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ffiambrilrgr historical S>^ms ^c 




1801— 1913 



C. F. CLAY, Manager 









ffiUinbutgl): loo, PRINCES STREET 


Hetpjifl: F. A. BROCKHAUS 

i?-m Igork: G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS 

Uomtau antj Calcutta: MACMILLAN AND CO., Ltd. 





All rights reserved 


1801— 1913 


Hon. LL.D. in the National University of Greece : Corresponding 

Member of the Historical and Ethnological Society of Greece : 

Author of The Latins in the Levant. 

** Who doubts but the Grecian Christians, Descendants of the 
ancient Possessors of that Country, may justly cast off the 
Turkish yoke which they have so long groaned under whenever 
they have an opportunity to do it ? " 

Locke, Of Civil Go-uemment. 



at the University Press 



CambtiUfic : 



The aim of this series is to sketch the history of Modern 
Europe^ with that of its chief colonies and conquests^ from about 
the end of the fifteenth century down to the present time. In one 
or two cases the story conunences at an earlier date : in the case 
of the colonies it generally begins later. The histories of the 
different countries are described^ as a rule, separately ; for it is 
believed that, except in epochs like that of the French Revolution 
and Napoleon /, the connection of events will thus be better under- 
stood and the continuity of historical development more clearly 

The series is intended for the use of all persons anxious to 
ufider stand the nature of existifig political conditions. * * The roots 
of the present lie deep in the past " ; and the real significance of 
co7itemporary events cannot be grasped utiles s the historical causes 
which have led to them are known. The plan adopted makes it 
possible to treat the history of the last four centuries in consider- 
able detail, a?id to e?fibody the most important results of modern 
research. It is hoped therefore that the series will be useful not 
only to beginners but to students who have already acquired some 
general hiowledge of European History. For those who wish 
to carry their studies further, the bibliography appended to each 
volume ivill act as a guide to original sources of infortnation and 
works of a more special character. 

Considerable attention is paid to political geography; and 
each volume is furnished with such maps and plans as may be 
requisite for the illustration of the text. 



THE present work has been based, wherever possible, upon 
the original documents, and is the result of many years' 
study of the Eastern Question. I am indebted to the editors 
of The English Historical and The Weslminsler Revie^vs for 
permission to reprint with considerable additions two articles 
contributed to those periodicals; and I desire to thank 
H. E. M. J. Gennadios, Greek Minister in London, for access 
to his unrivalled collection of pamphlets, and Cav. Pasqualucci, 
librarian of the Consulta, for his courtesy in allowing me to use 
the Hbrary of the Italian Foreign Office. 

With regard to the spelling of Greek names, while common 
words have been written in their popular, unaccented form, 
rarer words have been reproduced in Greek dress with their 
accents. Slav names have been transliterated. 

W. M. 

March ii, 191 3. 


The later relations of Turkey and other Powers with Egypt 
are not included in this work, having been discussed in 
another volume of this series, The Colonizatioti of Africa. 


The Ottoman Empire at the Dawn of the xixth Century 

Relations of Turkey with the four great Powers, France, Russia, Austria, 
and Great Britain — Eastern policy of Prussia — Extent of the Ottoman 
empire in Europe — In Asia, and Africa — Organisation and races of 
European Turkey — Local tyrants — Division between Mussulmans and 
Christians — Bosnian feudalism — Condition of the Serbs — The Al- 
banians — The Greeks — The Greek Church — The Phanariotes — State 
of Greece : privileged communities .... . . i 


Napoleon in the Near East (1801-15) 

The French in Dalmatia — Destruction of the Republics of Poljitza and 
Ragusa — France and Montenegro — First Russo-Turkish war of the 
century — Duckworth before Constantinople — Paper partition of Turkey 
at Tilsit — Second French occupation of the Ionian Islands — Capture 
of the Islands by the British — Treaty of Bucharest — Congresses of 
Vienna and Paris : British protectorate over the Ionian Islands . 31 

The Servian Risings (1804-17) 

Tyranny of the Janissaries — Mild rule and murder of Hajji Mustapha — 
Servian loyal rising of 1804 : Kara George — Servian overtures to 
Austria and Russia — Servian victories — Palace revolutions in Con- 
stantinople — Russian protectorate over Servia — Treaty of Bucharest 
abandons the Serbs — Second Servian rising of 181 5 : Milosh Obren- 
ovich — Murder of Kara George — Milosh recognised as chief . 46 

X Contents 

The Preface of Greek Independence (1815-21) 

The British in the Ionian Islands : Sir Thomas Maitland, first Lord High 
Commissioner — Constitution of 181 7 — The cession of Parga — Ali 
Pasha declared a rebel, appeals to the Greeks — The Philike Hetairia — 
Alexander Hypselantes, leader of the Greek movement, crosses the 
Pruth —Rival Roumanian rising of Tudor Vladimirescu — Battles of 
Dragashani and Skuleni — Native princes in the Danubian Princi- 
palities ........... 58 

The War of Greek Independence (1821-9) 

Outbreak of the Revolution — Heroic death of Diakos — Spread of the 
insurrection to the islands — Murder of the Patriarch Gregory V — 
Three stages in the war — The " Peloponnesian Senate" — Arrival of 
Demetrios Hypselantes and Alexander Mavrokordatos — Sack of 
Tripolitsa — Constitution of Epidauros — End of Ali Pasha — Massacre 
of Chios — Foundation of Hermoiipolis — Capitulation of the Akropolis 
— Greek victory at Dervenaki — Defeat at Peta — First " Commis- 
sioner " of Crete — Second National Assembly at Astros — Canning's 
Philhellenism — Russian proposal for three Greek principalities — Death 
of M^rko Botzares — Byron in Greece — The first Greek loan — Byron's 
death at Mesolonghi — *' War of the Primates " — Destruction of K^ssos 
and Psara — Ibrahim lands in the Morea — Santa Rosa at Navarino — 
Second siege of Mesolonghi — Death of Odysseiis — The sortie from 
Mesolonghi — Protocol of April 4, 1826 — Turkish siege of the Akropolis 
— Death of Karaiskakes— Second surrender of the Akro{X)lis — Third 
National Assembly at Troizen : Capo dTstria elected President of 
Greece — Treaty of London of 1827— Battle of Navarino — Death of 
Hastings — The Cretans at Graboiisa — Arrival of Capo d'Istria — The 
'* Panhellenion" — Policy of the President — France compels the 
Egyptians to evacuate the Morea — Destruction of Tripolitsd — Protocol 
of March 22, 1829 — Fourth National Assembly at Argos — Battle of 
Petra : end of the war ........ 71 

Contents xi 

The Creation of the Greek Kingdom (1829-33) 

Protocols of February 3, 1830: Leopold of Saxe-Coburg "Sovereign 
Prince of Greece " — Leopold refuses — Conflict between Capo d'Istria 
and the Hydriotes — Catastrophe of Poros— Assassination of Capo 
d'Istria — Provisional Commission of three — Fifth National Assembly 
at Argos — Agostino chosen President : civil war — Otho " King of 
Greece" — Limits of the kingdom — Samian autonomy — Crete united 
with Egypt — Triumph of Kolettes and the " Constitutionalists " — 
Anarchy — National Assembly at Pronoia — Flight of the Senate from 
Nauplia — Fight with the French at Argos — Arrival of Otho — Prosperity 
of the Ionian Islands — Napier in Cephalonia — Adam Lord High Com- 
missioner — The "Ionian Academy " — Parties in the Islands . 106 


The Balkan and Syrian difficulties of TurkeV 


Roumanian Nationalist movement : Asaki and Eliade — Convention of 
Akkerman — Russo-Turkish war of 1828-9 : Russian occupation of the 
Principalities — Treaty of Adrianople — The reglement organique — 
Servia at Akkerman and Adrianople — Grant of Servian autonomy : 
Milosh hereditary Prince of an enlarged Servia — Turkish garrisons of 
the Servian fortresses — Despotism of Milosh : " Constitution of 
Sretenje" — British support of Milosh — Creation of a Servian Senate — 
Milosh abdicates — Milan Obrenovich II — Michael Obrenovich Ill's 
first reign — Alexander Karageorgevich elected Prince — "The Dragon 
of Bosnia " — Ali Pasha Rizvanbegovich — Union of the Piperi with 
Montenegro — Peter II reorganises Montenegro : abolition of the civil 
"governorship" — His conflicts with the Turks — Revolt of Mehemet 
Ali : invasion of Syria — The Russians ' ' protect " the Sultan : treaty 
of Hunkiar Iskelesi — Battle of Nezib — Death of Mahmud II — Quadri- 
lateral convention of 1840 — Settlement of Egypt and Thasos — 
"Convention of the Straits" — Charter of GUl-khaneh — The Le- 
banon 125 

Greece under the Bavarian Autocracy (1833-43) 

The Regency — Disbanding of the irregulars — Bureaucratic system — Eccle- 
siastical policy — Conspiracy of Kolokot rones — Revolt of the Mainates — 
Recall of Maurer and Abel — Insurrection in Arkadia and Messenia — 

xii Contents 

The capital removed from Nauplia to Athens — Otho's majority — 
Insurrection in Akarnanfa — Rudhart Prime Minister — Founding of the 
University — "British," "French," and "Russian" parties — Crete 
under the Egyptians — The Cretan insurrection of 1841 — The revolution 
of September 3/15 at Athens — Progress of Greece during the decade 
1833-43 156 

The Greek and Ionian Constitutions (1843-53) 

The Greek Constitution of 1844 — Administration of Kolettes — The Mou- 
souros incident — Local disturbances — The Pacifico case : Cervi and 
Sapienza — The "Synodal Tome" of 1850: independence of the Church 
in Greece — Nugent, Douglas and Mackenzie in the Ionian Islands — 
Seaton's reforms in the Constitution: introduction of a free press — 
Risings in Cephalonia — The first reformed Ionian Parliament — 
Bibescu and Michael Sturdza in the Principalities — Roumanian revo- 
lution of 1848 — Convention of Balta Liman — Reigns of Barbe Stirbeiu 
and Gregory V Ghika — Austrophil policy of Servia — Montenegro : 
succession of Danilo — Abolition of the theocratic system — Count 
Leiningen's mission ........ 174 

The Crimean War (1853-6) 

The Holy Places — Mentschikoffs mission — Motives of Napoleon III — 
Overtures of the Tsar — Stratford de Redcliffe — Settlement of the 
original dispute — Fresh Russian demands — The Russians cross the 
Pruth — "The Vienna Note" — Destruction of the Turkish fleet at 
Sinope — British ultimatum — The Allies at Vama — British officers' 
defence of Silistria — Russia evacuates the Principalities — Effects of the 
war upon the Balkan races: Servia and Montenegro — Excitement in 
Greece : insurrections in Thessaly and Epirus — The Allies occupy the 
Piraeus — The cholera at Athens — The landing in the Crimea — Battle 
of the Alma — Siege of Sebastopol — Battles of Balaclava and Inker- 
man — The Crimean winter — " The four points " — Battle of the 
Tchemaya — Fall of Sebastopol— Congress and treaty of Paris— Small 
results of the treaty — The Montenegrin and Greek protocols . 199 

Contents xlii 

The Union of the Danubian Principalities (1856-62) 

growth of the Unionist idea — Convention of Paris — Election of Couza as 
Prince — First united Roumanian Assembly — Deposition of Alexander 
Karageorgevich — Restoration of Milosh — Second reign of Michael 
Obrenovich III — Bombardment of Belgrade — Partial evacuation of the 
Servian fortresses — Turco- Montenegrin war of 1858 : battle of Grahovo 
— Assassination of Danilo — Accession of Nicholas I — Herzegovinian 
rising of i86r — Turco- Montenegrin war of 1862 — Convention of 
Scutari — Greek finance — Question of the Greek succession — Effect of 
the Austro-Italian war of 1859 ^^ Greece — Combination of circum- 
stances against Otho — Revolt at Nauplia — Greek revolution of 1862 : 
abdication of Otho 243 

The Cession of the Ionian Islands (1862-4) 

Meeting of the National Assembly — Election of Prince Alfred as King — 
The search for a sovereign — Prince George of Denmark chosen "King 
of the Hellenes" — Fighting at Athens between "the Plain" and "the 
Mountain " — Arrival of King George — The Ionian question : scheme 
for the colonisation of Corfu and Paxo — The two stolen despatches — 
Gladstone's mission — Storks Lord High Commissioner — Union of the 
Ionian Islands with Greece — Neutralisation of Corfii and Paxo — 
Destruction of the Corfiote fortresses — The Greek Constitution of 
1864 270 


Reforms and their Results : the Lebanon and Crete 


Haiti- Hum ay ten of 1856 — Murder of the consuls at Jedda — The Massacres 
in the Lebanon — French expedition to Syria — Organisation of the 
Lebanon in 186 1-4 — The Cretan Insurrections of 1858 and 1866-9 — 
Defence of Arkadion — " Organic Statute of 1868" — Turkish ultimatum 
to Greece — Hobart Pasha at Syra — Conference of Paris . . 298 

xiv Contents 

The Roumanian and Servian Questions (1862-75) 

Murder of Barbe Catargi — Secularisation of the monasteries — Couza's 
coup d''itat — Agrarian law — Free education — Deposition of Couza — 
Prince Charles of Hohenzollern — Sigmaringen Prince of Roumania — 
Constitution of 1866: the Jewish question — The Prince's recognition 
by the Sultan — His difficult position during the Franco-German war — 
The railway question — Servia : suggested Serbo-Greek alliance — 
Complete Turkish evacuation of Servia — Assassination of Michael — 
Milan Obrenovich IV Prince of Servia — The Regency : constitution 
of 1 869 — Milan's situation"' 319 


The Bulgarian Exarchate (1870-5) 

Early Bulgarian risings — Bulgarian schools and books — The demand for 
national bishops-^Relations with the Papacy — Tartar and Circassian 
immigration — Midhat's administration — The Bulgarian emigrants at 
Bucharest — Creation of the Bulgarian Exarchate — The "Apostles" — 
Liberation of the Black Sea — The ** Marathon massacres " — The 
Ldvrion mines — Constitutional questions at Athens . . 338 

The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 

State of Bosnia and the Herzegovina —The rising at Nevesinje — Grievances 
of the insurgents— Revolt in Bosnia — The Andr^ssy note — The Berlin 
Memorandum — Servia and Montenegro declare war on Turkey — 
" Benkovski " in the Sredna Gora — The massacre of Batak : the 
"Bulgarian Atrocities "—Murder of the consuls at Salonika — De- 
position and death of Abdul Aziz— Murad V's brief reign : accession 
of Abdul Hamid II — The Servian war of 1876 — Successful Mon- 
tenegrin campaign — The Constantinople conference — "Midhat's 
Parliament " — The London protocolT-The Russo-Turkish war of 
1877-8 — Russo- Roumanian convention — Siege of Plevna — Second 
Montenegrin campaign — Second Servian war — Feeling in Great 
Britain — The " (Ecumenical government " at Athens — Insurrections 
in Epirus, Thessaly, and Crete— The treaty of San Stefano— The 
treaty of Berlin — The Cyprus convention — Present slate of the Berlin 
trt-'aty 358 

Contents xv 


The Union of the Two Bulgarias (1878-87) 

The Arab Tabia question — The regulation of the Danube — Roumania 
proclaimed a kingdom— Her relations with the Triple Alliance — The 
Austrians occupy Bosnia — The sanjak of Novibazar : Austro-Turkish 
convention of 1879 — "^^^ "Albanian League" : Gusinje and Plava — 
The " Corti compromise " — The cession of Dulcigno — Kidnapping of 
the Mirdite Prince — Rectification of the Greek frontier — The Berlin 
conference of 1880 — Greece receives Thessaly and Ax'ta — Crete : the 
Pact of Halepa — Alexander of Battenberg first Prince of Bulgaria — 
Coup (Titat oi 1881 — Constitution of Eastern Roumelia — The '* Pomak 
Republic " — The Philippopolis revolution — Sei-bo-Bulgarian war : 
battle of Slivnitza — Blockade of Greece — Kidnapping of Alexander — 
His return and abdication — Kaulbars in Bulgaria — Election of Prince 
Ferdinand . % • ....... 399 

Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia (i 887-1908) 

The Armenian massacres — The Cretan insurrection and firman of 1889 — 
The insurrection of 1896 — Col. Vassos in Crete — Bombardment of 
Akroteri — The Greco-Turkish war of 1897 — The International Com- 
mission of Control — Prince George of Greece High Commissioner in 
Crete — The Opposition at Therisso — M.Zaimes High Commissioner — 
Rival races and Churches in Macedonia — The Macedonian Committee 
— Austro-Russian schemes of reform : the Murzsteg programme — The 
bands in Macedonia — The occupation of Mitylene — Stambulov's rule 
in Bulgaria — His fall and assassination — Reconciliation with Russia : 
conversion of Prince Boris — Social condition of Bulgaria — Servia : the 
royal divorce — Servian constitution of 1889 — Milan's abdication — 
Alexander's coups d'etat — His marriage — Constitution of 1901 : third 
coup d''Hat — Murder of Alexander and Draga — Election of Prince 
Peter Karageorgevich as King : constitution of June 1903 — Rule of 
the regicides — Progress of Montenegro : the Italian marriage — Mon- 
tenegrin constitution of 1905 — Results of emigration — Italian influence 
— Roumanian social problems : (i) the land, (2) the Jews — Roumanian 
foreign policy — Greek internal politics since 1898 — Cyprus — The 
"Twelve Islands "^Thasos—Samos 427 

xvi Contents 


The Turkish Revolution (1908-12) 

The " Committee of Union and Progress " — The revival of the Turkish 
constitution — Fraternisation of the Ottomans — Declaration of Bul- 
garian Independence — Annexation of Bosnia and the Herzegovina — 
Crete proclaims union with Greece — The counter-revolution in Turkey 
— The massacre at Adana — Deposition of Abdul Hamid II — Moham- 
med V — Settlement of the Bosnian and Bulgarian questions — Crete : 
attitude of the Powers — Increasing Turkish demands — Withdrawal of 
the international troops from Crete — The flag incident : Turkish notes 
to Greece — The Greek Military League — The two National Assemblies : 
M. Venizelos Premier — The revised Greek Constitution — The policy 
of " Turkification " — Albanian insurrection of 1911 — The Libyan 
war: loss of Tripoli and the Cyrenaica^Italian occupation of 12 
islands 474 


The Balkan League (October, 1912-March, 1913) 

Symptoms of unrest — Montenegro declares war : capture of Tuzi — Balkan 
ultimatum — The four states against Turkey — Victories of the Allies : 
fall of Uskub and Salonika and battle of Liile Burgas — Armistice of 
Chatalja — Balkan Conference in St James' Palace — Revolution at 
Constantinople— Denunciation of the armistice — Summary of the 
whole period 498 

Table of Rulers 505 

Bibliography 508 

Index 529 


The Ottoman Empire in Europe 1856 . . . To fare p. 242 

Diagram to illustrate the Treaty of San Slefano . To face p. 386 
The Ottoman Empire in Europe after tlie Treaty 

of Berlin, 1878 To face p. 398 

The Ottoman Empire in 1801 . . . . . at end 




The near eastern question may be defined as the problem 
of filling up the vacuum created by the gradual disappearance 
of the Turkish empire from Europe. Its history, therefore, 
may be said to begin at the moment when that empire, having 
attained its zenith, commenced to decline. The European 
dominions of Turkey reached their greatest extent in the latter 
half of the seventeenth century, when " the great Greek island " 
of Crete, as the modern Hellenes love to call it, at last 
surrendered to the Turkish forces, and the king of Poland 
ceded Podolia to the Sultan. But the close of that same 
century witnessed the shrinkage of the Turkish frontiers. The 
peace of Karlovitz in 1699 has been justly called "the first 
dismemberment of the Ottoman empire." It was the initial 
step in the historical process which has slowly but surely gone 
on ever since. The eighteenth century saw the continuation 
of the work begun at Karlovitz, though now and again the 
Turkish dominions gained some temporary advantage, and 
European statesmen anticipated the dismemberment of the 
Sultan's European possessions and formed schemes for the 
partition of the spoil. 

At the beginning of the nineteenth century there were only 

four great European Powers, instead of six, directly interested 

in the eastern question, for Italy was not yet made and Prussia 

was only of the second rank, while Venice had ceased to exist. 

M. L. 1 

2 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

Of these four — France, Russia, Austria, and Great Britain — the 
first had been for centuries the traditional ally of the Sultans. 
Erancis I, who had begun his reign by proposing, as so many 
sovereigns have done since, the partition of Turkey, was the 
founder of this alliance, which, with occasional intervals of 
anti-Turkish feeling, was the fixed policy of his successors. In 
spite of the scandal caused to devout Catholics by this union of 
France, " the eldest daughter of the Church," with the head 
of the infidel Turks, Francis found it politic to use Suleyman 
the Magnificent as an ally in his struggle with the house of 
Austria, the historic rival of the French monarchy. The power 
and geographical position of Turkey at that period, its naval 
forces and the requirements of French trade in the Levant, 
were all strong arguments, which outweighed any crusading 
instincts of the astute French king, just as in our own day we 
have seen the German Emperor champion the Turkish cause in 
the interests of German commerce. Together the French and 
Ottoman fleets bombarded Nice, while Toulon served as the 
Turkish base of operations. By the capitulations of 1535, 
which were the most practical result of the Franco-Turkish 
alliance, the French received permission to trade in all the 
Ottoman ports — a privilege conceded to the vessels of other 
nations only on condition of flying the French flag. French 
subjects, residing in Turkey, were permitted the free exercise 
of their religion, and the custody of the Holy Places was 
entrusted to French Catholics. Henry II carried on the 
friendly policy of his father, and concluded a treaty with 
Suleyman, the object of which was to secure the co-operation 
of the Turkish fleet against the house of Austria. For a time 
the alliance ceased to be aggressive, but at the beginning of 
the seventeenth century French influence was predominant at 
Constantinople. The capitulations were renewed in 1604; and 
all nations except the English and the Venetians were compelled 
to seek the protection, and trade under the flag, of France in 
the Levant. But the capitulations of 1604 mark in this respect 

i] Early relations with France 3 

a change from those of 1535. France now had powerful rivals 
in the east ; England, Venice, and Holland exercised a 
competing influence on the Bosphorus ; and in 1634 the Greeks 
assumed the custody of the Holy Places, thus foreshadowing 
the conflict which two centuries later led to the Crimean war. 
The French began to turn against the Turks ; the plan of a new 
crusade was drawn up by a French priest ; a " sure means of 
destroying" the Ottoman empire was published by a French 
diplomatist. At the battle of St Gothard in 1664, French 
troops assisted the Austrians to beat the Turks ; during the 
siege of Candia French men-of-war brought aid to the Venetians, 
and the monument of the French commander, the due de 
Beaufort, may still be seen outside the walls of that town. In 
fact, Louis XIV, though he tried to prevent Sobieski from 
saving Vienna, was hostile to the Turkish empire. His fleets 
entered the Dardanelles, and he obtained in 1673 "^^^ capitula- 
tions, recognising him as the sole protector of the eastern 

In the eighteenth century, the old friendly relations were 
resumed ; and Turkey, menaced by Austria and Russia and 
already declining in force, was glad to avail herself of the good 
offices of France. The French ambassador at the time of the 
peace of Belgrade, by checkmating Austria, saved Servia to 
Turkey for three generations, and his influence was such that 
he became a sort of "Grand Vizier of the Christians." The 
capitulations of 1740, completing those of 1673, were the 
reward of French assistance, and remain at the present day a 
memorial of the Marquis de Villeneuve's diplomatic success. 
Numbers of French officers endeavoured, like the Germans 
to-day, to reform the Turkish army ; and Bonneval and Baron 
de Tott worked hard in the Turkish cause. But the treaty of 
Kutchuk-Kainardji ("the little fountain") in 1774 ruined 
French influence, and substituted for it that of Russia ; and 
the French revolution prevented France from taking an active 
part in eastern affairs, though indirectly by means of French 

I — 2 

4 The Ottoman Empire [cH. 

emigres^ who found their way to the Orient, it spread a 
knowledge of the French language and French customs. Soon 
the Ottoman dominions felt the weight of Bonaparte's influence. 
" It is of no use for us," he wrote to the Directory, "to try to 
maintain the Turkish empire ; we shall witness its fall in our 
time." The treaty of Campo-Formio in 1797 made France the 
near neighbour of the Sultan by ceding to her the Ionian 
Islands — ''more interesting to us than all Italy put together," 
as Bonaparte said— with Butrinto, Arta, Vonitza, and all the 
former Venetian establishments in Albania south of the gulf 
of the Drin. The great French conqueror paid special 
attention to the Greeks ; and two emissaries of the French 
government in Greece, the brothers Stefanopoli, members of 
the Greek colony at Cargese in Corsica, were sent on one of 
those semi-scientific, semi-political missions, dear to modern 
foreign offices, to spread his fame in the Peloponnese. A 
legend grew up around the victorious general. Greek philo- 
logists discovered that his name was merely an Italian transla- 
tion of two Greek words {k6.\o /xipo^) and that he must 
therefore be descended from the Imperial family of the 
Kalomeroi Porphyrogennetoi, whose glories he was destined to 
renew ; Greek historians, remembering the emigration of the 
Mainates to Corsica more than a century earlier, boldly 
proclaimed him as the offspring of one of those Spartan 
families ; and the women of Maina kept a lamp lighted before 
his portrait, "as before that of the Virgin." The idea of a 
restoration of the Byzantine empire with his aid became 
general among the Greeks ; and Bonaparte was regarded as a 
deliverer of the Hellenic race. Not content with organising 
the Ionian Islands as "the departments of Corcyra (com- 
prising the islands of CorfCi, Paxo, Antipaxo, and Fano, with 
their continental dependencies, Butrinto and Pdrga), Ithaca 
(including the islands of Santa Mavra, Cephalonia, and Ithaca, 
with Pr^veza and V6nitza on the gulf of Arta), and the Aegean 
Sea " (a vague term^ which embraced — for the moment — Zante, 

i] Early relations imth Russia 5 

the Strophades, Cerigo, and Dragomestre in Akarnania), the 
French government founded in the two Danubian Principalities, 
where the Greek element was predominant, two consulates, 
one at Bucharest, the other at Jassy, thus reviving an idea of 
Catherine de Medicis, who had once meditated colonising the 
Principalities with Huguenots, in order to create French 
industries and influence in the east. The Egyptian expedition 
of Bonaparte at last caused the Sultan to declare war against 
France, his traditional ally, and to ally himself with Russia, his 
traditional enemy. Russia was alarmed at the success of the 
French propaganda among the Greeks, and desirous that a 
strong French protectorate over the Christians of Turkey 
should not rise up as a barrier to her own schemes. Britain, 
engaged in a life-and-death struggle with France, joined the 
Russo-Turkish alliance, and the natural result was the loss of 
French possessions and the destruction of French trade in the 
east. The Ionian Islands were occupied by the Russians and 
Turks; the French commercial houses in the Levant were 
ruined. France, therefore, at the beginning of the nineteenth 
century, was no longer the upholder of the Ottoman empire. 
Bonaparte had, by his erratic genius, reversed her secular 
policy, and forced Russia, in self-defence, to defend the Turk. 
But Ottoman statesmen could have no illusions as to the 
ultimate aims of the northern Power. For generations Russia 
and Turkey had been rivals, and a series of Russo-Turkish 
wars had been chronicled even before the nineteenth century 
added four more to their number. By a curious anticipation 
of modern history, it was in the Crimea that the two nations 
first came into contact. A quarter of a century after the 
capture of Constantinople, Mohammed II claimed the su- 
zerainty of the Crim Tartars, whose prince was the ally of the 
ruler of Moscow. The Russian merchants at Kafifa and Azov 
were now brought into relations with the Turkish authorities, 
and their grievances occasioned the despatch of the first 
Russian embassy to Constantinople in 1495. Other Russian 

6 The Ottoman Empi7'e [cH. 

embassies followed, and for a long time pacific relations were 
maintained between the two governments. But the raids of 
the Tartars into Russian territory and the vengeance exacted 
by Russian hordes caused considerable friction ; and at last, in 
1569, the first armed confiict took place between troops of the 
two states. It is curious to find western Powers urging on the 
Russians at that period to drive the Turks out of Europe, and 
already recognising Russia as the natural protectress of the 
eastern Christians, while the fear of Russia's growing strength 
was felt in Turkey alone. No western statesman seems to 
have suspected at that moment that Russia on the Bosphorus 
would be a menace to Europe ; but even the Sultans, at that 
time at the height of their glory, hesitated to retaliate on a Power 
which might, they thought, prove too strong for them even 
then. It was not for another century that a formal war broke 
out between the rivals, in consequence of the Turkish ac- 
quisition of Podolia, which seemed to threaten Russian interests. 
The result was an increase of Russian territory at Kiev and 
the desire for further gains. Even so early as this, too, the 
Tsar posed as the guardian of religious interests by obtaining 
a safe-conduct for Russian pilgrims on their way to Jerusalem. 
The political and theological aims of Russia thus became 
inextricably mixed, just as the missionary has been to other 
nations the pioneer of the soldier. 

