nimiber. Towards 
the year 1000 Christianity became still more deeply rooted in Hun- 
gary, Poland, Russia, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. 



ABsemblage of the Ducal States— The Election— Conrad H, 10S4-lOS9~Be-etta- 
blishes Internal Peace — ^Italj — Canute, Kmg of England and Denmark— Burgondj 
•^Ernest, Dnke of SwaUa— The Fautt-Becht— Conrad's Death, 1039— Henrj 
m, 1039-1056— The Popes-Henry't seal for the Church— His Death, 1056-^ 
HemylV., 1056-1106— His Minority— Tl)e Archbishops— Albert of Bremen— 
Henrj and the Saxons— Their Hostility- Henry's Berenge— Pope Gregory 
Vn.— His Ambition— The Bight of Investiture— Buptnre with the Emperor— 
Heniy excommunicated— The Emperor a Fugitire— Hie riTal Emperors and Popes 
— ^Rudolphus of Swabia and Pope Clement m.— Henry's Death, 1106— Henry V. 
1106-1125— Bome— Pope Pascal IL— The Investiture Contest— Sanguinary Bat- 
tle— Henry crowned Emperor— His Death, 1125— The First Crusade, 1096-1099-<r 
liothairetfae Saxon, 1125-1137. 

The Germanic states, each under its duke, assembled for the elec* 
tion of a new emperor, upon the vast plains along both banks of the 
Rhine, between Mentz and Worms, near Oppenheim. There were 
eight dukes; Conrad the Younger, who exercised the ducal power in 
Franconia in the name of the king — Franconia bein^ still regarded 
as the king's country — ^Frederick of Upper Lorrame, Grozelo of 
Lower Lorraine, Bernard of Saxony (of Herman Billung's race), 
Henry of Bavaria, Adalbert of Carinthia (the new duchy, separated 
under Otho H. from Bavaria, and which contained the passes into 
Italjr), young Ernest of Swabia, and Othelric or Ulric, of Bo- 
hemia. The Saxons, the eastern Franks, the Bavarians, and Swa- 
bians, together with the Bohemians, encamped themselves on this 
aide of the Rhine; the Rhenish Franks, and those of Lower and 
Upper Lorraine on the other side. Thus a splendid and numerous 
assembly or diet of electors was here reflected in the waves of the 
great German stream. 

The voices, after long deliberation, inclined in favour of the 
Fiankishrace, from which twoConrads, surpassingall the rest in virtue 
and consideration, presented themselves — Count Uonrad the Elder or 
the Salian, and Conrad the Younger, the duke. They were kinsmen, 
beiDg sons of two brothers, and descended from Conrad the Wise, the 
husband of the daughter of Otho I., who feU in the battle with the 

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HunganaiiB on the Lech; both weie worthy of their ancestors, and 
upon the female side related to the Saxon imperial brancL The 
choice balanced bel^ween them; the elder Conrad then advanced to 
the side of the younger one, and thus addressed him : '' Do not let 
ufl allow our Mendship and interest to be disturbed by the contest. 
If we diq>ute together the princes may elect a third, and posterity 
will then say we were both imworthy of the crown. Methmks that 
whether the election fall upon either you or me, we shaU still both 
be honoured — I in you and you in me. If the crown be awarded 
to you, I will be the first to do homage to you; vow, therefore, my 
friend and brother to do the same by me." To this the younger 
prince agreed, and forthwith made the vow likewise. 

When the election commenced, and the archbishop, Aribo of 
Mentz, was first to give his vote, he named Conrad the Elder; the 
archbishops and bishops followed. Among the temporal princes, the 
Duke of the Franks was the first in rotation, and the younger Con- 
rad arose, and with a loud voice gave his vote to his cousin, Conrad 
the Elder, who seized him by the hand, and placed him beside him. 
The remaining princes followed on the same dde, and the people 
shouted their applause. Frederic of Lorraine and the Archbishop 
of Cologne alone were discontented, and quitted the assembly; but 
when they beheld the unanimity of all the others, and that the 
younger Conrad had at once acceded to the choice made, they be- 
came reconciled, and returning, rendered homage with the rest of 

Tne new king was now conducted to Mentz, to be there solemnly 
anointed and crowned. On the road to the church, the prooession 
was Btooped by the number of petitioners, who prayed for jus- 
tice. Tjie bishops became impatient, but Conrad listened tranquilly 
to their prayers and said: ^' To exercise justice, whether it be con- 
venient to me or not, is my first duty." These words were heard 
with joy by all around; thence great hopes were formed of the new 
king, and Conrad did not disappoint them. He commenced his reign 
by visiting all parts of Germany; he practised justice, restored order, 
and showed so much strict judgment, combined with mercy, that 
all united in one opinion, that no king since Charlemagne had so 
well merited to occuoy his seat upon the imperial throne. Robbers 
he punished so severely, that now there was more general security than 
had been known for a lon^ period, whilst commerce flourished once 
again. He secured for himself and his race the voice of {tie people, 
by promoting the development of the municipal institutions by every 
possible means. 

Thus did he govern his kingdom internally. In his foreign 
relations, he laboured equally for the dignity and greatness of Ger- 
many. Shortly after the commencement of his reign, he advanced 
into Italy, where in Milan he was crowned king of Italy, and subse- 
quently m Rome, emperor. The festival was rendered more august 
by the presence of two Idngs, Budolphus of Burgundy, and the great 

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Caaute, King of England and Denmark. With the latter, Conrad 
formed a strict friendship; he united his son, Henry, with his 
daughter, Kimihilda, and regulated also with him the limits be- 
tween Germany and Denmark, so that the river Eider, between 
Holstein and oilesia, became the boundary of both countries. He 
thus gave up, it is'true, the margraviate of Silesia ; but the country was 
difficult to defend, and Conrad was th^ gainer in other respecta. 
Henry H. had already concluded an hereditary alliance with xionf 
Budolphus of Burgundy, so that after his death Buimmdy should faU 
to Germany. Conrad renewed the treaty, and after the death of 
Kudolphus he took actual possession of that country, although a 
portion of the Burgundians had called forward Count Odo, of 
Champagne, whom, however, Conrad drove back, and was forthwith 
recognised as king. This kingdom comprised the beautiful districts of 
the south-east oi France, which were afterwards called Provence, 
Daupheny, Franche Comte, and I^yons, together with Savoy, and a 
portion of Switzerland, thus placing Germanjr, by means of the im* 

Srtant sea^ports of Marseilles and Toulon, in connexion with the 
editerranean: an important acquisition, which, however, after^ 
wards, in the times of weaker emperors, became neglected, and fell 
into the hands of the French. 

Conrad, however, was forced to experience, that this very ac(^ui-» 
dtion of Burgundy became a subject of dissension in his own family, 
and thence a source of vexation to himself. His step-son, Ernest, 
Duke of Swabia (the son of his queen, GHiseUa, by her former bus* 
band Herman, Duke of Swabia), considered he possessed the first 
right to the crown of Burgundy, because his mother was the niece 
of Rudol{)hus, King of Burgundy. Dissatisfied with Conrad's 
conduct, in getting this temtory annexed to the German em* 
pire, he deserted him in the Italian campaign, excited dissen* 
sion against him in Germany, and was in hopes, by the aid of 
his friends, to invade and conquer Burgundy. Conrad, however, 
hastened back, disappointed him in his efforts, and as Ernest could 
not succeed in gaining over the Swabian vas^Ja to his purpose, he 
was forced to surrender at discretion, and his step-father sent him a 
prisoner to the strong castle of Giebichenstein, in Thuringia. Afler 
an imprisQument of three years, he set him at liberty, and offered 
to restore him to his duchy, if he would deUver up to him his 
friend and principal accomplice, Count Werner, of Kyburg. This, 
however, Ernest hesitated and finally refused to do, and he was accord- 
ingly deposed ; and at a diet of the princes and nobles of the em-> 
?ire, he was banished the country, together with all his partisans, 
le fled for refuge to his cousin. Count Odo, of Champagne, ao- 
companied by Count Werner, and a few faithful friends; but soon 
afterwards returned, whilst his father was on an expedition a^inst 
the Hungarians, concealed himself amongst the caverns of the Black 
Forest, and once more endeavoured to ^n adherents in Swabia. 
But the Bishop of Constance, as administrator of the duchy for 

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Gisella's second son, Herman (yet a minor^, to whom Conrad had 
transferred it, sent Count Mangold, of Yehnngen, against him, when 
both armies met (1030), and fought a severe battle, imtil both 
Ernest and Werner, together with Mangold, were killed. The ad- 
ventures of Duke Ernest became the subject of many heroic lays 
and legends; and the most wonderful deeds performed by his army 
were connected with his name, and eventually, collect^ together 
by later poets, formed one entire work. Meantime, the campaign 
undertaken by the emperor a^inst the Hungarians, provea tii- 
tunphant, and he obliged Stephen, their king, to sign a favourable 
treaty of peace. He forced, also, to their former obedience the 
Slavonian and Yandalian tribes, who were still seated on the Oder, 
and northwards on the Elbe; and Hamburg, which they had de- 
stroyed, raised itself by degrees from its ruins. 

The emperor was also a zealous promoter of the institution 
whereby the church sought to set some limits to the rude force of 
the faust-recfU — namely, that of the Peace of God. From Wednes- 
day evening at sunset until sunrise on Monday morning, all feuds 
were to cease, no sword be raised, and universal security protect the 
a£&irs of life. He who should transgress against the peace of God 
(treuga or treva dei), was to be punished with the neaviest ban. 
Odilo, of Clumy, is named as the originator of this institution, and 
the clergy of Burgundy and the low countries, where the most san- 
guinary feuds prevailed, with the consent of Conrad, first united 
themselves, in the year 1033, for this purpose. 

Conrad returned sickly from his second expedition into Italy, 
wherein disease reduced his army; and his own step-son, Herman 
of Swabia, and Eimihilda, the young consort of his son Henry, the 
daughter of the Danish kW, both died there. He himself never 
thoroughly recovered, and med at Utrecht, in 1039. His biogra- 
pher, Wippo, thus speaks of him : — '* I should expose myself to the 
charge of nattery, were I to relate how generous, how steadfast, how 
undaunted, how severe towards the bad, how good towards the 
virtuous, how firm against the enemy, and how unwearied and urgent 
in affairs he was, when the welfare of the empire demanded it." 

His consort, Gisella, one of the most noble of German women, 
and who loved him most tenderly, refused every consolation, and 
mourned her husband in the convent of Kaufungen, near Cassel, imtil 
her death. The corpse of the emperor was brought to Spires, and 
deposited in the noble cathedral which he himself had founded. 

Thisemperor had evidently formed the idea, and which maybe called 
the fundamental idea of the whole Salic imperial race — ^namely, to 
raise the imperial power of Germany to the most imlimited extent, to 
restrict the dominion of the princes within narrow ^bounds, and, in 
order to complete this, he endeavoured to ^n, by every favour, the 
assistance of the inferior vassals, who had almost become slaves to 
them. To this tended an important law (constitutio de feudis), 
which Conrad made in the year 1037, on his second expedition to 

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Il^Jy, for that country, and wliich was soon afterwards transferred 
to Germany, namely — that feudal estates, which had belonged to 
the father, should not be taken capriciously from the sons, but 
only in criminal cases, decided by tribunals composed of their 
oo-Tassals. Thereby he prepared for the lesser vassals the full right 
of ]>ropeTty; so that from them there must necessarily have arisen a 
distinct, free order, for the support of the emperor agamst the gieater 
Tassals. These, on the contrary, and particularly the dukes, he 
sought to bring back to their old condition of mere imperial func- 
tionaries; and even gave the duchies of Swabia, Bavaria, and Fran- 
Gonia, to his son Heniy, who seemed fully adapted to carry still 
£ulher his ^reat and extensive plan. Had success attended it, 6er-» 
many would have become earlier what France became later, an undi- 
Tidea, powerful empire. But the Salic race was stayed in its mid* 
career, partly by its own fault, and partly by the rapid rising 
of the papal chair, whose authority deveiopea itself with astonishing 
energy, and whose victory over his grandson, Heniy IV., the power- 
fid C:)nrad certainly had not anticipated. 

Conrad's son, Henry, or the black, whom the Germans had 
chosen during his father's life, was twenty-two years of age; but the 
hopes formea of him were great, and they proved not unfounded. 
Like his father, he was of a high mind and a determined will, obsti- 
nate and firm, and at the same time eloquent and well-informed, for 
theprudent Gisella had early induced him tocultivatehis mind asmuch 
as possible by reading, although at that time books were very scarce. 
No emperor since Charlemagne maintained more vigorously the im- 
perial oignity in Italy, Germany, and the neighbouring lands, or 
rule d more powerfuUy within the limits of his extensive empire. 
What served to increase his gieat fame was, that he so humbled the 
wild Hungarians, who a hundred years before were the terror of 
Germany, that the Hungarian nobiuty, after a lost battle, took the 
oath of allegiance to him in the city of Stuhlweissen, in the year 
1044, and that Peter, their king, re-established by Henry, received 
the country as a feud from him, by means of a golden lance. It is 
true this was no durable subjection; still the act of itself is suf- 
ficiently glorious for Henry, whilst thereby he gained a portion of 
Hungry, from Kahlenburg to Leitha, which he unitea with the 
marches of Austria. 

The king then, in 1046, turned his attention towards Italy, to 
settle the great disorders existing there. There three popes held their 
sway at once: Benedict IX., Sylvester III., and Gregory IV. 
Henry, in order to be wholly impartial, convoked a council at 
Sutri. Here they were all three deposed, as irregularly elected; 
and then, in Rome, at the desire of the collective clergy and no- 
bility, Henry, who, foUowinj^ the example of Charlemagne, had 
received the di^ty of patrician for himself and successors, made 
a German,. Smdger, Bishop of Bamberg, pope, who took the 
name of Clement II.; and at the Christmas festival, 1046, he 

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crowned Henry emperor. Subsequently, Henry gave tlie Romans 
three successive popes, for they were obliged to promise him, as 
they had done to Otho, to acknowledge no pope without the impe- 
rial sanction. 

After these, the papal chair was filled by two more Grerman 
popes, and these six ponti6 from Germany: Clement H., Dama- 
sus n., Leo IX., Victor H., Stephan IX., and Nicholas II., who 
succeeded each other in very quick, but uninterrupted rotation, 
laboured with one concurring mind for the good of the church, and 
raised it a^ain from the ruinous state into wmch it had been thrown, 
through dissension in Rome itself, the immoral conduct practised by 
many of the clergy, and the purchase of spiritual offices for money. 
Thius they paved tibie way for theplans of that spiritual dominion of the 
world, which Hildebrand or Pope Grregory VII., afterwards suc- 
ceeded in executing. In our subsequent history of this celebrated 
pope, we shall allude further to this question. Here, however, we 
must at once say, for the honour of these German pontifs, that by 
their efforts, iimuenced by a noble and firm mind, and true zeai, 
towards promoting the purity and dignity of the church, they must 
be classed as the precursors in the reforms eventually introduced. 
Leo IX. (formerly Bruno, Bishop of Toul, and a relation of the 
Emperor Henry III.), was especially to be esteemed as a man of the 
most elevated moral virtue and true nobleness of mind. His hu- 
mility was so great, that after he was elected pope, he lefl his 
bishopric of Toul for Rome on foot, and with the pilgrim's staff in 
hand, he journeyed all the distance thus lowly, accompanied by Hil- 
debrand, then chaplain to the deposed pope, Ghregory VI., in whom 
Leo had already recognised a man of extraordinary genius. 

His zeal for the purification of the church urged him forthwith 
to operate a^nst the prevailing system of Simonism, or the pur- 
chasing of spiritual offices with money, and the immoral life lea by 
the clergy. He presided at three councils which were convoked for 
this purpose, in itome, Rheims, and Mentz; and he succeeded in 
bringing to bear, within a year, the most important reforms. He 
then travelled from the one cotmtry of Christendom to the other, 
wherever his presence was most necessary, in order to promote and 
establish personally the purification of the church. He died in the 
year 1054, too soon for the great work he had in hand; but his 
successors continued to complete what he had commenced according 
to his grand plan. 

Meantime, in Germany, Henry ruled as a wise and powerful sove- 
reign. He abandoned, certainly, to other princes, the duchies which 
he nimself formerly possessed, but only to such as were rulers of 
very limited power, and who received, it is true, the name but not the 
ancient prerogative of duke, as viz. : Bavaria to Heniy of the house 
of Luxemburg, and, after him, to Conrad, of the Palatinate ; Garinthia 
to Guelf, son of Ghielf, the Swabian count ; Swabia itself to Otho, 
Count Palatine, on the Rhine. In Swabia, the Gndfic house was 

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henry's personal courage— his death. 191 

veiypowerftil, and would therefore willingly have posseesed the ducl^; 
but it was precisely for that reason, that Henij placed Count Ghielf 
in Carinthia, in order that the duke might not possess ^eat hereditary 
lands in the country. Thus he acted as he pleased with the imperial 
dignities, whilst he fayoured the inheritance of the smaller fie&. 
Upper Lorraine passed through him to Count Albert, of Longwy, 
an ancestor of the present Austrian house. 

It was about this time that Henry gaye a striking proof of his 
personal courage, for at an interview which took place between him 
and King Henry of France, near Mentz, in the year 1056, a dispute 
arose between them, and the latter king charged him with a breach 
of his word. As it beseemed, Hemr replied only by casting. his 
gauntlet down before the kin^, who, however, during the following 
night, retired within his frontiers. Nothing could be more pleasing 
to the Germans than this chivalrous bearing of their emperor. 

Henry now returned to Saxony, where his favourite seat Groslar 
by, in the Hartz, and which he raised to a considerable city. We 
must not wonder that a king of the Prankish race should fix his 
seat in Saxony, considering that he did so on account of its rich mines, 
which existed close to this said Goslar, in the Hartz. Mines, in 
those limes, were the exclusive property of the emperor. In Goslar, 
Henry built a fortress^ a palace, churches, and rammrts round the 
town, and he obliged the Saxons of the surrounoing country to 
render excessive service. This increased the ill-will they felt at 
seeinff an imperial fortress thus suddenly created in their country; 
and although under so severe and powerful an enemy, they could 
not give utterance to their thoughts, it nevertheless produced the 
more bitter fruits for his son. Henry died suddenly, in the year 
1056, at Bothfeld, near Blankenburg, at the foot of the Hartz (whi- 
ther he had cone to hunt), in the prime of Ufe, bein^ only thir^- 
seven years old, and in the midst of great plans which he formed for 
the future. 

This emperor was strictly and bimtedly pious, notwithstanding 
his strong mind and stenmess of wilt. He never placed his crown 
wpon his head without having previously confessed, and received 
from his confessor permission to wear it. He likewise subjected 
Unself to the expiatory penalties and punishments of the church, 
•ad often submitted his body to be scourged by his priests. Thus 
the rode and barbarous manners of those tmies held in no contempt 
<^orporeal chastisement — as practised among them to curb the vio- 
lence of pasnon — even when infiieted upon the body by the suf- 
ferer's own lash. 

Henry HI. may, nevertheless, be named amongst those emperors 
who have proved the cultivation of their own mind, by their loye for 
t^ sciences, by their predilection in favour of distinguished men, and 
^7 theb promotion of intdlectual perfection generally. Ev^ since 
^e had received tiiepoem addressed to him in Latin ij Wippo (the 
i^i^^pher of his &ther), in whidhi he encouraged hua to l»ye the 

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cliildren of the secular nobles educated in the sciences, he con- 
tinued to evince the greatest interest in the erection of schools. 
Those of Li^ge, Lobbes, Gemblours, Fulda, Paderbom, St. Grallen, 
Reichenau, &c., flourished especially under his reign; and it was 
in the two last-mentioned schools that Herman le Contracte, one of 
the most learned men of that time, received his education. This 
extraordinary philosopher was, from his childhood, such a cripple, 
that he could only be conveyed from one place to another in a 
portable chair. He wrote a^ with the greatest difficulty, and 
stammered so painfully to hear, that his pupils required a long time 
before they could understand him; whilst, however, he was so ad- 
mired and soii^ht afber by them, that they flocked to him in multi- 
tudes from all parts. His chronicles belong to the most distin- 
guished historical sources, including the first division of the 11 th 

The sciences and the arts under Henry HI. progressed to an extent 
by no means unimportant; and if much became neglected under the 
long and turbulent reign of his successor, Henry lY ., still the foun- 
dation was then laid for that glorious development which is presented 
to us in the after-times, under the reign of the Hohenstaufens. 

The princes had already recognised the succession of Henry's 
son immediately on his birth. Unfortunately for the empire, 
upon the death of his &ther the young king was only a child six 
years old. 

His education and the government of the realm were at first in 
the hands of his excellent mother Agnes, who, however, was not in 
a condition to retain the nobles of the empire in dependance, and 
thus complete the father's work. She sought rather by &vouring 
some of them to acquire support for her government, and therefore 

Sve Swabia, and at the same time the dominion of Burgundy, to 
mnt Rudolphus of Rheinfelden, and Bavaria to Otho of Nordheim^ 
confirming the grant with a dangerous clause, viz., that these dig- 
nities should remain hereditary in their houses. Henry, Bishop of 
Augsburg possessed especially her confidence, but this speedily caused 
envy and jealousy. At the head of the discontented stood the Arch* 
bishop Hanno of Cologne, an ambitious and prudent, but austere 
and severe man. In order to gain possesion of the young king, and 
thereby of the government, he went at Easter in 1062 to Kaiserwerth 
on the Rhine, where at that moment the court of the empress was as- 
sembled, and after the dinner he persuaded the boy to go and view a 
particularly beautiM vessel, recently built He had scarcely, how- 
ever, got onboard,when the sailors, atasignal given by thearchbishop, 
loosened her moorings, and rowed to the middle of the Rhine, which so 
much terrified the youth, that he suddenly jumped into the river, and- 
would certainly have been drowned had not Count Elckbert of Bruns- 
wick sprang after him and saved him at the hazard of his life. He was 
cheered up, and many fair promises being held out to him, he was thus 
decoyed away and taken to Cologne. Hismotherwasmuchakrmedand 

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ffrieved, and when she perceiyed that the German princes had no 
Umger confidence in her, she determined to conclude her life in quiet 
retirement, and went to Rome. 

Hie Axchbiahop Hanno, in order that it mi^ht not appear as if he 
wanted to retain the highest power in his own hands, made an order 
that the young king should awell by turns in the different countriea 
of Germany, and that the bishop, in whose diocese he dwelt, should 
for the time being, have the protectorship and the chief government 
of the kingdom. His chief object, however, was to set me mind of 
the prince under his own control, but in this he comd not succeed. 
HiB character and manner were not such as to gain the heart of the 
vouth, for he was severe, haughty, and authoritative, and as it is r^ 
kted of him, that he even applied the scourge with severity to his 
fiither, the powerful Henry the Black, it may likewise be presumed 
that he often treated the vouth very roughly. Among the remaining 
bishops there was one who was a very oUfEerent man, as ambitious as 
Hanno, but subtle and flatterins, and who gained the youth by grant- 
ing all his wishes : this was the Archbishop Adalbert of Bremen. This 
ambitious man wished to unite the whole of the north of Germany into 
one great ecclesiastical dominion, and to place himself at its head as a 
second pope. In fact he was abeady invested almost with the authority 
and di^iity of a patriarch of the north; for by his zealous efforts to pro- 
pagate Chrisdamty there, many bishoprics had been founded in the 
Slavonic countries, such as Ratzeburg and Mecklenburg, as well as 
several churches in Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. He hated the 
temporal princes, because they stood m the way of these objects and 
in order to suppress them he wished to raise the imperial power to 
imlimited despotism. Hanno of Cologne and his confederates stood 
in the most decided opposition to him in this view, for they endea- 
voured to raise the digmty of the princes upon the ruins of the empire ; 
and thus both parties, without any reserve, went passionately to ex- 
tremes. Whilst Hanno was on a journey to Rome, where he re- 
mained some time, Adalbert obtained entire possession of the young 
prince. Nothing worse could have happened to the youth than to 
be subject to the influence of two such different men, and to this 
change of treatment so entirely opposite ; for after having been treated 
with the greatest severity, he was now allowed to sink by too great 
lenity and indulgence into dissipation and sensuality. 

Henry was distinguished for ^reat mental as well as physical 
qualities; he was endowed with daring and ardent courage, quickness 
of resolve, and a chivalric mind which might have been directed to 
the most noble objects. But now his active and fiery nature became 
transformed into a revengeful and furious disposition, and his elevated 
mind d^enerated into selfish pride and donunation. Besides which, 
he loved sensual pleasures, and thence became often idle and care- 
less. A good thought and a praiseworthy, honourable action in him 
changed speedily to an opposite chatacter^ because throughout his 
whole life he was wanting in a fixed leading principle whereon to 

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base liis actions. That steady calm repose and moderation, ever 
immutable, l^nd which constitute the highest majesty of kings, were 
by him unattainable and never possessed; and thus are reflected in 
his whole existence the dissimilar and CTen contradictory sentiments 
and principles of those by whom he was educated. 

It was strongly evinced and verified as a great truth in Henry IV., 
that according to our disposition and inward bein^, so is our fate. 
If the former be fixed and firm, our life as surel;^ takes a fixed direc- 
tion. But Henry's life was as unequal as his mind : the variation of 
^ood fortune wim misfortune, elevation with abasement, and haugh- 
tmess with humiliation — such were the transitions of his life, even 
imto the moment of his death. 

Adalbert had transplanted from his own soul to that of his pupil 
two feeling of the deepest aversion — the first was directed against 
all the pnnces generally, and the second against those of Saxony, 
and especially the ducal house of Bilking, and the whole Saxon 
people, with whom he had previously had man^ disputes relative to 
nis Archbishc^ric of Bremen. He therefore impressed upon the 
mind of the young king, that as the princes, but chiefly those of 
Saxony, were striving for independence, he should reduce them by 
times to obedience and crush them. These principles embittered and 
destroyed the tranquillity of the king's whole life, for although the 
ambitious archbishop, after he had declared the king to be of age at 
Worms in 1065, was, by means of the princes, removed firom Henry in 
the following year, his ward never forgot liis instructions, and when, 
inl069, Adalbert again visited the court of the young monarch, he used 
all his former influence to strengthen and confirm nimin this hatred. 

The Saxons speedily perceived the king's purpose of maldnff their 
country immediately dependent on the crown; for he dwelt diiefly 
at Goslar, and commenced building in the nftoimtains of the Hartz 
and in Thuringia a multitude of fortresses, and manned them vrith 
garrisons, to enable them to curb the natives more easily. The same 
Benno (afterwards Bishop of Osnaburg) who, imder Henry HI., upon 
the building of Goslar itself bad already forced the Saxons into service, 
now superintended these buildings. The chief of these fortresses was 
that of Hartzburg, near Ooslar, Henry's favourite place, but an eye-8(»re 
to the Saxpns. Murmurs passed around, and the people complained 
that the freedom they enjoyed from their ancestors was about to be 
destroyed. It was also related, that whilst one day surveying the 
country around from a mountain in Saxony, the Inn^ exclaimed: 
*^ Saxony is indeed a beautiful country, but those who inhaUt it are 
miserable serfs." 

There were two other causes which increased the discontent. Henrjr, 
as a child, had already been betrothed by his father to Bertha, the 
daughter of the Margrave of Susa, in Italy, and he had afterwards 
married her. Now, however, he wished to oe divorced from her, and 
as for this purpose he required the assistance of the q>iritual princes, 
he accordingly sought to conciliate before all others the finendship 

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ofSigfiried,AichbisliopofMentz. Butas his pasnonfl always diare Mm 
bfinmj on to the object he was so anzicms to erasp, so fikewise the 
ihenowemploTedtoattamitwereeqnallTbacL Hecommanded 

and forced the Thunngians to pay to the aichbishop the tithe of thdr 

goodswhichhehadformerljclaimed,aiid they had retused. Thusbehad 

luyw made the Thunngians doubly his enemies. Meantime^ however, 

owing to the opposition shown on the part of the pope, he was not 

^Torced from the q iieen ; and sabdufid, 6£K)rdy afierwurdfi^ by her ^^ 

and dignified cooanct, hi0 heart once more turned towards her, and 

die &ithfully continued to share with him his good and bad fortune. 

Bemdes this, Henir treated the Saxon Count, Otho of Nordheimf 

to wlKxm his mocher bad given the Duchy of Bavaria, so badly, that 

all the nobles, but chiefly those of Saxony, were highly exasperated. 

This Doke Otho was a friend of the Archbishop of Cologne, and 

mieht pirobaUy thereby have become obnoxiousto the king, orthelatter 

peraape turned die hatred he had imbibed from Adalbert i^ainst all 

die nobles^ more particularly against Otho, upon whose arm the Sax<» 

people chiefly depended* And when at this moment an accuser 

appeared, muned Egino (probably employed for that purpose), and 

chaiged the duke with having tned to |)er8nade him to assassinate 

the king,and Otho refused to do battle with him because he was not 

of tlie same rank, and bore besides a bad character, Henry, by an 

unjust sentence, deposed him forthwidi from his dudiy of Bavaria^ 

and destroyed with fire and sword all his hereditary lands in Saxony. 

He gave lus duchy of Bavaria (in 1070) to Guelf the Young (I V.) 

the son of the Italian Margmve AzzOy and the founder of the junior 

Guelfic house, the elder house having become extinct by the death 

of Duke Guelf of Carinthia in 1055. 

But in Otko of Nordheim he had now aroused for his whole life 
time a most valiant and inveteiate enemy. He joined Count Magnus 
of Saxony, son of Duke Ordulf, a noUe youth, bold and valiant in 
arms, and united himself with Urn ; but pressed by the royal forces, 
they were obliged to yield themselves both prisona^s to Henry before 
they had hardly prepared themselves for battle. After the lapse of 
a year Henry set Otho at liberty, but he retained Magnus in prison 
in the Hartzburg, because he refused at his command to renounce his 
nehts to his fiither's duehy, and although Otho nobly offered to 
take his friend's place in prison, he refused to Usten to him. Thence 
arose the natural conclusion, that it was the king's intention to take 
possession of the duchy of Saxony himself, and leave the young prince 
to die in captivity. 

These circumstances were the origin of thai deep and violent 
enmily between Henry and the Saxons, and which fnre^ed the 
most bitter and melancholy reverses for the king, and incited both 
parties to acts of the most implacable hatred and revenge. 

The Saxons, with Otho of i^orheim at their head, conduded with 
each other a close alliance. All the Saxon and Thuringian nobles, 
temporal and spiritual, belonged to it, and among otbos, Burkhard, 

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Bishop of Halberatadt, who was a nephew of the Archbishop of Co* 
logne, and had imbibed from the latter his hatred against the imperial 
misrule and ascendancy. This was still the time when the clergy mem- 
selves went into battle and frequently fought at the head of their war- 
like hosts. 

Quite unexpectedly, and whilst Henry was at Goslar, in the year 
1073, a deputation from the Saxons came to him and demanded of 
him as follows: '^ That he should destroy his fortresses in their 
bountry; set Magnus, the heir of their Saxon duchy free from his 
imprisonment; not always remain in Saxony; honour the ancient 
constitution of the country; and in imperial affairs not ffiye ear to 
bad advisers, but take counsel of the states. If he woiud perform 
these conditions," they added, '* no nation in Germany would be 
found more &ithful and devoted to him than that of the Saxons." 
Henry, however, dismissed the deputation with contempt. The 
Saxons accordingly, now brought into speedy effect and immediate 
execution the threatened consequences, and advanced towards Ooslar 
with 60,000 men. Henry fled with his treasures to the strong fortress 
of Hartzburg, and as the enemy speedily followed him,hetook to flight 
and sought refuge amidst great oanger in the Hartz mountains. He 
was obhged, for three days, to wander without food or drink, and 
with but few companions, under the guidance of a yager, imagining 
in every whisper of the wind passing along the tops of the firs, to 
hear the steps of his pursuers. At la^ he reached Eschwege, on the 
river Werra. From thence he went to the Rhine, towards Tribur, 
and sent messengers thro^hout the whole empire, summoning all to 
arms against the Saxons. But the Saxons wisely profited by the inter- 
yal, destroyed fortress afler fortress, and took possession of the strong 
castle of Luneburg with its whole garrison ; and which lucky circum* 
stance they tookaavantageof to free their duke, Magnus, for the j now 
demanded his freedom of the emperor under the toreat, that, if not 
granted, they would hang up the whole garrison of Lunebur^ as rob- 
bers. Henry was obliged therefore, however unwillingly, to yield and 
set Magnus at liberty, together with seventy other nobles and knights. 
The monarch's humiliation, however, did not end here, for he was 
now likewise deserted by the princes of Southern Germany, and 
even the Archbishop of Mentz, on whose account he had xnade so 
many enemies, lefl nim. A circumstance also occurred at this mo- 
ment which formed a parallel case with that of Egino and Otho of 
Nordheim, only that here the kiug was made out to be the assassin. 
Reginger, a kmght and former favourite of Henry, came now for- 
ward and made public that '' the king had employed him to murder 
the Dukes Rudoiphus of Swabia and Berthold of Carinthia." This 
statement might possibly have been a mere mancsuvre of the enemy, in 
order to prejudice public opinion against Henry, similar to that wnich 
he had nimself previously emploj^ed against Otho of Nordheim. 
But it was equally successful, K>r it was even proposed to elect a 
new Idngy and the ungrateful Archbishop Si^ri^ convoked the 
princes fcr that purpose to hold a diet at Mentz. y Google 


In tliis emergencTfr, when all liis friends had deserted him, the citi* 
zens of Wonxis alone remained faithful to the king. They opened their 
gates to him against tiie -w^ of their archbishop, offered hitn men 
and arms, and by thdr generous attachment and fidelity again r&« 
stored his despondent mind, and as far as their means admitted the^ 
^rholly supported him, no one else attempting to assist him. At this 
perioa, certain cities in Germany already b^n to have a Toioe in 
the imperial diets, and they became the chief support of imperial 
authority against the princes; thence we see how much, by industry 
and activity, they must have increased since the time of Henry I., 
hoOoL in the number and in the wealth of their inhabitants. But 
the iaithfiil people of Worms could not defend him against the 
entire power of all the accumulated evils which now hung over his 
Iiead. He was obUged, in order not to lose his crown, to make hard 
terms of peace with the Saxons in 1074, and to deliver up to them 
all liis fortresses, even his beloved Hartzburg. After contemplating 
it with sorrow and regret for the last time, as, in the midst of the 
Saxons he rode to Goslar, he once more, and even most earnestly 
entreated them to grant its preservation, but the proud fortress was 
doomed to fall, and in its destruction hatred raged so furiously, that 
the embittered populace, without even the knowledge or consent of 
the princes, plundered and burnt both its church and altar, tore open 
the mijperial tombs, and desecrated the remains of Henry's brotner 
and infant son. 

But the Saxons very soon experienced that the most dangerous 
enemy to good fortune is the arrogance of our own heart; and one of 
^oee singular changes of fortune which distinguished Henry's en-» 
tire rdgn now suddenly displayed itself. He had well learnt by this 
time, that men must be differendy treated to the fashion Adalbert had 
taught him, and that in order to conquer a people, something more 
is necessary than building isolated fortresses in their country. Ac- 
cordingly he now besan to address the German princes in a very 
opposite manner to wbat he had hitherto done; he sought to gain 
them individually, especially as their assemblies were in general pre- 
judicially opposed to nim, and for this purpose he employed a differ- 
ent but more suitably-adapted means with each of them separately. 
To all of them he complained bitterly of the shamefiil and revolting 
destruction of Hartzburg, and as soon as the public voice became more 
favourable towards him, he issued a general summons against the 
Saxons. This time obedience immediately followed, and a strong 
anny was speedily collected boA of knights and vaswils, from all 
parts of the kingdom, even from Bohemia and Lorraine, an army 
such as had not been seen for a long time, whilst the Saxons 
who had only hastily assembled a few troops, and by the artifices 
of the king biad become disunited among themselves, were severely 
beaten, in 1075, near Hohenburg, not far from Lancensalza, on the 
liver Unstrut. Henry pursued the fiigitives as far as Magdeburg and 
Halberstadt, and desolated their country with fire and sword. His 

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vengeance was terrific, like all hia imgoTemaUe passions. But in the 
following year, the other princes, who would not suffer the pocnr people 
to be entirely destroyed, stepped between as mediators. Henry granted 
the Saxons a peace after their nobles had humbly knelt to him before 
all the army; Dut instead of effecting a complete reconciliation by a 
fiill pardon, he, contcaiy to ihe promise he gave through his am- 
bassadors, retained many of the Saxon nobles as prisoners, and made 
over their fiefs to his vassab. The most dangerous of all their 
princes, however, Otho of Nordheim, he aliowed to return to his 
estates, and even appointed him administrator orer Saxony. He 
Cffosed all the destroyed fortresses, including Hartzburg, to be rebuilt, 
erected additional ones, and had them garrisoned by ms own troops, 
who, as befi>re, oppressed the land by arrogance and extortion; thus 
the seeds of future revolt were again planted in this quarter, vHiiist 
fcom an opposite direction an enemy presented himself, far more 
powerful, and who fought against him with very different weapons 
to those of the Saxons. 

Hildebrand (afterwards Ghnegory Y H.) was die son c^ a carpenter 
at Saone, an Italian city. He entered the clerical state, and as he 
possessed extraordinary mental powers he wsa taken by Pope Leo 
IV., in the reign of Heniy III., fi:om the monastery of Clugny to 
Rome, and there made sub-deacon of the Roman church, and after- 
wards chancellor; henceforward he alone directed the government of 
the popes, and became the soul of the pontifical court. His object wrs 
to raise the pope above all the princes and kings of the earth, and 
this aim be pursued during his whole life with so much prudence, 
constancy, power, and ^eatness of mind, that he must be placed 
among the most extraordinary men in the history of his times. W hen 
he fiist appeared great misuses had crept in among the higher and lower 
clergy; the majority purchased their holy offices with gold, whereby 
imworthy men could attain to high and important places. Immo- 
laiity, dissipation, and vices of every kind were not rare among 
them, and as they were the slaves c^ their own sins, so also by their 
love for temporal possessions thej attached themselves to temporal 
princes, who rewarded them with their possessions. Hildebrand 
therefore resolved, in^ired as he was for the freedom of the church 
and the morality of the clerical order, to lay the axe to the root of 
these evils. 

His first endeavours were very justly directed against the purchase 
of spiritual offices with gold, which was called the crime of simony (in 
reference to the history of Simon the magician, related in the Acts 
of the Apostles, viii., 18-24) and was considered a sin against the Holy 
Ghost. It is shown with what moral power and superiority of mind 
he knew how to influ^ice men, in the example of an archbishop of 
Franoe, who was diarged with this crime, but had cunningly gained 
over the informers by gold. Hildebrand, so says the origmal docu- 
ment, sat as representative of the pope in judgment upon the affidr. 
The archbi^op then stepped boldly into the assembly and said. 

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^ Wheie are they who charge me? Let him step forth who will con- 
demn me r The oribed oomplainants were silent. Hildebrand then 
toined himself to him and said: '' Dost thou believe that the Holy 
Ghost with Father and Son are one Beine?" To which the oiher 
rqJied: ^ I believe it." He now c(Hnmanded him to repeat: '^ Ho- 
nour the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost/' and whust the arch*' 
bishop was pronouncing the words, he looked at him with such a 
picTcmg, penetrating glance, that the conscience of the convicted 
dmyman was so struck with his guilt, that he was tumble to add 
" xne Holy Ghost,'' although he several times tried it. This was 
eon&dered a divine judgment. The archbishop fell at his judge's 
feet» acknowle<^ed his crime, and confessed himself unworthy to 
hold the priestly office; after which confession he was enabled to 
r^eat those words with a distinct voice. This circumstance worked 
80 powerfully upon the minds of the people, that twenty-seven other 
churchmen and several bishops, as yet unaccused, laid down their 
offices, because they had acqmred them with gold. 

