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12mo, half leather, numerous maps, plans, and 


ANCIENT HISTORY. By Willis M. West of the University of 

MODERN HISTORY. By Willis M. West. 

HISTORY OF ENGLAND. By Charles M. Andrews of Bryn 
Mawr College. 

HISTORY OF GERMANY. By Victor C Coffin of the University 
of Wisconsin. Jn-prepdraiioft. 

and William P. Trent of Columbia University. 


l^ortoooU Ifixtin 

J. S. Cnshing & Co. — Berwick & Smith Co. 

Norwood, Mass., U.S.A. 



My Ancient History closed with the epoch of Charlemagne. 
The present volume traces the interaction and development 
of the various forces which the ancient world had brought 
together and which had been partially fused in the Empire of 
Charlemagne. The treatment covers eleven centuries;^ but 
as much space is given to the last hundred years as to the 
preceding thousand, and, throughout, an unusual amount of 
attention is paid to the history of England. It seems fitting 
to offer a brief explanation for these two departures from 

(a) For American students some knowledge of English history 
is essential. Much of that history, however, is meaningless 
or misleading, apart from its setting in the history of the 
continent of Europe ; and, whatever be ideally desirable, many 
secondary schools find it impossible to devote one year to 
modern Europe and another to England. Therefore I have 
tried to combine in some measure the advantages of the two 
separate subjects. If the result be satisfactory, vexing prob- 
lems of time and arrangement are simplified. 

On the other hand, as American history more and more is 
gaining an important place for itself in high school courses, 
that subject need be touched upon in a book of this kind only 
for illustration or where the connection of events requires it. 

(b) Four years ago, when I was asked to write a Modem His- 
tory for high schools, I agreed to do so provided I might give 
half my space to the period since the beginning of the French 
Revolution. There was then no text-book upon any such 
plan, but within a few months past two excellent books have 

1 This use of the term ** Modern History " is discussed in § 4. 

• •  



appeared with a somewhat similar distribution of space. This 
is good evidence of a wholesome trend in historical teach- 
ing. We can well afford to treat with brevity the more ephem- 
eral phases of the Middle Ages, however quaint, if thereby 
can adequate space be won for the marvelous nineteenth 
century, and so for an intelligent introduction to the twen- 
tieth. When a choice must be made, we ought to sacrifice the 
past to the present. 

In connection with this principle, the present volume is still 
peculiar in the large proportion of attention given to the most 
recent history. An author is strongly tempted to pass lightly 
over the generation since the Franco-Prussian War, and the 
diflSculties of the opposite course are apparent. Yet only by 
surmounting them is one main end of our study attainable. 
To check the story at 1871 is to stop upon the brink of a 
vast and sudden change, and therefore to leave for the youth 
a chasm between past and present much wider than that 
represented ordinarily by a human lifetime. The high school 
course in history ought to put the student in touch with 
present movements in politics and society. To secure this 
result, the teacher must seize eagerly upon striking oppor- 
tunities, as they arise, to connect current history with the 
closing narrative in the text The latter part of the book 
affords such aid as it can in numerous suggestions for reports 
of this nature. 

It is a pleasure to renew my acknowledgment of obligation 
to my colleagues. Professor Albert B. White and Professor 
Frank Maloy Anderson. Each of these gentlemen has read 
most of the book in manuscript or in proof, and to both I am 
indebted for wise and scholarly suggestions and for cautions 
against errors. To my daughter, Ruth West, I owe the 
careful preparation of the index. 



MiNNBAPOLiB, Jannary 1, 1904. 



List of Maps Iz 

List of Illustrations x 

1-6. INTRODUCTION : The Elements, the Field, and the 

Periods 1 




6-10. L Dismption of the Empire of Charlemagne . 

11-17. IL The New Barbarian Attack 12 

18-10. ILL Feudalism 22 

41-44. IV. France from Verdun to the Twelfth Century . 61 

46-61. V. Germany from Verdun to the Empire, 843-962 . 66 

62-66. VL The Holy Roman Empire of the German People, 

962-1066 60 

66-76. VII. Empire and Papacy, 1066-1122 .... 74 

77-86. VIII. Empire and Papacy, 1122-1273 .... 85 

87-88. IX. Results of the Straggle between Emperors and Popes 94 



89-91. I. Conditions in the East before the Crusades . . 98 
92-105. IL The Crusades 103 



REFORMATION, 1100-1620. 

106-116. L The Rise of the Towns .116 

117. IL The Rise of Monarchic States .... 182 
























Europe by Separate States : England to 1600 . 183 
Europe by Separate States : France . . 168 

Europe by Separate States : Spain . . 168 

Europe by Separate States : Scandinavia . . 170 
Europe by Separate States : Germany . . .171 
Europe by Separate States : Switzerland . .174 
Europe by Separate States : The Netherlands 177 

The Papacy in the Fourteenth and Fifteenth 

Centuries 179 

New Perils from the East : Tartars and Turks 184 

The Political Situation at the Opening of the 

Reformation 187 

THE RENAISSANCE, 1360-1660. 

174-177. I. Nature of the Renaissance 191 

178-186. II. Medieval Science and Philosophy .... 193 

187-194. IIL Literature and the Fine Arts 205 

196-199. IV. The New Learning of the Renaissance . . .217 


STATES, 1520-1789. 


200. I. The Main Lines of Development .... 225 
201-204. n. Tables of Sovereigns 226 

REFORMATION, 1620-1648. 

206-218. L The Rise of Protestantism 228 

219-232. II. A Century of Religious Wars .... 240 



233-236. I. Preliminary : Survey of the Yorkist and Tudor 

Periods, 1486-1603 264 

236-244. II. Religious and Political Conditions under the Early 

Stuarts 269 



24^248. ni. The Great Rebellion and the Commonwealth . 272 
249-250. IV. The Restoration and the Revolution . .276 

261-254. V. ConsUtational Gams 278 


255-257. L General Characteristics 281 

258-265. II. TheAgeof Louis XIV— French Leadership . 282 
266-289. lU. The Rise of Russia . . .288 

270-280. IV. The Rise of Prussia 291 

281-284. V. The Expansion of England ..... 299 



285-287. I. Fundamental Characteristics 803 

288-312. IL Conditions before the Revolution .... 806 
31^-332. III. First Period, 1789-1792 : Constitutional Monarchy 323 
333-346. IV. Second Period, 1792-1795 : the First French Re- 
public under Revolutionary Government . 341 
347-355. V. Third Period, 1795-1799: the Republic under the 

Directory 356 

356-375. VL The Consulate and the Empire, 1799^1815 . . 363 


376-380. I. TheCongressof Vienna— Rearrangements . . 882 

381-401. IL Attempts to maintain the System of 1815 . 388 


402-412. L The " Divine Right " Monarchy, 1816-1830 . . 406 

413-418. IL The Constitutional Monarchy, 1830-1848 . 418 
419-424. IIL The Revolution of 1848 and the Second Republic, 

1848-1862 417 

426-432. IV. The Second Empire, 1862-1870 .... 422 

433-451. V. The Third Republic, to the Present Time . . 430 





463-466. L The Reyolntions of 1848 and the Restorations . 440 

467-468. n. The Unification of Italy 467 

464-471. IIL The Unification of Germany 466 

472-487. IV. The German Empire since 1871 . . .478 

488490. V. Italy since 1870 494 

491-493. VL Aastria-Hongaxy since 1848 498 



496-604. L The Iberian Peninsula, Spain and Portugal . . 604 

606-611. IL Holland and Belgium 616 

612-620. IIL The Swiss Republic 619 

621-626. IV. The Scandinavian Kingdoms 627 



627-628. I. Conditions in 1816 683 

629-640. IL Political Reform 642 

641-648. in. Legislation for Social Reform, to 1884 . . .668 

649^-662. IV. The Irish Question 669 

663-666. V. English Politics in the Twentieth Century . 674 

666-664. VL Colonies and Dependencies 676 


666-676. L Russia 683 

676-582. IL The Balkan States 694 


683-684. I. European Alliances 606 

685-691. II. The Expansion of Europe into Africa and Asia . 607 

692-594. III. Moral and Scientific Movements, and the Outlook 618 




All the maps, with two exceptions (Nos. 4 and 14) , are full-page maps. 
Nob. 15, 23, 31, 34, 37, and 30 are double-page maps. 


1. The Carolingian Realms at the Division of Verdun, 848. 

Colored facing 10 

2. European Peoples about 900. Colored . facing 14 

3. England about 000 17 

4. The Empire of Knut the Great 20 

5. Political Divisions of Europe about 000. Colored facing 60 

6. The Holy Roman Empire, 062-1000. Colored . . facing 63 

7. German Colonization on the East, 800-1400 . facing 71 

8. The Holy Roman Empire in the Eleventh Century, in the Time 

of Henry IIL Colored facing 73 

0. Italy in the Time of the Hohenstaufen. Colored facing 03 

10. Germany and Italy during the Interregnum, 1254-1273. Colored 

facing 06 

11. The Eastern Empire in the Tenth and Eleventh Centuries . 101 

12. Europe and Other Mediterranean Lands by Religions, about 

1100 (Time of the First Crusade). Colored facing 102 

13. The Crusading Latin States in Syria 108 

14. The Latin Empiiejat Constantinople, 1204-1260, with Neigh- 

boring States 110 

16. Dominions of the Hansa and of the Teutonic Order. Colored 

following 130 

16. England and France at Different Periods (a Series of Four 

Maps). Colored facing 164 

17. The Spanish Kingdoms of the Middle Ages. Colored facing 160 

18. Europe toward the Year 1400. Colored . . . facing 173 
10. The Swiss Confederacy, 1201-1600 175 

20. Southeastern Europe at the entrance of the Ottoman Turks. 

Colored facing 185 

21. The Ottoman Dominions at their Greatest Extent .186 

22. Europe in the Time of Charles V. Colored . facing 180 

23. Germany about 1660. Colored follomng 233 

24. The Netherlands at the Truce of 1600 243 

26. Territorial Changes effected by the Thirty Years' War. Colored 

facing 262 



26. Europe, 1740-1789. Colored facing 284 

27. Prussia at the Death of Frederick the Great .... 297 

28. Europe in 1802. Colored facing 364 

29. Europe in 1810. Colored .:.... facing 378 

30. Europe in 1815. Colored facing 388 

31. The Germanic Confederation from 1815 to 1867. Colored 

following 393 

32. The Growth of Italian Unity 466 

33. Prussia, 1807-1871 473 

34. llie German Empire since 1871. Colored . follotoing 480 

35. Austria-Hungary, to show Race Distribution. Colored facing 500 

36. The Balkan States after 1878-1881. Colored . facing 597 

37. Europe about 1900. Colored following 604 

38. Africa in 1900. Colored facing 609 

89. The World in 1900, to show the Possessions of the World 

Powers. Colored following 612 


1. Remains of the Viking Ship found at Gdkstad . 

2. Conway Castle (a typical feudal castle). From Old Englatid 
8. Plan of a Medieval Castle of the Larger Sort, with Moat and 

Drawbridge. From Gautier's La Chevalrie 

4. Drawbridge and Portcullis. From Gautier's La Chevalrie 

5. Guy's Tower, Warwick Castle. Erom Old England 

6. Kenilworth Castle To-day 

7. Kenilworth Castle, as it appeared in 1620; after a fresco paint- 

ing of that date. From Old England .... 

8. Stoke Castle. A modest manor house of the thirteenth century 

From Turner's Domestic Architecture 

9. Interior of the Hall of Stoke Castle 

10. Dancers. As represented in an English manuscript of the thir 

teenth century. From Lacroix, Moeurs., Usages^ etc. 

11. A Court Fool. After a medieval miniature in brilliant colors 

12. Ancient Manor House, Melichope, England ; in its present 

condition. From Wright's Homes of Other Days 

13. Interior View of a Window in Melichope Manor House . 









14. One of the Open Fields of the Manor of Lower Heyford, Ox- 

fordshire. From Andrew^s History of England . 42 

15. A Reaper's Cart. After Jusserand's English Wayfaring Life ; 

from a fourteenth century manuscript .... 48 

16. Falconry. From a medieval manuscript reproduced by Lacroix 45 

17. Knight in Armor. From Lacroix, Vie Militaire ... 46 

18. Monks busy in Field Labor. From Lacroix ; after a thirteenth 

century French manuscript .47 

19. The Temporal and the Spiritual Power ; a mosaic of the tenth 

century in the Church of St. John, Rome. From Lacroix 68 

20. The Court of Lions, Alhambra 99 

21. Doorway to the Hall of the Ambassadors, Alhambra . 100 

22. Church of the Holy Sepulcher at Jerusalem ; present condition 104 

23. A Crusader's Effigy. Funeral slab in Salisbury Cathedral . Ill 

24. Old Street in Rouen ; present condition 118 

25. Town Hall, Oudenarde, about 1525. From Lttbke . . .120 

26. Ruins of a Rhine Castle, with a Modem Town below . . 123 

27. St Mark's, Venice 128 

28. Windows of a House in Venice. Twelfth century. From Ruskin 129 

29. Windows of Venetian Palace. Thirteenth century. From 

Ruskin 130 

30. Interior of Hall of Merchant Princes at Dantzig. From LUbke 131 

31. Battle of Hastings. Bayeux Tapestry. From Old England . 136 

32. William the Conqueror and the Pope's Consecrated Banner. 

From the Bayeux Tapestry 137 

33. A Norman Ship. From the Bayeux Tapestry .... 138 

34. Norman Doorway, St. Peter's, Northampton. Yiom Old England 139 
36. Silver Penny of William I 140 

36. Silver Penny of Stephen 140 

37. Stephen. After an engraving based on a coin portrait .141 

38. EflBgy of Henry II. From his tomb. From Old England 143 

39. Sections of Magna Carta in Facsimile 147 

40. A Fourteenth Century Bridge in Rural England, near Danby 

in Oxfordshire. From Jusserand^s English Wayfaring Life 152 

41. Seals of Edward III ; before and after the assumption of the 

arms of France 153 

42. An English Carriage of the Fourteenth Century. After Jus- 

serand's English Wayfaring Life ; from a fourteenth cen- 
tury psalter 154 

43. The Parliament of 1399, which deposed Richard 11. From Old 

England, which follows a contemporary manuscript . .159 



44. Hall of the Cloth-makera' Guild at Ypres. From Ltibke . . 178 

45. Monk teaching the Globe. After a thirteenth century manu- 

script From Lacroiz, Science and Literature . 194 

46. Seal of the Faculty of Theology of Paris. Fourteenth century. 

From Lacroiz, Science and Literature .107 

47. Seal of the Picardy Nation, University of Paris. Fourteenth 

century. From Lacroiz 198 

48. Illustration from a Fifteenth Century Manuscript From La- 

croix, VieMilitaire 211 

49. Salisbury Cathedral, from the Southeast Built 1200-1260. 

From Cathedral Churches of England . .212 

60. Salisbury Cathedral. View from south to north transept . 213 

61. The Cloisters, Salisbury Cathedral 214 

62. Cathedral of Rheims 216 

6«3. Church of Saint-Maclou at Rouen. Fifteenth century . .216 
64. A Lower Comer of the Ducal Palace, Venice . . . .217 

66. Charles I. After a painting by Van Dyck .... 273 

66. Cromwell. After the painting by Sir Peter Lely . . . 276 

67. Louis XIV 287 

68. Church of St Bafiil, Moscow 288 

69. Peter the Great After a portrait by Eneller .... 289 

60. Frederick the Great After a painting by Ramberg . . 293 

61. Voltaire 316 

62. Napoleon at Areola. After the painting by Gros . . 360 

63. The Vendome Column, Paris 367 

64. Arch of Triumph, Paris , . 369 

66. Napoleon toward the Close of his Rule 379 

66. Napoleon III 424 

67. *^ France is Tranquil." A cartoon from Harper* 8 Magazine^ 

representing France under Napoleon III . . 426 

68. Mazzini 468 

69. Victor Emmanuel n 460 

70. Cavour 461 

71. Garibaldi 463 

72. Bismarck 475 

73. Proclamation of the German Empire 476 

74. William I of Prussia 477 

76. First Adhesive Penny Postage Stamp 664 

76. Sir Robert Peel 666 

77. Gladstone 668 

78. The First Railway Passenger Train 614 




The chief interest in history lies in the fact that it is not yet finished, 

— Ashley. 

1. A Summary of EarUer Ptogress.^ — Seven thousand years 
ago the Nile and Euphrates valleys developed an imposing 
material civilization : men learned to practise many arts and 
crafts, to build roads and canals, and, with ships and caravans, 
to seek out the treasures of distant i*egions ; while the accumu- 
lated wealth was spent by the rulers with gorgeous pomp and 
splendor. War and trade carried this culture slowly around 
the eastern coasts of the Mediterranean ; and, before 1500 b.c, 
Phoenician colonists had scattered its seeds widely in many 
r^ODS. A thousand years later, Persia saved the slow gains 
of ages from barbarian ravagers, and united and organized the 
civilized East under an improved political system. All this 
Oriental civilization, however, was marred by serious imperfec- 
tions : its governments were despotic ; its art was conventional 
and monstrous; its thought, extravagant and superstitious. 
At besty its benefits were for the few; it was uniform and 
passive; and it threatened to become stagnant. Among the 
Hebrews, it is true, there had grown up a pure religion whose 
truth and grandeur were to influence profoundly the future 

1 The Btory of this earUer progress has been told in a preceding volume of 
this series of histories, — West's Ancient History. Reference will be made to 
that Yolome simply as Ancient History. 



world, but for centuries to come it was to remain an exclusive 
possession of one small people.^ 

But now appeared a new culture. A widely diffused Euro- 
pean civilization had been rising slowly, through obscure 
periods of time. It borrowed from the East; but from the 
first it had its own peculiar traits : it was marked by diversity, 
freedom, and active energy, and intellectually by moderation, 
and naturalness.^ In the hands of the Greeks, about 500 b.c, 
this culture burst into sudden bloom. Then for nearly two 
hundred years it wrestled with Persia in war; and finally, 
through the genius of Alexander, it welded East and West 
into a Graeco-Oriental world. 

In the end, however, the huge passive East would have 
absorbed the small Greek creative element, had not the latter 
found reinforcement from the second peninsula of Southern 
Europe. Rome, drawing largely from the Greek culture, gave 
a Latin civilization to the western Mediterranean coasts, and 
then combined the Latin West with the older Greek East into 
a Graeco-Roman world. The Roman Empire embraced the 
Mediterranean fringe of the three Old- World continents, — a 
broad belt stretching from the Euphrates to Britain, between 
the southern deserts and the northern waters of the Rhine, 
the Danube, and the Black Sea. In language and culture, the 
West remained Latin, and the East, Greek ; but in politics and 
law and in patriotic sentiment, the fusion was complete. 

For nearly four centuries after the birth of Christ this vast 
region rested in peace and prosperity, while, under the favorable 
conditions of this social unity, Christianity grew up and spread 
victoriously over the civilized world. Then, happily not until 
then, the Empire began to disintegrate, and there came upon the 
stage two new forces, the Teuton and the Slav, and soon after a 
third in Mohammedanism. In four frightful centuries of invasion 
and disorder, Asia and Africa became the prey of the Moham- 
medan and were wholly lost to our western civilization, while 

^Ancient History, §§ 67, 78, 506. ^Ancient History, §§ 80, 81. 


the two halves of Europe fell asunder, — Southeastern Europe 
becoming Slavic-Greek, and Western Europe Romano-Teutonic. 

From this time, it is this Western Europe and its offshoots 
with which history is chiefly concerned. At first it seemed sub- 
merged in barbarism, but gradually two new organizing forces 
grew up, — the papacy and the kingdom of the Franks, — and 
the restoration of the Koman Empire by Charlemagne and the 
Pope, in the year 800, marks the successful fusion of the old and 
new elements in the West. This event, therefore, makes a con- 
venient close for the great period of human development that 
we call Ancient History. In that period the various forces that 
were to make our western world of to-day had been brought 
together. The subsequent working of these forces is the theme 
of Modem History,^ and will be treated in the present volume. 

2. The Stage and the Actors in Modem History. — For nine 
hundred of its eleven hundred years since 800 a.d., human 
progress was made almost wholly within the limits of the 
Komano-Teutonic Empire of Charlemagne and in its fringes in 
the new Teutonic states of England and of the Scandinavian 
peninsulas. The scene of history had shifted to the west and 
had shrunken in size. Some Teutonic districts outside the old 
Koman world had been added; but vast areas of the Koman 
territory itself had been abandoned,* and the Mediterranean — 

1 The seyen centuries from 800 to li}00 are sometimes classed, with the four 
oentaries of disorder before Charlemagne, as the Middle Age. The three hun- 
dred years from SOO to 1100, in their gloom and disorder, do resemble the 
unhappy period from 400 to 800 ; and indeed, in accordance with recognized 
custom, this volume sometimes uses the term '* medieval " to cover the thou- 
sand or eleven hundred years of fusion and reorganization that intervene 
between the progressive period of the ancient world and the progress of the 
modem world since 1500. However, in order to bring out more clearly the 
real value and meaning of these interniediate centuries, this volume prefers to 
regard the four hundred years before Charlemagne as the close of Ancient 
Hntory, and the period after Charlemagne as the beginning of Modem His- 
tory (cf. Ancient History ^ §§ 4 and 593, note 2). 

^ The Euphrates, the Nile, the eastern Mediterranean, all Asia with East- 
ern Europe to the Adriatic, and Airica with Western Europe to the Pyrenees, 
were gone. 


the center of the old Roman world — had become an ill- 
defended moat between Christian Europe and Mohammedan 
Africa, while its place as the highway of cinlization was taken 
over, as well as might be, by the Rhine and the North Sea. 

In the later centuries of the modem era, it is true, especially 
in the last two hundred years, this little Europe was to expand 
marvelously over new continents and to replace the Roman 
Mediterranean and the Teutonic Rhine by the mightier high- 
ways of the Atlantic and Mississippi, by the passage round, the 
Cape, and by the Indian Ocean. To-day, too, we are in the 
throes of a yet more wondrous growth; and all eyes center 
upon the Pacific, where ancient civilized peoples of the Far 
East, — unknown to either Alexander or to Rome, — are about 
to mingle their life with ours. But when Modern History 
began, all this growth was hidden in the distant future. For 
almost a thousand years, even the eastern half of Christian 
Europe was to count for little in our development : not until 
the nineteenth century, indeed, were the great Slav empire of 
the Korth and the new Slav and Greek nations of Southeastern 
Europe to be drawn into the current of our civilization. And 
with all the expansion of the stage in these later times, the 
chief actors, so far, have been the Teutonic and tlie LcUin peoples, 
and their descendants in the new regions of tJie world to which 
European culture has recently been transplanted, 

3. The Inheritance with which Modern History began. — 
Through Rome, the western peoples were also the heirs of 
Greek mind and Oriental hand,^ but much of this inheritance 
was to be recovered only in later times. In 800 a.d., Europe 
was still sunk deep in the barbarism that followed the long 
anarchy of the invasions, and the brief revival of Charlemagne 
had not gone far toward restoring civilization. Schools and 

1 " There was a great heritage of manual skill and mechanical arts which 
had been slowly built up in Egypt, Phoenicia, Greece, and Carthage, and 
which was incorporated in the culture which the Romans difiFused ; and it may 
be doubted if any of the industrial arts known and practised by the Romans 
was wholly lost in the West." — Cunningham, Western Civilization^ II, 6. 


learning were almost extinct ; commerce hardly existed ; com- 
munication between district and district was almost impossible ; 
money was so scarce that revenue had to be collected in prod- 
uce; and manners and morals were alike deplorable. When 
we turn from the darker side to count the positive institu- 
tions with which Modem History began, we observe (1) the 
Christian church, with the papacy and monasticism; (2) the 
Empire; (3) the remains of municipal life in Southern 
Europe ; (4) the serf organization of labor ; (5) the new nobil- 
ity, with the germs of the coming feudal system ; (6) a new 
Komano-Teutonic kingship; and (7) popular assemblies of 
freemen.' There was also for all educated men a common 
language, the Latin, and, through it, a common culture. 

4. The Coarse of Development after Charlemagne.^ — Modem 
History at first sight seems a pathless maze, — many threads 
of development crossing each other in curious tangles. For 
our purpose, however, we may find a guide through the laby- 
rinth by fixing our attention upon the successive ways in which 
European society has organized itself. (1) First we see a single 
Latin Christendom, bound together feebly by the church, but, 
for most political purposes, broken into innumerable fragments 
under aristocratic rulers. (2) Then, Christendom divided into 
two camps, but at the same time the* small "feudal" units 
combined into a few large states ruled by monarchs, (3) Lastly, 
the peoples in these new units took the final control of the 
government into their own hands, and the monarchic states 
became nation-states. These three great forms of European 
society give us a basis for dividing Modem History. 

a. For seven hundred years after the disappearance of Charlemagne^s 
Empire, Western Europe found its chief bond of union in the Roman 

1 Soch assemblies on a national scale were soon to die out, but local assem- 
bUes, especially in the English coantles, were to have important influence on 
later political development. Ancient History , §§ 613, 614. 

* This section may be read now by students ; but they should not be obliged 
to reproduce it ; and it will have more meaning as the stages of development 
are reached. 


(Latin) church. Through this organization it formed one Latin Christen- 
dom. Nations were not yet made. Not Britain or Italy or France, but 
Christendom, was the true fatherland for men and the true object of 
patriotism. The period falls into two main subdivisions. (1) From 
814 to about 1100, we have three centuries of **Dark Ages," caused by a 
new series of barbarian invasions and continued by the ** feudal " violence 
of the local military organization that society adopted to ward off these 
invasions. (2) From 1100 to 1500, Europe was astir with new impulses 
to progress, — intellectual, commercial, and political.^ Town life, uni- 
versities, new religious movements in and out of the church, new princi- 
ples of government, the rediscovery of Greek learning, new literature, 
new art, new inventions, greater material wealth and comfort, were 
making over society. 

The first two centuries of this period, from 1100 to 1800, were the age of 
the crusades, which tremendously augmented all the impulses to change, 
and these two hundred years are sometimes treated as a distinct period. 
Some writers, indeed, close the first great age with the crusades, and 
make the two hundred years from 1300 to 1520 the beginning of the next 
age, — to which they certainly bear a strong likeness in many features. 
For our purpose, however, it is more convenient to follow the more gen- 
eral custom, and to class these two centuries with the preceding ones. 
It should be clearly seen, of course, that they contained the forces which 
were to bring that age to a close. They prepared the *' Reformation,'* 
and formed the transition to the next great period, the second of the 
three into which we divide Modem History. 

h. A number of remarkable events gi'oup themselves near the end of 
the fifteenth century : the invention of printing ; the use of gunpowder, 
which destroyed the superiority of the knight in armor ; the discovery of 
America (1492) ; the definite beginning of the Reformation (1520) ; and 
the consolidation of strong monarchic governments, in England under the 
Tudors, in France under Louis XI, and in Spain under Ferdinand and 
Isabella. These events, and the forces that grew out of them, revealed a 
new wcfrld of thought and feeling, as well as a new physical hemisphere, 
and Europe passed into a new age, with a new form of social organizar- 
tion. Latin Christendom was broken into two camps by the Protestant 

^ The church remained the central fact for Europe all through these cen- 
turies, although its importance is greatly obscured in the first sub-period by 
the disorder and violence in society, and in the closing part of the second sub- 
period by the rising intellectual revolt which was to disrupt it and by the 
rising monarchies which were soon to displace it as the type of European 


Reformation. The church, bo far as it had represented the chief social 
organization, gave way to monarchic ** states, ^^ which remained the form 
under which society progressed for the next three centuries, down to 
the French Revolution (1789). The intermarriages and treaty relations 
of the ruling families, and the policy of preserving the " balance of power, ^* 
led to the beginning of modem international law, and in some measure 
preserved the unity of Europe. 

The age was one of almost constant war : during the first half of the 
period, — to the Peace of Westphalia (1648), — the wars largely grew 
out of religious differences ; in the second half, they grew out of the 
personal ambitions of the ruling monarchs, the commercial jealousies 
between the different countries, and the rivalry for the new worlds east 
and west. 

c. The last century of the second age (the eighteenth century) showed 
a rising consciousness of the rights of the people. ^ All over Europe, 
governments took a new tone toward the subject masses, acknowledging 
the duty of governing /or them, and despots undertook great paternal and 
beneficent reforms (§ 280). In France, in the last years of the eighteenth 
century, this movement was suddenly taken up by the people themselves ; 
and after the French Revolution, monarchic states gave way rapidly to 
nation-states, — the form in which society organizes itself to-day. > 

5. The Divisions of Modern History in this Volume. — Thus 
the progress in Modern History has been from theocracy arid 
fendal aristocracy to monarchy and then to democracy. This 
volume will treat Modern History under the following great 
divisions : — 

^ In England, which at this time was far ahead of the rest of Europe politi- 
cally, the king had already ceased to be the state ; but even in England until 
well into the nineteenth century, no large part of the nation had really entered 
into political power. 

« Louis XIV of France (1643-1716) could say with perfect truth, " I am the 
State." To-day in nearly all civilized countries the nations are the " states." 
Some thinkers urge that our nation-states are not the final or the ideal 
form of social organization, and that they are even now tending to give way 
to a higher form in greater race federations (Teutonic, Latin, Slav), or in 
that supreme ** federation of the world " of which Tennyson wrote. The 
student of history will learn not to look upon any social form as unchangeable. 

" Our little systems have their day ; 
They have their day and cease to be. 
They are but broken lights of Thee, 
And Thou, O Grod, art more than they." 


Part I. Latin Ghristendoin, from Charlemagne to Luther 
(sevea centuries), 814-1520: Europe a theocraq/, modi- 
fied by the disorder of local feudal aristocracy, and, toward 
the close, by the development of monarchic states. 

1. A new series of "Dark Ages," from the Norse 

invasions to the crusades, or the ojge of Feudal- 
ism (three hundred years), 814-1100. 

2. Four hundred years of slow revival, 1100-1520, 

the first half known as the period of the crusades 
and the latter part as Hie Renaissance. 
Part II. Monarchic States : the disruption of Christendom and 
the rise of European monarchies^ 1520-1789. 

1. The ReforTMUion and wars of religion, 1520-1648. 

2. Dynastic and commercial wars, 1648-1789 : colonial 

Part III. Nation States: recent and contemporary Europe 
from the Frencfi Revolution to to-day, 1789-1904 : risiyig 
democracy in politics and in industry; political federor 
tion ; territorial expansion ; marvelous growth in wealth 
and population.^ 

1 With reference to the proportion of space given to these periods in this 
book, see the Preface. 





A NXSW 8ERIB8 OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. 


6. The Failure of Charlemagne. — Charlemagne died iu 814 
A.D.y and his Empire did not long survive him. His brilliant 
attempt to organize Western Europe was to carry mighty in- 
fluences on into coming centuries/ but at the moment it seemed 
to have been only a glorious failure. There followed a long 
period of reaction towai*d barbarism, — an age of turmoil, igno- 
rance, ferocity, and misery. Not until well toward the close 
of the eleventh century did civilization again reach so fair a 
promise. The decline and disruption of the Empire were due 
partly to internal conditions and partly to a new series of bar- 
barian invasions (§§ 7-17). 

7. Internal Causes of the Political Decline. — The only natural 
tie between the widespreading regions of the Empire of Charle- 
niagne had been the common religion. The various sections 
differed in race,* in language, and in custom and law; and 

^ Cf. Ancient HUtortf, § 649. The Empire of Charlemagne is a point of 
Ught between the foar centuries that precede and the two or three that follow. 

'With wise moderation Charlemagne had refrained from adding territory 
outside of that in which the Teutons had in some degree established them- 
selves {Ancient History^ §§ 630, 640) ; but, of course, not to note minor dis- 
tinctions, there were wide differences between the pure Germans of Saxony 


10 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§8 

these differences were already creating local and tribal feeling, 
which in some districts was to grow later into national patriot- 
ism. The different parts of the Empire, too, were fitted by 
nature to be the homes of distinct peoples; and the old Roman 
bonds of trade and ti'avel had long gone to decay. Charle- 
magne's tremendous energy and broad tolerance held his do- 
minions together during his life, but time was not given him 
to change these adverse conditions. 

Moreover, Frankish feeling demanded that each son of a king 
should inherit part of his father's realm. It was only by acci- 
dent that Charlemagne himself had succeeded to the undivided 
Frankish state, and only the death of his two elder sons en- 
abled him to transmit the Empire unbroken * to his surviving 
heir, Louis tJie Pious, The reign of this weak prince made 
melancholy shipwreck amid the quarrels of his sons over their 
inheritance. Seven distinct plans of partition were tried in 
twenty-seven years (between 817 and 843), and most of them 
were accompanied by bloody civil war. 

8. The New Map of Europe: the Treaty of Verdon. — The 
greatest of these struggles closed with the Treaty of Verdun, in 
843. This treaty began the map of modern Europe. Lothair, 
the eldest grandson of Charlemagne, held the title of Emperor, 
and therefore wished to retain the two imperial capitals, Rome 
and Aachen. Accordingly, in this division, he kept Italy (that 
part of it which had belonged to the Empire) and a narrow 
strip of land from Italy to the North Sea. This northern 
strip lay in the valley of the Rhone and in the western valley 
of the Rhine, and so included Burgundy and old Austrasia. 
The rest of the Empire was made into two kingdoms — that of 
the East Franks and that of the West Franks — for Lothair's 

and Bavaria, with their unmixed Teutonic speech, and the Latinized Lom- 
bards of Italy or the Romanized Qanls of Aquitaine, with their growing 
"Romance" languages (based on the old Latin, but modified by Teutonic 
influences). See Ancient History ^ §§ 590 and 616, and compare the map 
opposite this page with that facing page 14. 

1 Special report : Charlemagne's plan for partition in 806 ; Bee especially 
Emerton's Middle Ages, 9-12. 



two brothers. Lotliair's intermediate strip contained the dis- 
tricts where the Koman and Teutonic elements had most inter- 
mingled. Thus the eastern and western kingdoms were left 
sharply contrasted, while each in itself was f airl j homogeneous 
in race and compact in territory, and so fitted for independent 
development. The eastern kingdom lay beyond the Ehine 
and was purely German : it was to grow into the Kingdom of 
the Germans. The western kingdom had more mixture of 
race; the Teutonic elements, however, were being absorbed 
rapidly, and it corresponded fairly with the extent of the new 
French language then just rising.* It was finally to take the 
name of France. 

9. Continiied Dismptioii of the Kiddle-land. — The Treaty of Verdun 
was followed by many more partitions between the degenerate Carol! n- 
gians ; but the lines it had laid down were in the main to prevail, and to 
it most of the present states of Western Europe can trace their origin. 

Lothair^s Middle Kingdom was to prove the weakest of the three great 
states created by the treaty. Its ruler was supposed to hold some vague 
suzerainty over the other two kings; but this unwieldy middle-land 
lacked unity, both in geography and in race. Italy almost at once fell 
away from the rest ; and then the northern district, intermediate between 
France and Germany and drawn to both sides, crumbled into fragments 
doomed to absorption in their stronger neighbors. On the whole, the 
middle-land was more German than French, and most of it soon became 
attached to the eastern kingdom (§§ 48-64 &.). Some centuries later, 

1 The " Oath of Straaburg," between two of the brothers during the war, 
to confirm their alliance against the third, shows the growing difference 
between the languages spoken in the eastern and western parts of the Empire. 
Charles, the king of Neustria (the land of the West Franks), swore in the 
langnage of his brother's German army, and Lewis, king of Bavaria (East 
Franks), swore In the Nenstrian tongue, so that each army might know what 
was promised by the other party. The doable oath begins : — 

"Pro Deo amur et pro christian poblo et nostro commun salva- 

" In Godes minna ind in thes christianes folches ind unser bedhero gehalt- 

ment dist di in avant in quant Bens savir," etc. 

nissi fon thesemo dage frammordes so fram so mir God gewizci," etc. 

These are the earliest records in the French and German tongues. The 
French is half way between Latin and modem French. See Emerton's 
Medieval Europe^ 25-28, or Munro's Middle Ages, 19-20, for the story of the 
oaths, with the full text and the translation. 

12 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ ID 

France began to seize parts of it, and, ever since, it has been a debatable 
land. From it came the many ^* Little Kingdoms '* that were to confuse 
the map and the politics of Europe for centuries, — Savoy, Aries, Pro- 
vence, Lotharingia (Lorraine), Franche Comt^, and so on. Three of 
these small states survive, — in modem Holland, Belgium, and Switzer- 
land. Another (Savoy, §§ 457, 463) was to grow into the modern king- 
dom of Italy ; and others lie at the root of the Alsace-Lorraine trouble 
of to-day. 

10. The Later Carolingians. — One cause of the decline of the 
age was the incapacity of the later Carolingians, as compared 
with the great founders of their house. For a century after 
Verdun, political history is little more than a tangle of fero- 
cious and treacherous family quarrels. Early Carolingians 
had won such surnames as "the Hammer" and "the Great": 
their descendants were known as "the Bald," "the Simple," 
" the Fat," " the Stammerer," " the Child," " the Lazy." The 
numerous branches of the family died out, one by one ; and in 
911 in Germany and in 987 in France, and still earlier in some 
of the small states, the nobles elected native princes from 
among their own number, and so founded national dynasties. 

Exercise. — Draw the Division of Verdun from memory, preferably 
upon ** outline maps/* with about the same degree of detail as that in the 
map facing page 10. 

For Further Reading. — Students may profitably consult one or two 
of the following : Oman, Dark Ages^ 383-445 ; Emerton, Medieval Europe^ 
14-36 ; Church, Beginnings of the Middle Ages, 140-166 ; Bemont and 
Monod, Medieval Europe, 211-228 ; Duruy, Middle Ages, 139-165. An 
excellent discussion of the period is given in Adams, Civilization^ ch. viii. 


From the fury of the Northmen, O Lord, deliver us, — Prayer in church 
service of the tenth century. 

11. Renewal of the Invasions. — The distracted Europe of the 
ninth century was endangered also by a new peril. Once more 
barbarian invasion threatened the civilized world. The Caro- 
lingian kings, instead of combining against the barbarians, only 
strove the more desperately to plunder one another, each one 


taking advantage of the others' misfortunes. Even within one 
kingdom, the people of different sections felt no common interest 
in repelling the attack, but selfishly allowed their neighbors to 
suffer, until the evil reached themselves. Moreover, there was 
no organized post to carry news, and the roads were so poor 
that troops could hardly be collected quickly enough to meet 
the scattered and swift attacks. 

Thus Europe seemed at the mercy of the invaders. On the 
east, hordes of wild Slavs and of wilder Hungarians broke 
across the frontiers, ravaged Germany, and penetrated some- « 
times even to Rome or to Toulouse in southern France; the 
Mohammedan Moors from Africa attacked Italy, Sicily, and 
southern France, establishing themselves firmly in many dis- 
tricts and turning the Mediterranean into a Mohammedan lake ; 
fierce Norse pirates harried every coast, and, swarming up the 
rivers, pierced the heart of the land. 

The Slavs and Moors had appeared earlier in history ; ^ but 
two of the invaders were fresh forces in European develop- 
ment (§§ 12, 13). 

12. The Httngarians (Magyars) were a Turanian people. 
They resembled the Huns in customs and character, and, 
though not closely connected with them, they probably be- 
longed to the same Tartar-Finnish stock. Advancing west- 
ward from their old homes in the Ural- Volga country, they 
reached the upper Danube in 889, and for the next sixty years 
they proved the most terrible scourge that Europe had ever 
known. They were small, active nomads, moving swiftly on 
scraggy ponies, — slajring, burning, carrying oflF captives and 
all movable plunder, and laying waste the land. 

13. The Norsemen were a new branch of the Teutons, and the 
fiercest and wildest of that race.* They dwelt in the Scandi- 

1 AnderU History, §§ 569, B26, note, and 640. 

> Ancient History , §§ 555-^561. There is a fine description of the Northmen 
in Green's Conquest of England^ 80-59. See also Boyesen*s Story of Norway, 
Johnson's Normans, Mabie's Norse Stories Retold, Jiriczek's Northern Hero 
Legends, and the Story of the Burnt- Njal. 




navian peninsulas, and were still heathen. They had taken 
no part in the earlier Teutonic invasions; but, in the ninth 
century, population was becoming too crowded for the scanty 
resources of their bleak lands, and they were driven to seek 
new homes. Moreover, at this time, leaders arose, — their 
imagination kindled, perhaps, by the achievement of Charle- 
magne, — to imite the independent and scattered tribes into 
kingdoms ; and the more adventurous spirits among the con- 
quered turned to the sea to preserve their independence. 
Some of them colonized distant Iceland, — pilgrims, in a fash- 
ion, for liberty's sake, — and set up there a free republic; but 
the greater number resorted to a life of wai'fare and plunder at 

the expense of richer 
countries.* The Swedes 
expanded to the east, 
conquering the Finns 
and Slavs, while the 
Danes and Norwegians 
turned toward the west. 
The Norse ships were 
long, open boats, sev- 
enty-five feet by twelve 
or fifteen, carrying a 
single square sail, but 
driven for the most part 
by thirty or forty long oars. They could be beached on any 
but the rockiest coast, or they could be run far up the rivers. 
A boat bore perhaps eighty warriors ; and each man was per- 
fectly clad in ring mail and steel helmet, and armed with 
lance, knife, bow, and the terrible Danish axe. Daring, indeed, 
were the long voyages of the Northmen in their frail craft. 
Often they were tossed in ruin by the fierce storms of the north- 
ern seas ; but the survivors, rallying again around the chief- 

1 Of coarse, before this time the Norsemen had spent their enerji^es largely 
in plundering each other : the firmer government of the new king made this 
life less possible now at home, and they sought new fields. 

Rkmains of Vikino Ship, found at Gokstad, 
Norway. It is of oak, unpainted; length 
over all, 79 feet 4 inches, from stem to stem ; 
breadth of beam, IHi feet; perpendicular 
depth, 6 feet in the middle, 8^ feet at the 


tain's vessel, laughed at winds and floods : " The blast," they 
sang, " aids our oars ; the hurricane is our servant and drives 
us whither we wish to go.'' 

14. The lfor»e Raids. — Fleets of these " Vikings," or " sons 
of the fiords," sometimes counting hundreds of boats, some- 
times only two or three, set forth upon the " pathway of the 
swans" to plunder Western Europe, as their relatives, the 
Jutes and Saxons, had harassed Britain four hundred years 
earlier. There is a story that Charlemagne, from the coast of 
Gaul, once saw some Norse ships in the Mediterranean, and 
shed tears, predicting that after his death his kingdom would 
suffer unspeakable woes from those new foes. Certainly the 
great Emperor maintained fleets to prevent such pirate attacks ; 
but in the quarrels of his weak successors the Norsemen found 
their opportunity. Every part of the Empire felt their raids. 
They not only plundered the open country, but they sacked 
cities like Hamburg, Eouen, Paris, Nantes, Bordeaux, Tours, 
Cologne, Within one period of a few years, they ravaged 
every town in old Austrasia, and finally stabled their horses in 
the cathedral of Aachen, about the tomb of Charlemagne. A 
characteristic sport of the raiders, according to popular stories, 
was t-o toss babes upon their spears, from point to point. 
Rspecially did they plunder and burn the churches and monas- 
teries, against which their heathen rage and scoffing were par- 
ticularly directed and wherein were collected the wealth and 
treasures of the day. Little wonder that when a band was 
defeated, the enraged people flayed captives alive and nailed 
their skins to the church doors. 

After a time, of course, like their earlier kinsmen, the Norse- 
men ceased to be mere plunderers, and became conquerors. 
They settled the Orkneys, Shetlands, Hebrides, little patches 
on the north of Scotland, and the whole west of Ireland, and 
finally established themselves in the east of Britain and in the 
north of France. These two latter colonies were the last im- 
portant infusions of Teutonic blood into the old Eoman world 
(§§ 15-16). 

16 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 16 

15. Rolf the Dane : Settlement in Normandy. — In 911, Charles 
the Simple, King of France, finally stopped the Norse raids in 
his country by establishing some of the Norse bands on the 
northern coast to defend it. He gave his daughter in marriage 
to their leader, Rolf (Rollo), on condition that Rolf accept 
Christianity, with his people, and acknowledge Charles as his 
overlord* for his new dukedom. 

Normandy, as this district came to be called from its new 
inhabitants, was, of course, really an independent state. Its 
dukes maintained stern order ; and this security quickly peopled 
the land from the neighboring provinces, so that it became one 
of the most populous and prosperous parts of Europe. Churches 
and rich abbeys rose on every side; agriculture flourished; 
and the serfs grew into free peasants. The Norsemen themr 
selves, with peculiar adaptability, took on French customs and 
culture, adopted French language and French ideas, and as 
*' Normans " became Hie foremost cJiampions of this civilization, 
even extending it into new lands. Indeed the most important 
results of the creation of Normandy were the subsequent Nor- 
man conquest of England (§§ 16, 123, 124) and of southern 
Italy (§ 67 h.), and the introduction of French civilization into 
those lands. 

16. England and the Danes and Normans. — The conquest of 
Britain in the fifth and sixth centuries by the Angles and 
Saxons left the eastern half of the island divided into several 
petty German states,' with numerous unconquered Celtic dis- 
tricts in the west. The German states farthest east — the 
Kentmen, South Saxons, East Saxons, and East Angles — 
were soon shut off from contact with the Celtic territory and 
ceased to grow ; but Wessex (the kingdom of the West Saxons) 
and Mercia and Northumbria (two of the kingdoms of the 
Angles) continued to expand at the expense of Celtic tribes. 
Plainly, leadership in the island was destined to fall to one of 

^ Special report : the story of Rolf's act of homage to Charles. 
3 For « brief accoant of the formation of these states, see Ancient History, 
§§ 691^594. 


18 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 16 

these three " mark " states.* They had been struggling with 
each other for two centuries for the mastery, when, in 827, 
Egbert,* King of Wessex, brought all the Teutonic kingdoms 
of the island under his authority. The union, however, was 
very imperfect, Egbert was simply a head king surrounded 
by jealous tributary kings, who might at any time break away 
from a weak ruler. 

This was the political situation when the Danish invasions 
began. These at first shattered the new-made union, but in 
the end they helped it to grow more complete. The story fills 
two centuries and a half, and falls into four chapters. 

a. First period: Danish settlements; division of the island; 
Alfred's reforms. The Danes had begun their raids in the 
time of Egbert, but they made no attempt at permanent settle- 
ment until 8»50, when a band wintered on the southeastern 
coast. From that time their attempts grew more and more 
eager, until in 871, after a series of great battles, in the last of 
which the King of Wessex was slain, they became for a time 
undisputed masters. 

This period was to close, however, with a division of the 
island into a Saxon South and a Danish North. The power of 
Wessex soon revived under Alfred the Great (871-901), brother 
of the slain king. Just after the Danish victory, Alfred had 
been driven into hiding in moors and fens ; but from his secret 
retreats he made many a daring sally, and finally he succeeded 
in reorganizing the Saxons and in defeating the Danish army 
(878).' The Danes accepted Christianity, withdrew into the 
north, and, by the later Treaty of Wedmore (885), received for 
their own the territory north of the old Koman road from 
London to Chester (Watling Street). 

The several kingdoms in the south now allowed themselves 
to be absorbed in Wessex, which plainly was their chief de- 

1 For the term mark stateSf see Ancient Histort/, § 276, note. 
3 Egbert had spent some years at the court of Charlemagne, and may have 
been inflaenced by the work of that ruler. 

* Special report: anecdotes of Alfred during this period of his life. 


fense against the invaders ; and Alfred's half of the island 
became one Saxon state. The rest of Alfred's life was given 
to strengthening his kingdom against the danger of future 
invasions and to removing the evil results of the desolating 
struggle. He reorganized the army, created an English navy, 
reformed many political and judicial institutions, and, in par- 
ticular, ardently encouraged the spread of learning among his 
people. His own day knew him by the honorable name of 
"Alfred the Truthteller " ; later generations looked back at 
him as "England's Darling"; and few kings have so well 
deserved the title of " the Great." 

6. Second penod: reconquest of tJie Danelagh, The Danish 
king in the north of the island was supposed to render some 
vague obedience to the Saxon king ; but in fact the Danelagh^ 
or the land of the Danes' law, was an independent state, like 
Normandy in France. The second period of warfare (900-950) 
went to the reconquest of this Danelagh by the great successors 
of Alfred, — Edward the Unconquered, Athelstane the Glori- 
ous, and Edmund the Doer of Deeds. Of course this movement 
was welcome to the old English inhabitants of the northern 
districts ; but, along the eastern coast especially, the country 
had become largely Danish in blood and very completely so in 
character. Indeed, all the ruling class were Danes; and, in 
spit« of their nominal subjection to Wessex, these districts 
kept their hope of future independence. Still, under Edgar 
the Peaceful (957-975), the great-grandson of Alfred, the island 
rested in prosperity and order, and even the kings of the Celtic 
tribes in the far west and north came to Edgar's court to 
acknowledge his overlordship. 

c. Third period : conquest by Denmark. After Edgar, how- 
ever, there came a new era of civil strife, and under Ethelred 
the Reddess (Ethelred, the man " without counsel "), the island 
was conquered (1002-1016) by Swegn and Knut, kings of Den- 
mark. Denmark had now become a united Christian kingdom, 
and this conquest in the eleventh century was not for Danish 
settlement^ like that of the ninth century : it was for the 


[8 16 

purpose of making Eaglaiid a part of a great Scandinavian 

d. The Iforman Conquest. Knut the Great (1016-1035) 
proved a wise ruler and a true English king; but his sons 
were unworthy successors, and in 1042 the Witan' of the 

island restored the old Saxon line by electing for their king 
Edward the Confessor, son of Ethelred and of the Norman 
Emma. This reign vas to result in a new Danish conquest, 
— a conquest this time, however, by Danes who had become 
Frenchmen. Edward was more monk than king. Half Nor- 
man by birth, he had lived long at the Norman court, and he 

'Or Wit^nfltTBinotf : this was the meeting of Ibe "wise" men, the National 
Assembly of great lords and eoclesiastics, wblch with the king ruled the lund 
and promulgated lani, and vhlch Bometlmes elected x klDg. 



brought crowds of Norman favorites with him to England. 

I At his death the English Witan chose the hero Harold, the 
most powerful Saxon noble, for their king ; but William, Ihike 
of Normarvdy, claimed the throne, — on the ground of a promise 

• from Edward and of distant relationship, — and, aided by a 
new Danish invasion and by fatal jealousy between Danish 
England and Saxon England, he conquered the island in 1066, 
at the decisive battle of Hastings, or Senlac.* 

17. Significance of the Kinth Century Invasion. — The con- 
quests of England by Knut and by William the Conqueror 
have been told in the last section to save space, but plainly 
they do not resemble the invasions of the earlier period, with 
which we here are mainly concerned. In conclusion, it should 
be noted that the barbarian invasions of the ninth century, 
unlike those of the fifth, did not create a new society. When 
we look for their permanent results, beyond the misery they 
caused, we note (1) that they brought in some new Teutonic 
stock to invigorate northern France and eastern England; 

(2) that they helped along the political union of England; 

(3) that they hastened the breaking up of the Empire of 
. Charlemagne ; and (4), chiefly, that they forced Europe to take 

on a new social and military organization for defense. This 
organization we call feudalism (§§ 18 ff.). 

For Further Reading. — On the invasions in general, Duniy, Middle 
AgeSy 156-170 ; Oman, Dark Ages, ch. xxiv ; or Bemont and Monod, 
229-240. On the invaders, see § 13, note. A longer treatment may be 
found in Keary's T%e Vikings in Western Christendom or in Du Chaillu's 
yiting Age. A translation of the Norse Heimskringla should be accessi- 
ble ; or, if it is not, students should read the extracts given in the Old 
South Leaflets, On the Danes in England, advanced students may con- 
sult Green's Conquest of England or Freeman's Nomian Conquest, I. 
For Alfred the Great, probably the most scholarly account is Plummer's 
Alfred the Great (1902) ; but students will enjoy the biographies by 
Hughes, Bowker, and Pauli. A biography by York-Powell is in prepara- 
tion (1903). The period of the Norman Conquest is treated in historical 

^The Saxon institutions and the results of the Norman Conquest are 
treated in §{ 118-124. 

22 A NEW SEBIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [J IB 

fiction, from diOerent points of view. In Klngsley's Heretnard, Bulwer's 
Harold, and Tennyson's Harold (drama). 

Special Rbfortb. — 1. ROTic and the Norse kingdom In Riusis. 
2. The Varangians at Constantinople. 3. The None in Ireland. 
4. Norse voyages to " Vinland the Good" in America. 6. AUred 
the Great's life and work. 6. The Battle ol HasUnga. 

CoNWAv Castlk. — From Old England. 

A. Oriqin; the Product of Anarchy. 

A protest of barbarism against barbnritm. — Heosl. 
18. The SuccesBor of the Empire of Charlemagne. — The ninth 
century, as we have noticed, saw the territorial beginnings of 
Germany, France, and Italy, and, outside the old realm of 
Charlemagne, of England, Xorway, I>eninarlt, and Sweden, as 
well as of various small kingdoms in the valleys of the Rhine 
and Rhone. But the nations to oecu])y these territories were 
not yet made, and the new royal governments proved unequal 
to the needs of the age (§ 11). A few centuries later, the 
monarchies in some of these countries were to become the 
chief agents in making new nations; meantime the church 


held Europe together in sentiment ; but everywhere, so far as 
maintaining order was concerned, the immediate successor of 
the Empire of Charlemagne was the feudal organization. Thia 
Dew form of social and political government was to dominate 
Europe for four hundred years and to play a leading part in 
many countries up to the nineteenth century. Indeed, it has 
left important traces in the European institutions of to-day, 
• 19. The Disaolutioa of the Old Society and the Emergence of 
 Few Order. — The rise of feudalism shows strikingly how 
strong the instinct in soci- 
ety is to set up some gov- 
emmeut that will protect 
life and property. After 
Charlemagne, through the 
renewal of barbarian inva- 
sions from without and 
thecollapse of government 
within, the ninth century 
became an age of inde- 
scribable horror and mis- 
ery. Thestrongrobbedthe 
weak; brigands swept over 
the land, to kill, torture, 
and plunder at will ; and 
society seemed on thepoint 
of universal dissolution, 
Bui out of this anarchy 
there emerged a new social 
order resting on force. 
Here and there, and fin- 
ally in greater and greater MRDiBTALCASTr.ot the lorfterMct wiih 
unnibers, some petty chief La ChevalrU. 

planted himself strongly 

on a small domain. Perhaps he had held it formerly as an 
officer of the king ; perhaps he had seized it from another : in 
any ease he kept it henceforth for himself, warding ofE all 



attack. By so doing he became a protector of others. The 
benefactor in that age was the man who could fight. " The 
noble, in the laiigu^e of the day, is the man of war, the sol- 
dier (milea), and it is he who lays anew the foundation for 
modern society." ' His an- 
cestry was of little conse- 
qnence : he was himself to 
be the ancestor of the later 
European aristocracy. "He 
is perhaps a (Jarolingian 
count, or a beneficiary of 
the king.'or, in a few cases, 
the sturdy proprietor of a 
territory of his own. In 
one place he is a valiant 
abbot; iu others he is a 
converted pagan, a retired 
bandit, a I'ude huntsman. 
Ill any event, the noble is 
the powerful man, who, at 
the head of his troop, in- 
stead of fleeing or paying 
ransom, offers his breast, 
stands firm, and protects 
a patch of soil with his 
sword," " In those days," 
says an old chronicle, 
" k in gs, nobles, andknights, 
to be always ready, kept their horses in the rooms in which 
they slept with their wives." 

Rnally, through the growth of this military generation, each 
district was provided with its settled body of soldiers and with 
its circle of frowning castles; and then the invasions ceased. 

ITitliie. •Iiioii'itr R4tibue,G. Tairie'.s flue passage, pp. 9-8, U lately q no ted 
or adapted in tbia and tlie FoUowing section. 
' One who held lauds granted b; the king. 

iHAorNATivK PimiHB to show draw, 
briii^e (with cliains to raisv and lowei 
It) ami part of portculUii. — From Gau- 
tier's La Chevalrie, 


20. HilitAry Features: Coatles and BlaUed Horsemen. — Feu- 
dalism tvas primarily the product of military necessity; and 
its whole oature was typified in two military features, the 
castle aud the mailed horseman. Castles rose at every ford 
and above each luountain pass and on every hill commanding 
a fertile plain. They were enormous buildings of massive 
stone, crowned by frowning battlements whence boiling pitch 
and masses of rock could be hurled down upon assailants. 
Usually the single narrow approach was across a moat, by a 
drawbridge, to a heavy iron gate and a portcullis which could be 
dropped from above, while the bridge was protected by flanking 
towers, from whose narrow 
gl it-like windows bowmen 
could command the road. 
Sometimes the walls in- 
closed several acres, with 
a variety of buildings and 
with room to gather cattle 
and supplies ; but in such 
cases there was always an 
inner "keep," orespecially 
, strong tower, with its own 
series of foi-titications and, 
it pMsible, with its own 

well. Until the days of gunpowder, such strongholds were 
virtually impregnable to ordinary attack and could be captured 
only by surprise, by treachery, or by famine. Upon these walls 
the Norse invaders might spend their force in vain. In later 
times, secure of such retreat, a petty lord could sometimes defy 
even his own sovereign with impunity, and too often the castles 
became themselves the seats of robber-barons who oppressed 
the country around them. To-day their gray ruins all over 
Europe give a peculiar picturesqueness to the landscape, mock- 
ing, even in decay, the slighter structures of modern times.' 

'The vails w«i« often enormoualy tbk'k,so that a man crawling out ot a 
"'■'dow would have to creep thrice his length. 

26 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [j 21 

The castlea afforded a refuge for man and treasure. But dur- 
ing the invasions, the problem in the field had been to bring to 
bay the swiftly moving assailants, — the light horsemen of the 
Hungarians, or the Danes with their swift boats for refuge. 
The Prankish infantry' had proved altogether too slow. Feu- 
dalism met this need also. Each castle was always ready to 
jxiur forth its band of trained and faithful men-at-arms (horse- 
men in mail) under the command of the knight, either to gather 

Kbnilworth Castle To-day, 

quickly with other bands into an army under a higher lord, or 
by themselves to cut off stragglers and hold the fords and 
passes. The raider's day was over; but meantime the old 
Teutonic foot-militia, in which every freeman had a place, had 
given way to an iron-clad cavalry, — the symbol and the resist- 
less weapon of the new feudal aristocracy. 

21. Feudal Classes and the Origin of Feudal Prlvilegea. — 
While the disorders were at their worst, any man of courage 

1 The nhaiige to cavalry la Bomylimes aatribed to Mnrtel before Toan 
{Ancieal Hhlnri,. 5 (iLiS), and n.imelliinj; icat tban Bttempled ; but the figbtiog 
force retiinlncil Infantry amniiK the East Franks ((iermans) until after WO, 
anil in "France" tbe horsemeu were not Important until some time after 


who could get together an armed force and fortify a dwelling, 
found the Deighborbood ready to turn to him as its master. 
Other weaker landlonis gladly surrendered to him their lands,' 
to receive them back as "fiefs" {§ 26) ; while they themselves 
became his " vassals," acknowledging him as their " lord " and, 
at call, fighting under his banner. In return, the lord prom- 
ised these vassals protection in all just rights. The soldiery, 
so provided, afforded protection to other classes. The peas- 

s fresi'o pnliiting of Ibat 

ants saw that they were no longer to be slain or driven captive 
by chance marauders. They ventured to plow and sow, to 
raise crops and to rear children. In case of danger they found 
asylum in the circle of palisades at the foot of the castle. In 
return for this security they cultivated the lord's crop, acknowl- 
edged him as their landlord, and paid him dues for house, for 
cattle, and for each sale or inheritance,' The village became 
his village ; the inhabitants became his villeins (" villains "). 

'Thig practice was known as " rommenilation." 

* TblB paragraph aim la Largely based upoD Taiae'a graphic passage referred 

28 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 21 

Besides these resldeDt laborers, who had some claim to con- 
sideration, fugitive wretches gathered on the lord's lands, to 
receive sucli measure of mercy as he might choose to grant; 
and these sank into the class of " serfs," ' of whom already 
there were many on all large estates. 

Both these last classes were largely at the lord's mercy, but 
they were necessarily gainers thi-ough their relation to him. 
One master, however ty- 
rannical, could not be so 
great an evilas exposure to 
constant anarchy. Hence 
there grewuppeculiarpriv- 
ilegea of the lord, which in 
later times came to be un- 
speakably oppressive and 
obnoxious, but which in 
Stokk Castlk, It modest manor house ot origin were usually con- 
thethirleenthcenturj; slyleda'castle,' nected with some benefit 
because of iia entrance tower. — From e^,„„A u.. i.;„. tu^ 

TaTa^fsVomuii, Architecture. conferred by hmi. The 

lord's services did not stop 
with defense against robbers. He slew the wild beast, and so 
came finally to have the sole right to hunt, — with atrocious 
game laws to preserve animals, large and small, for his pleasure. 
He was also the sole organizer of lalwr: he built the mill, the 
oven, the ferry, the bridge, the highway, with the labor he 
protected : then he took toll for the ;ise of all these conven- 
iences ; and later he demolished the mill that the villeins would 
have built for themselves. Moreover, he took the courts under 
his care, and rapidly assumed the power of a sovereign. Hin 
territory became a little slate. The greater nobles coined money 
and made war and treaties, like very kings.' As a rule, at 

iThe terms "sert" and "villein" are explained in $ .'U. Of course tJie 
ahovc statemetit does not prelcnd lojipve the or<{>nnof agricultural villeinage; 
that institution noes back to Roman times. 

> It is estimated that In Franiie in tlie tentli century, out of some sevent; 
thousand uobles, about two hundred exercised these sovereign powelB. 


first when the lord did these things, it was best for his depend- 
ents that be should do them. 

" Later tbe maBters of these castles were the terror of the country, but 
tbej larsd It first ; and thongb feudalism was to become so oppressive in 
the latter part of its exiateoce, it bad its time of legitimacy and useful- 
Draa. Power alvtaya ettablUheiiUelf through tervice and perUh«»tkrongk 
ailw."' — DtKcr, Midme Ages, 20L 

 Disastrous ae were most of tbe effects of the system, it at least Justified 
its exieieiice by saTingChrialendom from the foe without. . . . The price at 
which Christendom bought its safety was enormous : neverlheless no price 
was loo high when the future of Europe was at stake. Any mnsom was 
worth paying, if thereby Rome wassaved from the Saracen, Mainzfrom the 
Magyar, Paris from the heathenof the North." — Oban, Dark Ages, 612. 

22. Decentralization : Feudalism a Multitude of Separate Local 
Orsaiiizatioiia. The Growth of Feudal Attachment. — Undet the 
new organization, each 
locality was to a great de- 
gree independent of every 
other district. The king 
had been expected to pro- 
tect and care for every 
comer of his realm, and 
as afact he had protected 
none; but each little chief- 
tain proved able to care for i 
his own small corner when j 
hewaalefttohimself. The ! 
king lost authority and | 
the nobles usurped it. In ; 
eocft country, feudaiiam 
mtant the repiacing one in- 
fffeetive central authority by 

countless discmmected but i„„,„>ofthrHat,lopStokkCa«tlk. 
effective local authorities. 

Politically this was an evil, but it answered its immediate 
purpose of military defense, and the evil, real though it was, 
bad alleviations : gradually, within eacti feudal unit, habit and 

30 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 23 

local patriotism bound together the different classes and made 
the fief, large or small, an object of love and devotion to its 
inhabitants. The lord was admired and almost worshiped by 
his people ; and in return, however harsh himself, he permitted 
no one else to injure or insult one of his dependents. A rough 
paternalism ruled in society. Perhaps the system was more 
rough than paternal ; but it was better than anarchy, and it 
nourished some virtues peculiar to its own day.* 

23. Economic Causes that assisted the Rise of Feudalism : Lack 
of Money and of Roads. — Economically, as well as politically, 
each locality had been thrown upon its own resources and had 
been compelled to provide for its own needs. Commerce had 
almost ceased, and there was little money. The rich man's 
wealth was in land ; but he could make land pay only by rent- 
ing it for service or for produce. He rented part of it to 
smaller " nobles," who paid him by fighting for him, and part 
to workers, who raised and harvested his crops, and gave him 
part of their own : and of course the man who had no land was 
glad to exchange his services for the use of land in one way or 
the other. Moreover, the difficulty of communication between 
district and district tended to break up society into small units, 
each sufficient unto itself, economically as well as politically. 
These conditions, however, would not of themselves have made 
each of these properties a " state." They counted for less in 
producing the feudal system than did the political causes. 

24. Essential Elements of Feudalism ; the Preparation in Earlier 
History ; the Real Causes. — It is quite possible to trace back some of the 

1 A passage from Joinville's Memoir of St. Louis iUastrates this better side 
of the feudal relation. Joinville was a great French noble about to set out on 
a crusade ; at Eastertide he summoned his vassals to his castle for a week of 
feasting and dancing in honor of his approaching departure. " And on the 
Friday I said to them : * Sirs, I am going beyond sea and know not whether I 
shall ever return ; so draw near to me. If I have ever done you any wrong, 
I will redress it to one after another, as is my practice with all who have any- 
thing to ask of me.' And I made amends to them according to the decisions of 
those dwelling on my lands; and that I might not influence them, I withdrew 
from their deliberations and carried out without dispute whatever they decided." 


elements of feudalism to earlier Roman and Teutonic history. Thus, serf- 
dom was undoubtedly connected with the Roman institution of colon i.^ 
BQt serfdom was not an essential part of feudalism, and was not found 
long in some feudal countries. It is often said that the three essential 
elements of feudalism were (1) fealty^ or the personal relation between 
lord and vassal, which took its peculiar form from the old Teutonic insti- 
tuUon of ^* companions'^ ;^ (2) the ben^cium, or the piece of land granted 
by one man to another in return for service, a practice that had both 
Roman and Teutonic models ; and (3) jurisdiction^ or the possession of 
governing power by the owner of a piece of land over all those dwelling 
on it, a connection of political authority with landholdiug which dates in 
some degree, perhaps, from the early Teutonic conquest,^ and which the 
Carolingian counts helped to develop* in the ninth century by seizing 
upon their governments for hereditary fiefs. Moreover, the feudal sys- 
tem grew through the practice of commendation^ (p. 27, n. 1), for which 
again both Roman and Teutonic history afforded precedents. 

These antecedents, however, were not the causes of feudal organiza- 
tfon : they were materials out of which men built a new social structure 
when the old one had collapsed. No doubt they in some measure deter- 
mined the character of the structure, and they made its construction 
more rapid, when it had once begun ;'but it began because of the ninth 
century conditions we have described. Feudalism was caused, on the 
political side, by the breakdown of all other authority, and on the eco- 
nomic side, by the absence of money and by the difficulty of communi- 

B. Feudalism as a Completed Growth. 

25. Feadal Theory often opposed to Feudal Practice. — Feu- 
dalism lasted in its vigor over four hundred years, — almost as 
long a time as has elapsed since its decay. Thus it was one 
of the most enduring institutions that western civilization 
has known. Rising out of anarchy, it kept many anarchic 

1 AwAent History, § 549. » Ancient History, § 611. 

< Ancient History, §§ 660, 661. « Ancient HUtory, § (>46. 

*Thi8 practice became so general that nearly all pieces of land which had 
Wn held as freeholds were converted into fiefs. 

* Such conditions have produced feudal systems In other times and in other 
lands, as in ancient Egypt and in modern Japan ; and no doubt in Europe they 
would have produced some kind of a feudal system, more slowly, without 
these earlier institutions just noted. 

82 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 26 

traits, and naturally it was one of the most complicated systems 
the world ever saw. Some writers, indeed, refuse to call it a 
system at all. At first the relations of the various classes 
differed widely in different localities, and each district fixed its 
own customs and law. To a great degree this remained true 
as long as feudalism lived at all; but gradually the kings' 
lawyers built up a theory, of beautiful simplicity, to which 
facts in some measure came to conform. This theory helped 
to undermine feudal independence in favor of royal power, but 
it also preserved some feudal institutions for future times. 

26. Land Tenure and Social Classes. — In the feudal theory, 
the holder of any piece of land was only a tenant of some higher 
landlord; and, besides the clergy, there were two main classes 
of society, — the fighters, who were "noble," and the workers, 
who were ignoble. The king belonged to the fighting class and 
was the supreme landlord. He let out most of the land of the 
kingdom, on terms of military service, to great vassals. Each of 
these pai'celed out most of what he received, on like terms, to 
smaller vassals ; and so on, perhaps through six or seven steps, 
until the smallest division was reached titat could support a mailed 
horseman for the noble^s life of fighting. Every such grant — a 
dukedom or a few acres — was a "fief"; and the grant carried 
also the power of government over those dwelling on the land. 

Each noble kept some of his land in his own hands, to live 
upon. The king and the great lords kept vast amounts, usually 
scattered in many pieces ; the smallest nobles necessarily kept 
all of theirs. This land was " domain " land. Every village 
and rising town was part of the domain of some noble, and 
every domain included at least one village of agricultural 
laborers. Part of a domain went to make holdings for the 
serfs and villeins, from which they might raise their own 
subsistence, and the rest was tilled by them for the lord 
directly, under the management of his bailiff.^ These workers 

^ The necessity of making use of the prodnce on the spot where it was 
raised, explains partly why kings and great lords in this age were always 


had no power of goyermnent, but only the privilege of being 

Thus the theory suggests a symmetrical hierarchy, which 
might be diagrammed on a blackboard. In practice there was 
DO such regularity. Many of the smallest vassals held their land 
directly of the king or of the greatest lords, — not of a lord just 
above them in importance, — and the holdings and obligations 
differed in all conceivable ways. Often, great lords held part of 
their lands from smaller ones, and even kings were vassals 
for part of their kingdoms, — perhaps to vassals of their own. 
Thus the various grades were interlocked.^ There were many 
holders, even small ones, without a lord at all, until the con- 
venient maxim of the lawyers — " no land without a lord " — 
finally reduced them to tenants of the king, at least ; and as 
the king had all he could do to look after his great vassals, 
the small ones were still left pretty much to themselves. 

Except for the smallest knights, all these landlords of the 
fighting class were " suzerains " ; and, except perhaps the king, 
all were vassals. There was no great social distinction between 
the lord and his vassals : vassal and lord lived commonly on 
terms of familiarity and mutual respect. The vassal was always 
a " noble," and his service was always " honorable." It included 
other matters than fighting (§§ 28-30), but it must never be 

moYlDg from one of their castles to another during the year. It was easier 
for the coart to go to the produce than to bring the produce to the court. 

1 See Robinson's Western Europe, 113-115, for a striking illustration of 
inch complexity. The Count of Champagne in the thirteenth century was 
lord of twenty-six castles, each the center of a separate fief. Most of these 
fiefs the count held of the French king, but for others of them he was vassal 
to the Dnke of Burgundy, to the Archbishop of Rheims, to the Archbishop of 
Sens, to four neighboring bishops, and to the abbot of the monastery of St. 
I>ennis. Says Dr. Robinson: **To all these persons the count had pledged 
Mmaelf to be faithful and true, and when his various lords fell out with one 
another, it must have been difficult to see where his duty lay." The count 
Ittd divided his land among some two thousand knights: many of his vassals, 
bowever, held lands also of other lords, — in some cases of some of the liege 
lords of the count himself. The student will find it interesting to read Dr. 
Bobinson's full statement, and to note his valuable map and diagram. 

84 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§27 

confounded with the " ignoble " service paid by serfs and vil- 
leins, upon whom rested this society of feudal fighters. 

In the ninth century, fiefs became hereditary. For three hundred years 
more, a man from the lower ranks sometimes received a fief as a reward 
for bis services, and so became a noble ; but in the twelfth century nobility 
became strictly hereditary. In order the more easily to secure the ser- 
vices due them, the lords objected to a vassal's dividing a fief among his 
sons : thus became established the practice of ^* primogeniture,** or inherit- 
ance of landed property by the eldest son only. But on the continent all 
the sons of a noble kept their nobility, even if they were landless ; and 
(unless they entered the clergy) it became their aim to win lands, by 
serving some great lord who might have fiefs to bestow. 

In England, the term *^ noble*' had a much narrower meaning: it ap- 
plied only to the greatest lords, and to their eldest sons after them. The 
whole ^^ gentry ^^ class in England would have been nobles on the continent. 
(Cf. § 136.) 

27. The Feudal Contract. — In theory the relations between 
lord and vassal were regulated by hargaiUy for mutual advantage. 
The receiving of a fief was accompanied by the solemn ceremony 
of homage. The future vassal, with head uncovered and sword 
ungirt, knelt before the lord, placing his folded hands between 
the lord's hands, and swore to be the lord's " man " ; ^ he took 
also an oath of fealty, and promised to perform many specific 
obligations. The lord raised the vassal from his knees, gave 
him the "kiss of peace," invested him with the fief, — usually 
by presenting him with a sword or a clod of earth as a sym- 
bol, — and promised to defend him in it.* 

Very commonly the exact terms of the original contract were 
not preserved, and then the obligations had to be regulated by 
custom or by the decisions of other vassals in the lord's court 
(§ 29) or by appeal to the sword. Indeed, such quarrels were 
the chief cause of the incessant " private wars " of the period 
(§ 33). 

^ Latin, homo ; whence the term homage. 

8 For forms and contemporary accounts, see Pennsylvania Reprints, IV, 
No. 3. Some of the contracts were exceedingly fantastic. Perhaps the most 
remarkable one on record is given in Robinson's Western Europe, 110, note. 


The most importaut duties of the vassals may be classed 
under three heads, — military service, court service, and pay- 
ment o£ fiuancial aids (§S 28-30). 

28. HiUtaiy Service of the Tusal.' — The vassal was to pre- 
sent himself, at the call of his lord, to serve in war. Perhaps 
he w^ to come alone or with a single squire, or perhaps he was 
to briDg an army of knights and men-at-arma, — according to 
the size of his fief and the terms of his holding. For neighbor- 
hood service he might be required to call out even his serfs. 
He could be compelled to serve only a fixed time each year, — 
commonly forty days, — but for that time he was to maintain 
himself and bis men. If he remained in the field longer, it 
was of his free consent, and the lord assumed the maintenance. 

The short term of service made the feudal army of little use 
for distant expeditions; and indeed vassals were sometimes 
Dot under obligation to 
follow their lord out of 
the realm. The absence 
of general organization, 
too, and of all discipline 
except that of a lord over 
hia immediate followers, 
made the feudal array an 

Mwieldy and uncertain Dancers, aa represented in an English mano. 
■' , script oi the thirteenth century. — From 

instrument for offensive Lacroli, Moevn, Utage*. etc. 

29. Court Service of the Vua«l. — The vassal was bound to 
serve also in the lord's "court," usually at three fixed periods 
each year. As judicial bodies, these courts gave judgment in 
legal disputes between vassals; and as councils, they advised 
the lords in all important matters. A vassal, accused even by 
his lord, could be condemned only by this judgment of his 
peers (pores), or equals. The lord was only the presiding 
officer, not the judge. 

see Ptniui/l- 

36 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [5 30 

The second office of the court, however, was even more im- 
portant: the lord could not count upon support in any serious 
undertaking unless he had first secured the approval of his coun- 
cil; in feudal language, the council "advised and consented,"' 
Moreover, in deciding the force of local custom and in sanc- 
tioning new regulations, these bodies came nearer being legis- 
latures thau did any other institution in that 
age. Thus the " feudal court " had a share 
in all three functions of government, — ad- 
ministrative, legislative, and judicial.' 

30. Financial Obligatlona ofthe Vasaal.— 
The vassal was called upon also for financial 
assistance, but his contributions were made 
only upon special or uuusiLal occasions, and 
were not looked upon as "tases." Upon 
receiving a fief, either as a gift or 3S an in- 
heritance, be paid the lord a sum of money.' 
In theory this was a present, in exchange 
for the more valuable present from the lord: 
it was called a relief, and commonly it 
■**i°m"die^i''Jn"''r ^^^oint^^ ^ » y^^^'s reveuue. If the vassal 
tiire In brilliant wished to Sell or to give his fief to another, 
colors. Many great he was obliged to pay a /!»« vpon alienaiion. 

lords kept such ,. ii  l j 

lesiers Upon other occasions he made payments 

known as aids: the three most common pur- 
poses were to ransom the lord, if a prisoner, and to help meet 
the expense of knighting the lord's eldest son and of the 
marriage of his eldest daughter. Similar to such payments, 
but more oppressive, was the obligation to entertain the lord 
and all his follotoiiig upon a visit. 

' Tbia exprEsnlon. through Engllah prnctice. has (M>me down ipto our con- 
Blltution : our President is empowered to do certain things " with the adviM 
and consent" ot the senate. 

' These (unctions were not nt nil clearly disllnguished until much later. 

 The pnynient of this sum by the son of a deceased vassal was a recogui- 
tion of the (act that In theory the flef bad been granted only (or Che U(e ot th« 
previous bolder and that It had reverted to the higher lord. 


These four — reliefs, alienation-fines, the various aids, and entertain- 
ment—cover the payments made by an actual vassal in possession; but the 
lord had other clainus upon the fief, which under certain circumstances 
might produce revenue. (1) He assumed the guardianship of a minor 
heir^ and took to himself the revenues of the fief at such times, on the 
ground that there was no bolder to render the service for which it bad 
been granted. (2) He claimed the right to dispose of a female ward in 
marriage^ — so as to secure for her a husband who should be a satisfactory 
vassal, — and then commonly he sold to the woman the right to marry 
withoat interference. Sometimes to extort a huge sum he presented 
a hateful suitor.^ (3) In the absence of heirs, the fief returned (^escheated) 
to the lord ; and (4) if the vassal^s duties were not performed, it might 
come back to him by forfeiture. In general, however, all these latter 
rights — except the control over marriage — became so limited by custom 
that they were of little consequence. 

31. Obligations of the Lord. — By way of obligation toward 
a vassal, the lord was bound to defend him against attack, to 
treat him justly, and to see that he obtained justice from the 
co-vassals. The lord could not withdraw a fief, so long as the 
vassal was true to his bargain ; and the vassal could hold 
the lord to the performance of his duties, or at least could try 
to do so, by appealing to the court of the lord's lord. 

32. Extension of Feudal Tenure beyond Land; the Church 
Feudalized. — Feudalism dominated all the relations of man 
with man; and other things than land were given and held 
as hereditary fiefs, — the great offices of the kingdom, the 
right to fish in a stream, or to cut wood in a forest. Even the 
church became feudalized. A monastery or a cathedral drew 
its revenues largely from its serfs and villeins and from the 
church lands cultivated by them ; and it provided for its de- 
fense by giving other lands to nobles on terms of military 
service. Thus bishops and abbots became suzerains, and they 
were also always vassals of some other lord. 

* The Pennsylvania Reprints (IV, No. 3) contains extracts like the follow- 
iBRfrom the English royal accounts : " Hawissa, who was wife to William Fitz- 
Boberts, renders ISO marks and 4 palfreys, that she may have peace from 
Peter of Boroagh, to whom the king has given permission to marry her, and 
that she may not be compelled to marry." 

88 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§33 

33. Violence of the Feudal Age. — Feudal theory paid elabo- 
rate regard to rightSf but feudal practice was mainly a matter of 
force. There was no adequate machinery for obtaining jus- 
tice; it was not easy to enforce the decisions of the crude 
courts against any offender who might choose to resist; and 
the natural thing seemed to be for any one who felt himself 
injured to take the law into his own hands. The spirit of the 
times, too, regarded war as the most honorable and perhaps as 
the most religious way to settle disputes ; and, for the slight- 
est causes, great or petty lords went to war with each other. 
These " private wars " became a chief evil of the age. They 
hindered the growth of industry, and commonly they hurt neu- 
tral parties quite as much as the actual participants. In the 
eleventh century the church, unable to stop such strife, tried 
to regulate it by proclaiming the "Truce of God," which forbade 
private war between Wednesday evening and the following 
Monday morning of each week and during the church festivals^; 
but it was long before this truce was generally observed. 

34. The Substratum of Workers.' — The "upper classes" 
comprised the clergy and the nobles, — the " praying class " 
and the "lighting class." Tfiese made up feudal society proper; 
but they were fed and clothed by an immensely larger number 
of workers. The workers, whether legally free or servile, did 
not count in politics and not much in war, and they are hardly 
referred to in the records of the time except as cattle might be 
mentioned. They had few rights and many duties. Labor 
was almost wholly agricultural, and was performed, mainly, 
by serfs and villeins. 

The serf was bound to the soil by law: he could not leave it, 
but neither could he be sold apart from it. He had his own 
bit of ground to cultivate, at such times as the lord's bailiff did 
not call him to labor on the lord's land. To be sure, he had to 

1 See Pennsylvania Reprints, I, No. 2, for such a proclamation, by the 
Archbishop of Cologne In 1083. 

3 Cf. § 36, note. The best short treatments are Emerton's MedievtjU Europe, 
009-^20, and Adams' Growth of the French NcUion, 64^68. 


pay for the use of his land a large part of its produce, and he 
was compelled to pay a multitude of other dues and fines ; but 
if he succeeded in saving anything above a bare subsistence, it 
was usually left to him : so that there were some serfs with 
property,^ although in theory all that they had was their lord's. 
A step above the serf was the villein.' The villein was free 
in person: he could leave his land and go from one lord to 
another, if he found it to his advantage to do so. As a matter 
of fact, such changes were not very common ; and in any case 
the villein must have some master, ^r the landless and master- 
less man wa^ an outlaw, at the mercy of any lord. Practically, 
the most important distinction between villein and serf was 
that the villein's land was subject only to Jixed and certain 
charges, not to arbitrary exactions. These definite charges, 
however, were almost as oppressive as the uncertain charges 
upon the serfs land, because they were usually so fixed as to 
leave the villein only the bare necessities of life.' 

35. The Better Side of Serfdom. — We are too likely to think of the 
feudal age as one which degraded the laboring class from a higher stand- 
anL This is not the whole truth. It is true, that, in the violence of the 

1 Somewhat as there were some slaves with property in our South, in the 
days of slavery. 

* There were many grades of service and of rights, sometimes even on the 
same domain ; and serfdom and villeinage ran into each other in a most con- 
fusing manner, so that the two are often referred to under either name : but 
the broad distinction noted in the text is a convenient one to keep in mind. 
A difficult matter for the student to comprehend is, that the distinction 
applied primarily to land rather than to persons: some land was serf -land, 
and all who held it were serfs, or in danger of becoming serfs ; while other 
land was villein-land, and if a serf was given a piece of it he rose into the 
position of villein. 

* Gf. §§ 21-23. See also an excellent brief account in Emerton's Medieval 
Europe, 517-518, and a longer one in Cheyney's Industrial and Social History, 
3M4. " The obligations of the villein toward his lord were either rents in 
kind, as provisions, grain, cattle, or poultry, products of the land and farm; 
or labor or services of the body, the corv4es in the fields and vineyards of the 
lord, the building of the castle or cleansing of the moat, the repair of roads, 
the making of furniture, utensils, horse-shoes, plowshares, carriages, etc." 
— Dn&uY, Middle Ages, 210. 


times, m&ny men who bad been free were throst down into serfdom ; bnt 
all slavea soon ro«« into serfdom, and, on the whole, despite its mlBeriea, 
that institution waa a atep onward from the slave oi^nization of labor in 
ancient times toward the modem free organization.' Moreover, there were 
two special conditions which helped to make the position of the serfs toler- 
able. (1) Population was scant;, all through feudal times, and landlords 
felt the need of mote laborers : therefore, to keep his servants from run- 
ning oO to another lord, a wise master gave them good treatment, as ideas 
of good treatment went at that thne. (2) Custom made law ; and if a 
master allowed s serf to pay the same service, and no otber, year after 
year, finally he lost the right to call for other service, and the serf had 
insensibly become a villein, with service fixed by custom. In this and 
other ways, iu many parte of Europe, the serfs rose out of serfdom during 
Uie later port of the Middle Ages. 

36. Life In the Village.' — To picture even roughly the life of 
the non-noble classes is not easy. There were few towns 
until the twelfth century, 
and, a^ide frota the re- 
tainers of the nobles in the 
castles, most of the popula- 
tion dwelt ia agricultural 
villages. The farmhouses 
were not scattered, each in 
its own field: they were 
grouped in villages of 
twenty or fifty dwellings. 
Each village had its church 
Abciknt Manor HouBK, Melichope, Enu- j uauallv its manor 

land; in Its present condition. -From ^"'^ usually US manor 
Wright's Homei of Other Daya. house. The latter might 

be a castle, or it might be 
little bett«r than the homes of the peasants and be used only by 
the lord's steward. The other dwellii^s — low, filthy, thatch 

1 AncUni llitiory, % M9. 

"The mOBt graphic treatments of peasant life are Id Jessop's Friari, 87- 
112 ; Jenka' Edaari Pliinlageiiet, 46-62; and in Cheyney's IndiMHat and 
Social Hitlorv, Alsa. Of tlie 1n)>t, read especially 31-W and 00-02. lliere is 
also a good treatment in Ashley's £conomrc Hiitory, I, 10-43. Special report : 
a cumparlson of a medieval village in Western Europe with a Russian " Mir " 


or sod-roofed, one-roora hovels, without chimney or window — 
str^led along either side of an irregular lane, where poultry 
and children played in the dirt. Attached to each house was 
its patch of vegetable garden, and its 
low stable and barn, — these last often 
under the same roof as the living- 
room. Each village had its smithy, 
and somewhere near, on a convenient 
stream, was the lord's mill. About 
the village lay its tracts of land, reach- 
ing away until bounded by the lands 
of other villageB or by the waste.' 

A rude rotation of crops was prac- 
tised. The plowland was divided into interior View or the 
three great "fields": one of these Uppbb Window Showh 

w„ „„ ,„ wheat (in the M), one Sol-'S" "hZ 
to barley (iu the spring), while the the depth of the wail,— 

other lay fallow to recuperate. Each '"«' '^^^''^- '''<*«^' '''« 
„ ,, ,..,,, , stairway Is cut. 

field was divided into a great number 

of narrow strips, each as nearly as possible a "furrow-long," 
and one, two, or four rods wide; so that each contained from 
a quarter of an acre to an acre. Usually the strips were sepa- 
rated by " balks," or ridges of turf. A peasant's holding was 
about thirty acres, ten acres in each "field"; and his share in 
each lay not in one piece, but in fifteen or thirty scattered 
strips. The lord's land, probably half the whole, lay in strips 
lifee the rest, and was managed by his steward. 

Of course this kind of holding compelled a common cultiva- 
tion : each man must sow what his neighbor sowed ; and as a 
rule, each could sow, tul, and harvest only when his neighbors 
did. Agriculture was extremely crude. Only six or eight 
bushels of wheat or rye were expected from an acre. Walter 

(vQUge) of Ut-dAj, &a described In Wallace's Ruuia, or Id Leroy-Beanllen'a 
Tiart and RiiinaTu, 

' Ct. Glbblns' Indutlrial HUtorg of England, 21, for a aagjcestlre diagram 
of nich a vUlagA and Ita lands. 

42 A NEW SERIES OF DAKK AGES, 814-1100. [{36 

of Henley, a thirteenth century writer on agriculture, siya that 
threefold the seed was an average harvest, and that often a 
man was lucky to get back his seed corn and as much again. 
The breed of all farm animals was small. The plow re- 
quired eight oxen. Carts were few and cumbrous. The dis- 
tance to the outlying parts of the lields added to the labor of 
the villagers. There was little or no cultivation of root food:^ : 

Okb of thk Opkm Fikldb of thr Manob or Lowbb Hetford, OxroRi>- 
BKiRB. Tbia manor DOW belongs to Corpus Christi College, Oitord. — From 
Aodrewa' Iliitory <if England. 

potatoes, of course, were unknown ; sometimes a few turnips 
and cabbagea and carrots, rather uneatable varieties probably, 
were grown in garden plots behind the houses. In the " fields," 
wheat and rye were raised aa breadstuffs, barley for the brew- 
ing of beer, and sometimes peas and beans, commonly for 

The most important crop was the wild hay, upon which the 
cattle had to bo fed during the winter. Meadowland was 


twice as valuable as plowland. The meadow was fenced for 
the hay harvest, but was afterward thrown open for pasture ; 
and usually there was other extensive pasture and wood land, 
where lord and villagers fattened their cattle and swine. It 
was difficult to carry enough animals through the winter for 
the necessary farm work and breeding ; those to be used for 
food were killed in the fall and salted down. The large use of 
salt meat (the only meat for half the year) and the little vari- 
ety in food were in part the causes of loathsome diseases among 

A Rkafeb'b Cabt ooinq Ufhill. — Alter Jiuaerand's Engtith Wayfaring 
Life; from a toarteenth century manuscript. Note the force o( luen and 
borsea iieccssar]r. The 8t««pDes8 ol the bill is, o( course, exaggerated, so as 
to fit the picture Ut the spaoe id the manuscript. 

the people. The chief luxury of the poor was honey ; and well- 
t(^o peasants often had a hive of bees in their garden plot. 

Each village was a world by itself. Several villages might 
belong to one lord, but they had little more intercourse with 
each other on that account. The lord's bailiff secured from 
some distant market the three ontside products needed, — 
salt, millstones, and iron for the plowshares and for other 
tools. Except for this, a village carried on its primitive sys- 
tem of industry in complete isolation, ^unless a war desolated 
it, or a royal procession chanced to pass through it. Com- 
monly in the ninth century it had not even a shop. The 
women of each household wove rough cloth for the single 

44 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§37 

garment that covered them ; and the men prepared leather for 
their own heavier clothing. 

This shut-in life was unwholesome and stupefying and 
morally degrading. Measured by our standards, it was often 
indescribably ferocious, indecent, and cheerless. Certainly it 
was worse than anything the worst slums of our modern cities 
can show j but probably it was a great step up from the aver- 
age condition of the laboring (slave) population of earlier ages. 

37. Life in the Castle : Chivalry.^ — Many stories give us some 
picture of the life of the noble classes. We know that they 
dwelt in gloomy fortresses over dark dungeons where prisoners 
rotted, and that they had fighting for business, and hunting 
with hound and hawk and playing at fighting for pleasures. We 
can see the ladies busied over tapestries and embroideries, in 
the chambers; gay pages flit through the halls, or play at 
chess in the deep windows ; and in the courtyard lounge gruff 
men-at-arms, ready with blind obedience to follow the lord of 
the castle on any foray or even in an attack upon their king. 

This grim life had its romantic and gentle side, indicated to 
us by the name chivalry. The term at first meant the nobles 
on horseback (from the French cheval, horse), but it came to 
stand for the whole institution of " knighthood," with all its 
ideals. Chivalry has been called the "flower of feudalism." 
It did^not reach formal development until the twelfth century, 
but it can best be treated here. 

Each feudal lord of consequence was surrounded by a social 
court (not to be confused with the legal " court," or council, 
§ 29), where his leading vassals often attended. In this court, 
as in a school, the sons of his vassals were brought up and 
trained, under the lord^s eye, in all the duties of a fearless and 
blameless knight. This education had two stages. Until about 
fourteen the boy was known as ; and, aside from the train- 

^ Good treatments are given in Henderson's Short History of Germany ^ I, 
112-121, or in Stilld's Studies, 'M6-352. Longer accounts may be found in 
Cutts* Scenes and Characters of the Middle Ages, 311-460, and in the histories 
of Chivalry by James, Mills, and Cornish. 


ing ia the use of light arms, his attendance was paid mainly 
to the mistress of the castle, by whom he waa taught obedience 
and courtesy and a knight's duty to religion and to the ladies. 
Later, the page became a aquire to the lord, serving about his 
person, arming him for the field, and accompanying him to 
battle, with special care for his safety. 

After five or six years of such service, the squire was reaily 
to become Aknight. Admission to this order was a matter of 
imposing and symbolic ceremonial. The youth fasted and con- 
fessed his sins, and then spent a night in the chapel in prayer 
and vigil over his arms. The next day, after listening to a 
sermon upon the duties of knighthood, he appeared before his 
lord, and, kneeling, took the vows to be a brave and gentle 
knight, to defend the church, to protect the ladies, to be faith- 
ful to his fellows, and to succor the distressed, especially 
widows and orphans. The ladies of the castle then buckled 




on the golden spurs, and the lord struck htm Ughtly over the 
shoulder with the flat of his sword, pronouncing a formula, 
such as " In the name of God, of St. Michael, and of St. George, 
I make you knight." 

Thus chivalry was the result of the church's trying to take 
possession of feudal society : it was an imperfect attempt to 
fuse the ideals of the Teutonic war- 
rior and of the Christian. Its faults 
were twofold. (1) It was exclusive : 
its spirit was altogether a class 
spirit; it recognized no ohligations 
except to nobles; eveu the vow to 
protect women did not apply to any 
women but those of gentle birth. 
(2) It carried some of its virtues 
(bravery and devotion to ladies) to 
such extremes as to make them 
fantastic, if not vicious. The ideals, 
too, were not always reached ; and 
a perfect knight may have been 
no more common than is a perfect 
gentleman to-day. But chivalry did 
help to soften manners and to hu- 
manize society. Along with other 
feudal institutions, it develope<l a 
high sense of personal honor and of 
personal independence, and, at the 
same time, of personal loyalty to a 
lord ; it elevated women ; and it had much to do with creating 
the modern home and our ideal of a gentleman,' 

1 Toimrd the yenr 1400, when cblvair; was decsyfng, Chaucer gives thlB 
plctnreot his typical knight: — 

" A knight there was, and that a worthy man, 
Tliat [ro the time that he ilret began 
Xo riden out, be loveii <-hivalry, 
Truth and honor, freedom and courtesy, . . . 

- FrolQ LacToix, 


38. The Hen of Religion in the FeudAl Age. — The two con- 
I tntdictory ideals of the feudal age were those of the knight 
j and of the monk. The village priest was a peasaat in origin, 
and usually remained es- 
Eentially a peasant in his 
life, marrying in the vil- 
lage (until the eleventh 
century) and oftentimes 
working in the fields with 
bis neighbota. He was a 
peasant witli a somewhat 
better income than his fel- 
lows, with a little learning 
and a revered position, and 

with great powerforgood.' Mokm Bust ik Fikld Labob.— From 
In corresponding manner, l*<:n>li. »»»"■ » thirweuth century 

... French manuscript, 

the great ecclesiastics — 

bishops and archbishops — were essentially of the noble class, 
both in origin and in manner of life, fitting in all respects 
into the feudal framework. But the monks' were a distinct 

And tho that ha nas worth]', he was wise. 

And of his port as meek as Is a maid. 

And never ;et no vHlaio; be said 

In all his lite, unto no manner wight. 

He yiu a very perfect, gentle knight." 
About seveutf years later, In Malory's King Arlhur, another beantiful 
ideal is pictured. When SirEctoc found Sir Lancelot dead, — "He [ell down 
in a swoon - . . and when he waked it were hard for any tongue to (ell the 
dolelnll complaints that he made. ' Ah, Lancelot,' he said, , . . ' thou wert 
the courteonst knight that ever bore shield; and tb on wert the truest friend 
to iby lover that ever bestrode horse ; and tbou wert the Iniesl lover among 
Binfnl men that ever loved woman ; and thou wert the kindest man that ever 
itruck witli sword ; and thou wert the person that eier came among 
the preee of knights; and thon wert the meekest man and the gentlest tbat 
ever ate in hall among ladies ; and thou wert the sternest kntgbt to tby mor- 
tal foe that ever put epear In rest.' " 

' CI. i 72 for a fuller statement rejcarding the non-monaxtic clergy. The 
best treatment of the priest is Cults' Pariih Prie$ti and ihfir Peoplt. 

» MoDasteriea are treated briefly In the Ancient Hiitin-y, %% 602-605. For 
c life, cf. JesBop's Coming of the Friart, ch, ill. 

48 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814^1100. [§39 

class. They sought to escape the anarchy and the violence of 
the world about them, and in their quiet retreat they lived 
religious lives of industry and prayer. To other men in those 
evil days, their temperance, abstinence, and self-sacrifice seemed 
more than human ; and their saintly reputation long defended 
them, even when corruption for a time had crept in among them. 
For centuries they deserved this reverence. The thousands of 
monasteries that dotted Europe were the chief centers of in- 
dustry, peace, and religion, and the sole refuge of learning.* 
From them came most of the great religious revivals of the 
Middle Ages.* 

39. CaotionB for the Student — To avoid common misconceptions 
regarding feudalism, it is well to fix in mind the following points : — 

(1) The kings kept their old authority in theory^ and therefore were 

always something more than great feudal lords, though the dif- 
ference was vague. 

(2) ^'Vassal*' never means serf: a vassal was free and noble, though 

he was, by bargain, the ** man'' of some ** lord." 

(3) Strictly speaking, feudal society contained only suzerains and vas- 

sals, though these classes made up but a small part of the popu- 

(4) Serfs and villeins were not part of the feudal system : that is, their 

relations to their masters were not feudal relations, in strict 
language. But some such classes were necessary to the existence 
of the feudal classes above them. 

(5) Feudalism did not create serfs, to begin with, but it did thrust 

down into the position of serfs and villeins many men who bad 
formerly been free. 

(6) In feudal times, society was always more complex and less sym- 

metrical than would seem from any single account. 

40. Extracts from Joinville's Memoir of St. Louis, to show the Moral 
Ideas of the Best Lay Society about 1300. 

[The book was dedicated to the son of the ruling king, a great grand- 
son of St. Louis.] **And because I see no one who ought to have it 

1 Special report: the monasteries and learning (see especially Putnam's 
Books and their Makers in the Middle Ages, eh. i.). Munro's Middle Ages, 
127, gives a map of monasteries in France, which the student should see. 

2 Cf. §§ 59» 60, 72 close, and footnote 2. 


80 rightly as you who are his heir, I send it to you, that you and your 
brothers and others who may hear it read, may take good example from 
it and put these examples in practice, that God may be pleased with you. 
. . . The memory of the great king is a great honor to all his lineage 
who would resemble him in doing good and who seek to imitate him, but 
great dishonor to those of his blood who elect to do evil ; for the people 
will point the finger at them and say that the sainted king from whom 
they are descended would never have consented to such evil actions. 
. . . The saint [Louis was canonized about thirty years after his death] 
loved truth to such a degree that even with the Saracens he would not 
draw back from what he had promised. As to his palate he was so indif- 
ferent that never did I hear him ask for any particular dish, as many men 
do, but he ate contentedly of whatever was served up to him. He was 
measured in his speech. Never in my life did I hear him speak ill of any 
one ; nor did I ever hear him name the Devil, — a name widely spread in 
this realm ; and it is a great disgrace to the kingdom of France, and to the 
king when he suffers it, that one can hardly speak without saying * the 
Devil take it * and it is a great sin to devote to the Devil a man given to 
God from the moment that he is baptized. In the Joinville household, 
whoso utters such a word receives a box on the ears or a slap on the 
mouth, and bad language is almost wholly suppressed. ... He asked me 
once whether I wished to be honored and enter Paradise through death ? 
Keep yourself then from doing or saying aught which, if all the world 
knew, you could not avow and say, *I did this,^ *I said that.^ He told 
me to refrain from contradicting anything said in my presence, providing 
there was no sin in remaining silent, because hard words engender strife. 
... He used to say that a man should so equip his person that the 
grey-beards of the day should not be able to say that it was over done ; 
nor the young men that there was anything wanting. After the king's 
return from over the sea, he lived so devoutly that he never wore furs of 
different colors, or scarlet cloth, or gilt stirups or spurs. I was reminded 
of this by the father of the king who now reigns [Philip the Hardy] allud- 
ing[ once to the embroidered coats of arms fashionable now-a-days. I 
made answer to him that never in the voyage over the sea did I see em- 
broidered coats . . . and that he would have done better to have given 
the money to the poor and to have worn plain clothes as his father used 
to do." 

[Joinville gives also this extract from Louis' deathbed testament to his 
Bon.] *^ Fair son, the first thing that I teach thee is to mould thy heart to 
love 6od« If God send thee adversity, accept it patiently, and render 
thanks, and know that thou hast deserved it. If be send thee prosperity, 
thank him humbly, that thou be not worse through pride. Bear thyself 

50 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 40 

BO that thy confessor and friends may venture to reprove thee for thy 
misdeeds. Attend devoutly to the service of Holy Church both with 
mouth and mind. Let thy heart be gentle and compassionate toward the 
poor and the afflicted, and comfort them so far as in thee lies. Help the 
right and uphold the poor man until the truth be made manifest [i.e. 
while the case is undecided]. Bestow the benefices of the church upon 
men of unspotted lives. Wage no war with any Christian prince, except 
it be necessary after grave deliberation. Be careful to have good provosts 
and bailiCEs, and make frequent inquiries about them, and about all thy 
servants as to how they conduct themselves, and whether they are guilty 
of overmuch greed and deceit. . . . Fair dear son, I bestow upon thee all 
the benediction a good father can give a good son. And may the blessed 
Trinity preserve and defend thee from all evil, and give thee grace to do 
the will of God.'* 

Fob Further Reading. — Excellent "source*' material will be found 
in Pennsylvania lieprintSy IV, No. 3, and in Jones* Source Extracts^ both 
of which have been referred to in the notes. These volumes should be 
used exhaustively for feudalism. The student should also know Froissart 
(fourteenth century), — at least in Lanier's charming volume. The Boys* 
Froissart, — and Joinville's Memoir of St, Louis (thirteenth century). 
For modem accounts, the best statements are those in Adams' Civiliza- 
tion and his Growth of the French Nation, and in Emerton's Medieval 
Europe, Advanced students will find an admirable treatment in Seignobos' 
Feudal Btgime. There is a vast literature on the subject of feudalism ; 
but the older accounts, such as those of Ilallam, Robertson, and Guizot, 
are more or less untrustworthy, especially regarding the rise of the insti- 
tution. For special features, — chivalry, village life, etc., — see footnote 
references to §§21, 30-38. Historical fiction upon the feudal period Is 
particularly valuable : Scott's novels, of course, must not be overlooked, 
although they give a false glamor to the age, and perhaps they should be 
corrected by "Mark Twain's" scathing treatment in his Connecticut 
Yankee in King Arthur^s Court. Other excellent portraits are given in 
Robert Louis Stevenson's Black An*ow and Conan Doyle's White Com- 
pany. Charlotte Yonge's Little Duke and Stockton's Story of Viteau 
are good for younger students and will be enjoyed by older ones. 
Martineau's Prince and Peasant pictures the abuses of feudalism at a 
later period. 

Special Reports. — 1. The revolt of the Norman peasants in 097, and 
the way it was regarded by feudal society. (See a medieval account in 
Jones' Source Extracts^ 87-88. This may well be made a class exercise 
instead of an individual topic.) 2. Tournaments. 3. The amuse- 


ment of hunting in feudal times. 4. Life in a feudal cattle. 6. Her- 
aldry. 6. Armor. 7. Life in a monastery. 

For the second, third, and fourth topics, material should be sought in 
the better historical novels dealing with the period. Students may also 
be called upon to find incidents in such literature illustrating the various 
paragraphs in the preceding treatment. For topic 7, see especially 
JesBop^s Coming of the Friars, 


1. Let the class prepare review questions, each member five or ten. 

Criticise the questions, showing which ones help to bring out im- 
portant facts and contrasts and likenesses, and which are merely 
trivial and curious. 

2. Make lists of important names or terms for rapid drill, requiring brief 

but clear explanation of each term. The following terms are suitable : 
suzerain (liege), vassal, serf, villein, Loiharingia, Romance lan- 
guage. Oath of Strashurg, Magyars, Rolf the Dane, feudal aids. 
This number may be increased threefold. Let the class preserve 
such lists for future reviews. 


A. Rise of a Native Dynasty. 

4L The Last Carolingians and the Dukes of France. — By the Treaty 
of Verdun ($ 8), Charles the Bald, a grandson of Charlemagne, became 
King of the West Franks (843-877). His reign — the longest of any of his 
nee after Charlemagne — was concerned only with wars against his 
brothers, nephews, and grand-nephews, in the kingdoms about him, and 
with the ravages of the Norse pirates. Three feeble successors ^ held the 
throne for seven disastrous years. Then the nobles of France passed over 
keenly survivor of this branch of the Carolingians, a boy of five years, 
to be known later as Charles the Simple,* and offered the crown to Charles 
tkt Pat, of the German branch. By the death of all competitors, Charles 
had already become Emperor and ruler of Germany and of most of the old 
Middle Kingdom ; and so now for a moment nearly all of the Empire of 
Charlemagne was reunited. Charles, however, was a sluggish coward, in- 
capable of decision or action, on account of disease and corpulence. In 887, 

^ Louis the Stammerer (877-879) and his two sods, joint rulers, Louis III 
(879-882) and Carlman (879-884). 
' A third son of Louis the Stammerer. 

52 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 41 

he was deposed by a general revolt, and the dominions of the Carolingians 
fell apart upon the old lines of the Division of Verdun. France w<is 
never again to be joined to the Empire. 

Then for a hundred years (887-987), the crown passed back and forth 
between the Carolingians and a new family who were finally to establish 
themselves firmly upon the throne.^ In the universal despair of the pre- 
ceding fifty years, the only successful leadership in the north of France 
against the Norse inroads had come from a hero of humble birth who be- 
came known as Robert the Strong.^ Robert saved Paris from destruction, 
and extended his lands until they reached from the Seine to Orleans on 
the banks of the Loire. Somewhat later, this territory was known as the 
Dukedom of Francia. After Robertas death in battle against the Norse- 
men, his son Odo continued his policy. Odo became the most powerful 
nobleman in France, and was practically an independent sovereign. 

By this time there had grown up similar great lordships all over the 
kingdom, — Flanders, Brittany, Poitou, Anjou, Gascony, Aquitaine, 
Toulouse, Burgundy, Champagne, Blois, — each ruled by its hereditary 
count or duke. On the deposition of Charles the Fat, the great nobles 
chose Odo king. Odo was the first French ' king of France, His reign 
went to struggles with jealous rivals and to beating off the Northmen. 
At his death he named as his successor Charles the Simple (§41), the 
heir of the Carolingians. After more changes back and forth, the direct 
Carolingian line ran out (987), &ndllvgh Capet ^^ a grand-nephew of Odo, 
was chosen king by a council of nobles and clergy. 