Peter the Great gave a great impetus to the anti-Turkish 
policy of Russia. His capture of Azov was not permanent 
any more than the free use of the Black Sea for his new navy ; 
but it was he who sent the first Russian man-of-war to the 
Bosphorus; though its mission was pacific, it was a sign of 
the future. Equally significant were the beginnings of Russian 
intrigues in the two Danubian Principalities, whose princes 
corresponded with the Tsar, and his proclamation to the 
Greeks, to whom he foretold the approaching restoration of 
the Byzantine empire. The holy war, which broke out be- 
tween Ru.ssia and Turkey and was concluded by the treaty 

i] Early relations with Russia 7 

of the Pruth in 171 1, was a proof, like so many of its 
successors, of the military strength of even a politically feeble 
empire. The humiliating terms of that treaty, which imposed 
the retrocession of Azov to Turkey and the suppression of the 
Russian embassy at Constantinople, were, however, modified 
a few years later ; and a permanent embassy was re-established 
in the Turkish capital. It is worth noticing that on this 
occasion the influence of England was, for the first time, used 
against Russia. Since the formation of the Russian navy, the 
English Levant Company, which, in the beginning of the 
eighteenth century, had all the trade of the near east in its 
hands, had become alarmed at the rivalry of Russian mer- 
cl^ants; and the English ambassador at Constantinople, in 
opposing for this reason the return of his Russian colleague, 
drew the attention of the Porte to the dangers of a political 
and religious propaganda by Russian agents among the 
Sultan's Christian subjects. Having gained her point in regard 
to her embassy, Russia went on with characteristic tenacity of 
purpose to recover her lost foothold at Azov ; and despite the 
efforts of England and Holland, united in their opposition to 
further development of Russian trade in the east, again declared 
war against the Sultan in 1736, and again occupied Moldavia. 
By the peace of Belgrade she regained Azov, but only on 
condition that its fortifications were destroyed, that no Russian 
man-of-war should enter the sea of that name or the Euxine, 
and that all the Russian Black Sea trade should be carried in 
Turkish bottoms. A lull in the eastern question followed, for 
the great Powers were busy elsewhere. 

The accession of Catherine II revived the plans of Peter 
the Great. Russian agents were sent to stir up the Greeks 
and Montenegrins ; war broke out in 1768 ; and a Russian fleet, 
largely officered by Englishmen, was despatched to the 
Peloponnese, received the submission of 18 islands in the 
Archipelago, and at one moment threatened Constantinople 
itself. But the greatest triumph of this war was the memorable 

8 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

treaty which concluded it. The obscure Bulgarian village of 
Kutchuk-Kainardji, where this instrument was signed, has 
given its name to one of the most stupendous acts of Turkish 
folly. It was not so much the territorial losses of Turkey that 
mattered, though Russia's retention of Azov, Kinburn, Kertch, 
and Yeni Kaleh gave her the means of dominating the Black 
Sea, which her ships were now allowed to navigate, while her 
guardianship of the Crimean Mussulmans naturally fore- 
shadowed their absorption in her empire nine years later. 
The really fatal clauses of the treaty were those which gave 
her the right of making representations on behalf of the Greek 
Church in Turkey and of "speaking in favour of the Roumanian 
Principalities," which furnished pretexts for constant inter- 
ference in the internal affairs of the Ottoman dominions. The 
convention of Ainali-Kavak in 1779 confirmed the provisions 
of that treaty, and stipulated that the tribute which the two 
Danubian Principalities had to pay to the Porte " should be 
imposed with moderation and humanity " — an arrangement 
which did not prevent the Russian ambassador at Constantinople 
from demanding, no less than the Turkish government, ample 
pecuniary proof of the fitness for office of the candidates for 
the two Danubian thrones. Against the wishes of the Turks, 
a Russian consulate was now established at Bucharest, as 
a centre of intrigue ; and we find the Prussian consul at Jassy 
soon complaining that these agents were "put everywhere, 
without any necessity, perhaps to win over the inhabitants." 
Russia had, indeed, supplanted France as the oracle of the 
Porte, and had taught the eastern Christians to look to 
her for protection against their sovereign. The Grand-duke 
Constantine was educated to be the emperor of a new Greek 
empire; and Catherine 11 received a memorial from a Greek 
deputation. By the peace of Jassy in 1792, which closed the 
next war between the Russians and the Turks, the former, in 
spite of the threatened opposition of England and Prussia, 
moved their frontier up to the Dniester. This was the last 

i] Early relations with Austria 9 

dispute between the two rivals in the eighteenth century ; and, 
as we have seen, the close of that period witnessed their 
temporary alliance in order to defeat the ambitious schemes 
of Bonaparte in the east. 

Austria, now the chief competitor of Russia in the Balkan 
peninsula, was early brought into hostile contact with the 
advancing Turkish armies. In the fifteenth century the Turks 
began their attacks on the Hungarians, who were at that 
period the vanguard of Christendom against the Moslem. 
A century later Budapest was captured and remained, together 
with the greater part of Hungary, under Turkish rule for about 
150 years. But the close of the seventeenth century marked 
the retreat of the Ottoman armies from Hungarian soil. After 
the defeat of the Turks before Vienna and the emancipation 
of Budapest frequent Austrian expeditions invaded Bosnia, 
over which the Hungarian crown possessed old historic rights ; 
while an Austrian force captured Vidin in Bulgaria and Nish 
in Servia, and penetrated into Macedonia as far as Uskiib, 
where Stephen Dushan had fixed the capital of the medieval 
Servian empire. Prince Eugene made in 1697 his memorable 
march to Sarajevo along the same route that was afterwards 
followed by the army of occupation in 1878. "Yet another 
campaign," said a Turkish statesman, on hearing that Mace- 
donia was invaded, " and the Austrians will be under the walls 
of Stambiil." But these feats of arms were without permanent 
results, and Uskiib is the furthest point on the road to Salonika 
that an Austrian army has ever reached. The peace of 
Karlovitz, however, finally excluded the Turks from Hungary 
(except the Banat of Temesvar, which they abandoned 
nineteen years later), gave Transsylvania to Austria, and 
effected a complete change in the relations between that Power 
and the Turks. Austria had hitherto regarded the Turk as an 
aggressive enemy to be repulsed ; she henceforth looked upon 
him either as a weak foe to be attacked or as a bulwark, to be 
strengthened at need, against the advance of Russia, in whom 

lo The Ottoman E77ipi7x [cii. 

she saw a rival in the east all the more dangerous because 
there were many Slav subjects of Austria, who might be 
attracted by the Russian national and religious propaganda. 
The eighteenth century furnishes examples of all these 
three points of view. Sometimes, Austria was mainly actuated 
by the desire for Turkish territory ; and then she was willing 
to avail herself of Russian aid, even at the risk of Russian 
aggrandisement. This was the case in the war of 1736-39, 
when the Austrian and Russian armies were united against 
the Turks; in the projected partition of Turkey between 
Catherine II and Joseph II, which awarded the Crimea to 
the former and Bosnia and the Herzegovina to the latter ; and 
in the war of 1787-91, when once again the two states were 
allies, and the Turks their common foes. But it is a curious 
fact that, whenever this policy has been pursued by Austria, 
her successes have been much less than when she attacked 
Turkey single-handed. Whereas the result of the Austro- 
Turkish war, which was ended by the peace of Passarovitz, 
was to give part of Servia, North Bosnia, and Little Wallachia, 
as well as the Banat^ to Austria, her co-operation with Russia 
in 1736 cost her all her gains south of the Danube and Little 
Wallachia, while the alliance of 1787 brought her nothing 
more than the town of Orsova and two small places on the 
Croatian frontier. On the other hand, during the Russo- 
Turkish war which was ended by the treaty of Kutchuk- 
Kainardji, Austria proposed a secret treaty with Turkey, as 
soon as she saw that the Russians were becoming too 
successful. As the reward of her services, she was to receive 
once more Little Wallachia; and when Russia, in alarm, 
concluded peace, another Roumanian province, the Bukovina, 
became, and has ever since remained, Austrian. At this 
period the Austrian diplomatist, Thugut, believed the fall of 
Turkey to be at hand, and designated the two Danubian 
principalities as his country's share of the spoil. An Austrian 
consul was accordingly placed there to counteract the schemes 

i] Early relations tvith Austria 1 1 

of his Russian colleague. But the French revolution and the 
death of Joseph II saved by an accident, as has so often been 
the case since, the life of the "sick man," and diverted the 
attention of Austrian statesmen from the east to the west. 

But the eighteenth century had done much to shape the 
course of Austrian policy in the regions of the Balkans. The 
twenty- one years' Austrian occupation of Little Wallachia, 
a large portion of what is now Servia, and a slice of North 
Bosnia, between 1718 and 1739, was the beginning of that 
movement which has been resumed in so striking a manner 
in our own time. Austria then became an important factor 
in the eastern question, and undertook, though only temporarily, 
that duty for which destiny seemed to mark her out. The 
effects of those twenty-one years of European civilisation were 
not wholly lost on the peoples who were put back under 
Turkish sway by the treaty of Belgrade. While the Austrian 
rule was unpopular among the Roumanians of Little Wallachia 
owing to its insistence upon the regular payment of taxes, the 
Serbs of Turkey henceforth regarded Austria as the only 
power which, under existing conditions, could set them free. 
Numbers of their ancestors had settled in Hungary after the 
downfall of Servian independence in the fifteenth century ; and 
two Serb patriarchs of Ipek, accompanied by thousands of 
their flock, had more recently followed that example by 
migrating thither. The Hungarian Serbs were among the 
most brilliant soldiers of Prince Eugene ; and at the outbreak 
of every fresh Austro-Turkish war their brethren in Servia took 
up arms on the Austrian side. A Serb poet hailed Joseph II 
as "the protector of the Serb race," and the Serb leaders 
bitterly reproached his successor for making peace with 
Turkey in 1791. Nor can we be surprised at their regrets. 
For the first time since the Turkish conquest, Servia had 
shown signs of material progress during the two brief decades 
of the previous Austrian occupation ; and they naturally hoped 
that this time Austria would not retire beyond the Danube 

12 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

and the Save. Knowing little of western politics, they could 
not understand why the Power which had taken Belgrade and 
entered Bosnia should make peace on the most modest terms. 
But the last decade of the century gave Austria a further 
foothold in the near east. Just as the same year that had 
witnessed the disappearance of Venice from the Peloponnese 
witnessed also the first appearance of Austria as a Balkan 
state, so the same year that saw the death of the Republic of 
St Mark saw too the assumption of her heritage on the 
Adriatic by the Hapsburgs. The treaty of Campo-Formio 
in 1797, 'Which handed over the Dalmatian possessions of 
Venice to Austria, substituted a strong Power for a declining 
one as the neighbour of Turkey and Montenegro, and indicated 
to the anxious Sultan that the state which had thus annexed 
the Illyrian coastline would probably one day occupy the 
Bosnian territory behind it. 

England was not, like Russia and Austria, the territorial 
neighbour of Turkey; but, even before the foundation of 
her Indian empire, she had interests in the east, owing to her 
large Levant trade. So early as the beginning of the sixteenth 
century a Levantine was named English consul at Chios; in 
1520 the first English consul was appointed to Crete. 
Elizabeth gained free trading facilities in the Turkish do- 
minions for her subjects, who had previously carried on their 
commerce with the near east in the "argosies" of the 
Ragusan republic, then the greatest mercantile community 
of the Balkan peninsula. It is said that the origin of our 
trade in the Levant in ships of our own was a petty quarrel 
concerning the duty on currants ; but, whatever the cause, the 
interest of England in the affairs of Turkey was primarily 
commercial, and down to the beginning of the nineteenth 
century English influence in that part of the world was almost 
entirely due to "the Company of Merchants of the Levant," 
who received letters patent from Elizabeth in 1581. It was in 
the following year, on the first of the company's ships that 

i] Early relations with England 13 

sailed to Constantinople, that William Harebone went out as 
the first English ambassador to the Sultan. Like all his 
successors in that post down to 1803, he was appointed and 
paid, not by the English government, but by the company; 
and his chief duty was to develop English trade. At the same 
time, he was instructed to obtain the Sultan's support against 
the " idolatrous " Spaniards, for the Spanish Armada was soon 
to descend upon our shores. This admixture of commerce, 
politics, and religion was eminently characteristic of English 
statecraft ; and the ambassador did not neglect any part of his 
instructions. He began at once to appoint more consuls, and 
both he and his successor. Sir Edward Barton, used ingenious 
theological arguments to prejudice the Sultan's advisers against 
Spain. The Turks admitted that there could not be much 
difference between their own religious views and those of 
Giaours who excluded images and pictures from their churches. 
But Spain had the riches of the New World at her back ; and 
no help was sent by the Turks, though Barton was so popular 
with the Sultan that he accompanied him to the war in 

James I confirmed the company in its monopoly ; and in 
spite of the insolence with which Christians were treated by the 
Turks in the middle of the seventeenth century, English ships 
visited Greece ; and a Mussulman once observed that English- 
men " always persisted in what they said, even at the peril of 
their fives." The Engfish ambassador was entrusted by the 
Austrians with the money to bribe the chief Ottoman repre- 
sentative at the peace of Karlovitz ; and it was our representative 
who, at the peace of Passarovitz, obtained for the Turkish 
province of the Herzegovina the two small outlets on the sea, 
the enclave of Klek and the Sutorina, which were so important 
during the insurrection of 1875-6, and were till 1908 among 
the curiosities of political geography. During the eighteenth 
century, when Russia had come to the front as the possible 
successor of the Turk in Europe, British statesmen were, as a 

14 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

rule, without fear of Muscovite aggrandisement. At one 
moment, as we have seen, Britain tried to make peace between 
Russia and Turkey in the interests of her own trade, and in 
1 7 19 Stanhope had desired "to drive the Muscovite as far as 
possible " ; but in the middle of the century France was our 
great commercial rival in the Levant, where the English 
company had lost much ground in consequence of Villeneuve's 
vigorous support of Turkey. It was France, too, and not 
Russia, which then threatened India ; and the opening of the 
Black Sea to Russian ships was even regarded as an advantage 
for English merchants, who would thus find a new market. 
We saw that the Russian fleet, which nearly took Constanti- 
nople and destroyed the Turkish navy at Tchesme in 1770, 
was largely under the direction of English officers ; and Turkish 
oflficials asked England to explain what her policy really was. 
On the eve of the fatal treaty of Kutchuk-Kainardji we find 
Lord Chatham writing that he is "quite a Russ," but our 
ambassador at Constantinople was not of that opinion. So 
early as 1786 Mirabeau contemplated a Russian advance on 
India. In 1791 it was the intention of Pitt, had he had the 
support of the country, to declare war on Russia, in order 
to maintain the balance of power ; and, while Fox was en- 
thusiastically on the side of Russia, Pitt pointed out the uses of 
Turkey as our ally. But, by a combination of the two policies, 
the century closed with a triple alliance of England, Russia, 
and Turkey against the French invaders of Egypt. 

In view of the great influence of Germany in Turkish 
affairs at the present time, a few words may be said about the 
eastern policy of Prussia during the period of which we have 
just given a sketch. The Great Elector sought to use the 
Danubian Principalities in his schemes against Poland ; and 
one of their Princes, after his deposition by the Turks, 
ndeavoured to obtain aid in Brandenburg. Frederick the 
( ireat saw that the expansion of Russia in the east could not 
injure him — for he had few interests there — but would neutralise 

i] Policy of the Powers 15 

the rival power of Austria. His representative at Constanti- 
nople occasionally interceded on behalf of a Moldavian ruler ; 
and a Prussian consul was appointed in that country, partly on 
the characteristic ground that he asked no salary. Frederick 
regarded Turkey as a useful means of keeping Austria busy, 
and so of assisting his own plans of conquest ; and Frederick 
William II formed a triple alliance with England and Holland, 
to check the Austro-Russian combination against Turkey 
between 1787-91. But in their time the German trade in the 
east was in Austrian, rather than Prussian, hands, and Prussia's 
territorial aspirations were not in the direction of the Ottoman 
empire; at most she demanded compensation elsewhere for 
the gains of other nations in the east. 

We thus find four great Powers at the beginnin£_of the 
nineteenth century directly ~or mBirectly affected by the 
eastern question: France, in the main the protectress. iif. 
the Sultan, and also the protectress of the Catholics . of-the 
Levant; Russia, with her grand scheme of a new Byzantine 
empire already sketched out, and her efforts to attract her 
Orthod ox co-religionists in the Turkish dominions already 
begun ; Austria, oscillating between the fear of Russia and the 
desire of Turkish territory ; and Great Britain, commonly 
favouring a policy of friendship with Russia. Above all, jsfe 
have seen that there was a general conviction that sooner or 
later the rest of the Turkish empire in Europe would go. 

Still the opening of the nineteenth century found the Sultan 
the possessor of a vast European domain. He held the 
whole island of Crete, from its then capital of Candia ; for even 
the warlike Sphakiotes, long independent, had been forced to 
pay the haratch, or capitation-tax, in 1770. The modern 
kingdom of Greece was his, except the Ionian Islands; and 
even they for the moment constituted a republic under the 
joint protection of the Tsar and himself. All the former 
dependencies of the islands on the mainland, except Parga, 
were Turkish, having been captured by Ali Pasha of Joannina 

1 6 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

and then formally handed over to Turkey by the convention 
with Russia in 1800. All that is now known as European 
Turkey was then part of the Ottoman empire; and modern 
Bulgaria, modern Servia, Bosnia and the Herzegovina, and 
more than half of the present principality of Montenegro were 
direct possessions of the Sultan. Beyond the Danube, the 
two Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia, including at that 
time Bessarabia and stretching as far as the Dniester, formed 
tributary states, governed by Greek Princes, selected by the 
Porte from the wealthy families of the Phanar at Constantinople. 
It may be estimated that the Turkish dominions in Europe in 
1 801 measured 238,000 square miles, and contained 8,000,000 
inhabitants. Their recent area, excluding the practically lost 
province of Crete, was calculated at 65,350 square miles, with a 
population of 6,130,200 souls. Such was the result in figures of 
a little over a century's "consolidation," as Lord Beaconsfield 
called it, even before the war of 19 12. 

Asia had always been the stronghold of the Turks; 
thence they came and thither one day they will return. 
Their losses there have been accordingly far smaller than in 
Europe. The dawn of the last century found the Asian 
frontiers of the empire slightly more extended along the Black 
Sea coast than they are now; and to-day Asiatic Turkey, 
exclusive of Cyprus and Samos, is estimated to contain 
693,610 square miles with 17,683,500 inhabitants. In Africa, 
where, since Tripoli and the Cyrenaica have been ** placed under 
Italian sovereignty "S Turkey no longer possesses an effective 
dominion, she was then about to recover Egypt by British arms 
from the French ; Tripoli, where Ahmed Karamanli had 
achieved virtual independence in 17 14, was nominally a tribu- 
tary province, but really a " Regency " of pirates, whose chief 
was then the notorious Yusuf Pasha ; while Tunisia, under a 
Bey, and Algeria, ruled by a Dey, were theoretically subject to 
^ " Poste sotto la sovranita piena ed intera del Regno d' Italia," is the 
phrase used in the decree of Nov. 5, 191 1. 

i] European Turkey 17 

the Sultan — a subjection seldom pleaded by the local rulers 
except when some powerful naval power threatened to punish 
the piracies of the Barbary States. 

The European empire of Turkey was at that period divided 
into five governorships, which were subdivided into provinces 
and again into districts. In addition to these governorships 
there were the two Danubian PrincipaHties, which had the 
misfortune to enjoy a quasi-independence, worse even than the 
lot of the Sultan's direct possessions. The five European 
governments were known as RoumeHa, Bosnia (including Vidin 
in Bulgaria), Silistria (including Belgrade), Djezair (including 
the Peloponnese and many of the Greek islands), and Crete ; 
and the governor of Roumelia, who was styled in Turkish 
beylerbey^ or "prince of princes," was the commander-in-chief 
of all the European contingents in time of war. These five 
European governments comprised nine pashaliks : Roumelia, 
Belgrade, Bosnia, Scutari, Joannina, Negropont, the Morea, 
Candia, and the Archipelago. The Sultan's subjects in our 
continent were of various races — Turks, Greeks, Bulgarians, 
Serbs, Albanians, and Roumanians; but there were some 
common misfortunes which they all had to bear, though these 
were much lighter in the case of the Mussulmans than in that 
of the Christians. The former found it easier to bring their 
complaints to the ear of the Sultan, while their interests were 
protected in the provinces by the little bodies of local worthies, 
who assisted the governor in the discharge of his duties. But, 
even a century ago, the fate of the provincials was so hard as 
to attract the sympathy of even avowed partisans of the Turks. 
In reading of their sufferings, one is reminded of the grim 
descriptions which the Roman satirists give of the exactions of 
their own provincial authorities. It was not that the fixed and 
recognised taxation of the empire was heavy, but that the 
whole administrative system, excellent though it might be in 
theory, was utterly rotten in practice. Corruption had entered 
into the Sublime Porte, and everything was to be bought. A 

M. L. 2 

1 8 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

pasha, appointed to a provincial governorship for a year, had to 
pay a heavy price for his appointment, and recouped himself 
at the cost of his province. As the end of his year approached, 
he found it necessary to renew his bribes at Constantinople, if 
he wished to remain at his post ; and for that too the unhappy 
province had to pay. Bad as this system was if the pasha 
were a rich man and had capital at his disposal to invest in a 
governorship, it was much worse when, as usually happened, 
he was poor, and therefore compelled to borrow at heavy 
interest from some Greek or Armenian banker, who thus had 
a sort of lien on the revenues of the province. The judges, 
appointed in Constantinople in the same way as the governors, 
sold justice without scruple ; and the officers who executed their 
sentences were even more odious to the people. The author- 
ities were also fond of imposing taxes, merely as temporary 
expedients, which tended to become permanent institutions. 
It was calculated at this time that about one half of the 
product of each man's industry was paid to the government in 
one way or another throughout the provinces ; and, when we 
consider the need which the governors had of money, we 
cannot wonder at this high proportion of taxation to income. 
The frequent journeys of the pashas, the presents inseparable 
from Oriental administration, the necessity of sending a mes- 
senger on the smallest business, as there was no postal service, 
and the luxury and vast establishments kept up by the great 
officials, all involved a heavy expenditure. The general in- 
security of the country, owing to bands of brigands, repressed 
all industry ; there were few means of investing money safely ; 
and the deterioration of the roads, which had once struck 
English travellers as superior to those of their own country, 
increased the difficulties of commercial intercourse. 

Selim III, who at this time sat on the throne, was, it is 
true, a reforming Sultan, anxious to raise his empire from its 
declining state, and willing to take western nations as his 
model. He made, for a moment, a clean sweep of the 

i] Ali and Pasvanoglu 19 

Bulgarian and Macedonian brigands and the Aegean pirates, 
repaired the ruinous fortresses on his frontiers, and employed 
French shipbuilders to construct men-of-war. But, like most 
autocrats, he was powerless to change a whole system of 
misgovernment with a stroke of his pen. Albania and Epirus, 
always the most dangerous part of European Turkey, were in 
such a state that a Turk could not venture to show his face 
there, while all travellers were liable to be murdered with 
impunity by the natives of that mountainous region. In many 
parts of the empire hereditary tyrants, known as dereh beys, or 
"lords of the valleys," terrorised their humble neighbours. 
Here and there great pashas, like Ali of Joannina and Pas- 
vanoglu of Vidin, fought for their own hands and acted like 
semi-independent sovereigns. The "lion of Joannina" has 
been made familiar to the reader by the poetry of Lord Byron 
and the prose of J6kai, while, as a forerunner of the Greek 
revolution, he has gained a place in the best-known chapter of 
modern Oriental history. Ali belonged to an Albanian Mussul- 
man family of Tepelen, which had once been Christian ; but his 
grandfather had fallen for the Crescent in 17 16 at the siege of 
Corfu. Pasha of Joannina since 1788, he had distinguished 
himself by his cruelty, ability, and ambition ; poets sang in 
Greek how he had thrown a beautiful lady into the lake and 
avenged the injuries done to his family by the impartial 
destruction of both a Christian and a Mohammedan com- 
munity ; a British traveller summed up his character as a 
" mixture of magnificence and meanness." Osman Pasvanoglu, 
though almost forgotten now, was in his day scarcely inferior 
to Ali in influence. With the true fanaticism of a Bosnian 
Mussulman he declared against the reforms of his sovereign, 
whose real and only friend he pretended to be. Master of the 
" virgin-fortress " of Vidin, he showed his loyalty by defeating 
the Sultan's armies and despoiling his fellow-subjects. He 
raised a private force of his own, levied his own taxes, 
coined his own money, and sent his representative to Paris to 

2 — 2 

20 The Ottoman Empire [ch, 

negotiate on his own account v/ith the French government. A 
British consul visited his court ; and such was the terror of his 
name that there was a general stampede from Bucharest on 
the approach of his men. Severe as were the sufferings of the 
Roumanians and Bulgarians from his depredations, the cost of 
maintaining an army to oppose him was an even greater burden 
to the Wallachian peasants. It was on this occasion that 
Hangerli, their Prince, confiscated practically all the cattle of 
his people, and thus left them without sustenance in a winter 
which has become proverbial as one of the four plagues of that 
sorely oppressed principality. The Bulgarians experienced in 
their turn the usual fate which at that time befell a country 
through which a Turkish army marched. Southern Bulgaria 
was reported to be almost destitute of inhabitants^ and its now 
flourishing capital was left a heap of corpses and charred 
timber. The fearful ravages of the plague in most Turkish 
cities completed the devastation of the empire, though in this 
respect the European provinces suffered less than the Asiatic. 

The division of the Sultan's subjects into two sharply defined 
classes, those who were Mohammedans and those who were not, 
was the cause of much evil. It has been justly saicf that the 
Turkish government has shown itself far more tolerant of 
eligious opinions than many so-called Christian nations. The 
welcome extended by Turkey in the fifteenth century to the 
Spanish, and in the nineteenth to the Russian Jews, contrasts 
most favourably with the Jewish persecutions in Catholic Spain 
and Orthodox Russia. Such was the hatred which one sect of 
Christians felt for another, that the Bogomiles of Bosnia 
preferred to be conquered by the Sultan rather than con- 
verted by the Pope, and the Orthodox Greeks chose to be 
the subjects of infidel Turks rather than of Catholic Venetians. 
Mohammed II, like the great statesman that he was, saw at 
once that the Greek church might become in his hands a 
powerful support of the Ottoman rule. He accordingly re- 
.stored the (Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople and 

i] Conversions to Islam 21 

made the Patriarch his tool. But, with all his tolerance for 
freedom of thought, the Mussulman regarded the Christians 
as an inferior caste. The rayahs had to put up with a hundred 
slights, and were made to feel that they were outside the pale 
of the dominant religion. They were liable to all sorts of 
aggravating rules, which regulated the colour of their clothes, 
the style of their houses, and the professions which they might 
enter. Their women were exposed to the droit de seigneur at 
the pleasure of the young bloods of Islam ; if their children 
were no longer taken as a tribute for the Sultan's armies, and 
they were exempt from compulsory military service, they had 
to victual and do all the dirty work of the Ottoman forces, 
build military roads and fortresses, transport artillery, and carry 
munitions of war. It was no wonder, then, that those of little 
faith abandoned Christianity for a religion which would assure 
them the respect of the Turks, and the right, equally dear to 
them as perverts, of despising and maltreating their former 
co-religionists. Numbers of Serbs in Bosnia, num.bers of 
Greeks in Crete, many Bogomiles in Bulgaria, embraced Islam 
after the Turkish conquest ; and the Bosnian, Cretan, Bulgarian, 
and Albanian Mussulmans became the most conservative of all 
the Sultan's subjects in their opposition to reforms, the most 
fanatical of all Mohammedans in their devotion to the law of 
the prophet. Popular phraseology, which calls these people 
" Turks," obscures the fact that some of the worst oppressors of 
the Christians in Turkey were not Turks at all, but perverts 
from Christianity, of the same race as the persecuted. The 
high road to honours was to profess Islam ; and it became 
proverbial that " one must be the son of a Christian renegade 
to attain to the highest dignities of the Turkish empire." 
Thus, in Bosnia, although a Turkish governor was sent from 
Constantinople, he was a mere figure-head ; and all real power 
was centred in the great Bosnian nobles, who gradually became 
hereditary headmen of the divisions of that country. So strong 
was the influence of these Mussulman Serbs that they permitted 

2 2 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

the pasha to remain at Sarajevo for no more than forty-eight 
hours, and resisted all attempts to move the official capital 
from Travnik thither. So the Bosnian begs administered that 
province on feudal lines, and were quite content with a system 
which allowed them to do as they pleased at home and 
provided them with the occasional luxury of a foray abroad. 
It was only when the Turkish military power began to decline 
and Bosnia was invaded by Austrian armies, that the Bosnian 
Mussulmans began to doubt the wisdom of the Sultan's 

In Servia, where there was no native aristocracy as in 
Bosnia, a number of these Bosnian begs were settled as 
landowners, forming the majority of the spaht, or cavalry, 
who were the sole possessors of the soil, to the complete 
exclusion of the rayah from all rights of ownership. There 
were at this period some 132,000 of these military landowners 
in all Turkey, some 900 in the pashalik of Belgrade. In 
return for their lands they owed military service to the Sultan ; 
but even in time of peace they were mostly absentees, idling 
away their days in the towns and letting the despised Christians 
manage their farms. In addition to these spahi^ another 
military force, the Janissaries, were to be found in detachments 
through the provinces. Their leaders, or dahi^ were often 
more powerful than the Sultan's representative, and not only 
maltreated the Christian peasants, but even seized the lands 
of the Mohammedan spahi with impunity. The natives had, 
indeed, some small share in the administration ; and when, 
as was the case in Servia at this period, the pasha was a just 
man, their chosen representatives could temper the wind to 
their shorn flock. The head-man of the village, the village 
magistrate, and, in many cases, the district official or (in Serb) 
oborkneSy who was responsible for the collection of the Turkish 
taxes, and acted as a medium between the pasha and the 
taxpayers, were elected by the people. The oborknes, whether 
so elected or nominated by the pasha, usually held office for 

i] Servians and Albanians 23 

life — it had formerly been an hereditary post — and acquired 
considerable influence both with the Turkish officials and the 
Serb peasants. Not a few of these local worthies became 
leaders of the Servian revolution. One branch of the Serbs 
formed the only independent state of the peninsula — the 
principality of Montenegro, governed since 1696 by Prince- 
Bishops, or Vladikas of the family of Petrovich, a dignity 
which descended, as the theocratic ruler could not marry, 
from uncle to nephew, h. firman of 1799 had recognised that 
the Montenegrins had never been subjects of the Porte. 