In order, therefore, that the clei^ should now be made entirely 
free from the temporal power, it became essential that the head of 
the church should no longer be named by the emperor, but be ap- 
fomied by a free election. This had been differently settled at the 
time that Henry IH. caused the promise to be made to him, that the 
Bomans should acknowledge no pope without the imperial sanction, 
and under this emperor Hildebrand probably would not have carried 
his object But he now took advantage of the moment while the 
new emperor was still a child, and succeeded in the year 1059, under 
Pope Nicholas U., in having a kw made, that every pope should be 
chosen by the cardinals, but with the clause that tne sanction or 
confirmation of the emperor should be added, as it was onl^ in sub* 
aeqoent limes that endeavours were made even to abolish this decree^ 
and to put a false construction upon the law of Pope Nicholas. 

When Hildebrand as chancellor had, by this and other regula* 
tions, prepared every thing for his great object, he was himself 
elected pope in the year 1073, and caUed himself Gregory VH., in 
order thus to declare the deposition of Gregory VI. by Henry lU. 
SB invalid. The Emperor Henry IV., who now ruled the empire 
himself, sent his faithful adherent. Count Eberhard, to Rome, to de- 
mand of the Romans why they had dared without the imperial 
permission to elect a pope. Gregory, who did not wish at this mo- 
ment to commence the dispute with the emperor, excused himself by 
the plea that the people had forced him to receive the papal dignity, 
bat that he had not allowed himself to be ordained beiore he had 
received the sanction of the emperor and of the German princes. 
With this excuse Henry was contented, and the pope was confirmed. 
Henry thus showed, tliat in the bhndness of his fury against the 
Saxons, he had not at all perceived that all this time the degxadation 
of all temporal dominion, and the elevation of a spiritual empire, was 
BOW being gradually prepared in Rome. 

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Grregory now stepped forth with new and very severe laws against 
simony, and against the marriiuge of priests. He desired, like the 
earlier popes and fathers, that the priests of the church should conse- 
crate themselves wholly to the divine service, restrain themselves from 
all sensualitT) and not even chain themselves to the love of the earth's 
possessions by the marriage tie. It is true that in Italy, as well as 
m France and Germany, this prohibition found at first great oppo- 
sition among the clergy, for many of them, particularly among the 
lower clergy, were alr^dy marriea, but Gregory found m the people 
themselves the support necessaiy for the execution of his law. The 
populace, excited against the married priests, forced them, partly 
through the severest misusage, to separate themselves from their 
wives, but it lasted a full century before the celibacy of the clergy 
was fully established. The attainment of this object was of the greatest 
importance to Gregory for the completion of his extensive plans; 
for if the cler^ tlm>u^hout all Christian countries were no longer 
bound by their domestic cares and anxiety for their children, and 
were made independent of the temporal lords, the pope would thereby 
gain so many thousand more zealous servants, who would listen only 
to his command, and contribute to fix firmly the dominion of the 
church over aU temporal power. But in oroer to possess such ser- 
vants they must be rendered stilljmore independent, and not receive, 
even in any shape, their temporal possessions from the hands of 
princes as a fief; for the same as the lay vassals received a banner as 
a mark of their services, so also the grand ecclesiastical dignitaries 
received &om the princes as a similar sign, a ring and a shepherd's 
crook, which thus formed the investiture. Gregory, therefore, pro- 
hibited the clergy firom receiving this said symbol of investiture from 
the hands of me nobles; and he insisted that for their elevation 
they were to be beholden to the papal chair alone, and only to the 
pope were they to swear the oath of obedience. According to this 
prmciple, the pontiff necessarily became sovereign lord of one-third 
of all the property in the Catholic countries. 

Such then is the commencement of the long and violent dispute of 
investiture, and especially of the contest between the emperor and 
the pope, tiie state and tne church, and which by degrees weakened 
and destroyed both. We have already noticed previousljr that the 
peaceful co-operation of both the papal and imperial dignity might 
have formed a solid basis for the happiness of the people; but now 
tiie epoch commenced when both these powers strove singly to rise 
more elevated than the other. For if, on the one hand, the pope 
wished to reign not only in spiritual but also in temporal affairs over 
all princes and kings, and was anxious to take away as well as to 
provide crowns, so, on the other hand, the emperor would not admit 
m just and reasonable cases the authority of the pope, but insisted 
he could rule with the edge of tiie sword even over invisible and 
spiritual affidrs and the conscience of man. Thus the two powen» 
which in concord together might have made the world happy, de- 

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ifeFoyed each other, and after a contest of a century and a half, and 
after imutteiable confusion and dissension in Germany and Italy, 
the imperial dignity lost its ancient splendour and its intiinsic power,. 
"whilst the head of the church became externally dependent upon a 
£>reign power. In this schism great men stood opposed to each 
otfaery wno might ha^e exercised their energy and powers much more 
beneficially for society; but this very contest necessarily entered inta 
the great plan of the history of the world, and it prepared those de- 
Telopments which otherwise would not have followed. 

Pope Gregory continued to advance stUl further in his principles. 
Not satisfied with having separated the church with all its endow-^ 
meats wholly from temporal dominion, he also now solemnl;^ dedaied 
that emj>eror8, kings, and princes, toother with all their power, 
were subject to the pope. These principles are especially e^^ressed 
in his own letters: ''The world," he says in one of them, ''isguidedby 
two lights : by the sun, the larger, and the moon, the lesser Ught. Thus 
the apostohc power represents the sun, and the royal power the moon ; 
for as the latter has its li^ht from the former, so only do emperors,, 
longs, and princes, receive their authority through the pope, be* 
cause he receives his authority through God. Therefore, the power 
of the Roman chair is greater than the power of the throne, and ik& 
king is accordingly subject to the pope, and bound in obedience to 
him. If the apostles in heaven can bind and loosen, so may they 
also upon earth give and take, according to merit, empires, kingdoms, 
principalities, duchies, and every other kind of possession. And if 
they be appointed as sovereign judges over spiritual, thev must like- 
wise be so, and far more in proportion over temporal affidrs, and if,, 
finally, they have the right to command an^ls who are most assur- 
edly placed above the most powerful monardis, how much more may 
they not give judgment over the poor slaves of those angels, Be- 
ffldes, the pope is the successor oi the apostles, and their represen- 
tative upon the chair of St. Peter; he is the vicar of Christ, and 
consequently i>laced over all." 

These prmciples Gr^ry resolved to exercise ff enerally , and first of 
all upon the emperor himself, as the head of the Kings and princes, in 
order thereby to prove his power before the whole world. At the same 
time, Henry, Uvmg as he did in continual dissension with his sub- 
jects, had less real power than any other king, whilst his name 
being greater, the victory over mm must consequently become 
more glorious, and from the passionate character of this prince ia 
all his proceedings, the pope soon found it easy to fiimish a pretexts 
Complaints against the emperor came to Rome from every quarter, 
whilst the Saxons, likewise, bitterly complained because he still kept 
many of their princes prisoners. Grregory accordingly caused it to 
be signified to the emperor, '^ That at the ensuing fast he must ap« 
pear before the synod at Rome, to answer for the ciimes laid to his 
eharge; otherwise, it was now made known to him, that he would be 
cast out from the bosom of the church by the apostohc ban." 

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Henij was moTe indignant than terrified at these words, for the 
invisible power of the papal ban of excommunication had hitherto 
been Etde proved. He assembled the Grerman bishops at Worms, 
in the year 1076, and there with equal precipitation and impatience he 
cansea to be pronounced at once against the pope the same sentence 
of deposition with which the latter had threatened him. He then 
wrote him a letter of the following contents: 

'' Henry, king, not by force, but by the sacred ordination of God, 
to Hildebrand — ^not the pope, but thefsilse monk: 

^* This greeting hast thou merited by the confusion thou hast spread 
throughout all classesof the church. Thou hast trampled under thy feet 
the mmisters of the holy church, as slaves who know not what their 
lord does; and by that desecration hast thou won favour from the lips 
of the common herd of people. We have long suffered this because 
we were desirous to maintam the honour of the Roman chair. But 
thou hast mistaken our forbearance for fear, and hast become embold* 
ened to raise thvself above the royal power, bestowed upon us by God 
himself, and threatened to take it from us, as if we had received 
our dominion from thee. Thou hast raised thyself upon the steps 
which are called cunning and deception , and which are accursed. Thou 
hast gained favour by gold, won power by fitvour, and by that pjower 
tfaou hast gained the chair of peace, from whence thou liast banished 
peace itself by armins the inferior against the superior. St. Peter, 
the true pope himsdf, says: 'Fear (rod and honour the king!' 
but as thou dost not fear Grod, thou dost not honour me, his envoy. 
Descend, therefore, thou that liest under a curse of excommunica* 
tion by our and all bishops' judgment, descend ! Quit the apostolic 
seat thou hast usurped I And then shall the chair of St. Peter be as- 
cended by one who does not conceal, under the divine word, his arro- 
gance. I, Henry, by God's grace, king, and all oiu: bishops, say to 
thee, *• descend, descend ! ' " 

Upon this the pope held a council also, and not only pronounced 
the sentence of excommunication against Henry, but ne deposed 
him in the following words: '^ In the name of the Almighty God, 
I forbid to King Henry, the son of the Emperor Henry, who, with 
haughtiness unheard of, has arisen against the church, the govern- 
ment of the German and Italian empire, and absolve all Christians 
from the oath which they have made or will make to him, and for- 
bid that any one serve him as king. And occupying ^y office, 
holy Peter, I bind him with the bands of a curse, that all nations 
may learn that thou art the rock whereon the Son of God founded 
his church." 

When, at the Easter festival of the year 1016, Henry received, 
at Utrecht, the news of his excommunication, he immediately 
pronounced, on his part, thzoiiffh the violent bishop, William of 
Utrecht, an anathema against Gregory; and the bishops of Lom- 
bardy, the enemies of the pope, renewed this anathema in a coun- 

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cal assemUed at Pavia, under thepiesideiicy of Wibert, Azchbialiop 
of RaTensa. 

The impreasion made by tbeae unlieard of eyentB was varied, ao- 
coirdmg to the disposition and feelings of the people. The Saxons 
re]oiora, for their cause was now the cause of the church, and henoe- 
fixrward their usual shout of war was '^ Holy Pet^ I " whilst, through- 
out llie empire generally there was a division of parties; everywhere the 
cry was, ^' the pope for ever! "or,*' the emperor for ever I" This was, 
indeed, a time of bitter contrition, and hatred reigned throughout the 
whole oountty. Had the king been a good, iri^roachable man, pos- 
gRfwing the greatness of soul which can bind ana rule the hearts, the 
power of the mexe word would not have overcome him, for it was only 
fiom public o|»nion that this word received its force. But he hwl 
now numerous and bitter enemies, and his arxoganoe aft» conquering 
the Saxons had served to increase their number. Besides the Saxons, 
faia conduct had likewise made Kudolphus, Duke of Swabia, ex- 
tremely hostile towards him, whilst the pope's l^tes exercised all 
their influence upon the minds of the people. Tnence it happened 
that the mqority of Ghenuan princes assembled together at Tribur, 
en the Rhine, in order to elect a new emperor. Henry hastened to 
Oroenheim, in the vicinity, and at length, after many entreaties 
and vows of reform, he obtained fix)m tnem an extension of one 
year's delay; and it was decided that, in the meantime, the pope 
diodld be requested to come to Augsburg, and himself doeelyinves* 
tigate the amir; but if Henry, at idb end of the yoai:, was not freed 
mm excommunication, they resolved to proceed immediately to s 
fiesh election. 

In this desperate state Henry ibrmed quite an unexpected resoln* 
ikm. In the anxiety he experienoed lest, in the diet at Augsburg:, 
where his enemies ccmstituted the majority of the members, nothing 
&vourable towards him should be determined upon, he set off him* 
self, notwithstanding he possessed no means, and was obliged almost 
to b^forhis support(whiistlikewisethe prizhcesstilloccupied thepasses 
between ItalyanaGermany ), and resolved to cross the Alps, accompanied 
only by his consort and one faithful companion. He passed through 
Savoy, where he was furnished by his mother-in-law, the Mar^vine 
of Susa, with a few more attendants, and as it was winter, and indeed 
80 severe a winter that the Rhine, £rom Martinmas until the first of 
April, was completely frozen, the journey over the mountains covered 
with snow and ice was, consequently, attended with immeasur- 
able difBculties and danger, and the empress, wrapped up in an ox- 
hide, was obliged to be ^den down the precipitous paths of Mount 
Cenisbythe^uidesof the country, hired K)r the purpose. He arrived 
at last m Italy, and his presence, to his astonishment, was hailed 
with joy; for the report had already spread " that the emperor was 
coming to humiliate the haughty pope by the power of the sword." 
In Upper Italy a strong halzed had long been cherished against Ore* 
giiry; the temporal lords were indignant at his recent regulationsi 

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and among the clergy there were many whom his laws against dmony 
and the maniaffe of priests had made his enemies. Eksides, many 
Italians, even uie Archbishops of Milan and Ravenna, had shared 
in the sentence of axcommunication. Had Henry, therefore, not 
been too much dejected and disheartened by what he had experi- 
enced in Germany, he mi^t speedily have acquired a numerous train 
of adherents in Itely , to oner opposition to Ids mighty enemy, but he 
now had conciliation alone in view; the pope too, was at this moment 
on his journey to (Germany, to meet the diet at Augsburg, and there 
to sit in judgment upon the king. Upon hearing, however, of Henry's 
sudden arrival in Italy, and not Knowing as yet whether he was to ex- 
pect good or bad from him, he deviatai £rom his direct route, and 
proceeded to the strong castle of Canossa, there to gain an asylum 
with the Countess Matilda, the daughter and heiress of the rich 
Margrave BomfSsu^, of Tuscany, and who was a zealous friend of the 
papal chair; having even, at this moment, privately made over to it 
all her inheritance. 

Matilda was the most powerful and influenlial princess in Italy, 
and reigned as queen throughout Tuscany and Lombaidy , whilst she 
was likewise equally distinguished for ner mental attamments and 
firmness of spirit, as well as for her piety and virtue. She contested 
with all her power, during a period of thirty years, for the elevation 
of the pontincal cludr, having embraced this idea with all the strength 
of her natural character, ana to which she was still more influenced 
by the new severe regulations adopted by Gre^ry VH., which so 
perfectly agreed withlier own austere ana rigid prmciples of virtue. 
She was married to Gozelo, Duke of Lower tiorrame, but they 
lived separated from each other, owing to their opinions being so 
completely different; for whilst in Italy, where she ruled over the 
extensive possessions of her father and mother, she herself was busily 
occupied in the support of Gr^ory, her husband was doing all he 
could in aid of the emperor. 

Henry now turned himself therefore to the Princess Matilda, in 
order to get her to speak to the pope in his favour. The latter, at 
first, would by no means hear of a reconciliation, but referred all to 
the decision of the diet; at last, however, upon much entreaty, he 
yielded permission that Henry, in the garb of a penitent, covered 
with a shirt of hair, and with naked feet, might be received in the 
castle. As the emperor advanced within the outer gate it was im- 
mediately closed, so that his escort was obliged to remain outside the 
fortress, and he himself was now alone in the outer court, where, 
in January, lO??, in the midst of a severe and rigorous winter, he 
was obliged to remain three whole days barefooted and shivering 
with the cold. All in the castle were moved. Ghregory himseu 
writes in a letter, ^^ That every one present had severely censured him, 
and said that his conductmore resembled tyrannical ferocity than apos* 
tolic severity." The Countess Matilda, whilst vainly pleading for him, 
was afiectea even to burning tears of pity and grief, and Henry, inhiq 

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distress, at length only prayed that he miffht at least be allowed to go 
out again. On the fourth of theee dreadful days, the pope eyentuaJSy 
admitted him before him and absolved him from excommunication; 
but Henry was still forced to subscribe to the most severe conditions. 
He vrss obliged to promise to present himself at the day and place 
the pope should appoint, in order to hear whether he might remain 
king or not, and, meanwhile, he was to abstain from all exercise of 
the royal attributes and monarchal power. 

With shame and anger in his heart, Henry now withdrew, and as 
soon as the Italians and his old friends still under excommunication 
perceived the dis^sition he now evinced towards the pope, they as- 
sembled around mm, and he remained during the winter in Italy. 

His penetrating eye now perceived, during this his first visit to 
Italy, that the power of the pope was nowhere so weak as just in 
that very country of dissension and venal egotism, and that who- 
ever only imderstood the art of creating adherents by money, pro- 
mises, and cunning, would very soon succeed in collecting together 
a considerable party to aid him against the court.of Bome. j&e il- 
lusory awe he nad hitherto felt for the papal power now vanished; 
his former courage revived, and from this moment he commenced 
with the sword, as well as the pen, a war which \g sustained, during 
thirty years, with the greatest skill and determination, and in whi(£ 
he very ohea experienced the most decisive success. 

The Gierman princes, however, were still his enemies, and avail- 
ing themselves of his absence, held a diet at Foisheim in March, 
1077, and elected Rudolphus Duke of Swabia as rival emperor. Ger- 
many became now again divided by violent dissension; for Henry 
also commanded a strong party, chidiy among the cities and those of 
the clersy , who were discontented with Ghregory's church laws. He 
returned now to Germany; war commenced, and for three years 
devastated many of the most beautiful countries of Germany. 
Rudolphus was obliged to retire from Swabia, and marched to 
Saxony, the Saxon people and the valiant Otho of Nordheim being 
his warm supporters. Henry gave the duchy of Swabia, together 
with his daughter, Agnes, to the bold and ambitious Count Fre- 
deric of Buren, who now removed his seat from the village of 
Buren, at the foot of the high Staufen, and fixed it upon the pin- 
nacle of that mountain, where he built the Castle Hohenstaufen. 
Thus was laid the foundation of the greatness of this house, al- 
though, at the same lime, it was a cause of enmity between the 
Hohenstaufens and the other noble houses in the vicinity, who 
envied the good fortune of this new race, and thought they had 
much greater right to the duchy of Swabia. The Hohenstaufens, 
however, remained henceforward faithful friends to the Salic-Im- 
perial house. 

Gregory acted with duplicity in this war between the two empe- 
rors ; and it appeared as it he rejoiced in the destruction of Germany, 
and in the enervation of the temporal power by its own acts, for 

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instead of mipjiordiig the Saxons and their king, Rudolphus, ^nth^'aD 
tbe power of his authority, in order that thej might speedily ^in the 
yictorj, he recognised neither of the emperors, but only contmned to 
pomise them l£at he would come to Grermany and be himself the 
judge between them. " Nothing, however, took placse," sajs Bruno^ 
the nistorian of this war, ^* except that the pope's l^ates aniyed 
and waited on both parties in each camp, promising at one moment 
to the Saxons, and m the next to Henry, the favour of the pope; 
whilst at the same time they conveyed away from both armiee as 
much gold as they oould obtain — aecording to Roman custom.*' 
The Scucons complained severely of this equivocal conduct of the 
pojpe, and they wrote to him amongst the rest as follows: *' All our 
misfortunes would never have arisen, or at least have been but trivial, 
if upon having commenced your journey, you had turned neither to 
the right n<yt to the left. Inrough obedience to our shepherd we 
are exposed to the rapacity of the wolf, and if we are abandoned 
now by that shepherd, we shall be more unfortunate and miserable 
than all odier pecHple." This bold and reproachful address, however^ 
did not please the pope; he returned no reply to it, nor did it 
produce more detemunation in his conduct than the subsequent 
de^rate battle fought between the two armies at Mehichstadt, in 
Thuringia, in the year 1078; and it was only after Rudolphus had 
gained superior advantage in a second battle near MuhHuiusen in 
lOSO, that he declared for him, and even sent him the crown,* at 
the same time again excommunicating Henry. The latter, on the 
other hand, assembled a council at Brixen, again deposed the pope^ 
and caused to be elected as pontiff against him the excommunicated 
Archbishop Wibert of Ravenna, or Clement HI. Thus there were 
now two emiperors and two popes. The victory, however, this time 
inclined on. Henry's side. 

Meantime, in 1060, he suffered a severe loss in a tMrd battle, on 
the Elster, in Saxony, not far from Gera, through the valour of Otho 
of Notdheim, who there displayed the genius of a truly great leader, 
but, unfortunately, Rudolphus himself was fatally wounded in the 
battle and died. His right liand was hewn off, and Godfrey, Duke 
of Lower Lorraine, (Godefroy of Bouillon, the conqueror of the 
holy tomb,) as related in some records, thrust the spear of the 
imperial banner into his stomach. According to a later account, when 
his hand was shown to him, King Rudolphus is said to have remarked: 
"Behold, that is the hand with which I swore fidelity to King 
Henry T His &11 was considered as a judgment of God, and Henry's 
adherents increased in proportion ; so that he was now enabled to un- 
dertake an expedition into Italy in order to make war upon his most 
violent opp<Hient. He marched, therefore, with his army and 
came before Rome, which he besieged three times, in three suc- 
cessive years, and reduced Pope Gregory to such extremity that he 

* This crown bore the following inicription:— " Petra, dedit Petro, Petrus diadema 

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was obUged to shut himself up In the castle of St. Amtdo, where he 
was besieged by the Romans themseWes; neyertheleaB, Giegojj's^ixit 
was too great, and his will too inflexible, to humiliate himself, and 
follow the example of Henij at Ganossa. The emperor offered him re*> 
conciliation if he would crown him, but he replied firmly : *^ He could 
only communicate with him when he had giyen satisfactioiDL to Grod 
and the church." Henry was obliged, th^efore, with his conaortiy 
to be crowned by the rival pope, Clement^ at Easter, 1084, after which 
be retired from Italy. Pope Gregory, however, was still besi^ed by 
the Romans, in the castle of St. Angeb, until he was freedby his friena, 
Robert Guiscard, Duke c£ Normandy, who ruled in iJower Italy. 
The latter subjected the city to plunder, and then took with him toe 
old and obstinate pope (who, even in misfortune, would not renounce 
any of his views and pretensions) to Lower Italy, where he died the 
foUowing year at Salerno. His party chose Victor to succeed him; 
but he possessed neitber the genius nor the force cf Gregory, for 
even Clement maintained the position he held, and continued to en* 
joy the chief authority in Rome. 

Favourable and tranquil times now seemed to dawn upon the Em- 
peror Henry. The successor of Rudolphus of Swabia, Herman <£ 
jLuxembourg, whom the princes had elevated to be his seccmd oppo- 
nent, could not main tain himself against him, and spontaneously laid 
down the dignity. A second, Egbert of Thuringia, died by assassi- 
nation, and the Saxons, after Otho of Nordheim was dead, and the 
irreconcilable bishop, Burkhard, of Halberstadt^ had been killed by his 
own people, (after he had tried, for the fourteenth time, to excite them 
to revolt,) wearied with constant war, voluntarily submitted them- 
selves to the emperor — now made milder by the many painful triab 
he had undergone. But fate had reserved for him visitaticms still 
more sev^ie. For he was obliged to behold revolt against him, even 
in the last ^ears of his life, his eldest son, Conrad, and after his death 
in 1 101, his second son, Henry, was gained over by the papal party* 
Both the successors of Gr^oiy, Urban U. and Pascal It., renewed 
the papal ban against Henry the father, and his son, now declared 
that he could hold no community with an excommunicated person. 
Nay, even when Henry, confiding in the apparent reconciliation 
with his son, was about to attend the great diet of princes at Mentz, 
the latter caused him^ by cunning and treachery, to be disarmed, 
deprived him of the imperial insignia, by means of the Archbishops 
of Mentz and Cologne, and placed him a prisoner at Ingelheim^ 
where he forced him formally to abdicate the throne. 

Henry, however, found an opportunity to escape fix>m prison, and» 
full of grief and trouble, he went to his friend, Otbert, the Bishc^ 
of Liege. The latter, and Henry, Duke of Lorraine, assembled an 
army for him, and beat back the d^nerated son when crossing 
the Meuae in pursuit of his father. But the Emperor died imme^ 
diately afterwards at li^ge, oppressed at length by a turbulent and 
vexatioas career, in the year 1106. The otumber of battles be had 

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fought during his life — being no less than siztj-fiye — sufficiently 
prove its agitated and anxious character. 

The BiflQop of Li^e buried the emperor as beseemed; but to 
such length cud hatred go, that his body was a^ain exhumed, con- 
veyed to Spires, and there, for five years, it remamed in a stone cof- 
fin above tne earth, in an isolated, imconsecrated chapel, until at last, 
in the year 1111, Pope Pascal absolved him from excommunica- 
tion. He was then interred with greater magnificence than any other 
emperor before him. 

In the first years of the reign of Henry V., the ducal race of the 
Billimgens, in Saxony, became extinct; and he bestowed the duke- 
dom upon Lothaire, Count of S]upplingenburg. 

Henry V., although he had previously revolted against his father, 
nowacted according to his principles; and indefianceof the Fi^PaI laws, 
he still continued to impart the investiture with ring and staff; a right, 
which, as he declared to the pope, his ancestors since Charles the 
Great, had legitimately exercised for three centuries, under sixty- 
tiiree popes; and as eany as the year 1100, he marched widk a large 
army of 30,000 horse-soldiers, b^des in&ntry and servitors, for Italy, 
in order to be crowned with the imperial crown, and in caseof neces- 
sity, to maintain his rights with the sword. He was a much more dan- 
gerous enemy than his fiither, for, besides his physical force, he knew 
likewise how to avail himself of cunning and hypocrisy. Pope Pascal 
n. made a proposition to him, which would have ended the dispute for 
ever couldit have been executed. Hecaused the emperor to be apprised 
that — *^ As he founded his claims to the investiture only upon the 
donations which the emperors had presented to the church : the cities, 
duchies, coimties, coins, toUs, fimns, and castles, he might take 
them all back asain; the church would only retain the presents of 
private individuab, and the tithes and sacrifices. For," said he, ^' it is 
commanded by the divine law, as well as by the law of the church, 
that the clergy shall not occupy themselves with temporal matters, 
nay, not even appear at court, except for the purpose of saving an 
oppressed person. But among you, however, in Germany, the 
bishops ana abbots are so mixed up with worldly affairs, that the 
servants of the altar have become the servants of the court." 

The pope might have been serious when making this proportion, 
for he was extremely strict in his principles, and tkought, perhaps, 
m this manner to remedy the degeneration of the clergy, and to 
bring them back to theb original simple condition. But Henry's 
penetrating mind foresaw well that the cler^ themselves, particu- 
larly those who, by their possessions, were raised to the rank of im- 
perial princes, would never consenttomakesuch a restitution; therefore 
ne promised to dispense with the investiture, if the pope would com- 
mand the bishops to give back to him, the emperor, all those posses- 
ffions which they had received from Charlemagne and his successors. 
He then advanced to Rome, and the solemn treaty upon this affair 
was to be ratified between him and the pope in a large assembly of the 

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bishops, in the church of St. Peter, and then the coronation of the 
emperor was to be celebrated. But when the above condition be- 
came the subject of discussion, the most animated and violent oppo- 
sition arose between the Germian and Italian bishops, and a long and 
angry contest ensued. At length one of the German knights pre- 
sent exclaimed: " Why do you all continue thus wrangling? Let it 
suffice for you to know that our lord, the emperor, is resohred to be 
crowned as formerly were Charlemagne, Louis, and the other em- 
perors !" The pope replied once more — " That he could not perform 
the ceremony before lung Henry had solemnly sworn to discontinue 
the right of investiture." Henry then, by the counsel of his chan- 
cellor, Adalbert, and Burchard, Bishop of Mlinster, summoned his 
guards, and caused the pope, as well as the cardinals, to be made pri* 
soners. The Romans, enraged and furious at this violent proceeding, 
on the following day attacked the Germans, who were encamped 
around the church of St. Peter. The king speedily mounted his 
steed and boldly, but rashly, rushing into uie midst of the enemy, 
pierced five Romans with his own limce, but was himself wounded 
and thrown from his horse. He was rescued by Coimt Otho, of 
Milan, who hastily assisted him to mount his own horse, which he 

Sve up to the king, but for which service he was cut to pieces by the 
>mans. A murderous combat was continued throughout the whole 
day, until at length towards the evening the emperor cheered on his 
troops to make a final charge, the result of which was that the Ro- 
mans were completely put to flight, and were driven partiy into the 
Tiber, and partly across the bridges back into the city. Tne church 
of St. Peter, together with all that portion of the city remained in the 
hands of the Germans, but which the emperor abandoned, together 
with all his prisoners, in order to scour the country aroimd in the most 
dreadful manner. The Romans, now reduced to extreme necessityy 
urgently entreated the pope to conclude a treaty of peace with the 
emperor. He had now been a prisoner sixty-one days ; and at length 
yielded to their prayers. He, accordingly, agreed that the emperor 
should retain the investiture with ring and staff, and promised, at the 
same time, that he would never excommunicate him on account of 
this proceeding. The treaty was signed by fourteen cardinals, and 
in the emperor's name by fourteen princes, and Henry himself was, 
on the 13th of April, 1111, solemnly crowned emperor by Pascal. 

But scarcely were the Germans out of Rome when the whole 
clergy severely censured the pope, and persuaded him to assemble a 
council and excommunicate the agreement made between the king 
and him, as having been extorted by violence; for, according to the 
promise made by the pope* they durst not pronounce the ban against 
the emperor himself. The dispute thus commenced anew, and con- 
tinued, also, under the following popes, Gelasius II. and Calixtus H., 
ten years longer. As long as Pascal lived, the emperor was not 
himself visited with the general excommunication of the church; 
but the legates and many of the heads of the church excommunicated 

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him in their dioceses, and thereby gave occasion to fresh divisioiis 
and dissensions in Geimany; and a great portion of the imperial 
princes accordingly re&sed obedience to the emperor and his law^. 
Arbitraiy feuds, robbeiy, devastation, and muraer took the upper 
hand, the most &ithf ul allies of the emperor were his relations o£ 
the race of Hohenstaufen, and he raised their house accordingly still 
higher. When Frederick, the first duke to whom his &ther had 
given the duchy of Swabia, died, he transferred it to his eldest son, 
Frederick, and, shortly afterwards, he gave the duchy of Franconia 
to his second son, Conrad. 

His own sister Agnes, the widow of Duke Frederick, he married to 
the Marjgrave, Leopold of Austria, of the house of Babenberg, the 
£ither of that Leopold who was afi^erwards Duke of Bavaria, and 
who also established on the place where Windobona then stood, the 
foundation of the present city of Vienna. Thus in the south of 
Grermany the emperor gainea the superiority, but in the north, on 
the contrary, he could acquire no lasting power. Here the Arch- 
bishop Adalbert of Mentz, who had been elevated by him (and who 
was previously his own chancellor, and had advised him to imprison 
the pope, Pascal, but had now become his uncompromising enemy), 
workea most strenuously against him, and excited one prince after 
the other to oppose him. Saxony, as in his Other's time, became 
now the centre of opposition to him likewise. The emperor ad« 
vanced in the year 1115 with an army into Saxony, but in a battle, 
not far from Eisleben, he was enturely defeat^ by the Saxon 
princes. An expedition, which he soon afterwards made to Italy, 
gave him for a short time the superiority in Rome, but brought 
upon him in 1118 the general excommumcation of the new pope, 
Gelasius, which his successor GaJixtus U. confirmed. The chief 
object of dispute was still the right of investiture. Finally, in the 
year 1122, both parties, tared of the long dispute, concluded a solemn 
treaty at the diet of Worms, where both yielded to each other. 
The emperor permitted the firee choice of bishops, and ^ave up the 
investiture witn the ring and staff, as signs of spiritual jurisdiction, 
but for which concession, on the other hand, the election was to take 
place in the presence of the king, or of his plenipotentiary, and he 
was to decide in doubtful cases, or in any disagreement of the electors, 
and lastly confer fie& of temporal possessions with his sceptre. The 
spiritual consecration of this bishop elect was to take place in Ger- 
many after the investiture with the sceptre; but in Italy it was to 
precede it. 

After the records were publicly read, the legate of the pope gave 
the emperor the kiss of peace, and afterwards the communion. The 
joy espressed bjr the peacefuUy-minded members of the assembly 
U]^n this reconciliation was great; all separated as the records say, 
with infinite pleasure. 

The emperor reigned but a few years longer — ^in peace, it is true, 
with the cnurch, but not without constant dissensions in the Ger- 
man empire. Ajnidst plans for strengthening the imperial power, 


in Older to oppose more firmly those disorders, he died suddenly at 
Utreclit in 1125, in the forty-fourth year of his age. He died 
childless, and with him the SaUan house became extinct. Most of 
his hereditary possessions came to his nephews, the Dukes Fre« 
dezick and (Jonxad of Hohenstaufen. 

Henry did not acquire the love of his contemporaries; he was des- 
potic, severe, and often cruel. On the other hand, however, it is not 
to be denied that he possessed many ^reat qualities: activity, bold^^ 
nesB, perseverance in misfortune, and a noble-minded disposition. 
The maintenance of the imperial dig^nity against every enemy ap* 
peared to be with him the chief olj^ect of his life. He was en- 
tombed at Spires in the grave of his ancestors. 

Meantime, whilst the two emperois, Henry IV. and V., were en- 
gaged in such warm and serious disputes with the ^pe, more than a 
hundred thousand Christians, summoned by the voice of the church, 
and excited by their own immediate enthusiasm, assembled together, 
and abandoned their countiy in order to recover and secure from the 
power of the infidels the tomb of the Saviour in that holy land, 
wherein his divine footsteps remained imprinted. 

Already, fix>m the earliest ages, it had been a pious custom to make 
pilgrimages to the holy land, to pray at its sacred places, and to 
bawe in the waters of the Jordan, wnich had been consecrated by 
the baptism of our Lord. Gonstantine the Great, the first Roman 
emperor who embraced Christianity, as well as his mother, Helena, 
issued orders for the purification and adonmient of these holy places 
in Palestine, and the restoration of the sacred tomb at the foot of 
Mount Golgotha; and they erected over the tomb, at enormous out- 
lay, a loft^ dome, supported by beautiM pillars, with an adjoining 
oratory, nchhr adorned. Eastward of the sepulchre Constantine buiU 
a larger and still more magnificent temple. He celebrated the 
thirtieth anniversary of his reign by the consecration of this temple, 
on which occasion he was hiinself present; and the pious Helena, 
although in extreme old age, made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land 
at the same time, and built two churches, one at Bethlehem on the 
spot where our Saviour was bom, and the other on the top of the 
Mount of Olives. 

After this, pilgrimages to the Holy Land became more and more 
firequent; and even in the seventh century, when the land was under 
the dominion of the Arabs, the pilgrims were not obstructed or dis- 
turbed in their devotions. For the Arabs rejoiced in the advantage 
they derived from the visits of so many stran^rs, and took equal 
care not to molest either the Patriarch of Jerusalem, or the Christian 
community. But when the Turks, a savage and barbarous people, 
seized upon the country in the year 1073, complaint after complaint 
reached Europe of the cruel treatment heaped upon the pious pU- 
mms, and of the shamefiil profanation committed by the infidels on 
ike consecrated spots. 
In the year 1094, a hermit, named Peter of Amiens, appeared 



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before Pope Urban 11. on his return from a pilgrimage to Palestine, 
-with a letter of petition from the Patriarch of Jerusalem, and gave a 
most affecting description of the unheard-of suflferings expenenced 
by the Christians resident there, as well as by the pilgrims who 
repaired thither. The pope praised and encouraged his zeal, and 
sent him with letters of recommendation to all the princes in the 
various Christian countries, in order to arouse the minds of the 
I)eople, and to prepare them for a ^eat eiroedition. The enthu- 
siastic language of the hermit, togetner with the fire which still 
shone from ms deep-sunk eye, and his wasted, meagre form, on 
which was imprinted the sufferings he had endur^, made the 
deepest impression, and excited, wherever he went, equal enthusiasm 
among all classes, from the highest to the lowest. After this, in the 
year 1095, the pope convoked a great council of the church, at 
Fiacenza, in Italy, and another at Clermotit, in France, at which 
were present foiurteen archbishops, two hundred and twenty-five 
bishops, and four hundred abbots, besides numerous princes, nobles, 
and ^iffhts. And when Peter the Hermit and the pope advanced 
before them, and with words of overpowering fire and energy ap- 
pealed to and called upon this assembly to come forward in deli- 
verance of the sacred tomb, a thousand voices shouted aloud: '* It 
is the will of God ! It is the will of God I" When the pope and 
the hermit had concluded their eloquent appeal, Ademar, Bishop of 
Puy, was the first to press forward, ana throwing himself at the 
feet of the pontiff, begged from his holiness permission to proceed to 
the holy war. Many of the clerOT and laity followed his example, 
and as a sign of their devotion to the pipus undertaking, thejr sewed 
a red cross on their right shoulder. The final day of meeting for 
the great expedition was now fixed to take place on the 15th of 
August, 1096. 

Accordingly, innumerable multitudes assembled, including war- 
riors from Italy, France, Lorraine, Flanders, and particularly from 
Normandy, where the same love for distant and aaventurous expe- 
ditions, that had ever distinguished their heroic ancestors, was now 
evinced by the present natives. Not only the knights and nobles, 
but the whole people were set in motion, for as also in France the 
labouring classes experienced the severest oppression, many of these 
joined the expedition; because, according to the pope's decree, free- 
dom was attamed by dedication to the holy cross. Germany, which 
was then at variance with the pope, and agitated by internal dis- 
cord, was least affected by this first movement. With the com- 
mencement of the spring, reter the Hermit set out at the head of a 
crowd of people, — whose impatience would not allow them to await 
the appointea time— in company with their commander, a knight 
named Walter the Pennyless; but their anny was deficient in oraer 
and discipline, and especially in a supply of proper weapons. Befoie 
it reached Asia, the greater part, on account of the robberies com- 
mitted, were cut offby the Bu^ariians and Hungarians, and those who, 

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under the guidance of Peter and Walter, reached and landed on the 
first TurkiSi tetritory, were so badly received and cut up by the 
Turks, that very few escaped; and Peter was forced to return home 
with the remnant in a very melandioly plight. A second and still 
inder horde commenced its labours for the cross of Christ, by slaying 
the Jews in the cities on the Rhine; in Mentz alone nine himdrea 
were in this way put to death. In this was evinced the universal 
hatred of the people towards the Jews, who, by their usurious prac- 
tices, and the immense wealth gained thereby, brought down upon 
thcdr heads this full measure of vengeance. This party, and several 
other troops of crusaders, however, only reached Hungary. 

So nnpropitious a commencement might easily have crushed all 
incliiiations for further attempts, had not these first adventurers, 
in great part, consisted of the lowest class of the people, and had 
not their leaders been deficient in prudence^ expenence, and noble 
zeal and energy. Accordingly, at the appointed time, in the middle 
of summer, a grand army, weu-appointed and disciplined, and burn- 
ing with enthusiastic courage, was assembled, and on the 15th of 
August, 1096, set out for its destination. No kin^ was present as 
lea&r of the assembled forces; but, among the pnnces and nobles, 
Godfrey, Duke of Lower Lorraine, called, from his ancestral seat, 
Godefroy of Botdllon, stood proudly forward, conspicuous in every 
heroic virtue; having oflen fought in the armies of Henry IV. Hfe 
was appointed the lesuier of a body of 90,000 men, and directed his 
course through Hungary and the dominions of the Greek emperor, 
whilst other princes proceeded through Italy to Constantinople. He 
conducted his army, with the most admirable order, through coun- 
tries where so many of the crusaders had ah-eady perished, and 
having joined the other princes, entered the Turkish territories in 
the spring of 1097. The united forces of the crusaders consisted of 
300,000 men, and with the women, children, and servants, made up 
a body of half a million. Unfortimately, however, they already found 
in the tribe of the Sedjoucidians, who first opposed their progress, 
an enemy equally cunning and active, whilst they met with stdll 
pieater and more serious obstacles, iu the deserts where the Turks 
had destroyed every thing which might have procured them some 
sustenance, and through which they had to pass from Asia Minor 
to Palestine. Hunger and disease carried on every day numbers 
of men and horses; even the bravest began to waver, and had it 
not been for the active genius and heroic firmness displayed by the 
biave God&ey, this expedition would perhaps have experienced the 
same imfortunate result as those that preceded it. 