1 The alternations were as follows : — 

Old line : Charles the Fat, 884-887 ; deposed. 

New line: Odo, 887-898. 

Old line : Charles the Simple, 898-922 ; died in prison, 929. 

New line: Robert, 922-923 ; (Rudolph of Burgundy, 923-936). 

Old line : Louis IV, 936-954 ; Lothair, 954-986 ; Louis V, 986-987. 

New line : Hugh Cai>et, elected in 987. 

3 Accordiug to one story, he was descended from a Parisian butcher ; a 
more probable account makes him a descendant of one of the Saxons whom 
Charlemagne bad removed from their homes to the heart of Gaul. 

8 The Carolingians had been Germans {Ancient History y § 636, note). The 
line rnliug in Gaul had, however, become partly French, and perhaps the 
chief importance in the change of dynasty lay in getting rid, in France, of 
the Carolingian imperial tradition. 

^ Hugh's surname came from his custom of wearing an abbot's cope, or 
cape : he was a " lay abbot." 


B. Conditions confronting the Early Capetians. 

42. The '' Feudal Kingship " of the First Capetians.^ — Hugh 
Capet was crowned, not as " King of France," but as " King 
of the Gauls, Bretons, Danes, Normans, Aquitanians, Goths, 
Spaniards, and Gascons." This title shows something of the 
^mposite nature, at that date, of the realm we call France. 
In later times, French kingship was to become the type of 
absolute and centralized government (§ 264), and it is this kind 
of kingship that comes naturally before our minds when 
we sx>eak of even the early French kings; so it is hard 
for us to get a clear idea of the difficulties before the first 
Capetians. The election of Hugh did not increase his actual 
power. It did increase his duties and his claims to power; 
but his resources for performing those duties and enforcing 
those claims rested almost solely at first on his old possessions 
as Duke of Francia. Several of the great princes ruling over 
the rest of France were each quite as powerful as the king. 
Hugh was now in theory their sovereign : but so far as they 
obeyed him at all, they obeyed him not as sovereign, but as 
suzerain ; and this tie between the great vassals and the feudal 
Wng was precisely the least real of all the links in the whole 
chain of lords and vassals. France had no national machin- 
ery for government. In particular, there were three wants. 

a. There was no system of French law, and there were no 
iiational courts. Each great fief was building up its own local 
law from its own customs ; and the king's " court " was little 
niore than a court for his vassals only, just as each vassal had 
a court for his own subjects (§ 29). 

h. There was no national revenue, no general system of taxa- 
tion. The king's income came from his own domain land 
(S 26) and from the irregular feudal aids (§ 30). 

c. There was no national militia. When the king needed 
an army, his forces came (1) from his own immediate feudal 

^ Read the admirable treatment in Adams' Growth of the French Nation, 
^^^, from which this and the two following sections are condensed. 

54 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 43 

followers in his hereditary duchy, and (2) from such of his 
great vassals elsewhere as friendship might bring to his aid. 
Not till much later was the king able to compel the attendance 
of these princes : at first he was obliged to accept any excuse 
for staying away that they deigned to make.^ 

43. The Work before the Capetian Kings and Some Elements 
of Their Success. — The proper task for the Capetian kings was 
to make, from these composite, decentralized feudal fragments 
of a kingdom, a new French nation with a common language, 
common customs, and common patriotism. This work, after 
some centuries of constant effort, they were to accomplish. 
The chief forces and conditions that made for their success 
may be classed under four heads : — 

a. The hereditary possessions, or private fortunes, of the dukes 
of Francia (§ 41). 

b. The support of the church. That organization felt the 
need of a strong king to protect both itself and society at 
large against the violence of the greedy nobles ; and in that 
age, when bishops and abbots were themselves feudal lords, 
the church could give not only moral support, but also impor- 
tant material aid. 

c. T/ie Roman idea of government. The Capetians refused 
to accept the theory of a merely feudal kingship : they used 
that theory when it suited their purposes, but, from the first, 
with elastic policy, they claimed also the rights of a centralized 
monarchy. This theory was based upon Eoman ideas,* and it 
found ready support from the lawyers, when that class rose to 
importance in the eleventh and twelfth centuries. 

d. The undisputed succession to the throne for many genera- 
tions. The Capetians were to rule France for more than eight 
hundred years, or as long as France was to have kings at all. 
For a century the crown had been elective in practice, and no 

1 In all these respects, however, the Capetians were better off than the 
Carolingians had been, since the latter had had almost no feudal resources of 
their own. 

s Ancient History ^ § 613. 


doubt the Teutonic theory of an elective kingship had always 
survived. In Germany, election was soon to become the 
regular practice; but the election of Hugh Capet was the 
last such incident in French history. For three centuries each 
king left a son old enough, or nearly old enough, to assume the 
government; and in the absence of contending claims, the 
succession became strictly hereditary. The long line of able 
mJers held resolutely to one royal policy, and so the unbroken 
succession itself became a factor in their final victory. 

44. The Early Reigns, to the Twelfth Century.^ — The Capetian buc- 
eefls, however, did not begin in earnest in the period treated in this 
chapter. The first three kings of the new dynasty, surrounded with 
difficulties as they were, hardly held their own. The fourth king, 
Philip I, ruled nearly fifty years, and prepared for the later advance by 
increasing the private domain of his house. In the early part of his reign 
occurred the conquest of England (§ 16) by the Duke of Normandy, a 
vassal of the French king ; and in the latter part, the crusades began 
(K 92 ff.). These events were both to have a mighty influence upon the 
development of the French monarchy, but their results were not to show 
wtil a later period, when the consolidation of France had already made 
some progress (§§ 150-152). 


THE EMPIRE, 843-962.2 

-4. Germany at the Close of the Carolingiax Period. 

45. The Great "Stem Duchies." —With the break-up of the 
Carolingian state, the Germans, more plainly than before, 
appear divided into four great " stems," — Saxons, Franks, 
Siiabians (Alemanni), and Bavarians.' Besides these the 
liOtharingians must be counted as a fifth German people, 

^ The reigns for this preliminary period were as follows: Hugh, 987-996; 
^bert, 996-1031 ; Henry 1, 1031-1060 ; Philip 1, 1060-1108. For earlier reigns, 
s^ §§ 6, 7, 41, note ; for later reigns, see table, § 148. 

' For the remaining century and a half of the period treated in Part I, 

Germany is a part of the Holy Roman Empire ; see Divisions VI, VII, and 

' Cf . map, facing page 63. Advanced students will find an excellent treat- 
nient of the " stems " in Fisher's Medieval Empire^ 1, 48-93. 

56 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 46 

though that duchy was for a while connected with the realm 
of France. Each of the five divisions rallied around a native 
duke, and, at times, seemed likely to become a distinct nation. 
The two most important stems were the German Franks 
(Franconians) and the Saxons. Since the time of Clovis, the 
Franks had been the dominant people; but now the more 
vigorous Saxons were to gain the leadership. Of all the Ger- 
man races the Saxons were the least touched by Roman cul-' 
ture and Roman ideas. The old paganism still lingered 
among the wild moors of their northern frontiers, and as a 
people they kept many primitive Teutonic customs. 

46. The Proper Work of the German King^s, and some Hin- 
drances to Success. — For many years after the Carolingians, 
Germany was to be a federation of great duchies, the duke of 
the strongest nation ranking over the others as king. The two 
proper tasks for the king were to unite these five German peo- 
ples and to beat off the heathen invaders. 

In marked contrast with the Capetian line in France, the 
German royal families were all to die out after two or three 
generations ; so that Germany, frequently compelled to choose 
a new line of rulers, preserved the old principle of election, 
which was so soon to disappear in France. This condition 
weakened the monai'chy at critical periods. Moreover, a strong 
ruler was always tempted to try to secure also the fragments 
of the old Middle Kingdom and of Italy, on the west and south, 
and to revive the imperial dignity of Charlemagne. In these 
attempts, German kings were to dissipate energy needed for 
Germany itself. 

B. Rise of Native Dynasties :' Historical Outline to 962. 

47. The Change from Carolingian to Native Rulers : Conrad the 
Franconian. — On the deposition of Charles the Fat (§ 41), 
Amulf, a German Carolingian, secured the throne ; but in 911 

1 The Carolingian rulers of Germany frona Verdun to the election of a 
new line were as follows: Lewis II (Lewis the German), 843-876 ; l^wi^ III 


his line died out with his son, Lewis the Child. The German 
nobles then had at least enough national feeling to prevent 
them from turning to the French Carolingian, Charles the 
Simple (§ 41). Instead they elected Conrad^ the Duke of 
Franconia. Conrad (911-919) tried in vain to crush the other 
dukes. Finally he came to see that his family was not power- 
ful enough to unite Germany; and at his death, with true 
patriotism, he recommended for his successor the mightiest of 
his rivals, Henry of Saxony. 

48. Henry I, 919-936 (the Saxon House). — Henry reversed 
Conrad's policy towards the dukes. He recognized them as 
necessary centers of power; he bound them to himself as 
friends and ruled through them, so that he sometimes appeared 
master of all Germany. He also added finally to his kingdom 
the fifth duchy, Lotharingia. 

But the most important part of Henry's work was his suc- 
cessful defense of the realm against the Hungarians (§ 12). He 
first bought an interval for preparation, a nine years' truce, by 
payment of annual tribute, and he used the time to organize 
his military resources. At many important points near the 
frontier, he built strongholds.* A militia also was organized 
in the exposed districts, so that one man of nine might always 
be on guard in these forts, while the other eight tilled the land 
of their absent brother. Such fortified places not only afforded 
^fuge for the countrymen when invasion came ; they also made 
any invasion difficult. To reduce them was almost impossible, 
and for the invader to pass on, leaving them in his rear, was 
extremely hazardous. When his preparations were complete, 

(the Young), 876-882; Charles the Fat, 882-887; Arnulf, 887-889; Lewis IV 
(the Child), 899-911. 

^HeDiy ordered that all markets and festivals should be held within 
^led places, so as to make them centers of social life ; and in later times 
many of these strongholds grew into great cities, giving to the King his most 
honorable surname, *' the Builder of Cities." He was also called " Henry the 
fowler," because the messenger from Conrad's brother with the news of the 
election to the throne had found him, falcon on wrist, at his favorite sport of 
hunting in the Harz mountains. 

58 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§49 

Henry refused to pay further tribute, and a new invasion by 
the Hungarians was decisively repulsed. 

In 936, Henry was succeeded by his son Otto. 

49. Otto I, 936-973: the Dukedoms united; the Barbarians 
conquered. — Otto the Great carried his father's work to comple- 
tion in both its phases. At his coronation he required the four 
great dukes to serve him as marshal, steward, cup-bearer, and 
chamberlain; and the first years of his reign were spent in 
forcing upon these reluctant princes a real recognition of the 
royal authority. In this work, Otto turned to the clerical 
lords for help. The bishops and abbots, on their part, as in 
France (§ 43 6), favored a strong government and gladly threw 
their mighty influence on the royal side, while in return the 
king augmented their power and their lands. By 950, Otto 
had won. All the dukes had been reduced to obedience ; in- 
deed, for a time, they seemed no longer hereditary local rulers, 
but mere appointees of the king. Under Conrad, the dukes 
had been rivals and enemies ; under Henry, friendly supporters, 
but still possible rivals ; under Otto, they had become servants, 
and, at one time, after years of anxious conflict, all the great 
dukedoms were united in the King's own family.^ 

In protecting Germany from invasion. Otto was even more 
successful. While he had been busy with internal quarrels, 
the Hungarians had renewed their raids, and in 955 they poured 
into the country in greater force than ever before, — according 
to the chroniclers, numbering a himdred thousand horsemen. 
Augsburg, on the Lech river, detained them by holding out 
under its hero-bishop through a terrible siege, and Otto ad- 
vanced hastily to the relief of the imperiled city. He set out 
with a small body of followers ; but contingents from all Ger- 
many loyally joined him on the march, and Saxons, Franco- 
nians, Suabians, Bavarians, all took part in the deliverance of 
Germany, in the decisive Battle of Lechfeld. No quarter was 

1 The royal yictory, however, was far less complete than at first seemed 
the case ; and» for maDy generations the dukes proved centers of resistance 
to royal authority. 


given in the long and terrible pursuit across the border. The 
Hangarians never again attacked Christendom : they settled in 
the valleys of the Theiss and Danube (where they still live) 
and soon adopted Christianity and entered the family of Euro- 
pean nations (§§ 64 c, 65 a). 

50. German Expansion to the East. — Otto followed up his 
success firmly and wisely. Year by year, the Slavs were forced 
farther back, and ^^ marches,^^ or "marks,'* were established 
along the whole eastern frontier, under watchful commanders, 
to ward off attack.^ The heathen barbarians were compelled 
to receive missionaries and to permit the building of monas- 
teries that were to Christianize and civilize them. Private 
enterprise saw an opportunity ; and German nobles, eager for 
land, began a great colonizing movement, which was soon to 
extend Germany on the east from the Elbe to the Oder and to 
carry German civilization and swarms of German colonists 
among the Slavs of the Baltic coasts. Otto pointed out the 
direction in which Germany should expand, and indeed began 
the movement which was finally to double the size of his coun- 
try and to civilize even wider areas.' The prestige of Germany 
was firmly established among neighboring peoples : the war- 
like dukes of Bohemia and Poland and even the famous Harold 
Blue-Tooth, King of Denmark, recognized Otto as overlord. 
Best of all, the various peoples of Germany seemed for a time 
to have learned that safety and honor lay in national union 
under a strong king. 

51. A New Coarse of Political Development for Germany: 
Otto and the Empire. — Thus, before 960, Otto had succeeded 
apparently (1) in consolidating Germany into the most power- 
ful and best united state in Europe, (2) in warding off all 

^ At the extreme southeast was the East Mark (against the Hungarians) , 
vMch was to grow into Austria; another of these marks was tiie heginning 
of the later Prussia. Cf. Ancient History^ § 276 c and note, and see in this 
▼olume §§ 270 ff . 

' Bead LAvisse, Political History of Europe^ 45-48. Cf . also in this volume 
K ^ c, 65 a, and maps following pages 70 and 130. 

60 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 52 

attack from without, and (3) in starting his countrymen upon 
a course of national expansion toward the barbarous east. He 
now felt strong enough to interfere in Italy and to restore the 
Empire. Two military expeditions across the Alps accomplished 
his design (§ 53) and opened a new chapter of history for both 
Germany and Italy. 

For Further Reading. — Emerton, 00-114, or Tout, Empire and 
Papacy, 12-27. 

The Empire at its Height, Otto I to Henry III, 962-1056. 

The history of the Empire is the key to the whole history of medieval 
Europe. — Freeman. 

By a strange freak of fortune, the title and traditions of the Caesars 
pass to the latest barbarian arrival within the circle of the civilized nations 
of the west. — Herbert Fisher. 

To meti of that time, living amid the perpetual strife of small principali- 
ties, the vision of one universal Empire of law and right shone tcith an 
alluring brightness, which we, accustomed to a system of national govern- 
ments and international relations, can hardly understa)id, — Freeman.^ 

A. Restoration and Character. 

S2. Otto's Motives for restoring^ the Empire. — For the sixty- 
three years between Arnulf s death and Otto's invasion of 
Italy, the Empire in the West had lapsed.* The idea, how- 
ever, was still a vital force in Europe. Otto's father, the 
cool and practical Henry, is said to have dreamed grandly of 
its realization, and Otto's own more ardent spirit had long 
been fired by the vision of wider sway and of taking up again 
the imperial work of Charlemagne. 

This aspiration was not mere vulgar ambition. In that age 
a ruler strong enough for the work could not but feel it his su- 
preme duty to restore the Roman Empire, the symbol of univer- 

iCf. Freeman's "Holy Roman Empire" in the First Series of Essays, 
especially pages 126, 127, and 133. 

3 Except for the name Emperor, assumed from time to time by petty 
Italian princes. 


sal order and peace. Otto, moreover, had another motive sternly 
practical : the Pope, he believed, had been trying to interfere 
with his control over the ecclesiastical lords of Germany, upon 
whose suppoii; the throne rested ; and he thought it needful to 
be able to control that potentate. 

53. The Occasion and the Restoration (962): Otto in Italy. — 
The condition of Italy furnished an excuse for German inter- 
vention. Like other states of the period, Italy was broken into 
fragments, and the disintegration there was so complete that no 
local dynasty could set up even the form of a national king- 
ship. Colonies of Saracens had established themselves on the 
southern coasts, dividing that part of the peninsula with the 
Lombards and the Byzantine Empire; and central Italy was 
devastated by invasion, turbulence, and famine. Finally, in 
the incessant struggles between petty principalities, an im- 
prisoned princess called for help to Otto, the hero of the North. 
Otto seized the opportunity. In a first expedition, he was 
crowned King of Italy, at Pavia, and he married the beautiful 
suppliant, Adelheid, whose adventures had shed romance on 
even the dark pages of Italian history in that age. In a second 
expedition, in 962, Otto was consecrated Emperor by the Pope at 

Most of Otto's remaining years were spent in restoring order 
in Italy (§ 60). Ten years after the imperial coronation, his 
son was married to a Byzantine princess, and the glorious pomp 
and splendid ceremonial that celebrated this union of the two 
Christian empires gaVe the world a new sense of the power of 
the German state. 

54. The Restoration Disastrous in the Future, but Natural and Bene- 
ficial at the Time. — The connection with Italy first really lifted Germany 
from its ancient barbarism and brought to it the culture and art of the 
older world. Modem German writers, however, sometimes blame Otto 
bitterly, claiming that his ambition caused needless woe to his country in 
future times. And it is true that Otto was the first of a long line of Ger- 
man kings, who, for three centuries, at intervals of a few years, led 
splendid German armies across the Alps, to melt away beneath the 
Italian sun, and that his policy influenced future German rulers often to 

62 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [f 54 

neglect true German interests. For the whole duration of the Empire, 
German strength and German enterprise were frittered away in foreign 
squabbles, while the opportunity to make a permanent German state and 
to develop German national feeling was lost. Quite as serious were the 
results to Italy. A German king, however much he was ** Roman em- 
peror,** could hardly enter Italy without a German army at his back, and 
the southern land became in practice a conquered province, ruled by for- 
eigners whom the natives looked upon as uncouth northern barbarians. 

It should be remembered, however, that what Otto did, any great and 
good king in his place would have tried to do. The action was natural, if 
not inevitable, and it was applauded at the time by the best men of both 
Germany and Italy. The very chaos of the age disposed men to dwell 
reverently upon the idea of universal i)eace and justice under the wise 
providence of a supreme ruler elevated above all temptation ; and for 
centuries to come, many of the greatest and most generous spirits longed 
passionately for the realization of this idea in a universal empire. For 
this faith, four hundred years after Otto, Dante (§ 188) suffered life-long 
exile from his beloved Florence ; and Petrarch, even later (§ 189), be- 
lieved one imperial government for all the world as plain a necessity as is 
one head for the human body.^ Nor was this feeling restricted to lonely 
thinkers : it permeated the masses also ; and, before Otto*s fateful journey 
into Italy, while he stood victor amidst the carnage of Lechf eld's glorious 
day, his conquering host with common impulse had hailed him *^ Emperor 
of the Romans.'* 

Moreover, despite the evils of the distant future and some serious draw- 
backs from the beginning, the new policy was productive of much good. 
Whether the good balanced the evil, it is perhaps even now impossible to 
say. The restored Empire was to last more than eight hundred years, 
into the nineteenth century (§ 370). During the latter part of this long 
period, it was little more than a mockery ; but for the first three hundred 
years it was a mighty agent in keeping down feudal anarchy, in helping 
to reform the church, in civilizing Germany, in extending the sway of 
Christian civilization over the barbarous Slavs, and in holding together 
Central Europe, — when very possibly no other power could have done 
these things so well. 

I With reference to the breaking up of Christendom into separate states, 
Petrarch speaks of ** the hideous portent of a creature of many heads biting 
and snapping at each other'*; see a lengthy extract from Petrarch's Letter 
to the Romans in Bryce's Holy Roman Empire^ 256. Dante wrote his De 
Monarchia to establish this same view of the necessity of one imperial rule. 
Cf . also the third theme sentence at the head of Division VI, page 60. 


65. The Nature of the Restored Empire. — After its restorar 
tion the Empire is known as '* the Holy Roman Empire of the 
German People." Two new terms in this title are significant. 

a. The new Empire was Holy : ^ it partook of the nature of 
the church, and its most serious problems — indeed, the ques- 
tion of its success — were to turn upon the relations between 
popes and emperors. 

'^ The theory of the Medieval Empire is that of a universal Christian 
monarchy. The Roman Empire and the Catholic Church are two aspects 
of one society, a society ordained by the Divine Will to spread itself over 
the whole world. At the head of this society in its temporal character, 
as an empire, stands the temporal chief of Christendom, the Roman 
Caesar. At its head in its spiritual character, as a church, stands the 
spiritual chief of Christendom, the Roman Pontiff. Caesar and Pontiff, 
alike, role by divine right, each as God^s immediate vicar within his own 
sphere. Each is bound to the other by the closest ties, . . . And each 
of these lofty offices is open to every baptized man ; each alike is purely 
elective. . . . Here is a conception as magnificent as it was impractical. ^ * ' 

6. The new Empire was German,^ (1) It was less universal 
than the Carolingian Empire^ had been. Charlemagne had 
been ruler over practically all Latin Christendom. The 
restored Empire never included the French part of Charle- 
magne's territories, while, outside the old imperial bounds, new 
states were now growing up, north, west, and east, — in Eng- 
land, in the Scandinavian lauds, in Spain, in Poland, and in 
Hungary, — all for the most part beyond any real imperial 
control. (2) The fact that France was not included made the 

^ The term " Holy" does not appear in the official title until the time of 
Frederick I (§ 79) ; bat the new character appears from Otto's time, and it is 
customary to nse this name lor the whole period after 962. 

s Freeman, " Holy Roman Empire/' in Third Series of Essays, 136, 137 ; 
the student should read at least the context of this quotation. The best 
statement upon the subject, probably, is the chapter entitled, " Theory of the 
Medieyal Empire" in Bryce's classic work. The Holy Roman Empire, AU 
students should read at least pages 104-112 of that chapter. 

s CI. the second theme sentente at the bead of Division VI. 

^ It would be profitable at this point to review the relation of Charlemagne 
to the older Roman Empire. See Ancient History ^ §§ 517, 618. 

64 A NEW SERIES OF DARK! AGES, 814-1100. [§ 56 

new Empire more German, and less Roman, than the old. 
Otto had attached the imperial dignity finally to the German 
kingship, preventing forever its becoming attached to the 
kingship of France or Italy or Burgundy ; and in so doing, 
he had really created a new empire, — one with its elements 
mingled in new proportions. Roman tradition still furnished 
the theory of the world state, but the German people furnished 
all the physical support upon which the actual imperial structure 

56. The German and the Roman Crowns. — For three hundred years, 
each holder of the imperial throne was crowned thrice : ^ once at Aachen, 
as King of Germany ; once at Milan or Pavia, as King of Italy ; and 
finally at Rome, as Emperor. In theory the imperial throne was to be 
filled by free election at Rome, and any free man in Christendom might 
be chosen ; but in practice no one was eligible for the imperial election 
until he had become King of Germany, and every king of Germany who 
could march to Rome was at once saluted Emperor.^ A candidate cared 
for success in the first election — to the throne of Germany — mainly in 
order to make sure of the third — to the imperial throne. And so, after 
a time, the'first election changed its form : the very title " King of Ger- 
many^* ceased; and, instead, at Aachen men chose a ^*King of the 
Romans ^* — a new title, indicating the nature of the election as a mere 
step to the higher imperial dignity. 

B. The Church at the Restoration op the Empire. 

57. The Church the Strongest Bond of Union for Medieyal 
Europe. — The hardest thing to understand about the centuries 
we are now studying is the way the church pervaded all the 
life of the time. Christianity was not only a religion : it was 
a government. In a sense, Christendom was a political state. 
Especially was this true while the Empire- was in abeyance, 
and afterwards when at times the popes had made themselves 
superior to the emperors (§§ 69, 82-84). Later, there arose 
other agencies to do much of the work that in this early 
period fell to the church ; and so in no Christian land to-day 

1 Often he was crowned a fourth time as King of Burgundy (§ 64 b), 

2 Read Freeman, First Series of Esmffi^y 26(>. 


does any church fill so large a place, or hold so great authority, 
as the Catholic church did throughout Western Europe from 
the eighth to the fifteenth centuries. 

During all this time, in fact and in theory, the church in- 
cluded all inhabitants of Christendom, except Jews. Indeed, 
it was as impossible then to think of a man in Christian 
Europe as outside the church, as it is now to think of a 
Frenchman in France outside the French nation. When the 
Carolingian Empire had been shattered into feudal fragments, 
the units that we call national states, in which to-day our 
political life centers, had not yet developed: men still felt 
themselves citizens of a vaster fatherland, and gave to Chris- 
tendom something of the loyalty that we to-day give to our 
country. The unity of this universal church was preserved and 
its authority was exercised by its organized official body, the 
clergy, or "the church" in a narrower sense. The church had 
gained great power by rendering inestimable services. Upon 
it, over large areas, depended not only private morals but 
' also public order. With its spiritual thunders and the threat 
I of its curse, it many times protected the widow and the 
orphan from the brutal baron who would have regarded no 
earthly power. 

i The church building ^ of each parish, too, was the social center for the 

people. In it took place the most solemn events in each life, — the 

I christening, confirmation, marriage, and burial. Near it, on the Sunday 

' holiday, between the sacred services, occurred sportA and games ; and 

from its steps, the priest gave the people most of the news they received 

aboat the outside world. 

58. Decline of the Church in the Ninth and Tenth Centuries. — 

Even the church, however, could not escape the decay that was 

; going on everywhere in the ninth century. Both learning 

and morals declined, in the violence of the times ; and, after 

feudalism had put an end to barbarian invasion, the ferocity 

1 Observe that "church " is used in this section in three senses. The first 
two are easily confused. The student will have coustant occasion to discrim- 
^ inate between them in his reading. 

66 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 58 

and greed of that institution tended to infect religion. The 
church was growing worldly. To its great offices were at- 
tached revenues, lands, and political and even military duties. 
Bishops and abbots came to pay more attention to these finan- 
cial and civil matters than to their spiritual duties. They 
bought their places from the kings with money and with 
promises of support; and then sold the lower offices, which 
were under their jurisdiction, on like terms, for their own 
aggrandizement. This evil of simony,^ or the purchase of 
ecclesiastical office, permeated all ranks of the clergy. The 
rule of St. Benedict,' too, had fallen to decay, and often even 
the monasteries were no longer centers of moral earnest- 

The papacy also suffered sadly.* In the early part of the 
tenth century, it had lost all vital authority over Europe at 
large, and the popes had sunk again to mere bishops of B.ome. 
In Rome itself, the papacy lost public reverence and became 
the tool of the nobles in their private quarrels, until popes 
were set up and deposed by corrupt rings of Eoman lords. In 
nine years, from 896 to 904, there were nine popes, — the 
changes beiiig connected with furious struggles within the 
city. One pope caused the body of his predecessor, of a dif- 
ferent faction, to be dug up, mutilated, and flung into the 
Tiber. For half a century, infamous women by their intrigues 
raised their lovers and their sons in swift succession to the 
throne of St. Peter. Christendom was left without a head, 
and the evil results called loudly for reform. This reform 
was to come from two sources, — the great emperors (§§ 60, 
63, 65), and a remarkable religious revival within the church 
itself (§ 59). 

1 This name was suggested by the story of the oflfensive offer of the magi- 
cian Simon, related in the Acts of the Apostles. 

3 AncUnt History, §§ 603, 604. 

« See Ancient History, §§ 627-635, for a brief account of the rise of the 
papacy ; for the decline, see Alzog, 11, 292-298, and Adams, Civilixation, 


59. Clany and Reform.^ — In 910, a pious duke founded a 
new monastery at Cluny in Burgundy, and here began one of 
the greatest and most fruitful revivals in history. The abbot 
restored the rules of St. Benedict with such success that soon 
good men everywhere, as they struggled against evil, turned 
to Cluny for advice and leadership. The Benedictine rules, 
however, had left each monastery a separate unit ; now a more 
effective organization was adopted. New monasteries, and 
old ones as they were reformed under the influence of Cluniac 
missionaries, were joined as daughter societies to the mother 
monastery of Cluny. The abbot of Cluny appointed the heads 
of the daughter institutions and retained control over them, 
and from time to time there were held assemblies of delegates 
from all the monasteries of the order. This centralized gov- 
ernment produced rapid and wholesome results. Everywhere, 
in that brutal age, the widespread brotherhood lived holy, 
self-denying lives, and built up influence for good about them. 
Their power grew for two centuries, and they came to domi- 
nate the church. 

Besides the reform of individual lives, the leaders of the 
Cluniac movement had two main objects : they sought to re- 
form the machinery of the church by doing away with simony 
and with the marriage of the clergy; and, in order to accomplish 
the first purpose, they strove to elevate and purify the papacy. 

a. To prevent simony, they insisted that every bishop and abbot 
should be elected by the clergy of the ecclesiastical unit concemedf instead 
of being appointed by the civil power. This was a natural demand. For 
many students to-day it is not so easy to understand why the reformers 
objected to the marriage of the clergy. However, men have always had 
a tendency to think of holiness as connected with celibacy ; and from 
almost the beginning of Christianity attempts were made to keep the 
clergy from marrying. Outside of the monasteries these attempts seem to 
have broken down in the ninth century, and over most of Europe the 
clergy were husbands and fathers (§ 38) ; indeed, there had appeared a 

1 Read Tout, Empire and Papacy, 97-101 ; Emerton, 195-196 ; or Adams, 
Civilization, 239-244. Henderson's Documents, 239, gives the " Foundation 
of Cluny." 



tendency to make their ofBcea hereditary. But the men of Clunj believed 
ardently that the clergy could not do their proper work unleas they were 
set oH from iill concern regarding family, so that they might devote tbeir 
lives without reservation to the aervice of religion. After Bome two ceotu- 
ries of hitler Btmggle the reformers were successful, and the rule that the 
clergy must not marry became universal in the Latin church. 

6. The results of the attempt to eialt the papal power can be consid- 
ered beat in connection with the alory of the relations between popee and 
emperors (Sg 00 ff.). The great emperors of the tenth and eleventh cen- 
turies began the reformation, which the Ctuniac religious revival was 
finally to complete. 

60. Otto I and the Beginning of the Refonn of the Papacy. — 
Otto I had tried to fix the relation of the popes to the Empire. 
He coiifirmed the ancient 
"donations " of Pippin and 
Charlemagne,' but he also 
decreed that in the fu- 
ture no pope should be 
conseci-ated until he had 
taken an oath of allegiance 
to the emperor. Eoman 
patriotism and the papal 
party resented this attempt 
to make the pope a vassal 
of the Empire. Pope John 
XII (a dissolute criminal, 
as it happened) plotted to 
drive the Germans out of 
Italy. Otto deposed him 
^ ^ „ and set up another pope in 

ThK TkHPORAL and THK SplRITUAr. '^ '^ "^ 

his place. Soon after, the 
Romans drove out Otto'a 
pope and elected another, 
a worthy and noble man. 
Otto besieged thecity,cap- 
tured it, banished the rival pope, and restored his own candidate. 

In the Chiirc'hot St. John, Rome, repre- 
seiitlns fiod |;lvin);the keystn St. Peter 
and the banner to Constantiue. — From 
Lacroii, Vie ifilUiiire. 

1 Ancient Hutory, ^ 83*. 6UQ, 638. 


Otto's purpose was mainly political, and he had begun a 
struggle between popes and emperors, which was to endure 
three hundred years ; but incidentally he had also begun a re- 
form of the papacy which was to lift it to a pinnacle of glory. 

61« Three Theories of the RsUtions of Popes and Emperors.— This 
Blmggle Boon forced men to define their ideas about the relations of pope 
and emperor, and three theories appeared : (1) that the pope and emperor 
were equal and independent heads of Christendom, — one of the spiritual 
power, the other of the physical power, — bound, however, to act in close 
agreement and harmony ; (2) that the pope was independent in purely 
spiritual concerns, but that in political matters , as a ruling prince of the 
Empire, he was a vassal of the emperor; and (8) the Cluny idea that 
the pope as the more direct representative of God was the superior of the 
emperor and able to commandhis obedience. The first theory was nodoubt 
the most nearly in accord with the fundamental idea of a *' Holy '* Empire 
(cf. § 55 a), and for a long time it seems to have received general acknowl- 
edgment, at least in words ; but, when disputes arose, it could not be 
worked, and in practice men had to choose between the other two theories. 

C. Outline of Political History from Otto I to the 

Death of Henry III, 973-1056. 

62. Reference Table of German Kings, — from the close of the 
Carolingiaiis to the "Great Interregnmn," 9xz-xa54.^ 

a. Conrad I (Franconian), 911-918. 

6. The Saxon Dynasty: Henry /, 919-936; Otto /, 930-973 (Em- 
peror, 962-973) ; Otto II, 973-983 ; Otto III, 983-1002 ; Henry II, 

c The Franconian Dynasty: Conrad II, 1024-1039 ; Henry III, 1039- 
1056; Henry /F, 1056-1106; (Rudolph, Hermann, Conrad, set 
np as claimants against Henry, from 1077 to 1093) ; Henry V, 

d. Lothair U (Saxon), 1125-1137. 

e. Hohenstaufen (Snahian) Dynasty: Conrad IH, 1138-1152; (Henry 

of Saxony, opponent) Frederick /, 1162-1190 ; Henry VI, 1190- 
1197; {Welf Dynasty, Otto IV, 1198-1218, during minority of 
Frederick II ; opposed by Frederick's uncle, Philip, until 1208) ; 
Frederick II, 1218-1260; Conrad IV, 1160-1264. 

1 The earlier German kings are named in § 47, note. The kings in the pres- 
ent table, after Otto I, were also all Roman Emperors ; but they usually began 

70 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§63 

63. Otto II and Otto III. — The ten years of Otto II were 
spent mainly upon Italian interests : the danger to Germany 
from the imperial dignity of her king was already appear- 
ing. It became plainer in the next reign. Otto III (983-1002) 
was only three years old at his father's death. The first Otto 
had been German in feeling, as in blood. His grandson, this 
third Otto, was more Boman, and even more Greek, than he 
was German. He had been educated under the influence of 
his Greek mother and his Italian grandmother (§ 53). His 
learning won him the title " Wonder of the World," but it had 
also imbued him with notions ill-suited to a German king. He 
grew to manhood, devoted to religion and enthusiastic for 
church reform, but with absurdly exalted ideas of his imperial 
position. He was unselfish, ardent, noble, but visionary, mys- 
tical, unpractical. 

Otto assumed the government in 996, while a boy sixteen 
years old, and the remaining six years of his short life were 
spent in Italy. His first concern was to elevate the papacy, 
and he at once appointed to that dignity his cousin and 
intimate friend, Bruno, who took the name of Gregory V.^ 
Says Emerton (Medieval Europe^ 135): — 

For a moment it seemed as if Empire and papacy, in the hands of 
these two enthusiastic youths united by ties of blood and by the closest 
sympathy, might be about to realize the ideal of the medieval world, — 
each standing for the highest expression of authority in the Christian 
community, and yet each aiding the other to carry out his peculiar aims. 

to role as emperors somewhat later than the dates when their kingly rale 
began. To secure the succession to his family, the emperor usually secured 
the election of his son to the kingship in his own lifetime, — sometimes while 
the boy was a mere babe. The theory of election was maintained, and at the 
extinction of a dynasty, the election was real. The elections were conducted 
by the great nobles — for a long time without any settled procedure. Toward 
the close of the period, however, a regular "electoral college " began to 
emerge, — one of the most peculiar institutions of the Middle Ages (§ 159) . 

^ Gregory was the first pope from without Italy, and his appointment 
marks an era in the development of the papacy into a world power. Plainly, 
if the bishop of Rome was to be the spiritual head of Christendom, it was 
needful that at his election the choice should not be restricted to Italians. 





On Gregory's death, soon after his appointment, Otto appointed 
a Frenchman, Gerbert.^ Gerbert sympathized with Otto in his 
imperial ideas, and the young prince now passed rapidly to 
more and more impractical designs. He began to construct a 
great palace on the Aventine for the imperial residence ; and 
he planned to make Bome the real as well as the nominal 
head of the Empire, so as to rule Germany from that center. 
He introduced Oriental ceremonial and pomp into his court, 
and he dreamed of conquering the Byzantine Empire and 
uniting Greek and Latin Christendoms. But suddenly both 
Germany and Italy flamed into revolt, and in the midst of 
defeat Otto died of fever. A German chronicler of the time 
exclaims : — 

The sin of this king was that he would not look upon the land of his 
nativity, delightful Germany, — so great was his love of dwelling in Italy, 
where savage destruction runs armed with a thousand languors and a thou- 
sand deaths. , . , He designed a great and impossible task, for he tried 
to raise the Roman Empire to its power under the ancient kings. 

64. The Empire in the First Third of the Eleventh Century. — 
The two immediate successors of Otto III gave their energies 
to Germany. While they were so busied, the papacy sank into 
shame and impotence ; but they did restore the strength of the 
German kingship. In the half century between Otto I and the 
close of these reigns, four great changes with important bearing 
upon the power of the Empire took place in Western Europe. 

a. On the north, the great Danish state (§ 16), which had 
promised for a time to be a formidable rival, went to pieces 
rapidly after the death of Knut the Great (1035) ; and in this 
connection, it is to be remembered that England was still in 
the period of weakness before the Norman conquest, and that 
France was distracted with feudal anarchy. 

"^ Gerbert had been an ally of the Capetians in their struggle with the 
expiring Garolingian line (§41), and, while in exile during the reign of the 
last Carolingian, be had been the tutor of the youthful Otto. His unusual 
learning, derived in part from the Spanish Saracens, had made him suspected 
of sorcery by the ignorant. 

72 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§66 


b. On the west, through the relationship of the ruling families, 
the kingdom of Burgundy, or Aries, was added to the Empire, 
without serious warfare. 

c. On the ea^em frcmtier, the Christian Empire extended 
its military rule over a wide stretch of " marches " ; and, by 
its missionaries, its colonists, and its example, it pushed back 
even farther the borders of heathendom. By the year 1000, 
Poles, Hungarians, and Bohemians had not only accepted 
Christianity, but had also become real states with settled gov- 
ernments. This organization saved these lands from being Ger- 
manized in blood by gradual conquest and settlement, as the 
lands between them and the Elbe had been : they kept their 
Magyar and Slav speech and nationalities; but their civiliza- 
tion was to be German in source and character, and from time 
to time they all recognized some vague overlordship in the 

d. Within Germany, by the steady policy of the great kings, 
the former duchies were beginning to break up into smaller 
units, each depending directly on the king. The extension of 
Germany to the east had added other such states, also; so 
that now, instead of being composed of four or five large 
governments, the realm was made up of many feudal units, — 
counties, marks, and new duchies, — of varying size. The 
future was to show that under a weak ruler this condition 
would lead to all the more serious anarchy ; but for the mo- 
ment it was easier for a strong king to control the many 
smaller, scattered units, than it had been to regulate the five 
powerful duchies. 

65. Henry III (1039-1056) came to the throne under more 
promising auspices than any earlier German king. The 
promise was well fulfilled. Henry was a good man and a 
great ruler, and he raised the German kingship to the highest 
point it was ever to reach. His reign had three important 

a. Germany was extended, and strengthened against attacks 
from mthotU, By a series of remarkable victories, Henry 



(IlMe erilMiT 1)1) 


reduced the Ms^ar kingdom of Hungary and the Slav duke- 
doms of Poland and Bohemia to fiefs of the Empire. The 
relation was wholly different from the uncertain suzerainty 
the Empire had possessed before. Hungary, it is true, broke 
away again in Henry's own reign, and with Poland the con- 
nection was not to be permanent; but Bohemia was to remain 
always part of the Empire and was soon to become one of its 
leading states (§ 159). 

b. Within Germany, both church and state were reformed, 
(1) Henry enforced the " Truce of God " (§ 33), which had 
not before been introduced into Germany, and even tried to 
widen it into the " Peace of the Land," by exacting oaths from 
all German nobles to give up private war and to submit all 
differences to public courts. At the same time he encouraged 
the growing towns by new and wider grants of trading privi- 
leges. (2) He allied himself closely to the party of Cluny, 
and in particular he put down simony. To be sure, he kept 
the appointment of the higher clergy strictly in his own hands, 
but only for the public good: he never sold such offices for 
money or personal advantage. 

c The papacy was again reformed, A boy pope, ten years old, 
— a depraved little wretch, according to the accounts of the time, 
— had given way to three rivals, all claiming the throne of 
St. Peter at once. Under Henry's control, two church councils 
deposed all three claimants and gave power of appointment 
to the Emperor. Henry filled the papal chair four times, 
each time with a German. Perfect harmony existed between 
the Emperor and these popes, and Henry even left his infant 
son under the Pope's guardianship. The rule of that son, the 
future Henry IV, was spent in fierce conflict with the papacy 
(§ 74). 

For Further Rbadiko. — Emerton, 135-209 ; Bryce, Holy Boman 
Empire, 103-168 ; Tout, Empire and Papacy, 27-64 ; Stephens, Hilde- 
brand, 10-37 ; Henderson, Short History of Germany, I, 49-57. 

The references upon Subdivision B (the church) will be given in con- 
nection with the following Division ; see pages 84, 85. 

74 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§66 


Human pride invented the power of kings ; divine pity established that 
of bishops. . . . He [the pope] may depose emperors. . . . He may 
absolve subjects from their allegiance to wicked men, , , . He himself 
may be judged by no one, — Grkooky VII.^ 


66. The Youth of Hildebrand. — The central figure in the 
great struggle between Empire and papacy was the son of a 
Tuscan peasant. His name was Hildebrand, and he was 
brought up at Home in a rich monastery, where his uncle 
was abbot.^ Here the young monk became imbued with the 
ideas of the Cluny reformers, and later he lived for a j'-ear 
in the Cluny monastery. His body was frail and his voice 
weak, but he had a fiery soul, indomitable energy, and great 
practical sagacity. His ability soon attracted attention, and 
in 1045, at the age of twenty-one, he became chaplain to the 
pope. Then, for many years, under successive popes, he seems 
to have been the power behind the throne, shaping a growing 
and consistent papal policy. 

67. The Work of Hildebrand as Counsellor. — Three important 
steps in the development of the papacy were taken in this 
period, through Hildebrand's statesmanship. 

a. A close alliance was formed with a popular reform party 
that had appeared in Lombardy. This party was made up 
largely of the lower classes, and was led by popular agitators. 
Its opponents styled it the " Pataria," or the party of the 
ragamuffins. Its purposes were social, religious, and patriotic: 
it opposed the wealth and corruption of the higher clergy, the 

1 The entire statement of Gregory is found in Emerton's Medieval Europe^ 
244, 245, and in Henderson's Documents^ 366, 367. Students should read it In 
connection with § 68. 

> This is one illustration of the democratic nature of the church. Long 
after the gulf between nobles and non-nobles in lay society became impassable 
(§26 note), men of humble, and even of servile, birth could rise in the chaich 
to the highest dignities, and so become the masters of lords and kings. 


dependence of the church upon lay lords^ and the dominance 
of Germans in Italy. 

b. In the south of the peninsula, other allies were found. 
Early in the eleventh century, bands of Norman adventurers 
had established themselves in Apulia, and finally their leader, 
Robert Guiscard (Wiscard, or the crafty), had built up a pow- 
erful Norman state, which in the next century was to be 
known as the Kingdom of Sicily.* At first, these strangers 
seized territory, not only from Saracen and Greek, but even 
from the Pope ; but, in 1059, Hildebrand negotiated a treaty 
with them which secured for the papacy their powerful aid. 
The Pope conferred upon Eobert the title of Duke of Apulia 
and Calabria; and in return, Bobert became a vassal of the 
papacy for these fiefs. 

c. A church council was persuaded to adopt a decree regu- 
lating the method of electing popes (1059). Thereafter the 
election was to be made, not by a gathering summoned and 
controlled by the emperors or by some noble just then in 
power in Rome, but by a fixed and independent body of 

' churchmen. This body was to consist of the seven " cardinal 
bishops" of Rome and its vicinity; but their choice was to 
require confirmation by the other clergy and the people of 
Rome, — while vague clauses in the decree referred also to 
some meaningless authority in the emperor.' 

68. Hildel^rand becomes Gregory Til : Theories and Policy — 
Hildebrand might have been made pope on more than one 
occasion before he finally accepted the place. At last, in 
1073y an enthusiastic popular uprising, confirmed by the car- 
dinals, forced the election upon him. He took the name of 

1 Special report : the growth of the Norman state : see Johnson's Noi^ians 
or Freeman's Story of Sicily. 

SRead Emerton, 217. 218, or Stephens, Hildebrand, 46, 47, or Alzog, II, 
S44-34S ; and see Henderson's Doaiments, 361-565, for the two versions of tlie 
decree. This decree is the origin of the ** College of Cardinals," which still 
elects the popes; the "college" now numbers seventy, representing all the 
important lands in which the Catholic church is found, and no confirmation 
of their choice is required. 

76 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. L§ ^ 

Gregory VII, and began to work with fresh vigor to make real 
his dream of a universal Roman monarchy^ with the pope, not 
the emperor, for its supreme ruler. At first, to be sure, he 
aimed mainly to complete the moral reform of the church and 
to bring it absolutely under papal control ; but the opposition 
he encountered from temporal rulers forced him on to the 
further aim of raising the papacy above all other powers in 
the world. The Empire was to be subject to the papacy, as 
the body to the soul. The pope, as the immediate representa- 
tive of God, was to be the final arbiter between kings.^ 

Gregory's life proved that his convictions were sincere and 
unselfish. They were shared, too, by the purest and ablest 
churchmen of the age. Nor was there anything new in them. 
The new thing was for a man to be found with the noble dar- 
ing to try to live up to these ideas when they brought him 
into conflict with the sovereigns of the earth. 

The church itself, however, in the hands of a resolute man, 
was a tremendous power, and it had been taking on an organi- 
zation that was to help in enforcing its claims against temporal 
rulers. Four points in that organization should be noted' 
(§§ 69-72), — ecclesiastical courts, power of excommunication 
and interdict, revenues, and the hierarchic organization with 
the system of councils and legates. 

B. The Church in the Age of Hildebrakd.* 

69. Ecclesiastical Courts and Canon Law. — The church had 
its own system of courts, — archdeacons', bishops', archbishops', 
and papal, — altogether independent of the public courts in the 
different lands of Christendom ; and there had been developed 
also a complex system of church law, known as "canon" law.* 

1 See various letters of Gregory's in Henderson's Documents, 366-405. Cf. 
Stephens' Hildebrand, 153-167. 

^ Much of the following account holds good for the earlier centuries also. 
Cf. §§ 6, 67. The best treatments in elementary text-books are in Robinson's 
Western Europe, 201-215, and Muuro's Middle Ages, 169-183. 

*Read Emerton, 682-585, on the canon law; and Jessop's Friars, 81 ^ 
on the exemption of " clerks." from civil jurisdiction. 


The clergy claimed the privileee of trial in these courts^ no 
matter what the question or xne charge against them; and 
cases against laymen might also be tried there when religious 
or moral questions were involved; for instance, cases de- 
pending upon laws of marriage and inheritance, commercial 
morality, taking of interest, and all matters connected with 
church revenues. 

The right of the clergy to be tried in clerical courts was 
known as " benefit of clergy." The practice had its good side. 
Ordinary courts and ordinary law partook of the violent and 
ferocious life of the age. Trials were rude; and ghastly or 
repulsive punishments were inflicted for trivial offenses, — 
often, no doubt, upon the innocent. It was a gain when the 
peaceful and moral part of society secured the right to trial in 
more intelligent courts and by more civilized codes.^ 

But the church law was too mild to deal with serious 
crimes. It did not use force in its punishments, but only re- 
quired the offender to punish himself by penances of various 
kinds or by fines, or payments to the church.' Unfortunately 
this mildness was seriously abused. Its advantages tempted 
men to **take Holy Orders," until, besides the preaching 
clergy and the monks, the land swarmed with " clerics " who 
were really only lawyers, secretaries, scholars, teachers, or 
mere adventurers. Some of these, by their crimes, brought 
disgrace upon the church and danger to the state, and made it 
necessary for the civil power, as fast as it grew strong enough, 
^ reclaim jurisdiction. On this issue there arose a long strife 
between charch and state in many lands. 

70. Penalties. — Despite its gentleness, the church had 
two mighty weapons to compel obedience to its commands, — 

^MoreoYer, in the Middle Ages, aU corporations, even trade gilds, very 
«>oimonly had courts with considerable power of jurisdiction over their own 
bombers. The demand of the church was not out of keeping with the ideas 
*n<l practice of the age, as such a claim would be now. (Cf. §§ 112, 113, 180.) 

^^or the worst crimes, it is true, a clerk might be degraded from his 
order, and then for a second ofifense he might be tried in an ordinary court. 

78 A NEW SERIES OF DARE AGES, 814-1100. [§71 

excommuniccUion and interdict. A bishop could declare any man 
in his diocese excommunicated, and a pope could decree ex- 
communication against any man in Christendom. In modern 
language, excommunication was a universal boycott for all 
religious and social and business relations. If it was obeyed 
by the community, it cut a man off absolutely from all com- 
munication with his fellows, and practically made him an out- 
law. No one might speak to him or give him food or shelter, 
under danger of similar penalty, and his very presence was 
shunned like the pestilence. 

What excommunication was to the individual, the interdict 
was to a district or a nation. Churches were closed, and no 
religious ceremonies were permitted, except the rites of baptism 
and of extreme unction. No marriage could be performed, and 
there could be no burial in consecrated ground.* " The dead 
were left unburied, the living were unblessed." 

71. Revenues: Peter's Pence. — All churches and ecclesias- 
tical lords had their revenues, of course, from rents and landed 
properties ; and there were also many dues and fees paid to 
the clergy. But besides all this, — which corresponded fairly- 
well to the income of the lay lords of the time, — there was 
also a papal system of taxation extending over all Christendom, 
long before any king had so effective a revenue system for his 
particular country. The inost famous element in this taxation 
was Peter^s Pence, or a penny for each hearth each year, col- 
lected over Western Europe by an organized body of papal 
officers ; much more important, however, were the many enor- 
mous payments made by the clergy. 

72. Political Organization. — In political organization, too, 
the church was ahead of the civil states of Europe. In 

1 In this extreme form, the interdict was rarely proclaimed ; and, of 
course, a decree of excommunication against a king was always disregarded 
by many of his followers. But, on the other hand, few kings or peoples coald 
hold out against the mere threat of these terrors in an age when religious 
practices were so interwoven with the fiber of daily life. The Pennsylvania 
Reprints, IV, No. 4, gives several decrees of interdict. Notice especially the 
reply to one by the Doge of Venice in 1606. 


England or in France, a "Convocation" of clergy, under an 
archbishop, provided for the church a better machinery for 
unity of action than the civil state had yet attained in its 
rode gatherings of nobles ; while there was no civil organiza- 
tion for Europe at large to correspond with the Councils of 
Christendom summoned by the popes. 

In general, the government of the church was monarchic. No decree of 
a Council was valid without the assent of the pope, and all the lower clergy 
were subject to removal by him. Next to the pope stood the archbishops, 
each with a vague supervision over the other bishops of his province, and 
with a court for appeals from the bishops' courts. Each bishop was the 
bead of a diocese and was charged with the ordination and the oversight 
of the lower clergy in that district. His church was the cathedral, and it 
bad its force of canons and other clergy to assist in the work of the bishop's 
coun and in the services of religion. Only the bishop could administer 
confirmation or consecrate churches. In each parish, the village priest 
wag chained with the care of souls. He heard confession of sins, imposed 
penances, and granted to sincere penitents the absolution without which 
they did not hope for God's forgiveness. To the dying he administered 
extreme unction, and daily he worked for his parishioners the miracle 
of the Mass.1 Besides all this hierarchy of secular clergy, there were, of 
coone, the numerous bodies of monks in their separate communities.^ 

At Rome, about the papal court, there were large numbers of clergy to 
act as clerks and to assist in preparing and transacting the business of this 
▼ast centralized government. Moreover, largely by Gregory VII, there 
^vas created a system of papal ^Megates" to act in all the lands of 
Boiope as ears, eyes, and hands for the pope, somewhat as the Missi 
Dominici three centuries before had done for Charlemagne in his £m- 

^ Roman Catholics, of course, believed then as now that the sacramental 
bread and wine are changed into the very body and blood of Christ. This is 
the doctrine of tranmhstarUixition, 

' Many new orders of monks arose in this and the next century, — created 
by the same religions revival of which mention has just been made. With- 
drawn from the world, as they were, still some of them by their holy lives 
and strong characters came to exercise mighty influence upon society. Per- 
^pa the most powerful man in Europe between Pope Gregory VII and Pope 
Innocent III (§ 82) was Bernard of Clairvaux, a simple monk. Munro's 
Middle Ages, 126-131, has an admirable brief account of several of the 
new monastic orders and of Bernard's work. Special reports: Bernard of 
Clairvaoz; Cistercian monks; Carthusian monks. 

80 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 78 

pire.^ These papal representatives could revoke the decisions of bishops* 
courts, or depose the bishops themselves ; and with curt haughtiness ' 
ihey claimed the obedience of the mightiest kings of Europe. 

C The Investiture Strife between Emperors and Popes. 

73. An Irrepressible Conflict. — The strife between the rising 
civil states and the claims of the church came to a head upon 
the question of " investitures." The struggle was fiercest in 
the Empire, — where it lasted almost fifty years, from 1075 to 
1122, — and it can best be studied there ; but students of France 
and England will find that it played its part there also. 

The emperor appointed and "invested"* all bishops and 
abbots. This practice was not always connected with simony, 
but it made that evil much more common, and naturally the 
church tended to regard the two things as practically the 
same. The great conflict was unavoidable. The real cause of 
the strife was the twofold nature of bishops and abbots : they 
were spiritual oflicers, and, as such, it was not fit that they 
should be appointed by lay rulers ; but they were at the same 
time temporal lords, and, as such, the emperors needed to keep 
control over them. In Germany, nearly half the land and 
resources of the realm were in the hands of these great eccle- 
siastics. Plainly no civil ruler could consent to yield their 
appointment to any power but himself. Just as plainly, no 
great and good pope, with the interests of religion at heart, 
could willingly see these clerical officers appointed by any lay 
power, with the frequent disregard of spiritual interests that 
would surely follow.* 

1 Andent History , § 646. 

> Notice Shakspere's portraiture of the legate and the kings, in King John, 
Act III, Scene I. 

> Gf. § 27, for the meaning of the term. 

^ Toward the close of the struggle, Henry V (§ 75) and Pope Paschal II 
came to a formal agreement to do away with the cause of the trouble by 
separating church and state : the clerical princes were to give up their fiefs, 
and the emperor then would leave their appointment wholly to the church 
(Emerton, 267, 268). But the plan was too far in advance of the age, and it 
was given up on both sides without serious attempts to put it in force. 


74. Progress of the Struggle, to the Deaths of Gregory and of 
Henry IV. — In 1075, Gregory threatened to excommunicate all 
bishops and abbots who should thereafter receive their investi- 
ture from a lay ruler, and, likewise, every lay ruler who should 
venture to invest an ecclesiastic with his office. This was a 
declaration of war. 

Gregory's great opponent was to be the young emperor, 
Henry IV. I>uring the minority of this sovereign (§ 65, close, 
and § 62), Germany had fallen back toward anarchy, and the 
conditions were serious indeed, when, at fifteen, Henry assumed 
the management of the kingdom (1065). Henry was an able, 
strong-willed ruler, and had it not been for a faulty training 
throughout his youth, he might have become a great and noble 
king. Unhappily, he seems to have been licentious in morals, 
and he was cei-tainly headstrong and violent. He proved a 
generous master to the lower classes and he favored the rising 
towns, but he was to be engaged in a life-long, deadly contest 
with the two great forces of his age, feudalism and the church. 
Soon after his accession, the Saxon nobles revolted, and for 
some years the young King was busied in a desperate effort to 
keep his crown at all. He had just come out victorious, for a 
time, from this contest, when the decree of Gregory regarding 
investitures summoned him to a mightier conflict. 

The opening of the strife was sharp and rude. Henry con- 
tinued to invest clerical lords and also to show favor to some 
whom Gregory had condemned for simony. Gregory sum- 
moned him to Rome, and threatened excommunication unless 
he gave up this policy and also reformed the vices of his 
private life. Henry replied, with a council of German bishops, 
by declaring Gregory guilty of infamous crimes and by pro- 
nouncing his deposition. News of this action was sent to 
Borne, with agents to s.ecure the election of another pope ; and 
the messenger delivered his notice roughly, while Gregory 
was conducting a sacred service. Gregory's response was 
to declare the German bishops excommunicated, and Henry 

82 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§ 74 

Henry's letter to Gregory had been addressed, ^^ Hildebrand, not pope 
but false monk '' ; and it had closed, ** Descend and surrender the apos- 
tolic chair, which thou hast usurped. ... I, Henry, Icing by the grace 
of God, together with all my bishops, do call to thee, * Get thee down, 
get down to everlasting damnation.* " Gregory's reply ran : " O St. Peter, 
chief of the apostles, ... for the honor and security of thy church, in 
the name of Almighty God, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, I withdraw, 
through thy power and authority, from Henry, the king, who has risen 
against thy church with unheard of insolence, the rule over the whole 
kingdom of the Germans and over Italy. And I absolve all Christians 
from the bonds of the oaths which they have taken and shall take to him ; 
and I forbid any one to serve him as king." ^ 

Encouraged by this action of the Pope, Henry's enemies in 
Germany again took arms. The clergy fell away, — iinaWe to 
stand before the terrors of the papal bull, — and in a few- 
months Henry was helpless. A council of nobles was called, 
over which the Pope was to preside, to decide the question of 
Henry's deposition. By swift submission, Henry saved his 
crown. He hurried into Italy and met the Pope, already on his 
way across the Alps, at Canossa, The stern Gregory refused 
to see the suppliant, who stood barefoot, in a penitent's garb, 
through three days of extreme cold, amid the snow and rocks 
before the castle gate. Admitted finally to the Pope's presence, 
after promising abject submission to his will, whatever it might 
be, Henry threw himself in tears at the feet of his conqueror, 
crying, " Spare me. Holy Father, spare me ! " Gregory also 
was moved to tears. He raised Henry to his feet, gave him the 
kiss of peace, and promised him absolution. 

But the Pope had pushed his victory too far, or else not far 
enough. The foes of Henry in Germany felt that the Pope 
had deserted them, and the mass of the nation were angered 
by the humiliation of their King.* The hostile nobles did try 

1 See the documents in full, in Henderson's Documents. 

^ Germany has never altogether ceased to resent the disgrace. In 1872, in 
a conflict between the new German empire and the papal party, Bismarck 
rallied the national feeling to the side of the government by his exclamation, 
"Be sure we shall not go to Canossa! " (§ 482). This sentence is engraved 
upon Bismarck's monument at Harzbuig. 


to set up another king ; but German patriotism rallied around 
Henry, and he easily kept the upper hand. After some delay, 
since there was no change in the matter of royal investitures, 
Gregory issued another decree of deposition against Henry; 
but the opportunity was gone. The German bishops, returning 
to Henry's side, again declared Gregory deposed, and went 
through the form of electing another pope in his place. There 
followed a distressing tangle of wars. Finally, Gregory was 
driven from Eome, and soon after he died in the south of Italy 
(1085), exclaiming sadly, ''I have loved righteousness and 
hated iniquity ; therefore I die in exile." * 

The quarrel was soon renewed with the new Pope, Urban II. 
Henry's sons were stirred up to rebel against their father, wars 
were waged incessantly, and in his old age the Emperor met 
many reverses. For years he was a prisoner, and he died in 
1106, broken-hearted, in the midst of defeat and shame. For 
five years his body lay in unconsecrated ground, before the 
church would remove the curse from his ashes. 

76. The Concordat of Worms. — Henry V, the son of Henry 
IV, had been an ally of the popes against his father, but as 
emperor he was obliged to resist their claims as his father had 
done. Finally, at the city of Worms (1122), the long quarrel 
was settled by a reasonable compromise. Bishops were to be 
elected by the clergy and consecrated by the pope ; but the em- 
peror was to have a possible veto upon any election, inasmuch 
as the candidate was to receive from him the investiture of the 
episcopal lands, which were to be held as by a faithful vassal.* 

The struggle between Empire and papacy was not over, by any means, 
with the Concordat of Worms ; but one chapter was closed, and it is well 
to Bee what had been accomplished. Henry IV had outlived Gregory by 
a score of years, and, though conquered and humiliated, he had prevented 

1 Still, Gregory was in large part victorious. He lives in history as one 
of the world's greatest men, — one who built an empire, not hy sword and 
cannon, but by intellect and moral earnestness. 

* This compromise seems to have been modeled upon one made Just before 
io England between Henry I (§ 125) and Anselm. The English contest is a 
good subject for a special report. 

84 A NEW SERIES OF DARK AGES, 814-1100. [§76 

the complete victory of Gregory ^s ideas. His son, the papal ally, had be- 
come the papacy ^8 foe, and had forced that power to a compromise. Still, 
no emperor could ever again make and unmake popes as the Ottos and 
Henry III had done ; while the popes did retain a powerful influence 
in making emperors,^ and their right even to depose temporal rulers 
had been powerfully asserted. To all men the papacy had become the 
final court of appeal and the chief source of justice, righteousness, and 

76. Political Results of the Straggle : Feudal Anarchy ; Ciyic Inde- 
pendence. — During the fifty years of incessant confiict between emperors 
and popes, and in the long absence of the emperors from Germany, the 
German nobles had been growing more and more independent of royal 
authority. The popes, of course, had fostered the tendency, as their best 
weapon against the emperors ; and the feudal lords had been able to satisfy 
their rebellious instincts under the guise of a pious alliance. As a result 
the strong German kingship of the eleventh century was dissolving in 
feudal anarchy, and the most that the *great successors of the Henrys 
succeeded in doing was for a time to arrest the deplorable tendency. 

One other political result of the contest was wholly unexpected. The 
pope turned to the city democracies of Italy for help against the emperor 
and the Italian nobles ; and the emperor called upon the German cities 
for aid against the pope and the German nobles. Emperor and pope each 
strove for the monarchic principle, but out of their confiict came strength 
to the beginnings of popular liberty. 

For Further Reading. — Henderson^s Select Documents^ 351-409, 
gives much of the source material for the platform of the two parties. 
There are brief accounts in Henderson, Short History of Germany, 58-75; 
Emerton, 212-268; Tout, Empire and Papacy, 110-150; Bryce, Holy 
Boman Empire, 103-163. Roman Catholic views are presented admirably 

1 A contemporary artist painted a famous picture of the Emperor Lothair II 
(§ 62) kneeling before Innocent II for coronation. This painting was preserved 
in the great audience hall of the papal palace, and beneath it was inscribed : 
*' The King comes before the gates, first swearing due honor to the city. He 
is then made the vassal of the Pope, and takes the crown which the latter 
be8tow8.''* The second emperor after Lothair, Frederick Barbarossa, in a 
quarrel with Pope Adrian, objected vehemently to this inscription, and finally 
secured the removal of the picture and a partial disclaimer of the theory of 
papal suzerainty, but the claim was frequently revived. Indeed, it was soon 
revived by Adrian himself: " What were the Franks,'* he wrote to the Em- 
peror, '*till [Pope] Zacharias welcomed Pippin? What is the German king 
now till consecrated at Rome by Holy Hands? The chair of Peter has given 
and can withdraw its gifts.*' 


by Alzog, Church History, and Pastor, History of the Popes. Storra, 
Bernard of Clairoaux, lecture ii, gives an illuminating survey of the situa- 
tion and the problems. Other treatments may be consulted in Stills, 
Studies; Stephens, Hildebrand; Vincent, Age of Hildehrand; Bowden, 
Gregory VII; Lea, Sacerdotal Celibacy (ch. xiv on Gregory's reforms) ; 
HUman, Latin Christianity ; and in other church histories. 

Vin. EMPIRE AND PAPACY, 1122-1273.1 

A, Conditions undeb the Hohenstauven Empebors. 

77. Parties: "Ghibelline" and "Gnelf." — The Franconian line 
expired with Henry V, but it was soon followed * by a dynasty yet more 
brilliant, though possessed of less real power. The Hohenstaufen took 
their name from their ancestral castle, perched upon a crag in the Alps. 
Near this first seat of the family lay the village of Waiblingen, where 
Conrad III, the first emperor of the line, was bom. This village also 
gave a name to the family. The chief rivals of Conrad for the throne had 
been Henry the Proud, and afterward his son Henry the Lion, of the Welf^ 
family, which held great possessions in Bavaria and Saxony. In a siege 
during the civil war between Conrad and Henry, these family names, 
Waibling and Welf, are said to have been used as war cries ; certainly 
they finally became party names. The VVelfs of course were allied with 
the popes against the Hohenstaufen emperors ; and soon in Italy the two 
names — in softened form, Ghibelline and Guelf — stood respectively for 
the imperial and the papal party .^ 

78. The Controversy between Emperors and Popes renewed : the 
Real Point at Issue. — Under the Hohenstaufen, the old strife 
between emperors and popes opened again, — upon new ques- 
tions. At bottom, as before, it was a contest to decide which 

J The period treated in this Division (VIII) belongs chronologically under 
Chapter III, "The Age of the Crusades " ; but it will prove simpler to con- 
tinue the story of the Empire at this point, since the central interest for the 
Empire is the same as in the epoch we have been studying. 

* After one intervening reign ; cf . § 62 d. 

* The English monarchs since George I have been Welfs. 

*The names continued to be nsed between the two factions in Italian 
towns after they had lost all significance except that of family or local 
interest or ambition, so that we have a bye word, — '* as meaningless as the 
squabbles of Guelfs and Ghibellines." In general, the democratic factions 
were Guelfs, while the aristocratic party took the name Ghibelline. 

86 EMPIRE AND PAPACY, 1122-1273. [§ 79 

power should be the world-sovereign ; but the immediate occa- 
sion of most of the outbreaks in the twelfth and thirteenth 
centuries was a conflict of policies regarding Italy. The em- 
perors were bent upon consolidating the peninsula into a single 
state, with a strong central government. The popes dreaded 
this, and believed that it would put an end to their independ- 
ence, even as spiritual rulers. Accordingly, they gave their 
energies to stirring up enemies against the emperors. 

B. Fredebigk Barbabossa and the Lombard Leaque. 

79. Frederick I (1x52-1190): Character and Program. — The 

second Hohenstaufen was Frederick Barharossa, or Red Beard. 
Mr. Tout calls him '^ the noblest embodiment of medieval king- 
ship, the most imposing, the most heroic, and the most brilliant 
of the long line of German princes who strove to realize the 
impracticable but glorious political ideal of the Middle Ages." ^ 
Frederick was a distinguished man and general before he be- 
came king. Almost alone among the leaders of the miserable 
Second Crusade (§ 96), he had returned Mrith some glory. As 
sovereign, he was first a German king, and he spent much of 
his life in establishing peace and order in his northern realm. 
This was the most successful part of his work; but he was 
also a Koman emperor, and he brought to the throne strong 
and clear convictions ' about the imperial authority. He has 
been fitly called an imperialist Hildebrand, and he strove with 
energy and insight to restore the waning glory of the Empire.* 

80. The Struggle with the Lombard League : Legnano ; Peace 
of Constance. — These views and plans brought the King into 

1 Empire and Papacy t 247. See also t&., 272, for an exceUent estimate of 
Frederick's character and ability. 

^ He was influenced by the revival of Roman law, with its teaching that 
** what a king pleases has the force of law/' This phase of Roman law was 
a chief reason for Frederick's favor to the rising University of Bologna, where 
that subject was taught (§ 180 h). 

* Special reports: the city of Rome in the time of Frederick I, especially 
under Arnold of Brescia ; Alexander III and Frederick. 


conflict with the rising towns of northern Italy, and the strug- 
gle that followed is to us the most important matter in Fred- 
erick's reign. To the Lombard cities (which had been growing 
in wealth and independence during the long struggle over 
investitures) the imperialistic ideas of the new King meant 
tyranny. To Frederick, the incessant and remorseless private 
wars of town with town, and the bloody faction-fights within 
the leading cities, together with their new republican theories, 
seemed anarchy ; and he determined to reduce these turbulent 
communities to order, and to rule them through imperial lieu- 
tenants stationed in each city. Time after time, German 
armies crossed the Alps to subdue the Lombard towns. Milan, 
the greatest city in the Po valley, was razed to the ground, 
and its inhabitants were scattered in unwalled villages and 
oppressed by crushing taxation. Some years afterward, how- 
ever, while Frederick was at Rome, a sudden pestilence of the 
Italian summer swept away his army ; twenty-five thousand 
men perished in a week, " slain by the angel of the Lord," 
Uke the host of Sennacherib before Jerusalem, said the papal 
party. The cities seized their chance and flew to arms. They 
had organized in the Lombard League,^ and allied themselves 
with the Pope ; and at the battle of Legnano, 117 6 ^ the Emperor 
was completely defeated, barely escaping with life. 

Legnano is one of a very few battles in almost four hundred 
years of incessant fighting that deserve commemoration. In 
two respects, it stands for the victory of a new age. (1) It was 
won by a citizen infantry against the feudal horsemen who had 
so long been irresistible in the field, and so it prophesied a new 
era in warfare and consequently in social organization. (2) It 
secured, immediately, the recognition of the freedom of the 
Lombard towns. 

A great Peace Convention was held at Venice, a new kind of 
meeting in history, whither came representatives of all the inter- 

^ EmertoD, 302, 303. This was the first important federation since Greek 
days. Special report : comparison with the Achaean League. 

88 EMPIRE AND PAPACY, 1122-127JJ. [§81 

ested parties. To draw the papal party from the side of his other 
foes, Frederick cast himself at the feet of Pope Alexander III, 
imploring forgiveness (cf . § 74) ; but the Peace of Constance, 
signed soon after, was substantially dictated by the free cities. 
The towns recognized the imperial overlordship in words, and 
bound themselves to pay certain tribute ; but they secured the 
recognition of their rights to fortify themselves, to raise their 
own troops, to wage war on their own account, even against 
each other, to coin money, and to regulate all their internal 
concerns. Practically, they had become free republics, 

81. Frederick's Place in History. — Despite the defeat of Legnano, 
Frederick remained the greatest and most honored monarch in Europe. 
His court was one of pomp and splendor. He looked upon France and 
England as fiefs of the Empire, and the sovereigns of those lands regarded 
the Emperor with profound respect, if not quite as their overlord. When 
an old man, Frederick set out upon the Third Crusade (§ 98), and had 
he lived longer, that expedition would probably have had a far different 
ending ; but he was drowned while bathing, after a hot day^s march, in 
a little stream in Asia Minor. 

Of all the German kings, Barbarossa, even more than Charlemagne, is 
the popular hero with the Oerman people ; and legends long told how he 
was not dead, but sleeping a magic sleep, upright upon a golden throne 
in the heart of the Kyffhftuser Mountain, crown on head and scepter in 
hand, waiting for the appointed time, when, in his country^s need, he 
should come again to bring the reign of peace and justice. • 

C. The Papacy at its Height. 

82. Innocent III* (1x98-1216). — Barbarossa's son, Henry 
VI (1190-1197), married the heiress of the Norman kingdom 
of Sicily, and so brought South Italy into union with the 
Empire. At Henry's death, his son, afterward Frederick II, 
was a child of three years ; and for a score of years Ghibelline 
and Guelf claimants warred for the imperial crown, with the 
Pope holding the balance of power. During this period, more 

1 Upon Innocent, read Alzog,II, 673-^586, op Tout's Empire and Papacy, 
313-^35. Further accounts may be found in Pastor's History of the Popes 
and in Balzani's Popes and Hohenstavfen. 


plainly than ever before, the sovereign power in Europe was 
the papacy, under the stern morality, tremendous energy, im- 
perious character, and able administration of Innocejit III. 

Innocent set forth the papal claim to the lordship of the 
world in language more glowing and forceful * even than that of 
Gregory VII, and he enforced his claims with far more strik- 
ing success. Never was the general reverence for the papacy 
so profound and so widespread. Within the Empire, Innocent 
was favored by the political situation. He became feudal over- 
lord and protector of the Tuscan towns, and he was guardian 
of Frederick, the child-king of Sicily ; thus he was safe from 
attack by Italy, north or south. At the same time, the condi- 
tions in Germany enabled him to make and unmake emperors. 
In France and England, it is true, there now ruled mightier 
kings than any previous pope had had to deal with outside the 
Empire; but even these sovereigns were forced to obey the 
commands of Innocent's legates (§ 72 and note). Philip Augus- 
tus, the haughty and successful sovereign of France, was com- 
pelled to take back an innocent wife whom he had just put 
away for another ; and John of England even surrendered his 
kingdom and received it back as a fief of the Holy See, prom- 
ising annual tribute to Rome. The kings of Portugal and 
Aragon, rising Christian states' in the Spanish peninsula, were 
Innocent's vassals, and he interfered at will in the government 
of the other kingdoms there, — Navarre, Castile, and Leon, — 
as well as in the new Slavonic kingdoms on the eastern fron- 
tier of Europe. 

Innocent was also a moral reformer, and he led a successful 
movement for a revival within the church.* He adopted the 
Friar reform (§ 84), which asked for recognition, and he crushed 
the Albigensian* movement, which rejected the church (§ 83). 

1 See extracts in Toat, Empire and Papacy ^ 314, 315. 
^ These states were being formed by warfare against the Moors in Spain. 
See § 155 and the map there. 

* Special report : the Lateran Council of 1215. 

* The name came from Albi, or Albiga, a town in southern France, where 
the sect had many adherents. 

90 EMPIRE AND PAPACY, 1122-1273. [§83 

83. The Crashing: of the Albigenses. — The Albigenses were 
the most formidable of several heretical sects produced in the 
twelfth century by a general social and religious discontent. 
All these movements seem to have drawn strength chiefly from 
popular feeling against the wealth and corruption of the higher 
clergy ; and most of them quickly subsided when the church 
roused and reformed itself. But the Albigenses rejected impor- 
tant doctrines of the church, and soon came to rebel against 
its government. They had their home in Languedoc, or south- 
eastern France, and in that region the dislike for the clergy be- 
came so intense that the old byword, " I had rather be a Jew," 
was exchanged for " I had rather be a priest." Popes and 
church councils made various ineffectual attempts to reclaim 
the heretics, and finally Innocent III proclaimed a holy war 
against them as " more wicked than Saracens." For a hundred 
years, popes had been preaching a war of the cross against the 
Mohammedans in Palestine (§ 93) : now a crusade was preached 
against a sect of Christian heretics. Raymond, the mighty 
Count of Toulouse, tried to protect his subjects ; but the feudal 
nobles of northern France rallied to the Pope's call. Besides 
the religious motive, these lords hated the rising democracy of 
southern city-France, and hungered for its rich plunder. A 
twenty-years' struggle, marked by ferocious massacres, exter- 
minated the heretics and the rising prosperity of Languedoc. 

84. The Begging Brotherhoods (Mendicant Friars).^ — The 
gi'owing towns of the eleventh and twelfth centuries did not at 
first fit into the older organization of the church. Neither the 
rural parish priests nor the monks furnished the machinery to 
care for the religious needs of the crowded populations. The 
poorer inhabitants were miserable in body, too, beyond all 
words, — fever and plague stricken, dying slowly of want and 
filth and wretchedness such as no modern city knows. Early 
in the thirteenth century, these conditions, together with the 

1 The best brief accounts are given in Jessop's Coming of the Friars, 1-^2, 
and in Lea '8 History of the Inquisition, cb. i. 


spread of heretical movements, called forth a general religious 
revival, with the rise of two new orders of religious workers, 
— the Franciscan and the Dominican brotherhoods. 

The Franciscans (1206) took their name from their founder, 
FraTids of Assist, " Saint Francis," says Dr. Jessop, " was the 
John Wesley of the thirteenth century, whom the church did 
not cast out."^ He vas moved by a passionate pity for the 
ignorant, dying, despairing dregs of the population in the 
medieval Italian towns about him. A little group of eleven 
yoaths caught the inspiration of his noble enthusiasm and self- 
renunciation. Francis walked to Rome and secured sanction 
for his plans from Innocent III, and at once the little band of 
"brothers" {Jriars) began their mission. They went forth, 
two and two, to the poor and the outcasts, living from day to 
day in the midst of noisome wretchedness, to act as healers 
and preachers. They nursed lepers, ministered to the poor, and, 
with short, homely, fervent speech, preached to all the love 
of Christ for men and the call to turn from sin. They gave 
themselves utterly to serve their suffering fellows. Money 
they would not touch. Literally they were barefooted beggars, 
with one garment, living from day to day upon chance alms.' 
They were not monks. The monk lived in a quiet cloister, 
and, however beneficial his services were to the world, his first 
care was for his own soul. The friar sought instead to save 
the souls and heal the bodies of others, and he went out into 
the world wherever he could find most suffering and sin. 
The Dominicans (1216) grew out of the zeal of St Dominic 
} to convert the Albigenses from their heresy. Dominic was a 
powerful and fiery preacher, learned in all the theology of the 
age. Thus, while the Franciscans in origin were missionaries 

^ Wesley was the leader of the great Methodist revival in England in the 
eighteenth century, and Dr. Jessop's church (the Church of England) " cast 
out" Wesley's followers. Renan, New Studies in Religious History ^ 306-329, 
has a good stady of St. Francis, as has also Jessop, Coming of the Friars, 9-19. 
The best long account in English is Sebatier's St. Francis. 

* Cf. the precept of Christ to his disciples, Matthew x, 9, 10. The Francis- 
can " rule " 18 translated in Henderson's Documents, 344. 

92 EMPIRE AND PAPACY, 1122-1278. [§86 

to the poor to alleviate suffering, the Dominicans were preachers 
to the better classes to combat intellectual error. Naturally 
the Franciscans (Grejr Friars) were of gentler, the Dominicaoj^ 
(Black Friars) of sterner, character. 

Before long, however, these differences in character and pur- 
pose disappeared, and the two orders became almost identical. 
They formed a disciplined, omnipresent, devoted soldiery for 
the church and for the papacy, vastly more effective than the 
secluded monks, filling for three centuries the place afterward 
taken by the Jesuits (§ 215).^ At first they had no central 
homes of any kind; but as their numbers grew day by day, 
some fixed abode became necessary. Before long, too, wealth 
was showered upon them. At first, they had renounced prop- 
erty, not only as individuals, like the monks, but even as 
orders ; but afterward they began to accept it in trust for the 
poor, and finally for their own use, until they became among 
the richest orders in Europe. 

D, Frederick IL 

The most gifted of the sons of men^ ... a wonderful man in a won- 
derful age, — Frkbman. 

85. Character. — Frederick II has been called the last of the 
great medieval emperors and the first of the great modern 
kings. Unlike his grandfather, Barbarossa, he was an Italian 
by birth and nature. In person, he was slight, bald, near- 
sighted. A Mohammedan historian wrote that as a slave he 
would not have brought a hundred drachmas. He was an en- 
thusiastic patron of literature, a founder of one of the early 
universities (§ 180 a), and himself a scholar and an author, of 
no mean ability, in prose and in verse. He wrote charming 
songs, not in Latin, but in the new Italian tongue of every-day 
life ; and Dante (§ 188) afterward regarded him as the father 
of Italian poetry. He was deeply interested in the science of 

1 As early as 1221 the Dominicans reached England, passing at once to 
London, Oxford, York, and other towns. 


the Arabs; he ridiculed trial by ordeal and other medieval 
superstitions ; and his own codes of law were far in advance of 
the barbarous customs and ideas of the age. He was a modern, 
rather than a medieval man, in his habit of thought and feel- 
ing : a many-sided man, warrior, statesman, law-giver, scholar, 
poetL At the same time, in his private life he was immoral, 
and sometimes in his public policy cruel and 'unscrupulous, 
80 that Dante puts him, alone of all the emperors, in hell ; add, 
with all bis wonderful genius, he gave his life's energies to 
buttressing a hopelessly outgrown and tottering system, so that 
he left no positive result behind him and was only << the most 
dazzling of a long line of imperial failures." 

86. Frederick and the Popes : the Fall of the Hohenstauf en. — 
The death of Innocent III, in 1216, left the field clear for the 
moment for the young Emperor, who was just coming to man- 
hood. Politically, there was an irreconcilable opposition of 
interest between Frederick and the papacy. As Emperor, 
Frederick was master of North Italy ; and as King of Sicily, 
he was master of the South. Thus he seemed about to bring 
to success the cherished policy of his house and to establish 
a consolidated Italy. The chief obstacle to this success was 
the existence of the Papal States, stretching across Italy from 
sea to sea. It was almost inevitable that Frederick should 
wish to join the two parts of his realm. It was certainly 
inevitable that the popes should fear lest their temporal 
principality should be crushed between the two arms of the 
Hohenstaufen power, and that the danger should make them 
Frederick's relentless foes. 

iHiring much of his reign, the Emperor was under sentence 
of excommunication and deposition. On one occasion during 
the struggle, when the papal throne became vacant, it was 
filled by the election of a man who had always been favor- 
able to the imperial side. But Frederick did not deceive 
himself with false hopes : when he was congratulated, he re- 
plied, " I have only lost a friend ; no pope can be a Ghibel- 
line." Innocent IV, the new pope, proved, indeed, one of 

94 EMPIRE AND PAPACY, 1122-1273. [j 87 

the most formidable opponents any emperor had encountered. 
Frederick maintained the war during his life, but towards the 
close with lessening chances of success. He spent his last 
years like a lion at bay, amid the fierce onslaughts of open 
enemies and the cruel treacheries of trusted friends; and his 
death (1250) was followed by quick, complete, and final ruin 
for his plans', and by the extinction of his family in the 
relentless strife waged against them by the papal party. 

In 1254, the death of Frederick's oldest son, Conrad IV, 
ushered in a long interregnum for the Empire, and marked 
the separation of Germany from Italy. To crush another of 
Frederick's sons, Manfred, in Sicily, the Pope called in Charles 
of Anjou^ brother of Louis IX of France (§ 149), and gave him 
the Sicilian crown.* 

For Fdkther Reading. — Emerton, 271-356 ; Tout, 245-273, 304-335, 
358-392 ; Henderson, Short History of Germany^ ch. iv ; Bryce, Holy 
Boman Empire ^ chs. xi and xiii. Longer treatments may be consulted in 
Pastor, History of the Popes; Freeman, ** Frederick King of Italy " and 
"Frederick II," in First Series of Essays ; Mil man, Latin Christianity; 
Balzani, Popes and Hohenstaufen ; Alzog, Church History ; Lea, History 
of the Inquisition (opening chapters) ; and A. L. Smith, Frederick 11^ the 
Wonder of the World. 



87. Results to the PafMicy and to Italy. — The popes had won. 
They had prevented Italian unity; they had preserved their 
own predominance as princes in central Italy ; and they had 
excluded the Germans. It is true they had not saved Italy 
from foreign domination. They had only called in one for- 
eigner against another ; ' and as a result of their policy, Italy, 

1 Brief special reports : the tragic story of Ck>nrad IV ; of Enzio ; of Man- 
fred; of Conradin. 

> The calling in of the Angevines (honse of Anjou) against the Hohen- 
staufen will remind the student of the calling in of the Franks five centuries 
before against the Lombards {Ancient History, §§ 634, 638). 


for centuries to come (§§ 171, 173), was to be the battle 
ground of France, Spain, and Germany. Incidentally, how- 
ever, they had assisted the rising Italian towns in the 
revolt against imperial despotism, and so had helped to pre- 
pare for the rich civic life of northern Italy in the next two 

Apparently, the papacy emerged from the two hundred 
years' contest the unchallenged head of Christendom, and for 
a time some of the wearers of the papal crown took a loftier 
tone toward worldly monarchs than even Gregory or Innocent 
had done. But the victory was short-lived. The growing 
monarchies in France and England were about to rebel against 
papal domination in temporal affairs (§ 163), and, in less than 
fifty years after the death of Frederick II, the papacy entered 
upon the long " Babylonian Captivity " (§ 165). 

88. Results to the Empire and. to Germany. — The emperors 
had failed utterly. Two hundred years later, an English 
chronicler wrote of the period following the death of Frederick 
II, " The Empire in a manner censed here" Certainly the 
character of the Empire changed radically: (1) Italy was 
lost, as France had been four centuries earlier ; and (2) even 
in theory the union between the spiritual and temporal head- 
ship of Christendom was dissolved. The Empire in character 
was no longer either " Holy " or " Roman " ; it remained only 
" German." * 

This was not all. In Germany also there was a striking 
change. The idea that had made the soul of the Empire was 
gone; but so, too, was the physical embodiment of it in the 
German kingdom (§§ 55 b and 56). The title King of Germany 
had long since disappeared in the scramble for the higher dig- 
nity of the imperial title (§ 56) ; or, as Freeman puts it, the 

^ From the thirteenth centary the Empire is often spoken of as the ** Ger- 
man Empire." The term is good as a description, — just as we speak of the 
" Greek Empire " at Constantinople, — bnt it is not a proper title in a strict 
sense. The only empire in history with the title *' German Empire/' is the 
one created by Bismarck and King William in 1871. 

96 EMPIRE AND PAPACY, 1122-1273. [J 88 

kingly crown of Germg^ny had been "crushed beneath the 
loftier imperial diadem." But now more than crown and title 
had vanished. Says Mr. Bryce, in a sentence of profound 
meaning, " The kingdom of Germany broke down beneath the 
weight of the Roman Empire." For the greater part of three 
hundred years, Germany had been the strongest state in Europ>e 
— far in advance of England or France. That leadership 
was now lost. The emperors had squandered the strength of 
their northern kingdom in the vain attempt to build up a 
kingdom in Italy. For twenty yews after the last Hohen- 
staufen (1254-1273), there was no eiRperor in Germany* and 
no king. These years were the "Great Interregnum," the 
period of " FistrlawJ^ During this time there was no pretense 
of central government. The old kingdom had dissolved into 
a mass of petty fragments, some three hundred in number, — 
free cities, duchies, marks, counties, — each virtually an inde- 
pendent monarchy or city-republic. The chance to make a 
united German nation was postponed six hundred years. In 
1273, the name of Emperor was revived by the election of 
Cownt Rudolph of Hapshurg : but little more than the name 
remained (§§ 158 fP.). 


1. Fact drills (cf. Ancient History, 245, 240, for suggestions). 

a. Dates : 843, 962, 087, 1066 ; (class fill in the events). 1075-1264 

(struggle between Empire and papacy), 1122 (Concordat of 

Worms, which divides struggle of Empire and papacy into two 

chapters), 1176 (Legnano). 
h. Fix other events in connection with the dates ffiven above ; such aa 

Lechfeldy Lombard League, Peace of Constance, 
c. Extend list of terms for brief explanation (see page 61) : Hugh 

Capet, Guelf, benefit of clergy^ Pataria, Peter^s Pence, Canossa, 

mark states, etc. 

^ Two emperors were elected daring this period, — a Spaniard and an Eng* 
lishman (the brother of Henry III), — but neither of them actually appeared 
in Germany to enter upon the government. 


2. Make a syllabus of the work so far. This may be done readily from 
the headings of l^aragraphs, upon the plan of the Analytical Table of 
Contents in the Ancient History, 

3. Review questions by the class (cf. page 51). For example : give the 
two divisions of the struggle between Empire and papacy, characteriz- 
ing each, and naming leaders and chief events. 

4. Catch- word reviews (cf. Ancient History, 163). 

a. Germany from Charles the Fat to 962. 

b. The Holy Roman Empire, to 1273. 

5. Map review. Compare the four maps on the Empire (including the 
one on the Partition of Verdun) for varying boundaries and for increase 
in number of political divisions. 




89. The Mohammedan World ^ before the Coming of the Turk. 
— From 800 to 1100, Western Europe had stood to Asia much 
as Asia now stands to Europe. It was far below both the Greek 
and the Mohammedan world in civilization. The Moham- 
medans still ruled from the Pyrenees to the Ganges and the 
Jaxartes. This wide dominion, it is true, was broken up into 
many states, but the civilization of the Saracens had not yet 
begun to decline. They had utilized the old culture of Persia 
and of Greece. Their governments were as good as the Oriental 
world had ever known. Their roads and canals encouraged 
commerce and bound together distant regions. Their magnifi- 
cent cities were built with a peculiar and beautiful architec- 
ture.* Their manufactures were the finest in the world, both 
for beautiful design and for delicate workmanship. Their 
glass and pottery and metal work, their dye-stuffs, their paper, 
their preparations of leather, all represented industries almost 
or wholly unknown to the West. We still speak of " Toledo " 
blades and " Morocco " leather. Their agriculture was scien- 
tific, with the use of irrigation and fertilizers ; and by grafting 
they had produced many new varieties of fruit and flowers. 

In intellectual lines their superiority was no less marked. 
While Europe had only a few monastic schools to light its 

1 On early Mohammedanism, see Ancient History , §§ 620-626 and 648. 
> Saracenic architecture was characterized by the horse-shoe arch, the 
dome, the turret, the graceful minaret, and a rich ornament of " arabesque.** 



"Dark Ages," the Arabs had great universities, with libraries 
cootaioiDg hundreds of thousands of manuscripts. Philosophy, 
theol<^y, law, rhetoric, were subjects for special study ; much 
pit^ress had been made in astronomy ; chemistry had been 
begun; algebra had been greatly developed; spherical trigo- 
nometry bad been created; and while Europe still treated 

disease from the point of view of an Indian " Medicine Man," 
the Saracens had established, on Greek foundations, a real 
science of medicine. 

90. The Byzantine Empire. — Midway in character, as in 
geographical position, between Latin Europe and Mohammedan 
Asia, lay the Greek Empire, living on for centuries its quiet, 
orderly life. In material prosperity it was unexcelled any- 
where in the world, and in intellectual activity it was surpassed 
only by the Saracens. Until recently, writers have been 

100 AGE OF THE CRUSADES, 1100-1300. [§90 

accustomed to refer to the Greek Empire aa altogether meaa 

and uniDte resting. The opinion of later scholars is indicated 

in the following brief characterizations.' 

"A government which with all its faults, for man; ceoturies discharged 

Its functions better than any contemporary government in the world. 
. . . Wise legislators, able ad- 
ministrators, valiant generals, 
profound scholars, acui« tkeoio- 
gians vere the natural product 
o( the soil, century after cen- 
tury." — Frebhah, "Byzantine 
Empire," in tbe Third SerUt 
of Easaj/g. 

" The Empire of the East 
maintained its existence like an 
agitai«d Same, sending forth 
great gleams of light, wbicb tan- 
ished only to reappear with re- 
newed brightness. During more 
than sii centuries [after Charle- 
magne's Empire fell] it defended 
itself against the darkness that 
finally overlook it." — Lavisse, 
Political Hixtorv of Europe, SO. 
The Empire was a civil- 
ized state, standing on the 
defeiisive against barbarian 
attack, and waging its wars 
mainly by means of Norse 
mercenaries. Its emperors 

were often devoted scholars 
DiioKWAl TO THE Hall or the , , , ^. „ 

AMBASSADORS, alhambra. »^° ^ole authors, as wbU 

as great rulers. Constanti- 
nople in magnificence and extent was unapproacbed by the 
rude towns of France and Germany ; and its wealth, splendor, 

I There are good alalemenu in Tnut's Einpirt and Papacy , 161, 132; and 
see, lor detail, 1.^3-1TI). Students may ronault also Oman's Byxantine Em- 
pire, and Finlay's }li»lory of Greece. 

102 AGR OF THE CRUSADES, 1100-1800. [§ 91 

and comforts, — its paved and lighted streets, its schools and 
theaters, its orderly police system, its hospitals and parks, — 
were all new features to the few visitors from the West. Such 
trade as Western Europe possessed, was mainly in Greek 
hands ; and the " Byzant," the coin of Constantinople, was the 
standard of coinage over Europe. 

During most of its history, the Empire comprised the greater 
part of Asia Minor, many islafids, and at least the coast regions 
of the Balkan peninsula in Europe. The more distant parts 
of that peninsula were divided between two Slav peoples, the 
Servians and the Bulgarians.^ These peoples were sometimes 
tributaries, sometimes foes, of Constantinople, but from that 
source, they, like the Eussians, had drawn their Christianity 
and civilization. 

91. Appearance of the Turks. — In the eleventh century, the 
civilization of the Saracens received a fatal blow, and the 
existence of the Greek Empire was endangered. Political 
supremacy in the Mohammedan world fell to the Seljuk Turks, 
a new Tartar people from beyond the Jaxartes. The Turks 
were to play somewhat the same part in the Saracenic world 
that the Teutons had played in the old Roman world, — with this 
tremendous difference, that even to the present day they have 
not assimilated civilization. The Saracenic culture survived 
long enough to be transplanted into Europe during the cru- 
sades, but in its own home it was doomed to swift decay. 

The Turks were at least mighty soldiers, and they began a 
new era of Mohammedan conquest. Almost at once the greater 
part of the Greek Empire fell into their hands. They overran 
Asia Minor, and established a number of principalities there, — 
one of them, called the Empire of "Roum" (Rome), with its 
capital at Nicea, only seventy miles from Constantinople. In 
terror, the Greek Emperor turned to Western Christendom for 
aid ; and his appeal was the signal for two centuries of war, 
cross against crescent. 

1 Ancient History, §§ 581, 624. 


The West takes the Offensive against the East. 

The point upon which the Middle Ages turned from the darkness and 
disorder of the earlier times to the greater light and order of modern times, 
— George Burton Adams. 

A lamentable tale of divided counsels^ of incredible ignorance, of heroic 
bravery y and of frightful sacrifice, — Emerton. 

A, Character and Causes. 

92. Place in History. — In the ninth century, Europe for a 
while had seemed defenseless against plundering bands of 
Norse or Saracen raiders, but now — so strong had it grown 
under the military system of feudalism — for two hundred 
years it poured a ceaseless stream of mailed knights into Asia. 
From about 1100 to about 1300, there was fighting between 
Christian and Mohammedan in the East, and during all this 
time bands of nobles from various parts of Europe kept going 
off to join the war. At times, it is true, there were particularly 
impressive movements of mighty armies into Asia, and these 
are commonly known as the eight crusades ; but this number- 
ing of a few great expeditions must not blind us to the more 
important fact that the conflict was practically continuous. 

To a broad view, the crusades were one more chapter in the 
age-long struggle between East and West,* in which Marathon, 
Zama, Arbela, and Tours had been earlier episodes. But it is 
also true that the appearance of the Turk gave a new aspect 
to the strife. It was no longer a conflict between two types 
of civilization. It was thenceforth for centuries a conflict 
between the only possible civilization and a brutal and destruc- 
tive barbarism, — as before had been the case only at brief 
moments of time, in the old Scythian invasions or in the attack 
of Attila's Huns.* 

1 Of. Andent History, §§ 153, 176, 340, 358, 625. 

' Andent History, § 670. Trae, in 1100 the Europeans were excelled in 
enltore by the lands which had just fallen to the Turk ; but there was no 
hope for those lands after the Turkish conquest. 


AGE OF THE CRUSADES, 1100-1300. 


93. Causea of the CruBades : the Greek Appeal and the Abuse of 
Pi^rlma by the Turks. Urban at Clennont. — The Greek call 
for aid against the infidel, the common foe of all Christians, 
was the immediate occasion for the crusades; but that call 
would probably have pro- 
duced little effect it West- 
ern Europe had not had 
deep grievancea of ita own 
against the Turk. 

The key to the under- 
standing of the crusades 
is found in the fact that 
they were limply a new 
form of pilgrimage, and 
the only kind any longer 
possible. Pilgrimages to 
holy shrines were a lead- 
ing feature of medieval 
life : good men made them 
to satisfy religious enthu- 
siasm; evil men, to se- 
cure forgiveness for crime; 
sick men, to heal bodily 
ills. A pilgrimage was an 
act of worship, and it was 
regarded as meritorious in 
itself. Chief of all pil- 
grimages, of course, was 
that to the land where 
Christ had lived and to 
the tomb where His body 
had been laid. In particular, after the religious revival early 
in the eleventh century (§ 59), a steatly stream of pilgrims 
from Europe visited Palestine, -sometimes in bands of hiindreds- 
In 1064, the archbishop of Mainz led one company of seven 
thousand to the Holy Land. 

Chdrch or THB Holt Srpuu-heb at 

Jerusalrm; present condition. Thin 
chuTph was bnilt by Conatatitiue about 
the year 335 STid waa rcBlored by the 
Crusaders in 10!)9. It la Buppoaed to 
contain the place of the burial of Christ. 


The Saracens had permitted these pilgrimages, and had even 
encouraged them as a means of revenue; but in 1076 the 
Turks captured Jerusalem from the Arabs, and at once began 
to persecute all Christians there. Tales of suffering and of 
wrongs, told by returned pilgrims, filled Europe with shame 
and wrath, and prepared Latin Christendom to respond to the 
Greek Emperor^s appeal for aid. Each crusader marched to 
avenge pilgrims and at the same time to make a pilgrimage 
himself. He was ^'an armed pilgrim" to the holiest of 

The messengers from Constantinople came to Pope Urhan^ 
as the head of Christendom, in 1095. Twenty years before, 
Gregory VII had wished to put himself at the head of an army 
to relieve the Eastern Empire from a threatened Turkish ad- 
vance, but had been prevented by the strife with Henry IV. 
Now Urban at once assumed the leadership, and at a great 
council of French nobles at Clermont, preached a war of the 
Cross against the infidel. His eloquence ' thrilled the multitude 
to a frenzy of enthusiasm, and they caught up his cry, " God 
wills it! God wills it!" A great expedition was arranged 
for the following spring, and all over Europe men were called 
upon to "take the cross," — that is, to pledge themselves to the 
expedition by fastening a red cross on the breast.* The polit- 
ical motive, to relieve the Greek Empire, sank almost out of 
mind. The crusaders seemed to think only of recovering the 
Holy Sepulcher. 

There were, however, other motives, less noble, and less prominent in 
TBCords, but hardly less potent. Multitudes of nobles were influenced 
largely by greedy hopes of winning new principalities in Asia. Indeed, 
the Greek Emperor, in his letters to western leaders, laid chief emphasis 
on this inducement, and even Pope Urban did not neglect it in his address 
at Clermont. "Wrest the land from that wicked race," said lie, **and 

1 See Pennsylvania ReprintSj I, No. 2. 

< Special report: the preaching of Peter the Hermit, its real value, and the 
old error regarding its importance as a cause of the crusades. See, especiallyi 
Pennsylvania BeprintSt I, No. 2. 

106 AGE OF THE CRUSADES, 1100-1800. [§ 94 

possess it for yourselves." ^ Many men, too, were moved in great meas- 
ure by military ardor and by the mere spirit of adventure^ — the desire to 
see the world ; while others found in the crusades a chance to escape put^ 
ishmentfor crime,^ 

None the less, the real cause of the crusades was religious zeal : the war 
was truly a ^' war of the cross," and all these grosser motives only helped 
to rally recruits about a banner which a high enthusiasm had set up. 

B» The Story. 

94. The First Crusade and Preliminary Movements. — The cru- 
sades opened with a pathetic and absurd movement which shows 
both the sincere enthusiasm and the ignorant credulity of the 
age.* Great hordes of peasantry, impatient of delay, without 
waiting for the army of nobles, set off to rescue the Holy 
Land, under a preaching monk and a beggar knight, Peter the 
Hermit and Walter the Penniless, These multitudes — igno- 
rant, unorganized, almost unarmed, and altogether without 
supplies — expected divine guidance and aid. Most of them 
perished miserably in the terrible journey through the Danube 
valley, either by starvation and disease, or by the attacks of 
the Christian natives, whose lands they were pillaging for food; 
and the remnants, as soon as they reached Asia, were annihi- 
lated by the Turks. 

In the spring of 1096, swarms of the real crusaders began 
to make their way through Europe to Constantinople, the 

1 Closely related to this consideration was the need of some oatlet for the 
increasing population of France. That country had just sent the Normans 
into England and Italy, and other bands of adventurers into Portugal. In 
like manner, she now poured her swarming military population into the East. 
The crusading armies were so dominantly French that the Greeks and Mo- 
hammedans came to use the names "Frank " and "LAtin " interchangeably, 
and to apply either term to any inhabitant of Western Europe. 

2 Urban dwelt upon this inducement also, and urged those "who have been 
robbers " to "become soldiers of Christ." From the moment a man took the 
cross, the church promised him forgiveneas for all past sins, and forbade all 
attacks, even by the law, upon his person or his property. For some curious 
documents illustrating these points, see Pennsylvania ReprintSt I, No, 2. 

' Special report, to show a like lesson : the Children's Crusade. 


appointed place of meeting. There they gathered, some three 
hundred thousand strong, according to the chroniclers, — one 
hundred thousand of them mailed horsemen, — the most formi- 
dable army Europe has ever sent against Asia. The Greek 
£mperor, fearful lest these fierce allies might turn upon his 
own realm, hastened their departure into Asia. There they 
endured terrible suffering and loss, in march, skirmish, battle, 
and siege, while the leaders quarreled savagely among them- 
selves; but fortunately the Mohammedans at this time were 
even more broken up into hostile camps, and in July, 1099, 
the Christians stormed Jerusalem, amid hideous butchery and 
wild transports of religious enthusiasm. 

95. The Latin States in Syria, and the Military Orders. — The 
First Crusade is said to have cost Europe a million lives, — 
counting the reinforcements that poured into Asia each year 
while the struggle had been going on, — but no doubt the fig- 
ures are greatly exaggerated. Two important political results 
were accomplished. (1) The Greek Empire recovered much 
of Asia Minor. (2) The greater nobles among the crusaders 
divided the conquered Syrian districts among themselves and 
set up there four " Latin states," of which the chief was the 
"Kingdom of Jerusalem." Each ruler divided his realm in 
feudal fashion among his retainers, and, on the soil of Asia, a 
complete feudal society sprang up, to continue the war against 
the crescent. 

These Latin states found the core of their fighting force in a 
new institution, which combined in a remarkable fashion the 
two opposite ideals of the age, — that of the monk and that of 
the knight. Three orders oi fighting monks arose.^ The Knights 
of St Johuy or of the Hospital, grew out of an organization to 
care for the sick and wounded : soon the nurses became them- 
selves warriors and knights ; they took the monk's threefold 
vow of poverty, chastity, and obedience, and added a fourth, 

1 Brief accounta are given in Emerton, 372-374, and in Tout, Empire and 
Papacy, 1S»-191. The Teutonic Order is treated in Henderson's Short His- 
tor*j of Germany, 173-181. 

108 AGE OF THE CRUSADES, 1100-1300. [§96 



binding themselves to perpetual warfare against the infidel. 
The Templars arose in like manner out of a society to succor 
distressed pilgrims, and the name came from the fact that the 
eight or nine knights who originally composed the organiza- 
tion dwelt in a house near Solomon's Temple. The Teutonic 
Order grew out of the hospitality of a German merchant 
toward his needy countrymen in Jerusalem. All three orders 
played important parts in later history. 

96. The Second Crusade. — For nearly fifty years the new Latin states, 
leenforced by the annual streams of pilgrim-crusaders, kept the Moham- 
medan from the Holy Land. Finally, however, the enemy began to gain 
ground again, and in 1147, Europe was alarmed by the fall of Edessa, the 
foremost outpost of the Christian power in Syria. St. Bernard (§ 72, 
note) at once preached another great crusade. This time. Emperor 
Conrad III and King Louis VII of France were persuaded to lead the 
expedition. The enterprise failed miserably, from bad generalship and 
ignorance ; but the numbers of crusaders left by it in Palestine enabled 
the Christian states there to make head, for a time, against the enemy. 

97. The Third Crusade. — Each new generation was ready for its new 
crosade ; and forty years after Conrad's failure, the capture of Jerusalem 
by Saladin ^ called Europe again to arms. The Christian states in Pales- 
tine had been reduced to a mere strip of coast, but now the great sover- 
eigns of Western Europe — Frederick Barbarossa of Germany, Philip II 
of France, and JRichard of England — united in a mighty eflfort for the 
recovery of the Holy Land. The Third Crusade is the best known and 
the most romantic of the whole series ; but it failed to produce important 
results, because of the death of Barbarossa (§ 81} and the jealousies be- 
tween the French and English kings. 

98. Fourth Crusade: the Latin Kingdom at Constantinople. — The 
true crusading era closed with the Third Crusade. The failure of that 
movement, it is true, at once called forth another effort, but the Fourth 
Crusade was diverted from its purpose as a religious war against the 
infidel into a commercial war upon a Christian state. Venice furnished 
the ships for the expedition ; and her rulers, jealous of Constantinople's 
monopoly of the eastern trade, persuaded the crusaders to attack the 
Greek Empire. For a time that venerable empire disappeared, and the 
crusaders shared the booty among themselves. Venice took some three- 
eighths of the old imperial territory, mostly islands and coast regions; 

1 Special report : character and work of Saladin. 

110 AGE OF THE CRUSADES, 1100-1300. [j M 

T&rloiu petty fragmenta were mnde iDto Freokish principalities, like the 
"Duchy of Athens";' snda"Latin Kingdom " waa aet up at Conatao- 
tinople (1204), LoDg yiOK followed between this Frank, or '> Latin,'' 
Btat« and the remnants of the Greek power;* and fifty yeais later, in 
1201, the Greek Empire at Constantinople was restored. It waa to endure 
two centuriea more, but It never recovered its former vigor. The Fourth 
Cruaade, in its greedy attack upon this ancient champion of Christendom 
ID the Eaat. vaa a crime against the cause of the crusades. 

99- The Later Cmaadea are of minor consequence. Their actual 

military operations were carried on largely In Egypt, which had become a 
chief center of Mohammedan power. After a terrible Ices of life in the 
Fifth and Sixth Crusades, the Emperor Frederick II (§; 86, 86) recovered 
Jerusalem b; peaceful negotiation (1230): but it was soon lost ag^n to the 

1 Advanced stndeDts may like to read Finlay's account of the Dakes of 
Athens, History of Greece, IV, 13'2^17y. It was the brilliant court of these 
medievnl "dukea " that Chaucer and Shakspere had in mind in Iheir refer- 
ences to aiicifnt Athenian history; cf. " Duke Theeens," In A Midmmmtr 
Xight's Dream. 