The Albanians had offered, under their hero Skanderbeg, 
the most determined resistance to the Turkish conquest ; and 
even at the beginning of the nineteenth century, as indeed 
to-day, their land was hardly under the control of its nominal 
sovereign. Divided by three religions — the Catholic, the 
Orthodox, and the Mohammedan — and split up into two main 
branches — the Ghegs and the Tosks — and into numerous 
tribes, the Albanians were alike in their love of fighting. 
The best regiments in the Turkish army, the crack regiment 
in the kingdom of Naples, were composed of these warriors, 
who in our own time formed the bodyguard of the timorous 
Sultan. Even before the Turks had conquered Greece, 
Albanian colonies had settled there ; and in southern Italy 
there is a large Albanian element. In northern Albania one 
tribe, the Catholic Mirdites, enjoyed practical independence 
under an hereditary ruler of the family of Gion (John) 
Marcu, called "captain" by his men, but "prince" by 
Europeans from a mistranslation of the name of Prenk 
(Peter), borne by each successive chief. In Epirus, the 
Orthodox Souliotes, an admirable blend of Greeks and 
Hellenised Albanians, who won the admiration of Byron, 
formed a sort of military commonwealth, composed first of 
four, then of eleven villages, paying in time of peace the 
tithe and the capitation-tax to the Porte, but in wartime 
maintaining practical independence by their swords. At 

24 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

once rulers and ruled, they levied the same imposts from 
the Parasouliotes, or inhabitants of some 60 conquered 
hamlets, who depended upon them, till, after a three years' 
struggle, Soi^li was betrayed to Ali Pasha in 1803, the women 
hurled themselves and their babes in the dance of death from 
the rock of Zalongo, and the survivors fled to Corfu. 

Of all the Christian races beneath the rule of the Turk, 
the Greeks were at that time the most important and the 
most prosperous. They had had, like the Serbs, the advantage 
early in the eighteenth century of being, though for a very 
short period, under the administration of a western Power; 
and the Venetian government of the Morea, though not by 
any means popular while it lasted, nor remembered with 
any gratitude, was a great advance upon Turkish rule. 
Although Russia, when she invaded the Morea in 1770, 
clearly demonstrated that her aim was not to make the 
Greeks free but to make them her subjects, and abandoned 
them so soon as it suited her purpose, the treaty of Kainardji 
placed them more or less under her influence ; and later 
arrangements entitled the Greek islanders to trade under her 
flag. The French revolution not only provided the Greeks, 
and especially those who inhabited the Ionian Islands during 
the first French occupation, with majestic phrases about the 
liberty of nations and the equality of men, but indirectly 
favoured Greek commerce, owing to the fact that the Turkish 
government was generally neutral and its flag could therefore 
go anywhere. The Greeks combine two usually irreconcilable 
qualities — great aptitude for business and great love of book- 
learning. Both these qualities, already developed at the 
beginning of the nineteenth century, tended to prepare them 
for national independence, though neither of them implied 
the possession of that political training which nations only 
acquire, as a rule, after centuries of experience. Commerce 
led them to visit other and better-governed countries, and so 
to draw inferences as to their own future prospects ; literature, 

i] The Greeks 25 

as created by Eugenics Boillgaris the Corfiote, and Koraes 
the Chiote, formed a bond of national union ; and Rhegas 
of Velestino gave to the impending Greek revolution its 
Marseillaise^ while "to Joannina," in the phrase of a Greek 
writer, *' Greece owes the regeneration of her education." 

Travellers noticed that the Greeks bore " the Turkish yoke 
with greater impatience than other Christians," although, 
except in Crete, they had perhaps less to complain of than 
their fellows. They occupied, indeed, a position of superiority 
towards the Sultan's other Christian subjects. For the Greek 
Patriarch was the ecclesiastical head of all the Christian 
population, irrespective of race, throughout the Balkan 
peninsula. The services of the Greek Church and clergy 
in the struggle for Greek independence were very great ; but 
by Bulgarians and Serbs, and still more in Moldavia and 
Wallachia, the Greek bishop was regarded as a foreign agent. 
With the suppression of the two ancient autocephalous Serb 
and Bulgarian Churches of Ipek and Ochrida in 1766-7, the 
last ecclesiastical bulwarks of those Slav races fell before the 
influence of the Greek clergy, who had long been as supreme 
in the spiritual life of the peninsula as the Turkish officials 
were in its political affairs. The Greek bishop, chosen from 
the Phanariotes of Constantinople, usually had to buy his see, 
just as the Turkish pasha bought his post, and made the 
people pay him back what he had expended. He was 
generally a valuable ally of the pasha, because he wanted the 
latter's aid to compel the peasants to comply with his requests, 
while he could render various diplomatic services to the pasha 
in return. Under the influence of these spiritual pastors, who 
rarely spoke any language but Greek, and, of course, con- 
ducted the service in that tongue, Slavs and Roumanians 
alike became outwardly hellenised. Their own languages 
were despised as barbarous jargons ; to speak Greek came to 
be considered as the mark of a gentleman ; the two Rou- 
manian codes were published, and even Bulgarian business 

26 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

correspondence conducted in Greek, as the most useful and 
widest spoken idiom of the near east. Foreigners therefore 
might be excused for considering the Greek Church as 
co-extensive with the Greek race and for reckoning up the 
Christian population of the Balkan peninsula at this period 
as collectively " Greeks." Rhegas poetically assumed that 
" all the Macedonians " would '' rise together," that " Bulgarians 
and Albanians, Serbs and Roumanians " would " draw the 
sword" for the cause of Greece and liberty. Until our 
own day, enthusiasts alone imagined the beautiful picture 
of the Christian races of the east united against the Turk. 
For the cardinal difficulty of the eastern question always 
had been, before the Balkan League of 19 12, the mutual 
animosities of these very same Christian races. For the 
Bulgarians sought to free themselves not only from the 
political domination of the Turks, but from the ecclesiastical 
authority of the Greeks ; and in our time the quarrels of the 
Patriarchists and Exarchists have been quite as serious as 
those of Mussulmans and Christians. 

Apart altogether from their ecclesiastical influence, the 
Greeks found many profitable careers open to them in 
the Turkish service. Their superior intelligence and linguistic 
skill enabled them to attain distinction as dragomans and 
envoys of the Porte. Their happy hunting-ground was beyond 
the Danube in the Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia, 
where thrones could be bought by the great Phanariote 
families of Constantinople and fortunes could be made out 
of the administration. It was noticed by travellers that the 
Greeks of the Turkish capital were less moral than those of 
the islands ; and the descriptions which contemporaries have 
left us of the Phanar, the quarter of that city where the 
Patriarchate was situated, represent it at this period as an 
academy of intrigue — the only weapon by which the weak 
can circumvent the strong. Greek historians accuse the 
Phanariotes of pride towards their own fellow-countrymen. 

i] The Hospodars 27 

and of forgetting that their own position depended upon the 
uncertain favour of a tyrant. Indeed, few portions of oriental 
history are so unedifying as that which records the reigns of 
the Phanariote Hospodars at Bucharest and Jassy during 
a large part of the eighteenth and the nineteenth centuries. 
The luxury of the two alien princes contrasted as strongly 
with the poverty of their subjects as did their proud demeanour 
to the Roumanians with their enforced humility to the Turks. 
"The two Hospodars," said a Turkish proverb, "are the eyes 
of the Ottoman empire, turned towards Europe." They were, 
in fact, the real foreign secretaries of the Sultan ; but they 
betrayed their master, whenever it suited their own purpose 
to play the game of Austria or Russia at his expense. The 
chief aim of the Hospodar of Wallachia, the richer principality, 
was to keep his place and make money out of it; the chief 
object of the Hospodar of Moldavia was to obtain promotion 
to Bucharest. Thus, the two became bitter rivals, while all 
the time there were hungry place-hunters at Constantinople, 
eager to dispossess them both. Under this system, these 
two provinces, justly called "the granary of the capital," 
became perhaps the most miserable part of the whole empire. 
Nature had done much for the great plains of the Danube, 
the fine slopes of the Carpathians ; but the government had 
ruined the country for the poor Roumanian peasant. His 
songs are full of lamentations over his woes and of denuncia- 
tions of the oppressors who caused them — the Turk, who was 
j his over-lord, the Russian, who came to "deliver" him in the 
name of religion, the Jew, who plundered him, the Phanariote, 
who misgoverned him under the authority of the Sultan. But 
it is only fair to recognise the diplomatic ability, the superior 
culture, the greater refinement, and the political experience of 
the Phanariotes, who furnished to the Greek revolution its 
leading statesman, in the person of Alexander Mavrokordatos, 
and contributed a valuable element to the society of the young 
Greek kingdom. 

28 The Ottoman Empire [ch. 

In Greece itself, though there were no such brilliant 
openings for talent as in Moldavia and Wallachia, scope was 
found for the administrative abilities of the natives. The 
primates, or kodjabashis, formed a kind of official aristocracy, 
whose business it was to assess the share of the taxes that 
each person had to pay. They were agents of the Turkish 
dignitaries, who farmed the taxes, and, in some respects, 
imitated their Turkish patrons. In the Peloponnese, where 
local administration was better organised than elsewhere, 
there was, even under the Turks, some attempt at self- 
government. Every village elected a head-man ; and these 
head-men collectively with the townsfolk elected representatives, 
who chose the primate of the province. All the primates 
resided at Tripolitsa, the capital ; and their interests were 
represented by a delegate at Constantinople. Here and there 
Greek communities enjoyed even greater privileges. The 
island of Chios was the most favoured of them all. Before 
the Turkish conquest, it had been governed by a Genoese 
mercantile company — the first instance of one of those 
chartered companies so common in our own day. The 
Turks continued the enlightened Genoese system of govern- 
ment ; and the Chiotes were better off than any other Greeks 
at the beginning of the nineteenth century. The three 
** Nautical Islands " of H^dra, Spetsai, and Psara, the nurseries 
of the future Greek fleet, almost unknown before the eighteenth 
century, had suddenly risen to be flourishing communities, 
where the sailors had a share in the ships and their cargoes. 
At this time H)^dra was governed by George Boiilgares, 
a capable administrator, Spetsai by a similar local official, 
known as a zampites (or *' policeman "), and Psara by a 
council of "elders." Tenos, after five centuries of Venetian 
rule, was another example of a Greek island, in the affairs of 
which the Turks interfered but little ; while Naxos, once the 
capital of a Catholic duchy, retained, together with some 
vestiges of Latin civilisation, the right to govern itself according 

i] Privileged Districts 29 

to its own customs. The 12 southern Sporades had enjoyed 
special privileges, ratified by successive Sultans since the 
conquest of Rhodes. In the mountainous districts of Pindus 
and Olympus, the Christians had another and more dangerous 
privilege, that of bearing arms, and so forming, under the 
name of armatoloi^ a local militia. In their " free villages," or 
eleutherochbria (the name may still be found in that region), 
they formed military communities, which in the eighteenth 
century had excited the apprehensions of the government. 
Repeated attempts were made to weaken them, but it was 
not till the time of Ali of Joannina that these efforts were 

The "24 hamlets of Volo," each with its school-house, 
aroused the admiration of travellers; while the flourishing 
community of Ambelakia on the slopes of Ossa, thanks to 
its dye-works, vied with the prosperity of the villages on 
Pelion, till local jealousies and British competition ruined 
Ambelakia and the sword of Ali destroyed the autonomy of 
all the " 24 hamlets " save Zagora. On the peninsula of 
Chalkidike a confederation of villages, the so-called Mademo- 
chbria^ elected the local authorities; while "the Holy Moun- 
tain " of Athos enjoyed the privilege of self-government, and 
the Turkish official, who resided at Karnes, the capital of this 
theocratic republic, interfered in its affairs as little as the 
Madem-aga in those of the Chalkidic confederacy. At the 
extreme south of Greece, Maina, after the rising of 1770, was 
governed by a local chief, appointed for life by the Sultan and 
dignified with the title of bey ; and in practice the tribute 
consisted of as much money as would lie on the flat blade 
of a sabre. Levadeia, then the chief town in eastern Greece, 
was governed by the local magnates, whose president re- 
presented the town in all negotiations with the Turkish civil 
and military authorities. Finally, Athens was the private 
property of the Sultan, who let it out for life to the highest 
bidder. The Turkish authorities consisted of the voivode (or 

30 The Ottoman Empire [ch. i 

"governor"), appointed by the Imperial Mint, the cadi (or 
"judge"), the mufti (or "bishop"), and the disdar-aga (or 
"comTnandef of the garrison "), who Hved with his harem in 
the Erechtheion. But the Athenians annually elected their 
" elders " ; and their own *' agents " (cTrn-poTroi) conducted the 
business of the community with the Turkish officials. The 
tyranny of Hajji Ali the Haseki, who repeatedly held the 
office of voivode in the latter part of the eighteenth century, 
had combined with two recent plagues to diminish the 
prosperity and population of the city, which contained about 
10,000 inhabitants. Even then Athens could boast an 
historian in the person of John Venizelos, the Athenian 

Thus, at the dawn of the nineteenth century, we find 
rehgion, rather than race, the dividing line between the 
subjects of the Sultan. The Mussulmans, whether Turks or 
the descendants of Bulgarian, Bosnian, Albanian, or Cretan 
converts from Christianity, formed a dominant caste; the 
Christians, except the comparatively few Catholics in Bosnia, 
Albania, Servia, Bulgaria, and in one or two of the Greek 
islands, were classed together as Greeks, because they belonged 
to the Greek Church and owned the spiritual authority of the 
CEcumenical Patriarch. European statesmen, except perhaps 
in the case of the Serbs, had scarcely become conscious of the 
fact that the eastern question would have to consider the 
claims of other Christian races of Turkey than the Greeks as 
heirs to some part of the Turkish empire. The principle of 
nationalities was not yet a powerful force in politics ; and the 
career of Napoleon in the near east, as elsewhere, was its 



The relations between the four great Powers and the Sultan 
changed considerably during the early years of the nineteenth 
century, for the selfish inconsistencies of Napoleon's policy 
caused them to support or oppose the Turks according to the 
requirements of the moment, without much regard for any 
general principle. Turkey, like other countries, was simply 
a pawn in the great game, which the Corsican played for his 
own hand. 

Both Great Britain and Russia reaped some reward for 
their assistance to the Sultan against the invaders of Egypt. 
The grateful Turks presented the Levant Company with the 
site of the present British Embassy at Constantinople; the 
Russians obtained a more important concession, the so-called 
hatti-sherif^ or Imperial ordinance, of 1802, which provided 
that the Hospodars of Moldavia and Wallachia should not be 
deposed without the consent of the Tsar, and that the term 
of their office should be seven years. This provision was a 
further increase of Russia's influence in the Danubian Princi- 
palities, a step beyond the advantage gained by her at 
Ainali-Kavak (see p. 8). The two Princes were now Russian 
agents, and showed an independence of the Sultan which was 
as marked as their servility towards the Tsar. 

France was reconciled to Turkey in 1802 ; and Colonel 
Sebastiani was sent on a special mission to the Levant, 
ostensibly for the promotion of French trade, really to report 

32 Napoleon in the Near East [cH. 

on the strategic importance of various places in the east. 
In 1805 the treaty of Pressburg, by which Austria ceded to 
Napoleon her lately acquired possessions in Dalmatia, gave 
France the only footing she has ever had in the Balkan 
peninsula. It was on this occasion that Talleyrand drew up 
a famous memoir on the eastern question, in which he advised 
the French Emperor to give Austria as compensation Moldavia 
and Wallachia, and so bar the road to Constantinople against 
the Russians. Had the idea been carried out, the history of 
the near east would have been changed, and the war of 1877 
might have never taken place. 

The nine years' French occupation of Dalmatia has not 
been adequately described by any English historian ; but it 
deserves attention as an example of the mistakes which even 
so great a genius as Napoleon I could make in the government 
of a country placed on the confines of west and east. The 
long Venetian rule over Dalmatia has left a permanent mark 
on the coast towns ; but it was the policy of the Republic of 
St Mark to repress Dalmatian trade and prevent the spread 
of enlightened ideas. The Austrians during their first brief 
ownership, from 1797 to 1805, had no time to effect much; 
but they began to make roads, which were wholly wanting in 
the Venetian times, though even in this respect they had not 
accomplished much when the French succeeded them in the 
administration of the province. Napoleon's emissaries had, 
therefore, practically everything to create, and at first they 
set about their work with considerable common-sense. But 
there are two distinct periods in the French government of 
Dalmatia, each of which has a separate character of its own 
and represents a different aspect of Napoleonic policy. So 
long as Dalmatia formed part of the Kingdom of Italy, from 
1805 to 1809, the French Emperor, still dreaming of Balkan 
conquests, and even of an advance on India, regarded the 
Illyrian coast-line as an excellent base from which to start. 
He realised the value of the harbour of Gravosa and the 

ii] The French in Dalmatia 33 

Bocche di Cattaro as future naval stations, and impressed upon 
the distinguished men whom he sent to govern the Dalmatians 
in those early years the necessity of adapting their methods 
to the local requirements. Marmont and Dandolo, who 
succeeded his first representative, Molitor, were, as an Austrian 
historian has said, " the two most eminent administrators that 
Dalmatia has ever had," but they were quite unable to 
agree together ; the civilian thought the soldier an interfering 
ignoramus, and the soldier treated the civilian as an unpractical 
pedant. Yet both, in their way, did something for the benefit 
of the province committed to their charge. Molitor had not 
greatly altered the Austrian system, but Dandolo lost no time 
in founding a newspaper, the first in Dalmatia, in starting a 
high school, and in making a bid for the support of the 
Orthodox clergy, who had hitherto been under the Catholics, 
by giving them a bishop of their own persuasion. This 
measure, which the Austrians had already meditated in order 
to break the influence of Montenegro in Dalmatia, had, how- 
ever, the effect of estranging the Catholics without securing 
the gratitude of the Orthodox. When the Russians invaded 
Dalmatia, the latter were their strongest supporters ; and 
throughout the French occupation the Dalmatian clergy of 
all denominations depicted the agents of Napoleon as atheists 
and regicides, and used their vast influence with the ignorant 
people against their rulers. Marmont, on the other hand, has 
left a permanent reputation in the country as a road-maker; 
and the peasants still tell the marvellous tale how the French 
general " mounted his horse and bade his soldiers make roads," 
and how " when he dismounted, lo ! the roads were made.'' 
A Frenchman, too, drew up an accurate chart of the difficult 
Dalmatian coast, with its countless islands and dangerous 
currents ; while another of his compatriots induced even the 
conservative natives to recognise the advantages of vaccina- 
tion, and so diminished the terrible scourge of most oriental 

M. L. -K 

34 Napoleon in the Near East [ch. 

After 1809 Napoleon's schemes changed, and he looked 
upon Dalmatia merely as a nursery for tall soldiers and its 
inhabitants as food for powder. Now, it is a curious fact that 
the same people who had willingly furnished aid to Venice 
in her last days resolutely refused to follow the standards of 
the French Emperor. From first to last the conscription was 
most unpopular in the country; and, when war broke out 
between France and Austria in 1809, the Dalmatians rose 
almost as one man against the French. From this time, too, 
the country was treated without the smallest regard to its special 
conditions. No longer a part of the Kingdom of Italy, but 
forming, together with Ragusa, two of the seven " lUyrian 
Provinces," it ceased to have a separate history from that of 
the other dominions of Napoleon. The Illyrian kingdom, 
composed as it was of five nationalities — Germans, Italians, 
Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes — had no unity, while there was 
nothing in common between the Norman or Breton peasant 
and the Dalmatian fisherman. Yet the Dalmatian, no less 
than the Norman and Breton, was now subjected to the rigid 
and unbending Code NapoUon ; what was good for France was 
declared to be good for Dalmatia ; and, in the room of men 
like Dandolo and Marmont, inexperienced doctrinaires or 
mechanical clerks were sent to govern the people on hard-and- 
fast rules, laid down in Paris, without the least regard for the 
past history or present needs of the governed. The elaborate 
organisation of the "Illyrian Provinces" in 181 1 was a 
complete failure, as the French candidly admitted ; everything 
was sacrificed to the desire for centralisation ; and when, 
in 18 14, the Austrians re-entered Dalmatia they were hailed 
as liberators. Moreover, the trade of the country suffered 
greatly from the British cruisers during the struggle against 
Napoleon, though there was some compensating benefit to 
those Dalmatian islands — Lissa, Curzola, Lesina, and the 
Ragusan archipelago — which were regularly occupied by our 
forces between 18 12 and 181 5. The important naval station 

ii] The British in Dalmatia 35 

of Lissa, in particular, where the British fleet defeated the 
French in 181 1, became a centre of trade during our brief 
occupation. In two years its population was nearly trebled ; 
all the nationalities hostile to Napoleon found shelter there ; 
and at no period of its history, before or since, has the island 
known such prosperity. Curzola was provided by the British 
governor with local institutions; and an inscription still preserves 
his memory there and expresses the gratitude of the inhabitants. 
In the five Ragusan islands the old Ragusan laws were restored 
by our representatives, and native nobles placed at the head 
of their respective administrations. Britain has no cause 
to be ashamed of the part she played at a critical time in a 
country whose manly sailors are scarcely inferior to her own. 
But, if the French occupation of Dalmatia has left little 
constructive work, except Marmont's roads, behind it, it de- 
stroyed for ever two interesting survivals of the middle ages 
— the Republics of Poljitza and Ragusa. It is curious that 
Napoleon, who spared the tiny Italian commonwealth of San 
Marino, should have swept away its Illyrian counterpart. The 
mountain-republic of Poljitza, with a population of between 
6ooo and 7000, had maintained its independence under Hun- 
garian and Venetian protection for centuries. Governed by 
a highly aristocratic constitution, and tempering its constitu- 
tional theories with frequent appeals to violence, as befitted a 
Balkan state, it was unwise enough to take sides with the 
Russians, who hounded it on against the French in 1807. 
The result was the destruction of the Republic and its 
incorporation with the rest of Dalmatia — an arrangement never 
since disturbed, although, on St George's day 191 1, by order 
of the Emperor, the three communes, which occupied the 
territory of the Republic, were formed into one^ having its 
exact historic boundaries. More tragic still was the end of 
Ragusa, a Republic which had existed in one form or another 
for over eleven centuries, and won the proud title of "The 
South Slavonic Athens." At this time the Republic numbered 


36 Napoleon in the Near East [ch. 

35,000 inhabitants, and consisted of the city of the same name, 
the town of Ragusa Vecchia, the district of Canali between 
that place and the Bocche di Cattaro, the beautiful valley of 
the Ombla, the long peninsula of Sabbioncello, and the five 
islands of Lagosta, Meleda, Giupana, Mezzo, and Calamotta. 
The Austrians had not touched its liberties and had refused 
to aid the refractory Canalesi, who were discontented with the 
republican government. But, at the news of the treaty of 
Pressburg, the Russians had occupied the Bocche di Cattaro ; 
and Ragusa was thus placed between them and the French. 
The latter declared their intention of occupying its territory, 
but of evacuating it as soon as the Russians should have 
withdrawn. This promise was wilfully broken by Napoleon, 
whose officers, Lauriston and Marmont, seem both to have 
been ashamed of the transaction. The siege of Ragusa by the 
Russians and their allies, the Montenegrins and the Canalesi, 
did much harm to the suburbs, but was raised by the French 
under Molitor. Once, however, in possession of the city, the 
French showed no sign of going. The lower orders of Ragusa 
were in favour of French annexation as an alternative to the 
aristocratic rule of their fellow countrymen. The nobles made 
a final effort to save the commonwealth, and in vain appealed 
to Austria and Turkey. The standard of San Biagio, patron 
of Ragusa, ceased to float above the famous statue of Orlando ; 
and on the last day of January 1808, a French colonel informed 
the assembled Senate that "the Republic of Ragusa has 
ceased to exist." Marmont was created Due de Raguse ; and 
the Republican territory became, first, a part of the Kingdom 
of Italy, and then one of the " Illyrian Provinces." Six years 
later Ragusa was freed from the French by the combined 
Austrian and British forces; but, though the nobles hoped 
for a revival of the Republic, the people welcomed Austrian, 
as they had welcomed French, rule, and Ragusa has since 
remained, like the rest of Dalmatia, under the sway of the 

ii] The Montenegrins ^il 


One other result of the French occupation of Dalmatia was 
to bring Montenegro for the first time within the circle of 
European politics. At the beginning of the nineteenth century 
the warriors of the Black Mountain were quite outside the 
pale of civilisation, and passed their time in almost incessant 
struggles against the Turks. But their traditional friendship 
with Russia made them willing to assist the latter power in its 
seizure of the Bocche di Cattaro in 1806; and, as we have 
seen, they took part in the siege of Ragusa. The French 
found the Prince-Bishop of Montenegro, Peter I, so tiresome 
an opponent that they in vain endeavoured to appease him 
by offering to make him Patriarch of Dalmatia ; and, after the 
treaty of Tilsit had given them undisturbed possession of the 
Bocche, they thought it well to be on good terms with so 
awkward a neighbour. But the wary Peter, though he granted 
Marmont an interview, declined to receive a French consul 
at Cetinje ; and, when Vialla de Sommieres was instructed by 
Napoleon to draw up a report on Montenegro, he had to obtain 
his political information under the pretext of botanising. The 
Prince-Bishop would not hear of the French Emperor's offer 
of his protection ; and, as soon as the news of the retreat from 
Moscow reached him, he prepared to attack the garrisons of 
Napoleon, who had planned the wholesale deportation of 
Montenegrins to the Low Countries. Peter gladly co-operated 
with the British fleet in the siege of Cattaro in 18 13, but his 
tenure of that coveted place was of short duration. Next year, 
on the advice of the Tsar, he restored it to Austria, which has 
ever since held it. 

Meanwhile, on the other side of the Balkan peninsula, the 
diplomacy of Napoleon had not been idle. In 1806, in 
consequence of the deposition of the Hospodars of Moldavia 
and Wallachia, without the consent of Russia, at Sebastiani's 
suggestion, the Russian troops entered the Principalities, and 
the first Russo-Turkish war of the century began. The Tsar 
had legal right on his side, for the deposition of the Hospodars 

38 Napoleon m the Near East [ch. 

was a direct violation of the ordinance of 1802 ; and in Great 
Britain he found a wilHng ally. A British ultimatum in 1807 
demanded the expulsion of Se'bastiani, and a declaration of 
war against France, the alliance of Turkey with Russia and 
Great Britain, the cession of the Danubian Principalities to the 
Tsar, and the surrender of the Turkish fleet, together with the 
forts at the Dardanelles, to the British admiral. As the Sultan, 
encouraged by the French, rejected this ultimatum, the British 
fleet entered the Dardanelles, as Elphinston had advised in 
1770, and appeared before Constantinople. But the admiral 
allowed himself to be entangled in those negotiations which 
Turkish statesmen know so well how to spin out. Had he 
shown the decision of another British admiral in Crete ninety- 
one years later, the world might have witnessed the spectacle 
of a British occupation of Constantinople. But he wasted 
precious time in despatch-writing; and, while he wrote, the 
Turks, urged on by the French and encouraged by the Sultan 
in person, worked at the fortifications. Admiral Duckworth 
had to retreat beyond the Dardanelles ; Constantinople was 
saved. Occupied with Napoleon, neither Russia nor Great 
Britain could prosecute a war against Turkey with vigour ; and 
the preoccupations of the Powers seemed, as usual, to be the 
best safeguard of the Sultan. But suddenly the world learnt 
that Napoleon and the Tsar had become reconciled by the 
peace of Tilsit, and that, in order to prosecute his plans 
against England, the French Emperor had changed his eastern 
policy, and was ready to sacrifice Turkey to the requirements 
of his ambition. Only a few months earlier he had declared 
it to be his " mission to save her." 

The scheme for the partition of the Turkish empire in 
Europe, which was sketched out by Napoleon in his interview 
with the Tsar Alexander I at Tilsit, was not more practical 
than such plans have been in later days. But, rough as it 
was, it still contained one or two pregnant suggestions, which 
even now are not without value in the discussion of the 

ii] Peace of Tilsit 39 

eastern question. Napoleon was willing to cede Bessarabia, 
Moldavia, Wallachia, and North Bulgaria to Russia, taking as 
his own share Albania, Thessaly as far as the gulf of Salonika, 
the Morea and Crete, while Austria was to be appeased with 
a part of Bosnia and Servia. The heir of Peter the Great and 
Catherine II was not, however, content with his portion of the 
spoils. He was willing to allow Napoleon to take, in addition 
to the already large French claims, the islands of the Archi- 
pelago, Syria, and Egypt, if Russia could have Roumelia and 
Constantinople. We have it on the authority of an eye-witness, 
the French Emperor's private secretary, that Napoleon replied 
by indignantly placing his finger on the spot on the map, which 
represented the Turkish capital, and exclaiming : " Constanti- 
nople ! Constantinople ! never ! for it is the empire of the 
world." Subsequent events have perhaps diminished the 
strategic value of that marvellous site ; but few will deny that 
it is still the goal of Russian ambition, though of all the 
Turkish provinces assigned to Russia at Tilsit, Bessarabia is 
the only one that she has definitely incorporated in her 
empire. France, at that time in occupation of Dalmatia, and 
about to re-enter into possession of the Ionian Islands, might 
not unnaturally aspire to further acquisitions in the near east 
— an aspiration now abandoned ; while Napoleon's concession 
of part of Bosnia to Austria was an anticipation of the Berlin 
Treaty of 1878. By a secret article the two Emperors pledged 
themselves, in the event of the failure of French diplomacy 
to make its influence felt with the new Sultan, to "free all 
European Turkey, except Roumelia and the capital, from the 
yoke and vexations of the Turks." No time was lost in 
preparing for this philanthropic partition. Marmont was 
ordered to procure information about Bosnia, Macedonia, 
Thrace, Greece, and Albania, their resources and their military 
situation, and to be less friendly with the pasha of Bosnia, 
at whose residence the French had a consul-general. As 
another consequence of the Franco-Russian treaty, the French 

40 Napoleon in the Near East [ch. 

were reinstated in the Ionian Islands. The possession of the 
Bocche di Cattaro and Corfu seemed, indeed, to be a prelude 
to a grand campaign against Turkey, which might, as a British 
diplomatist wrote, be a prelude to a still grander campaign 
against the rest of Europe. 