At length, in May, 1099, the wearied feet of the remaininff portion 
of the army which had escaped so many dangers, trod the cnerished 
soil of that hallowed land, and on the 6th of July, they beheld 
fiom ihe top of a mountain near Emmaus, the object of their 
ardent hopes and desires — Jerusalem ! One universal shout of joy 
filled the air, vibrating in undying echoes firom hill to hill, wmlst 

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tears of rapture burst from every eye. Their noble leader could 
scarcely prevent them from rushing forwards at once, in their wild 
enthusiasm, to storm the walls of the holy city. But Godfrey soon. 

reived that the conquest of the place was not easy, and could not 
effected in a moment, especially as the gamson was muck 
stronger in numbers than the crusaders, of whom out of 300,000^ 
only 40,000 men were now left. At length every preparation being 
maae, and warlike machines with storming-ladders provided in spite 
of every existing difficulty — ^for the country arouna was deficient in 
wood— 4he first general assault was made on the 14th of July; but 
as the besieged defended themselves with the greatest bravery, this 
first attempt failed. On the following da^, however, the Christians 
renewed the attack, and Godfrey was one of the first that mounted 
the enemy's ramparts. His sword opened a path for the rest; the 
walls were soon gained on all sides, the gates forced open, and the 
whole army rushed into the city. A dreadful scene of massacre now 
commenced; in their first fury the victors put all to the sword, and 
but few of the inhabitants escaped. When, however, reason at length 
resumed its sway, the warriors, wiping the blood from their swords, 
returned them to their scabbards, and men proceeded bareheaded and 
barefooted, to prostrate themselves before the holy places; and the 
same dtj whicix just before had resounded in every part with the 
wild shrieks of the slaughtered, was now filled with prayers and 
hymns to the honour and glory of God. 

The election of a sovereign for the new kingdom of Jerusalem, 
became now an object of consideration, and Godefroy of Bouillon 
appeared to all as the most worthy to rule; but he refused to 
wear a crown of jewels on the spot where the Saviour of the world 
had bled beneath one of thorns, and would only take the title of 
" Defender of the Holy Sepulchre." As he died, however, in the 
following year, his brother Baldwin assumed at once the title of 

Of the other crusades, which subsequently took place for the 
maintenance of the Christian dominion in Palestine, and in which 
the German emperors also took part, our history will speak here- 

After the extinction of the Franks, a moment had again arrived 
when the German princes, if they were desirous of becoming inde- 
pendent and sovereim rulers, were not obliged to place a new em- 
peror above themselves; but such a thougnt was foreign to their 
minds, and they preferred paving homage to one, whom they had 
exalted to the highest step of honour, rather than behold Germany 
divided into numerous petty kingdoms. 

Accordingly in 1125 the Grerman tribes again encamped on the 
banks of the Rhine, in the vicinity of Mentz, and ten princes selected 
ttom each of the four principal families, viz: Saxony, Franconia, Ba- 
varia, and Swabia, assembled in Mentz for the first election. Three 
princes only were proposed: Duke Frederick of Swabia, (the mighty 

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and courageous Hohenstaufen,) Lothaire of Saxony, and Leopold of 
Austria. The two latter on their knees, and almost in tears, en- 
treated that they might be spared the infliction of such a heavy 
burden, whilst Frederick, in his proud mind, ambitiously thought 
that the crown could be destined for none other but himself; and 
such feeling of pretension indeed was too visibly expressed in his coun- 
tenance. Adalbert, the Archbishop of Mentz, however, who was himself 
not well inclined towards the Hohenstaufens, put to all three the ques* 
tion : " Whether each was willing and ready to yield and swear alle- 
giance to him that should be elected ?' The two former immediately 
answered in the affirmative; but Frederick hesitated and lef); the aa- 
eembly, under the excuse that he must take council of his friends. 
The princes were all indignant at this conduct, and the archbishop 
persuaded them at length to make choice of Lothaire of Saxony, 
although against his own will. 

But hoetihties soon broke out between the two powerful Hohen- 
staufen dukes, Frederick of Swabia and Conrad of Franconia, and 
during i^early the entire reign of the new king, the beautiful lands of 
Swabia, Franconia, and Alsace, were kid waste and destroyed, until 
at last both the dukes found themselves compelled to bow before the 
imperial authority. In this dispute the Emperor Lothaire, in order 
to strengthen his party, had recourse to means which produced agita- 
tion and dissension, and continued to do so for more than a hundred 
years afterwards. He gave his only dau^ter Gertrude in marriage to 
Henry the Proud, the powerful Duke of^avaria, (of the Gruelfs,) and 
gave him, besides Bavaria, the duchy of Saxony Kkewise. This is the 
first instance of two dukedoms being governed by one ^rson. Nay, 
with the acqidescence of the pope, and imder the condition that after 
Henry's death they were to become the property of the Roman church, 
he even invested him with the valuable hereditary possessions of 
Matilda in Italy, as a fief, so that the duke's authority extended from 
the Elbe to fcr beyond the Alps, being much more ^werftil than 
even that of the emperor himself; for besides his patrimonial lands 
in Swabia and Bavaria, he had Ukewise inherited from his mother 
the moiety of the great ancestral possessions in Saxony, and in addi- 
tion to all this his consort now brought him the entire lands of Sup- 
plinburg, Nordheim, and old Brunswick. Thus the foundation for the 
wibsequent jealousy so destructive to Germany and Italy, between the 
Gnelfi and Hohenstaufens — ^the latter (styled by the Italians Ohibel- 
^,) according to their casde, VeibHng on the Rems, being called 
VeibKngers — was laid at tins period, and the faction-names of 
the Guelfs and Ghibelins henceforward continued for centuries 
afterwards to resound from Mount Etna and Vesuvius to the coasts 
of the North and East Sea. Lothaire's reign became so shaken 
J*id troubled, pardy hy the dispute of the Hohenstaufens and partly 
by the Itahan campaigns, that but very few, if any of the great 
hopes he had at first excited by his chivalric, wise, and pious cha- 
^^'cter, were Iwought into effect 

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During his second and rather successful campaign in Italy, in the 
year 1137, Lothaire was suddenly seized with illness, and died oix 
his return, in the village of Breitenwang, between the rivers Inn and 
Lech, in the wildest part of the Tyrolese mountains. His body- 
was conveyed to, and interred in the monasteiy of Konigslutter, irt 
Saxony, foimded by himself. 

However much the two princely houses of the Ghielfs and 
Ghibelins may, from this time, have continued .to attract and com- 
mand attention, there was still a third, which, under this rei^n, ex* 
cited not less interest. Lothaire had given the Margraviate of rf orth* 
Saxony, which then comprised the present Altmark, to Albert the 
Bear, of the house of Anhalt, one of the most distinguished princes 
of his time. He conquered from the Vandals the middle marches, 
as well as those on the Uker and Prignitz, together with the town 
of Brandenburg; and finally, in order to excite in these countries the 
desired industry, he procured firom Flanders a great number of agri- 
cultural labourers. He may likewise be regaroed as the founder of 
the Brandenburg territory; and it was also under his rule that, about 
the middle of the twelfth century, the name of Berlin appeared for 
the first time, which place, therefore, dates its ori^n from the 
same period that Leopold of Austria laid the foundation of Vienna. 



Conrad HI., 1138-1152— The Gaelftand Ghibeliiu—Weiiuberg— The Faithful 
Wives— Conrad's Crusade — Disastrous Results— His Death, 1152 — ^Frederick I. or 
Barharossa, 1152-1190— His noble Character and distinguished Qualities— Ex- 
tends his Dominions — The Cities of Lombardy and Milan— Pavia— Pope Adrian 
rv.— The Emperor^s Homage — Otho of Wittelsbach- Dispute between the Pope 
and the Emperor— Milan taken and razed— The Confederation of the Lombar- 
dian Towns— The Battle of lignano— Frederick defeated— Pope Alexander and 
Frederick— Yenioe— Henry the Lion of Brunswick— His Rise and Fall — Becon« 
dilation and Peace— Lombardj— Frederick's Crusade and Death in Palestine, 1 190. 

The election even this time did not &11 upon him who considered 
he had the greatest right to the crown, namely, the son-in-law of 
Lothaire, the powerM Henry (the Proud) of Bavaria and Sazonj, 
although he had possession of the jewds of the crown; for the 
princes, repulsed by his pride, elected on the 22d of February, 
1138, the Hohenstaufen duke, Conrad of Franconia, whom mis- 
fortunehad madewise, and to whomhis elder brother, Frederick, who 
contested with Lothaire for the crown, willingly gave up now the 
precedence. Henry the Proud would not bend before the new em- 
peror, whereupon he was declared an outiaw, his two duchies taken 
from him, and Bavaria given to the margrave, Leopold of Austria, 
the half-brother of the Emperor Conrad by the maternal side, and 

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Saxony to Albert the Beax, of Brandenburg. Henry died almost 
iznznematelj afterwards, and left a son ten years of age, who be- 
came afterwards so celebrated under the title of Henry uie Lion, to 
whom Albert, at the desire of the emperor, formally resigned 
the duchy of Saxony, which he had not oeen able to conquer (so 
£dthful did the Saxons remain attached to the Gruelfic house); and 
in return he was allowed to possess his hereditary estates in that 
coimtrv as a princely mar^yiate, independent of the duchy. 

In Bavaria also. Count Guelf, of Altorf, the brother of Henry the 
Proud, still contended against ihe house of Austria, and not unsuc- 
cessfully. But when, in the year 1 140, he ventured to march against 
the emperor, near Weinsberg, he was vanquished in the battle. It 
was in this action that the names ^' Guelis and Ghibelins" were first 
heard as party names, for the battle-cry of the troops on one side 
was, " Stiike for the Guelfs," and of those on the other, " Strike for 
the Ghibelins." After the battle, the long besieged city of Weinsberg 
was obliged to yield. The emperor, irritated at its long resistance, 
had resolved to destroy it with fire and sword. He, however, per- 
mitted the females of the city previously to retire, and to carry with 
them iheir dearest jewels. And behold, when the day dawned, and 
the ^tes were opened, the women advanced in long rows, and the 
mamed bore eacn upon her back her husband, and the others each 
their dearest relative. This affecting scene so moved the emperor, 
that he not only spared the men, but also the whole city.* 

The Emneror Conrad was now about to proceed to Italy, to re- 
confirm ana establish there the imperial dignity, when intelligence 
arrived in Europe that the unbelievers threatened the Holy Land, 
and had already conquered and destroyed the fortified city of E^essa, 
a firontier fortress ; upon which, Pope Eugene HI. sent letters of exhor- 
tation to all the European kings ana princes^ that they might assist the 
Christians in the east; andapiou8andzealousman,theholyAbbotBer'- 
nardof Clairvaux, inFrance, journeyed throughoutEuroDe, preaching 
so powerfully, that many thousands took the cross. Ana when he ad- 
dressed LomsYH. of France, themultitude of those who took the cross 
was so great, that St. Bernard (he being afterwards canonised), was 
obliged to cut up his own clothes to make crosses of them, and both the 
kingandhisconsortEleanor resolved upon theexpedition. StBemard 
now turned his attention to Germany, and tried to stimulate the Em- 
peror Conrad, who long refused, and avoided the abbot, by proceeding 
firom Frankfort to Spires, in order that he might take into consideration 
how much still remained to be put in order in his own empire. But 
St.Bemard would notquit him; he followed him to Spires, and there it 
was that Conrad, in the middle of the abbot's address, suddenly arose, 
and, with tearful eyes, exclaimed, *' I acknowledge, holy fiither, the 
great goodness that Grod has shown me, and will no longer refuse, but 
am ready to serve him ; for I feel urged to this expedition by Himself" 

* This drcninttance is recorded by a contemporary of that period in the chronicle 

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St Bernard immediatelj decorated liim -with the croes, and presented 
Lim with the holy banner lyinff upon the altar. Frederick, Conrad's 
nephew, who became afterwards the first emperor of that name, and 
even the old Duke Gnelf, who had become reconciled with the em- 
peror, both took the cross likewise, and a great armj was assembled, 
which numbered 70,000 warriors alone. But in all human enterprises, 
a splendid commencement will not always secure a successful issue, 
and so, in this great expedition, nothing but misfortune followed. 
In the year 1147, whilst the army was encamped near Constanti- 
nople, on the banks of a river, in order to refiresh themselves from the 
iatigues of the march, and to celebrate the festival of the birth of St. 
Mary, the waters so swelled in the night by a sudden rain, that the 
whole camp became overflowed, and sreat numbers of men and horses 
were drowned. And a^ain, when the army was transported across 
the straits to Asia, treadierous guides led it into places which the 
Turks had previously devastated; the i>rovisions they carried with 
them were soon consumed, and the cities which tne expedition 
passed closed their gates against them. Many then entreated those 
upon the walls for bread, and showed their gold, whidi the people 
first let down ropes to possess themselves o^ giving in return only 
as much as they pleased, frequently nothing at aU, or only a little 
meal mixed with lime. Many thousands, consequently, died of 
Jiunger and disease, and still more were destroyed by the cimeters 
of tne Turkish horsemen, who allowed the Germans no repose, 
either by night or day, never forming for a regular engagement 
with them, which the harassed troops so heartily desired. Tnus, afler 
a thousand dangers, Conrad arrived in the Holy Land with only 
the tenth part of his army. He entered Jerasalem and visited the 
holy spot of the cross, where he paid his worship; but these were 
the whole firuits of this crusade. The siege of Damascus was unsuc- 
cessful, and the French army was equally unfortunate. Conrad re- 
turned after an absence of two years, and died shortly afterwards, 
in the year 1152, at Bamberg. He was a valiant, high-minded, and 
noble-hearted man, and was universally esteemed. He recommended 
as his successor, not his own young son, Frederick, whose age would 
not as yet allow him to rule the nation, but his valiant nephew, 
Frederick Barbarossa, Duke of Swabia, who had made the crusade 
with him, and who was unanimously dected at Frankfort. 

Frederick I. was one of the most powerful of all the German 
emperors; high-minded^ valiant,with a will firm as iron, and of 
a stem, energetic character. His very form displayed his lof^ 
mind. His figure was manly and powerful; his limbs well formed and 
strong, auburn locks covered his high forehead, and beneath them 
sparldedhis sharp and piercing eyes. Hischin, according to the an- 
cient custom, was coveted with his beard, which being of a bright yel- 
low, he thence derived his surname of Barbarossa. A youth&l rud- 
diness of complexion andnatural affability gave to hiscountenance that 
cheerful expression which attracts all hearts; but his firm, proud step^ 

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and the whole bearing of his presence, displayed the piince bom to 
rule and command. 

Ahready, even as a youth, he had performed deeds which an- 
nounced the great man; besides which, he belonged to the Ghibe- 
lizis on the paternal, and to the Gnelfs on the maternal side. It 
was hoped that he would cause the rivalship of both houses to be 
forgotten; and, indeed, one of his first acts m Germany was in &• 
vour of the Guelfic house. For, in the year 1154, he re-granted 
the duchy of Bavaiia to Henry the lion, the son of Henry the 
Proud, so that the duke again possessed Saxony and Bavaria in con-» 
junction, by which means he b^»me the most powerful prince in Ger- 
many. The Maigrave Henry, caUed Jasomirgoth, of Austria, who, 
after his brother Leopold's death, had become Duke of Bavaria, re- 
fused, indeed, to give up the country; but in 1156, Frederick in- 
duced him to renoun<ie it, and compensated him by ^vin^ him the 
old Bavarian Mar^viate of Austria, and by making it independent 
of Bavaria, and raising it to a duchy, he presented him with great 
lights and privileges. The duchy was to be hereditary, not onlv 
in the male, but also in the female line, and the duke was to rank 
yriih the first imperial nobles.* He was only required to be invested 
in his own land, and to participate in the expeditions against the 
Hungarians, whilst, without his sanction, no foreign laws were avail* 
able in Austria, &c. The reconciliation of the first princely houses 
in Germanv caused universal satis&ction; and Frederick depended 
now more nrmly than ever upon the assistance of the friend of his 
youth, Henry me Lion, for the execution of his enteiprises. In the 
other affairs of the empire also; the new emperor exerted himself 
with vigour; he destroyed the castles of the freebooter-knights, 
whom he condemned to death; and proved himself to be, by all his 
acts, a protector of general order, and of the rights of the German peo- 
ple. A contemporary historian says, therefore, of him : '' It appeared 
as if he gave to heaven and earth a new and more peaceful form." 

The countries bordering upon Germany also presented him with 
an opportunity to give to the imperial name additional lustre. In 
his first diet, at Merseburg, in 1152, he decided the dispute of the 
two Danish princes, Sven and Knud, reflpectang the kingdom of 
Denmark. Knud received S^ealand; but oven the crown, which 
Frederick himself placed upon his head ,and for which the Danish 
king swore allegiance to him. This also King Boleslaus, of Poland, 
was obliged to renew, and whom the emperor forced thereto by an 
eflfedive campaign in Sile&a. He gave to Duke Wladislas, of Bo* 
hernia, on accoimt of his fidthfiil adherence in this Polish campaign, 
the title of kin^ , such titles the emperor alone beinff able to impart 
Sing Geisa, of Hungary, renewed his allegiance, andmlfilled hisduties 
as vassal in Frederick's second Italian expedition. And finally, in 

* '^ He shall rank equal with the ancient ArcUdMcibus^ atanda reoorded'in the ori* 

^ statute. Thenoe, ftom this expression, originated the snhseqnent title of Axcfa« 
of Aostim. This wBsflxvtadqpfted by IMterickni. in the year 145a. 

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BuTffundy, which had become almost estranged from the Germanic 
empire, Frederick re-established his influence by his own mar- 
riage with B^trice, the heiress of High Burgunay, whereby his 
house acquired, at the same time, this poiiion of me kingdom of 
Burgundy. AJl the Burgundian nobles did homage to the em- 
peror, and thus the ancient imperial dignity acquired additional 
eplendour under the powerftd monarch who now ruled in Germany. 

It was only in Itely, the ancient seat of the dominion of the 
world, that the authority of the emperor had declined; and Frede- 
rick was not able to restore it entirely, even by the most glo- 
rious battles. The large towns in this country, since the weak 
government of Henry IV., had become overbearing, and submitted 
with great repugnance to the obedience due towards their superior 
feudal sovereign; above all the rest, the opulent city of Milan, the 
capital of Lombardy, was the most arrogant and independent. Mil a n , 
since the commencement of the 12th century, had, by die vigour and 
energy of its inhabitants, made such rapid progress, that one mi^ht 
almost have believed that ancient Rome had transplanted its spirit 
thither. It subjected, by degrees, several of the neighbouring cities, 
especially Lodi and Como ; and, at the same time, anected to treat the 
commands of the emperor with such contempt, that an imperial 
edict which Frederick issued in the year 1153, had even its seal torn 
off, and was trampled under foot. Upon this, the emperor, in 
1154, crossed the Alps, and, according to the ancient custom of the 
Longobardian kings, held his first great diet in the Roncalian plains, 
on the banks of the river Po; and now that complaints firom many 
other places were urged against the oppression of this proud city, 
which even refused to meet or reply to them, his an^er became ex- 
cited, and he resolved to punish it severely. He did not venture 
this time, to beside it, as he was not prepared for such an important 
undertaking; but he destroyed several of its adjacent castles and 
forts, and conquered its allied cities, Asti and Tortona. 

At Pavia he caused himself to be crowned King of Lombardy, 
and then rapidly advanced towards Rome. Here dissension existed 
between the pope and the people, who, in a revolutionary tumult, 
and under the guidance of a bold monk, Arnold of Brescia, wished 
to restore the ancient Roman republic. Neither of the parties knew 
in whose favour the emperor advanced. Pope Adrian IV. fled to 
a well-fortified castle called Castellana, but soon returned to the 
German camp, the emperor having promised him safety. Upon his 
arrival, Adrian (who had originally wandered from England, his 
native country, as a beggar boy,, and had eventually raised him- 
self to the papacy), expected that Frederick would hold his stir- 
rup, as his predecessors had always done; as, however, he did 
not do it, the cardinals accompanying the pope fled hastily back 
to Castellana, for they re^rded this omission as a bad omen of the 
imperial sentiments. Adrian, however, descended from his mule, 
and placed himself upon the seat prepared for him; and now Frede- 

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Tick cast himself before Urn, and kissed his feet. The pope now 
acqiiired fresh courage, and charged the emperor with the omission 
of the accustomed mark of deference; and the latter, who sought his 
glory in greater things, willindy yielded in this trifling affair, upon his 
{ninces assuring him that the Emperor Lothaire had shown a similar 
sign of respect to Pope Innocent II. The ceremony of dismoimting 
was consequently repeated on the following day, when the emperor met 
the pope and held his stirrup— thus it is related by the records of 
Rome, (xerman writers, on the contrary — ^namely, Otho of Freis- 
Exngen, and Helmold, inform us that tne emperor, upon the first 
descending of the pope, had held the stirrup, but, from oversight, had 
seized the left insteEia of the right, and that the pope, in consequence, 
had refused him the kiss of peace. Upon the excuse of the emperor, 
that he had erred through ignorance, as he had not applied much 
attention to stirrup-holding, the pope replied : *^ If the emperor 
neglects trifles from ignorance, how will he show attention in im- 
portant aflairs ?' The emperor, however, at the entreaty of the 
princes, yielded, and they both embraced each other as friends. 

After this, Frederick went to Rome, and was crowned emperor 
in St. Peter*s church, on the 18th of June, 1155. Meantime, a 
dispute ensued with iJie Romans, who would yield neither to the 
pope or the emperor; the force of arms, however, soon reduced 
them to tranquillity. 

In spite of these continual contests, however, with the perfidious 
and treacherous Italians, Frederick returned at length to Germany. 
But disputes speedily arose between him and the pope himself, who, 
confiding in the assistance of the Norman king, William of Naples and 
Sicily, wrote to the emperor a letter full of reproaches, and his 
l^ate. Cardinal Roland (afterwards Pope Alexander III.), uttered 
even in the assembly of the German princes, the arrogant words: 
" From whom, then, has the emperor the empire, if not from the 
pope?" Tlie irritated Count Psoatine, Otho of Wittelsbach, whose 
office it was to bear the naked sword before the emperor, upon hear- 
ing this raised the weapon, and was about to sunder the legate's head, 
for he considered the honour of the German princes deeply wounded 
by this language. Frederick, however, withheld him u:om this des* 
perate act of indignation ; but he commanded the ambassador to return 
early on the following morning to Rome, The German bishops, in 
repty to the reproaches of the pope* stated, that they had given them* 
selves every possible trouble to mediate, but that the emperor had re- 
plied to them, firmly and gravely, thus : " There are two regulations, 
according to which our empire must be ruled — ^the laws of the em- 
perors, and the good customs of our forefathers; these limits we will 
not, nor can we transgress. To our father, the pope, we will wil- 
lingly pay all the homage we owe him; but our imperial crown 
is mdependent, and we ascribe its possession to divme goodness 
only." They ihen earnestly entreated the holy father no longer to 
excite the anger of their lord the emperor. 

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' The dispute between the emperor and the pope, after a short 
reconciliation, was, nevertheless, resomed, and lasted until the death, 
of Adrian, in 1159. Thenceforward, affidis became still more en* 
tangled, for the imperial party chose Victor m., and the opposite 
party Alexander III., the same who, as cardinal l^ate, had uttoied 
such bold words in the imperial assembly. Each pope exoommimi- 
cated the other, and sought to strengthen each otner's party by all 
possible means. 

The Emperor Frederick, as early as the year 1158, had already 
prepared another more powerful expedition against Italy; the Mi- 
lanese having in the preceding year, reduced to ashes the city of Lodi, 
which had yielded aile^ianoe to the emperor. All the princes of Ger- 
many, as well as the kin^ of Hungary and the newly-elected King of 
Bohemia, performed feu<£d service ; by which means such an army was 
collected as no emperor had previoimv led into Italy: consisting of 
100,000 infimtay and 15,000 cavalry. They broke up their camp, near 
Augsburg at Whitsuntide, and crossed the Alps. Almost all the dties 
of iNorthem Italy were humbled at the view of such a powerful force, 
and allied themselves with the emperor ; but the rebeUiousdty of Mlaa 
was declared outlawed, and, after a short aege, was obliged to sub- 
mit to the irritated ruler. The Milanese appeared now before him, 
in humble supplication, forming a procession unusual to the Grermans. 
First came both ecclesiastics and laymen barefooted, and dressed in 
tattered garments, the former holding up crosses in the air; then fol- 
lowed the consuls and patricians with swords hanging from their necks, 
and the restwith cords round theirthroats; and thus humbly they fell at 
the feet of the emperor. As he therefore only desired their submission, 
he pardoned them, sajring : ^^ You must now acknowledge that it is 
easier to conquer by obemence than with arms." Upon which, he 
caused them to swear allegiance, and to promise that they would not 
interrupt the freedom of the smaller cities ; and taking with him three 
hundred hostages, he placed the imperial eagle upon the spire of the 

But their humility was only feigned, and the effect of necessity; 
lasting only so long as the power of the emperor terrified them. 
For when, according to the impeiial prerogative, he wished, in the 
following year, to appoint the civil ftmctdonaries, ^e citizens attacked 
Haynald, his chancellor, the count palatine, Otho, and the other 
ambassadors, with so much fury that they could scarcely save their 
lives. Upon being summoned, and an explanation demanded, they 
pleaded nothing but empty excuses; and at the second and third 
summons they did not appear at all. Upon which the emperor renewed 
the imperial edict of outlawry against Milan, and vowed, in his 
wrath, never to replace the crown upon his head until he had de- 
stroyed the arrogant city. 

^ The war recommenced with all the bitter exasperation of that pe- 
riod. The Milanese sought even their salvation — such at least was 
the universal charge — ^in the assassination of the powerfrd emperor 

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who thus menaced them. It is quite certain that a man of gigantic 
strength suddenlyattacked the emperorwhilst performing his morning 
devotions in a l>eautiful and solitary spot upon the Ada, and strove 
to throw him into the river. In tne struggle both fell to the earth, 
and, upon the call of the emperor, his attendants rushed forward, 
and the assassin was himself cast into the stream. Shortly afler this 
an old mis-shapen, squinting man glided into the camp with poisoned 
wares, the veiy touch of which was said to be mortal. The emperor 
bein^ fortunately already warned, caused him to be seized and exe- 
cuted. His army, meanwhile, had become much strengthened, and 
with it he first bcsdeged, in 1160, the city of Cremona, which was 
in alliance with MOan, and had obstinately refused submission ; the 
inhabitants defended themselves for seven months with unexampled 
obstinacy, when they were at length obliged to yield. The city was 
razed to the ground, and the inhabitants were obliged to wander to 
other places. 

It was only after a three years' sie^, and after much blood had 
been spilt on both sides, that Fredenck overcame the strong city 
of Milan. His patience was exhausted; the pardon he had once 
granted having only made the rash citizens more arrogant, he re- 
solved therefore^ by a severe punishment, to destroy their spirit of 
reastance. During three day^, the 1st, 3d, and 6th of March, 
the consuls and chief men of ike city, in increasing numbers, ad- 
vanced to the imperial camp before lK)di, and on the third day, the 
whole people with them; they divided themsdves into a hundred 
sections, and repeated thrice before that city, which had been so 
despised and ill-treated by them, the whole spectacle of their humili- 
ation; with crosses, swords, and ropes hanging about the neck, and 
barefooted. More than a hundred banners of tne city were, upon the 
third day, laid down before the imperial throne, and. lastly, their chief 
banner, the Gabogium,* was drawn forward. Its lony frame or 
tree, with its iron leaves, was bowed down before the emperor as a sign 
of the deepest humiliation; the princes and bishops, seated near him, 
sprang up, in dread of being HUed by the weighty mass, but Frederick 
remainea unmoved and tore the ftinge of the banner down. The whole 
of the people then cast themselves to the ground, with loud wailings, 
and inmlored mercy. The consuls and grandees of the city, and even 
the nobles of the emperor's suite, all supplicated his paraon for the 
capital, but the emperor remained inexorable, and desired his chan- 
ceUor, Baynald, to read the law, whereby the city surrendered itself 
atdiscredon. He then said: '^According to that law you have all me- 
rited d«ith, but I will grant you your Hves. As regards the fitte of the 
dty itself, I will so order it, that mftiture you shaU be prevented from 

* Upon a car •trengthened with iron, a mandye iron tree with iron leares was 
flied; a large croBsadonied the top of the tree, iBfh»t of which was represented the 
holr Amhmitti, Milan's tntelaiy saint. Tlie toolour of the car was red, and the 
eight oxen which drew it, were also ooTered with red dmpety. Before it was 
drawn away, high mass was oetefarated on the oar; the idiole hehig an imitation of 
theazkof thelmdites. C^r^nin]^^ 

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committiDg similar crimefl therein." Upon whicli he retired to Pavia, 
to decide upon the fate of Milan in a large assembly of Grerman and 
Italian bishops, lords, and deputies from the various other cities. 

The sentence was, *' that Milan should be levelled with the ground, 
and the inhabitants remove, within eight days, to four of their vil- 
lages, two miles from each other, where they should live under the 
surveilknce of the imperial functionaries." The city of Milan in its 
prosperity and arrogance, had so deeply injured many other cities: 
Cosmo, Lodi, Cremona, Pavia, Veirelh, Novarra, and owers, that they 
all beg^, 1^ aa especial favour, that they might diemselves puU 
down me walls of the proud capital; so that, by the impulse of tneir 
hatred and revenge, they accomplished within six days what hired 
workmen would scared v have executed in so many months: for, al* 
though the houses and cnurches were not pulled down, as later exagge- 
ratedrecords report, yet, the powerful walls and forts of the city were 
destroyed, the ditches filled up, and this once wealthy and splendid 
city, after the expulsion of the moaning inhabitants, became one dread« 
ful scene of waste and desolation.* The emperor then, at asplendid ban- 
quet at Pavia, in the Easter festival, replaced his crown upon his head. 

But Frederick was doomed to show to the world, by nis example, 
that a change of fortune must ever produce its influence upon the 
most powerml monarchs, and that no force can check it but wisdom 
and moderation. The punishment of the city of Milan had been 
too severe, and if this may even be excused perhaps by the rude- 
ness and strong passions of that period, still Fredenck erred in not 
having treated that and the other cities of the north of Italy with 
mildness, and according to the laws of justice. 

His deputies severely oppressed the country, and although, per- 
haps, without his concurrence, yet he did not sufficiently attend to 
the complaints which were made to him. At the same time he con- 
tinued the contest with the still-increasing party of Pope Alexander, 
and acted wrong in not taking advantage of the death of his own 
Pope, Victor Ui., to reconcile himself with the former, instead of con- 
firming the election of another rival pope, Pascal III. Frederick did 
not consider that his opponents, by their united inspiration, the one 
for civil freedom and the other for their church-party, derived uncon- 

Suerable power. The cities of Lombardy allied themselves still more 
losely together, and even those which had previously been the enemies 
of the Milanese became disinclined towards the emperor ; for, now that 
their former oppressors were cast to the ground, they compassionated 
them. But the most dangerous enemy of the emperor was the bold and 
sagacious Pope Alexander, who had succeeded, after a two years' exile 
in France, to gain over the Romans to his side ; and had now returned 
U> his metropolis. Consequently^ Frederick, afiier he had collected a 
new army, and had settled the most urgent affairs in Northern Italy, 

* During this deraftation of MxIad, many relics were remoTed from the deserted 
chmrches. Among the rest, the Archbishop Raynald oonyeyed the bones of the tliree 
kings with great solemnity across the Alps to the city of Cologne, and the King of 
Bohemia carxied with him the candlesticks of the temple of Jenisalemu^^T^ 


znarchedt in 1167| ix) Rome. The Romans were speedily beaten out 
of the field, and the city itself besieged. It was especially around 
the churches that the severest conflict took place, for they were de- 
fended like fortresses; and it was in the heat of combat that the 
Germans, having cast torches into the church of St. Mary, situated 
close to St. Peter's, the flames reached the latter edifice, which, in 
the general confiision, was taken possession of by the Swabian duke, 
Piederick. Pope Alexander, seemg that the Romans commenced 
murmuring at his obstinacy, fled secretly from the city, in the dress 
of a pil^m. He was seen on the third day near a fountain, not far 
£rom Circello, whence he escaped to Benevento. 

Frederick, however, together with his consort, was crowned by 
his pope, Pascal, on the first of August, 1167, in the metropolitan 
church of Christendom. But, imme^ately afterwards, an epidemic 
disease broke out among the Germans, of so terrific a nature that a 
great portion of the army and a multitude of the nobles and chief men 
were carried off. It was on a Wednesday, in August, that it first ap- 
peared; the heat had long been excessive and overpowering; on the 
morning of that day the sim was bright, after which rain suddenly fell, 
and a glowing heat succeeded; whence the vapour raised caused the 
sickness. Men died so suddenly, that often those who were perfectly 
well in the morning fell dead on the same day while walking in the 
street, and many, whilst even burying the dead, fell suddenly with 
them into the grave. The Archbishop Raynald, of Cologne, the 
emperor's able chancellor, four bishops, and eight dukes, and 
among these the emperor's cousin, Frederick of Kothenberg, and 
Guelf; the younger; besides many thousands of noble counts and 
lords who were numbered amon^ the dead. The people everywhere 
exclaimed, *' that this was a judgment of God for bummg St. 
Peter's Church ! " The emperor was obliged to retire to Pavia, and, 
in the following spring, he was forced, with only a few companions, 
to leave Italy like a fugitive, secretly and disgmsed. 

The cities, however, now raised their heads. They had already, in 
that very year, 1167, and almost under the very eyes of the emperor, 
whilst he lay before Rome, concluded a formal alliance with each 
other; they even ventured to re-conduct the Milanese back to their 
ancient city. The ditches, walls, and towers were speedily restored, 
and every one laboured to re-construct his habitation. For the 
capital had been so large and strong that, in its destruction, por- 
tions of the walls, most of the houses, and almost all the churches 
had remained standing. Thus, as Athens once, afler its destruc- 
tion by the Persians, so, also, Milan now raised itself by the aid of 
the other cities, more extensive and powerful than heiore. After 
this was done, the Lombard confederation built a new city, as an im- 
pregnable fortress against the emperor, in a beautiful and fertile spot 
surrounded by three rivers and deep marshes, and called it, in 
defiance of the emperor, and in honour of their pope, Alexandria, 
In the space of a year this city became inhabited, and garrisoned by 

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15,000 warriors. The most powerful cities participated in the Lom- 
bard confederation: Venice, Milan, Verona, Vicenza, Padna, Fer- 
rara, Brescia, Cremona, Placenza, Parma, Modena, Bologna, &c. 

Frederick, meanwhile, was not inactive in Grermanj; he remained 
there stationary, nearly seven years; established more firmly the im* 
penal dignity with all the strengthof his high mind; regulated and ad- 
justed internal disturbances, ana, in particular, the great dis^te in the 
north of Germany between Henry the Lion and his adversanes — ^upon 
which subject we shall enlarge as we proceed — ^and at the same tune 
augmented the power of his house by various just and legitimate acqui- 
sitions for his five sons, still very yoxmg. Henry, the ddest, although 
only 15 years of age, was elected King of the Romans; Frederick 
received the duchy of Swabia and the lands of Ghielf, the elder, who 
had bequeathed them, after the death of his only son, to the em- 

gsror, an example followed by many other counts and nobles in 
wabia. Conrad, the third son, inherited the lands of the Duke of 
Rothenberg, who died childless. To the fourth son, Otho, Frede- 
rick gave the vice-regency of Burgundy and Aries; and to the young- 
est, Phillip, who stiU lay in the cradle, he presented several confis- 
cated crown possessions and clerical feods. Thus the race of the 
Hohenstaufens stood firmly rooted like a vigorous and richly-branched 
tree of majestic oak. 

But now Frederick again directed his attention to that still revolu- 
tionary country, Italy. The German princes were now, it is true, 
less easily induced to proceed to that intractable unhealthy climate, 
but, by his persuasive eloquence and unwearied activity, he at length 
succeeded in again coUectmg an army, and appeared, in the autumn 
of 1174, for the fifth time, in that land. He b^eged the new 
city of Alexandria, which had been built and fortifiea in order to 
check his course; and he was forced to remain seven months before 
it, during which his army suffered greatly in the winter fix)m sick- 
ness and fatigue, in their camp, pitched upon marshy ground. 
Meanwhile the Lombard cities had collected an army to relieve the 
besieged, and which advanced at Easter, in 1175, fully prepared and 
equipped. The emperor resolved upon making a last attack gainst 
the place, and caused it to be stormed on the Thursday before Easter. 
The Germans, by means of a subterraneous passage, succeeded in 
advancing into the very heart of the city, as far as the middle of the 
market place. Nevertheless the valiant garrison did not lose coura^, 
and, to their great good fortune, this subterraneous passage fell m. 
Those of their enemy, who had thus entered the city, were over- 
powered, and the rest who were storming from without were beaten 
back. The emperor was therefore obliged to raise the siege, and to 
seek so hastily a different position, that he was forced to set fire to 
his own encampment. 

It was then agreed, that a meeting of the belligerent parties 
should take place at Pavia, in order to conclude a treaty. The cardi- 
nal of Ostia, who appeared in the name of the pope, would not 

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greet the emperor on account of the ezconunnnication, but he oTinced 
to him his regret, whilst he expressed his admiration of Frederick's 
great qualities. Both sides were, however, but little inclined to 
yield in an J portion of their demands. Whattended much to increase 
the courage of the Lombards was, that precisely at this moment, 
Henry the Lion refused the emperor that assistance, upon which 
Frederick had so much relied. The treaties were, consequently, 
Iroken off, and the Lombards, taking advantage of this &vourable 
momenty advanced, under the protection of the grand and sacred 
banner of St. Ambrose, against the emperor, and fought the deci- 
ave battle of Lignano, on the 29th of May, 1176. Their force was 
far superior in numbers, and occupied a &vourable poaiticm; whilst 
€ia one flide they were flanked by a ditch which made all flight im- 
possiUe. When they saw that tiie emperor had accepted their chat- 
len^e, and now advanced against them, they immediately formed ' 
their line of battle. The Carocium ol tiie Milanese, was placed in 
their centre, surrounded by 300 youths who had sworn to defend it 
in life unto death, besides a body of 900 picked cavalry, styled the 
phalanx of death, who had, singly and collectively, likewise taken tiie 
oath of imolation. The battle commenced, and one of the Lombard 
wings beginning very soon to waver, the order of the Milanese ranks 
became confused. The emperor pressed directly upon the centre, to 
gain the Carocium, and, as now its band of defenders likewise fair 
tered, the courage of the Germans increased, and at len^ they con- 
quered the sacred banner, and tore down aU its decorations, mt at 
uiis moment the death-squadron recovered themselves, and again re- 
tumed to the charge. Mortally wounded, the emperor s standard- 
bearer now sank at his side, and the imperial banner with him; but 
the brave Frederick, equipped in his splendid suit of armour, still 
fought on at the head of his warriors. Suddenly, however, he was 
seen to fall &om his diarger, and vanish &om the view of the army. 
Terror and confusion now seized upon all, and Frederick's troops suf- 
ferred an entire overthrow; he himself escaped with a* few faithM 
fiiends in the wild tumult, and under the protection of the night. 
Almost aU the citizens of Gomo, his allies, embittered by hatred and 
reven^ against the Milanese on account of their ancient wars, fell 
a sacrifice and were lef); dead upon the field. For two whole days 
the emperor was mourned as slain, and even his consort put on a 
widoVs robes; when, to the imexpected joy of aU, he again ap- 
peared in Pavia. 