*ThiB of course still called Itaelf " Roman ," — so that we read for a tJme of 
the wan of the "IacIds " agunst the "Bomans." 




Turks. Then, in 1249, Louis IX of France organized the Seventh Crussde. 
This attempt came to nothing ; and the cnuading spirit expired with 
another expedition, twenl]' years later, in nhich LouIb died at Tunis. 

Before 1300, the last territory of the Latins in Syria had fallen finally 
to the Turks ; and thereafter, men who still wished to fight for the cross 
went to aid the Christian princes in Spain 
against the Hoors, or warred against Uie 
heathen on the northeast of Europe. The 
Teutonic order remoTed U> Germany and took 
up the conquest and settlement of heathen 
Prussia, bo laying the foundation for the great- 
ness of a future German state.' The Knighis 
of SL John withdrew to Rhodes, where in 
constant warfare, for two hundred years more, 
they formed the outpost of Christendom against 
Moham medantsm. 

100. Why the Cmsades ceased.— The cru- 
sades ceased because the; had themselves pro- 
duced a new age and a new spirit. Men had 
found interests and duties nearer home. This 
is well shown in a story told hy JoinTille in his 
life of St. hoaiB (cf. } 40), Joinville, one of 
the greatest nobles of France, came of a family 
of famous crusaders; he had accompanied 
Louis IX on the Seventh Crusade, and had 
persisted in continuing it after all the other 
caunsellora of the King had advised return ; 
but when Louis made fals second expedition, 
Joioville stoutly refused to go at all. The 
King had summoned his nobles to a great 
assembly. Joinvilie, suspecting the purpose, 
tried to excuse himself from attending ; and, 
when he arrived, he found the other nobles i 
believe me," said one knight of the royal council, "if the King is not 
going to take the croaa." Whereupon another replied, "It he does, it 
will he one of the saddest days that ever befell France. And if we do 
not take the cross we shall lose the King's affection ; and if we do take it, 
we shall lose God's favor, because it will not he on His account that we 
take it." Joinvilie was pressed by the King to join, — '■ Whereto 1 replied 
that while I was serving God and the King beyond sea befoi'e, the offlcers 

ErrioT FBOM a Funehal 
Slab In Salisbury Cathe- 
dral, 12S0. ThecroasiDK 

of the legs indicates a 

n conatemation. "Never 

> See maps following pages TO and 130. 


112 AGE OF THE CRUSADES, 1100-1300. [§ 101 

of the King had ruined myself and impoverished my people ; and that if 
1 wished now to please God I should remain here to defend my people ; 
for if I risked myself for the cross when I saw clearly that it would be 
for the damage of my people, I should bring down upon me the wrath of 
God, who gave his life to save His people. . . . And I considered that 
those committed a deadly sin who advised him to that voyage, because 
France was then at peace with itself and all its neighbors, and after hia 
departure, its condition has never ceased to grow worse and worse." 

C Results upon Western Europe. 

101. Importance. — During the crusading centuries, Europe 
made great progress in culture. Sometimes this advance is 
ascribed wholly to the crusades. These movements themselves, 
however, would not have been possible, if an advance from the 
condition of the ninth century had not already begun. But, 
though the crusades did not begin the advance, they did in- 
crease and modify it. They failed of their avowed object; 
but they retarded Mohammedan advance for some centuries, 
and their indirect results upon Europe were vastly more im- 
portant to the world than the recovery of Palestine would 
have been. 

102. Intellectual Results. — In their effect upon the intellect, 
the crusades stand to medieval Europe somewhat as the Per- 
sian wars to Greece, or the Punic wars to Kome : they brought 
new energies into play and opened up new worlds of thought. 
They gave at once some new possessions in science, art, medical 
knowledge, and architecture. They furnished heroic figures 
and a romantic setting for the poet's use, so that literary ac- 
tivity was stimulated and numerous histories of the crusades 
were written. The horizon was widened : men had gained ac- 
quaintance with new lands, new peoples, new standards of life 
and conduct. Best of all, Europeans had learned that there 
was more to learn and that the despised infidel could teach 
them much. Even among the Arabs they had found men 
brave, just, honorable, and religious. There was a new stir in 
the intellectual atmosphere, and the way was prepared for the 
intellectual uprising of the Renaissance (§§ 179-189). 


108. Commercial Results. — As long as the Latin states in 
Syria lasted (nearly two hundred years), they were practically 
military colonies, dependent upon Europe for weapons, horses, 
and supplies of food. From the first, such supplies had to be 
transported by sea, and, after the Second Crusade, the crusaders 
themselves always journeyed by ship. This stimulated ship- 
building, and led to an increased production in Europe of many 
commodities for these new markets. 

Even more important was the reappearance in the West of 
long-forgotten Oriental products.* Europeans now learned to 
use sugar-cane, spices, dates, buckwheat, sesame, saffron, apri- 
cots, melons, oils, perfumes, and various drugs and dyes, and, 
among new objects of manufacture, cottons, silks, rugs, calicoes, 
muslins (from Mosul), damasks (from Damascus), satins, 
velvets, delicate glassware, the cross-bow, the windmill. Many 
of these things became almost necessaries of life ; some of them 
were soon grown or manufactured in Europe; others, like 
spices,* could not be produced there. In consequence, commerce 
with Asia augmented enormously. For a time, Venice and 
Genoa, assisted by their favorable positions, monopolized much 
of the new carrying-trade, but all the ports of Western Europe 
were more or less affected.' 

IM. Money replaces Barter.^ — All these commercial transac- 
tions, as well as the fitting out of the crusades themselves, 
called for money. The system of barter and of exchange of 
services, by which Europe had lived for some centuries, was 
outgrown, and a new economic system was born. Bankers 
now appeared,* and coinage received a marvelous impetus. 

1 On the older trade with the East, see Ancient History, § 478. 
s In the absence of fresh meat in winter and of onr modem root-foods, 
spices became of immense importance for the tabie. 

• This commercial activity called for qnicker methods of reckoning ; and 
at this time Europe adopted the Arabic numerals {Ancient History , § 2 note). 

< Cunningham, Western Civilization^ II, 74-77 ; Adams, Civilization, 297. 

* Until this time the Jews had been the only money-lenders. Christians 
had regarded all lending for interest (usury) as sinful. An excellent topic 
for a report by an advanced student is the treatment of the Jews in Western 
Europe during the Middle Ages. 

114 AGE OF THE CRUSADES, 1100-1800. [{105 

lOS. Political and Social Results of the Crasades. — The 

crusades undermined feudalism and encouraged new social 
forces. The introduction of money did away with the eco- 
nomic basis of feudalism (§ 23): the relations between tenant 
and landlord no longer needed to rest upon exchange of services 
for land. The presence of money, too, enabled the kings to 
collect national revenues, and so to maintain disciplined and 
regular standing armies, more efficient than the old feudal 
array (§ 28). But the crusades struck more direct blows than 
these at feudalism. They swept away multitudes of the feudal 
lords themselves. Hundreds of thousands of barons and 
knights squandered their possessions in preparing for the 
expedition, and then left their bones in Palestine ; so that in 
£urope the ground was cleared for a new society and for a new 
system of government. 

And the crusades helped new social and political systems to 
grow up, to take the place vacated by the dying feudalism. 
To get money wherewith to equip their followers for the 
crusades, the great barons mortgaged their possessions to the 
kings, and sometimes the smaller barons sold theirs outright, 
while both classes sold charters of rights to the rising towns. 
Thus the kings consolidated their dominions and got rid of 
dangerous rivals ; and at the same time the towns rose to polit- 
ical power. Until the twelfth century there had been only 
two "estates," or political classes, in European society, — 
clergy and nobles. Now the townsmen appeared as a " tiiird 
estate."* This "third estate" wanted order, and the kings 
could help to secure it; while the kings wanted money, and 
the third estate could supply it. So these two elements allied 
themselves still further against the weakened remnants of the 
feudal system, and soon feudalism was little more than a form. 
It was succeeded, as a political system, by the free cities 

^ — —  -  

^ The peasantry did not yet coant politicaUy, bat even they were benefited 
by the new conditions: the fact that they might be tempted to run away to 
the towns (which were always glad to afford them refuge) helped to secure 
them better treatment from their lords. 


(§S 106 ff.) and by the "new monarchies" (§§ 147 ff.). The 
members of a new nobility which soon appeared, with the title 
and honors of the old^ were dependent on the monarch, instead 
of being his rivals. 

Fob Further Reading. — Three contemporary accounts are printed 
in the Tolnme, Chronicles of the Crusades; Joinville^s account in his St. 
Louis — one of the three narratives in that volume — ib especially excel- 
lent. Further source material will be found in Pennsylvania Beprints, I 
and II, and Archer's Crusade of Eichard I in the series, ** English His- 
tory by Contemporary Writers." 

Modem accounts : Archer and Kingsford, The Crusades (probably the 
best account in English ; especially good for the ** Kingdom of Jeru- 
salem") ; Tout, Umpire and Papacy, 175-197, 29&-304; Cox, The Cru- 
sades; Gray, The Children's Crusade; Gilman, The Saracens; Emerton, 
Medieval Europe, ch. xi ; Adams, Civilization, ch. xi ; Pears, Fall of 
Constantinople; Oman, Byzantine Empire j a,nd. -The Art of War; Cutts, 
Scenes and Characters of the Middle Ages, 167-104 ; Lane-Poole, Sal- 
adin; Perry, St. Louis. See also references in footnotes. 

In fiction : Scott's Talisman, 

Spbcial Reports. — 1. Impressions that a student gets from the 
letters of crusaders given In Pennsylvania Beprints, I, No. 4. 2. The 
Third Crusade. 3. The Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem. 4. The 

warfare of the crusaders (see Oman's History of the Art of War). See 
also footnotes to §§ 92, 94, 99. 

ExKBCiSB. — Catchword review of the crusades. 




A. Significance. 

106. Society ceases to be exclusively Rural : a Fourth Type 
added to the Three of Earlier Centuries. — Ancient civilization 
had been a city civilization. Thus, though Gaul was civilized 
late, yet in the last century of Koman rule it contained 
over a hundred flourishing cities with municipal institutions.* 
But in the fifth century a.d., through the barbarian invasions, 
city life in Western Europe gave way to a less organized 
country life. This was one of the most striking and far- 
reaching results of that terrible period. European society re- 
mained essentially rural for over Jive hundred years, and, after the 
development of feudalism, the three typical figures in that society 
were the tonsured priest, the mailed horseman, and the field laborer 
bent with toil ayid hard fare. Then, in the eleventh century, cities 
again appeared ; and alongside the priest, the knight, and the 
peasant, there stood forth another figure, — (he townsman, or 

Feudalism was to remain dominant for a while, but the rising 
towns stood for forces hostile to its life ; and the men of the 
town — traders and artisans — were finally to replace the 
knights as the decisive force in society. Feudalism had arisen 
out of war, and it was militant in purpose and nature. The towns 
grew out of trade ; and, though they could and did fight val- 
iantly, they were essentially industrial. When they fought they 

1 Ancimt History, §§ 478, 479. 


did so, not as a business, but in order that they might have a 
chance to carry on their real business of peaceful industry. 

107. Material Well-being. — It is difficult for us to realize 
how much this appearance of the burgher meant to European 
society. The twelfth and thirteenth centuries saw one of the 
greatest social and economic changes in the world's history. 
Labor ceased to be wholly agricultural : the new towns were 
workshops and trading factories. New wants, new comforts, 
new occupations appeared. Rude country barter and " pay- 
ment in kind " were replaced by money transactions and by 
bills of exchange. Peasant villages were transformed into 
walled towns of three thousand or three hundred thousand 
inhabitants.^ Thatched hovels, with dirt floors, gave way 
to comfortable and even stately burghers' homes. Universal 
misery and squalor among the industrial classes were replaced, 
for a large part of the population, by happy luxury ; and there 
followed a lavish expenditure for town halls and cathedrals 
and for civic feasts and shows. 

Still, even on the material side, the medieval European city 
fell far behind the ancient Greek or Roman city or the con- 
temix)rary Arabian city. There were no street lights at night, 
no city water supply, no sewerage, no street-cleaning, no pavingi 
Dead animals rotted in the streets and narrow lanes ; and the 
story is told that on one occasion in the fifteenth century a 
German emperor, warmly welcomed in a loyal city, was almost 
swallowed up, horse and rider, in the bottomless filth, as he 
entered the city-gate. Frankfort, in 1387, found it necessary 
to forbid the building of pig-sties in the public streets, and Ulm 
a little later was troubled by swine running loose. Within 
doorsy too, the material prosperity was not for all. Says Dr. 
Jessop, " The sediment of the town population was a dense 

1 Milan, in Italy (§ 80) » coanted some three hundred thousand inhabitants 
and some of the largest German cities numbered perhaps fifty thousand ; but 
in general the towns were small, — from three thousand to six thousand peo- 
ple. Up to the year 1500, England had only three cities with over twelve 
thousand inhabitants. 

WESTERK EUROPE, 1100-1620. 

Old Strbrt in Boiikn, present coiidilion. Tlie Cathedral ia visible a 
tbe opening of tha street into the 8c|uare. Probably the appeftnuio 
or Che street bos cbBDged little sinee tbe rourteentb ceoCor;. 


slough of stagnant misery, squalor, famine, loathsome disease, 
and dull despair." There was no adequate police system, and 
street fights were constant. At night, no well-to-do citizen stirred 
abroad without his armor and a guard of stout apprentice lads, 
and he was always compelled to fortify and guard his house. 

108. The Political Change. — The change was political also. 
The townsmen became the " third estate " (§ 105). The im- 
portance of the political change, however, great as it was, is 
easily overstated. The townsmen were not the " people " of a 
nation, in the modern sense. They were only one more " class " 
risen from the unreckoned mass, to stand beside the two smaller 
but higher classes previously recognized. Society continued for 
centuries to be organized in classes, not as one people ; and the 
new " third estate " looked down upon the great mass of un- 
skilled workmen and of agricultural laborers with the same 
bigoted and haughty contempt with which it was itself re- 
garded by the nobles.^ So far as the burghers fought for 
popular liberty, they did so unconsciously : they thought only 
of their own liberties and of those of their class ; Und their 
spirit was as narrow and jealous as that of any feudal lord. 
Even within a city, political rights, like material comforts, 
were only for a part of the inhabitants, — the traders and the 
skiUed artisans. These were organized in gilds, or unions 
(§ 112), and monopolized the government of the city. Un- 
skilled laborers had no political rights. Moreover, the mer- 
chants and the artisans were mutually jealous; and for two 
centuries (1200-1400), in city after city, the aristocratic mer- 
chant gild struggled in ferocious civil war to shut out the more 
democratic craft gilds from the city government.* 

For a time in the thirteenth century it must have seemed 
possible that all Europe might give up the feudal for the city 
life, and become an enlarged copy of ancient Greece. The 
Lombard League had defeated the great l^arbarossa. The Con- 

^ For an excellent statement, see Adams' Civilizationt 305-307. 
* At Magdeburg !n 1302 the democratic party, securing the upper hand, 
burned ten aristocratic aldermen at the stake at one time. 

120 WE8TEEN EUROPE, 1100-1520. fS 108 

federacy of the Bhine (§ 116) claimed equality with the princes 
of the Empire. In southern France the cities predominated 
over feudalism. In the rising Christian states in Spain, 
the towns were among the freest in Europe, and were bound 
together in a. Holy League to resist feudal encroachment. 
Even in England, an early 
[. beginning of such a league 

I was to be seen in the alliance 

; of the Cinque Ports {§ 113). 

! In distant Bussia, great 

cities, like Novgorod, Vla- 
dimir, Kief, and Moscow, 
I had grown up, where the 

ringing of the town bell 
I called thousands of citizens 

I to arms, to prescribe terms 

to princes. And the germs 
I of the future Hans eat ic 

League (§ 116) were begin- 
! ning to dominate the coasts 

I and waters of the northern 

I seas. 

Most of these unions, 
however, were short-lived. 
The cities were to remiun 
important factors in European life ; indeed they were to grow 
more and more important: but it was soon apparent that there 
was no danger of their becoming the controlling political force. 
Like the ancient city, the medieval town lacked permanence 
and stable order, and could not of itself provide a safe basis 
for popular liberty. No doubt this was well. It was a good 
thing that Europe did not pass too rapidly into the city stage, 
but moved instead toward that larger national life which the 
cities of ancient Greece never reached.' 

1 Ajlcienl HMoiy, { 93. 


At the same time, when the cities fought feudalism, how- 
ever selfishly, they fought on the side of human welfare. The 
townsmen of France or Germany were not " the people " of 
these lands, and they did not care for national life ; but still 
they helped, more than any other agency, to make peoples and 
nations. They aimed only at their own good, but they wrought 
the good of mankind. 

B, Origin op the Towns, and their Revolt. 

109. Roman Influences in Old Towns. — The origin of the towns is 
obscure. The crusades increased trade, and trade built cities ; but we do 
not know clearly what materials it found to build with, nor what the ex- 
act procedure was. In Italy, and perhaps in southern France, the Roman 
towns had lived on ; but their population had shrunken terribly, their old 
institutions had been altered or altogether lost, and, politically, each one 
had become subject to some bishop or neighboring lord. Before 1100, 
however, Italy and southern France were dotted again with prosperous, 
self-governing cities. It is impossible to say just how far their new insti- 
tutions were based upon their ancient life : but certainly they had some 
relation to the old Roman world ; and, by example and suggestion, they 
must have had something to do with the form of town life in more north- 
em countries, when it developed there a little later. 

110. The Origin of the Hew Towns. — Over northern France 
and along the Ehine, the Eoman towns for the most part had 
disappeared, and the medieval cities of these regions and of 
England and Germany were essentially new growths. They 
arose in various ways.^ Sometimes they grew out of agricul- 
tural villages, favorably situated for trade and protected by 
the castle of a powerful noble or by the residence of a bishop, 
or around monasteries, out of the groups of artisans and peasants 
attracted by the employment and security there. Sometimes 
they grew up in the "burghs," or fortified places, established 
by Henry the Builder and other kings to check the invasions 
(§ 48). Sometimes a " grant of a market " caused a village, or 
even a place previously uninhabited, to develop into a city. 

^ For outline of different theories, see Ashley's Surveys, 167-212. 

122 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§ 111 

A Grant of a Market was essentially the grant of a stricter law to 
secure the peace of the market-place, with the establishment of a court to 
enforce that law and to regulate questions of trade. Such grants were 
made sometimes to nobles, who then profited by the market-tolls and 
fines ; but the German kings, from the time of Henry and Otto the Great, 
granted these privileges to groups of traders, especially within certain of 
their fortified places or at a meeting of trade routes. The privileges of a 
market drew settlers ; and sometimes a peimanent town grew up, while 
the market-law became the core of a city-constitution. 

The Bight of Asylum vfM another curious element in town growth. 
This seems to have grown out of the protection anciently afforded fugi- 
tives by temples and churches. Even an escaped serf could not be re- 
claimed by his master, after he had lived unmolested a year and a day 
within the city walls. 

111. Two Centaries of Revolt against the Lords. — At first 
the towns must have seemed merely overgrown villages of 
peasants, with some admixture of traders and artisans. No 
doubt, in northern Europe anyway, each inhabitant remained 
for a while the direct dependant of the feudal lord upon whose 
domain the town grew up. The first great advance lay in 
changing the iiidividual dependence of the citizens into a collec- 
tive dependence of the city. The town, as a corporation, took 
upon itself all the relations of its separate inhabitants toward 
the lord. It was an immense gain when the corporation, 
through its elected officers, negotiated regarding the dues and 
services to be paid by the citizens in a body, instead of each 
helpless individual being left to settle for himself, at the lord's 
mercy .^ Probably the change began in a small way, and grew 
into custom in some districts through the compliance of cer- 
tain lords; but by 1100 the towns generally had begun to 
contend for the express recognition of such conditions in 
" charters." 

They secured their end, by war and by purchase, through 
the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Some towns rose in 

1 The gain was somewhat like that which the trade-union of to-day enjoys, 
compared with the position of single workmen bargaining with a great 


annB five or six, or even a dozen, times, at intervals of years, 
t and suffered terrible punishment before final success,' and 
I some were never successful. Nor did one victory end the 

RoiNB OF A Rh:kb Cabtle, Tlth a modern town below. 

contest. Tlie first charter won from a lord was usually brief 
and vague, and became the occasion for many later struggles 

' Mrs. Green's Town Life, I, 313-316, given an inieresting story o( tlie 
Btroggle o[ Bristol with the Lords of Berkeley, about tlie year 1300. In 
England, however, the conSlct wA^ceedingly mild, compared to that on 
the continent. In particular, In France and Oermany, the Hmall noble wae 
Ssrcely bitter toward the towns. In Oermany, in the anarchy that followed 
bin Hohenstanfen Tailare and in the long weakness of the central government 
In the nwtt centorj-, the " robber-knights," shut out from the towns by 
the walla, were Htlll wont to de!k'end from their caslleH^rags upon any un- 
wary lAwnsman, and even npnn armed caravans of traders, to plunder and to 
carry off (or ransom. Snch nnhappj prisoners were left in damp dungeons 
nntilpertMps tbeir limbs rotted off, — so that to "rot a peasant" became « 

124 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§ 112 

for more precise grants. As a rule, each town had a number 
of these documents^ sacredly guarded in its iron-bound town 

The great lords felt less jealousy toward the towns than 
the small nobles did, and some of them gave charters will- 
ingly, to encourage the growth of cities upon their domains 
and so to secure increased revenue. In the struggle between 
emperors and popes, the emperors sold liberties lavishly to 
German towns, to secure means wherewith to try vainly to 
crush the liberties of Italian towns; while the popes, in turn, 
favored the towns in Italy. During the crusades, too, great 
numbers of lords sold charters recklessly ; and of course, all 
over Europe, the towns found their advantage in the destruc- 
tion of noble families by the crusades. 

112. Organization in Gilds. — The inhabitants of a town, 
except the unskilled laborers, were grouped into gilds. These 
gilds were as old apparently as town life itself in Western 
Europe. The principle underlying the gild organization was, 
that, in a given district, all men occupied in the same kind of 
work ought to be united to help each other and to arrange 
matters of common interest. Each medieval town had its 
merchant gild and its several crafts gilds. The latter were 
unions of artisans, — weavers, shoe-makers, glovers, bow-makers, 
drapers, tanners, and so on. York, a small English city, had 
fifty such gilds ; Cologne had eighty ; some towns had even 
a larger number. 

German byword. This horror seems incredible at first, bat the physical fact 
is easily understood, if one comprehends the nature of the damp, filthy, fetid, 
cramped dungeons, together with the effect of the rusty irons upon the limbs. 
Even in England as sad a fate might befall a vagrant, through the ordinary 
delays of Justice. The Rolls of Henry III (§ 133) contain the following entry: 
'* Assizes held at Ludinglond. The jury present that William Le Sawage 
took two men, aliens, and one woman, and imprisoned them at Thorlestan, 
and detained them in prison until one of them died and the other lost a foot, 
and the woman lost either foot by putrefaction. Afterward he took them to 
the court of Ludinglond to try them. And when the court saw them, it was 
loath to try them, because tliey were not attached for any robbery or mis- 
deed. And so they were permitted to depart.** 

§112] THE GILDS. 126 

Each craft gild contaiiied three classes of meiDbers, — mas- 
ters, journeymen, and apprentices. The master owned a shop, 
— probably part of the house where his family lived, — and 
employed one or more journeymen, besides a band of appren- 
tices. Strictly, apprentices were not members of the gild, 
except in prospect, but they were governed by its rules. 
They were boys or youths bound out by their parents for a 
tenn of years to learn the trade. They lived in the master's 
house, ate at his table, and he furnished their clothing and 
taught them " all he knew." On the expiration of the term 
of service (three, seven, or ten years), the apprentice became a 
free journeyman, working for wages. For the next few years 
he traveled from place to place, practising his trade in various 
cities, to see the world and to perfect himself in his " mys- 
tery," as the secrets of the trade were called. If he could 
save the small amount of money needed, he finally set up a 
shop of his own and became a master. As a master, he con- 
tinued to work with his own hands, living among his depend- 
ents with a more or less paternal care over them. 

The modern sei>aration between capital and labor had not yet begun, 
80 far as the skilled trades were concerned. The gild was not organized, 
as the modem trade-union is, to regulate the relations of workmen to em- 
ployers. It was a brotherhood, containing both workmen and employers. 
Its purposes were (1) to prevent competition (and so all who practised 
tiie trade were forced to enter the gild and abide by its rules) ; (2) to 
prevent monopoly of materials or opportunity by any of its members (and 
80 each ** brother** had a right to share in any purchase by another, and 
no one could sell except at appointed times and places) ; (3) to keep up 
the price (which was fixed by the gild) ; and (4) to maintain a high stand- 
^ of goods (and so the gild punished severely all adulterations, the 
mixing of poor wool with good, and the giving short weight). Thus the 
9^d aimed to protect both producer and consumer. 

The gild was also a fraternal insurance society : it provided assistance 
^or a needy member, attended to the burial of a deceased member, and, if 
he died poor, paid pensions to his wife and children and the dowry for his 
<)^hter*s marriage. Moreover, the gild had social features. Indeed, 
many a gild originated as a social club for men engaged in the same trade ; 

and throughout the Middle Ages the gild feasts were the chief social 

126 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§ 113 

events in the lives of the members of the union. In connection with this 
social character, the gilds had many rules minutely regulating the conduct 
of the brethren toward one another.^ 

C. Political Fate of the Towns in Different Lands. 

113. Towns in England. — The degree of actual independence 
possessed by the towns varied, in different lands, with the 
strength of the royal government. Everywhere out of Eng- 
land, for a time at least, they waged private wars, like feudal 
nobles,* and exercised the other powers of the greatest lords. 
In England the towns did not grow up till later than on the 
continent. They found the royal authority more firmly estab- 
lished ; and so, like the English nobles, they never possessed 
the extreme feudal independence common elsewhere in Europe. 
The powers they did possess, however, astound a modern stu- 
dent. Each town was an isolated unit. It built its walls and 
armed and trained its citizen-militia to defend them. It 
elected its own officers and prescribed their powers. Even the 
royal officers could not enter its gates without permission from 
the town authorities, and they could exercise no direct control 
within its walls. The townsfolk paid a tax to the government, 
regarding which they or their representatives had been con- 
sulted, and they furnished troops, upon occasion; but both 
tax and troops they levied in their own way and by their own 
officers. Offenses committed within the town were tried in 
the mayor's court, and were punished by ducking in the pond, 
by fines, flogging, mutilation, beheading, or by hanging in 
chains on the town gallows at the city gate.' The town passed 

1 Special report : what farther can be learned regarding the relations of 
the gild members to each other, from the collection of gild regulations pub- 
lished in Gaemsey Jones' Civilization in die Middle Ages, and in the Penn- 
gylvania Reprints, II, No. 1. 

3 Sometimes the towns became "feudal persons " and took on the forms of 
feudalism: a town became the vassal of a lord, or of the king or emperor, 
and also perhaps a suzerain over nobles or even over vassal towns. 

' On the continent the city authorities sometimes exposed criminals in iron 
cages, pulled away the flesh of blasphemers with red-hot tongs, and boiled 


ordinances upon many matters now regulated by the state or 
the nation. They did not fix their own weights and measures 
and coinage, as the continental towns commonly did ; but each 
town determined its own tariffs on goods brought through its 
gates, and discriminated in favor of its own citizens, even 
against other Englishmen. The Cinque Ports, a league of five 
ports on the English Channel, waged war on their own account 
with French and Flemish towns, while their respective coun- 
tries were at peace ; and it was customary for a town to make 
its own treaties with other English towns regarding trading 
privileges.* The magistrates supervised all industries and in 
particular they looked after the making and sale of food-stuffs, 
—bread, corn, ale, wine, meat, and fish, — fixing the quality, 
price, and time and place of sale. An important duty of the 
authorities was to provide against a season of scarcity by col- 
lecting grain in the town granaries.' 

Gradually the English towns lost the more extreme of their 
separate liberties, but not until they had received full compen- 
sation for them in the share they secured in Parliament 
(§§ 134-136). 

114. Towns in Italy. — Italy shows the greatest degree of 
town authority. The remoteness of imperial power favored 
city independence at an early period (§ 76), and, in this land, 
medieval town life reached its most vigorous development. 
Indeed, the nobles were compelled to come into the towns and 
become citizens, instead of remaining rural landlords in their 
isolated castles, as they did elsewhere in Europe. The Lom- 
bard League, in the Po valley, numbered sixteen independent 

foi^^ers in oil, pouring in cold water from time to time, that death might 
not oome too quickly. 

^ Che3mey states {Industrial and Social History of England, 89) that South- 
ampton had formal agreements with seventy towns, and that, in a period 
of twenty years, the London authorities sent three hundred letters on such 
matters to the officials of some ninety towns. 

' This custom prevailed also on the continent. Emperor Charles V (§ 172) 
in 1540, at Nuremberg, was given bread to taste made from wheat that was 
■aid to have been kept in the town granary one hundred and eighteen years. 

128 WESTEBH EUROPE, 1100-1520. tS ^ 

cities in its little territory, and each of these bustling com- 
mtinitiea possessed an intense and fervid life.* They gave 
birth to a new art and a new literature, and were soon to be the 
homes of a brilliant and splendid culture (§§ 189 ff.); they 
waged the bitterest, most destructive wars among themselves, 
regarding trading privileges and boundary disputes ; and they 
passed through rapid and frequent revolutions in government, 
with cruel class-stru^les in each city (§ 77, note). 

St. Mark's, Venicr. — From a photograpb. 

Before ISOO, moat of the Italian cities had sunk under the 
rule of " tyrants," who found their opportunity in this civic 
strife. Some of these despots were of ancient noble families, 
others were mere military adventurers j some were enlightened 
rulers, others were among the vilest wretches and most inhuman 
monsters the world has ever seen. Florence, with her strong 
democracy, retained her freedom until after 1400 ; indeed, she 

' Compare with the old Greek cities {Ancient SMofy, } 198). 



kept the forms of freedom, under her Medici' rulera, for nearly 
a century more. Venice, under her remarkable oligarchic 
government, built up a mighty maritime empire, like that of 
Carthage or of Athens, and 
stood forth as one of the 
chief Powers in Europe un- 
til after 1500. By that time 
the Turks had seized much 
of her former territory ; but 
the city retained its separate 
existence and its name aa a 
Republic until the wars that 
followed the French Kevo- 
lution (§§ 351, 352). 

115- Towna in France. — In 
Prance tbe Boulhern towns were 
for B time almost as independent 
IB those in Italy, and man; of 
ttMge in tlie nortli secured greater 
liberties than nere known in 
England. Ho never, when the 
French kings were finally victo- 
Tioasorerfeadalisni (g 153), they 
proceeded to perfect tbe consoli- 
dation of the realm by bringing 
Ihe towns completely under their 
wthority. Thus, before 1400, after a Bhorter life than elsewhere in 
Europe, the early liberties of the towns had wholly disappeared, and they 
vere ruled by royal officers. 

116. Towna in Germany: Confederation of tbe Rhine; the 
Huiu. — In Germany after 1250 many towns became known 
IB "free cities of the Empire." Like the German principali- 
ties, they were virtually sovereign states, with only nominal 
alliance to a shadowy emperor {§§ 88. 160). Most of them 
belonged to one of two great leagues : — 

Windows or a Modbst Hdubb m 
Vbnick, twelfth century. — From 

Rdskin. (The beauty of lieHign is 
tuUy equal to that of the flue window 
hi the lllugtration on page 130.) 

180 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [J 118 

a. The Confederacy of the Rhine numbered soine fifty of the 
leading towns of southern Germajiy. It was organized for 
defense against the nobles, and for a time it seemed likely to 
secure a position, in the Diet of the Empire, equal to that of 
the great princes. This brilliant promise was ruined by a vic- 
tory of the princes over the 
League at the battle of 
Deffingen (1388), but many 
of the separate towns re- 
tained their independence 
into the nineteenth cen- 

b. The Hanseatic League 
("Hansa," — an old Ger- 
man word for "union") 
was composed of eighty 

northern German towns. 
WiMDows OF A Venbtian Palacb, tWr- 

WBnlh century. — From RuBkin. It grew up about 1300, OUt 

of earlier unions of small 
groups of cities ; and it was organized, not for political purposes, 
like the Lombard and the Khine Leagues, but to protect trade 
against pirates and robbers, and to secure greater advantages in 
foreign countriea than single cities could secure for themselves. 
It came to monopolize and control the trade of the 'North and 
Baltic Seas and much of the overland trade from Italy. It 
established colonies, or " factories," in foreign cities, as in 
London,' N"ovgorod, Bergen, Bruges, and Wisby ; and by war, 
or threats of war, it won trading privileges from the kings of 
England and other northern countries. In 1370 Waldemar of 
Denmark was compelled after long strife to sign the Peace of 

1 See map. The KanseatlcHettlement In London was known as the Sttel- 
yanl. Each such culotiy hail its ovru government aad its own soldiery, inde- 
peadent of those of the other parts of the cltj in which It wta embedded. 
Tile Importaniv of the Hunw in Gnclish trade Is indlraMil by the fact that the 
coin (poand) of the " Easier] ings " (from the East, or Baltia, Sea), became 
the " pound sterlinR " in EnRlish eutrency ; and the tniBtworthy character of 
their wares U shown by the meaning ot the won! "sterling" in onr lattgnage. 


Slralaund, which provided that future Banish kings must have 
the sanction of the League before they mounted the throne. 
For a century the Let^ue was one of the Great Powers oi 
Eurojw. The Hansa flag floated over nearly every merchant 
shij) of the northern seas and over every counting house from 
Loudon to Novgorod. The League owned fisheries and uiines ; 
', and in their trading posts there met for exchange the furs and 

hides from Russia, the grain from Poland, the amber from the 
Baltic coasts, the metals of Saxony, the wines of the Rhine, 
the wool and tin of England, the cloths of Holland, and the 
more distant products of the South and East. 

As the other northern countries developed, the Hansa lost 
its preeminence and its sf)ecial privileges. Many of its cities 
were ruined in the religious wars of the sixteenth and seven- 
teenth centuries. Some of them, however, remained sovereign 
states until late in the nineteenth century; and three" of 
them — Hamburg, Bremen, and Lubeck — entered the present 

132 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§ 117 

GerinaQ Empire, when it was formed in 1871, on a footing of 
equality with the other confederating states (§ 472).* 

Fob Furthbb Readino. — Source material : town charters and gild 
rules are given in Pennsylvania Reprints, II, No. 1, and by Guemaey 
Jones in his Civilization during the Middle Ages, 121-140. 

Modern accounts : brief statements of great value are to be found in 
Adams, Civilization^ 290-310 ; Cheyney, Indtistrial and Social History of 
England, 67-95 ; Munro, Middle Ages, ch. ziv ; Robinson, Western Europe, 
ch. xviii ; Green, English People, I, 206-225 ; Cunningham, English 
Industry and Commerce, I, 197-214 ; Henderson, Short History of Ger- 
many, I, 181-202; Zimmern, The Hansa Towns; Lodge, Close of the 
Middle Ages, 419-450 (for the Hansa) ; Emerton, Medieval Europe, 
620-540 ; Symonds, Short History of the Renaissance in Italy, 13-61 ; 
Duffy, Tuscan Republics ; Gibbins, Industrial History of England. Ad- 
vanced students may use the excellent treatments of Ashley, Economic 
History, 1, 67-123, and II, 3-189. All students with time for reading such 
extended works will enjoy Mrs. Green's Town Life in the Fifteenth 
Century; Hazlitt's Venetian Republic; Mrs. Oliphant's Makers of Venice 
and Makers of Florence; Villari's Florence; NeiPs Venice; Brown's 
Venetian Republic ; and the various volumes of the Medieval Town Series, 
especially Rouen, Moscow, Toledo, Florence, Nuremberg, Bruges, Verona, 
and Prague, 

Special Reports. — 1. Mystery plays as presented by the gilds. 
2. The Hansa and the herring fishery. 3. Fairs in the Middle Ages 
(see Cheyney's Industrial and Social History, 76-79). 


117. The '' New Monarchies'' and their Task. ~ Before 1300, Europe 
had tried various principles of organization. Feudal aristocracy and 
town democracy had both been found wanting in order and permanence. 
The ideal of a universal monarchy had been shattered by the quarrel be- 
tween popes and emperors. The papacy (theocratic rule) had seemed to 
come out of that struggle triumphant, but almost at once it wsus to fall 
before a new form of organization, — the separate monarchic states, into 
which Europe had been growing. Says Lavisse, "From the wreck of the 
two universal powers [papacy and empire], the various nationalities 
emerged. Just as Christendom had succeeded the Roman Empire, so 
* Europe' succeeded * Christendom.' " 

1 For the towns of Flanders, see § 162. 


This rise of '' New Monarchies/' ^ each with a definite territory, is the 
political change that characterized the close of the Middle Ages. Each 
sach territory had contained several distinct, mutually jealous classes, — 
nobles, burgesses, artisans, clergy, peasantry, — and for centuries, French 
nobility and German nobility had had more in common with each other 
than either had with the townsmen of their own country. So of the 
other classes. Social unity and sympathies had not been national, Ger- 
man or English: they had followed the lines of class-cleavage across 
Europe. The monarchies were to change all this. They were to weld 
these classes, within each of their respective territories, into one nation 
with a common patriotism. Probably no king put this end before him 
clearly as his task ; but the result followed naturally from the thing the 
king did strive for, — namely, to consolidate the numerous petty feudal 
states within his realm into one state with a uniform administration 
centering in his will. 

While this was being accomplished, some old liberties were lost and 
the monarchs became despots : but the liberties were of a kind that had 
proved to be intertwined with anarchy, and the seeming loss was only 
for a time. A few centuries later there was to grow up a freer, broader, 
more secure freedom than had ever before been possible. 

In Germany and Italy the destructive conflict between papacy and 
Empire mined all chance for progress toward national monarchies for 
hundreds of years. Until 1260, these countries had been the centera of 
faiterest; then leadership passed to England, France, and Spain, — the 
lands in which the new monarchic movement was best developed. 


A. What the Normans Found.* 

118. Importance of Saxon Local Institutions. — At the time 
of the Korman conquest (§ 16), the Saxons in England had 
developed certain institutions which were to have a lasting 

1 This term " New Monarchy " has come to be ased for the despotic, 
centralized monarchies that appeared in France, Spain, and, in some degree, 
in England, aboot 1500; they were new, as compared with the old Teutonic 
ind the feudal kingship. 

s For England in 1066, review § 16. 

s Cf. a good brief treatment of Saxon institutions in Andrews' History 
o/Englandf 40-52. Very few books give the recent views upon this topic 
in a form osable by yoong students. 

184 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 119 

value. Those that pertained to the court and the king's gov- 
ernment were to be replaced, under the conquerors, by some- 
what different Norman institutions; and the Normans, also, 
drew tighter the loose bonds which previously had held the 
local units together: but the local divisions themselves sur- 
vived, as did also for the most part the old Saxon machinery, 
for justice and government within each unit. 

These local divisions were of three orders, — shires, hun- 
dreds, and townships (§§ 119-121). 

119. Shire and Shire Court — As Wessex had extended her 
sway over the island (§ 16), the former tribal kingdoms sank 
into shires^ and in the end all England came to be divided into 
about forty units of this name. The shire — or county, as the 
Normans called it — was adopted also by the church as a 
bishop's diocese. Its three important officers were the ealdor- 
man, the sheriff, and the bishop. In form, the ealdorman was 
appointed by the king and Witan. Oftentimes, however, he 
was the descendant of the ancient tribal chief, and the king 
felt constrained to appoint him ; in any case, he was one of 
the most powerful nobles of the district, with local interests 
and sympathies, and his office was almost sure to pass on to 
his son. The sheriff was at first merely the king's reeve, or 
bailiff, for the shire, to look after the king's lands there and 
to collect the king's revenues; and until the Norman period 
he was much inferior in power to the ealdorman. 

Ealdorman and bishop together presided over the shire court, 
or shire-moot. This was a survival of the old folk-moot of 
the tribal kingdom.* It was made up of the landlords of the 
shire and apparently of some of the most important men 
from each hundred and village. In this court the actual 
government of the shire was carried on, and some judicial cases 
were tried. 

1 The first shires originated in this way. But in most of the old Danelagh 
the ancient tribal divisions seem to have been wiped out by Danish rule ; and 
there the suc<;e8sor8 of Alfred divided the land arbitrarily into shires. 

! 3 Ancient History, §§ 559, 612. 


120. Hundred and Hundred Court. — Before the tribal king- 
doms sank into shires, they had local divisions of their own, 
under various names. These divisions, or others framed in 
imitation of them, remained as subdivisions of the shire, and 
were known as hundreds. Each hundred had its court, made 
up much like the shire court ; and this busy body was the chief 
unit for the administration of justice. 

121. Townships and Boroughs. — Within the hundred were 
townships, or villages, and perhaps one or more boroughs. A 
few boroughs, like London or Winchester, were important cities 
and capitals; but most of them at this time were merely 
large and especially protected villages. The township does 
not seem to have had any important powers of self-government. 
So far as we can see, such political powers as its inhabitants 
possessed they must have exercised in the popular courts of 
the shire and hundred. 

122. Anglo-Saxon Feudalism. — The local units had fallen 
to a great degree under the influence of local nobles. Some- 
times a great lord had secured from the king the right to hold 
a private court alongside the popular court of the hundred.^ 
There was a serious lack of effective machinery to secure uni- 
formity in the different shires and to compel obedience to the 
laws of the king and Witan. Moreover, the freemen of the 
villages were sinking somewhat in condition. After Alfred's 
time, it was necessary for each free villager to attach himself to 
some lord. This did not make him unfree in his own eyes or 
in the eyes of the law : it was rather a device to make surer of 
bis obedience to the law; for the lord was made responsible 
for him. But in return the villager made one or more of a 
great variety of payments to the lord, and, in some cases at 
least, his land had begun to pass into the condition of villein 
land on the continent (§ 34, note). 

* Such grants seem to have been not really grants of jurisdiction, but 
rather grants of fines to be levied in the courts, in return for seeing that the 
proper procedure was carried on. All our knowledge, however, of Anglo- 
Saxon feudaUsm is vague and unsatisfactory. 

WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. 

B. The Norman Period," 1066-1154. 

123. General Effect of the Normui Conquest (io66). — The 

Norman Conquest took place in the early part of the reign of 

8ATTLKOFHAaTtKoa{§16],froiii the B»yBUX Tapestry.*— From Gld England. 

Henry IV of Germany, when the Capetian monarchy in France 
was about eighty years old. The strong German kingship was 
just beginning to decline: the French kingship had hardly 

1 It is desirable, of course, that students should read more extenBlvely on 
Enf^lish btstory [ban on Chat of otber single countries. Source material will 
be found In Lee's Source Book, Colby's Sourcei, Adams and Stepbens' 
Documenli, Henderson's Duaimeiili; but probably Htll's Liberty DocumenU 
contains enough for blgh Kchools, and it cuatains also valuable collections ol 
critical comments upon important documents. 

Of modern aecounts. Oreen's Engliih People remains Ibe most attractive 
general history, though it gives undue value to early Saxon InsHtntions and 
ascribes to the Saxons a ccrtaiu degree of representative government wbich 
they did not possess. Either Andrevs', Terry's, or Oardlner's Hitlory of 
England makes a good one-volume te^it. Advanced students may use Stubbs' 
ContiilulioHat History, and all will find the treatment of Taswell-Langmead 
clear and reaitable. The volumes that represent the most critical scholarship 
(sucb as Round's and Polloi-k and Maltlnnd's) can hardly be used by high 
school students, nor, unhappily, can Medley's shorter and scholarly work- 
Montague's KlemenU is an excellent manual. Freeman's Iforman Congue*t 
is the great authority for the narrative io William Bufns, and tbe same 
author's Witliani the Conqueror is an excellent brief study. Tbe openiufE 
pages of Stubbs' Knrly Plaalageneti, and of Jenks' Edicard I contain admi- 
rable summaries ol the Norman period. Traill's iSocfuf England may be used 
to good advantage. 

1 Tbe Bayeux Tapestry is a lineD band 230 feet long and 20 Inches wide, 
embroidered in colors, with seventy-two scenes illustrating the Nonnan Con- 
quest and the customs of the time. It was a contemporary work. 

J123] ENGLAND — NORMAN PERIOD, 1060-1164. 137 

begun to grow. Until this time, England had counted for 
little in the life of Europe. Its church had become almost 
iodependent of Rome, and in politics its foreign relations had 
been mainly with the Scandinavian countries of the north (S 17). 
At home, from the time of Alfred the Great, the two chief 
dangers had been the growth of feudal anarchy (§ 122) and the 
splitting apart of Danish 
England and Saxou Eng- 
land (§ 16). 

The Norman Conquest 
changed all these condi- 
tions. It brought the 
church again into depend- 
ence on Kome,' and drew 
England into the thick of 
European politics.' With- 
in the island, it crushed „ „ „ ' 
' , , William thr Conqurror abd the Cou- 
K^ther north and south, secbated Baknkr sbnt bv thb Popb 
so that the two parts ("* footnote l below). — from the 
never »gaiu dreamrf o£ '^''•" '■"""■■ 
separation, and it built up a strong central government. The 
kings were strong enough to keep down feudal tyrants, but 
not quite strong enough to become royal tyrants themselves. 
Through dread of royal power, nobles and people were drawn 

'Tba ecclesiaBUeal cnndltton was a factor In the conquest. The Pope 
.bhaaed the enterpriBe and sent Duke Willinm B cousecraled banner. After- 
ncd, Gregory VII demanded that William do homage to him for hia realm. 
William banghtlty refused (see his letter to Greeory in Lee, Sonrre Book, 
Ko. SO), He filled the high places In the chnrch with Normans In sympathy 
Willi Borne and with the Clunlac reform, and he developed separate ecclesiaH- 
tkal courts (j 6U). which had not eiisted before in Gn|;land ; but ha guariled 
Inlonsly against papal ioterference in hIa government. He forbade the 
'1*^ to place any of his knighta under excommunication without consulting 
him', he declared any one an outlaw who should carry an appeal lo Rome 
"riihont royal permission ; and no papal letter could be received in England 
without his sanction. 

' For aoms generations the rulers of England were also Dukes ot Nor- 
B*ady, and so gnat VMsals ot the French crown. 

188 WESTERN EUKOPE, 1100-1520. [$ 124 

together* and became fused into an English nation, which in 
centuries of slow, quiet, determined progiess, won constitu- 
tional liberty. To the old spirit of Saxon freedom, tiie Normans 
added a new geniim for organization. The local institutions to 
a considerable degree remained Saxon, but the central govern- 
ment was to owe its ef&cieDcy to Norman influences. England 
was the first country iu the world to work out for a large 
territory the union of a strong central government and of free 

The conquest also brought in new blood, a higher culture, 
and new elements in language. Norman lords and clergy, and 
likewise Norman merchauts and artisans, flocked into England. 
All these people spoke their own Norman-French tongue, and 
for a time only the lowest classes spoke English. Gradually, 
however, the English 
was to gain its place as 
the language of the whole 
people ; and meantime 
it was to lose its more 
compl i cated gramin at ical 
forms and to be enriched 
by a multitude of Nor- 
man words. 
124. EoKliili Feudal- 
A Norman Ship, from tbe Bajeui Tnpestry.— igm. — Feudalism had 
From OM Engliind. (Ct. wilb ihe remaitiB , , , „,.„i, . „_„ 
ottheNatsobo«t,pageH.) developed much more 

slowly in England than 
on the continent, and William the Conqneror was able deci- 
sively to influence its subsequent character. He confiscated 
the land of England, with legal formalities, on the ground that 
the holders had been traitors ; then he granted much of it back 
to the old holders on payment of fines, and the rest he gave 

>Tlieaharpdi3tincMon betweea the Norman and the SaxoD had dlBappenMd 
before the close of the NorniHO reien'* l§ t^). Scott's ftianAcx pictures aslata 
of affairs In this respect which had passed awa; at least two geoeratlooa 
before th« time dealt with In the story. 




to his own folloHers. In all cases he introduced feudal 
tenure : that is, the land was to be held of the king on condi- 
tion of feudal service.* But with the grants of land the king 
did not grant authority to the lord over his vassals to the extent 
that was customary on 
the contiuent. Feudalism 
was systematized, so far 
as land tenure went, and 
during the next two cen- 
turies the peasantry sank 
into villeinage; but the 
worst political evils of con- 
tinental feudalism were 

Many checks were in- 
troduced to keep the lords 
from usurping feudal in- 
dependence. (1) Ko one 
lord was permitted to ac- 
cumulate such vast pos- 
sessions as were often 
held by single barons in 
France and Germany ; 
and properties that the 
great lords did hold were 
scattered in different counties, so that each piece really became 
a surety for the lord's fidelity.* (2) The chief authority in a 
shire was now exercised, not by an hereditary ealdorinan, but 
by the king's sheriff. (3) All freemen were required to swear 
fidelity directly to the king, so that they owed him allegiance 

NoRUAW DooRWAT, St. Feterg, Nortll- 
amptOD. — Fmu Old England. (Note 
tha mnHsive round urch and lh« Blmple 
but effective ornameut.) 

' Round (Feudal England, 29Z) sbows that probably lliere were not more 
than fire thousand knigbtg In the whole oF William's feudal army. An old 
l«gend. belieTed until recently, said Biity thouwnd. 

*Tbi« fortunate arran^ment came about probably not ao much from 
dealRn as (rom the fact that William really became manter of the country 
raly by degrees, and so had to rewud bis tollowers a Utile at a time. 

140 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [{ 126 

even against their immediate over-lords. (4) The old national 
militia was preserved, and was put under the command of the 
toyal sheriffs, so that the king was not wholly dependent upon 
a feudal army. 

125. The Foni "Nomun" 
Kings. — IfiVIiant the Con- 
queror (1066-1087) was king 
by right of the sword ; but be 
went through the fonn of an 
election by vi Engliab assem- 
bly, and thereafter he ruled, as 
fai as a conqueror could, with 
8n.T>R Pknnt of Wilmak I. - ^^^^^ j^^ ^^^^^^ cuatome.' 

William, by will, left Nor- 
mandy to hia eldest bod Robert, and England to his second son William 
Bvfus (the Red). This prince, to strengthen his claim, procured an elec- 
tion from an Englisli assembly, after the old English fashion ; but he 
proved unscrupulous, though able, and is remembered as a tyrant (1087' 
1100). He was succeeded by bis brother, Heitry J, the youngest son of 
the conqueror. Henry (1100- 
1135) bad been born in Eng- 
land and he married an Eng- 
lish princesE. He, also, secured 
the form of an election, and in 
return he granted to tbe people 
of England a Charier of Liber- 
ties,* which a hundred years 
later wss to become tlie model 

for a more important grant. Silvbh Pknsy of Siepkbtt. 

Henry also began many impor- 
tant reforms in the government, but his work was undone in the anarchy 
of the next reign and had to be reconstructed by his grandson. 

1 Among the wise nets of King Willlnni was the taking of a great census of 
the kingdom, to determine Its resources and the dues payable t« the king. 
Tbe rcBulta vere recorded in the Dometiiay Book, and are still preserved, lo 
that we have more exact knowledge about England at this time than about 
any other country. There seems to have been a population of about twelve 
hundred thousand people. One tenth of them, perhaps, were " botgesses," 
though at least half of these dwelt In what we should call mere villagea. 

 See charter and comments in Hill's Liberty DocumtnU, 1-S. The charter 
is given also in Lee, Colby, and Feniaylvania Reprintt, I. 




The Eoglisb nobles promlaed Heni? to make his daughter Matilda 
his ffiicoessor ; but, after bis death, his nephew Stephen secured an 
election. Stephen C1136-11M) was weak by nature, and his rule was 
distracted by civil war with the eupporl«iB of Matilda. His reign is the 
darkest period in English his- 
tory atl«r the Conquest Feudal 
Boarcby seemed at last to hare 
seized upon the land. The con- 
temporary chroniclers exclaim 
upon the miaerj of the age with 
bitter phrases :— 

"Every powerful man made 
his castles, and when they were 
built they Glied them with devils 
and evil men ; they put men in 
tbeir dungeons for their gold and 
silver, and tortured them with 
pains unspeakable . . . until men 
mid that Christ and bis saints 
slept. ... In those days, if 
three or four men came riding 
towaids a township, all the 
lomship fled hastily, believing 
them to be robbers. . . . That 
lasted then 
tAen was king.' 

EiEBCiBB. — The four Norman reigns may be summed up briefly, 
thus-. William I, conquest, consolidation, provision against feudal dis- 
integration ; William II, tyranny ; Henry I, the charter, and beginnings 
of judicial organization ; Stephen, anarchy and civil war. 

Observe that the three aiicceuors of William I all had rimlt for the 
throne, and no were kept in some meature in dependence upon the 

Special Repohts.— The Danegeld; Domesday Book; a fuller story 
of the Norman Conquest, with the harrying of the North ; the making 
of the New Forest ; character of William I ; further matters of impor- 
tance to be learned for this period from the reading of the Anglo-Saxon 

Stbphem. From an engraving based 
probably on the coin portraits of his 
reign. — From Andrews' Hiitorg of 

142 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 126 

C. The Early Plantagenets,* Hexrt II to Edward II, 


(To TH£ Hundred Years' War.) 

126. Henry 11, z 154-1x89. — Matilda had married Geofitrey Plan- 
tagenet, Count of Anjou. The son of this marriage, Henry, succeeded 
Stephen, and was the first of a long line of Plantagenet kings. The 
evils of Stephen^s time had not lasted long enough to fix themselves upon 
England, and Henry quickly restored peace and good order. His reign 
is further notable for new territorial relations and for new administrative 
and judicial organization (§§ 127-130). 

127. The Territories of the Plantagenets. — Through his 
mother, Henry was duke of Normandy and Maine, and he held 
also an old and shadowy claim upon Brittany, which he was 
soon able to convert into real lordship. Through his father, he 
was count of Anjou and Touraine. By marriage with the prin- 
cess Eleanor, divorced wife of Louis VII of France (§ 149), he 
obtained Aquitaine, which then included Poitou and Gascony. 
Thus, besides his insular possessions, Henry ruled more than 
half of all France, — six or seven times as much territory on the 
continent as was held directly by the French king.* By imper- 
fect conquest, Henry was also " King of Ireland." ' For a time, 
too, he seemed to hold Scotland in subjection ; and the reduction 
of Wales was going on slowly through every strong English reign. 

Probably Henry II was the most powerful ruler in Europe. 
He was not strictly an English ruler, and his continental pos- 

1 For source material, see references In note on page 136. The "English 
History by Contemporary Writers " series (edited by York-Powell) contains 
several valuable volumes, especially, The Misrule of Henrif III and Simon 
de Monf/ort. (The entire series should be in every high school library.) For 
modern accounts, see also page 130. In addition, for special periods: Stubbs' 
Early PlantagenHs ; Mrs. Green's Henry II; Kate Norgate's John Lack- 
land; Jenks' Edward I; and Tout's Edward J. Jessop's Coming of the 
Friars, Jusserand's English Wayfaring Life^ and Cheyney's Industrial and 
Social History are admirable for their special phases of development. 

^ See map facing page 165. 

8 Special reports: the conquest of Ireland; the English ''Pale" and its 

5128] ENGLAND — HENRY II, 1164-1189. 143 

sessions are not to be regarded as English acquisitions. Henry 
thought of himself as a French prince with some important 
possessions in England and Ireland. N^one the less, he proved 
one of the greatest and most beneficent of English kings. 

128. TheBuisof EnKllBh"ConmionLaw": 
Itinerant Coarts. — The most important of 
Henry'sraanyreforms concerned the courts.' 
Until Henry's time the king's court was 
chiefly for causes in which the king or his 
immediate vassals were concerned. The 
great body of men sought justice in the 
decaying courts of the hundred and county 
or in the feudal courts that we^ growing 
out of these older popular court* 

If this condition had been ^llowed to 
continue, each district in England would 
liave developed its own local customs (g 29); 
and the only escape from the ensuing con- 
fusion would have come through the later Etiot ofHbnrt 11, 
introduction of Koman Law, with its tend- FroiiiOWJi.'«p(iiii(I. 
ency toward absolute monarchy (§ 79). 
This was the order of events in continental countriea. That 
England followed a different course and gave us her " Common 
Law," we owe largely to the policy of Henry II. His "court" 
widened its functions, and opened its doors to all.' At the 

' Special report ; Henry's quarrel with Becket avet lay and eccleiiUstical 
Mart* ; the Conalitutiong ot Clarendoo.' Cf. § fl9. 

'For one InsOince, — Henry aDDonnced that any tree-holder, whose title to 
his land was attacked, shonld ha*8 his case heard In the royal coarta. This 
weakened not only the feudal courts, but also the whole Itasls of feiidal feel- 
Inif. Henry weakened reudallsm atiU lurther by enconraging the sub-tenants, 
or rassals of his tenants-ln-chlef, to pay Kiitaqe, or shield money, iiialead of 
seryinjr personally in war. With the money no ccillected, the king could raise 
armies superior to the short-termed, undisciplined, feudal levies. But It Is 
of more importance to see that the knights were put into the way of ceasing 
tube flgbterB: they gradually became more interested In managinR tiieir 
estates and in political lite, and before long we speak of Ihem in this new 
Hnse, as " knigbta ot the ahlre." 

144 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 129 

same time, judges of the court were sent out, as itinerant Jus- 
tices, to sit in each community at fixed and regular intervals, as 
though the king were present in person. Thus the "customs" 
of the king's court became common law for all England. The 
nation was benefited, and the feudal courts were controlled and 
finally starved out. This bringing impartial justice to every 
man's door was a gift beyond price in the twelfth century, and 
it produced a reverence for the law and for the courts that was 
to become an instinct in the English mind. 

129. Bzcorsus : Administration of Royal Justice in the Middle Ages. 

— In theory the king could always do justice between contending claims ; 
but the difficulty was for the man who suffered from injustice to get at 
the king. The kings of France and Germany depended more upon their 
personal efforts, and less upon organization, than was the case in England. 
They were marvels of energy, and they worked harder than any other 
men of their time ; but they worked at a well-nigh impossible task. 
When Conrad II of Germany (§ 62) was passing in the royal procession 
to his coronation, three low-born persons — a peasant, a widow, and a 
child — pressed through the crowd and called to him for justice. Con- 
rad kept the proce&sion waiting while he heard their troubles and righted 
their wrongs, saying to the bishop who wished him to pass on, *' Since I 
have been chosen as a ruler, it is better to do my duty at once ; you have 
often said to me that it was not the hearer, but the doer of the law that 
was blessed.^' A moment later another man stopped the procession 
with his cries for justice, and was heard upon the spot. This was the 
way the German and French kings administered justice. Herbert Fisher 
(Medieval Empire, 168) says of the German king, *' Instead of organizing 
labor on the great highway that was to lead from chaos to order, he takes 
up the pick and works devotedly, with face to the ground.*' Royal justice 
was simply what justice the king in person, with the assistance of the 
nobles about him, could get through with in the day, with all the inter- 
ruptions of war, travel, and other business. There was no fixed court j 
and there were no regular sessions at different places. To render justice 
was a hard task for the king, and to secure it was impossible for most of 
his subjects. 1 

1 This condition made possible the growth of irregular secret tribunals, 
with some of the characteristics of the modem frontier ''vigilance com- 
mittee." The most famous of such medieval institutions was the Holy 
VehmBf which appears in Scott's Anne of Oeierstein. There is a good 
account in Henderson's Short History of Germany, 169-170. 

§130] ENGLAND — HENRY n, 1154-1189. 145 

A like truth held good for France, in large measure, even as late as 
the great Louis IX (about 1250). Joinville*s Memoir (cf. § 40) gives 
many illustrations. Louis was a justice-loving king, and Joinville de- 
lights to dwell upon the stories of his judgments and the regulation of his 
primitive courts. *' Sometimes I have seen him, in order to administer 
justice to his people, come into the garden of Paris dressed in a green 
coat, a surcoat of woolen stuff without sleeves, his hair well combed, and 
a hat, with white peacock feathers, on his head ; carpets were spread, 
and all people who had business to be disposed of stood before him. . . . 
Certain nobles heard every day all pleadings at the gateway of the castle, 
and after mass the king heard all appeals from these decisions in person, 
seated on his bed.^ . . . Many a time it happened in summer that he 
would go sit in the wood of Vincennes with his back to an oak, and make 
us take our seats around him. And all who had complaints to make came 
to him withoat hindrance of ushers. Then he would call a certain noble 
and say, ' Dispose of this case for me *; and when he saw anything to 
amend in the words of those who spoke he would correct it with his own 
iips.*^ Elsewhere, Louis recommends his people to put up with any 
bearable injustice ; and, with unconscious pathos, he admits his inability 
to secure justice for his subjects, even from his own officers, except in 
extreme cases. 

130. Trial by Jury. — Trial by jury has been looked upon 
for centuries as a chief element in English freedom. This in- 
stitution, also, comes first into notice in the reign of Henry IT. 
The jury developed from foreign germs, but its value is due to 
its English growth. It seems to have arisen out of a custom 
of the early Frankish kings. When a dispute occurred as to 
their rights in a given district, they called together a number of 
the oldest and most reliable men to give witness in the matter. 
This form of inquiry, or "inquest," was brought by the Nor- 
mans to England. The Conqueror's officers used it in each 
county and district in compiling the Domesday survey (§ 125, 
note) ; and the ignorance of the Norman rulers regarding the 
customs of the land gave frequent occasion for employing it. 

So far, the sworn body of witnesses, or " jury," had been used 
only to determine matters in which the king was interested. 
Henry II extended the same method to some questions about 

^This custom g^Te rise to the expression " hed of justice." 

146 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 131 

property where private individuals were concerned. That is, he 
created a trial jury for civil cases, to replace the old method of 
judicial combat. Under Henry, also, a jury was called in each 
county, at intervals, to " present " suspected criminals for trial. 
This was the origin of our grand jury , or jury of presentment. 
For some time longer, those suspected criminals who were 
" presented" by the "jury of inquest" were tried by " ordeal '' 
or by "combat";* but in 1215 the Lateran Council (§ 82, note) 
condemned the "ordeal," and after that time it became the 
custom in England to summon another, smaller jury (petit 
jury) to try the man whom the larger jury had accused.* 

131. Richard I (1x89-1199) ; John (1199-12x6). — Henry II was fol- 
lowed by two sons in succession, Richard *■*' the Lion Hearted" and John. 
Both were bad and tyrannical rulers. Richard spent only seven months 
of his reign In England, and those months solely for the purpose of getting 
money for his foreign wars. Fortunately he was as careless as he was 
tyrannical ; and so in his desire for money he sold valuable charters to 
many rising towns. He is remembered as the leader of the Third Cru- 
sade (§ 07). England suffered little evil from his neglect, because the 
old officers of his father for the most part remained in charge and contin- 
ued the old system. John was an abler man than his brother, but a more 
despicable character. Three events mark his reign. (1) Abroad he lost 
Normandy and all northern France to the French king. (2) After a long 
contest with Fope Innocent III, he was forced to surrender his crown, to 
receive it back again as a papal fief. (3) His oppression finally brought 
all classes of the nation to combine against him, and, in 1215^ a general 
rising forced him to sign Magna Carta.* 

1 Ancient History ^ § 608. 

3 The accused still had the right to claim trial by combat. The noble 
classes commonly did so, for some generations; and the practice was not 
legally abolished until 1819, shortly after an attempt had been made to take 
advantage of the obsolete right. Cf. Taswell-Langmead, English Constitu- 
tional History f 5th edition, 103-105. For a long time the trial jury were 
witnesses as well as judges of the testimony. They were allowed, however, 
to call in other witnesses ; and gradually a line was drawn between them and 
these others, until finally it became the rale that the "jurymen" should 
come without any knowledge of their own regarding the case, so as to bear 
and judge impartially the evidence submitted by the witnesses. 

' Special reports : the story of the rising ; Stephen Langton and his part iq 
securing Magna Carta. 


NulluB liber homo capiatur, vel impritMmetur, aut dissaisiatur, aut utlagetur, 
No free man shall be taken, or imprisoned, or dispossessed, or outlawed^ 


*-■* ^ — 


aut exuietur, aut aliquo luodo destruatur, nee super eum ibimus nee super 
or banished, or in any way destroyed, nor will we go upon him nor upon 

earn mittemus, nisi per legale judicium parium suorum vel per legem terrae. 
him send, except by the legal judgment of his peers or by the law of the land. 


Nolli vendemus, nuili negabimus, aut differemus, rectum aut justiciam. 
To no one will we sell, to no one will we deny, or delay, right or justice. 

Sbctions 39 AND 40 OF Magna Carta. The bars are facsimiles of the writing 
in the charter, in Latin, of course, with the curious abbreviations of the 
medieval Latin. Below each line is given the Latin in full with a transla- 
tion. — From Andrews' History of England. 

132. Magna Carta is the '' first great document in the Bible 
of English Liberties.*' It was not unusual in the Middle Ages 
for the nobles to secure charters of liberties for themselves 
from their kings. In England, too, the great barons led this 
movement ; but the peculiarity of the Great Charter is (1) that 
in it the barons promised toward their dependents the same 
rights they demanded for themselves from the king; and 
(2) that place was found for special provisions in the interest 
of the townsmen and even of villeins. The Charter became at 
once the standard of freedom, and in the next two centuries, 
English kings were called upon to confirm it no less than 
thirty-eight times ; * while, as new needs arose, new meanings 
were read into it (cf. § 134, note). 

133. Henry HI, 1217-1272. — The long reign of John's son, Henry III, 
saw much disorder and tyranny, and much constitutional progress for 

1 Exercise : a study of Magna Carta. It is printed in all collections of 
documents upon English history (see bibliography, page 136), but it can be 
consulted best, with a collection of comments, in Hill's Liberty Documents^ 
&-32. Five-cent copies can be obtained in the Old South Leaflets. 

148 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 184 

which the King deserves no credit. Henry waa a pious, frivolous, extrava- 
gant, weak tyrant. In the second half of the reign, the popular party 
found an able champion in the great Simon de Montfort^ Earl of Leicester, 
the most powerful of the English nobles. The struggle^ became open 
war, and Simon conquered at the Battle of Lewes (1264). For a year he 
was really master of England, until his defeat and death at Evesham ^ in 
1265. That year is notable in the history of English freedom (§ 134). 

134. The Beginning of Parliament. — After the Conquest, the 
Saxon Witan had given way to the " Great Council " of the 
Norman kings. In theory, the king ruled with the "advice 
and consent" of this body. In practice, the Council was 
the mere servant of a powerful king. All those who held 
land directly of the king ("tenants-in-chief") had a right 
to be present in this court; but in fact only the great lords 
attended. Magna Carta had provided that no new "tax"' 
should be imposed without the consent of the Great Council, 
and had prescribed the method of calling the Council: the 
great barons were to be summoned by letter, individually; 
the lesser barons, by a general notice read by the sheriffs in 
the county courts. These smaller barons, however, did not 
attend; and in the troubles of the reign of Henry III, on 
two or three occasions, notably in i^5^, the sheriffs had been 
directed to see that each county sent knights to the gathering.* 
Thus a representative element had been introdticed into tJie Great 
Council, So far, however, only the landholding aristocracy had 
been concerned. But after the Battle of Lewes, Earl Simon 
seized upon this system of representation and extended it. 
The writs for the famous " Parliament " * of 1265, issued by 

1 Special report: the Provisions of Oxford, of 1258. 

* Special report upon this battle ; see Green's English People, 1, 303-304. 

* The charter did not say *' tax." Taxation proper had hardly began. 
The document provided that no feudal aid or scntage (a kind of war tax) 
should be imposed without the consent of the Council. Later, when taxation 
developed, the nation read the idea of taxes into the document, In place of 
the feudal aids really referred to. 

^ Once, indeed, in John's reign, four knights from each shire had been 
summoned ; but the Assembly seems never to have met. 

fi This name for the national assembly had come into use shortly before. 


Simon's direction while the King was in his power, called for 
the attendance of two knights from each shire and also of two 
burgesses from eaxh borough, to sit with the lords and clergy. 
Simon had taken a great step toward changing the Great 
Council of royal vassals into a " Parliament " representing the 
people of England. 

135. The Model Parliament, 1295. — In the years that imme- 
diately followed the great deed of Simon, several national 
assemblies met, wherein towns and counties had some repre- 
sentation ; but the exact form varied from time to time, and 
the powers of the representatives were slight and indefinite. 
In the " Model Parliament " of 1295, however, Edward /, the 
son of Henry III, adopted Simon's plan of thirty years before : 
each shire and each borough was called upon to send its two 
representatives, — since, as Edward's writ read, "that which 
touches all should be approved by all." ^ From that time, the 
regular representation of counties and boroughs became a fixed 
principle in the English national assembly. For the first time 
in the world's history, representative government was put upon 
a good working basis. 

136. Lords and Commons. — After a half-century or so, Par- 
liament began to sit in two "houses." The nature of this 
division was not the result of any deliberate plan, but it was 
of immense importance. Edward summoned to his Parliament 
the "three estates," — the clergy, the nobles, and the burgesses. 
The greater nobles and the greater clergy had personal sum- 
mons : the other classes were to be represented by delegates, 
— the smaller landholders by the elected "knights of the 
shire," the towns by their chosen burgesses, and the lower 
clergy by elected representatives, one for each district. At 
first, all probably sat together. Had this continued, the 
townsmen would never have secured much voice : they would 
have been frightened and overawed by the nobles. The result 
would have been about as bad if the three estates had come to 

1 Hill*s Liberty Documents gives the Summons and modem critical comment. 

160 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 137 

sit sepaxately, as they did in France and Spain : with so many 
distinct orders, an able king could easily have played off one 
against the other. England again followed a course of its 
own. The inferior clergy, very happily, refused to attend 
Parliament, insisting instead upon their right to act in " Con- 
vocation," a purely ecclesiastical assembly. Thus they threw 
away a chance to secure political power. The great spiritual 
lords, with personal summons, were not numerous enough by 
themselves to make an " estate," and so they preferred to sit 
with the great lay lords, not as clergy, but as temporal barons. 
Thus, when the different orders began to sit apart, the great 
peers, lay and spiritual, who were summoned by individual 
letters, made a "House of Lords," while the representative ele- 
ments — knights of the shire and burgesses — came together 
as the " House of Commons."^ 

The three estates had faded into two, and even these two 
were not distinct. For in England, unlike the case upon the 
continent, only the oldest son of a lord succeeded to his father's 
title and nobility and to the right to a personal summons to 
the House of Lords: the younger sons — and even the oldest 
son during his father's life — belonged in the gentry (gentle- 
man) class, and at most were " knights of the shire." As such, 
oftentimes, the son or the brother of an earl sat for his county 
in the House of Commons beside the shopkeeper from the 
town. The gentry in the Commons formed a link to bind Lords 
and Commons together, and to preserve good understanding 
between them, so that the two houses upon occasion could act 
in unison in behalf of English liberty. The House of Com- 
mons, from the first, was much more than an " estate/' and it 
was to widen into the representative of the nation. 

137. The First Two Edwards. — Edward I (1272-1807) was the 
greatest of the Plantagenet kings. Apart from his development of Parlia- 

1 The knights were drawn to the lords hy social ties ; but they had been in 
the habit of acting with the burgesses in local matters, and, happily, now 
joined with them in the national assembly. 


ment, his great legal reforms^ have earned him the title, 'Hhe English 
Justinian. '^ His weak son, Edward II (1307-1327), was controlled by 
unworthy favorites, and was finally deposed by Parliament.^ 

D. Period of the "Hundred Years' War," 1338-1453.« 

138. Reference Table of Reigns. 

a. The PlantageneUt, from Edward III to the Lancastrian Branch, 

Edward III, 1327-1377: son of Edward II ; opening of the long war with 

France ; the Black Death ; growth of the Commons. 
Richard II, 1377-1390 : grandson of Edward III ; the peasant revolt of 

1S81 ; attempt at personal rule ; deposition. 

b. The Lancastrians. 

Henry IV, 1399-1413: Duke of Lancaster and cousin of Richard II; 
elected king by Parliament, after a brief civil war ; recognized de- 
pendence on Parliament ; remarkable growth of the Commons. 

Henry V, 1413-1422 : renewed Hundred Years' War, and conquered France. 

Henry VI, 1422-1461 : loss of France ; throne of England claimed by the 
Duke of York, another descendant of Edward III ; civil war ; Henry 
deposed by his Yorkist conquerors. 

139. The Hundred Years' War. — Ever since the greatest 
French vassal became king of England, it had been a matter of 
settled policy with the French kings, to undermine the power 
of the English rulers. John and Henry III had lost their 
French possessions north of the Loire, and Poitou to the south 
of that river : England kept only southwest Aquitaine. While 
the English Edwards were trying desperately to conquer Scot- 
land, France continued her policy, by aiding that northern 

^ These reforms are too complicated to treat in this volume, but it may be 
stated that among other results they continued the weakening of feudalism. 

* In the early Saxon period, the Wltan had sometimes deposed a king, bat 
this deposition of Edward II was the ftrst instance of the kind after the Nor- 
man Conquest. There were to be other striking cases in English history 
(§§ 143, 242, 260). 

• See references on pages 136 and 142. Pennftylvania Reprints, II, No. 5, 
deals with the time of Wydif, and the Paston Letters give graphic views of 
the fifteenth century. See also notes on pages 155 and 157. 

152 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [| 139 

kingdom. Therefore, in 1338, Edward III declared open war 
upon France. This was the beginning of the " Hundred 
Years' War," which was to last, with brief truces, until 1453. 
Edward's purpose was largely commercial ; he wished to pre- 
serve the trade with Gascony and to secure that of Flanders. 
To strengthen his position, especially with the Flemish vassals 
of France, Edward set up a somewhat fanciful claim to the 

French crown (§ 148, note), and each English king called him- 
self also " King of France " from that time until 1802. 

The English gaine<i brilliant victories, overran France re- 
peatedly, and brought home much plunder. England was 
prosperous, too, because of her growing commerce. Her people 
felt none of the direct ravages of war, except for the raids of 
French pirateson the coast; and for a time they bore cheerfully 
the cost of the French campaigns. The two important battles 
in Edward's reign were those of Crhy and Poitiers. At Cr^y, 


in 1347, a small English army, some sixteen thousand strong, 
defeated a. French host thi-ee times its tuimber. The signili- 
cance of the battle lay in the fact that in the main it was won 
over the gallantest chii-alry in Europe by the peasant bowmen 
who made the bulk of the English force, and that even the 
English horsemen had dismounted and fought on foot as pike- 
men." The invincibility of the feudal horseman' was passing 

away. The like phenomenon was repeated a few years later at 
Poitiers (1356), where the numbers were seven to one (and 
quite as strikingly, three generations later, at Atflncourt). 

These victories bore little fruit. Neither pasties nor towns 
opened their gates because of them ; and before the end of 
Edward's reign, by cautious campaigning, the French had 

■According tu one old rhronlrler, gunpon'rltr w»a used in this bnttle: 
the English are said to hsve tiad severnl small " bombards," " which, with 
fire and noiae like God's thunder, threw little balU □( Iron to /rif/kten Ihe 

'The term " infantry" bad been to this time a conlemptuoiie eiprexsion, 
(rom the same word as " Infant," applied to the undiwiplined nioli of boys 
and men who followed (he army of horsemen. The Enfillsh had learned the 
ralae ut Infantry just before Crecy. In their defeat by the Scuta at itanitori- 
biirn. C(. the earlier example at LeRnano, S 80. Special report upon 

154 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. Q5 140 

recovered all their territory except a few cities on the coast. 
This was best for the iutetests of both France and England ; 
but iu 141>'), after many years of truce, Henry V again invaded 
France, at a moment when the country was distracted by internal 
quarrels, and made himself master of the kingdom. His son, 
Heury VI, a child of nine months, waa crowned in Paris as 
" King of France " ; but again the French recovered themselves, 
and by the middle of the fifteenth century, just before the 

Ak ExiiLisH Carmaob or thb Focbtbbnth Cbnturt. — Artec Josseniiid's 

EnglUh Wayfaring Life; froin a fourteentli century paslter. This car- 
riage Is represeDted as drawn by Ave horses tandem, driven by two postjl- 
iona. Such a carriage wrb a princely luxury, equaling iu value a herd o( 
from four hundred to sixteen hundred oxeo. 

beginning of the civil war in England (§ 145), the English lost 
all France except Calais on the Channel. 

140. The Black Death.' — The happy prosperity in Kngland 
during the early part of the reign of Edward III, received a 
great shock from the Black Death. This was the most famous 
of all the great plagues of history. It had been devastating 
the East for some years ; and in 1348, the year after Cr^y, it 
reached England. Almost at a blow, it reduced the population 
of the island at least one-thii-d.' 

1 For documents and contemporary accounts, «ee Lee, Colby, and Penntfl- 
vania Reprinlt. II. No. S. The b«it nioilern account ii Oasquet'a The Gnat 
Pettil'nve. See also JeSEwp's Comin;/ of the Friarn. 

' The resiilta were not lesa terrible upon the continent. Some antboritiel 
estimate that the disease swept away half the population of Western Europe. 


This terrible loss fell most heavily upon the working classes, 
but in the final result it helped along a great social change for 
their betterment The lack of laborers was so great that 
wages doubled^ and a new and higher standard of living was 
introduced. Parliament, it is true, in the interest of the land- 
lords, tried, by foolish and cruel laws,^ to keep the laborers upon 
the old footing ; but individual landlords were so anxious to 
harvest their standing crops, that they did not venture to take 
advantage of such laws. Instead, they made more and more 
favorable terms with their old serfs, to keep them from running 
ofif to other districts, and gradually allowed them to exchange 
their labor services for fixed money rents. This amounted to 
a change from serfdom to freedom. 

141. Social Discontent : Desire of the Peasantry for more Rapid 
ImproTement ; Wyclif and the Lollard Movement' — The change 
was under way even before the coming of the Black Death, 
and it was practically complete before the middle of the 
fifteenth century. That is, the process was spread over a 
century. Kapid as this seems to the student of history, it was 
terribly slow to the laboring population of the time. The 
improvement that had taken place made them doubly impatient 
with the burdens that remained. No doubt, too, there were 
individual cases of bitter hardship, where a lord by legal tricks, 
or by reviving old and almost forgotten claims, or by down- 
right violence, reduced his half-freed villeins to serfdom again. 

There were also other causes, political and religious, for pop- 
ular discontent In particular the growing wealth and world- 
liness of the church began to attract attention. Cliaucer, the 
great English poet of the age, indulged in gentle raillery' 
toward these features of the religious establishment ; but more 
serious men could not dismiss them so lightly. The great 

1 See Penmiylvania Reprints, II, No. 5, for documents. 

* Cf. Trevelyan's England in the Age of Wycliffe ; Poole's Wycliffe and 
Movements for Reform; and Sergeant's Widif, 

•Cf. the Prologue to the Canterbury Tales, for the descriptions of the 
monk, the prioress, the friar, and the pardoner. 

156 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§ 141 

John Wyclif Sit Oxford preached strenuously against such evils, 
and his most earnest disciples traveled from place to place 
spreading his doctrines through the land.^ 

These '*poor preachers'* were called ** Lollards" (babblers) by their 
enemies. Some of them exaggerated into pure communism their mas- 
ter's teachings against wealth, and called for the abolition of all rank and 
property. John Ball, one of the ** mad preachers,*' wrote words that 
rang through England from shore to shore, — 

*^ When Adam delved and Eve span, 
Who was then the gentleman ? " 

" This priest," says Froissart, a contemporary chronicler, " used often- 
times to go and preach when the people in the villages were coming out 
from mass ; and he would make them gather about him, and would say thus: 
* Good people, things go not well in England, nor will, till everything be 
in common and there no more be villeins and gentlemen. By what right 
are they whom we call lords greater folk than we ? We be all come from 
one father and one mother, Adam and Eve, . . . but they are clothed in 
velvet and are warm in their furs, while we shiver in rags ; they have 
wine, and spices, and fair bread ; and we, oat cake and straw, and water 
to drink ; they dwell in fair houses, and we have the pain and travail, the 
rain and the wind in the fields. Yet from our labor they keep their estate. ' 
And so the people would murmur one with the other in the fields, and in 
the ways as they met together, affirming that John Ball spoke truth." 

^ Wyclif passed on from attacking the abuses in the church to attacking 
its doctrines, and finally took much the position occupied by Luther a century 
and a half later. Indeed, Wyclif has been called the " Moniing Star of the 
Reformation." With his associates, he made the first complete translation 
of the Bible into English ; and many copies made by his " poor preachers " 
were distributed through the land. Recently, an eminent Roman Catholic 
scholar, Father Gasquet, has advanced the theory that the so-called Wyclifs 
Bible was really an old, authorized Catholic translation ; but this view has 
not met with general acceptance. There is no doubt, however, that, nearly a 
century earlier than Wyclif, friends of Roger Bacon began such a translation 
(cf. Cambridge Modern History, I, 585 ff.)- 

Wyclif was protected, for political reasons, by the Duke of Lancaster, one 
of the sons of Edward III; and all attempts to persecute him failed. Some 
years after his death, however, the Council of Constance (§ 167) condemned 
his doctrines, and his ashes were then disinterred and cast into the river 
Swift. The Lancastrian kings, Henry IV and Henry V, persecuted the Lol- 
lards, and the sect soon disappeared from sight, but it may have had con- 
siderable influence upon the later English Protestant movement. 


142. The Peasant Rising of 1381:^ Disappearance of Villeinage. 

— Thus the material was ready for a conflagration. While 
things were in this state, Parliament passed a heavy poll tax, 
bearing with unfair weight on the poor of the realm. With 
amazing suddenness and unanimity, the peasantry rose in 
arms. From all sides they marched upon London, and in a 
few days the kingdom was virtually in their hands. Their 
special demand was that all labor rents should be exchanged 
for fixed money rents ; and they offered a fair rent, as prices 
then were. The strangest thing about the rising was the 
self-restraint shown by the peasants. The various bands 
sacked some buildings of the gentry class, — destroying 
especially the "manor rolls," or the written evidence of 
services due from villeins on an estate, — and they put to 
death a few lawyers and nobles. But women and children 
were not injured, and there was no attempt at general 
pillage and murder, such as usually mark servile insurrections 
and such as characterized the frightful risings of the peasantry 
in France in the same century. The French "Jacquerie"* 
was an outburst of blind, brute rage, upon the part of hopeless 
creatures, goaded past all endumnce, seeking only to glut their 
vengeance. The English peasants stood upon a higher plane 
of comfort and of civilization, and their revolt was marked 
relatively by the modeitition of men who had a definite pro- 
gram for social reform. 

Unfortunately, the peasants lacked the organization needful 
to secure the results of their temporary success. Their leader, 
Wat the Tyler J was murdered treacherously in a conference, and 
his followers were persuaded to go home under written guar- 
antee from the King that all their demands should be granted, 
together with free pardon for the revolt. When they had 

* Ashley's Edward III and His Wars ; Powell's Peasant Rising ; Kriehn's 
"Stitdies in the Sovrcea of the Social Revolt" {American Historical Review ^ 
Vn, Nog. 2 and 3) ; and Trevelyan's Age of Wy cliff e. 

' " Jaoqaes " is the general French name for a peasant. A vivid picture 
of a local rialDg in France is given in Conan Doyle's White, Company. 

158 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§ 143 

dispersed, the property classes rallied and exacted a bloody 
and treacherous vengeance.^ 

In a short time, however, the movement toward emancipation 
began again with renewed force. We cannot be sure whether 
the revolt hastened or hindered the change.* Probably it did 
not very much affect the movement, except for a brief time ; 
and it is best regarded as an unwise but very natural attempt 
to secure at a stroke the good results which were coming more 
surely by slow, peaceful development. In any event, except 
for isolated eases villebvage had passed away from England 
before the Wars of the Roses (§ 145). 

143. The Growth of Parliament. — The French war made it 
necessary for Edward III and his successors to ask Parliament 
for frequent grants of money. The towns were growing wealthy 
and were able to supply the money : indeed the English success 
was due to this middle-class wealth as much, perhaps, as to the 
long-bow of the yeomanry. But Parliament took advantage 
of the needs of the King to secure gradual extensions of power. 
(1) It became an established principle that " redress of griev- 
ances " must precede a " grant of supply." (2) In the closing 
years of Edward III, the Good Parliament (1376) " impeached " 
the King's ministers, using the same method that has ever 
since been used for such purposes in English-speaking coun- 
tries. (3) When Richard 11^ attempted a "personal" rule, 
without regard to Parliament, he was deposed (1399), and a 

1 Parliament refused to keep any of the pledges that the King had made, 
and told him he could not grant away the services due them, — their property, 
— without their consent. 

3 The older view was that the Peasant Revolt came hecause the landlords 
were trying to make the condition of the peasants worse than before ; bat the 
new view, presented in the text, is now clearly established. The discussions 
are generally too technical for high school students. An excellent statement 
of the present view is given in Cheyney's InduMrial and Social History, 
103-133; and page 120 gives a copy of the royal charters which were carried 
home by the peasantry to every village and which were afterward so cruelly 

> Edward's oldest son, the Black Prince, had died before his father; ao 
Edward was succeeded by his grandson Richard. 


cousin was elected king in his place. (4) This sovereign, 
Henry IV (Henry of Lancaster), frankly recognized his de- 
pendence on Parliament. Under hiiu the lower house made 
good its claims that all money bills must originate with it* 
and that it should audit the expenditures (1407) ; (6) it se- 
cured the right to judge of the election of its own members. 

and (6) it compelled the King to dismiss his ministers and 
appoint new ones satisfactory to Parliament; (7) freedom of 
speech in Parliament and freedom from arrest, except by the 
order of Parliament itself, became recognized privileges of all 
members; (8) on three different occaaiona during Henry's 
reign, Parliament passed acts fixing the succession to the 
throne. (9) Under the next sovereign, Henry V, the older 
form of petitions to the king to make laws was changed, 
BO that Parliament passed " bills," which the king had to 
accept or reject, and the wording of which he could not 
change without reference back to Parliament (1414). 

I Ibis hsa been the practice In Engliah-speftklng legislatures ever since. 

160 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 144 

144. The " Liberties of Englishmen.'' — Thus under the Lan- 
castrians there was established in the breasts of Englishmen 
a proud consciousness of English Liberty as a most precious 
inheritance. With right they believed it superior to that 
possessed by any other people of the time. As Duruy remarks 
(Middle Ages, 436), " In the middle of the fifteenth century, 
the English people had in Magna Carta a declaration of their 
rights, in the jury a guarantee for their safety as individuals, 
and in Parliament a guai-antee for national liberty." No man 
could be arrested except by order of a magistrate (not simply 
on the king's order) ; when arrested, he was entitled to speedy 
trial ; and he could be condemned only by twelve men of his 
own neighborhood. Parliament voted taxes and superintended 
their expenditure, settled the succession to the throne, im- 
peached offensive officers, and, upon occasion, deposed a king ; 
and no law could be made or changed without its consent. 

Sir John Fortescue, Chief Justice under Henry VI, wrote a book, In 
Praise of the Lavos of England^ for the instruction of Henry's son. The 
volume explains the English kingship in these words : — 

** A king of England at his pleasure can not make any alteration in the 
laws of the land without the consent of his subjects, nor burden then 
against their wills with strange impasitions. . . . Rejoice therefore, my 
good Prince, that such is the law of the kingdom you are to inherit, be- 
cause it will afford both to you and to your subjects the greatest security 
and satisfaction. . . . [The King] is appointed to protect his subjects in 
their lives, properties, and laws ; for this end he has the delegation of 
power from the people^ and he has no just claims to any other power but 

Some of the privileges of Parliament were soon lost (§ 147), 
it is true; and it must be understood, too, that the courts 
remained dependent upon the crown and often proved shame- 
fully subservient to its will. Still, the liberties won in the 
Lancastrian period were of mighty importance both in their 
own day and in their influence upon future times. An ideal 
of free government had been established, toward which, cen- 
turies later, men were to struggle (§§ 237 £P.). 


E. The Wars of the Roses and the Yorkist Kings,* 


146. The Civil War. — In 1422, Henry VI became king, while 
less than a year old. The long minority gave time for factions 
to grow among the nobles; and when Henry assumed the 
government, he proved too weak and gentle to restore order. 
The misrule of the great lords caused widespread discontent, 
especially among the rising towns,* whose industries called 
for settled government; and, encouraged by this discontent, 
the Duke of York came forward to claim the crown. 

Thus began the Wars of the Roses,' to last from 1454 to 1471. 
York was descended from a son of Edward III older than the 
one through whom the Lancastrians derived their claim to the 
throne ; and the war, the most ruthless and bloody in English 
history since Danish times, was largely a selfish contest between 
great nobles. At the same time the chief significance of the 
stru^le is in the fact that the Lancastrian strength lay in 
the feudal nobility of the north of England, while York 
was supported by the. new middle class of the towns in the 

Finally, York and the cause of the towns conquered. The 
Lancastrian family, with most of the great nobles of both 
parties, had been exterminated in battle or by assassination. 
The townsmen, however, could not dream of grasping political 
power; they wanted only protection. The political fruits of 
the victory fell to the new monarchy (§ 146). 

^ Gairdner's Lancaster and York is the best brief volume on this period. 
See also references on pages 136 and 142. Stubbs' great history just goes ' 
through the period. Stevenson's Black Arrow is an admirable story for a 
boy, and Bulwer's Last of the Barons is the most famous novel dealing with 
the age. 

'Special topic: Cade's Rebellion. (The student must get the view of 
recent scholars and not be content with the slanders of the old writers.) 

' The Yorkists assumed a white rose as their badge ; the Lancastrians, a 
red rose. Students may be asked to find the scene hi which Shakspere 
represents the choice of these symbols. 

162 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 146 

146. Reference Table of the Torldst Reig^ns. 

Edward IV, 1461-1483 : neglected Parliament. 

Edward V, 1483 : a child ; never crowned ; son of Edward IV ; mur- 
dered by his uncle, the regent, who became king. 

Richard III, 1483-1486: a cruel tyrant, soon overthrown by a popular 
rising led by Henry Tudor, a connection of the Lancastrian line, who 
became king as Henry VII. 

147. Resolts of the Ctvil War : Decline of Parliament ; a ** New 
Monarchy." — The losses in the war had fallen in the main on 
the feudal classes. The old nobility was almost swept away, 
and the following Yorkist and Tudor kings set to work skill- 
fully to crush whatever feudal independence remained. A new 
nobility was created, but it was dependent upon the king. The 
towns continued to grow in importance, but this did not mean 
a growth in political freedom. Without nobles for leaders, the 
towns and country gentlemen were still too weak to challenge 
the royal power. 

Parliament lost authority and sank to insignificance. During 
the long war. it had not been possible to hold true Parliaments. 
When the wars were over, the kings were so enriched by con- 
fiscations, that in ordinary times they could rule without new 
taxes, and so could get along for long periods without calling 
a Parliament. This policy was deliberately adopted, except 
when the king was confident that he could easily use Parlia- 
ment as his tool. England entered the sixteenth century under 
the Tudor monarchs, Henry VII and his son Henry VIII, 
with a "New Monarchy," — a strong government, absolute in 
practice, though still following old constitutional forms. The 
occasional meetings of Parliament preserved these forms; but 
not for two hundred years was Parliament to play as large a 
part in the government as it had done in the century before 
the civil war. After all, however, the New Monarchy, in 
crushing the feudal forces, was preparing the way for a future 
parliamentary government infinitely more valuable than men 
had dreamed of in earlier times. 



There is no other modern nation which owes so heavy a debt of gratitude 
to its ancient line of Icings as the French. France, as it exists to-day, and 
has existed through all modern history, with all its glorious achievements, 
is their creation and that of no one else, — Gkobqe Burton Adams. 

148. Reference Table : Capetian IBLings to 1547, with Accession Dates. 

Philip V 1316 

Charles IV 1322 

Hugh Capet 987 

Robert II 996 

Henry I 1031 

PhiUpI 1060 

Louis VI 1108 

LoQis VII 1137 

Philip II (Augustus) ... 1180 

Louis VIII 1223 

iottfa /X (the Saint) . . . 1226 

Philip III 1270 

PhUip IV (the Fair) . . . 1286 

Louis X 1314 

Philip VI (Valois)i . . . 1328 

John 1350 

Charles V (the Wise) . . . 1364 

Charles VI 1380 

Charles VII 1422 

Louis XI 1461 

Charles VIII 1483 

Louis XII 1498 

Francis I 1515-1647 

149. The Most Important Reigns.^ — The real growth of France 
begins with the fifth Capetian, Louis VL This King con sol idated 
the hereditary Capetian duchy, the " Isle of France," by bring- 
ing his vassals into closer dependence upon himself, and so 
forged the weapon with which his successors were to consolidate 
all France. The " Isle of France " lay in the north-central part of 
the kingdom, remote from the sea, and comprised about a twelfth 
of French territory. The other parts were ruled by ten or twelve 

1 The first fourteen of these rulers came to the throne in the " direct line." 
Until Philip IV, the succession was always from father to oldest son. The 
last three of the fourteen were all sons of Philip IV, and all three died with- 
out male heirs. The crown then passed to their oldest cousin, a grandson of 
Ptiilip ni. This prince (Philip VI) had been Count of Valois, and his succes- 
sors are known as the House of Valois. The death of the sons of Philip IV 
without a male heir was the occasion for the claim advanced by Edward IFI 
of England ($ 139): Edward's mother was a younger sister of these three 
kings. French law, however, did not recognize inheritance of the crown 
through females; and, if it had, Edward's claim would have been worthless, 
since the oldest son of Philip IV had left a daughter who had a male heir, and 
this claim would have preceded that of Edward's mother. 

> At this point the student should re-read carefully §§ 42-44, for the nature 
and aims of the early Capetian monarchy. 

164 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 160 

great princes, who were vassals of the Capetiaos only in name. 
Louis VI did not add any of these territories permanently to the 
crown ; but he prepared the way for their gradual acquisition.* 

In the next four centuries, the five kings who had most to 
do in this great task were Philip AugustuSy Saint Louis, Philip 
the Fair, Charles the Wise, and Louis XL Before the death of 
the third of these five, — about 1300, when the four centuries 
were half gone, — the greater part of France had been united 
and the king had become stronger than all the other forces in 
the state. While the German kings were wasting their earlier 
strength in pursuit of impossible universal sovereignty, and 
while the English kings were beginning to share with Parlia- 
ment the absolute power they had for a time possessed from 
conquest, the French kings were adding domain to domain and 
authority to authority, until they became the most absolute 
and powerful sovereigns in Europe. 

160. Territorial Growth. — The making of France, territori- 
ally, consisted in adding the great feudal fiefs (§ 41) directly 
to the royal domain. In the eleventh century a duke of Nor- 
mandy or of Aquitaine was as powerful as the king of France. 
But if the king himself could step into the place of such a 
duke, then the minor lords in Normandy or Aquitaine became 
his direct vassals and added to his power, instead of possibly 
adding to the weight of a rival. By marriage, by forfeiture, 
by war, the kings did themselves replace, one by one, the feudal 
princes. The striking advances came in connection (1) with the 
crusades (§ 105), (2) with the wars against the English kings, 
(3) with the crushing of the Albigenses, and (4) with the seizure 
of the dukedom of Burgundy (§§ 151, 152). 

151. Acquisition of the French Domains of the Plantagenets. — 
Duke William of Normandy, even before he became William 
the Conqueror of England, was the chief rival of his liege, 

1 Louis VI did arrange a marriage for his son with Eleanor, heiress of Aqui- 
taine, the largest of the French principalities; hut the impolitic Louis VII, 
offended by Eleanor's conduct, secured a divorce. Eleanor at once married 
Henry Plantagenet (§ 126), and Aquitahie passed into English hands. 


a-J'-'f [tJZD. 


the king of France. Henry II of England ruled directly six 
or seven times as much territory in France as did Philip 
Augustus at the opening of his reign ; and as late as this date 
(1180) "France" proper was still without a seaport. Under 
such conditions it was natural that the French kings should 
strive ceaselessly to stir up enemies for these great rival vas- 
sals and should seize every pretext to weaken them by war.^ 
Through the folly and crimes of John of England (§ 131), 
Philip Augustus was able to declare John's fiefs in France for- 
feited and to enforce the forfeiture of a great part of them, — 
(he northeast quarter of France. In this way, Noynandy, Maine, 
Anjou, Touraine, and Poitou were added to the French crown, 
quadrupling the direct domain of the king, and giving him 
ports on both the Channel and the Atlantic. A century later, 
the persistent policy of the French kings brought on the 
Hundred Years' War with England (§ 139). That war falls 
into two great chapters. The first lasts until the time of 
Richard II in England. In the beginning, the English seemed 
completely victorious ; but Charles the Wise taught the French 
to avoid pitched battles and to conquer by slow campaigns, 
and before 1400 the invaders were driven from all but a few 
ports on the coast. Southwestern France had now been added to 
the royal domain, and the realm had been again nearly doubled. 
To be sure, in a later period of the war, Henry V conquered 
the insane French king, Charles VI, and secured a treaty under 
which the English babe, Henry VI, was crowned at Paris as 
King of France ; but the triumph was brief. French national 
feeling had come into being, as a result of the long struggle 
with the foreigner ; and soon the devotion of an heroic peasant 
girl, Joan of Arc, freed her country.' 

^ Until the time of the UDprovoked attack upon France by Henry V 
(§1^, all the stroggles with the English kings were really begun by France. 
Sach war was not defensive war, but at least it was waged in the interest of 
national consolidation and order. Lasting peace was not possible while the 
realm was so fantastically cut up into opposing states. 

'Special report: life and work of Joan of Arc. Read 01 iphant's Jeanne 
^Arc and Clemens' Personal Reminiscences of Joan of Arc (a novel). 

166 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§162 

Joan saw yisions and believed that divine voices called her to her mis- 
sion. That mission was, in truth, to give voice to the new national con- 
sciousness. Her enthusiasm was the prelude to a national uprising, 
before which the few invaders were swept away like chaff. Says 
Lavisse (General Vieio, 64), French patriotism ** blossomed in Joan of 
Arc and sanctified itself with the perfume of a miracle." 

France emerged from the struggle after tremendous economic 
loss, and after long periods of terrible suffering and desolation,^ 
but with consolidated territory, with a new popular patriotism, 
and with a strengthened government. 

152. Acquisition of the Southeast and the Northeast. — About 
1200, shortly Before England's loss of French territory began, 
came the movement that paved the way for the acquisition of 
the principality of Toulouse; and, soon after the Hundred 
Years' War closed. Burgundy became French. 

a. Jlie Crusades against the Alhigeiises (§ 83) broke the power 
of the count of Toulouse, and left the way open for the kings 
to seize upon this comer of the French realm, piece by piece. 
From the days of Clovis until these crusades, southeastern 
Roman Gaul had really been independent of northern Teutonic 
Gaul.* Now the feudal North conquered the city South ; but 
the monarchy reaped the benefit of the victory. At last the 
Capetians had won their way to the Mediterranean. 

6. The duchy of Btuyiindy had been separated from the 
kingdom of Burgundy since the Treaty of Verdun (§ 8). It 
was in name a French province, but its rulers had aided 
England in the Hundred Years' War, in order to weaken the 
French kings and so better to preserve their own independence. 
Little by little, a series of able dukes had built up a composite 
state of wealthy provinces, — some of them fiefs of the Empire, 
some of France.* During the Wars of the Roses in England, 
Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, was working zealously 
to weld his group of provinces into a kingdom and to persuade 
the Emperor to change the ducal title to the name of "king." 

1 The first period of the war was the time of the Jacquerie (§ H2). 

3 Ancient History, §§ 590, 616, 618, 619. * See map followlDg page 172. 


Success would have restored the old Middle Kingdom of Caro- 
lingian days. For a time Charles seemed about to achieve his 
aim, despite the crafty intrigues of Louis XI of France ; but 
in 1477 he was defeated and slain by the Swiss, whom he was 
trying to force into his growing state. He left no male heir, 
and the unscrupulous Louis at once seized Burgundy. The 
rich Flemish towns, it is true, escaped the French grasp, though 
they had been part of Burgundy (§ 162) ; but Louis found com- 
pensation by securing Provence, which Charles had hoped to 
add to his dukedom. 

153. Administrative Development. — As the kings acquired 
the soil of France, step by step, the realm outgrew the simple 
feudal government. The kings then had to create new admin- 
istrative machinery. Philip Augustus (about 1200) made a 
beginning by dividing the growing domain into districts and 
putting each under a royal officer. Louis IX (about 1250) 
greatly reduced the power of the feudal barons, by insisting 
rigidly on all the ancient rights of the crown. Philip the Fair 
(about 1300) introduced various new checks upon feudal rights 
and established a modern system of national taxation. At 
various times the feudal nobility made desperate attempts to 
regain their waning independence. They had risen in arms in 
formidable leagues at the openings of the reigns of Louis VIII 
and Louis IX, and they made another desperate attempt when 
Louis XI came to the throne. The young King fought val- 
iantly in the field, but really won his victories by cunning 
and unscrupulous diplomacy. Afterward he chose his chief 
ministers from men of low birth, who necessarily remained 
wholly dependent upon royal favor, and before his death the 
feudal lords were reduced to complete dependence. 

154, The Estates General. — Philip the Fair had completed 
his reforms by adding representatives of the towns to the nobles 
and clergy in tlie Great Council of France. This brought to- 
gether all three " estates " ; and the gathering was called the 
Estates Oeneral, to distinguish it from smaller gatherings in 
the separate provinces. The first meeting in this form was 

168 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§166 

held in 1302j only a few years after the " Model Parliament " 
in England (§ 135). Philip used the Estates General as a con- 
venient taxing-machine. It never became a governing body, 
as the English Parliament did. The kings assembled it only 
when they chose, and easily controlled it. When they no 
longer needed it, the meetings grew rarer, and finally ceased. 

For FtJRTHKR Reading. — Source material: Froissart's Chronicles; 
Commines' Memoirs (1464-1498). 

Modem accounts : Adams^ Growth of the French Nation is the best 
brief account, and quite as full as can be used with profit at this point. 
The same author has a shorter survey in his Civilization, ch. xiii. Lodgers 
Close of the Middle Ages, ch. xvi, is particularly good. Excellent treat- 
ments are given in Huttou^s Philip AugustuSj Smith's The Troubadours, 
and Lodgers Charles tJie Bold. 

Fiction : Scott's Anne of Geierstein and Quentin Durtcard both treat 
of the time of Louis XI and Charles the Bold. Ilale's In His Name Is a 
story of the Albigenses, no doubt idealizing that sect. Conan Doyle^s 
White Company (referred to on page 157) is deserving of mention under 
the head of France also ; and Charles Readers Cloister and Hearth has 
great value. 

Special Reports. — 1. The Battle of Cr^y. 2. The Battle of 
Poitiers. 3. The English long-bow and the art of war (Oman, Art of 
War, chs. vii, viii). 4. The Battle of Bouvines (1214), and its effects 
upon France, England, and Germany. 


165. Territorial Growth. — Until the Moorish conquest in 
711, the fate of Spain for some centuries had been not unlike 
that of Gaul or Italy, and certainly not less promising. The 
Mohammedan invasion, however, separated the course of de- 
velopment in Spain from that of the rest of Europe ; and for 
centuries afterward " Africa began at the Pyrenees." 

The wave of Moorish invasion had left unconquered a few 
resolute Christian chiefs in the remote fastnesses of the north- 
western mountains, and Charlemagne recovered part, also, of 
the northeast. In these districts (Astmia and the Spanish 


§ 166] SPAIN. 169 

Marc!i)y several little ChristiaD principalities arose, to begin 
the long task of winning back their land; crag by crag and 
stream by stream. This they accomplished in eight hundred 
years of war, — a war at once patriotic and religious, Spaniard 
against African, and Christian against Infidel. The long 
struggle left the Spanish race proud, brave, warlike, unfitted 
for industrial civilization, intensely patriotic, and blindly 
devoted to the church. 

During the eight centuries of conflict, the Christian states 
spread gradually to the south and east, — waxing, fusing, 
splitting up into new states, uniting in kaleidoscopic com- 
binations by marriage and war, — until, before 1400, they had 
combined into three countries, Portugal, Aragon, and Castile. 
Nearly a century later, two of these were united by the mar- 
riage of Isabella of Castile with Ferdinand of Aragon; and 
in 1492 their combined power captured Granada, the last 
Moorish stronghold. Thus, in the year that Columbus dis- 
covered America under Spanish auspices, Spain at home had 
achieved national union and national independence, and she 
soon took her place (with her new-world dependencies) as the 
most powei'ful European state. 

166. Growth of Monarchic Government. — The feudal lords of 
the many Spanish kingdoms had been the most turbulent and 
uncontrollable in Europe. In each petty state they elected 
their king and took the oath to obey him, in forms like this : 
" We, who are each of us as good as thou, and who together 
are far more powerful than thou, swear to obey thee if thou 
dost obey our laws, and if not, not." The towns of Spain, too, 
had possessed charters of liberties of the most extreme charac- 
ter, and in various kingdoms they had sent representatives to 
the national assembly of Estates, or the "Cortes," for more 
than a century before a like practice began in England. But 
Ferdinand of Aragon began to abridge all these privileges, 
and in the next two reigns (§§ 170, 209 ff.) the process was 
carried so far that Spain became the most absolute monarchy 
in Europe. 

170 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§157 

Map Exercise. — ^* Castile *' was at first merely a line of ** castles.*^ 
It was a **mark state** (cf. Ancient History^ § 276, and note) : it shut 
off Aragon on one side and Leon on the other from any effective contact 
with the Moors, as Barcelona, Navarre, and Asturia had been shut off 
still earlier. After this was accomplished, Castile was the state most 
likely to grow to supremacy. Cf. Wessex in Britain ; § 16. 

For Further Reading. -yTout, Empire and Papacy, ch. xx ; Lodge, 
Middle Ages, ch. xx ; Watts, Christian Recovery of Spain. 

Special Report. — The Cid ; see Clarke, 77ie Cid. 