The lonians, who had welcomed the democratic French 
with enthusiasm in 1797, as an agreeable relief from the pride 
of the Venetians, showed themselves completely indifferent 
to the second French occupation ten years later. In the 
interval, under the unpopular protectorate of Russia and 
Turkey, the islands on March 21, 1800, had been erected into 
a " Septinsular Republic," which, though shorn of their former 
continental dependencies, formed the first autonomous Greek 
state of modern times. Unfortunately, this Ionian common- 
wealth had been indulging in the luxury of constant changes 
of administration. Three constitutions had been proclaimed 
in two years ; and a small revolution had demonstrated that 
Corfu had not greatly altered since the days when it furnished 
Thucydides with moral maxims on the wickedness of civic 
strife. At first a beautiful scheme of federation was tried. 
A federal Senate, whose president was styled drchon, met at 
Corfti, and a local council of nobles sat in each island. But 
the democrats found this arrangement too aristocratic, and the 
federalists found that it tended to separation. Cephalonia and 
Ithaca proclaimed their independence, and Zante hoisted the 
British flag. A National Assembly was held at Corfu, and the 
other islands were left to look after themselves. Then Russia 
intervened and granted one of those constitutions which she 
is fond of bestowing on her *' spheres of influence " outside her 
direct dominions. But the returning French made short work 
with Ionian self-government. Napoleon was more than ever 
convinced of the strategic importance of Corfii ; " the greatest 
misfortune that could happen to me," he said, " would be its 
loss." So he now organised the Ionian Islands on a purely 
military footing ; the native Senate had no power, and the 

ii] The British in the Ionian Islands 41 

French governed absolutely, to the great disgust of the in- 
habitants. But this second French occupation was not much 
longer than the first. The British took Zante, Cephalonia, 
Ithaca, and Cerigo in October 1809, with the object of 
protecting Sicily, then occupied by our troops, and Santa 
Mavra in April 1810. Brigadier Oswald organised these 
islands, and military governors were appointed. But, as the 
frequent changes of those officials caused inconvenience, 
Lieut.-General James Campbell was appointed Civil and 
Military Governor. Two out of the seven islands — Corfu and 
Paxo — alone remained to the French. Paxo was taken in 
February 18 14, but the blockade of Corfti proved futile. Napo- 
leon wrote that " Corfu acquires more importance every day ; 
for the English, if they were its masters, would be masters of 
the Adriatic too." But, if he prized it as " the key of the 
Adriatic," if an Ionian Academy was founded under his auspices, 
he did nothing for its economic interests. The Corfiote trade 
was ruined by the blockade ; the superb olive-trees of the 
island were cut down by the French troops; and when the 
French government ordered its surrender to the British upon 
the first fall of Napoleon in pursuance of the convention of 
Paris of April 23, 1814, an order executed on June 24, the 
French administration, though the French governor Donzelot 
personally left behind him pleasant memories, had con- 
tented the islanders as Httle as that of Venice or that of 

Napoleon's designs for the partition of Turkey at Tilsit 
were modified in 1808, when he again met the Tsar at Erfurt. 
He had learned to see the hopelessness of any large plan of 
operations in the east, while he had the west upon his hands. 
He now conceded Moldavia and Wallachia alone to Russia, 
took nothing for himself from Turkey, and joined with the 
Tsar in guaranteeing the other Turkish provinces. The result 
of these negotiations was to induce Britain and Turkey to end 
their mutual hostilities, and in 1809 to sign the peace of the 

42 Napoleon in the Near East [ch. 

Dardanelles. But in spite of a brief armistice, the Russo- 
Turkish war continued. The Russians once more found that 
it was not an easy matter to conquer their hereditary enemies ; 
but the victory rested with them. They crossed the Danube, 
and, more fortunate than in 1854, took the strong fortress of 
Silistria. The Danubian towns of Nikopol is, Svishtov, and 
Rustchuk passed into their hands, when the changing policy 
of Napoleon caused them to pause. The Tsar, foreseeing the 
French Emperor's impending attack upon him, had to withdraw 
troops for the defence of his own dominions. As in 1829, 
so in 181 2, Russia played what the "new diplomacy" would 
call "a game of bluff." She pretended to have in her hands 
cards which she did not possess. She pretended that her 
differences with Napoleon would be arranged peacefully, and, 
having gained a considerable success over the Turks, expressed 
a willingness to negotiate. The Turkish government, mindful 
of the way in which Napoleon had thrown over his good friend, 
the Sultan, at Tilsit, paid no heed to the arguments of the 
French agents in favour of continuing the war. The Russian 
demands were moderate, and they were accepted. There was 
no question now of a Russian annexation of the Danubian 
Principalities as a whole. But by the treaty of Bucharest in 
181 2 the Tsar received the territory between the Dniester and 
the Pruth, which is known by the generic name of Bessarabia. 
For the Roumanians the cession of Bessarabia was a terrible 
blow. Austria had taken from them the Bukovina; now 
Russia took another piece of their land. During the six years 
of the war they had learned to dread their "liberators, ' who 
were quartered upon them, who made them labour at the 
fortifications and provide waggons and oxen for the transport 
service, who extorted large sums from the nobles, sold titles 
to the highest bidder, flooded the country with a debased 
currency, and favoured the Greek monks at the expense of 
the natives. The full information which we possess on the 
state of Moldavia and Wallachia at this period proves the 

ii] Treaty of Bucharest 43 

utter misery of the poor, the utter corruption of the rich, the 
utter demoralisation of all classes under the Russian occupation. 
Wherever the Russian armies passed " the earth groaned," 
says a chronicler ; and, to crown all, in spite of the protests 
of the native aristocracy and its efforts to convince the Porte 
of its folly in yielding so rich a prize, Bessarabia was to go to 
swell the dominions of the Tsar, and the Pruth was to become 
the frontier of his empire. 

The treaty of Bucharest was a fatal blunder on the part 
of Turkey ; less than a month after its signature Napoleon 
formally declared war against Russia ; and the Sultan, regretting 
his undue haste in making peace, disgraced his Grand Vizier 
and cut off the heads of his plenipotentiaries. But the influence 
of Great Britain, once more in the ascendant at Constantinople 
and once more directed to the great object of breaking the 
power of the French colossus, restrained the ardour of the 
war party. Moreover, the internal state of Turkey was such 
as to demand the undivided attention of the government. 
Servia was in arms against the Sultan ; Ali of Joannina was 
practically independent in Epirus; Pasvanoglu had found a 
successor at Vidin ; great chieftains kept armies of their own 
in Thrace and Macedonia. Still, it is probable that, as at the 
treaty of Falksen a century earlier, so at Bucharest in 181 2, 
the Turks, without much risk, might have obtained better 
terms. On both occasions they were sold by their agents; 
on both occasions Russia got better terms than she could have 
expected. The Sultan, it is true, endeavoured to recover 
Bessarabia through the good offices of Austria at the congress 
of Vienna after the fall of Napoleon. But he only received 
the reply that such a retrocession was out of the question. 
Russia, on her part, did all she could to prevent the inhabitants 
of her new province from emigrating to join their brothers in 
Moldavia ; and so closely did she guard the frontier that the 
Moldaves, accustomed to draw their supplies of food from 
Bessarabia, suffered great privations. 

44 Napoleon in the Near East [ch. 

The career of Napoleon was over, and but little of his 
great plans of conquest in the east had been accomplished; 
even of that little practically nothing remained. His seven 
" Illyrian Provinces" were restored to Austria; the Ionian 
Islands were, after a long discussion, erected into an indepen- 
dent state under the protection of Great Britain. At the 
congress of Vienna the British plenipotentiary had proposed 
that the islands should be placed under an Austrian protectorate 
— a proposal which had much to commend it. As the heir 
of Venice, the Austrian Emperor could claim to have inherited 
the former Venetian possessions, while the master of Corfu 
commanded the approach to the Adriatic and would protect 
the Austrian seaboard in Dalmatia. This was, however, 
opposed by the Tsar, who urged that the wishes of the 
islanders for a British protectorate should be respected. For 
this argument there was much to be said. Great Britain had 
conquered six of the seven islands from the French ; and her 
troops were occupying the seventh by virtue of its surrender 
by the new French government. At the congress of Paris the 
British representatives accordingly proposed that the seven 
islands and their former dependencies on the mainland and 
elsewhere should pass under the complete sovereignty of 
King George III. The Russian plenipotentiary, Count Capo 
dTstria, himself a Corfiote and destined to be the future 
President of Greece, insisted, however, on the freedom and 
independence of the islands, and was willing to cede no more 
than a protectorate over them and their former dependencies 
to Great Britain. The final arrangement, signed at Paris in 
1815, was that the Seven Islands and the small islets depending 
on them should form an independent state, under the de- 
nomination of " the United States of the Ionian Islands," and 
under a British protectorate. As Lord Bathurst, the Colonial 
Secretary of that date, under whose department the islands 
were placed, saw clearly enough, this arrangement was unsatis- 
factory and incomplete. It placed the British government 

ii] The Ionian Islands 45 

in an invidious position, because it enabled the lonians, who 
were not easily contented, to represent Great Britain as a 
tyrannical power whose main object was to repress their 
liberties. Moreover, the settlement was incomplete in another 
way. For the former dependencies of the islands on the 
mainland, which had been awarded to Turkey, as we have 
seen, by the Russo-Turkish convention of 1800, were allowed 
to remain a part of the Ottoman empire. Parga alone of them 
was still unconquered ; and the subsequent fate of that place 
showed what an error had been committed by the British 
diplomatists in this affair. Count Capo d'Istria, while un- 
willing to grant Great Britain the absolute sovereignty over 
the Ionian Islands and their dependencies on the continent, 
was nevertheless most anxious that the latter should not be 
severed from the former under his scheme for a British pro- 
tectorate. The British, however, contended that if they could 
not have the absolute sovereignty they would have nothing to 
do with the continental dependencies of the islands. They 
were undesirous of mixing themselves up in Turkish affairs 
and of disturbing the Turkish occupation. Unlike the 
Venetians, who had styled those places in Epirus '* the eyes 
and ears of the Republic" on the mainland, the British 
showed in 18 15, as at much later periods, that they cared very 
little for, perhaps understood very little about, that Balkan 
peninsula which Napoleon had tried to partition, but which 
even his genius had found an insoluble problem. 



While Napoleon was sketching the dismemberment of the 
Turkish empire in Europe, that empire was being shaken by a 
revolution from within. Servia, which since its final absorption 
in Turkey in 1459 had given the government comparatively little 
trouble, was convulsed by a movement which, from small be- 
ginnings, led to the complete independence of that country and 
heralded the struggles of other Balkan races for freedom. 

In its first stage the Servian rising was not directed against 
the Turkish government, but against the Janissaries ; and the 
Serbs long protested that they were loyal to the Sultan, and 
only wished to live in peace under his paternal rule. Their 
land had suffered more than any other part of Europe from 
the presence of the terrible band of men which wa^ at this 
time the scourge of the Turkish empire and the dread of 
neighbouring realms. As the Belgrade pashalik, like that of 
Bagdad, was far removed from the capital, it was the custom 
to send thither the most turbulent members of the Janissaries' 
corps. They had constantly outraged the Hungarian frontier ; 
and at the treaty of Svishtov it had been stipulated that they 
should be withdrawn from Servia. Many of them entered the 
service of Pasvanoglu ; but, when that rebel was induced to 
make peace with his sovereign and appointed pasha of Vidin 
in 1799, he stipulated that the Porte should fulfil the promise 
which he had made to the Janis.saries and restore them to 
the pashalik of Belgrade. The Porte, anxious to weaken 

CH. Ill] Condition of the Serbs 47 

Pasvanoglu's forces or else desirous to pacify him at the cost 
of the Serbs, consented in an evil hour ; and the Janissaries 
came back to their old hunting-ground. Austria was too 
much occupied with western affairs to protest against the 
infraction of the treaty; and it seemed as if the former bad 
state of things had returned with the returning Janissaries. 
But a great deal had happened since they had left Servia. 
The Serbs had been governed for the last five years by a 
pasha, Hajji Mustapha, so mild and just, that they called him 
their " mother," and the Turks branded him as a "renegade." 
No Turkish ruler was ever more beloved by his Christian 
subjects. With an enlightenment rare in the east, he did all 
he could to encourage trade, put down violence with a firm 
hand, and allowed the Serbs to rebuild their ruinous churches 
and monasteries. He had armed them against Pasvanoglu 
and his Janissaries for the defence of Servia during one of that 
rebel's invasions ; and their national spirit, already kindled by 
the late Austro-Turkish war, was thus further aroused. It was 
in this state of public feeling that the Janissaries arrived. 

Those masterful pretorians at once saw that, so long as 
Hajji Mustapha lived, they could not do as they pleased, and 
they lost little time in plotting his destruction. Another 
invasion of Pasvanoglu gave them the desired opportunity; 
and, in 1801, at a moment when Belgrade was denuded of 
troops, they murdered the pasha in the fortress, and their four 
chiefs divided his pashalik among themselves. The Sultan, 
occupied with the war against France, was unable to send an 
army against them ; and, at their request, replaced the dead 
pasha by a successor, who, as an ex-captain of Janissaries, was 
their willing tool. The leaders now reassumed the title of 
dahi^ and governed the people, Mohammedan as well as 
Christian, in the most arbitrary manner. The administration 
of justice was in their hands ; and, in order further to secure 
their position, they invited kindred spirits from Bosnia and 
Albania to plunder the province, which they treated as their 

4^ The Servian Risings [ch. 

private property. No wonder that brigandage, which had 
almost ceased under Hajji Mustapha, began to reappear ; and 
it was calculated that a tenth of the population took to the 
mountains. The Mohammedan spahi^ seeing their privileges 
as landowners threatened, now joined hands with the Christians 
against the common oppressors. Through their instrumentality 
a petition was sent to the Sultan setting forth the grievances 
of the Serbs ; and the Sultan replied by threatening the Janis- 
saries, that, if they continued in their evil practices, he would 
send against them an army, "not of Turks, but of men of 
another faith and another race." By a process of exhaustion 
the Janissaries arrived at the conclusion that these words 
could only refer to the Serbs ; and they at once resolved to 
anticipate an attack by murdering all the prominent men of 
that race. Early in 1804 they carried out their plan. But 
the massacre of the Servian head-men provoked the Servian 
revolution ; and, as the result proved, Alexa Nenadovich and 
the other victims of the Janissaries died for their country just 
as much as if they had fallen fighting on the field of battle. 
The news spread like wildfire ; the people flew to arms ; and, 
as usually happens when a leader is wanted, a leader was 
found in the person of George Petrovich, better known as 
Kara George. 

Of the two great men, Kara George and Milosh, who 
have left a name in the history of modern Servia, the 
former was bprn about 1760 in the cottage of a peasant, 
who made a living by keeping bees. " Black " George, as 
his comrades called him, alike in Turkish and Serb, from 
his dark features, grew up in the grim Servian forest without 
learning to read or write. He served as a swine-herd and 
made a little money in what was then, as now, the chief 
branch of Servian trade. When the war seemed about to 
break out between Austria and Turkey in 1787, he fled 
with his family to Austria, and, as his father refused to quit 
his native land, either shot him, or had him shot, according 

Ill] Kara George 49 

to the most favourable version, at the command of his mother. 
He took part in the war with the volunteers on the Austrian 
side, became a brigand, and then, at the peace, fled again 
to Austria, Hajji Mustapha's mild rule attracted him back 
to Servia ; and at this period he was living quietly as a pig- 
dealer in the village of Topola. When the dahi resolved upon 
the massacre of the principal Serbs, his was one of the names 
on their black list. But he escaped their attempts to kill him 
and became the saviour of his countrymen and the avenger of 
their wrongs. 

In February 1804 a body of Serbs assembled at Orashatz 
and chose him as their chief. Kara George was unwilling to 
accept the post, for he felt that his ungovernable temper would 
disqualify him for the management of men. But his fellows 
would have no other leader, so he finally accepted their offer 
and at once issued an appeal to the Servian head-men, wealthy 
yeomen and tradesmen to join him. At first there was a 
tendency to view the rising with suspicion. The Serbs thought 
that the revolutionists might be only common brigands, who 
followed the approved Balkan method of robbing the people 
whom they claimed to liberate. In the district of Valjevo, 
however, two influential men, Jacob and Matthew Nenadovich, 
respectively brother and son of the Nenadovich murdered by 
the Janissaries, raised the standard of revolt, and spread the 
pious fraud that Kara George was the accredited agent of the 
Sultan, and that it was their duty, as his Majesty's loyal 
subjects, to aid the Servian chief against the rebellious Janis- 
saries. This argument convinced the people that the movement 
had the Sultan's sanction, and no further incentives were 
needed. Selim was known to be a reformer and an enemy 
of the Janissaries ; and it was against them, not against him, 
that the Serbs had a grievance. It is a striking proof of the 
peculiar character of the Servian revolution in its first stage, 
that the leaders everywhere ordered their followers to spare 
those Mussulmans who had no connexion with the Janissaries. 
M. L. 4 

50 The Serz'ian Risings [ch. 

The latter at once saw their danger, and in vain tried to bribe 
Kara George, who refused alike their money and their promises, 
unless the latter were guaranteed by the Austrian government. 
At that time the Serbs regarded Austria as their natural 
protectress. She was their nearest neighbour ; she had occupied 
their country on more than one occasion ; she had thousands 
of Servian subjects. To her accordingly the Servian leaders 
turned. Kara George even went so far as to offer the whole 
of Servia to the Emperor and to ask him to send some 
member of the Imperial house as a viceroy. The offer was 
tempting, but it was refused; and the Hungarian statesman 
who, in our own. day, became the regenerator of Bosnia, 
thought the refusal a mistake. A more moderate suggestion — 
that Austria should attempt to reconcile the two parties in 
Servia — was, however, adopted ; and a conference was held at 
Semlin, under Austrian auspices, between the Servian leaders 
and the dahi. The conference was a failure, but the Austrians 
continued to favour the cause of the insurgents. The authorities 
at the frontier allowed arms and provisions to be smuggled 
across it; numbers of Hungarian Serbs joined the revolutionists; 
and, while the poet Obradovich placed half his property at 
their disposal, officers who had fought in the Austrian army 
furnished much-needed strategical knowledge. Everywhere 
the insurgents were successful; and, at last, the Sultan, becoming 
alarmed, resolved to send the vizier of Bosnia, who had 
already had experience in Servia, to restore order in that 
pashalik. At the vizier's approach the dahi fled to the island 
of Ada Kaleh in the Danube near Orsova, a fortress which is 
even now one of the curiosities of the near east. Here they 
were killed by the Serbs ; and with their death it might have 
seemed that the insurrection, having attained its object, would 

But the Serbs, flushed with victory, were not content with 
what would have contented them a short time before. They 
insisted that an Austrian commissioner should be appointed 

Ill] Russia and the Serbs 51 

to see that the agreement between the Sultan and his subjects 
was faithfully carried out, while the vizier declared such an 
interference by a foreign Power in the internal affairs of his 
master's dominions to be simply "impossible." No com- 
promise seemed practicable, and the vizier returned to Bosnia, 
leaving matters much as they were before. Having little faith 
in the power of the Sultan to enforce reforms, and having 
failed to induce Austria to break her treaty engagements with 
Turkey and take their country under her protection, some of 
the Servian leaders now bethought them of the two Slav states, 
little Montenegro and big Russia. From Montenegro there 
was nothing to be obtained, so Matthew Nenadovich and two 
others set out on an embassy to the distant court of the great 
Tsar. Kara George had threatened Austria that he would 
apply elsewhere for help if she refused. The Metropolitan of 
Karlovitz, the spiritual head of the Hungarian Serbs, one of 
those intriguers common in the near east, who disguise the 
politician under the robes of the priest, had already prepared 
the way by submitting a memorandum to the Russian Minister 
for Foreign Affairs, in which he advocated the constitution of 
Servia, increased at Austrian expense by the addition of Syrmia 
and an outlet on the sea at Cattaro, as an autonomous, tributary 
Turkish province, governed by a Russian Grand-duke or a 
Protestant Prince. But the Minister was inclined to favour 
neither the scheme of the Metropolitan nor the prayers of the 
deputation. At that moment Russia regarded it as desirable 
to maintain the integrity of the Turkish empire ; and the only 
advice of her Foreign Secretary was to petition the Sultan for 
a redress of grievances. But the incident is important as 
showing thus early the tendency of Servian politicians to play 
off Russia against Austria, which has, almost ever since then, 
been the key-note of their public affairs. 

The Sultan, now thoroughly alarmed at the prospect of a 
dismemberment of his empire, resolved to finish with the too 
officious loyalty of his Servian subjects. The governor of Nish 


52 The Servian Risings [cH. 

was appointed vizier of Belgrade and sent to restore order. 
Encouraged by the instigations of Constantine Hypselantes, 
Hospodar of Wallachia, and believing that, after all, Russia 
would help them, the Serbs resisted. A battle ensued, and 
for the first time the insurgents fought against their sovereign, 
and conquered. The eyes of the Mussulmans were opened, 
and it became clear to them, as to the Serbs, that the " loyal 
rising" had become a revolution against the Sultan. The 
latter employed the breathing-space which followed the Turkish 
defeat in forming a species of government for the management 
of their affairs. From the old days of Servian independence 
there had survived the custom of holding an assembly of the 
people, called Skupshtina-, and such an assembly had been held 
by Kara George. A permanent Senate, or Sovet^ was now 
formed by the election of a representative of each district into 
which the pashalik was divided. Even to-day the Servian 
parliament-house is not an imposing assembly ; but that primitive 
senate, which met in a desolate monastery where there were 
no beds and no provisions but one sack of flour, was as far 
removed as possible from our idea of parhamentary institutions. 
Nor had it much real power, for Kara George was the practical 
ruler of the land. 

Even now the Serbs had not thought of separation from 
Turkey, and made further appeals to the Sultan for peace and 
to the Emperors of Austria and Russia for intervention. But 
the Sultan was resolved to put down what he now regarded 
as a rebellion against his lawful authority, and his forces 
invaded Servia in 1806. The Servian victory at Mishar, near 
Shabatz, which has been glorified by the national bards, 
seemed likely to induce both sides to make peace. But the 
Russo-Turkish war began, and Napoleon advised the Sultan 
to refuse the moderate Servian demands. The Serbs gained 
one success after another, but marred their successes by the 
treacherous massacre of the Belgrade garrison. At the 
beginning of 1807 they were masters of the whole pashalik; 

Ill] Revohitions in Constantinople 53 

and for the first time in their history a Russian corps fought 
side by side with them against the Turks. And while they 
had held their own, their former masters were fighting among 
themselves. Selim III had endeavoured to get rid of the 
Janissaries, and they had got rid of him : he had attempted 
to reform his state, and, like all Turkish reformers, he had 
failed. His French sympathies, his European ideas, his military 
system, made him unpopular with the old school of Turks. 
The Mussulman religion was the natural ally of the conserva- 
tive party in the capital. Bigotry, vested interests, and brute 
force won an easy victory over the well-meaning Sultan. The 
Sheikh-ul-Islam issued an ambiguous decision, which was 
interpreted as a justification of the sovereign's deposition. A 
captain of the Turkish pretorians emulated the conduct of the 
Roman soldiery and placed Mustapha IV on the throne, whence 
he had expelled Selim. One palace revolution followed 
another in rapid succession. Selim and Mustapha both 
perished by violence in 1808 ; and Mahmtid II, who was to 
be the greatest reformer of modern Turkey, but had the 
wisdom to conceal his plans till he was strong enough to put 
them into force, ruled in their place. 

Meanwhile the influence of Russia had become more 
marked in Servian affairs. In 1807 the first official agent of 
the Tsar arrived in Belgrade as a proof that the ruler of All 
the Russias had extended his paternal care to the Serbs. A 
convention was made between the two governments, by which 
it was stipulated that the new state should be under the Tsar's 
protection, and that the protector should keep up Russian 
garrisons in the country and name all its officials. But, when 
the armistice caused a lull in the Russo-Turkish war, Russia 
abandoned Servia, and was only induced to renew her pro- 
tectorate when Austria made overtures of a similar kind to 
Kara George. Russian statesmen saw that Servia might be 
useful to them as a means of keeping their rival, Austria, in 
check ; and the unhappy little country had already begun to 

54 The Servian Risings [ch. 

be regarded as a mere pawn in the diplomatic game. When 
hostilities recommenced, and the Turks, in spite of the heroic 
defence of Deligrad, defeated the Serbs, the Russian agent 
ran away, leaving his proteges unprotected. Two parties made 
their appearance in the state, the one pro-Russian, the other 
anti-Russian ; and the sudden death of Milan Obrenovich, the 
leader of the former faction, was ascribed by some to Kara 
George, and considered by later writers as the beginning of 
that feud between the Obrenovich and Karageorgevich families, 
which was till 1903 the bane of Servia. Instead of acting 
patriotically together, the peasant statesmen quarrelled among 
themselves, and at times showed, like true Orientals, that they 
regarded public positions not as places of trust, but as places of 
profit. The Russophils procured the rejection of the Turkish 
offer to give to Servia practically the same administration as 
that of the two Danubian Principalities. But they soon found, 
as the Principalities did, that the Tsar recognised no claims upon 
his gratitude. We have already stigmatised the Russian treat- 
ment of the Roumanians at the peace of Bucharest in 181 2 ; the 
fate of the Serbs, who had co-operated with the Russian armies, 
who had been led to expect help from the Russian protectorate, 
was almost as bad. The eighth article of that treaty abandoned 
them to such tender mercies as the Turkish government, now 
released from the pre-occupation of the Russian war, might 
mete out to them. The Turks were to occupy the old, and 
the Serbs to demolish the new, Servian fortresses; the Porte 
promised to the Serbs "the same advantages as those enjoyed by 
the islanders of the Archipelago," " the management -of their 
internal affairs," and " moderate taxes, to be received directly 
from themselves"; besides, there was a good deal of vague writ- 
ing about " clemency " and other un-Oriental virtues. The 
Russian regiment, which had been in garrison at Belgrade 
during the latter part of the war, left the country; and Europe 
was too much occupied with the great struggle against Napoleon 
to concern itself about the fate of this little nation beyond the 

Ill] Milosh Obrenovich 55 

Danube. The same memorable year, 1813, that marked the 
freedom of Germany from Napoleon, witnessed also the re- 
conquest of Servia by the Turks. Nearly all the native 
chieftains, like Kara George, losing nerve, crossed into Austria ; 
and no foreign intervention was possible. It has always been 
so; the eastern and the western questions cannot be solved 
together ; when the great Powers are busy in flying at each 
others' throats, the nationalities of the east must look after 

But it was at this moment that the second of Servians two 
modern heroes appeared on the scene, whence Kara George 
and the other leaders of the late insurrection had fled. Milosh 
Theodorovich Obrenovich had not played a very prominent 
part in that movement. Nearly twenty years younger than 
Kara George, he was the half-brother of that Milan whom 
Kara George was suspected of having poisoned, and was so 
devoted to him that he adopted his half-brother's surname, 
Obrenovich, in which philologists trace the word obrin, the 
Slav equivalent of the Avar race, which had once overrun the 
Balkan peninsula. He, too, had begun life as a herdsman, had 
come to riches and such honours as his native district could 
bestow, and was raised to further distinctions by the returning 
Turks as a reward for his aid in pacifying the people. The 
new pasha of Belgrade, whose arm he had wounded in battle, 
named him district official or oborknes of three districts, and 
for a time he seemed to be content to use his influence in the 
interest of the conquerors. Instead of heading an insurrection, 
which broke out a year after the return of the Turks, he 
actually suppressed it, thinking that the time had not yet come 
for a successful uprising. But the cruelties of the victors 
convinced him that nothing but force could avail against them ; 
and the indignation of his fellow-countrymen showed him that 
the moment had arrived for striking the decisive blow. On 
Palm Sunday, 18 15, he unfurled the banner of resistance 
under the oak before the church at Takovo — a name ever- 

56 The Servian Risings [ch. 

memorable in Servian history, and to-day commemorated by 
one of the Servian orders. The assembled people swore to 
forget their differences and join in union against the common 
foe. The revolt spread all over the country, and some of the 
exiles began to return from their retreat in Austria. With the 
capture of the historic fortress of Passarovitz the insurgents 
gained the upper hand over the Turkish forces then on Servian 
soil. The state of western politics at this moment caused 
Mahmfid II to shrink from further hostilities, which might 
lead to Russian intervention. For Napoleon had now fallen ; 
and the Russian ambassador in Constantinople had leisure 
to ask pointed questions of the Sultan and to remind him of 
the treaty of Bucharest. The British envoys to the congress 
of Vienna had declined to do anything for the Servian delegates, 
who had asked their aid ; but Russia was nearer and more 
interested in the Balkans. An arrangement was made between 
the Turks and the Serbs. The latter retained their weapons, 
but acknowledged themselves to be the Sultan's vassals ; the 
former allowed the Serbs to collect the taxes, and gave them 
a share in the administration of justice ; a sort of national 
Senate was created at Belgrade for both these purposes. The 
insurgents had also gained the great advantage of having in 
Milosh a leader whose recent achievements had made him the 
representative of national feeling. 

But personal jealousies have been the curse of the Balkan 
Christians. Milosh, great man as he was, could brook no 
rivals among his own countrymen ; and his first acts after the 
restoration of peace were to remove all possible competitors. 
The first president of the new national Senate was, at his 
instigation, handed over to the Turkish pasha for summary 
execution. A haughty bishop, who treated Milosh with scant 
respect, was found murdered by robbers under suspicious 
circumstances. Black George himself met with a like fate. 
The former leader of the Serbs had secretly returned from 
his exile, full of hope that a fresh rising would free the land 

Ill] Death of Kara George 57 

from the Turks, full of belief in the prospects of an organised 
insurrection in the Morea, which would divide the attention 
of the Sultan. He urged Milosh to unite with him in the 
national cause. But the crafty Obrenovich had no intention 
of sharing his glory with another. He informed the pasha 
of Kara George's presence in the country ; the pasha bade him 
send the Liberator's head to Belgrade. The order was carried 
out on June 24, 18 17 by Vuitza Vulichevich, the mayor of 
Semendria, probably at Milosh's orders ; and the gory trophy, 
after having been identified to the satisfaction of the pasha, 
was dispatched to Constantinople for the edification of the 
Sultan. Thus perished the first pioneer of Servian freedom, 
and by his death bequeathed to his countrymen a legacy of 
hate, which survived to the third generation. At length, 
freed from all rivals, Milosh was recognised in November 
181 7 by all the head-men as their chief, who also conceded 
that, after his death, his next-of-kin should succeed him. 