After this the Emperor wished and proposed a peace; when tiie 
Pope, Alexander, said in reply: ** That nothing was more desirable 
to nim than to obtain peace m>m the greatest hero of Christendom; 
he entreated only, that the Lombards might participate in it, and 
he himself would proceed to that country." The two great opponents 
had now learnt mutually to esteem each other, and Frederick having 
expressed a wish for an interview witii the pope, the latter proceeded at 
once to Venice. His journey thitiier resembled a triumphal rapcessioni 

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for he was treated as the saviour of liberty, and as the father of the 
Italian free-states. Frederick also came there in July, 1177, and, 
according to an ancient historian: '' It pleased God so to guide his 
heart that he suddenly subjected the lion-like pride of his mind, and 
he became mild and gentle as a lamb, so that nc cast himself at the 
feet of the pope, who awaited him at the entrance of the church 
of St. Mark, and kissed them ; and the pope, with tears, raised him 
from the ground, and gave him the kiss of peace, at which the 
Germans exclaimed: 'Lord God we praise thee I' The emperor 
then took the pope by the hand and led him into the church, where 
he bestowed upon mm his benediction. On the following day, 
however, at the express desire of the emperor, the pope celebrated 
high mass, and Frederick, after he had himself, like an inferior of 
the church, humbly cleared the way for the pope through the crowd, 
took his place amidst the train of the German archbishops and 
bishops, and devoutly assisted in the holy ceremony." 

Thus, in those days, did mild, reUgious feelings moderate the 
severe and stem disposition of the emperor, without at all affecting 
the majesty of his presence, for his humility was voluntary, and 
thence acquired for him general esteem ; whilst at the same time his 
conduct was sincere, and consequently his reconciliation with the 
pope was complete and lasting. But with the Lombards, as all the 
articles of the treaty could not be immediately settled, a truce of six 
-years was concluded. All rights and customs were to be investi- 
gated; the demands of both sides equally weighed; and the relations 
of the Italian cities with the emperor ana empire arranged afresh : all 
which demanded time. 

In 1 178 the emperor proceeded to Aries, where he was crowned king 
of Burg^dy , and thence returned to Germany, where another import- 
ant affair awaited his presence. Whilst on the one hand the house of 
Hohenstaufen possessed at this period, in the person of its emperor, a 
powerful and high-minded chief, the house ot Gxielf enjo)red, on the 
other, an equal advantage in Henry the Lion, Duke of Bavaria and Sax- 
ony. For, whilst Freaerick, in the south, conducted his great wars 
against the Italian cities, Henry increased his power in the north by a 
successful war against the Vandals. Henry resembled the friend of his 
youth, Frederick, in valour, firmness, and chivalric sentiments. His 
outward appearance was also distinguished, and his powerful figure, 
strengthened by every corporeal exercise, displayed tne bold courage 
of his mind. Yet, whilst 1 rederick, in his hair and complexion, bore 
the true impress of genuine German origin, Henry, on his part, 
presented in liis whole appearance the evidence of his connexion 
with the southern race of the Guelfs; his complexion being darker, 
his hair and beard black, and his eyes the same colour. His name 
soon became terrible in the northern districts. He conquered a great 
portion of Holstein and Mecklenburg, as far as Pomerania, and 
populated the country, as Albert the Bear had done previously in 
.the marches, with peasants from Brabant, Flandeira^ and Germany. 

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He founded bishoprics and schools ; distributed throughout these coun- 
tries criminal courts and judges ; transformed forests and, marshes into 
fruitful fields; and, whilst he increased his own power, he became the 
promoter cf civilization in the north of Germany. Lubeck, foimded in 
1140, and made the sec of a bishop, soon developed itself and flourished 
lobly ; and Hamburg, previously destroyed by the Vandals, was again 
restored. Thus his extensive possessions extended from the shores of 
the Baltic and the North Sea, as far as the Danube in the southern 
mountains, and were more considerable than the absolute dominions of 
Ae emperor; whilst, finally, he founded, in 11 57, Munich, in Bavaria. 
Tie object of Henry was to unite his two duchies under one entire 
political government, and thus to restrict throughout his territories 
as much as possible, the rights of the nobles, both temporal and spi- 
lituaL At the same time, in so doing he laid himself open to tne 
leproacb of injustice; as, for instance, in the case of Count Adol- 
phus m., of Holstein. This nobleman had laboured greatlv to ad- 
vance tbe prosperity of his country, and having, amongst the rest, 
established some valuable salt works at Oldcsloe, Henry now de- 
stroyed them by causing firesh water from neighbouring springs to 
flow into them, because nis own salt works at Luneburg were, as he 
thought, injured by the existence of those of Count Adolphus. 

The jealousy ol the neighbouring German princes having now 
become excited against him, ho, as a warning to them, caused a large 
Hon, cast in bronze, to be placed before lus castle in Brunswick. 
They understood what by this sign he meant to indicate, but although 
they trembled individually, they nevertheless tried once more to put 
a stop to his rapid progress by a great alliance, in which were in- 
dud^: the Archbishops of Cologne, Bremen, and Magdeburg; the 
Bishops of Hildesheim, and Lubeck, the Landgrave of Thuringia, 
and the Margrave of Brandenburg, with several counts and knights. 
But Henry, sudden as the royal animal whose title he had chosen, 
broke loose, re-conquered Bremen, devastated Thuringia and the 
ardibishopric of Magdeburg with fire and sword, drove away Con- 
rad, bishop of Lubeck, and thus overcame and crushed his enemies 
completely. Such was the state of afiairs in Germany when the 
Emperor Frederick returned from Italy, in 1 168 ; his presence, how- 
ever, restored tranquillity once more, and both parties were obliged 
to surrender to each other their conquests. 

The noble Guelf, to whom repose was hateful, made now, in 1172, 
8 plgrimage to the Holy Land, but, upon his return, disputes were 
renewed, and he this time drew upon himself, in the person of the 
emperor, a fiir more powerful opj>onent. The latter, who had bcjen 
hitherto his constant mend, and, in a series of years, had shown him 
nodiing but kindness, considered he might with justice calculate 
especially upon him when, after raising the siege of Alexandria, in the 
year 1175, he collected all his forces together, in order to come to a 
decisive and final engagement with the Lombards. But it was just 
in that critical moment that Henry, to whom these distant expedi* 

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230 henry's ingratitude — ^FREDERICK'S REVENGE. 

tions were liiglily objectionable, and who preferred remaining at home 
with his army, for the purpoee of increasing his own power, rsfused hia 
aaostanoe. He plead^ his age, although n^ was only forty-six years 
cdd, and thus younger than me emperor hixoself ; pretending that too 
many necessary affiurs required his presence in his own coimtry. 
Frederick hoped, however, in an interview with him, to persuade him 
to change his mind, and invited him to the frontiers of Italy; the 
duke came, and the two rulers met at Chiavenna, on the Laiae of 
Como. The emperor reminded his fiiend of their alliance, their 
dose relationship, of his honour, and feudal duty as prince; but 
Henry remained inflexible. The emperor then arose in great a^ta- 
tion, embraced the duke's knees, and entreated him still more 
earnestly — so important was his asastance to him at this moment. 
Henry was moved, and endeavoured to raise the emptor, but did 
not waver in his determination. The empress then joined them, and 
said to her husband : ^' Pray rise, my dear friend, God wiU help you if, 
on some future day, you do but punish this arrogance I" The emp^<»: 
arose, but the duke retired; and it was to his absoice that Frederick 
might chiefly impute his subsequent bad success atLignano. He could 
not for^t tnis event, and upon his return to Germany, after the peace 
of Vemce, in 1178, and &esh complaints resounded fiom all sides 
a^ainstthe duke,he cited him to appear at a dietat Worms. Heniy 
did not however attend. He was summoned a second time to Magde- 
burg; even there he did not smpear; and, ashe equally neglected a third 
and a fourth summons, at G^lar and Wurzburg, me emperor sat in 
judgment upon him, in the year 1180, and the princes confirmed his 
deposal &om all his dignities and fiefs, as his punishment Fre- 
d^ck then declared him outlawed, and divided his fiefs among other 
princes. The duchy of Saxony, to which he left but the shMow of 
preceding greatness — ^for he had himself already felt the danger re- 
sulting from too extensive duchies — ^he awarded to the second son of 
Albert the Bear, Bernard of Anhalt. The duchy in the western 
districts, as far as the dioceses of Cologne and Paderbom, comprising 
limburg, Amsberg, West^^lia, Paderbom, and a portion of Ra- 
vensberg, he gave to the Archbishop of Cologne, who, however, 
only succeeded in holding possession of a portion of these countries. 
The Bishops of Magdeburg, Hildesheim, Pa<krbc»m, Br^nen, Ver- 
den, and Minden, took advantage of this opportunity to make them- 
selves not onlyindependent of the duch}r, but also to increase their 
possessions. The duchy of Bavaria, which was also somewhat de- 
creased, was given to the valiant Count Palatine, Otho of Wit- 
telsbach, the mthful companion of the emperor, llie cities of Lii- 
beck and Batbbon became free imperial cities, and in Pomerania, 
which was now united with the empire, Frederick created the bro- 
thers, Casimir and Bogislaus, dukes. 

After the emperor had pa^ed judgment upon Heniy his enemies 
forthwith took up arms, to possess themselves of their portion of the 
booty; but the old lion st^ defended himself valiantly. They could 

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aocomj)liah nothing against him, and were lepeatedly beaten, until 
Frederick himselfadvanoed with an army. Their reverence for the im- 
perial name, and their natural repugnance to be allied with an outlaw, 
disarmed tbe duke's friends; he was obliged to quit his patrimonial 
estates, and was forced to see Brunswick, his capital, invested, one 
of his chief castles, Bardewick, taken ; and finally, when the powerful 
dty of Liibeck yielded to the emptor, he found himself left com- 
pletely without any protection, even behind the Elbe. Driven, at 
Jasty to extremities, he cast himself at the feet of the emperor, at 
ihe diet of Erfurt, held in the year 1181. The humiliation of his 
<M friend and companion in arms, whose proud soul was now broken, 
drew even tears of sympathy from the mighty Frederick, and he par- 
doned him. He counselled him, however, in order that, with time, 
the hatred of his enemies might become moderated, to absent him- 
self for three vears from Grermany, and to remain, during that inter- 
val with his mther-in-law, Henry IL, King of England; meanwhile 
his hereditary lands, Brunswick and Liinebur^, remained in his pos- 
session. Thus it was that, as it were by a smgular reverse of late, 
the duke dwelt as an exile for some time in the country where his 
descendants were subsequently to ascend a brilliant throne; for it was 
there that his consort, MatildBi, gave birth to the same William who 
was afterwards the chief branch of the house of Hanover which has 
placed the British kiags upon the throne. 

This great example of imperial superiority in Germany may pos- 
sibly have worked upon the minds of the ItaUaus; and as, m the 
following year, 1183, the truoe of six years with the Lombards 
ceased, and the emperor, besides, showed himself a merciful ruler, 
they evinced a more satined disposition, and the peace of Kosnitz 
was accordingly signed with them, which henceiorward stood as 
fundamental law between the ^peror and upper Italy. The em- 
peror himself obtained great privileges: he had the right to appoint 
his own counts, as the burgomasters chosen by the citizens, and to 
renew their dignity every five years ; he exercised the supreme judicial 
power, whilst he derived, besides, several imposts, particularly the 
subsidies for his army in the Italian campaigns; and all the citizens, 
from the a^e of 15 to 70, swore all^iance to him. Under these 
conditions the citizens, on their part, received the right of municipal 
freedom within their walls; were permitted to Hve according to their 
own manners and customs, and were even privileged to make such 
new regulations as they deemed just, and the confederation of their 
dties, already existing, was now confirmed. 

Thus Frederick was enabled, now and for the last time, (in 1184) 
to proceed to Italy in a state of peace, and, as he advanced, he was 
rendered more and more happy in witnessing the tranquillity and 
contentment that reigned throughout the land, whilst all around him 
was in a fever of joy and delight The Lombards received him as 
if no enmity had ever existed between them. He caused the iron 
crown of iiik Lombards to be placed on the head of his son Henry, 

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and gave him away in marriaffe, -with great pomp and festivity, at 
Milan, in 1186, (which city had especially begged from the em- 
peror that honour) to Constanza, the last heiress of Naples and 
Sicily of the royal Norman race, and which alliance gave the house 
of Hohenstaufen new and high expectations; for, being already 
in possession of Northern Italy, if it acquired in addition, Lower 
Italy, the whole peninsula would necessarily soon become subject 
to its dominion, and its subjection would accordingly lead to that of 
the whole of Germany. Such were the projects formed by the old 
yet youthfully-sanguine emperor, who was far from anticipating that 
by this last, and apparently splendid achievement of his glorious 
career the seeds were sown for the fall and ruin of his house. 

It appeared now as if £ate, after having subjected the emperor to 
all its storms, had determined to prepare for him, in his venerable 
age, the glory of a noble death in a sacred cause; for, at this mo- 
ment, intelligence arrived suddenly in Europe that Jerusalem, after 
the imfortunate battle of Hittin, or Tibenad, in 1187, was ^ain 
torn from the Christians by Saladin, the Sultan of Egypt. Pope 
Urban III. died of grief at this news, and his successors, Gregory 
Vin. and Clement III. addressed urgent letters to the European 
princes, summoning them to rise and march forthwith to the debver- 
ance of the Holy City; consequently, all the knights-templars and the 
knights of St. John, dispersed throughout Europe, were the first to 
embark; the Italians assembled together under the Archbishops of 
Bavenna and Pisa; the Normans furnished all their forces; a fleet of 
fifty vessels from Denmark and Friesland, and thirty-seven from 
Flanders set sail, headed by their great leaders : Richard Cceur-de-lion, 
Kinffof England, Philip Augustus, of France, and the Emperor Frede- 
rick Barbarossa, together with all the neighbouring kings and princes 
came likewise forward with their whole power for the sacred cause. 
Our venerable hero, Frederick Barbarossa, advanced, in the Mayof 
the year 1 189, at the head of 150,000 well armed combatants. The 
Greeks, who seemed disposed to practise similar treachery towards 
him as they had against Conrad III., he punished severely, and dis- 
mantled their cities. The Sultan Kilidish Arslan, of Cogni, or Ico- 
nium, in Asia Minor, who had offered him his friendship, and after- 
wards betrayed him, he attacked and put to flight, taking possession 
of his metropolis. Thus, in all these battles Frederick, even as an old 
man, distinguished himself beyond all the rest by his heroic vigour 
and magnanimity, and he succeeded in leading his army through 
every da^^er as far as the frontiers of Syria, but here ended the 
term of his noble course. When, on the lOih of Jime, 1190, the 
army resumed its march from Sileucia, and traversed the river 
Cymius, or Seleph, the bold and venturesome old warrior, to whom 
the passage over the bridge was much too slow, dashed at once with 
his war-horse into the river, in order thus to overtake more speedily 
his son Frederick, who led the van. But the rapid course of the 
stream overpowered and bore him away, and when at length, assist- 

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anoe could be rendered him, the veteran was found abeady dead. 
The grief and lamentations of his son, of the princes, and of the whole 
army were indescribable. Fate nevertheless had by this means saved 
him from experiencing subsequently, bitterpain and mortification, and 
his noble soul was not doomed to sufier by the unfortunate termina- 
tion of so great an enterprise. For the German army, after his 
death, was almost entirely destroyed by sickness before the city of 
Antioch; and the emperor's second son Frederick, Duke of Swabia, 
died at the siege of Acre, or Ptolemais, and Jerusalem was never re- 

The grief which the Emperor Frederick's death excited through- 
out the west of Europe, is testified by a French writer of that 
period, who, according to his peculiar style, thus speaks of it: 
" News so deadly piercmg, even to the very marrow and bone, has 
wounded me so mortally, that all hope and desire of life have passed 
from me. For I have heard that that immoveable pillar of the em- 
pire, Grermany's tower of strength and its very foundation, and that 
morning star which surpassed all other stars insplendour, Frederick 
the migiity, has ended nis life in the east. Thus no longer exists 
that strong lion, whose majestic countenance and powerful arm 
frightened savage animals from devastation, subjected rebels, and 
maae robbers hve in peace and order." And the degree to which 
tile imperial dignity in general was raised by him, is expressed in 
the words of his chancellor, Raynald, at a diet at Besancon, where 
he said, ** Germany possesses an emperor, but the rest ot Europe — 
only petty kings. 

* This riege is one of the most remarkable and sanguinary on record. Both the 
Kings of England and France were present, and took their share in the dangers. 
The dty was eventually taken, after a long and yigorous resistance; but the sword 
and disease bad combined to reduce the army of the Crusaders to such a degree^ 
that it was in vain to contemplate any fresh enterprise. Seyeral archbishops and 
patriarchs, twelve bishops, forty dukes and counts, five hundred of the principal no- 
^ity* together with a great number of knights, and an innumerable host of inferior 
oflloers and soldiers, became a sacrifice. Philip Augustus returned speedily to 
^EVanoe; but Richiurd of England remained, and continuing on the war with the 
greatest activity, acquired the reputation of beiug the most valiant knight oi 
bis time; whilst Saladin likewise proved himself a brave and shrewd adversary. 
Bichard, however, was recalled to Europe, through the dangers which threatened his 
own kingdom. He concluded a peace with the sultan, and gave up to him Jerusa- 
lem; and thus nothing more remained in the hands of the Christians than a narrow 
strip of land along the coast from Jaifa to Acre. 

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HeniT VI, 1190-1197^Hi8 Meroenary and Cruel Character— Richard L of England 
— ^IB SeijEed and Imprisoned b j Henry— Naples and Sicil j— The Grandees— Thdr 
Barbarons Treatment bj the Emperor— Hk Death, 1197 — The Riral Sovereigns 
—Phillip of Swahia, 1197-1206, and Otho IV., 1197-1215— Their Death— Fre- 
derick n., 1215-1250— His Noble Qualities— Loye for the Arts and Sciences— His 
Sarcastic Poetry — ^Preference for Italy — ^Disputes inth the Popes— Is ezoonunu- 
nicated— His drnsade to the Holy Land— Crowned King of Jerusalem— Marries 
a Princess of; England — Italy — ^Pope Gregory IX.— Frederick denounced and de- 
poted— Dissensions in Germany— The Riyal Kings— Death of Frederick IL, 1250 
— ^His Extraordinary Genius and Talents — His Zeal for Science and Education-^ 
A G^oe at the East and North-Eastem Farts of Germany— Fngress in dvili- 
sation— William of Holland, 1247-1256— Conrad IV., 1250-1254— Their Deaths— 
The Intenregnum, 1256-1273 — ^Progress of the Germanic Constitution. 

Frederick's eldest eon, Heniy, who, duiin^ his father's life 
was named his suooessor, and in whose absence he had been invested 
with the government of the empire, was not diflsimilar to his &ther 
in the power of his mind, in chivaliic bearing, and in grand ideas 
and plans, but his disposition was extremely partial and severe, often 
crael, and in order to execute great ambitious projects he betrayed 
feelings of a very meroenary nature. This was duplayed in an oc- 
currence which 1^ not done him much honour. King Richard Goeurw 
de-Lion, of England, when in Palestine, had at the siege of Akkon, 
or Acre (of which we have already spoken) a dispute with Duke 
Leopold of Austria; inasmuch as the Germans, aner the city was 
taken, being encamped in one of its quarters, Duke Leopold caused 
the German banner to be raised accordingly upon a tower, similar 
to the Kings of England and France. But the proud Richard of 
England caused it to be torn down, and it was trampled in the mud 
by the English. This was an affront to the whole Gennan army, and 
oertainly deserved immediate and severe punishment. But the revenge 
which the duke and the emperor Henry took afterwards upon the king 
was of the most treacherous and ignoble character. Richard, namely, 
upon his return &om Palestine m 1192, was cast by a storm upon 
the Italian coast, near Aauileja, and wished to continue his route 
through Germany; but, although he had disguised himself as a pil- 
grim,ne was recognised in Vienna by his expensive style of living, 
and by the imprudence of his servant. He was seized and deliver^ 
up to Duke Leopold, who had previously returned, and by whom he 
was surrendered to the Emperor Henry. The noble chivalric Kine 
of England, and brother-in-law of Henry the Lion, was now detained 
at Trifels, in close confinement, above a year, until he was formally 
brought before the assembly of German princes at Hagenau, as a 
crimmal, and had defended hunself ; nor was he liberated and allowed 
to return to his kingdom until the English had paid a ransom of a 
million of dollars — ^&r that period an immense sum. Inthusproceed- 

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ing against Richard, Heniy had, it is true, acted in conformity with 
the ancient right of the imperial dignitj, according to whidi the 
emperor was authorised to ate before him all the kings of Christ- 
endom, and sit in judgment over them. But the manner in which he 
acted in this case was degrading, and unworthy of any ruling power. 

The emperor concluded with Henry tlie Lion, who after his return 
fiom England had produced fresh wars, a perman^it treaty of peace, 
and by the marriage which took place between the duke's son, Henry 
the Slender, and Agnes, princess palatine, and niece of Frederick I., 
the reconciliation of these two distinguished houses was confirmed. 

The principal aim now of the Emperor Henry, beyond every thing 
else, was to secure to his house Naples and Sicily, the inheritance 
of his consort Constanza; but the avarice and crud^ with which he 
acted in his endeavours to gain his object soon inmsposed and ren* 
dered the feelings of his new subjects more and more adverse towards 
him, and increased their hatred against the Gr^mans. Eor he not 
only conveyed away the gold and silver, together with all the costly 
ornaments of the ancient Norman kings, to such an extent that one 
hundred and sixty animals were loaded therewith, and proceeded with 
them to the castle of Trifels on the Rhine, but hecaused the eyes of the 
grandees who had rebelled to be put out, and as an insult to uieir mis- 
mituikda, and in mockery of tibieb efforts to get possession of the throne 
and wear the crown, he placed th^n upon seats of red-hot iron, and lis- 
tened upon their heads crowns formed equally of burning iron. The 
rest of their accomplices were, it is true, so much terrified thereby, 
that they vowed allegiance; but this submission did not ccnne £rom 
their hearts, and Henry's successors paid severely for his cruelties. 

He meditated the most important plans, wmch, had they been 
accomplished, would have given to the whole empire a completely 
differ^it form. Among the rest, he offered to the German princes to 
xeoder their fiefs hereditaiy, promised to roiounce all imperial dainui 
to the property left by bishops and the rest of the clergy; in return 
for which, however, he desired the imperial throne to be made likewise 
hereditary in his family* He even promised to unite Naples and Sicily 
whollywith the empire. Many princes voluntarily agreed to these pro- 
positions, which appeared advantageous to them ; some of the greater 
ones, however, refused, and as the pope likewise withheld his consent, 
Henry was obliged to diefer the execution of his great projects toa more 
convenient time. Affiiirs now called him agaon to Sicily, and there 
he died suddenly in 1197, in the 33d year of his age, and at the 
moment when he oontemi^ated the conquest of the Greek empire, by 
which to ^pare and secure a successful issue to the crusades.* ^ 

HissonErederick was but just eight years old, and the two parties in 
Germany, the Hohenstaufens and Vie Guelfs, became again so strongly 
divided, that the one side chose as emperor Phillip, Henry's brother, 

• Heoi/B tomb, at Palermo, was opened after nearly 600 yean, and the body 
fend weU preserred. InthefestaxeBof 1lie£uie,ilieezpre0donorimperiotupride 
a«d deipotic onielly fr«n stitt to be xeoogDiMd. 

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and the other Otho, the second son of Henry the Lion, a prince distin- 
guished for his strength and valour, and thus Germany had again two 
sovereigns at once. 

Through this unfortunate division of parties the empire became for 
the space of more than ten years the scene of devastation, robbery, and 
znuraer, and both princes, who were equally endowed with good quali- 
ties, could do nothing for the country; on the contrary, in the endea- 
vours made by each to gain over the pope to himself, they jielded to 
the subtle Innocent III., under whom the papacy attained its highest 
gradeof power, many of their privileges. Otho IV. even acknowledged 
the pope s claim of authority to bestow the empire as he might appomt, 
and called himself in his letters to the pope a Roman king by the 
grace of God and the pope. For which concession, and because he 
was a Guelf, Innocent protected him with all his power, and when 
Phillip in 1208 was assassinated at Bamberg by Otho of Wittelsbach, 
(a nej)hew of him to whom Frederick I. had ffiven the duchy of 
Bavaria) in revenge because he would not give him bis daughter in 
marriage as he hadpromised, Otho IV. was universally acknowledged 
as emperor, and solemnly crowned at Rome. His friendship with 
the pope, however, did not last long, for Otho saw that he had gone 
too far in his submission, and ought not to sacrifice for his private 
interest all the privileges of the empire. The pontiff, therefore, op- 
posed to him as king, the youthful Frederick, the son of Henry Vl., 
who had meanwhile grown up in Sicily, and whose guardian ne be- 
came after the death of his mother Constanza. Frederick soon gained 
adherents, and was crowned at Aix-la-Chapelle in 1215, and Otho 
lived henceforward deserted and inactive on his patrimonial lands 
until he died in 1218. 

The Emperor Frederick II., the grandson of Frederick I., by his he- 
roism, firmness of will, and boldness of spirit, and combining with this 
majesty of character both mildness and grace, was worthy of his noble 
family, so that the impression of his personal greatness remained long 
after his demise. In addition to which, he was a friend of art and 
science, and was himself a poet: sentiment, anioiation, and euphony 
breathing in all his works. His bold and searching glance dwelt 
especially upon the follies of his age, and he frequently lashed them 
With bitter ridicule, whilst, on the contrary, he saw in every one, 
whence or of whatsoever fitith he might be, merely the man, and 
honoured him as such if he found him so worthy. 

And yet this emperor executed but little that was great; his best 
powers were consumed in the renewed contest between the imperial 
and papal authority which never had more ruinous consequences 
than under his reign, and Germany in particular found but little 
reason to rejoice in its sovereign, for his views even beyond all the 
other Hohenstaufens, were directed to Italy. Bj birth and educa^ 
tion more an Italian than a German, he was particularly attached to 
his beautiful inheritance of the Two Sicilies, and in Germany, thus 
neglected, the irresponsible dominion of the vassals took still deeper 

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root, whilst, on the other hand, in France the royal power, by with- 
drawing considerable fiefs, commenced preparing its victory over the 
feudal system. 

There were also three grand causes which served to excite the popes 
against Frederick. In the first place, they could not endure that, 
besides northern Italy, he should possess Sicily and Naples, and was 
thus enabled to press upon their state from two sides; secondly, they 
were indignant because he would not yield to them, unconditionally, 
the great privileges which the weak Otho lY. had ceded to them; 
but, thirdly, what most excited their anger was, that, in the heat of 
their dispute, he frequently turned the sharpness of his sarcasm 
against them, and endeavoured to make them both ridiculous and 

The commencement of the schism, however, arose from a par* 
ticular circumstance. Frederick, at his coronation, in Aix-la-Cha- 

SeUe, had spontaneously en^a^ed to undertake a crusade for the 
eliverance of Jerusalem, and this promise he renewed when he was 
crowned emperor at Rome, in 1220. But he now found in hia 
Italian inheritance, as well as in the opposition shown by the Lom* 
bard cities, which, after the death of Frederick I., had again become 
arrogant, so much to do that he was continually obliged to require 
from the pope renewed delays. The peaceful and just Honorius III. 
granted them to him; and there existed between him and the em- 
peror a firiendly feeling, and even a mutual feeling of respect. But 
with the passionate Gregory IX., the old dispute between the spi- 
ritual ana temporal power soon again broke forth, and Gregory 
strongly urged the crusade. In the year 1227, Frederick actually sailed 
with a fleet, but returned after a few days, under the pretext of ill- 
ness, and the whole expedition ending m nothing, Ghregory became 
irritated, and without listening to or admitting even the emperor's 
excuses, excommimicated him, for he maintained his sickness was a 
fiction. To contradict these charges by facts, the emperor actually 
went the ensuing year to Palestine. But upon this the pope cen- 
sured him, even more strongly than before, declaring any one, 
under excommunication, to be an unfit instrument for the service of 
God. And in order that Frederick might accompUsh nothing great 
in the holy land, he sent thither commands, that neither the clergy 
there, nor the orders of knighthood, should have community with 
him : nay, he himself even caused his troops to make an incursion 
into Frederick's Italian lands, and conquered a portion of Apulia. 

But Frederick, in the meantime, speedilv brought the war in Pales- 
tine to a successful termination. The Sultan of Egypt, at Kameel, 
partly through the great fame which the imperial sovereignty enjoyed 
in the east, and part^&om personal esteem for Frederick(but weakened 
principally by family dissensions), concluded with him a truce for 
ten years, and gave up Jerusalem, Bethlehem, and Nazareth. The 
emperor then entered the holy city, and visited the grave, but the 
patriarchs of Jerusalem and the priests, obedient to the commands 
of the pope, would celebrate no religious service in his presence. 


Notwithstanding which, he performed his devotions, and in the pre- 
Bence of his nobles, crowned himself with the crown of the kings of 
Jerusalem; a right he had acquired by his marriage with lolontha, 
the daughter ofKing John, of Jerusalem;* after which he returned 
quickly to Italy. His presence speedily repaired all that was lost, 
and the pope saw himself obliged, in 1230, to conclude a peace and 
remove the ban. 

A tranquil moment seemed now to present itself in Frederick's 
life, but fate attacked him from ajiother side. His own son, Henry, 
whom he had left in Germany, as imperial viceroy, rebelled against 
him, exdted, probably, by ambition and evil counsellors. After 
fift;een years absence, Frederick returned to Germany, and with a 
bleeding heart he was obliged to overpower his own son by force, 
take him prisoner, and place him in confinement in Apulia, where, 
seven years afterwards, he died. 

Upon this occasion, Frederick also held, in 1235, a grand diet at 
Mentz, where 64 princes, and about 12,000 nobles and knights 
were present. Here written laws were made relative to the peace 
of the country, and other regulations adopted, which showed the em- 
pire the prudence of its emperor. Before the diet assembled, he cele- 
brated, at Worms, his espousal with his second consort, the English 
princess, Isabella. The unperial bride was received upon the fron- 
tiers by a splendid suite of nobles and knights; in all the cities 
through which she passed, the clergy met her, accompanied by 
choirs of sacred music, and the cheerful peals of the church-bells ; and 
in Cologne, the streets of which were superbly decorated, she was 
received by ten thousand citizens on horseback, in rich clothing and 
arms. Carriages with organs, in the form of ships, their wheels and 
horses concealed by purple coverings, caused an harmonious music to 
resound, and throughout the whole night choirs of maidens sere- 
naded beneath the windows of the emperor's bride. At the 
marriage in Worms, four kings, eleven dnkes, and thirty counts and 
margraves were present. Frederick made the most costly presents 
to the English ambassador; and, among the rest, he sent nch gifts 
of curiosities from the east to the King of England, as well as l£ree 
leopards, the leopards being included m the English coat of arms. 

From these peaceftd occupations, Frederick was obliged to turn, in 
the following year, to more serious afi&irs in Italy, where the Lombard 
cities more especially claimed his presence, thej having renewed their 
ancient alliance amongst themselves and reftismg to yield to him the 
obedience he required as emperor. With the assistance of his valiant 
leader, the knight Ezzelin de Romano, he conquered several of the 
allied .'cities, and so beat the Milanese in 1237, at Cortenuova, 
that they would willingly have humbled themselves, if he had 
granted only moderate conditions. But, unwarned by the example 
of his grandfather, he required them to submit at discretion: whilst 

* The Kings d ^agka and Sicily inherited the title of King of Jerosalem from 

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the citizeiis, lemembeiin^ eazfier times, prefeired dying under their 
shields, laiher, they said^ than by the zope, famine, or fire, and 
from this period commenced in reality the misfortanes of Frederick's 
life. According to the statement nuide by one of our writers, ^^ he 
lost the favour of many men by his implacable severi^.'* His old 
enemy also, Gregory IjL, rose up again against him, joined hence- 
forth the confederation of the cities, and excozmnnnicated him a 
second time. Indeed, theenmity of both parties went so fiur, and de- 
generated so much into personal animosity, that the pope comparing 
the emperor, in a letter to the other princes, '^ to that Apocalyptie 
monster rising fix)m the sea, which was mil of blasphemous names, and 
in colour chequered like a leopard," Frederick immediately replied 
with another passage firom Scripture: ^'Another red horse arose 
from the sea, and he who sat thereon took peace irom the earth, so 
that the living dbould kiU eadi other." 

But in that i^ there existed one great anthoritjr which operated 
powerfully on the ade of the pope, and feught against Frederick — 
this was the power of public apmkm. The pope now cast upon the 
emperor the heayy charge that he was a despiser of rdigion and of the 
holy church, and was incUned to the infidelity of the Saracens (the 
fact that Frederick had employed, in the war with the Lombardians, 
10,000 Saracens, appeared to justify this charge), and althoudh the 
emperor several times, both Terbally and in writing, solemnly de- 
clared that he was a true Christian, and as such wished to live and 
die: naj, although he was formally examined in religion by several 
bishops, and carded a testimony of his orthodoxy to be pubUshed, 
this accusation of the pope still found belief amongst most men. In 
addition to which, Frederick's rash and capricious wit had too often 
thoughtlessly attacked saered subjects; whilst his life also was not 
pure and blameless, but stained with the excesses of seneuality. Ac- 
cordingly he sank more and more in general estimation, and it was 
this that embittered the latter period of his life, and at length en- 
tirely consumed him with vexation. 

Grregory IX., who died in 1241, nearly one hundred years old, 
was succeeded by Innocent IV., who was a still more violent enemy 
of the emperor than even Gregory had been. As Frederick stiU 
continued to be powerful in Italy ,.and threatened him even in Rome 
itself, the pope retired to Grenoa, and from thence to Lyons, in 
France. Thare he renewed, in 1245, in a larse council, the ban 
against the emperor, although the latter offered nimself in peace and 
friendship, and was willing to remove aUpoints of complaint, whilst, 
in addition to all this, his ambassador, Thaddeus of Suessa, pleaded 
most powerfully for his lord. Indeed, the pope went so frur as so- 
l^nnly to pronounce the deposal of the emperor from all his states 
and dignities. When the bull of excommunication was circulated 
in Germany, many of the spiritual princes took advantage of the 
exditemait produced thereby, and elected, in 1246, at Wiirzburg, 
ihe landgrave, Heniy Baspe, of Thuiingia, as rival emperor. The 

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latter, however, could gain no absolute authority, and died the fol- 
lowing year. As Frederick, however, still remained in Italy, en- 
tangled in constant wars, the ecclesiastical princes elected another 
sovereign, Count William of Holland, a youth twenty years of age, 
who, in order that he might become the head of the order of 
knighthood, was forthwith solemnly promoted iBrom his inferior rank 
of squire to that of a knight. The greatest confusion now existed 
in Germany, as well as in Italy. ** After the Emperor Frederick 
was excommunicated," says an ancient historian, '* the robbers con- 
gratulated themselves, and rejoiced at the opportunities for pillage 
now presented to them. The ploughshares were transformed into 
sworos, and the scythes into lances. Every one supplied himself 
with steel and flint, in order to be able to produce fixe and spread 
incendiarism instantly." 

In Italy, the war continued uninterruptedly and without any deci- 
sive result, especially with the Lombardian cities. The imperial arms 
were often successful, but the spirit of the emperor was bowed down, 
and at last his good fortime occasionally deserted him. In the year 
1249, his own son, Ensdus, whom hehad made King of Sicily, and of 
all his sons the most chivalric and handsome, was taken prisoner by 
the Bolognese in an unsuccessftd combat near Fossalta. Tne irritated 
citizens reftised all offers of ransom for the emperor's son, and con- 
demned him to perpetual imprisonment, in which he continued for 
two-and-twenty years, and survived all the sons and grandsons of 
Frederick, who perished every one by poison, the sword, and the axe 
of the executioner. 

Exclusive of the bitter grief caused by his son's misfortune, the 
emperor, in his last years, was afflicted with the additional pain and 
mortification at finding his long-tried friend and chancellor, Petnis 
de Vincis, to whom he had confided the most important affairs of 
his empire, charged with the crime of attempting to take the life of 
his master by poison. Matthieu of Paris, at least, relates as certain, 
that the physician de Vincis handed to the emperor a poisonous 
beverage as a medicine, but which the latter, naving had his sus- 
picions excited, did not drink. The chancellor was thrown into 
prison, and deprived of his eyesight, where he committed suicide by 
dashing his head against the wall. Whether de Vincis was guilty, 
or whether appearances were alone against him which he comd not 
remove, is not to be decided, owing to the insufficiency of the infor- 
mation handed down to us. The emperor, however, did not long 
survive this painful event; he died in 1250, in the arms of his son, 
Manfred, at the castle of Fiorentino or Firenzuolo, in the fifty-sixth 
year of his age. 

If after contemplating the stormy phases which convulsed this em- 
peror's life, we turn our observation to his noble qualities, his acute and 
sensitive feehng for all that was beautiful and grand, and, above all, to 
what he did for science and enlightenment generally in Naples, his 
hereditary land, we feel penetrated with profoxmd regret when we 

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find that all this, like a transdtoTy apparition, |)assed away without 
any lasting trace; but more especially are we pained to witness how 
he neglected to reign with affection and devotion over his German 
subjects. Since Charlemagne and Alfred of England, no potentate 
had existed who loved and promoted civilization, in its broadest 
sense, so much as Frederick II. At his court the same as at that 
of Charlemagne, were assembled the noblest and most intellectual 
minds of that age; through them he caused a multitude of Grreek 
works, and in particular tnose of Aristotle, to be translated fix>m 
the Arabic into Latin. He collected, for that period, a very consider^ 
able Hbrary , partly by researches made in his own states, partly during 
his stay in oyria, and through his alliance with the Arab princes. 
Besides, he did not retain these treasures jealously and covetously 
for himself, but imparted them to others; as, for mstance, he pre- 
sented the works of Aristotle to the University of Bolo^a, although 
that city was inimically disposed towards him, to which he added 
the following address : *' Science must go hand in hand with govern- 
ment, legislation, and the pursuits of war, because these, otherwise 
subjected to the allurements of the world and to ignorance, either 
sink into indolence, or else, if imchecked, stray beyond dl sanc- 
tioned limits. Wherefore, from youth upwards, we have sought 
and loved science, whereby the soul of man becomes enlightened 
and strengthened, and without which his life is deprived of Si regu- 
lation and innate freedom. Now that the noble possession of science 
is not diminished by being imparted, but, on the contrary, grows 
thereby still more mdtful, we accordingly will not conceal the pro- 
duce of much exertion, but will only consider our own possessions 
as truly delightful when we shall have imparted so great a benefit 
to others. But none have a greater right to them than those great 
men, who, firom the original ancient and rich sources, have derived 
new streams, and thereby supply the thirsty with a sweet and healthy 
refireshment. Wherefore, receive these works as a present from your 
friend, the emperor," &c. 