157. Soon after the year 800, Norse adventurers began to 
found small states, almost at will, on the fringes of Western 
Europe (§§ 14 if.), and before the close of the century the 
Scandinavian lands themselves entered the political map of 
Europe as crude kingdoms. After that time, however, except 
for the brief empire of Knut (§§ 17, 64), they hardly touched 
the life of the rest of Europe until the seventeenth century. 
Within the peninsulas, feudalism was gradually introduced, 
though its hold upon Norway was never firm. The story of 
these northern lands is romantic : the very names of the Norse 
kings make a portrait gallery, — Eric Broadax, Hakon the 
Good, Hakon the Old, Olaf the Thickset, Olaf the Saint* 
But after all, the history for the most part is only a record of 
meaningless wars, until, in 1397, the three kingdoms were united 
under Queen Margaret of Denmark, by the Union of Ccdmar, 

This treaty had the form of a brief written constitution, 
signed by the principal men of the three nations. It provided 
that each country should keep its own laws and its. internal 
administration, but that for foreign affairs the three should be 
joined in " perpetual union " under one hereditary sovereign. 
In practice, the "Union" made the states of the northern 
peninsula into dependencies of Denmark. Sweden soon re- 
belled, and finally, under her heroic Gustavxis Vasay established 

1 High school students will enjoy Carlyle*8 King$ of Norway, 

§ 158] GERMANY. 171 

her independence (1537). Norway became a mere province of 
Denmark, to remain so, with occasional rebellions, until 1814. 


** From the middle of the thirteenth century, Germany was merely an 
anarchical federation of principalities and republics. There icas no 
longer any collective national life, ho national army, finance, or judiciary. 
Everywhere tear prevailed, and there was no longer any law save that 
of the fist. . . . 

** Over this disorder a monarch presided who still called himself Emperor. 
But, under the trappings of his title, he was only a petty German prince, 
exploiting his high office to make the fortune of his house. Thus the 
Luxemburgs, poor squires of the county of Ardennes, and the Uapsburgs, 
small seigneurs of the county of Argovia, secured a family domain.^ ^ — 
Lavisse, Political History of Europe, 40. 

158. Rudolph of Hapsburg, 1373-1 291. — The Holy Roman 
Empire never recovered from the failure of the Hohenstaufen 
princes (§ 88). During the twenty years of interregnum 
(1254-1273), " robber barons " had harassed the land, and in 
many parts of the country each lord of a single tower had 
become practically a sovereign prince. Says Bryce, "These 
petty tyrants, whose boast was that they owed fealty only to 
God and the Emperor, showed themselves in practice equally 
regardless of both powers." 

This anarchy was only slightly checked in 1273 by the 
election of Rudolph of Hapsburg as Emperor. Rudolph was 
a petty count of a rude district near the Alps, and no doubt 
the princes chose him because they did not fear his power. 
One of them, the King of Bohemia, refused to acknowledge 
Mm. Rudolph attacked Bohemia, and seized from it the 
duchy of Austria, which has ever since been the chief seat 
of the Hapsburgs. He completely abandoned the Italian 
policy of the earlier emperors ; and throughout his reign he 
displayed much zeal in widening the boundaries of his personal 
domain. " Sit firm on Thy throne, Lord," once prayed the 
Bishop of Basel, " or the Count of Hapsburg will shove Thee 

172 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§159 

off." Rudolph gave much energy also to the restoration of 
order, so far as that task lay within his power. Along the 
Rhine alone, he demolished over one hundred and forty robber 
castles, and he once hung twenty -nine robbers at one execution. 

159. The Electoral College and the Golden Bull. — At Rudolph's 
death the Electors refused to give the imperial crown to his 
son, though that prince was thoroughly capable ; and the next 
fifty-five years saw five kings each of a different house from his 
predecessor. The method of electing an emperor had varied 
greatly at different periods. On some occasions, a gathering 
of great nobles had made the choice in a fairly popular way, 
while at other times a few princes had settled the matter by 
private negotiation (§ 62, note). Before the end of the Hohen- 
staufen period, the right of election had fallen to a ring of 
seven princes. These " Electors " now passed the crown from 
family to family, and, at each new election, enriched them- 
selves through extortionate demands upon the candidates. 

To prevent such scandals and the dangerous disputes over 
membership in the electoral college, a Bohemian Emperor, 
Charles IV, with the consent of a Diet,* issued the Golden 
Bull (1347).' This document remained the fundamental law 
of the Empire through the rest of its history. It defined 
exactly the powers and procedure of the "college of Electors" 
and defined the members as the three Archbishops of Mainz, 
Cologne, and Trier, the King of Bohemia, the Duke of Saxony, 

1 The Great Council of German lords was known as a " Diet." To this 
^fathering, representatives of the free cities were admitted in the foarteenth 
century (as had been the case earlier in the French Estates General, the Eng- 
lish Parliament, and the Spanish Cortes). The Diet came to consist of three 
houses, — the Chamber of Electors, the Chamber of Princes (the greater 
nobles of the second rank), and the Chamber of City Representatives. The 
Diet could do nothing but pass resolutions, which nobody obeyed unless he 
chose to do so. The knights were not admitted, either in person or by repre- 

3 So called from its gold seal, or bulla. (This word explains the term 
"bull" applied to papal documents.) For a brief special report on the 
Grolden Bull, see Henderson, Short History of Germany^ 159-162, or Bryoe, 
Holy Roman Empire, 22r>-237. 

§ 160] GERMANY. 173 

the Margrave of Brandenburg, and the Count Palatine of the 

160. The "Hapsburg" Empire. — Finally, in 1438, after a 
long line of Bohemian emperors, the imperial title came back 
to the Hapsburgs by the election of Albert, Duke of Austria. 
From this time to its disappearance in 1806, the title was to 
belong to the house of Austria, practically as an hereditary 
possession. The form of an election was always gone through, 
but the choice invariably fell upon the Hapsburg heir.^ 

The Empire after 1438 is sometimes called the '^Austrian Empire** 
(cf. I 55). The phrase is not strictly correct, but it is significant. The 
emperor was little more than the honorary president of a loose confeder- 
acy made up of a multitude of petty sovereignties; and Austria did 
famish such physical support as the imperial dignity possessed. From 
this time until the French Revolution, with rare exceptions (like Maxi- 
milian), the emperors spent their entire reigns within their Austrian 
domains, busying themselves exclusively with Austrian interests. 

Albert was followed by the long but uninteresting reign of 
Frederick III (1440-1493), and then the crown passed to 
Maximilian I (1493-1519), the romantic hero of the Hapsburg 
race. Maximilian made a noble effort to reconstruct the Em- 
pire in the interest of order and good government, and so to 
bring Germany abreast of England, France, and Spain ; but in 
the end he failed utterly, because of the selfishness of the 
nobles and the local jealousies between the provinces, and, 
it must be added, because of his own dreamy nature and 
haughty willfulness. 

In the person of Maximilian's grandson, Charles V, the 
houses of Austria and Spain were united (§ 172), so introduc- 
ing a new chapter in the history of Europe. 

For Further Heading. — Bryce, Holy Boman Empire^ 211-238, 
8a3-4i20 ; Henderson, Short History of Germany, 122-240 ; Lodge, Close 
of the Middle Ages, 1-19, 98-123, and 394-418. 

^ Except in one case (1747)^ when the Hapsburgs had no direct male heir. 
The crown was then given to Francis I, the husband of the Hapsburg prin- 
cess, Maria Theresa (§ 274), after a brief rule by a Bavarian rival. 

174 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§161 


161. Switzerland began to grow into a political state just 
before the year 1300. The brave and sturdy peasantry, in the 
isolation of their mountain fastnesses, had preserved many old 
Teutonic customs and much of the old Teutonic independence.^ 
Some small districts (cantons) in the German Alps had belonged 
to the Hapsburg counts. When Rudolph of Hapsburg became 
duke of distant Austria (§ 158), these older possessions were 
left to the administration of subordinate officers. The extor- 
tions practised by such agents prepared the mountaineers for 
revolt ; and, in 1291, seventeen days after the death of Rudolph, 
the three " Forest Cantons " — Uri, Schivyz, and Untenvalderi — 
formed a "perpetual league" for mutual defense against tyranny. 

The league was not designed, at first, for independence.* 
The confederates pledged themselves to receive no "judge" 
who should have purchased his office, and none who should 
not be an inhabitant of the district, and they declared their 
purpose to establish quiet and peace, — " yet in such vnanner, 
that every man according to his rank, shall obey and serve his 
overlord as it behooves hini." The original Latin document of 
confederation is still preserved in the archives of Schwyz. 

For two centuries, from time to time, the Hapsburgs in- 
vaded Switzerland with powerful armies, in order to reduce 
the mountaineers to complete subjection; and very soon the 
league against oppression by the lord's agents became a 
league for independence, against the lord himself. Freedom 
was practically established by two great victories, — Mar- 
garten (1315) and SemjHich (1386).* Between the two battles, 

1 Read the account of a modern Swiss " folkmoot/' in the opening pages of 
Freeman's Groioth of the English Constitution. 

3 Two of the cantons — Uri and Schwyz — are said to have had an older leagae, 
and to have secured recognition as free states from Frederick II in 1241. 

8 The myth of William Tell belongs to tlie period of Morgarten, and the 
myth of Arnold Winkelried to that of Sempach. These two stories are good 
subjects for special reports. Advanced students may be asked to present the 
modem criticism of the legends. 

176 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§161 

five other cantons rebelled against their lords and joined the 

The new members — among them Bern, Zurich, and Luzem 
— were small city-states, wealthier and more aristocratic than 
the original union. Soon after Sempach, the constitution of 
the league was revised. In the new document, the confederate 
cantons claimed to be states of the Empire, but all dependence 
upon feudal lords was expressly rejected. Each canton kept 
complete control over its own internal affairs. The "Diet," 
or central congress of representatives, was hardly more than 
a meeting of ambassadors, and was designed for little else than 
the management of foreign war and the division of the plun- 
der. The union preserved this loose character until after the 
French Revolution (1798), and the history after 1500 is mostly 
a record of miserable petty quarrels between the cantons. 
The growth into the remarkable federal republic of to-day was 
to be in the main a matter of French and American influences, 
in the nineteenth century. 

Late in the fourteenth century, Charles the Bold (§ 152) 
wrecked his reviving Middle Kingdom in an attempt to sub- 
due the Swiss; and a few years later, in 1499, Maximilian, 
the Hapsburg emperor, was defeated and forced to treat with 
the League as a sovereign state.* Its independence was not 
formally recognized, however, until 1648 (§ 232). 

It is notable, as in the case of Spain (§ 156), that the heroic struggies 
of the Swiss produced disastrous results upon their character. Their 
victories developed a passion for plunder and for fighting ; so that, when 
there were no wars at home, great numbers of Swiss youth became " mer- 
cenaries." For centuries they were the most famous soldiery of Europe, 
and, strangely enough, when the great democratic movements of the 
French Revolution began, the thrones of European despots were guarded 
by hirelings from the free Swiss mountains. 

For Further Reading. — The federal history of Switzerland is of 
peculiar interest to American students, but the reading can be done more 

1 Between these two conflicts, five cantons were added to the confederatiou, 
making the thirteen that formed the union till the French Revolution. 


profitably in connection with the later history (§§ 612 ff.). Lodgers Close 
of the Middle Ages gives an excellent brief account. Scott* s Anne of 
Geierstein pictures Swiss life about 1475. 


162. The Netherlands (Low Countries) did not form an inde- 
pendent state in the Middle Ages, but they deserve a special 
treatment. They were made up of a group of provinces, part 
of them fiefs of the Empire, part of them French fiefs. The 
southern portion has become modern Belgium ; the northern 
part, modern Holland. The land is a low, level tract, and in 
the Middle Ages it was more densely packed with teeming 
cities than any other part of Europe. Built, as many of them 
were, on land wrested from the sea,^ these cities took naturally 
to commerce. It was here that the merchants from Italy and 
the south of Europe met and exchanged wares with the Hansa 
merchants. But as long as the Hansa controlled the northern 
trade, these Netherland towns were workshops even more than 
they were trading rooms: "Nothing reached their shores," 
says one historian, " but received a more perfect finish ; what 
was coarse and almost worthless, became transmuted into 
something beautiful and valuable." Matthew Paris, a thir- 
teenth century English chronicler, exclaimed that " the whole 
world was clothed in English wool manufactured in Flanders" 

The inhabitants were a sturdy, independent, slow, industri- 
ous, persistent people. Ghent claimed eighty thousand citi- 
zens able to bear arms, while Ypres is said to have employed 
two hundred thousand people in the weaving of cloth. No 
doubt these numbers are exaggerations ; but wealth so abounded 
that the " counts " of this little district excelled most of the 
kings of Europe in magnificence. Early in the crusading age 
the cities had won or bought their liberties. Each province 
had its Diet, where sat nobles and city representatives. 

^ Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and many other cities to the north were built 
upon dams, or dykes. 

178 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [J 1«2 

The central faot in Netfaerland history through the thir- 
teenth and fourteenth centuries waa the trade with England 
for raw wool. The need of this commodity for the Flemish 
looms made Flanders the ally of England in the long struggle 
between that country and 
France (§§138, 151). Dur- 
ing this period the dukea 
of Burgundy became mas- 
ters of Flanders, and, after 
many revolts and cruel 
suppressions, the ancient 
liberties of the towns were 
somewhat abridged. When 
Charles the Bold of Bur- 
gundy lost his life in trying 
to extend hia dukedom into 
a kingdom (§ 152), and 
when Louis XI of France 
then seized most of hia 
possessions, the Flemish 
towns wisely chose to re- 
main faithful to Mary, the 
daughter of Charles. In 
return for their fidelity, 
an Estates General of all 
the provinces secured from 
that princess a grant of 
Hall of ths Clotr-Makirh' Gild at The Oreat Privilege, the 

Yprbs: beitor in 1300; finished In ISM. „ n, n » t n. 

Now the Town Hall. -From LiibkB. "Magna Carta of the 
Netherlands" (1478). This 
document promised that the provinces might hold Diets at will ; 
that no new tax should be imposed but by the Estates General ; 
that no war should be declared but by the consent of that 
body; that offices should be filled by natives only; and that 
Dutch should be the official language. 

Mary married the young Maximilian of Hapsbui^, soon to 

163] THE PAPACY. 179 

become emperor (§ 160), and five years later she died, leav- 
ing an infant son Philip. Maximilian claimed the regency, 
and, after conquering the cities in war, he revoked The Great 
Privilege. His son Philip, however, assuming the government 
in 1494, restored the " ancient privileges " of the provinces ; 
and The Great Privilege, though not expressly confirmed, 
remained the standard of rights in the hearts of the people. 

Philip married Joanna of Spain (daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella), 
and a son, Cliarles, born in loOO, became the greatest ruler in Europe 
(§{ 172, 209 ff.). When his realms were divided, the Netherlands passed 
with Spain to his son Philip II, in whose reign began the terrible but 
glorious struggle that made this little spot of sea-rescued land a ** holy 
land " to all who love liberty (§§ 221 ff.). 

Fob Further Reading. — Rogers^ Holland, and GrifiBs* Brave Little 
Holland^ or the opening pages of The StudetU^s Motley. 



163. The Reyolt of France and England. — The thirteenth 
century conflict between popes and emperors had left the popes 
victorious; but at once new foes appeared to challenge their 
overlordship. In France and England the people were coming 
to have a new sense of national unity, and had already begun 
to rebel against papal authority in temporal matters * and to 
demand that the government of the land should be independent 
of all papal supervision. To this feeling, the Emperor Freder- 
ick II had tried to appeal in letters to the kings : " My house 
is on fire. Hurry, bring water, lest the fire spread to your 
house too!" And, soon after his fall, France and England 
did take up in earnest the struggle against papal claims. 

^ An early instance is afforded by the " Constitutions of Clarendon " in Eng- 
land, under Henry II (§ 128, note). Advanced students may be asked to 
report upon the situation during the reign of Henry III. Neither people nor 
kings, of coarse, had any intention of questioning the authority of the pope 
in spiritual matters. Their attitude in many respects was like that of the 
people and government of Italy toward the pope since 1870 (§ 490). 

180 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1520. [§164 

The conflict was hastened by the long wars between the 
French and English kings. Both needed money, and both 
were trying to introduce systems of national taxation in the 
place of the old feudal revenues. The clergy had been exempt 
from feudal services ; but they owned so much of the wealth 
of the two countries, that the kings were not willing to leave 
them exempt from the new t-axes. Pope Boniface VIII issued 
a bull forbidding any prince to impose taxes on the clergy 
without papal consent, and threatening excommunication against 
all clergy who paid. Thus the struggle began. 

164. Edward I, PhUip IV, and Boniface Vin. — When the 
English clergy, trusting in this papal decree, refused to pay 
taxes, Edward I outlawed^ them; and it at once appeared that, 
in comparison with this practical " excommunication " by the 
state, the old clerical excommunication was mere stage thunder. 
The clergy generally paid, until, a little later, a compromise 
was effected whereby they were permitted to tax themselves. 

France, however, was the scene of a sharper contest. As it 
progressed, Boniface set forth the old claims of papal suprem- 
acy over princes ; * but Philip IV treated these claims with 
haughty contempt, and the Estates General (1302), even the 
clerical Estate, denied the Pope any control over the state and 
pledged their lives to defend the "ancient liberties of the 
French nation." Philip forbade the payment of any revenues 
from his realm to the Pope, and arrested the papal legate. 
Boniface threatened to depose the King. A few days later, a 

1 To outlaw a man was to put him outside the protection of the law : he 
could not bring suit to recover property or damages, and offenses against him 
were not "crimes." 

2 " The spiritual power has to establish the princely power. [The refer- 
ence is to the consecration of kings at their coronation by ecclesiastics.] 
Therefore if the earthly power err, it shall be judged by the spiritual 
power. ... A spiritual man judgeth all things, but he himself is judged by 
no one. . . . 'Whoever resists this power . . . resists the ordination of 
God. . . . Indeed we declare . . . that it is altogether necessary to salva- 
tion for every human creature to be subject to the Roman pontiff.*' The bull 
from which these sentences are taken, as well as the one regarding taxation, 
are given in Henderson's Documents, 432-437. 

§106] THE PAPACY. 181 

company of French soldiers, with an anti-papal clique of Boman 
nobles, besieged and captured Boniface ; and the chagrin of the 
old man at the indignities and insults heaped upon him proba- 
bly hastened his death (1303). 

166. The ** Babylonian Captivity." — Soon after the death of 
Boniface, Philip secured the election of a French pope, together 
with the removal of the papal capital to Avignon, a papal city 
m Provence, on the French frontier, controlled by French influ- 
ence. Here the popes remained for seventy yeai-s (1309-1377), 
in " the Babylonian Captivity of the church." 

Of course the papacy lost public respect. It was no longer 
an impartial umpire, even in appearance. Politically it had 
sunk into a mere tool of the French kings, and the enemies of 
France could not be expected to show it reverence. The Eng- 
lish Parliaments of Edward III passed the great statutes of 
Pravisors and of Praemtinire, to limit papal control over church 
appointments in England and to prevent appeals from English 
ecclesiastical courts to the papal court. Even Germany, dis- 
tracted as it was, had too much national feeling to allow to a 
** French pope " any voice in determining its emperor ; and in 
1338, the German Electors and a German Diet formally denied 
that the popes had any part in the choice of their ruler. In 
Italy the Papal States themselves fell into anarchy and revolu- 
tion, so that there was imminent danger that the popes might 
lose their principality altogether.* 

166. The Great Schism. The Hussite Heresy. — In 1377, to 
save the papal territory in Italy, Gregory XI returned to Rome ; 
but this act was only the signal for a greater disaster than the 
exile itself. The next year saw two popes, one at Rome and 
one at Avignon, each hurling anathemas at the other. England 
and Germany supported the pope at Rome ; France and Sicily 
the one at Avignon. It had become purely a question of politi- 

^ This was the period of the enthusiast Rienzl, the popular dictator of the 
city of Rome. Rienzl dreamed of making a renovated Rome the head of 
Italy and of the world. Special report: Rienzi's life and work. Students 
will enjoy Bulwer's novel, Rienzi, the Last of the Tribunes, 

182 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§167 

cal advantage whether a nation recognized the one or the other. 
The papacy was never to recover altogether from its loss of 
dignity and power during the century of exile and schism. 

The church itself began to be threatened, as well as the 
papacy. The Wyclif movement (§ 141) took place toward 
the close of the exile. The Lancastrian monarchs, it is true, 
with the hearty approval of Parliament, repressed the Lollards 
savagely, and England seemed saved to Catholicism; but 
meantime the seeds of the Lollard heresy had been scattered 
in a distant pai't of Europe. Kichard II of England had 
married a princess of Bohemia. Some of her followers had 
carried the teachings of Wyclif from the University of Oxford 
back to the Bohemian University of Prague; and about 1400 
John Hu88, a professor at Prague, became the leader in a radi- 
cal reform movement along the lines that Wyclif had followed. 

167. Unity restored : the Great Church Councils. — Under 
these ominous conditions, there arose a widespread demand 
within the chui-ch for a General Council, representing all 
Christendom, to restore unity of government and doctrine. 
This plan implied a power in the church higher than that of 
the pope, and it was opposed vehemently both by Rome and 
Avignon. Finally the cardinals called tlie Council of Pirn 
(1409). This body declared both popes deposed, and chose a 
new one. The result was three popes; for the Council was 
not really universal in character, and, acting with unwise 
haste, it failed to secure obedience. 

Soon after, however, the new Pope, under pressure from the 
Emperor, called the Council of Constance (1414). Five thou- 
sand delegates attended, and all Latin Europe was repre- 
sented. The Council put down heresy sternly. John Huss 
had come to the assembly under a "safe conduct" from the 
Emperor. This was shamefully disregarded.* Huss was 
imprisoned, tried, condemned, and burned at the stake; and 

1 The Emperor was assured by the great churchmen that no promise to a 
heretic was binding. 

§167] THE PAPACY. 183 

when his followers rose in arms, a crusade was preached 
against them.* The following year (1415), one of his associ- 
ates, Jerome of Prague, was burned. (Cf. § 141, close.) 

Though so bitter toward heresy, the Council acted in mat- 
ters- of church government with caution and wisdom. One 
pope was brought to resign; the others were deposed; and 
unity was established under a new pope, Martin V. The 
Council had designed other reforms, but Martin dissolved it 
before it could act further. It had already made provision 
for Councils at regular intervals of ten years, but this pro- 
vision also the popes were to render valueless.* For the 
following century, down to the time of Luther, the history 
of the popes and of the church contains no striking develop- 
ments.* Thus, alone of all the old institutions of Europe, the 
church passed out of the Middle Ages essentially unchanged 
in character. 

For Further Reading. — Original material for this period is to be 
found in Henderson's Documents^ 432-440, and in Pennsylvania Reprints, 
III, No. 6. (The latter treata of the Council of Constance.) 

Modem accounts: concise treatments are given by Adams, Civiliza- 
tion, 392-415, and by Lodge, Close of the Middle Ages, chs. ii, ix-xi. A 
scholarly Catholic view may be found in Alzog's Church History, II and 
III, and in Pastor's History of the Popes, I. There is a good account by 
Creighton in his History of the Papacy during the Period of the Reforma- 
tion, I and II. (These three works are all too diffuse for young students. ) 
Poole's Wycliffe and Movements for Beform treats the Hussite movement. 

1 A war of fifteen or twenty years desolated Bohemia and crushed the 
more radical party among the Hussites. The moderate wing of the reform 
secnred some recognition of their rights. Henderson's Short History of Ger- 
many, 215-220, gives a brief survey of the struggle. 

« If the plan could have been adopted in good faith, it would have limited 
the papacy somewhat as Parliament limited the English kingship, and no 
doubt it would have made the subsequent history of Europe very different 
from its actual course. 

" The most interesting episode in this period is the career and martyrdom of 
Savonarola, the Florentme reformer. This Is a good subject for a special 
report by an advanced student. Savonarola appears prominently in George 
Eliot's Romola. 

184 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§161 


168. The Tartar Invasions of the Thirteenth Century. — During th« 
later part of the crusading age, Europe was menaced suddenly by a peril 
which for a time seemed greater than that of the Turks. Shortly after 
1200, a great military leader had appeared among the Tartars of the 
Asiatic steppes. Assuming the title Genghis Khan, or Lord of Lords, hei 
organized the scattered nomad tribes into a terrible fighting macliine,| 
and set about the devastation and conquest of the world. The ancient 
Scythian and Hunuish invasions^ were repeated upon a larger scale and 
with greater horrors. Fertile countries were turned into silent, dismal 
deserts. Populous districts became tombs, marked only by enormoas 
pyramids of blackened corpses. Genghis himself conquered China, 
northern India, and Persia, while his son invaded Europe. In 1223, 
the rising Christian state of Russia was crushed by these heathen bar- 
barians,^ and southern Russia became a Tartar province. The Mongol 
Empire reached from Pekin and the Indus to Crimea and the Dnieper. 
The death of the Great Khan (1227) recalled his son to Asia and gave 
Europe a brief re.spite ; but, ten years later, the assault was renewed. 
Moscow was burned, and northern Russia became a tributary province ; 
Poland and Hungary were ravaged and conquered : half of Europe was 
Tartar, and these new Huns even crossed the Danube. In vain did 
Emperor Frederick II appeal for aid to the rest of Christendom. A 
German army under Frederick's son inflicted a slight check upon the 
invaders, but again Western Europe was saved only by the death of a 
Mongol emperor. Soon afterward the vast Tartar realm fell into frag- 
ments, and the pressing danger passed away. 

The conquerors took on civilization, too, in China and India, from the 
subject races ; but parts of Asia have hardly yet recovered from the 
ravages of the conquest. The whole subsequent development of Russia 
has felt its baleful influence; and for three centuries a Tartar state, 
The Golden Horde, maintained itself in southern Russia. The escape 
of Western Europe, through no great merit of its own, is one of the 
supremely fortunate events in liistory.' 

1 Ancient History, §§ 72, 56<M)71. 

3 These Mongols were not Mohammedans like their relatives the Turks 
(§§ 91, 169), but were heathen like the old Huns. 

8 Special report: the career of Tamerlane, another great Tartar conqueror, 
in the fourteenth century, who for a time checked tlie Turks ($ 169). The 
beneficial effect of the Mongol Empire upon geographical knowledge in 
Europe will be noted in § 197. 






169. Southeastern Europe and the Ottoman Turks (Mohamme- 
dans). — The Greek Empire never recovered fully from its over- 
throw in the Fourth Crusade. In the fourteenth century, the 
Servians (Slavs) built up a great state under their " emperor," 
Steplien DusJianj but both Greek and Slav were soon to fall 
before a new foe. 

The Ottoman Turks first came to notice about 1240, when 
small bauds of them from the distant Jaxartes appeared in 
Asia Minor, in the service of their kinsmen, the Seljuk Turks 
($ 91). The newcomers soon became the ruling race, and in 
1346, a century after their first appearance, they established 
themselves also on the European side of the straits, — though 
Constantinople held out for a century more, a Christian island 
encompassed by seas of Mohammedanism. At the battle of 
Kassova (1389), the Turks completed the overthrow of the 
Servians and other Slav peoples of the Balkan regions ; and a 
few years later a crushing defeat was inflicted upon the Hun- 
garians and Poles. About 1400, Tamerlane (§ 168, note) 
seemed for a moment to have shattered the Turkish power, 
but Mahomet I reconstructed the Empire, and in 1453 his son, 
Mahomet the Conqueror, entered Constantinople through the 
breach where the heroic Constantine Pakeologus, last of the 
Greek emperors, had dieS. sword in hand. 

Constantinople has remained the capital of the Turkish 
Empire from that day to the present time. That empire con- 
tinued to expand for over a century more (until about 1550) : 
and for a time it seemed as though nothing could save Western 
Europe. Not until well into the nineteenth century did either 
Slav or Greek in the Balkan regions begin to find relief from 
Mohammedan oppression (§§ 576 ff.).^ 

The Turks were incapable of civilization, in the European sense, and 
they have always remained a hostile army encamped among subject 
Christian populations, whom their rule has blighted. A chief factor in 

1 The critical position of Hungary, and her heroic services against the Turk, 
may be made a topic for special report. The great defeats of the Turks at 
Lepanto (1571) and before Vienna (1(>83) will be noted in §§ 224, 257. 




their early success was the ^Hribute of children/* organized into the 
famous fighting force of Janissaries. Says Freeman: *^A fixed pro- 
portion of the strongest and most promising boys among the conquered 
Christian nations were carried off for the service of the Ottoman princes. 
They were brought up in the Mohammedan faith and were employed 
in civil and military functions. . . . Out of them was formed the 
famous force of the Janissaries, the new soldiers who for three centuries 

— as long as they were levied in this way — formed the strength of the 
Ottoman armies. . . , In this loay the strength of the conquered nations 
WIS turned against themselves. They could not throw o£f the yoke, be- 
cause those among them who were their natural leaders were pressed into 
the service of their enemies.*^ 

For Further Rbadixo. — Mijatovich's Constantitie, the Last Em- 
peror of the Greeks; Oman^s Byzantine Empire, chs. xxv, xxvi ; Poole's 
Story of Turkey, chs. i-vii ; Creasy's Ottoman Turks, chs. i-vi ; Lodgers 
Close of the Middle Ages, 494-614 ; Freeman^s Ottoman Power , 1-135. 



170. A Political Summary. — In the ninth and tenth centuries, 
three imposing figures seem to fill the stage of European history, 

— the Emperor of the East, the Emperor of the West, and the 
Pope. By 1500, the first had forever vanished, the second had 
shrunk into a petty prince, and the third, politically, had retired 
far into the background. In the tenth century, other western 
lands had been but a fringe to the mighty Holy Roman Empire 
(Germany and Italy). In 1500, Germany and Italy, weak and 
divided, were about to become the battle ground and the prey 
of new powers. On the north and west, England, Denmark, 
France, and Spain had grown into strong and unified mon- 
archies ; on the southeast, the Mohammedan power, which had 
just been driven from the west of Europe, had advanced to the 
Danube and was threatening Austria itself with conquest. The 
Empire had lost not only organization, but considerable terri- 
tory : all claims upon Poland and Hungary were gone, and the 
northern Slavs and Swedes were seizing upon the lands once 
held by the Teutonic Knights; Switzerland was practically 

188 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 171 

independent, and Holland soon was to be so (§§ 221-226) ; half 
the kingdom of Burgundy had already fallen to France, and 
the failure of Charles the Bold to reestablish the "Middle 
Kingdom" had brought that same aggressive French realm 
into touch with the Rhine provinces of Germany, many of 
which it was soon to seize (§§ 212, 232, 259 ff.)- 

Farther east, there loomed a reviving Russian state at Moscow. Ivan 
the Great (1462-1605) threw off the Tartar yoke ; and his grandson, Ivan 
the Terrible^ extended Russian sway to the Caspian. However, Russia 
was still an inland state, shut off from the Black Sea by the Tartars, from 
the Baltic by the Swedes, and from any contact with Germany by the 
Poles ; not until about 1700 was it to count in western politics. 

• 171. New International Relations ; the Conflict for Italy. — 

The breaking up of Christendom into clearly defined monarchic 
states introduced a new period. The leading states became 
intensely jealous of each other. France and Spain were at 
first the great rivals, and Italy was the first field of conflict. 
In Italy, as in France and Spain, there had been some move- 
ment toward unity. The thirteenth century had seen the land 
broken up into a multitude of petty states ; but by 1450 almost 
all of these had been brought under one or another of the 
five "Great States" — the kingdom of Sicily in the south, 
the Papal States in the center, and in the north the duchy 
of Milan and the so-called republics of Venice and Florence. 
During most of the second half of the fifteenth century Italy 
enjoyed comparative peace, but the movement toward consoli- 
dation had not gone far enough to afford security, now that 
other countries were imited at home and were free to turn 
their attention to a defenseless neighbor. In 14.94, Charles 
VIII of France crossed the Alps with a large army to assert 
his claim as King of Sicily.^ Charles was animated by wild 
dreams of conquest. He marched victoriously from end to 
end of the peninsula, virtually its master, regulating matters 
at will, not only in his southern kingdom, but in the northern 

^ A claim which he derived from the House of Anjoa ($ 86). 


states as well. However, enemies quickly gathered behind 
him: Ferdinand of Aragon, also, claimed the kingdom of Sicily ; 
Venice and some other states joined the anti-French party ; and 
Charles secured his retreat into France only by a desperate 
battle. Spain uoas left in possesmon of Sicily and Naples, and 
the French dominion vanished as quickly as it had risen ; but 
the expedition of Charles heralded three centuries of conflict 
between the European powers for the rich and beautiful 

172. The Hapsburg Power : Dominions of Charles V. — While 
France was beginning to seize foreign territory, Ferdinand 
of Aragon was building up family alliances to strengthen 
the power of Spain. One daughter he married to the young 
English prince, soon to become King Henry VIII, and an- 
other to Philip of Hapsburg, son of the Emperor Maximilian 
(§§ 160, 162). From this last marriage in 1500, was born a 
child, Charles, who was almost to restore a universal empire. 

The early death of his father left the boy Charles ruler of 
the rich provinces of the Netherlands, and in 1616 he suc- 
ceeded his grandfather Ferdinand as king of Spain and of 
Sicily. In the same year, Francis I ascended the French 
throne.* These two ambitious princes were to be the chief 
political forces in Western Europe for a generation. In 1519, 
on the death of Maximilian, the two young kings, with Henry 
VIII of England, became candidates for the imperial title. 
Through the wealth of his Flemish merchants, Charles was 
successful ; and his other widespread realms * gave a physical 
support to the position of Emperor, such as it had not pos- 
sessed since Hohenstaufen days. 

1 Of. Ancient History, § 273. 

3 Six years earlier, Henry VIII had become King of England, and five 
years later, Solyman the Magnificent became Saltan of the Turks. 

* On his mother's side, Charles had inherited Spain and southern Italy and 
the gold-producing lands of America which the discovery of Columbus had 
JQSt made Spain's. From his father and paternal grandfather he inherited 
the Netherlands, Austria, and other Hapsburg possessions. By election, he 
was Emperor of the rest of Germany and of northern Italy. 

190 WESTERN EUROPE, 1100-1620. [§ 173 

173. Charles and Francis in Italy. — Francis I had already 
been engaged in asserting a French claim on Milan in northern 
Italy, and the two great rivals now came into conflict. Com- 
pact France was probably nearly equal in power to all the 
scattered Hapsburg realms, and Francis found mighty rein- 
forcement from an event which occurred just at this moment 
in Germany. In 1520 Martin Luther publicly burned a papal 
bull (§ 207) and started the Protestant Reformation, which 
was to split Germany at once into opposing camps and to 
render for ever impossible the restoration of the old imperial 
unity of Christendom, of which Charles perhaps had dreamed. 


1. Fact drills. 

a. Dates, Add to previous lists the following : — 

1100-1300, Crusades. 1391, Peasant Rising. 

1216, Magna Carta. 1414, Council of Constance. 

1254-1273, Great Interregnum. 1463, Fall of Constantinople. 
1296, Model Parliament. 1402, Columbus. Capture of Granada. 

5. Fix other events in connection toith the above; such as the Swiss 
Confederacy (after the death of Rudolph, who becomes emperor 
1273, at close of Interregnum), Innocent III, Albigensian 
heresy, Tartar invasions, the first Estates General (soon after 
the Model Parliament), etc. 

c. Extend list of terms for brief explanation (cf. pages 51, 96) : '* take 
the cross,** Dukes of Athens, Teutonic Order, Janissaries, etc. 
(The list should be a long one for this period.) 

2. Make a syllabus (cf. page 96). 

3. Review and note force of all introductory ** theme " sentences (in 

italics, at head of Chapters or Divisions, as on pages 1, 22, and 60). 

4. Review questions presented by class (cf. page 51). 

5. Map reviews and comparisons. 

6. €reneral topics : (a) parliamentary assemblies of Europe, — Diets, 

Estates, Cortes, etc.; (b) movements for religious reforms within 
the church ; (c) movements for religious reforms that threatened, 
at least, to act outside the church ; (d) history of the medieval 





174. Classicism and the Renaissance. — About 1350 there 
began in Italy a new movement, which we call the Renaissance. 
It is hard to date the period for all Europe, because it differed 
for different countries. It was well over in Italy by 1550, while 
in England it had hardly begun before 1500 and was to last 
through Shakspere's age, — to about 1600.^ It was a period of 
tremendous change. Europe transformed its whole habit of 
thought and way of feeling. The name Renaissance is a fit 
one, because the change consisted largely in a " rebirth ^' into 
the world of an old, long-forgotten way of looking at life. This 
older way had expressed itself in the ancient classical art and 
literature; and naturally the men of the new age were pas- 
sionately enthusiastic over all remains of the classical period. 
The term Renaissance is sometimes used as though it applied 
chiefly to this admiration for classical antiquity. The real 
characteristic of the period, however, was not its devotion to 
the past, but its joyous and self-reliant altitude in the present. 
The men of the Renaissance cared for the ancient culture of 
Greece and of Rome, because they found it in sympathy with 
what they themselves thought and felt in their own day. 

175. Characteristics of the Middle Ages. — Between the classi- 
cal and the renaissance ages there had intervened several cen- 
turies of very different life and thought. These centuries were 
the Middle Ages. Three characteristics had been especially 

1 This chapter rnns over into the next era, as is natural in dealing with a 
transition age. At this point the student should reread §§ 4 and 5. 


192 THE RENAISSANCE, 135a<1550. [§176 

prominent. (1) Ignorance was the general rule ; and even the 
learned followed slavishly in the footsteps of some intellectual 
master. (2) Man as an individual counted for little. In all 
his activities he was part of some gild or order or corporation. 
(3) The dominant intellectual forces were the ecclesiastical 
ideals. Beauty in nature was little regarded, or regarded as 
almost a temptation of the Evil One. Men not only felt it 
wrong to take delight in the world, but thought they ought 
always to think of the terrors of a world to come. The pagan's 
disregard for his shadowy future world ' had been succeeded by 
so intense an interest in the future as to lead to neglect of the 
present life. Thus, during the Middle Ages, thousands upon thou- 
sands of the best minds withdrew from the world, giving up all 
natural pleasures and duties, to prepare for the world to come, 
by fastings and scourgings in monks' cells. Even princes and 
kings surrendered their pomp and power for this purpose. 

176. Characteristics of the Renaissance. — The Eenaissance 
changed all this. For the medieval instinct of blind obedience 
to authority and tradition, it substituted the free inquiring 
way in which the Ancients had looked at things.* It awoke 
to delight in flower and sky and mountain, in the beauty of 
the human body, in all the pleasures of the natural world, and 
also of the world of thought and imagination. A new self- 
reliance and self-confidence marked the individual, and a fresh 
and lively originality appeared in every form of thought. 

The transformation from the medieval to the renaissance age 
is one of the two or three most wonderful changes in all history. 
It manifested itself first in art and literature, then in scientific 
study and in religion, and finally, long after, in politics. The 
change began in Italy. There it had its chief manifestation 
in the revival of art, but it produced also a revival of learning. 
This second phase of the Italian Renaissance was the first to 
travel into northern lands. It concerned itself with religion 
and the Early Church ; and, together with the moral earnestness 

1 Ancient HUtory, § 143. « Ancient HUtory, § 83, doae. 


of the northern races and with the new confidence in individual 
judgment, it produced the Protestant Reformation. Sometimes 
it is said that the Kenaissance was mainly artistic in the south 
of Europe and intellectual and moral in the north. . Such a 
statement is convenient, but it should not blind us to the 
important part which Italy played in the early intellectual 
movement (§§ 189, 195). 

177. Method of Treatment in this Chapter. — Thus the Renaissance 
was a revolt against the medieval spirit in all its forms. The causes were 
mainly intellectual. Accordingly, as an introduction, we must outline 
the intellectual side of European life during the Middle Ages, which has 
been omitted so far in this volume. The student should realize, too, that 
the changes about to be noted in various lines of thought and feeling 
(Divisions II-V) were intimately interrelated, although we can trace 
them best one by one. 


A. Universities. 

178. Intellectnal Studies in the '^Dark Ages.'' — Intellectu- 
ally, Western Europe lay in torpor through the early Middle 
Ages. Except for the brief gleam of Charlemagne's time, 
this unwholesome sleep was not broken until about the year 
1100. For several centuries before that date, studying and 
teaching were confined to the schools connected with the mon- 
asteries and cathedrals; and in these, almost the whole aim 
was to prepare the clergy for their duties. Even this all- 
important task, through the eighth, ninth, and tenth centuries, 
was poorly performed. King Alfred in England lamented 
that hardly a priest south of the Thames could read the services 
he repeated by rote,* and like complaints were not uncommon 

1 ** So dean was learning fallen away amonf( the English that there were 
▼eiy few on this side of the Humber who knew how to render their daily- 
prayers in Ehiglish, or so much as to translate an epistle out of Latin into 
Knglish. I ween that there were not so many beyond the Humber. They 
were so few that I can not think of a single one south of the Thames when I 
took the kingdom.**— From Alfred's Preface to his Translation of Gregory's 
Pastoral Care. 

194 THK BENAISSANCE, 13GO~1650. [{179 

on the continent. Some cathedral schoola preserved feint 
traditions of the old learning, in their courses in " arts " ; but 
in the best of them the studies were only a shrunken survival 
of the trivium and qiiadrivium of Soman times.' The work 
consisted iu committing to memory dry epitomes of knowledge, 
and the teacher's task lay in dictating such abstracts, word by 
word, in Latin, for the students to copy. There was no inquiry, 
no investigation, no criti- 
cism ; there was of course 
no study of nature, and 
there were almost no 
books. Such schools could 
not advance learning, but 
they did help to preserve, 
through the "Dark Ages," 
the spirit of scholarship 
and a little of the older 
knowledge, and so made 
it possible for Europe to 
advance again when more 
favorable conditions had 
Honk tracbinotbkGlobk; altera tliir- been provided. 

teenlh century maniisoript now id the 179 ^he RIm of Hedle- 

National Library at Paris. — From La- 

croii. ScienM «nd liieratu™. val UnivcrsitieB. — Better 

conditions appeared about 
the beginning of the twelfth century. From that time, Europe 
was ever more and more astir with intellectual life. The rising 
towns established lay schools to train for business pursuits;' 
medical and legal services, which had been performed before 

> The ancient triviam compriaed tanguage, rhetoric, and logic ; (lie quadrlv- 
lum Included music, atitlimetk, geometr;, and astronomy. Tbs student would 
do well at this point to review the AncitM Hittory, H 2AS, 259, 483, 484, 53!l-542, 
and tUT. TheremarkBble Irisli and English Schools, just before and after Charle- 
majine, to some degree form an exception to the statement in the text. They 
might be made the snhject of a special report. Bee Zimmern'g Iriah Ciiltiirt. 

^ Such schoola used the vernacular, instead of lAtin ; and, bealdea reading 
and writing, they taught a little arithmetic and geography. 


by the clergy, were now prepared for by special study ; some 
of the old cathedral schools began to feel the influence of 
Arabian culture from the Universities of Cordova and Alex- 
andria; Constantinople, through Venice, began to introduce 
Greek learning into Italy; and all these impulses were intensi- 
fied, of course, by the crusades. 

The result of these forces was the medieval university. 
The early institutions of this character grew up as voluntary 
associations of teachers * and students. Usually they appeared 
alongside some cathedral school, but they were lay schools, not 
ecclesiastical schools; and, like many medieval associations, 
they took on the gild form.* The earliest universities did not 
come into existence at any precise moment. Most of them 
finally received papal bulls or royal patents, confirming their 
privileges; but these documents simply recognized and sanc- 
tioned institutions which had slowly formed themselves. At a 
later time, however, popes and kings became the founders of 
many universities. The term "university" did not at first 
imply instruction in all forms of knowledge:' a university 
always comprised a course in " arts," and, for the graduates of 
this course, one or more professional courses, — law, medicine, 
or theology.* The " arts " course continued to be based upon 
the ancient trivium and quadrivium, and the great majority of 
university students never went beyond it. 

180. Typical Early Universities. — The three universities osually 
selected as types of the early period are Salerno, Bologna, and Paris. 

^ It was commonly the personality of some great teacher which determined 
that a oniversity should grow at one place rather than at another ; see $ 180. 

2 The students working for the first degree corresponded to the appren- 
tices of the trade gilds; the bachelors of arts, to the journeymen; and the 
" masters ** and " doctors " to the trade " masters." Even the forms of pub- 
lic examinations and graduation, some of which still survive, were modeled 
upon trade gild customs. 

* Indeed the word " university," as used in the early charters, meant only 
** all of yon," and was sometimes applied to organizations which had nothing 
to do with teaching, — even to trade gilds. 

* Theology included philosophy. 

196 THE RENAISSANCE, 1360^1660. [§180 

CuriouBly enough, each of the three grew out of a different specialty, — 
Salerno from the study of medicine, Bologna from that of Roman law, 
and Paris from that of theology.^ 

a. Near Salerno was a great Benedictine monastery, which even 
through the Dark Ages had been noted for its excellence in medical in- 
struction. Probably the science of the Arabs in southern Italy had some 
effect upon it in this respect. Somewhat before 1100, according to a 
rather legendary story, Constantine the African^ a Carthaginian Greek 
who had studied in the most famous Arabian schools, came to Salerno 
and gave a wide reputation to a school of medicine there, distinct from 
the monastery school. Certainly before 1100 there was such a lay 
school, with important privileges conferred by Robert Guiscard (§ 67 b). 
This "University of Salerno," then, was the first "university." The 
medical course of five years required a preparatory course of three years 
in "arts." 

Salerno, however, had no courses in law or theology. Before 1200 
these latter subjects had become famous at Bologna and Paris ; and then 
the Emperor Frederick II, in 1224, established a University of Naples, to 
combine all the branches of instruction, " in order that those who hunger 
for knowledge may find vsithin the kingdom the food for which they 
yearn, and may not be forced to go into exile to beg the bread of learning 
in strange lands." The medical college at Salerno was incorporated in 
this new institution. This University of Naples was the first university 
created by royal chaiter.^ 

h. At Bologna^ about 1100, Irnerius^ a teacher in an " arts " school, 
became deeply interested in Roman Law.' There are various legends that 
try to account for this interest. The certain fact is that because of it 
Imerius practically rediscovered Roman Law for Western Europe. He 
began to teach it to all who would study, and Bologna was soon thronged 
with the students who gathered around him. In 1168, Frederick Barba- 

1 " It was the needs of the hnman body which originated Salerno; it was 
the needs of men as related to each other in a civil organism which originated 
Bologna ; it was the eternal needs of the hnman spirit in its relation to the 
Unseen that originated Paris." — Laurie, Rise of Universities^ 109-110. 

2 It was distinctly a ** state " university. The state appointed the profes- 
sors, endowed chairs, and issued licenses (or degrees) to students in the dif- 
ferent professions. The professors were free from taxes and military service, 
and possessed a variety of other privileges. Like privileges were accorded to 
the teachers in other medieval universities. Of. Ancient History^ § 483. 

s Roman law bad never died out in Italy, and indeed it had always been 
studied in some Italian schools ; but, after the work of Imerius, its study and 
use spread rapidly over the West. 


roHBa confirmed by charter TBiiona rights which the "UnWerelty" had 
come lo enjoy. 1 

The government of the Unlvetaity waa vested in the body of studeoU, 
not in the city or state or even in the teaching body. Tbie community of 
scbulaTB not only managed its own inlernsil aSaira, deciding what studies 
should be pursued and how long tbe lecture hour should last, but it also 
judged its own members in all casea, both civil and criminal, in which 
they were connected with outsiders. As the University grew, there 
occurred much disorder and crime and many serious conSicls between 
students and citizens. These were the first " town and gown " combats. 
Tbe city authorities wished to assume jurisdiction over tbe students, in 
criminal cases at least ; but tbe Pope, in 1254, contlnned the " ancient 
rights " of the University. Like other early universities, the institution 
bad almost no buildingH, or 
fixed plant, and the ease with 
which it could migrate to a 
neighboring town made the city 
content to put up with mnch 
inconvenience rather than risk 
losing so large a population 
aad BO famous a school.* 

c. The Unirtnily of Pari* 
grew directly out of an "arts" 
school connected with the Ca- 
thedral of Notre Dame. In tbe 
eleventh century, a learned 
monk, William of Champeaux, 
as head master, had made that 

school one of the three or four „ „ _,_ 

, , c. J Sral of the FAruLTT or Thboloot or 

most famous in France and p^^^. fourteenth centary.- From I^ 

had given new prominence to croii, Scienix and Literature. 
the study of theology there. 

But tbe impulse to a real university dates from the work of Abelard as 

be^ of the school, about 1115. Abelard ° did not remain long at Paris, 

'"We owe," says tbe charter, "protection to all our subjects, but 
especially to those whose knowledge enlightens tbe world." Bologna Was 
soon known as the " Mother of Laws." 

>The great University of Padua did grow out of a secession from 
Bologna, and a seceiwlon from Paris to Oifonl first msde the last named city 
a real nniversliy town. 

s Abelard is one of the saddest and most romanlic figures of the Middle 
Ages. An advanced student might prepare a special report upon his life. 


TUB RENAISSANCE, 1360-1560. 


and UiouBancU of stniJents followed bim from that school to different 
places and even Into the deseK, nheu he retired for a time to a hermitage ; 
but liU brilliant iatellect had given to the stud; of theology and philoso- 
phy an impulse which his remaining students at Paris carried on, until 
to the old " arte " school there was soon added a new and distinct body 
of leacbera in theology and philoeophy. A new faculty in arts grew np 
also. Several hundred mastf IS 
of arte and of theology gave 
inatruction, each in his own 
dwelling, to all who came as 

Gradually the mastere or- 
gauLzed, especially to confer 
degrees; and by 1140 there 
Beeins to have been a deSnile 
" University of l*ari8." From 
time to time the French kings 
and the popes confirmed ita 
privileges or gave it new ones. 
At Paris, unlike democratic 
Bologna, the cootrolliiig power 
waa really vested in the maa- 
tero,' not in the students. The 
latter, ho wever, had some voice . 
As at other univeraf tiea of note, 
the students came from all 
 partB of Europe* Naturally, those from one country grouped themselves 
together for mutual assistance, and such afiroup was known as a "nation."* 

1 In this way amw the " Latin Quarter " of Paris. The district known bj 
that name is still irihnblteil 1ari;e1y by sliidents. 

' This aristocratit; organization was finally to become the dominant one In 
European univeraities. 

* There was a surprising fluidity in medieval life. Hercbanta, soldiers ot 
fortune, friars, journeymen, were always an the move; but the poor wuder- 
ing scholar was the typical traveler of them all. He shared in some di^iee 
the clerical privileges, and beeged his way from place to place. Young men 
thought DothinK of passing from Oxford to Paris or Bologna and back again, 
to sit at the feet of iIiIh or that tamoos teai^her and to see the world by the 
way. Indeed, we are told that public stage coaches in Eorope originated 
mainly In the needs ol travel which gradually developed in connection with 
the UDlverBitles. 

< A "nation" might include the students from several adjoining countries 
The " English nation " at Paris contidned men Irom all the norUi ol Europe 


UHlTKBstiT OF pABis; lourleeDth 
tury. — From I^croiz. 


At Paris, before 1200, there were four of these ** nations,'* each with various 
subdivisions ; and the nations and subdivisions chose from their masters 
certain deans and proctors to look after matters of discipline. A univer- 
sity, even of the aristocratic type, was truly a ** Republic of Letters.*' ^ 

181. Value of the Medieval University. — Uuiversity life and 
training grew more and more popular : the fourteenth century 
saw fifteen new universities founded ; the fifteenth century saw 
twenty-nine. Moreover, the number of students at the old 
foundations increased rapidly, and, according to contempo- 
rary authorities, from twelve to twenty thousand was not an 
unoommon attendance at a single institution.' The work in 
the main was a slavish study of texts, and Latin continued to 
be the sole learned language.* However, the mere bringing 
together so many youthful minds, glowing with desire for 
knowledge, tended to produce an intellectual tumultuousness ; 
and in theology, where the reason was sometimes allowed to 
speculate a little, university men were more ready than the 
rest of Europe to receive new ideas.* But in other lines of 
study, the method of instruction tended to produce an over- 
whelming respect for tradition and authority. The movement 
which produced the universities was a kind of prelude to the 
true Renaissance of two centuries later : at the time the old 
habits of thought were too strong, and there was too little 
knowledge, for a successful intellectual revolution. Thus 
the universities were captured by the medieval spirit and 
became one of the most striking characteristics of "medievalism.^* 
They do not belong to the true Renaissance, They became the 
strongholds of the "Schoolmen" (§§ 182-185). The new im- 
pulses of the fifteenth century, which were to carry turope on 
into a broader intellectual life, did not arise within their walls 
and found admission at all only after stern struggles. 

1 Bead Laurie, 167-170 and IBS^IOO. 

s No doubt, these figures are merely loose estimates and very great exaggera- 
tions, Uke most other medieval statements of numbers. 

* This fact encouraged the practice of traveling from one university to another. 
Stodents who went from Paris to study at Bologna did not need a new language. 

^ WycUf, Huss, and Luther were all connected with university teaching. 

200 THE RENAISSANCE, 1360-1560. [§182 

B, Scholasticism. 

182. The ** Scholastic Method." — The twelfth and thirteenth 
centuries, with their intellectual revival, developed a new and 
peculiar intellectual method. This became known as scholas- 
ticism, or the method of the schools. Its one weapon was the 
" formal logic**' of Aristotle,^ which had never been quite for- 
gotten in Europe. This logic consisted in throwing knowledge 
into the form of "syllogisms." There are several kinds of 
syllogisms, but each contains three statements, of which the 
third, the "conclusion," follows irresistibly from the two 
" premises " : thus, — 

All A is part of B ; 
C is part of A ; 
therefore C is part of B. 

The intellectual effort in scholasticism lay in the selection and 
an'angernerit of suitable premises, and in stringitig one syllogism 
to another, so as to build up into one system all the fragments 
of knowledge that the age possessed. These fragments were 
few and insignificant ; and the method of scholasticism could 
not discover new knowledge. At best it was suited only to 
test and to arrange, not to discover.* And so, lacking other 
material, the Schoolmen turned in upon their own minds, and 
constructed huge systems of speculative philosophy, highly 
organized, but, apart from the mental gymnastics involved iu 
constructing them, utterly barren for purposes of practical 
life. Scholasticism ignored the whole world of nature and 

1 Ancient Hi story, § 207. 

3 Tliis holds good, unless we call the development of geometrical truths 
out of a few axioms a discovery. Geometry is the kind of study for which 
the method of the Schoolmen is perfectly fitted. The trouble with them was 
that they tried to apply that method to other kinds of study for which it was 
not fitted at all, or else they ignored those otlier studies. This draw^ing of 
conclusions from premises is deduction. Modern science employs this method, 
of course, but its first task is to e.stabl1sh the truth of its premises, and 
to collect great masses of them, by inductive methods (observation and 


of men ; and it knew nothing of observation and experiment 
as means of study. 

About the year 1600, Francis Bacon (§ 109) very properly said: it 
was a ^'degenerate learning" that *'did reign among the Schoolmen, . . . 
who did out of a great quantity of matter and infinite agitation of wit, 
spin out unto us those laborious webs. . . . For if the wit, and mind of 
men . . . work upon itself » as the spider worketh his web; then it is endless 
and briugeth forth indeed cobwebs of learning, admirable for the fineness 
of thread and work, but of no substance or profit." — Advancement of 

With all its faults, however, scholasticism was the first 
efTort of the awakening mind of Europe. Men had turned 
to seek knowledge in an unfortunate direction ; but they dis- 
played amazing eagerness. The disputations of the School- 
men developed power in making precise definitions and subtile 
distinctions ; * and it is difficult for us to comprehend the in- 
tellectual stir and enthusiasm that agitated Europe as a result 
of their speculations. Still, scholasticism is memorable as a 
striving, not as a product. Indeed, it not only could not of 
itself make progress, but in two ways it was actually to retard 
progress. It constructed so complete a speculative system that 
it had no room for new facts; and its system was so connected 
with theology that finally to question a philosophic theory 
was to incur the condemnation of the church. In character, 
as well as in time, scholasticism belongs to medievalism^ not to the 

183. Scholasticism and Theology. — The School men set to work 
to put the church doctrines into a logical system. The first 
great Schoolman in this sense was the Italian Anselm, whose 
life was spent mainly as prior and teacher at the Norman 
monastery of Bee, and afterward as Archbishop of Canter- 
bury under William II and Henry I of England. Anselm 

1 It is easy to fiing cheap witticisms at the Schoolmen for their disputes as 
to how many spirits could stand on the point of a needle. Criticism of this 
kind, however, shows ignorance of the real problem the Schoolmen had in 
hand, — in this case, the nature of space. 

202 THE RENAISSANCE, 1850-1560. [§ 184 

felt that the highest exercise of the human reason was to 
fashion clear statements about the divine truths previously 
accepted by faith. Man was not to question whether a given 
doctrine was true, but he might use his reason to learn why 
it was true. This Anselm said explicitly : — 

Whether that is true which the universal Church believes with the 
heart and confesses with the mouth, no Christian can be permitted to ques- 
tion ; but, while holding fast to it without doubting, and loving and liv- 
ing for this faith, he may and should search in humility for the grounds 
of this truth. If he is able to add to his faith, intelligence, let him thank 
God ; if not, let him not turn against his faith, but bow his head and 

This came to be the general position of the Schoolmen^ but not 
until after an interesting attempt to exalt human reason to 
a higher place. Abdardy the second great Schoolman^ was a 
Frenchman of bold, restless intellect. He tried to use reason 
to test the truth of theological doctrines. He does not seem 
himself to have doubted the teachings of the church, but his 
appeals from all authority to reason as a sufficient guide, 
aroused the more devout and far-seeing churchmen. St. Ber- 
nard (§ 72, note) declared that not reason, but love and faith, 
enabled man to understand the ways of God. Abelard was 
condemned by church councils, and he recanted and burned 
his works. The earlier attitude of Anselm prevailed.^ 

184. Scholasticism and Science. — By the thirteenth century 
Europe had recovered other works of Aristotle besides his 
Logic, and the Schoolmen exercised themselves upon these 
writings also, but without in the least learning Aristotle's 

1 Another great division among the early Schoolmen was that into iVbmt- 
nalists and Realists. One party urged, somewhat as Plato had done, that our 
general names, such as " virtue " and " tree," stand for real existences: the 
general, or universal, tree, these Realists held, exists in the divine mind, and 
all individual trees are merely manifestations of it; virtue is an essence in 
itself, independent of all virtuous deeds and thoughts. The Nominalists 
held, on the other hand, that such terms are mere names for the qualities we 
mentally abstract from concrete deeds and trees : there are individual trees, 
but no general tree; there are virtuous persons, but no virtnoiu essence, 
independent of persons. 


method of scientific observation. Some little science did creep 
into Europe from the Arabs, especially astronomy and chem- 
istry. But the astronomy was mainly astrology , a system 
of fortune telling by the stars ; and the chemistry was largely 
a deluded search for the " philosopher's stone," which should 
transmute metals into gold, or for the elixir of life, a drink 
that should confer immortality. Men who dealt in either 
science, honestly or as quacks, were generally held to be 
wizards, who had sold their souls to the devil in return for 
forbidden knowledge. 

185. The Great Schoolmen of the Thirteenth Centnzy. — The School- 
xoen, with their barren method, continued almost undisputed masters of 
the intellectual field through the thirteenth century. The three great 
names of the century are those of Albert the Great, Thomas of Aquino, 
and Duns the Scot. Albert (Albertus Magnus, died 1280) was a German 
Dominican friar who had studied at Bologna and at Paris. He mingled 
with his studies enough of curious speculation upon the properties of 
stones, plants, and animals to be accused of the ** black art.*' Thomas 
Aquinas (died 1274) was an Italian Dominican, and a pupil of Albertus 
Magnus. He studied at Naples and Paris, and afterward lectured at 
Paris to immense audiences. His great work summing up Christian 
theology is the most complete of all such published systems and is still 
looked upon as a standard authority. Duns Scotus (died 1308) was 

I among the last of the great Schoolmen. He was so popular that an able 
disputant was proud to be called ** a Duns.*' When a better intellectual 
method arose, after the revival of Greek learning, the term became one of 
opprobrium. It survives in *' dunce." 

186. Roger Bacon: a Forerunner of the Scientific Method. — The 
thirteenth century saw one memorable attempt to study nature 
in a scientific way. Priar Bacon^ (Englishman, died 1294) is 
sometimes called a Schoolman, but he spent his life in pointing 
out the lacks of the scholastic method and in trying to make 
clear the principles of scientific study. His "Great Work" 
was a cyclopedia of thirteenth century knowledge in geog- 

1 Roger Bacon, the thirteenth centary friar, must not be confused with 
Francis Bacon, his more famous bat no more deserving countryman, of two 
centaries later (§ 199). 

204 THE RENAISSANCE, 1360-1560. [§ 186 

raphj, mathematics^ music, and physics. Bacon wins more 
and more recognition from scholars now, but in his own day he 
was listened to only to be persecuted. He was a devoted stu- 
dent, working under difficulties incredible and incomprehensible 
to us. Fourteen years he spent in prison. More than once he 
sought all over Europe for years for a copy of a book, when a 
modern scholar under like wants would need only to send a 
note to the nearest bookseller. He learned of the ocean east 
of China, and speculated convincingly upon the feasibility of 
reaching Asia by sailing west into the Atlantic (§ 197). He 
knew much about chemical explosives, and is believed to have 
invented gunpowder. He is thought also to have used a com- 
bination of lenses as a telescope. Probably he foresaw the 
possibility of steam : certainly, he prophesied that in time 
wagons and ships would move swiftly without the help of 
horses or sails. In 1258, Brunetto Latini, the tutor of Dante, 
visited Roger Bacon and wrote as follows to a friend in Italy : — 

Among other things he showed me a black, ugly stone called a 
magnet, which has the surprising quality of drawing iron to it ; and if a 
needle be rubbed upon it and afterward fastened to a straw, so that it will 
swim upon water, it will instantly turn to the pole star. . . . Therefore, 
be the night never so dark, neither moon nor stars visible, yet shall the 
sailor by help of this needle be able to steer his vessel aright. This dis- 
covery so useful to all who travel by sea, must remain concealed until 
other times, because no master mariner dare use it, lest he fall under im- 
putation of being a magician, nor would sailors put to sea with one who 
carried an instrument so evidently constructed by the devil. A time may 
come when these prejudices, such hindrances to researches into the secrets 
of nature, will be overcome ; and then mankind will reap benefits from 
the labor of such men as Friar Bacon, who now meet only with obloquy 
and reproach. 

Bacon's work deserved to introduce a new scientific era ; but 
he found no followers. He lived at least a century too soon to 
influence the world about him. Scholasticism was to fall, not 
before his demonstration of its weakness, but through new 
popular needs and through the recovery of more of the knowl- 
edge of the Greeks than the scholastic system could hold. 


For Forthbr Reading. — (1) On Universities : Sources : Penn- 
sylvania BeprintSy II, No. 3, contains much valuable information con- 
cerning '' the Medieval Student " ; Henderson^ s Documents^ 262-200, 
gives the foundation charter of the University of Heidelberg. Modem 
accounts : Laurie's Rise of Universities ; Compayr^'s Abelard ; Jessop^s 
Friars (ch. vi, ** The Building up of a University ") ; Mullinger's Cam- 
bridge (chs. i-iii) ; Brodrick^s Oxford; and Rashdall's Universities in the 
Middle Ages (for advanced students only). 

(2) On Scholasticism : Rashdall and Compayr^, as above ; Stille^s 
Studies (ch. xiii) ; Poole's Medieval Thought; Churches Anselm; Mori- 
son^s Bernard; and Storrs' Bernard. 

A. Literature: Humanism. 

187. From 8oo to 1300 : Latin Chronicles. — From the eighth 
century to the thirteenth, practically all writing in Western 
Europe was in Latin, and was therefore the possession of 
a small class.^ Various spoken dialects had arisen from the 
mixture of Roman and Teutonic elements, but these were not 
yet the vehicle of literature. The Latin, too, was a crude 
and barbarous jargon, very unlike the polished diction of 
Cicero. The only writers were monks, and the writings con- 
sisted almost exclusively of the Lives of saints and of barren 
chronicles concerned mostly with narrow local interests. 

These monkish chronicles form a large part of the material upon which 
the historian has to draw for his knowledge of several centuries, but their 
use is made exceedingly difficult by several characteristics. 

a. The chroniclers usually lacked all sense of historical proportion. 
They cared more about the acquisition of the wonder-working bones of 
some saint by a monastery, or the election of a new abbot, than about a 
great war or the coronation of a new monarch ; while the deeper forces in 
a people^s life they seem not to have thought of at all.^ 

^ For some centuries, knowledge belonged so exclusively to the clergy that 
a man had only to show an ability to read, in order to establish his right to 
•* benefit of clergy " (§ 69) . 

2 The Anglo Saxon Chronicle has this entry for the important year of 1066 
in England : *' In this year King Edward died, and Earl Harold succeeded to 

206 THE RENAISSANCE, 1360-15M. [§188 

b. They were incredibly credulous. What ara intended for sober his- 
torical narratives are interfused, in perfect good faith, with the wildest 
stories of miracles. Indeed, the more marvelous a story, the more eagerly 
the writer seized upon it and the less likely he was to question its truth. 

c. They seem not to have distinguished clearly between the purposes 
of history and fiction. Most of the historical narratives partook of the 
nature of our *^ historical fiction.'' Even the contemporary accounts of 
the crusades, though earnest histories in form, were intended not so much 
to state exact truth as to amuse noble patrons by fable or by lively inven- 
tion or by flattery. 

d. They were oftentimes quite ready to forge a history or a charter 
for a pious purpose. A considerable portion of the official documents 
and charters preserved through the Middle Ages have been proved to be 
more or less clumsy forgeries.^ 

188. Rise of Vemacttlar Literatures in the Thirteenth Century. 

— Even after the thirteenth centuiy, Latin continued to be the 
chief language of science and philosophy. But poets and story- 
tellers needed to use the speech of the common people. This 
had been done all along by the minstrels, who, as wandering 
adventurers or as retainers of some lord, formed a characteris- 
tic part of medieval life ; and after 1200 there arose in various 
lands a popular poetry that began to deserve the name of lit- 
erature. Spanislr ballad poets chanted the Song of the Cid 
(commemorating the national hero in the conflict with the 
Moors). In the language of northern France, the trouveurs 
celebrated the adventures of Charlemagne and Roland or of 
King Arthur and his Table Round. In the softer language of 
the south of France (Languedoc) the troubadours sang of love, 
as did a like class of poets, the minnesingers, in Grermany. 
Similar songs were written in the dialect of southern Italy at 
the Sicilian court of Frederick II (§ 85).* In the north of Europe 

the kingdom and held it forty weeks and one day. And in this year William 
came and won England. And in this year Christ Church was burned. And 
in this year a comet appeared." 

1 Cf. Ancient History, § 6:i5, with reference to the " Donation of Con- 
stantine," the most famous forgery of the age. 

' But in the next generation, Dante's Divine Comedy made his Tuscan 
dialect the literary language for the whole of Italy. 


the ScandiihOLvian poets wove the ancient Korse ballads and 
legends into a mighty mythic epic, the Heimskringlaj — as the 
Germans also had done with their early legends, in the NiheU 
ungen Lied. England was more backward, because of the new 
language imposed for a while by her Norman conquerors. The 
Aiiglo Saxon Chronicle, it is true, did not qidte die out until 
the close of Stephen's reign, and soon afterward rude popular 
songs celebrated the deeds of Earl Simon ; but not until the 
fourteenth century did popular poetry of a high order awaken 
in that island. Finally, toward the close of the century, in the 
Canterbury Tales, Chaucer, "the Father of English Poetry," 
accomplished the fusion of the Saxon and the Norman French 
into a literary English, while at almost the same time Wyclif 
translated the Bible into the common tongue. 

Like the thirteenth century university and the Schoolmen, 
the troubadours and minnesingers were characteristically medie- 
val. But this rise of native literary languages was a necessary 
prelude to any wide-spread knowledge or- to any true national 
movements. Now that each country had in its own language 
a fit means for scholars to use, it was possible to attack the 
medieval system in science and theology with a chance of 
popular support. 

189. The Literary Renaissance. — The Eenaissance began in 
Italy, and began in literature even sooner than in painting. 
Italy was the natural home for such a movement. Italy's 
Vergil had been read by a few scholars all through the Middle 
Ages, and had dominated literary ideals almost as completely 
as Aristotle's Logic had dominated philosophy. The Italian 
language was nearer the Latin, too, than was that of any 
other country, and probably more of the manuscripts of the 
ancient Koman writers survived in Italy than elsewhere. 

Three names are commonly associated with the Italian lit- 
erary Renaissance,— Dante (1265-1321), Petrarch (1304-1874), 
and Boccaccio (1313-1375), — all citizens of Florence. The 
greatest of the three was Dante (§ 188) ; but, after all, Dante's 
thought belonged to the Middle Ages : it is only in his inde- 

208 THE RENAISSANCE, 1360-1560. [§ 189 

pendence and self-reliance that he prophesied a new era. 
Petrarch^ in the next generation, was the conscious champion 
of a new age. In feeling and aspiration he belonged wholly 
to the Renaissance, — which he did much to bring to pass. 
His graceful sonnets are a famous part of Italian literature, 
but his chief influence upon the world lay in his work as a 
tireless critic of the medieval system and as an ardent advo- 
cate of classical ideals. He attacked vehemently the supersti- 
tions and the false science of the day ; he ridiculed the mighty 
tomes of the Schoolmen as *' heaps of worthless rubbish " ; the 
universities themselves he laughed at as ''nests of gloomy 
ignorance " ; and he ventured daringly even to challenge the 
infallibility of Aristotle, — who, he said, was after all " only 
a man." 

But Petrarch did more than merely to destroy. It was 
desirable that the world should recover what the Ancients had 
possessed of art and knowledge, that it might take up progress 
again where they had left off. Petrarch began an enthusiastic 
search for classical manuscripts, and his disciples soon made 
this ?eal fashionable throughout Italy. 

Among these disciples the most famous was Boccaccio, nine years 
Petrarch's junior. He is widely famed as the writer of the Decameron, 
a collection of a hundred tales, which made him the father of Italian prose, 
as Dante was of Italian poetry ; but, as in the case of Petrarch, Boccac- 
cio's real worth to the world lay mainly in the impulse he added to the 
revival of classical learning. 

After Boccaccio, Italian literature declined suddenly for almost two 
centuries, probably because enthusiasm was directed rather to painting 
and sculpture. Not until the close of the Renaissance did Italy again 
produce great authors, — in the poets Tasso and Ariosto. But meantime, 
as we shall see (§ 195), scientific study began in this southern land ; and 
it should be added that the Florentine Machiavelli, in his famous work 
The Prince (about 1513), began the modern study of politics. 

The new enthusiasm for the classics became known as humanism 
(Latin human itas, culture). Within seventy years of Petrarch's death, 
or before 1450, the Humanists had recovered practically all the literary 
remains we now have of the Latin authors and a large part of the surviv- 
ing Greek manuscripts. Oftentimes the neglected manuscripts were 


found decaying in moldy yaults. Many had been mutilated, or bad been 
erased in order that the parchment might receive some monastic legend.^ 
Much had been wholly lost ; and if the humanistic revival had been 
a little longer delayed, a great deal that we now possess would never have 
been recovered. 

190. Recovery of the Greek Language. — With all their zeal 
for Greek manuscripts and Latin translations of them, the 
early Humanists were ignorant of the Greek language; but 
after about the year 1400, the knowledge of that tongue grew 
rapidly. Greek scholars were invited to the Italian cities and 
were given professorships in the universities. The increasing 
danger in the Greek Empire from the Turk made such invita- 
tions acceptable, and the high prices paid by princely Italian 
collectors drew more and more of the literary treasures of Con- 
stantinople to the Italian cities. Many a fugitive scholar 
from the East found the possession of some precious manu- 
script the key to fortune and favor in Italy.* 

191. The Place of Humanism in the History of Education. — At first, 
humanism had been stoutly resisted by the universities, especially outside 
Italy, bat it finally captured them and established a ^*new education.^* 
The earlier ^^ liberal education ** had contained no Greek and had given 
little acquaintance v^ith the Latin authors. The courses in ^* arts^^ were 
now broadened so as to furnish a true classical training. Monkish Latin 
was replaced by the refined style of Cicero, and the barren and often 
misleading ** compendiums " in earlier use were supplanted by a fuller 
knowledge of the great works of classical antiquity at first hand. From 
that time to the present day the classics have held a prominent place in 
educational systems, — until recently, almost an exclusive place. 

The value of this recovery of the past cannot be overstated. Greek 
thought and knowledge and the grand and beautiful conceptions of Greek 
and Latin' literature have been gradually absorbed into our modern 
thought and literature, which they still color. But merely as concerned 
the system of education, the change was less revolutionary than at first 
appeared. The spirit of the Schoolmen survived in the schools strongly 

1 In some cases this later writing has since been carefully removed, and 
the original writing restored faintly, through chemical processes. 

> The value of such a manuscript furnishes an essential element In the plot 
of George Eliot's Romola. 

210 THE RENAISSANCE, 1350-1660. [§ IW 

enough to conquer the conquerors. The originality and independence of 
the early Humanista waa soon exchanged in the universities for servile 
imitation and dependence upon authority. Cicero became almost as 
great an intellectual tyrant as Aristotle had been. The study of the 
classics took on an unwholesome formalism, from which it had to be 
rescued much later by a new scientific movement 

jB. The Fine Arts. 

192. Medieval Painting and Architecture. — Classical art had 
been as completely lost through the early Middle Ages as 
classical learning. Medieval art existed only as the handmaid 
of religion. Monks " illuminated " missals and other religious 
books, — painting with tiny brushes in brilliant colors on 
parchment, — and they designed gay page-borders and initial 
letters, sometimes with beauty and delicacy. On a larger scale, 
the only paintings were rude altar pieces, representing stiff 
Madonnas and saints, in conventional and unnatural colors. 
The painters knew little of either anatomy or perspective; and 
even the flowing draperies which they used freely could not 
hide their ignorance of how to draw the human body. 

Architecture, too, until the twelfth century, was relatively 
poor and rude. The style was the Romanesque, based upon 
old Roman remains and characterized by the round arch. The 
only buildings of any pretension, aside from the massive feudal 
castles, were churches, and the general plan for these was fur- 
nished by the old basilica.* But in the twelfth and thirteenth 
centuries, the Romanesque gave way to a new French style, 
called Gothic; and architecture, especially in churches and 
cathedrals, reached one of its greatest periods. The older ele- 
ments were all used, but with marvelous transformations and 
with important additions. Gothic architecture modified the 
round arch into the lighter pointed arch, and it used the old Greek 
column with a new freedom and variety, adding lofty, curiously 
vaulted ceilings. It substituted the tower for the dome, and 

1 Ancient History, § 488. 


Illcitkatiok fsom a Late Medieval Mandscrift (fifteenth century), 
ataoving In the (oT^rouud MBiimiliaii o( Aiiairla. Mary ol Burgundy, 
and their iod Philip. —Alter Uicroii, Fie Milituirt. 

212 THE RENAISSANCE, 136O-16G0. [g 192 

added, perhaps from the Saracens, heaveD-pointing spires. By 
the use of the new flyiytg buttress, strength was gained, so that 
it became safe to pierce the walls with row upon row of tall 
windows, giving the effect of lightness and complexity. New 
opportunities for ornament were found in the tracery, or open- 

ings in the stonework about doors and windows, in the mold- 
higs of the window frames, and in the use of stained gluss.^ 
The total result was a new architecture, bo different from 

' Sciiliitureil fiK"re» "'ere UHed. alwi, to fill the nfrbM *bout the portals, bat 
tbe; were llie robed forms of sniiilN carved mdelf in stone, not the nuirblc- 
sculptuted bodies of atbletea in wliioh aiu'ieiit nrt bad delighted. 


the older styles as to permit little oompariaon. Gothic archi- 
tecture indeed is the most perfect product of the Middle Ages, 

and a Gothic cathedral is one of the wonders of the world 
today. Such structures could have been reared only in an 
age of intense faith and spiritual longing, and they funn the 

214 THE RENAISSANCE, 1350-1650. [J 

finest expression of the highest life of the time. They 
religious aspirations in stone. 

193. Renalsunce Art. — Architecture was the one beauti 

thing that suffered at the Renaissance, when the noble GotI 

was replaced by imitations of the older Roman and Gre 

styles. In painting and sculpture, on the contrary, there w 

great gain. Ihese arts were reborn into the world, with t 

rebirth of a delight 

life; and painting, at leat 

reached a perfection nev< 

before known. 

This was particular! 
trueinltaly. Inthatlani 
with so many remaius o 
ancient art still preserve*: 
or buried in the soil ani 
now eagerly sought foi 
the new movement bec&mt 
Thi Cloistkrb, SAbiiBDRT Cathrdral. preeminently artistic. Art 
dominated the whole peo- 
ple, not merely a select few. Great popular processions did 
honor to single paintings, and famous works were produced ip 
an abundance almost inconceivable. 

TliB new artistic iiiipulae is usuftlly dated from the work of CHoUo, ewtj 
ill the fourteeDth century, but ItAlian painting culminated in the eigbt; 
years from 1470 to l.ViO. Between these dates came tiie workof ftrwjn'"'' 
thr, Bellini, Fra liartolommro, Micbnpl Angel", Raphael, Giorgione. Cof- 
regffio, Titian, Andrfa <M Sarto, Leonardo da t'lnei, and TintoreUo. Each 
town had ila able artiRtg, but nearly all the greatest masters, like miMt d 
those just named, beloiified tn Florence or to Venice. Many of fb,iM 
men practised more than one art. Thus Michael Angelo was greM W 
architect and sculptor a« well as painter, and he was not without fame H 

Untii about 1460, the palntiogs were mainly frescoes, or paintings apon 
plastered ceilings, in churches or palaces. But one of the Van E^ei 
brothers in Holland, abont the middle of tlie fifteenth century, inTenle* 
new methods of preparing; oil paints, so that painting upon canras tiecaoB 
possible. Atiout the same liuie, engraving of copper plates and Iha uM 


Cathrdrai. of Rhriuh. 

of wDodcnts came into utte, — to do fur works of art Koiiiething of what 
U» invention of printing was about to do for books. 

The great period of Dutch art was to come a little later, between 1000 
•nd 1660, with Bubetu, VanDgek, and Bembrandt. In the same century 

216 THE RENAISSANCE, 1360-1660. [5 IM 

came the ^reftt Spanish paintera, Velaaguez (15e!t-I660) and Muiitlo 
(I618-l(t82). Tlie other great painters of the renaissance age outside of 
Italy were Ihe Germana Albert DUrer (I471-162S) and Holbein (1498- 
1543), Neither England nor France produced much in this direction dur- 
ing these centuries. France did have her Pouiiitt (1694-1055) ; and 
some of the great Italians — 
Andrea del Sarto and Leo- 
nardo — found theirchief pat- 
ronage in Paris from Francis 
I, Jiist as a centur; later the 
English BOTereignsentertained 
Holbein, Rubens, and Van 

194. The Pagan Side of 
the Italian RenalsMnce. — 
There waa an evil side 
to the Kenaisaance. The 
men of the new move- 
ment, having cast off old 
restraints and beliefs, fell 
often into gi'oss and shal- 
low skepticism and int« 
shameless self-indulgence 
and sensuality. Religious 
faith and private morals 
both declined, and for a 
time Italian society sank 
lower than the old Pagan 
The north of Europe was saved, in the main, from this phase 
of the Kpiiaissance by a greater moral earnestness and by the 
fact tliat in the north the movement was more purely Intelleo- 
tual and less artistic and sensuous than in Italy. 

CHURru or SAinT-MflrLOM at Rouen; 



195. A Sdentlflc Study of " Sonrcea " for a Enowledge of Early 
CbriBtiaoity. — The purely intellectual side of the Reuaissaiice 
manifested itself first in a new historical attitude — in a desire 
to get at the reai sonrcea of the knowledge of past centuries, aud 
in a critical treatment ofcor- 
TujHed or forged doctinieids. 
Plainly, this new historical 
criticism wa3 akin to the 
enthusiasm of the Hu- 
manists for the recovery of 
faithful copies of classical 
writings ; but it was also re- 
lated to a fervent religious 
desire to remove abuses 
in the church and to get 
back to the spirit and prac- 
ticesof priinitiveChristian- 
ity. Like other renaissance 
movements, historical criti- 
cism had its birth in Italy ; 
but it was to find its more 
abiding home north of the 


The first modem scholar ice. Venptian Gothic (tourteeiilh cen- 

With the critical scientific '"'^'' >°""«»««'' ^y By^ntine art. 

Spirit was Laurentiua Valla'^ (died 1457), private secretary to 
Pope Nicholas V. Among other works, Valla edited the New 
Testament carefully in Greek, and he proved the falsity of the 
"Donation of Constantine." ' 

 K we except Soger Bbcod ({ 186). Petrarcli was rathuT n mitii of lettcni 
tban ft scholar, thoagh he, too, showed nmch or this scientific spirit [tiitealiog 
wlU] old manuscripts. It is Datable that Roger Bauin called attention to tha 
need ol recover; Euid translation i>[ the documents ol early Christianity. See 
Cambridge Modern Hiitorj/, I, S8C-(>'J2. 

* Andeat Eiltory, f 636. 

218 THE RENAISSANCE, 1360-1660, [§196 

Valla's work was taken up by John Colet, the Englishman, and 
by Erasmus, the Hollander. Colet studied in Italy, and, upon his 
return to England, lectured at Oxford upon the New Testament-, 
treating it as an historical presentation of early Christianity. 
He influenced a considerable group of enthusiastic followers. 
The most important of them was Erasmus, whose influence 
was not confined to any one country, but was European in 
extent. In 1516, Erasmus published the New Testament in 
Greek and in Latin, with the text carefully revised and with 
critical notes. Afterward he edited the writings of many of 
the early Christian Fathers. In another class of works, — The 
Colloqtdes and The Praise of Folly, — with unsurpassed wit 
and graceful ridicule he lashed the false methods and the folly 
of the monks and the Schoolmen, and so prepared society to 
turn to the serious constructive side of the " New Learning." 

Erasmus has been called " the Scholar of the Reformation,'' 
and he did furnish Luther with much material ready for use ; 
but he was not himself a revolutionist. Like Valla and Colet, 
he worked only for reform within the church. 

196. Inyentions. — The new intellectual movement was 
marked by a number of new inventions or by the first prac- 
tical applications of them. Four demand special attention. 

a. Gunpowder had been known for over a century, but its 
first serious use was in the wars between Charles V and 
Francis I, about 1521. This invention gave the final blow to 
the already dying feudalism. 

6. Printing was to do more to advance the new order than 
gunpowder could do to destroy the old. The invention of print- 
ing from movable type came at a happy moment, just when 
the Humanists had fairly completed their recovery of ancient 
manuscripts. The invention is claimed for different people and 
places ; but the first effective process seems to have been that 
practised by John Gutenbeiy at Mainz in Germany, about 1450.^ 

1 Special report: ancient *' printing " from seals and blocks, especially in 
China, and the development in Germany of movable type of one size (cf. 
Whitcomb's Modem Europe, 28, 29, for an admirable brief statement). 


In less than twenty-five years, printing presses were at work 
in every country in Southwestern Europe, and, before 1500, 
Venice alone had sent out over three thousand editions of 
famous books. Ko previous invention had spread its influence 
so rapidly. The new process seems to have reduced the price 
of books by four-fifths at once, and so, of course, it enor- 
mously increased their circulation. It preserved the precious 
works recovered by the Humanists, and spread broadcast the 
new thought of the Reformation (§§ 205 ff.). 

c The telescope (§ 198) gave knowledge of other worlds. 

d. The mariner^s compass more than doubled the area of the 
known globe, and shifted the stage of historical action. 

197. Geographical Discoveries.^ — The Ancients had played 
with the notion of sailing around the earth. Aristotle speaks of 
" persons " who held that it might be possible ; Eratosthenes * 
feared that the great expanse of ocean could not be traversed ; 
and Strabo ' suggested that one or more continents might lie in 
the Atlantic between Europe and Asia. 

During the Koman period, however, no great motive had 
impelled men to make trial of these guesses, and during the 
Middle Ages a different geographical theory had gained con- 
trol. Men had come to believe that the known habitable earth 
was bounded on all sides by an uninhabitable and untraversa- 
ble world, — on the north by snow and ice, on the south by a 
fiery zone, on the west by watery wastes stretching down an 
inclined plane, up which men might not return, and on the 
east by a dim land of fog and fen, the abode of strange and 
terrible monsters.'' The Indian Ocean, too, was thought to be 
a lake encompassed by the shores of Asia and Africa. 

The first step in the discovery of America and in the other 
marvelous explorations of the fifteenth century lay in the cor- 
rection of these views. This was accomplished in part by a 

^ See Flake's Discovery of America or Payne's History of (he New World. 
« Ancient History, § 259. « Ancient History, § 491. 

* For some of these ideas, see the curious and interesting Travels of Sir 
John Mandeville (thirteenth century). 

220 • THE RENAISSANCE, 1360-1650. [§ 197 

better geographical knowledge of Asia, which was acquired in 
the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. Louis IX of France 
sent Friar Rubruquis as ambassador to the court of the Tartar 
Khan in central Asia; and the friar on his return reported 
that he had heard of a 9iavigable ocean east of Cathay (China), 
with a marvelously wealthy island, Zipango (Japan). This 
rumor of a navigable ocean to the east made a leap in men's 
thought. Friar Bacon in England (§ 186) at once raised the 
question whether it might not be the same ocean as the one 
that washed Europe on the west and whether men might 
not reach Asia by sailing west into the Atlantic. Indeed, 
Bacon wrote a book to support these conjectures, adding many 
opinions of the Ancients; and extensive extracts from this 
volume were copied into a later book, which was to become a 
favorite of Columbus'.^ 

Moreover, the Mongol emperors (§ 168) helped indirectly to 
give Europe true geographical ideas. They opened China to 
western strangers to a degree altogether new for that land, 
and, while their dominion lasted, many strangers and merchants 
visited the East. Among these were three Venetians, the Polos, 
who on their return sailed from Pekin through the straits into 
the Indian Ocean and up the Persian Gulf. Tliis proved true 
the rumor of Ruhruquis regarding an eastern ocean, and proved 
also that the Indian Ocean uxis not landlocked.^ 

From this time it was possible to think seriously of reaching 
India by sailing west ; and soon afterward commercial condi- 

1 Snch speculation implies that scholars understood the sphericity of the 
earth. See Ancient History, §§ 259, 540, for the orifjin of this knowledge and 
for its temporary loss to Christendom. Saracenic schools, however, preserved 
the truth, and some European thinkers had been familiar with It, even in the 
"Dark Ages." 

3 Travelers in that age did not often write descriptions of their travels. 
One of these Polos, however, being captured, soon after his return, in a sea 
fight between Venice and Genoa, remained a prisoner in Genoa for some years; 
and the stories that he told of his adventures were written down by one of his 
fellow captives. Thus was made '* The Book of Ser Marco Polo," one of the 
most widely read books of the later Middle Ages. 


tions changed so as to impel men earnestly to the attempt. 
The crusades had given a new impulse to trade with the Orient, 
until many eastern products were become almost necessities of 
daily life to Europe (§ 103) ; but in the fifteenth century, the 
progress of the Ottoman Turks threatened the old trade-routes. 
Constantinople, the emporium for the route by the Black Sea, 
finally fell into their hands, and each year their power crept 
further along the coast of Asia Minor and Palestine, endanger- 
ing the remaining route by the Red Sea. Under these circum- 
stances the question was forced home to Europe whether or not 
a new route could be found ; and the speculations of Bacon and 
the discoveries of the Polos pointed to an answer. 

The Portuguese, under Prince Henry the Navigator, had 
already been engaged in building up a Portuguese empire in 
Africa and in the islands of the Atlantic (Azores, Canary, and 
Verde ^ ) ; and about 1470 they began to attempt the circum- 
navigation of Africa. In 1486, a Portuguese captain, Bartholo- 
mew DiaZy while engaged in this attempt, was carried far to 
the south in a storm, and on his return to the coast he found 
it on his left hand as he moved toward the north. He followed 
it several hundred miles, well into the Indian Ocean, when his 
sailors compelled him to turn back to Portugal. India was 
not actiially reached until the expedition of Vasco da Gam a in 
1498, after more memorable voyages in another direction. 

One of the sailors with Diaz in 1486, when in this way he 
rounded the Cape of "Good Hope," w^as a Bartholomew 
Columbus, whose brother Christopher had also sailed on several 
of the Portuguese voyages, but now for some years had de- 
voted himself to the more daring theory that India could be 
reached by sailing west into the open Atlantic. Portugal, well 
content with her monopoly of African exploration, refused to 
assist Columbus to try his plan, and Henry VII of England 
declined to. furnish him ships ; but finally Isabella of Castile, 

1 The Dame " Cape Verde " indicates the surprise of tlie discoverers (1460) 
at verdnre so far south. 

222 THE RENAISSANCE, 1360-1650. [§ 198 

while the siege of Granada was in progress, fitted out his small 
fleet, and in 1492 Columbus added America to the possessions 
of Spain. 

The marvels of the new regions of the earth, so disclosed^ 
added mightily to the intellectual stir of the times. For a 
century or two, however, the immediate material gain was con- 
fined to the two countries which had begun the explorations. 
The Mediterranean trade decayed and the Italian cities lost 
their commercial importance ; but Portugal built up a great 
and wealthy empire in the Indian Ocean and in the adjoining 
islands of the Pacific, while Spain acquired the wealth of 
Mexico and Peru, and poured forth multitudes of adventurers 
to create a new Spain in America. 

198. Physical Science. — The new scientific methods which 
Valla and Erasmus had applied to history and theology, were 
applied a little, later to the natural sciences. The first great 
representative of this movement was the Polish astronomer 
Copernicus, The universally accepted system of astronomy 


was that of Ptolemy.* The earth was believed to be the center 
of the universe, and all the apparent movements of the sun 
and stars were explained by complex theories as to their rota- 
tion about the earth. Copernicus proved that the earth was 
only one member of a solar system which had the sun for its 
center. This discovery not only revolutionized the particular 
science of astronomy : it also helped to revolutionize thought 
about man and the world, by opening up such immensities of 
worlds and such possibilities of other forms of life as had 
never before been dreamed of. 

When the work of Copernicus was printed (1543),' the long 
series of devastating wars between Catholic and Protestant 
Europe was just beginning (§ 211). These wars were to have 
Germany for their especial battle ground, and for a long time 
they destroyed all chance of scientific or literary development 

1 Ancient HUtory^ § 492. 

3 Copernicus, from fear of persecution, delayed the publication of his dis> 
covery many years, until Just before his death. 


in that country. In another way the great struggle repressed 
scientific thought, even more completely, in the Catholic coun- 
tries. At the opening of the Renaissance, the popes had been 
among the most active patrons of the new movement; but 
now the reaction against Protestant revolt threw control into 
conservative hands, and the church used its tremendous power 
to stifle the teachings of the new science. 

Still, much was accomplished. In Italy, GaXV.eo (1564-1642) 
discovered the laws of the pendulum and of falling bodies, 
invented the thermometer, and, using a hint from a Holland 
plaything, constructed the first real telescope. He had already 
adopted the Copernican theory of the universe, and with his 
telescope he was able to demonstrate its truth by showing 
the " phases " of Venus in her revolution about the sun. His 
teachings, however, were considered dangerous and unsup- 
ported by scripture. He was summoned to Rome, imprisoned, 
and forced publicly to abjure his teaching that the earth moved 
around the sun.* Galileo's contemporary, the German Kepler, 
making use of the observations of the Danish astronomer, 
Tycho Brahe, established the exact laws of the motions of the 
planets ; and in England, a little later, Sir Isaac Newton stated 
the law of gravitation. 

199. England and the Renaissance. — England was a relatively 
poor and barbarous country, and had lagged behind in the 
early movements of the Renaissance. But about 1600, in the 
reign of Elizabeth, that land began to take a leading place 
both in science and in literature. Shortly after 1600 Harvey 
laid the basis for a true study of medicine by the discovery of 
the way in which the blood circulates,' and Napiei* widened the 

^The story is told that as Galileo rose from his knees after making his 
reeantation, he whispered to a friend, " But it does move, nevertheless." 

*The history of this discovery illustrates strikingly the slow progress of 
new ideas in past times, as compared with the ready welcome given them in 
oar own day. In earlier centuries it had been believed that the bright blood 
of the arteries and the dark blood of the veins were two distinct syutems, one 
coming from the heart, and the other from the liv^r. Half a century before 


application of mathematics by the invention of logarithms. 
At about the same time, Francis Bacon, statesman and philos- 
opher, in his essays and especially in his Normm Organuni, 
called the attention of the world to the necessity of true 
scientific methods of observation and experiment and induc- 
tion. However, the real glory of the Elizabethan age was the 
English drama, with ShaJcspere for its foremost representative, 
among such other great authors as Marlowe, Greene, Beaumont, 
Fletcher, and Ben Jonson.* Another form of English poetry 
in the same age is represented by Spenser's Fairy Queen, 

For Further Rbadino. — For Division II, see page 205. For Divi- 
sions I, III, and IV, the following works may be used, particularly by 
advanced students : Adams^ Civilization^ 364-391 ; Lodgers Close of the 
Middle Ages, 515-523 ; Pearson^s Symond^s Short History of the Renais- 
sance; Robinson and Rolfs Petrarch; £merton*s Erasmus; Froude's 
Erasmus; Poole's Illustrations of Medieval Thought; Beazley's Prince 
Henry ; Winsor's Columbus ; The Cambridge Modem History, I. Saints- 
bury's Flourishing of Bomance is a delightful treatment of medieval liter- 
ature. Liibke's History of Art is particularly good for the medieval period ; 
and Moore's Gothic Architecture is excellent. In fiction, Readers CloistiT 
and Hearth and George Eliot's Romola picture renaissance movements. 

Harvey's time, the identity of the two systems had been discovered, together 
with the purification of the dark blood in the lungs, and with a full undei^ 
standing of the functions of the heart. The discoverer was Servetus, a young 
Spanish physician. But Servetus, who held opinions regarding the Trinity 
somewhat like those of modern Unitarians, was put to death for heresy (§ 217). 
It chanced that he had announced his medical discovery about the blood in 
the book in which he published his heretical opinions in theology ; and his 
persecutors sought out the copies of this book, to bum them, so zealously that 
only two copies have survived. Thus the great discovery seems to have 
received no attention, until it was made again, independently, by Harvey, 
fifty years later. Even then it was not at once accepted, though its truth 
could be so easily demonstrated. A fierce controversy raged over it, inas- 
much as it had not been taught by the Ancients ; and, as late as 1700, it was 
solemnly questioned at Harvard College. 

1 No attempt is made to treat this topic of Elizabethan literature, because 
high school students will probably give much more attention to it in other 
classes than is possible here. 






200. As we enter upon the later centuries of modern history, the 
story grows more and more complex. There is a confusing multitude of 
actors, and important events ciowd upon one another in a bewildering 
maze. To secure a clear view we must fix our attention upon a few great 
moyements and characteristics. Those most demanding notice in the 
three centuries between the Renaissance and the French Revolution are : — 

1. The Protestant Reformation (the religious revolution), 1520-1648. 

2. The struggle in England between Parliament and the Stuart despotism, 


3. The predominance of France under the absolutism of Louis XIV, 


4. The changes in the political map of Europe in the first half of the 

eighteenth century : rise of Russia and Prussia (Peter the Great 
and Frederick the Great) and decline of Sweden and Poland. 

5. Reform by benevolent despots in the second half of the eighteenth 


6. The changes in the world-map : the eighteenth century struggle for 

world- empire between England and France, 1690-1783. 


aOl. Spain. 

Charles /, 1516-1656 (Emperor Charles V, 1619-1556) : the Reformation 
in Germany and the rivalry of France prevents the conquest of 
Europe ; abdicated in favor of his son. 


226 MONARCHIC STATES, 1620-1789. [§202 

Philip II, 1556-1508 : revolt of the Netherlands ; '' Invincible Armada.'' 

Philip III, 1598-1621 : expulsion of the Moriscoes. 

Philip IV, 1621-1665. 

Charles II, 1665-1700 : last of the Spanish Hapsburgs. 

Philip V, 1700-1746 : first Spanish Bourbon (§ 261). 

Ferdinand VI, 1746-1759. 

Charles III, 175i)-1788, brother of Ferdinand. 

Charles IV, 1788-1808: seizure of Spain by Napoleon (§ 367).i 

202. Emperors of the Holy Roman Empire and Archdukes of Austria. 

Charles K, 1519-1556 (Charles I of Spain). 

Ferdinand I, brother of Charles, 1556-1564: added Bohemia to the 

Hapsburg realms by marriage with Anne of Bohemia. 
Maximilian II, 1564-1576. 
Rudolph II, 1576-1612. 
Mathias, 1612-1619, brother of Rudolph. 
Ferdinand II, 1619-1687, cousin of Rudolph. 
Ferdinand III, 1637-1657. 
Leopold I, 1658-1706. 
Joseph I, 1705-1711. 

Charles VI, 1711-1740 : brother of Joseph I ; died without male heir. 
Charles VII, of Bavaria, 1742-1745 : a fugitive much of his short reign ; 

war with Maria Theresa. 
Francis I (of Lorraine), 1745-1765 : husband of Maria Theresa 

(daughter of Charles VI and Archduchess of Austria). 
Joseph II, 1765-1790 : son of Maria Theresa ; restoration of the Hapsburg 

Leopold II, 1790-1792 (brother of Joseph). 

Francis II, 1792-1806 : Empire ends ; ** Emperor of Austria," 1804-1835. 
Ferdinand I (the '» First " because ** Emperor of Austria"), 18:)5-1848. 
Francis Joseph I : nephew of Ferdinand ; became emperor, 1848. 

203. France. 

Frajicis /, 1515-1547. 
Henry II, 1547-1559 : followed 

by his three weak sons 
Francis II (1559-1560), 
Charles IX (1560-1574), 
Henry III (1574-1589) : 

these four reigns a period of re- 
ligious civil war ; Catherine of 
Medici, the Queen-mother, the 
evil genius of the last three 

1 Charles died in France before the overthrow of Napoleon. The subsequent 
rulers of Spain are named in §§ 495-499. 


Henry IV, 1689-1610 : cousin of the preceding kings and the first 

Bourbon king; Edict of Nantes. 
Louis XIII, 1610-1643 : rule of Bichelieu, 
Louis XIV, 164S-1716: rule of Mazarin during the King's minority ; 

wars and foreign conquests ; supremacy of France in Europe ; 

revocation of Edict of Nantes. 
Louis XV, 1716-1774, great-grandson of Louis XIV. 
Louis XVIt 1774-1792 : grandson of Louis XV ; the Revolution.^ 

204. England. 
a. Tudors. 

Henry VIII, 1509-1647 : son of the first Tudor king, Henry VII 
(§ 147) ; separates Church of England from Rome ; followed in 
succession by his three childr^i. 

Edward VI, 1647-1653. 

Mary, 1553-1668 ; Catholic reaction. 

Elizabeth, 1668-1603. 

6. Stuarts, 

James I, 1603-1626. 

Charles I, 1626-1649 : civil war ; execution, 

{The Commonwealth and Protectorate, 1649-1660.) 

Charles II, 1660-1686. 

James II, 1686-1688. 

The ''Glorious Bevolution'' of 1688. 

c. House of Orange. 
William III and Mary, 1689-1702 (Mary died in 1694). 


(2. The Last Stuart. 
Anne, second daughter of James II, 1702-1714. 

e. Hanoverians (Welfs : House of Brunswick). 

George I, 1714-1727. 

George II, 1727-1760. 

George III, 1760-1820 (grandson of George 11). 

George IV, 1820-1830. 

WUliam IV, 1830-1837 (brother of George IV). 

Victoria, 1837-1901 (niece of William) : parliamentary government, 

Edward VII, 1901-. 

1 A table of the rulers and governments of France after 1792 may easily 
be made by the student from §§ 338-377 and 402-444. 



1520-1648. • 

A, Luther and Germany. 

205. BCartin Luther and the Abuse of "Indulgences." — The 

abuses within the church which called forth efforts for reform 
from Colet and Erasmus drove more impetuous spirits into 
complete revolt. This revolt was to divide Western Christen- 
dom into opposing camps for centuries. We call the move- 
ment the Protestant Reformation. Its leader was Martin 
Luther (1483-1546), son of a Thuringian peasant. Luther 
was a straightforward, forceful man, with a blunt, homely 
manner that went straight to the heart. Erasmus addressed 
scholars; Luther spoke to the people. He had become an 
Augustinian friar and a professor in the University of Witten- 
berg in Saxony. He was a born fighter, and, in 1517, at the 
age of thirty-four, he entered upon a struggle with Rome.* 

Luther's revolt grew out of his opposition to* the sale of 
" Indulgences." The theory of the church was, that the pope, 
as the representative of St. Peter, might, in reward for some 
pious act, remit the punishment in purgatory to a sinner who 
had truly repented and who had so far as possible atoned for 
his sins. The ignorant multitude, however, unable to read the 
Latin documents, thought that the "Letters of Indulgence'* 
promised unconditional pardon; and this unwarranted belief 

1 When it became plain that Luther's movement was to break up the unity 
of Christendom, Erasmus and nearly all the other Humanists were violently 
repelled by it. Such disruption seemed to them a greater evU than the faults 
it sought to cure. Cf . § 195, close. 



seems to liave been encouraged grossly by some professional 
" pardoners," who peddled such " letters " for money.* 

Criticism of these evils was not new. Over a hundred 
years before Luther, Chaucer had devoted the only bitter lines 
in the Canterbury Tales to the Pardoner, with his wallet " bret- 
ful of pardons, come from Eome all hot." In the time of 
Luther the evil had grown in dimensions : Erasmus had writ- 
ten scathing words against it, and earnest and radical spirits 
were ready for an outbreak. Luther had criticised it in earlier 
writings ; and in 1517 a visit to Wittenberg by Tetzel, a Domin- 
ican friar, with a batch of these papal letters, called forth a 
more vehement protest from him. 

906. Lather posts his Theses. — In accordance with a Uni- 
versity custom, Luther expressed his protest in the form of a 
paper posted on the Wittenberg church door, containing ninety- 
five propositions,* upon which he challenged all comers to pub- 
lic debate. The theses were in Latin, and they admitted the 
old church doctrine of papal indulgences; but their protest 
against the abuse of the practice met with so ready a popular 
response that in a few days they were known and discussed in 
German all over the land. 

1 It had long been common to grant *' Indulgences " in retarn for gifts of 
money for pious purposes ; and in a period of ignorance and moral decline, 
this practice slipped easily into what was practically an almost undisguised 
selling of indulgence for sin. The church, aroused to reform by the Protest- 
ant secession, recognized this danger. The Council of Trent, which sat at 
iotervals from 1545 to 1563, to expiate heresies and reform morals, reafHrmod 
emphatically the need of three acts in the penitent to secure the entire remis- 
sion of shis, — "to wit, contrition, confession, and atonement." The Council 
ttien condemns " those who assert that indulgences are useless, or who deny 
the power of the church to grant them. ... In granting them, however, the 
Council desires that . . . moderation be observed. . . . And, being desirous 
of mending the abases which have crept in, by occasion of which the honor- 
able name of indulgences is blasphemed by heretics, the Council ordains . . . 
that all evil gains for the obtaining thereof be abolished." In later times the 
practice of granting indulgences in return for money has been discontinued. 
A translation of a Letter of Indulgence is given in Scrib7ier*8 Monthly ^ XII, 
SO. See also Pennsylvania Reprints, II, No. 6. 

> Pennsylvania Reprints^ II, No. 6. 

230 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1520-l()i8. [§207 

Luther was honestly amazed at this result. He seems at 
first to have had no thought of denying papal authority. He 
dedicated to Pope Leo X certain writings in defense of his 
position, and in a letter to Leo he says: — 

By what unlucky chance it is that these particular propositions 
of mine, more than all others, should go forth into nearly all the earth, I 
am at a Icnss to know. They were set forth here for our use alone, and 
how they should come to everybody's knowledge is incredible to me. . . . 
But what shall 1 do ? Recall them I cannot ; and yet i see that their 
notoriety bringeth upon me great odium. In order then to soften my ad- 
versaries, and to gratify my friends, I send forth these trifles [proofs, 
etc.] to explain my theses. For greater safety, I let them go forth, most 
blessed Father, under your name and under the shadow of your protec- 
tion. Here all who will may see how basely I am reproached and belied 
by my enemies. . . . Save or slay, call or recall, approve or disapprove, 
as it shall best please you, I shall acknowledge your voice as the voice of 
Christ presiding and speaking in you. 

However, Luther found himself unable to defend this origi- 
nal position against the skillful logic of his critics; and by 
degrees he was driven into open rebellion against all papal 
authority. Soon he denied the infallibility of the pope and 
of church councils, and appealed to the Bible as the rule of 
conduct and of faith. This meant, of course, Luther^s judg- 
ment of the Bible. So Protestantism unintentionally was to 
come to stand for the right and duty of individual judgment 
in matters of religion. 

207. Burning of the Papal Boll : Luther at Worms. — Finally, 
after trying to convert the rebel by legates, Pope Leo X 
issued a bull threatening Luther with excommunication if he 
did not within two months abandon his position. This bull 
Luther burned before the town gates in December, 1520. 
The open conflict between the German friar and the Catholic 
church had begun. 

The next year Charles V summoned a Diet of the Empire 
at Worms, to settle affairs in Germany. Luther attended, 
under a safe conduct, and fearlessly reaffirmed his position. 


His friends bad tried to dissuade bim from attending the Diet, pointing 
to the fate of Huss a century before ; but Luther persisted, saying char- 
acteristically, ^^ I would go on if there were as many devils in Worms as 
there are tiles on the housetops/^ Before the Diet he showed no falter- 
ing, though the power of the Empire and of the church were arrayed in 
scornful contempt against him ; and he closed his statement with the 
heroic words, " Here I stand. As God is my help, I can no otherwise/* 

The Diet pronounced tlie ban of the Empire against him and 
ordered his writings burned. Luther was carried off into hid- 
ing by his friends, and he spent a year at the Wartburg castle 
translating the New Testament into German. Meantime his 
teachings spread rapidly over North Germany. 