The first act in the drama of Balkan emancipation was 
over ; Servia had led the way ; now Greece was to follow, and 
compel the attention of the Powers to the eastern question. 



The settlement of Europe in 1815 affected those Greeks 
alone who inhabited the islands which down to 1797 had been 
in the possession of the Venetian Republic, and which since 
that date, except for their brief career as a " Septinsular 
Republic," had belonged to the French till one island after 
another had fallen into British hands. The convention of 
November 5, 181 5, formed Corfti, Cephalonia, Zante, Santa 
Mavra, Ithaca, Cerigo, and Paxo with their dependent islets 
into " The United States of the Ionian Islands " under the 
protection of King George III and his successors. It was 
stipulated that a resident " Lord High Commissioner " should 
be appointed, who should convoke a legislative assembly for 
the purpose of drawing up a new constitution. Meanwhile the 
existing constitutional arrangements were to remain in force. 

The southern islands of the Ionian group were already 
accustomed to the just, if autocratic, administration established 
there by their captor, Sir Hudson Lowe, the future gaoler of 
Napoleon ; while Sir James Campbell, to whom the French 
commander had surrendered Corfu in 18 14, had gained such 
popularity with the Corfiotes, that they petitioned the British 
government to appoint him as first Lord High Commissioner. 
Instead, however, the government sent Sir Thomas Maitland, 
brother of Lord I^uderdale, and governor of Malta, where his 
despotic character had won him the nickname of " King Tom.'' 
The wisdom of this choice might well have been questioned ; 

CH. iv] Sir Thomas Maiiland 59 

for the first Lord High Commissioner, if able and honest, was 
a rough soldier, who looked like a bull-dog, whose language 
surprised the elegant lonians by its coarseness, and whose 
convivial habits disgusted a naturally abstemious people. 
Meanwhile, however, the Seven Islands greeted the new order 
of things with demonstrations of joy ; Cephalonia addressed 
Maitland as "a new Aristides"; and an Ionic temple at Corfu, 
and monuments in other islands, still commemorate the 
services of the benevolent autocrat, to whom a strange fate had 
entrusted the poetic realms of Odysseus and Alkinoos. 

Sir Thomas Maitland, who arrived early in 1816, came to 
the conclusion, as the result of recent experience and of his 
own personal temperament and observation, that the lonians 
were not yet fitted for the management of their own affairs ; and 
he therefore determined, as he must grant them a constitution, 
to give them the appearance, without the substance, of free 
institutions. He nominated a " Primary Council " of eleven 
lonians under the presidency of Baron Emmanuel Theot6kes, 
charged with the task of convoking the Constituent Assembly. 
The president was a member of a famous Corfiote family, 
which had already produced one of the regenerators of the 
Greek language in the person of his uncle, and the president 
of the Senate of the Septinsular Republic in that of his father. 
At once a patriotic Greek and a firm friend of Great Britain, 
Baron Theot6kes was obviously indicated for the post. A 
Constituent Assembly of 40 members was formed, 11 being 
already members of the " Primary Council " and the remaining 
29 elected by the Islands from a double list of candidates, 
submitted by that body. Thanks to this plan, borrowed by 
Maitland from that devised by the Ionian plenipotentiary of 
Russia in 1803, the High Commissioner was able to summon 
an Assembly which would be subservient to his wishes. To 
this body the " Primary Council " submitted the draft of a 
constitution, which was unanimously passed on May 2, 181 7. 
This charter created a bicameral legislature— a "Legislative 

6o The Preface of Greek Independence [ch. 

Assembly," composed of 1 1 " integral " or ex-officio members, 
and of 29 members elected in the same manner as the 
Constituent : and a " Senate " of six persons, of whom four, 
representing the four larger islands, and one representing the 
three smaller islands by rotation, were elected by, and out of, 
the " Legislative Assembly," subject to the veto of the High 
Commissioner, while the sixth, or President, was nominated by 
the sovereign through the medium of the High Commissioner, 
from the ranks of the Ionian nobles. Both Chambers received 
salaries and travelling expenses ; the term of both was five 
years ; that of the President of the Senate half that period. 
But this official, who could be re-nominated, bore in com- 
pensation the title of " Highness," was received with military 
honours, and was the most important person in the Ionian 
state after the High Commissioner, upon whose favour, however, 
he depended for his appointment and its renewal. As the 
right of summoning the legislature in extraordinary session — 
it ordinarily met on March i of every other year — and that 
of advising the Crown to dissolve it resided in the High 
Commissioner, that official was practically omnipotent. In the 
other six islands, he was represented by " Residents," while the 
Senate appointed their " Regents," usually local men, subject 
to his approval; and these "Regents " required that of his 
" Residents " for their acts. The local municipal councils, of 
which the "Regents "were chairmen, were elected by open voting. 
The Senate elected, too, with his sanction, the two Ionian 
members of the " Supreme Council of Justice," while the two 
British judges were nominated by the Crown, and the High 
Commissioner and the President of the Senate were extraordinary 
members of this tribunal. No printing-press, other than that 
of the government, could be erected without the consent of 
the Senate and the High Commissioner; and the official 
Gazette of the United States of the Ionian Islands, first published 
at Zante under a slightly different title in 18 10 and subsequently 
transferred to Corfu, was long the sole Ionian newspaper. 

iv] Ionian Constitution of i^ij 6i 

J his journal was printed for many years in Italian only; and, 
although the Greek Church and the Greek language were declared 
to be the predominant creed and idiom, English was employed 
in the police, sanitary, and postal departments, Italian in the 
legislature till 1849, and the national tongue was not made 
obligatory in the public offices till 1852. Such was the system, 
under which the Islands were governed for upwards of 30 years. 

The Ionian constitution of 181 7, illiberal as it may seem 
now, was characteristic of that age, and must be judged by its 
results. The Ionian Islands had for the previous 20 years 
been the sport of faction, and above all else needed repose and 
a just administration of the law. Maitland left the franchise, 
as he found it, the privilege of the nobles, while he benefited 
the peasants by prohibiting usurious loans which reduced them 
to the position of bondsmen, by facilitating the sale of land, 
and by beginning those splendid roads, which are the best 
monument of British rule in the Islands. His abolition of the 
ballot was a mistake, for it led to feuds and intimidation. 
Believing that well-paid officials have fewer temptations, he 
attached high salaries to the principal posts, and deliberately 
increased the offices in order to provide employment for the 
natives, to whom all professions except the church, the law, 
and medicine, were unfortunately closed, and for whom 
commerce had few attractions. The creation of the order of 
St Michael and St George, and the high-sounding epithets of 
senators and deputies, gratified the Ionian love of titles. 
Thus the nobles, especially at the seat of government, became 
the strongest supporters of the British protectorate. 

An event soon occurred, however, which exposed the 
British to great odium and is still remembered in Greek lands 
as an error of British policy. The Russo-Turkish convention 
of March 21, 1800, had ceded to Turkey the former con- 
tinental dependencies of the Ionian Islands, on condition of 
the observance of their ancient privileges ; and the subsequent 
convention, which had placed the Islands under British 

62 The Preface of Greek Independence [cH. 

protection, had made special allusion to this arrangement. By 
this time all the four continental dependencies, except Parga, 
had fallen into the hands of Ali Pasha of Joannina. Parga, 
however, had been garrisoned by order of Napoleon, when the 
French recovered the Ionian Islands in 1807, on the ground 
that the treaty of 1800 had been annulled by All's violation of 
the clause which had guaranteed the ancient privileges of the 
ex- Venetian dependencies. Accordingly it was held by a 
French force till March 22, 18 14, when Sir Charles Gordon, 
British Commandant of the opposite island of Paxo, occupied 
the place at the invitation of the inhabitants, anxious lest the 
French should hand it over to Ali^ The Parguinotes appear 
to have believed that their request for the union of their home 
with the Ionian Islands, as in Venetian times, had been 
granted. The Prince Regent approved the occupation of their 
town ; a British officer was thenceforth stationed there ; and it 
certainly seemed as if they, like the Islanders, were to enjoy 
the protection of the British Crown. Turkey, however, de- 
manded the execution of the treaty of 1800; and Sir Thomas 
Maitland, who asserted that no "assurance of a more permanent 
connection^" had been given at the time of the occupation in 
1 814, and who calculated that the retention of the place would 
cost ;£5o,ooo a year, proceeded to carry out the cession. 

Accordingly, early in 181 7, Lieut.-Col. De Bosset, a Swiss 
officer in the British service, was sent to prepare the Parguinotes 
for the transfer of their home to the Sultan, and to inform all 
who desired to emigrate, that they would receive compensation 
for the loss of their houses and property, and a free passage to 
the Ionian Islands. The inhabitants unanimously expressed 
their resolve to leave their beloved home rather than become 
Turkish subjects, exposed to the tender mercies of the terrible 
pasha of Joannina. The difficulty of arriving at a valuation 
of their property caused however, a long delay. The owners 
* Papers relating to the military occupation of Parga^ p. 3. 
' Papers relating to Parga, p. 49. 

iv] Cession of Parga 63 

assessed its value at nearly ^£600,000 ; the Ottoman com- 
missioners at only ;£56,756; Corfiote valuers, judging by the 
standard of the islands, appraised it at ;^28o,ooo ; whereas 
Maitland insisted on deducting from this latter sum one-third, 
because the property was situated on the continent, and a 
quarter more, because the payment was to be in ready money. 
He, therefore, informed the Parguinotes that no more than 
;£"i5o,ooo would be paid. After first digging up and burning 
the bones of their ancestors, the homeless population, save two 
families, abandoned Parga; and on May 10, 18 19, the Turkish 
flag replaced {proh pudor I) the Union Jack, and the last free 
Greek community became extinct. But, on their arrival in 
Corfu, they did not receive their compensation without further 
deductions. As Ali had proposed to pay in depreciated coin, 
Maitland knocked off ;!^8ooo in consideration of payment in 
good metal, thus reducing the amount to ;£ 142,000, and 
provisionally retained a further sum of about one per cent, for 
freight and the expenses of the commission, the return of 
which sum the Parguinotes refused to accept as a definitive 
settlement. The government promised to build a church for 
them, and the exiles were provided with houses rent-free in the 
Corfiote suburb of Mandoiichio, where their descendants still 
reside. In the garrison-church of Corfu may still be seen the 
sacred pictures and the other furniture of the church at Parga, 
which have been placed there " until the day when the old home 
shall once more be free." Now that that day, long promised, 
but long postponed, has arrived, if Great Britain supports 
the Greek claim to Epirus, the cession of Parga, denounced 
in the Italian verses of Berchet and with greater force in the 
Greek of a famous ballad, will cease to rankle in the breasts of 
a high-spirited people, which has never forgiven the British for 
surrendering, albeit in strict observance of an international 
treaty, its altars and its hearths to the Turk. 

Ali Pasha had now attained the object of his desires. But 
the Sultan had long been alarmed at his nominal subject's 

64 The Preface of Greek Independence [ch. 

growing independence, and struck at the too powerful satrap in 
the person of his second son, Vely, already removed from the 
governorship of the Morea to that of Larissa, and now further 
degraded to the less important pashalik of Lepanto. AH 
saw in this deliberate stroke of policy the hand of a personal 
enemy, Ismael Pasho Bey, an Albanian and a former friend, 
who had fled to Constantinople and had there obtained the 
favour of the Sultan. Accustomed to remove every obstacle 
from his path, the pasha of Joannina hired assassins to 
murder his foe. The attempt, however, failed ; the assassins 
confessed; and the indignant Sultan declared Ali a rebel 
and an outlaw, and conferred his pashalik upon his intended 
victim. Thus threatened with destruction by his sovereign, 
Ali perforce appealed to the Greeks for assistance. There 
was nothing remarkable in this appeal to men of that race 
and creed; for the pasha, Mussulman though he was, had 
never trusted his Mohammedan retainers and had never founded 
a mosque, but had utilised the Greek bishops as his agents, 
had built churches for their flocks, had used their language 
as the means of his diplomatic correspondence, and had 
encouraged its study in the two colleges, which Greek 
patriotism and love of learning had erected at Joannina, where 
Greek was spoken more grammatically than elsewhere. To 
the Albanians he spoke of independence, to the Greeks of 
a constitution ; one of the former, Omer Vri6nes, who had won 
fame and wealth fighting the Mamelukes of Egypt, and one of 
the latter, Odysseus, son of the famous klepht Androdtsos, 
espoused his cause. But the Greeks as a whole showed little 
sympathy with the tyrant, whose cruelties had made him feared 
throughout Epirus. Everywhere the Sultan's troops were 
successful; Parga, Ali's last acquisition, submitted, and Ismael 
invited the exiled Parguinotes to return; Omer Vridnes deserted; 
even Ali's sons, Muktar and Vely, surrendered, the one Berat 
and Argyr6kastron, the other Preveza; while the exiled Souliotes, 
mindful of the treatment inflicted upon their home, crossed 

iv] The ''Friendly Society'' 65 

over from Corfu, under Marko B6tzares, to assist the Turkish 
authorities against the rebel. Ali was besieged in his capital, 
and felt compelled to lay that flourishing town in ashes lest it 
should afford cover to the besiegers. But Ismael Pasho, the 
Turkish commander, irritated, instead of conciliating, the 
Christians of the province which had been conferred upon him 
as All's successor. His exactions made one chieftain after 
another abandon his side ; and the Souliotes, still kept out of 
their promised home and their promised pay, consented to 
forgive the cruelties of their ancient enemy and entered the 
service of Ali Pasha. Convinced of Ismael's incapacity, the 
Sultan entrusted the supreme command to Kurshid Pasha, the 
governor of the Morea and a veteran who had had Egyptian 
experience. But the new commander had scarcely arrived 
at Joannina when a fresh danger menaced Turkey on the 
eastern side of the Balkan peninsula. 

During the previous six years a secret organisation, known 
as the Philike Hetairia, or "Friendly' Society," had been 
gradually working to promote a rising of the Greeks against 
Turkish rule. Founded in 18 14 at Odessa by Nicholas 
Skouphas, a native of Arta, Athanasios Tsakalof of Joannina, 
and Panagiotes x\nagnost6poulos of Andritsaina in the Morea, 
it was composed of seven classes, ranging from that of the 
Vldmides (an Albanian word signifying " adopted brothers ") 
up to that of " the chiefs of the initiated," and was governed by 
a mysterious committee, known as "the Supreme Authority." 
For the first three years of its existence, the Society made 
little progress, but thenceforth its "apostles" made many 
proselytes in the islands and in the Morea ; Petrobey Mavro- 
michales, the Prince of Maina, was among those thus 
initiated ; it was even suggested that Ali Pasha should join the 
organisation ; officials of the Society, called " Consuls," were 
nominated at Levadeia; others, under the title of "Ephors," 
were appointed to direct its affairs at Bucharest, Jassy, and 
Galatz. Meanwhile, it was felt that the leadership of the 
M. L. 5 

66 The Preface of Greek Independence [cH. 

movement should be entrusted to some individual of com- 
manding position. The thoughts of the Greeks naturally 
turned to Count Capo d'Istria, the distinguished Corfiote, who 
had played the part of Hampden during the French occupation 
of his native island, had abandoned the practice of medicine 
for public employment under the " Septinsular Republic," and, 
on the restoration of French rule, had entered the Russian 
service, in which he had risen by the favour of Alexander I 
and his own diplomatic talents with such rapidity as to repre- 
sent his adopted country at the congresses of Vienna, Paris, 
and Aix-la-Chapelle. Capo dTstria declined, however, the 
proffered position, whereupon Xanthos, the emissary of the 
Society, betook himself to Prince Alexander Hypselantes, 
eldest son of one Hospodar, first of Moldavia and then of 
Wallachia, and grandson of another. A major-general in the 
Russian army, he had lost his right hand at the battle of Kulm ; 
and his noble birth, his Russian connexion, and his personal 
bravery combined to indicate him as the fitting commander of 
a Greek revolution, which would thus appear to have the 
sympathy of the Tsar. Hypselantes accepted, and on June 27, 
1820, was recognised as ** General Commissioner of the 
Supreme Authority." 

It was his first intention to raise the standard of revolt in 
Greece itself; but he ultimately decided to begin operations in 
the Danubian Principalities, with which his ancestors had been 
connected so long. To a superficial observer Wallachia and 
Moldavia might seem the most suitable basis for his attack; 
for John Caragea, the former Hospodar of Wallachia, had been 
comprised in the Society, and Alexander Solitsos, his successor, 
who was hostile to the revolution, died of poison, it is said, 
early in 182 1 ; while Michael H Sodtsos, Hospodar of Moldavia, 
and the historian Rizos Neroul6s, his Minister for Foreign 
Affairs, were in correspondence with Hypselantes. But the 
native population of the two Principalities regarded the 
Phanariote Greeks as tyrants rather than liberators; the 

iv] Alexander Hypseldntes 67 

Roumanian peasants felt no enthusiasm for the Hellenic 
cause; and it thus came to pass that the same movement 
which rid Greece of the Turkish yoke emancipated the 
Roumanians from their Greek princes. 

Confident, however, of success, Hypselantes crossed the 
Pruth, since 181 2 the boundary between the Russian and the 
Turkish empires, on March 6, 182 1, attended by a few 
followers, and entered the Moldavian capital without op- 
position. The Hospodar's guards went over to the Hetairist 
chief; the few Turkish soldiers in Jassy were disarmed; and 
Hypselantes and Soutsos met in the house of the Minister. 
But the exercise of authority soon revealed the deficiencies of 
the revolutionary leader. Full of noble sentiments, he lacked 
experience of men and affairs. A manifesto, announcing that 
" a terrible power was prepared to punish the boldness of the 
Turks and annihilate them," annoyed the Russian government; 
the massacre of Turks at Galatz and Jassy excited the fanaticism 
of their compatriots ; the extortion of blackmail from a local 
banker in the interest of the cause frightened other capitalists. 
The Tsar, then engaged at Laibach in suppressing revolution 
at Naples, repudiated all sympathy with Hypselantes, and 
struck his name from the Russian army list ; the (Ecumenical 
Patriarch, under pressure from the Sultan, excommunicated 
the would-be saviour of Greeks and the Hospodar of Moldavia. 
Hypselantes slowly marched to Bucharest; Sotltsos fled into 
Russian territory, the last Phanariote prince who has actually 
ruled over a Roumanian land. 

Arrived in Wallachia, Hypselantes found a further obstacle 
in the shape of a native, and indeed a nationalist, revolution. 
Upon the death of Alexander SoCltsos, a small noble, Tudor 
(or Theodore) Vladimirescu, so called from the Russian Order 
of St Vladimir which he had won in the last Russo-Turkish 
war, had raised a revolt in Little Wallachia against the nobles, 
Greek and Roumanian alike. This movement, at first social 
rather than political, became political and nationalist when its 


68 The Preface of Greek Independence [ch. 

leader reached Bucharest. The native nobles saw that their 
best policy was to separate themselves from the Greeks, and 
divert the agitation, which seemed to savour of the French 
revolution, against the foreigners who had so long governed 
their country. Tudor came to terms with the "patriot" nobles, 
who disavowed all hostility to the Sultan ; and thus his 
agitation was thenceforth diametrically opposed to that of 
Hypselantes. " Greece," he told the Hetairist chief, " belongs 
to the Greeks, and Roumania to the Roumans." Meanwhile, 
the Turks were making active preparations to retain it for 
themselves; a Turkish army entered Bucharest; and Hypse- 
lantes, suspecting his rival of treachery, ordered his arrest, and 
then allowed him to be butchered without mercy. Denounced 
as a traitor by the Greeks, the murdered man is extolled as a 
patriot by his fellow-countrymen, who trace the re-establishment 
of their native princes to his revolution. 

Hypselantes did not long maintain his position in Wallachia 
after the suppression of his native rival. On June 19, the 
" sacred battalion," which he had formed out of young Greeks 
of the upper and middle classes, and which was under the 
command of his brother Nicholas, was cut to pieces, after a 
brave resistance, by the Turks at Dragashani. Upon receiving 
the news of this defeat, Alexander Hypselantes thought only of 
his own safety. By means of a forged letter, he pretended that 
he had been summoned to the Austrian frontier to discuss 
the military operations which the Emperor of Austria was, 
according to this fiction, about to undertake against the Turks. 
Abandoning his soldiers to their fate, he fled with two of his 
brothers into Austrian territory, from which secure position he 
issued an insulting proclamation to the men whom he 
had betrayed. For once, however, the policy of Metternich 
coincided with the requirements of poetic justice. The 
fugitive leader was arrested, and languished for six years the 
prisoner of the Emperor, in whose capital he died an exile 
in 1828. 

iv] Courage of the Greeks 69 

The Greeks who remained behind behaved with a courage 
which contrasted with the conduct of their leaders. Prince 
George Cantacuzene, who commanded the insurgent forces in 
Moldavia, imitated his chief, and retired to Russia. But his 
young Greek soldiers resolved to strike a final blow for their 
deserted cause. At Skuleni, the spot where Hypselantes had 
crossed the Pruth, this band of some 500 heroes made on 
June 29 its last stand against the Turks. Of that number 
about one-fourth, after a desperate fight, escaped by swimming 
the river; the rest perished on the field or in the stream, 
Avhile the Russians from the opposite bank applauded their 
resistance. Even then, Georgakes of Mt Olympus, a military 
leader and an enthusiastic patriot, who had commanded the 
troops of Wallachia in the time of its last prince, held out in 
the Moldavian monastery of Seku till, finding further resistance 
useless, he set fire to the powder-magazine, and was blown 
to pieces by the explosion. His comrade, the Macedonian 
Pharmakes, continued to defend the rest of the building for 
about a fortnight longer, when, on October 4, he was induced 
to surrender by the promise that his life should be spared — a 
promise violated by his subsequent beheadal at Constantinople. 
Thus, after having lasted six months, the attempt of the 
Hetairists in the Danubian Principalities ended in failure. 
Splendid acts of heroism illuminated this sorry preface of the 
Greek revolution ; and against the incapacity of Hypselantes 
may be set the actions of Dragashani and Skuleni. 

If the campaign of Hypselantes had little influence upon 
the course of events in Greece, it contributed to a complete 
change in the government of the Roumans. The Sultan had, 
indeed, already entrusted both the vacant thrones of Wallachia 
and Moldavia to Charles Callimachi, a former Hospodar of the 
latter principality. But the double revolution prevented him 
from setting foot in either province, where he was accordingly 
represented by two Greek governors. But the native nobility, 
anxious for the abolition of the Phanariote administration of 

70 The Preface of Greek Independence [ch. iv 

their country, which had existed since 171 1, were able to point 
to the Hetairist movement as an example of the danger to 
which the Sultan's empire was exposed by the employment of 
a hostile race in such important positions of trust. When the 
Greek insurrection in the principalities had been crushed, 
the Roumanian boyars accordingly petitioned the Turkish 
government that the two Hospodars should thenceforth be 
selected from their own ranks. Their petition was granted, 
and in 1822 Gregory IV Ghika, a Roumanised Albanian, and 
John Sturdza, member of an ancient Roumanian family, were 
appointed to the respective thrones of Wallachia and Moldavia. 
Thus ended the rule of the Greeks over the Danubian 
Principalities at the time when that of the Turks over Greece 
was drawing to a close. Greek and Roumanian independence 
were born together. 



Barely a month after Hypselantes had crossed the Pruth 
the revolution broke out in the Morea. The time and the 
place were both favourable to the movement. The Turks were 
occupied with two rebellions, one beyond the Danube and the 
other at Joannina, whither the governor of the Morea had gone 
to crush Ali Pasha, and they had to conduct simultaneously 
a Persian war. The Peloponnese, where the Christians were 
in a large majority, possessed in the native magnates leaders of 
wealth and position; and a committee of seven "ephors" had 
lately been formed there for the purpose of disseminating and 
organising the schemes of the Hetairists. In the early spring 
of 182 1, the moment seemed therefore to have arrived foFa 
general rising. 

A picturesque tradition, which has obtained official con- 
firmation by the consecration of that day as a national festival, 
dates the outbreak of the Greek revolution from April,_^ 
(March 25, O.S.), when German6s, Metropolitan of Patras, 
raised the sacred banner representing the death of the Virgin 
in the church of the monastery of Hagia Lavra near Kalavryta\ 
But, like mxist JnsurrectiQns^__the Greek rising began with 
isolated attacks upon Mussulmans, which became frequent 
towards the end of March. On April 2, the revolt became 

^ I inspected the original banner, which is not a Greek flag, as usually 
represented, at the monastery, in 1912. Cf. AeXriou r^s'Icrr. Kal 'Edv. 'Er. 
iii, 428-45. 

72 The War of Greek Independence [cH. 

general; on that day the Greeks besieged the Turks in 
Kalavryta; on the morrow Petrobey surrounded the garrison 
of Kalamata. Both places capitulated, and a solemn service 
of thanksgiving to Almighty God was celebrated on the banks 
of the Nedon, whence the Bey of Maina, elected president of 
a Messenian Senate, addressed a manifesto to Christian Europe. 
Simultaneously with the fall of Kalamata, an outbreak occurred 
at Patras; and the popular song which declared that "not a 
Turk should remain in the Morea" was translated > into action 
by the massacre of thousands of Mussulmans throughout the 
peninsula, where a victory at Valtetsi near Tripolitsa was proof 
of the prowess of the Greeks. Thence the movement spread 
across the gulf of Corinth, where Salona, crowned by its fine 
medieval castle, once again became a Christian stronghold. 
Athanasios, known as Diakos (or the " deacon ") from his early 
monastic life, who had been in the service of Ali Pasha, secured 
the surrender of Levadeia, whose Mussulman population shared 
the fate of their compatriots in the Morea. But the heroic 
" deacon " was overpowered in an attempt to hold the bridge of 
Alaman between Thermopylae and Lamia, where his statue now 
commemorates the courage with which the Leonidas of modern 
Greece confronted the tortures of impalement. Odysseus, equally 
brave and more fortunate, defended the pass of Gravia. The 
peasants of Parnes easily captured the town of Athens, then a 
place of some 10,000 inhabitants ^ the residence of a French 
and an Austrian consul, the seat of a Turkish voivode^ and 
defended by a small garrison and by a wall hastily constructed 
by the tyrant Hajji Ali the Haseki on the occasion of the 
Albanian raid of 1778. But the Akropolis, refortified by the 
Turks after the Venetian siege, resisted till midsummer of the 
following year. In the west, Mesol6nghi and Vrachori (now 
called Agrinion) joined the national cause, so that within 
three months from the commencement of the revolution the 
whole country south of the Maliac and the Ambrakian gulfs, 
^ In 1822 a census showed 1235 houses. Lampros, Mi^rat 2eX^5ej, 549. 

v] The Islands "j^^ 

except the fortresses, was in Greek hands. Even further north, 
Anthimos Gazes, a Hetairist who ten years earlier had founded 
at Vienna the first Greek newspaper ever published, kindled 
the flames of revolt in the villages that nestled among "the 
folds of Pelion"; and a provisional government, bearing the 
august name of "the Assembly of Thessalo-Magnesia," was 
formed to direct the affairs of that district. The three 
peninsulas which jut out from Macedonia into the sea 
embraced the Hellenic cause ; and even the monks of Mt Athos 
armed for a contest which seemed to be religious no less than 
national. But internal quarrels soon reduced the Thessalians 
beneath the rule of Dramali Pasha, and Trikeri at the mouth 
of the gulf of Volo alone resisted all attacks; while Aboulabad, 
the governor of Salonika, put an end before the year had 
closed to the insurrection in the three peninsulas by the 
capture of Kassandra and by the military occupation of the 
Holy Mountain. Of the islands Spetsai was the first to hoist 
the Greek flag ; and a Spetsiote widow, the heroic Bouboulina, 
not only blockaded the gulf of Nauplia at her own expense, 
but took part herself in the blockade. Psara was not slow to 
follow; but Hydra, owing to the reluctance of the wealthy 
primates, hesitated until a ship's captain, named Oikonomos, 
who was affiliated to the " Friendly Society," placed himself at 
the head of the people, and forced the local leaders to fit out a 
squadron under the Hydriote Tombazes. Samos proclaimed 
that union with Greece which even to-day has not been 
accomplished, whereas Syra, then wholly Catholic, preserved a 
neutrality which was the foundation of her prosperity. Crete, 
where the proportion — 160,000 to 130,000 — of Mussulmans 
to Christians was then much larger than at the time of the recent 
insurrections, received the tidings of the revolution with 
apparent apathy, despite the fact that it was then, in the phrase 
of Pashley, "the worst-governed province of the Turkish 
empire." The French consul at Canea, the only European 
representative who was then allowed to hoist his flag, reported 

74 The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

that "the authority of the Pasha" was "null." The local 
authorities were powerless to control the Janissaries, who were 
there exclusively composed of Cretan Mussulmans, Greeks by 
speech and race, yet always the most fanatical members of the 
dominant creed. "No Christian," we are told, "was master of 
his own house"; while it was the custom to send bullets 
wrapped up in paper with a demand for blackmail — a demand 
quickly followed by the murder of the stubborn recipients of 
these significant missives. In short, "the horrors and atrocities 
which were almost of daily occurrence in Crete had hardly a 
single parallel throughout the whole extent of the Ottoman 
empire." The sole exception was the Sphakiotes, who had 
submitted to pay the capitation-tax only 50 years earlier. In 
the summer of 182 1 a massacre of 30 Christians at Canea, and 
the butchery of the Metropolitan of Candia and five bishops 
at the altar of his cathedral, proved to the Cretans of the 
mountains what was in store for them. An order to the 
Sphakiotes to disarm had the effect of bringing them into the 
field. They rose against the Turks and blockaded Canea, 
while vessels from Kassos cut off its supplies by sea. But the 
Greek fleet, after burning a Turkish man-of-war, devoted itself 
to saving the Greeks of the flourishing Asiatic town of Aivali, 
instead of taking advantage of its supremacy in the Aegean. 
In that respect 182 1 anticipated 1897, but not 191 2. 