A splendid monument of his noble mind and genius is presented in 
his code of laws for his hereditary kingdom of Naples and Sidly, and 
which he caused to be composed chiefly by Peter de Vinos. Ac^ 
cording to the plan of a truly great legislator, he was not influenced 
by the idea of creating something entirely new, but he built upon 
the basis of what already eidsted, adapted whatsoever to him ap- 
peared good and necessary for his main object, and so formed a 
work wmch gave him as ruler the necessary power to establish a 
firm foundation for the welfare of his people. Unfortunately, the 
convulsions of his later reign and the following periods, never al- 
lowed this grand work to develope its results entirely. 

Frederick himself possessed a knowledge imusual, and acquired 
by few men of his time. He understood Greek, Latin, Italian, 
French, German, and Arabic. Amongst the sciences, he loved 
chiefly natiunal history, and proved himself a master in that science 

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by a work he composed upon the art of hawldng; for it not only 
displays the most perfect and thorough investigation in the mode of 
life, nourishment, diseases, and the whole nature of those birdsi but 
dwells also upon their construction generally, both internally and ex* 
tcomally. This desire after a fundamental knowledge in natondacieiioe 
had the happiest influence, especially upon the medical scienoea« 
Physicians were obliged to study anatomy before every thing dse; 
they were referred to the enthusiastic apphcation of Hippocrates and 
Galen, and not allowed to practice their profession until they had 
reeeived from the board of faculty at Salerno or Naples, a satisfactofiy 
and honourable certificate; besides which, they were obliged to pass 
an examination before the imperial chamber, termed of a committee 
of competent members in the science. 

The emperor founded the University of Naples in 1224, and he 
considerably improved and enlarged the medical school at Salerno. 
At both places siso, through his zeal, were formed the first collections 
of art, miidh, tmfortunately, in the tumults of the following ages, 
were eventually destroyed.* 

Of Frederick II. it is related, as was already stated of Cheile- 
msj^e, that the eastern princes emulated each other in sending him 
artistical works as signs of friendship. Amongst the rest, the Sul« 
taQ of £gypt presented him with an extraordinary tent. The sun 
and moon revolved, moved hj invisible agents, and showed the 
hours of the day and night in just and exact relation. 

At the court of the emperor, there were often contests in science 
and art, and victorious wreaths bestowed, in which scenes Frederick 
shone as a poet, and invented and practised many difficult measures 
of verse. His chief judffe, Peter de Vincis, tne composer of the 
code of laws, wrote also the first sonnet extant in Italian. Minds, 
in fact, developed themselves, and were in full action in the vicinity 
and presence of the great emperor, and there they commanded full 
scope for all their powers. 

His own personal merit was so distinguished and universally re* 
eognised, ihat he was enabled to collect around him the most cele- 
brated men of the age without feeling any jealousy towards them«-** 
always a proof of true greatness. His most violent enemies even 
could not withhold from mm their admiration of his great qualities. 
His exterior was also both commanding and prepossessing. Like 
his grand&ther he was fair^ but not so tall, although well and tstronAy 
formed, and very skilfttl in all warlike and corporeal exercises; Bia 
forehead, nose, and mouth bore the impression of that delicate and 
yet firm character which w^s admire in the works of the Greeks, and 

* On the bridge across the Viiltuniai, in Capua, was trected a statue of tbeJSai* 
peror Frederick IL» with sereral others, and it continiied there in a rerj good state 
of preserration until the most recent wars of modem times, when it became a prqr 
to the terastation committed. The head of the emperor on this states^ lioweT«r« 
has been copied and engraved upon a ring; and it is afkr that> that the cxoitttfll 
portrait of Frederick has been drawn in the History of the Uohenstaufens, by IL 
r. de Baumer. 

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lUD&e after th«m; and his eye generally e x pro M o d the moat serene 
cbeerfuhien, but on important and aerions oocaaona it indicated 
gnivitj and aeyeri^. Ijiua, in genenl, the happy conjunction of 
Tnildnfifla with aeriouaneai waa, thronghout hia life, the diatinffuiahing 
fratnre of thia emperor. Hia deam produced great conmnon in ' 
Italy, and atill greater dissenaion in Germany. In the latter country 
two emperora again stood oppoaed to eadi other, throne against 
throne: the Hohenataufen party acknowledging and upholding C!on« 
rad, Frederick's son, in opposition to William of Holland, the former 
haTing already, during ins father's life, been elected King of the 

But before we relate the history of these two rival empeiprs, it 
win be useful and interesting to cast our glance at the countries in 
llie east and north-eastern parts of Germany. 

Ekurope was about this time threatened by a terrible enemy from the 
east, equally as dreadful as the Hunns were in earlier times. This 
enemy consisted of the Mongolians, who ever since the year 1206, 
under Dachinges-Ehan, had continued to ravage Asia, and led by 
him had advanced as far as Moravia and Silesia. In the year 1241 
they gained a great battle near Lie^tz over the Silesians, under the 
command of Henir 11. of Liegmtz, who himself fell chivalrously 
fighting at the head of his troops; but by the valour with which he 
dispated the victory with the enemy, he destroyed the desire they 
had previously indulged in of penetrating farther westward, as they 
now turned towards Hungry. Thus, by his own death, Henry the 
Pious, saved Europe; and indeed, upon the same spot (Wahlstadt) 
where, on the 26tn of Au^st, 1813, the action called the battle of 
Kat2badi wad so victoriously fought. 

In this emergency Frederick well felt what his duly was as first 
Christian prince, and very urgently pressed the other kmgs for their 
immediate assistance against the common enemy; but at this mo- 
ment the general disorder was too great, and his appeal for aid re- 
mained without any effect. As regards Silesia and Hungary the 
incursion of the Mongolians produced this result, that many German 
peasants migrated to the deserted and depopulated districts, and 
nenceforwara Lower Silesia became, indeed, more a German than 
Slavonic country. Other neighbouring countries also were about this 
period occupied and populated by the Germans, consisting of the coasts 
of the Baltic, Prussia, Livonia, Esthland, andCourland. As early as at 
the end of the twelftii century, Meinhardt, a canon of the monastery 
of Legeberg, built a church at Exkalle, (in the vicinity of the pre- 
sent Riga,) where, shortly afterwards, Pope Clement III. founded a 
bishopric, and from this central point the diffusion of Christianity 
extended in that district. But temporal force soon mixed itself in 
these spiritual and peaceful exertions; the resistance of the heathen 
Livonians induced Pope Celestin III. to cause a crusade to be preached 
against them, and speedily a multitude of men from the north of 
(^miany stormed towards these parts. A spiritual order of knight- 

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Hood was formed iinder the name of the knights of the swoid, and 
with the Chiifltiazi doctrines the dominion of this order was by de- 
grees extended over Livonia, Esthland, and Courland. The na- 
tives who remained after the sanguinary battles of this exterminating 
war were reduced to oppressive ^very, which was for the first time 
moderated in our own age by the Emperor Alexander. 

In Prussia also the sword established at the same time with Chris- 
tianity the German dominion and superiority. About the year 1208 
a monk of the monastery of Kolwitz, in Pomerania, of the name of 
Christian, crossed the Vistula, and preached Christianity to the heath- 
en Prussians. But when the pope made him a bishop, and wished to 
estabUsh a formal hierarchal government, they rose in contest against 
him, in which the knights of the sword, together with Duke Henry 
the Bearded of Breslau, and many warriors of the neighbouring lands, 
immediately marched forth and gave warlike aid to the new oishop. 
But little was accomplished until the latter, upon the advice of Duke 
Henry, summoned to his assistance the knights of the Teutonic Order, 
which had originated in an institution of North Germany. Accord- 
ingly, in the year 1229, their first grand master, Herman Salza, with 
not more than twenty-eight knights and one hundred squires and at- 
tendants, advanced to Prussia; he proceeded in his work cautiously 
by establishing fortified places, among which Thorn, on the Vistula, 
serving, as it were, for the entrance gate of the country, was the first; 
and Culm, Marienwerder, £lbing, Braunsberg, and others speedily 
followed. The dominion of the Teutonic order was spread even in 
Livonia, as the knights of the sword, after a severe defeat by the Li- 
vonians, in 1273, were received in it; and in 1255, upon the advice 
of Ottocar of Bohemia, who had made a crusade against the Prussians, 
in which Rudolphus of Hapsburg joined, the present metropolis of the 
country was founded, and in honour of him was called Konigsberg. 
The cities around, by their favourable situation for commerce, soon 
flourished again, and the peasants found themselves in a happier situa- 
tion than their Livonian neighbours, for their services and imposts 
were rendered more moderate, and absolute slavery was only expe- 
rienced by a few individuals as a punishment for their defection. 

When we add to this the various emigrationswhich had conunenced 
already much earlier, populating the Vandal countries as well as Bran- 
denburg, Mecklenburg, and Pomerania, and take into consideration 
the many flourishing cities which were built there by German citizens, 
we may be inclined to style the twelfth and thirteenth centuries as 
the epoch of the migration of Germans towards the north-east, the 
same as that of the fourth and fifth centuries after Christ is called the 
period of migration towards the west and south. Indeed, if we 
reckon the hundreds of thousands which Germany at the same 
period sent with the crusades to the east, together with those sent 
with the Hohenstaufen emperors to Italy, we must really feel asto- 
nished at the population wmch that vast country produced, and assur- 
edly cannot join with many other historians in calling a period pre- 

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senlaiig like this so much viTOur and activity of life an epoch of 
absolute misery, slavitude, and desolation. 

Had the Emperor Frederick rightly known the strength of Ger- 
many, and had he understood how to avail himself of the means 
to render it still more powerful by union, the whole of the east and 
north of Europe might then have become annexed to that country. 
But his eyes were turned exclusively upon Italy, and there he 
fruitlessly sacrificed all his strength. 

Gonraa, meanwhile, was likewise more occupied with his patrimonial 
inheritance than with Grermany. Hewent as earlyas 1251 to Italy, and 
left his consort in the former country who gave birth the following year 
to the unfortunate Conradin. Conrad, under the excommunication of 
the pope, like his father, conquered Naples, it is true, but made the in- 
habitants his most implacable enemies, by placing a bridle upon the 
horse, which stood as an emblem ofthedtyupon the market-place. He 
died shortly after, in 12«^4, and said a few moments before his death : 
" Unhappy being that I am, why did my parents brinff me into this 
world only to expose me to so much misfortune ! The church, which 
should have shown both me and my father a maternal heart, has be- 
come much rather our step-mother; and this empire which flourished 
before the birth of Christ is now fiiding away and approaching its 
destruction !" And in this he prophesied too truly with respect to 
his own race, for he was the last king of the Hohenstaufens. Fre- 
derick n. had, it is true, left behind him a second son (Henry) by his 
mairiage with Isabella, and a third (Manfred) by Blanca, his Italian 
consort, and two grandsons, the sons of his unfortunate eldest son 
Henry; but they ful died in the flower of their age, and about the 
same time: so that at the death of Conrad lY., there only remained 
of the whole fiimily of the Hohenstaufens, his son, the unfortunate 
Conradin, and his brother Manfred. We shall very shortly learn the 
fate of these two princes. 

King William also Uved but a few years after Conrad, and in so little 
esteem, ihat a common citizen of Utrecht cast a stone at him, and a 
nobleman plundered his consort upon the highway. When in the 
winter of tne year 1256 he advanced against tne Friesi, and crossed 
the ice near Medenblick, it broke under him, and he remained 
with his heavy war-horse sticking in the morass, where the Friesi 
killed him, although he offered a large sum for his Ufe. 

After lu^ death the confused state of affairs in Germany became 
greater than ever. 

Upon the demise of Conrad lY., and William of Holland, no 
Grerman prince would accept the imperial crown, except, perhaps, 
Ottocar, King of Bohemia, but who, however, was not liked. 
Most of them preferred rather to occupy themselves in ruling over, 
and extending their own hereditary lands, than to take upon them- 
selves the heavy charge of restoring order and peace in those coun- 
tries of Germany now become almost again savage, and thus renounce 
thdr own selfiah interests^ in order to consecrate all their powers to 

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the common good. The spiritual electon now conoeiTed the va* 
worthy and degrading idea of electing a forei^er for emperor* 
Still they were by no means unammous in their choice ; the one party 
elected an Englishman, Richard, EatI of Cornwall, the brother of King 
Heniy HI.; uie other chose a Spaniard, Alphonso, King of Castilei 
who, on account of his knowledge in astronomy, was called the Sage, 
but who nevertheless was not wise enough to Imow how to rule even 
his own country. Both had offered the imperial princes considerable 
sums of money, and Richard, as some relatei came with tfaui^»two 
carriages to Qermany, each drawn by eight horses, together with an 
immense tun filled with sterlings, an English coin of that period* 
He possesBed extensive tin mines in Cornwall, then almost the only 
mines in the world, whence he acquired immense riches. With such 
arms as these, he speedily conqueied many hearts, and was solemnly 
crowned at Aox-la-Chapdle, in 1257, after which he returned to Eng* 
land again, accompanied by several Gemians of high rank. In £ng« 
land, however, the home of national pride, he was not treated oiber- 
wise than any other English prince or nobleman; and this so mock 
vexed the Grermans who were with him, that they returned to their 
country discontented. After that, Richard visited Germany at thzee 
diffeimt times, but on each occasion only for a short space* Alphonso, 
however, never came to that country at alL During this period, 
therefore, disorder and violence nec^sarily increased from day to 
day, so that the petty princes, counts, knights, and the cities them« 
selves, lived in constant anarchy and warfare with each other, to an 
extent, that those who desired justice and tranquillity, wished most 
heartily for an emperor who might become their protection and 

Conradin of Swabia, the son of the Emperor Conrad IV*, the last 
descendant of the Hohenstaufen race, fell at this moment a victim 
to the most cruel fate. He was styled Conradin by the Italians, be* 
cause he ended his career at so early an a^. After his iSither's 
death, he had been brought up in Bavana, and afterwards in 
Swabia, where he still retained some small ixiheritance; whilst his 
unde Manfred, as regent, and subsequently as king, administered 
his hereditary estates in Naples and Siciljr. The popes, however, 
who still remained the irreconcileable enemies of the Hohenstaufen 
house, sought to despoil him of these posieasions; and as they 
could not effect this by their own power, it was determined by Cle- 
ment lY . to bring another king in opposition to the hated Manfi?ed* 
He applied, therefore, to Charles, Duke of Anjou, who marched fordi 
in 1266 ; he was accompanied by a numerous suite of French knisrhts, 
who were ever happy to avail themselves of any exoedition vmich 
promised them rich booty. King Manfied, who had unfortunately 
tost, in a storm, the whole of his fleet, with which he had set sail 
in order to prevent the French from landing, was defeated in an 
action at Benevento, on the 26th of February, 1266, principally 
through treachery, and piefegedsacrificing himself byanlui:Qie death. 

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twAa thaii to endure an iffnomiaious life in pnBon; he ihrarefore 
xuibed into ihe midst of Sie enemy's ranks, and sank mortally 
^rounded.^ His bhildren, however, were seized by the conquerort 
and remained in captiTity during the rest of their hves. 

^ When the youtmiil Conradin now became old^, and bethought 
bim of the lands which belonged to him, whereof one city alone 
was richer than his German posaeasions altogether, the bold dispo- 
eitifm of his ancestors awoke within bim, and he resolved to dnve 
the robbers fiom his inheritance. In 1268, therefore, he went forth, 
seoompanied by the faithful friend of his youth, Prince Frederick of 
Baden and many £uthful knights who followed him firom Germany, 

^ In Italy the numerous adherents of the Ghibelin party imme- 
distely flocked to him; the fiomans in defiance of their pope, Cle* 
ment, who had called for the aid of the French, led him in triumph 
into their dty, and he soon stood opposed to the enemy with a strong 
army near iWliacozzo in Lower Italy. In battle, also, ibrtune at 
first fiivonred nim; the enemy was put to flight, but, unfortunately, 
in the pursuit his own army got into disorder, and in their eagerness 
Sat booty fell too soon upon the enemy's camp, for at that moment 
the French reserve returned and rushed upon the plunderers. The 
latter were wholly defeated, and Conradin, with his friend Frederick, 
after they had long fought most bravely, were forced to fly towards 
the sea. They had already got on board a ship at Astura, and were 
just setting sail for Pisa, wh^ they were overtaken, made prisoners, 
and led before Charles of Anjou. And such was the insolence, per<- 
fidy, and cruelty of the tyrant, that he treated Conradin as a rebel 
against himself the legitimate and true kinff, and caused both the 
princes, at the age of sixteen, to be beheaded pitbGcly in the market 
pkoe of Naples on the 28th of October, 1266.* 

With the unfortunate Conradin ended the powerful house of the 
Hohenstaufens, and that was produced by means of the same pos* 
sessions hj which Frederick I. thought to elevate it to the hignest 
dmee of'^splendour and glory. But the Swabian patrimony now 
US into so many divisions, that eventually no territory throughout 
Germany was divided into so many ownerships as Swabia. As the 
duchy was never restored, the whole of its states henceforwaitL 
formed a part of the immediate possessions of the empire. Not only 
the bishops, counts, and superior firee lords, but also the inferior 
ranks of w nobility, the cities, monasteries, and even the peasantry, 
which had been previously the vassals and subjects of the duke, be- 
came now emancipated; but they had not these rights and privile^ 
tadividnally , like the larger imperial lordships, but <mly as an entue 
combined body of the Swabian states, which tiiey enjoyed as members 

* OlwiiiiAirtiiMlt Conndln, befora bia ezecatkn, tmiflfened sfl fail fi^tOg to 
KaaAed's dansihter, Constansa; and UusprinoeM became afterwards the arenger of 
the Hohenstaufens. For, as the wife of Peter of Arragon, she fitvoured the homUe 
conspiracy known under the name of the Sicilian Vespers, in ^b^ jresr ItSS, by 
wiydi Cbailas of Asjoa loat his nsorped kingdom of Sicily, 

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thereof. The emperor derived from them important revenues, and the 
administration of these imperial possessions was transferred to senes- 
chals; so that instead of the ancient Swabian dukes there were only 
now the imperial bailiwicks: Helvetia or Switzerland, Alsace, and 
Swabia, which were divided into cantons. These arrangements were 
adopted under the rei^ of the succeeding emperor, Rudolphus. 

The fate of the duchy of Swabia leads us naturally to consider the 
circumstances which produced, especially in the interior of Germany, 
the dismemberment and aboUtion of the ancient national duchies. 
The basis for this important event was laid, as we have already seen, 
at the time of the d^osition of Henry the Lion, in the year 1180. 
Although the plan and the limits of this general history of the em- 
pire wifi not permit us to trace more in detail all those princely 
nouses which have arisen from the ruins of these ancient ducnies, we 
may give at least a general outline of the changes as they occurred: 

1. The duchy of Saxony had already become separated from the 
important margraviate of Brandenburg, which was transferred to 
Henry the Bear, who received therewith all the prerogatives of a 
duke in time of war, together with the rights of an elector, in his 
quality of arch-chamberlain. His son Bernard re-united subsequently, 
it is true, the duchy with the margraviate, and was created a duke; 
but his territory was of very Uttle importance, and was, besides, 
divided into two portions between the two families of lauenburg 
and Wittenberg, both of which disputed with each other for a lon^ 
time for the possession of the office of grand marshal, and which 
question was not settled until the reign of Charles lY., who de- 
cided in favour of the Wittenberg house. 

The ducal authority of the Archbishop of Cologne in the western 
part of Saxony likewise could not recover its former elevation. The 
nobles in his jurisdiction made themselves gradually independent, 
after the example presented to them, especially by the spiritual 
princes of the ancient duchy. Besides which, the Archbishop of 
Bremen came into possession of the lordship of Stade, in the terri- 
tory of Detmarsh; the peasants took upon themselves the principal 
authority in that country; the Count of Oldenbui^ refused to re- 
main united with the duchy, and the important city of Lubeck was 
raised to the dignity of an imperial free city by Frederick II. ; whilst 
at the celebrated diet of Mentz, in 1235, the emperor having con- 
ferred upon the Giielfic house new power and authority, by re- 
storing to the infant duke, Otho, tne duchies of Brunswick and 
Liineburg, that powerful &mily likewise refused to recognise longer 
any rights claimed by the house of Saxe-Anhalt. Thuringia had 
already long since separated itself &om the duchy, and had possessed 
its own particular counts from the time that the house of Saxony 
became imperial: we speak here of the north and southern parts of 
Thuringia, which became united under the valiant margrave, Eccard 
of Meissen. Under the Hohenstaufens, the margraviate was re- 
placed by a landgraviate. The landgraves resided at Eisenach and 

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in the castle of Wartburg. Their possessions extended, by means of 
certain allodial acquisitions, over Hesse and the towns of Munden, 
Cassel, Marburg, &c., as far even as the banks of the Rhine; such 
•was the power commanded by Louis IV., landgrave of Thuringia, 
the husband of Elizabeth the Holj, at the commencement of the 
thirteenth century. With Henry Raspe, who died childless, in 
1247, the mascuhne branch of the house of Thuringia became ex- 
tinct The female line contested together for the inheritance, and 
two of the descendants carried on a war against each otlier during a 
period of seven years. At length, in 1264, the fief of Thuringia 
"^as conferred upon Otho the Illustrious, of Meissen; but the aUo- 
dial possessions, and especially the Hessian territory, fell to Henry, 
the son of Sophia, of Brabant. The aforesaid Henry of Meissen 
was the founder of the present Saxon house, and Hemry of Hesse 
that of the house of the landffrave of Hesse. 

In the north of Germany uie counts of Holstein possessed claims 
to immediate imperial lordships: Mecklenburg, which belonged to 
the counts of Schwerin on the one part, and to the Obotrite princes 
on the other, had become an immediate fief of the empire, the same 
as the Duchy of Pomerania. 

2. The Duchy of Bavaria, when it passed firom the house of the 
6ael& to that of Wittelsbach, possessed nothing more than the 
mere name of the ancient duchy. Carinthia, Austria, and Styria, 
had already since the year 1156, under the Saxon emperors, been 
separated nrom Bavaria. 

Otho of Wittelsbach governed his duchy with much greater 
vigour certainly than Bernard of Saxony; but the bishops, neverthe- 
less, withdrew from his sovereignty ; Ratisbon became an imperial city ; 
and in the south of Bavaria the Count of Andechs, in his quality of 
heir to the house of the Counts of Dachau, came in possession of 
the title of Duke of Merau, (which this house had assumed from a 
track of land on the coasts of Dalmatia), which title he extended 
to the whole of his possesions in Franconia, and made it the 
basis for claiming his independence. In 1248, however, the house 
of Andechs became extinct, whence the greater portion of its posses^ 
dons passed over to a house of Swabia (the Hohenzoller branch), 
the burgraves of Nuremberg, and laid the foundation for the 
duchies of Anspach and Baireuth. 

Meantime the house of Wittelsbach, besides the acquisition of 
the duchy of Bavaria, came into poseession of another territory 
extremely important: the county-palatine of the Rhine, which it 
received in 1227, by the marriage of Otho the Illustrious, with the 
hereditary countess palatine of the house of Gruelf. But the power of 
this house became considerably diminished by its dismemberment, 
after the dealh of Louis the Severe, in 1292, whose eldest son, Ru- 
dolphus, received the ^^latinate, and his second son, Louis, sue- 
ceeded to the duchy. The count palatine of the Rhine possessed 
the title of arch-carver or steward, and consequently he commanded 

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the fint Toice in the deetonl college of the tennKoal oiinoes. B«« 
Taria contested with Bohemia for the office of iioo cup* Deaier* which 
Henry the Lion, or his &tber, who pooMesed two duchioiy had been 
fotcea to abandon, and which it subseauentljr loat lor ever. 

Those arch or grand offices fell graaually into the hands of ihoat 
who possessed the right of election, after the original institutioii, 
which called together the principal heads of the people throughout 
the empire to tuce part in the meetings, bad become altered. At 
the election of Otno I., there were present five of the principal 
nations: the Lorrainers, the Franks, tne Swabians, the Bavarians, 
and the Saxons. When Otho of Saxony was elected, the dukes of 
the other four nations divided among themselves the offices of arch* 
chamberlain, arch-carver or steward, arch-cupbearer, and arch-mar* 
ahal. At the subsequent election of Otho III., however^ the disiri* 
bution of the offices had already become changed. 

At the election of Conrad 11. there appeared seven nations, because 
Lorraine was then divided in two portions, and Caiinthia had likewise 
recently joined the rest. But at tne election of Lothaire, the Saxcms, 
the Lorrainers, and Carinthians, no lonjjer attended, as the former 
had detached themselves from ihe empire, and the latter remained 
but a short time allied with the other chief nations. In earlier 
times the dukes did not possess this exclusive and positive ri^ht of 
election. All the princes, even the populsce itself, took part m the 
dioice of the soveieign; but subeeauently in proportion as the else* 
tion assumed a more determined form, the elective right became 
more and more connected with the arch-offioes, and was even tzans- 
ferred altogether with those dignities to other princes. 

Thus Conrad ID. indemnified the margrave, Albert the Bear, for the 
loss of the duchy of Saxony, by giving up in his favour the office of 
arch-chamberlain, which he held as a Uohenstaufen; whilst, on the 
other hand, the Hohenstaufens received the dignity of arch*oazver or 
steward, when the remains of the duchy of Franconia passed over to 
their house. This office was then attached to the palatinate of the 
Rhine; and as, in ancient times, the Duke of Franoonia held the 
first rank among the temporal princes, so now, among the latter, the 
count palatine commanded the first voice. 

We have already found that the office of grand cup-bearer was 
transferred from the (juelfs to the house of Bohemia; but with 
respect to that of grand marshal, it always remained with the Saxons. 
The right of Bohemia to a voice in the elections was a subject of 
long contest, inasmuch as the Germans would not admit the right of 
election to a Slavonic prince; and it was on this account that, at the 
period in question, the college of princes only possessed six votes: 
three ecclesiastical, consistmg of those of the .Ajfchbishops of Ments, 
Treves, and Coloene, who, protected by the influence of the pope, 
were thus enabled to raise themselves to the highest rank in the em- 
pire; and three temporal votes, those of the Dukes of Saxony, Bran- 
denburg, and of the Palatinate. 

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3. In Smbia, we lutre seen that, at the fall of the Hohenataufeofi 
all their lights disappeared; their rich possessions had, in the later 
period, been wasted or given away; and Conradin, at the time of 
his expedition to Italy, made over his remaining possessions to the 
house of Bavaria, We therefore naturallj inquire who then, from 
that time, really ranked as the most important and influential family 
in Swabia? In answer to this, we find that the Counts of Wiirtem- 
berg stood at the head of all the rest of the nobility, and who had 
ah^^ chosen Stuttgard as their place of residence. Afler them, 
the nch Counts of Baden, scions of the Hohenstaufen race, ac* 
quired firom the house of Zahringen the territory of Breiseaui 
which was the commencement of the re]jB;n of the house of Baaen. 
Another portion of the Zahringen inhentanoe, in Switzerland, fell 
to the Counts of Kyburg, and afWr them to the Counts of HapSi- 
burg, who owed to this circumstance their subsequent importance. 
Of the Counts of HohenzoUem, the Burgraves of Nuremberg, we 
have BDoken previously. 

4. m Franoonia, the duchy had ahready become extinct when the 
raoosHicm of the Salic house terminated. It had been divided 
equally between the ecclesiastical and temporal nobles; for the Ho* 
henstaufens, who were called dukes of Franconia, possessed nothing 
of the authority of the ancient dukes; enjoying merely, as they 
were the most powerful lords of Franconia, and proprietors of the 
county-palatinate, a small portion of the ducal influence, and which 
was recognised by a few of those counts and knights who were de- 
pendent on them as finidatories. At the end of this priod, besides 
the powerful counts palatine of the Rhine, we find m the ancient 
land of Franconia the landgraves of Hesse, who possessed a portion 
thereof, the Counts of Nassau, the Bishop of WUrzbur^, &c. 

Tihe general title of count palatme gradually vanished m Qermapj^ 
leaving it only in the hands of the coimt palatine of the Bhiney 
whilst, on the other hand, the title of bui^rave now came into use^ 
find took rank immediately after that of the king. 

5. Finidly, with respect to Lorraine, it became divided into two 
portions: Upper Lorraine &Ilin^ to the Counts of Alsape, and Lower 
Lorraine to tne Counts of Lovain. They, however^ did not possess 
the whole of Lorraine, and for this reason they were likewise styled 
^^<Nmt8 of Brabant. Several other counts— of Holland, Zealand, 
I*riesland, Juliers, Cleves, Guelder, Luxemburg, &c., ranked them* 
^Ives as immediate imperial feudatories. 

All the princes bc^an now to consider themselves as feudatories, 
not only of -the country of which they merel;^ had the administra^ 
^) but likewise of their hereditary lands, wmch they governed in 
^^ own name. Vassalage now received another meamng; it was 
^ longer for their possessions, but their dignities, that the princes 
now held themselves bound to pay homage by the investiture ; and 
M they had already raised themselves to the height of territorial 
power and sovereignty throughout their coimtry— although they did 

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not take to themselves the title — all the sovereign princes in the 
land became feudatories. 

We will now proceed to give a sketch of the entire states exist- 
ing in the empire, although we cannot pretend to present an exact 
detail thereof, on account of the confusion so prevalent in some of 
the dependencies. 

Germany included, at this period, six archbishoprics; that of 
Mentz fthe most considerable and extensive) havmg under its 
jurisdiction fourteen bishoprics, viz. : Worms, Spires, Strasbu^, Con- 
stance, Cour, Augsburg, Eichstadt, WUrtzburg, Olmlitz, Prague, 
Halberstadt, Hildesheim, Paderbom, and Verden; that of Colore 
with five bishoprics: Li^ge, Utrecht, Munster, Osnaburg, and Min- 
den; that of Treves with three bishoprics: Mentz, Toul, and Ver- 
dun; that of Magdeburg with five bisnoprics: Brandenburg, Havel- 
berg, Naumburg, Merseburg, and Meissen; that of Bremen with 
thr^ bishoprics: Oldenburg (afterwards Liibeck), Mecklenburg 
(afterwards Schwerin), and Ratzbuig; and, finally, that of Salz- 
burg with five bishoprics: Ratisbon, rassau, Freisingen, Brixen, and 
Gudc. Besides which are to be added: Bamberg, whidi stood im- 
mediately under the pope, and Oambrai under the Archbishop of 
Rheims. Altogether, therefore, thj^ amounted to six archbisnop- 
rics and thirty-seven bishoprics. There existed, besides, seventy 
prelates, abbots and abbesses, and three reli^ous orders, thus forming, 
m the whole, more than a hundred ecclesiastical states. 

The temporal estates were, viz. : four electors (if we include Bo- 
hemia), consisting of one king, one duke, one count palatine, and 
one margrave; six grand dukes: Bavaria, Austria, Carinthia, Bruns- 
wick, Lorraine, and Brabant-Limburg; about thirty counts with 
the title of prince, amongst whom some had also the title of duke, 
others of margrave, landgrave, and burgrave; about sixty imperial 
cities, of whom some, however, did not enjoy entirely the privileges 
of the imperial municipalities. Thus, altogether, these formed about 
a hundred temporal states; and, finally, both classes embraced more 
than two hundred members of the empire, spiritual and temporal. 

Meantime, the dominion of the empire had, in certain respects, 
diminished in extent of government towards the end of the inter- 
regnum, inasmuch as it no longer held under its sway either Den- 
mark, Hungary, or Poland ; whilst Burgundy and Liombardy had 
both withdrawn themselves from the imperial rule, Prussia alone 
having joined in alliance. 

» We will now avail ourselves of this short interval, and cursorily 
review the chief features presented in the Middle Ages, which imme- 
diately succeed this period of the interregnum; for every thing that 
has been said, whether favourable or un&vourable upon the cha- 
racter of this barbarous and yet glorious epoch, is especially appro- 
priate at the present moment. 

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Chimlzy— The CitSet— The Peftsantry— The Arts and Seienoet— The Ciecgy and 
Eodeaiastical InsUtutiona — The MonasterieB and CooTenta-^The Fanst-Becht^ 
The Administration of Justice— The Vehm-Qeiicht or Secret Trihonal. 

The period of the Middle Ages has also been called the period of 
GhiTalry, and it was knighthood indeed which chiefly gave to it its 
great and peculiar lustre. , By the diffusion of the feudal system 
over the whole of Germany, as has already been shown, the nobility 
became the influential portion of the empire, to the extent that, be- 
yond the cities, few common fireemen were to be found. War was 
conducted principally by the nobles and their vassals. The former 
fought only on horsebacK, were equipped in heavy iron armour, and 
were so exercised in the exercise of arms from youth upwards, that 
they could not only bear them with ease, but were enabled to use them 
fieely and ppwermlly. A man thus encased in armour and arms, on 
horseback, was infinitely superior to the common warriors, who 
served on foot, and who were badly armed, and thence an army was 
speedily counted solely by the multitude of its knights. In order to 
maintam these privileges, the education of the nobility was neces- 
sarOy entirely warlike. An ancient writer says — " The boys bom 
in Germany, in their quality as pages, prefer learning to ride rather 
than to read; their horses may run and gallop as they please, still 
they remain immoveably fixed in the saddle. They carry after their 
lords their long lances; and inured to cold and heat, they are not to 
be £Eitigued by any toilsome exercise. The bearing of arms is as 
easy to the Germans as carrying their own limbs, and it is sur- 
prising, and almost incredible, how skilful they are in governing 
their horses, usinff their bows and arrows, and wielding the lance, 
shield, and sword." 

By their exclusive attention to the improvement of their corporeal 
strength, whilst the intellectual occupations which, in later centuries, 
began to be treated as the chief portion of education, were then en- 
tirely imknown, this generation must have sank into a state of com- 
plete barbarism, had not the happy nature and noble capacities of 
the German races, and the development of the grand institutions of 
chivalry, have produced a preponderating power by their beneficial 
effects. But in order to comprehend tiie details, it is necessary we 
should know more exactly the institutions of the middle affes. 

These various grades of condition and rank were particularly dis-. 
tinguished by the changes introduced in military service from the time 
of Henry I.; for from that period the cavaby department especially 
underwent such reforms that, in the course of a short time, it came 
exclusively into the hands of the nobility and their own vassals, to 

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354 THE MIDDLS AOfifl. 

the extent tliat tlie lionotir of this warlike arm of the service be- 
longed to them alone. It was made to form two divisions or classes, 
the &mpcr;/mai, or available freemen (always free), and tbeifittel- 
freieuy or mediate freemen. The former, who, in ancient times, con- 
sisted merely of the nobility, and were called ingenui in the codes of 
law, were the immediate nobilitjr, whieh, after the dismemb erm e nt 
of die early dudiies, retained theb independence of every prince^ 
and were only subjected to the empire. Of this class, the hiffh clergy 
formed part, with this exception, however, that the nobility ac- 
quired by birth what the former received by their office. 

The second class was composed of memate freemen; firstly, of 
those freemen who were origmally bound by their possessions to 
do service as cavaliers, but who could not dis^gage themselves itom 
^e authority of the princes, and were forced to follow them to the 
wars; and secondly, of those who were employed by the higher 
nobiUty of the empire, and who served as cavaliers imder Sieir 
orders with the title of milites tninores. These mediate freemen very 
soon advanced their claims to titles of nobility, especially after Con- 
rad II. had been the means of raising them to higher importance and 
consideration by making the lowest fiefi heroditaty. Thus was 
created by degrees a higher and lower class of nobility. 

But for both these trades it was strictly necessary that the descent 
of families should be from parents of equal rank; and in case of un- 
equal unions, the children were forced to remain in the inferior con- 
dition of the one or the other parent. 

The king, however, always retained the right of power to elevate 
anysubject from this lower grade to the rank of a noblemap. 

Thence the nobility formed two distinct classes from the moment 
that the art of war became wholly based upon its cavaliy service; 
and it was in this sense that knighthood already existed under the 
Saxon and Salian emperors. But it was not until the twelfth cen- 
tury that it formed itself into one especial institution, which served 
as a connecting link between the higher and lesser nobility, inas- 
much as it thus brought into union by military and religious rows, 
and under especial discipline, mSitaris ordo^ both the Semper-fi^ie 
and Mittel-fieie. The Crusades had the most important influence and 
shed the greatest lustre upon chivalry, for it was in the sacred service 
of Gbd and the Saviour that the swords of the knights obtained for 
them the greatest glory on earth. The goal which was to be at- 
tained lay far distant from home, and in other climes; the ima^'na- 
tion became more enthusiastically excited, and the descriptions given 
by such as had returned from those eastern countries were perfectly 
adapted to heighten and render still more vivid the glowing colours 
of the picture their heated fancy had alr^y formed. Thence this 
period was inspired by such darin? and fanatic enthusiasm, that no 
enterprise was deemed too difficuK to undertake, and such heroic 
deeds were actually achieved, that in modem times they have been 
regarded abnoet in the light of fabulous creation^ ot the mind. 

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Hum i^gious orden of knighthood, which owed their ori^ ex- 
dumvely to the Cruaadei, served eepeaally to attach the wamors to 
the cause of Christianity by a sacred and solemn yow. The first of 
these was the order of the Templar-Knights, which originally <nily 
consstedof a small body of French cavahers, for the purpose of pro- 
tecting the pilgrims on their journey to the Holy Land; &ey took 
the time religious vows: obedience, poverty, and chastity, adding a 
fourth, which was altogether milit^, vis.: to protect travellers, 
siratoi pttbUcas ctutodire, Baldwin U., Ejng of Jerusalem, granted 
them as quartert a portion of his palace, next to the temple of Solo- 
mon; and it is from this circumstance that they adopted the title 
of Templars. Two yeats afterwards originated the order of the 
Knights of the Hospital, who devoted themselves to the chai^ of 
the fflck pilgrims, subsequently adopting the name of St. tK>hn, 
hem their tutelary saint, John the Baptist; their vows were exclu- 
atvely religious. To these followed shortly after the order of the 
Teutonic knighls. 

These examples operated with a yerjr great effect upon the con- 
tinent; and as the entire spirit of the times produced a closer union 
between individuals of equal habits and condition, the result was 
that chivalry in the middle of the twelfth century became more and 
mcce extended and formed one grand body of aluance, to which ac- 
cess could only be obtained after passing through certain ordeals in 
which the religious vows of chastity and poverty were, however, ex- 
empted, but religious consecration was retained. 

Thus the entire education of the nobility connected itself with 
the sole object of attaining knighthood by passing through all its 
Various gradations. As soon as the boy had esca]^ from its ma- 
ternal guide, he was transferred to the charge of some esteemed 
kniffht and friend, whom he served as page; and, subsequently, after 
he had become versed in arms, and received his sword, he at- 
tended him as his esquire (famulus, armi^r^, regarding him as the 
model of his future life. He accompanied his lorn at aU hours, and 
in every occupation. In the pleasures of the chace, the festival, the 
tournament, and military jousts, as well as in the dangers of the 
battle. His first duty was the most faithful attachment to and vi- 
gilant care of his lord; and if, in the heat of the battle, he had de- 
mided him with sword and slueld, and had saved his life, he thence 
acquired the highest degree of fame that could be earned by a young 
nobleman. Thus fidelity was the first virtue which, by hourly and 
daily ex^rdse, became so deeply impressed upon the memoij of the 
youth, that it grew up in mdissoiuble connexion with his mind. 
Ahex several years of honourable service as a scjuiie, the youth (gene- 
rally in his twenty^first year) was made a knight, and received into 
mihtary companicmship under the consecration of religion. Solemn 
occasions: grand festivals, coronation days, and such scenes, were 
diligently sought for the purpose, and frequently many were dubbed 
knights at the same time, fasting and prayer preceded, and after 

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the youth had partaken of the sacrament he received from the 
han^ of a knight, or noble ladj, the spurs, breast-plate, and 

fauntlets. He then knelt down, and one of the knights (often 
owever, the reigning king or prince) gave him, with a naked 
sword, three gentle blows across the Sioulder, upon which he 
vowed, with a solemn oath, to faithfully fulfil all the duties of an 
honourable knight, to speak the truth, to defend the laws, and to 
draw his sword for the aefence of religion, of widows and orphans, 
and of persecuted innocence, but, above all, against every unbeliever ; 
finally he received the helmet, shield, lance, and sword. Thus, in 
the most inspired hour of the youth's early career, the practice of 
manly virtues: truth, justice, and religion was again, by a solemn 
oath, elevated to become the inviolable law of his whole life. Honour 
stood before the eyes of the youthful knight like a brilliant star— an 
emblem to which he was to remain faithful to his last breath — as the 
noble object of, and, at the same time the reward for the due ob- 
servance of the oath he took. So highly was this solemn consecra- 
tion of the noble warrior esteemed, that Count William of Holland, 
as we have already seen in his history, was necessarily made a knight 
before his coronation. 