208. The Peasant War. — The German peasants were in a more de- 
plorable condition than those of France or England. The new religious 
doctrines spread among them in somewhat distorted form, accompanied 
by new ideas of property rights. In 1525, the peasants rose in arms, 
arenging centuries of suffering by terrible cruelties toward their masters. 
Lather seems to have sympathized with their earlier demands,^ but evi- 
dently he came to fear that his reform would be associated with anarchy, 
and he called loudly upon the Protestant princes to put down the rebels 
with the sword. The rising was finally stamped out, and apparently the 
peasantry won no improvement from it. 

B. Charles V axd the Reformation. 

209. A Respite for the Reformers. — The ban of the Empire 
would have been enforced and Lutheranism would have 
been crushed at its birth, if the young and zealous Catholic 
Emperor, Charles V, had had his hands free. Happily for 
Protestantism, his reign was spent in incessant wars.'' While 

^ See Pennsylvania Reprints^ II, No. 6, pages 25-^, for the peasants' Htiite- 
ment of their program. Some of these radical Protestants were called Ana- 
haptistSf because of their doctrines about baptism. Ten thousand of them are 
said to have been put to death in the cruel vengeance of the victorious lords. 

* Cf. §§ 170-173. It is a peculiar fact that the two countries destitute of 
Bettled government gave Europe the Renaissance and the Reformation. The 
intense civic vigor of the small Italian states was a condition favorable to the 
inteilectnal activity and independence of the Renaissance, and the absence of 
an effective central government was the condition which permitted Protes* 
tantism so long to grow unchecked in Germany. 

232 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, ir)20-1648. [§210 

the Diet of Worms was condemning Luther, the Spanish towns 
were rising in revolt and Francis I of France was seizing 
Italian territory. The rebellion was put down promptly and 
the ancient liberties of the Spanish towns were extinguished; 
but the wars against France and against the Turk, with only 
brief truces, filled the next twenty-three years (1621-1644); 
and so for a generation the new faith was left to grow strong.* 

210. ** Protestants " ; the Augsburg Confession; League of 
Smalkald. — The first important interruption in the French 
wars came in 1529. Charles at once summoned a Diet at 
Speier, which reaffirmed the decree of Worms. Against this 
decision the Lutheran princes presented a protest. This act 
gave the name Protestant to their party. The following year, 
in a Diet at Augsburg, the Lutherans put forward a written 
statement of their beliefs.* Charles, however, autocratically 
demanded from the princes the execution of the decrees of 
Worms and Speier, and prepared to enforce them by arms. 
In defense, the Protestant nobles organized the League of 
Smalkald; but an open clash was once more postponed, 
because of an attack upon Germany by Solyman, the Turkish 

211. Opening of the Religious Strife in Germany: Peace of 
Augsburg. — Before Charles was again at liberty to give his 
attention to his Protestant subjects, Lutheranism had become 
the religion of moat of Germany and of all Scandinavia, while 
the English church had cut itself off from Rome as an inde- 
pendent Episcopal Church, and a new Presbyterian heresy 
had begun to spread rapidly in France and even in Germany 
(§§ 216 ff.). Try as he might, Charles did not find himself free 

1 Tlie striking incidents connected with these wars were (1) the Battle of 
Pa via (1525) and the capture of Francis ; (2) tlie capture and sack of Rome 
by the army of Charles (made up largely of German Lutherans), when the 
Pope for a time had sided with France ; (3) the alliance between Francis and 
the Turkish Sultan, Solyman the Magnificent, and Solyman 'a invasion of 
Germany ; (4) the ravages of Turkish pirates along the Mediterranean coasts. 
These topics may be assigned students for special reports. 

3 This '* Augsburg Confession " is still the platform of the Lutheran Charch. 

, I 

I * 


to strike in Germany until 1546, the year of Luther's death. 
Then two brief 'struggles settled the contest for the time. 
In the first, Charles seemed completely victorious over the 
Smalkald League; but almost at once the defeated princes 
rallied again, drove Charles in hurried flight from their do- 
mains, and forced him to accept the Peace of Augsburg (1656) . 
According to this treaty, each ruling prince of the Empire was 
free to choose between Liitheranism and Catholicism for him< 
self and for all his subjects,* except that if an ecclesiastical 
ruler became a Protestant, he was to surrender his lands to 
the church, from whom they came. 

212. Abdication of Charles. — The Protestants in their last 
rising had sought aid from Henry II, the new French king; 
and France for her reward had seized some German districts, 
including the city of Metz. Charles proved unable to recover 
the territory. Chs^ined at the loss and disheartened by the 
split within the Empire, he abdicated his many crowns in 
1556. His brother Ferdinand succeeded him in the Austrian 
possessions, and soon after as emperor, while his son Philip II 
received the Netherlands, Spain, Naples, and Spanish America. 

C. The Counter-Eepormation. 

213. Protestantism in the South of £urope, and its Check. — 

For a time it seemed as though Protestantism would overrun 
the south of Europe also, but the Romance lands and' South 
Germany were finally saved to the old church. France was to re- 
main Catholic, partly as the result of religious wars (§§ 227 ff.). 
The same may be said of much of South Germany and of mod- 
ern Belgium (§§ 231, 222) ; and the final victory of Catholicism 
elsewhere was due partly to the terrible repression of the new 
faith by the Inquisition. More important than this element 
of violence, however, was the purifying of the old faith by the 
movement known as the Counter- Reformation, 

^ Observe that this peace secured toleration only for rulers, not for the peo- 
ple, and that it disregarded all Protestant sects except the Lutherans. 

234 THE TROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1620-1648. [§214 

214. The Inquisition, or Haly Office, had been organized in a 
comparatively mild form for the suppression of the Albigensian 
heresy (§ 83). After open resistance in Languedoc had been 
crushed, the Pope appointed a special court to hunt out and 
try heretics there. This court soon became a regular part of 
the machinery of the church. A little before 1500, it was 
introduced into Spain to deal with Jews and Moors who had 
adopted Christianity but who afterward returned to their 
old faiths ; and after the appearance of Lutheranism, the 
authorities of the church turned to it to deal with this more 
alarming heresy. The court was reorganized and enlarged; 
and in this final form it is generally known as the "Spanish 
Inquisition," It held sway in Portugal and in Italy, as well 
as in all the wide-lying Spanish possessions, but France and 
Germany never admitted it in any considerable degree. 

The methods of the Inquisition were atrocious, and its story 
is one of the darkest that blot the pages of history. The In- 
quisitor encouraged and commanded children to betray their 
parents, and parents their children. Upon secret accusation 
by spies, a victim disappeared, without warning, to under- 
ground dungeons. The trial that followed was a gross farce. 
The court did not confront the accused with his accuser, nor 
allow him witnesses of his choosing ; and it extorted confes- 
sion by cruel and ingenious tortures, carried to a point beyond 
which human courage could not endure. Acquittals were rare. 
The property of the convicted went to enrich the church, and 
the heretic himself was handed over to the government for 
death by fire. 

Persecution of unbelievers was characteristic of the age and 
disgraced every sect, Protestant as well as Catholic, but no 
Protestant land possessed a device so admirably calculated to 
accomplish its evil purpose as this Spanish Inquisition. Un- 
questionably it sifted out for destruction thousands upon thou- 
sands of the stoutest hearts and best brains of Spain, and no 
doubt it played a great part in the intellectual blight that soon, 
fell upon that people (§ 224). 


215. Reform within the Church : the Council of Trent ; the 
Jesuits. — A pleasauter form of the reaction against Protes- 
tantism lay in the gi*eat reform within the Catholic church. 
This movement was organized by the CmmcH of Trent (1545- 
1563). Catholic forms were not changed ; but some doctrines 
were more exactly defined, abuses were pruned away, and a 
greater moral energy was infused into the church.^ 

The new religious enthusiasm gave birth to several new reli- 
gious Orders. The most important of these was that of the 
Jesuits. This "Order of Jesus" was founded in 1534 by 
Ignatius Loyola, a gallant Spanish gentleman of deep religious 
convictions. Loyola had designed his society for missionary 
work among the Mohammedans ; but an accident prevented his 
setting out, and he soon adopted wider projects. The Jesuits 
stood to the friars somewhat as the friars stjood to the older 
monks (§ 84) : holding fast like both these Orders to an in- 
tensely religious private life, they represented a further advance 
into the world of public affairs. Their members mingled with 
men in all capacities. Especially did they distinguish them- 
selves as statesmen and as teachers. Their schools were the 
best in Europe, and many a Protestant youth was won back 
bv them to Catholicism. In like manner, as individual coun- 
sellers, they converted many a Protestant prince — especially 
in Germany, where the religion of the prince determined that 
of his people (§ 211). 

Much of the succjbss of the Jesuits was due to their perfect 
obedience to their superiors, and to their rigid military organi- 
zation. They became the chief soldiers of the pope in check- 
ing the advance of Protestantism in Europe, and their many 
devoted missionaries among the heathen in the New Worlds 
won vast regions to Christianity and Catholicism. 

^ This beneficent effect upon the Catholic world from the Protestant seces- 
sion corresponds to the moral awakening in the Church of England, two hun- 
'Ired years later, caused by the great Methodist secession. In some part, no 
doubt, the reform resulted from forces within the church, independent of the 
Protestant revolt. The work of Erasmus was one of these forces. 

236 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1620-1648. [§ 216 

D, Peotestant Sects. 

216. Diyision into Sects the Natural Result of Protestantism. — 

The right of private judgment, which lay at the basis of Prot- 
estautism (§ 206) and which was thoroughly in accord with the 
spirit of the Renaissance, resulted in a multitude of sects. 
These sects were scandalously hostile to each other; and, in 
Germany in particular, the mutual hatred of Lutherans and 
Calvinists seriously weakened the cause of the Reformation.* 
Undoubtedly, on the other hand, the variety of thought and 
the rivalry between the sects contributed to intellectual and 
moral activity. The two most important Protestant move- 
ments after the growth of Lutheranism have already been 
referred to (§ 211), but now demand fuller treatment. 

217. Calvinism. — The Father of the Presbyterian church 
and of Puritan theology was John Calvin, a Frenchman. Cal- 
vin had promptly adopted Luther's teachings against the 
papacy, but he added new ideas of his own regarding church 
government and religious doctrine. The city of Geneva 
afforded him an opportunity to put his system into practice. 
Geneva was a French town in the Swiss Alps. It was not a 
member of the Swiss confederation ; but it had just established 
itself as a free city-republic by rebellion against an ecclesiasti- 
cal lord ; and the bitter struggle left the people disposed to 
Protestantism. Here Calvin, a fugitive from France, took up 
his abode in 1536, and soon he was the absolute dictator of the 
little state. Geneva became a Puritan " theocracy," and fur- 
nished many hints for the future American Puritan common- 

Calvin's writings influenced profoundly his own and future 
times. The more ardent reformers from all Europe flocked 
to Geneva to imbibe his teachings, and then returned to spread 
Calvinism in their own lands. From Geneva came the seeds 

1 Catholics pointed to these divisions as proofs of the necessity of relying 
apon the collective wisdom of the church, rather than upon the individual 


of Scotch Presbyterianism, of the great Puritan movement 
within the English Church, of the leading Protestant move- 
ment among the Dutch, and of the Huguenot church in France. 

Calvin's government repressed amusements and tyi;annized 
over the private lives of citizens, but it made Geneva a sober 
and industrious commonwealth. One terrible deed stains 
Calvin's fame. Servetua, a learned physician, who denied the 
doctrine of the Trinity and who had had literary controver- 
sies with Calvin, ventured to visit Geneva. He was promptly 
arrested, tried for heresy, and burned at the stake.* 

The Calvinistic doctrine in its original form seems to nearly 
all men of the present time too sober and merciless. It was, 
however, sternly logical. It made strong men, and it appealed 
to strong spirits. Fortunately, in the course of historical 
movements, it became the ally of political freedom in Holland, 
England, and America. 

218. The Church of £ngland and English Puritanism. — In Eng- 
land, separation from Rome was at first the act of the mon- 
archs, rather than of the people, and the motives were personal 
and political, rather than religious. King Henry VIII had 
shown himself zealous against Luther, and had even written 
a book to controvert him. A little later, however, Henry de- 
sired a divorce from his wife, the unfortunate Catherine of 
Aragon, aunt of Charles V (§ 172). Catherine's only child was 
a girl (Mary), and Henry was anxious for a male heir, in 
order to maintain public peace and tranquillity. Moreover, he 
desired to marry Anne Boleyn, a lady of the court for whom 
he had begun to feel a guilty passion. After long negotiation, 
the Pope refused to grant the divorce. Thereupon Henry put 
himself in the place of the Pope so far as his island was con- 
cerned, and secured the divorce from his own courts. 

The secession of the English church was accomplished in the 
years 1532-1534, by two simple but far-reaching measures of 
Henry's servile Parliament. (1) The clergy and people were 

* See § 199, note. In the year 1903. Calvinist subscriptions from all over 
the world erected at Geneva a noble *' expiatory statue " to Servetus. 

238 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1620-1648. [§218 

forbidden to raake further payments to " the Bishop of Kome " ; 
and (2) the " Act of Supremacy '' declared Henry the " only 
supreme head on earth of the Church of England." 

Parliament was ready to follow the king in all matters, in the reign of 
the despot Henry ; but in this case, no doubt, its willingness was partly 
due to the old English feeling for independence of papal control (§ 164), 
and partly, perhaps, to some sympathy for the Lutheran movement. 

Henry wished no further change ; but his chief advisers and 
agents — his minister, Thomas Cromwell, and the Archbishop of 
Canterbury, Cranmer — had secret leanings toward the Refor- 
mation, and they secured from him some additional measures. 
The English Bible was introduced into the church service, and 
the doctrine of purgatory was declaimed false. At Henry's 
wish, too. Parliament dissolved the hundreds of monasteries 
in England. Some of the wealth of these institutions went to 
found schools and hospitals, but Henry seized most of the lands 
for himself, parceling part of them out to the gentry and to 
a new nobility, who w^ere thus attached to the new movement^ 

This was as far as Henry could be persuaded to go ; and to 
the close of his reign he continued to behead the " traitors " 
who recognized the papal headship and to burn the " heretics " 
who denied the leading papal doctrines.* During the short 
reign of Henry's successor, the boy Edward VI, England was 
ruled by a clique of great Protestant lords, who tried to 
carry the English church into the full tide of Protestantism. 
Priests were allowed to marry ; and the use of the old litany, 
of incense, tapers, holy water, and the surplice, was forbidden. 
The English Prayer Book and the " Thirty-nine Articles " of 
the English church date from this period. 

1 Forty thousand families are said to have been enriched by snch gifts. Of 
course this created a mighty influence hostile to reconciliation with Rome. 

3 Henry's most famous victim was Sir Thomas More, a Catholic gentle- 
man, and one of the noblest Englishmen of any age. More was beheaded for 
refusing to declare the marriage with Catherine illegal. One Protestant suf- 
ferer was Anne Askew, a gentlewoman of good position, who was burnt for 
saying " The bread [of the communion] cannot be God." Of. § 72, note. 


But though the nation had felt no great opposition to Henry's 
casting off papal supremacy, it was still overwhelmingly 
Catholic in doctrine and feeling; and Edward's half-sister 
Mary, on her accession to the throne, had no difficulty in doing 
away with the Protestant innovations of her brother's time. 
Mary, however, desired to undo also her father's work; and 
Parliament readily voted the repeal of the anti-Catholic laws, 
except that it stubbornly refused to restore the church lands. 
Finally the Pope wisely waived this matter, and the nation 
was solemnly absolved and received back into the old church. 
Then Mary proceeded to destroy her work by a bloody perse- 
cution of the Protestants, which roused popular fear and detes- 
tation and so prepared for another change. 

Over two hundred and seventy martyrs perished at the stake, — about 
half the entire namber that suffered death for conscience^ sake in all 
English history. The most famoos executions were those of Bishops 
Ridley and Latimer i and Archbishop Cranmer. 

A few Catholics had been burned by Edward's Protestant government, 
and even Latimer had preached in commendation of the torture of the 
Catholic Father Forest, roasted in a swinging iron cradle over a slow fire ; 
but the number of these Catholic victims had not been enough to arouse 
popular feeling in a people like the English of that day. So, too, in the 
long reign of forty >flve years that followed, — nine times as long as 
Mary's, — there were nearly as many Catholics put to death as there had 
been Protestant executions under Mary ; but there was no sudden piling 
np of executions, and moreover, nominally, death was inflicted in most 
cases not for religious faith but for treason against Queen Elizabeth.' 

Mary's brief and troubled reign was followed by the long 
and glorious rule of her half-sister, Elizabeth. The new 
Queen desired probably to return to the ecclesiastical system 
of her father: certainly she had little sympathy with extreme 

^ As Latimer and Ridley approached the stake the former called out coar- 
ageonsly to his friend, "Play the man, Master Ridley; we shall this day by 
God's grace light such a candle in England as I trust shall never be put out." 
The words were well justified by the result. 

> Elizabeth's ministers used the rack and other instruments of torture 
upon their Catholic victims ; but such deeds were secret in the Tower, and 
the executions took place, not at the stake, but on the more familiar scaffold. 

240 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1620-1048. [§219 

Protestantism. However, she was the daughter of Anne 
Boleyn, whose marriage with Henry was not recognized hy 
the papal party. Accordingly, that party denied Elizabeth's 
claim to the throne ; and in self-defense the Queen was forced 
to rely upon the Protestants. Throughout her reign, England 
was threatened by the Catholic Powers, and only Elizabeth's 
shrewd statesmanship saved her country from its incessant 
perils. Finally Philip II, with the blessing of the Pope, sent 
a mighty Spanish armament, the " Invincible Armada," for the 
conquest of England (§ 223). The heroic English navy, aided 
by a great storm in the North Sea, beat off the invasion (1688) ; 
and for the rising generation the gallant struggle identified 
patriotism with Protestantism. Thus, before Elizabeth's death 
(1603), England was Protestant in religion ; and even the Puri- 
tan doctrines from Geneva had begun to spread widely among 
the people (§ 233). 

For Further Reading. — Source material in Pennsylvania Beprints, 
II, No. 0, and III, No. 3. 

Modern accounts : Johnson, Europe in the Sixteenth Century, espe- 
cially on the Counter-Reformation and Calvinism, 261-276; Adams, 
Civilization^ 416-442 ; Kbstlin, Luther ; Beard, Luther ; Hausser, Befor- 
mation; Seebohm, Protestant Reformation; Alzog, Church History; 
Pastor, History of the Popes; Creighton, Papacy; Walker, Beformation 
(especially good) ; Fisher, Beformation ; Perry, Beformation in Eng- 
land ; Ward, Connter-Be formation ; Creighton, Age of Elizabeth; Creigh- 
ton, Queen Elizabeth ; Beesly, Elizabeth. 

Special Reports. — 1. Mary, Queen of Scots. 2. The Armada. 
3. Sir Francis Drake. 4. Sir Walter Raleigh. 5. John Knox. 


219. General Snrvey. — The Peace of Augsburg (§211), which 
closed the first religious wars in Germany, proved unsatisfactory to both 
parties ; and soon each was chai-ging the other with infringing the terms 
of the treaty. There seems little dolibt but that the Protestant Powers 
did systematically disregard the provisions intended to preserve church 
lands to the Catholic church. But though there were incessant bickerings, 


Germany had no further civil war for over sixty years. Just this interval 
was filled, however, with terrible religious strife in the Netherlands and 
in liYance; and then the age closed, as it began, with a civil war in 
Germany, — the most destructive in history. From the opening of the 
Smalkald war to the end of the Thirty Years' War (1646-1648) is a 
century of almost continuous religious strife. The close of the period is 
marked by the rapid decay of Spain, by the further disruption of Ger- 
many, by the rise of France, of the Dutch Republic, and of England, and 
by the development of political liberty in England. 

A. Spain and the Netherlands. 

220. The Power of Spain under Philip II. — Philip II suc- 
ceeded his father (§ 212) as the most powerful and most 
absolute monarch in Europe. The Spanish infantry were the 
finest soldiery in the world. The Spanish navy was the 
nnquestioned mistress of the ocean. Each year the great 
"gold fleet" filled Philip's coffers from the apparently ex- 
haustless wealth of the Americas. In 1580, Portugal and her 
East India empire fell to Spain/ and the Spanish boast that 
the sun never set upon Spanish Dominions became literal fact. 

221. The Netherland Revolt. — Charles V had seriously 
infringed the old liberties of the Netherlands and had set up 
the Inquisitioii in that country, with frightful consequences ; * 
but the great majority of the people had been attached to him, 
as their native sovereign, and had felt a warm loyalty to his 
government. Philip continued all his father's abuses, without 
possessing any of his redeeming qualities, in Dutch eyes. He 
seemed a foreign master, and he ruled from a distance through 

^ The ruling line of Portagal ran out ; and Philip II, closely related to the 
extinct family, claimed the throne. The Portuguese were unwilling to be 
annexed to Spain, but Philip easily seized upon the country. It remained 
Spanish until 1640, when its independence was established by a successful 
reyolt. Meantime most of its colonial empire, except Brazil, had passed 
/rom Spain to Holland (§ 225). 

^ Protestant writers used to claim that from fifty thousand to one hundred 
thousand men and women were bunied, strangled, or buried alive, within the 
Netherlands during Charles' reign. These numbers appear to be mere guesses 
p^nd serious exaggerations, but it is plain that the actual facts were horrible. 

242 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1620-1648. [§222 

foreign officers. Finally, Protestant and Catholic nobles joined 
in a demand for reform. These demands were mainly politi- 
cal ; but just at this time the Protestant mobs in the cities rose 
in fury to sack the churches and cathedrals (1566), and so 
gave a look of religious strife to the beginning of the move- 
ment against Spain. 

Philip's reply was to send the stern Spanish general, Alva, 
with a veteran army, to enforce submission. Alva's council is 
known as the Council of Blood, It declared almost the whole 
population guilty of rebellion, and so deserving of death, with 
confiscation of goods. With disgraceful disregard for even the 
forms of law, the Council proceeded to enforce the atrocious 
sentence upon great numbers, — especially upon the wealthy 
classes, — and in 1568 a revolt began. 

The struggle between the small disunited provinces and the 
world-empire was to last over forty years. In the beginning, 
it was essentially a conflict for political liberty, but it soon 
became a religious struggle. It was waged on both sides with 
an exasperated and relentless fury that made it a byword for 
ferocity, even in that brutal age. The worst excesses were 
chargeable to the Spaniards, because they made war upon 
women and children, as well as upon men. City after city 
was given up to indiscriminate rapine and massacre, with 
deeds of horror indescribable. 

Over against this dark side, stands the stubborn heroism of 
the Dutch people, unsurpassed and hardly matched in all his- 
tory, — a heroism which saved not themselves only, but also 
the cause of Protestantism and of political liberty for the 

222. William the Silent. The Dutch Republic. — The central 
figure on the side of freedom was William of Orangey the lead« 
ing noble of the land, known in history as William the Silent, 
He is not unfitly called the Dutch Washington. The per- 
sistent, courageous statesmanship of this hero over and again 
snatched a new chance from crushing defeat, and finally made 
his countrymen a nation. The seven northern provinces. 


244 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1620-1648. [§223 

Dutch in blood and Protestant in religion, became independent, 
as " The United Provinces." ^ 

The turning point of the war was the relief of Leyden (1574). 
For many mouths the city had been closely besieged, and the 
people were dying grimly of starvation. Fifteen miles away, 
on the North Sea, rode a Dutch fleet with supplies; but all 
attempts to relieve the suffering town had failed. Then 
William the Silent cut the dykes and let in the ocean on the 
land. Over wide districts the prosperity of years was engulfed 
in ruin ; but upon the invading sea the relieving ships rode to 
the city gates, and Dutch liberty was saved.* 

223. English Aid. Spain's '* Invincible Armada" attacks Eng- 
land. — In 1584, William was assassinated by a fanatic, at the 
instigation of Philip II ; but now at last Elizabeth of England 
was ready to render tardy aid. For many years, individual 
English adventurers had joined the Dutch army, or, like Drake, 
had attacked the Spaniards in half-piratical fashion in the 
New World. It was clear that only the successful resistance 
of the Dutch had kept Philip from long since attacking Eng- 
land ; and finally, in 1585, Elizabeth sent a small English army 
to the Netherlands.' 

Philip then turned upon England. His preparations for 
invading the island were delayed by a gallant exploit of Drake, 
who sailed into the harbor where the expedition was preparing 

1 This new state is often called the Dutch Republic, or the Netherlands. 
Its government was vcHted in a States General, representing the different 
provinces, and in a Stadtholder. The most important of the seven provinces 
was Holland, which has given its name, in popular usage, to all seven. The 
ten southern provinces of the old Netherlands soon gave up the struggle and 
returned to Spanish allegiance. They were largely French in race and Catho- 
lic in religion. Protestantism was of course completely stamped out in them. 
After this time, they are known as the Spanish Netherlands, and then as the 
Austrian Netherlands again, and finally as modern Belgium (§505). 

^ In memory of its heroic resistance, William offered Leyden exemption 
from taxes or the establishment of a university. The citizens finely chose 
the latter; and the University of Leyden, ever since one of the most famoos 
universities in Europe, arose to commemorate the city's deed. 

8 Anecdote of the dying Sir Philip Sidney and the drink of water. 


and burned the Spanish fleet, "singeing the beard of the 
Spanish king," as the old sea-rover described it ; but in 1588 
the " Invincible Armada " at last set sail for England (§ 218, 
close). English ships of all sorts — mostly little merchant 
vessels hastily transformed into a war navy — gathered in 
the Channel ; and, to the amazement of the world, the small 
but swift and better handled English vessels completely out- 
fought the great Spanish navy in a splendid nine-days' sea 
fight. As the shattered Spaniards fled around the north of 
Scotland, a mighty storm completed their overthrow. Eng- 
land was saved, and the prospect for Dutch success was greatly 
improved. Spain never recovered her supremacy on the sea, and 
the way was prepared for the English colonization of America. 

SS24. The Decay of Spain. Her final Service to Christendom at 
lepanto. — The war between Spain and Holland dragged on twenty 
years more, but in 1609 a truce was concluded which virtually established 
the independence of the Dutch Republic. From this time, Spain sank 
rapidly into a second-rate power. The narrow bigot, Philip III, drove 
into exile the Christianized Moors, or Moriscoes. These were the de- 
scendants of the old Mohammedan rulers of the land, who had been 
left behind when the Moorish political power had been driven out, in the 
preceding centuries. They numbered over half a million, — perhaps a 
twentieth of the entire population, — and they were the foremost agriciil- 
taralists and almost the sole skilled artisans and manufacturers in the 
peninsula. Their pitiless expulsion inflicted a deadly blow upon the 
prosperity of Spain. For a time the wealth she drew from America 
disguised her fall, and she continued to furnish financial resources for the 
Catholic Powers through the Thirty Years' War (§ 231). But after the 
Armada she never played a great part in Europe, and, relying upon 
tbe plunder of the New World for riches, she failed to develop the in- 
tiostrial life which alone could furnish a true national prosperity. 

One great service Spain had rendered Christendom, just before England 
and Holland broke her naval power. For a generation, Turkish fleets, 
almost unchecked, had ravaged the Christian coasts of the Mediterranean, 
even burning villages far inland and sweeping off the peasants into cap- 
tivity. Cyprus had fallen before their attack, and Malta had been saved 
only by the heroic efforts of the Knights of St. John.* Finally Spain, 

* Special report: the siege of Malta; read Prescott's account in his Philip 
Ilf if available. 

246 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1620-1648. [§225 

Venice, and the Pope joined their naval strength, and in 1671 the com- 
bined Christian fleet annihilated the great Turkish navy at LeparUo, on 
the Greek coast. Lepauto was the greatest naval battle since Cartha- 
ginian days. Over six hundred ships engaged. The Turks lost thirty thou- 
sand men, and twelve thousand Christian rowers were freed from their 
horrible slavery at the oar. The Turks never recovered their former 
naval importance ; and indeed the turning point of their power is often 
dated from this defeat. 

225. The Prosperity of the Dutch Republic. — The most mar- 
velous feature of the struggle between the little Dutch state 
and Spain was that Holland actually grew wealthy during 
the contest, although the stage of a desolating war. This 
strange result was due to the fact that the Dutch were a mari- 
time people, drawing their riches not from the wasted land, 
but from the sea, and that during the war they plundered the 
possessions of Spain in the West Indies. The little republic 
built up a great colonial empire, and, especially after Spain's 
naval supremacy had been engulfed with the Armada, the 
Dutch held almost a monopoly of the Asiatic trade for all 
Europe. One hundred thousand of their three million people 
lived constantly upon the sea. 

Moreover, success in so heroic a war stimulated the people 
to a wonderful intellectual and industrial activity. They 
taught to all Europe scientific agriculture and horticulture, as 
well as the science of navigation. In the seventeenth century 
the presses of Holland are said to have put forth more books 
than all the rest of Europe. Motley sums up this wonderful 
career of Holland briefly : — 

The splendid empire of Charles V was erected upon the grave of lib- 
erty. . . . But from the hand-breadth of territory called Holland rises 
a power which wages eighty years' warfare i with the most potent empire 
upon earth, and which, during the struggle, becomes itself a mighty state, 
and, binding about its slender form a zone of the richest possessions of 
the earth, from pole to tropic, finally dictates its decrees to the empire 
of Charles. 

1 Motley includes in this number the Thirty Years' War, § 290. 


B. Wars of the French Huguenots. 

226. Conditions in France. — The French Protestants were Cal- 
vinists, and are known as Huguenots. By 1560, they counted 
one man out of twenty in the population, and, because of the 
logical appeal of Calvin to the intellect, their numbers were 
made up almost wholly from the nobles and the wealthy middle 
class. Francis I and Henry II persecuted the new faith, but 
not continuously enough to crush it. Henry was followed by 
his three sons, — Francis II, Charles IX, and Henry III, — all 
weak in body and in mind. During their reigns (1559-1589), 
power was disputed between two groups of great lords. Each 
was closely related to the failing royal family, and each hoped 
to place a successor upon the throne. One of these groups 
was the Catholic Gfuise family ; the other was the Protestant 
Bourbons, who counted as their leaders the King of Navarre 
and the Prince of Conde. In the background was the chief 
figure of all, the crafty, cruel, and utterly unscrupulous Queen- 
mother, Catherine of Medici, who played off one party against 
the other in whatever way might best promote her own control 
over her feeble sons. These were the conditions that bred 
civil war in France. 

227. Period of Strife ; St Bartholomew. — War between the 
two factions opened in 1562 and lasted, with brief truces, to 
1598. More than the other struggles of the period, it was 
marked by assassinations and treacheries, which struck down 
almost every leader on either side. The most horrible event 
of this character was the Massacre of St Bartholomeio (August 
24, 1572). An honest attempt had just been made to establish 
a -lasting peace, and a marriage had been arranged between the 
Huguenot leader, the young Henry of Navarre, and the sister 
of King Charles IX. The grandest character of the age, the 
Protestant Coligny, became one of Charles' chief counsellors, 
and soon won remarkable influence over him. Catherine of 
Medici had favored the arrangement at first ; but she had not 
expected to see her own power over her son so superseded, and 

248 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1620-1648. [§228 

she passed over secretly to the Guises again. One attempt to 
assassinate Coligny failed^ and the King threatened vengeance 
for the attack. Then the conspirators, as a desperate resort, 
played upon his religious fears and bigotry with a new plot to 
cleanse France from heresy at one blow ; and his consent was 
finally won for a general massacre of the Huguenots. Large 
numbers of that sect were assembled in Paris to witness the 
marriage of their chief. The secret was kept perfectly, to the 
appointed moment ; and then the Catholic mob of Paris bathed 
in Huguenot blood. Some ten thousand victims fell. Nothing 
else so well shows the terrible ferocity of the religious struggle 
in Europe as the reception of this news. The Protestant 
world, of course, shuddered with horror and fear; but great 
and good men among the Catholics loudly expressed their joy 
and offered special services of praise to God. 

228. Henry IV; the Edict of Nantes. — Henry III, who 
showed himself too moderate for the Catholic League, and who, 
in order to secure greater freedom of action, had had the Duke 
of Guise murdered, was himself struck down by a Catholic 
assassin. Henry of Navarre was the nearest heir to the throne, 
and he became king as Henry /F", but only after four years 
more of civil war with the Catholic League. Finally, to secure 
Paris, which he had long besieged, Henry accepted Catholi- 
cism, declaring lightly that so fair a city was " well worth a 
mass." His purpose, of course, was not only to secure the 
capital, but also to give stable peace to his distracted country. 
In this he was thoroughly successful. The thirty years of 
conflict closed; and in 1598 the Edict of Naiites established 
toleration for the Huguenots. They were granted full equality 
before the law ; they were to have perfect liberty of conscience, 
and to enjoy the privilege of public worship, except in the 
cathedral cities; while certain towns were handed over to them, 
to hold with their own garrisons, as a security for their rights.' 

1 This last measure was no doubt needful, but it carried with it a politicAl 
danger: it set up a state within a state, and hindered the unity of France. 


Henry IV proved one of the greatest of French Kings, and 
lie was one of the most loved. With his sagacious minister, 
the Protestant Duke of Sully, he set himself to restore pros- 
perity to desolated France.^ Roads and canals were built, 
new trades were fostered, and under the blessings of a firm 
government, the industry of the French people with marvelous 
rapidity removed the evil results of the long strife. Before 
his death, Henry had begun to think himself ready to enlarge 
France again by foreign conquest at the expense of the Hajjs- 
bargs; but in 1610 he was assassinated by a half-insane 
Catholic fanatic. 

229. Richelieu: Separate Political Power of the Huguenots 
cmahed; German Protestants aided. — At the death of Henry 
IV, his son Louis XIII was a boy of nine years. During the 
long regency of the weak Queen-mother, anarchy again raised 
its head; but France was saved by the commanding genius of 
Cardinal Richelieu, Richelieu became the chief minister of 
the young King in 1624, and he remained the controlling 
power in France until his death (1642). He was a sincere 
French patriot, and, though an earnest Catholic, his states- 
manship was guided always by political, not by religious, 
motives. He crushed the great nobles mercilessly, and he 
waged war upon the Huguenots to deprive them of La Rochelle 
and their other garrisoned towns, which menaced the unity of 
France. But when he had captured their cities and held the 
Huguenots at his mercy, he kept toward them in full all the 
other pledges of the Edict of Nantes. As a statesman, he 
wished to use Catholic and Protestant together for the up- 
building of the nation ; and he carried out his purpose by aid- 
ing the German Protestants in the religious war that was 
going on in Germany against the Catholic Emperor, — so 
securing a chance to seize imperial territory for France. To 
make the king supreme in France, he waged war upon the 

^ One of Henry's treasured saylnii^ was, that, if he lived, the poorest peas- 
ant should have a fowl in the pot on a Sunday. 

250 THE PROTESTANT REFORMATION, 1520-1648. [§230 

Protestants within the nation ; to make France supreme in 
Europe, he aided in war the Protestants of Germany. 

After Francis I, France had given up Italy and had begun to work 
for a frontier to the Rhine. Henry II had made a beginning (§ 212), aud 
Richelieu laid the foundation for the rapid additions that were to come m 
the reign of Louis XIV (§§ 263, 264). At first this policy was not mere 
greed : it was partly a policy of self-preservation. With the Austrian and 
Spanish Hapsburgs united or in alliance, France was for a time in serious 
danger of being crushed between them. The failure of Spain against Hol- 
land and the policy of Richelieu against Austria did away with that danger. 

C, The Thirty Years' War in Germany. 

230. The Parties and Leaders. — Fortunately for German Prot- 
estants, the two immediate successors of Charles V on the im- 
perial throne were liberal in temper, — disinclined either to 
persecution or to religious war. So for sixty years more, the 
new faith gained ground rapidly, until it spread over much 
of South Germany and held almost exclusive possession of 
Bohemia, the home of the ancient Hussite reform and now a 
Hapsburg province.^ Strife was incessantly threatening, how- 
ever. The Hapsburgs strove to restrict Protestantism in their 
hereditary dominions, while the Protestants vigorously en- 
deavored to secure even the ecclesiastical lands there. These 
conditions led to the last of the great religious wars. It began 
just a century after Luther posted his theses at Wittenberg, 
and it is known as the Tldrty Tears' War (1618-1648). Beyond 
doubt, it was the most destmctive and terrible war in all 
history. The divided Protestant princes showed themselves 
timid and incapable, and, had the war been left to Germany, a 
Catholic victory would soon have been assured. But first Den- 
mark (1G25-1629) and then Sweden (1630) entered the field in 
behalf of the Protestant cause, and, at the last. Catholic 
France under Richelieu (1635-1648) threw its weight against 
the Emperor. 

1 Ferdinand, brother of Charles V, had secured this realm for his house, 
by marriage with Anne, heiress of Bohemia. 


The war was marked by the career of four great generals, — Tilly and 
Wallenstein on the imperial side, and Gostavus Adolphus, King of Sweden, 
*'the Lion of the North,'* and Mansfeld on the side of the Protestants. 
Gostavus wajs at once great and admirable ; but he fell at the battle of 
LviUien (1632), in the moment of victory ; and thereafter the struggle 
was as dreary as it was terrible. Mansfeld and Wallenstein from the 
first deliberately adopted the policy of making the war pay by supporting 
their armies everywhere upon the country. The excessive horrors of the 
great struggle must be charged In large measure to these men. At the 
close of his career, Wallenstein seems to have been planning to betray 
the Emperor to the Swedes ; but he was arrested and murdered by im- 
perial messengers (1634). 

231. Effect upon Germany. — The calamities the war brought 
upon a whole people were so monstrous and indescribable that 
it seems weak to dwell upon brilliant characters or striking 
events. It was a huge, blasting ruin, from which Germany 
had not fully recovered in the middle of the nineteenth cen- 
tury. Season by season, for a generation of human life, armies 
of ruthless freebooters harried the land with fire and sword. 
The peasant, who found that he toiled only to feed robbers and 
to draw them to outrage and torture his family, ceased to 
labor and became himself robber or camp-follower. Half the 
population and two-thirds the movable property of Germany 
were swept away. In many large districts, the facts were 
worse than this average. The Duchy of Wurtemberg had fifty 
thousand people left out of five hundred thousand. Populous 
cities had become hamlets ; and for miles upon miles, former 
hamlets were the lairs of wolfpacks. Not until 1850 did 
some sections of Germany again contain as many homesteads 
and cattle as in 1618. 

Even more destnictive was the result upon industry and 
character. Whole trades, with all their long-inherited skill, 
had passed from the memory of men.* Land tilled for cen- 
turies became wilderness, and men became savages. The 

^ An instance of this Is the wonderful old Grerman wood-carving. A genu- 
ine old piece of German cabinet-work is easily placed before 1618, because the 
war dmply wiped oat the skill and the industry. 

252 THE PROTESTANT REFOUMATION, 1520-1648. [§232 

generation that survived the war had come to manhood with- 
out schools or churches or law or orderly industry. The low 
position of the German peasantry, morally and mentally, well 
into the nineteenth century, was a direct result of the Thirty 
Years' War. 

232. The Peace of Westphalia, 1648. — The war was closed hy 
the Peace of Westphalia. This treaty was drawn up by a 
congress of ambassadors from nearly every European Power. 
It contains three distinct classes of stipulations, — the provi- 
sions for religious peace in Germany, the territorial rewards 
for France and Sweden, and the political provisions to secure 
the independence of the German princes as against the 

a. The principle of the Peace of Augsburg was reaffirmed 
and extended. Each sovereign prince was to choose Catholi- 
cism, Lutheranism, or Calvinism ; and his subjects were to 
have three years to conform to his choice, or to withdraw from 
his realm.* 

b. Sweden, which was in that day a great Baltic power, ex- 
tending around both the east and west shores of that sea, 
secured also most of the south coast. Pomerania — with the 
mouths of the Oder, Elbe, and W^eser — was the payment she 
received for her part in the war. This gave Sweden control 
over German commerce. France annexed most of Alsace, with 
some fortresses on the German bank of the Rhine. The inde- 
pendence of Switzerland (§ 161) and of the Dutch Provinces 
(§ 225) was expressly recognized. 

c. Besides this loss of imperial territory, there were various 
political rearrangements within Germany, which made clear 
the lack of unity in the Empire. The states were expressly 

1 The practice of toleration had gained ground so far that the Catholics in 
the North German Protestant states were rarely molested. Many of the Soath 
German Protestants, however, were driven into exile. Indeed, this was the 
first cause of the coming to America of the " Pennsylvania Datch " ; most of 
the German Immigration to America before the Revolution was oonnected 
with this expulsion or with the devastation of the Rhine provinces a little 
later by Louis XIV (§ 266). 


granted the right of forming alliances with each other or 
with foreign powers; and all possibility of important action 
by the imperial Diet was taken away, by a provision that in 
votes which concerned religion no state of the Empire should 
be bound, except by its own consent. 

For Furthbb Reading. — Mot\ey''s Dutch Eepuhlic 9Xid United Neth- 
erlands; Hiiasser^s Beformation; Johnson^s Europe in the Sixteenth 
Century and Wakeman^s Ascendanq/ of France, to page 105 ; Creighton's 
Elizabeth; Greenes English People; Balvd^B Huguenots ; WiWerVs Henry 
of Navarre; Gardiner's Thirty Tears' War; Henderson's Short History of 
Germany; Fletcher's Gustavus Adolphus; Dodge's Gustavus Adolphus; 
Perkins' Bichelieu ; Putnam's William the Silent. 

In fiction : Kingsley's Westward, Ho ! (for England and the Armada); 
Schiller*8 Wallenstein ; Bulwer's Bichelieu. 

Exercises. — 1. A catchword review of the Reformation in Germany, 
ihroogh the whole period. 2. Contrast the character of the Reforma- 
tion m Germany with that of the movement in England. 

BiraLAND nr thb sevbntbbnth cbntury. 

(Rise of Political Libebtt, 1603-1688.) 


PERIODS, 1486-1603.1 

233. An Era of Change, 1450-1600. — The century and a half 
from 1450 to 1600, — the age of the Wars of the Roses and of 
the Tudors, — had been a period of tremendous changes in 
English life, intellectual, religious, political, and economic. 
(1) The Renaissance (originating in Italian influence) had 
created a new intellectual life (§ 199), with the abounding 
spontaneous energy and the enthusiastic self-reliance that we 
associate with the names of Shakspere and Elizabeth and Ra- 
leigh. (2) The Reformation (due to German influence, to the 
general renaissance movement, and to the personal desires of 
monarchs) had introduced new religious organization and feel- 
ing (§§ 218, 223). (3) On the ruins of the two chief political 
forces of earlier times, — feudalism and the church, — the 
sovereigns had built up a new political system.* (4) Lastly, a 
transformation took place in the economic organization of 
society (upon which had rested both the old feudalism and the 
old church): the rural organization was revolutionized, and 

1 It has been convenient to trace some phases of English history in the six- 
teenth century by themselves in §§ 218» 223; bat before taking up the great 
struggle between Parliament and kings, in the seventeenth century, it is 
desirable to give fuller attention to the preceding hundred years. 

3 Edward IV and Henry VIII, it has been noted, carried further the work 
of the Wars of the Roses in crushing tlie old nobility, and Henry VIU and 
Elizabeth did away with the Independence of the church. 



towns grew into new prominence. Thus the last change has 
to be studied from the two view-points of country and of town 
(§§ 234, 235). 

The first three changes have been treated in some detail in the previ- 
ons chapters. The fourth is more difficult to grasp. In a sense, it under- 
lies the others. The discontent of the towns brought about the victory of 
the Yorkists over the feudal party of the Lancastrians in the Wars of the 
Roses (§ 146). The towns, too, were the strongholds of the Reformation 
movement against the Catholic rural districts and especially against the 
Catholic North. And in the towns developed the new intellectual life of 
the renaissance age. 

234. The Economic Change in the Country^: Inclosures. — By 

1450, after a century of progress, villeinage had disappeared 
(§§ 141, 142). The small farmer was living in rude abun- 
dance ; and comfort surrounded even the farm laborer, — with 
his cow, sheep, or geese, on the common, his four-acre patch of 
garden about his cabin, and good wages for his labor on the 
landlord's fields. From about 1425 to about 1500 was a golden 
age for these lower rural classes. 

Sir John Fortescue (§ 144) boasts of their prosperity, as compared 
with that of the French peasantry : ** They drink no water, unless at 
times by way of penance. They are fed in great abundance with all kinds 
of flesh and fish. They are clothed throughout in good woolens. . . . 
Every one, according to his rank, hath all things needful to make life easy 
and happy." 

The large landlords had been relatively less prosperous. 
Since the rise of their old laborers out of villeinage, their land 
was no longer a source of wealth. Indeed, they were " land- 
poor." They paid high wages, while, under the wasteful com- 
mon-field system, crops were small (§ 36). 

But by 1450 a change had begun which was to create a new 
prosperity for the large holders and cruelly to depress the 
smaller holders. This change is connected with the process 
of "inclosures" for sheep-raising. There was a steady de- 
mand for wool at good prices, to supply the Flemish markets 
(§ 162), and enterprising landlords began to raise sheep instead 


of grain. Large flocks could be cared for by a few hands, so 
that the high wages mattered less ; and profits proved so en- 
ticing that soon there was a mad rush into the new industry. 
But sheep-raising called for large tracts of land. It was pos- 
sible only for the large landholders; and even these were 
obliged to hedge in their share of the common " fields." There- 
fore, as far as possible, they turned out the small tenants, whose 
holdings interfered with such " inclosui*es," and often they 
inclosed also the woodlands and meadows, in disregard of 
ancient rights of common pasture. 

Some small tenants were protected by the courts, on the 
ground that they had a right to their holdings as long as they 
paid the customary rents, shown in the copyroll of the manor. 
This class were known as " copyholders." They ranked next 
to the freeholders in dignity, and probably exceeded them in 
number. Below them came various classes of " leaseholders," 
who could /be turned off whenever their leases ran out, and 
also a class of " tenants at will," who could be evicted at any 
time. Even the copyholders seem to have found the courts a 
poor defense against the greed of the wealthy classes, and the 
freeholders themselves often found it best to sell, however 
much they wished to keep their holdings. 

Sir Thomas More, for a time chief minister of Henry VIII, lamented 
these conditions bitterly: *^A careless and unsatiable cormorant may 
compass about and inclose many thousand acres within one pale, and the 
husbandmen be thrust out of their own ; or else by fraud, or violent 
oppression, or by wrongs and injuries, they be so worried that they be 
compelled to sell. . . , They [the landlords] throw down houses ; they 
pluck down towns [villages], and leave nothing standing but only the 
church, to be made a sheep-house.^* ^ 

Statesmen bewailed that sheep should take the place of the 
yeomanry who had won Cr^cy and Poitiers, and who. Bacon 
said, were also " the backbone of the revenue " ; and from 1488 
to 1600 the government made many attempts by laws to check 

1 Cf. Ancient History, §§ 397, 398. Mere's Utopia may be assigned for a 
special report. See also page 238, Note 2, for Sir Thomas More. 


inclosures.' But all such legislation was ineffective. Neither 
did popular riots and insurrections avail anything.* The con- 
fiscation of the monastery lands and their transfer into the 
hands of a new landlord class gave fresh impetus to the in- 
closure movement ; and it went on until the profits of sheep- 
raising and grain-raising found a level. 

This had come to pass by 1600, when grain had risen in 
value, because of the rapid growth of population in the towns. 
But meantime multitudes of villages had been swept away and 
half of all those in England had been injured.* Multitudes of 
the evicted peasantry became " sturdy beggars," or tramps,* to 
terrorize the rural districts; and the laborers who were not 
evicted found that prices for their food and clothing rose twice 
as fast as their wages did. 

Through these changes, however, the prosperity of the 
larger landowners was restored, and a new landed gentry arose, 
to take the lead in society and politics. 

1 Special report upon these attempts. 

2 There were a series of these risings in the reigns of Henry VIII and 
Edward YI. They were usually connected with dissatisfaction at the religious 
changes made hy the government ; but it is plain that the fundamental cause 
was the discontent caused hy inclosures. Advanced students may be assigned 
these risings, or, at least, Kett*s rising, for a special report. 

* This was one reason why so many honest Englishmen were so ready to 
try their fortunes in colonizing America. John Winthrop, the great Puritan 
leader, declared that England " grows weary of her inhabitants, so as man 
who is the most precious of God's creatures, is here more vile and base than 
the earth we tread upon and of less prize among us than a horse or an ox." 

* Of these the justices often hung large batches without trial. It is esti- 
mated that in the century of Elizabeth and Shakspere seventy thousand ** beg- 
gars *' were executed in fifty years. Cf. Sir Thomas More's piteous picture: 
** By one means or another, either by hook or by crook, they must needs 
depart, poor wretched souls — men, women, husbands, wives, fatherless chil- 
dren, widows, woful mothers with young babes. . . . All their household 
stuff, which is very little worth, though it might well abide the sale, yet being 
suddenly Uirust out, they be constrained to sell it for a thing of nought. And 
when they have wandered till that be spent, what can they then else do but 
steal, and then justly, pardy, be hanged, or else go about begging? And yet 
then also they be cast into prison as vagabonds, because they go about and 
work not, — whom no man will set to work though they never so willingly 
proffer themselves thereto.'' 



After 1550, the inclosures were less rapid, and from 1550 to 1640 the 
movement changed its character. It ceased to be a landlord movement 
for sheep-farming. It became an arrangement among the small holders 
whereby, in place of his thirty or so scattered acre strips, each received 
three or four compact holdings, which he might fence in and till in his 
own way. In the end, this was to lead to improved methods of farming, 
and, no doubt, it helped at once to develop more individuality and self- 
reliance than the system of common cultivation could have done, and so 
to produce the yeomen, who, when imbued with the stem teachings of 
Calvinism, were to make Cromwell's Ironsides (§ 245). 

236. The Ecobomic Change in the Towns — Meantime, so far as 
the national welfare was concerned, the sufferings of the agri* 
cultural population had been more than offset by the growth of 
the towns, with a new prosperity resting upon home manufac- 
tures and foreign trade. From the time of Edward IV, the 
kings had made it their especial care to favor the towns and 
their industries. Skilled workmen, driven from the Nether- 
lands by the Spanish wars and from France by the persecution 
of the Huguenots, were welcomed gladly and given many 
favors. Thus manufactures had grown up. In Elizabeth's 
day, English wool was no longer sold to Flanders. It was 
worked up at home, the manufacture giving employment to 
great numbers of workmen ;^ and then the finished product was 
sold, with other commodities, in foreign markets, by English 
merchants.' These " merchants " had so increased in number 
and wealth that practically they made a new class in English 
society. About 1350 a royal inquiry could find a list of only 
169 important merchants in England. In 1601 more than 
twenty times that number were engaged in the Holland trade 
alone. By purchase of land and by royal gifts from the con- 
fiscated church property, the members of this class rose into a 

I The introduction of such new industries finally absorbed the classes 
evicted from the land by inclosures. 

> A '* merchant " was a trader who sent goods to a foreign country. Com* 
panics were formed to trade to Russia, or India, or other distant parts of the 
world ; and sometimes a single merchant owned a considerable fleet of ships 
for such trade (cf. Shakspere's Antonio, in The Merchant of Venice). 


new gentry, whose capital and energy helped to restore pros- 
perity to the land. 

Two features of the new town life call for attention. (1) The gild 
system was rapidly breaking down and was being replaced by the 
** domestic system ^' of manofactures. The work was carried on, as be- 
fore, by masters, journeymen, and apprentices; but the gap between 
masters and journeymen was growing, and in the absence of the strict 
gild supervision, there was greater freedom as to methods.^ Indeed the 
old towns, where the gild regulations to some degree remained in force, 
began to be replaced as manufacturing centers by new towns without such 
checks on individual capitalists. 

(2) The king's authority was extended. Trade and manufacture, for- 
merly regulated by single towns and their gilds, had now become matters 
of national concern and were regulated, so far as they were controlled at 
all, with paternal interest and anxiety by the king or Parliament. Royal 
proclamations fixed the number of pence for which a fat goose might be 
sold at Christmas or in midsummer, established a certain standard for 
foods, and tried to prescribe the best methods of manufacture. It is in- 
teresting to see that in general men felt it proper and natural for the 
government to attend to such matters. 



At every moment some one country more than any other represents the 
future and the welfare of mankind. — Emerson. 

236. The Religious Situation at the Accession of James I. — 

English politics in the seventeenth century were concerned 
largely with questions of religion. The Church of England 
contained a large Puritan element, which for a time seemed 
about to get control of the organization. This " Low Church " 
wing did not wish to separate church and state, but only to 
carry the church farther from the forms of Catholicism and to 
secure a more serious morality. There was also a Presbyterian 
element, which wished to change the organization, but which 
did not cfount for much in England until the Civil War (§ 245), 

I The change corresponds in some measure to the change in agriculture 
from common to individnal tillage. 


though in Scotland it had already won control, under its 
great preacher, John Knox. Moreover, in Elizabeth's day, 
there had appeared in England a few small bands of Independ- 
ents, or *' Separatists," so called because they believed that 
each tjhurch should be a separate religious community, ruling 
itself independently of the state and of other churches. These 
Independents were the Puritans of the Puritans. They were 
the germs of later Congregationalism. Elizabeth persecuted 
them savagely, and her successor continued that policy. Some 
of the Independent churches fled to Holland ; and one of them, 
from Scrooby in northern England, after staying several years 
at Leyden, founded Plymouth in America (1620). 

237. The Political Situation at the Accession of James I. — 
Constitutional liberty in England had fallen low under the 
Tudors;^ but, after all, Henry VIII and Elizabeth had ruled 
absolutely, only because they made use of constitutional forms 
and because they possessed a shrewd tact which taught them 
just where to stop. Moreover, toward the close of Elizabeth's 
long reign, when foreign perils were past, the tone of Parlia- 
ment began to rise again. Men spoke boldly of the popular 
checks upon the royal power. Parliament asserted its right 
to discuss matters of government, and Parliament and the 
courts forced the great Queen to give up the practice of grant- 
ing monopolies.* It was plain to keen observers that only the 
reverence for Elizabeth's age and sex, and the gratitude due 
her for her great services to the kingdom, held off an open 
clash between the sovereign and Parliament. Upon her death, 
the clash began, — to last through eighty-five years. 

1 No measure proposed by the crown could become law without consent of 
Parliament, and that body controlled all new grants of money. But the mon- 
arch (or his ministers) prepared nearly all measures that came before Parlia- 
ment ; he could veto any act of Parliament ; and, after a law had been made, 
he could virtually nullify it by special proclamations. Moreover, the mon- 
arch could, upon occasion, resort to violence against individuals, and so it was 
extremely hazardous for any one persistently to oppose him. See an excellent 
statement in Andrews* England, 308-310. 

3 Special report upon the dispute over monopolies. 


Elizabeth was succeeded by her relative James I (James 
Stuart), already King of Scotland. James was learned, 
pedantic, and conceited, — " the wisest fool in Christendom," 
as Henry IV of France called him. He sincerely believed in 
the " divine right " of kings : that is, he believed that the king, 
as God's anointed, was the source of law and could not himself 
be controlled by law. James and his son not only practised 
absolutism, but they also preached it on every occasion. 
They were despots on principle, and cared for the forms, as well 
as the reality, of absolutism. Naturally, the nation which had 
been growing restive under the beneficent, elastic tyranny of 
the great Tudors, soon rose in fierce opposition against the 
noisy, uncompromising, needless tyranny of the weak Stuarts. 

Prom 1603, when the first James mounted the throne, until 
1688, when his grandson, the second James, ignominiously 
ran away from it, England was constantly engaged in strife be- 
tween this "divine right" of kings and the right of the people. 
Through all that seventeenth century, too, this little patch of 
land was the last remaining battle ground for political liberty. 
In all other important states, — in Spain, in France, in Austria, 
in the Scandinavian lands, in the petty principalities of Ger- 
many and Italy, — despotism was supreme. In England both 
sides recognized the fact. Said the second Stuart king, 
Charles I, in a crisis of his reign, " I am ashamed that my 
cousins of France and Spain should have completed what I have 
scarce begun " ; and at the same time a patriot exclaimed in 
fervent exhortation to his party, " England is the last country 
which retains her ancient liberties ; let them not perish now." 

238. The Issue defined, and the Parties. — The issue was soon 
stated. In the first few weeks of his new sovereignty, James 
gave several practical proofs of his disregard for law and of 
his arbitrary temper;^ and then in a famous utterance, on a 

^ On his royal entry from Scotland, James ordered a thief to be hung 
witboat trial ; and when he summoned his first Parliament he ordered that 
cootested elections should be settled, not by Parliament, but by his courts. 
Liberal Englishmen resented these things fiercely. 


solemn occasion, he summed up his theory: ''As it is atheism 
and blasphemy in a creature to dispute what God can do, so it 
is presumption and high contempt in a subject to question 
what a king can do." This became the tone of the court party. 
About this time Dr. Cowell of Cambridge University published 
a Law Dictionary, The Interpreter, in which under the title 
"King" it was stated, "He is above the law by his absolute 
power, and though he do admit the estates into counsel, it is 
only by his benignity." * 

When Parliament assembled, it took the first chance to 
answer these new claims. The Speaker of the Commons, 
replying to the King's opening address, in place of the usual 
formal expression of grateful thanks to his majesty, reminded 
James sharply of his limited powers. "New laws," said 
the Speaker, "cannot be instituted, nor imperfect laws 
reformed ... by any other power than this high court of 
Parliament." Parliament continued in this tone. It gave 
money grudgingly, and it soon addressed to the King an 
"Apology," stating the parliamentary doctrine. After de- 
claring that the King must have been misled by misinformed 
persons, or he could not have held such views of the English 
government as he had expressed, the statement continues, " that 
the privileges and liberties of Parliament are their right and 
inheritance, no less than their lands and goods ; that to with- 
hold them is to wrong the whole realm ; that in this session 
the privileges of this house have been more universally im- 
pugned than ever before since the beginning of Parliaments." 

The struggle so declared, continued for forty years before it became 
war. This period of constitutional wrangling falls into four broad divi- 
sions, — the reign of James I (1603-1625), the first three Parliaments of 
Charles I (1625-1629), the period of "No Parliament" (1629-1640), and 
the early period (1640-1642) of the Long Parliament (§§ 239-244). 

There were, as yet^ no organized political parties. But there was a 
*' court party," devoted to the royal power, consisting of most of the 

1 Soon afterward Parliament showed a determination to take stem acdon 
against Cowell, and so the copies of the work were called in and destroyed. 


nobles and of the *' High Church ** clergy, and an opposition *' country 
party/' consisting of the mass of country gentry, some Puritan nobles, 
and the Puritan element generally. 

239. Constitational Wrangling during the Reign of James I. — 

Throughout James' reign Parliaments met but rarely, and 
would have met still less often, had it not been that the waste- 
ful extravagance of the court kept the King in need of money. ^ 
Every session of Parliament was marked by some clash between 
the King and that body. James succeeded in turning the law 
courts into his tools, by making it plain that he would dismiss 
every judge who would not act and think as he wished (an 
interference with the courts wholly new in English history); 
but Parliament on the whole held its own. It insisted stub- 
bornly on its control of taxation, on freedom of speech, and on 
its right to impeach the King's ministers. James became 
exceedingly unpopular toward the close of his reign, because 
he failed to support his son-in-law, the Elector Palatine in 
Germany, the Protestant leader in the opening of the Thirty 
Years' War (§ 230), and because he wished his son Charles to 
marry a Spanish princess.* However, Charles was personally 
insulted by the Spanish court, and in the last year of James' 

1 The economic revolution noted in § 234 had decreased the wealth of the 
kings (whose property was in land), while the rise in prices and the increas- 
ing duties of the government called for a larger expenditure. Thus Elizabeth 
and James were really poor. This fact is the key to much of the history of 
the time. 

^In James' third Parliament (1621), the Commons had begun to express 
dissatisfaction with the marriage that James had planned. James sharply 
forbade such discussion. ** Let us resort to our prayers," said one of the 
members, "and then consider this great business." The outcome of the con- 
sideration was a resolution, ** that the liberties, privileges, and jurisdictions of 
Parliament are the ancient and undoubted birthright of the subjects of Eng- 
land, and that the arduous and urgent affairs concerning the King, the state, 
the church, the defense of the realm, the making and maintenance of laws, 
and the redress of grievances, which happen daily within this realm, are 
proper subjects for debate in Parliament; and that in the handling and pro- 
ceeding of those businesses, every member of the Commons . . . has freedom 
of speech ... to bring to conclusion the same." James tore out this page of 
the records and dissolved Parliament. 


life, the Prince succeeded in forcing him into war with Spain, 
to the great joy of the nation. 

240. The Early Parliaments of Charles I. — In March, 1625, 
in the midst of shame and disgrace because of mismanage- 
ment of the war, James died. In May, Charles I met his first 
Parliament He quarreled with it at once, dissolved it, and 
turned to an eager prosecution of the war, trusting to win 
the nation to his side by glorious victory over the hereditary 
enemy. Ignominious failure, instead, forced him to meet his 
second Parliament in 1626. 

It is now that Sir John Eliot stands forward as a leader of 
the patriots. ' Eliot is the " first great commoner." In her 
earlier struggles with her kings, England had depended upon 
her nobles for leaders. The Wai*s of the Eoses had annihilated 
the old nobility, and the new nobles could never assume the 
old leadership. The gentry, however, had been rising in 
importance, and the Tudor monarchs had begim to use them 
as ministers of the crown. Now one of this class was to lead 
the opposition to the crown. Eliot was a Cornish gentleman, 
thirty-three years of age, courtly in manner, ardent and poetic 
in temper. His mind was enriched by all the culture of the 
time, and afterward in weary years of imprisonment he could 
find consolation in his Tacitus, Livy, Epictetus, and Seneca. 
He was an atlilete and a courtier, and at the same time a 
deeply religious Puritan ; but his mind was never tinged with 
the somber feeling of the later Puritanism.* 

Eliot stood for the control of the King's ministers by Parliar 
ment. Everything else, he saw, was likely to prove worthless, 
if the executive could not be held responsible. The king's 
person could not be so held, except by revolution and deposi- 
tion ; but his ministers might be impeached and punished ; 
and, under fear of this, they might be held in control. In 

1 This passage, and much of the foUowing account of Eliot's work, is con- 
densed from Green's treatment of Eliot in his History of the English People. 
Students who can read further will find Forster's L%fe qf Eliot an intensely 
interesting book. 


pursuance of this principle, Eliot pei*suaded the Commons to 
impeach the Duke of Buckingham, the King's favorite and the 
instrument of much past tyranny. Charles stopped the pro- 
ceedings by casting Eliot into prison and dissolving Parliament 
241. Charles' Attempts at Benevolences and Forced Loons. — 
The King fell back upon "benevolences," or the begging of 
"free gifts/' to raise a revenue. These benevolences had 
been asked occasionally from individual men of wealth ever 
since the Wars of the Roses, but now they were asked of all 
tax payers, through the county courts. County after county 
refused to give a penny, often with cheers for Parliament. 
Some sheriffs refused to ask for the "free gift." The County 
of Cornwall, Sir John Eliot's county, answered " that if they 
had but two kine, they would sell one to supply his majesty, — 
in a parliamentary way" Charles passed to a " forced loan," 
— virtually a tax levied by the usual tax machinery, — a tax 
thinly disguised by the false promise of repayment. Force 
and persuasion were both used. Some of the pulpits, manned 
now by the anti-Puritan party, rang with the cry of " passive 
obedience " and the doctrine that to resist the king was eternal 
damnation. As a patriot of the time put it, this section of 
the clergy "improved the highwayman's formula into Your 
money or your life eternal." More immediate penalties, how- 
ever, were resorted to. Poor freeholders who refused to pay 
were "pressed" into the navy, or a turbulent soldiery was 
quartered in their defenseless homes ; and two hundred 
English gentlemen were confined in disgraceful prisons, to 
subdue their obstinacy. Among these gentlemen was a young 
squire who had based his refusal upon a clause in Magna 
Carta and who was rewarded with so close an imprisonment, 
that, his kinsman tells us, " he never did look the same man 
after." This was John Hampden^s introduction into the com- 
pany of patriots. Equal heroism was shown by hundreds 
of poorer unknown men. George Radcliffe wrote from his 
prison to his " right dear and loving wife," who was eager to 
have him submit in time to have Christmas with her, " Shall 


it be thought I prejudice the public cause by begiDDing to 
conform, which none yet hath done of all that have been 
committed, save only two poor men, a butcher and another^ 
and they hooted at like owls among their neighbors?" 

Thus the forced loan raised little revenue ; and with an armar 
ment poorly fitted out, Buckingham sailed against France, with 
which England was now at war. For the third time in four 
years an English army was wasted to no purpose ; and, sunk in 
debt and shame, Charles met his third Parliament in 1628. 

242. The *' Petition of Right": EUot's Final Struggle.— The 
imprisoned country gentlemen were released before the elec- 
tions, and some seventy of them (all who appeared as candi- 
dates) sat in the new Parliament, in spite of the royal efforts 
to prevent their election. 

Before Parliament met, a caucus of the country leaders 
decided, against Eliot's desire, not to press the action against 
Buckingham, but to try to obtain some guarantee for their 
personal liberties, which had just been so seriously threatened. 
For two months the Commons debated the recent infringe- 
ments of English liberties and some way to provide security. 
The King offered to give his word that such things should 
not occur again, but was told that his oath had already 
been given at his coronation. Finally the house passed the 
Petition of RigJit, a document that ranks almost with Magna 
Carta in the history of English liberty. This great law first 
recited the ancient English statutes, from Magna Carta down, 
against arbitrary imprisonment, arbitrary taxation, quartering 
of soldiery upon the people in time of peace, and against 
forced loans and benevolences ; then it named the frequent 
violation of right in these respects in recent years ; and finally 
it declared all such infringements illegal. The Lords tried to 
save the King's dignity by adding an evasive clause to the 
effect that it was not intended to interfere w^ith " that sovereign 
power wherewith your majesty is entrusted." But the Com- 
mons rejected the amendment after a striking debate. " Sov- 
ereign power," said one, "would mean power above condition; 


tliey could not leave the King that, for he had never had it." * 
" The King's person I will call sovereign," said another, *• but 
not his power " ; and a third added, '' Magna Carta is such a 
fellow that he will have no sovereign." Finally, the Lords, 
too, passed the Petition, and Charles, after evasive delays, felt 
compelled to sign it. 

In form, the document was a petition : in fact, when passed 
and assented to by the King, it became a revision of the con- 
stitution down to date, so far as the personal rights of English- 
men were concerned.' Almost at once, however, in recess of 
Parliament, Charles broke the provisions of the Petition;' and 
he also made it clear that through his appointees, the bishops, 
be intended to introduce such changes as he wished into the 
church, in favor of the "High Church" party. Parliament 
reassembled in bitter humor. Heedless of the King's pleading 
for money, it affirmed its own control over religion to be supreme 
in England,* and then turned to punish the officers who had 
acted as the King's agents in the recent infringements of the 
Petition of Right. Proceedings were stopped by the Speaker's 
announcing that he had the King's command to adjourn the 
House. Men knew that it would not be permitted to meet 
again, and there followed a striking scene. The Speaker was 
thrust back into his chair and held there by two of the 
patriots ; the doors were locked against the King's messenger ; 
and Eliot in a ringing speech moved a series of resolutions, 
which were to form the platform of the liberal party in the 
dark years to come. Tumult gathered. Royalist members 

1 Mr. Gardiner questions the correctness of this reading; but it is at least 
in perfect harmony with the spirit of the rest of the debate. 

* For the document and critical comments, see Hill's Liberty Documents. 

• Especially by levying customs at the ports, by royal order merely. 

■• This was the occasion for Eliot's daring speech : "There is a custom in 
the Eastern churches of standing at the repetition of the creed, to testify their 
purpose to maintain it, — not only with the body upright, but with the sword 
drawn. Give me leave to call that custom very commendable.'* And the 
Commons voted Eliot's resolution, —that they would resist all innovation in 
religion, if need be, with their lives, — by a standing vote, leaning upon their 
loosened swords. 


cried, Traitor! Traitor! Swords were drawn. The usher 
pounded at the door with the royal message of dissolution. 
But the bulk of the members sternly voted the resolutions, 
declaring traitors to England any one who should bring in 
innovations in religion without the consent of Parliament, any 
minister who should advise the illegal levy of taxes, any officer 
who should aid in their collection, and every citizen who should 
voluntarily pay them. And in the moment's hush, when the 
great deed was done, Eliot's voice was heard once more, and for 
the last time, in that hall : " For myself, I further protest, as I 
am a gentleman, if my fortune be ever again to meet in this 
honorable assembly, where I now leave off, I will begin again." 
Then the doors swung open, and the angry crowd surged out. 
Eliot passed to the Tower, to die there a prisoner four years 
later. But Eliot's friends remembered his words : when another 
Parliament did meet, where he had left off, they began again. 

Eliot could have had his liberty If he had bent to acknowledge himself 
wrong. His wife died ; friends fell away ; consumption attacked him, 
and his enemies knew that he must yield or die. His son petitioned for 
his release, on the ground that doctors had certified that without it he could 
not live. The King refused. ** Though Sir John be brought low in body, 
yet is he as high and lofty in mind as ever.'* A month later, Eliot was 
dead. His son presented another petition, that he might have his father^s 
body for burial. The request was refused, and there was inscribed on 
the paper, — a mean act of a mean king, — *^Let Sir John^s body be 
buried in the church of that parish where he died.** So Eliot^s body rests 
in the Tower, and the spot is not marked. 

243. Eleven Tears of *' No Parliament." — On the dissolution 
of the third Parliament of Charles, England entered a gloomy 
period. The King adopted a policy of ruling by royal edicts, 
and no Parliament met for eleven years, 1629-1640. During 
this period, in many ways, the government sought the welfare of 
the nation, and in particular it gave attention to the needs of 
the poor ; but its methods were thoroughly despotic and bad. 

To avoid the necessity of calling Parliaments, Charles prac- 
tised rigid economy. Additional financial resources were in- 
vented, and an ancient demand upon seacoast counties to 


furnish ships for the national navy in time of invasion, was 
stretched into a precedent for a " ship-money tax " for all 
£ngland in time of peace. John Hampden refused to pay 
the twenty shillings assessed upon his lands, and the famous 
"ship-money case" went to the courts (1637). The slavish 
judges decided for the King, as had been expected, and the 
King's friends were jubilant, seeing in the new tax " an ever- 
lasting supply on all occasions " ; but Hampden's purpose was 
achieved. He had won a moral victory. The twelve-day argu- 
ment of the lawyers attracted wide attention, and the couit in 
its decision was compelled to state the theory of despotism in 
its naked hideousness, declaring that there was no power to 
check the king's authority over his subjects, — their persons 
or their money, — "For," said the Chief Justice, "no act of 
Parliament makes any difference" The theory of the Stuart 
rule was made clear to all men. It remained to see how long 
England would endure it. 

The chief servants of the crown during this period were 
Archbishop Laud and Thomas WentwoHh, Wentworth had 
been a member of the country group and had been one of the 
leaders in securing the Petition of Right ; but soon afterward 
he passed over to the side of the King and later he was 
rewarded by the earldom of Strafford. His old associates 
regai'ded him as an apostate from the cause of liberty; but 
it is possible that he sincerely expected to secure the good of 
England through upholding the royal power. Certainly he 
was a political genius. He reduced turbulent Ireland to order, 
and ruled there with an iron hand, — drilling an army against 
the day of reckoning he foresaw. Laud was an extreme High 
Churchman and a conscientious bigot. He reformed the disci- 
pline of the church and ennobled the ritual; but he persecuted* 
the Puritan clergy cruelly, with imprisonment and even with 

^ As a result of this and of the political discouragement, that sect founded 
the colony of Massachusetts Bay. Practically all the immigration this col- 
ony received came in the ten years, 1630-1640, while Charles ruled without 


mutilation, and in 1638 he tried to force Episcopacy upon 
Presbyterian Scotland.* The Scots rose, signed a "covenant" 
to defend their religion, and marched to the border. Charles' 
system of absolutism fell at a breath, like a house of cards. 
Wentworth's Irish troops proved unreliable. England would 
give no help without a Parliament. Charles summoned a Par- 
liament, and quarreled with it. The Scots advanced into Eng- 
land, and the King called a new Parliament (November, 1640), 
to be known in history as the Long Parliament, 

244. The Long Parliament, to the Civil War. — The great 
leaders of the Long Parliament were the commoners PyrOy 
Hampden^ Sir Harry Vaney^ St John, Holies^ and, somewhat 
later, Cromwell. Pym succeeded to the place of Eliot, and at an 
early date indicated that the Commons were the real rulers of 
England. When the Lords showed inclination to delay reform, 
he brought them to time by his veiled threat : he " should be 
sorry," he said, " if the House of Commons had to save Eng- 
land alone.^^ 

The Scots remained encamped in England, — virtually allies 
of the Parliament. Thus the King had no resource but to 
assent to Parliament's bills. Parliament secured itself by a 
law that it could be dissolved only by its own vote, and then 
took up its serious program. Its purpose was first to punish 
past tyranny, and secondly to prevent its recurrence. For the 
first purpose, it began where Eliot had left off, and sternly put 
into action the principles of his last resolutions. Laud, who 
had " brought in innovations in religion," and Wentworth, who 
had advised and helped carry out the King's policy, were con- 
demned to death as traitors ; the lawyers who had advised ship- 
money and the judges who had declared it legal were cast into 
prison or driven into banishment ; and forty committees were 

1 Scotland had been joined to England when her King James had become 
King of England, but each country had its own Parliament, laws, and church: 
the union was "personal,'* and consisted in 4he fact that the two countries 
had the same king. This remained the theory until 1707 (§ 281 a). 

3 Vane had spent some time in Massachusetts and had been governor there. 


appointed, one for each county, to secure the punishment of 
the lesser officers concerned in the illegal acts of the govern- 
ment. The martyrs whom the tyranny of Charles and Laud 
had imprisoned were freed from their dungeons and welcomed 
to London by rejoicing multitudes, who strewed flowers beneath 
the feet of their advancing horses. Parliament's second pur- 
pose was to some degree attained by abolishing the courts of 
the Star Chamber and the High Commission^ extraordinary 
judicial bodies, through which Charles and Laud had worked.^ 
These measures filled the first year,* and so far Parliament 
had been almost a unit. But now a split began. A Presbyte- 
rian and an Independent party (the " Root and Branch " men, 
with Vane and Cromwell for leaders) began to attack Episco- 
pacy itself ; and other radical leaders, like Pym and Hampden, 
felt it necessary to secure further political safeguards against 
the Ring, since they could not trust his promises. On the 
other hand, a moderate party who dreaded anarchy, and a 
church party who feared for Episcopacy, drew toward the 
King. These elements were led by Falkland and Hyde, two of 
the noblest of English patriots. Meantime Charles was sus- 
pected, justly, of plotting with the Irish and the army ; and 
terrible news of a massacre of English Puritans in Ireland, by 
a native rising, brought about decisive action in Parliament. 
Pym introduced a Chrand RemonstrancCj a series of resolutions 
appealing to the country for further support against the King 
and the High Church party, and proposing two definite meas- 
ures: (1) a synod of clergy to reform the church, and (2) par- 
liamentary approval of the King's choice of ministers. After 
an all-day and almost all-night bitter debate, the Commons 
adopted the Remonstrance (November 22, 1641) by the narrow 
majority of eleven votes, amid a scene of wild confusion. 

^ These peculiar courts dated from Tudor times, and had been designed, 
the first to control the great nobles, and the second to carry through the 
separation from Rome; but Chltrles had used them for general political 
tyranny against the nation. They had no juries, and the Star Chamber cor- 
responded in many ways to the French administrative courts (§ 448). 

^ The trial of Laud came later ; but he was already a prisoner. 


Then the moderate party passed over unreservedly to the 
King's side, and a little later Charles tried to reverse the 
small majority against him in the House, and to intimidate 
the Radicals, by seizing five radical leaders on a charge of 
treason.' The attempt failed and the opposition was tremen- 
dously strengthened. London rose in arms to protect Parlia- 
ment. Parliament demanded control of the militia and of the 
education of the royal princes. Charles withdrew from the 
city and raised the standard of civil war (1642). 


245. The Civil War. — Many who had gone with Parliament 
in all its earlier reform, now chose the King's side rather than 
rebellion and the danger of anarchy. The majority of the 
gentry sided with the King, while in general the trading and 
manufacturing classes and the yeomanry fought for Parliament 
At the same time it must be remembered that the struggle was 
a true " civil war," dividing families and old friends.* 

At first Charles was successful. The shop-boys of the city 
trainbands could not stand before the chivalry of the "Cava- 
liers,"^ and the Puritan nobles, who led the parliamentary 
armies, were afraid to conquer their king too completely. Both 
conditions were soon changed. Cromwell, a colonel in the par- 
liamentary army, had raised a troop known as Ironsides. He 
had seen that the only force Parliament could oppose to the 
traditional bravery of the English gentleman was the religious 
enthusiasm of the extreme Puritans. Accordingly, he had 
drawn his recruits from the Independents of the east of 

1 Special report : the story of the attempt. < 

^An instructive contrast may be drawn between the civilized nature of 
this war and the character of the Thirty Years* War in Germany, which was 
going on at the same time. In England, non-combatants were rarely molested, 
and as a rule property rights were respected. 

*The King's party took the name, "Cavaliers," from the court nobles,* 
while the Parliamentarians were called " Round Heads," in derision, from the 
cropped hair of the London 'prentice lads. The portrait of Cromwell (page 
275) shows, however, that Puritan gentlemen did not crop their hair. 

§246] THE CIVIL WAR. 273 

England, — mostly yeomen farmers. They were men of godly 
lives, free from all the usual license of a camp. They prayed 
before battle, and then charged, with the old Hebrew battle 
psalms upon their lips. Mainly by these troops the great 
battle of Martton Moor was won. Then Cromwell was put in 
chief command, and he re- 
organized the whole army 
upon this "New Model." 
■Soon after, the victory of 
yatebif virtually closed the 
war (1645). 

Says Jobn Ftehe : '> If we con- 
fer merely its territorEsl area or 
the number of men elain, the war 
of the EDglisb Parliament against 
Charles I seems a trivial aSair, 
contrasted with the gigantic but 
mmparatively iualgnl Scant work 
of barbarians like Genghis Khan 
or Tamerlane ; but if we consider 
ttie moral and political issues in- 
volved, and the influence of the 
struggle on tlie future welfare of 
mankind, we soon come to see that 
ihere never was a conflict of more 
world-wide significance than that 
from which Oliver Cromwell came 

oat victorious, ... To speak of Naseby and Marston Moor as merely 
Eogllsb victories, would be as absurd as to restrict the signiticance of 
Gettysbui^ to the state of Pennsylvania. If ever there were men who 
laiil down their lives in the cause of all mankind, it was those grim old 
Ironeideg, whose wat«hwords were t«xts from Holy Writ, and whose battle- 
cries were hymns of pisise." 

246. Parliament ud the Anny: Pride's Purge. — When the 

war began, the Episcopalian party in rarliament had with- 
drawn to join the King, and the Presbyterians were left in 
control. Then, to buy the aid of the Scots, Parliament made 
the English church Presbyterian, and it wished to enforce unity 


of belief and worship along Presbyterian lines. Dissensions 
at once broke out, upon this issue, between Parliament and the 
Independents of the army. Charles, now a prisoner, sought to 
play off each party against the other, — intending, as he wrote 
to his wife, to keep promises to neither.* The result was a 
series of risings, Presbyterian and Royalist, and a "Second 
Civil War." The New Model army quickly stamped out the 
risings, and purged Parliament by military foroe^ leaving only 
a " Rump " of Independents (December, 1648). 

247. England a Republic. — The remnant of the Commons 
abolished monarchy and the House of Lords, and set up a 
Republic under the name of (he Commonwealth (1649). " The 
people," they declared, in a famous statement of principle, 
" are, under God, the original of all just power j and the Com- 
mons of England in Parliament assembled, being chosen by the 
people, have the supreme power in this nation." 

Under the " Commonwealth," the Long Parliament continued 
to form the government, without reelection. Early in the year 
it had brought the deposed King to trial for treason, and 
Charles had been executed January 30, dying with better grace 
than he had lived. The Scots, unprepared for this extreme action 
and angered at the overthrow of Presbyterianism, crowned the 
son of the dead king as Charles II, and invaded England to 
place him on the throne. Cromwell crushed them at Worcester, 
and the young "King of the Scots" escaped to the continent 

248. The Protectorate. — Cromwell was now anxious for a 
new Parliament and a settlement of the constitution. The 
Rump refused to dissolve, and finally Cromwell dispersed it 
with his troopers (1653). He then made some further sincere 

1 *' Be quite easy," Charles wrote, with shameless and characteristic duplies 
ity, ** as to the concessions I may grant. When the time comes I shall know 
very well how to treat these rogues, and, instead of a silken garter, I will fit 
them with a hempen halter." 

^ This militarj' expulsion of the Presbyterian majority from Parliament is 
known as Pride's Purge, from the name of the officer who carried out the 
order. Vane was the leader of Parliament after this event. Pym and Hamp- 
den were already dead. 


efforts to secure a new constitution through a national con- 
vention ; but the body chosen proved unwise and dilatory, 
and at last Cromwell and the army officers impatiently took 
the consti'uctioii of the machinery of government into their own 
hands. The real difficulty was that the Independents repre- 
sented only a small minority of the nation. ' They were un- 
willing to surrender the re- 
sults of their victory in war, 
and so they maintained them- 
selves in despotic power by 
the discipline of the Kew 
Model. Cromwell assumed 
the title of Lord Protector 
(1654), and continued to 
rule as virtual dictator. In 
practice, his authority ex- 
ceeded that of any recent 
sovereign. His rule was 
stained by cruelties in Ire- 
land (as were also his mili- 
tary campaigns in that 
island),' but it was in other 
respects wise and firm. He 

made England once more a Ceokwkll. — Alter an enKtaving from 
Great Power, peaceful at 
home and respected abroad. 
At the best, however, his nile was the rule of the sword, not that 
of law. The great experiment of a Republic* had failed miser- 
ably in the hands of its friends ; and on Cromwell's death, the 
nation, with wild rejoicings (1660), welcomed back Charles II. 

' Special reports : Cromwell id Irelnnd; the "InBtrument of Government," 
or the cooBtitutlon at the proteclorale. 

' There were several Int^restlnfc constitutional experiments snd proposals 
b; the Republican party during tbis period, which miKlit be asHi^ned to ad- 
fMced ttodents for special reports. See especially the " Agreement ot the 
I^le," of 16*7. Cf. Hill, Liberli/ DocumenU, 78-113. 



249. The Later Stuarts. — With the restoration of the 
Stuarts, the great age of Puritanism was over. At the court 
and among the young cavaliers, the stern and somber morality 
of the Independents gave way to unbridled excesses and shame- 
ful licentiousness, with the King to set the fashion. Litera- 
ture became indescribably indecent and corrupt.* To a great 
degree this became the tone of English society for many years, 
although of course the middle classes continued to include 
large numbers of God-fearing homes. The established church 
became again Episcopalian ; and dissenters — Protestant and 
Catholic — were cruelly persecuted. The Cavalier Parliament, 
chosen in the fervor of the welcome to the returned monarch, 
was enthusiastic for church and king, and Charles shrewdly 
kept this assembly through most of his reign (until 1679). 
Still, the great constitutional principles for which the Puritans 
had contended were victorious and were adopted by their old 
enemies. Even the Cavalier Parliament insisted strenuously 
on Parliament's sole right to impose taxes, to regulate the 
church, and to control foreign policy; and Charles' second 
Parliament secured Englishmen against arbitrary imprison- 
ment, by the Habeas Corpus Act} 

Charles said lightly that he had no mind to go on his travels 
again, and at any cost he avoided a clash with Parliament. He 
was slowly building up a standing army, however, and he sold 
himself to Louis XIV, King of France, in return for subsidies. 

^ This statement applies to the court literature of the Restoration, — a con- 
siderable body of English drama. However, it should be noted that defeated 
Puritanism uttered itself nobly in just this age of political overthrow. Mil- 
ton, the great pamphleteer of the Commonwealth, who for many years had 
abandoned poetry for political writings, now, as a blind and disappointed old 
man, gave the world his famous work, Paradise Lost; and John Bunyan^ a 
dissenting preacher, lying in jail under the persecuting statutes of the Cavalier 
Parliament, composed his PUgrirrCs Progress. 

^ The principle of this Act is older than Magna Carta, but the Act of 
Charles' time first provided adequate machinery, much as we have it to-day, 
to enforce the principle. 


There is reason to think that beneath his merry, careless 
exterior, Charles nursed plans of absolutism more dangerous 
than his father's ; but, if so, his death came in 1685, before he 
was ready to act. 

His brother James II was a thorough despot, and less pliable. 
James was a Catholic, and, in the interest of his oppressed 
co-religionists, he interfered with the laws and the courts in 
high-handed fashion, while he rapidly increased the standing 
army. This conduct created a wide-spread belief that he 
intended to make the English church Catholic, and so it 
brought on " tlie Glorious Revolution " of 1688, James' oppo- 
nents invited over William of Orange, the Stadtholder of 
Holland, husband of James' daughter Mary. When William 
landed with a small army, James found himself utterly 
deserted, even by his troops, and he fled to France. 

250. The "Glorious Revolution." — The story of the Revolu- 
tion is not a noble one. Selfishness, duplicity, and treachery 
mark every step ; and, except William of Orange, all the chief 
actors on both sides fail of our sympathy. There is no longer 
a patriot Eliot or Pym or Hampden, or a royalist Hyde or Falk- 
land. As Macaulay says, it was "an age of great measures 
and little men"; and the term "glorious," which English his- 
torians have applied to the Revolution, must be taken to belong 
to results rather than to methods. 

Those results were of mighty import. A Convention-Parlia- 
ment declared the throne vacant, drew up the great Declaration 
of Rights, the "third great document in the Bible of English 
Liberties,"* and elected William and Mary joint sovereigns, 
on condition of their assenting to the Declaration. Thus the 
supremacy, of Parliament over the king was once more firmly 
established. The new sovereigns, like the old Lancastrians, 
had only a parliamentary title to the throne.* 

^The next regular Parliament turned this document into the *'Bill of 
Rights." Cf. Hill's Liberty Documents. 

' Special report : the story of the struggle between England and France, 
1090 to lfi8&, especiall}' the *' Battle of La Hogae." 



251. Parliamentary Control of Purse and Sword : Annual Meet- 
ings — William III ranks among England's greatest kings; but 
he was unpopular, because a foreigner, and his reign was spent 
in wars against the threatening power of Louis XIV of France, 
who undertook to restore James. England entered upon a cen- 
tury in which the chief interest was foreign expansion (§ 283). 
During the first few years, however, some striking progress 
was made in the machinery of free government. 

The judges were made independent of royaJ removal, and a 
triennial bill pr-ovided for a renewal of Parliament by fresh 
election once in three years.* Parliament hit also upon a 
simple device to prevent the king's abusing his power of dis- 
solving the assembly: it resolved to pass revenue bills, no 
longer for the life of the sovereign, but only for one year, and 
to defer their passage until other business had been attended 
to. In like manner, the Mutiny Act, giving officers of the army 
authority over their troops, was passed only for a year. That 
is, j)oxcer of purse and sword was delegated only for a year at a 
time. Thus it became absolutely necessary for the government to 
assemble Parliament each year, and thenceforward Parliament 
has virtually fixed its own adjournments. So simply and indi- 
rectly was solved the constitutional puzzle of four centuries. 

252. Ministerial Government — Almost equally simple, though 
not so quickly perceived, was the method of solving the remain- 
ing political problem of parliamentary government, — how to 
control effectively the appointment of the king's ministers. 
Parliament could remove and punish ministers, as it had done 
at intervals since the time of the Edwards, and recently in the 
case of Strafford and Laud ; but such action could be secured 
only against notorious offenders, and it amounted almost to a 
revolution in itself. Some machinery was wanted, by which 
ministers acceptable to Parliament could be secured peaceably. 

^ Id 1716 this was changed to the present seven years' term. 


The desired result was accomplished indirectly ^ and the first 
step was made in the reign of William III. Political parties 
— Whigs and Tories — had appeared in England in the latter 
part of the reign of Charles II.* Since that time, they have 
never ceased to be an important element in the government, 
although they were not for a long time to acquire the impor- 
tance that political parties now have. There was no exact state- 
ment of principles, but the Whigs wished to limit the royal 
authority on every occasion, while the Tories preferred to sus- 
tain it and wished to prevent all further liberalizing of the 
constitution. At first William had tried to balance the two 
parties by keeping leaders from each among his ministers. 
But Parliament showed great jealousy of all the measures of 
the government, and there was danger of a deadlock. Then a 
shrewd political schemer suggested to the King that he 
appoint all his ministers from the Whigs, who made the 
majority in the Commons: such men would have the confi- 
dence of the House, and that body would have to supjwrt some 
positive measures, instead of blocking all proposals. William 
showed his political capacity by accepting this suggestion; 
and a little later, when the Tories secured a majority in the 
House, he carried out the principle by replacing his ministers 
with Tories. In the next century, this government by the minis- 
try became an established part of the English constitution. 

The ministers, at first, were not a compact ** ministry '^ controlled by 
one leader, as at present, nor were they then ministers of the Commons, 
but really *^ ministers of the king,^^ as tbey are still in name. The king 

^ The Radicals had introduced a bill to exclude from the throne the Duke of 
York, the King's brother and heir. The supporters of the bill were known 
as Exclnsionists, and great petitions were sent up from the country to sup- 
port their program. The Catholics and the conservative political factions sent 
dp counter-petitions expressing hori*or at such a proposal. Thus the friends 
and opponents of the measure became known as Petitioners and Abhorrers. 
The first were called Whigs (Whey-eaters) by their enemies, after a term 
applied to the extreme Scotch Calvinists ; and the second party were called 
Tories (bog-trotters), after the Irish rebels who supported the Catholic and 
royal policy. The division was really between the supporters of royal and 
the supporters of parliamentary sovereignty. 


had great Inflaence in determining the majority in the Commons, both in 
the elections, and afterward by buying support with his favor and with 
appointments and money ; and oftentimes his ministry created a majority 
in the Commons instead of the elected majority creating the ministry. 
This remained true until the nineteenth century. None Uie less, the 
change just outlined was momentous, even at the time ; and in the middle 
of the next century, under the stupid and indifferent Georges I and II, 
the Commons really ruled England through the great minister Hobert 
Walpole, Thus a system devised to enable the king more smoothly to rule 
the Commons, became the means whereby the Commons rule the king. 

253. Act of Settlement : Royal Title dependent upon Parliament — 
On the death of William without an heir (Mary died some years before), 
the crown passed to Anne, Mary^s younger sister, in accordance with a 
previous Act of Parliament This *» Act of Settlement" further provided 
that if Anne died without offspring, the throne should pass to the German 
house of Brunswick, the nearest Protestant heirs. The Act passed over 
the son of James II, and expressly excluded Catholics from the throne. 
In pursuance of the Act of Settlement, on Anne*s death, George I became 
king, and his successors have followed in accordance with the same law. 
The title of the present king is based strictly on Act of Parliament. 

264. Limitations upon Progress. — Thus the seventeenth cen- 
tury seemed to have made England a free country. The vic- 
tory was not complete, however. Parliament was supreme 
over the king; but Parliament itself was largely the posses- 
sion of the aristocracy. Owing to changes in wealth, this 
became even more marked in the next centnry. The real gov- 
ernment of England became a landed oligarchy, and it took 
the great parliamentary reform of the nineteenth century to 
establish popular control (§§ 531-537). 

For Further Heading. — For general works covering this period, see 
footnote 1 on page 136. Gardiner's First Two Stuarts and his CromweH 
are brief works by the greatest authority on the period. Firth's Crom- 
tcell is an admirable work by a scholar whose name ranks only second 
to that of Gardiner. Morley's Cromwell and Hale's Fall of the Stuarts^ 
1678-1697, are very good treatments of the later period. Jenks' Con- 
stitutional Experiments of the Commonwealth and Borgeaud's Rise of 
Democracy are readable and suggestive. There is good fiction for the 
seventeenth century, especially George MacDonald's St. George and St, 
Michael, Blackmore's Lorna Doone, and Scott's Woodstock. 





255. Wars to maintain the Balance of Power in Europe, and to secure 
Colonial Empire. — The century of wars about religion was closed by the 
Peace of Westphalia. There followed a century of selfish and dynastic 
wars. The last period of the Thirty Years' War had revealed new prin- 
ciples of action. Catholic France aided Protestant North Germany, in 
order to break the power of the llapsburgs, which had so long ringed her 
about. The Peace of Westphalia removed Spain from the leadership of 
Europe and put France in that place. It also introduced a new period 
of international politics. The chief object of most statesmen, through the 
next age, was to keep any one country from becoming too strong for the 
safety of its neighbors. This was called maintaining the Balance of Power. 
For many years France was the country that threatened that balance, 
and so league after league of other countries was organized against her. 
International morality was low and selfish, however, and commonly the 
nations were willing to let a strong Power rob a weaker neighbor, if they 
could find "compensation," and so maintain the ** balance," by them- 
selves robbing some other weak state. The theory of the balance of 
power came to mean not that an unscrupulous monarch should be pre- 
vented from plundering a defenseless one, but that he must be compelled 
to share his booty with the other strong ones. 

Before 1700 the area and the objects of strife widened beyond Europe, 
and the various wars merged into a titanic struggle between France and 
England for world-empire, — with the result, toward the close of the 
period, of making England the sole great colonial power and of establish- 
ing the new American Republic. 

^ This century and a half has strongly marked characteristics (§§ 255-257). 
The- period is a difficult one, however, for young students, and perhaps this 
chapter should be read and discussed with open books, without formal recita- 
tions. At this point, the student should reread caref ally §§ 4 and 5. 



256. Absolutism within; Dynastic Interests abroad. — Louts XIV 
of France (§ 264) is reported by legend to have once said, *' I am the 
state/* In his day the words might have been used truthfully by 
almost any monarch outside England. A few great rulers dominated the 
period. Indeed, the stage is almost filled by three monarchs, — Louis XIV 
of France (1043-1715), Peter the Great of Russia (1689-1725), aud Frede- 
rick the Great of Prussia (1740-1786). The main influence of Peter was 
spent directly upon his own country, but Louis and Frederick belonged 
to all Europe, and tlie period divides itself into the Age of Louis XIV 
and the Age of Frederick II. 

Absurd as it seems to us, the personal characteristics of monarchs 
became, even more than before, mighty factors in the histories of whole 
peoples. The wars of this age were dynastic^ or family, wars ; and the 
personal likings or hatreds of the princes, as well as their family interests, 
sometimes interfered curiously with devotion to the theory of a balance 
of power. 

257. Readjustment of the Map of Northern and Sastem Europe. — 
About 1700 the map of northern Europe underwent a striking transfor- 
mation. For a long time the two most powerful states there had been 
Sweden and Poland. Sweden had saved Protestantism in North Ger- 
many in the Thirty Years' War ; and, a generation later, John Sohie^kij 
King of Poland, saved South Germany from the Turks by driving back 
the Mohammedan army from Vienna (1683). Notwithstanding such 
mighty services, it was still true that neither of these two Powers had 
ordinarily played a very important part in European affairs. And now 
Sweden was to shrink up, and Poland was to disappear, before two new 
Powers, Russia and Prussia, which ever since have been leading factors 
upon the European stage. 


258. Mazarin and the Fronde. Early Years of Louis XIV. — 

During the long minority of Louis XIV, affairs were managed 
by Cardinal Mazarin, who continued the policy of Richelieu 
(§ 229). The most irapoi-tant event of the period was the 
crushing of the Fronde, the last rising of the French nobles 
against the royal power (cf. § 152). 

Louis himself assumed control in 1661. At first it seemed 
as though he would continue the wise policy of Henry IV. 
With his great minister ColheH, he introduced order and 

§200] THE AGE OF LOUIS XIV. 283 

economy into the finances, encouraged new manufactures, and, 
with ardent zeal, watched over the welfare of the New France 
growing up in America (§ 282). But in 1667 Louis turned to 
a career of foreign aggression, and a series of wars filled the 
remaining forty years of his life. 

259. First Period of Wars, 1667-1678. — Louis had married the 
daughter of Philip IV of Spain, but had expressly renounced any future 
claim upon the Spanish throne. On Phiiip*s death, however, Louis 
claimed the Spanish Netherlands for his wife, and marched into the Prov- 
inces with overwhelming force. The neighboring Dutch Republic saw its 
own danger, and resisted his progress. Tlirough its efforts the Triple 
Alliance against Louis was formed between Holland, Sweden, and Eng- 
land. Louis yielded, keeping only a line of Netherland fortresses ; but 
he yielded in order better to prepare to crush presumptuous Holland. 
Sweden and England he detached from the Alliance. Then he turned to 
attack the little Dutch Republic. His rapid successes alarmed the Dutch, 
and, by an internal revolution, they called to power William of Orange,^ 
grandson of the great William the Silent. William was not a supreme 
genius like his grandfather, but he was able, faithful, heroic, and more 
than any other man he foiled the French designs through the years to 
come. When it was urged upon him that conflict with France was hope- 
less, and that he would only see his country lost, he replied quietly, 
"There is one way never to see it lost, — and that is to die on the last 
dyke.'* With such grim determination, he finally cut the dykes, and the 
waves of the North Sea drove out the French army. Meantime he toiled 
ceaselessly in building up against France the Grand Alliance, comprising 
Spain, Austria, and Brandenburg. Louis was forced to accept peace, keep- 
ing, however, Franche Comt6 (which had been a detached Spanish prov- 
ince) and a strip more of the Spanish Netherlands. 

260. *< Rennions.' ' Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. — These 
wars had lasted twelve years. During the next ten years of 
peace two significant movements occurred. 

a. The ** Beuniojis." A French court of inquiry, set up by 
Louis, declared that about a hundred little bits of territory 
along the Rhine frontier belonged to France, because of some 
previous connection with the realms recently acquired; and 
on this flimsy pretext Louis seized them, one after another. 

1 Ten years later he became William III of England (§ 250). 


The most important territory so gained was the great city of 

b. Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Louis was an ardent 
Catholic and hated heresy. In 1685 he decided to revoke the 
Edict of Nantes and to compel the Huguenots to accept Cathol- 
icism. Bodies of dragoons were quartered in the Huguenot 
districts, and terrible persecutions followed. Protestantism 
did disappear from French soil ; but, despite the prohibition 
against emigration, the Protestants themselves by tens of thou- 
sands (perhaps three hundred thousand in all) escaped to Eng- 
land, Prussia, Holland, and America. 

The effect upon France corresponded in a measure to the 
effect upon Spain from the expulsion of the Moriscoes. The 
Huguenots had been the most enterprising merchants and 
the most skillful artisans of France, and their flight dealt a 
crushing blow to the prosperity of that country, — coming, too, 
as it did, just when France was exhausted by wars. The 
remainder of Louis^ reign was to be a period of failure and 
humiliation, and of preparation for the French Revolution a 
century later. 

261. Second Series of Wars, 1689-17x3. — The accession of Louis' en- 
emy, William of Orange, to the throne of England (§ 250) was the signal 
for a new war. This time Louis meant to secure the Palatinate, a Ger- 
man province on the Rhine. As before, the French armies were victori- 
ous in the field ; but, as before too, William checked Louis by a general 
European alliance. France gained no territory, and indeed surrendered 
some of the ** reunions '' of the preceding period. This war is known in 
American history as ** King William's War.*' It was the beginning of 
a new Hundred Years' War (1689-1816) between France and England, 
for world-empire, — though it cannot be said that either country was 
conscious at first of the importance of the struggle outside Europe. 

Louis hoped to make good his disappointment by arranging a partition 
of Spain. Charles II, the last Spanish Ilapsburg, was dying. The crown 
would go naturally either to the Austrian Hapsburgs or to the children 
of Louis XIV, who were nephews of Charles. This time Louis seemed 
to prefer negotiation to war, and he arranged a partition treaty with 
William of Orange, in accordance with which the Spanish realms were to 
be divided among the Powers of Europe. But the proud Spanish people, 

§262] THE AGE OF LOUIS XIV. 285 

who had not been consulted, had no mind for such an assassination of 
their empire. They preferred instead the accession of Louis' younger 
grandson, as Philip V ; and Cliarles II so arranged in his will. When this 
became known, on the death of Charles in 1700, Louis abandoned the 
partition plan and snatched at the whole prize. Said he exultantly, ^^ The 
Pyrenees no longer exist.'* Then Europe united against France and 
Spain in the ^^ War of the Spanish Succession," — known in American 
history as "Queen Anne's War." In this struggle, for the first time, 
success in the field lay with the Allies. The English Marlborough and 
the Hapsburg Prince Eugene were two of the greatest generals of history, 
and they won splendid victories over the hitherto invincible armies of 
France, at Blenheim, BamillieSy Oudenarde, and MalplaqueL 

The allies were supporting an Austrian Hapsburg for the Spanish 
throne ; but unexpectedly this prince became Emperor Charles VI. After 
that event, to make him also King of Spain would have been to return to 
the days of Charles V, with the world-wide dominions of the Hapsburgs 
reunited. Accordingly, England and Holland withdrew from the alliance, 
and the Peace of Utrecht (1713) left Philip V King of Spain (with a re- 
nunciation of any claim upon the French throne). France had gained 
no territory in Europe, and in America she had lost Newfoundland and 
Nova Scotia to England. England also had acquired command of the 
Mediterranean, by securing from Spain the foi-tress of Gibraltar and the 
island of Minorca. Spain lost all her European possessions outside her 
own peninsula. To Austria fell the Netherlands, Milan, Naples, and 
Sicily. 1 To the Duke of Savoy fell Sardinia, with the title of a kingdom 
for his enlarged state. 

262. Change in Austrian Policy. — Austria still furnished the emperor 
of the " Holy Roman Empire " at each election, but her nilers were turn- 
ing their attention more and more away from the Rhine and toward the 
Danube. For almost three centuries, Austria had been one of the chief 
bulwarks of Christendom against the Turk. In 1683, Vienna had stood 
its last great siege at a critical moment, and had been relieved by a 
Polish army. Thereafter, Austria assumed the offensive, won back Hun- 
gary, and gradually extended her dominions down the Danube valley 
and the Illyrian coast. In the later part of the age of Louis XIV, the 

^ These arrangements as to Sicily and Sardinia were not completed at the 
Peace of Utrecht, but were partly arranged afterward between Savoy and 
Austria. The union of Savoy and Sardinia marks the beginning of the 
growth of the kingdom which a century and a half later was to conHolidate 
Italy. Shortly before, in 1701 (§ 273) , Brandenburg in North Germany had 
become the kingdom of Prussia ; and this state, a century and a half later, 
was to consolidate Germany. 

•A — • 


significance of this policy lay in the diversion of Austria's attention from 
the great European wars. Austria's general, Prince Eugene, won most 
of his famous victories over the Turks, not over the French. A century 
later, just before the French Revolution, Russia was to replace Austria 
as the chief enemy of the Turk, and to begin to acquire Turkish territory 
along the Black Sea, toward the Danube. Thus, as Turkey declined, 
Russia and Austria were to become rivals for the inheritance. 

263. The Decline of Holland. — The Danubian policy of Austria had 
helped to give Louis XIV a free hand on the Rhine, and one of the re- 
sults was the decline of Holland. In 1640, Dutch vessels carried the 
greater part of the commerce of the world. England, under the Common- 
wealth (1651 and 1652), had attacked Holland's carrying trade, first by 
** Navigation Acts" * and then by open war ; and, after the Restoration in 
England, the government of Charles II on the whole had continued this 
policy. But finally Holland was driven by fear of French conquest to 
ally herself to her commercial rival, and after 1689, she followed the lead 
of England in politics, while that country drew to herself the old Dutch 
supremacy in commerce. 

264. Estimate of Louis XIV. — Louis XIV dazzled the men 
of his age, and won the title of the Great King {Orand Mo- 
narque) ; but we can now see that his aims were mistaken, 
even from a purely selfish view, and that his failure was pro- 
found. From the time of Francis I to the time of Kichelieu, 
France had been in real danger of being crushed in the hostile 
embrace of the Hapsburgs, whose realms encircled her. But 
after 1648, that danger had passed away; and Louis' wars 
against the Hapsburgs lacked whatever excuse had belonged 
to the policy of his predecessors. They, to some degree, fought 
for security ; Louis fought only to enlarge his borders. 

In this aim he was partially successful; but his wars ex- 
hausted France and left the nation burdened with debt through 
the next century. At the close of his reign, the industry of 
France was declining, under a crushing taxation of which 
more than half went merely to pay the interest on the debt he 

1 The Navigation Acts required all ships carryinf^ goods between English 
colonies and English ports to be built and owned by Ehiglishmen, — citizens of 
England or of the colonies. These Acts injared Holland and built up the 
New England merchant-marine and shipbuilding industries. 


had created. Moreover, in his unjust attacks upou petty prop- 
erties of his neighbors in Europe, he had wasted strength and 
opportunities that might have intrenched France aa mistress 
m Asia and America (§§ 282, 284). 

265. Frencb Intellectiul Leadership. — The Treaty of Utrecht 
marks the exhaustion of France and her decline from politi- 
cal leadership. But French 
btellectual supremacy sur- 
Ti\-ed through the next cen- 
tury. The court of Louis 
XlV remained the model 
ou which every couii; in 
Europe sought to form itself. 
French thought, French fash- 
ions, the French language, 
spread over Europe and be- 
came the common property of 
all polite society. 

This admiration for France 
was due partly to the out- 
burst of French poetry at this 
time. It was the first great 
age in French literature. 
The leading authors were the 

dramatists, Com ei lie, Racine, Louis XIV. 

and Moli^re.' At the same 

time, this literature was brilliant and sparkling, rather than 
great Says George Burton Adams (frencAA'a/i'on, 230, 231)l— 

It naa distinctly an age of quantity and finish in literature, ratlier 
than of quality. . . . The work U not constructive, but imitative. It is 
not free and strong, bat careful and studied. It is, as it has been called, 
the most literary of literatures. Its theme ia . . , the some wliat artificial 
aian of society. 