Mahmiid II was not the man to allow his subjects to defy 
his authority with impunity, and he adopted the usual Turkish 
measure for punishing or preventing revolt — the massacre of 
the revolutionaries' fellow-countrymen. When he received the 
news of the slaughter of the Turks in the Principalities, he 
began to execute suspected Greeks ; when there came the 
tidings of the wholesale slaughter of the Turks in the Morea, 
he beheaded Mouroilzes, the Greek dragoman of the Porte, 
and several other leading Phanariotes. Not content with these 
examples of his severity, he resolved to strike at the Greek race 
in the person of its most representative man, the venerable 

v] Martyrdom of the Patriarch 75 

Patriarch, Gregory V, a native of the Morea. On Easter Sunday 
the Patriarch was hanged from the gate of his palace, whence, 
after being exposed to the public gaze for three days, the body was 
dragged by the Jews, the inveterate enemies of Hellenism, and 
cast into, the sea. The faithful recovered the body of the 
martyred Patriarch; it was interred at Odessa, and thence 
transported, fifty years later, to the Metropolitan Cathedral at 
Athens. Other executions followed that of Gregory. Charles 
Callimachi, whom the Sultan had appointed Hospodar of the 
principalities, was killed in prison ; Greek heads were affixed 
to the battlements of Salonika; the Greeks of Smyrna, Rhodes, 
and Cyprus became the object of Mussulman fanaticism. Our 
generation, which has seen the Armenian massacres, can 
understand the motives and the methods of Mahmtid 11. 
And the Greeks in 1821, like the Armenians in our own time, 
had no established Greek state, to which they could appeal. 
They could, however, beg the sympathy of cultured Europe in 
the name of those famous ancestors who have so often saved 
them ; they might anticipate the protection of the Tsar on 
account of their common rebellion and the traditional policy 

of his house. But A jfYanHpr T_;Yf^<^ in a rliffirnlt prx^itinn; aS a 

member of the Holy iVlHance, he could not consistently suppprt 
a^_reyQlutionaix_movement ; as_riie. patron of tJ2e_Ortlhindny 
mhabitants sA Turkey , he cn iild_nnt acquiesce in.- their^iies: 
truction. He contented himself with breaking off diplomatic 
relations with the Porte, and continued to vacillate for the 
next five years between his fear of revolution and his devotion 
to Orthodoxy. Thus, unaided by any foreign power, unassisted 
as yet by foreign volunteers, the War of Greek Independence 
had begun. In that war ^ree phases may be traced : the first, 
lasting from 182 1 to 1825, in which the Greeks were successful ; 
the second, extending from the arrival of Ibrahim in the Morea m 
1825, when the tide turned, down to 1827 ; and the third, which 
began with the intervention of Great Britain, France, and Russia, 
and which saw the last fi ght between Greeks and Turks, in_i8.2^. 

76 The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

The early successes of the Greeks in the Morea had been 
won by leaders acting independently of any central authority. 
A "Messenian Senate" had, indeed, sprung into existence at 
Kalamata, just as an " Assembly of Thessalo-Magnesia " arose 
on Pelion ; but the need was felt for some council, which 
could at least conduct the business of the whole Peloponnese. 
Accordingly, on June 7, 1 821, at a meeting held in the monastery 
of Kalteziai, a " Peloponnesian Senate " of six, subsequently 
increased to eight, magnates and ecclesiastics, was appointed 
to exercise dictatorial powers, together with Petrobey, as 
commander-in-chief, until the taking of Tripolitsa. But twelve 
days after this appointment there arrived in Greece Prince 
Demetrios Hypselantes, a younger brother of the Hetairist 
chief, as the latter's representative. In an age of telegrams the 
futility of the new-comer's pretensions would have been promptly 
made public ; for on the very day of his landing his brother's 
campaign was practically ended by the defeat of Dragashani. 
But news travelled slowly then ; Demetrios Hypselantes was, 
therefore, able to impose himself upon the willing Greeks ; 
and even Petrobey acknowledged as his superior officer this 
ex-captain of five-and-twenty, who had come from the service 
of Russia to ransom and rule Greece. When, however, the 
tidings of Dragashani arrived, the Peloponnesian Senators saw 
no reason why they should submit to the authority of one who 
represented a beaten and discredited leader ; and nothing less 
than the threat of his departure and the consequent mutiny of 
the soldiers coerced them into accepting him as commander- 
in-chief. Yet, in spite of this jealousy between Hypselantes 
and the Senate, Monemvasia, the Gibraltar, and Navarino, the 
Portsmouth of Greece, were surrendered by their Turkish 
garrisons ; the waters of that beautiful bay were reddened with 
the blood of the massacred Turks. 

On the day when Monemvasia capitulated, another and an 
abler man arrived in Greece. Alexander Mavrokorddtos was 
a member of the old Phanariote family which had given five 

v] Fall of Tripolitsd yy 

princes to Moldavia and two to Wallachia, where he had 
himself held a court appointment. The outbreak of the revolu- 
tion found him in exile at Pisa, whence he repaired to Greece to 
place his fortune and his services at the disposition of his race. 
Disgusted, however, at the quarrels between Hypselantes and 
the " Peloponnesian Senate " in the camp before Tripolitsa, he 
accepted an invitation to organise the administration of Aitolia 
and Akarnania, and established at Mesol6nghi under his own 
presidency an "Assembly of Western Continental Greece." 
Another Phanariote, Theodore Negres, created a more ambi- 
tious organisation for the eastern part of the Greek continent 
under the title of " Areopagos " with its seat at Salona. Mean- 
while, on October 5 the Turkish capital of the Morea had 
fallen, and a terrible massacre of its inhabitants ensued. It 
was estimated that at least 8000 Mussulmans and Jews 
perished in the assault and in the subsequent slaughter, while 
the sack of Tripolitsa made the fortune of more than one 
Moreote family. The outbreak of an epidemic was nature's 

It had been stipulated that the functions of the "Pelopon- 
nesian Senate" should cease with the capture of the Pelo- 
ponnesian capital; and Hypselantes gladly issued a proclamation 
to the people, convoking a National Assembly, which should, 
as he hinted in no obscure language, end the tyranny of the 
primates no less than that of the Turks. This Assembly met 
at Argos, but was speedily transferred to the village of Piada 
not far from Epidauros, whence it derived the name by which 
it is known in history. There, on January 13, 1822, the Greek 
New Year's day, was proclaimed the Constitution of Epidauros 
— the first attempt to provide a central government for the 
whole of Greece. The constitution created a legislature of 
70 annually elected members and an executive of five, of 
whom Mavrokordatos was appointed president and who named 
the " ministers," as they were called, of the eight departments. 
Universal equality before the law, religious toleration, freedom 

yS The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

of an as yet non-existent press, and a republican form of 
government, were the characteristics of this organic law; they 
were scarcely suited to a country just emancipating itself from 
centuries of Turkish despotism and peculiarly attached to its 
communal organisation. The constitution, largely the work of 
an Italian, bears the marks of the Latin love of symmetry, 
which was so strangely at variance with the actual requirements 
of the Greeks. Indeed, the Moreote primates drew up a 
Peloponnesian Constitution of their own and formed a provincial 
senate of 20 members to watch over their local interests. For 
the moment, however, fortune seemed to smile on the Assembly. 
While it was still sitting, there came the news that Corinth had 
surrendered ; and that admirably central position was chosen as 
the first capital of free Greece. Over Acro-Corinth were hoisted 
the newly chosen blue and white colours of the Greek nation. 

While the Greek cause was thus triumphant on the Isthmus 
and to the south of it, the Turks defeated and slew Petro bey's 
eldest son, Elias, in Eubcea, and were re-establishing their 
authority on a durable basis in the north-west. Khurshid's 
operations against Ali Pasha had been hindered by the outbreak 
of the revolution behind him. But in the autumn he had 
occupied the fortress of Litharitza, which the lord of Joannina 
had built on a commanding height not far from the lake. The 
next step was the capture of the citadel, whence Ali retired to 
an island which is the summer-resort of the townsfolk. Ali 
had obtained a promise from Khurshid that his life should be 
spared ; but Khurshid's successor, Mohammed, disregarded a 
pledge which he did not consider binding on his master. On 
February 5, 1822 he visited Ali in a little convent on the 
island, and, as he departed, stabbed him to the heart. But the 
present writer was shown the bullet-marks, which, according to 
the local tradition, were made by the missiles of the soldiers, 
who killed the old lion by firing through the wooden floor. 
Thus, at the age of 82, perished the able but unscrupulous 
tyrant in the midst of that beautiful lake, which had witnessed 

v] Massacre of Chios 79 

the last struggles of so many of his victims and which a 
romantic poem has connected with the drowning of the fair 
Euphros^ne. The head of the old pasha, with those of his 
three sons and his grandson, after being exhibited at Constanti- 
nople, was buried beyond the Selymbria gate of the Turkish 
capital ; and a tomb on the cliff above the lake of Joannina 
and a Greek inscription outside the water-gate still preserve in 
his old residence the memory of one of the few Albanians 
whose fame has penetrated beyond the mountains of their 
savage native land. 

If the dramatic punishment of Ali Pasha impressed 
European statesmen with the growing authority of the Sultan 
in Epirus, another event gained for the Greeks the sympathy 
of the whole civilised world. Of all the islands in the 
Archipelago the richest and most pacific was Chios, whose 
famous mastic-gardens were an appanage of the Sultan's wives. 
The prosperity and the character of the Chians rendered them 
unwilling to risk their lives and property in the doubtful 
cause of the revolution ; and this conduct, without gaining 
them the confidence of the Turks, lost them the esteem of 
the Greeks. Against the express desire of the inhabitants, 
who had little wish to be saved from a tyranny which in 
their case was not oppressive, a Chian named Bournias, 
who had served in the French army, and a Samian ad- 
venturer called Lykoiirgos Logothetes, who had become 
almost dictator of his native island, landed in Chios in March 
1822, and occupied the capital. The capitan-pasha there- 
upon disembarked a large force at Chios ; the Turks captured 
the town, and put to the sword every Greek whom they met ; 
and nothing but a desire to preserve the mastic-gardens induced 
the capitan-pasha to offer an amnesty to the survivors. The 
two promoters of the abortive insurrection fled from the island, 
where 46 smoking villages, a ruined city, and a hecatomb of 
corpses testified to the rashness of their enterprise. Thousands 
of Chians were dragged away as slaves ; thousands more begged 

8o The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

their bread as penniless exiles. Their sufferings aroused the 
desire of their fellow- Greeks for vengeance; and a fleet under 
Andrew Miaoilles, a brave Hydriote who had issued from his 
hardly-won repose at the call of his country, sailed for the 
devastated island. On the night of June i8, while the capitan- 
pashawas celebrating the approaching moon of Bairam, Constan- 
tine Kanares, a young sailor from Psara, steered a fireship towards 
the vessel of the Turkish admiral, which perished in the flames 
with nearly all its crew. Panic seized the rest of the Turkish 
captains, who cut their cables and fled, while their infuriated 
compatriots on the island avenged the death of the admiral, 
who had been borne ashore only to die of his wounds, by 
sacking the mastic-villages, which had been spared till then. 
This act of vengeance completed the ruin of what had been the 
most flourishing of Greek islands ; it was calculated that of the 
113,000 Christians, whom Chios contained in April, only 1800 
remained there in August. Of the rest 23,000 had been slain, 
47,000 sold into slavery, and the others scattered to every part 
of the Hellenic world. The destruction of Chios was the gain 
of Syra ; for it was a body of Chian exiles who founded the 
new and Orthodox of Syra's twin towns, and introduced that 
delightful industry the manufacture of "Turkish delight," of 
which Syra has the monopoly. In 1825 the new town was 
christened by Luke Rhalles " Hermoilpolis " from the god of 
commerce, which was the main occupation of its industrious 
colonists ^ 

In the spring of 1822 the Sultan, having already recovered 
possession of Thessaly and Joannina, ordered the double 
invasion of Greece on the east and on the west. But before 
Dramali, who was entrusted with the command of the western 
army, had begun operations, the Turks who still held the 
Akropolis of Athens had capitulated. On June 2 1 the articles 
of capitulation, of which the second guaranteed the lives of the 
garrison, were signed; but the rumour of Dramali's advance 

^ AeXriop rrjs 'laropiKrji Kal 'EdvoXoyiKrjs 'EratpLas, iv, 481. 

v] Theodore Kolokotrdnes 8i 

created a panic among the Athenians. Many fled, as of old, 
to Salamis, while the soldiery fell upon the Turks, of whom 
several hundreds were massacred and the rest escaped only 
thanks to the arrival of two French warships and to the 
courage of the consuls. The anarchy which prevailed there 
was ended by a summons to Odysseiis to occupy the Akropolis, 
where till 1888 a bastion, which he built to protect the ancient 
Klepsydra and thus secure himself a supply of water, remained 
to associate the name of this revolutionary leader with the 
sacred rock. Meanwhile Dramali invaded the Morea with a 
pomp and circumstance which recalled the Turkish expedition 
to recover it from the Venetians 107 years earlier. But, 
although the Turkish commander at first carried all before him, 
although Acro-Corinth was abandoned by its garrison and he 
advanced as far as Argos, disease and the lack of forage com- 
pelled him to fall back upon the Isthmus. The Greek 
generalissimo was the celebrated leader of irregulars, Theodore 
Kolokotrdnes, already a man of fifty-one at the outbreak of the 
revolution. Brought up in the Spartan rigour of Maina, 
where his father had sought refuge from his native district 
of Karytaina from the Turks, he had pursued the career of arms 
as a brigand till the Morea was too hot to hold him. Escaping 
thence to Zante in the time of the " Septinsular Republic," 
he took part as a privateer in the last Russo-Turkish war; 
entering the service of the British, when they captured Zante 
from the French, he assisted in the assault upon Santa Mavra ; 
and he was carrying on the trade of a cattle-dealer when the 
rumours of the revolution reached him.. Returning from Zante 
to Maina, he was present when Kalamata fell ; and his skill in 
klephtic warfare, combined with his native common-sense, 
won him the first place among the military leaders. His 
plumed helmet, so familiar to every traveller in Greece, gave 
him a picturesque appearance ; of all the chieftains of the War 
of Independence he is still the most popular; and his statues 
at Athens and Nauplia are the tribute of the people's admiration 
M. L. 6 

82 The War of Greek Independence [cH. 

for his adventurous career and his patriotic services. But on 
this occasion the glory of a great victory was reserved for his 
nephew Niketas. In the pass of Dervenaki, through which 
now runs the railway between Corinth and Argos, Niketas fell 
upon the Turkish vanguard, and his personal prowess that day 
won him the name of the " Turk-eater." Dramali himself with 
the rest of his troops sustained a similar defeat, and died at 
Corinth before the year was over. Thus ingloriously ended 
the great Turkish invasion of the Morea in 1822. 

On the west, however, whither Mavrokordatos had betaken 
himself, the Greeks were less successful. On July 16, the 
Greeks and a corps of Philhellenes, which had been formed 
two months earlier, were defeated at Peta a couple of miles 
above the famous bridge of Arta, owing to the treachery of a 
local chieftain. The Philhellenes, many of them seasoned 
warriors, were cut to pieces after a heroic struggle. On the 
same day Kyriakoiiles Mavromichales, brother of the Bey of 
Maina, was killed near the Epirote haven of Phanari in the 
attempt to co-operate with the Souliotes. These twin disasters 
induced them to capitulate, and they returned to the Ionian 
Islands, whither the terrified peasantry of Akarnania also 
sought safety under the British protectorate. The most cele- 
brated of the Souliotes, Marko B6tzares, remained, however, to 
fight and fall for the Greek cause on the continent. Thus 
freed from the dangers of an attack from the men of Soiili, 
Omer Vri6nes, who had succeeded Ali as pasha of Joannina, 
was at last able to march to the south and besiege Mesol6nghi. 
But this first siege of Mesol6nghi failed, whereas on the other 
side of Greece the close of the year witnessed the capitulation 
of the Turkish garrison of Nauplia, which was saved from 
pillage and massacre by the intervention of a British Philhellene, 
Captain Hamilton. In Crete, however, this second year of the 
insurrection had been unpropitious to the Christians. Hypse- 
lantes, at the request of the Cretans, had sent thither towards 
the end of 1821 a Russian Greek, who signed himself "Michael 

v] Crete 83 

Komnenos Afentoiilief " and boasted his descent from the 
Byzantine Emperors, as their leader and his representative. A 
diplomatist without military capacity is not the man to manage 
that turbulent island, whose tall warriors looked down with 
scorn upon this short and limping penman, who styled himself 
" Generalissimo and Administrator of all Crete." The murder 
of Anthony Melidones, one of the most successful leaders, by 
a jealous Sphakiote chief, further weakened the Christian 
cause ; a fresh organiser was sent to the island by the Greek 
government; and in the midst of this confusion an Egyptian 
fleet anchored in Suda bay. The Sphakiotes, who had begun 
the insurrection, were resolved to direct it ; and the descendant 
of the house of Komnenos, " placed between the tiger and the 
panther," withdrew to Malta. In his place Handles Tombazes, 
a member of the well-known Hydriote family, arrived as 
Harmostes (or Commissioner) — the first application of that 
since familiar term, already current among the lonians, to the 
Governor of the great Greek island. 

The mandate of the Greek legislature had now expired; 
and a second National Assembly accordingly met at Astros 
on the gulf of Nauplia early in 1823. After introducing 
a few modifications into the Constitution of Epidauros, the 
deputies appointed a new executive of five persons, of whom 
Petrobey was the president, Mavrokordatos being degraded to 
a secretaryship of state, while Hypselanteswas ignored altogether. 
Unfortunately the discussions at Astros accentuated the differ- 
ences already existent between the party of the primates, of 
which Petrobey was the leader, and that of the military men, 
headed by Kolokotrones ; while local and personal jealousies 
within the ranks of both parties demonstrated that human 
nature had changed as little as topography since the days of 
ancient Greece. It was already becoming apparent that a 
foreign prince would be the only possible head of the new 
Greek state, for no Greek would consent to recognise another 
Greek as his sovereign ; and already men's eyes began to turn 


§4 ^^^ War of Greek Independence [ch. 

to the ever-useful house of Saxe-Coburg, whose special function 
it is to provide sovereigns of any religion for any throne. 
Moreover, it was becoming obvious that public opinion in the 
west of Europe would ultimately compel the governments to 
pay attention to the claims of Greece. A Greek committee 
was formed in London and affiliated with those of Germany 
and Switzerland. The Congress of Verona might, indeed, 
refuse to admit the Greek delegates; but George Canning, 
who had succeeded Castlereagh as Foreign Secretary, was 
known to have Philhellenic sympathies. He recognised the 
Greeks as belligerents, and assigned Kalamos, one of the 
insular dependencies of the Ionian Islands, to the fugitives as 
a place of refuge. The rigorous measures of Sir Thomas 
Maitland could not prevent the lonians from showing sympathy 
with their fellow-Greeks of the mainland ; but the violation of 
Ionian neutrality in Cerigo, Zante, and Ithaca was severely 
punished, and the consequent execution of several lonians 
rendered the protectorate unpopular. On the other hand, 
Russia disillusioned any who still believed in the sincerity of 
her Philhellenism by proposing in January 1824 the creation of 
three separate vassal Greek principalities — Eastern Greece 
(Thessaly, Boeotia, and Attica) ; Western Greece (Epirus and 
Akarnania) ; and the Morea with the possible addition of 
Crete — under native officials, appointed by, and tributary to, 
the Sultan. This arrangement, although it had the merit of 
including Epirus and Crete, excluded the Archipelago, which 
was to have the restoration of its old municipal privileges, and 
would have left Greece in the position of the Danubian Princi- 
palities — weak, divided, and dependent upon Russia. The 
leading Greek families would alone have gained ; like the 
Phanariotes in Moldavia and Wallachia, they would have 
looked for advancement to the Sultan, while the (Ecumenical 
Patriarch, whom Russia suggested as the spokesman of the 
three principalities at Constantinople, would have been his 

v] Lord Byron 85 

The military operations of 1823 were less important than 
those of the previous years. At the outset the Turks were 
crippled by the conflagration of the arsenal at Constantinople 
— an outrage attributed to the Janissaries, anxious for a pretext 
for postponing their march against the Greeks. Nevertheless, 
the Sultan was now free from the distraction of the war against 
Persia, which had hitherto compelled him to fight in Asia as well 
as in Europe. His commanders subdued the last remnant of 
the insurrection in Thessaly by the reduction of Trikeri, and 
plundered the village of Kastrf, which then (but now no 
longer) concealed the treasures of Delphi. From Scutari in 
Albania an army of Mohammedan Ghegs and Catholic 
Mirdites, the latter ever ready to fight against the Orthodox, 
descended into western Greece ; and in a battle against these 
northern Albanians at Karpenesi on August 21 the heroic 
Souliote, Marko B6tzares, met his- death. His body was 
borne to Mesolonghi and there interred, amidst universal 
lamentation. His tomb , may still be seen in the local 
" Hereon," where ere long the heart of one greater than he was 
destined to be laid to rest. 

Lord Byron had arrived in Cephalonia in the very month 
of Botzares' death ; and his active participation in the defence 
of Greece contributed almost more than any other event to 
popularise the Hellenic cause in Europe. The great poet was 
no stranger to the Greeks or to their language. Twelve years 
earlier he had indited from the interior of the Choragic Monu- 
ment of Lysikrates, transformed into a study of Capuchin 
monks, his " Curse of Minerva " against the "plunderer " of the 
Elgin Marbles. He had translated the famous war-song of 
Rhegas, and had now come to prove that he could not only 
praise the virtues of ancient Greece but also imitate them. 
Yet Lord Byron, although a poet, had no illusions. He did 
not land in Hellas prepared to find it peopled with the im- 
possible heroes of Plutarch ; he expected the Greeks to be 
what centuries of Turkish rule might have been naturally 

86 The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

anticipated to make them ; and consequently he was neither 
disheartened nor disillusioned, when he had to do with men 
who were neither saints nor sages but human beings barely 
emancipated from a demoralising form of government, for 
which no adequate substitute had yet been found. In order 
not to compromise himself with any political party until he had 
studied the state of affairs, he remained for four months in 
Cephalonia. Meanwhile, negotiations for a Greek loan had 
been conducted. The first idea of the Greeks had been to 
raise money by restoring the island of Rhodes, its former seat, 
to the Order of the Knights of St John, to which Syra and 
three smaller islands were to be assigned provisionally. But 
this picturesque revival of Prankish Greece was abandoned for 
a more practical scheme, by which a nominal sum of ;^8oo,ooo 
(really only ;£"2 80,000) was raised in London. 

While Lord Byron was still in Cephalonia, the Greeks 
obtained two successes. In the east they recovered the 
citadel of Corinth ; in the west they compelled the Turks to 
abandon the siege of Anatolik6n. But the quarrels between 
the military and the political parties in the Morea had 
developed into civil war, the first but not the last occasion 
when Greek fought Greek, instead of joining in an united 
attack upon the common foe. This fratricidal struggle, which 
Lord Byron endeavoured to compose, was provoked by Kolo- 
kotr6nes, who, like another Cromwell, sent his son Pdnos to 
dissolve the legislature, then sitting at Argos, by force of arms. 
Most of the deputies reconstituted themselves a legislature at 
Kranidi opposite H)^dra, declared the executive deposed, and 
appointed a new committee in its place, with George Koun- 
touri6tes, a Hydriote, as its president. Thus Greece had two 
hostile governments, one established at Kranidi and supported 
by the shipowners of the Nautical Islands of H^dra and Sp^tsai, 
the primates, and the military chiefs of continental Greece ; and 
the other sitting at Tripolitsa, and deriving its authority from 
the prowess of Kolokotr6nes and his personal followers. This 

v] Byron at Mesoldnghi 87 

struggle was proceeding when, on January 5, 1824, Lord Byron 
arrived at Mesol6nghi; and what he both saw and heard 
confirmed his opinion that Greece in the throes of revolution 
required practical methods of government instead of the 
theories of Bentham. It seemed to him that the publication 
of newspapers, so eagerly recommended by the " typographical 
Colonel " Leicester Stanhope, who was with him, would inflame 
the party feelings, rather than edify the minds, of those who 
could read them. However Stanhope insisted on issuing, 
under the editorship of a Swiss Republican named Meyer, the 
first Greek newspaper published on Greek soil, if we except a 
few fly-sheets issued at Kalamata three years before. Thus, 
on the mud-flats of Mesoldnghi, began on January 12, 1824, 
with The Greek Chronicles^ that press ^ which is so characteristic 
a feature of modern Greek life. Byron unhappily did not live 
to see the conclusion of even the civil war, which he had 
endeavoured to allay. On April 19 he died at Mesoldnghi, 
where his heart still reposes. He had given his time, his 
means, and at last his life for the cause of Greece ; and Greece 
has never forgotten his services. The historian Spyridon 
Trikoiipes, himself a native of Mesoldnghi, pronounced over his 
body a funeral oration, which is considered a model of Greek 
prose ; statues have arisen in his honour ; streets have been 
called by his name ; and in many a remote island, in many a 
mountain village men still speak of Byron, as if he had died 
but yesterday — a happy exception to the cynical maxim of Lord 
Salisbury that there is no gratitude in international politics. 

The year was not over before a second civil war had broken 
out, in which the English loan, instead of being devoted 
exclusively to the national defences, was frittered away in party 
jealousies. This " War of the Primates," as it was called, arose 
out of the antipathy felt by the Moreotes for an executive, the 
majority of whose members came from the Nautical Islands and 

^ Part of this printing-press is preserved in the Museum of " the Historical 
and Ethnological Society" at Athens. 

88 7^ he War of Greek Independence [ch. 

the continent. The leaders of the Moreote party were the two 
Andrews — Zafmes of Kalavryta, member of a family which has 
given more than one statesman to Greece; and Ldntos of 
Vostitsa, a friend of Byron, who had caroused with him when 
they were young ; with them was Sisines, or Sessini, of Gastodni 
in Elis, whose name denoted his Venetian origin, who from 
the neighbouring Glarentza jocularly called himself " Duke of 
Clarence" and kept up a style worthy of a Turkish pasha. 
The soul of the executive was John Kolettes, the future Prime 
Minister and diplomatist, a native of the Epirote village of 
Syrakou, who had begun life as physician to Ali Pasha's son 
Mukhtar and had learned statecraft at the court of Joannina. 
Kolettes had already taken an active part in the revolution. 
After inciting his native village to revolt, he had become 
Minister of War under the Constitution of Epidauros ; but this 
ex-doctor was a better politician than soldier ; and, if he gained 
little renown in the field, his talents gained him a place on the 
executive, of which Kountouri6tes was the nominal head. 
On this occasion his energy speedily crushed the rebellious 
primates; Kolokotrdnes, who had espoused their cause, was 
imprisoned in H^dra, and his son Panos slain ; the two 
Andrews fled across the gulf of Corinth ; Sessini was refused 
admission to Zante. The " War of the Primates " had ended 
with their complete failure. 

While the Greek leaders were fighting among themselves, a 
new and formidable enemy had appeared in Greek waters. 
Unable to make headway single-handed against the insurgents, 
Mahmtid II had been forced to seek the aid of his vassal, 
Mehemet Ali, the pasha of Egypt, an Albanian who had risen 
from tobacco-dealing in his native Ka valla to the position of a 
modern Pharaoh. Mahmiid had already employed him against 
the Wahabis in Arabia; he now asked him to assist in 
subduing the Greeks, and appointed Mehemet's son Ibrahim 
pasha of the Morea. First, however, it was resolved to crush 
the islanders of Psara and Kassos, the former of which had 

v] Ibrahim! s Expedition 89 

gained world-wide fame as a nursery of bold and skilful seamen, 
while the latter had served as a base for maintaining the 
insurrection in Crete. Both these preliminary enterprises were 
successful. The Albanian troops of the pasha of Egypt effected 
a night-attack upon the rugged island of Kassos, slew the men 
and the old women, and carried off the young women and 
children into slavery. The Turkish soldiers of the capitan-pasha 
almost exterminated the male population of Psara, at that time 
increased by the refugees from Chios ; and hundreds of heads 
and ears of the slain were exposed with a pompous inscription 
to the gaze of the faithful at Constantinople. The survivors 
fled to Aigina, Spetsai, and Syra, while some founded on the 
site of the classic Eretria a colony which they called New 
Psara. These two successive blows to the Greek cause were 
followed by a series of naval engagements, which retarded the 
arrival of Ibrahim in the Morea. On the way he put into Suda 
bay ; but it was unnecessary for him to land in Crete, for the 
Cretan insurrection was by that time over, thanks to the 
importation of the Egyptian troops and the vaulting ambition 
of the Sphakiotes. Tombazes had left the island ; and, amidst 
horrors such as the suffocation of hundreds of Christians by 
smoke in a cavern, the Cretan rising had smouldered out in the 
spring of 1824. Ibrahim pursued his course to the Morea; 
and with his landing there at the former Venetian colony of 
Modon on February 24, 1825, the second phase of the war began. 
Ibrahim's first movement was directed against the two 
fortresses which commanded the bay of Navarino — the " new 
castle" at the south entrance, and the "old castle" at the 
north. But it became apparent that the key of the position 
was the island of Sphakteria, which lies, like some huge 
cetacean, across the bay, and which, at the eleventh hour, was 
occupied by Mavrokordatos with a chosen band of soldiers, 
among them the Piedmontese Philhellene, Count Santa Rosa, 
who, exiled for his attempts to establish freedom in his own 
country, had come to fight for that of Greece. An hour 

90 The War of Greek Independence [ch, 

sufficed for the capture of this historic island, which, twenty- 
three centuries before, had witnessed the Spartan defeat, 
immortalised by Thucydides. The Italian historian of the 
modern battle on Sphakteria could not pretend to the skill of 
the great Greek writer, but at least in his friend and country- 
man Santa Rosa he found a hero, worthy of a place beside any 
Spartan. Although wounded, Santa Rosa refused to yield ; and 
his name, with that of the Hydriote Tsamados, who fell with 
him, is still associated with the bay of Navarino. A monument 
there preserves his memory; and 72 years later his heroism 
inspired another of his compatriots, Antonio Fratti, on the 
fatal field of Domok6s. Mavrokordatos with difficulty escaped. 
The capture of Sphakteria was the prelude of the capitulation 
of both the "old" and the "new castles" — disasters for 
which the destruction of a part of the Egyptian fleet by 
Miaoiiles at Modon only partially atoned. The loss of Navarino 
had at least one good result, that it convinced the Greek execu- 
tive of the necessity for union. Kountouri6tes had displayed 
such a lack of energy in his measures for the defence of that 
important position, that it was felt that the Morea must be 
defended by the Moreote chiefs. Accordingly an amnesty was 
granted to the vanquished of the late civil war; the fugitive 
primates resumed their authority ; Kolokotr6nes was appointed 
commander-in-chief in the Morea. 