The prerogative of the knight was to belong henceforward to a 
select body of his equals, whicn none could join but by the especial 
reception he himself^ had experienced, and to be enabled to confer 
knighthood himself; as also to take his share in the tournaments, 
which in the twelfth century were introduced from France into 
Germany. These had the most important influence on the educa- 
tion of the nobility ; for as none coidd take part in them whose 
honour had suffered the least stain, and the whole imagination of 
the boy and youth was from earliest infancy devoted to the fflory 
and high reputation these contests bonferred, chivalry thenceforth 
became the school of honour and morality, as well as of eveiy 
other heroic virtue. Thence this period presents us with the most 
complete and undeniable evidence of the principle; that in order to 
disseminate a love for virtue in a generation, it is not enough to try 
to promote it by instruction, but it is likewise necessary to en- 
•cours^e and give an impulse to the practice thereof by the irresist- 
ible force of example. 

Such is the light in which the design and object of chivalry must 
present itself before us in the most flourishing period of its existence; 
ibr although a system may not be carried out so completely as to 
^render it possible to say, tmit it is in every respect perfect, and, conse- 
quently, although in the most happy times of chivalry, much bar- 
barism and imcouth violence too otten appeared, still it cannot be 
denied that it laid the foimdation for that elevation of thought which 
•eventually, in a moral point of view, exercised its influence upon the 
'Community at lar^e. 

The noble institution of chivalry was, in fact, of the highest im- 
portance in its results to the whole of the Christian nations, inas- 

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much as eveii when the imperial dignity lost its powerful influence, 
and the authority of the church began to totter on its base, the prin- 
ciples of honour and rectitude, together with the irresistible force 
commanded by the manly, chivalric word, in all cases of need and 
succour, operated so beneflcially upon all classes, that this grand 
and illustrious foundation of knighthood served as a tower of strength, 
impregnable against all subsequent attacks attempted by uncivilised 
and barbarous assailants. 

Whilst the aristocracy of the German nation thus vigorously 
cultivated itself, and wore the sword equally for the honour of 
^eir faith and defence of their country, the citizens in the towns 
laboured with industry and activity for their commercial pros- 
perity. The German cities during this period daily increased in 
population and riches, and the source of all was commerce, for 
which also the crusades operated very advantageously. The spirit 
for great undertakings ana speculations was aroused, the costly wares 
of southern countries were brought more frequently and in greater 
abundance to Europe. The Italian maritime cities, particularly 
Venice, Genoa, and Pisa, introduced the merchandise of the east, 
and then it was conveyed the same as the produce of Italy itself 
along the ancient commercial roads, through the passes of the Alps 
to Germany, there extending its transit upon the high roads and 
rivers, and what was not consumed in the country itself was carried 
stiU further towards the territories bordering upon the North Sea 
and the Baltic. All that was brought to the nortnem countries from 
across the oc6an was forwarded through Germany, and by means of 
this extensive commercial agency, to which was added the produce 
of native German industry, the ancient cities of the empire pro- 
gressed and flourished in all their wealth and prosperity. Augsburg, 
Strasburg, Ratisbon, Nuremberg, Bamberg, Worms, Spires, and 
Mentz, in the south of Geirmany; in the north, Cologne, Erfurt, 
Brunswick, Luneburg, Hamburg, Bremen, and Liibeck, and many 
others proudly raised and extended their walls and towers, and an 
increasing and active, but equally industrious population, animated 
their streets. Their riches soon gave them the means to purchase 
their freedom and independence trom the princes who held them in 
dominion, for as in those ancient times, when but few or no regular 
imposts were levied, the privileges of those princes and lords were not 
so productive as now, no large sum was required to obtain this eman- 
cipation. The cities then acknowledged the emj^ror alone as their 
superior feudal lord, and thence were called free imperial cities. 

This progress, however, was only made by degrees, and was not 
everywhere attended with the same favourable results. The first 
step was made in the tenth century, when Henry I. encouraged the 
foundation and extension of cities, and improved their mtemal con- 
dition in eastern Germany, and when afterwards the episcopal cities 
in the south and western parts of the countr]^, according to the 
ancient Roman* cities, were raised to a state of immunity, and the 

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authorilj of tli6 oount was subetituted by that of tke episoopal in^ 
tendant, or adooaOuB coMoe. Afiter their example, a number of 
other citieB reoeiyed also imperial goYemors, ana -were thus freed 
from the jurisdidaon of the count. 

Subsequentlj the cities advanced still further, and sought to elevate 
themselyes from their state of immunity, in order to become theb o^ 
govemoiB; for the intendants, replacing the counts in their quality 
as judges, selected their assessors &om the municipal council, who^ 
previous to ihe twelfth century, were called €we$^ in its more dis- 
tinguished acceptation, and later, in imitation of the Lombardiaa 
cities, they were, styled oonsuks or councillors; and tibeir president, 
proconsul or tnoffi&ter cansohunf burgomaster. Those families 
amongst whom the councillors were usually chosen, formed a civic 
or urban nobility^ and were called patrician families. As thia eoun- 
cil was entrusted with the administration of the commercial property 
and the magisterial authoritj of the dly , it is easy to conceive what 
increasing influence it must have had at its command, and how it must 
have extended its power in the administration of affidrs beyond, 
as well as within the city, and the burffomaster, consequmtly, 
in the course of time, lef); Htde or nothing for the intendant to per- 
form. In &ct, this lattar ftmctionary in the end had reaaoa to con- 
gratulate himself if he was only allowed to retain the administration 
<^ justice; and, even then^ means were not wanting on the part of 
the council to arrogate tlua department to themselves when they 
found it favourable tot their object to do so. 

But the authority did not rest exclusively in the hands of the 
council; the various guilds and trade associations had also their share 
in the government. Their influence derived strength from the 
increasing activity among the industrial and working classes, and 
consequent prosperity in trade; and thence their claims to a portion 
of power they enjoyed were based upon the interest they took and 
shared individually and among themselves in the municipal institu- 
tions. The extent to which they gradually succeeded in establishing 
their united dominion is made evident by their generally triumphant 
contests with the patrician families in many of the cities. 

If commerce and gain had alone been the objects of the inhabit- 
ants of the cities, they would soon have become sulnect to all those 
evils which necessarily arise when the mind of man becomes wholly 
occupied and absorbed in his mercenary pursuits; the citizens would 
have been rendered timid and coward^, and would have sacrificed 
both their liberty and pride in their eflorts after worldly possessions. 
But in those times, when the Faustrecht or club-law existed in all 
its violence, they found opposed to them the entire nobility of the 
empire : princes, counts, and knights, as well as bishops and abbots^ 
who, jealous of the riches of the cities, closely observed their deeds 
and acts, and waited only for an opportunity to overturn and de- 
stroy thdue freedom. 

It the cities, therefore, desired to submit no longer to these power- 
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ful enemies^ thejr faimcl they most neoesBBiily bear anns tkemselreSy 
and preflerre niTiolate ia tkeir breasts that manly cooiage which is 
the stueld of fire^om. In an ancient chronicle we find the follow- 
ing account of the Nuranbezff patricians: ^^ The furniture of their 
honses ccMisists chiefly of gold and silTcr, but amidst all that meets 
the eye nothing is more cons|Hcnou8 than their swords, armour, bat- 
tle axes, and horses, which they particularly diq>lay as the chief 
signs q£ thdbr nobility and the ancient rank of their families. But 
the simple citiien also keeps his arms ready and in good order in hia 
house, so that on the first movement he may appear fully equipped 
immediately at the apoointed place of assembly. The whole of the 
internal regulations ot the citrfr had war in view; the citizens were 
divided into companies accordmg to their trade and dwelling-place; 
and when the city was in danger each of the different bodies assem- 
bled in its appointed quarter, and under its particular banner, and 
thus all mardbed forth together, and fought united in battle. This was 
a beantifid union, firndy bound by warBke and peacefiil occupations, 
and the rivalry and emulation evinced by all in valour have frequently 
obtained the victory fi>r cities in time of danger. The citizens coI» 
kctively did not lose their time in a love for petty things and trifles, 
nor in the effeminacy of a sedentary life in the close rooms of their 
houses, but they were both in body and soul good men and true, as 
well as independent. And, notwithstanding their riches, notwith- 
standing their extraordinary expenditure upon CTeat festivals, which 
honour demanded in those more ancient and better times, dieir 
daily ordinary life was very ample and temperate, and not sophis- 
ticated by artificial wants. Thence their bodies remained strong, 
and their prosperity lasting; for the source and guarantee of prospe- 
rity do not so much ccmsist in rich acquisitions as in that moderation 
which knows how to preserve them. . " That the Germans are rich," 
says MachiaveUi, in lus treatise, Biiratti delta Alamaana^ '^ arises 
&om their lining as if they were poor. It suffices for them to have 
a superfluity in oread and meat, and a room, whither they may re- 
treat firom the cold. Thus little or no money quits their coimtry ; on 
the contrary &r more comes into the land m payment for the wares 
they manufacture themselves. The power of Germany is based upon 
its cities; they aie the nerves of the provinces, for in them there 
exists both weidth and good order." 

At this glorious period of the municipal institutions, many Gennan 
cities united together for the protection of their freedom, their inde- 
pendance, and their commerce genendly. Thus, in theyearl254, seventy 
citaes in iJie south of Germany formed the Rhenish league, for o& 
ience and d^nce, and powerfully opposed themselves to the en- 
croachments and pretentioBS of the nobility. Afterwards arose the 
S¥rabian dties'-uzuon, which was also very numerous and strong. 

But the most powerful confoderation among all was that of the 
Hanse towns. .^Llready early in the middle ages, the trading cities 
of Gcecmany had formed alliances in the large commercial towns of 

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Other countries, and there established warehouses and factories. 
These Victories bore the name of Hanse, probably from the word 
Hansa, which signifies trade imposts (confounded subsequently with 
the Italian word Ansaria\ and as several such houses were united 
in foreign cities, there consequently arose a general Hanse, which 
was termed German Hanse. Very early we find in London, Ger- 
man Hanses from Cologne, Hamburg, Lubeck, Bremen, and other 
cities^ and, perhaps, their union was a chief cause for the establishment 
of the whole alliance. In the history of its formation also it is im- 
portant to notice the league which in 1241 the cities of Lubeck and 
Hamburg concluded together, and which is commonly but incorrectly 
consider^ as the first commencement of the whole confederation. 
It was agreed that both cities should prepare ships and supply troops 
to protect from all robbery the highway between the Trave and the 
Elbe, and the rivers themselves, down which both sent their merchan- 
dise to the sea. Several northern cities soon joined this alliance ; about 
the year 1300 it numbered already sixty cities from the Lower Rhine 
as far as Prussia and Livonia ; later it included as many as a himdred, 
and in the middle of the fourteenth century we find the name Hansa 
universally distributed. In Grermany there belonged to it, besides 
Lubeck and Hamburg: Bremen, Stade, Kiel, Wismar, Rostock, 
Stralsund, Greifswalde, Stettin, Colberg, Stargard, Salzwedel^ 
Magdeburg, Brunswick, Hildesheim, Hwiover, Liineburg, Osna- 
burg, Miinster, C5oesfeld, Dortmund, Soest, Wesel, Duisburg, Co- 
logne, and many others besides; and out of Germany : Thorn, Dant- 
zig, Konigsberg, Riga, Reval, Narva, Whisby, Stockholm, &c. 
They wholly monopoUsed the trade in the Baltic, and chiefly that 
in the Nortn Sea, and had four grand depots : at Novogorod in Rus- 
sia, Bergen in Norway, Bruges in Flanders, and in London. 

The establishment of these emporia called forth the greatest pos- 
sible development in trade, and produced the most glorious results 
in commercial intercourse. From the northern regions they shipped 
timber for building vessels, flax, hemp, tar, furs, and smoked and 
dried fish, the consumption of which was extremely great on account 
of the rigorous observance of the periods for fasting practised by the 
catholics ; and they maintained the herring fishery exclusively in 
their own hands. From England they procured raw wool and 
cloths, which they had dyed and prepared m Germany. Bruges at 
this epoch was one of the most important of the commercial cities, 
and formed a depot for the merchandise of Asia, Italy, and Western 
Europe, which the Hanseatic towns conveyed thence to the north, 
of Europe: spices of every sort, silks, gold and silver wares, fruit,. 
&c. This traj£c exercised, likewise, the most happy influence upon 
the sale of the produce of Germany: linen, cloth, metal wares, com, 
flower, beer, Rhenish wine, and woad, (so much sought for before 
the introduction of indigo, and much planted in G^many,) and 
many other articles which, by means of the Hanse found a market in 
foreign countries. It is, therefore, not surprising that when uniting 

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its strengtli the confederation was richer and more powerfiil than the 
northern ^gdoms. It vrsis enabled to collect together whole fleets 
and armies whenever it chose, even if only a portion of the cities 
united, and its friendship was universallv sougnt. It forced King 
Philip IV. of France to forbid the Engfish aff traffic on his coast, 
aad obliged England to purchase peace for 10,000/. sterling. It 
conquer^, in 1369, even Copenhagen and Helsengoer, command- 
ing the mouth of the Sound, and offered the kingdom of Denmark 
for sale; to such an extent did it hold the northern kingdoms gene- 
rally in its dependence, and the city of Liibeck might well be proud 
of being the head of such an alliance. It was divided into four 
classes: 1. The Wendish, of which Liibeck was particidarlv the 
head ; 2. The Westphalian, with Cologne at its head ^Cologne 
emulated Liibeck for precedency; it earned on an extensive com- 
merce bjr sea, and founded m London a celebrated German 
fkctory; its maritime commerce, however, fell when Dortrecht 
received its oppressive staple-right) ; 3. The Saxon, of which Bruns- 
wick was the head; and 4. The Prussian and Livonian, with Dant- 
zig at the head. 

Maxiy records testify how extensive and populous the cities were 
precise^ at a time when violence through the Faustrecht ra^ed 
most wildly. In the fourteenth century, for instance, Aix-la-Cna- 
pelle had 19,826 men who could bear arms, and Strasburg 20,000 
more; Nuremberg 52,000 citizens; and increased annually by 4000 
male bom children. Upon a revolt of the citizens of Lubeck, the 
council alone armed 5000 merchants and their servants. And be- 
sides these and other large places Germany was covered with a mul- 
titude of towns of middung size, which likewise flourished in trade 
and population, but which now retain only the shadow of their 
former importance; as, for instance, the many imperial cities in 

-.tineas Sylvius, (afterward Pius 11.,^ in the fifteenth century, speaks 
with great admiration of the riches of ine German cities, although even 
then their splendour began to sink: " The kings of Scotlana might 
envy,"he]says, "the state of the meaner citizens of Nuremberg. Where 
is there a tavern among you where you do not drink out of silver? 
What married woman, 1 will not say of rank, but the wife of merely 
a simple citizen, do we not find decorated with gold? What shall 1 
say ot the neckchains of the men, and the bridles of the horses, which 
are made of the j)urest gold, and of the spurs and scabbards, which 
are covered with jewels?' 

The source of such especial riches in precious metals, possessed 
by Germany, originated not only in the commerce, but also in the 
recently discovert mines of the country. Li the year 1477, for 
instance, when Duke Albert of Saxony, dined in the mine of 
Schneeberg, in the Hartz mountains, the viands were laid out upon 
a solid block of silver, whence afterwards 400 quintals of silver 
were produced. 

The flourishing state and increasing power of the German cities 


-was alflo a cbief motiTe for ibe peasantij to reooTer their freedom; 
for the inhabkaBte also of the nizal districts who, under the op|n«8» 
aooL of sLaveryv were obliged to cultivate their own land, as serfet 
£>r a master, at the view ^ the flouiiahing free cities were aroused, 
to the love of liberty and indq)eiidenoe, and whai this desire is once 
properly ze-awokein an enslaved people, it rests no more untilit has 
cast its oppressive and degrading burden from its shoulders. Not 
that the gradual rise of the rural population is to be attributed to one 
source only, but, on the oontraiy, as in this case, it must be a con* 
fjequence cf the collective working of many causes, which here ear- 
Her, there later, supplied an individual, a uunily, or awholecommu'^ 
nzty with fineedom and possessicm of the soil. In this view also thd 
crusades now produced the most important and beneficial results. 

Bj command of the pope, every serf who took 1^ cross to pro* 
ceed into theHdj Land was obliged to be made free by his lord, and 
thousands of &em proceeded diither and became free accordingly. 
In other cases the loid, previous to eetting out upon the crusade^ 
animated by pious eeal, gave his Bei& thdr freedom at onoe, or per^ 
hap he did not return at all; and if he had no heirs, many of his 
feudal aervitocs, in theconsequettt dispute for ilie inheritance, faithful 
until then, now made themselves free. This method of disfScandiiae- 
ment was the more eaaly put into efieet when they belonged to a 
soble, and if they dwelt near large cities. For th^ put themselves 
under the protection of the latter, and contimied to live within their 
walls or remained upon their own inheritance, and were called then, 
Pfahlbiirger or suburban citizens, and in case their lord sought to 
force them to return to his service, it became the affair of the power> 
ful city itself^ and evea of the entire leame to which it belonged. 

It 16 not to be denied, that under audi circumstanoes many cities 
in their municipal arrogance were unjust towards their noble ndigh- 
bours, inasmuch as they, withouthaving one justifying cause, recdved 
andharbomred their subjects in opposition to him; but what in<nted 
them chiefly to do this was the recoiiecticMi of the injustice which these 
lords or their predecessors had done to them, — ^for injustice provokes 
injustice— or they were perhaps at open variance with them, and they 
thoi^httheywerejustifiedin injuring them in everyway. Whennow 
the nobles saw themselves in danger of thus losing all their subjects, 
one after the other, if they persisted in retaining them in their service 
by force, they preferred emancipating them themselves, under certain 
conditions, for l^hter services and a fixed yearly impost Finally, 
many from a kmdliness of disposition, and influenced by the ^ 
Ughtenment of the period, may possibly have seen ik^Jt it was more 
honourable as well as more lucrative, to cause their land to be cul- 
tivated by free labourers, who in the fediag that they were toil- 
ing for themselves and their descendants, now devoted all their 
powers of mind and body to that occupation which form^ly as elaves 
they were forced to be driven to perform. 

It was in this maimer, particularly at the period of whidi we now 
speak, that by a hundred di&rent causesi^(l!Pi laid in Ger- 


manj for the esteUishment of the important cfaun of oommon fiee 
peuaAtiyy which by degrees became the fundamental strength of 
th e m are modeni states of Europe 

When man is raised to a certain degree of prosperityin whicbhis 
mand is no koger absorbed in aoquirmg the more immediate and 
pceaBing means to satisfy the necessary cares and wants of life, be 
then applies and devotes tbe powers of his genius towards producing 
die beautiful and grand — ^to that, the creation of which must sbed 
o*er his whole life and memory, an enduring balo of glory and bo<* 
noor — and accordingly all those gifts of intellectaal greatness are 
promoted by their cultivation and enjoy the free independent action 
they demand. Thence the cities with their increasing riches neces* 
SBzuj became the cradle of German art and science; to which the 
excitement of the imagination, and the impulse which the crusades 
produced in all minds, contributed not a little. Ideas both novel 
and of vast and eztiaordinarv character spread over the world, ele*> 
vated the powers of the mind beyond the ordinary condition of life, 
and filled it with images which it found itself excited to represent and 
embody in beautiful productions of art. If we had no other evidence 
of die splendour of the middle ages than that displayed in the works 
of art of all lands which that period has handed down to us, we 
should even then have ample proof wherewith to refute those opi- 
nions which, without any mooificadon, pronounce that epoch to 
have been dark, barbarous and miserable. A period of ignorance 
and calamity could not have produced such sublime works as the 
minsteis of Strasbuig, Vienna, and Ulm, together with the cathe* 
deals of Cologne, ]i£gdeburg, Spires, Freiburg, and so many other 
churches in l£e cities of Germanv and the Low Countries. For 
art flourishes solely in the light of nreedom and in the genial warmth 
of siosperity and human happiness. 

We have here taken our examples £rom architecture, because there 
is scarcely any other art which uke this so peculiarly ezpreases the 
genuine Grerman genius. What we call gothic arcnitecture, — and 
whidi would be baiter expressed with the general name of the na- 
ti<m, Teutonic axcfaitecture— is a comlnnation of the greatest bold- 
ness and sublimity^ of idea, produced by religious inspiration and deep 
natural feeling, wi^ the most admirable industry and perfection in 
the ezecotion of the detail. In the contemplation of those wonderful 
structures, our heart swells and the breast expands with reverential 
awe and emotion; we beccxne completely lost, and forget ourselvee 
in the presence of so much grandeur, whilst we feel as we con^ 
tinue gazing as if with those bold ideas our mind was conveyed 
iq>warajB towards heaven, leaving its earthly infirmities behind it — 
such is precisely the expression which characterises the trulj suIk 
lime and grand in all the creations of nature, as also m the- 
works of man. And when the ejre, afW it has recovered firom 
this first and overpowering impression of the whole, contemplates 
the detail, it observes that there is scarcely a solitary stone through^ 
out the gigantic edifice which is introduced in itff TmAjeMe^ 

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but eacli beais some artistical labour whicli makes it share in 
the embellishment of the whole. Thus, it might be almost said 
that, as in the works of the wide creation itself, there is not a blade 
of grass but possesses its own peculiar beautj and ornament, and 
this blade with its millions of semblant companions combined with 
the trees, rocks, and lakes present a rich and magnificent picture 
of nature — ^so, likewise these works of German industir and art, 
faithful in the detail, and sublime in the idea of the whole, are in 
this union of both, objects surpassed by no other nation. We will 
only remark of the Imnster of Strasburg, that it has the loftiest 
tower in Europe, being 594 feet high. Bishop Werner began to 
lay the foundation of the church in 1015, but it was not completed 
until 1275. After which the eminent architect, Erwin of otein- 
bach, sketched the plan of the tower in 1277 ; this was begun and 
completed in 1439 oy John Hulz, of Cologne, so that 424 years 
were consumed in the entire construction. Of the Cathedral of Co- 
logne, which in its design, commenced by Archbishop Conrad, of 
Eiochstedt, in 1248, is still more noble, not even the church itself, 
not to name its tower, has been completed although its construction 
has lasted 250 years. But we shall not wonder at this when we con- 
sider the thousands of images which are carved in the stone.* 

It tends to the eternal fame of our nation and of those times that 
the industry, patience, and outlay of capital so necessary for the con- 
struction of such works were not spared, while later generations have 
but too often wasted their powers upon undertakings which have left 
no trace behind. 

In order to comprehend the origin and, especially, the successftd 
execution of those miracles of architecture, according to one great 
plan, we must remark that it was not individual architects, who, 
with sometimes good, sometimes bad workmen, as in our times, 
undertook such works, but they were accomplished by an association 
of masons, distributed over the whole of Germany, and, indeed, 
over the whole of Europe, who were bound together by religion, 
honour, and discipHne. Even among the Romans there were build- 
ing societies of great extent, the remaining members of which re- 
tired to the monasteries, and there occupied themselves chiefly 
with the construction of churches, and created the more sublime 
style of Christian architecture. Regular but temporal builders were 
also received into the society, and \nien, in the eleventh century, the 
vigour of the monachal system began to slumber in the indolence and 
satiety of acquired riches, these temporal builders obtained by de- 
uces the superiority, and eventually formed the grand associations 
by means of which those wonderful works were executed. They 
possessed and followed mysterious signs and customs, by which the 
members of the body forming the class of the more sublime archi- 
tecture were distinguished from the more simple artizans. Every 

* It is, however, gratifying to observe as one among the many existing signs of the 
progress made in our time in the fine arts, that the completion of this noUe edifice 
has been recently determined and commenced upon. ^ I 

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flocietj had its protectmg patron, from whom it was named, and 
wherever a grand undertatdng was to be executed they aU came 
fix>m their various districts and assembled on the spot, so that their 
art, like a common possession, was beneficially distributed through- 
out most Christian countries. These important societies received 
£nom the reigning emperor and princes letters of license, and even 
their own exclusive judicial courts, at which the chief architect pre- 
sided as judge. Close to the spot on which was to be erected the 
large building they were engaged upon, and which edifice perhaps 
took centuries to construct, a wooden house or Hiitte, was generally 
built, neatly adorned inside, in which the said chief architect, with the 
sword of justice in his hand, sat under a canopy and pronounced judg- 
ment. This hiitte or court house, in Strasburg, aerived a peculiar 
importance during the period of the construction of the minster. 
It was soon regarded as the most distinguished amongst all in Ger- 
many ; its institutions were imitated, and the other court houses 
frequently derived counsel and decision from it.* 

But the noble principle of these associations ended with the de- 
cline of the general spirit of the middle ages. The great architec- 
tural undertakings ceased; the energies of men were divided in all 
directions. War monopolised so entirely the resources of states, that 
for great monuments of art but little more could be done, as will be 
more particularly developed as we proceed in the course of our his- 

Fainting was also zealously practised for the decoration of churches 
and other holy places, and our old cities are full of splendid speci- 
mens of this art. Grennan art in its entire character is grave, cnaste, 
and moral, abounding with depth of thought and expression, like 
the nation itself In the figures of the holy apostles and saints, as 
well as of pious men and women generally, who are represented in 
devout contemplation and prayer, we find expressed the profound 
sublimity of thought and sentmient which would be vainly sought 
ibr in the works of art produced by any other nation, although they 
may, and do possess a superiority m miish, richness of colour, and 
sHulilly-deceptive representation. In their pictures, also, the Ger- 
mans display that untiring industry which does not consider it too 
trifling to carefully represent, with truth and fideUty, the smallest 
and most minute decorations of the walls, furniture, or garments. 
It is true that painting attained its culminating point much later, and 
the names of the most celebrated Grerman and Flemish painters, who 
worked in the same spirit, belong to the fifteenth and sixteenth cen- 
turies; although in earlier times, and by masters whose names are 
unknown, splendid pictures of subjects taken from sacred history 

* After Strasburg came, in 1681, imder the donunion of France, all connexion be- 
tween this principal Hutte and the others of Germany gradually ceased to exist; and 
the consequent disputes which arose between these latter on the subject of each 
other's claims to superiority were erentually put an end to in 1731 by an imperial 
decree, by which all distinctions of priTUi^ between these associations and the com- 
mon class of architects were abolished. 

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were executed for the chuickes. Tlie most odebtaied of the kter 
artists were John Van Ejck, of Bruges^ who died in 1441, and who 
is considered as the inyentor of oil painting; his countrymen, Hans 
(John) Hemling, Mattin Schon of Cuknbach, in Franoonia, Mi* 
chael Wohlgemuth <^ Nuremberg, but aboTO all others Albert 
Diirer, who was bom in 1471 and died in 1521, and whose works 
are characterised by vigorous feeling and profound seriousness of ex- 
pression; and, finally, Lucas Cranach, wno was bom in 1470, and 
died in 1553. 

Aa a third art in the list of the middle ages, poetry was one which 
particularly flourished in the time of the Swabian emperors. This 
deriyed its vigour from the inspiration of the whole period of the 
cmsades and was in high estimation among the higher and lower 
classes. The celebrated siugeis who knew how to elevate the hearts 
of men by their songs of the great deeds of ancient heroes, or by 
their tender lays of kment — ^here and there, however, refreshed by 
encouraging and energetic strains-— were hos^tably welcomed at 
every festival, and richly rewarded, proceeded from the courts of 
emperors, princes, and counts, to flourishing cities, throughout the 
whole of Germany. Sometimes a contest of art was instituted, simikr 
to those wherein the knights disputed f<Mr the prise of arms, and, be« 
fore an assembly of selected ana competent judges, songs resounded 
of the most in^Hiing and admirable nature. &>me of the most oe^ 
lebrated poets and troubadours of this period are Henry of Vildedc, 
about 1170, Wolfram of Eschenbach, Hartman of the Aue, Heniy 
of Ofterdingen, Godfrey of Stcasburg, Walter of the Yogelweide, and 
Conrad of Wurzburg. But also emperors, princes, and noble kc^hts 
themselves practised poetry. All the Hohenstaufens from Frederidc L 
have left us poems, besides Mar^ve Otho with the Arrow, of Biaa<- 
denburg, Duke Henrv of Bresiaw, Henry of Meissen, Duke John 
of Bra^nt, Count Bodolph of Neuenbuig, Kraft of Tosgenbui^, and 
many others. One of the greatest and most ^lendia collections of 
German poems is that of the Niebehmgen or Legends of Chivalry, 
which alwough not originally composed in this period, still at that 
time was collected together and formed into one entire work ; a poem 
as sublime and grand as it is sweet and touching, and may be jusdy 
compared with the Homeric lays themselves. The HeUenbuch^ or 
great book of heroes, which is derived from the Swabian period, 
Ekewise C(»itains the most beautifulpoems; and, about the year 1300, 
a counsellor of Ziirich, Riidger otManesse, collected the mietrical 
lays of one hundred and forty Minmeswaers^ or troubadours. 

In the sciaioes, the period of the midme ages cannot, probably, be 
compared with those of later times, however superior, on the 
other hand, it may* rank in the fine arts, inasmuch as the sciences 
aie a fruit of senous reflection and of long experience, and one 
age can build upon the foundation laid by a preceding one; whilst 
art, on the contrary, is more a fiiee blossom oT nature, and a work of 
happy inspuation, being not so much the result of i^ep research as 
it IS of the impressions aroused by an excited epoch. The sciences, 

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however^ were not decided, but, on the ccoitEaiY, zealously promoted 
by the Hohenstaufen emperors. When Otho, Bishop of Freisingen, 
handed to the Emperor Frederick I. his Chronidos, the emperor 
said : ^* I reoeive with extreme pleasuie the Chicmicles which you nave 
compiled so wisely in such good order, and which, hitherto obscured 
and concealed, you have brought to light and harmonised; and I 
rejoioe always, when freed £rom the labcmrs of war, to read them, for 
I guide myself to excellence by the splendid deeds of the emperors." 
We have already seen in the hie of tne Emperor Frederick il. how 
much he estimated science. And although herdn his care was di<^ 
rected chiefly to his Italian states and universities, yet we must take 
into consideiation its subsequent reaction upon Geimany ; for all that 
we trace proves that Germany itself was occupied in the most active 
development- of science and art. No period of the middle ages can 
in this r^pect be compared with that of the Hofaenstaufens. The 
mind of Frederick 11., without doubt, worked both powerfully and 
effectually among us for the promotion of this object. 

Science, at this period, was chiefly confined to the ecdeaastical 
body, the members of which, by theu: state of independence, were 
called to be its true preservers. It has been customary to consider 
monasteries as the seat of indolence and ignorance, hypocrisy and 
seDsuali^, and, in fact, of many other vices. But this is an unjust 

rion, confounding the thing itself with its abuse; and what, in 
course of years, by the change of all thincs, was forced to pass 
away, has been at the same time, wholly misunderstood in its earlier 
and more active form. In times when rude force held its sway in 
the world, and eveiy one who could not defend himself was obl^ed 
to succumb, or was cast to the ground, the cloisters were places ofre- 
fiige and retreat for thousands of men, who found therem, not only 
desirable asylums for security and repose, but also that necessarr 
leisure for the calm and contemplative occupations of the mind, which 
flilently and progressively produced the sciences. Without ihe mo- 
nasteries, we should have possessed but little of the treasures of 
ancient literature, which they chiefly preserved for us; indeed, but 
tor them we should know almost nodiang of our earlier records, and 
possess, but a very meager and brief history of the events of former 
times. Before the invention of printing, it was so difficult and 
laborious to multiply copies of works, that without the leissnre and 
the industry of the monks in cloisters, who, with astonishing and 
admirable patience, transcribed entire works in elaborate chaxao- 
ters, and with illuminated letters, almost all traces would have been 
lost of the primitive and middle ages. Besides which, the authors of 
nearly all the histcnical works were clergymen. Their names have 
been mentioned at the commencement of this period, and when we 
read their productions, we must be filled with equal esteem and ad- 
miration for the ecclesiastics of the middle ages. 

The warlike spirit of that epoch, however, had an important 
effect upon the manners of the clergy. Christum, the Archbishop 
of Ment^ who was frequently at the £ad of the armies of Frederick I., 

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in his expeditions to Italy, and conducted the very obstinate siege of 
Ancona, in 1174, was as valiant a warrior as he was a zealous priest 
and skilful statesman. He could speak six languages: the German, 
Latin, French, Brabant, Greek, and Italian. Wnen^ as a clergy- 
man, he stood before the altar, he was the true representative of the 
minister of peace, in fiill priestly dignity; but when, again, he was 
mounted on his warHke steed, he displayed an equally commanding 
and elevated mien as a leader of the church militant. Under his 
sacerdotal robe he wore a coat of iron armour, upon his head a splen- 
did helmet of ^old, and in his hand a massive three-edged, club. It 
is related of him, that in the different battles in whida he fought, 
he killed nine enemies with his own hand. • 

The monasteries, of the importance of which for the middle ages 
we have already spoken, ment here still closer observation. They 
owe their first origin to that pious spirit which prizes, by far, the 
heavenlyabove all earthly possessions ; and which by severe self-denial, 
repentance, and mortification, in all sensual gratifications, seeks to 
make itself worthy of the blessings of a purer life. At first, minds 
thus tutored sought to fly from the tumult of the world, and retired 
into solitary and isolated places; and when several thus disposed 
were collected together, they united themselves into brotherhoods, 
with the resolution of practising, in a body, similar penance and 
mortification. Thus those holy men, Antonius and Pachonius, 
founded in this manner, in the middle of the fourth century, in the 
deserts of Upper Egypt, the first monasteries. By degrees, their 
example was ioUowed m several places ; and also in Europe monas- 
teries were founded, after the holy Athanasius brought the first 
monks from Egypt into Rome. 

In the commencement of the sixth century (515), St. Benedict, 
of Nursia, gave, by the rule he formed for his monastery at Monte 
Cassino, and which was everywhere followed, an entire new form to 
monastic life ; and this monastery, seated upon a high moimtain in 
the most beautiful part of Lower Italy, may be considered as the 
model of all the others in western Christendom. It has existed and 
operated during a space of thirteen hundred years, and above thirty 
popes, and a great number of cardinals, bishops, and ecclesiastics of the 
highest rank, have sprung from the order of Benedictines. Every- 
where now arose monasteries ; partly because active monks settled them- 
selves in previously uncultivated districts, made them arable, and thus 
acquired a right to the land around; partly because emperors, kings, 
and princes, the high clergy, and noble families, as a pleasing work to 
God, built abbeys, and endowed them with the ground upon which 
they were erected. Monasteries also arose in cities and villages, and cities 
formed and settled themselves around monasteries. The enthusiastic 
zeal excited in ancient times for amonastic life,and the donations which 
these institutions received are incredible ; the monastery of Ebersberg, 
in Austria, alone received as many as two hundred and twenty-eight 
such gifts. It was thought that no better use could be made of earthly 
possessions, than to give them to a monastery; and the monks had, 


1)e8ide8y at ack beds, opportunities enough to foster and maintain thia 
opinion. Economical management, and cheap and advantageous 
purchases made at a convenient time, auraiented these possessions, 
and especially so at the period of the crusades. The nobles who were 
not able to command the necessary means for the expeditions to those 
distant countries, sold their estates, or borrowed money upon them; 
and if they did not return, or could not pay back what they had 
borrowed, the property remained in the hands of the monastery. 
Subsequently too, m the time of violence or the Faustrecht, many 
freemen gave themselves up, together with their possessions, into 
the hands of the monasteries, to enjoy their protection. And 
£naUy» the monasteries received from the pope, in the thirteenth cen- 
tury, the privilege to retain for their own possession, the bequeathed 
property of the deceased relatives of the brethren — ^a productive 
source of wealth; whilst, likewise, it was made into a law, that, 
neither nuns nor monks could ever bequeath any thing to a third 
party, but were forced to leave their whole inheritance to the monas- 
tery they belonged to. The cloisters even bestowed upon many, 
lich persons the title of monk, in order to inherit their property, 
and permitted them afterwards to live beyond the monastery, the 
same as before. If we consider all tiiis, it is very easy to compre- 
hend how the convents, by degrees, acquired such large, and some 
even immense riches. The example produced stimulation, and 
their number increased incredibly. St. Bernard, of Clairvaux, who 
lived at the period of the secona grand crusade, founded alone one 
hundred and sixty, and some cities contained even several hundred 

The mrgency displayed by applicants to be received in them 
was extraordinary; many sought admission from a true spontaneous 
impulse of the soul, many in order to find the means of hvin^, and, 
lastly, many were persuaded and forced into them by their relatives. 
It is true, in order to remedy and prevent this latter abuse, the 
canon law forbid expressly that any one should be forced to take 
the vow, either by imprisonment or any other measure of compulsion; 
besides which, it was ordained that a year's noviciate should always 
precede taking tiie habit; and, finally, that no male should take the 
vow of monk before his fourteenth year, nor any female before her 
twelfth year; but this age was evidently too early, for many cer- 
tainly took the vow without knowine what they were doing. 
Many orders fixed, also, a more advanced age. 

The occupation of the lay brothers, according to the rule of St. 
Benedict, consisted in agricultural labour, the sciences, instruction of 
youth, transcribing of books, attendance on tiie dck, and the exercise 
of prayer and religious worship. Their mode of Ufe was very severe, 
their dress very ample, whilst their food was restricted to merely the 
most necessary diet, and frequent fasting was strictiy enjomed. 
Later orders, which took that rule as their foundation, but increased 
its severity, imposed upon their members the most rigid penances, 

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iadtiding corporeal eastigatioa. The order of the CarthosiaiiSy 
which was fouaded by a Uerman, St. Bruno, previously a cancel at 
BheimSt in an inhospitable and desert valley near Grenoble, was 
considered the most severe. Their raiment coajsisted not only of a 
rough hair skin worn n^ct the flesh, as in many of the other 
Orders, but the rule commanded expressly that it should be a prickly 
one; and they were forbidden any covering for the head or the 
use of shoes and stockings. They &8ted three times in the week, 
and during the ei^ht holy weeks the^ took nothing but bread and 
water^ whflst fat of all kinds, butter, cal^ &c,f were wholly prohibited. 
The religious exercises were not interrupted either by night or day, 
and solitude and melancholy silence increased the ngidness of this 
mode of li&. And yet who could believe that notwilostanding this 
severity of the order, it numbered, two hundred jrears after its ori^, 
no less than two hundred and eleven monasteries and nunneries? 
Such examples may serve us as a proof that the spirit of monastic life, 
fiur firom being in contradiction with the manners, was much rather a 
necessary feature of that age. Their subsequent degeneration into 
worldly views, and the whole changed spirit of the period, must not 
cause the judfpnent of history to err in its consideration of the origin 
of these institutions. 