 A MrlklDg illustration of the iiiflut'iice of French literature is that a great 
Engllih Bdiool of writers incxieled tliem»elveg upon it. Thig le the body of 
"correct poets," of whom Pope perhaps is the most famous member. 



266. RiuBla u Peter the Great found Her. — As a "Great 
Power," Russia is the creation of Peter the Great. This timque 
ruler became master of Russia in 1689, at the age of seventeen. 
The Russians belonged to 
the Greek church, but they 
had no other tie with Eu- 
ropean life. In manners 
and thought they were 
Asiatic. They were Asiatic 
also in gec^raphical rela- 
tions. They held a vast 
area — the great eastern 
plain of Europe, reaching 
over into Siberia — but they 
had no seacoaat except on 
the Arctic. Practically, 
Russia was an inland state, 
shut otf from contact with 
Western Europe hy hostile 
Sweden, Poland, and Tur- 

267. Peter'a Character and 
Aims. — Peter was a bar- 
baric genius of tremendous 
enei^, clear intellect, and ruthless will. He admired the 
material results of western civilization, and he determined to 
Europeanize his people. As steps toward this, he meant to get 
the Baltic coast from Sweden and the Black Sea from the 
Turks, so as to have " windows to look out upon Europe." 

After two campaigns against the Turks, the young Tsar 
decided to learn more about the western world he had admired 
at a distance. In Holland he studied shipbuilding, as a work- 
man in the navy yards. He visited most of the countries of 
the West, impressing ail who met him with his insatiable 

CHrnrH or St. Basil, Moscow; built 
about \6K. in the reittn of Ivan the 
Terribib (§1T0). Tbe building waa 
painted brilliantly, in all tbe colore 
ol the rainbow. 


voracity for inforrastion. He inspected cutleries, 
manufactories, arsenals, departments of government, military 
organizations. He collected instiuments and models, and 
gathered naval and military stores. He engaged choice artists, 
gold beaters, architecte, workmen, officers, and engineers, to 
return with him to Bussia, 
with promises, not well kept, 
of great pay. 

368. RnssiA veneered with 
European Cnltnre. — With 
these workmen Peter sought 
to introduce western civiliza- 
tion inte Russia. The man- 
ners of his people he reformed 
by edict. He himself cut off 
the Asiatic beards of his cour- 
tiers and clipped the bottoms 
of their long robes. Women 
were ordered to put aside 
their veils and to come out 
of their Oriental seclusion. 
It has been well said that 
Peter " tried to Europeanize 

b, ABiatio methods." He ''""• '" 'JJS,',"" ' ■"'"' 
"civilized by the cudgel." 

The upper classes did take on a European veneer. The 
masses remained Russian and Oriental. The gap has never 

269. Growth of RuMlan Territory under Peter and Catherine II. 
— Peter also started Russia on her march toward the European 
seas. On the south, he himself made no permanent advance, 
despite a series of wars with Turkey ; but he boqueathed his 
pohcy to his successors, and, ever since his day, Constantinople 
has been the goal of Russian ambition in this direction, The 
Baltic " window " Peter himself secured, by victory over Charles 
XII of Sweden, " the Glorious Madman of the North." Sweden 


was a thinly populated country with no great natural resources. 
For a century, a line of great kings and the disciplined bravery 
of her soldiery had made her a leading power in Europe ; but 
such leadership could hardly be permanent. Sweden had grown 
at the expense of Russia, Poland, Denmark, and Brandenburg- 
Prussia; and when Charles XII came to the Swedish throne 
(1697) as a mere boy of fifteen, these states leagued against 

Charles proved a military geuiiis, and for a long time seemed 
victorious against this overwhelming coalition. But he wore 
out his resources in winning victories that did not destroy his 
huge antagonists, and he was as incapable a ruler as he was 
great in battle. Early in the struggle he defeated Peter the 
Great at Narva, with an army not more than an eighth as 
large as the Russian force ; but while Charles was busied in 
Poland and Germany, Russia recovered herself, and in 1709 
Peter crushed Charles at Pultava, As Peter had foreseen, the 
Swedes had taught him how to beat them. Sweden never 
recovered her military supremacy. Russia secured the Swed- 
ish provinces on the east coast of the Baltic as far north as 
the Gulf of Finland. These districts had been colonized, 
three centuries before, by the Teutonic Knights (§§ 95, 99), 
and German civilization was strongly implanted there. Thus 
the ac(iinsition not only gave Russia a door into Europe, but 
actually brought part of Europe inside Russia. It was in this 
new territory that Peter founded St. Petersburg.* 

The next important acquisition of territory was under the Empress 
Elizabeth,^ who 8eized the southern half of Finland from helpless Sweden. 
Toward the close of the century, under Catherine II, Russia made great 
progress along the coast of the Black Sea. Under the same ruler occurred 
the partition of Poland (§ 278) and the acquisition by Russia of the east- 
em part of that kingdom, along with the rest of the southeastern Baltic 
shore. These last changes, however, can be understood only in connection 
with the rise of Prussia (§§ 270 flf.). 

1 Special report : anecdotes of the founding of St. Petersburg. 
^ Daughter of Peter ; Empress from 1741 to 1762. 


A Rise of Prussia, to the Age of Frederick the Great. 

270. Growth of a Mark into an Electorate. — Brandenburg was 
one of the " marks " established in the tenth century as bul- 
warks against the Slavs (§ 50). This mark was the germ of 
modern Prussia. Under a great race of fighting Margraves it 
grew from century to century, and during the Hohenstaufen 
period, its ruler became one of the Electors of the Empire. 

271. Accession of the Hohenzollems. — In 1415, the first line 
of Brandenburg Electors ran out, and Frederick of Hohen- 
zollern, a petty count in the Alps (like the Hapsburgs a cen- 
tury and a half before), bought Brandenburg from the Emperor. 
The new family was to play a part in North Germany compar- 
able to that of the Hapsburgs in the South. Next to Saxony, 
Brandenburg was the most important of the German Protes- 
tant states in the wars of the Keformation. 

272. New Territory : Cleves and Prussia. — Shortly after 1600 
came the next important acquisition of territory. By family 
inheritance, the Elector of Brandenburg fell heir to two con- 
siderable principalities, — the duchy of Cleves on the extreme 
west of Germany, and the duchy of Prussia outside the Empire 
on the extreme east.* Thereafter the Hohenzollern Electors 
ruled three widely separated provinces, — on the Rhine, the 
Elbe, and the Vistula. The object of their politics was to 
unite these regions, by securing intermediate lands. To do this 
an army was necessary ; and the army of the little Prussian 
state was soon among the largest and best in Europe. 

273. The '* Great Elector" and the First King of Prussia.— 
Toward the close of the Thirty Years' War, Frederick William, 
the " Great Elector,'' came to the throne of Brandenburg. He 

^ Prussia was the name ^ven to a district which the Teutonic Knights had 
conqaered in the fourteenth century from the heathen SlavH, and which had 
^n partly colonized by Germans. In the fourteenth century, Poland had seized 
West Prussia. East Prussia afterward became a duchy in the hands of a 
branch of the Hohenzollern family, and in 1618 it passed to the Elector of 


at once took a leading part in the struggle ; and, as his reward, 
at the Peace of Westphalia he secured eastern Poinerania. 
This brought Brandenburg to the sea. The chief services of 
the long reign of the Great Elector, however, were rendered 
not in war but in peace. He built roads and canals, drained 
marshes, encouraged agriculture, and welcomed the Huguenot 
fugitives from France after the revocation of the Edict of 
Nantes (§ 260). 

Frederick, son and successor of the Great Elector, in return 
for aid against Louis XIV, secured the Emperor's consent to 
his changing the title " Elector of Brandenburg " for the more 
stately one of "King in Prussia" (1701); and Prussia soon 
came to be the name used for all the Hohenzollern dominions. 

B, Frederick the Great in Europe; and England in 

THE New Worlds. 

274. Wars of the Austrian Succession. — The second king of 
Prussia, Frederick William I, was a rude "drill sergeant," 
memorable only as the stupid father of Frederick the Great ^ 
and as the builder of the magnificent army which his son was 
to use so magnificently. Frederick II (the Great), ascended 
the Prussian throne in 1740. In the same year the Hapsburg 
Emperor, Charles VI, died without a male heir, and Frederick 
began his long reign by an unjust but profitable war. 

By long negotiations Charles had secured the approval of all the Euro- 
pean governments to the Pragmatic Sanction^ — a royal decree whereby 
he appointed his daughter, Maria Theresa, his successor in the heredi- 
tary realms of the Hapsburg family. Frederick, however, disregarded 
Pnis8ia^s pledge, and unscrupulously took advantage of the supposed 
weakness of the new Archduchess of Austria. With his perfectly prepared 
army, he seized Silesia, an Austrian province upon which Prussia had 
some shadowy claim. This high-handed act was the signal for a general 
onslaught to divide the Austrian realms. Spain, France, Savoy, Bavaria, 
each hurried to snatch some morsel of the booty. But Maria Theresa 
displayed great courage and ability ; her subjects, especially the gallant 

^ Special reports : anecdotes of Frederick's youth and of his father's court. 


Hnr.garian noWea, rallied loyally to her support ; and the wolves found 
the expected carcass very mnch alive. A little later, England and Holland 
addi'd their strength to the Austrian side. 

Tliis liar o/ (Ae Au$eTiiin Succemon was closed in 1748 by the Peace 
0/ Aix la Chapellt. Maria Theresa's husband, Francis at Lorraine, had 
been elected Emperor, and the Archduchess herself was now acknowl- 
edged as ruler of Austria. Frederick II kept Silesia, but Austria lost no 
other territory. Frederick 
had shown hiuiseU the great- 
est general of tlte age ; he bad 
added a large territory U> his 
kingdom, which now reached 
down into the heart of Ger- 
many \ and he had made 
Prussia the one great rival of 
Austria in Germany. 

275. The Contest out- 
■ide Europe. — jUucb more 
important, though less 
striking, was the contest 
outside Europe. Eng- 
land and Spain had al- 
ready begun a colonial j, 
war in 1739, before Fred- 
erick started the general European war; and France in any 
case would soon have joined Spain. France, however, gave her 
energies chiefly to the European struggle, while England's 
activity was spent to a great degree in America. When the 
war began, the French had the advantage of position in 
America, holding the mouths of the St. Lawrence and the 
Mississippi, with the connecting water-ways; while the Eng- 
lish colonists were stretched along a narrow fringe of coast in 
scattered patches, shut ofE from the interior by the Appalachians. 
The English Americans were more numerous, however, than the 
French; and the most important event of the war in America 
was the capture of the French fortress of Louisburg by a New 
England oKpedition. In India, the French leader, Duplelx, saw 
the chance to secure an Asiatic empire for his country, and. 


though greatly thwarted by home indifference and jealousy, he 
did capture the English stations in that country. 

The treaty of peace restored matters to their former position, 
both in America and Asia, but the war marks the growth of a 
consciousness in England and France that the two countries 
were rivals for vast realms outside Europe. The tremendous 
significance of the • struggle they did not yet realize. Of 
course we can see now that whether Prussia or Austria 
were to possess Silesia, whether France or Austria were to 
hold the Netherlands, were questions wholly insignificant in 
comparison with the mightier question as to what race and 
what political ideas should hold the New Worlds.^ 

276. The "Seven Years' War" in Europe.— The War of 1740-1748 
had resulted from Frederick's greedy attack upon Austria. In 1756, 
Austria began a war of revenge. Maria Theresa had secured the alliance 
of Russia, Sweden, and even of her old enemy France. Four great armies 
invaded Prussia from different directions, and Frederick's throne seemed 
to totter. His swift action and his supreme military genius saved his 
country, in the victories of Hossbach and Leuthen, The next year Eng- 
land entered the struggle as his ally. England and France had remained 
practically at war in America and India through the brief interval between 
the two European wars ; ' and now that France had changed to Austria^s 
side, England had no choice but to support Prussia. 

277. Victory of England In America and Asia. — In America 
the Seven Years' War is known as the " Great French War," 
or the " French and Indian War." The struggle was literally 
world-wide. Red men scalped each other by the Great Lakes 
of North America, and black men fought in Senegal in Africa; 
while Frenchmen and Englishmen grappled in India as well 
as in Germany, and their fleets engaged on every sea. The 
most tremendous and showy battles took place in Germany ; 

1 The American English felt bitterly chagrined at the return of Looisbms 
to the French ; but it was mach more important for the British Empire to 
regain its hold upon India than to keep one French fortress in America. 

2 Braddock's campaign in America (1754) took place during this hiterval. 
before any formal declaration of war between France and England. 


and, though the real importance of the struggle lay outside 
Europe, still the European conflict in the main decided the 
wider results. William Pitt, the English minister, who was 
working to build up a great British empire, declared that in 
Germany he would conquer America from France. He did so. 
England furnished the funds and her navy swept the seas. 
Frederick and Prussia, supported by English subsidies, fur- 
nished the troops and the generalship for the European 
battles. The striking figures of the struggle are (1) Pitt, the 
great English imperialist, the directing genius of the war; 
(2) Frederick of Prussia, the military genius, who won Pitt's 
victories in Germany; (3) Wolfe, who won French America 
from the great Montcalm ; and (4) Olive in India. 

The story of the straggle in America is too familiar to need repetition. 
The story of the conquest of India calls for a brief outline. Dupleiz had 
been recalled by the shortsighted French government, and no French 
commander was left in India able to cope with the English leaders. Olive 
was an unknown English clerk at Madras. The Nabob of Bengal 
treacherously seized the English post at Calcutta, induced the gan'ison to 
surrender on the promise of good treatment, and then suffocated them 
horribly by packing the one hundred and forty-six Europeans in a close 
dungeon ^ through the hot tropical night. The young Clive was moved to 
vengeance. He organized a small expedition of a hundred Englishmen 
and two thousand faithful native troops, and at Plassey (1757) he over- 
threw the Nabob's Oriental army of sixty thousand men. Soon after, 
English supremacy was thoroughly established. 

The treaty of peace left Europe without change. In India, 
the French retained only a few unfortified trading posts. In 
America, England received Florida from Spain, and Canada 
and the eastern half of the Mississippi Valley from France. 
France ceded to Spain the western half of the Mississippi 
Valley, in compensation for the losses Spain had incurred as 
her ally, and, except for her West Indian islands, she herself 
ceased to be an American power. 

1 This was the Black Hole of Calcutta, famous in literature. 



278. The Partitions of Poland.— The anarchy of Poland gave its 
growing neighbors excuse to plunder it. The population consisted of about 
twelve million degraded serfs, and one hundred thousand selfish, oligarchic 
nobles. The latter constituted the government. They met in occasional 
Diets, and, when the throne became vacant, they elected the figure-head 
king. Unanimous consent was required for any vote in the Diet, — each 
noble possessing the right of veto. Under such conditions, the other 
Powers of Europe had begun to play with Poland at will. Catherine II 
of Russia determined to seize a large part of the country. Frederick II 
persuaded Austria to join him in compelling Catherine to share the booty. 
The " Fii-st Partition " in 1772, pared off a rind about the heart. The 
Second and Third Partitions, which completed the. work and ** assassi- 
nated the kingdom,*^ had not even the pretext of misgovemment in 
Poland. The Poles had undertaken sweeping reforms ; but Catherine 
did not mean that her prey should so escape, and a Russian army sud- 
denly crossed the border (1703). Frederick II was dead and the new 
king of Prussia had approved the reformed Polish constitution ; but now 
he sent his army to join the Russians. Austria was busied with a war 
against the French Revolutionists (§ 331), and so the' Second Partition 
enlarged only tbe two other robbers. The Poles made an heroic defense, 
under their hero-leader Kosciusko, but this only led to the Third Partition, 
in which Austria again had a share. This partition wiped Poland off the 
map (1795). 

Russia had gained far the greatest part of the territory, and she now 
bordered Germany on the east, as Fmnce did on the west. Plainly the 
true policy of the Germans, early and late, would have been the honest 
one of supporting the "buffer states*' — Poland and Charles the Hold's 
Bur^ndy — against the greed of Russia and France. Failure to do so 
has left Germany exposed to immediate attack by powerful enemies and 
has compelled her to build up artificial frontiers of fortresses and bayonets. 

279. The True Greatness of Frederick. — Frederick II had 
shown himself unscrupulous in diplomacy and a genius in war; 
but there was another side to his life, which, more properly 
than either war or diplomacy, earns him his title of "the 
Great." Most of his forty-six years' reign was passed in peace, 
and he proved a father to his people. All the beneficent work 
of the Great Elector (§ 273) was taken up and carried forward 
vigorously. Prussia was transformed. Wealth and comfort 
increased by great leaps. The condition of the peasantry was 
improved, and the administration in all its branches was made 


economical and efficient. Frederick was also an author and 
a patron of literature ; and he is a type of the " crowned phi- 
losophers," or " beneficent despots," who sat upon the thrones 
of Europe in the latter half of the eighteenth century, just 
before the French Revolution. Under the influence of a new 
enlightened sentiment, created by a remarkable school of 
French writers (§ 302), government underwent a marvelous 
change. It was just as aristocratic as before, — no more by 
the people than before, — but despots did try to govern for the 
people, not for themselves. Sovereigns began to speak of 
themselves, not as privileged proprietors, but, in Frederick's 
phrase, as " the first servants of their states." * 

280. The " Benevolent Despots." — Frederick of Prussia, Cath- 
erine of Russia, Charles III of Spain, Leopold of Tuscany, 
Ferdinand of Naples, Joseph II of Austria, all belonged to the 
class of philosophic, liberal-minded, "benevolent despots" of 
this age. In Sweden and Portugal, two great ministers sought 
to impose a like policy upon the kings. All these rulers 
planned far-reaching reforms, — amelioration or abolition of 
serfdom, the building up of public education, and reform of 
the church. Frederick's genius and tireless energy accom- 
plished something for a time ; but on the whole the monarchs 
made lamentable failures. One man proved powerless to lift 
the inert weight of a nation. The clergy and nobles^ jealous 
for their privileges, opposed and thwarted the royal will. 
Except in England and France, there was no large middle 
class to supply friendly officials and sympathy. The most 
remarkable, and in some ways the greatest, of these philo- 
sophic despots, was Joseph II of Austria, the son of Maria 
Theresa; and he died disheartened, dictating for himself the 
epitaph, "Here lies a king who designed many benefits for 
his people, but who was unable to accomplish any of them." * 

1 Even Frederick's worst wars were designed to benefit Prussia. 

2 The kinj^s had failed to bring about suflicient reform ; and now, in France, 
the people were to try for themxelvps (§§ 285 if.). Before entering upon that 
story, we wiU sum up one more phase of the eighteenth century (§§ 281-2S4). 



281. Expansion of England, to the Opening of the Straggle 
with France. — In the reign of Elizabeth, England meant a 
state of fifty-eight thousand square miles, — about the size 
of Georgia. It did not include Scotland nor all of Ireland. 
The population was about four millions. The decisive steps 
in the great change into the vast empire of to-day belong to 
the eighteenth century, and much of the real progress was to 
take place in the nineteenth century ; but some earlier begin- 
nings call for notice. 

a. The first Stuart king, James I (1603), joined Scotland 
and England under one crown. A little more than a century 
later, under Anne, the last Stuart sovereign, this "personal 
union" (§ 243, note) was made a real consolidation (1707). 
By the parliamentary "Act of Union," assented to by Scot- 
land, the northern state gave up her separate legislature, re- 
ceived representation in the English Parliament, and became 
a part of the " United Kingdom." 

b. Between the first and last Stuart reigns, Ireland was 
made English by conquest and colonization ; and, during the 
Commonwealth, by sweeping acts of confiscation, English 
landlords were put in possession of the soil, so that the Irish 
peasantry became outcasts in their own land. No other part 
of England's empire was so unjustly acquired, and no other 
part has given her so much trouble. 

c. During the Stuart period, too, the English colonies in 
America were founded. That story needs no telling here. 

282. The French Colonial System. — When English expansion 
began, France had already begun to build up her colonial 
empire in Canada ; and a little later, in the time of Louis XIV, 
La Salle secured the mouth of the Mississippi. 

But the French colonies were petted and over-governed. 
They were hampered by well-meant but foolish restrictions 
and encouragements. Every new enterprise was fostered by 
aid from the government at home, — and fell into hopeless 


languor when the support was withdrawn. Moreover, no 
shadow of political life was permitted. The governors were 
sent out from France, and there was no sign of a colonial 
legislature or of popular county and town governments, all of 
which were found in the English colonies. The rulers did 
everything: the people did nothing. 

The rulers were oftentimes f arsighted, noble men ; but the 
system was fundamentally weak, when compared with that 
of the English colonies growing up in neglect along the At- 
lantic coast. The French were better woodsmen and Indian 
fighters, man for man, than the English colonists ; but they 
could not build a state ; and when England had once conquered 
them, they submitted easily, — as the English colonists would 
never have done under French despotism. Louis XIV lost his 
last real chance for American empire when he refused to let 
the Huguenots settle in French America. They would have 
come in numbers, with families, and would have made farmers 
and artisans. The French who did come did not bring wives, 
and turned eagerly to hunting and fur-trading, rather than to 
agriculture. Thus, despite their early start and their better 
location and the much larger population at home, the French 
colonists did not grow in numbers as fast as did the English. 
In 1754, when the decisive struggle began, with Braddock's 
campaign, France had only about a fortieth as many colonists 
in America as England had, though her home population was 
four times as large as England's. 

283. The Second " Hundred Years' War." — At the end of the 
seventeenth century began the long contest for empire between 
France and England. This struggle lasted with brief intervals 
for a hundred and twenty-six years, from 1689 to Waterloo 
in 1815. It falls into three chapters, 1689-1763, 1775-1783, 
and 1792-1815. The story of the first struggle has been told 
in outline in §§ 261, 275-279, in connection with the story 
of European wars. At the expiration of the period, England 
had dispossessed France in America and in Asia ; Spain still 
held South America and half North America, but her power 


was evidently decaying, day by day ; and Holland, too, with 
wide-spread colonial empire, was plainly in decline. England 
stood forth as the leading world-power. 

This result was to be intensified by the third period of the 
struggle, whose story will be told in connection with the Wars 
of the Revolution and of Napoleon. The second period, that 
of the American Revolution, needs only brief reference (§ 284). 

284. The American Revolution. — At the time, France and 
Spain saw in the American Revolution a chance to revenge 
themselves upon England by helping the best part of her 
empire to break away. To-day we see more justly that its 
real importance, even to Europe, lay in the establishment of 
an independent American nation and in teaching England to 
improve her system of colonial government. From the 
strictly American point of view, the war came because the 
English government unwisely insisted upon managing Ameri- 
can affairs after the Americans were quite able to take care 
of themselves. England came out of the war with gains as 
well as losses, and with glory little tarnished. She had been 
fighting, not America alone, but France, Spain, Holland, and 

Theodore Roosevelt has put finely the result and character of this wider 
straggle (Crouverneur Morris^ 116) : "England, hemmed in by the ring 
of her foes, fronted them with a grand courage. In her veins the Ber- 
serker blood was up, and she hailed each new enemy with grim delight, 
exerting to the full her warlike strength. Single-handed, she kept them 
all at bay, and repaid with crippling blows, the injuries they had done 
her. In America, alone, the tide ran too strong to be turned. But Hol- 
land was stripped of all her colonies ; in the East, Sir Eyre Coote beat 
down Hyder All, and taught Moslem and Hindoo alike that they could 
not shake off the grasp of the iron hands that held India ; Rodney won 
back for his country the supremacy of the ocean in that great sea-fight 
where he shattered the splendid French navy ; and the long siege of Gib- 
raltar was closed with the crushing overthrow of the assailants. So, with 
bloody honor, England ended the most disastrous war she had ever waged." 

The secession of the American colonies did not injure England, 
as her friends and foes had expected it to do. The commerce 


of the United States continued to be carried on mainly through 
England, and, very soon, the new nation, with its growing 
wealth, was buying more English goods than the old colonies 
had been able to pay for. For her territorial loss, England 
found compensation, too, to some degree, in the acquisition of 

Further Reading upon the subject of this chapter may profitably 
be confined to the expansion of Europe into the New Worlds. On this 
topic the best brief treatments are Woodward^s Expansion of the British 
Empire (pp. 1-263) and Seeley's Expansion of England. Seeley's Groveth 
of British Policy is good for advanced students. George Burton Adams' 
essay, "Anglo Saxon Expansion," in the Atlantic Monthly for April, 
1897, is excellent reading. Caldecott^s English Colonization and Empire 
contains an admirable treatment For the great struggle in America, the 
student should read Parkman^s Works, especially his Jdontcalm and Wolfe 
and his Half Century of ConflicL The following biographies, too, are 
good : Wilson's Clive^ Malleson's Dupleix and Lord Clive^ and Bradley's 
Wolfe. Mahan's Influence of the Sea Power upon History. 1660-1783^ 
should not be omitted by the advanced student. 

For Europe, the best general reference is the volume of the ** Periods " 
series, — Wakeman's Europe,, 1589-1715, Hassal's Louis XIV is an 
admirable treatment Henderson's Short History of Germany may be 
used for Germany and for Frederick II. 


1. Fact drills. 

a. Dates : add the following with their significance : 1620, 1571, 1588, 
1628-1629, 1648, 1640-1649, 1660, 1688, 1713, 1740, 1763, 1783. 
6. Extend list of terms for drill. 
c List twenty important battles between 843 and 1789. 

2. Continue the syllabus (page 190). 

3. Review by countries, with ** catch- words," from 848. 

4. Review the introductory chapter of the book, and observe its applica> 

tion to the narrative up to 1789. 

5. Make a brief paragraph statement for the period 1648-1787, to include 

the changes in territory and in the relative power of the different 
European states. 





Every aristocracy has three ages : it is founded in its age of violence ; 
it degenerates into its age of privilege ; and in its age of vanity it is extin- 
guished, — Chateaubriand. 

There are only two events in history^ — the Siege of Troy and the 
French Bevolution. — Disraeli. 

. . . Anevidenceof vitality, not of decay ; the outcome of national con- 
valescence; the result of a universal conviction of injustice and of a univer- 
sal determination to install justice. — Adapted from Shailer Mathews. 

7%e nineteenth century is precisely the history of the work the French 
Bevolution did leave. The Bevolution was a creating force even more 
than a destroying one; it was an inexhaustible source of fertile influences; 
it not only cleared the ground of the old society, but it manifested all the 
elements of the new society. — Frederic Harrison. 


285. A True "Revolution." — Italy had given the world an 
intellectual revolution ; Germany, a religious revolution ; and 
now France was to give the political and social revolution. 
The three movements, — the Eenaissance, the Reformation, 
and the French Revolution, — are the most important events 
since the Teutonic invasions. Preeminently, among the so- 
called "revolutions" in history, the French Revolution de- 
serves the name. The English Revolution of 1688 only swept 
away a temporary interference with the old lines of develop- 



ment in English politics : it was a " conservative revolution," 
restoring the nation to an old groove. The like is true, to a 
great degree, of the American Revolution: that great move- 
ment divided the British Empire and made a new nation, but 
it did not itself materially change the character of American 
society or politics ; like the English Revolution, it was a 
protest against new abuses. But the French Revolution over- 
turned and swept away a society and institutions that had 
been growing up for centuries. It cut loose from the past, 
and started France upon new lines of growth. 

286. The Revolution Constructiye as well as Destractive. — The 
Revolution was a vast and fruitful reform. The work of 
destruction, with which it began, was accompanied by much 
horror and bloodshed, and often receives undue attention. 
But if the Revolution destroyed the old, it also built up the 
new: and this constructive side is far the more important 
The Revolution did inflict much terrible agony upon a large 
class, and it took the lives of thousands of individuals, most 
of them, perhaps, innocent and worthy. But the really sig- 
nificant thing is not the temporary mob-rule with its horrors : 
the significant thing is the great national awakening which 
swept away an absurd society, founded by ancient violence 
and warped by time, to replace it with a simpler social system 
based more nearly on equal rights. 

And even as to the destructive side, we must guard against 
prevalent exaggerations. Literature is full of hysterics and 
sentimentality on this matter. It is right that we should 
shudder at the violence and agony: but there is no danger 
that we shall not shudder sufficiently; for, as Carlyle says, 
those who suffered in the excesses of the Revolution were 
the few who could shriek and so create sympathy for their 
woes. The danger is, that we forget the relief to the dumb 
multitudes, who had been enduring worse tortures for ages, but 
whose inarticulate moanings hardly attract the attention of 
history. Carlyle touches a sad truth when he adds that not 
within ten centuries had there been any equal period with so 


little suffering, over France as a whole, as just those months 
of bloody revolution. 

287. The Revolution directed against Social Inequality even 
more than against Absolute Government. — The Bevolutionists 
were to take for their watchword the famous phrase, Liberty, 
Fraternity, Equality. But in practice they cared for liberty 
not so much in itself as because it was a means toward equal- 
ity. " Fraternity '' and " Equality " meant to them much the 
same thing ; and they put the emphasis on this two-thirds of 
the motto. In other words, the Revolution was social even 
more than political} The Revolution came to he a revolt 
against the monarchy, but primarily it was a revolt against 
the unjust privileges of the aristocracy. Had the monarch 
been willing and resolute to reduce those privileges himself, 
his own power probably would not have been attacked. The 
assault upon the monarchy was a means to an end. 


A. Social Classes. 

288. The Privileged Drones. — In 1789, France had a popula- 
tion of about twenty-five millions. At the top were a quarter 
of a million of nobles and clergy. These were the two privi- 
leged orders. They were about equally divided in numbers 
and wealth. Together they owned half the soil of France, 
with all the fine buildings; and they took besides from the 
peasant, in church dues and feudal payments, over a fourth of 
his income. Moreover, they received in pensions and sinecure ^ 
salaries a large part of the taxes paid by the nation, while they 
themselves were nearly exempt from taxation. 

^ This is hard for American students to grasp, because in America our 
democracy in politics has grown out of democracy in society. But it is true 
that in France, political democracy was sought chiefly as a means of securing 
social and economic equality. 

^ A sinecure is an office to which no duties are attached. 


Nor were financial advantages the only privileges of these orders. 
For instance, no man in the army could become an officer unless he could 
show that his ancestors on both sides had been nobles back to his great- 
great-grandfathers. Other privileges will be noticed in connection with 
the oppression of the peasantry (§§ 293-204). Arthur Toung, an English 
gentleman traveling in France just before the Revolution, was indignant 
at the reckless driving of young French nobles in the crowded and narrow 
Paris streets, and declared that if English nobles were to drive so in Lon- 
don they would be soundly thrashed and rolled in the gutter. 

These privileged nobles rendered little service to society. 
They had been useful in earlier times : but the monarchy had 
taken away their political power, giving all administrative 
offices to low-born clerks, and the nobles themselves had abdi- 
cated their other proper functions, as captains of local indus- 
try, by becoming mere courtiers. 

Many of the poorer nobles, it is true, remained upon their 
shrunken estates, because they could not afford life at court : 
but even this class saw their highest ambition in a pension or 
an office which should enable them to exchange their "dull 
banishment " for the gayety of Paris, and so they failed to fill 
the proper place in country life. The wealthy nobles were 
absentee landlords ; and to keep up luxuriant establishments 
in town they drove their bailiffs for money, while the bailiffs 
in turn harassed the cultivators. The nobles of this class had 
for their sole industry to amuse themselves and each other, — 
to dress gracefully, to phrase a jest wittily or a compliment 
acceptably, to win a pension, and to dine sumptuously. They 
had become a burdensome excrescence upon the nation. 

289. Higher and Lower Clergy. — Of the hundred and thirty 
thousand clergy, half were monks and nuns. Of the rest, one 
out of six belonged to the " higher clergy." With insignificant 
exceptions, these were all of noble birth. From their immense 
revenues they paid paltry sums to subordinates, who performed 
for them their spiritual offices, while they themselves lived at 
court in idle luxury or in vice. The bishops and abbots enjoyed 
over five-sixths of the church revenues, while the forty thou- 
sand village priests and the other lower clergy lived on bare 


pittances. These priests numbered many devoted religious 
men ; but they were of non-noble birth, and high offices were as 
hopelessly barred against the non-noble in the church as in the 
army. In consequence, the opening of the Revolution found 
the village priests (cur^s) on the side of the third estate. 

290. The Burdened Workers. — The privileged drones were 
supported by some twenty-three millions of unprivileged and 
overburdened workers, — nearly a hundred to each aristocrat. 
Of these workers, great masses dragged out a haggard existence 
in hideous wretchedness. A century before the Revolution a 
French gentleman wrote, with somewhat cynical sympathy : — 

** Certain wild-looking beings, male and female, are seen in the coun- 
try, — black-livid, sunburned, slaves of the soil, which they dig and grub 
with invincible stubbornness. They seem just capable of speech, and 
when they stand erect, they display the lineaments of men. They are 
men. At night they retire to their dens, where they devour black bread 
with roots and water. They spare other human beings the trouble of sow- 
ing, plowing, and reaping, and thus should not themselves lack bread.** 

A hundred years later, on the eve of the Revolution, Arthur 
Young (§ 288) speaks, with less rhetoric but with greater 
earnestness, of the misery of this class. Pitiful is his typical 
story of the peasant woman whom he overtook upon the road and 
whom he supposed to be seventy years old, but who proved to 
be only twenty-seven. Toil, want, and hard fare robbed the 
workers of youth and life. Famine was chronic in the fertile 
land of France in the eighteenth century, as it has been in 
Russia in the nineteenth. Taxation and feudal extortion dis- 
couraged agriculture. A fourth of the land lay waste. Of the 
rest, the tillage was poor, and the yield per acre was a third 
less than in England. If a poor season produced a crop fail- 
ure in a single province, starvation followed, although neigh- 
boring provinces might possess abundance. Poor roads, and 
high tolls, and poverty, and the government's carelessness or 
inefficiency made it impossible for one district to draw relief 
from another. So the records are full of local famines and 
desperate revolts. At other times, when things were not quite 


SO bad, great niimbers of the peasants lived on a coarse bread 
made of bran and bark and acorns, — because of which, says 
an oflBcial report, " the children very commonly die." 

The laborers in the towns were little or no better off. They 
were pallid, haggard, diminutive, — ** sullen masses of rags and 
misery," — huddled in garrets and cellars. The regulations of 
the gilds shut out the masses of the town population from 
profitable trades and left them no chance to rise. 

At the same time, it must be understood that this dark pic- 
ture was not without relief. The condition of the peasantry 
varied greatly in the different districts; and in some places 
they lived a merry, prosperous life. In any case, the cause of 
the Revolution did not lie in their misery so much as in the 
progress they had made toward getting out of it (§ 292). To 
some extent, however, the justification of the Revolution does 
lie in that ancient misery.* 

291. The Bourgeoisie. — Between the two social extremes 
came a small, but important, middle class, composed of 
bankers, lawyers, physicians, men of letters, merchants, and 
shopkeepers. This class is known by the French name of 
bourgeoisie. It was wealthy and proud, and its members pos- 
sessed many economic privileges, which were bitterly griev- 
ous to the masses ; but it was destitute hi political power and 
of social privilege. 

The middle class was less numerous than in England, but 
far more numerous and much more important than in Ger- 
many, Italy, or Spain. It was this class who made the Revo- 
lution possible. They began it, and for the first two years, on 
the whole, they controlled it. Then it slipped for a while from 
their hands, and, indeed, was directed against their class, in 
the interests of the masses ; but with one or two exceptions, 
the bourgeoisie continued to furnish the leaders of the move- 
ment to the close. 

1 On the peasantry, see Taine's Ancient Regime, 321^-345. For a more 
favorable view, cf. Lowell's Eve of the French Revolution, ch8.xiii and xiy. 


B, Feudal Burdens. 

The miBery of the peasant came from (1) the feudal burdens, (2) the 
extortionate taxation by the state, and (3) the absence of suitable pro- 
vision for spiritual and intellectual needs. The first two of these factors 
will now be treated more in detail. 

292. Peasant Landowners.^ — Despite the evils mentioned 
above, and others yet to be noted, the French peasantry had 
been slowly improving in condition during the eighteenth cen- 
tury. They were behind the peasantry of England, but far in 
advance of that class in Germany or Spain. They played a part 
in the Revolution because they had already progressed far etiotigh 
to fed the possibility of fuHher progress, A million and a half 
were still serfs, but these were nearly all in Alsace or Lor- 
raine, the regions lately seized from Germany. Elsewhere the 
twenty-two millions or more had become free in person, and 
many of them had become landowners. Perhaps a fourth of 
the soil belonged to the peasants ; but most of it was held in 
lots so small that a family must eke out its existence by labor 
on other land belonging to a neighboring lord. The greater 
part of the peasants lived altogether by cultivating the laud 
of great proprietors. 

293. The Land Servile. — Even when the free peasant owned 
land, he owned it subject to many feudal obligations. Sometimes 
the dues were heavy, one or more days' work out of each week ; 
sometimes they were merely trifling and vexatious, perhaps a 
pair of chickens a year. So long as he made the payments, a 
peasant-owner could not be dispossessed. He was subject, 
however, to many incidental burdens. He could not sell his 
land without paying the lord a part of the price. He could not 
sell produce except in the lord's market, and only after the 
lord had had first chance to sell his own ; and then the peas- 
ant paid toll on each sale. The grain that he kept for his 
children he could grind only at the lord's mill, leaving there 

* Read Tocqueville's France before the Revolution, bk. ii, ch. 1. 


one sixteenth the flour, and he could bake only in the lord's 
oven, leaving one loaf out of a cei-tain number.* 

294. The Game Laws. — Most grievous of all the feudal 
burdens were the nobles' rights, and sole rights, to hunt. Wild 
animals were protected by brutal game-laws such as had van- 
ished in England more than four hundred years before. The 
peasant must not under any circumstances injui'e the rabbits 
or pigeons or deer that devoured his crop ; but the nobles at 
will might ride over the crops to chase the game. The peasant 
might not own a dog, except by special permit ; and if he did, 
he must keep it chained to a log. On penalty of death, the 
peasant might not carry a gun, even to kill the wolves. He 
could not fence his land without a special permit, and then he 
must leave wide gaps for the huntsmen's horses. He could 
not even enter his own field, to till it, between certain dates, 
when the pheasants were hatching or the rabbits were young. 
Year after year the crops were trampled by huntsmen or 
devoured by game. In some districts the peasants watched 
all night from May to October, armed with tin pans and kettles 
to make a hullabaloo. Arthur Young tells us how the peasant 
had come to identify the noble with the wild beast : at sight 
of a herd of deer his guide exclaimed, " There go the nobility, 
who devour us." * 

C Taxation.' 

295. Unequal Distribution. — The irresponsible monarchy 
spent money extravagantly, wastefully, wickedly. The wars 
of Louis XIV left France burdened with a great debt. The 
dissolute, cynical Louis XV spent as much in vice as his 

I Probably these burdens never all fell upon any one free peasant: they 
varied from district to district and from man to man. 

« See Arthur Younp's Travels, 82, 316, 317 (Bohn edition), and Tocqueville's 
Correspondence f I, 102. Striking aummaries are given by Taine, Ancient 
Regime, 55-59. When the government broke down, in the summer of 1789 
(§ 317), the peasantry attacked the game with a wholesale slaughter and with 
peculiar animosity. Cf . Young, 256. 

s For a remarkable treatment, see Taine, Ancient Regime, 349-373 and 412. 


predecessor had spent in war. The royal revenue was mis- 
managed, given away in pensions to unworthy favorites and 
needy nobles, and plundered by corrupt officials. 

The treasury, emptied in these shameful ways, was filled in 
a manner equally shameful. Through devices and favors too 
numerous to mention, the privileged orders practically escaped 
taxation. The most grievous taxes they were free from alto- 
gether, and for the others they assessed themselves and paid a 
ridiculously small part in proportion to their wealth. Large 
numbers of the wealthier bourgeoisie, also, escaped, by purchas- 
ing exemption in the form of sinecure offices connected, in 
name with the royal household. Thus payment was made 
only by those too poor to escape and least able to pay. The 
actual amount raised by the monarchy was not greater than 
France could have afforded. The evils were (1) that the reve- 
nue was wasted without any proper benefit to the nation; 
(2) that the wealthy classes did not pay; and (3) that various 
clumsy devices made the collection needlessly burdensome 
and offensive. 

296. The Direct Taxes. — Of the many direct taxes, perhaps the most 
burdensome were the taille and the corvee, 

a. The taille was originally a tax on the peasant^s land ; bat over 
much of France it had become an arbitrary seizure of any part of his 
visible income. Each year the government decided how much a given 
district most pay. If a village showed signs of prosperity, its share was 
promptly increased. On one occasion a royal officer wrote, ** The peo- 
ple of this village are stouter, and there are chicken feathers before the 
doors ; the taxes here should be greatly increased next year.** 

Within the village, what one peasant did not or could not pay, his 
richer or less favored neighbor had to pay. The apportionment in these 
small units was left wholly to the appointed collector. He could favor 
one neighbor, or gratify a petty grudge by ruining another. But for each 
individual, too, in the long run, just as for the community, any evidence 
of well-being meant heavier taxation. So the peasants concealed their 
comforts jealously, if they had any, and by preference left their cottages 

6. The corvee was the forced labor upon roads or upon other public 
works. For such purposes, the peasant might be called from his own crop 


at any time, even at the most critical momentf by the arbitrary order of 
an official. 

It bas been estimated that on the average a peasant paid over half his 
income in direct taxes to the government, and that the feudal dues and 
church tithes raised the amount to over four-fifths his income, while, from 
the remaining one- fifth, he had not only to support his family but also to 
pay various indit^ect taxes (§ 297).^ 

297. Indirect Taxes: the Gabelle. — The government placed 
a tax upon the sale of a great many articles.' The most 
famous of these indirect taxes in France was that upon salt. 
This was called the gabelle,^ It raised the price of salt many 
times its first value. No salt could be bought except from the 
government agents, and every household was compelled by law 
to purchase from these agents at least seven pounds a year for 
every inmate over seven years of age. This amount, too, was 
for the table only. If a pig were to be salted down, the peas- 
ant must buy an additional supply for that purpose, and get a 
certificate that such a purchase had been made. 

This tax was " farmed " to collectors, who paid the govern- 
ment a certain amount down, and then secured what they 
could get above that amount for their own profit. Only one- 
fifth the amount collected reached the treasury, and thousands 
of persons every year were hung or sent to the galleys for try- 
ing to evade the tax. Many other indirect taxes — on candles, 
fuel, grain, and flour — were farmed out in similar fashion. 

Another class of vexatious indirect taxes were the tolls and 
tariffs on goods. These payments were required not only at 
the frontier of France, but again and again, at the border of 

1 Cf. Taine's Ancient R^f/hne, 412, 413. It seems as though tliesc figures 
must contain serious exaggeration, but they are the work of an industrions 
and earnest scholar, and they are usually quoted as conveying the essential 
trutht-'Perhaps they held good for some districts, and at least they establish 
beyjmd doubt the fact of terrible general oppression. 

^ >arSuch a tax is usually called an indirect tax, because, directly, it is paid to 
the\government by the dealers, and only indirectly by the actual consumers, 
ip tne added price they pay. 

Cf. Arthur Young's Travels, 315, 316 (Bohn edition). The gabelle varied 
in4m6unt in different districts, and some provinces were wholly free from iti 


each province and even at the gate of each town, as the goods 
traveled through the country. Workmen who crossed a river 
from their homes in one district to their day's work in another, 
had to pay a tariff on the luncheon in their pockets ; and fish, 
on their way to Paris from the coast, paid thirteen times their 
first cost in such tolls. 

D. The Government.* 

298. The Centralized Machinery. — Directly about the king 
was a Council of State, which formed the center of the admin- 
istration. Subject to the king's approval, it fixed the taxes 
and the levy for the army, drew up edicts, and indeed ruled 
France. Its members were appointed by the king and held 
office only at his pleasure. France was made up of about 
thirty districts, which corresponded roughly to the old feudal 
provinces. At the head of each such province was an Ldendant 
appointed by the king, from men of the third estate with 
legal training. Subject to the royal power, the Intendant was 
an unchecked despot, with tremendous power for good or evil. 
In the parish, the local officer — mayor, consul, or syndic — 
was sometimes chosen by the people, sometimes appointed by 
the Intendant, who could remove him at will. The parish 
assembly could not meet without the Intendant's permission; 
and it could not take any action without the government's 
approval. Had the wind damaged the parish steeple ? The 
parish might petition for permission to repair it, — at their 
own expense, of course. The Intendant would send the peti- 
tion, with his recommendation, to the Council of State at 
Paris, and a reply might be expected in a year or two.' 

299. Tyranny over Individuals: Letters of the Seal. — A 
special convenience of the government was its practice of con- 

^ A clear and detailed account is ^iven in Wilson's The State, 207-213. 

' Tocqueville declares (France he/ore the Revolution, 92) that in the musty 
archives he found many cases of this kind where the original sum needed for 
repair would not have exceeded five dollars. 



signing individuals, high or low, to prison without trial, merely 
by a letter with the royal seal. Such letters were not only 
used to remove political offenders, down to the man who spoke 
jestingly of the king's mistress, but they were often secured 
also by private individuals of influence to remove rivals, and 
by parents to discipline unruly sons. Usually the imprison- 
ments were for a few months ; but sometimes the wretch was 
virtually forgotten and left to die in prison, perhaps without 
ever learning the cause of his arrest.^ One minister is said to 
have signed one hundred and fifty thousand of these '' lettres 
de cachet, '' besides sending out others, signed in blanky to his 
Intendants. Very properly did Blackstone, the English law 
writer, class France with Turkey as countries where " personal 
liberty " was " wholly at the mercy of the ruler." 

300. Complications from Survivals of Old Local Governments and 
from Class Feeling. — This centralized machinery was likely to be clumsy, 
from tlie amount of detail it had to attend to. Moreover, it was compli- 
cated by many factors that did not show on the surface. It is important 
to understand that France waA still a patchwork of territories which had 
been seized piece by piece by the kings. Each province had its own laws 
and customs, its own privileges and exemptions ; and the Intendant, 
absolute as he was, had to respect these checks. Even the taxes varied 
widely ; and salt, for instance, cost In one province ten or twelve times as 
much as it did in another just alongside. This absence of uniformity was 
a serious obstacle to efficient government. Moreover, tyrannical as the 
monarchy might be toward individuals, it never dared offend the nobles 
as a body, or the church ; and ordinarily it showed respect to multitudes 
of local interests. France was covered with shadows of old local govern- 
ments, which had lost their power for action but which remained power- 
ful to delay and obstruct. Two classes of such survivals need attention, 
— the Provincial Assemblies of certain districts, and the Parlement of 

a. Anciently, each province had had its Assembly of three estates. 
In the thirteenth century, the French kings began to abolish these as- 
semblies; but several large provinces kept them until the Revolution. 

1 Arthur Toung, Travels^ 313 (Bohn edition), tells of an Englishman who 
had been kept in a French prison thirty years, although not even the gov- 
ernment held a record of the reason. 


These Pays cT^tat (Provinces with Estates), like Brittany, Languedoc, 
and Champagne, were all on the frontier. They had heen acquired late, 
and had preserved their *^ Estates** by treaty. The Provincial Estates 
exercised considerable control over local improvements and local taxation, 
and their mere existence was a check upon royal absolutism. 

6. The Parlement of Paris was a law court, like several others in 
France, but more important than any other. Membership was originally 
purchased from the king, but it had become a property right, and the 
seats were virtually hereditary, though a holder might sell his place. When 
theldng issued a new edict, it was not considered in force until it had 
been *' registered,** or put on record, by this Parlement. This constituted 
a slight check upon the king*s power of making laws. The Parlement 
could send back an objectionable edict with a remonstrance (though such 
action was most unusual), and so might possibly secure a reconsideration 
by the monarch. Of course, in such a case, the Parlement would explain 
that it felt sure the king had not meant quite what the words of the edict 
seemed to say ; and of course, too, if the king was in earnest, he had only 
to summon the Parlement before him and in person order it to register. ^ 

Toward the close of the reign of Louis XV, however, the Parlement 
had claimed the right of absolute veto and had refused to register, even 
when so ordered. Whereupon Louis had banished or imprisoned the 
members; but his successor had brought them back, to play a part in 
setting in motion the coming Revolution (§310). 

301. The Government summarized. — Thus the government of 
France was a centralized despotism, anxious to keep the good 
opinion of the privileged classes and hindered in its work by 
the complex survivals of ancient local institutions. To run 
such a machine called for a Napoleon or a Bismarck; but 
hereditary monarchy in the eighteenth century had ceased to 
furnish great rulers.' Louis XIV had been a tireless worker. 
His successor, the selfish, keen-sighted Louis XV, was wont 
to say, with his mistress, " Let the good machine run itself ; 
it will last our time ; after us, the deluge ; " or, as the same 
shameless king said about his coming successor, " I should 
like very much to see how Berry will pull through with it." 

1 This proceeding was known as holding a ** bed of justice.** Cf . § 129, note. 

* Jefferson, with some exaggeration, wrote from Paris in 1787 to Monroe 
that there was not a crowned head in Europe with abilities to fit its possessor 
to act as a Virginia vestryman. 


Under this "Berry " (Louis XVI), a benevolent idler, of iofirm 
will and mediocie talent, the "machine" was to go to pieces 
and the " deluge " was to come. 

E. The Men of Lettees.' 

302. Toltoire, Roubsud, and their Fellows. — A revolution, 

it haa beea said, requires not only abuses but also ideas. The 

combustibles were ready; 

now came the men of ideas 

to apply the igniting mateb. 

About 1750, there began a 

period of dazzling brilliancy 

iu French literature. Never 

before in the history of the 

world had any country seen 

BO numerous and so eminent 

a group of men of letters. 

Voliaire, the greatest of the 

illustrious company, had 

already won the fame he 

was to enjoy nearly thirty 

years more ; Diderot and his 

associates began the great 

" Eucyclopedia " in 1751 ; 

and two years later appeared 

VoLTAiRB. the first work of Rousseau. 

Beside these men stood 

scores of others only less eminent. Most of the writing, 

except Kousseau's, was critical and destructive. With biting 

satire and keen mockery and powerful logic, these authors 

daringly attacked the sujierstitions and scandals of the church 

and the absurdities and evils of society. Most of them, it is 

true, confused the corruptions of the church with religion 

itself, and sometimes they are remembered chiefly for their 

> Ou this topiu see Matbews, S2-T2, or Hallet, 28-40. 

§303] THE MEN OF LETTERS. 817 

attack upon Christianity ; but of course, " their glory lies not 
in their contempt for things holy but in their scorn for things 
unjust." They railed at absentee bishops of licentious lives ; 
they questioned the privileges of the nobles; and they pitilessly 
exposed the absurdity and iniquity of the gabelle and of the 
"letters of the seal." Voltaire's powerful plea for religious 
tolerance and his life-long exposure of the folly and wrong of 
religious persecution had much to do with creating the free 
atmosphere in which we live to-day.^ 

303. Rousseau and Political Democracy. — Some of these 
authors had learned to admire English liberty and the Eng- 
lish constitutional monarchy ; * but most of them, like Voltaire, 
looked rather for reform by some enlightened, philosophic 
despot. One alone of all their number stood for democracy. 
This was Rousseau. He taught much that was absurd, as to 
an ideal " state of nature " " before governments were formed 
by men " ; but he also taught the final and absolute sovereignty 
of the people. His most famous book {TJie Social Contract, 
1762) opens with the words, " Man was born free, but he is 
now everywhere in chains " ; and the volume argues passion- 
ately man's right and duty to recover freedom. Rousseau's 
moral earnestness and enthusiasm made his doctrine not a 
mere intellectual speculation, but a popular religion. He was 
preeminently the prophet of the political side of the coming 

1 J. R. LoweU says, " We owe half our liberty to that leering old mocker *' ; 
and Professor Jowett of Oxford, an English Churchman, declares that Vol- 
taire " did more good than all the Fathers of the Church together." John 
Morley has well said that Voltaire's life, with its long challenge of all existing 
institutions, was of itself equivalent to a revolution. Voltaire is often incor- 
rectly called an atheist. Though not a Christian, he was a deist, — a firm 
believer in a God revealed in nature and in the human soul. 

> Buckle, History of Civilization^ opening of ch. xii, has a marvelous ten 
pages of proof of English influence. 

* Some years before the French Revolution, these phrases and ideas of 
Rousseau were to have a powerful influence in America. They did not create 
the American Revolution, but they may have determined to some degree how 
that great movement should justify itself in words. The passages about 


304. Philosophic Liberalism becomes Fashionable. — When the 
French writers began to attack hoary abuses, they ran extreme personal 
risks and played an heroic part The same movement, however, th&t 
produced these men of letters was at work in all social circles. The 
writers intensified the movement ; and, before long, criticism of social 
arrangements became general. Even the privileged orders began to talk 
about their own uselessness. When the great noble in a popular play was 
asked what he had done to deserve all his privileges, and when it was an- 
swered for him, *' Your Excellency took the trouble to be bom,** the 
audience of nobles in the boxes laughed and applauded. Part of this 
new attitude was only sentimentality ; but there was also a real change. 
In the fifteen years just before the Revolution, society did become less 
artificial and less corrupt, and some of the nobles did try zealously to 
resume long-abandoned duties. 

Upon the whole, however, this new pity for the poor proved helpless to 
relieve them. The mass of the privileged classes remained selfish and 
scornful. The chief influence of the new philosophy was in its effect 
upon the unprivileged masses. The third estate was imbued with a new 
consciousness of its wrongs and of its power, and with a determination to 
secure its rights. Said a famous pamphlet of SUyes (§314) on the eve of 
the Revolution, *^ What, really is the third estate? Everything. What has 
it been so far in the state ? Nothing. What does it ask ? To be something.** 

F. Attempted Reforms, from the Accession of Louis XVI 
TO THE Meeting of the States General, 1774-1789. 

305. Character of the Sovereign. — In 1774, the dissolute but 
able Louis XV was succeeded by the well-disposed but irreso- 
lute Louis XVI. This Prince had a vague notion of what was 
right and a general desire to do it, but he lacked moral courage 
and will power. His weakness was as harmful to France as 
his predecessor's wickedness. He abandoned the wisest policy 
and the best ministers, rather than face the sour looks of the 
courtiers and the pouts of the Queen. 

natural equality and freedom in the Declaration of Independence and In many 
of the original state constitutions are popularly supposed to he due to Ameri- 
can admiration for Rousseau. Rousseau, however, drew these ideas to a great 
extent from John Locke and other English writers of the seventeenth cen- 
tury ; and we cannot always tell whether an American document Is affected 
directly by Rousseau or by the older but less impressive English literature. 


The Queen was Marie Antoinette, daughter of the great 
Maria Theresa of Austria. She was young, high-spirited, and 
lovely; but she had come to the vile court of Louis XV as 
a child-bride, and had grown up under its evil influence. 
Historians differ regarding her character, but, at the best, 
she was ignorant, frivolous, and selfishly bent upon her own 
pleasures, without the slightest comprehension of her real 
duties. The King was greatly influenced by her, and, in 
matters of government, almost always for evil. 

306. National Bankruptcy. — When Louis XVI came to the 
throne, the national debt was some five hundred million dollars, 
and it tvas increasing ea^ch year by ten million doUara more. 
This condition stirred the government to spasmodic attempts 
at reform. To the view of the court, the danger to France lay, 
not in the social injustice or in the misery of the masses, but 
merely in the empty treasury. Says Carlyle, with bitter scorn, 
"It is spiritual bankruptcy, long tolerated, now verging toward 
economic bankruptcy and become intolerable." 

307. Turgot. — Louis XVI at once called to his aid Turgot, 
a man of letters, a reformer, and an experienced administrator. 
Turgot had been an Intendant for many years, and had made 
remarkable improvements in his district. Now he set about 
conferring still greater benefits on all France. He abolished 
the corvee, the internal tariffs on grain, and the outgrown 
gilds, with their restrictions on the right to labor. The frivo- 
lous expenses of the court were cut down, and the absurd 
pension list was curtailed remorselessly. Turgot planned 
other vast and far-reaching reforms, — to recast the whole 
system of taxation, to equalize burdeus, to abolish feudal dues, 
and to introduce a system of public education : " a whole 
pacific French Revolution in that head," says Carlyle. But 
the Queen hated the reformer, who interfered with her pleas- 
ures; and Louis, who had promised unfailing support, wavered, 
grew cold, and, after only twenty months, dismissed the man 
who might perhaps have saved France from a revolution of 


Turgot rejected impatiently all ideas of reform by the people. He 
wished no States General. He belonged to the autocratic reformers of 
the day, and he expected to refashion France through the despotic power 
of the monarch. At the same time he tried to secure the support of public 
opinion. He recommended his reforms to the public, and explained his 
purposes, in prefaces to the royal edicts. In abolishing the corv^, a 
proclamation said, ^*The roads are made by the forced labor of those 
who are least interested in roads.** The edict abolishing restrictions on 
trade declared, *^The right to work is the most sacred of possessions; 
every law by which it is infringed violates the natural rights of man, and 
is null and void of itself. . . . The existing corpoi*ations are grotesque 
and tyrannical monopolies, — results of the selfish avarice and violence 
of their privileged members, and of the fiscal avidity of the crown.'* 

Such language in royal documents was significant, and somewhat awk- 
ward when the crown soon afterward restored these * tyrannical monop- 
olies *' ; but the striking fact was that the government should think it 
necessary to give its reasons at all. Soon it would be compelled to do so. 

306. Hecker. — Turgot's reforms were swiftly undone; but 
after a little, in 1776, Necker, another reformer, was called to 
the helm. Necker was not a great statesman, but he was a 
good business man with liberal sentiments ; and he might 
have accomplished something for the national finances, if his 
difficulties had not been tremendously augmented in an unfore- 
seen manner. In 1778, France joined America in the war 
against England. The new " loans " ^ to support the expense 
of the war greatly increased the national debt, and made it 
more impossible to pay the annual interest.* Necker secured 
a number of minor reforms, and he enforced a strict economy, 

^ When a nation sells bonds to raise money, the proceeding is called a loan. 

2 The American Revolution directly helped to bring on the French Revolu- 
tion by sinking the French monarchy more hopelessly into bankruptcy. In 
other important but more indirect ways the American movement con tribnted to 
tliat in France. Lafayette and other young nobles who had served in Amer- 
ica came home with liberal ideas strengthened; and the French regiments 
that had fought side by side with the American yeomanry had imbibed demo- 
cratic ideas and were soon to declare themselves "the army of the nation/' 
not of the king. Said Arthur Young in 1789, "The American Revolution has 
laid the foundation for another one in France ; " and again, " A strong leaven 
of independence has been increasing here every hour since the American 


which angered the courtiers ; but finally he found himself 
forced to more radical measures. He laid before the King a 
plan for comprehensive reform, much along Turgot's lines; 
but the universal outcry of the privileged classes caused Louis 
to dismiss him from office (1781). Just before that event, 
decker published to the nation a detailed statement of the 
government's finances. Thid was a step farther than Turgot 
had gone in consulting the public. The statement showed in 
figures the miserable injustice of the existing system ; and the 
minister retired, hated by the privileged orders, but the idol 
of the people. 

309. Calonne and the Notables. — Once more, all the old 
abuses were restored. Then a new minister of finance, the 
courtly Calonne, adopted the policy of an unscrupulous bank- 
rupt and tried to create credit by lavish extravagance. For a 
time this was successful : but in 1786 the annual deficit had 
risen to twenty-five million dollars, and even adroit Calonne 
could borrow no more money to pay expenses or interest. 
Under these conditions, the minister persuaded Louis to call 
together the Notables of France. 

The Notables were not an elected body. They were com- 
posed of such leading nobles and clergy as the king pleased 
to summon. Still, this assembly, nearly a hundred and fifty 
strong, was in an imperfect way a representation of France. 
At least it represented the privileged orders. To the amazed 
Notables, Calonne suggested that the privileged orders give up 
their exemption from taxation. But all cried out against him, 
— the few Liberals for what he had done in the past, the many 
Conservatives for what he now proposed to do. 

310. The Parlement of Paris and the States General. — Calonne 
gave way to a new minister, a favorite of the Queen, who found 
himself at once driven to the same plan. In fact it had become 
necessary to get more money, and that could be done only by 
taxing those who had something wherewith to pay. As the 
Notables were still stubborn, they were dismissed, and the 
King tried to force the plan upon the nobles by royal edict. 


The Parlement of Paris^ representing the privileged orders, 
refused to register the edict, and cloaked their dislike to reform 
under the excuse that the only potver in France which could 
properly impose a new tax was the States General, Louis sum- 
moned resolution to banish the Parlement, but it had given a 
rallying cry to the nation. 

The States General (§ 154) had not met since 1612. Sugges- 
tions for assembling it had been made from time to time, ever 
since Louis XVI became king. At the session of the Notables, 
Lafayette had called for it. Now, after the action of the Parle- 
ment, the demand became universal and imperious. Finally, 
August, 1788, the King yielded, restored the Parlement, 
recalled Necker, and promised that the States General should 
be assembled. 

(?. Summary. 

The States General were soon to inaugurate the Revolution. Before 
we take up that story, it is worth while to Bummarize the conditions and 
causes of the coming change. 

311. The Chief Institntions of France were : (1) a monarchy, central- 
ized, despotic, and irresponsible, bnt incumbered, ineffective, and in weak 
hands ; (2) an aristocracy , wealthy, privileged, corrupt, skeptical ; and 
(3) an established church, wealthy and often corrupt. Below these 
spread the masses, as a necessary but ugly substructure. 

Like conditions existed also over the continent of Europe. In France, 
as compared with the other large countries, the nobles had fewer duties, 
the peasantry had risen somewhat, and more of a middle class had grown 
up. That is, feudal society was more decayed and the industrial stcUe was 
more advanced in France than in other continental countries. This ex- 
plains why the Revolution came in France. Revolutions break through 
in the weakest spots. 

312. The Causes of the ReYOlution classified. — First among the 
causes of the Revolution, we must put the unjust privileges of the small 
upper class and the crushing burdens borne by the great non-privileged 
mass. These evils, however, were no greater than for centuries before. 
But the consciousness of them was greater than ever before. Not only 
was the system bad, but mert knew that it was bad. The masses wfere 
beginning to demand reform ; and the privileged classes and the govern- 
ment had begun to distrust their rights, and were to find their power of 





resistance weakened by such doubts. This new intellectual condition was 
due primarily to the new school of French men of letters, whose influence 
was strengthened by England and America. Then, the financial bank- 
ruptcy of t?ie national treasury opened the way for other forces to act, 
and started the government itself upon the path of reform ; and the in- 
efficiency and indecision of the government led the people finally to seize 
upon the reform movement themselves, — a result gi'eatly hastened by 
the political doctrines made popular just before by Rousseau. 

For Fukthbr Reading. — Source material may be found in the Penn- 
sylvania BeprintSf IV, No 5 (examples of cahiers) ; V, No. 2 (Protest of 
the Cour des Aides) ; and VI, No. 1 (short extracts from French writers 
of the time). Stephens* Life and Writings of Turgot gives translations 
of the writings of the great reformer. Arthur Young^s Travels in France 
in 1787-1789 is the best contemporary description. 

Modem accounts : LowelPs Eve of the French Revolution is perhaps 
the best one-volume survey, for popular purposes, though the work is 
based only on secondary authorities, and the view of the Old Regime is 
perhaps too cheerful. Maclehose's Last Days of the French Monarchy, 
Grant's Fall of the French Monarchy, Dabney's Causes of the French 
Revolution, and Kingsley's Ancient Regime are also good. Tocqueville's 
France before the Revolution (especially book ii, chs. i, vi, ix, and xii) 
and Taine's Ancient Regime (especially on classes of society, 13-85, and 
329-402) are among the greatest studies ever made of this period. John 
Morley's Lives of Voltaire, Rousseau, and Diderot, and his essays in his 
Miscellanies, upon ** France in the Eighteenth Century" (Vol. Ill) and 
" Turgot" (Vol. II), are admirable and interesting. Say's Turgot is excel- 
lent. Lecky's England in the Eighteenth Century, V, ch. xx, and Buckle's 
History of Civilization, chs. viii-xiv, may be consulted by advanced stu- 
dents. The opening pages of most of the histories of the Revolution listed on 
page 343 have brief treatments of the conditions before 1789, — especially 
Shailer Mathews (pages 1-110), Mallet (5-50), and Gardiner (1-32). . 


A, The First Three Months: the Constituent 
Assembly at Versailles. 

313. Election of the States General. — France had lost even 
the tradition of how to elect a States General. The govern- 
ment asked for suggestions, and learned societies showered 


down pamphlets of advice. Finally the country was divided 
into districts; the nobility and clergy of each district came 
together to choose their delegates; and the delegates of the 
third estate were elected by a complex system of electoral 
colleges. In choosing these colleges, all tax payers had a voice. 
When finally chosen, the States General consisted of about six 
hundred members of the third estate, three hundred nobles, 
and three hundred clergy. Of this last order, two-thirds were 
cur^s. The delegates possessed almost no political experience; 
but the bulk of the third estate were lawyers, and, as a whole, 
the gathering was scholarly and cultured. It contained no 
representatives from the " lower classes." 

314. The States General becomes the National Assembly. — 
May 5, 1789, the King opened the States General at Ver- 
sailles.^ Before the elections, the Liberals had demanded 
(1) double representation for the third estate (or as many repre- 
sentatives as the other two orders together), and (2) vote by 
member^ instead of by three separate orders. The double 
representation had been granted, but the other half of the 
question had been left to settle itself. The nobles and the 
clergy proceeded to organize as separate chambers, after 
the ancient fashion. This would have given the privileged 
orders two votes, to one for the third estate, and would have 
blocked all vital reforms. The third estate insisted that all 
three orders should organize in a single chamber, where its 
double membership could outvote the other orders combined. 
With wise generalship, it refused to ** usurp the right to 
organize " until it should have been joined by the other " dele- 
gates of the nation " ; and there followed a deadlock for five 

But delay was serious. The preceding harvest had been a 

^ In the royal address, some reforms were suggested ; bat it was plain that 
the King hoped mainly for more taxes, and enthusiastic Liberals were sadly 
disappointed. Even Necker's three-hour address, which followed the King*8| 
dwelt almost exclusively upon the need of prompt action to relieve the finan- 
cial straits of the government. Read Carlyle's account of the procession. 


failure, and famine was abroad in the land. In Paris every 
bakeshop had its '^ tail " of men and women, standing through 
the night for a chance to buy bread. Such conditions called 
for speedy action, especially as the ignorant masses had got it 
into their heads that the marvelous States General would in 
some way make food plenty. Finally (June 17), on motion 
of Si^yfes (§ 304), an ex-priest, the third estate declared that 
by itself it represented ninety-six per cent of the nation, and 
that, with or without the other orders, it would organize as a 
National Assembly,^ Uiia was a revolution. It changed a gather- 
ing of fevdal Estates into an assembly representing the nation as 
one whole. Nothing of this kind had ever been seen before on the 
continent of Europe, 

315. The Tennis Court Oath: the National Assembly becomes 
the Constituent Assembly. — Two days later, the National Assem- 
bly was joined by half the clergy (mainly cur^s) and by a few 
liberal nobles. But the next morning the Assembly found 
sentries at the doors of their hall and carpenters within putting 
up staging, to prepare for a " royal session." Plainly the King 
was about to interfere. The gathering adjourned to a tennis 
court near by, and there unanimously took a memorable oath* 
neryer to separate until they had established the constitution on a 
firm foundation (June 20). 

This Tennis Court Oath marks an era. The idea of a 
written constitution came from America. Six years earlier, 
Franklin, our minister to France, had published French trans- 
lations of the constitutions adopted by the new American 
States. The pamphlet had been widely read, and had called 
forth much discussion. The instructions' of delegates to the 
Assembly had very commonly called, among other matters, for 

1 See Anderson's Constitutiong and Documents, No. 1, for the decree. 

s See the text in Anderson's Constitutions and Documents, No. 2. 

* Nearly every fi^thering for choosing delegates to the Assembly, or eren 
to the electoral colleges, had drawn up a statement of grievances and had 
suggested reforms, for the guidance of its representatives. These cahiers 
(ki-ya') are the most valuable source of our knowledge of France before the 
Revolution. See Pennsylvania Reprints, IV, No. 5, for examples. 


a constitution, but, so far, the idea had lain rather in the back- 
ground. After the Tennis Court Oath, however, to make a 
constitution became the chief purpose of the Assembly ; and 
that body soon became known sis the CoruUUuent Assembly, 

On June 23, Louis summoned the three estates to meet him, 
and told them that they were to organize as separate bodies 
and to carry out certain specified reforms : if they failed to 
comply with the royal wishes, the King would himself " secure 
the happiness of his people." When the King left, the nobles 
and higher clergy followed. The new " National Assembly " 
kept their seats. There was a moment of uncertainty. It was 
a serious matter for those quiet citizens to brave the wrath of 
the ancient monarchy. Mirabeau, soon to be known as the 
greatest man in France, — a noble who had abandoned his order^ 
— rose to remind the delegates of their great oath. The Mar- 
quis de Br^z^, master of ceremonies, reentering, asked if they 
had not heard the King's command to disperse. " Yes," broke 
in Mirabeau's thunder ; " but go tell your master that we are 
here by the power of the people, and that nothing but the 
power of bayonets shall drive us away." Then, upon Mira- 
beau's motion, the Assembly decreed the inviolability of its 
members : " Infamous and guilty of capital crime is any person 
or court that shall dare pursue or arrest any of them, on whose 
part soever the same be commanded.'^ * 

The King's weakness prevented conflict, and perhaps it was 
as well for him ; for Paris was rising, and the French Guards, 
the main body of troops then in the capital, when ordered to 
fire on the mob, rang their musket butts sullenly on the pave- 
ment. The next day, forty-seven nobles joined the National 
Assembly, and in less than a week the King ordered the rest 
to enter. 

316. Paris saves the Assembly ; Fall of the Bastille. — How- 
ever, the court planned a counter-revolution. A camp of sev- 
eral thousand veterans was collected near Paris, — largely 

1 The royal declaration and this decree are in Anderson, No. 3. 


German op Swiss regiments who could be depended upon. 
Probably it was intended to imprison leading liberal deputies : 
certainly the Assembly was to be overawed or dissolved. 
July 9, Mirabeau boldly declared to the Assembly that such 
was the royal policy, and he secured an address from the 
Assembly to the King, solemnly requesting the immediate 
withdrawal of the troops. The King's answer was to banish 
Necker, who, as minister, had opposed the new royal policy. 
This was on the evening of July 11. About noon the next 
day, the news was whispered on the streets. Camille Des- 
moulins, a young journalist, pistol in hand, leaped upon a 
table in one of the public gardens, exclaiming, '' Necker is 
dismissed. It is a signal for a St. Bartholomew of patriots. 
To arms! To arms!" By" night the streets bristled with 
barricades against the charge of the King's cavalry, and the 
crowds were sacking bakeshops for bread and gun shops for 
arms. Three regiments of the French Guards joined the 
rebels. Various street conflicts took place. Some rude organi- 
zation was introduced during the next day ; and, on the day 
following, the revolutionary forces attacked the Bastille. 

The Bastille was the great " state prison," like the Tower in 
England. In it had been confined political offenders and vic- 
tims of " letters of the seal." It was a symbol of the Old Regime 
and an object of detestation to the Liberals. It had been used 
as an arsenal, and the rebels went to it at first only to demand 
arms. Refused admission and fired upon, they made a frantic 
attack. The fortress was virtually impregnable; but after 
some hours of wild onslaught, it surrendered to an almost 
unarmed force, — " taken," as Carlyle says, " like Jericho, by 
miraculous sound." The hangers-on of the attacking force 
massacred the garrison, and paraded their heads on pikes 
through the streets. Out at Versailles, Louis, who had spent 
the day hunting and had retired early, was awakened to hear 
the news. " What ! a riot, then ? " said he. « No, Sire," re- 
plied the messenger ; " a revolution." Soon after, the Bastille 
was razed to the ground, and the anniversary of its destruction 


(July 14) is still celebrated in France as the birthday of 
political liberty.* 

The rising of Paris had saved the Assembly. The most 
hated of the courtiers fled from France. The King visited 
Paris, sanctioned all that had been done, sent away the troops, 
accepted the tricolor, the badge of the Revolution, as the 
national colors, and recalled Necker. 

317. Anarchy; and Reorganization on the Part of the Bour- 
geoisie : Municipal Councils and Guards. — The fall of the Bastille 
gave the signal for a brief mob-rule all over France. In towns, 
the mobs demolished local fortresses. In the country, the 
lower peasantry and bands of vagabonds plundered and demol- 
ished castles, seeking especially to destroy the court rolls, with 
the records of servile dues. Eac& district had its carnival of 
plunder, with outrage and bloodshed. 

More instructive than this anarchy, however, is the new 
order that evolved out of it. The King could not enforce the 
law : the machinery of the old royal government had simply 
collapsed. The Assembly did not dare interfere vigorously, 
because it might need the mob again for its own protection.* 
But everywhere the middle class organized locally against an- 
archy. In Paris, during the disorder of July 13, the electoral 
college of the city met at the Hotel de Ville, and assumed the 
authority to act as the Municipal Council. In other munici- 
palities the like was done ; ' and in a few weeks, France was 
covered with new local governments composed of the bour- 

i Read Carlyle's account of the celebration of the first anniyenary. 

3 Six days after the fall of the Bastille, the moderate Liberals proposed to 
issue a proclamation denouncing popular violence. From an obscure seat od 
the Extreme-Left, Robespierre, then an unknown deputy, protested vehe- 
mently; "Revolt? This revolt is liberty. To-morrow the shameful plots 
against us may be renewed, and who will then repulse them if we declare 
rebels the men who have rushed to our protection ! *' 

' This was the easier, because in many cases the electoral colleges, instead 
of breaking up after the election, had continued to hold occasional meetings 
during the two months since, in order to correspond with their delegates in 
the National Assembly. Cf. Stephens, 1, 192 ff. 


geoisie. The first act of the Paris provisional Council had 
been to order that in each of the sixty " sections " (wards) of 
the city, two hundred men should patrol the streets, to main- 
tain order. This, or something like this, was done in all the 
districts of France. The new militia became permanent. It 
took the name National Guards, and in Paris Lafayette be- 
came the commander. Like the new municipal councils, the 
Guards were made up from the middle class ; and before the 
middle of August, these new forces had restored order.* 

318. Abolition of "Priyilege." — Meantime, on the evening of 
August 4, the discussions of the Assembly were interrupted by 
the report of a committee on the disorders throughout the coun- 
try. The account stirred the Assembly deeply. One of the 
young nobles who had served in America declared that these 
evils were all due to the continuance of feudal burdens, and, 
with impassioned oratory, he^ moved their instant abolition. 
One after another, in eager emulation, the liberal nobles fol- 
lowed, each moving some sacrifice for his order, — game laws, 
dovecotes, tithes, exclusive right to military office, and a mass 
of sinecures and pensions.^ In like manner, representatives of 
the towns moved the surrender of ancient and exclusive rights 
possessed by their cities. Every proposal was ratified with 
applause. Our American minister, Gouverneur Morris, was 
disgusted with the haste, and even Mirabeau called the scene 
" an orgy of sacrifice." One night accomplished what might 
well have taken a year's calm debate, and no doubt much con- 
fusion and hardship resulted ; but, on the whole, the work was 
necessary and noble, and it has never been undone. 77ie night 
of August ^4 saw the end of feudalism and of legal inequalities 
in France.* 

1 Taine gives the darkest picture of the disorders ; see French Revolution, 
book iii, chs. i and ii. For the opposite view, see Stephens, I, ch. vi. , 

> This surrender was voluntary : it was not caused by the action of the 
third estate. 

* Anderson, No. 4, and Pennsylvania Reprints, I, No. 6, give the decrees, 
as finaUy put in order a few days later. 


319. Summary: Kay 5 to Angaat 5. — Thus in three months France 
had been revolutionized. The third estate had asserted successfully its 
just claim to represent the nation, and had compelled the King and the 
privileged orders to acknowledge its right to recast society and govern- 
ment. The odious inequalities at law and the class distinctions of the Old 
R^me had been forever swept away. The local units of the country had 
already set up new popular governments, and had organized new citizen 
armies to protect them : and the Assembly was hard at work upon a new 
constitution for the nation at large. 

B, The Constituent Assembly in Paris, October, 1789- 

OCTOBER, 1791. 

320. The March of the Women, October 5. — Two years more 
were spent iu making the constitution and in putting it into 
operation, piece by piece. Early in this period the scene 
changed from Versailles, with its danger of royal interference, 
to Paris, with its mob influence. Even after the new harvest 
of 1789, food remained scarce and riots continued. To main- 
tain order, the King brought to Versailles one of the foreign 
regiments. Suspicion awoke that he was again plotting to 
undo the Revolution. Extravagant loyal demonstration at a 
military banquet emphasized the suspicion. It was reported 
that young officers, to win the favor of court ladies, had tram- 
pled upon the tricolor and had displayed instead the old white 
cockade of the Bourbon monarchy. The men of Paris tried 
to go to Versailles to secure the person of the King, but the 
National Guards turned them back. Then thousands of the 
women of the market place, crying that French soldiers would 
not fire upon women, set out in a wild, hungry, haggard rout 
to bring the King to Paris. In their wake, followed the riff- 
raff of the city. Lafayette permitted the movement to go on, 
until there came near being a terrible massacre at Versailles ; 
but his tardy arrival, late at night, with twenty thousand 
National Guards, restored order. In the early morning, how- 
ever, the mob broke into the palace ; and probably the Queen's 
life was saved only by the gallant self-sacrifice of some of her 


guards. The King yielded to the demands of the crowd and 
to the advice of Lafayette; and the same day a strange pro- 
cession escorted the royal family to Paris, — the mob dancing 
in wild joy along the road before the royal carriage, carrying 
on pikes the heads of the slain soldiers, and shouting, " Now 
we shall have bread, for we are bringing the baker, the baker's 
wife, and the bakei-'s little boy." ^ The King's brothers and 
great numbers of the nobles fled from France ; and many of 
these "Emigrants" strove at foreign courts to stir up war 
against their country, so that the name " Emigrant " became 
hateful to all patriotic Frenchmen. 

321. The Assembly in Paris : Parties ; the Galleries ; the Clubs. 
— Gradually the Assembly divided into parties. On the 
Speaker's right, the place of honor, sat the extreme Conserva- 
tives, known from their position as the Eight, They were 
reactionists, and stood for the restoration of the old order. 
Next to them sat the Eight-Center. This party did not expect 
to restore the old conditions, but they did hope to prevent the 
Revolution from going any farther, and they wished to keep 
political power in the hands of the wealthy landowners. The 
LeJUCenter, the largest body, wished neither to restrict power 
to the very wealthy, nor to extend it to the very poor, but to 
intrust it to the middle class. In this group sat Mirabeau, 
Lafayette, and Si^y^s. Both parties of the Center wished a 
constitutional monarchy. The Extreme-Left * comprised some 
thirty deputies who were disciples of Rousseau. They wished 
manhood suffrage, a:nd possibly they already believed in a 
republic, though at the time they had no serious hope of one. 
In this group sat Robespierre. 

1 Read Carlyle's account of this March of the Women. For another pio- 
tare, see Taine, French Revolution^ I, 96-107. 

^ In the legislatures of continental Burope a like arrangement of parties is 
stiU customary. The Conservatives sit on the right, the Liberals on the left ; 
and they are still known by the party names, the Right and the Left. In 
England, the supporters of the ministry sit on the right, and the opposition 
on the left, and the two parties change places with a change of ministry ; so 
in that country the "Left" and the "Right" are not party names. 


When the Assembly followed the King to Paris, nearly a 
fourth of the members withdrew, declaring that the delibera- 
tions were now controlled by the mob. Among the with- 
drawals were some of the earliest leaders of reform, but of 
course the great body of them came from the Right The ses- 
sions were all public, and the galleries interrupted unpopular 
and conservative speakers with jeers or threats, and sometimes 
attacked them afterward on the streets. Sometimes, too, the 
galleries were packed by a mob paid to hiss down certain 
speakers and to secure the passage of particular measures. 

Another important political power was found in the clubs. 
Of these the most important was the Jacobins} Here some 
of the deputies of the Left-Center met to discuss measures 
that were about to come up in the Assembly. Others beside 
deputies were admitted, and the club became the chief organ 
of the radical democracy. Lafayette and Mirabeau tried to 
counteract the Jacobin influence by organizing a Constitution- 
alist Club, of more moderate sentiments; but, as with vari- 
ous royalist clubs, the effort came to little. The clubs, like 
the galleries, were best suited to add strength to the Extreme- 

322. Mirabeau and his Plan. — One man in the Assembly 
was a party in himself. Mirabeau was a marvelous orator, a 
statesman of profound insight, and a man of dauntless courage. 
He never hesitated to oppose the mob, if his convictions 
required it ; and often he won them to his side. But he had 
lived a wild and dissolute life, and so could not gain influence 
over some of the best elements of the Assembly, while his 
arrogance aroused much jealousy. Both Necker and Lafay- 
ette hated him. 

Mirabeau was resolutely opposed to anarchy, and he believed 
in a stronger executive than the Assembly was willing to 
create. After the events of October, he saw truly that the 

1 It took its name from the fact that it met in a building belonging to the 
Dominican friars. This order in Paris was called Jacobins, becanse its first 
home in the city had been at the church of St. Jacques. 


danger to the Revolution lay not so much in the weakened 
King as in the mob; and thereafter, he sought to preserve the 
remaining royal power and to direct it. He wished the King 
to accept the Revolution in good faith, and to surround himself 
with a liberal ministry chosen from the Assembly. No doubt, 
Mirabeau expected to be the guiding genius of that ministry. 
His hopes were mined by a decree of the Assembly that no 
deputy should take office under the King. Almost fatally 
thwarted, Mirabeau sought next to become the King's unofficial 
adviser ; and, as the mob grew more furious, he wished the 
King to leave Paris and to raise the provinces against the capi- 
tal in behalf of the Revolution so far accomplished.^ 

323. Attempted Flight of the King : Clash between Constitu- 
tionalist Bourgeoisie and Republican Mob. — The King hesitated, 
and Mirabeau died (April 2, 1791), broken down by the strain 
of his work. Then Louis decided upon a wild modification of 
Mirabeau's plan. He would flee, not to the French provinces, 
but to Austria, to raise war not against the Paris mob but 
against France and the Revolution. The plot failed, because 
of the King's indecision and clumsiness. Tl\e royal family 
did get out of Paris (June 20, 1791) and well toward the 
frontier, but they were recognized, arrested, and brought back 
as prisoners.' 

This attempt of the King led to another popular rising, this 
time not to save the Assembly from the King, but to force the 
Assembly to dethrone the King. A petition for such action 
and for the establishment of a republic was drawn up, and 
crowds flocked out from Paris to the Champs de Mars to sign 
it. Some disorder occurred. The municipal authorities seized 
the excuse to forbid the gathering; and finally Lafayette's 
National Guards dispersed the jeering mob with volleys of 
musketry. This " Massacre of the Champs de Mars " (July 17) 

1 Ezeiciiie : report upon Mirabeau's sincerity. Note the excellent statement 
in Gardiner's French Revolutioriy 82-85. 

> Read Carlyle's interesting account. See Anderson for documents. 


took place three days after the second anniversary of the Fall 
of the Bastille, and indeed it was connected with the celebrar 
tion of that event. It marks a sharp division between the mob 
and the bourgeoisie. For the time, the latter carried the day. 
In the next six weeks the victorious Assembly completed and 
revised its two-years' work; and September 14, 1791, after 
solemnly swearing to uphold the constitution, Louis was restored 
to power. 

C. The Constitution of 1791. 

324. General Characteristics. — The constitution made all 
Frenchmen equal before the law and equally eligible to public 
employment; it permitted no exemptions, no special privileges, 
no hereditary titles; and it established jury trial, freedom of 
conscience, and freedom of the press.^ That is, socially it 
aimed to secure eqvxdity for all citizens and uniformity for all 
provinces of France, with a large amount of personal liberty. 
Politically, it provided for a limited monarchy , with extreme 
decentralization (i.e. a large amount of local self-government) 
and with middle-class control, 

325. Local Government. — The historic provinces, with their 
troublesome traditions of peculiar privileges and customs, were 
wiped from the map. France was divided into eighty-three 
"departments," of nearly equal size. The departments were 
subdivided into districts (arrondissem^ents)] and the district 
was made up of communes (villages or towns, with their adja- 
cent territory). Each department and district elected a " Gren- 
eral Council " and an executive board, or " Directory." The 
forty thousand communes had each its elected Council and 
mayor. So much authority was left to the communes, that 
France under this constitution has been called "a loose 
alliance of forty thousand little republics."* 

I Read the "Declaration of the Rights of Man/' in the Pennsylvania i?e- 
printSf I, No. 5, or in Anderson, No. 5. 

3 The extreme decentralization was not to last long, but the plan of the 
local government in many respects survives to-day. 

§328] THE CONSTITUTION OF 1791. 835 

326. The Central GoTemment was made to consist of the king 
and a Liegislatiye Assembly of one chamber. The Assembly 
was to be elected anew each two years. The king could not 
dissolve it, and his veto upon any measure could be overridden 
by the action of three successive legislatures. Indeed, one 
serious error of the constitution was in weakening the execu- 
tive unreasonably, so that it became little more than a figure- 

327. The Franchise. — Middle-class supremacy was secured 
by graded property qualifications and by a system of indirect 
elections^ Citizens who did not pay taxes equal in amount to 
at least three days' wages for an artisan had no vote. These 
" passive citizens " made about one-fourth the adult male popu- 
lation. The other three-fourths were known as " active citi- 
zens." They composed the National Guards and the primary 
political assemblies in each commune; but to hold even the 
lower offices was possible only to those who paid a higher tax, 
such as to shut out all workmen. Out of these " more active " 
citizens, the primary assemblies elected municipal authorities 
and chose district electoral colleges. From those who paid 
still higher taxes, these electoral colleges elected district and 
departmental authorities, and chose departmental electoral 
colleges, which elected deputies to the National Assembly. 

328. The Church under the New Constitution. — For much of 
its existence, the Constituent Assembly had been forced to 
wrestle with the problem of an empty treasury and to find 
means to run the government. In the disorders of 1789, peo- 
ple ceased to pay the old taxes, and it was many months before 
a new system could be devised and put into operation. Mean- 
time the Assembly secured funds by seizing and selling the 
church lands, — more than a fifth of all France and over a 
half-billion of dollars in value. 

^ Both these devices to dodge democracy were employed in the American 
states of that day. Advanced students may search the constitutions of the 
thirteen states for illustrations. No state had manhood suffrage ; and, of the 
thirteen, five allowed only owners of real estate to vote. 


At firat, sales were slow ; and so, with these lands as security, the 
Assembly issaed paper money (assignats), which was received again by 
the government in payment for the lands. This currency was issued in 
such vast amounts that it depreciated rapidly.^ Serious hardships fol- 
lowed ; ^ but in the final outcome, the lands passed in small parcels into 
the hands of the peasantry and the middle class, and so laid the founda- 
tion for future prosperity. A later Assembly (the Convention, §§ 338 fit.), 
in like manner seized and sold the land of the Emigrant nobles, when 
that class levied war against France. Thus France became a land of 
small farmers, and the peasantry rose to a higher standard of comfort 
than such a class in Europe had ever known. 

When the government took the revenue of the church, of 
course it also assumed the duty of paying the clergy and 
maintaining the churches. This led promptly to national con- 
trol and reorganization. The number of higher clergy was 
greatly reduced. Ecclesiastical organization was based upon 
the new local divisions, and only one bishop was allotted to 
each department. Unfortunately, the clergy of all grades 
were made elective, in the same way as other civil officers, 
and were required to take an oath of fidelity to the constitu- 
tion in a form repulsive to many sincere adherents to the 
pope. Only four of the old bishops took the oath ; and two- 
thirds the cures, including no doubt the most sincere and con- 
scientious among them, were driven into opposition to the 
Revolution. On the other hand, the elected " Constitutional 
clergy" contained many men who had little interest in re- 
ligion. The greatest error of the Constituent Assembly was in 
so arraying against each other patriotism and the old religion. 

D, The Legislative Assembly and Foreign War, 

329. Elections. Influence of the Jacobin Organization. — France 
had been made over in two years, — on the whole with little 
violence, — and the bulk of the nation accepted the result 

i Cf. our *' Continental currency " of a few years earlier. 
3 In the financial difficulties all Necker's popularity vanished, and he finally 
retired from office, thoroughly discredited by all parties. 


enthusiastically, except as to some portions of the new organi- 
zation of the church. Most men believed that the Revolu- 
tion was over ; and moderate Liberals very largely withdrew 
from active politics, not even attending the polls. On the 
other hand, a small but vigorous minority of radical spirits 
was dissatisfied with the restrictions on the franchise and 
with the restoratioji of monarchy. This minority possessed 
undue weight, because of its superior organization in political 
clubs over France. These clubs took the name Jacobin. 
They were all closely affiliated with the mother-club in Paris, 
and were strictly obedient to its suggestions. No other party 
had any political machinery whatever. Moreover, the Jacobins 
had the sympathy of the " passive citizens " ; and in many 
cases these citizens, though they had no vote, proved an im- 
portant factor in the election, terrorizing the more conservative 
elements by mob-violence. 

330. Composition and Parties. — By a nobly intended but 
unwise law, the Constituent Assembly had made its members 
ineligible to seats in the Legislative Assembly, where their 
political experience would have been of the utmost value. 
The seven hundred and forty-five members of the Legisla- 
tive Assembly were all new men. On the whole, too, they 
were of lower ability than the preceding Assembly. They 
were mostly young provincial lawyers and journalists ; and 
there was not among them all one great proprietor or practical 

The old Right and Right-Center of the first Assembly had 
no successors in the second. The new Right corresponded to 
the old Left-Center. Its members were known as Constitu- 
tionalists (or Feuillants), because they wished to preserve the 
constitution as it was. Outside the House, this party was 
represented by Lafayette,^ who, since the death of Mirabeau, 
was the most influential man in France. In the Assembly, 

^ Students may profitably compare the estimates of Lafayette by different 
bi8tori{Mi9« Oarlyle is severe; Mallet, 116-118, gives a judicial summary. 


the party counted about one hundred regular adherents, but, 
for a time, the four hundred members of the Center, or " The 
Plain," voted with it on most questions. The Plain, how- 
ever, was gradually won over to the more radical views of the 
Left. This section of the Assembly consisted of about two 
hundred and forty delegates, many of them connected with 
the Jacobin clubs. The greater part were to become known 
as Oirondista} They wished a republic, but they were un- 
willing to use unconstitutional means to get one. They feared 
and hated the Paris mob, and they wished to intrust power to 
the provinces rather than to the capital. The leaders were 
hot-headed, eloquent young men, with ability for feeling and 
phrasing fine sentiments, but with no fitness for action. The 
members of the Extreme-Left, known from their elevated seats 
as the " Mountain," were the quintessence of Jacobinism. This 
party wished a democratic government by whatever means might 
offer, and it contained the men of action in the Assembly. 

331. The War Policy. — The significant fact about the Legis- 
lative Assembly was its influence in hurrying on foreign war. 
The Emigrants, breathing threats of invasion and vengeance, 
were gathering in arms on the Rhine, under protection of 
German princes. They were supported by mercenary troops, 
and they had secret sympathizers within France. In the 
winter, a treacherous plot to betray to them the great fortress 
of Strasburg all but succeeded. The danger was certainly 
real ; but a proper though stern decree of the Assembly, con- 
demning to death all Emigrants who should not return to 
France before a certain date, fell before the royal veto. 

Back of the Emigrants loomed the danger of foreign inter- 
vention. The attempted flight of Louis in June had revealed 
his true position as a prisoner. His brother-in-law, the Em- 
peror Leopold, then sent to the sovereigns of Europe a circular 
note (the Padua Letter), calling for common action against 

1 From the Gironde, the name of a department from which the leaders 


the Bevolution, inasmuch as the cause of Louis was " the cause 
of kings"; and a few days later, Leopold and the King of 
Prussia united in the Declaration of Pilnitz,^ asserting their 
intention to arm, in order to act in aid of their "brother" 
Louis. Thus war was almost inevitable. The Bevolution 
stood for a new social order. It and the old order could not 
live together. Its success was a standing invitation to revolu- 
tion in neighboring lands. If the cause of Louis was "the 
cause of kings," so was the cause of the Eevolution " the cause 
of peoples " ; and the kings felt that they must crush it before 
it spread. 

However, both Leopold and the Constituent Assembly had 
wished to avoid war if possible ; and after Louis accepted the 
constitution in September, Leopold withdrew his offensive 
declaration. But the reception given the Emigrants within 
the Empire renewed the hard feeling; and the Legislative 
Assembly, unlike its predecessor, welcomed the prospect of 
war. It demanded of Leopold that he disperse the armies of 
the Emigrants and that he apologize for the Declaration 
*" of Pilnitz. Leopold replied with a counter-demand for a 
idiange ia the French government such as to secure Europe 
against the spread of Revolutionary movements. He had 
finally decided upon war. Just at this moment, Leopold died, 
but his successor, Francis II, was even more eager for war. 
Compromise was no longer possible, and in April, 1792, France 
declared war against Austria. For the next twenty-three years 
Europe was involved in almost constant strife, upon a greater 
scale than ever before in history. 

332. Attitude of Parties and Leaders. — The attempts of Ger- 
man princes to dictate the internal policy of the French people 
rightly aroused a tempest of scorn and wrath ; but the light- 
heartedness with which the Assembly rushed into a war for 
which France was so ill-prepared is at first a matter of 

1 See Anderson, Nos. 13, 14, for this and for the Padua Letter. 


The explanation, however, is not hard to find. The Consti- 
tutionalists expected war to strengthen the executive (as it 
would have done if Louis had honestly gone with the nation), 
and they hoped also that it would increase their own power, 
since their leader, Lafayette, was now in command of the most 
important army of France. On the other hand, the Girondists 
and the bulk of the Assembly suspected Louis of being in 
secret league with Austria (suspicions only too well founded), 
and they knew that France was filled with spies and plotters 
in the interests of the Emigrants. The nervous strain of such 
a situation was tremendous, and the majority of the Assembly 
preferred open war to this terror of secret treason. Moreover, 
the Girondists hoped vaguely that the disorders of war might 
offer some good excuse to set up a republic. 

Indeed, the only voices raised against the war were from the 
Mountain and its sympathizers in the Jacobin club. Strangely 
enough, both Constitutionalists and Girondists were to find their 
ruin in the war they so recklessly invited, while the three men 
most active in opposing it — Robespierre, Danton, and MarcU — 
were to be called by it to virtual dictatorship. 

Mar(U had been a physician of considerable eminence and of hi^ 
scientific attainments. His nature was jealous and suspicious, and he 
seems to have become half-crazed under the strain of the Revolution. 
Early in the days of the Constituent Assembly, his paper, ^^ The Friend of 
the People/^ began to preach the assassination of all aristocrats. Maiat 
was moved, however, by sincere pity for the poor and oppressed ; and he 
opposed war, because, as he said, its suffering always fell finally upon the 

Robespierre before the Revolution had been a precise young lawyer 
in a provincial town. He had risen to the position of judge, the highest 
he could ever expect to attain ; but he had resigned his office because he 
had conscientious scruples against imposing a death penalty upon a crim- 
inal. He was an enthusiastic disciple of Rousseau. He was narrow, 
dull, pedantic, logical, envious, incorruptible, sincere. '* That man is 
dangerous, ^^ Mirabeau had said of him ; *^ he will go far; he believes every 
word he says.^^ In the last months of the Constituent Assembly, Robes- 
pierre had advanced rapidly in popularity and power ; and now, although 
without a seat in the Assembly, he was the most influential member of 


the Jacobin Club. He opposed the war, because he feared what the Con- 
stitutionalists hoped, — a strengthening of the executive. 

Danton was a Parisian lawyer. He had early become prominent in the 
radical clubs ; and next to Mirabeau he was the strongest man brought 
to notice in the early years of the Revolution. He was well named ^Hhe 
Mirabeau of the Market Place.*' He was a large, forceful, shaggy, 
nature, and a bom leader of men. Above all, he was a man of action. 
Not without a rude eloquence himself, he had no patience with the fine 
speechifying of the Girondists, when deeds not words were wanted. He 
opposed the war, because he saw how unprepared France was and how 
unfit her leaders. When it came, he was to brush aside these incompe- 
tent leaders and himself to organize France. 

For Fubther Reading. — The three best one- volume histories of the 
Revolution are those by Shailer Mathews, Mallet, and Mrs. Gardiner ; 
the two latter are somewhat conservative. There are excellent brief 
treatments in H. Morse Stephens' B evolutionary Europe, 1789-1816, 
Rose's Revolutionary and Napoleonic Era, and Morris' French BevolU" 
tion. The best of the larger works in English is H. Morse Stephens' 
History of the French Revolution (3 vols.). Taine's French Revolution 
(3 vols.) is violently anti-democratic. Carlyle*s French Revolution re- 
mains the most powerful and vivid presentation of the forces and of many 
of the episodes of the Revolution, and it should certainly be read ; but it 
can be used to best advantage after some preliminary study upon the age, 
and it is sometimes inaccurate ; it should be used in one of the recently 
edited and annotated editions (cf. bibliography at the close of this volume). 
Among the biographies, the following are especially good : Belloc's Danton, 
Belloc's Robespierre, Willert^s Mirabeau, Blind's Madam Roland, and 
Morley's " Robespierre " (in Miscellanies, I). For fiction, Dickens' Tale 
of Two Cities and Victor Hugo's Ninety-Three are notable. (The last 
half dozen titles pertain especially to the period treated in the next 
Division.) Anderson's Constitutions and Documents and the Pennsyl- 
vania Reprints, I, No. 5, contain illustrative source material. 


A. Breakdown of the Constitution in War. 

333. New Character imparted to the Reyolution by War. —The 
internal conditions In France would have led in any case to further con- 
stitutional changes. If France had been left to herself, however, these 



future changes might have been brought about as quietly as the eariier 
ones ; but in the terrible stress of foreign war, the Revolution took on 
a new character of bloodshed and violence. 

The massacres and disorders which we are now to survey, and which 
have brought reproach upon the Revolution, were not a necessary part 
of the Revolution itself, but were incidental to the fear of foreign con- 
quest. Not the Revolution proper, but the war, caused the " Reign of 
Terror** (§ 344). Even in internal policy, the Revolution was thrown 
by the war into the hands of extremists who were able to cany through 
sweeping changes under the color of *^ war measures.** 

334. Jane ao : the Mob inyades the Tnileries. — At the decla- 
ration of war, the raw French levies at once invaded Belgium 
(then an Austrian province), but were rolled back in two 
defeats. The German Powers; however, were no more ready 
than France, and a few weeks more for preparation were 
given before the storm broke. The Assembly decreed the ban- 
ishment of all non-juring priests, many of whom were spies, 
and the formation of a camp of twenty thousand chosen 
patriots to guard the capital. Louis vetoed both Acts,^ and 
immediately afterward he dismissed his Liberal ministers 
(June 13). The populace was convinced that he was using his 
power treasonably, to prevent effective opposition to the ene- 
mies of France; and on June 20 there occurred an armed rising 
like those of July and October, 1789. An immense throng 
presented to the Assembly a monster petition against the 
King's policy, and then broke into the Tuileries, the palace of 
the royal family. For hours a dense throng surged through 
the apartments. Louis was crowded into a window, and stood 
there patiently, not without courageous dignity. A red cap, 

1 Despite the veto, a small camp was formed, under the pretense of cele- 
brating the festival of the destruction of the Bastille. Among the forces so 
collected were the six hundred Marseillaise, sent in responM to the call of the 
deputy of Marseilles for " six hundred men who knew how to die." These 
men were to be the chief reliance in the coming insurrection of August 10 
(§ 335) . They entered Paris, singing a new battle hymn, which was afterward 
chanted on many a Revolutionary battle field and which was to become 
famous as The Marseillaise Special report: the Marseillaise. Gf. Felix 
Oras' The Reds of the Midi. 


sign of the Revolution, was handed him, and he put it upon 
his head ; but to all demands for a recall of his vetoes he made 
firm refusal. By nightfall the buildiag was cleared. Little 
harm had been done, except to furniture ; and indeed the mob 
had shown throughout a surprising good-nature. 

There followed an outburst of loyalty from the Moderates. 
Lafayette, in command on the frontier, left his troops and has- 
tened to Paris, to demand the punishment of the leaders of the 
mob and the closing of the Jacobin Club. The middle class 
was ready to rally about him ; and, if the King had been will- 
ing to join himself to the Constitutionalists, Lafayette might 
have saved the government. But the royal family secretly 
preferred to trust to the advancing Austrians ; and Lafayette 
was rebuffed and scorned. Even yet he might have seized a 
temporary dictatorship by force, and saved the King in spite 
of himself, but either conscience or timidity withheld him. 
He returned to his army, and the management of affairs passed 
rapidly to the Jacobins. The Moderates had lost their last 

335. Insurrection of August lo : Deposition of Louis. — France 
was girdled with foes. The Empire, Prussia, and Sardinia 
were in arms ; Naples and Spain were soon to join the coali- 
tion ; Sweden and Russia both offered to do so, if they were 
needed. In July a Prussian army, commanded by old officers 
of Frederick the Great, crossed the frontier ; and two Austrian 
armies, one from the Netherlands and one from the upper 
Khine, converged upon the same line of invasion. The French 
levies were outnumbered three to one. Worse still, they were 
utterly demoralized by the resignation of many officers in the 
face of the enemy and by a justifiable suspicion that many 
of those remaining sympathized with the invaders. Within 
France were royalist risings and plots of risings; and the 
King was in secret alliance with the enemy.* 

1 There is do doubt now that the Qaeen had even comm^fl|ul;6d the French 
plan of campaign to the Austrians. ^ ^^^ 


Brunswick, the Prussian commander, counted upon a holiday 
march to Paris. July 25, he issued to the French people his 
famous proclamation, written by the Emigrants, declaring that 
the allies entered France to restore Louis to his place, that all 
men taken with arms in their hands should be hanged, and 
that, if Louis were injured, he would "inflict a memorable 
vengeance" by delivering up Pai'is to military execution.* 

This insolent paper was fatal to the King. Patriotic France 
rose in rage and defiance, to hurl back the boastful invader. 
But before the new troops marched to the front, some of them 
insisted upon guarding agauist enemies in the rear. The Jaco- 
bins had decided that Louis should not be left free to paralyze 
national action at some critical moment by his veto. They 
demanded his deposition ; but the Girondists were not ready 
for such extreme action. Then the Jacobins carried their 
point by insurrection. Led by Danton, they displaced the 
municipal council of Paris with a new government* represent- 
ing the most radical elements, and this " Commune of Paris " 
publicly prepared an attack upon the Tuileries for August 10. 
If Louis had possessed ability or decision, his Guards might 
have repulsed the mob; but, as it was, after confusing them 
with contradictory orders, the King and his family fled to the 
Assembly, leaving the faithful Swiss regiment to be massacred. 
Bloody from this slaughter, the rebels forced their way into 
the hall of the Assembly to demand the King's instant deposi- 
tion. Two-thirds of the deputies had fled, and the " rump " of 
Girondists and Jacobins decreed the deposition and imprison- 
ment of Louis, and the immediate election, by manhood snffrage, 
of a Convention to decide upon the government of France.* 

1 Anderson, No. 22, gives the Declaration. 

^ Special report : the details of this reorganization of the government of 
Paris ; see especially the account in Stephens' French Revolution, 

8 This was the first trial of manhood suffrage in any modern nation. Cf. 
§ 327, note. The only exception in this case was the class of male domestic 
servants, who, it was feared, would be influenced by their employers, and who, 
therefore, were not x>ermitted to vote. The decree is given by Anderson. 


Lafayette arrested the Legislative Commissioners who 
brought him the news, and tried to lead his troops against Paris 
to restore the King. He found his army unwilling to follow 
him, and so he fled to the Austrians.^ The nation at large had 
not desired the new revolution, but it accepted it as inevitable, 
and chose a Convention which was to ratify it unanimously. 
The nation was more concerned with repulsing foreign foes than 
with balancing nice questions as to praise or blame in Paris. 

336. The September Massacres. — The same causes that led 
to the rising of August 10, led, three weeks later, to one of the 
most terrible events in history. The " Commune of Paris," 
under Danton's leadership, had .packed the prisons with three 
thousand " suspected " aristocrats, to prevent a royalist rising. 
Then, on August 29 and September 2, came the news of the 
shameful surrender of Longwy and Verdun, — two great fron- 
tier fortresses guarding the road to Paris. Paris was thrown 
into a panic of fear, and the Paris volunteers hesitated to go 
to the front, lest the numerous prisoners recently arrested 
should break out and avenge themselves upon the city, stripped 
of its defenders. So, while Danton was pressing on enlist- 
ments and hurrying recruits to meet Brunswick, the frenzied 
mob attacked the prisons, organized rude lynch-courts, and on 
September 2, 3, and 4, massacred over a thousand of the pris- 
oners with only the shadow of a trial.* These events are known 
as " the September massacres." 

How far the Jacobin leaders were responsible for starting 
the atrocious executions at the prisons will probably never 
be known. Certainly they did not try to stop them; but 
neither did the Assembly, nor the Gironde leaders, nor any 
other body of persons in Paris.* The Jacobins, however, did 

1 Read Garlyle's account. Lafayette was cast into prison by the Austrians, 
to remain there until freed by the victories of Napoleon. 

> The fairest account in English of these massacres is that by Stephens, 
n, 141-150. 