The Egyptian successes, however, continued. The Archi- 
mandrite Dikaios, better known as Papaphlessas, who had 
been the most energetic member of the " Friendly Society " in 
the Peloponnese, but whose courage and dissipation had led 
him to be styled the Alkibiades of the revolution, was cut down 
after a brave stand at Maniaki ; Kolokotr6nes was defeated in 
the pass of Makryplagi, the scene of so many battles ; and 
Ibrahim, despite a check inflicted upon him by Hypselantes at 
the mills of Lerna, marched towards Nauplia, then the seat of 
the Greek government. But the Egyptians were unable to 
undertake the siege of that strong fortress ; so they returned to 

v] Death of Odysseus 91 

Tripolitsa, whence, after again defeating Kolokotr6nes, they 
proceeded to ravage the Morea with fire and sword till Ibrahim 
received orders to cross over into continental Greece and assist 
in the second siege of Mesol6nghi, the most heroic incident of 
the whole war. 

Reshid Pasha, the victor of Peta, had begun the siege 
towards the end of April ; but it was not till the arrival of the 
Turkish fleet in July that he made sufficient progress to offer 
terms to the besieged. His offer was rejected ; and the appear- 
ance of the Greek fleet dispersed the Turkish vessels, raised the 
maritime blockade, and re-victualled the town. It should then 
have been possible, as the besiegers had lost command of the 
sea, to cut off their communications by land. But, although 
George Karaiskakes intercepted some of their supplies, the 
leaders of the insurgents in continental Greece did little to 
save the place. The most famous of them, the klepht Odysseds, 
had met with a terrible end. This former favourite of Ali 
Pasha had been long suspected of scheming to obtain a 
province for himself from the Turks, who seemed more likely 
to appreciate his abilities than was the Greek executive. At 
last an overt act of treachery was discovered, and Odysseds 
forced to surrender to Gkouras, his old lieutenant. The former 
master of Athens was dragged up to the Akropolis amid the 
execrations of the Athenians, and imprisoned in the Prankish 
tower, which then stood near the temple of Wingless Victory. 
There, on July 16, his corpse was found lying at the base of 
the tower, the victim not of a fall, as was pretended, but of his 
keeper's hand. The tower, and the bastion that he built, have 
both vanished ; but the son of Androdtsos still retains a place 
in the history of the city, which he had once governed, while 
his bust now stands in that " new Thermopylae " which he had 
made, the pass of Gravia — an exploit which should be set 
against his treachery. Trelawny, his son-in-law, for a time 
held out in a cave of Parnass6s, where two British adventurers 
attempted to assassinate the friend of Shelley. 

92 The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

The arrival of Ibrahim before Mesol6nghi put a new 
complexion upon the siege. In March, 1826, Anatolikon on 
an island in the lagoon, which had repelled a former attack, 
capitulated; and the loss of this outwork of Mesoldnghi induced 
Sir Frederick Adam, who in 1824' had succeeded Sir Thomas 
Maitland as Lord High Commissioner in the Ionian Islands, to 
offer his mediation — an offer refused by the confident pashas, 
as was equally a summons from them to surrender by the 
stubborn defenders. Provisions had by this time begun to fail, 
so that the only hope was the return of the Greek fleet to 
relieve them. But Miaoules, when he reappeared, was unable 
to enter the shallows near Mesol6nghi and retired before the 
enemy's largely superior navy. No other alternatives remained 
to the garrison but surrender or a sortie. It chose the latter ; 
and on the night of April 22, after signalling to Karaiskakes, 
who was to attack the besiegers in the rear, some 7,000 men, 
women, and children prepared to sally through the Mussulman 
lines. Only 3000 of them were combatants, while the rest of 
the 9000, who formed the total population of the town, were 
too old, too ill, or too much attached to their old home to leave 
it. The women wore male attire ; the boys who could use 
pistols were armed ; while those who remained shut themselves 
up in a ruined windmill and in the great magazine, where the 
powder was stored. Unluckily a Bulgarian deserter had 
betrayed the impending sortie to the enemy, who had therefore 
time to make preparations. For some time after crossing the 
ditch the garrison, commanded by N6tes Botzares, Kitsos 
Tsavellas, and Makres, waited under fire till Karaiskakes 
should appear ; then, when there was still no sign of his 
approach, they sprang, with shouts of "forward," at the 
besiegers, slew the artillerymen and cut their way into the open 
plain. The people behind them, however, seized with a panic, 
began to shout " back," and fled in confusion into the town. 
Those who had escaped from the besiegers' lines fell into 
an Albanian ambuscade, and the survivors with difificulty 

v] Fall of Mesoldnghi 93 

reached Karaiskakes' camp. Next morning Ibrahim's troops 
entered the town, only to meet with a determined resistance 
from those who had remained there, and who fired the powder- 
magazines rather than fall alive into their enemy's hands. It 
is calculated that about 2000 escaped to tell the tale of the 
great sortie, besides some 3000 prisoners. Among those who 
fell were Meyer, the editor of the Mesolonghiote newspaper, 
and the patriot magnate of Patras, Papadiamant6poulos. 
These men and others like them have conferred upon the 
little Aitolian fishing-town a fame which will last as long as 
the Greek nation. Every year a solemn procession of the 
inhabitants commemorates the heroic sortie; and the second 
siege of Mesolonghi has taken its place among the famous 
sieges of history. 

After the fall of this coveted place, the two pashas separated, 
Ibrahim returning to ravage the Morea, Reshid remaining to 
complete the pacification of western Greece. Meanwhile, the 
new turn that the war had taken since the intervention of the 
Egyptians made the Greeks desirous to obtain peace, provided 
that they did not lose their practical independence so dearly 
bought by five years of continuous fighting. External diffi- 
culties as well as domestic dissensions had convinced most of 
them that the protection of some great foreign Power was 
necessary to them; but, while one faction favoured Russia, and 
another suggested the Due de Nemours as a French candidate 
for the throne, a third wished to place the whole country, like 
the Ionian Islands, under the suzerainty of Great Britain — a 
proposal actually passed by the Assembly at Nauplia in August 
1825. This action strengthened the hands of George Canning, 
the British Foreign Secretary ; and Stratford Canning, the new 
British ambassador at Constantinople, met Mavrokordatos at 
Hydra on his way out, to discuss the conditions of British 
mediation. The Assembly formally authorised the ambassador 
to treat on behalf of Greece, including Crete, on the basis 
of tributary autonomy under the suzerainty of the Sultan. 

94 The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

Meanwhile, the Duke of Wellington had induced the new Tsar 
Nicholas I to sanction the signature, on April 4, 1826, of a 
protocol, with the view of obtaining for the Greeks, ©n payment 
of an annual tribute to the Porte, the exclusive right of 
managing their internal affairs. This was the first effective 
diplomatic step of the Powers towards Greek independence. 

In the summer of 1826 Reshid marched from western 
Greece into Attica to undertake the next important operation 
of the war — the siege of Athens. On August 15 he took the 
city by storm, forcing the Athenians to take refuge in the 
Akropolis, then commanded by Gkouras. An attempt to 
recover the city was made by Karaiskakes, whom the newly- 
elected executive, presided over by Andrew Zaimes, had 
appointed to the supreme command in eastern Greece, and by 
Colonel Fabvier, an experienced French ofificer, who had been 
entrusted by the Greek government with the organisation of a 
regular corps. The Turks repulsed the relieving force at 
Chaidari near the monastery of Daphni, and proceeded to 
bombard the Akropolis, as Morosini had done 140 years before, 
and to mine the theatre of Her6des Atticus. The position of 
the garrison seemed to be desperate, when its commander was 
killed by a bullet as he was going his nightly rounds. But 
Kriez6tes, a daring leader of irregulars, managed to traverse 
the Turkish lines and enter the fortress, whither Fabvier 
followed him with a considerable force on December 13. But 
this exploit increased the difficulties of accommodation, for the 
sacred rock was already crowded ; and, despite a firman, 
obtained by Stratford Canning, which forbade the bombard- 
ment of the ancient monuments, the roof of the Erechtheion 
collapsed and buried beneath its ruins the widow of Gkoiiras 
and a number of Athenian ladies. One attempt after another 
was made to raise the siege. General Gordon, the historian of 
the revolution, occupied on February 5, 1827, the classic hill 
of Mounychia; while Colonel Boiirbaki, a Cephalonian who had 
served in the French army, approached Athens from the north- 

v] Capitulation of the Akropolis 95 

west. But this concerted attack failed ; Boiirbaki was killed in 
the plain near Kamaterdn and his head sent to Constantinople ; 
Gordon was compelled to defend Mounychia. Nor was Colonel 
Heideck, the agent of the King of Bavaria, that warm friend of 
the Greek cause, more fortunate in an expedition to Oropos. 
The enterprise was then entrusted to two distinguished British 
officers,. Lord Cochrane, who had seen service in South America, 
and Sir Richard Church, who had fought in Egypt, Italy, and 
the Ionian Islands, where he had been wounded at Santa 
Mavra and had made the acquaintance and gained the respect 
of Kolokotr6nes and other Greek chiefs. In the spring of 
1827 these two foreigners were appointed respectively to 
command the naval and military forces of Greece. Both 
concentrated their efforts upon the Piraeus, where Karaiskakes 
co-operated with them. 

Three successive misfortunes marked the course of these 
operations. A brilliant charge against the Turkish positions 
round the Piraeus was followed by the massacre of the Albanians 
who had surrendered the monastery of St Spiridon under 
promise that their lives should be spared. In a subsequent 
skirmish Karaiskakes, " at one moment," as he himself phrased 
it, "an angel, at another a devil," but latterly more of an 
" angel " than " devil," was mortally wounded at the spot where 
his monument now stands ; and with him expired one of the 
most popular leaders of the revolution. And on the morrow 
of his death Sir Richard Church received a crushing defeat at 
Phaleron, which compelled him to abandon his position at 
Mounychia. Thus, the garrison of the Akropolis was left to its 
fate ; on June 5 the capitulation was signed ; a marble tablet 
in the Odeion of Herddes Atticus now commemorates Fabvier's 
defence. After a Greek occupation of five years and a Turkish 
siege of ten months, the " castle of Athens " owned once more, 
and that for the last time, the authority of the Sultan. The 
whole of continental Greece had been subdued ; the capture of 
Athens had completed what the siege of Mesolonghi had begun. 

g6 The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

Happily for Greece, a month after the surrender of the Akropolis, 
Great Britain, France, and Russia signed the treaty of July 6. 

While the Turks had been besieging Athens, the Greek 
politicians had convened a third National Assembly at Damala, 
the picturesque village, a Prankish barony in the middle ages, 
which stands on the site of the ancient Troizen, whence this 
parliament takes its name. The convergence at this spot of 
the two rival factions — that of the government from Aigina, and 
that of the opposition under Kolokotr6nes from Hermi6ne 
(the modern Kastri) — was due to Lord Cochrane, who advised 
the latter party to read the first " Philippic " of Demosthenes 
and act upon the advice which it contained. There, in the 
romantic setting of a lemon garden, which served as a parlia- 
ment-house, the Assembly on April 14 elected Count John 
Capo dTstria President {Kv^epv7JTr]<;) of Greece, which was to 
include all the provinces that had taken up arms, for the term 
of seven years. Pending his arrival, a commission of three — 
George Mavromichales (who was subsequently to be his 
assassin), Milaetes, and Nakos, all little-known and untried 
men — was to carry on the government. The election of Capo 
dTstria was due to the Russophil party, of which Kolokotr6nes 
was the leader, assisted by the Francophil section under 
Kolettes and Kountouriotes since the jealousy of Charles X 
for the house of Orleans had rendered the candidature of 
the Due de Nemours impossible. The choice made by the 
Assembly, although it displeased many, had much at that 
time to recommend it. Capo d'Istria was the most distinguished 
living Greek diplomatist ; he had influence with the Tsar ; 
he was a proved patriot ; but great diplomatists are rarely 
constructive statesmen, while patriotism loses practical value 
in one who, from years of absence abroad, has lost touch with 
his country. Capo dlstria had known the Ionian Islands, but 
he did not know the rest of Greece, where society was very 
different from that of CorfCi. Born under Venetian rule, he 
did not even write Greek correctly. But he was honest ; he 

v] Treaty ^1827 97 

was indicated; even the British, men like Cochrane, Church 
and Hamilton recognised that he was inevitable. For every 
friend of Greece saw that what she wanted was unity ; and the 
Corfiote Count seemed to be the only available person who 
could secure it. The result showed that Capo d'Istria brought 
not peace but a sword. 

The acquiescence of the three Greek parties in his election 
was quickly followed by an agreement between the three 
Powers which they respectively favoured. On July 6, 1827, 
Great Britain, France, and Russia signed in London a treaty, 
pledging them to mediate and meanwhile to demand an im- 
mediate armistice from both Greece and Turkey. Tributary 
autonomy under the Sultan's suzerainty was defined as the form 
of the new Greek state that was to be created. An additional 
artide.43rQvidedthat,j[LtheJPorte did not accept their mediation 
within a month, the Powers would establish consular relations 
with the Greek-Government ; and that they would prevent, so 
far as possible, all collisions between the belligerents ''without, 
however, taking any part in the hostilities." Instructions were 
sent to the naval commanders of the three Powers; and Admiral 
Codrington proceeded to notify the Greek government of the 
armistice, which was accepted by it, but refused by the Sultan. 
Yet, notwithstanding the armistice. Captain Hastings, the 
Philhellene, with his corvette, the Karteria {^Perseverance)^ 
defeated a Turkish flotilla at the landing-place for Delphi and 
Salona. I brahim, burning to revenge this attack, was compelled 
by Codrington to return to the bay of Navarino, where both 
the Egyptian and the Turkish fleets were blockaded by the 
three admirals. Ibrahim, if unable to issue from the bay, was, 
however, still free to ravage the country behind it ; accordingly, 
warned by the approach of the stormy season and desirous of 
preventing the further devastation of the Morea, the three allied 
fleets entered the bay on October 20. ^odring^toiyspriiers were 
that no cannon should be fired until the Turks began ;_ but Ihe 
Mussulmans saw at once that a battle was inevitable,^ and Jtod 
M. L. 7 

98 The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

the_^st shot_ at ^e^DartmoUth^s long-bo at, sent to pa rley. 
The Dartmouth and the French flag-ship retaliated with a 
discharge of musketry ; an Egyptian vessel replied with a 
cannon shot, and the firing then became general ; when the 
sun arose next morning, only 29 of the 82 vessels that had 
composed the Turkish and Egyptian fleets remained afloat. 
The defeated had lost 6000, the allies only 172 men, whose 
memory is preserved by three monuments on the spot. Never 
since Lepanto had the Turkish empire experienced such a 
naval disaster. 

The news of Navarino caused immense rejoicings in Greece 
and among all those who sympathised with the Greek cause. 
In England, where Canning had meanwhile died, although the 
King was made to describe the battle in his speech from the 
throne as an " untoward event," he decorated Codrington and 
several of the officers who had won what Russell described as 
'-la glorious victory." The Turks took the defeat with calm 
resignation, merely demanding compensation for the loss of 
their ships. The three Powers refused on the ground that 
they had not been the aggressors; and their ambassadors quitted 
Constantinople. Meanwhile the Greeks continued to act as 
belligerents. Church and Hastings were engaged in western 
Greece ; Fabvier invaded Chios. But this second expedition 
to the mastic-island ended in failure ; and its commander soon 
afterwards returned to France. Hastings, whose aim was the 
recapture of Mesolonghi, after some success, was mortally 
wounded before AnatoHk6n, thus adding another British victim 
to those of the fatal lagoon. Many years afterwards, the 
heart of this gallant officer was found by the late Arthur Hill 
in a box in the house of Hastings' friend and old comrade, 
the historian Finlay, at Athens. It now rests in the English 
church there, that pantheon of British Philhellenes, in which 
are commemorated the long and valiant career of Sir Richard 
Church and the brief but heroic life of Clement Harris, who 
seventy years after Hastings fell at Pente Pegadia. The Cretans, 

v] Arrival of Capo d' I stria 99 

too, rose again after Navarino, inspired by fugitives who had 
taken refuge on the rocky islet of Grabotisa off the west coast, 
a stronghold which the Venetians had retained after the 
Turkish conquest of Crete till 1691, and which had latterly 
become a nest of pirates. On that rugged cliff piracy was 
regularly organised ; and the sea-robbers made their obeisances 
before a " klephtic Madonna." But the authorities of Grabotisa 
were patriots as well as pirates ; the local municipality became 
the "Council of Crete"; and with its aid Hajji Michales, an 
Epirote leader, stirred up a fresh insurrection. In 1828, 
however, he was defeated and hacked in pieces by the Turks ; 
and the British cleared out the pirate republic of Grabo(isa at 
the request of Capo d'lstria. 

The President arrived in Greece in January 1828, and 
landed at Nauplia, where his mere presence sufficed to stop 
the civil war that had raged there for months between Theodore 
Grivas, the commander of the great fortress of Palam^di, and 
Stratos, who held Itsh Kaleh, the Akropolis of Nauplia. Thence 
he proceded to Aigina, whither the provisional government had 
removed from the range of Palamedi's cannon, and where he 
received the reports of the ministers for the several departments 
of state. They were certainly not encouraging. The Minister 
of the Interior informed him that the territory which actually 
acknowledged his authority consisted of no more than Aigina, 
P6ros, Salamis, Eleusis, Megara, and a few islands of the 
Aegean. The troops of Ibrahim held a large part of the 
Morea ; continental Greece was almost entirely Turkish ; 
Crete had risen in vain ; Samos was practically independent 
under Logothetes, the promoter of the fatal expedition to Chios. 
Agriculture was at a standstill ; the only profitable trade was 
piracy. The Finance Minister was not more comforting. He 
had, he said, neither treasure nor treasury ; some of the 
revenues had been mortgaged a year in advance to pay the 
legislature ; even the bills of the carpenters who had been at 
work on the presidential abode could not be met. The 


lOO The War of Greek Independence [cH. 

Minister of War lamented the absence of an army, but his 
colleague of the Admiralty was not quite so gloomy ; as for 
justice, the head of that department remembered the adage 
that " the laws are silent in time of war," and was silent also. 
Such was the condition of Greece after nearly seven years of 

Capo d'Istria began his career as President by a coup d'etat. 
The Assembly, which had elected him at Troizen, had also 
drawn up a third constitution, which had declared Greece to 
be an independent, indivisible state, whereas the treaty of 
London aimed at the creation of an autonomous, tributary 
Hellas under the suzerainty of the Sultan. The President, 
as a diplomatist, knew that autonomy was not the same as 
sovereignty, and that the former was all that could be obtained 
for the present. He realised, too, that constitutions and 
representative bodies have a very relative importance in 
countries scarcely emancipated from an oriental despotism 
and still in a state of siege. He therefore persuaded the 
legislature to abdicate its functions, and in its place appointed 
a body, called the " Panhellenion," and composed of 27 
members, forming three committees, administrative, financial, 
and judicial. At the same time he promised to summon a 
fresh National Assembly in three months' time. But, if the 
Greek leaders, who had borne the burden and heat of the 
struggle for independence, were prepared to accept the pro- 
visional dictatorship of the President, they saw no reason why 
they should submit to the authority of his unintelligent elder 
brother, Viaro, and of that brother's bosom friend, whom he 
summoned from Corfu and seated in the " Panhellenion." 
Viaro was his evil genius. As Commissioner of Aigina and 
the Nautical Islands, the home of powerful personages like 
Kountouri6tes, he acted like a petty despot, arresting citizens, 
opening letters, exercising a censorship of the only newspaper 
then published in Greek, and threatening reprisals upon all 
who dared to criticise his very paternal orders. He ordered 

v] Policy of Capo d' I stria loi 

a petition of the Aiginetans to be burnt before their eyes, 
while the President was sufficiently tactless to describe the 
heroes of the revolution — men who had fought while he had 
only written — in unflattering language, calling the primates 
" Christian Turks," the military chiefs *' brigands," the Phana- 
riotes "vessels of Satan," and the literary men "fools." In 
order to prevent the perpetuation of this last species, he drew 
up a strictly professional system of education — for priests at 
Poros, for farmers at Tiryns, for soldiers and sailors at Nauplia 
and Hydra — and would not hear of the foundation of an 
Academy such as Lord Guildford had created in Corfu. He 
believed that character is. more likely to build up a nation 
than learning, and that material prosperity is essential to the 
welfare of a state. But he forgot that he had to deal with a 
race which has a thirst for knowledge, and values the things 
of the intellect above all else. In short, Capo dTstria, honest 
as he was in all his endeavours for the welfare of his country, 
sought to apply to a democratic, highly critical people methods 
which he had learnt in the Venetian society of Corfu and at 
the Russian court. 

He began with finance. Greece had thus far had no national 
coinage ; he endowed her with a silver coin known as a 
phoenix^ and bronze pieces of i, 5, 10, and 20 leptd^ and es- 
tablished a national bank, followed by an issue of paper notes ^ 
but his monetary unit was based upon a fluctuating value, and 
his bank was admittedly only a forced loan. Next he turned 
to the army, formed eight regiments of a thousand men each, 
and placed them under the command of Hypselantes in the 
east and of Church in the west. He divided the Morea into 
seven, and the islands into six provinces, governed by com- 
missioners, and thus weakened the municipal system which 
had so long flourished in Greece. But a long-expected event 
abroad soon over-shadowed these domestic reforms. On 
April 26, 1828, the Tsar declared war upon Turkey, and 

1 Lampros, Mi/crai SeXfSes, 654-64. 

I02 The War of Greek Independence [en. 

thus created a military diversion, which could scarcely fail to 
benefit the Greeks. 

The moment seemed favourable for the accomplishment 
of Russia's traditional aim — the conquest of Constantinople. 
The Turkish fleet had been annihilated at Navarino ; the 
Janissaries had been exterminated a year earlier on the Et 
Meidan, or "Meat Market," of Constantinople by the reforming 
Sultan ; but the reformer had not had time to perfect his 
"new model," and the Greeks, under their Russophil President, 
were still unsubdued. But then, as so often, the power of 
Russia was over-estimated, and the resistance of the Turks 
surpassed expectation. Moreover, the Tsar, while fighting 
Turkey in the Balkans, was not a belligerent in the Aegean. 
Meanwhile, another of the three Powers which had signed the 
treaty of London rendered Greece a great service by ridding 
the Morea of the Egyptian troops. Ibrahim, owing to the 
withdrawal of the allied fleets, had already sent his wounded 
men with some thousands of Greek slaves to Alexandria ; but 
the rest of his army had suffered severely during the winter ; 
and in the summer of 1828 his Albanian garrison of Coron, 
one of the old Venetian colonies at the south of Messenfa, 
mutinied and were allowed by the Greeks to leave the Morea 
for their own country. The French government thereupon 
offered to expel the remainder of Ibrahim's forces. The British 
cabinet accepted the ofl'er ; and on August 30 General Maison 
landed with a French army at Petalidi on the gulf of Coron 
to enforce the evacuation of the peninsula. Codrington had, 
however, already concl uded a convention with Mehemet Ali for the 
removal of the Mussulman troops and the release of the Greek 
slaves. Ibrahim was willing to carry out his father's promise, 
but declined to hand over the Turkish fortresses of Modon, 
Coron, Navarino, Chloumoutsi, Patras, and Rhion, which had 
been specially excluded from the convention. The last-named, 
however, alone resisted ; on October 30 it also surrendered. 
No hostile troops remained in the Morea, where the French, 

v] Protocol (?/" 1829 103 

having thus easily cleared the fortresses, proceeded to clean 
them, to make roads, and to repair the ravages of Ibrahim. 
One of his last acts had been the complete destruction of 
Tripolitsa. So thoroughly did his Arabs carry out his orders, 
that of the former Turkish capital of the Morea the traveller 
can now find little but the foundations of what was once the 
konak of the pasha. In order to preserve the peninsula from 
a further invasion, the Allies by a protocol of November 16 
placed it together with the adjacent islands and the Cyclades 
under their joint guarantee until a definite settlement of the 
Greek question, and allowed France to keep a certain number 
of troops in the Morea ; the rest returned home. 

South of the Isthmus, the war was thus over ; north of it, 
the Turks were so much weakened by the Russian campaign 
and by an Albanian revolt, that the Greeks recovered lost 
ground. Hypselantes occupied Boeotia ; Salona surrendered ; 
the castle of Vdnitza on the Ambrakian gulf capitulated ; 
Lepanto and Mesol6nghi followed. In Crete both parties 
accepted an armistice. Meanwhile, the representatives of the 
three Powers had been discussing the boundaries of the new 
Greek state at Pdros, and their decisions were embodied in the 
London protocol of March 22, 1829. The northern frontier of 
Greece was to be drawn from the Ambrakian to the Pagasaean 
gulf, and was to include on the east Euboea, the islands adjacent 
to the Morea and the Cyclades. The country thus delimited 
was to become an hereditary monarchy under a Christian prince 
to be chosen by, but not from, the dynasties of the three 
protecting Powers, with the consent of the Porte, which he was 
to acknowledge as his suzerain, from which he and his 
successors were to receive their investiture, and to which a 
tribute of 1,500,000 piastres (or some ;£"3o,ooo) should be 
paid. This arrangement displeased alike the Greek politicians 
and the President ; they resented the exclusion of Samos and 
Crete ; he intrigued against the nomination of a foreign prince 
who would take his place. On the other hand, the Sultan was 

I04 The War of Greek Independence [ch. 

willing to concede only the Morea and the adjacent islands. 
But had it not been for the Turcophil inclinations of Lord 
Aberdeen, then Foreign Secretary, the protocol would have 
been forced upon Turkey, and the kingdom of Greece would 
have become an accomplished fact. In these circumstances 
Capo d'Istria performed his long-deferred promise to convoke 
a National Assembly. In order to secure the election of a 
majority favourable to himself, he made an electoral tour of the 
Morea, where he was very popular. Many districts actually 
elected him as their representative^ and, when this was 
declared illegal, mere delegates — "good Christians," as they 
were called — were chosen, who received written instructions 
from their constituents. Mesol6nghi, always to the fore in the 
cause of freedom, protested against this caricature of repre- 
sentative government ; the Nautical Islands naturally voted 
for the Opposition. From Greek lands still in Turkish hands, 
from Epirus and Thessaly, from Chios and Crete, came 
deputies to support him in the fourth National Assembly, 
which met on July 23, 1829 in the ancient theatre of Argos. 
A parliament thus elected provided a majority ready to carry 
out the President's behests. He received full powers of 
negotiation with the Allies ; he appointed six, and selected 
from a list of 63 candidates submitted to him the remaining 2 1 
members of the newly-created Senate, which was to take the 
place of the " Panhelldnion," but with very limited authority; 
his name was to be engraved on the coins ; he was to be the 
first, and for the present the only person, to wear the newly- 
created Order of the Redeemer. Only on one point, the 
ratification of the Allies' decisions, did the Assembly reserve 
its own rights, and this reservation proved a serviceable weapon 
in his hands ; only one protest, a letter from Church, was raised 
against the nepotism which had made the President's younger 
brother, Agostino, his plenipotentiary in western Greece, and 
this protest was rejected. Capo d'Istria seemed to be at the 
summit of his power ; Metternich, who had throughout 

v] Battle of Petra 105 

misjudged the Greek movement, regarded him as irre- 

A few weeks after the close of the Assembly the long-drawn 
war between Greeks and Turks ended. The advance of the 
Russians towards Adrianople had compelled the Sultan to 
withdraw all his available soldiers from Greece ; and a body of 
Albanians under Asian Bey was ordered to escort the Turks 
who still remained in Attica and Bceotia. On his way back 
from Athens, Asian had to traverse the then narrow pass of 
Petra between Levadeia and Thebes, then the Thermopylae of 
Boeotia, but now completely transformed by the draining of the 
Copaic lake. There he found Hypselantes prepared to dispute 
his passage ; and on September 24 Asian sustained so severe a 
defeat from the prince and Kriezotes, that on the morrow he 
signed a capitulation, by which the Turks agreed to evacuate 
all eastern Greece, except the Akropolis of Athens and the 
fortress of Karababa which commands the Euripus. Thus, in 
Finlay's happy phrase, " Prince Demetrius Hypsilantes had the 
honour of terminating the war which his brother had com- 
menced on the banks of the Pruth." 