The head of the monastery to whom a blind and unconditional 
obedience beloa&ged, was the abbot; under him stood next the prior^ 
then the deacon, the butler, the steward, the cantor, &q. In the 
convents there were under the abbess similar female dignities. 
But every convent of nuns had a prior for religious worship, for 
preaching, confession, &c., because these functions could not be 
transferred to women. Laybrothers were also found in imonasteries, 
who, without havini? taken the entire vow of monks, attended to the 
external business of the monastery, in order that the others might 
not be obliged to quit the cloister or enclosed space of the monastery. 

The monasteries, according to the ancient order of church govern- 
ment, stood originally under the jurisdiction of the archbishops and 
bishops of the diocess, and the abbots were consecrated by them ; they 
gave permission for the foundation of those institutions, authorised do- 
nations, the purchase and sale of land, &c. But ambition and a deare 
for greater independence became excited by degrees in the cloisters; 
they soon wished to be dependent only upon the popes, and the latter 
were not unwilling to increase in this manner their immediate and ex- 
tended influence. The same as with the cities in Germany dnd Italy, 
who sought to make themselves free &om the domination of princes, 
and would only be subject to the emperor, so it wa» with the cloisteni 
with respect to the bishops and the pope. With the temporal cler^ 
also, the patrons and curators, the monasteries by degrees stood m 
direct opposition. Originally they had nothing to do with the cure 
of souls. Shortly, however, many individuals turned to the monastery 
to confess, to have children christened, &c. The clergy complained 
of it and several popes prohibited these incursions upon the oiocess. 

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Bat in the course of time the monks, by the &your of the bishops, 
and subsequentlj of the popes, gained in this respect also greater 
freedom, and exercised the clencal duties in a far more extended 
cirele around them. 

A third great extension of their power originated in the circum- 
atence, that from the tenth centurjrtheprevioudy solitary standin^moi- 
nasteries became gradually united into mrge societies or congregations, 
belongingto the diffier^it principal orders. Intheyear910,aroBethatof 
Clun^Tyirom the monastery of that name in Burgundy, founded by St. 
Odo ; in 101 8, that of the Camaldulensians, by Romuald ; in 10B6, that of 
the Carthusians; in 1098, that of the Cistercians; in 1 122, that of the 
F^montratensians, &c. These orders receiyed from the chief mo« 
nastery one common central and superior direction. All monasteries 
sent their deputies to the chief assemUy held in this head cloister, 
and here their common affiurs \fere dehberated upon and arranged, 
sikI resolutions fixed. The abbot of this head cloister, to whom 
the remaining abbots vowed obedience, was charged with the exe* 
cation of these r^ulations, inspected the cloisters, regulated them, 
and thus exercised episcopal rights and priyileges. 

These congr^ations were in reality yery powerful associations, and 
infused into the monastic Ufe fresh vigour and strength. In the be* 
ginning of the twelfdi century, consequently two hundred years aflec 
its foundation^ th^e were 2000 other monasteries subject to the 
parent monastery of Cluny. Its abbot received all the privileges of a 
biddop, and placed in all the dependant monasteries pnors only from 
his own monks; and he hims^ was elected by them. In Climy 
itself there Hved four hundred and sixty monks, and yet not one was 
obliged to remove from his own cell, nor was any chamber aj^inted 
&at public use, required to be cleared when, in 1245, Pope Inno- 
cent IV., with several cardinals and bishops, the King of France 
trith his mother, sister, and brother, the Emperor of Constantinople, 
the sons of the Hngs of Castile and Arragon, all with their suites were 
entertained as guests in this splendid and spacious monasten^. The 
order of Premontratensians lounded by St. Norbert of Xante, at 
Premontre near Laon in France, numbered, ^ghty years afler its 
origin, twenty-four provincial or district directors, one thousand alK 
bots, three hundred friars, and five himdred convents of nuns. 
Norbert was afterwards Archbishop of Magdeburg, and introduced 
his rule into the monasteries of Magdeburg, Havelberg, Branden- 
burg, &c., and the order spread to Bohemia and Silesia. 

In opposition and as a contrast to these rich orders, which by 
their very wealth had developed the germ of degeneration and indo« 
lence, there was established at the commencement of the thirteenth 
century the order of beggar-monks, whose first law was to acquire 
no fixed property beyond their monastic walls, and to seek th^r 
support by receiving small gifi». Thus, they could never be troubled 
with a desire after temporal possesions m their practice of self- 
denial, poverty, and mortification — ^three essential virtues in thia 

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new order. Francis of Assissi, an Italian, founded, in 1210, the 
order of the Franciscans, and Dominique Guzman, a Spaniard^ that 
of the Dominicans^ in 12 15, and it was to this Guzman that the 
pope afterwards transferred in particular the inquisition. In 1 238 , the 
CJarmelites who had previou^ had their original seat upon Mount 
Carmel, in the east, came to Europe, and about this time under Pope 
Ghregory IX., they assumed the rule of St. Augustine, and foimded 
the order of the Au^ustines. AU these orders speedily, and at once, 
spread themselves, but it was only in the following centuries that 
their activity came into full operation. 

In tliis manner the whole empire of the church had divided 
itself into two portions; on the one side the whole of the monastic 
clergy, and upon the other the secular clergy. It is true they 
were both united in their several grades, under their superior and 
supreme head, the pope; but this division of the churcn was not 
beneficial. Envy, jealousy, and many vexatious disputes were 
thereby produced. The closer inspection of the bishops might have 
kept tne monasteries in a better state of discipline and order. St. 
Bernard of Clairvaux, who belonged to the order of the Cistercians, 
the only order which recognised the jurisdiction of the bishops, 
writes upon this subject thus: " The pope can by virtue of his 
power vnthdraw the bishop from the jurisdiction of the archbishop, 
and the abbot from that of the bishop, but it ought not to taJke 
place, for the bishops would thereby only become more arrogant, 
and the monks less restrainable. AU superiority, all fear, would be re- 
moved, and the whole structure of the nierarchy, which in wise order 
ascends to the pope, would be imdermined. Beneath their humble 
demeanour and expressions are concealed the haughty dispositions of 
the abbots; they plunder the church in order to free themselves from 
the superiority of the bishops, and they purchase their independence 
so that they may escape from that ol>emence which should be their 
richest ornament. Thence this desire of each to rank next to and 
as immediately as possible after the pope, dissolves the entire bonds 
of the hierarchy." 

It has been shown how in the course of time these institutions which 
had grown from, and were adapted to the necessities of the age, and 
which, retained in proper limits, might afterwards, bjb at first, have con- 
tinued to fulfil their object, degenerated from the moment that their 
temporal exertions entirely outweighed their intellectual efforts, their 
multiplicity having thus become ten, nay a hundred times too great. 
For a proportionate number of men of really inspired minds, who, dis- 
gusted with the world, desired the retirement oil a monastic life, could 
not possibly be found to inhabit the cloisters thus numerously distri- 
buted. Tnence thousands against their wills, or urged by base mo- 
tives, had adopted the cowl, to which they were now forever bound, 
and this majority thus introduced the germ of ruin into every institu- 
tion they entered. Complaints of the degeneration of the monks, of 
their continued life of sensuality, dissipation, and other vices, became 

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more and more frequent. The ancient reverence wluch had hitherto 
surrounded and hovered over these places of repose and jjious medita- 
tion, now gradually disappeared. The inhabitants of cities, who, for- 
merly by presents and grants, had contributed to build and endow the 
cloisters within their walls, became now their enemies, when they be- 
held them stretch their arms too widely around them, and when among 
other rights, they found them arrogate to themselves that of a free- 
dom from all civil impost, not only for themselves but likewise for their 
labourers and mechanics. Between the princes and nobles on one side, 
and the monasteries on the other, there arose jealousy, contention, and 
unjust reprisals. In order to protect themselves against external power, 
as well as to exercise their rights of freedom, which alone depended 
on the empire, the monasteries were obliged to procure and establish 
an authorised governor and protector (^Schutz or Kast-vogt) selected 
chiefly from among the powerful nobihty of the neighbourhood, and 
for wliich service they paid him a considerable tax. But between 
the Vogt and the monastery disputes often arose, and thus many a 
monastery was severely oppressed by the Vogt, its own chosen de- 
fender. The contest often lorced itself within the very walls of the mo- 
nastery itself. The monks rebelled against their superiors, misused and 
drovethem away ; the lay brothers revolted against the whole monastic 
brotherhood, and consequently violence and murderous scenes of blood 
desecrated those walls originally consecrated to peace. Such is the 
&te of every human institution as soon as it steps beyond the true 
limits assigned to it for the legitimate attainment of its appointed 

Nevertheless, we must hero observe, that this sad degeneration in 
the monastic life occurred less in the age of the Hohenstaufens than 
in the following centuries, when it becomes evident that all the insti- 
tutions of the middle ages inclined, and in fact were hastening 
towards their fall and ruin. 

It remains now for us in this description of the middle ages to 
speak of that which is made its greatest objection, the misuse of 
power to obtain justice, or even without the least justice, to offend. 
Upon this accoimt these times are called those of the Faustrecht 
(fist or club law), because the fist so generally decided instead of the 
word, and force had all the validity of law. Every prince had his 
fortified castle, every knight 'his strong tower, frequently upon an 
inaccessible rock, and every city its protecting walls; and confiding in 
these places of retreat, every one mocked the demands of the otner, 
often when he was wrong, until he was obliged to yield to force, or 
was himself destroyed. Little attention was paid to the sentence of 
judges, and, j&equently, even the emperor's word was not heeded, 
and thus it was mat while the empire enjoyed profoimd peace with 
its neighbours, internally the most violent contests, small and great, 
raged in difierent places at once, so that in what they called the 
most ordinary state of these fatal times of anarchy in Germany, 
thousands of individuals perished by the sword annually. Such a con- 


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dition appears fearftil to us, and we cannot comparehend Iiow men 
could, in such a state, be easy and cheerful as if in perfect security. 
For it would seem that only those who were yiolentlj and rapaciouai j 
inclined held dominion, wmbt peaceful, tranquil men must haye liyed 
in constant fear and dread ox destructioiL So serere a judgment* 
however, would again be based upon a miscon^ieption of the spirit 
of that age, whilst closer observation will only serve to soften and 
mellow down the harsh and hideous colours of this sad picture. 

The noble lived amidst his warlike arms and was always ready 
at a moment's notice to resist force by force whenever he wasattacked ; 
and in so doing, he did not consider himself verging at all beyond his 
ordinary sphere; it often, indeed, afforded him pleasure to be thus 
occasionally aroused from a temporary state of lethargy. It was a 
realising proof of that ^lory he was bound to sustain, and as it was 
for honour's sake that me very best fiiends broke a lance together—^ 
often in serious contest — ^in the tournaments, so likewise in the most 
violent feuds honour was constantly the ^ding star. They did not 
oppose each other in battle with tne animosity and absolute hatred 
excited in enemies of later times, for v^ frec[uently their encounter 
was only a more serious joust at arms, in which the opponents mear 
sured their strength witn each other for life and death. It was an 
ordeal of God, an open and energetic mode of deciding the quarrel 
which reason and argument could no longer terminate, and this de- 
cision was regarded as that of justice and good right. 

We have already seen that besides this, the cities excited by these 
continual wars of the Fehde or Fatistrecht, between the princes and 
nobility, were aroused to a full development of their powers, and that, 
together with industrial activity, both manly virtue and the feeling 
of civil honour had become firmly united, and more and more ener- 
getically brought into action. When, therefore, the citizen was at 
home, within the walls of his own city, he lived in perfect security and 
full of confidence in the courage of his feUow-citizens ; and when he was 
travelling he protected and defended himself with his own arms, 
assisted by his numerous suite, with which, whenever possible, he 
took care to provide himsel£ 

The peasant was forced to suffer most in these feuds, and his condi- 
tion was sadly deplorable during this period. The battle was most 
Senerally fought upon his CTound, and thus his plantations became 
estroyed, whilst he himself was defenceless and without arms, not 
having even the right to bear them; being held unworthy of such 
honour unless he was wholly or at least naif fi:eed. But, again, 
in many cases he found a protection in the point of honour 
established in chivalry, which did not permit an injury or offence 
bein^ offered to a defenceless man< whilst he likewise derived 
considerable compensation from the security he possessed in being, 
with his sons, exempt from military service. Besides which, 
the evils of war were less in extent, and left much fewer and less 
disastrous traces behind than in our days; fi)£ what are all those 

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minor mischances of the battle-field compared with the misery so 
inexpressible and incalculable which a single war in the present time 

We shonld also err very much if we thought that in this period 
of the Faustrecht the law had no effect, that no judges were 
appointed, or tribunals held, and that all was left to arbitrary 
will. On the contrary, the Fehde-rechty in its peculiar sense, 
was connected with the dispensation of justice and the infliction of 
punishment conformably with the spirit of the age. But to perceive 
and comprehend this better, we must refer back to the primitive ju- 
dicial system of the Germans, and prosecute its entire development 
in the middle ages. 

The German ludicial system like every other, the object of which is 
to furnish a civil community with order and well being, was based upon 
the principle that peace should reign between all its members. Thus, 
whcfloevCT had broKen the peace by murder, fire, robbery, &c., (so did 
nature interpret and decree to the Germans — who desired not only jus- 
tice but speedy justice,) it was not necessary to cite the criminal before 
a tribunal, but the offended party was at liberty to prosecute retalia- 
tion until the former made compensation, either by money or other- 
wise. Thence this ancient and original right of the freed man served 
to found the collective feudal system. The individual who had com- 
mitted the crime might be himself attacked on the same day and 
immediately after it occurred; but subsequently, when the feudal 
code became better regulated a previous announcement of three days 
•was necessary. When, however, the offender offered reparation of 
honour and right, that is to say a just restitution, there was then 
no longer cause to seek justice oy force of arms. 

In 3ie earlier periods of German antiquity when all justice pro- 
ceeded dbrectly firom, and rested in the grand and mighty union of 
all the fireed men, there existed no other law but the common law 
practised by the count together with the community of his Grau or 
district, the Ceatgrcme or centenary, and the Decanus or tything man, 
at the head of the communities of their jurisdiction. Every judge held 
regularly, and at certain neriods of the year, his Echte Ding, or court 
of session. Every defenaant was compelled to appear, the complaints 
were made, the judge required the verdict of the community, and 
what these decided by their foreman, who was caUed on for that 
purpose by the judge, the latter declared as sentence. The commu- 
nity consequendy tounded the law which became absolute for all 
similar cases subsequently, and every freeman took a part in its le- 
gislation. Charlemagne nrst introduced the Schoffen, whose office it 
was to attend at every court held, in order to refer to ancient pre- 
cedents. If the condemned refused to submit to the sentence, the 
judge himself, together with the whole judicial community, were 
obliged to see the sentence executed. Thus the whole system was 
based upon the equalised strength of the individuals, and the firm 
union of the oouective conmiunity. Charlemagne by his power 



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knew how to maintain order, and prevent each from takmj^ the lawin 
his own hands. Under his reign no private or distinct feud was heard 
of. But Louis the Pious, with ms sons, soon afterwards gave already an 
example of violence, and under the later Carlovingians the count lost 
all his judicial authority, and with it, likewise, vanished more and 
more the power of the communities; for, on the one hand, the 
clergy, the monasteries, and the high nobility, with their vassals, 
began to assume to themselves particular privileges which removed 
them from the ordinary jurisdiction of the communities, and, at the 
same time, exempted them from the duty of making the disobedient 
attend to the sentence pronounced thereby; and, on the other, the 
necessary general equality of the community was destroyed by the 
preponderating authority acquired by the pnnces, coimts, and lords. 

A superior power — that of a duke — ^became then requisite in order 
to restore the vigour of the courts. Ever since the first emperors of 
tfie House of iSaxony, Henry and Otho, had created diikes and 
raised them to their proper position, the judicial courts became also 
re-strengthened and improved; inasmuch as they by their summons 
issued to all their officials in the districts they ruled, and by the aid 
of their own vassals were enabled to command the necessary re- 
spect being shown to their authority. The first Salic emperors strove, 
it is true, to weaken and overthrow the ducal authority in order to 
procure a more immediate influence for the imperial power, but it was 
exactly in the powerful authority invested in these emperors that 
justice and order found their support. But the long and unfortunate 
reign of Henry IV., who was continually at war with the Saxons^ 
as well as with his rivals to the imperial throne, and finally with his 
own sons, was the cause of the abandonment of justice once more 
and of its becoming a prey to violence. 

Not but that the majonty of the Hohenstaufens possessed dignity 
and personal authority enough to re-establish order, but all their ener- 
gies being directed towards Italy, the inclination so general in Ger- 
many for the Faustrecht could therefore be put into practice more 
easily, especially as the power of the dukes, by the jealousy of the em- 
perors, and of FredericK I. in particular, was now destroyed. The 
emperors, indeed, now sought to place themselves more immediately 
at tlie head of the judicial power, and by maintaining its dispensation 
themselves^ endeavoured to cause its authority to be respected by 
their princes and counts. For this purpose Frederick I. established 
the Landfriede, or peace of the country, which was re-established 
by Frederick II., in 1235; but the confusion in the rights and pos- 
sessions of the princes being already too great, the individual princes 
and nobles opposed each other in constant feuds. Tliose wars had 
acquired even a more regular form by the ordinance of Frederick I. 
wmch decreed that the declaration of war should be announced three 
days previously, and thus each knight was enabled to find greater op- 
portunity to secure himself against the judicial power of his superior. 

After this law, opposition to justice, and private feuds which. 

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in earlier times, owing to the vigour and strength of the institu- 
tions, existed only as exceptions, became now of regular and estab- 
lished occurrence. The baneful spirit of disorder took the upper 
hand at the period of the Interregnum, and spread its domimon 
everywhere around, whilst the noble chivalric feeling of honour and 
virtue which was still maintained under the Hohenstaufens, gra- 
dually disappeared, and rude and brutal violence became more and 
more intolerant and oppressive. 

Several of the emperors, whom the next division of our history 
v?ill name, endeavoured to remove and overcome these evils. Ru- 
dolphus or Rodolph of Hapsburg, renewed, in several diets, the law 
for the Landfrieden (or peace of the country), and strove to strengthen 
it by the association of several districts, as, for instance: Westphalia, 
liower Saxony; Thuringia, Hessia, Bavaria, and Swabia. This was, 
in reality, a new mode of giving strength to justice, after it was 
found that the authority of the courts, tlie dukes, and even that of 
the emperors had successively lost all power. But in a country 
which was divided into so many petty dominions, these unions only 
fostered too easily a party spirit, and consequently led to much in- 
justice. The temporal nobles and knights, especially in the south- 
west of Germany, took advantage thereof, to oppose and make war 
against aU those powerful cities, which had also concluded alliances to- 
gether. To which followed very speedily, continued dissensions and 
disputes upon the subject of the election of the emperors, and claims 
to inheritance in seveiral countries: in Liineburg, Hessia, the Tyrol, 
&c.; during which the nobility received greater weight, and could 
arrogate to themselves the right of justice. The Emperor Wences- 
las and his successors endeavoured to unite all these various asso- 
ciations into one grand alliance of a Reischsfriede (or peace of the em- 
pire), and thus restore a superior authority, but in vain. It was not 
until towards the fifteenth century, when the nobility were obliged, 
by degrees, to yield to the power of the territorial princes, and when, 
especially, the vigour of chivalry was broken by the development of 
a new epoch, that, at length, a solid and durable foundation was laid 
for the dominion of justice, by the Emperor Maximilian's fixed law 
of the JReichsfriede, which secured the public peace for ever. 

We will now trace the prominent features of the forms of judicial 
proceedings, and of the laws in the middle ages. Originally, the 
superior court of jurisdiction was held only in the particular county 
which, in the name of the king, or under the Koniffsbann, exercised 
high judicial authority over real property and life. In the cent- 
giaviates fwhich were called, in Lower Saxony and in Westphalia, 
Gofferichte), there was only a petty court of justice, to which the 
nobles (Semperfreien) were not subject; for, throuffhout the whole of 
the middle ages, we find maintained the rule: that every one, to 
whatsoever class he belonged, could be adjudged only by his equals; 
fio that the general grand principle of the administration of justice 
by the communities, from the highest to the lowest, continued to 

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form the basis of all judicial proceedings throughout Grermany. 
The emperor could pass no sentence which the princes and nobles had 
not approved; and in the class of peasants, even in the courts of 
laWy among feudatories and vassals, no lord and no superior au- 
thority could adjudge capriciously and arbitrarily, inasmuch as it 
-was necessary to have the approbation of the community. Justice, 
dieiefore, remained the living property of the people, and its code was 
formed by custom and descent, from among themselves. Written laws, 
indeed, were held in dread and suspicion, for then the {)roceedings 
would have fallen into the hands of those learned in jurisprudence. 
T^e church alone was ruled by written laws, and almost in evenr 
thing by the Roman code. Wherever solitary written laws were found, 
such as privileges, jprinciples of jurisprudence and rights, for ddee 
or particular distncts, they were of such trifling import in their 
incomplete state that, &r from being so constituted as to form sources 
of right and fountains of justice, they only served as testimonies to 
prove that the true law Kved exclusively in the people. 

The first collection of German laws was formed by a Saxon noble- 
man, Epke or Eike von Repgow, between 1215 — 18, and which 
is known under the name ol Sachsenspiegel or Saxon Mirror. It 
was a mere private labour; but as the collection was more complete 
than the hitherto so-called laws, it came by degrees into general 
practice, particularly in the fourteenth and fifteenth c^ituries. The 
compiler was totally ignorant of the Roman code, and did not therefore 
adapt his composition to it, either in form or matter; but those 
who revised it subsequently, introduced much of the Roman canon 
law. Among the compilations, we must include the Sckwaben- 
sjpiegel or Swabian Mirror, and the Kaiserrecht or Imperial Code, 
tne latter of which, in particular, contains the feudal system. 

The Roman law was evidently introduced by the clergy int({ 
Germany, and was adopted in the ecclesiasdcal courts. It was only 
in the fifteenth century that the municipal courts commenced re- 
ferring to it. The re-awakened taste for the study of Roman an- 
tiquity, in general, brought with it also a desire to investigate and 
make researches into the Roman law-books, particularly in the 
universities; and they commenced, in doubtful cases, to procure 
opinions and legal aecisions, as well from the doctors of the uni- 
versities as from the superior courts. The influence which the gra- 
dual introduction of tne Roman law had upon the public a&irs of 
Germany, will become more and more evident as we proceed in the 
course of our history. 

Before we conclude our description of the state of judicial affairs 
in the middle ages, we will contemplate one of its most remarkable 
institutions, namely, that of the Vehm or Femgerichty (secret execu- 
tive tribunal), which formed itself in Westphalia, and which gives 
us a profound view of the spirit of that period. But for the saxe of 
connection, we must previously enta: upon and anticipate the limits 
of the immediate succeeding period. 

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Id Wetiphalia the jinisdiction of the ptinoen and nobleB was wKoIh^ 
founded upon the Gogerickte or Centgraviates. The ancient tiibiinaiy 
however, of the Graf or count had also maintained itself, although 
much diminished in authority, as the supreme and royal court. 
The high nobility and the £unilies comprismg the original free land 
proprietors, who had continued free from fie& and had never be- 
come the Yassals of the dominant lords, could alone be chosen as 
Seh^en or ministers in this court; they being called on that ac^ 
count FreUchqffen\ or free ministers and judges, and the court was 
styled a fi^e court or tribunal. 

A^aui, as the rights of the free tribunals were attached to the 
primitive rights of the ancient jurisdiction of the counties, so also 
those of the Stuhlherr were connected with the Freistuhb or free 
courts; for the term Stuhlherr was applied to every prince, noble, 
and knight, who as judicial lord possessed a jurisdiction which did 
not dep^id upon the emperor. The Stuhlherr was appointed to watch 
espedally that justioe was done. For this purpose ne created a Frei' 
ffraf or free count, who was invested with authority by the emperors, 
or dukes, and, afrerthe fall of Henry theLion,he wasappnnted by 
the Archbishop of Cologne, as inheritor of the Duchy of Westphalia. 
The free count stood in the same affinity to the Stuhlherr as the 
judge or judicial lord; the Freischdffen, however, were not servants 
of tJoe judge, but they represented the andent community or jury, 
and the £^ ooimt was only the president or foreman who main* 
tained order in the assembly. All the Friesch5ffen present pos- 
sessed the right to participate in pronoundng judgment; a less 
number than seven members could not form a court, and if there 
were too many to enable all to take an immediate part in the pro- 
ceedings, the remainder formed the audience, of whom, in the later 
and more splendid periods of this tribunal, there were assembled 
hundreds and even thousands. Besides this, every friee count had 
his clerks who were called Fnmbotenj and were appointed to serve 
him especiall]^', taking no share in the decisions of tne court 

The superior Freistuhl or tribunal was at Dortmund, that city 
being a free city of the empire, and acknowledging no Stuhlherr 
or judicial lord, owing, perhaps, to the antiquit^ and celebrity of 
its tribunal, as well as the aboriginal privileges it had acquired in 
the time of Charlemagne. In Dortmund all the free counts assembled 
every year to meet a general chapter, where they founded fVeiS" 
tkimcTj or principles of law, examined the judgments of the free 
courts, and confirmed or put them aride when an appeal was entered. 
As these tribunak drew their origin from those of the ancient 
county courts, it will be readily perceived that they exercised a 
jurisdiction over ordinary legal disputes which we call civil actions, as 
also over penal cases, which pre-suppose a crime. But this last division 
of theb office, at that time so important, became still more so in the 
course of time, in order to enable them to exercise their whole power, 

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in suppressing as much as possible the savage spirit existing so univer- 
sally and amongst all classes, to commit the most serious crimes 
against life, honour, and property. And as they adjudged in the 
name of the emperor, andby the law of life and death, they thought 
that in all criminal affairs they could extend their jurisdiction beyond 
the limits of "Westphalia, more especially as not another tribunal 
existed throughout the empire so authorised, from which to obtain 
justice against criminals, in fact, such influence did this tribimal 
command, that at length no cases of contention, nor even purely civil 
disputes arose which could not be brought before them for decision, 
if the defendant refused to do justice and honour to the plaintiff; 
for thence the crime became one absolutely confirmed against the 
sanctity of the law. 

. Thus in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries the power of the 
Freigerichte extended over all parts of Germany, as far as Prussia 
and Livonia; whilst all complaints, even from the most distant districts, 
were obliged to be brought before a Westphalian superior tribunal, 
and it was upon WestphaUan ground (styled in the judicial language 
the red earth) that the cited person was forced to appear. Beyond 
Westphalia no such Freistuhl could exist, and when the Emperor 
Wcnceslas endeavoured to introduce one into Bohemia, the free 
counts declared that any one participating in such a Freistuhl 
incurred the penalty of death. Thus onginally it was Westphalians 
alone, and of these only the ancient free bom ISchdffen or Stu/djreien 
that could be constituted judges in the tribunal; but in the thirteenth 
century it was the custom to receive also other free, irreproachable, 
and honourable men as Schoffen^ and when the court itself extended 
its jurisdiction beyond the boundaries of Westphalia, every free 
German could become a Freischoffe, and princes, counts, knights, 
and citizens, strove to attain the honour of participating in the pri- 
vileges of Freischbffen. A Freischoffe could be cited only before a 
Freigericht or free tribunal, and great weight was laid upon his 
word and oath. But they were very careful and strict in their 
election of a Freischoffe; he was obliged to prove that he was free 
bom, of a good family, not suspected of any misdeeds, and was in 
the enjoyment of all his rights, and finally two Freischbffen were 
obliged to become his security. The reception could take place only 
in Westphalia. Even the emperor himself could make Freischoffen 
only upon the so-called red earth, in this superior court. They had 
among them a very ancient, secret sign and peculiar greeting, whereby 
they recognised each other; whence, or perhaps from their knowledge 
of the laws, they were called the initiated, and in order to make any 
one knowing or wise implied receiving him among the Schbffen of 
the superior tribunal; even emperors were subjected to this reception, 
for in the year 1429 the Emperor Sigismund was solemnly received 
among the initiated, at the Freistuhl of Dortmund. We may consider 
these courts of justice in Westphalia at this brilliant moment of their 

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existence, when almost all the princes, nobles, and knights, became 
Freischofien, as an absolute and important association, which in all 
its ramifications spread over the whole of Germany, and which at a 
time when all the other courts had lost their power, acted as a sub- . 
stitute, and constituted a barrier against the rude and brutal force of 
crime. A solemn oath held all the members united, and not even 
in the confessional were they suffered to reveal a secret of the Vehm 
tribiinal; neither were the clergy themselves admitted into it. 

Originally the non-initiated were not taken at once before the 
secret tribunal, but before the ancient tribunal of the community or 
ju^ court (the JSchte IHng\ but that was formed by the same indi- 
viduals ; the forms only were less severe, and likewise there every, 
one could be present. But if the cited individual did not appear, he 
was then taken before the closed or secret court, so called oecause 
only those initiated could be present, and any non-initiated one 
venturing to introduce himself was immediately hanged. The term 
secret here therefore impUes closed ooMii^ and does not indicate those 
terrible mysteries which dared not be exhibited before the light of 

It is equally as fabulous that these tribunals were held at night in 
woods, caverns, and subterranean vaults, although in later times, 
when this court had become degenerated, it may have occurred in 
isolated cases. But the place of meeting was the ancient palace 
court of the grafs or counts, generally upon a mountain or hill, 
whence the eye could command a view of the entire country 
around, under the shade of lime trees, and by the light of the sun. 
The free graf or count ascended and presided on the seat of 
justice; before him lay the sword, the symbol of supreme justice, 
at the same time representing in the form of its handle the cross 
of Christ, and the next to it the Wyd or cord as a sign of 
right over life and death. The count then opened and closed 
the court, that is, he called the Schiiffen around nira and assigned 
to them their places. They were obliged to appear bareheaded and 
without arms or armour. Upon the judges* declaration that the court 
was opened, peace was commanded for the first, second, and third 
time. From that moment the deepest silence reigned throuffhout 
the assembly, no one ventured to argue or converse, for by so doing 
he transgressed against the solemn decreed peace of the tribunal. The 
cited person, who was also obliged to appear without arms, stepped 
forward, accompanied by his two sureties or bail, if he had any. The 
complaint made against him was stated to him by the judge, and if 
he swore upon the cross of die sword, the legal oath of purification, 
he was free: " He shall then take t^KreuzpfenniffjOT farthing piece," 
says an ancient work on jurisprudence, *' throw it at the feet of the 
court, turn round and go his way. Whoever attacks or touches him, 
has then, which all freemen know, broken the king's peace.*' Such 
was the ancient proceeding with the genuine Freisch5ffen, who en- 
joyed particular privileges, and who were presumed to have a strict 

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love for troth and honour. In later times that simple straight^ 
forward way seems to have become cpite changed, for we read in 
other ancient codes that the plaintiff was entitled to oppose and 
destroy the Yalidilr of the purifying oath of the defendant by three 
witnesses, which, however, the latter could again oppose with six; 
if the accuser appeared with fourteen, the defendant could swear 
himself fiee with twenty-one, which was the highest testimony. If 
the defendant acknowledged the crime, or if the plaintiff convicted 
him by oath and witnesses, the Schoffen then gave judgment If 
the criminal received sentence of death he was executed immediately 
and hanged on the next tiee; the minor punishments were exile 
and fine. 

But if the defendant did not appear upon the third citation, and 
could produce no satisfactorv cause of absence within a stipulated 
period, he was considered as having confessed his crime, or as one 
despising justice and peace, and, therefore, having placed himself 
bevond me pale of either, the sentence of the Vehm^ much was equi- 
valent to condemnation, was pronounced against him; and thence 
these courts received the name of Vehmgerichte. 

The sentence pronounced by the court was dreadful: *' As now 
N. has been cited, prosecuted, and adjudged before me, and who 
on account of his misdeeds, I smnmoned before me, and who 
who is so hardened in evil, that he will obey neither honour nor 
justice, and despises the highest tribunal of the holy empire, I 
verfemej or denoimce him here, by all the royal power and force, as 
js but just, and as is commanded by the Eonigsbann, or royal 
ban. I deprive him, as outcast ana emelled, of all the peace, 
justice, and freedom he has ever enjoyed once he was baptised; 
and I deprive him, henceforward, of the enjoyment of the four 
elements, which Grod made and ^ave as a consolation to man, and 
denounce him as without right, without law, without peace, without 
honour, without security; I declare him condemned and lost, so 
that any man may act towards him as with any other baniehed 
criminal. And he shall henceforward be considered unworthy, and 
shall enjoy neither law nor justice, nor have either freedom in, 
or guidance to any castles or cities, excepting consecrated places. 
And I herewith curse his flesh and his blood; and may his body 
never receive burial, but may it be borne away by the wind, and 
may the ravens, and crows, and wild birds of prey consume and de- 
stroy him. And I adjudge his neck to the rope, and his body to 
be devoured by the birds and beasts of the air, sea, and land ; but 
his soul I commend to our dear Lord God, if He will receive it." 

According to some customs, after he had cast forth the rope beyond 
the walls of me court, the coimt was obHged to pronounce these words 
three times, and every time to spit on the earth with the collective 
Schoffen, as was the usage when any one was actually executed. 
The name of the condemned criminal was then inserted in the 
book of blood, and the count then concluded the sentence as foU 

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lows: ^< I conunand all kings, princes, lords, knights, and squipes^ 
all free counts, and all free, trae Schbfien, and all those who belong 
to the holy empire, that ihej shall help with all their power to 
fulfil this sentence upon this banished criminal, as is but just to the 
secret tribunal of the holj empire. And nothing shall cause them 
to withhold from so doing, neither love nor affection, relationship, 
fiiendship, nor any thing whatever in this world." 

The banished man was now in the condition of the criminal con- 
denmed to death, over whom execution lowered. Whosoever re- 
ceived or even warned him, was also taken before the tribimal of 
the free count. The assisting members of thfe court were bound by 
a terrible oath, and by a heavy sentence of death, to conceal the 
judgment which had been passed against any one; that is to say, to 
make it known to nobody but one ioitiatea; and even if the con- 
demned man was a brother or fiither, the member durst not warn 
him thereof. Besides which, each initiated one to whom the sen- 
tence was authentically conveyed, was bound to help to put it in 
execution. Generally, a letter of outlawry was given to the 
plaintiff, with the seal of the free count and seven Schoffen, that he 
might pursue the guilty party; the oath of three Frei8ch5ffen suf- 
ficed to confirm the sentence. Wherever the Verfemte, or banished 
man was found, whether in a house, in the open street, the high road, 
or in the forest, he was handed at the next tree or post, if the ser- 
vants of the secret court could obtain possession of him. As a sign 
that he was put to death in execution of the holy Vehm, and was not 
mxcrdered by robbers, they left him all that he bore about him, and 
stuck a knife in the ground dose beside him. Besides this, the 
Schoffen of this secret court possessed the privilege of hanpn^ with- 
out a trial every criminal taken in the fact, if, fiuthful to the laws of 
honour, they took nothing from him which they found about him, 
and left behmd the sign ofthe Vehm. 

We are astonished when we contemplate this terrific and mighty 
power ofthe Schoffen alliance, and can at the same time easily com- 
prehend how the most extraordinary traditions of this Vehmgericht^ 
or secret tribunal, based upon their nocturnal assemblies, their 
mysterious customs, their imtiation and course of justice, together 
with theb condemnation and execution of the criminal, have been 
preserved in the mouths of the people, for even the plain histoiioal 
descriptions thereof are sufficiently striking. An association of se- 
veral thousand men spread throughout the whole of Grermany,.from 
the highest to the lowest classes (for we find examples of common 
freemen, mechanics, and citizens, being clothed with the dignity of 
a free count, and that even princes and knights did not disdain to 
assist as Schoffen under their presidency), such a society whose 
members recognised each other by secret signs and by a solemn oath 
were bound to support each other, who adjudged and punished in 
the name of the emperor and the empire, who reached the criminal 

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even after an elapse of years, and in whatever comer lie might seek re- 
fuge, and finally who were not subjected to give any account for what 
they did if only the terrific knife was present as evidence : what power, 
we repeat, did not this alliance command against the evil-minded, and 
what a powerful support and guarantee might it not have been for 
the peace and justice of the empire? The prince or knight who easily- 
escaped the judgment of the imperial court, and from behind his 
fortified walls defied even the emperor himself, trembled when in the 
silence of the night he heard the voices of the Freischoffen at the 
gate of his castle, and when the free count summoned him to appear 
at the ancient malplatz or plain, under the lime tree, or on the bank 
of a rivulet upon that dreaded soil, the Westphalian or red ground* 
And that the power of these free counts was not exaggerated by th6 
mere imagination, excited by terror, nor in reality by any means in- 
significant, is proved by a hundred undeniable examples, supj>orted 
by records and testimonies, diat numerous princes, counts, knights, 
and wealthy citizens were seized by these Schoffen of the secret 
tribimal, and in execution of its sentence, perished by their hands. 

Such power placed in human hands witnout the protecting check 
of publicity and responsibility could not long exist Avithout misuse. 
In the great development and extension of the association, it could 
not be avoided, but that unworthy individuals should be received as 
members who used the power confided to them for the sole satisfac- 
tion of their revengeful and baser passions. At tlie end of the 
fifteenth century many complaints arose in several parts of the empire, 
and particularly on the part of the clergy, against these free courts ; and 
we find that the whole spirit of modern times began to work against 
them far more than these cliarges upon isolated events. The power of the 
lords of the soil had now become increased and confirmed; they could 
not endure that their subjects should be judged by a strange, although 
originally imperial tribunal. Thence arose alliances of princes, nobles, 
knights, and cities, against the Westphalian courts, and when the 
law for the lasting peace of the land, the new imperial chamber of 
justice, and a new criminal court were introduced, the study of law 
and jurisprudence became substituted for a knowledge of the ancient 
customs; and when crimes against the peace of the knd and against 
obedience to the authorities ceased, then did the power of the secret 

♦ We must add here, that the summoDs was eicecuted by two Schoffen who were 
the bearers of the free count's letter. If they did not succeed in finding the accused, 
because he was living either in a city or a fortress, where they could not safely enter, 
they were authorised to execute the summons in the night. They stuck the letter, 
enclosing a farthing piece, in the panel of the gate of the castle, and cut off three 
chips from the same gate, which they handed to the free count as a testimony that 
they had delivered the summons, having, when leaving the gate, cried out to the 
sentinel on the walls that they had deposited there a letter for his lord. If the 
accused was a man without any regular place of residence, and if he could not be 
met with, he was summoned at four different cross-roads, where at each point, the 
east, west, north, and south, they attached a summons, enclosing in each the royair 
petty coin. 

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tribunal evaporate of itself without anjr formal abrogation, so that it 
is equall J difficult to trace the last as it is to fix the first year of its 

* In the sixteenth century, the aMociation contended for its rights and privileges^ 
and the struggle stiU continued in the serenteenth century, although much weakened 
and the scene confined to Westphalia. In the eighteenth century there were left 
only a few traces, the ruins of the past; its recollections and its signs, however, stiU 
continiie to exist amongst the peasants of certain provinces in Westphalia. At 
Gehmen in Miinster the secret tribunal was only extinguished entirely by the 
French legislation in 181 1 ; and even to the present day, some of the free peasants 
who have taken the oath of the Schofi*en, meet annually at a particiUar spot 
aroiind the Freutuhl, and it has been impossible to extract from them the secret 
oath. The principal signs are indicated by the letters S. S. G. G. which signify stock 
fstick), stein (stone), gras (grass), grein (tears); but we cannot trace the mysterioua 
meaning these words convey in connexion with the Vehmgericht 

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ntm muDOLFHtrs i. of hapsbitbo to chables r. 