'The apathy in Paris at the time of these events is amazing. Mallet, 
page 179, has a good brief statement. Says Carlyle : " Very desirable indeed 


Brunswick, the Prussian commander, counted upon a holiday 
march to Paris. July 25, he issued to the French people his 
famous proclamation, written by the Emigrants, declaring that 
the allies entered France to restore Louis to his place, that all 
men taken with arms in their hands should be hanged, and 
that, if Louis were injured, he would ''inflict a memorable 
vengeance" by delivering up Paiis to military execution.* 

This insolent paper was fatal to the King. Patriotic France 
rose in rage and defiance, to hurl back the boastful invader. 
But before the new troops marched to the front, some of them 
insisted upon guarding against enemies in the rear. The Jaoo- 
bins had decided that Louis should not be left free to paralyze 
national action at some critical moment by his veto. They 
demanded his deposition ; but the Girondists were not ready 
for such extreme action. Then the Jacobins carried their 
point by insui'rection. Led by Danton, they displaced the 
municipal council of Paris with a new government* represent- 
ing the most radical elements, and this " Commune of Paris " 
publicly prepared an attack upon the Tuileries for August 10. 
If Louis had possessed ability or decision, his Guards might 
have repulsed the mob ; but, as it was, after confusing them 
with contradictory orders, the King and his family fled to the 
Assembly, leaving the faithful Swiss regiment to be massacred. 
Bloody from this slaughter, the rebels forced their way into 
the hall of the Assembly to demand the King's instant deposi- 
tion. Two-thirds of the deputies had fled, and the " rump " of 
Girondists and Jacobins decreed the deposition and imprison- 
ment of Louis, and the immediate election, by manhood suffragey 
of a Convention to decide upon the government of France.' 

1 Anderson, No. 22, gives the Declaration. 

3 Special report : the details of this reorganization of the government of 
Paris ; see especially the account in Stephens' French Revolutioti. 

^ This was the Arst trial of manhood suffrage in any modern nation. Cf. 
§ 327, note. The only exception in this case was the class o f mal e dome** 
servants, who, it was feared, would be influenced by their emvf^^^ *nd t 
therefore, were not permitted to vote. The decree is gi 



Lafayette arrested the Legislative Commissioners who 
brought him the news, and tried to lead his troops against Paris 
to restore the King. He found his army unwilling to follow 
him, and so he fled to the Austrians.^ The nation at large had 
not desired the new revolution, but it accepted it as inevitable, 
and chose a Convention which was to ratify it unanimously. 
The nation was more concerned with repulsing foreign foes than 
with balancing nice questions as to praise or blame in Paris. 

336. The September IfaBsacres. — The same causes that led 
to the rising of August 10, led, three weeks later, to one of the 
most terrible events in history. The "Commune of Paris," 
under Danton's leadership, had .packed the prisons with three 
thousand " suspected " aristocrats, to prevent a royalist rising. 
Then, on August 29 and September 2, came the news of the 
shameful surrender of Longwy and Verdun, — two great fron- 
tier fortresses guarding the road to Paris. Paris was thrown 
into a panic of fear, and the Paris volunteers hesitated to go 
to the front, lest the numerous prisoners recently arrested 
should break out and avenge themselves upon the city, stripped 
of its defenders. So, while Dan ton was pressing on enlist- 
ments and hurrying recruits to meet Brunswick, the frenzied 
mob attacked the prisons, organized rude lynch-courts, and on 
September 2, 3, and 4, massacred over a thousand of the pris- 
oners with only the shadow of a trial.* These events are known 
as '< the September massacres." 

How far the Jacobin leaders were responsible for starting 
the atrocious executions at the prisons will probably never 
be known. Certainly they did not try to stop themj but 
neither did the Assembly, nor the Gironde leaders, nor any 
other body of persons in Paris.* The Jacobins, however, did 

^ Head Carlyle'8 account. Lafayette was cast into prison by the Austrians, 
to remain there until freed by the victories of Napoleon. 

* The fairest account in English of these massacres is that by Stephens, 

apathy in Paris at the time of these events is amazing. Mallet, 
baa a good brief statement. Says Carlyle : ** Very desirable indeed 


Brunswick, the Prussian commander, counted upon a holiday 
march to Paris. July 25, he issued to the French people his 
famous proclamation, written by the Emigrants, declaring that 
the allies entered France to restore Louis to his place, that all 
men taken with arms in their hands should be hanged, and 
that, if Louis were injured, he would "inflict a memorable 
vengeance" by delivering up Pai*is to military execution.* 

This insolent paper was fatal to the King. Patriotic France 
rose in rage and defiance, to hurl back the boastful invader. 
But before the new troops marched to the front, some of them 
insisted upon guarding against enemies in the rear. The Jaco- 
bins had decided that Louis should not be left free to paralyze 
national action at some critical moment by his veto. They 
demanded his deposition ; but the Girondists were not reiady 
for such extreme action. Then the Jacobins carried their 
point by insuiTection. Led by Danton, they displaced the 
municipal council of Paris with a new government* represent- 
ing the most radical elements, and this " Commune of Paris " 
publicly prepared an attack upon the Tuileries for August 10. 
If Louis had possessed ability or decision, his Guards might 
have repulsed the mob; but, as it was, after confusing them 
with contradictory orders, the King and his family fled to the 
Assembly, leaving the faithful Swiss regiment to be massacred. 
Bloody from this slaughter, the rebels forced their way into 
the hall of the Assembly to demand the King's instant deposi- 
tion. Two-thirds of the deputies had fled, and the " rump " of 
Girondists and Jacobins decreed the deposition and imprison- 
ment of Louis, and the immediate election, by manhood sitffragey 
of a Convention to decide upon the government of France.' 

1 Anderson, No. 22, gives the Declaration. 

3 Special report : the details of this reorganization of the government of 
Paris ; see especially the account in Stephens' French RevoltUioti, 

^ This was the first trial of manhood saftrage in any modem nation. Cf. 
§ 327, note. The only exception in this case was the class of male domestic 
servants, who, it was feared, would he influenced by their employers, and who, 
therefore, were not permitted to vote. The decree Is given by Anderson. 


Lafayette arrested the Legislative Commissioners who 
brought him the news, and tried to lead his troops against Paris 
to restore the King. He found his army unwilling to follow 
him, and so he fled to the Austrians.^ The nation at large had 
not desired the new revolution, but it accepted it as inevitable, 
and chose a Convention which was to ratify it unanimously. 
The nation was more concerned with repulsing foreign foes than 
with balancing nice questions as to praise or blame in Paris. 

336. The September Massacres. — The same causes that led 
to the rising of August 10, led, three weeks later, to one of the 
most terrible events in history. The " Commune of Paris," 
under Danton's leadership, had .packed the prisons with three 
thousand " suspected " aristocrats, to prevent a royalist rising. 
Then, on August 29 and September 2, came the news of the 
shameful surrender of Longwy and Verdun, — two great fron- 
tier fortresses guarding the road to Paris. Paris was thrown 
into a panic of fear, and the Paris volunteers hesitated to go 
to the front, lest the numerous prisoners recently arrested 
should break out and avenge themselves upon the city, stripped 
of its defenders. So, while Danton was pressing on enlist- 
ments and hurrying recruits to meet Brunswick, the frenzied 
mob attacked the prisons, organized rude lynch-courts, and on 
September 2, 3, and 4, massacred over a thousand of the pris- 
oners with only the shadow of a trial.* These events are known 
as " the September massacres." 

How far the Jacobin leaders were responsible for starting 
the atrocious executions at the prisons will probably never 
be known. Certainly they did not try to stop them; but 
neither did the Assembly, nor the Gironde leaders, nor any 
other body of persons in Paris.* The Jacobins, however, did 

1 Read Garlyle's account. Lafayette was cast into prison by the Auatrians, 
to remain there until freed by the victories of Napoleon. 

* The fairest account in English of these massacres is that by Stephens, 

n, 141-iflo. 

'The apathy in Paris at the time of these events is amazing. Mallet, 
page 179, has a good brief statement. Says Carlyle : " Very desirable indeed 


Brunswicky the Prussian commander, counted upon a holiday 
march to Paris. July 25, he issued to the French people his 
famous proclamation, written by the Emigrants, declaring that 
the allies entered France to restore Louis to his place, that all 
men taken with arms in their hands should be hanged, and 
that, if Louis were injured, he would "inflict a memorable 
vengeance" by delivering up Pai'is to military execution.* 

This insolent paper was fatal to the King. Patriotic France 
rose in rage and defiance, to hurl back the boastful invader. 
But before the new troops marched to the front, some of them 
insisted upon guarding against enemies in the rear. The Jaco- 
bins had decided that Louis should not be left free to paralyze 
national action at some critical moment by his veto. They 
demanded his deposition ; but the Girondists were not ready 
for such extreme action. Then the Jacobins carried their 
point by insurrection. Led by Danton, they displaced the 
municipal council of Paris with a new government ' represent- 
ing the most radical elements, and this " Commune of Paris " 
publicly prepared an attack upon the Tuileries for August 10. 
If Louis had possessed ability or decision, his Guards might 
have repulsed the mob; but, as it was, after confusing them 
with contradictory orders, the King and his family fled to the 
Assembly, leaving the faithful Swiss regiment to be massacred. 
Bloody from this slaughter, the rebels forced their way into 
the hall of the Assembly to demand the King's instant deposi- 
tion. Two-thirds of the deputies had fled, and the " rump " of 
Girondists and Jacobins decreed the deposition and imprison- 
ment of Louis, and the immediate election, by manhood suffrage, 
of a Convention to decide upon the government of France.' 

^ Anderson, No. 22, gives the Declaration. 

3 Special report : the details of this reorganization of the government of 
Paris ; see especially the account in Stephens' French Revolution, 

s This was the first trial of manhood suffrage in any modern nation. Cf. 
§ 327, note. The only exception in this case was the class of male domestic 
servants, who, it was feared, would he influenced hy their employers, and whO| 
therefore, were not permitted to vote. The decree is given by Anderson. 


Lafayette arrested the Legislative Commissioners who 
brought him the news, and tried to lead his troops against Paris 
to restore the King. He found his army unwilling to follow 
him, and so he fled to the Austrians.^ The nation at large had 
not desired the new revolution, but it accepted it as inevitable, 
and chose a Convention which was to ratify it unanimously. 
The nation was more concerned with repulsing foreign foes than 
with balancing nice questions as to praise or blame in Paris. 

336. The September liassacres. — The same causes that led 
to the rising of August 10, led, three weeks later, to one of the 
most terrible events in history. The " Commune of Paris," 
under Danton's leadership, had«packed the prisons with three 
thousand " suspected " aristocrats, to prevent a royalist rising. 
Then, on August 29 and September 2, came the news of the 
shameful surrender of Longwy and Verdun, — two great fron- 
tier fortresses guarding the road to Paris. Paris was thrown 
into a panic of fear, and the Paris volunteers hesitated to go 
to the front, lest the numerous prisoners recently arrested 
should break out and avenge themselves upon the city, stripped 
of its defenders. So, while Danton was pressing on enlist- 
ments and hurrying recruits to meet Brunswick, the frenzied 
mob attacked the prisons, organized rude lynch-courts, and on 
September 2, 3, and 4, massacred over a thousand of the pris- 
oners with only the shadow of a trial.* These events are known 
as '' the September massacres." 

How far the Jacobin leaders were responsible for starting 
the atrocious executions at the prisons will probably never 
be known. Certainly they did not try to stop them; but 
neither did the Assembly, nor the Gironde leaders, nor any 
other body of persons in Paris.* The Jacobins, however, did 

1 Read Carlyle's account. Lafayette was cast into prison by the Austrians, 
to remain there until freed by the victories of Napoleon. 

* The fairest account in English of these massacres is that by Stephens, 
II, 141-180. 

*The apathy in Paris at the time of these events is amazing. Mallet, 
page 179, has a good brief statement. Says Carlyle : ** Very desirable indeed 


Brunswick, the Prussian commander, counted upon a holiday 
march to Paris. July 25, he issued to the French people his 
famous proclamation, written by the Emigrants, declaring that 
the allies entered France to restore Louis to his place, that all 
men taken with arms in their hands should be hanged, and 
that, if Louis were injured, he would "inflict a memorable 
vengeance" by delivering up Paris to military execution.^ 

This insolent paper was fatal to the King. Patriotic France 
rose in rage and defiance, to hurl back the boastful invader. 
But before the new troops marched to the front, some of them 
insisted upon guarding against enemies in the rear. The Jaco- 
bins had decided that Louis should not be left free to paralyze 
national action at some critical moment by his veto. They 
demanded his deposition ; but the Girondists were not ready 
for such extreme action. Then the Jacobins carried their 
point by insurrection. Led by Danton, they displaced the 
municipal council of Paris with a new government* represent- 
ing the most radical elements, and this " Commune of Paris " 
publicly prepared an attack upon the Tuileries for August 10. 
If Louis had possessed ability or decision, his Guards might 
have repulsed the mob ; but, as it was, after confusing them 
with contradictory orders, the King aud his family fled to the 
Assembly, leaving the faithful Swiss regiment to be massacred. 
Bloody from this slaughter, the rebels forced their way into 
the hall of the Assembly to demand the King's instant deposi- 
tion. Two-thirds of the deputies had fled, and the " nimp " of 
Girondists and Jacobins decreed the deposition and imprison- 
ment of Louis, and the immediate election, by manhood stiffrage^ 
of a Convention to decide upon the government of France.* 

1 Anderson, No. 22, gives the Declaration. 

' Special report : the details of this reorganization of the government of 
Paris; see especially the account in Stephens' French Revolution. 

* This was the first trial of manhood suffrage in any modern nation. Gf. 
§ <^j note. The only exception in this case was the class of male domestic 
servants, who, it was feared, would be influenced by their employers, and who, 
therefore, were not permitted to vote. The decree is given by Anderson. 


Ijafayette arrested the Legislative Commissioners who 
brought him the news, and tried to lead his troops against Paris 
to restore the King. He found his army unwilling to follow 
Mm^ and so he fled to the Austrians.^ The nation at large had 
not desired the new revolution, but it accepted it as inevitable, 
and chose a Convention which was to ratify it unanimously. 
The nation was more concerned with repulsing foreign foes than 
with balancing nice questions as to praise or blame in Paris. 

336. The September Massacres. — The same causes that led 
to the rising of August 10, led, three weeks later, to one of the 
most terrible events in history. The " Commune of Paris," 
under Danton's leadership, had .packed the prisons with three 
thousand " suspected " aristocrats, to prevent a royalist rising. 
Then, on August 29 and September 2, came the news of the 
shameful surrender of Longwy and Verdun, — two great fron- 
tier fortresses guarding the road to Paris. Paris was thrown 
into a panic of fear, and the Paris volunteers hesitated to go 
to the front, lest the numerous prisoners recently arrested 
should break out and avenge themselves upon the city, stripped 
of its defenders. So, while Danton was pressing on enlist- 
ments and hurrying recruits to meet Brunswick, the frenzied 
mob attacked the prisons, organized rude lynch-courts, and on 
September 2, 3, and 4, massacred over a thousand of the pris- 
oners with only the shadow of a trial.* These events are known 
as " the September massacres." 

How far the Jacobin leaders were responsible for starting 
the atrocious executions at the prisons will probably never 
be known. Certainly they did not try to stop them; but 
neither did the Assembly, nor the Gironde leaders, nor any 
other body of persons in Paris.* The Jacobins, however, did 

1 Bead Garlyle's account. Lafayette was cast into prison by the Austrians, 
to remain there until freed by the victories of Napoleon. 

* The fairest account in English of these massacres is that by Stephens, 
n, 141-150. 

'The apathy in Paris at the time of these events is amazing. Mallet, 
page 179, has a good brief statement. Says Carlyle : " Very desirable indeed 


Brunswick, the Prussian commander^ counted upon a holiday 
march to Paris. July 25, he issued to the French people his 
famous proclamation, written by the Emigrants, declaring that 
the allies entered France to restore Louis to his place, that all 
men taken with arms in their hands should be hanged, and 
that, if Louis were injured, he would '' inflict a memorable 
vengeance" by delivering up Paiis to military execution.^ 

This insolent paper was fatal to the King. Patriotic France 
rose in rage and defiance, to hurl back the boastful invader. 
But before the new troops marched to the front, some of them 
insisted upon guarding against enemies in the rear. The Jaco- 
bins had decided that Louis should not be left free to paralyze 
national action at some critical moment by his veto. They 
demanded his deposition ; but the Girondists were not ready 
for such extreme action. Then the Jacobins carried their 
point by insurrection. Led by Danton, they displaced the 
municipal council of Paris with a new government* represent- 
ing the most i-adical elements, and this " Commune of Paris " 
publicly prepared an attack upon the Tuileries for August 10. 
If Louis had possessed ability or decision, his Guards might 
have repulsed the mob; but, as it was, after confusing them 
with contradictory orders, the King and his family fled to the 
Assembly, leaving the faithful Swiss regiment to be massacred. 
Bloody from this slaughter, the rebels forced their way into 
the hall of the Assembly to demand the King's instant deposi- 
tion. Two-thirds of the deputies had fled, and the " rump " of 
Girondists and Jacobins decreed the deposition and imprison- 
ment of Louis, and the immediate election, by manhood s^iffrage, 
of a Convention to decide upon the government of France.* 

1 Anderson, No. 22, gives the Declaration. 

3 Special report : the details of this reorganization of the government of 
Paris ; see especially the accoant in Stephens' French Revolution, 

^ This was the first trial of manhood suffrage in any modern nation. Of* 
§ 827, note. The only exception in this case was the class of male domestic 
servants, who, it was feared, would be influenced by their employers, and who, 
therefore, were not permitted to vote. The decree is given by Anderson. 


Liafajette arrested the Legislative Commissioners who 
brought him the news, and tried to lead his troops against Paris 
to restore the King. He found his army unwilling to follow 
him, and so he fled to the Austrians.^ The nation at large had 
not desired the new revolution, but it accepted it as inevitable, 
and chose a Convention which was to ratify it unanimously. 
The nation was more concerned with repulsing foreign foes than 
with balancing nice questions as to praise or blame in Paris. 

336. The September Massacres. — The same causes that led 
to the rising of August 10, led, three weeks later, to one of the 
most terrible events in history. The " Commune of Paris," 
under Danton's leadership, had .packed the prisons with three 
thousand " suspected " aristocrats, to prevent a royalist rising. 
Then, on August 29 and September 2, came the news of the 
shameful surrender of Longwy and Verdun, — two great fron- 
tier fortresses guarding the road to Paris. Paris was thrown 
into a panic of fear, and the Paris volunteers hesitated to go 
to the front, lest the numerous prisoners recently arrested 
should break out and avenge themselves upon the city, stripped 
of its defenders. So, while Danton was pressing on enlist- 
ments and hurrying recruits to meet Brunswick, the frenzied 
mob attacked the prisons, organized rude lynch-courts, and on 
September 2, 3, and 4, massacred over a thousand of the pris- 
oners with only the shadow of a trial.* These events are known 
as " the September massacres." 

How far the Jacobin leaders were responsible for starting 
the atrocious executions at the prisons will probably never 
be known. Certainly they did not try to stop them; but 
neither did the Assembly, nor the Gironde leaders, nor any 
other body of persons in Paris.' The Jacobins, however, did 

^ Read Garlyle's account. Lafayette was cast into prison by the Austrians, 
to remain there untU freed by the victories of Napoleon. 

* The fairest account in English of these massacres is that by Stephens, 
n, 141-150. 

*The apathy in Paris at the time of these events is amazing. Mallet, 
page 179, has a good brief statement. Says Carlyle : ** Very desirable indeed 


openly accept the massacres, when once accomplished, as a 
useful means of terrifying the royalist plotters and of unify- 
ing France. When the Assembly talked of punishment, Dauton 
excused the deed, and urged action instead against the enemies 
of France. " It was necessary to make our enemies afi-aid," 
he cried, "... Blast my memory, but let France be free." 

B. The Revolution makes Converts with the Sword. 

337. France at War with S^gs. — After August 10, Dan ton 
became the leading member of a provisional executive com- 
mittee, and at once infused new vigor into the government. 
"We must dare," his great voice i-ang out to the doubting 
Assembly, "and dare again, and ever dare, — and France is 
saved ! " In this spirit he toiled, night and day, to raise and 
arm and organize recruits. France responded with the finest 
outburst of patriotic military enthusiasm the world has ever 
seen in a great civilized state. September 20 the advanc- 
ing Prussians were checked at VcUmy ; and November 9 the 
victory of Jemmapes, the first real pitched battle of the war, 
opened Belgium to French conquest. Another French army 
had already entered Germany, and a third had occupied Nice 
and Savoy. 

These successes of the raw but devoted French soldiery over 
the veterans of Europe intoxicated the nation, and called forth 
an orgy of democratic enthusiasm. The new National Conven- 
tion (§ 338) became, in Danton's phrase, " a general committee 
of insurrection for all nations." Flamed out one fiery orator, — 
" Despots march against us with fire and sword : we will bear 
against them liberty ! " The Convention ordained a manifesto 
in all languages, offering the alliance of the French nation to 

that Paris had interfered ; yet not unnatural that it stood even so, looking on 
in stupor. Paris is in death-panic, the enemy and gibbets at its door: whoso- 
ever in Paris hath the heart to front death, finds it more pressing to do so 
fighting the Prussians than fighting the killers of aristocrats." See, too, 
Stephens' Revolutionary Europe ^ 115. 

5338] THE CONVENTION. 847 

all peoples who wished to recover their liberties ; and French 
generals, entering a foreign country, were ordered <' to abolish 
serfdom, nobility, and all monopolies and privileges, and to 
aid in setting up a new government upon principles of popular 
sovereignty." * 

Starving and ragged, but welcomed by the invaded peoples, 
the French armies sowed over Europe the seed of civil and 
political liberty. The Revolution was no longer merely 
French. It took on the intense zeal of a proselyting religion, 
and its principles were spread by fire and sword. 

C Thb Convention: Revolutionary Government. 

338. The Republic declared: Execution of the S^ing. — The 
new Convention had assembled September 21, 1792. The Con- 
stitutionalists had disappeared.^ The Girondist leaders now 
sat upon the Right and seemed to have the adherence of the 
Plain, and indeed of the whole Convention, except for a small 
party of the Mountain, where sat Robespierre, Danton, and 
Marat, with the rest of the deputies of Paris and the organ- 
izers of the Revolution of August 10. On the first afternoon,* 
the Convention declared monarchy abolished, and enthusiasti- 
cally established " The French Republic, One and Indivisible." 

The Mountain was bent also upon punishing Louis. They 
were satisfied of his guilt, and they wished to make reconcilia- 
tion impossible. Said Danton: "The allied kings march 
against us. Let us hurl at their feet, as the gantlet of battle, 
the head of a king." Most of the Girondists wished to save 

1 The decrees are given by Anderson, Nos. 28, 29. 

*Note the progress of the Revolution: the old Royalists who made the 
Bight of the First Assembly had no place iu the Second ; while the Constitn- 
tionalists who made the Left of the First Assembly and the Right of the 
Second had vanished in the Third. 

* Bead Garlyle for an acconnt of this first session of the Convention. The 
next day, September 22, the fall eqninox, was afterward named the first 
day of the " Year One " of the new era. The new Calendar (cf . Garlyle or 
Stephens) may be presented as a special report. 


Louis' life, but they were intimidated by the mobs and the 
galleries; and finally the Convention declared him guilty of 
"treason to the nation," and condemned him to death. He 
was executed January 21, 1793. 

339. The Constittttion of the Year I. — Somewhat later, the new 
Republic secured the Banctlon of a written constitution, known as ^^ the 
Constitution of the Year I." All adult males were declared equally 
sovereign and equally eligible to office. A one-chambered legislature was 
to be renewed annually, and its decrees were to be subject to veto by 
popular vote. The constitution was ratified by the vote of the French 
ncUion^ but it never went into operation. It was suspended unconstitu- 
tionally, as soon as ratified, by a simple decree of the Convention declar- 
ing that, as France was in danger, the government must be reyolutionaiy 
until the war was over. 

340. Kew Enemies. Treason of Domouriez. — The execution 
of the King was one factor in deciding England, Spain, Hol- 
land, Naples, and Portugal to join the allies against France, 
and it fatally offended many French patriots. Dumouriez, 
an able but unscrupulous general who had succeeded Lafayette 
as the chief military leader, tried to play traitor, in the spring 
of 1793, by surrendering Belgian fortresses to the Austrians 
and by leading his army to Paris to restore the monarchy. 
His troops, however, refused to follow him, and he fled to the 
enemy ; but Belgium was lost for a time, and once more the 
frontier was in danger. 

341. Ruin of the Girondists. — Ever since the Convention 
met, dissension had threatened between the Gironde majority 
and the Mountain (§ 338). The Girondists were men of 
theories and sentiment; the Mountain were men of action. 
The Girondists wished a mild and enlightened government; 
the Mountain were determined to have a strong government. 
Some of the Mountain, moreover, were zealous for radical 
social changes, — the leveling of the rich, the abolition of 
poverty, and the destruction of all who stood in the way of 
sweeping reforms. For success, they depended upon the sup- 
port of the Paris mob. The Girondists abhorred such doc- 


trines and methods. They wished to remove the Convention 
from Paris, and they were accused of desiring to " federate " 
France, — to break up the " Indivisible Republic " into a fed- 
eration of provinces. 

After the death of the King, the quarrel broke out fiercely, 
and the Girondists took the moment of foreign danger, in the 
spring of 1793, to press it to a head. They had been calling 
for the expulsion of Marat, and finally they ordered his trial, 
for complicity with the September massacres. Then in April 
they were mad enough to charge Danton with royalist conspir- 
acy. Danton, who was straining his mighty strength to send re- 
enforcements to the armies of France, pleaded at first for peace 
and union ; but, when this proved vain, he turned savagely 
upon his assailants. " You were right," he cried to the Moun- 
tain, who had pressed before for extreme measures against 
the Girondists, " and I was wrong. There is no peace possible 
with these men. Let it be war, then. They will not save the 
Kepublic with us. It shall be saved without them, saved in 
spite of them." And then, while the Assembly debated and 
resolved, the Mountain acted. It was weak in the Conven- 
tion, but it was supreme in the galleries and in the streets and 
above all in the Commune of Paris. The Commune, which 
had carried the Bevolution of August 10 against the Legisla- 
tive Assembly, now planned another rising. June 2, 1793, 
armed forces marched against the Convention and held it 
prisoner until it passed a decree imprisoning thirty of the 
leading Girondists. Others of that party fled, and the Jacobin 
Mountain was left in power.^ 

342. The Committee of Public Safety : a Strong Executive. — 
Fugitive Girondists, however, roused the provinces against the 

I The fate of the Girondists has aroused much sympathy ; hut says John 
Morley (Essay on Robespierre), "The deliverance of a people beset by strong 
and implacable foes could not wait on mere good manners and fastidious sen- 
timents, when those comely things were in company with the most stupendous 
want of foresight ever shown by a political party." Certainly the victory of 
tiie Jacobins was the only means to save the Bevolution with its priceless 
gain for humanity. 


Jacobin capital. Armies were gathered at Marseilles, Bor- 
deaux, Caen, and Lyons. Lyons, the second city in France, 
even raised the white flag of the Bourbons and invited in the 
Austrians.^ Elsewhere, too, royalist revolt reared its head, 
and in Vendue' the savage peasantry rose in wild rebellion 
for church and king. The great port of Toulon admitted an 
English fleet and army. For a time, it seemed as though 
Paris, with a score of central departments, must face the other 
three-fourths of France and united Europe. 

Out of this terrible danger was born a new government. For 
the first time since the States General met, France found a 
strong executive. This was a great Committee of Public Safetyy 
which was to rule for over a year with despotic power. So far, 
in matters of government, the Revolution had been tearing 
down ; it had been decentralizing and disorganizing. Now it 
was beginning to build up, to centralize and organize; and 
never has French genius in these lines shown itself with more 
triumphant vigor than in the months that followed. In the 
language of one of its members, the Convention was forced 
" to establish the despotism of liberty, in order to crush the 
despotism of tyrants." The great Committee had been created 
by the Convention in April, after the treason of Dumouriez. 
Its twelve members, all chosen from the Mountain, were at 
first to hold office only for one month, but soon they came to 
retain their places without even the form of a reelection. Its 
original purpose had been mainly to hurry enlistments ; but, 
as perils thickened, after the Gironde revolt, the Convention 
put all authority into its hands. All other national committees 
and officers became its servants ; the Convention itself became 
its mouthpiece; and every petty municipal functionary in 
France was ordered to obey its decrees. This obedience was 
enforced through nearly a hundred "Deputies on Mission," 
who were sent out by the Convention to all departments, with 

1 Whereapon the Girondists in Lyons refused to fight longer, preferring 
death to alliance with the enemies of France. 
3 A province of old Brittany. 

§343] THE CONVENTION. 851 

absolute power, — subject only to the Committee, to which they 
were to report every ten days. They could replace civil 
authorities ; they could seize goods or money for national use ; 
they could imprison and condemn to death by their own tribu- 
nals.^ To prevent further treachery and to secure energy in 
military operations, " Deputies on Mission " were sent out also 
with each army of the Republic, with power even to arrest the 
general at the head of his troops. 

The Committee were not trained administrators, but they 
were men of practical business sagacity and of tremendous 
energy, — such men as a Revolution must finally toss to the 
top. In the war office, Camot " organized victory " ; beside 
him, in the treasury, labored Camhon^ with his stem motto, 
** War to the manorhouse, peace to the hut " ; while a group 
of such men as Robespierre and St Jtist sought to direct the 
Revolution so as to refashion France according to new ideals.* 

343. Energy and Victory abroad. — Never has a despotism 
been more absolute or more efficient. In October, Lyons was 
captured, and ordered razed to the ground. A like fate befell 
Toulon, despite English aid. Other centers of revolt, paralyzed 
with fear, yielded. Order and union were restored; and a 
million of men, according to report, were sent to join the 
armies of France. Before the year closed, French soil was 
free from danger of invasion, and French armies had taken the 
offensive on all the frontiers. Serious peril from without was 
past until Napoleon's overthrow, twenty years later. 

** All France and whatsoever it contains of men and resources is put 
under reqaisition,*' said the Committee, in a stirring proclamation to the 
nation (August 23, 1793).* ** The republic is one vast besieged city. . . . 
The young men shall go to battle ; it is their task to conquer ; the mar- 
ried men shall forge arms, transport baggage and artillery, provide 

1 On these great proconsuls of 1793 and 1791, read Stephens, 11, 367-370, 
and Taine, III, 55-58. 

* On the personnel of the Committee, read Stephens, II, 285, or Revolvtion- 
ary Europe^ 133-135 ; and see a dramatiokaccount of their meetings by Morley 
in his *' Robespierre*' {Miscellanies, I, 67). 

< The decree is given in full by Anderson. 


subelstence ; the women shall work at Boldiers' clothes, make tents, serve 
in the hospitals ; children shall scrape old linen into surgeon^s lint ; the 
old men shall have themselves carried into public places, and there, by 
their words, excite the courage of the young and preach hatred to kings 
and unity for the Republic/* 

" In this humor, then, since no other will serve," comments Carlyle, 
" will France rash against its enemies ; headlong, reckoning no cost, heed- 
ing no law but the supreme law, Salvation of the People. The weapons 
are all the iron there is in France ; the strength is thact of all the men 
and women there are in France. . . . From all hamlets toward their 
departmental town, from all departmental towns toward the appointed 
camp, the Sons of Freedom shall march. Their banner is to bear ^ The 
French People risen against Tyrants.' " 

Only Carlyle's words do justice to the result. ** These soldiers have 
shoes of wood and pasteboard, or go booted in bay-ropes, in dead of 
winter. . . . What then? * With steel and bread,' says the Conven- 
tion Representative, ^ one may get to China.' The generals go fast to 
the guillotine, justly or unjustly. . . . Ill-succ^ is death ; in victory alone 
is life. ... All Girondism, Halfness, Compromise, is swept away. . . . 
Forward, ye soldiers of the Republic, captain and man I Dash with your 
Gallic impetuosity on Austria, England, Prussia, Spain, Sardinia, Pitt, 
Coburg, York, and the Devil and the World I 

** See accordingly on all frontiers, how the * Sons of Night' astonished, 
after short triumph, do recoil ; the Sons of the Republic flying after 
them, with temper of catr-o< mountain or demon incarnate, which no Son 
of Night can withstand. . . . Spain which came bursting through the 
Pyrenees, rustling with Bourbon banners, and went conquering here and 
there for a season, falters at such welcome, draws itself in again, — too 
happy now were the Pyrenees impassable. Dugomier invades Spain by 
the eastern Pyrenees. General Mueller shall invade it by the western. 
^ Shall,^ that is the word. Committee of Public Safety has said it. Rep- 
resentative Cavaignac, on mission there, must see it done. * Impossible,' 
cries Mueller; * Infallible,' answers Cavaignac. ^The Committee is deaf 
on that side of its head,' answers Cavaignac. ^ How many want'st thou 
of men, of horses, of cannon? Thou shalt have them. Conquerors, con- 
quered, or hanged. Forward we must.' Which things also, even as the 
Representative spake them, were done." 

344. The Reign of Terror at Home. — The Committee had not 
hesitated to use the most terrible means to secure union and 
implicit obedience. Early in September it adopted " Terror " 
as a deliberate policy. This "Long Terror" was a very differ- 

§344] THE CONVENTION. 853 

ent thing from the " Short Terror" of the mob, a year before. 
The Paris prisons were crowded again with " Suspects " ; and 
each day the Revolutionary tribunal, after farcical trials, sent 
batches of the condemned to the guillotine. Among the vic- 
tims were the Queen, many aristocrats, and also many Constitu- 
tionalists and Girondists — heroes of 1791 and 1792. In some 
of the revolted districts, too, submission was followed by 
horrible executions, and at Nantes the cruelty of Carrier, the 
Deputy on Mission, half-crazed with blood, inflicted upon the 
Revolution an indelible stain.^ In all, some fifteen thousand 
executions took place during the year of the Terror, — nearly 
three thousand of them in Paris. Over much of France, how- 
ever, the Terror was only a name. The rule of most of the 
great Deputies on Mission was bloodless and was ardently 
supported by the popular will. 

The temporary use of this terrible policy in parts of France 
had been made almost inevitable by the anarchy of the pre- 
ceding years and by the danger of foreign invasion. At all 
events, it was the weapon nearest at hand, and the Committee 
did not shrink from its use. It proved effectual. By the end 
of October, 1793, after only two months of the Terror, Paris was 
tranquil and had resumed its usual life.* There were no more 
riots and almost no crime, even of the ordinary kind. France 
was again a mighty nation, united and orderly at home and 
victorious abroad.' 

However, when all has been said in excuse and explanation, 
the Reign of Terror remains a blot upon the history of man- 
kind. If it was begun to save France, it was continued for 

1 Special report: Carrier's "Noyades" and "Republican Marriages/' 
which became so famous in literature. 

* " Singular city," says Carlyle; "for overhead of all of this, there is the 
customary brewing and baking. Labor hammers and grinds. Frilled prome- 
naders saunter under the trees, white-muslin promenadresses, with green 
parasols, leaning on your arm. ... In this Paris, are twenty-three theaters 
nightly ; some count as many as sixty places of dancing." Cf. for similar 
ideas, Taine, II, 188, and Stephens, II, 343-345. 

* For a general verdict, read Stephens, II, 230. 


party ends; and though the leaders were personally incor- 
ruptible and were animated, most of them, by lofty motives, 
the subordinate agents were unspeakably cruel and sordid. 

At the same time the crimes of the Terrorists do not stand by them- 
selves. They have attracted attention because of the class of society 
against which they were directed. John Morley, a cultivated and liberal 
English scholar, calls their deeds ^* almost as horrible as the scenes an 
English army was to enact six years later in Ireland*' (§551); and cer- 
tainly they were less terrible than the needless vengeance inflicted by 
the conservative government of Paris in 1871 upon twenty thousand vic- 
tims of the Commune (§ 486), — a matter of which the world hears very 

345. Constructiye Work of the Conyention. — The grim, silent, 
tense-browed men of the great Committee, working their eigh- 
teen hours out of every twenty-four, and carrying their lives 
in their hands, were doing more than organizing "terror" 
within and victory abroad. They were solving multitudes of 
vexing questions, left over from the preceding Assemblies, — 
cutting knots they could not loosen, and laying anew the foun- 
dations of society. In the midst of war and tumult, the Con- 
vention carried through much good work. It created and 
organized the splendid array with which Napoleon was to win 
his victories. It made provision for the public debt, adopted 
the beginning of a simple legal code, accepted the metric sys- 
tem for weights and measures, abolished slavery in the French 
colonies, instituted the first Normal School, the Polytechnic 
School of France, the Conservatory of France, the famous 
Institute of France, and the National Library, and planned 
also a comprehensive system of public instruction, the improve- 
ment of the hospitals and of the prisons, and the reform of 
youthful criminals. As Shailer Mathews says, "No govern- 
ment ever worked harder for the good of the masses " ; and 
says H. Morse Stephens {Tale Review^ November, 1895, 
page 331): — 

It is probable that as the centuries pass, the political strife . . . may 
be forgotten, while the projects of Cambac^r^s and Merlin toward oodifi- 

§346] THE CONVENTION. 855 

cation, the plans of Condorcet and Lakanal for a system of national edu- 
cation, and Aigobast's report on the new weights and measures, will be 
regarded as making great and important steps in the progress of the 
race. . . . The Convention laid the foundations upon which Napoleon 
afterward built. In educational as in legal reform, the most important 
work was done during the Reign of Terror. . . . Their work was finally 
appropriated by Napoleon to his own glory. 

346. The Factions of the Jacobins and their Ruin. — In the 
spring of 1794, after some ten months' rule, the Committee of 
Safety began to encounter opposition.^ In the Convention, 
Danton, weary of bloodshed, had been urging that the policy 
of Terror was no longer necessary, and his friend Desmoulins 
had suggested a " Committee of Mercy." On the other hand, 
Hubert and the Paris Commune wished more radical measures. 
Hubert planned an atheistical republic, and proposed to substi- 
tute a Worship of Reason * for that of God. 

The great Committee proved strong enough to strike down 
both Danton and Hubert (March and April) ; and then for a 
few months, Robespierre, the best-known member of the Com- 
mittee, appeared to rule, sole master of France. He reopened 
churches in Paris, and, to offset Hubert's Festival of Reason, 
he made the Convention solemnly celebrate a " Festival to the 
Supreme Being." He seems to have hoped to refashion society 
with a strong hand and to create a new France with simple 
and austere manners.' But, perhaps to clear the field of possi- 
ble opponents to his ideals, perhaps merely to remove personal 
rivals, Robespierre used his brief preeminence bloodily. The 
number of executions mounted with frightful rapidity. Then, 

1 Marat had been murdered by Charlotte Corday. The story may be pre- 
sented as a special report. 

3 In Paris, HAert carried his point for a time. Religious exercises were 
forbidden, and in the ancient Cathedral of Notre Dame a service was per- 
formed to Reason personified by a beautiful but dissolute woman seated on 
the altar. 

s A decree of the Conyention providing for public education read: ** The 
transition of an oppressed nation to democracy is like the effort by which 
nature rose out of nothingness to existence. We must entirely refashion a 
people whom we wish to make free,— destroy its prejudices, alter its habits, 


in the last days of July (1794), the Convention rose against 
him and sent him and his adherents to the guillotine. The 
factions of the Jacobins had devoured one another. 

847. The Conservative Reaction. — In December, 1794^ en- 
couraged by the reaction against the Kadicals, the fug^itive 
members of the Right once more appeared in the Assembly ; 
and in March, 1795, even the survivors of the Girondists were 
admitted. The Jacobins raised the populace of Paris in a 
desperate attempt to undo the reaction ; but the middle classes 
had rallied at last, and the mob was dispersed by troops and 
by organized bands of " gilded youth " from the bourgeoisie. 
The populace was disarmed, the National Guards were reorgan- 
ized, and there followed over France a " White Terror," wherein 
the conservative classes executed or assassinated many hun- 
dreds of the Jacobin party.* 



348. The Constitution of the Tear III. — The Constitution of 
the Year I was too democratic and provided too weak an 
executive for the new conditions ; and the reaction was con- 
firmed by a new constitution, known as the Constitution of the 

limit its necessities, root up its vices, purify its desires. The state mnst 
therefore lay hold on every human being at his birth and direct his education 
with powerful hand." 

The most enthusiastic follower of Robespierre was St. Just ; and the frag- 
ments of St. Just's Institutes^ with which he hoped to regenerate his coantry, 
express the ardent hopes of the Terrorists. Boys of seven were to be 
handed over to the " school of the nation," to be trained " to endure hardship 
and to speak little." Neither servants nor gold or silver vessels were to 
be permitted. As St. Just said elsewhere, he wished " to offer the nation the 
happiness of virtue, of moderation, of comfort, — the happiness that springs 
from the enjoyment of the necessary without the superfluous. The luxury of 
a cabin and of a field fertilized by your own hands, a cart, a thatched roof, — 
such is happiness." St. Just declared that he would blow his brains out if he 
did not believe it possible to remodel the French people along such lines. 

1 For further reading on Division IV, see page 341. This is a good place to 
stop for a careful review of the years 1789-17(15. Topical outlines and *' catch- 
word reviews " of the three Assemblies are suggested. 


Year III (1795). The government established by this docu- 
ment is called " The Directory." This was the name of the 
executive, which consisted of a committee office^ chosen by the 
legislature. The legislature consisted of two houses. Property 
qualification for voting was restored, with the use of electoral 
colleges ; and the local governments were made subordinate to 
agents sent out by the Directory. The liberal principles of 
1791 were reasserted, — individual liberty, liberty of worship, 
freedom of the press, and jury trial. The constitution resem- 
bled that of 1791, except in three points : (1) the new executive 
was stronger than the old constitutional king of 1791 ; (2) the 
legislature had two houses, so as to check hasty legislation ; 
and (3) the administration was centralized.^ 

349. Inaurrection against the Directory. — The constitution 
was submitted to a popular vote, but before the vote was 
taken, at the last moment, the expiring Convention added a 
peculiar provision. There seemed danger that a new legisla- 
ture might restore some form of monarchy ; and, dreading this 
result, the Convention decreed that two-thirds of its members 
should hold over as members of the new Assembly. This 
arrangement was submitted to the people, along with the con- 
stitution, and was practically made a condition to the latter's 
going into effect. It was carried by a small majority, while the 
constitution was ratified by an overwhelming vote. Indeed, 
the Convention was accused of falsifying the returns,^ to carry 
this special provision at all ; and, in any case, the interference 
with a full election was extremely unpopular. In Paris, where 
the opposition was strongest, the secret Royalists took advantage 
of the dissatisfaction to stir up a revolt against the Conven- 
tion. They were joined by twenty thousand National Guards, 
but their gallant attack was dispersed by four thousand regu- 
lar troops under the firm command of Napoleon Bonaparte. 
This young officer in the service of the Convention mowed 

1 The constitution is given in Anderson^s Cotistitutions and Documents. 

2 Cf . Borgeaud's Adoption and Amendment of Constitutional 215, 216. 


down the attacking columns with grapeshot, and the rising 
was crushed. This was the "affair of Vend^miaire.*' * The 
Directory was inaugurated quietly and remained in power over 
four years. 

350. The BfiUtary Situation in 1795 : French Oaina before the 
Appearance of Napoleon. — In 1795^ when the government of the 
Convention was merged in the Directory, France had already 
made great gains of territory. On the northeast, Belgium had 
been annexed, in accordance with the vote of its people. Nice 
and Savoy, on the southeast, had been added, in like manner. 
The eastern frontier had been moved to the Rhine, by the 
seizure of all the territory of the Empire on the west side of 
the river. Holland had been conquered and converted into a 
dependent ally, as the '* Batavian Republic," with a constitu- 
tion molded on that of France. Prussia, Spain, and most of 
the small states had withdrawn from the war. Only England, 
Austria, and Sardinia kept the field. 

351. Napoleon Bonaparte in Italy. — The Directory deter- 
mined to attack Austria vigorously, both in (Jermany and 
Italy.' Two splendid armies were sent into Germany, and a 
small, ill-supplied force in Italy was put under the command of 
Napoleon Bonaparte. The wonderful genius of the young 
general made the Italian campaign the decisive element in the 
war. By rapid movements, he separated the Austrian and 
Sardinian forces, beat the latter in five battles in eleven days, 
and forced Sardinia to conclude peace. Turning upon the 
gallant but deliberate Austrians, he won battle after battle, 
and by July he seemed master of Italy. Austria, however, 
clung stubbornly to her Italian provinces ; and, during the fol- 
lowing year, four fresh armies, each larger than Napoleon's, 
were sent in succession from the Rhine to the Po, only to meet 
destruction. In October, 1797, Austria agreed to accept Venice 
from Bonaparte, in exchange for Lombardy and Belgium, which 

1 The name of the French month. 

> Austria at this time held a considerable part of North Italy. 


she had lost ; and war on the continent closed with the Peace 
of Campo Formio. 

S52. Effect of the Italian Campaign upon Italy. — Bonaparte's 
proclamation upon taking command of the Army of Italy had 
been significant of much that was to come : " Soldiers, you are 
starving and in rags. The government owes you much, but 
can do nothing for you. I will lead you into the most fruitful 
plains of the world. Teeming provinces, flourishing cities, 
will be in your power. There you may reap honor and glory 
and wealth.'' 

To the Italians, Bonaparte posed at first as a deliverer ; and 
his large promises awoke the peninsula from the sleep of cen- 
turies to the hope of a new national life. This hope was to 
bear fruit in the next century, and something was accomplished 
at the time. Oligarchic Genoa became the Ligurian Republic, 
and the I^o valley was made into the Cisalpine Republic, The 
French conquerors swept away feudalism and serfdom and the 
forms of the old Austrian despotism, and introduced civil 
equality and some appearance of political liberty. At the same 
time, however, with amazing perfidy, the independent state of 
Venice was goaded and tricked into war, seized by a French 
army, and afterward coolly bartered away to Austria.^ Upon 
even the friendly states, Bonaparte levied enormous contribu- 
tions, to enrich his soldiers and officers, to fill the coffers of 
France, and to bribe the Directory. Works of art, too, and 
choice manuscripts were ravished frpm Italian libraries and 
galleries, and sent to Paris in vast quantities, to gratify French 
vanity ; and when the Italians rose against this spoliation, the 
revolts were stamped out with ferocious and deliberate cruelty. 

353. Bonaparte's Character and Aims. — Napoleon Bonaparte 
was born in Corsica in 1769. His parents were Italians, poor, 
but of noble descent. In the year of Napoleon's birth, Corsica 
became a possession of France. The boy passed through a 

1 Special report : Napoleon and Venice ; see Rose's Napoleon I, 130-133, 


French military school, and, when the Revolution began, he 
was a junior lieutenant of artillery.' The war gave him oppor- 
tunity. He had distinguished himself at the capture of 
Toulon (§§ 342, 343) ; and, chancing to be in Paris at the time 
of the rising against the Directory in 1795, he had been called 
upon to defend the govemmenL In reward, he was given, the 
next year, the command of 
the"ArmyofItaly." Then 
followed the brilliant cam- 
paigns which called the at- 
tention of the world to the 
man who was to dominate 
European history for the 
next eighteen years. 

Bonapai'te was one of the 
three OT four supreme mili- 
tary geniuses of all histoty. 
He was also one of the 
greatest of civil rulers. He 
had profound insight,a mar- 
velous memory, and tireless 
energy. He was a " terrible 
worker," and his success 
NApot.BoM AT AKc<)r.A, Id hJH Italian was largely due to his won- 
caiupa«n; after tbe painting by Groe. derful grasp of masses of 
details, — so that he could 
recall the smallest features of geography where a campaign 
was to take place, or could name the man best suited for office 
in any one of a multitude of obscure towns. He was not in- 
sensible to generous emotions ; but he was utterly unscrupulous 
and selfish, and he deliberately rejected all claims of moral- 
ity upon his conduct.' Pei-fidy and cruelty, when they suited 

' Special FRiHirt: Napolwm'a early ilislike fnr Fmnce and his CoTstcan 
patrlotlntn, il1aatra(«<l by his career f rotii 1TH9 tu 1T!M. 

'"Morality," Bald he, "haa nothliiK Utdo with sufh a man as lam." To 
thU it has be«n fitly rsjoined, " Was he then above morally, or betow It? " 


his ends, he used as calmly as appeals to honor and patriotism. 
In early life, Bonaparte seems to have been a sincere Repub- 
lican ; but he hated anarchy and disorder, and, before his 
campaign in Italy was over, he had begun to plan to make 
himself ruler of France under some semi-republican form. 
He worked systematically and successfully to transform the 
army's earlier ardor for liberty into a new passion for military 
glory and plunder. He became the idol of the soldiery, and 
then used the military power to overthrow the civil authority. 

Before Campo Formio he had said to a friend, **■ Do you suppose I con- 
quer for the lawyers of the Directory ? . . . Do you think I mean to 
found a Republic ? What an idea 1 . . . The nation wants a head, a 
chief illustrious for great exploits ; it does not care for theories of govern- 
ment. . . . The French want glory. As for liberty, of that they have no 
conception. ... I am everything to the army. Let the Directory try to 
take my command from me, and they will see who is master.^* 

354. Bonaparte in Egypt — The war with England con- 
tinued; and the next year (1798) Bonaparte persuaded the 
Directory to let him attack Egypt, as a step toward the con- 
quest of England's power in India. He won a series of bril- 
liant battles, but suddenly his fleet was annihilated by the 
English under Nelson^ in the Battle of the Nile, and the gor- 
geous dreams of Oriental empire faded away. 

355. Bonaparte oyerthrows the Directory : Revolution of Bru- 
maire, 1799. — Then Bonaparte deserted his doomed army, 
and escaped to France. There his failure was not at first 
comprehended, and he found the nation ready to welcome him 
as a savior. War on the continent had been renewed. In 
1798 the Directory had brought about a change in the govern- 
ment of Switzerland and had organized that country as the 
Helvetic Republic (§ 613). They had also driven the Pope 
from Rome and dispossessed other Italian rulers, to make way 
for new republican states. The Great Powers of Europe were 
alarmed at these measures. England succeeded in drawing 
Russia and Austria into another coalition ; and so far, in the 
new war, the campaigns on the whole had not favored France. 


At home the French people were wearied, and anxious for 
peace; and the Directory had proved incapable, corrupt, and 
despotic. According to the Constitution of 1795, one of the 
live Directors and one-fifth the Legislative Chambers were to 
be renewed each year, beginning in the spring of 1797. In the 
elections of that year, the Constitutional Monarchists had 
been so successful that the old Directors, fearing a restoration 
of the Bourbons, resorted to a coup WHat,^ First making sure 
of leading generals of the army, including Bonaparte, they 
arrested fifty of the new members of the Legislature, and ban- 
ished them without trial to Cayenne, a French penal colony 
in South America. The following year (1798), there was 
almost equal danger of a Jacobin revival, and the Directory 
guarded against this by another coup (T^tat, — declaring a large 
number of elections void, and itself filling the places with its 
own adherents. In 1799, for the third time in succession, the 
elections went against the existing government; and, though 
the Directory could keep control through the majority that held 
over, it was plain that the people were ready for its overthrow. 
It was plain, too, that this overthrow was coming through 
the army. Si^y^s had just been chosen Director, and was 
already planning a new constitution to oust his colleagues. 
He expected to accomplish his purpose through some of the 
victorious generals of France ; but the sudden return of Napo- 
leon, the most available general, left him, not Si^y^s, master 
of the situation. All hostile members of the Legislature were 
cleared from the hall by troops ; and a Rump, made up of Bo- 
naparte's adherents, abolished the Directory and elected Bona- 
parte, Siey^s, and one other as Consuls, intrusting to them the 
preparation of a new constitution. This was the Revolution of 

1 Literally, a ** stroke of state/' This is the name given in France to infrac- 
tions of the constitution by some part of the government through the use of 
force. Happily the thing itself has been so unknown to English history that 
the English language has to borrow the French name. The coming century 
was to see many a coup d'etat in France; and like phenomena have been 
common in other European countries. 

§366] THE CONSULATE. 863 

Brumaire} " Now," said the peasantry, " we shall have peace, 
thanks to God and to Bonaparte '^ ; and by a vote of some 
three- million to fifteen hundred, the French people accepted 
the Constitution that virtually made Bonaparte dictator. 

No doabt the French Republic would have become a military dictator- 
ship for a time, even though there had been no Bonaparte. The French 
were not ready for free government, and could not learn it all in eight 
years of constant war and turmoil. For a time they needed repose and a 
strong hand at the helm. Moreover, many men appear to have thought 
that in putting Bonaparte into power they were averting, in the only way 
possible, the overthrow of the Republic by the Royalists. And it is quite 
probable that if leadership had fallen to a general of more sincere repub- 
lican sentiments, — for instance to Moreau, Napoleon^s chief rival, — then 
France might never have gone so far in reaction toward despotism as 
she was to go. Napoleon did re^tablish social and political institutions 
for France, as indeed any leader at that time must have tried to do ; but, 
to a wholly unnecessary degree, he built them upon despotic lines : he 
aimed from the first at hereditary monarchy ; he played upon the vain- 
glojry of his people, and, after a short period of dizzy elevation, he brought 
v^t calamities upon his country, besides deluging all Europe in blood. 

y For Fcrther Reading. — High school students will hardly get time 
' to read upon the Directory, apart from Napoleon^s career. For that, 
see the references on page 381. 

A. Peace and the Reconstruction op France. 

356. Marengo and Hohenlinden, i8oo. Peace of Amiens, 1802. 
— The campaign of 1800 dissolved the hostile coalition. 
Bonaparte in person won the great battle of Marengo over the 
Aiistrians in Italy, and General Moreau crushed another Aus- 
trian army in Bavaria at Hohenlinden, Austria and Russia 
made peace ; and Napoleon, anxious to impress the European 
rulers with a sense of his moderation, wisely allowed essen- 
tially the old terms of Campo Formio (§ 351). Then, in 1802, 

I Anderson, No. 59, gives the decree. Special report: the story of 
Bmmaire ; see especially the admirable chapter in Rose's Napoleon I. 


France and England laid aside their contest by the Treaty of 
Amiens, and, for a brief period, the world was free from war. 
Napoleon appeared both a conqueror, with dazzling yictories, 
and also the restorer of the long-desired peace ; and the popu- 
larity of his government was established. 

357. The " Constitation of the Year Yin '» (1800), which con- 
firmed the Revolution of Brumaire, had been devised in its 
main outlines by Siey^s. The government was to rest on 
manhood suffrage, but that suffrage was to be refined by sue- 
cessice JUtraiions. The adult males, some five million in all, 
were to choose one-tenth their number; the ^\q hundred 
thousand "Communal Notables," so chosen, were in turn to 
choose one-tenth their number ; these fifty thousand " Depart- 
mental Notables" were to choose five thousand "National 
Notables." Hut all this voting was only to settle digihUity: 
the exeaUive teas to appoint communal officers at will out of the 
Communal Notables, departmental officers out of the Depart- 
mental Notables, and members of the legislature and other 
chief officers out of the National Notables. 

The legislature was to be broken up into four parts: a 
Council of State to prepare bills ; a Tribunate to discuss them, 
without right to vote ; a Legislative Chaynber to accept or reject 
them, without right to discuss or amend ; and a Senate^ with 
power to veto. 

Si^yfes had intended to break up the executive in like man- 
ner into one Consul for war, another for peace, and a " Grand 
Elector " who should appoint the consuls and other great offi- 
cials, but should then have no part in the government. Here 
Napoleon intervened. He was willing to accept the system of 
elections that never elected anybody, and a legislature that 
could not legislate, but he meant to have a real executive ; so 
he changed the shadowy " Grand Elector" into a First Cons^d, 
with all other parts of the constitution subject to his will. 
Bona])arte became First (Consul. His colleagues, as he put it, 
were " merely counsellors whom I am expected to consult, but 
whose advice I need not accept." Directly or indirectly, he 

368] THE CONSULATE. 365 

himself filled all offices, and no law could even be proposed 
without his sanction.^ 

358. Local Administration ^ was again highly centralized. For 
each department. Napoleon appointed a Prefect, and for each 
subdistrict a Subprefect. These officers were intrusted with 
almost absolute power. They were free even from the local 
checks upon the Intendants of the Old Monarchy, since the 
Revolution had cleared away the obstructing parlements and 
other local institutions.' The despotic centralization of the 
Old Regime was outdone. Even the forty thousand mayors of 
towns and villages were appointed by the First Consul or by 
his agents, and held office at his will ; <' nor did there exist 
anywhere independent of him the authority to light or repair 
the streets of the meanest village in France." 

This new administration was vigorous and fearless ; and under Napo- 
leon's energy and genius, it did confer upon France great and rapid bene- 
fits. But, in the long run, the result was to be unspeakably disastrous. 
The chance for Frenchmen to train themselves at their own gates in the 
duties and responsibilities of freemen, by sharing in the local government, 
was lost ; and the willingness to depend upon an all-directing central 
power was fixed even more firmly than before in their minds. Through 
almost all the next century, the various national governments of France 
— imperial, monarchic, or republican — alike preserved this despotism in 
local government. Under such conditions, so far sis real liberty was con- 
cerned, it mattered little whether the central government was called a 
monarchy or a republic. About the middle of the nineteenth century the 

1 For more precise details of the constitution, see Dickenson, Revolution and 
ReacfioTit 36-38, or Rose, I, 210-214. The docament is given by Anderson. 

a Rose, I, 246-249; Fyffe, 1, 207, 208. 

* In 1790, within a year of the meeting of the States General, Mirabeau had 
written to the king, trying to reconcile him to the Revolution : " Is it nothing 
for the royal power to be without parlements, without pays d'etat, without a 
body of clergy, without a privileged class ? . . . Several successive reigns of 
an absolute monarch would not have done so much for royal [centralized] 
authority, as this one year of Revolution." So Burke, in England, about the 
same time, foretold the coming military despotism and its centralized char- 
acter: ** When the dictator appears, he will find that the legislation which has 
crushed and leveled all orders in the state, has greatly facilitated his career. 
. . . He will be able to construct the most completely absolute power that 
has ever appeared on earth." 


French patriot, Tocqueville. despairingly confessed that, owing to the vioe 
of centralization, all attempts to set up a free government in France had 
resulted at best in putting ** a free head on servile shoulders ** ; or, as the 
same statesman exclaimed at another time, ** There is only one thing we 
canH create in France : that is a free government. And there is only one 
institution we canH destroy, and that is centralization.** Even under the 
present Third Republic, this poison of centralization has been a serioos 
drawback to the development of French liberty. Since about 1884, how- 
ever, great advance has been made in introducing self-government in local 
units (§ 447); and in this reversal of Napoleon's work live the best hopes 
for France to-day.* 

359. Restoration of Order and Prosperity. — For a time, Bonar 
parte used his vast authority to restore order, to heal strife, 
and to reconcile all elements to the state. Royalist and Jaco- 
bin were welcomed to public employment and to favor ; and a 
hundred and fifty thousand exiles, of the best blood and brain 
of France, returned, to reinforce the citizen body.' In the 
public administration, corruption, extravagance, and inefficiency 
were replaced everywhere by order, precision, and symmetry. 
Education was organized. The church was reconciled to the 
state. Law was simplified ; and justice was made cheap and 
easy to secure. The material side of society was not neglected : 
the depreciated paper money was restored to a sound basis, 
and industry of all kinds was encouraged. Paris was made 
the most beautiful city of Europe, and it was endowed with 
an excellent water supply. The narrow streets were widened 
into magnificent boulevards; parks and public gardens were pro- 
vided ; while here and there rose triumphal arches and columns • 

1 Cf. Ancient History, §§ 526-627. 

^Extreme Royalists and early ''Emigrants," who believed in absolute 
monarchy and in the Old Regime, of course did not return. Those who were 
now restored to France were the liberal aristocrats and the clergy and Consti- 
tutionalists who had fled during the Reign of Terror. 

< The Yendome column (see next page) was made from Russian and Austrian 
cannon captured in the Austerlitz campaign. The figures on the spirals repre- 
sent scenes in that campaign, and upon the summit, 142 feet high, stands a 
statue of Napoleon. The name Vendome comes from the name of the public 
square. The column was restored in 1875, from the fragments into which it 
had been broken by the Communards (§ 436). 

5 360] THE CONSULATE. 367 

to commemorate French ^ — — — | 

victories,' Throughout 

tbe country, roads, canals, 

and harbors were built 

or improved. Poiilical 

liberty was destroyed, but 

equality was preserved, 

along Kith Ike economic 

gains of the Revolntion. 

The Revolution had 
greatly improved the con- 
dition of the laborer. The 
peasantry were all land- 
owners, free from their 
old burdens ; and work- 
men secured two or three 
times the wages they had 
received ten years before. 
Under such conditions 
the people displayed new 
energies, and, with the 
establishment of quiet 
and order, they quickly 
built up a vast material 

360. The Concordat and 
tie Code. — Two of the 
reforms of the Consulate 
call for special attention.' j 

a. The ConconitU. Re- 
ligion and patriotism were I 

reconciled. For ten years Thb Vbndomb Colukn, P.\rib. 

1 Read Roae, I, 203, 293, 

' It tiine can be spared tor otber Napoleonic inatitullona, special reports 
ma; be aesl^ed opoD tbe Legina of Honor, the [Tnlverslty o[ Franca, and 
Napoleon's enMnragement ot Bdence tbrongbout bis oaresr. 


the condition of the church had been unsatisfactory and full 
of danger to religion and to France. Bonaparte at once freed 
the non-juring clergy from banishment and from prisons. But 
these priests had still neither churches nor support, while the 
established Constitutionalist clergy were not recognized by the 
Pope nor by the most devout Catholics. Bonaparte now forced 
the Pope to agree to a Concordat,^ which reconstituted the 
church. All bishops, non-juring and Constitutionalist alike, 
were requested to resign or were dismissed, and new ones, 
appointed by Napoleon, were consecrated by the Pope. Thus 
the church became Roman again ; but its property was not re- 
stored, and it was supported and strictly controlled by the state. 

b. The Code. Under the ancient monarchy, the contradic- 
tions and complexities of the legal system had called loudly 
for reform ; and the Revolution, with its new principles and 
its sweeping changes, had made the need of codification still 
more imperative. The work had been begun in 1793 (§ 345); 
and now the First Consul took up the task and carried it to 
completion with wonderful dispatch and success. A commis- 
sion of great jurists, working under Bonaparte's inspiration 
and oversight, reduced the vast chaos of French legislation to 
a compact, simple, symmetrical code, known later as t?ie Code 
Naiyoleon} This code, embracing many of the most important 
principles of the Revolution, was introduced during the next 
few years, by French control or influence, into Holland, Italy, 
Spain, and nearly all the German states except Austria and 
Prussia. Even these two countries imitated it for themselves, 
so that it became the basis of law for practically all Europe, 
except England, Russia, and Turkey. Morepver, from Spain 
it spread to all Spanish America, and to-day it lies at the 
foundation of the law of the State of Louisiana. 

361. Napoleon's Share in the Reconstruction of France. — In 
all this reconstruction of France, the controlling and designing 

1 The name commonly given to a treaty between a pope and a temporal 
state. For brief accounts, see Rose, I, 34i>-2()2; Seeley, 99. 

2 Rose, I, 262-271; Fyffe, 173-175. 

1362] THE EMPIRE. 869 

mind was that of the First Consul. Functionaries worked as 
they had worked for no other master. Bonaparte knew how to 
set every man the right task ; and his own matehless activity 
(he sometimes worked twenty hours a day) made it possible 
for him to oversee countless designs. His penetrating intelli- 
gence seized the essential point of every problem, and his 
indomitable will drove through all obstacles to a quick and 

Akch op Triumph, Pabtr, commemoniilng Napoleon's victories. ' 

effective solution. His ardor, his ambition for France and for 
glory, his passion for good work, his contempt for difficulties, 
inspired every official, until, as one of thein said, " the gigantic 
entered into our habits of thought." 

362. Despotism veiled by ■■Pleblscitea." "Emperor of the 
French," 1804. — But after all, the prreat benefits that Napoleon 
conferred upon France were the work of a beneficent despotism, 
not of a free government. The First Consul worked as a 

iNapoleon foUowad Romu modeU- CI. Ancient Biitom, UO.ill. 


Joseph II might have done (§ 280) had he possessed the ability 
and the opportunity. The Constitution of the Year VIII 
needed little change to accommodate it to avowed monarchy, 
and the slight forms of freedom in it were, for the most part 
soon discarded.* Even the Tribunate's right to discuss pro- 
posed laws was suppressed. In 1802, Bonaparte had himself 
elected Consul for Life. He set up a monarchic court and 
began to call himself by his first name — Napoleon — after 
the custom of monarchs. Then, in 1804, he secured a vote of 
the nation declaring him "Emperor of the French," and he 
solemnly crowned himself at Paris, with the presence and 
sanction of the Pope, as the successor of Charlemagne. 

Napoleon always claimed, it is true, that he ruled by the 
" will of the French people " ; and each assumption of power 
was given a show of ratification by a popular vote, or plebiscite. 
But the plebiscite was merely the nation's Yes or No to a ques- 
tion framed by the master. The result of a negative answer 
could never be foreseen ; and it was not hard so to shape ques- 
tions that men would rather say Yes than risk the indefinite 
consequences of saying No. The nation had no share at any 
stage in shaping the questions upon which it was to vote. Even if 
the result of the vote had not been largely affected by skillful 
coercion, the plebiscite would have been a poor substitute for 
representative legislatures and free discussion. It was but a 
thin veil for military despotism. It was, however, a standing 
denial of the old doctrine of " divine right." 

363. Personal Liberty vanishes. — Personal liberty was no 
longer safe. Napoleon maintained a vast network of secret 
police and spies ; and he sent thousands of men to prison or into 
exile by his sole decree. The press was subjected to stern and 
searching censorship.* No book could be published if it con- 
tained opinions offensive to the Emperor, even in matters most 

1 For a detailed statement of the modifications made by the later con- 
stitutions, advanced stadents may consalt a coQcise summary in Dickenson's 
Revolution and Reaction^ 38-41. 

3 Read Dickenson, 46-48. 


distantly related to politics.* Newspapers were restricted in 
number, and, on pain of losing their licenses, they were for- 
bidden to print anything " contrary to the duties of subjects/' 
They were required to omit all news " disadvantageous or dis- 
agreeable to France," and in political matters they were allowed 
to publish only such items as were furnished them by the gov- 
ernment. Moreover, they were required to praise the admin- 
istration. " Tell them," said Napoleon, " I shall judge them 
not only by the evil they say, but by the good they do not 
say." Even the schools were made to preach despotism, and 
were commanded to ^' take as the basis of their instruction 
fidelity to the Emperor." Religion, too, was pressed into ser- 
vice. Every village priest depended, directly or indirectly, 
upon Napoleon's will, and was expected to uphold his power. 
Indeed, a catechism was devised expressly to teach the duty 
of all good Christians to obey the Emperor.* 

B. The Wars op the Empire. 

364. Renewal of War. — There is no doubt that Napoleon 
wished peace in 1800, to enable him to consolidate his power 
and reorganize France. It is equally clear that soon he again 
desired war. In 1802 he told his Council of State that he 
should welcome war and that he expected it. The existing 
peace, he said, and any that might follow, could be only a 
truce. In 1804 he declared that Europe needed a single head, 
an Emperor, to distribute the various kingdoms among lieu- 
tenants. He felt, too, that victories and military glory were 
needful to prevent the French nation from murmuring against 
his despotism. On the other hand, the other nations felt that 
there could be no lasting peace with Napoleon except on terms 
of absolute submission. Under such conditions as these, war 

^ Madame de Stael was not aUowed to say that the drama of Iphigenia by 
the German Gk>ethe was a greater play than the work of the French Racine 
upon the same plot. 

' Bead extracts in Anderson, No. 67, or in Dickenson, 54-^. 


soon broke out afresh. England and France renewed their 
strife in 1803, and between these Powere there was nerer 
again to be a truce until Napoleon's fall. During the next 
eleven years, Napoleon fought also three wars with Austria, 
two with Prussia, two with Russia, a long war with Spain, and 
various minor conflicts. 

The European wars from 1792 to 1802 belong to the period 
of the French Revolution proper. Those from 1803 to 1815 
are Napoleonic wars, due primarily to the ambition of one 
great military genius. In the first series, Austria was the chief 
opponent of the Revolution : in the second series, England was 
the relentless foe of Napoleon. 

365. Austerlitz, Jena, Peace of Tilsit (i 805-1 807). — On 
the breaking out of war with England, Napoleon prepared a 
mighty flotilla and a magnificent army at Boulogne, and for 
over a year England was threatened with overwhelming inva- 
sion if she should lose command of the Channel even for a few 
hours. But all Napoleon's attempts to get together a fleet to 
compete with England failed ; and in 1805 Austria and Russia 
joined England in the war. With immediate decision, Napo- 
leon transferred his forces from the Channel" to the Danube, 
annihilated two great armies, at Ubn and Austerlitz (October 
and December), and, entering Vienna as a conqueror, forced 
Austria to a humiliating peace. That country gave up her 
remaining territory in Italy, and her Illyrian provinces, and 
surrendered also many of her possessions in Germany. 

Prussia had maintained her neutrality for eleven years ; but 
now, with his hands free, Napoleon goaded her into war, 
crushed her absolutely at Jena (October, 1807), occupied Berlin, 
and soon afterward dictated a peace that reduced Prussia one- 
half in size and bound her to France as a vassal state. 

Less decisive cohflicts with Russia were followed by the 
Peace of Tilsit (July, 1807). The Russian and French Em- 
perors met in a long interview, and Tsar Alexander was so 
impressed by Napoleon's genius, that, from an enemy, he be- 
came a friend and ally. France, it was understood, was to rule 


Western Europe; Russia might aggrandize herself at the ex- 
pense of Sweden, Turkey, and Asia; and the two Powers were 
to unite in ruining England by excluding her commerce from 
the continent (§ 366). 

366. The ** Continental System." — Meantime, England had 
proved as supreme on the seas as Napoleon on land. In 1805, 
at Trafalgar, off the coast of Spain, Nelson destroyed the last 
great fleet that Napoleon collected. Soon afterward, it is true, 
a secret article in the Treaty of Tilsit agreed that Denmark, 
then a considerable naval power, should be made to add her 
fleet to the French; but the English government struck flrst. 
It demanded the surrender of the Danish fleet into English 
hands until war should close, and finally it compelled the 
delivery by bombarding Copenhagen. 

After this, Napoleon could not strike at England with his 
armies, and he fell back upon an attempt to ruin her by crush- 
ing her commerce. All the ports of the continent were to be 
closed to her goods, and no intercourse was to be allowed with 
the island. This "Continental System" did inflict damage 
upon England, but it carried greater harm to the continent, 
which simply could not do without the manufactures of Eng- 
land, at that time the workshop of Europe.* Smuggling became 
universal, and the System never worked successfully. In at- 
tempts to enforce it. Napoleon was led on from one high-handed 
measure to another, until Portugal and Russia rose against 
him (§ 367), and gave oppressed Central Europe another 

1 At timto, even the French armies had to be clothed In smuggled English 
goods, and they marched into Russia in English shoes. Napoleon stirred 
French scientists into desperate efforts to invent substitutes for the goods 
now shut out of the continent. One valuable result followed. The English 
cruisers prevented the importation of West India cane-sugar ; but it was dis- 
covered that sugar could be made from the beet, and the raising of the sugar- 
beet became a leading industry of France. 

3 England's retort to the Continental System was an attempt to blockade 
the coast of France and her dependencies to all neutral vessels. In these war 
measures, both France and England ignored the rights of neutral states ; and 


367. Military Brento from Tilsit to Wagnm. Tho Peninsiilar 
War. — Tortugal refused to coufiBcate tiie English vessels in her porta. 
Thereupon Kapoleon^s armies occupied the kingdom. From this act, 
Napoleon passed to the seizure of Spain, placing his brother Joseph upon 
the throne. But the proud and patriotic Spanish people rose in a " War 
for Liberation,^* and it was soon plain that a new force had appeared. 
Hitherto^ Napoleon had warred against governments and regular armies, 
and had dictated peace when the capitals and rulers were in his power : 
noWy first, he had to fight with a people in arms. He found that brilliant 
victories merely transferred the outbreaks from one quarter to another 
and called for more and more of his energies. England seized her op- 
portunity, too, and sent an army under Wellesley (afterward Duke of 
Wellington) to support the Peninsular revolt. 

In 1809, encouraged by the Spanish rising, Austria once more entered 
the lists, but the defeat of Wagram forced her again to submission.^ 
For the next two years, no opposition raised its head on the continent, 
except for the seemingly insignificant guerrilla war in Spain. This ^* Pen- 
insular War,** however, continued to drain Napoleon*s resources until 
the final expulsion of the French in 1813, after the Russian campaign 
(§ 378). Afterward, at St. Helena, Napoleon declared that it was really 
the Spanish war that worked his ruin. 

C. Napoleon's Reconstruction of Europe. 

368. Territorial Rearrangements on the North Sea and in Italy. 

— At the moment, the campaigns of 1808-1809 seemed trivial. 
For five years after Tilsit, Napoleon was supreme in Central 
Europe. This period was marked by sweeping changes in 
territory, government, and society. Of course, many of the 
changes were designed in pure selfishness, merely to strengthen 
the supremacy of France; but almost all of them were to 
result beneficially to Europe. In particular, the Germany 

the result was onr War of 1812. Advanced students should read the magnifi- 
cent treatment of the Continental System hy Captain Mahan in The Infitienee 
of the Sea Power upon the French Revolution (chs. xvii and xviii). 

^ Napoleon now married a princess of Austria. He was anxious for an 
heir, and so divorced his former wife, Josephine, who had borne him no chil- 
dren, to make way for the new alliance with a grandnlece of Haiie Antoinette. 
This union of the Revolutionary Emperor with the proud Hapsbuig iMMUd 
marks in some respects the summit of his power. . . i: 


and Italy of to-day were made possible by Napoleon's vigorous 
clearing away of old institutions and by the impulse he gave 
to the new movements of political unity and of social reform. 
Outside of Germany, which requires special treatment (§ 369), 
the most important of the territorial changes may be grouped 
under three heads. 

a. The Batavian Republic was converted into the Kingdom 
of Holland, with Napoleon's brother Louis for its sovereign. 
Later, when Louis refused to ruin his people by enforcing the 
Continental System rigidly, Napoleon deposed him, and Hol- 
land, along with the whole north coast of Germany as far as 
Denmark, was annexed to France. 

b. In Italy the new republics and the old petty states were 
disposed of, one after another; even the Pope was deprived 
of his principality and, indeed, was made a French captive. 
When these changes were complete, Italy lay in three fairly 
equal divisions: in the south, Napoleon's brother, Joseph, 
ruled as King of Naples;^ in the northeast was the "Kingdom 
of Italy," with Napoleon himself as king ; and all the rest of 
the peninsula was a part of France, and was organized as a 
French department. 

c. The lUyrian provinces on the eastern coast of the Adri- 
atic were annexed directly to the French Empire. 

At the time, these changes added enormously to Napoleon's power, but 
at his fall, they were for the most part undone. For this reason they were 
less important than the changes wrought in Central Europe, which in the 
main were to survive. But to comprehend the significance of Napoleon's 
work in Germany, one must first grasp the bewildering conditions there 
before his interference (§ 360). 

369. Territorial Conditions in Germany before Napoleon. — Be- 
fore Napoleon there was no Germany. The Holy Roman 
Empire was made up of (1) two great states, Austria ai\d 
Prussia, each of them half Slavonic in blood ; (2) some thirty 
states of the second rank, like Bavaria and Wurtemberg; 

^ When Joseph was promoted in 1809 to the throne of Spain, he was suc- 
ceeded in Naples by Murat, one of Napoleon's generals. 


(3) about two hundred and fifty petty states of the third 
order, many of them ecclesiastical, — ranging in size from a 
small duchy to a large farm, but averaging a few thousand 
subjects.^ Each of these states was an absolute monarchy, 
with its own laws, its own tariffs, its own mimic court, its own 
coinage, its own army,' and its crowd of pedantic officials. 

Besides these three hundred states already mentioned, there 
were also about fifteen hundred " knights of the Empire." In 
England this class would have been country squires; but in 
Germany they were virtually independent sovereigns, with an 
average territory of less than three square miles, ruling with 
power of life and death over half a million subjects, — some 
three hundred apiece. Each such state, too, had its tolls, its 
army, and its own system of taxation. And, lastly, there were 
some fifty " free cities," all in oligarchic decay and misrule. 

One more factor must be taken into account in order to get an idea of 
the indescribable confusion. Few even of these petty principalities had 
their territory compact Many a state of the second or third order con- 
sisted of several fragments (obtained by accidents of marriage or war), 
sometimes widely scattered, — some of them perhaps wholly inside a 
larger state to which politically they had no relation. No map can do jus- 
tice to the quaint confusion of this region, about the size of Texas, thus 
broken into eighteen hundred governments varying from an Empire to a 
small estate, and scattered in fragments within fragments. The *' Holy 
Roman Empire,^ ^ as Voltaire said, ^^ was neither Holy, nor Roman, nor 
yet an Empire.'* It is little wonder that the philosopher Lessing, the 
greatest Grerman between Luther and Goethe, should have said : *^ Patriot- 
ism I do not imderstand ; at best it seems an amiable weakness which I 
am glad to be free from.** 

The next seventy years were to see this '* political crazy quilt " trans- 
formed into a mighty German state. The transformation was to be the 
work of German patriotic leaders, like Stein (§371) and Bismarck (§ 405), 
and of a new national enthusiasm in the German people, aroused by poets 
and statesmen ; but the work of the patriots, it is well to remember, was 
made possible by the preliminary work of the foreign despot, Napoleon. 

^ Eighty of these states averaged less than twelve square miles in area. 
3 The " Sovereign Count " of Leiraburg-StyrumAVilhelmsdorf maintained a 
standing army of one colonel, nine lower officers, and two privates. 


370. Territorial Consolidation of Germany. — At Campo 
Formio (§ 351), Napoleon had begun his rearrangement of 
Germany: at that treaty, and by subsequent arrangements, 
princes of the Empire were allowed to recompense themselves 
for the territories they had lost to France by absorbitig the 
ecclesiastical spates and most of the free cities. After Austerlitz, 
Jena, and Wagram, more radical changes followed. Austria 
and Prussia were weakened. The first became an inland state. 
The second was halved and pushed altogether beyond the 
Elbe, while its recent Polish acquisitions were turned into the 
Duchy of Warsaw. After so depressing the two great states. 
Napoleon proceeded to form a further check upon them by 
augmenting the states of the second rank. Bavaria, Saxony, 
and Wurtemberg were made kingdoms, with territories enlarged 
at the expense of Austria and of smaller neighboring states ; 
while out of old Prussian territory and of the electorate of 
Hanover was formed a new "Kingdom of Westphalia," for 
Napoleon's brother Jerome. 

At the same time the large states were encouraged or com- 
pelled to absorb the territories of the knights and of tJie petty 
principaiities within or adjoining their borders. Thus eighteen 
hundred states were reduced to abend forty ; and this tremendous 
consolidation, surviving the rearrangements after Napoleon^ s folly 
paved the way for later German unity. 

Nearly all these German states, too, except Austria and 
Prussia, were leagued in the "Confederation of the Rhine," 
under Napoleon as " Protector." Of course the formation of 
this League amounted to a dissolution of the Holy Roman 
Empire ; and in 1806 Francis II laid down the venerable title. 
So closed a government that dated from Augustus Caesar. 
TwQ years before, Francis had assumed the title "Emperor 
of Austria," instead of his previous title, "Arch-Duke of 
Austria " ; but the new Austrian Empire must not be thought 
of as the successor of the Holy Roman Empire. 

371. Social Reform. — In the Confederacy of the Rhine and 
in the various kingdoms of Napoleon's brothers and generals, 


serfdom and feudalism were abolished, and civil equality and 
the Code Napoleon were introduced. Everywhere, too, the 
administration of justice was made cheap and simple, and the 
old clumsy and corrupt methods of government gave way to 
order and efficiency. 

Most striking of all was the reform in Prussia. Elsewhere 
the new methods were introduced by French agents or under 
French influence. In Prussia they came from a Prussian 
minister, and were adopted in order to make Prussia strong 
enough to cast off the French yoke. Jena had proved that 
the old Prussian system was utterly rotten. The leading 
spirit in a new Prussian ministry was Stein, who labored to fit 
Prussia for leadership in freeing and regenerating Germany. 
The serfs were changed into free peasant-landowners; the 
caste distinctions * in society were broken down ; some self- 
government was granted to the towns ; and many of the best 
principles of the French reforms were adopted. Napoleon's 
insolence and the domination of French armies at last had 
forced part of Germany into the beginning of a new national 
patriotism ; and that patriotism began to arm itself by borrow- 
ing weapons from the arsenal of the French Revolution. 

D. Fall of Napoleon. 

372. The Situation before the Russian Campaign. — In 1810, 
Napoleon's power had reached its widest limits. The huge 
bulk of France filled the space from the Ocean to the Rhine, 
— including not only the France which we know, but also 
Belgium, half of Switzerland, and large strips of German terri- 
tory, while from this central body two outward-curving arms 
reached toward the east, — one along the North Sea to the 

1 In Prussia, the old law had recognized distinct classes, —peasants, bur- 
gesses and nobility, —and had practically forbidden an individual to pass from 
one class into another. Even the land had been bound by the caste system: 
no noble could sell land to the citizen of a town, or vice versa ; nor could a 
townsman sell to a peasant. All this was now done away. Advanced students 
may consult Seeley's Steiiit I, 291-294. 





Danish Peninsula, and the other down the coast of Italy past 
Borne. Besides this vast territory, all organized in French 
departments, the rest of Italy and half the rest of Germany 
were under Napoleon's protection and were ruled by his 
appointees or favorites. 
Moreover, Denmark and 
Switzerland were his de- 
pendent allies, and Prussia 
and Austria were unwill- 
ing ones. Only the ex- 
tremities of the continent 
kept their independence. 
The islands of England, 
Sicily, and Sardinia and 
the rebels in the moun- 
tains of Portugal and Spain 
were in arms i^inst hiin ; 
while Sweden and Russia 
were in alliance with him. 
And even these allies, 
though nominally equals, 
had, in fact, become mere 
upholders of his policy. 

373. Qturrel with RuasU ; 
the Retreat from Moscow. 
— Russia had been friendly 
since Tilsit, but was grow- 
ing hostile. Alexander was offended by the partial restoration 
of Poland (in the Duchy o£ Warsaw), and he believed that 
Napoleon had intrigued against Russian gains in Finland and 
in Turkey, The Continental System, too, was growing more 
and more burdensome, and in 1811 the Tsar refused to enforce 
it longer. Napoleon at once declared war. In 1812 he invaded 
Russia and penetrated to Moscow. The Russians set fire to 
the city, so that it should not afford him winter quarters; but, 
with tare indecision, he stayed there five weeks, hoping in 

Napolbon townrd tbe close of hia i 


vain that the Tsar would offer to submit. Then, too late, in 
the middle of October, when the Russian winter was already 
upon them, the French began a terrible retreat, fighting des- 
perately each foot of the way against cold, starvation, and 
clouds of Cossack cavalry. Nine weeks later, twenty thou- 
sand miserable scarecrows recrossed the Niemen. The " Grand 
Army," a half-million strong, had left its bones strewn among 
Russian snows. 

374. From Leipzig to Paris. — The Russians kept up the pur- 
suit into Germany, and the enthusiasm of the Prussian people 
forced the government to declare against the oppressor. The 
next summer, Austria also took up arms. By tremendous 
efforts. Napoleon raised a new army of boys and old men from 
exhausted France, and for a time he kept the field victoriously 
in Germany ; but in October, 1813, he met crushing defeat at 
Leipzig, in the " Battle of the Nations." He retreated across 
the Rhine, and his vassal kings fled from their states. Most 
of the small Powers of Central Europe now joined his enemies, 
but as yet there was no plan to dethrone him. England, 
Russia, Austria, and Prussia, acting in close concert through 
numerous congresses, took to themselves the name "The 
Allies," and maintained a perfect understanding. After Leip- 
zig, they proposed peace, offering to leave France the Rhine 
for her boundary. When this liberal proposal was rejected 
by the desperate gamester who opposed them, the Allies 
advanced to the Rhine, and offered peace with the French 
boundaries of 1792. Napoleon again refused. Then the 
Allies invaded France at several points, with overwhelming 
numbers, and, in spite of Napoleon's superb defense, they 
entered Paris victoriously in March, 1814. 

375. The Peace of 1814. Louis XVIIL — The French Senate 
rejected Napoleon's offer to abdicate in favor of his young son, 
and decreed his immediate deposition. The Allies made him 
a large allowance, and granted him the island of Elba, in the 
Mediterranean, as an independent principality. France now 
had no government ; but the Bourbon heir, one of the Emi- 

§375] FALL OF NAPOLEON. 881 

grant brothers of Louis XVI, appeared, promised a constitu- 
tion, and was quietly recognized by the Senate as Louis XVIII.^ 
The Allies had avoided the appearance of imposing this king 
upon France, but they were pleased with the arrangement ; 
and, to make it popular, they granted liberal terms of peace. 
France kept her territory of 1791, and received back nearly 
all her colonies. The Allies withdrew their armies without 
imposing any war indemnity, such as France had exacted 
repeatedly from other countries ; nor did they even take back 
the works of art that French armies had plundered from so 
many famous galleries in Europe. 

For Furtheb Rbadikg. — The best brief accounts of the Napoleonic 
era are given in Stephens^ Eevolutionary Europe, 1789-1815, Rosens 
RevoltUionary and Napoleonic Era, a^d Fyffe's Modern Europe, 135- 
367. Andrews* Modern Europe has an excellent fifty-page treatment 
(I, 37-85), and Dickenson^s JSevolution and Reaction has a valuable 
chapter (eh. ii). The many histories of Napoleon are most of them 
defaced by extreme partisanship on one side or the other, or are too 
long for general use. Probably the best treatment is also the most re- 
cent, — Kose^s Napoleon the First, Foumier's older but excellent Life 
of Napoleon has just been translated into English. Seeley^s Short His- 
tory of Napoleon is exceedingly readable and forceful, but it is unjust to 
Napoleon. Campaigns are admirably dealt with in Ropes^ The First Na- 
poleon, and that volume is also one of the best brief treatments of other 
phases of the time. Seeley^s Life and Times of Stein gives a full and 
excellent account of Germany and Pruasia in this age. Students who wish 
further details may consult works upon the separate countries. Ander- 
son's Constitutions and Documents gives an admirable selection of docu- 
ments. Kennan's Folk-tales About Napoleon is a curious and interesting 

^ The son of Louis XVI had died in prison in Paris in 1795 ; according to 
the theory that he began to reign upon his father's death in 1793, he is known 
as Louis XVII. 




376. Call and Composition of the Congress. — Napoleon had 
wip^d away the old map of Europe, and now, in turn, his 
territorial arrangements fell to pieces. All the districts 
which had been annexed to France since 1792, and all the 
states which had been created by Napoleon, were left with- 
out governments ; and the old rulers of these and other Euro- 
pean countries were clamoring for restoration of territories or 
for new acquisitions. To settle these problems, the four great 
Allies invited all the sovereigns of Europe to a Congress at 
Vienna, but by a secret treaty they reserved important ques- 
tions for their own decision. 

The Congress of Vienna assembled in November, 1814. The 
crowd of smaller monarchs and princes were entertained by 
their Austrian host in a constant round of masques and revels, 
while the great Allies did the work in committee. From time 
to time, as they reached agreements, they announced results 
to the Congress for public ratification. Before the work was 
concluded, however, Talleyrand, the French representative, 
forced his way into the inner circle, by taking adroit advan- 
tage of a quarrel among the Allies (§ 377 d). Thus the re- 
sults were really the work of England, Russia, Austria, 
Prussia, and France ; and the three men of most weight were 
Alexander of Russia, Talleyrand of France, and Mettemich, 
the Austrian diplomat. 

377. The Political and Territorial Rearrangements of the Con- 
gress fall under four heads. 



a. The old German and Italian principalities were restored, 
under their former ruling families, except that no one thought 
of reestablishing the ecclesiastical states (other than the 
Pope's) or the petty German states below the second rank 
(§ 369). Italy was left in twelve states, and Germany in thirty- 
eight. These German states, moreover, were organized into a 
loose confederacy, under the presidency of Austria, for pro- 
tection against foreign attack (§ 387). 

b. The states along the French frontier were strengthened, 
Holland was made into the Kingdom of the Netherlands, 
under the famous House of Orange, and to it was added Bel- 
gium, despite the fact that the Belgians wished to be inde- 
pendent. Switzerland received new French territory and was 
taken under the protection of the Powers, her neutrality being 
guaranteed.^ Nice and Savoy were given back to the King- 
dom of Sardinia, to which was added also the old Kepublic of 
Genoa. The old German territory west of the Rhine was 
given to Bavaria or Prussia. Thus aggression from France 
was guarded against by leaving no really weak state touching 
its borders. 

c. Denmark, the ally of Prance, was weakened ; and Sweden 
became a purely Scandinavian power, confined to the northern 
peninsula, Denmark was forced to cede Norway to Sweden,* 
in compensation for that country's loss of Finland to Russia 
and of Pomerania to Prussia. 

d. There remained the matter of compensation to the four 
Allies. England had stood out alone for years against the 

^ The Powers agreed,, that is, that in time of war no state should send troops 
through Swiss territory or occupy any part of it. Switzerland was the one 
republic left in Europe, and its constitution was remodeled upon an oligarchic 
and ineffective basis, very inferior to that it had possessed as the Helvetic 
Bepublic. The ancient republics of Venice, Grenoa, and Holland were none of 
them restored. 

^ The Norwegians resented the transfer, and tried to set up an independent 
government. The Powers ignored their wishes, however, and they had to be 
contented with a constitution approved by the King of Sweden, recognizing 
them in some respects as a distinct state with rights of their own ({ 523). 

884 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§378 

whole power of Napoleon, and she bad incurred an enormous 
national debt by acting as paymaster of the various coali- 
tions. In some small repayment, she kept Malta, the Ionian 
Islands, Cape Colony, Ceylon, and a few other colonial acquisi- 
tions. Alexander of Russia claimed his reward in Poland : he 
insisted that the Duchy of Warsaw, with the Russian parts of 
Poland, should be made into a Kingdom of Poland, of which 
he should wear the crown. Austria and Prussia had both been 
enlarged after the beginning of the French Revolution, by the 
partitions of Poland. It was understood, now, that they were 
to be given territory enough to make them as large as they 
were after those partitions, but that they would not seek other 

Austria was easily made content: she received back most 
of her provinces in Germany and Italy and on the Adriatic, 
and she accepted Venice in exchange for Belgium.^ But on 
the matter of the Russian and Prussian indemnity, serious 
difficulty arose. Prussia had expected her old territories, in- 
cluding the Duchy of Warsaw. Alexander's plan interfered 
with this ; and he finally won the support of the Prussian 
King by promising to aid Prussia in obtaining Saxony.* 
Austria dreaded the approach of either Russia or Prussia 
toward the heart of Germany, and opposed the plan. Eng- 
land and France^ joined her, and the Allies came to the 
verge of wai*. Finally, however, it was arranged that Prussia 
should have half Saxony and the rest of her indemnity from 
German territory recovered from France west of the Rhine. 
Alexander secured his crown of Poland. 

378. The Congress interrupted by the Return of Napoleon. — 
Suddenly the Congress was startled by the news that Kapo- 

1 The Venetians bitterly resented the transfer, but their opinions were not 
regarded as in any way a matter of consideration. 

3 The King of Saxony had remained faithful to Napoleon, and so, Alexander 
urged, it would be proper to make an exception in his case to the careful re- 
spect shown by the conquerors toward all other ** legitimate mlers." 

' This was the occasion when Talleyrand made France a party to the real 
Powers in the Congress (§ 376). 


leon had left Elba. A few months of Bourbon rule had filled 
France with disquiet and dread. The tricolor, under which 
Frenchmen had marched in triumph into nearly every capital 
in Europe, had been replaced by the old white flag, and many 
Napoleonic officers had been dismissed from the army to make 
way for returned Emigrants, who for twenty years had fought 
against France: thus the army was restless. The extreme 
Royalists were talking, too, of restoring the land of the 
church and of the Emigrants, though it had passed for a 
generation into other hands : and in consequence, the peasants 
and the middle class were rendered uneasy. Napoleon, learn- 
ing how matters stood, had landed in France, almost unat- 
tended. The forces sent to capture him joined his standard, 
and in a few days, without firing a shot, he entered Paris 
in triumph. The King and the old Emigrants emigrated 
again. Napoleon called upon a liberal statesman to draw 
up a free constitution ; France accepted it ; and Napoleon 
solemnly promised to respect it. The Allies at Vienna, 
however, refused even to treat with Napoleon. They declared 
unrelenting war upon him as '^the disturber of the peace 
of Europe," and promptly moved powerful armies to the 
French frontier. 

379. Waterloo and the Second Treaty with France.— No time 
was given Napoleon for preparation. The Allies were ready, 
and the odds were overwhelming. After a brief rule, known 
as " The Hundred Days," Napoleon was crushed at Waterloo 
by the English under Wellington and the Prussians under 
BliicTier (June 18, 1815). The Allies reentered Paris, " bring- 
ing Louis XVIII in their baggage," as the French wits ex- 
pressed it. Napoleon was imprisoned on the distant volcanic 
rock of St. Helena; and to France was dictated a new treaty, 
much more severe than that of 1814. The Powers were 
alarmed at the ease with which the Bourbon monarchy had 
again been overthrown, and they wished to punish the nation 
for its voluntary acceptance of Napoleon. Prussia urged that 
France should be dismembered, as she herself had been after 


886 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§ 380 

Jena;^ but Alexander and England insisted upon a milder 
penalty. In the end, some small strips of territory were taken 
away, containing about a half-million of people, and a huge 
war indemnity was imposed, payable in five years. Meantime, 
France was required to receive and maintain a garrison from 
the troops of the Allies. This time, too, the works of art 
which Napoleon's armies had brought to France were restored 
to their proper homes. 

380. Qoaing Work of the Congress. — During the Hundred 
Days, the Congress of Vienna finished its work. Some of its 
later measures were highly praiseworthy. England induced 
most of the Powers to unite in an earnest declaration against 
the slave-trade, and the navigation of all the rivers of Western 
Europe which flowed through or between different countries 
was declared free.' Moreover, it was worth much for Europe 
to recognize that it had common interests and that they could 
be arranged by a peaceful Congress. This was an advance 
from eighteenth century politics toward a better international 
organization. To be sure, tJie Congress of Vienna represented 
only governments, not peoples. But democracy vjos to come into 
control of the govemmeritSy and then it would Jiave only to utilize 
this mxichinery. Thus even the gathering of despots at Vienna 
contained promise of the Hague Conference (§ 5d4), of inter- 
national tribunals, and of Tennyson's ''federation of the 

^ Moderate Prussian statesmen demanded the cession to Germany of Alsace 
and Lorraine, — all the conquests made hy France since the time of Loais XIV. 
These were essentially the terms imposed by Bismarck upon France, fifty years 
later, after the Franco-Prussian War (§ 434). Radical Prussian papers talked 
of breaking France up into Neustria, Aquitaine, etc., and even of killing off 
the French people " like mad dogs." 

3 A country in possession of the mouth of a river had been in the habit of 
closing it against the trade of other nations, to the serious disadvantage of 
countries on its upper course and of other commercial Powers. For instance, 
while Spain owned the mouth of the Mississippi (1783-1801), she had wished 
to follow this policy, — to the wrath of our western settlers on the river and 
its tributaries. The principle established at Vienna was a step forward for 


Of course, nothing of this was designed by the statesmen at 
Vienna. That << assemblage of princes and lackeys/' in its 
desires, stood wholly for reaction. As Fyffe says, " It com- 
placently set to work to turn back the hands of time to the 
historic hour at which they stood when the Bastille fell." It 
ignored the peoples of Europe, — their wishes, rights, and 
interests. It considered only princes, and applied the phrase 
of '^legitimacy" to consecrate the claims of ruling families 
against all popular movements. It even dismembered peo- 
ples among princes at will, to serve its own selfish purposes. 
The sentiment for national unity and independence had roused 
the peoples against Napoleon in Spain, Russia, Germany, and 
Italy, and had wrought his overthrow. The Congress of 
Vienna, though reaping the result, ignored the cause ; and its 
work, therefore, had to be slowly undone through the next 

Still, even this selfish work contained many germs of prog- 
ress. Napoleon's consolidation of Germany was not undone. 
Austria had lost territory in Central Europe and gained it in 
Italy : thus the energies of this despotic Power were drawn, 
even more than before, away from Germany and into Italian 
and Danubian questions. Meantime, renovated Prussia, from 
whom now a true German union might be hoped, had lost Slav 
territory, hard to organize, and gained German districts. With 
her new Saxon lands, she reached down to the heart of Ger- 
many ; and with her distant isolated districts to defend, on the 
Ehine and the Niemen, she stood forth as the natural champion 
of German independence against both Slav and Gaul. In the 
next half-century, Prussia was to thrust Austria out of Germany 
and to organize the Fatherland into a grand empire under her 
own leadership. The possibility of this glorious result was 
one of the things hidden in the arrangements at Vienna. 

In like manner, the addition of Genoa to the Kingdom of 
Sardinia began the consolidation of Italy by absorption into 
Sardinia, — a process which was to reach completion, together 
with that for German unity, in 1870. 

388 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§381 

Fob Fubthbb Rbadino. — One or more of the following works should 
be consulted : Andrews^ Modern Europe, I, 90-113 ; Seignobos* Europe 
since 1814, 2-« ; Phillips' Modern Europe, 1-13; Fyffe's Modern 
Europe, 368-418. Additional material will be foand in Stephens* Revo- 
lutionary Europe, Rose's Revolutionary and Napoleonic Era, and 
Seeley's Life and Times of Stein. The most important documents are 
given in Anderson's CotistUutions and Documents, 

A. General Character of the Period, 1815-1848. 

381 . Reactionary Sentiment among the Restored Rulers. — The 

immediate result of the Congress of Vienna was a victory for 
reaction and despotism over liberal thought and free govern- 
ment. In many states, especially in the pettier ones, the 
restoration of the old rulers was accompanied by ludicrous 
absurdities. The princes who had scampered away before the 
French eagles came back to show that they had ^Ueamed noth- 
ing and forgotten nothing." They set out to ignore the past 
twenty years. Even in France, a school history spoke of 
Austerlitz as " a victory gained by General Bonaparte, a lieu- 
tenant of the King"! The Elector of Hesse restored the 
ancient uniforms and the wearing of queues by the soldiers, and 
censured his military Commandant for "omitting quarterly 
reports during the preceding ten years," — in which the Elector 
had been a fugitive. The King of Sardinia restored serfdom. 
In the Papal States and in Spain, the Inquisition and other 
medieval institutions were restored. In some places French 
plants were uprooted from the botanical gardens and French 
material improvements were abolished, — from street-lamps to 

382. Attitude of the Five << Great Powers." — The statesmen 
of the Great Powers must have smiled to themselves at some 
of these absurd extremes; but they, too, almost universally 

1 Andrew D. White gives an interesting account of a ''Catechism of Re- 
action," in the American Historical Association Papers, IV, Part I, 69-92. 

W^ if 'iiS 111 \.U-.E )»>r\i.= \ Jr"\ 



strove to suppress all progress. Five states — Russia, Austria, 
Prussia, France, and England — really determined the policy 
of Europe. The first three were " divine right " monarchies. 
Hussia had not been modified by any phase of the French Rev- 
olution. Prussia, with all her recent reforms, was an absolute 
despotism, dependent upon the whim of her king. Austria in 
the main was still medieval. And though the Tsar Alexander 
and Frederick William III of Prussia both played a little at 
liberalism, they were easily terrified by the bogie of " Revolu- 
tion," and were soon drawn to the Austrian policy. That 
policy from the close of the Vienna Congress was frankly 
reactionary. The Emperor Francis expressed it in an address 
to the professors of an Austrian college; "New ideas are 
being promulgated of which I can not and will not approve. 
Abide by the old. They are good ; our fathers prospered under 
them ; why should not we ? . . . I do not need wise men, 
but brave and obedient subjects." And while the government 
thought so to harness thought at home, it established rigid 
quarantine against ideas from abroad : students might not go 
abroad for study; no foreign teachers were allowed to get 
places in Austria; and all printed matter was carefully super- 

The western states, France and England, were at first not 
much better than these eastern Powers. Louis XVIII gave 
France a limited Charter, but the theory of divine right was 
carefully preserved until the Revolution of 1830 (§§ 411 ff.). 
That theory, of course, could have no place in England, where 
the monarchy rested on the Revolution of 1688; but even 
England for several years was to be in the hands of the Tory 
party, which was bitterly opposed to further progi-ess (§ 529). 

383. The "Rule of Mettemich,"— The central figure in the 
period of reaction from 1815 to 1848 was the subtle Austrian 
statesman, Metternich. No one has phrased the reactionary 
' creed better than he : " Sovereigns alone are entitled to guide 
the destinies of their peoples, and they are responsible to none 
but God. . . . Government is no more a subject for debate 

390 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§384 

than religion is." Metternich was too shrewd to think it 
possible to return altogether to the days before the French 
Eevolution ; but he did strive to arrest all change at the lines 
the Congress of Vienna had drawn. The "new ideas" of 
democracy and equality and nationality ^ ought never to have 
been allowed to get into Europe, he said -, but, since they were 
in, the business of governments must be to keep them down 
out of sight. His policy has been aptly described as " Do 
nothing and let nothing be done." For over thirty years he 
was the evil genius of Europe. The rule of Napoleon, it is 
well said, was followed by the rule of Metternich. 

Metternich was a polished cynic and a master of intrigue. Napoleon 
said of him that lie ** mistook intrigue for statesmanship/* and, again, 
that he ** narrowly missed being a statesman*'; and Stein complained 
that, though he had industry and ability, he was ** overfond of complica- 
tions ** and did not know how to do business ** in the great and simple 
way.** The one good thing to be said for his long rule is that it per- 
mitted no war between the Great Powers. The hundred years of almost 
incessant strife was followed, for the leading states of Europe, by forty 
years of almost unbroken peace. 

384. Disappointment of the Liberals. — The political reaction 
was the more galling to the friends of liberty because the Wars 
of Liberation in 1812-1814 had been essentially popular upris- 
ings. The Austrian and Prussian rulers had made repeated 
appeals to national patriotism, and had promised national 
unity and constitutional liberties. Austria and England had 
held out like hopes to the Italians;* and the Spanish rebels 
had adopted a free constitution for their country (§ 393). Thus 
the Liberals of Europe had greeted Napoleon's overthrow with 

1 The sentiment of nationality is the feeling among all the people of one 
race, speech, and country that they should make one political state, or become 
a " nation.'' This feeling tended to draw all Germans into a Ctorman state, 
and all Italians into an Italian state. It threatened Austrian supremacy, 
especially in Italy, because it made the Italian subjects of Austria wish to 
break away from Austria to join the rest of their fellow Italians. Thus in 
any conglomerate state, like Austria, the feeling of nationality was likely 
to be a disrupting force. 

3 Cf. § 3»3; and read Andrews, I, 57, 114-115, and especially 185, 186. 


joyous acclaim ; but they soon came to see that Leipzig and 
Waterloo had done nothing toward freeing Europe. These 
victories simply " replaced one insolent giant by a swarm of 
swaggering pygmies." Only a few months after Waterloo, 
Byron ^ lamented that <^the chain of banded nations has been 
broke in vain by the accord of raised-up millions"; and, 
''standing on an Empire's Dust" at the scene of the great 
battle, and noting '' how that red rain has made the harvest 
grow," he mused : — 

** Gaol may champ the bit and foam in fetters, 
But is Earth more free ? 
Did nations combat to make one submit, 
Or league to teach all kings true sovereignty ? . . . 
Then o^er one fallen despot boast no more.^' 

385. Progressive Forces : Democracy and Nationality. — How- 
ever, underneath all the wave of reaction, the principles of the 
French Revolution survived.' The ttoo positive forces in politics 
for the nineteenth century were to be Democracy and Nationality, 
— just the two principles ignored by the Congress of Vienna 
and warred upon by Metternich. The league of princes for a 
time compelled these forces to work underground, in secret 
societies and plots ; but before the middle of the century they 
emerged in three series of revolutions, — in 1820, 1830, and 
1848. In 1820, almost no gain was made, except, after some 
delay, in Portugal and Greece. In 1830, gains were confined 
for the most part to France and Belgium. But after 1848, — 
" the Year of Revolutions," — the system of Metternich lay in 

The work of the second half of the century was to reorganize 
Europe out of those ruins. Through the principles of Democ- 
racy and Nationality, there was created a new Germany, a 
new Italy, a new, stable French Republic, a new Swiss Fed- 
eral Republic, a democratic England, a constitutional, federal 

1 An English poet of strong liberal sympathies in politics. See § 399. 
s There is an admirable statement of the permanent results of the Revolu- 
tion in Judson's Nineteenth Century, 6^70. 

392 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§386 

Austria-Hungary, and a group of free Slav states in the 
Balkan peninsula. All these and the other small states of 
Europe in great measure remodeled their governments upon 
English or American forms. Russia and Turkey remain the 
only two Powers in Europe not reconstructed ; and the latter 
of these has been nearly thrust back into Asia. 

386. Plan for the Treatment of the Period to 1848. — In our smrey 
of the reactionary period to 1848 we are to note (1) Mettemich^s control 
over Germany through the Germanic Confederacy ; and (2) his control 
over Southern Europe through the concert of Austria, Russia, and Prussia. 
These two topics are treated in subdivisions B and C, below. The revo- 
lutionary forces, which were to overthrow the *' European system" of 
Metternich, emanated mainly from France, and will be referred to upon 
occasion ; but their systematic treatment will be left until a following 

B. Germany and Metternich. 

387. The Germanic Confederation. — The chief victory won by 
Metternich at the Congress of Vienna lay in the new organiza- 
tion adopted by Germany. Liberal Germany, represented by 
Stein, had hoped for a real union of the nation, either in the 
revival and strengthening of the Empire, or in a new federal 
state. But Metternich saw that in a true German Empire, 
Austria, with her Slav, Hungarian, and Italian interests, could 
not long keep the lead against Prussia, He preferred to leave 
the various states practically independent, so that Austria, the 
largest of all, might play them off against each other and so 
dominate them all. The small rulers, too, were hostile to a 
real union, because it would limit their sovereignties. In the 
settlement of the question, Metternich allied himself with 
these princes of the small states against Prussia and the 
Liberals. Stein was without official position j the Prussian 
King and his ministers were mild-mannered and not very 
acute; and the Prussian opportunity was lost 

But some sort of alliance was necessary to guard against 
foreign invasion; and the Federal Act of June 12, 1815, created 
the " Germanic Confederation." This union was a loose league^ 


:»~i_iTv'— 3_-»_ 


and it was composed of sovereigns^ not ofjyeoples. Each of the 
thirty- eight states controlled its own government, its own 
army, its own tariffs, and its own foreign diplomacy, and they 
even kept the right to form alliances among themselves or 
with foreign powers, — although they did promise not to make 
war upon each other. The Confederacy did not even send 
ambassadors to foreign countries. It had no distinct execu- 
tive, judicial, and legislative departments: its one organ was 
the Federal Diet at Frankfort. This was merely a standing 
conference of ambassadors appointed by the sovereigns to 
speak their wills.- The Austrian representative presided ; but 
no really important action could be taken without the consent 
of every state.* Naturally, it was almost impossible to do 
business. Before many years the Diet was the laughingstock 
of Europe. As Dr. Judson says, " It was not a government at 
all ; it was a polite and ceremonious way of doing nothing." 
The union amounted to little more than a possible means of 
securing concerted action by agreement among sovereigns ; and 
in practice this agreement was to be secured only for the pur- 
pose of repressing liberal movements. 