The sources of the history of this period are again still more scanty than in that 
of the Hohenstaufens, consisting chiefly of specif chronicles rather than of general 
historical -works, constituting one entire and continuous representation of events, 
added to which they are all, or for the greater jtortion, written in the Latin tongue. 
The first we haye to mention axe those works of general history which appear in 
the form of chronicles or annals, and which present hut a meagre portion of German 
history. The most important are: 

1. Hermann, a monk of Attaich, known xmder the name of Henricus Sterv; Chro- 
nicle 1147—1300. 

2. AnnaJes Colmarienses, 1211 — 1803; in the collection of Urstisius. 

3. Matthias of Neuenhurg; Chronicle as far as 1353, continued hy Alhert of Stras- 
burg ( Albertus Argentinensis) to 1378; in Urstisius. 

4. JohnVitododuranus; Chronicle 1215—1348; in Eccard. 

5. Gobelinus Persona, deacon of Birkefeld; Beyiewof the World (Cosmodromium^, 
to 1418; in Meebom. 

6. Dieterich Engelhusen; Chronicle to the year 1420; in Leibnitz and Menken. 

7. Andreas, a presbyterian of Ratisbon; Cluronicle to 1442; in Eccard. 

8. Werner Bolewink of Laer, a carthusian monk in Cobgne; Chronicle to 1476, 
continued by Hans Lindner to 1514; in Fistorius. 

9. Hermann Eomer, Domin, in Lubeck; Chronicle to 1435; m Eccard. 

10. Hartmann Schedel, a doctor in Nuremberg; Chronicle to 1492; printed sepa- 

11. John Nauklerus, professor in Tubingen; Uniyersal History, to 1500; printed 

12. John of Trittenheim (Joannes Trithemius), from the yicinity of Treres, 
Abbot of Sponheim and Wurzburg, who died in 1516: his works are very important 
and haye been edited by Freher. The most valuable among them is the Chronicle of 
the Monastery of Hrrschau in Wurtemberg (published at St. Gallen iu 1630: Chro- 
nic. Hirsaugiense) 830 — 1514; in which the historian has interwoven Hie whole hia- 
tory of Grermany. 

13. Albert Kranz, canon in Hamburg, who died in 1517, wrote the history of 
Northern Germany, in three parts: Metropolis, Saxonia,etVandalia; a learned man, 
and, for his time, an independent thinker. 

As especial and entire works on Germany may be mentioned: 

14. The State letters of the Emperor Budolphus L; edited by (Herbert, 1772, and 
Bodmann, 1806. 

15. The Biography, &c., of the Emperors Budolphus L and Albert L, written by 
Gottfried, of Ensningen, by desire of Magnus Engelhard, a citizen of Strasburg. 

16. Albert Mussatus, professor in Padua, and who died in 1330, wrote De Gestis 
Henrici VH. Imp., and History of Italy, after the death of Henry VIL 

17. Caroli lY., (>>mmentariu8 de vita sua ad Alios. « 

18. JSAieaa Sylvius Piocolomini, subsequently Pope Pius H, and who died in the 
year 1464, produced: 

a. The history of his own times from 1405-63, which he caused to be written by 
his own private secretary, J. Gobelin, of Bonn. 

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RUDOLPH0S I. OF HAP3BURG.— CHARLES V. 1273—1520. 287 

b. The histoiy of the eodesiagtical council of Basle, written by himself; as also 

c The histoiy of the Emperor Frederick HI., and, 

d. Various minor works, amongst which the Descriptio de Ritu, Situ, Moribus et 
Conditione Germaniae, and nnmerons letters, all of which have been collected and 
repeatedly printed. 

19. Pertz's Scripta rerom Aostriac. contains many valuable sources for tbe history 
Off the Austrian emperors. 

20. J. Joach. MiiUer has collected t^ie most important transactions of the diets of 
the Germanic empire, espedally of those under Frederick ILL and Maximilian L, 
published in Jena 1709, and subsequently. 

In the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries we find historical workis in the German 
language become more frequent : 

21. Ofetocar of Homegk wrote a Chronicle in riiyme, which contains the entire 
epoch oi the Xntenegnnm and the history of the Emperors Budolphus, Adolphus, 
ABiert, and Henry TIL, as far as 1909; a work which although not strictly historical, 
is nerertheless worthy to be rellsned to as a faortory of those times. It is reprinted 
m Fiertz's History of Austria. 

22. Jacob of Konigshoven, an ecclesiastic in Strasbmrg, who died in 1420, wrote a 
Chronicle of Alsace and Strasburg in the Swabian disdect, which, was edited by 
Schilter, and published with his notes in 1698. 

23. Eberhard Windeck, of Mentz, private secretary to the ]&nperar Sfigisnmiid, 
wrote a Biography of that monarch; in Menken. 

24. J. Rothe, domin. in Eisenach, wrote a Chronicle of Thuringia,in the low Saxon 
dialect, as far as 1434; continued by an anonymous writer to 1440. 

25. The Limpnrgian Chronicle firom 1336-89, which contains much, espedally of 
the history of manners, customs, &c., and has been aeveral times reprinted. 

26. Conrad Bothe, chronicler of the Saxons to 1489, in the low German dialect; 
In Leibnitz. 

27. Diebold SchilUng^ about 1480, history of the wan of Burgundy; very wdl 

28. Melchior Pfinzing (of Nuremberg, bom in 1481, Snperial Councillor, and sub- 
sequently FroYost in Mentz) sang tite history of the Emperor Maximilian I. under 
an adopted title: '* Geuertichkeiten und GeKhiditen des loblichen strdtbaien Helds 
und Ritters Tewrdanks." Nuremberg 1517, and subsequently often reprinted. 

29. Marcus Tn^auerwein, priYate aecretary to the Emperor M a ximi lia n L, has 
presented us tikewise with a description of that monarch's great deeds in his work: 
der Weiskunig, 1514; and for which the emperor himself fbmished much of the 

30. Bilibald Pirkheimer (of Eichstadt, bom 1470, Councillor in Nuremberg, and 
subsequently Impoial Councillor, died in 1530) wrote his: Hist. beUi HdYetici, and 
Currus triumph(Uis, honcnri Max. L iuYcntus; together with many other works. 

31. Finally, we must mention two works by Sebastian Franks (bom 1500, died 
1545), the Zeitbuch 1531,and Teutsche Chronik 1538. 

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Budolphus I. of Hapsbiirg, 1273-91— Adolphus I. of Nassau, 1292-98— Albert L of 
Austria, 1298-1308 — Switzeriand — Confeideration of the Swiss — Gessler — William 
Tell— Henry VII. of Luxemburg:, 1308-13— Frederick of Austria, 1314-30 and 
Lewis of Bayaria, 1314-47— Switzerland— The little of Morgarten, 1315 — ^The 
Battle of Miihldorf, 1322— The First Electoral Alliance, 1338— Death of Lewis^ 

The state of commotion in Germany continued to grow daily 
more violent; and when, in 1272, Richard of England died, and 
Alphonso took not the least interest in the German Empire, the 
princes at length, in the year 1273, held an imperial diet at Frank- 
fort, in order to choose an emperor who should meet the views of 
every one. It was necessary that he should be great and wise, in 
order that he might restore the imperial dignity; but at the same 
time not powerful, lest the princes should have reason of appre- 
hension for the security of their own power. To unite both requi- 
sites was a difficult matter; however, good fortune determined the 
election to the advantage of the country. In Switzerland lived 
Count Rudolphus of Hapsburg, whose territories and subjects were 
not very extensive or numerous, but who by his valour, pru- 
dence, and integrity, liad obtained the respect of the higher or- 
ders, and of the people generally. He had been formerly tne com- 
panion and friend of the Emperor Frederick II., who in the year 
1218, had personally stood goafather to liim, and in one of his cam- 
paigns in Italy, possibly after the glorious battle at Cortenuova, had 
conferred upon nim the order of knighthood. During the tur- 
bulent time of the Interregnum, he lived on his family estates, and 
defended, to the utmost of nis power, all who required his assistance 
against the oppression and injustice of the rapacious knights. He 
was for a long time the protector and governor of the cities of 
Zurich and Strasburg, and of the towns situated at the foot of the 
Alps of St. Gotthard. In his manners he displayed the natural sim- 
plicity and frankness of a good and noble man; and in a letter ad' 
dressed to the pope, the Archbishop of Cologne, when speaking of 
him, says : "He reveres the church, he is a lover of justice, a man of 
prudent counsels and piety, beloved of God and man, possessing an 
agreeable form and countenance, and which although of a stem 
expression, still when he speaks is invested with an air of afia- 
bihty which inspires confidence; he possesses besides, a hardy con- 
stitution, and in his wars against the faithless he has always been 

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He was more especially held in liigh esteem by Wemer, Arch- 
bisliop of Mentz, for when on one occasion this prelate took a jour- 
ney to Rome for the purpose of receiving his archbishop's robe, 
deeming the passage through the mountains of Switzerland unsafe, 
he besought Count Rudolpnus to escort him from Strasburg to the 
Alps and back. This Rudolphus did with all the chivalric faith of a 
true knight. During the journey, the archbishop became gradually 
acquainted with his great and rare virtues, and when he was about 
to leave his noble defender, he said, that he only wished to live long 
enough to be able in some degree to reward him for his services ; and 
this opportunity had now arrived. He so urgently recommended 
CSount Kudolphus of Hapsburg for the imperial dignity, that the Ger- 
man princes elected him at once to the throne of the empire. 

Rudolphus, who little e»pected such an elevation, was at that 
moment engaged in war with the city of Basle, in order to reinstate 
in that city, that portion of the nobility who called themselves the 
" Stemers," and who had been expelled by the other party, the 
** Psitfcichers." It was at midnight that the Burggrave of ISfurem- 
berg, Frederick of Hohenzollem, Rudolphus's brother-in-law, ar- 
riv^ at the camp, and brought the unexpected intelligence. Ru- 
dolphus, at first, ^d not believe it; but when the marshal of the 
empire, Henry of Pappenheim, arrived, he sent the Burggrave into 
the city, with an offer of peace to the citizens, he bein^ now, as he 
said, the more power&l party. They accepted it with gladness, 
and were the first to congratulate him upon his elevation. He then 
went to Frankfort, and thence to Aix-la-Chapelle, where he was 
publicly crowned. After the coronation, the princes present, ac- 
cording to the ancient custom, rendered homage to the new emperor 
for their estates. It so happened, that there was no sceptre at hand, 
probably because, owin^ to the many foreign emperors, and the 
consequent changes in the government, the state jewels were dis- 
persed; great concern was, therefore, manifested, as to what the 
emperor could possibly use for performing the ceremony of enfeoff- 
ment. Rudolphus thereupon removed the difficulty, and snatching 
up a crucifix, he employee! that instead of the sceptre: '* For," said 
he, " a symbol by which the world was redeemed, may well supply 
theplace of a sceptre ;" lan^ua^e which pleased all present. 

Tne new emperor began his reign with great rigour but at the same 
time with such patemalbenevolence, that the meanest of his subjects 
experienced the good results therefrom: his new dignity effecting 
no change in the greatness and firmness of his character; and even in 
his outward appearance he remained as simple and unostentatious 
as before. So tittle did he regard external display and magnificent 
apparel, that he did not hesitate, especially in nis great expeditions, 
to wear, equally with his companions in arms, an inferior cloak, and 
even with his own hands to repair his own doublet. Once only we 
find, by his accounts, that he bestowed a large sum of money upon 


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dress for himself, his consort, and childrai, which occoired on the 
occasion of his first interview with the pope. 

In order that he might at once heal and eradicate the disorders 
of the kingdom, he sent the following commmiication to all the 
▼assals and loyal subjects of his realm: ^* I now intend, by the 
blessing of Grod, to re-establish peace throughout this country so 
long distracted, and to take under my protection against further 
tyranny all those who have hitherto groaned under oppresnon; to 
promote which object I confide in the efficient co-operation of my 

He suited the action to the word, and travelled throughout the 
countries of Franconia, Swabia, and the borders of the Khine, and 
wherever he met with a peace-breaker who would not conform to 
order, he punished him with all the severity of the law. This was 
the case especially with regard to the more petir^ robbers and dis- 
turbers; but Rudolphus clearly perceived, that if the imperial dig- 
nity was to be clothed with its original and proper importance, the 
great princes must likewise be compelled to perform their duties, 
and pay him due homage. King Ottocar of Bohemia, however, 
would hear nothing of any such subjection to the emperor; he was 
a much more powerful prince than the Count of Hapsburg, pos- 
sessing in addition to Bohemia, also the AtLstrian estates, whidi after 
the extincticm of the ducal house of Babenberg, he had obtained 
partly by inheritance and partly by money and force of arms, and 
he by no means felt bound to yield. Moreover, the Austrian estates 
complained bitterly of his tyranny and oppressioiL Rudolphus, 
therefore, commenced by summoning Ottocar to appear at the im- 
perial diet of Nuremberg, in 1274^ there to take the usual oath 
of alle gian ce. But the King came neither then nor to a second 
diet at Wurzburg; and to a third held at Augsburg in the year 
1275, he only sent Bernard, Bishop of Seckau, as his representa- 
tive, who was, however, so daring as to begin a Latin speech in the 
presence of the assembled princes, in which he endeavoured to prove 
that the Emperor Rudolphus's election was not le^timate. Rudol- 
phus however interrupted him, saying : ** My lord bishop, if you have 
any affairs to settle with my clergy, speak by all means in lAtin, but 
if you have to say ought touching me or the privileges of my empire, 
speak as is the custom, in the language of the country," and the 

Srinces, when they understood that he intended to impeach Ru- 
olphus's election to the empire, could scarcely refrain from turning 
him out; but the bishop saved them the trouble by departing of his 
own accord, and he hastened away from Nuremberg. 

The ban of the empire was now pronounced against the rebellious 
Ottocar; but he|!was so insolent, and faithless, that he ordered the 
heralds, who had brought to him the declaration of the ban, to be 
tied up at the gates of Prague. He, however, soon suflferied the 
punishment due to him. Rudolphus, in the year 1276, suddenly 
made an attack upon Austria, and subdued the coimtry as £str as 

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Vieima, which he besieged. Ottocar encamped on the opposite side 
of the Danube, thinking himself secured bj the width of the river; 
but Rudolphus, to the astonishment of all, so (juickly thiew a bridge 
acroBB, in order to attack and capture the king m his stronghold, that 
the latter, being greatly alarmed, immediately offered peace. He was 
obliged to resign Austria, Styria, Carinthia, and Camiola. And for 
the ratification of peace a marriage was contracted between the Bohe- 
mian crown prince, Wenzedas, and one of the six daughters of Ru- 
dolphus, and another between a son of the emperor and a Bohemian 
princess. Ottocar then came to Rudolphus, m his encampment, to 
obtain the feoffinent of his estates. This scene did not pass without 
the humiliation and shame of the proud kin^. He had hoped by 
the splendour of his royal retinue to eclipse me unostentatious em* 
peror, but Rudolphus availed himself of this very circumstance in 
order to humble lum: ^' The king of Bohemia has often laughed 
at my grey doublet," said he, *^ but to-day m]r grey doublet shall 
lauffh at hun." Accordingly, arrayed in his plson and simple attire, ' 
and seated upon the imperial throne, he received the king, who, 
glittering in gold and purple, was now obliged, in the presence of 
all the bishops and princes, to humbly suppUcate on his knees for 
pardon, and to do homage for his kingdom of Bohemia and Moravia. 
Hereupon the princes of the empire, as usual after a terminated 
campaign, returned home; but Rudolphus, who by no means trusted 
the proud Irii^, remsdned in Austria with his faithfiil Alsatian and 
Swabian knights, who continued attached to him from the time when, 
under his orders as count of Hapsburg, they fought with him in so 
many battles. And, in reality, very shortly afterwards Ottocar re- 
commenced hostilities, thinking that Rudolphus had now no com- 
petent farces with him. But the emperor with his small but valiant 
Iband boldly marched against his adversary, and maintained a most 
sanguinary battle, on ue 26th of August 1278, at Marchfeld, on 
the other ride of the Danube. The victory was long doubtfiil, and 
Rudolphus himself was in ffreat danger, for amongst the Bohemian 
knights, several had agreed and sworn to attack and destroy him. 
One of them, Henry of Fullenstein, sprang upon him with his 
couched lance, but the emperor avoided the stroke, and dexterously 
thrusting the point of his own spear through the aperture of his an- 
tagonist's helmet, he pierced his nead and he fell dead from his horse* 
At the same moment, however, a gigantic Thuringian knight, who 
also belonged to the conspirators, stabbed the horse of Rudolphus, 
which fell to the ground, and its royal rider with di£5.culty pro- 
tected himself witn his diield from being trampled under ioot, 
until one of his own knights brought him another horse. Being 
tffain mounted, and his genial, Beraiold Eappler, bringing up now 
the rear-guard, he once more dashed against tne enemy, who could 
no longer resist the attack, but was completely put to flight. Never- 
theless, although deserted by his army, Ottocar, as Rudolphus himr 
self testifies, fought bravely to the burt; until, with his horse, he was 

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etruck to the earth and killed by a knight of Styria, whom he 
had formerly much injured and oppressed. When peace was re- 
stored, the marriage between the two royal houses was celebrated, 
and Bohemia was governed in trust for the children of Ottocar by 
the margrave of Brandenburg. 

Rudolphus, however, with the consent of the German princes, 
transferred Austria, as imperial fief to his own house; it was in fact, 
a country reconquered by his arms for the German empire, and one 
of the electoral princes in a letter he wrote in approbation of this 
arrangement said: '^ That it was only just that Kudolphus should 
convey over to his children, if he thought fit, that principality whicL 
he had reconquered for the empire with so much sacrifice of his own 
blood." Accordingly, at an imperial diet, held in Augsburg m 
1282, the emperor took solemn possession thereof, and in the pre* 
sence of all the princes and nobles of the empire, he gave to his 
sons Albert and Rudolphus, the countries of Austria, Styria, Car- 
niola and Vienna; but Carinthia he gave to Meinhard, Count of 
Tyrol, whose daughter his son Albert had married. Thus the 
Emperor Rudolphus became the founder of the powerful house of 

These affairs being settled, he was again, although far advanced in 
years, zealously engaged in seeking to promote the tranquillity of 
the empire. He required the counts, nobles, and cities of the 
several countries throughout the empire to take an oath to pre- 
serve the public peace for the term of five years; and knowinff 
well that all who nourish evil intentions are never sufficiently bound 
by their word, he himself journeyed through all the provinces, and 
routing the freebooter knights from their castles and strongholds, 
completely destroyed them. Thus, on one expedition to Thurin- 
gia, he razed sixty-six such places, and executed twenty-nine of 
tnese brigand nobles; amongst those of the most troublesome 
princes whom he pimished was Count Eberhard of Wurtemberg, and 
whose motto was: *' The Friend of God and enemy of the world;" 
him he besieged in his own city of Stuttgard, and forced him to 
yield and to raze with his own hands the walls of that, his actual 
place of residence. On the other hand, he suffered other persons of 
rank to build fortresses for their defence against the freebooters, as 
in the case of the Bishop of Paderbom, who in 1290 was permitted 
to build two castles upon his domain. 

Thence the Emperor Rudolphus was so fully employed in Germany, 
that he never seriously contemplated going to Italy in order to be 
crowned king. He was also accustomed to say that ''Italy re- 
sembled a lion's den, in which it was true many traces might be 
found of those emperors who had entered it, but very few, if any of 
those who had quitted it" Nay, so little did he follow out the 
plans of former kings with regard to Italy, that in a negotiation 
with the pope, Gregory X., he ceded all the imperial right of in- 
terference within the domain of the church as in the present day. 

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Thence^he could congratukte himself in beholding that destructive 
cause of incitement Temoved which impelled the emperors to make 
their expeditions into Italy. 

Towards the latter end of his reign, Rudolphus was anxious, at an 
imperial diet, held at Frankfort in 1291, to have his own son Albert 
recognised by the princes as Emperor of Germany; but the nobles, 
jealous and tired of the government of Rudolphus, which had 
^ilready become too vigorous and firm for them — ^in as much as it pre- 
-ventea them from following their own selfish interests — ^thinking that 
-Germany would ceaso to be an elective kingdom if the son were 
4dlowed to succeed his father, refused their consent to the propo- 
£al. Displeased with this in^titude Rudolphus took his departure 
in disgust, and proceeded to Basle. 

He had now attained a mreat age, and suffered much firom in- 
firmity and disease; so much so that during the last year of his life 
his pnysicians had only prolonged his existence by artificial means. 
One day, whilst he was sitting at the chess-board, they announced to 
him the near approadi of his death. "Well then," he said, " let us 
away, my fiiends, to Spires, to the tomb of the kings !" Accord- 
ingly he was carefully conveyed to the travelling equipa^, and 
with his train set off and journeyed along the Rhme; he md not, 
however, reach Spires, but died on the road, at Germersheim, on 
4he 30th of September, 1291, aged seventy-four. 

His memory was so universalfy revered throughout Germany, that 
for a long time after his death it was common to say : '^ No, no, that 
is not acting with the honesty of Rudolphus!" He was a warrior 
from his boyhood, and one of his dearest wishes as a youth was 
that he might have the command of a German army of 40,000 in- 
fantry and 4000 cavalry, for with such a force, he said, he would 
have inarched against, and fiiced the whole world. 

Several of the princes were notunfiivourable to Albert of Austria, 
the son of Rudolpnus, but Archbishop Gerhard of Mentz understood 
^80 to arrange matters that his own cousin, Count Adolphus of Nassau, 
was chosen emperor. Adolphus was indeed a brave and valiant 
Imight, and possessed many amiable qualities, but for such a station 
he had neither sufficient tact, nor adequate power and influence. He 
held only the moiety of the territory of Nassau, and his property was 
so insignificant that he could not even cover the expenses attending 
the coronation ; and when he tried to extricate himself from this diffi- 
culty by imposing a tax upon the Jews in Frankfort, he was opposed 
by the mayor of that city; Archbishop Gerhard, therefore, was 
obliged to mortage his ecclesiastical estates in his favour. 

As emperor, he sought to follow in the footsteps of Rudolphus, by 
maintaining the peace of the land, and at the same time endeavour- 
ing to aggrandise his 6wn house; but it was impossible for him to 
succeed in either of these objects, and in the latter especially he 
employed such means as produced disaffection and disgust in the 

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public mind. In tlie fint plaoe, in order to obtain monejr, he pro- 
xnised King Edward I. of England his aid in troops against Phillip 
of France, in return for a considerable sum. lliis aid, however, 
although the money was paid, was not required, as the war between 
the two kings was suspended for that time. The money, however, 
Adolphus devoted nevertheless to the purchase of fbesh lands. Just 
at this period a profligate Margrave, Albert the Base, held his sway 
in Thuringia, and abandoned his amiable and virtuous wife Mar- 
met, the daughter of the Emperor Frederick 11., in order to many 
Cuniffunde of Isenburg. The unhappy mother, when obliged to 
take leave of her chiMren, in the anguish of separation, bit the 
cheek of her son Frederick, who from this circumstance is styled in 
history '' Frederick with the bitten cheek." This unnatural and 
truly base father sold the hereditaiy estates of his two sons by the 
first marriage, to the Emperor Adolphus, and presented the money 
to Albert, the son of Cunigunde. Subsequently, however, Frede- 
rick and Dietzmann, the two sons of Margaret, having come to 
manhood, fought bravely for their inheritance, their people having 
remained faithful to them ; so that the emperor found himself obHged 
to wage an unrighteous war against them — ^he whose primary dut^ it 
was to maintain with all his power and influence right and justice 
towards alL The brothers, however, regained a portion of their lands. 

Such unworthy proceedings had brought down upon Adolphus 
the hatred of Germany; besiaes this, the fickle-minded Archbisnop, 
Oerhard of Mentz, was also dissatisfied with him, because he found 
that he was deceived in the hopes he had cherished of making him 
subservient to his own interests. At his suggestion, therefore, a new 
diet of all the princes and nobles was held, and Adolphus was there 
deposed: inasmuch as he had desolated the churches, received nay 
from a prince (the King of England) inferior to himself, and had like- 
wise diminished the empire instead of extending it, and finally had 
not promoted and maintained the peace of the country. Albert of 
Austria was therefore chosen to replace him. This was the first 
instance in which the electoral princes, without the instigation of the 
Pope, dethroned an emperor of their own accord. The two rival 
sovereigns appealed to arms, marched against each other, and met at 
Worms, where, in 1298, they fought the decisive battle. Adolphus 
was completely overthrown, and fell in the contest mortally wounded 
— as some say, by the hand of Albert himself. 

This Albert was by no means of a kind, friendly disposition like 
his father; on the contrary, he was a severe, austere, and despotic 
ruler; besides, even in his external appearance he was disfigured by 
the loss of an eye. It is true his severity towards the Archbishop 
of Mentz was just, for the emperor not being disposed to consult 
his will in every thing, the archbishop had xbenacingly said: ''That 
he had yet more emperors in his pocket;" and actually adopted 
means for the election of another. But Albert very soon brought 

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him to reason, and obliged him to sue for mercj. In other matteis, 
however, his actions were not always guided by justice. His aim 
was to biing under his subjection sevcand other countries, in which 
he ^ordy succeeded; and ms eyes were now turned towards Thu- 
zin^, Bohemia, and Holland, when all his enterprizes were suddenly 
annihilated by death. In the spring of the year, 1308, he went to 
his hereditary estates on the borders of Switzerland, in order to re- 
establish peace amongst the insurgent Swiss, and to levy great forces 
to enable him to cany on the contemplated war against Bohemia. 
He had with him also his young nephew, John of Swabia, the son 
of his brother Rudolphus, from whom, although he was now out of 
his minority, he withneld the share he inherit^ of the Hapsburg es- 
tates. In vain did the ambitious youth repeatedly beg for his patri- 
mony ; the kin^ always refused. Finding, therefore, all his just de- 
mands in vain, he, with four knights, who also nourished a secret ha- 
tred aeainst Albert, determined at length to assassinate him. On the 
1st of May, 1308, and in the tenth year of his reign, the emperor set 
out from Stein near Baden through Axgau, in omer to return to the 
camp at Reinfeld, where his court was assembled, ^^^hey came 
through -the deep yalleys to the ferry across the Reuss at Windisch. 
Here the conspirators pressed forward with the yiew of entering the 
same boat ¥dth the emperor; and thus, haying separated him from his 
attendants, they crossed the stream together. Haying reached the 
shore, they re-mounted their steeds and proceeded for some distance, 
through the yast cornfields, at ihe base of the hills, on the highest 
of which towered the mighty castle of Hapsburg, when suddenly 
rushing upon the emperor, Duke John of Swabia buried^ his lance 
in his necK, loudly exclaiming: " Such is the reward of injustice !" 
At the same time Rudolphus of Balm, stabbed him with his da^^r, 
and Walter of Esehenbach, divided his head with his sword. The kmg 
sunk to the earth powerless and bathed in his blood. A poor woman, 
who had witnessed the deed, hurried to the spot, and in her arms the 
Emperor Albert breathed his last. The conspirators decamped and 
separated from each other immediately after the tragedy; and, tor- 
mented by their guilty consciences, neyer afterwards met or saw 
each other again. One of them, Rudolphus, of Wart, was taken and 
broken upon the wheel on the spot where the deed of blood was 
committed; the others, as well as the duke himself, ended their days 
in obscurity and misery. 

It was during the year in which King Albert was murdered, that 
the foundation of the Swiss confederacy was laid. The history of 
this yigorous, industrious, and freedom-loving people, who inhabit 
many creater and smaller tracts of country at the foot of, and amidst the 
lofty dhains of mountains which run between Germany, France, and 
Italy, belongs also to the history of Germany; for the origin of the 
Swiss nation is entirely German, and it is only on the borders of this 
country and France that liie French language is spoken. The chief 
dties in the districts towards Swabia, Berne, Zurich, Freiburg, So- 

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leure, &c., were originally, and continued for a long period to be im- 
perial free cities; and the Waldstadte, or forest towns, Schwyz, Uri, 
and Unterwald, were likewise under the immediate protection of the 
empire. Their form of government was very ancient, and seemed, 
as it were, £resh from the hand of nature. The same as among the 
ancient Germans, the whole community of free-men exercised, under 
their Landammann or president, the greatest power; and the strength 
of their constitution lay entirely in the combined will of the people. 
The Emperor of Germany, however, as they belonged to the em- 
pire, had amongst them his Vogts or intendants, who attended to 
the collection of taxes, the coinage and stamping of money, and 
matters by no means burdensome. 

Albert, who was anxious to extend the power of his house, pro- 
posed that they should renounce their connexion with the imperial 
state, and place themselves under the protection of his powerful 
house, possessing as it did such extensive patrimonial possessions in 
their immediate vicinity, which meant, in other words, that, in- 
stead of remaining longer Germans, they should become Haps- 
burgians, or Austrians. They, however, regarding his acts with 
a suspicious eye, refused to agree to his proposal; upon which the 
emperor, in his turn, renounced them, permitting, and even encou- 
raging the intendants to oppress and levy upon the people severe 
and cruelly unjust exactions. He treated these comparatively httle 
known and obscure mountaineers with derision and contempt. He 
appointed as his representatives two Vogts: Hermann Gessler, of 
Bruneck, a haughty, overbearing nobleman, who possessed, near the 
town of Altorf, in Uri, a castle or strong fortress, in which he used 
to force the inhabitants of the neighbourhood to obedience; and 
Beringer of Landenberg, who dwdt at the castle of Samen^ in 
Unterwald ; to those Albert added several other officers, who per- 
formed the fimctions of unter-vogts or sub-intendants. 

But three patriotic and noble-minded Swiss, who felt and deeply 
participated in the misery endured by their native land, whilst de- 
prived of its ancient freedom, united together in order to overthrow 
and crush the tvrannical power of these imperial Vogts. 

The names of these fearless and magnanimous men were : Werner 
Stauffiicher, of Schwyz, Walter Furst of Attinghausen in Uri, 
and Arnold of Mdchthal in Unterwald. They knew well that 
their hardy countrymen, bold and undismayed in tne defence of their 
rights, would readily take part with them. Arnold of Melchthal 
especially, however, had grievous cause for resentment, inas- 
much as the intendant, Landenberg, for some very trifling cir- 
cumstance, had most unjustly taken from him a team of fine oxen, 
and when his father complained of it, Landenberg's officer replied, 
contemptuously: '* If peasants wish to eat bread, let them draw the 
plough themselves." Arnold, incensed at the shameful act itself, 
as well as indignant at the fellow's insolence, broke the servant's 
arm with the stick he held in his hand, and knowing but too well 

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the cruel character of the Vogt, took flight and secreted himself. 
The tyrant, unable to find him, ordered the eyes of his venerable 
father to be plucked out — an instance of savage cruelty but too fre- 
quently presented at that time in this oppressed country. 

These three patriots now uniting together, met regularly during 
the silent hour of night at Biitli, a small meadow in a lonely place, 
between high rocks on the banks of the Lake of Lucerne. At the 
same time they were busily engaged in enlistinff their friends into 
the noble cause, and on the night of the Wednesday before Martin- 
mas, in the year 1307, each brought with him to this place ten 
fellow-patriots, men of upright, resolute mind. When these thirty- 
three good and true men were assembled at the Rutli, filled with 
the recollection of their former liberty, and united together by the 
perils of the times in the closest bonds of friendship, the three leaders 
lifted up their hands to heaven, and swore in the name of the Su- 
preme Being, that they would manfully combine in defence of their 
common liberty. The other thirty members following the example 
of their chief, and raising their hands to heaven with equsl ardour and 
enthusiasm, pronounced the same oath. The execution of their plan, 
however, was reserved for the first day of the ensuing new year ; 
and separating now, they each returned to their cottages, where in 
the mean time they preserved the most strict silence, and put up 
their cattle for the wmter. 

Meanwhile, the Vogt or Governor, Hermann Gressler, was shot by 
William Tell, a citizen of Uri, and a native of Burglen, son-in-law of 
Walter Furst. How that fi:ee and brave man refrised, at the command 
of the cruel Vogt, to do homage to a hat, the symbol of his tyranny, 
how he was obliged to shoot an apple from the top of his son's head, 
and how he escaped from the threatened incarceration by leaping 
out of a boat in the midst of a heavy storm, on the Lake of Lucerne, 
and finally of his shooting Gessler at Kiissnacht — all this is well- 
known, and having continued to form the theme of universal praise, 
has been celebrated by the poet and painter, both in ancient and 
modem times, down to the present moment. And although this 
event took place before the liour destined to liberate the country, 
and without the interference of the oppressed people, it nevertheless 
strengthened the courage of the confederates, and was hailed as the 
harbinger of their emancipation by all the sturdy natives of that 
noble and majestic country. 

Early in the morning of the first day of the year 1308, when 
Landenberg, the Vogt, was proceeding from the castle to attend mass 
at Samen, he was met by twenty men of Unterwald with calves, 
goats, sheep, fowls and hares, which, according to the custom of the 
mountaineeis, they brought for his acceptance as a new year's gift. 
The Vogt, pleased with Sieir present, desired the men to convey the 
animals mto the court of the castle. As soon, however, as these 
twenty patriots had entered within the gates, one of them blew a 
horn, at which signal each of them drew K)rth a steel blade concealed 

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beneath his doublet, and fixed it upon the end of his stick, whilst 
thirty more of their comrades luahed down the hill through the wood 
of Erleuy and joining them in the castle, they all took possession of the 

Elace, and nmde the whole garrison prisoners. Landenberg, who 
aving heard the tumult, had fled irom Samen, across the fields, 
towards Alpnach, was pursued and taken; but as the confederates 
had agreed to shed no blood, they having first made him swear to 
quit Switzerland for ever, and never return to it, allowed him to 
depart and seek refuge at ihe court of his emperor. 

JBy similar stratagems to that employed in the taking of the 
castle of Samen, many others were captured and demolished, and 
the various imperial Vogts, with their dependantSi sent beyond the 
borders; so that messengers arrived from eveiy quarter at the Lake 
of Lucerne, with the good news of success. On the following 
Sunday, the 7th of January, *the Swiss met together, and again 
pledged themselves to the ancient oath of confederacy. The next 
and most immediate danger which threatened them was from Kin^ 
Albert, who was resolved to avenge himself upon them for their 
conduct. From this* however, they were in a tew months rescued 
by the arm of Duke John, of Swabia, and his confederates. Never- 
theless, the^ had sdU to sustain some dreadful struggles for their 
newly-acQuired fireedom. 

Aner the death of Albert I. the German princes remained true to 
their piinciple, not to choose several emperors from the same house 
in succession, and therefore as chivalric virtues in their estimation 
surpassed all other, thej elected Count Henry of Luxemburg, who 
was known to be a valiant, manlj hero and xnight. His reien in 
Germany was too short to permit him to do much for its welfare; 
nevertheless, brief as it was, he showed by his conduct that he pos- 
sessed sufficient courage and nobleness of mind to render himself 
worthy of the ancient imperial crown. He likewise made an exoe- 
dition to Italy,* whither no emperor had gone since Conrad I V . ; 
and there he testified his noble and chivalric principles by efiecting 
a reconciliation between the (juelfs and the Ghibelins, thus agaia 
uniting together, under the ascendancy of the government, those 
whose minds had been distracted with natred and discord; but the 
violence of the parties soon again broke forth, and Henr^ himself 
sunk, probably ttieir sacrifice. After being crowned at Kome, he 
died suddenly in the midst of their contention, in an expedition 
against Robert, King of Naples, at Buonconventi, near Sienna, on 
the 24th of August, 1313, as was thought by poison. 

He ac(|uired for his house the kingdom of Bohemia, and by this 
means laid the foundation of its greatness. Li Bohemia, Ottocar's 
grand daughter Elizabeth was left as the last survivor of the ancient 
royal race. In a spirit of hatred to the Hapsburgian house, which, 

* Dante was among the first to do homage to him on his arrival, and presented him 
with a letter and a I^tin disconrse upon the imperial dominion, in which he, as a 
Ghibeliii, highly extoUed it, aod invited Henzy to make a Tigorous use of his power. 

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after this princess, possessed the next claim upon Bohemia, the no- 
bility gave this heiress in marriage to John,the son of the emperor, and 
-with her the house of Luxemburg obtained the royal crown of Bo- 
hemia, to which was afterwards added also the imperial crown. 

In ihe new election of emperor the piinces were far from being 
unanimous; the one party, with the Archbishop of Mentz at their 
head, choae Lewis oi Upper Bavaria; the other, led by the Arch- 
bishop of Cologne, selected Duke Frederick of Austria, sumamed 
the handsome, because of his fine and noble form. Lewis was 
crowned at Aix-la-Chapelle and Frederick at Bonn, with the real 
insignia of the empire. Thence a new war broke out in Germany; 
everywhere there was violent opposition. The greatest number of 
towns, especially those in Swabia, were for Lewis, and, as might be 
expected, the Swiss people also; on the other hand, the nobility were 
chiefly for Frederick of Austria. Moreover, Frederick had a power- 
Ad auy in the person of his brother, Duke Leopold, who was a 
brave knight and a good general. This prince resolved in the first place 
to avenge the honour of the Austrian house upon the Swiss people, and 
be forthwith advanced into their country, accompanied by a numer- 
ous retinue of knijQ:hts. He threatened to trample these boors under 
bis feet, and provided himself with an abundant supply of ropes for 
ike execution of their rebellious chiefs; for he had no idea of the 
astonishing feats which an oppressed people are capable of perform- 
ing in the cause of their freedom, however unskilled in the ordinary 
tactics of war. 

The duke divided his army into two divisions, and advanced 
firom Aegeri to Morgarten, towards the mountains of Schwyz. 
The heavy cavalry, consisting of knights clad in complete iron ar- 
mour, the pride and flower of the army, formed the van guard, for 
the blown heroism of the duke had attracted the whole of the 
ancient nobilily of Hapsburg, Lenzburg, and Kvburg, to join his 
ranks, together with the Vogt of Landenber^, ana the xnale branches 
of Geadi^B family, all burning to revenge his death. 

But the confederates when 3iey received the news that'the enemy 
was approaching, did not in the least waver in their courage and 
heroism, but prepared at once for battle. On that same night four 
hundred men from Uri landed at Brunnen, in Schwyz, and a few 
hours afterwards they were joined by three hundred men firom Un- 
terwald; they then all marched across the fields, and joined the 
main body m Schwyz. There they were gladly welcomed by a 
venerable patriot, Ruaolphus Redin, of Biberegg, so aged and in&m 
that he could scarcely totter, yet so skilled and prudent in war, that 
the people, as he now drew up their plan of attack, gladly listened 
to his sage advice, which thev scrupulously followed: "Our grand 
aim, my sons, must be," said ne, " as we are so inferior in numbers, 
to prevent the duke horn gaining any advantage by his superior 
force." He then showed them how they must occupy the heights 
of Morgarten and the Sattel mountain, in order to surprise the 

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duke's army in the narrow pass, and falling upon its flank, thti0 
divide and ciit it off. 

The small but united band of patriots, after they had knelt down, 
and implored the help of God, according to ancient custom, went 
forth to the number of thirteen hundred, and gained the summit of 
the Sattel mountain, near the Einsiedeln boundary. Here they 
were joined by an unexpected body of fifty men, who on account of 
some dispute had been banished from Schwyz, but who on being 
made acquainted with the danger that threatened their country, 
forgot their quarrel, and repaired to Morgarten, resolved to sacrifice 
their Uves