This Confederacy is the form in which Germany was organized from 
1815 until 1866, when Prussia thrust Austria out by war and began the 
present German state. The fact that the Confederacy lasted so long, how- 
ever, calls for no praise : it means only that for half a century there was 
little progress in national life. 

388. The Promised Constitutions in the German States. — The 
chance for making a German nation had been lost at the Con- 
gress of Vienna, but the Liberals still hoped, for a time, for 
free political institutions in the separate states. In the " War 
of Liberation " the King of Prussia had twice promised his 
people a constitution ; and at the Congress of Vienna he had 

^ Thirty-four of the members were sovereign princes ; the other four were 
the goTernments of the surviving " free cities," Hamburg, Bremen, Liibeck, 
and Frankfort. 

* Details of the Constitution are given in Pennsylvania Reprints, I, No. 3. 
Excellent analyses are given by Andrews, I, 232-238, and by Phillips, 38-44. 

894 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§388 

urged that the Federal Act should provide for setting up repre- 
sentative assemblies within a year in all the states and that 
these bodies should be given power over taxation. Mettemich 
got this resolution softened into a vague and meaningless 
declaration that representative assemblies " would be " estab- 
lished. No time was stated, no powers enumerated; and it 
soon became plain that the pledge was worthless for most 
members of the Confederation. 

Within the next four years, it is true, constitutions were 
granted by the liberal Grand Duke of Weimar, and by the 
rulers of Nassau and of the four South German states, W^ur- 
temberg, Bavaria, Baden, and Hesse-Darmstadt.^ These con- 
stitutions left the princes still the real rulers of their states ; 
but they provided for equality of all classes before the law, 
for freedom of the press, and for representative assemblies 
with control over new taxes. 

The King of Prussia might have put himself at the head of 
the movement and so rallied the liberal enthusiasm of Ger- 
many around his country. But Frederick William III was 
weak and vacillating, and when the first glow of patriotic 
sympathy was over, he began to see difficulties in the way of 
constitution making.' He did appoint a committee to prepare 
a constitution; but that body dawdled along for four years 
without result, and finally Frederick William formally repudi- 
ated his promise. This last event happened after the intensi- 
fied reaction now to be described (§§ 389, 390). 

^ Germany south of the river Main is known as Soath Germany. The 
people in these districts bad been greatly influenced by the French Revolution, 
and their rulers granted constitutions largely in order to secure popular sup- 
port against possible attempts of Austria or Prussia upon their sovereignty. 

3 Some of these difficulties were real. Prussia was a mass of heterogeneous 
provinces, — Polish, German, and Grermanized Prussian (Slav). The east was 
Protestant and intensely conservative ; the new and distant western provinces 
were Catholic and zealously liberal. A third of the territory had just become 
Prussian for the first time, and large portions of the rest had been parts of 
other states for the preceding ten years. Moreover, the Prussian nobility 
railed bitterly at the thought of free institutions for the people, and the King's 
associations were chiefly with this nobility. 


389. Liberal Indignation, Demonstrations, and Crimes : Reaction 
intensified. — By 1817, the Liberals ^ had become indignant and 
uneasy from the many delays and evasions by which in most 
states the promised constitutions were withheld. In October of 
that year, the three-hundredth anniversary of Luther^s defi- 
ance of the Pope and the fourth anniversary of the Battle of 
Leipzig were celebrated together at the Wartburg castle in the 
Duchy of Weimar. The Jena University students took part 
in the celebration and turned it into a demonstration of liberal 
feeling. Patriotic and religious songs were sung; ardent 
speeches were made ; and, in the evening, some old text-books 
were thrown into a bonfire, — having first been labeled with 
the names of reactionary works especially hated by the liberal 

This harmless and boyish ebullition threw sober statesmen 
into spasms of fear, and seemed tg them to prelude a revolu- 
tionary "Reign of Terror." Metternich took shrewd advan- 
tage of the opportunity to wean the King of Prussia from 
whatever remained of his earlier liberalism and to make him 
a satellite in the Austrian system of reaction. Unhappily, 
more serious weapons than the Wartburg Festival were soon 
put into the hands of the Reactionists. A small section of 
Kwiical agitators preached that even assassination in the cause 
of liberty was right; and, in 1819, a fanatical student mur- 
dered Kotzebue, a Russian representative in Germany, because 
he was supposed to have drawn away the Tsar from liberal 
sympathies. Soon after, a like attempt was made upon an 
absolutist minister in Hesse. These crimes shut out all pros- 
pect of political progress for many years. 

390. The Carlsbad Decrees. — Austria at once called together 
the greater sovereigns of Germany to a conference at Carlsbad, 
and Metternich secured their approval for a series of resolu- 

^ Outside the Rhine districts the party was not large, but it comprised an 
influential body, —writers, journalists, students, professors, and most of the 
'wt of the small educated middle class. 

• Read Andrews, I, 2(2-243, or PhUlips, 54-5.5 

396 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§ 391 

tionsy which were then hastily forced through the Diet at 
Frankfort. For once, that body was coerced into prompt 
action by the urgent unanimity of the leading monarchs. 
The " Carlsbad Decrees," so adopted, were especially directed 
against free speech in the press and in the universities. Thej 
forbade secret societies among students; they appointed a 
government official in every university to discharge any pro- 
fessor who should preach doctrines ''hostile to the public 
order " ; they set up a rigid censorship of all printed matter ; 
and they created a standing committee to hunt out conspira- 
cies. These regulations broke in upon the sovereignty that 
had been promised the rulers over their respective states, and 
compelled some of the rulers to infringe constitutions they 
had just granted. A few of the small states protested, but 
the resolute attitude of Austria and Prussia forced them to 
yield or risk conquest. 

The decrees were renewed in 1824 and in 1833, and remained 
the law of the Confederacy, with little interruption, for nearly 
thirty years. During this time, thousands of enthusiastic 
youths were sent into exile or to prison for long terms, for 
singing forbidden patriotic songs, or for wearing the colors 
black, red, and orange, — the symbol of German unity. " Turn- 
vater Jahn," the organizer of the patriotic Turner societies in 
the time of Napoleon, and the poet Arndt, whose songs had 
done much to arouse the people against French rule, were both 
persecuted. Learned professors who would not consent to be 
completely muzzled were driven from the universities. Men 
ceased to talk politics in society, and left matters of govern- 
ment to princes. 

391. The Revolutions of 1830. — In 1830 the reaction was 
broken by a brief interruption. The "Second French Revolu- 
tion" (§ 412) drove out the reigning "divine right" monarch 
in France and set up a new monarchy resting upon popular 
authority. The success of the sudden rising was followed by 
revolts all over Europe, and for a time the European system 
seemed crumbling. Belgium broke away from the King of 


Holland, to whom the Congress of Vienna had given it. Poland 
rose against the Tsar, to whom the Congress had given it. The 
states of Italy rose (§ 394) against Austria and the Austrian 
satellites, to whom the Congress had given them. And in 
Germany there were various uprisings in all absolutist states, 
to demand the constitutions which the Congress had not 

393. Reaction restored until 1848. — The final gains, however, 
were not so vast as at first they seemed. Belgium did become 
an independent monarchy with the most liberal constitution 
on the continent : and to that country and to France the Revo- 
lution brought permanent profit. But Tsar Nicholas crushed 
the Poles, took away their constitution,^ and made them a 
Russian province. Austria crushed the Italian revolts. And 
though four new constitutions appeared in small German 
states, after almost bloodless risings, still the general despotic 
character of the Confederacy was not modified. While Austria 
was busied in Italy, it is true, there had seemed some hope of 
progress for Germany; but Metternich soon had his hands free, 
and at once he set about restoring "order." In 1832 an open- 
ing was given by a liberal demonstration at Hampach in Bava- 
ria. The meeting was as harmless as the Wartburg Festival 
of 1817 ; but it answered Metternich's purpose. Troops were 
marched to Hampach to put down the " insurrection,'' and the 
Diet was frightened into restoring the Carlsbad Decrees in an 
intensified form. 

Still, in the period from 1830 to 1848, reaction had lost much 
of its vigor and confidence, and it was being slowly under- 
mined by a quiet but growing public opinion. Metternich's 
genius sufficed to keep his system standing, as long as it was 
not disturbed from without ; but when the next year of Revo- 
lutions came (1848) that system fell forever in Western Europe. 
(See §§ 452-456.) 

^ Tsar Alexander had given a liberal constitution to his " Kingdom of 
I^oland/' but in 1825 Alexander was succeeded by Nicholas (§ 573). 

398 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [| 398 

C Revolutions in Southern Europe, and "Interven- 
tion" BY THE Despotic Monarchs. 

393. The Spanish Revolution of zSao. — The Spanish patriots 
who rose in 1808 against Napoleon found themselves without 
a government. Their king, with all their government machin- 
ery, was in the hands of the French. The insurgents set up 
a representative Cortes, and, in 1812, they adopted a liberal 
constitution. This " Constitution of 1812 " was far from per- 
fect ; indeed, it was modeled largely upon the French Constitu- 
tion of 1791 (§ 324) ; but it was the standard about which the 
Liberals of Southern Europe were to rally for a generation. 

After the fall of Napoleon, King Ferdinand returned to the 
Spanish throne. He had promised to maintain the new con- 
stitution ; but he soon broke his pledges, restored all the old 
iniquities, and cruelly persecuted the liberal heroes of the 
" War of Liberation." 

This condition lasted until 1820. In that year came a revo- 
lution. Troops had been collected to subdue the revolted 
American colonies;^ but the service was unpopular, and, in- 
stead of embarking, one of the regiments raised the standard 
of revolt and proclaimed the Constitution of 1812. Tumults 
followed in Madrid and other large towns; and the King, 
cowardly as he was treacherous, yielded, called a Cortes, and 
restored the Constitution. 

394. Other Revolutions of 1820-182 1. — This success* in Spain 
became the signal for like attempts in other states. Before 
the year closed, Portugal and Naples both forced their kings 
to grant constitutions modeled upon that of Spain ; and Sicily 

1 When Napoleon seized Spain, the Spanish American states refused to 
recofcuize his authority, and so became virtually independent under govern- 
ments of their own. At first, most of these new governments were in name 
loyal to the Spanish crown. During the next few years, however, the Spanish 
Americans experienced the benefits of freedom, and began to desire to emulate 
the example of the United States, which had so recently been merely a group 
of European colonies. Accordingly, by 1815, all the Spanish states on the 
continent of America had declared themselves independent nations. 


rose against the Neapolitan government for a constitution of 
its own. Early in the next year, the people and army of Pied- 
mont ' rebelled, to secure a constitution for the Kingdom of 
Sardinia and to unite Italy ; Lombardy and Venetia, though 
held in the overpowering grasp of Austria, stirred restlessly j 
and the Greeks began their long and heroic struggle for inde- 
pendence against Turkey. 

The wide-spread unanimity of action was due in part to 
secret revolutionary societies, already in existence. The most 
important of these was the Carbonari (" charcoal burners ''). 
It had been formed in Italy, in the time of Napoleon, to drive 
out the French, and was continued there to drive out Austrian 
rule and to unite Italy. It was particularly strong among 
army ofiBcers, and it had branches or connections in other 

395.. The Congress of Troppau and the Alliance of the Three 
Eastern Despots against Revolution. — We have seen how Met- 
ternich used the Germanic Confederacy, designed for protec- 
tion against foreign attack, to stifle liberalism in Germany. 
We are now to observe how he adroitly twisted an alliance 
of monarchs from its original purpose in order to crush these 
revolutions in Southern Europe. 

After Waterloo, while the four " Allies " were still in Paris 
(November 20, 1815), they had agreed to preserve their union 
and to hold meetings from time to time. The purpose was to 
guard against any future aggression by France. But when the 
revolutions of 1820 began, Metternich invited France also to 
a Congress of the Great Powers at Troppau. The French 
King had been terrified by recent radical movements in France 
(§ 407), and these same events, together with the Wartburg 
affair and the murder of Kotzebue (§ 389), had made the Tsar 
and the King of Prussia pliable to Metternich's molding hand. 

^ Piedmont (" Foot of the Mount") was the district between the Alps and 
the plains of Lombardy. It was the most important part of the old Duchy of 
Bavoy and of the later Kingdom of Sardinia. The name is often used for the 
whole state of Sardinia. 

400 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§ 396 

At Troppau, the absolute sovereigus of Austria, Russia, and 
Prussia signed a declaration that they would intervene to put 
down revolution against any established government. Thus 
the principle of " intervention " was a proclamation that the 
'' divine right'' monarchs would support each other against 
the nations : it was directed against the right of a people to 
throw off despotic rule and to make its government for itself. 
England prot<ested against this doctrine, both before and after 
the meeting, and formulated in opposition to it the principle 
of " non-intervention," or the doctrine that each nation should 
manage its internal affairs as it chose. On this issue, the 
alliance of 1815 was broken up. Undaunted by England's 
protests, however, the united eastern despots, known popu- 
larly from this time as "the Holy Alliance,"* prepared to 
enforce the Troppau program.* 

896. The Congress of Laibach: Intervention in Kapl^ and 
Sardinia. — A few months after Troppau, the three allied 
monarchs met again at Laibach. The King of Naples, another 
treacherous Bourbon Ferdinand, was present. That monarch 
had sworn solemnly to uphold the new Neapolitan constitution 
and had invoked the vengeance of Heaven upon his head if he 
should prove unfaithful ; but at the moment of these protesta- 

^ This name belongs strictly not to this outgrowth of the political alliance 
of November, 1815, bat to a wholly different league organized two months 
earlier by the Tsar, under the influence of strong religious emotion. In Sep- 
tember, 1815, Alexander had presented to the monarchs a brief agreement 
whereby the signers would promise to govern their respective peoples as 
** branches of one Christian nation " in accordance with ** the precepts of 
justice, charity, and peace." (The document is printed in the Pennsffira- 
nia Reprints^ I, No. 3.) No one took very seriously this " pious verbiage," 
as Metternich called it, except the Tsar himself and his friend Frederick 
William of Prussia ; but, from motives of courtesy, it was signed by every 
Christian rnler on the continent, except the Pope. This League caUed itself 
the Holy Alliance. Its name has come to be applied to that other league of 
the three eastern states, — so different in composition, origin, and purpose. 
No doubt the confusion was helped by the fact that the three despotic sover- 
eigns who signed the Troppau agreement were also the first three signers of 
the Holy Alliance. 

* The document is given in Pennsylvania Reprints^ I, No. 3. 


tions he was in secret correspondence with Metternich, and 
now he had come to Laibach for help to regain his absolutism. 
The Laibach meeting sent an Austrian army to Naples. The 
Neapolitan army was defeated ; and Ferdinand returned, sur- 
rounded by Austrian bayonets, to glut his vengeance upon the 
Liberals, with dungeon and scaffold. 

Three days after the Neapolitan defeat, came the revolt in 
Piedmont (March 10, 1821). If the two risings had been simul- 
taneous, there would have been at least some show of success. 
As it was, the "Congress of Laibach" promptly marched 
eighty thousand Austrians into North Italy, while one hundred 
thousand Eussians were held ready to support them ; and the 
Piedmontese were easily crushed. 

397. The Congress of Verona : Intervention in Spain. — Flushed 
with success, the Holy Alliance determined to overthrow 
also the Spanish constitution, from which the "contagion 
of liberty" had spread. In 1822 the Great Powers were 
summoned to a Congress at Verona. England again pro- 
tested vigorously ; ^ but France now joined the eastern Powers, 
and, with the sanction of the "crowned conspirators,"* a 
French army restored the old absolutism in Spain. Then 
the Bourbon Ferdinand in Spain, like his namesake in Naples, 
busied himself for many months in a reactionary " Reign of 

398. Failure of Intervention in Spanish America. — The next 
wish of the Holy Alliance was to restore monarchic con- 
trol in the revolted Spanish colonies. But here they failed. 
England's protests they had been able to disregard as long as 
only the continent of Europe was concerned ; but on the sea 

^ The French representative tried to reconcile England by pleading that a 
constitution might be all very well in Spain, but that it should be a constitu- 
tion granted by the King, not one forced upon him by rebels against his 
authority. Wellington, the English representative, Tory though he was, fitly 
answered this "divine right "plea: *'Do yon not know, sir, that it is not 
^ings who make constitutions, but constitutions that make kings ? " 

^ Sydney Smith, an English Liberal, called the allied Powers at the Congress 
* the crowned conspirators of Verona." 

402 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§ 390 

England was supreme. The Allies could not reach America 
without her consent, and she made it known that she would 
oppose the intended expedition with all her great might. 
America shares in the credit of checking the despots. CaniuD^, 
the English minister, urged the United States to join England 
in an alliance to protect Spanish America. The United States 
chose to act without formal alliance, but it did act along the 
same lines. President Monroe's message to Congress in 1823 
announced to the world that this country would oppose any 
attempt of the despotic Powers to extend their ''politieaJ 
system " to America.^ Probably the decided position of either 
England or the United States would have caused the Powers 
to abandon their project. Acting together, the two nations 
were certainly irresistible in the proposed field of combat, and 
the plan of the Holy Alliance was quietly dropped.' 

399. Intervention in Greece, for Freedom. — Almost at once 
Metternich met another check, in the affairs of Greece. The 
rising there had been accompanied by terrible massacres of all 
Turks dwelling in the country, and the exasperated Turkish 
government was now putting down the rebellion by a war of 
extermination. For a time Metternich had hoped to bring 
about intervention by the allied Powers to restore Turkish 
authority quickly j^ but he failed from two causes. 

^ This is one part of the famous Monroe Doctrine. 

3 When reproached afterward, in Parliament, for not having done more to 
preserve constitutionalism in Spain, Canning replied with the proud boast, 
** I called the New World into existence to redress the balance of the Old." 
It is possible to argue that both America and England acted from selfish 
motives, rather than from love of liberty. England wanted to keep her 
commerce with the free Spanish states; and the United States objected to 
the neighborhood of a strong Power that might interfere with her leadership 
or with her safety. There is no doubt, however, that, along with these proper 
though selfish motives, both countries were actuated also by principle and by 
sympathy with freedom, just as the Holy Alliance was moved by contrary 
principle. England had refused to listen to any offer securing her com- 
mercial advantages upon condition that she should in turn leave the Holy 
Alliance a free hand; and the accusation against Canning and the tone o( 
his reply are evidence of the real feeling of the English people. • 


a. The educated classes of western Europe had been nour- 
ished mainly on the ancient Greek literature, and now their 
imagination was fired by the thought that this struggle against 
the Turks was a contest akin to that ancient war against the 
Persians, which Herodotus, Xenophon, Plutarch, and iEschylus 
had m ade glorious to them. The man who did m ost to widen this 
sympathy was Byron, the English poet. He closed a career of 
mingled genius and generosity and wrong-doing by a noble self- 
devotion, giving fortune and life to the Greek cause ; and his 
poems, invoking the magic of the old names of Marathon and 
SaJamis, stirred Europe to passionate enthusiasm.^ Great num- 
bers of volunteers followed him to fight for Greek liberty, and 
before any government had taken action, the Turks complained, 
with some truth, that they had to fight all Europe. 

b. The Bussian people, untouched by this western passion, 
still felt a deep sympathy for the Greeks as their co-religion- 
ists, and a deeper hatred for the Turks as their hereditary foes ; 
and so Metternich lost his chief ally. For though the Tsar 
at first discountenanced the Greek rising and even punished 
Russian officers who had encouraged it, still he was too much 
influenced by the feeling of his people to join in open inter- 
vention against the revolution. 

Finally, indeed, intervention came, but for the Greeks, not 
against them. The English, French, and Kussian fleets had 
proceeded to Greece to enforce a truce, so as to permit negotia- 
tion. The three fleets were acting together under the lead of 
the English admiral, who happened to be the senior officer. 
Almost by chance, and chiefly through the excited feelings of 

^This feeling is called Phiiheilenism. No schoolboy to-day can read the 
sad but stirring lyric, *'The Isles of Greece," without quicker pulse-beat; but 
the European youth of Byrou's time were moved more deeply than the pres- 
ent generation can easily understand by the allusions in such passages as 

this* -— 

" Standing on the Persian's grave, 

I could not deem myself a slave" ; 

or this : " Ye have the letters Cadmus gave ; 

Think ye he meant them for a slave ! " 

404 PERIOD OF REACTION, 1814-1848. [§ 400 

the sailors, they came into conflict with the Turkish fleet at 
Navarino (October, 1827) and annihilated it. The English 
commander had exceeded his instructions, but there could 
be no going back; the three Powers intervened to secure 
Greek independence, and Kussian troops soon forced Turkej 
to grant it. 

400. The Holy Alliance and the Revolation of 1830 ; Renewal 
in 1833; Final Orerthrow in 1848. — The French Revolution 
of 1830 dealt the next blow to Metternich's <' European Sys- 
tem." France — her own government now resting on revolu- 
tion (§ 413) — was definitely lost to the Alliance, and joined 
England in protecting revolutionary Belgium against hostile 
intervention, so that Metteniich called London and Paris " the 
two madhouses of Europe." Then the risings in Italy and 
Poland gave Austria and Russia «ach its hands full for many 
months. To be sure, these revolts were put down; but the 
despotic allies had not been able to hold Congresses and to 
act with united and overwhelming force, as in 1820. 

Metternich went to work again patiently, to build up his 
shattered system; and for a time, to some degree, he suc^ 
ceeded. Soon, however, it became plain that his day was over. 
In 1833 a new Congress of the monarchs of Austria, Russia, 
and Prussia, at Mttnchengratz, renewed the pledge to unite in 
suppressing revolution ; but before there was occasion to put 
this agreement in force,^ the revolutions of 1848 shattered 
absolutism in Prussia and weakened it beyond recovery even 
in Austria (§§ 452 if.). Russia, it is true, continued to act on the 
promise of MUnchengratz, in assisting Austria to put down the 
Hungarian rebellion (§ 453), and, from that time to the present, 
she has shown a disposition to continue a like policy ; but never 

1 In 1847 a civil war broke out in Switzerland (§ 517) and the ManchengriLtz 
Allies made some preparation to interfere. The French govemment, too', was 
just then reactionary in feeling (at the moment before its overthrow) and was 
ready to join the intervention. But England showed great firmness and 
seemed to threaten war, and in a few months came the 1848 revolutions all 
over Europe, preventing further action. 


again has there been a concert of European powers in the 
interests of despotism.* 

401. Summary. — The System of Mettemich and The Holy Alliance 
was triumphant at Troppau, Laibach, and Verona, over Sardinia, Naples, 
and Spain ; and, upon the whole, it remained victorious in Europe until 
1830. With reference to the South American continent it had been 
defeated by England and the United States ; and in 1830 it was weakened 
in Europe by the withdrawal of France. France and England then 
checked its plan to restore Belgium to the King of Holland. Mettemich 
rebuilt the Alliance, in form, at MUnchengr&tz ; but the Revolution of 
1848 swept it away forever. 

Since that date, demands for intervention have usually come from the 
liberals, in behalf of oppressed peoples. 

For Further Reading. — A number of valuable documents (referred 
to in footnotes above) are given in the Pennsylvania Beprints^ I, No. 3. 
Good recent accounts of the rule of Mettemich are given by Andrews, 
Modern Europe, 113-133 ; Seignobos, Europe Since 1814, 374-389, 326, 
336, and especially 719-746; Phillips, Modern Europe, 37-134; and 
Fyffe, Modem Europe, 419-645. Special works upon Germany, Italy, 
and Spain may also be consulted. 

^ The nearest approach was the Congress of Berlin in 1878 (§ 647), when the 
Powers, led by the Tory goverament of England, gave back to Turkey some 
provinces which Rnssia had taken away. Bnt plainly this was a political 
attempt to maintain Turkey as a balance to Russia : it was not despotic in 
purpose, and it would not have occurred if men had believed that the sur- 
rendered provinces could have maintained a real independence of their own. 




A, The Chabteb. 

402. Theory and General Character. — Before the French Sen- 
ate proclaimed Louis XVIII (§ 375), it had drawn up a hasty 
constitution. Louis refused to accept it. Still, he recognized 
that France must have some written form of government,* 
and in June, 1814, he promulgated a Charter, In form this 
was a free grant from the King, not a restriction forced upon 
him. Thus the theory of " Divine Right " was not sacrificed.* 
In other respects, however, the Charter closely resembled the 
rejected constitution, and for its day it was a liberal document. 
It gave to the French people more self-government than they 
had ever exercised in a regular way for any length of time, 
and more, too, than was to be found until 1830 in any other 
continental state. 

403. ProvlBionB. — There were two houses in the legislature. 
The House of Peers was to be appointed by the king, either for 

^ The student will observe that events in France daring this period haye 
been referred to in §§ 387-399. 

3 The experiences of the past twenty years and the uncertainty of the 
people as to the intention of the new government^ made this particularly 
necessary in France. The people had shown that they would not necessarily 
object to a political master, but they were by no means ready for the restora- 
tion of the old privileged orders, and tliey wished to be sure of the titles to 
the old church lands* ' 

> Read the preamble to the charter, in Pennsylvania Reprints^ I, No. 3, or 
in Anderson's Constitutions and Documents, where the document is given 


§404] THE CHAKTER OF 1814. 407 

life or with hereditary seats. The lower house (Cliamher of 
Deputies) was to be elected and was to have full control over 
taxation. It was chosen, however, upon a high property quali- 
fication. To vote for a deputy, one must pay a direct tax of 
sixty dollars a year. This confined the franchise to less than 
one hundred thousand voters, in a population of nearly thirty 
millions. In other words, only one man out of about seventy 
could vote. Moreover, no one could be elected as deputy unless 
he paid a direct tax of about two hundred dollars.^ The mem- 
bers were to hold office for five years, and one fifth of them 
were to be renewed each year. The king retained an absolute 
veto, and also the sole right to introduce legislation. For civil 
liberty^ the provisions were fairly satisfactory. The purchasers 
of the lands confiscated during the Revolution were guaranteed 
titles. The principles of religious liberty, equality before the 
law, admission of all to public employment, free speech, and 
freedom of the press* were confirmed. On local government 
the Charter was silent; but in practice the centralized system 
of Napoleon was retained: all prefects, subprefects, mayors, 
district and municipal councils, and bishops were appointed by 
the crown. 

B, First Period, 1816-1820. 

The Monabcht tries Constitutional Government. 

404. The Rage of the Ultra-royalists. — The Charter did not 
really go into effect until after the Hundred Days (§ 379) ; 
and the second restoration, after Waterloo, was followed by a 
bloody proscription of the Bonapartists and of the old Revo- 
lutionists, — in the "White Terror" of 1815. In the midst 
of this fury of the returned Emigrants, the elections took place 
for the first Chamber of Deputies. The Reactionists, taking 

^ This amount was so high that some districts hardly had enough eligible 
men to fill the places ; and so, of coarse, in such dliftricts, the right of choice 
was practically annihilated. 

* " Within the limits necessary to public tranquillity." This limitation 
was to be taken advantage of by the government in 1830 (§ 410) . 

408 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§405 

advantage of the panic into which the moderate and liberal 
parties were thrown, secured a large majority of the representa- 
tives, and they at once showed a determination to nullify the 
Charter. These " Ultra-royalists " were headed by the King's 
brother, the Count of Artois, the heir to the throne. They 
wished to restore the church lands and the lands of the Emi- 
grants, to hand education over to the church, and to wreak 
vengeance upon their old enemies. 

405. Louis sides with the Constitutionalists. — A new civil 
strife was averted only by the moderation of the King. Louis 
was wise enough, in a cynical way, to see the folly of his 
friends. lie perceived that the Ultra majority was accidental 
and that it did not truly represent even the narrow body of 
electors; and in 1816 he dissolved the Chamber. The new 
election justified him, by giving a legislature of a more mod- 
erate character. For the next four years, the King continued 
to support the Liberals against the Ultras. France enjoyed 
order and tranquillity, and was prosperous and happy. 

406. Parties in the Assembly. — There were four groups in the 
Assembly. During the years 1810-1821, the Extreme-Right (the Ultras) 
and the Extreme-Left (Radical Republicans) both desired revolution, 
though in opposite directions; but they were both small in numbers. 
The bulk of the Assembly was divided between the Right-Center and the 
Left-Center. Both these parties were upholders of the Charter ; but 
while the first regarded it as a finality and were opposed to all further 
change, the second regarded it as a basis for future development. The 
King chose his ministers from one or the other of the two Center parties, 
usually from the Right-Center ; but the ministry governed by keeping 
up an alliance between the two moderate parties against the extremes in 
the two wings.i 

1 This principle of government has held good through so much of the 
subsequent history of France that it is worth while for the student to try to 
grasp it. It differs radically, of course, from party government in England 
and America. Government in France has been carried on mainly by the 
Center, and when the Moderates there have failed to get on together, the 
government has commonly broken dowu before a joint attack from the two 
opposing extremes. 

§408] REACTION, 1820-1830. 409 

407. Louis frightened into the Arms of the Ultras. — By 1820 
the King was breaking in health and will, and the Ultras 
finally captured him by playing upon his fear of Revolution. 
The annual renewal of a fifth of the Chamber had increased 
the number of the Liberals. In 1818 Lafayette had appeared 
in the legislature ; and in 1819 more than half the new mem- 
bers were men who had served Napoleon or who had been 
active in the earlier Revolutionary movements. The King, ter- 
rified by such conditions, began to seek support from the Ultras. 
Then the Radicals, discouraged or terrified, fell back upon secret 
plots. In 1820 the Duke of Berry, the most promising nephew 
of Louis and the hope of the Royalists, was assassinated. This 
crime drove the King wholly into the arms of the Ultras.* 

a Second Period, 1820-1830. 
The Monabcht tbies Reaction. 

408. Reactionary Measures. — In 1824 Louis XVIII was suc- 
ceeded by his brother, the Count of Artois, with the title of 
Charles X ; and, for the whole period from 1820 to 1830, reaction 
held unbroken sway. The representative Chamber had become 
Ultra, partly through the natural popular reaction against the 
Radicals, partly through force and fraud at the polls on the 
part of the government. There followed a long series of re- 
actionary measures. Liberty of the press was curtailed ; the 
historical lectures of Guizot (§ 415) were closed; the gov- 
ernment joined the Holy Alliance at Verona (§ 397) in 
conspiring against constitutional liberty in Spain ; the " Emi- 
grants" were given two hundred million dollars from the 
treasury, to compensate them for their losses in the Revo- 
lution; a law against sacrilege was enacted, with medieval 
features ; ' a double vote in elections was given to the greater 

^ Cf . events in Germany (§ 389) . The assassination strengthened the hands 
of Metternich at Troppaa and Verona. Between 1821 and 1824 there were eight 
conRpiracies of Revolutionists in France, followed by a namber of executions. 

> Read Andrews, I, lt>2. 

410 FRANCE SINCE 1816. [§409 

landowners, and electoral colleges were introduced to strengthen 
still further the influence of the higher aristocracy ; prefects 
and subprefects were dismissed in great numbers to make 
way for new appointees more in harmony with absolute rule ; 
and finally the sitting legislature lengthened its own life from 
five years to seven, abolishing, too^ the annual renewal of a 
part of its number. 

409. Defeats of the Ultras at the Polls. — The few Liberals 
in the Chamber annoyed Charles by their vigorous protests 
against these measures ; and in 1827 he dissolved the legisla- 
ture, expecting under the new laws to secure a still more sub- 
missive body. The issue was drawn clearly. Thiers, then a 
brilliant young journalist,^ preached the liberal constitutional 
theory in the words, " The king reigns, but does not goveroj" 
and he made repeated and significant references in his paper 
to the English Kevolution of 1688; while Charles announced 
that he regarded the legislature only as an advisory coun- 
cil, and that in case of a conflict of views his decision must 

The elections showed that the nation, and even the narrow 
body of voters, were earnestly opposed to the King's doctrine. 
The intellect of France and the influential part of the press 
were with the liberal party ; and, despite all court influence, 
the Liberals received a decisive majority at the polls. 

In a half-hearted way, Charles tried a more liberal govern- 
ment for a few months ; but he was not willing to go far enough 
to win the confidence of the legislature. Then, as clashes 
continued, he felt justified in falling back upon his older 
policy, and he called together a ministry of the Ultras. The 
Assembly answered his challenge by a bold address (March 2, 
1830), calling for the dismissal of the ministry, which it called 
" a menace to public safety." The address was carried by a 
vote of 221 to 182. Charles at once dissolved the Chamber. 

1 Afterward a prominent statesman and later still a president of France 
(§§ 415, note, and 4^ ff .)• 

§411] THE REVOLUTION OF 1830. 411 

Public interest was intense,^ and the aged Lafayette journeyed 
through France to organize the Liberals for the contest. The 
new elections in June effaced the Ultra party in the Chamber : 
every deputy who had voted against the ministry was returned, 
and the Liberals gained also fifty of the remaining seats. 

D. The Kevolution of 1830. 

410. The "July Ordinances." — No whit daunted by the 
unanimity of the nation, the stubborn monarch prepared a 
coup d^^aJt} He looked upon the Charter merely as " a decla- 
ration of policy" on the part of the royal power, and he be- 
lieved that he had the right to modify or abolish it whenever 
such action might seem to him advisable.' Accordingly, he 
now suspended the Constitution by a series of edicts, known 
in history as the "July Ordinances." 

These ordinances forbade the publication of newspapers with- 
out royal approval (a measure designed to prevent agitation 
against the rest of the changes), dissolved the new legislature 
(which had not yet met), promulgated a new law for elections 
(designed to make the court supreme at the polls), and called 
for new elections under this rule. 

411. The Protests of the Journalists and the Barricades of the 
Revolutionists. — The Ordinances were published July 26, 1830. 
Forty-one leading journalists of Paris at once signed and printed 
a protest, declaring the ordinances illegal, announcing their 

1 TocqueviUe's Memoirs (1, 18) gives an interesting picture. Anderson gives 
the King's speeches to the Chamber and its Address. 

3 Shrewd observers had foreseen it and its probable result. Even Mett«rnich, 
while lamenting the free press and the representative system in France, had 
warned the French ambassador that an attempt now to do away with these 
** plague spots " would ruin the dynasty ; " The men of lead," said he, " are 
on the side of the Constitution; Charles X should remember 1789." 

* The preamble to the Ordinances (Anderson, No. 114) expresses this convio 
tion, whicsh was no doubt sincere. Some additional color for the King's action 
was found in Article 14 of the Charter, which declared that the King might 
issue ordinances " necessary for the execution of the laws and for the safety 
of the state." 

412 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§412 

intention to resist, and calling upon France to do so. Copies 
of this paper were read eagerly by the disaffected classes of 
the city, and added to the public excitement. The journalists, 
however, seem to have had in mind only legal resistance, not 
violence ; but there were in Paris a few obscure Radicals who 
were ready to go further, and they were powerful in a crisis, 
because of their organization in secret societies. The same 
evening they decided upon armed revolt, and appointed " Com- 
mittees of Insurrection" for the various districts of the city. 
The next morning saw the streets thronged with angry crowds 
who threw up barricades out of paving stones, but who for 
the most part were still unarmed and were easily dispersed at 
any given point when troops arrived. That night, however, 
Lafayette reached Paris, to take charge of the revolt, and on 
the following morning the fighting began. 

412. The «* July Days.*' — The 28th, 29th, and 30th are the 
" Three Days of July." On the 28th the crowd cried " Down 
with the ministry I " but, as their blood became heated with 
fighting, they came under the influence of the old Revolu- 
tionists, and began to shout "Down with the Bourbons!" 
About four thousand men were slain in the three days. Out 
at the palace at St. Cloud, in the suburbs, the King hunted as 
usual ; and, on each evening, messengers from the sorely beset 
troops were kept waiting overnight, so as not to disturb the 
royal game of whist, while the scepter was slipping forever 
from the old line of French kings. Outside Paris, there was 
nojiglvting, hut the nation gladly accepted the Revolution wJientt 
had been accomjMshed. 

While the fighting was still going on, some thirty liberal 
Deputies of the legislature assembled at the Hotel de Ville 
and appointed a Provisional Government. The leaders at the 
barricades would have liked a republic, but they knew they 
had little support in the country. The Deputies and the Pro- 
visional Government wished, not a republic, but a change of 
dynasty. They decided to pass over the direct heir of Charles 
X, and give the crown to Loui^ Philippey Duke of Orleans, a 

§413] CONSTITUTIONAL MONARCHY, 1830-1848. 413 

distant cousin of the King.* Lafayette threw his influence 
for this policy, and his popularity won the crowd to it. Phi- 
lippe was made Lieutenant General, with the understanding 
that the office should be a step to the throne. 

For Further Reading. — Excellent accounts are given in Andrews, 
I, 134-189 ; Seignobos, 103-132 ; Fyffe, 427-446, 469-475, 603-619 ; and 
Dickenson, Revolution and Reaction^ 63-103. 


413. Changes in the Charter. Election of Louis Philippe. — As 
soon as possible after the "July Days," the legislature' 
assembled to regulate the government. It restored the tricolor 
as the national flag, modified the Charter in the direction of 
constitutional freedom, and then offered the crown to Louis 
Philippe, upon condition that he should first accept the 
amended Charter. The Revolution was then completed during 
1831 by the passage of a number of further reforms.' 

The changes in the Charter and these supplementary laws 
may be grouped together. The divine-right preamble to the 
Charter was cut out, as was also the king's power of issuing 
ordinances and the clause suggesting the possible need of 
limiting the freedom of the press (§ 403, note). The right 
to introduce bills was given to the legislature. The reaction- 
ary measures of the years 1820-1830 were repealed, including 
the " double vote " and the electoral colleges ; and a new elec- 
toral law extended the franchise to all who paid forty dollars 
in taxes. This doubled the voters, raising the number to nearly 
two hundred thousand. At the same time the number of those 

1 As a youth, Louis Philippe had taken the side of the First Revolution, and 
had fought gallantly in French armies until the excesses of the Revolution 
drove him into exile. Then, by a happy chance, instead of joining the royalist 
Emigrants in their attempts against France, he had fled to England and the 
United States. 

3 This was the body which had been elected in June (§ 409) and which had 
been declared dissolved by the July Ordinances. 

s See Anderson, for documents. 

414 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§414 

eligible to seats in the legislature was increased by reducing 
the property qualifieation one-half. 

More significant than any of these details, however, was the 
new relation between the crown and the nation. The doctrine 
of divine right was still to find support from time to time in a 
small body in the legislature, but it was never again to control 
the government. Louis XVIII had ruled by hereditary tide^ 
and had given a charter to France, Louis Philippe, " King of 
the Barricades" ruled by election, and a constitution was imposed 
upon him} 

414. Character of the "Orleans Monarchy." — The Orleans 
Monarchy, or the "July Monarchy," as it is sometimes 
called, lasted from 1830 to 1848. It rose out of a Revolution, 
and it fell before a more serious one. While it stood, it repre- 
sented the bourgeoisie, and was sustained by their favor.* This 
was the class to which the King himself belonged in habits 
and character. Louis Philippe earned fairly his title of "a 
bourgeois king " ; he walked the streets with a green cotton 
umbrella under his arm, and he sent his children to the public 
schools ; but he offended the taste of the aristocratic elements 
by his small economies and hoarding, and he was always offen- 
sive to the Radicals. 

415. The Conservative Mhiistry of Guizot. — The first ten 
years of the new reign (1830-1840) were disturbed by insur- 
rections and plots, and by incessant changes of ministry. 
During the remaining eight years, the government was admin- 
istered by Guizot. This statesman belonged to the new Right- 
Center, or the " party of resistance." ' The period was one of 
rapid growth, and France needed peace and internal reform. 
The first need Guizot met : his ministry was the most stable 
government France had enjoyed since Napoleon's days; but 

1 The effect of the Revolution outside France has been referred to in § 391. 

> The National Guards had been reorganized and were made up altogether 
of this class. 

> Guizot was an eminent historian and had written a philosophic treatise upon 
the history of civilization. His leading opponent, Thiers (§ 409), was famous 

§416] CONSTITUTIONAL MONARCHY, 1830-1848. 416 

in his anxiety to secure tranquillity, he opposed all change and 
all reform. 

Thus, after a few years, the intellect of France was driven 
into opposition, and even the selfish interests of the bour- 
geoisie suffered from the inaction of the government. Pro- 
posals were made in the legislature to reduce the salt tax, 
to extend education, to reform the postal system, to improve 
the prisons, to care for youthful criminals ; but all these ideas 
came from the liberal opposition and were quietly suppressed 
by the ministry.^ Said Lamartine in 1842, in an attack upon 
Guizot in the Chamber : " According to you, political genius 
consists in taking your stand on a position which chance has 
won for you, and remaining there immovable, inert, implacable 
to every reform. If this were true . . . there would be no 
need of statesmen; a post would suffice." 

416. Narrow Electorate ; *' Placemen " ; Corrupt Use of Patron- 
age. — Under such conditions the nation soon became indiffer- 
ent or hostile to Guizot ; but he intrenched himself so skillfully 
that he could hardly be overthrown by constitutional methods. 
Personally he was incorruptible, and even austere, but he ruled 
by corrupting others. He used the vast patronage of the gov- 
ernment to control the elections, and afterward to control the 

Two evil conditions made this possible : (1) the narrowness 
of the franchise ; and (2) the fact that members of the legislar 
ture could become " placemen," or receive appointment to sal- 
aried offices.' These evils were both increased by the fact that 

for brUliant works deaUng with the French Revolution and with the Napole- 
onic era. Thiers represented the Left-Center, or the "party of action." 
Other prominent Liberals who joined the opposition were Tocqueville, the 
author of Democracy in America and of various treatises upon French history, 
ftad Lamartine, a poet and the historian of the Girondists. 

^ Guizot merits some praise, however, for beginning a system of primary 
schools for France. Cf . § 449. 

^ As though in America the President could appoint Congressmen to lucra- 
tive positions as custom-house coUectors or postmasters, — a proceeding which 
oar constitution prohibits. 

416 FRANCE SINCE 1816. [§417 

the government appointed all local officers,^ and therefore had 
a vast patronage at its disposal. Guizot organized this in- 
fluence for purposes of corruption. Less than two hundred 
thousand men had the right to vote, and large numbers of 
these were bought up by some of the three hundred thousand 
offices in the gift of the government. Then, when the elee- 
tions were over, the ministry strengthened its majority by 
appointing members of the legislature to important offices or 
by giving them profitable state contracts. At one time, it is 
said, half the members held lucrative positions at Guizot's 
will, and so gave their votes at his nod.* 

417. Ag^itation for Political Reform. — The Liberals finally 
began to demand political reforms : (1) the extension of the fran- 
chise,^ and (2) the doing away with placemen. In the legisla- 
ture, Guizot successfully opposed both proposals. A new 
election took place in 1847, and the Liberals had high hoi)es of 
success; but Guizot's tactics again secured his usual majority. 
Then the Liberals began to appeal to the thirty-nine fortieths 
of the nation who had no vote. They planned a series of mass 
meetings and demonstrations, to bring public opinion to bear 
upon the legislature. According to English or American 
ideas, the proceeding was perfectly proper; but the French 
government believed it dangerous, and tried to prevent it. 
This action of the government brought on the Revolution of 
1848; but to understand the Revolution it is necessary to 
know something of another force which had been growing up 
almost unnoticed by political leaders (§ 418). 

418. Rise of Socialism. — The chief cause of the coming Rev- 
olution was the growth of Socialism in Paris among the work- 
ingmen. Through the preceding third of a century, wealth 

1 As though in America the Presideut appointed state and county officers 
and mayors and chiefs of police. 

3 Tocqueville's Recollections ^ 38, 39, or Correspondence, I, 78. Read An- 
drews, I, 329. 

' They asked only to double the number of voters. At the time not more 
than one adult male out of thirty-five or forty had the franchise. 

§419] THE REVOLUTION OF 1848. 417 

had been increasing rapidly, but workingmen felt that they 
had not been getting their share. Certainly the distinction 
between capitalist and wage-earner had been growing sharper, 
and it was becoming more and more difficult to rise from the 
one class into the other. A number of remarkable writers 
had been so impressed by these facts that they attacked the 
whole existing organization of society. In general these 
" Socialists " taught that the state, not individuals, ought to 
own all capital, and to direct all labor, and to divide the prod- 
uct in some way that would give the working classes a larger 
share than they had been receiving. The writers and thinkers 
who led in these speculations were moved by sincere and pas- 
sionate pity for the masses, and were themselves high-minded, 
unselfish idealists.^ Among their followers there were many 
crack-brained enthusiasts, some criminal fanatics, and a large 
number of ignorant men easily inclined to violence. Large 
masses of Parisian workingmen had adopted phrases about the 
" right to labor " and the " crime of private property '^ as their 
creed. In the coming Revolution, Socialism was to be revealed 
for the first time as a political force. 

For Further Reading. — See the works named on page 413. Tocque- 
ville's Recollections^ too, is a most interesting volume for this period. 

Exercise. — Review §§ 381-390 and 402-418, so as to get a view of 
the period for France and the rest of Europe together. 



419. The *' February Days" : Overthrow of the Orleans Mon- 
archy. — The Liberals had set February 22^ for a monster 

^ AmoDg the French Socialists of the period were St. Simon, Fourier, and 
liouU Blanc, The last of these three was to play a prominent part in the 
coming Revolution. Various secret societies, like " The Society of the Friends 
of the People" and "The Society of the Rights of Man," were organized to 
propagate socialistic doctrines. For an example of criminal fanaticism, read 
I^ekenson's Revolution and Reaction^ 127. 

^ The date is said to have been chosen in honor of the American celebration. 

418 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§420 

political demonstration in Paris (§ 417). At the last moment 
the government forbade the meeting. The leaders obeyed, but 
the streets were filled all day with angry crowds shouting for the 
dismissal of the ministry. The National Guards, when called 
out to disperse the mob, themselves took up the cry. The next 
day, Guizot resigned. Peace seemed restored ; but that night 
a collision occurred between some regular troops and the mob ; 
and the Socialists and Radicals seized the chance to rouse the 
masses against the monarchy. By the morning of the 2411^ 
the streets bristled with barricades and the mob was marching 
on the Tuileries. Louis Philippe abdicated, and, like Charles X, 
fled to England. His government had lost the support of the 
middle classes, and it simply collapsed.^ It remained to be 
seen what was to come from the victory of the Radicals. 

420. The Provisional Government : Composition. — The Cham- 
ber of Deputies was about to proclaim the infant grandson 
of Louis Philippe as king, under a regency, when the room 
was invaded by a howling mob, flourishing muskets and 
butcher-knives and calling for a republic. In the midst of 
this tumult the few deputies who kept their seats hastily 
appointed a committee as a " Provisional Government." This 
body was at once escorted to the Hotel de Ville, whei-e it found 
another provisional government already set up by the Radicals 
and Socialists. By a compromise, some of this latter body 
were incorporated in the first. The Provisional Government 
was now made up of three conflicting elements: Lamartine, 
the poet historian (§ 415 and note), represented the Moderate 
Republicans ; Ledru-Rollin was the representative of the 
Radical Republicans ("the Reds''), who wished to return to 
the " Terror " of 1793 ; and Louis Blanc and the workingman 
Albert represented the Socialists. On the whole, the Pro- 
visional Government followed Lamartine and stood for order 
and property, but it was forced to concede much to the radical 
forces within and without. 

1 Read TocqueviUe's RecoUectione, lU. 

§422] THE REVOLUTION OF 1848. 419 

421. The Difficulties before the Goyemment were tremendous. 
For sixty hours it was in the presence of an infuriated and 
drunken mob. This crowd of one hundred thousand armed 
men was packed into the streets about the Hotel de Ville, and 
self-appointed delegations from it repeatedly forced their way 
into the building to make wild demands \x\k)1i the " govern- 
ment." That government must at once disperse this seething 
multitude, avert plunder and massacre, clear away barricades, 
bury the dead and care for the wounded, and supply food for 
the great city wherein all ordinary business had ceased. All 
this, too, had to be accomplished without any military or police 

Time after time, during the first long session, was Lamartine 
called from the room to check an invasion by some new band 
of Revolutionists. Said the spokesman of one of the bands : — 

We demand the extermination of property and of capitalists, the instant 
establishment of community of goods, the proscription of the rich, the 
merchants, the bourgeoisie of every condition above that of wage-earners, 
• . . and finally the acceptance of the red flag, to signify to society its de- 
feat, to the people its victory, to all foreign governments invasion. 

Lamartine grew faint with exhaustion and want of food, 
but his fine courage and wit and persuasive eloquence still 
won the victory over every danger.* To help appease the 
mob, however, the government hastily adopted a number of 
radical decrees, declaring a Republic, abolishing the House of 
Peers, establishing manhood suffrage, and affirming the duty 
of the state to gh'e every man a chance to icork? 

422. «« National Workshops.'* — A few days later, the decree 
recognizing the " right to work " was given more specific mean- 
ing by the establishment of "national workshops"' for the 

^ Lord Normanby, the English Ambassador, says that in one of these en- 
counters I^martine's face was scratched by a bayonet that was thrust at him. 

^ A nnmber of these decrees are given by Anderson. 

' The plan was in accordance with the teaching of Louis Blanc, and the un- 
willing majority of the government were coerced into joining in it by the mob. 
The government pat the management, however, into the hands of a personal 

420 FRANCE SINCE 1816. [§ 42S 

unemployed. In the panic that followed the Revolution, 
great numbers of men had been thrown out of work. The 
government now organized these men in Paris, as they 
applied, into a ^' workshop army," in brigades, companies, and 
squads, — paying full wages to all it could employ and a three- 
fourths wage to those obliged to remain idle. 

Over one hundred thousand men were finally enrolled in 
this way; but, except for a little work on the streets, the 
government had no employment ready for such a number. 
The experiment, of course, was not in any sense a fair trial of 
the socialistic idea. It was more of a police provision and a 
temporary poor-law. For the moment, it did preserve order 
and distribute alms ; but it also gave a formidable organizatioa 
to a terrible force with which the new Republic would soon 
have to reckon. 

423. The Constitnent Assembly : Conflicts with the Socialists. — 
Twice in its ten weeks' rule, after the first disorders, the Pro- 
visional Government was attacked by the mob ; but the middle 
class rallied to its support and enabled it to maintain order 
until it was replaced by a ConstitueiU Assembly, The Assembly, 
elected by manhood suffrage, met May 4. The Revolution, 
like that of 1830, had been confined to Paris. The rest of 
France had not cared to interfere in behalf of Louis Philippe, 
but it felt no enthusiasm for a republic and it abhorred the 
" lleds " and the Socialists. This, too, was the temper of the 
Assembly. It accepted the republic as inevitable, for the time 
at least ; but it was bent upon putting down the Radicals. As 
soon as this fact became evident, the mob rose once more 
(May 15), and burst into the legislative hall, holding possession 
for three turbulent hours.^ At last, however, some middle- 
class battalions of the National Guard arrived, under Lamar- 

enemy of Blanc'8, and it seems to have been their intention that the ezperi- 
meut should fail, so as to discredit Blanc with the populace. Cf. Ely's French 
and German Socialism^ 113. Special report : Louis Blanc, life and character. 
1 Read Tocqueville's account in his Recollections, 156 fF., or Lamartine*s in 
his Revolution of 1848 ^ and Andrews, I, 354» 355. 


tine's leadership, to sweep away the rabble and save the 

The rescued Assembly promptly followed up its victory. 
After making military preparations, it issued a series of 
decrees, virtually abolishing the workshop army.^ Then the 
men of the national workshops rose. This time the Revolu- 
tionists were not a mere rabble: they comprised the great 
body of the workingmen of Paris, and they were aided by the 
semi-military organization of the ** workshop army." The 
Assembly made General Cavaignac dictator, and the conflict 
raged for four days, — the most terrible struggle that even 
turbulent Paris had ever witnessed. Probably not less than 
twenty thousand men perished ; but in the outcome, the supe- 
rior discipline and equipment of the troops and of the bour- 
geoisie National Guards crushed the Socialists for another 

424. The Constitution of the " Second Republic " : Louis Napo- 
leon President. — The Assembly now turned to its work of 
making a constitution. Tlie document was promulgated in 
November.* It provided for a legislature of one house, and 
for a four-year president, both to be chosen by manhood 
franchise. A month later (December 10) Louis Napoleon, a 
nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte, was elected the first president 
by an overwhelming majority. 

Napoleon^s political capital was his name. A group of brilliant writers 
had created a "Napoleonic legend," representing the rule of the First 
Napoleon as a period of glory and prosperity for France, broken only by 
wars forced upon Napoleon by the jealousy of other rulers. These ideas 
had become a blind faith for great masses in France. Louis Philippe, 
curiously enough, had added to their fervor by bringing home Napoleon^s 
ashes from St. Helena for triumphant interment in Paris. 

1 A conservative French statesman has styled this legislation " a brutal, 
unjust, blundering end to a foolish experiment." 

2 Tocqaeville's RecoUectiona is especially good for the story of these " June 
Days " ; see, in particular, pages 187, 193, 212. 

* It was not submitted to a popular vote. The document is given in Ander- 
son's C(m$tUution8 and Documents, 

422 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§426 

Louis Napoleon had long believed that he was destined to reviye the 
rule of his family. Twice in the early years of Louis Philippe's reign he 
had tried to stir up a Napoleonic revolution.^ After the last of these 
fiascoes he had been imprisoned for some time, but he finally escaped to 
England and lived there quietly until the Revolution of 1848 called him 
back to France. To the peasantry and the bourgeoisie, alarmed as they 
were by the specter of ** Red Republicanism *' and Socialism, Napoleon^s 
name seemed the symbol of order and peace. He received over five and 
a half million votes, to about one and a half million for Cavaignac, 
the stern Republican, and only eight thousand for Lamartine, shortly 
before the idol of French Liberalism. Rollin received three hundred 
and seventy thousand. 

IV. THE SECOND EMPIRE, 1852-1870. 

425. Preparatioir : Napoleon and the Assembly at Loggerheads. — 

Louis Najwleon had repeatedly pledged his faith to the Con- 
stitution, but he seems to have plotted from the first to over- 
throw it. The Assembly gave him opportunity. In 1849, 
there was a rising of the " Reds," led by Ledru-Rollin. This 
event, together with rapid radical gains in Paris, terrified 
the Assembly into passing a reactionary suffrage law which 
virtually disfranchised a large part of the population.* 

After the law had been passed, Napoleon criticised it vehe- 
mently, and so appeared to the artisan class as the champion 
of their constitutional rights, in opposition to a reactionary 
Assembly. At the same time, the discontent of the artisans 
made the bourgeoisie fear a revolution, and that class turned 
to Napoleon as the sole hope for order and stable government. 
Thus the chief elements in the state viewed with dread the 
approaching close of Napoleon's presidency. The constitution 
forbade a reelection ; and an attempt to amend it in this matter 
was defeated in the Assembly. Thus that body had now seri- 

1 Special report : the story of these efforts of Louis Napoleon, especially of 
the curious attempt at Boulogne. 

^ Tocqueville says it took the franchise from about three men out of ten. 
( Correspondence, 1, 100, 259) . Read the statement in Fyffe, 811, 812. The Act 
is given in Anderson's Constitutions and Documents, 

§426] THE SECOND EMPIRE, 1862-1870. 423 

ously offended both the artisan class and the bourgeoisie, and 
Napoleon could overthrow it with impunity. 

426. The Coup d'etat — In semi-royal progresses through 
France,* Napoleon had been preparing the nation for his blow. 
He found fault with the Assembly freely, and his speeches were 
filled with references to the "glory" of the former French 
Empire, and to the benefits conferred upon France by "my 
great uncle." Meantime the important offices in the army and 
in the government were put into the hands of his tools and his 
trusted friends, and on December 2, 1851, he carried out the 
most striking coup cT^tat in all French history. 

During the preceding night nearly eighty men whose oppo- 
sition was especially feared — journalists, generals, and leaders 
in the Assembly — were privately arrested and imprisoned; 
and all the printing offices in the city were seized by Napo- 
leon's troops. In the morning the amazed people found the 
city posted with startling placards announcing the dissolution 
of the Assembly, proposing a new government with Napoleon 
at its head, and promising an appeal to the nation for ratifica- 
tion.* The Assembly tried to declare Napoleon deposed, but 
it was dispersed by soldiers, and most of the members were 
imprisoned. During the next few days a few Radicals began 
to raise barricades here and there in the streets, but these were 
carried by the soldiers with pitiless slaughter, and the conflict 
was made an excuse for a "reign of terror." Batches of 
prisoners, taken at the barricades, were shot down after sur- 
render ; the most dangerous districts of France were put under 
martial law ; and thousands of men were transported to penal 
settlements, virtually without trial.' 

Under these conditions, a few days later, the country was 
invited to vote Yes or No upon a new constitution making 
Napoleon President for Ten Years with dictatorial power. 
France " ratified " this proposal by a vote of seven and a half 

1 Read Andrews, II, 23, 24. 

3 See Anderson, for the proclamation. 

* See Seignobos, 171, for precise figures; or Andrews, II, 36, 37. 

424 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§ 427 

million out of eight million.' In November of the aext year, 
a still more unanimous vote sanctioned a second step in the 
usurpation, and made the daring adventurer Emperor of t7te 
FVench, under the title Na- 
poleon 111.* 

427. The Constitntlon. 
Character of the Emidre and 
the Periods of its History. — 
The Second Empire was 
modeled closely upon that 
of Napoleon I. The people 
elected a Legislative Cham- 
ber {a greater popularpower 
than esiated under the First 
Empire) ; but the Emperor 
appointed a Senate and 
a Council of State (with 
powers like those of the 
corresponding bodies under 
Napolfon III. Napoleon 1), while he kept 

in his hands the sole right 
to introduce laws. Moreover, of his own will, he filled all 
offices, made treaties, and declared war.* 

' This unanimity was doe in large measure to the govemioent'g shame- 
less iiiterferenpe at tlie polls; the aniij was voted flrat, foT &□ example; 
and lb many places the rural pupalatloii was tnarched to the polls, virtually 
nnder military authority. Such measiirea, liowever, were not necessary to 
secure a large majority. Apart from them, Fraiii^ threw Itself Into Napo- 
leon'H arms, with only a small body of Liberals and of Socialists iti Paris la 
oppose him. There can l>e no doubt that the vast majority of the people 
were content to give to a master a piiwer almost equal to that of a Ts«r. 
Tocqueville gives a valuable contemporary account of the coup d'etal in a 
Letter lo tlie London Tintfa, reprinted in his Remaini. II. 173-18S. Victor 
Hugo, who fought at the barricades, tells the story in his llinlory of a Crimt. 

' The Bonapaniscs counted the son of Napoleon I as Napoleon II, allhough 
he revpr reijjned. 

*8eignobos. ITl-lTH; Dickenson's Revolution and Reaction, 22S~239; and 
Andrews, II, 151-153. The Constitution is given hy Anderson. 

§428] THE SECOND EMPIRE, 1852-1870. 426 

Napoleon's methods had been those of a conspirator, and his 
rule ignored real political liberty ; but he was not a mere self- 
ish adventurer. He desired to benefit France, and he honestly- 
regarded himself as "a democratic chief." His government, 
he insisted, rested upon manhood suffrage, in elections and 
plebiscites. The Restoration (1815-1830), he said, was the 
government of the great landowners; the Orleans Monarchy 
was the government of the bourgeoisie ; the Empire was the 
government of the people. He seems really to have wished to 
introduce liberal features into the workings of the Constitution, 
as fast as he could safely do so.^ Unfortunately, he could find 
tools only among second-rate men, often more despotic in 
temper than their master ; and the actual administration was 
exceedingly tyrannical. 

The Empire lasted from 1852 to 1870, just about as long as the Orleans 
Monarchy. This period falls into two divisions. I>uring the first eight 
years (1852-1860) the government was successful abroad and despotic 
at home. Daring the next ten years (1860-1870) it encountered a series of 
humiliations abroad and it grew more and more liberal at home. Then, 
in 1870, it was overthrown in the Franco-Prussian War, and replaced by 
the Third Republic (§§ 433 flf.). 

428. The Despotic Period, 1852-1860 — During the first years 
of the Empire, political life was suspended. The elections, at 
best, could not have greatly affected the government ; but the 
government did effectually control elections. It presented for 
every elective position an " official candidate," for whom the 
way was made easy. Opposing candidates could not hold 
public meetings, nor hire the distribution of circulars, while 
they were seriously hampered even in the use of the mails, 
and their placards were torn down by the police or indus- 
tiiously covered by the official bill-poster for the government 
candidate. Moreover, the ballot boxes were supervised by 

1 Advanced students will find a good summary of Napoleon's ideas in 
Andrews, II, 14(>-151, or in Dickenson's Revolution and Reaction, 221^228. 
For the liberal modifications of the constitution after 18G0, see Dickenson, 

426 FRANCE SINCE IBIS. [g 4!8 

the police, and, no doubt, were sometimes "stufEed." The 
government subsidized a large number of newspapers, and it 
suppressed, on slightest pretext, all that were unfavorable 
to it.' 

tu private life, prominent men lived in an atmosphere of 
espionage and corruption. Their servants were likely to be the 
paid spies of the police. Personal liberty was wholly at the 
mercy of the government. Under the " Law of Public Secu- 
rity " (1858), the government 
could legally send "suspects," 
with outtrial, to linger through 
a slow death in tropical penal 
colonies,' aa it had been doing 
illegally before ; and many 
thousands are said to have 
perished in this way. 

Upon the pfwsage of tUia law, 
an order was sent to each prefect 
to arrest a fixed number of men 
in Ilia department, using his onn 
choice in selecting them. The 
number varied from twenty to 
forty, according to the cbiinu:t«r of 
the department. That 1b, the total 

~ " arrests under this order must have 

" Fbanck (s TRANurit,." — A cartoon eieegded two tliousand. The pur- 

trom Ilariier'B Magazine, revrKseutr- . , , , . 

ing FraucVunder Nupoleon III. P"^ '""^"«' " ""'^ ^'^ ««"''? " 

intimidate the nation. 

In partial recompense for this loss of liberty, the Empire 
gave to France great material and eeonoiuic progress. In- 
dustry was encouraged ; Paris and other leading cities were 
rebuilt upon a more magnificent scale ; asylums and hospitals 

' For aneedoles, read Seicnobos, 174-175. 

» See TocqoevlllB's Correipondence, 11. 1U5-197. A ntrihtnfc story illoslrat- 
Ing the adminlittmtion o( the law Is given by Dii'liensoii , 234, 23S, and others 
are given In Senior's Convertalioiia, I, 90 and 160-161. Anderson gives the 
Act. Sea also, for the tyranny of this period, Tocqueville's RtmatTU. II, 186. 

§429] THE SECOND EMPIRE, 1862-1870. 427 

were founded; schools were encouraged, and school libraries 
were established ; while a system of vast public works through- 
out the Empire afforded employment to the working classes. 
France secured her full share of the increase of wealth and 
comfort that came to the world so rapidly during these years.^ 
429. Foreign Wars to i860. — In 1852 Napoleon had declared 
** The Empire is Peace " ; but he found himself irresistibly 
impelled to war, in order to keep the favor of the army and 
of the populace by reviving the glories of the First Empire. 
Thus his foreign policy soon became aggressive, and the first 
period of his reign saw a series of military and diplomatic 
victories that dazzled France. The two most important wars 
of the period were the Crimean (1854-1856) and the Italian 

a. France had a trivial quarrel with Russia over the guardianship of 
Christian pilgrims at Jemsalem. England was hostile to Russia, fearing 
lest that Power should force itself to the Mediterranean and endanger 
England^s route to India. Russia and Turkey were at war in the Black 
Sea. Through Napoleon's intrigues, in 1854, France and England joined 
Turkey, by declaring war upon Russia. The struggle was waged mainly 
in Crimea, and took its name from that peninsula. It became essentially 
a war for the defense of Turkey against Russia. Russia was defeated, 
but no permanent results of importance were achieved. However, at the 
close of the contest. Napoleon gathered representatives of all the leading 
Powers to the Congress of Fai'is, to make peace, and France seemed 
again to have become the leader in European politics. > 

b. In 1859 Napoleon joined the kingdom of Sardinia in a war against 
Austria (§ 460). His ostensible purpose was to free Italy. He won great 
victories at Magenta and Solferino,^ near the scene of the early triumphs 
of the First Napoleon over the same foe ; and then he made unexpected 

1 Review §§ 419-428 and 400-401, to get a view of France together with the 
rest of Europe for this period. Such a review should be repeated at § 456. 

2 Europe had enjoyed freedom from great wars for forty years, — since the 
fall of the First Napoleon. The important achievement of the Congress of 
Paris was the abolition of privateering by the great European Powers. 
Unfortunately the United States refused to accede to this policy, and so 
suffered soon afterward in the American Civil War from European sympathy 
for Southern privateering. 

8 Some military critics call these victories accidental. 

428 FRANCE SINCE 1816. [§430 

peace, to the dismay and wrath of the half-freed Italians. For his pay. 
Napoleon received from Italy the provinces of Nice and Savoy, and so 
restored some of the territory which his uncle had lost. 

430. Foreign Policy, 1860-1870. — The second period of Na- 
poleoii's rule was a long series of humiliations and blunders 
in foreign affairs. 

a. In aiding Italy against Austria in 1859, Napoleon had 
offended the Pope and also the clerical party in France. Na- 
poleon, however, wished to keep the Pope a temporal prince, 
and so he stepped in to prevent the new Kingdom of Italy from 
seizing Rome for its capital. This act lost him the friendship 
of the Italians also. 

b. He favored the Southern Confederacy in the American 
Civil War, and repeatedly urged England to unite with him in 
acknowledging it as an independent state. Thus he incurred 
the hostility of the United States. Then, in 1863 he entered 
upon a disastrous attempt in Mexico. That country had re- 
pudiated its debts. Several European governments had sent 
fleets to its ports to enforce payment; but soon it became 
evident that Napoleon meant much more than the mere col- 
lection of debts. Thereupon, the other governments withdrew 
from the enterprise. Napoleon then sent a large army to over- 
throw the Mexican Republic and to set up as "Emperor" his 
proteg^, Maximilian, an Austrian prince. Napoleon's motives 
were to secure a larger share of the Mexican trade for France, 
to increase the prestige of France as arbiter in the destinies 
of nations, and to forward his plan of a union of the Latin 
peoples of Europe and America, under French leadership, 
against the Teutonic states. His act was a striking defiance 
of the Monroe Doctrine of the United States ; but his purpose 
seemed triumphant until the close of the American Civil War. 
Then the government of the United States, in unmistakable 
terms, demanded the withdrawal of the French troops from 
Mexico. Napoleon was obliged to comply. Soon afterward 
Maximilian was overthrown by the Mexicans, and captured 
and shot. 

§432] THE SECOND EMPIRE, 1852-1870. 429 

c. Most serious of all Napoleon's checks were his disap- 
pointments regarding the Rhine frontier. He wished to re- 
store the old boundaries there, and he made fruitless attempts 
to do so by diplomacy and by taking advantage of wars in 
Germany. All these efforts failed ; and Bismarck, the Prussian 
statesman, turned them to such advantage that the small 
German states came to look \ij)on Xapoleon as an unscrupulous 
and dangerous neighbor (§ 469). Thus the way was paved for 
their warm alliance with Prussia against France, when war 
broke out, soon after, between the two countries. 

431. Second Period : Internal Policy. — Napoleon intended to 
keep his pledges and to give to France, from time to time, a 
larger measure of self-government. A beginning was made 
in 1860, when the Legislative Chamber was permitted to 
discuss fully the policy of the government and to express 
its judgment in an address to the throne. From this time 
the party of constitutional opposition increased rapidly. In 
the election of 1857 only five opposition candidates had se- 
cured seats ; in the next election (1863) the numbers of the 
opposition rose to forty-three ; and in 1869 the Chamber was 
almost equally divided. 

When the government's corrupt control over elections is 
taken into account, this result indicates that France was 
ready to repudiate Napoleon. That ruler, feeling his weak- 
ness, tried vainly to win back popular favor by concession 
after concession, until at his fall he had nearly restored par- 
liamentary government.^ 

432. The Franco-Prussian War and the Fall of the Empire. — 
In 1870, as a last resort. Napoleon tried to win back the favor 
of the nation by war with Prussia. The opening of the con- 

1 In 1870 Napoleon appealed to the nation in a plebiscite for a Tot« of 
confidence, and the vote stood in his favor by about seven million to one and 
a half million. But this meant only that France would rather endure his 
rule than meet the certain revolution that would follow if he were to be 
overthrown by violence. Even so, the cities showed a surprisingly large 
vote against him. Advanced students will find a good passage in Von Sybel's 
German Empire^ VII, 26iJ-270, upon this matter. 

430 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§433 

flict showed that the government was honeycombed with cor- 
ruption and inefficiency. Regiments lacked men and discipline ; 
arsenals were empty; supplies of all kinds were wanting or 
were of poor quality. Prussia had been preparing diligently 
for the long-foreseen conflict, and every step in the opening 
of her campaign was carefully planned. The Prussians won 
victory after victory. In a few weeks, one French army of 
one hundred and seventy-three thousand was securely besieged 
at Metz, and another of over one hundred and thirty thou- 
sand, with Kapoleon in person, was defeated and captured at 

For Further Reading. — As before. Note especially the references 
in the footnotes. Advanced students will find an admirable treatment of 
the diplomatic history of the period in Von SybePs Gentian Empire, VIL 


A. Through Foreign and Civil War: September^ 1870, 

TO May, 1871. 

433. The Government of National Defense. — The news of Sedan 
reached Paris, September 3, 1870. The city had been kept 
in ignorance, as far as possible, of the previous reverses of the 
French armies; and now it went mad with excitement and 
dismay. The next day a mob invaded the hall where the 
legislature was already debating Napoleon's deposition, and, 
with this reinforcement, a few radical deputies tumultuously 
proclaimed the Third Republic and set up a provisional Goi>- 
eminent of National Defense, 

The armies of France were already destroyed, except the 
one besieged at Metz, and this one was soon to surrender, 
through the treachery or faint-heartedness of its general. 
France seemed utterly incapable of further resistance to the 
invader, and the new government tried at first to secure an 

1 Napoleon remained for a few months a prisoner of war, and died in 
England a few years later (1876). 


honorable peace. But when Prussia made it plain that she 
intended to punish France by taking large slices of her terri- 
tory^ the conHict entered upon a new stage and became a heroic 
struggle for defense. 

For this second stage of the Franco-Prussian War, there are 
two main features: the gallant resistance of Paris through 
a four-months' siege, and a magnificent, patriotic uprising 
in the provinces. Gambettdy a leading member of the Govern- 
ment of Defense, escaped from Paris, in a balloon, to organize 
the movement in the provinces, and ruled there with dicta« 
torial power. For a time success seemed possible. Exhausted 
France raised army after army, and amazed the world by her 
tremendous exertions. But in the end it became apparent 
that the iron grasp of the German armies, with their perfect 
organization, could not be broken. The great population of 
Paris began to suffer the horrors of famine ; and on January 28 
the city surrendered. Plainly France must accept the terms 
of the conqueror. 

434. The National Assembly, and the Terms of Peace. — There 
was no government with any real authority to make peace ; 
and so an armistice was arranged, to permit the election of a 
National Assembly. The Assembly was chosen by manhood 
suffrage. It met toward the close of February, 1871, and 
created a provisional government by electing Thiers " Head of 
the Executive Power of the French Republic." 

The terms of peace were hard. The Prussians demanded 
that France should cede Alsace and part of Lorraine, with 
the great fortresses of Metz and Strasburg, and pay a huge 
war indemnity of one and a fifth billion dollars. Day after 
day the aged Thiers wrestled in pleading argument with Bis- 
marck, the grim German Chancellor, to secure better terms. 
He did finally secure a slight reduction in the indemnity, to 
one billion, and the retention by France of Belfort, one of the 
cities of Alsace. In return for these concessions, Bismarck 
humiliated Paris by marching German troops in triumphal 
progress into the capital. 

432 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§435 

435. The Paris Commiine of 1871. — The National Assembly 
had hardly arranged peace with the foreign foe, before it had 
to meet a terrible rebellion at home. During the siege of 
PariS; all the adult males of the city had been organized and 
armed as National Guards. Twice during the siege (in Octo- 
ber and in January) the Radicals had tried by violent rebel- 
lion to supplant the Government of Defense with a more 
radical committee, but in both cases they had been quickly 
put down. When the siege was over, however, nearly every 
one who could get away from the distressed city did tempo- 
rarily remove, including one hundred and fifty thousand of 
the wealthier National Guards, and so Paris was left in con- 
trol of the radical element. This element, too, kept its arms 
and its military organization, and it now set up a kind of gov- 
ernment by choosing a large " Central Committee." 

The National Assembly had established itself, not at Paris, 
but at Versailles. The Republicans of Paris suspected it of 
wishing to restore the monarchy. In fact, a large majority of 
the members were Monarchists, as events were soon to prove 
(§ 437). The Assembly, too, had put in command of the 
army a man who had assisted in Napoleon's coup d'kat and 
who might not unreasonably be suspected of tiying another 
such move in favor of some of the royalist pretenders. More- 
over, it had aggrieved the poorer classes of Paris by some of 
its decrees : it had insisted upon the immediate payment of 
rents and other debts incurred during the siege; and it did 
away in large measure with the pay of the National Guard, 
which since the surrender had been a kind of poor-relief. In 
addition to all this, the Reds and Socialists were always ready 
for any rising that promised success. 

For two weeks Paris and Versailles faced each other with 
ill-concealed hostility. The National Guards collected a large 
number of cannon in one of the strongest forts of Paris. 
IMarch 18 the Assembly sent a detachment of troops to secure 
these guns. A mob gathered to resist them; and the troops 
refused to fire, and looked on while two of their officers were 


seized and shot by the rebels. This was the opening of the 

For a time, however, there was still hope that a conflict 
might be averted. Paris decided to hold an election for a 
" General Council," and it was possible that the moderate ele- 
ment might win. Two hundred thousand votes were cast, and 
the Radicals and Revolutionists elected sixty-four ^ members, 
to about twenty Moderates. This hopeless minority refused to 
take their seats. Then the Radical Council, acting with the 
" Central Committee " of the Guards, set up the Commune and 
adopted the red flag. 

In 1848 the Paris Radicals had learned that the country districts of 
France were overwhelmingly opposed to Socialism and to '* Red Republi- 
canism ^*; and these elements had now become advocates of extreme local 
self-government. If each city and village could become an almost inde- 
pendent state, then the Radicals hoped to carry out their policy in Paris 
and in the other large cities. The supporters of this program wished 
the central government of France to be merely a loose federation of in- 
dependent *' communes" ;^ and so they called themselves *' Federals." 
They are properly described also as ** Communards " ; but the name 
*' Communist," which is often applied to them, is likely to give a false 
impression. That latter name is generally used only for those who oppose 
private property. Many of the Communards were also Communists, but 
probably the majority of them hardly went to such an extreme. 

The supporters of the Paris Commune certainly included the greater part 
of the citizens remaining in Paris ; but France, still bleeding from invasion, 
very properly refused to be dismembered by internal revolt. The excited 
bourgeoisie felt, moreover, that the institution of property itself was at 
stake, and they confounded all Communards together as criminals seeking 
to overthrow society. Little chance was given to show what the Com- 
mune would have done, if left to itself; but its government was made up 
of visionary enthusiasts and unpractical or criminal revolutionists, and 
certainly, in actual operation, it tended toward anarchy. Like attempts 
to set up Communes took place at Marseilles, Toulouse, Narbonne, and 
Lyons ; but they came to little, and civil war was confined to Paris. 

1 About twenty of these were worlcingmen. 

2 As Hanotauz, a prominent French statesman and historian puts it, " The 
men of the Commune wished to make a Switzerland of France, — a socialized 

434 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§436 

436. The Civil War. — April 2 the Versailles Assembly at- 
tacked Paris with the regular troops that had now returned 
from captivity in Germany. The struggle lasted two months 
and was utterly ferocious. Both sides were guilty of horrible 
atrocities. The Assembly refused to treat the Communards 
as regular combatants, and shot down all prisoners taken in 
sorties. In retaliation, the Commune seized several hundred 
hostages from the better classes left in Paris, declaring that it 
would execute three of them for each of its soldiers shot after 
surrender. In fact, however, it did not carry out this threat ; 
and the hostages were not harmed until the Commune had been 
overthrown, when, in the final disorder, an unauthorized mob 
did put sixty-three of them to death, — the venerable Arch- 
bishop of Paris among them. 

The bombardment of Paris by the Versailles government 
was far more destructive than that by the Grermans had been. 
Finally the troops forced their way into the city, which was 
already in flames in many sections. For eight days more, 
desperate fighting went on in the streets, before the rebellion 
was suppressed.^ Court-martial executions of large batches of 
prisoners continued for many months afterward; and, besides 
the slaughtered, some thirteen thousand survivors were con- 
demned to transportation, before the rage of the victorious 
bourgeoisie was sated. There are few darker stains on the page 
of history than the cruelty and brutality of this middle-class 

1 The Commune had arranged mines in the sewers to blow up certain por- 
tions of the streets where the invaders were expected to enter; and, during 
its brief rule, it had cast down the triumphal column of Napoleon I, com- 
memorating his victories, on the ground that such glorification of wars of 
conquest was unworthy a civilized people. These facts, together with some 
destruction by the mob after the Commune had ceased to control the city, gave 
rise to the report that the Commune tried to destroy Paris when it could no 
longer retain possession. No such intention is needed to explain an enormous 
destruction under the conditions of the war. The world has never ceased to 
lament the loss to the art collections of the city. 

3 Cf . § 344, close ; and, for details, see Hanotauz, Contemporary France, I, 

§438] THE THIRD REPUBLIC, 1871-1879. 435 

B. From the Suppression of the Commune to the 
Secure Establishment op the Republic, 1871-1879. 

437. Nature and Powers of the Asaembly. — The Assembly had 
been elected simply with a view to making peace. In choosing 
it, men had thought of nothing else.^ It was limited by no 
constitution and it had no definite term of office. Certainly 
it had not been commissioned to make a constitution or to con- 
tinue to rule indefinitely ; but it did both these things. 

At the election, people had chosen conservative candidates, 
because they wanted men who could be counted upon not to 
renew the war rashly. It turned out that the majority of the 
members were Monarchists ; and they failed to set up a king, 
only because they were divided into three rival groups, — 
Imperialists (Bonapartists), Orleanists (supporters of the 
Count of Paris, grandson of Louis Philippe), and Legitimists 
(adherents of the Count of Chambord, grandson of Charles X). 
The three factions agreed in believing that a new election 
would increase the strength of the Republicans ; and so for five 
years they resisted all demands of the republican members for 
dissolution. The Republicans also were divided into three 
groups, — the Moderates, the Left, and the Extreme-Left, or the 

488. Presidency of Thiers, 1871-1873. — Some settled form 
of government had to be adopted, and in August, 1871, the 
Assembly made Thiers " President of the Republic " ; but even 
then they left it unsettled how long his presidency should last, 
in order that they might be at liberty to change the govern- 
ment at any favorable moment. Thiers * was an old Orleanist, 
and had always condemned republicanism ; but he now saw 
that to set up any other form of government was to risk almost 
certain civil war. Accordingly he threw all his influence on 
the side of the Moderate Republicans, and for nearly three 

1 Read Hanotaax, I, 30-33 and 77. 

2 For an admirable account of Thiers' character and career, see Hanotaux, 

436 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§439 

years he triumphantly baffled all the efforts of the Monarchist 
factions, while liepublicanism was daily becoming stronger in 
the country. 

The other most important event of Thiers' presidency was the 
payment of the immense war indemnity. It had been intended 
that this should be paid in installments through three years, 
and German garrisons were to remain in France until payment 
was complete. But France astonished all beholders by her 
rapid recovery of prosperity; and, in eighteen months, the 
indemnity was paid in coin, and the last German soldier had 
left French soil. The government loans (§ 308, note) were 
taken up enthusiastically by all classes of Frenchmen, and in 
great measure by the industrious and prosperous peasantry, 
so that it appeared that the government would not have been 
forced to borrow at all from foreign capitalists, had it not 
chosen to do so. 

439. Presidency of MacMahon : Government by Monarchists. — 
In 1873 Thiers was forced to resign, and the Monarchists 
elected Marshal MacMahon, an ardent Orleanist. For some 
months a monarchic restoration seemed almost certain. Legit- 
imists and Orleanists had at last united in support of the 
Count of Chambord, who had agreed to adopt the Count of 
Paris as his heir. The Monarchists had the machinery of the 
government in their hands, and all arrangements were com- 
plete for declaring the Bourbon heir the King of France, when 
the two factions split once more on the question of a symbol. 
The Orleanists wished to keep the tricolor, the flag of the 1830 
Revolution, and certainly the only flag the army would have 
followed. But the Count of (!)hambord denounced the tricolor 
as the " symbol of revolution," and declared that he would 
not give up the white lilies of the old Bourbon monarchy, 
the symbol of divine right. On this scruple the chance of the 
Monarchists came to shipwreck. 

440. The Constitution. — Then, in 1875, despairing of an 
immediate restoration, the Assembly adopted a series of laws 
fixing more precisely the frame of government As modified 



slightly by later amendments, these "constitutional laws" 
make the present constitution of the French Republic. They 
have never been submitted to the people. 

The Constitution is very brief, because the monarchist major- 
ity preferred to leave the details to be settled by later legisla- 
tion, hoping to adapt them to a kingly government. The word 
"republic" did not appear in the original draft, but it was 
introduced indirectly by amendment : the first draft spoke of 
a " Chief Executive " ; an amendment changed this title to 
" President of the Republic." The change was adopted by a 
majority of one in a vote of seven hundred and five. Later, 
in 1884, a new amendment declared the republican form of 
government to be " not subject to repeal." 

TTte legislature consists of two iiouses. The Senate contains 
three hundred members, holding office for nine years, one third 
going out each third year. At first, seventy-five of the mem- 
bers were to hold office for life, but in 1884 an amendment de- 
clared that no more life members should be chosen. Senators 
are elected by the departments of France, in electoral colleges, 
and the number from the different departments varies with the 
population. The Deputies (lower house) are chosen by man- 
hood suffrage for a term of four years. At present there are 
five hundred and eighty-four members. When the Senate and 
the House of Deputies agree that it is desirable to amend the 
constitution, or when it is necessary to choose a President, the 
two houses meet together at Versailles, away from ix)ssible 
disturbances in Paris. In this joint form, they take the name 
National Assembly. A majority vote of the National Assembly 
suffices to change the constitution. 

The executive consists of a President, elected for seven years 
by the National Assembly, and of the ministry he appoints. 
The President has much less power than the President of the 
United States. He is more nearly in the position of a short- 
term, elective, English king. That is, he is little more than 
a figure-head. He can act only through his ministers. The 
ministers, as in England, are the real executive, and they wield 

438 FRANCE SINCE 1816. [§ 441 

enormous power, directing all legislation, appointing a vast 
multitude of officers, and carrying on the government. Nomi- 
nally, the President appoints the ministers; but, in practice, 
he must always name those who will be acceptable to the 
chambers, and the ministry is obliged to resign when it ceases 
to have a majority of Deputies to support its measures. The 
Deputies maintain a control over the ministers, by the right of 
interpellation. That is, any Deputy may address to the minis- 
ters a formal question, calling upon them to explain their action 
in any matter. Such a question must be answered fully, and it 
always affords a chance to censure and overthrow the ministry.^ 

Thus France is trying a republican government, not so much 
with American machinery, as with English. The experiment 
is unique. r 

441. The Republicans gain Possession of the Oovemment, 
1876-1879. — Even after the adoption of the constitution, the 
Assembly did not give way at once to a new legislature. 
But almost every bye-election' resulted in a victory for the 
Eepublicans, and by 1876 that party had gained a bare majority 
of the seats. It at once dissolved the Assembly, and the new 
elections created a House of Deputies two-thirds Republican. 

The Senate with its seventy-five life members was still 
monarchic ; and, with its support, MacMahon tried to keep a 
Monarchist ministry, but after a short contest he was forced 
to yield. During this contest the President and Senate dis- 
solved the House of Deputies (as the constitution gives them 
power to do when they act together), and the ministry changed 
prefects and local officers all over France, in order to control 
the election ; but the Republicans rallied under the leadership 
of the fiery Gambetta (§ 433), and the new House of Deputies 
was even more strongly Republican than the preceding one.' 

1 Advanced students should consult Lowell, OovemmeiitB and Parties, I, 

3 To fill a vacancy, upon death or reflig:nation. 

* At least this was true after the republican majority had unseated a namber 
of Monarchists who claimed election. 


This body then withheld all votes of supply, until MacMahon 
appointed a ministry acceptable to it.^ 

In 1879 the renewal of one third the Senate gave the Repub- 
licans a majority in that House also, and soon after MacMahon 
resigned. Then the National Assembly elected to the presi- 
dency Gr4vyy an ardent Republican ; and all branches of the 
government had at last come under Republican control. 

For the first time in the history of France, republican gov- 
ernment was established by the calm will of the nation. Four 
times between 1792 and 1871 had the Republicans seized 
Paris; three times they had set up a republic; but never 
before had they truly represented the deliberate determination 
of the nation. In 1879 they came into power, not by violence, 
but by an eight-years' constitutional struggle against the polit- 
ical tricks of an accidental Monarchist minority. This time 
it was the Republicans whom the conservative, peace-loving 
peasantry supported. 

442. Constitutional Relations of President and Deputies. — Gr^vy 
served out the full seven years of his presidency ; and in 1886 he was 
reelected. Then a curious constitutional question came up for settlement. 
Gr^vy^s son-in-law had been guilty of shameful corruption in office, and 
the President, though personally incorruptible, had tried to shield him 
from punishment. When this became known, the Deputies demanded 
that Gr^vy should resign, and they overthrew ministry after ministry, 
making it clear that they would not support any administration appointed 
by him. Finally the President resigned ; and the Deputies had estab- 
lished a valuable precedent as to their control over the executive.^ 

1 Cf. Lowell, Oovemments and Parties, 1, 22-24, and, for later develop- 
ments, 97-99. 

2 Up to 1904, no other president of France has served a full terra. The 
subsequent presidents, with their terms of office, have been as follows: — 

F. Sadi-Gamot, grandson of the great Camot who " organized victory " (§ 342), 

1887-1894: assassinated by an Italian anarchist just before the close of his 

Casimir Eerier, June, 1894-January, 1895 : resigned because of trouble with 

the legislature. 
Felix Faure, 1896-1899: died in office, after two attempts upon his life by 

£mile Loubet, 189^. 

440 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§ 443 

C, Crises since 1879. 

Since 1875, there has been no serious danger of a Revolution in 
France. The country has had four political crises, but, upon the whole^ 
she has met them with moderation and in something the same way that 
English-speaking nations would have done. Two of these crises demand 
attention, — the kulturkampf and Boulangism. 

443. The Kulturkampf. — In 1875, the Catholic clergy of 
France, and the other most ardent Catholics, wei*e mainly 
Monarchists, distrusting and fearing the Republic. More- 
over, these elements looked to the Pope for direction in 
political affairs, and acknowledged an allegiance to him supe- 
rior to that they felt for the national government. Because of 
this devotion to a power " beyond the mountains," they were 
called " Ultramontanists." 

The Republican leaders, wisely or unwisely, turned this atti- 
tude into political war. They adopted Gambetta's famous 
phrase in the elections of 1876 and 1881, — " Our foe is Cleri- 
calism," — and the first Republican ministries (especially in 
the years 1880-1884) entered upon a struggle to take from the 
church its control over the family and the child. This con- 
flict between the church and the state over education is called 
the kulturkampf.* France is mainly Catholic in religion; but 
the majority of French Catholics were not Ultramontanists, 
and the state was victorious. Public education was taken 
away from church influence ; the private schools of the reli- 
gious societies were closed; the Jesuits were expelled from 
the country. Marriage was made a civil contract,' not a reli- 
gious sacrament ; and divorce was made legal, despite the doc- 
trines of the church. 

This policy of the Republicans aroused a fierce opposition; 
and in the elections of 1885 the Monarchists and Clericals 

1 A like contest was wa^ed about the same time in other couDtries having 
large Catholic populations. Cf . §§ 482, 490, 508. 

3 It must be performed first before a civil officer; the religious ceremony 
may follow, of course. 


made decided gains. They did not secure a majority, however ; 
and a long continuance of the conflict was prevented by the 
moderation and statesmanship of Pope Leo XIIL Before 
the elections of 1893, Leo made clear his conviction and his 
desire that French Catholics should rally to the support of the 
Republic and try to get such privileges as they needed by 
favorable legislation, not by trying to change the government.* 
The order was generally obeyed. The irreconcilable Monarch- 
ists withdrew from public life, and the rest of the old Ultra- 
montanists took the name of "Rallied Republicans." The 
kulturkampf continues to disturb French politics, but the 
Clerical party no longer plots to overthrow the Republic. 

444. Boolanger. — While this Ultramontane dissatisfaction 
was at its height, danger threatened for a time from another 
quarter. From 1885 to 1888, Boulanger, a popular general 
and an advocate of a war of revenge against Germany, seems 
to have hoped to make himself master of France, after the 
fashion of the Napoleons ; but the movement, if ever serious, 
came quickly to utter collapse. When the government ordered 
a trial, Boulanger fled, and soon afterward he died by his own 

Exercise. — Two minor crises were connected with the Panama scan- 
dals of 1893 and the Dreyfus and Zola trials of 1898. These may be 
assigned as special reports, together with the kulturkampf since 1893. 

D. France To-day. 

445. Stability of the Republic. — Since 1893, there has been 
no Monarchist party of any consequence in France. Still more 
promising is the fact that the Socialists seem to have given 
up revolutionary methods and to have become a true political 
party. No party in France now avows a revolutionary policy.* 

1 See McCarthy's Leo XIII, 182-201. The Pope's action is an excellent 
topic for a special report. 

2 The growing strength of the Socialists in the legislatures of France, 
Germany, Italy, and Belgium (§§ 485, 488, SOS) is sometimes thought to 
portend a new series of revolutions in the future. But it seems more probable 

442 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§446 

For nearly a century, France passed from revolution to revo- 
lution so incessantly, that the world began to doubt whether 
any French government could be stable. But the present 
Republic has endured already (1904) almost twice as long as 
any government in France since the States General met in 
1789, and to-day it seems about as firm and secure as any mon- 
archy in Europe. The ministries change more rapidly than is 
desirable, and often they are overthrown without good reason; 
but even this fault of French politics is becoming less and less 
marked. The age of revoltUion in Frarice seems to have dosed : 
the age of a parliamentary republic ha^ fairly begun. 

Under the Third Republic, French politics have been barren of interest, 
and in international matters France has not counted as a great factor. 
But the people have been learning the practice of self-government ; the 
country has been enriched by many material achievements; and in 
literature and science France has been regaining her old position as a 
leader of European thought. A few of the most important features of 
France of to-day will be treated briefly in the following paragraphs. 

446. Church and State. — The relation of the churches to the 
state is peculiar. It rests upon the principle of Napoleon's 
Concordat of 1801, except that the state now puts all religions 
upon the same footing. No church has political power or 
endowments ; that is, there is no " established church," in the 
sense in which we call the Episcopal church '< the established 
church of England." But the state recognizes and controls 
and supports four religions, — Catholic, Protestant (Lutheran 
and reformed Protestant), Jewish, and, in Algeria, the Moham- 
medan ; and it will treat in the same way any other denomina- 
tion which can show that it has a hundred thousand members. 
For all these organizations, the state furnishes the buildings 
and pays the clergy, supervising also their appointment. 

The Catholics make up about seventy-eight per cent of the 
population. Other religions comprise only about two per cent. 

that this party will work for its ends by constitutional means, and that 
so far as its program is adopted, it will be done peacefully by ordinary 
legislation, a small part at a time. 


Nearly twenty per cent are reported in the census as without 
religious connection. 

447. Local Government — France is divided into eighty-six 
departments ; the departments are subdivided into arrondisse- 
ments ; these are divided again into cantons ; and the cantons 
are made up of communes. This arrangement dates from the 
Pirst Revolution (§ 325), but the communes, of course, are 
ancient units. The two important divisions of these four are 
the two extremes — the department and the commune.^ Each of 
these has its own " budget '' : that is, it levies taxes for local 
purposes and expends them in its own way. Each is a corpo- 
ration, and can own property and sue and be sued at law. 
Each has a large amount of self-government, with machinery 
for managing affairs. The department has an executive offi- 
cer, called a prefect, and a General Council. The prefect is 
appointed by the Minister of the Interior,* and he may be 
removed by the same authority. He appoints police, postmen, 
and other local officers. The General Council is elected by 
universal suffrage. It exercises control over local taxation and 
expenditures, especially for roads, asylums, and, to some degree, 
for schools ; but its decisions are subject to the supervision of 
the central government, which may even dissolve it. 

The thirty-six thousand communes vary in size from great 
cities like Marseilles, to rural villages with only two or three 
hundred people.* For all of them there is one system of gov- 
ernment. Each has a mayor and a council. Until 1884, the 

1 The other two divisions are hardly more than convenient administrative 
districts, far less important than counties in our Northern states. The 
canton is the anit for the administration of justice, but it chooses no officers. 
The arrondissement is the unit for the election of a deputy to the national 
legislatare, like our congressional district. It has an elective council of its 
own, however, and some powers resembling in slight measure those of oar 

s An official corresponding to our cabinet officer, Secretary of the Interior. 

* Seventeen thousand communes, or nearly half the whole number, have 
under five hundred people each; ninety-nine have over twenty thousand 
people each. 

444 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§ 448 

mayor was appointed by the Minister of the Interior; since 
1884, he has been elected by the municipal council, but he is 
still regarded as the officer of the central government, which 
may revise his acts or even remove him from office. The mu- 
nicipal council varies in number, according to the size of the 
commune. It is elected by manhood suffrage. All its acts are 
subject to the approval of the prefect or the central govern- 
ment, and the latter may dissolve the council. Paris and 
Lyons are each organized as a department, with even less self- 
government than the other departments of the country. 

Such conditions do not seem very encouraging at first to an 
American student; but the situation, as compared with the 
past in France, is full of promise. Political interest in the 
communes is steadily growing, and Frenchmen are learning 
more and more to use the field of self-government open to 

448. The Judicial System and Political Liberty. Administrative 
Courts. — The French system of law seems to an American or 
an Englishman to be wanting in safeguards for personal lib- 
erty. Unlike the previous French constitutions, the present 
constitution has no " bill of rights." That is, there are no pro- 
visions in the fundamental law regarding jury trial, habeas 
corpus privileges, or the right of free speech. Moreover, even 
if there were, the courts could not protect the individual from 
arbitrary acts of the government by appealing to such provi- 
sions, because, in case of conflict between a citizen and the 
government, the case is tried, not in ordinary civil courts, 
but in administrative courts made up of government officials.* 
This does not mean that in ordinary times an individual is 
likely to be treated unjustly. As a rule, the administrative 
courts mete out excellent justice. But in case of any supposed 
danger to the government, they ai-e liable to become careless of 
the rights of an individual. 

1 Cf. § 358, and read Boutmy, Constitutional Studies^ 145. 
3 For an excellent statement of the growth of such coarts, see Lowell's 
Oovemmenta and Parties, I, 60-55. 


449. Bdttcation. — The plans of the early Revolutionists for 
educating the people (§ 345) came to little; and for a long 
time after the Restoration, nothing was done. In 1827, over a 
third of the communes of France had no primary school what- 
ever, and nearly a third of the population could neither read 
nor write. In the latter part of the reign of Louis Philippe, a 
fair beginning was made in a system of primary schools, but 
the real growth of popular education dates from the Third 
Republic. Almost as soon as the war with Germany was over, 
France adopted in large measure the German plan for schools 
and for her army. To-day, in every commune there is a pri- 
mary school or group of schools. Education is free and 
compulsory and strictly regulated by the state. That is, the 
central government appoints teachers and regulates the courses 
of study. Each department has an excellent system of sec- 
ondary schools, called lyc^es. When its recent birth is con- 
sidered, the educational system seems marvelously efficient. 

450. The Land and Peasantry. — The peculiar thing about 
French society is the large number of small landowners and 
the prosperity of this landed peasantry. Half the entire 
population live on the soil, and three-fourths the soil is under 
crops. The subdivision of the soil is carried so far that it is 
difficult to introduce the best machinery (though neighborhood 
associations are being founded to own machinery in common) ; 
but the peasant is industrious, thrifty, prosperous, happy, and 

The peasant wishes to educate his son, and he has a high 
standard of living, compared with other European peasantry. 
With five or six children, a farmer owning five or ten acres 
would almost necessarily find it impossible to keep up this 
high standard, and to leave his children as well off as he him- 
self had been. Therefore the peasantry do not wish large 
families, and population is almost stationary. At present it is 
a little under forty millions. 

451. The French Empire outside Europe. — About 1750 
France bade fair to be the great colonial power of the world. 

446 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [{451 

The century-long duel with England was then half over. 
" New France " was written on the map across the valley of 
the St. Lawrence and the Mississippi, and the richest lands of 
the Orient seemed within the French grasp. Fifty years later 
saw France stripped of all possessions outside Europe, except 
a few unimportant islands in the Indian Ocean and in the 
Antilles and some small ports in India (§§ 275, 277, 282-283). 

But in the nineteenth century France became again a colonial 
power. In 1830, the government of Charles X took advantage 
of an insult by the Dey of Algiers to a French consul to seize 
territory in North Africa. In the middle of the century this 
foothold had grown, through savage and bloody wars, into 
complete military occupancy of Algeria ; and in the early 
years of the Third Republic civil rule was introduced. Since 
1880 Algeria has been not so much a foreign possession, or a 
colony, as a part of France separated from the rest by a strip 
of sea. The French make only a small part of the population, 
it is true, but the country is orderly and civilized. It is divided 
into three departments, which are ruled essentially like the 
departments in European France ; and it has representatives 
in the French legislature.* French rule has restored to the 
long-desolate Barbary coast the fertility and bloom which 
belonged to that region when it was the garden of the Koman 

Since 1881, Tunis, the next Mohammedan state to the east of 
Algeria, has been a " protectorate " of France. That is, France 
controls all its relations with foreign governments, but, for the 
present, leaves it its own government for internal matters. 

The rest of the vast colonial empire, apart from these pos- 
sessions in North Africa, has been acquired since the Franco- 
Prussian War, except for some slight beginnings made by 
Napoleon III. The seizure of territory has very commonly 
been based upon ancient claims connected with the period 

1 AH these statements apply to the settled portions under civil rule. The 
vast districts farther inland are still barbarous. 


before the French Bevolution, and it has been carried on in 
some cases with high-handed disregard of the rights of weaker 
peoples/ but no doubt the general result makes for human 

In Asia, France has chief possession of the great peninsula 
of Indo-China.' In Africa, France kept a hold upon Senegal 
from her ancient colonial empire, and to-day she has huge 
possessions on both the east and west coasts, besides the great 
island of Madagascar.' In America, France holds Guiana, or 
Cayenne, with a few islands in the Antilles. In Oceana, be- 
tween 1884 and 1887 she came into possession of New Caledonia 
and six or seven groups of smaller islands. 

Though France has these immense possessions, she is not a 
cdlonizing nation. Large parts of these regions are almost 
unpeopled, or are inhabited by savage tribes and are under 
military government. Even in the settled portions the Euro- 
pean population is small. The total area of the colonial pos- 
sessions is about four million square miles, of which about 
three and a half million are in Africa. All the settled and 
orderly regions have a share in self-government, and most of 
them have representatives in the legislature at Paris. 

Fob Further Reading. — The works mentioned on page 413 con- 
tinue to be valuable well into the Third Republic. Fyffe closes in 1878. 
Coubertin, France under the Third Republic^ or Ilanotaux, Contempo- 
rary France, may be used by advanced students for fuller details. The 
latter is the more recent and more extended work. Lebon and Pelet^s 
France as It la (1890) was an excellent treatment of institutions and 
conditions at its publication. Wilson's The State, 216-244, outlines the 
government. Advanced students can use LowelPs Governments and 
Parties and Borgeaud's Adoption and Amendment of Constitutions, All 

1 As in Siam and Madagascar. Advanced students may be assigned 
special reports upon the conquest of these countries. 

> The order in which the different provinces in Asia have been acquired is 
as follows: Cambodia (18<>2), Cochin China (1863), Tonking (1884), Annam 
(1886), Siam, to the Mekong River (1893-18i)6). 

• Most of this African territory has been secured since 1884, and indeed 
it has been enlarged one half since 1896 ; see map facing page 609. 

448 FRANCE SINCE 1815. [§451 

the impoilant constitutional documents are given in Anderson *8 Consti- 
tutiotis and Documents. 

Recent history must be traced in Year Books, Annual Encyclopedias, 
and Reviews. Every high school should have one or more good Reviews 
accessible or in the reading rooms, besides an International Year Book 
or Tke Statesman's Year Book^ at least for every second or third year, 
and, if possible, Appleton*s Annual Encyclopedia, The World Almanac 
makes a possible substitute for the Year Books in many matters. 

Special Reports. — 1. Great strikes in France since 1880. 2. The 
anai*chistic plots and the attempts at assassination of rulers since 1893. 

3. The French army law of to-day, and the strength of the organization. 

4. Political parties and their strength in the legislature. (See Lowell, 
I, p. 04, for the elections of 1893, after the Monarchists had virtually 
disappeared. The results of 1808 and 1903 may be found in Annual 
Encyclopedias for these years.) 


1. Fact drills. 

a. Dates: add to the list, 1789, 1793, 1815, 1830, 1848, 1870- 

h. Battles : add to the former list. 

2. France since 1815 by catch-words. 

3. France since 1848 in like manner, and also by brief topical outlines. 
(The divisions and sections of this volume will offer a basis for 
such outlines.) 




453. The Tear of Reroltttions : Threefold Character in Central 
Europe. — The system of Metternich lasted in Europe until 
1848 (§ 401) ; but for some years before that date the forces of 
revolution had been gathering strength for a general explosion. 
Metternich himself saw this. " The world is very sick," he 
wrote to a friend in January, 1848; "the one thing certain 
is that there will be tremendous changes." A few weeks later, 
the February Revolution in Pai-is (§ 419) gave the signal for 
March risings in other lands ; and that month saw Metternich 
a fugitive, escaping from Vienna in a laundry cart, while 
thrones were tottering everywhere in Europe, between Eussia 
and Turkey on the one side and England on the other. The 
kings of Spain, Holland, Denmark, and Sweden made conces- 
sions to popular demands. Even England trembled with a 
Chartist movement (§ 533) and the threat of an Irish rebellion; 
but the chief interest of the period, outside France, centers in 
Germany and Italy. In these countries -the movement was 
threefold: (1) for constitutional liberty and social reform 
within the several states ; (2) for the union of the fragments 
of the German race into a new nation ; (3) for the independence 
of the other nations held in subjection by Austria. The three 
forces were interlaced, working sometimes in unison, sometimes 

1 This chapter continues the story from where chapter ii left it. Chapter 
iii was a necessary interlude, inserted because of the influence of France on 
Central Europe in 1848 and 1870. 



in opposition : and thus the period is one of indescribable con- 
fusion. The March risings resulted in new constitutions, 
radical reforms, and liberal ministnes, in every German state, 
— including Prussia and Austria, — and also in Sardinia, Tus- 
cany, Borne, and Naples. The remains of feudal priyilege in 
these lands, too, were swept away. The movement for German 
nationality brought together representatives of all the German 
peoples in a National Assembly at Frankfort. The sentiment 
of nationality in the conglomerate Austrian Empire brought 
on wars for independence by the Italians, Hungarians, and 

453. In Detail: Austria and the Revolution. — Of course 
Austria was the storm center. On March 13 came the rising 
in Vienna, to the cry, " Down with Mettemich ! " Metternich 
fled, and the Emperor proclaimed a series of reforms, promised 
a constitution, and named a liberal ministry. Bohemia and 
Hungary, where revolt was imminent, were pacified with prom- 
ises of constitutional governments of their own, and all efforts 
were concentrated on putting down the Italian rising. 

On the news of Mettemich's overthrow, the people of Milan 
and Venice had driven out the Austrian troops ; and all Italy 
had been swept with a storm of feeling for the permanent 
expulsion of Austria. Charles Albert, King of Sardinia, put 
himself at the head of the movement. The Pope, the Grand 
Duke of Tuscany, and even the King of Naples promised him 
loyal aid ; and Venice, Modena, and other small states in north- 
em Italy voted for incorporation into the Kingdom of Sardinia. 
But soon the dukes and the King of Naples began to be jealous 
of Sardinia; the Pope was unwilling to break finally with Aus- 
tria; and, on the eve of the struggle, Charles Albert found 
himself deserted by all Italy south of Lombardy, save for a few 
thousand patriotic volunteers. July 25, he was defeated at 
Custozztty and was forced to withdraw into his own dominions 
and to sign a truce. 

Then the movement in Italy passed into the hands of the 
Radicals. Venice set up a republic. Florence drove out her 


G-rand Duke, and did the same. At Home, the minister whom 
the Pope had appointed to carry out reform in the Papal States 
wsLS assassinated ; the Pope was driven from the city ; and in 
February, 1849, the " Roman Republic " was proclai