The War of Independence was over; it remained to fix 
definitely the dimensions and to appoint the ruler of the new 
state. Eleven days before the conclusion of the Greco- 
Turkish hostilities at Petra, Russia had imposed upon the 
Sultan the peace of Adrianople, which included his recognition 
of the treaty of London and of the protocol of March 22. 
The effect of this treaty in London was such that the Duke 
of Wellington, then Prime Minister, abandoned the idea of 
making Greece a vassal principality, and became an advocate 
of an independent Greek kingdom. Twenty-five years later, 
his Foreign Secretary, Lord Aberdeen, confessed that Greece 
owed her escape from vassalage to complete freedom solely 
to the impression created by the treaty of Adrianople. The 
Duke believed the end of Turkey to be at hand ; it was, 
therefore, useless to place Greece beneath a suzerain too feeble 
to defend her. On the other hand he foresaw the further 
aggrandisement of Russia, and he was accordingly anxious that 
Greece, believed to be Russophil, should not be too large. 
What the British Cabinet of that day wanted was a small, 
independent state ; and such were the two leading ideas which 
inspired the fresh protocols, signed by the three Powers on 
February 3, 1830. They decided that Greece should be a com- 
pletely independent state, governed by an hereditary monarch, 
selected outside the reigning families of Great Britain, France, 
and Russia, with the title of " Sovereign Prince of Greece." But 

CH. vi] Prince Leopold chosen King 107 

in consideration of the advantage of independence, "and in 
deference to the desire expressed by the Porte to obtain the 
reduction of the frontiers fixed by the protocol of March 22," 
the frontiers of this principality were to be restricted to the 
mouth of the Sperchei6s on the east, to that of the Acheloos 
on the west. It would have been difficult even for British 
diplomacy, whose geographical ignorance has provoked so many 
complications in the near east, to have drawn a worse frontier. 
The best that could be said of it was that it included Thermo- 
pylae, the glory of ancient, and Mesolonghi, that of modern 
Greece. It sacrificed Akarnania and a large part of Aitolia, 
whose inhabitants had borne a conspicuous part in the struggle ; 
and it thereby abandoned to Turkey the pass of Makryn6ros, the 
Thermopylae of the west. It did, indeed, include Euboea, 
the Devil's Islands, Skyros, and the Cyclades, but it excluded 
Crete, and thus left to Europe a legacy of trouble and expense 
even now unfinished. As usually happens, the best expert 
opinion could have been had for the asking, but was not con- 
sidered. Colonel Leake was then in London ; yet the Foreign 
Office never consulted the famous traveller, who knew northern 
Greece as well as its clerks knew Downing Street. As ruler of 
the new principality the powers proposed Prince Leopold of 
Saxe-Coburg (subsequently first king of the Belgians). This 
was an excellent choice. The Prince, as he afterwards showed 
on the Belgian throne, possessed the qualities of a statesman ; 
he was forty years of age ; he had long been suggested as a 
sovereign for the Greeks ; five years earlier Kountouri6tes had 
commissioned agents to sound him; more recently he had 
himself sent an emissary to study the situation in Greece. 
No one was, therefore, surprised when, eight days later, he 
accepted. As the Porte likewise accepted these last protocols of 
the three Powers, and the Greek people was delighted at Prince 
Leopold's selection, it seemed as if the Greek question were 
settled; so certain did this appear, that France abandoned into 
his hands her ancient protectorate over the Catholics in the 

io8 The Creafiojt of the G7^eek Kingdom [ch. 

Cyclades. But the Allies had reckoned without the President. 
Capo d'Istria cherished the ambition of a life presidency for 
himself ; he was disappointed that he had been overlooked, 
and he saw no reason why he should have sown that a foreigner 
might reap. He, therefore, deliberately set to work to paint 
the condition of Greece in the darkest colours, so as to deter 
the Prince from coming. Leopold himself was disappointed 
at the narrow frontiers of his intended principality; he had 
already written to Lord Aberdeen " that he could imagine no 
effectual mode of pacifying Greece without including Candia 
in the new state " ; he had read Church's pamphlet on the 
strategic advantages of Akarnania ; he had even hoped to 
bring, like King George in 1864, the Ionian Islands as a 
present to his future subjects. Capo d'Istria harped upon the 
unpopularity of this restriction of frontier, with which Leopold 
would be identified ; he cleverly availed himself of the decree 
passed at Argos that the negotiations must be approved by the 
legislature. He hinted that the Prince would do well to 
adopt the religion of his subjects, of which the President was 
a warm devotee. He tried to prevent addresses of welcome 
from reaching Leopold, and he treated the signatories as his 
enemies. All these things, combined with the remote prospect 
of a regency in England — for his dead wife had been the 
daughter of George IV — so affected the Prince, that he 
retracted his acceptance and in May definitely resigned the 
Greek throne. Leopold a year later became king of the 
Belgians ; but he often lamented, amid the prosaic comforts of 
Brussels, the romantic career which might have been his at 
Athens. To-day the most instructive incident in his candida- 
ture is his prophetic warning about Crete. 

Capo d'Istria had succeeded in thwarting the Coburg 
nomination, but there at once set in a reaction against himself. 
His own conduct and the revolutionary spirit, which spread to 
Greece from Paris as the result of the July revolution, both 
fostered the growing discontent. Success had made him more 

vi] opposition to Capo cT I stria 109 

autocratic ; and some of his acts were as arbitrary as those 
which had just cost Charles X his throne. To have signed an 
address to Leopold was considered a criminal offence, just as 
in later Italy it was sufficient proof of guilt to " have spoken 
evil of Garibaldi." He sent Russian ships to coerce the 
independent Mainates into payment of a tax ; he was unable to 
procure the Turkish evacuation of the Akropolis and Euboea, 
because the Turks refused to budge till they received com- 
pensation for their private property and till the delimitation of 
the frontier was completed. But the President could not raise 
the money; and the Powers, distracted by the French and the 
Polish revolutions, tarried with the settlement of Greece. The 
Turkish garrison did not finally quit the Akropolis till March 
31, 1833, nearly eighteen months after his death ; the Athenians 
strongly criticised his administration ; a military mutiny fore- 
shadowed what was to follow. Worst of all, his refusal to pay 
the compensation demanded by the Hydriotes for their losses 
in the war aroused the stubborn opposition of that influential 
island. The Hydriotes started a newspaper, the Aurora^ as 
the mouthpiece of their grievances ; Capo d'Istria suppressed 
it, only to find that another journal, the Apollo^ was being 
printed at Nauplia, whither the seat of government had been 
transferred from Aigina. Viaro smothered its first issue ; but 
the editor transferred his operations to the indomitable island, 
where it at once became the organ of the Opposition, with 
"a Congress and a Constitution" as its programme. Hj^dra 
then separated herself from the President's jurisdiction and 
became practically an independent commonwealth under a 
committee of local magnates. Syra, the most flourishing 
commercial community in Greece, galled by his mercantile 
regulations, supported. H)^dra. This was more than the 
President could stand; he ordered the fleet to punish Syra. 
Before, however, the fleet had left the arsenal at P6ros, 
the " constitutional committee " of Hydra sent Admiral 
Miaodles, who was one of its members, with Mavrokordatos as 

I lo The Creation of the Greek Kingdom [ch. 

his adviser, to seize the arsenal. Miaoilles executed his task 
with his accustomed energy, and after trying to induce Kanares, 
who was in command of a corvette there, to join the con- 
stitutionalists, put his old comrade under arrest. When the 
President heard of this coup de main, he forgot his diplomacy 
in his desire for revenge ; and in the Russian admiral, Ricord, 
who was then at Nauplia, he found a willing instrument. 
The Russian officer sailed for P6ros, and summoned Miaodles 
to surrender the arsenal ; the Greek admiral replied that 
he recognised no authority save the committee at H)^dra ; 
the Russian blustered ; the patriot retorted that he would do 
his duty. At this crisis the British and French commanders 
arrived by chance, but departed to Nauplia for instructions. 
Meanwhile Ricord's men came into collision with a vessel 
from Hydra ; and Capo d'Istria sent him a message, insinuating 
that he should strike before they returned. On August 13, 
183 1, he took up a position to cannonade the Greek fleet, 
whereupon Miaoilles sent him a message to the effect that 
he would blow it up rather than surrender. The Hydriote 
was as good as his word ; a terrific explosion covered the 
beautiful harbour of P6ros with the wrecks of the Greek 
ships ; Miaoilles escaped with their crews to Hydra ; the 
troops of the President under Niketas sacked the town of 
P6ros, although it had previously capitulated, as if it had been 
a Turkish city, while the Russian admiral looked on. When 
all was over Capo d'Istria wrote to Ricord thanking him for 
his services. But the catastrophe of P6ros was fatal to the 
President. The Greek Opposition considered him as a party 
chief; the British and French governments regarded him as a 
Russian proconsul. 

The deeply wounded pride of a powerful family caused, 
within two months of the conflagration of P6ros, the end of 
Capo d'Istria. The clan of the Mavromichalai was all 
powerful in Maina ; since 1690 the name had been familiar; 
since 1769 it had been ennobled by the struggles of those who 

vij The Mavromichdlai 1 1 1 

bore it in the cause of Greek freedom. In the War of Indepen- 
dence, at the taking of Kalamata, at the battle of Valtetsi, in 
Euboea, in Akarnania, and in Epirus, the Mavromichdlai had 
fought heroically, sometimes with the loss of their lives, for 
Greece. But, notwithstanding these patriotic services, they 
represented Maina and all that Maina stood for — the blood feud, 
the ethics of a primitive society, defiance of a central and cen- 
tralising authority. To Capo d'Istria it seemed that Maina 
must be " civilised " and raised to the level of the less Homeric 
parts of Greece ; and the only way of achieving this object was 
the proscription of a family, whose word was law where his writ 
would not run. A local revolt, headed by Petrobey's brother 
John, had been suppressed through the intervention of the 
Bey's second son George at the request of the President, who 
had promised to arrange the disputes between the government 
and the clan, if John would come to Nauplia. John came, 
and was put under arrest, while prosecutions were set on foot 
against him and his son. His son fled to Maina, where 
Constantine, a brother of the Bey, headed the revolt of " the 
Spartans," as the Mainates loved to call themselves, against 
the gaoler of their chieftain's family. Thither the Bey himself 
likewise hastened, but was arrested and escorted back to 
Nauplia, where he was imprisoned on a charge of high treason 
and dereliction of his duty as a member of the Senate. 
Constantine and George were also conveyed to Nauplia and 
there placed under police supervision. These proceedings 
naturally aroused public sympathy with the persecuted family. 
The Bey's aged mother petitioned the President to release her 
distinguished son, who had been then nine months in prison 
untried; Admiral Ricord, the confidant of Capo d'Istria at 
P6ros, used his influence in the same direction. But the 
President remained obdurate ; and, acting in accord with the 
Mainate code of honour, Constantine and George, who were 
merely '' shadowed " by the police and not confined to prison, 
resolved to avenge their relative. On October 9, 1831, Capo 

1 1 2 The Creation of the Greek Kingdom [ch. 

-d'Istria walked, as was his wont, to attend early service at 
the church of St Spin'don, the patron saint of his native 
island, situated at the foot of Itsh Kaleh. As he approached 
the door, he noticed the two Mavromichalai standing on either 
side. He stopped for a moment, as if suspecting an attempt, 
against which he had been warned ; then, recovering his self- 
possession, he walked on towards the church. But before he 
could reach the door, Constantine's bullet struck him in the 
back of the head ; George's dagger stabbed him through the 
lungs; and he fell lifeless in the embrace of his one-armed 
orderly. His attendant laid the corpse upon the ground, fired 
at Constantine and wounded him ; another bullet from a 
window struck the fleeing assassin ; a third killed him ; where- 
upon the crowd dragged bis body through the streets and 
hurled it into the sea. Meanwhile, George had escaped into 
the French residency, which was besieged by an angry mob 
clamouring for his surrender. Escorted by a French officer 
he was ferried across to the island-fortress of Boiirzi, court- 
martialled, and, on October 22, shot before the eyes of his 
imprisoned father, who from the casemate of his prison saw 
his son die, as he had lived, a true son of Maina. The 
portraits of the two Mavromichalai now adorn the Athenian 
palace of the present head of the family, the ex-Premier of 
Greece, where the visitor may distinguish the fierce mien of 
George from the mild features of Constantine. 

The lapse of three generations has enabled posterity to 
form an unbiased judgment upon the career of Capo d'Istria. 
No one will deny his private virtues, his austere life, his 
sincere love of his native land, his services to it alike in the 
days of his foreign employment and in those of his presidency. 
But he tried to govern Greeks by the maxims, and with the 
assistance, of the most autocratic of governments ; he was to 
the last a diplomatist, and revolutions need not diplomatists 
but men of action. Nevertheless, a grateful country has 
recognised his public merits as well as his personal qualities. 

vi] Provisional Government 1 1 3 

Aigina, his first capital, and Corfu his birthplace, have both 
raised statues in his honour ; the one island preserves in 
different form the orphanage which he founded, and the "govern- 
ment house " which was the first mint of Greece ; the other 
cherishes in the Platytera convent his murdered remains ; 
a part of the University at Athens has been called since 191 1 
by his name; while his latest biographer has extolled the 
services to elementary education of the former ephor of the 
first public school at Corfd. 

The assassination of Capo dlstria awakened widely different 
feelings. The poet Alexander Soiitsos compared the assassins 
with Harm6dios and Aristogeiton ; the Apollo deplored the 
human tragedy, yet thought otherwise of the political tyranni- 
cide; the firiends of the murdered President mourned, and 
acted. The Senate at once met, and before mid-day of the 
fatal ninth of October nominated a provisional commission of 
three to carry on the government till a National Assembly 
met. The trio consisted of Agostino Capo d'lstria, the repre- 
sentative of the late President's family influence, Kolokotr6nes, 
the leading Moreote chieftain, and Kolettes, the spokesman 
of continental Greece. Agostino, who was the chairman, 
unfortunately showed a complete lack of that conciliatory 
spirit which should have united all parties around the bier 
of his brother, and with the support of Kolokotrones, he was 
able to outvote the more prudent Kolettes. Thus, when 
Syra offered to acknowledge the authority of the provisional 
government, and when H)^dra merely asked that two members 
of the Opposition should be added to the commission, an 
amnesty granted, and a freely elected Assembly held at some 
neutral spot, the olive branch of "the Constitutionalists" 
was rejected, in spite of a statesmanlike appeal by Andrew 
Zai'mes for union. Following blindly the policy of his late 
brother at P6ros, Agostino employed the Russian fleet to 
blockade H)^dra, and showed his dislike for the French by 
dismissing one French general, and giving another a broad 

M. L. 8 

114 T^h^e Creation of the Greek Kingdo7n [ch. 

hint that Greece could not afford the luxury of foreign troops 
— a hint which led to the withdrawal of all French officers 
from the Greek service. The most reckless charges were 
banded about by the contending factions, each identified with 
one or other of the three allied Powers ; the Capodistrians, 
or " Nappists," as they were called from a nickname of 
Agostino, or from a follower of his brother, accused Great 
Britain and France of complicity in the late President's murder; 
the Hydriotes retorted that he had hired wretches to assassinate 
the "constitutional leaders," and that his brother had sworn 
to send the heroes of P6ros to Siberia. Such was the at- 
mosphere of mutual calumny in which the elections were held. 
To make the Capodistrian majority secure, the Hydriote 
deputies were prevented from landing at Lerna to take their 
seats in the new Assembly at Argos; those of Maina were 
arrested at Astros. 

Kolettes saw that the time had arrived to sever his con- 
nexion with his two colleagues. His influence with the 
Roumeliote or continental deputies enabled him to form a 
formidable Opposition, which labelled itself as '* constitutional," 
demanded the admission of the Hydriotes, and threatened, in 
case of refusal, to hold a separate convention. Accordingly, 
while, after taking the oath on December 1 7, the Capodistrians 
held the fifth National Assembly in the schoolhouse at Argos, 
the Roumeliotes met in another part of the town. Agostino 
and Kolokotr6nes went through the form of resigning their 
posts; and on December 20 Agostino was elected President 
(npo€(rro>s) of Greece. Kolettes, however, declined to resign ; 
and civil war ensued. Agostino summoned Russian assistance; 
and after two days' fighting in the streets of Argos, which 
Sir Stratford Canning, on his way to Constantinople, arrived 
in time to witness, the worsted Roumeliotes retired beyond 
the Isthmus, and at Perach6ra near Corinth named a governing 
committee, of which Kolettes, Zaimes, and Kountouri6tes 
were members. Thus, Greece was once more distracted 

vi] Otho King of Greece 115 

between two rival authorities. A conference at the baths of 
Loutraki failed. Agostino declared Kolettes and his con- 
federates outlaws; Kolettes denounced Agostino as an usurper. 
In vain a tardily published protocol of the Powers acknowledged 
the latter as the legitimate President ; in vain their Residents 
caused him to publish a restricted amnesty ; in vain Canning 
counselled unity. What he had seen convinced him all the 
more of the advantage of a foreign king over a native president, 
who, as he wrote to Palmerston, " had neither knowledge, nor 
the natural talent which replaces it." 

At last, after two years' interval, the pre-occupied Powers, 
on February 13, 1832, offered the crown to Prince Otho, 
second son of the King of Bavaria. There seemed much to 
be said for this choice. King Louis was an ardent Philhellene; 
his name was well-known and popular in Greece ; his country 
was not important enough to arouse the jealousy of the Powers ; 
a German, Professor Thiersch, who had "discovered" Prince 
Otho more than two years before, had since travelled about 
Hellas as his unofficial agent, to sound public opinion and 
prepare it for a Bavarian candidature. If the future ruler of 
Greece was barely seventeen, it was pointed out that his lack of 
experience would be more than compensated for by the greater 
facility with which he would assimilate Greek ideas, while the 
difficulties and unpopularity inherent in the existing adminis- 
tration would fall not upon the young sovereign but upon the 
regency. On May 7 a treaty between Bavaria and the three 
Powers settled the conditions of King Louis' acceptance for 
his son. Otho was to bear the title of '* King of Greece," an 
independent, hereditary monarchy under their guarantee ; in 
case of his dying childless, his younger brother was to succeed; 
but in no case were the Greek and Bavarian crowns to be worn 
by the same person. On June i, 1835, his twentieth birthday, 
he was to come of age ; and in the meanwhile three Regents, 
appointed by his father, were to exercise full sovereignty. The 
powers promised to guarantee a 5 per cent, loan of not more 

I T 6 The Creation of the Greek Kingdom [ch. 

than ;^2, 400,000 to be raised in three instalments, the King 
of Bavaria to furnish a corps of Bavarian soldiers, "not exceeding 
3500 men," with Bavarian officers for the organisation of a 
native army. The northern frontiers of the new kingdom, 
thanks to the efforts of Palmerston and the energy of Sir 
Stratford Canning, were ultimately advanced to the gulfs of 
Volo and Arta, and included the disputed district of Lamia, 
in consideration of which the indemnity to the Turks was 
fixed at ;£462,48o, payable out of the loan. The Sultan 
accepted these arrangements and recognised Otho as King of 
Greece — a Greece much larger than that assigned to Leopold, but 
from which Samos and Crete were excluded. The former, after 
being organised by Kolettes, and proclaiming its independence, 
was coerced and erected in 1832 into an autonomous tributary 
Christian principality, from which troops were expressly excluded; 
the latter was united in 1830 to the Egyptian pashalik of 
Mehemet Ali as a reward for his services to the Sultan, while 
a liberal firman allowed the islanders a flag, free navigation, 
and the collection of their taxes by their bishops and captains. 
Strategically, however, the new frontier was, with one exception, 
favourable to Greece ; for it was so drawn as to give her the 
famous pass of Makryn6ros and the whole eastern and southern 
shores of " Ambracia's gulf," save the fort of Punta and a 
strip of land behind it on the site of Actium. Thus Turkey 
retained the two keys — Preveza and Punta — of the gulf; Punta 
she ceded in 1881, Preveza she held till 191 2. The news 
of Otho's selection made the Constitutionalists at Perach6ra 
resolve to attack the Capodistrians at once, in order to have 
their share of posts and honours when the king arrived. For 
the same reason the deputies who supported Agostino pro- 
claimed him Regent till Otho's arrival, perhaps in the hope 
that he might continue to be Regent afterwards. In vain the 
excellent Thiersch was sent by the Residents of the Powers to 
hinder the advance of the Constitutionalists into the Morea. The 
ingenuous professor fell under the spell of Kolettes' diplomacy, 


] Triumph of Koldttes 117 

convinced himself that justice was on their side, and went so 
far as to write on his own authority to the French commander, 
upon whom Agostino relied, bidding him allow them to cross 
the Isthmus. The Capodistrian cavalry posted at that dangerous 
passage, the scene of so many battles, dispersed at the first 
discharge, while the French, favourably inclined to Kolettes 
and fresh from a skirmish with the Capodistrians in Messenia, 
showed no disposition to fire upon the Constitutionalists. 
On April 8 Kolettes and his followers occupied Pronoia, the 
suburb of Nauplia, and a conflict seemed inevitable. For- 
tunately, however, a note had just arrived from London, 
stating that a ''provisional government calculated to preserve 
the country from anarchy" was required. Armed with this 
document, the Residents presented themselves before Agostino, 
and informed him that he must resign. Agostino could 
not refuse ; but the Residents marred their success by 
causing him to ask the Senate to name the provisional 
government. The Senate responded by appointing an Ad- 
ministrative Committee of five, including, indeed, Kolettes, 
but leaving him in a hopeless minority. The Roumeliote 
leader, flushed with victory, naturally refused to accept this 
arrangement, but was induced to enter the town and discuss 
a compromise. His entry into Nauplia was a triumph ; such 
was the enthusiasm of the people, that Agostino, an unseen 
spectator of his enemy's reception, fled with his relatives, his 
brother's remains, and Mustoxidi, the Corfiote historian, on 
board a Russian vessel to Corfu, where he and Viaro joined 
the opposition to the British protectorate. After much dis- 
cussion, a compromise was effected, by which the Committee's 
numbers were increased to seven, of whom only two were 
avowed Capodistrians, while all the seven ministers, subordinate 
to it, were Constitutionalists. But the device of a large 
quorum, always fatal to the transaction of business, was 
adopted, so as to paralyse the activity of the majority of the 
Committee. Thus, despite the resignation of Agostino, the 

1 1 8 The Creation of the Greek Kingdom [ch. 

Capodistrian party continued to exist even without a Capo 

Kol^ttes, in the hour of his triumph, was devoid of funds 
to pay his Roumeliote soldiery ; and the latter resolved to pay 
themselves out of the plunder of the Morea. These strange 
"Constitutionalists," led by Theodore Grivas, and assisted by 
a band of Mussulman Albanians, soon caused the Moreotes, 
naturally jealous of " the continentals," to call upon their 
own famous chief, Kolokotrones, to defend the peninsula. 
The old warrior cheerfully came to their rescue, and issued 
a proclamation declaring the acts of the Committee illegal, 
while his son, Gennaios, stopped the march of the Roumeliotes. 
The government in its alarm begged the French to occupy 
Nauplia and Patras, and a French force actually garrisoned 
the great fortress of Palamedi ; but before they could reach 
Patras, Kitsos Tsavellas, the Souliote chief, who had headed 
a party in the heroic sortie from Mesol6nghi, had seized the 
splendid castle, which he refused to surrender. He extended 
his jurisdiction over the twin forts which command the entrance 
to the gulf of Corinth, and held these strong positions till the 
arrival of Otho, whose Prime Minister he ultimately became. 
Tsavellas was not a Moreote, yet he was not the only leader 
outside the peninsula who revolted against the government. 
Salona was in the hands of the Opposition ; and of the islands 
Tenos, Aigina, and Spetsai were unwilling, or unable, to 
acknowledge the authority of the Committee. The country 
was, in fact, in a state of complete anarchy ; the "constitution" 
was a mere fiction ; the people, as the poet Soutsos bitterly 
complained, was "stripped" by the official "wolves." 

It was necessary to hold a National Assembly before the 
king's arrival for the purpose of granting a general amnesty 
and of recognising his nomination. This Assembly of 224 
deputies, including several Cretans, was considered as a con- 
tinuation of that which had met at Argos, but assembled on 
July 26, 1832, in a wooden shanty at Pr6noia, through the 

yi] The Assembly dispersed 119 

interstices of which the free and easy representatives were 
wont to inhale the tobacco from their protruding pipes ! The 
Assembly did, indeed, pass the amnesty bill, and unanimously 
recognised Otho ; but it abolished the Senate, and thereby 
offended the Residents. One of the latter, Dawkins, the 
representative of Great Britain, chanced to be out for a ride 
in the direction of Areia, a village some two miles from Nauplia, 
where the unpaid, ill-fed Roumeliote troops were quartered. 
Spying the Resident, the penniless soldiery beset him with cries 
for help and assistance. Dawkins in reply pointed with his 
riding-whip to the shed, where the deputies were deliberating, 
and added that it contained experienced paymasters. The 
soldiers took the hint, broke into the midst of the Assembly, 
dragged Notaras, the aged chairman, from his seat, and carried 
him off with seven of the richest members to Areia as hostages 
for the payment of their arrears. As the government had no 
money, the prisoners had to provide their own ransom. A 
rump-parliament of 62 deputies, who remained in Nauplia, 
after drawing up a protest, adjourned on September i, till the 
arrival of the king. But the outrage committed upon the 
Assembly at Pr6noia provided such an object-lesson to the 
opponents of parliamentary institutions, that eleven years 
elapsed before another Greek legislature met. It required the 
revolution of 1843 to restore the liberties lost in 1832. 

In September of that year Greece was left without any legal 
authority to direct her affairs. The Assembly had been 
dispersed ; the Senate had been abolished ; of the Committee 
of seven, Demetrios Hypselantes had just died, after eleven 
years spent in the service of Hellenism ; two of his colleagues 
had gone to greet Otho at Munich; another had retired in 
dudgeon to his native H)^dra. The three who remained — 
Kolettes, Zaimes, and Andrew Metaxas — could not form a 
legal quorum. But it was felt that the coming king's govern- 
ment must be carried on ; so the Senate treated the decree of 
the late Assembly as null, and recognised the triumvirs as the 

1 20 The Creation of the Greek Kingdom [ch. 

supreme executive. Such was the confusion, that all the 
law-courts were temporarily abolished, and French troops 
summoned to keep order within the walls of Nauplia. But 
there was worse to come. The Senate, a creation of Capo 
dTstria, preserved the Russophil traditions of its creator ; and 
a section of its members desired that a Russian, instead of the 
Francophil Kolettes, should be in power when the king arrived. 
These senators fled with the government printing-press to 
Astros and thence to Spetsai, and offered the presidency of 
Greece to Admiral Ricord, whom public opinion held respon- 
sible for the burning of the Greek fleet at P6ros. The admiral 
had frequently meddled in Greek domestic politics, but the 
presidency of the state he felt reluctantly obliged to decline ; 
whereupon the senators nominated a fresh governing committee 
of seven, all military chiefs such as Kolokotrones, Kriezdtes, 
and Tsavellas. At Nauplia and Kalamata French bayonets 
supported the authority of " the constitution " and the trium- 
virs; elsewhere there would have been anarchy, had it not 
been for the action of the municipalities, which seeing the 
central government powerless to preserve order, took measures 
for its preservation themselves. The municipal institutions of 
the Greeks proved at this crisis more valuable than paper 
constitutions; native tradition is always more durable than 
imported ideas. Indeed, at that moment, the very name of 
*' constitution " stank in the nostrils of the Moreote peasantry. 
They were taught to associate it alike with the French garrison 
of Kalamata and with the Mainates who raided the fertile plain 
of Messenia ; swineherds told travellers that " the constitution " 
had devoured their pigs ; mothers told their naughty children 
that " the constitution " would come and take them ! 

One more tragedy was destined to afflict the unhappy 
country before the king at last arrived. As the day approached, 
the Senate and the military chiefs became all the more anxious 
to impose themselves upon the sovereign. Two of the latter, 
Kriez6tes and the Argive Tz6kres, accordingly resolved to 

vi] King Othds arrival 121 

occupy Argos, so as to demonstrate their power in the neigh- 
bourhood of NaupHa. The triumvirs requested the French to 
garrison Argos, and thither the French converged from Nauplia 
and Messenia. The Opposition had learned to hate the French; 
and " Argive Vespers " were contemplated, which would rid 
the peninsula of these foreign supporters of the government. 
On January 16, 1833, the Greeks suddenly attacked them; 
but the French cleared the streets, and then with their bayonets 
drove their assailants from the houses. Even the venerable 
citadel, the ancient Larissa, failed to shelter the fugitives from 
the Corsican light infantry. Kriezotes was taken, many of his 
followers killed in the fight, two prisoners shot as an example. 
The triumvirate thanked the French for their exertions; the 
military chiefs deeply felt the defeat. Happily time has 
obliterated the feelings with which one Greek party then 
regarded the nation which had rid the Morea of the Egyptian 
troops. A monument, erected by a patriotic Greek, now 
commemorates on the quay at Nauplia the French who fell in 
the War of Independence ; while a lion, carved on a rock near 
the suburb of Prdnoia, bears impartial witness to the services 
of the Bavarians who replaced them. Sixteen days after the 
conflict at Argos, the British frigate, Madagascar^ with Otho on 
board, arrived at Nauplia. In the excitement caused by the 
arrival of the long-expected king, the last incident of the 
protracted reign of anarchy, which had begun with the murder 
of Capo d'Istria, was forgotten. 

While the rest of the Greek people had suffered so severely 
from the war and its sequel, the Ionian Islands had made great 
material progress under the British protectorate. The three 
currant-producing islands, Cephalonia, Ithaca, and Zante had 
specially benefited from the destruction of the currant-fields in 
the Morea. As long as the war lasted, they had the monopoly 
of the currant trade; and in 1829 the Cephalonians, in an 
address to George IV, stated that in nine years the weight of 
their currant crop had doubled. " Our mountainous and rocky 

1 2 2 The Creation of the Greek Kingdom [cH. 

island," they wrote, '*has been, as it were, transformed into one 
vast vineyard'." It was largely owing to the useful currant that 
the revenue of the Seven Islands rose under Sir Frederick 
Adam to ;£ 140,000. The new Lord High Commissioner was 
thus able to expend large sums on public works. He con- 
structed an aqueduct for the supply of water to Corfu ; he 
established a convalescent hospital and erected lighthouses ; he 
continued the road-building policy of his predecessor, and the 
Residents in the other islands did likewise — Lord Charles 
Fitzroy in Zante, Colonel Napier in Cephalonia. The latter, 
during a long tenure of office, devoted all his efforts to the 
development of that island, the " weak point," as he expressed 
it, of the British protectorate. Cephalonia was always the most 
restive of the islands ; there the animosity of the nobles and 
the peasants was intense ; and, if the great currant-planters 
were "glued to the English market," there was much less 
money spent by the British officials there than at Corfu. The 
Cephalonians and Zantiotes complained that Corfu was en- 
riched at their expense ; and Napier actually proposed that the 
capital should be transferred to Argost61i. His own popularity 
was shown by the repeated offer of the command of the Greek 
army; but his methods, if well-meaning, were sometimes 
arbitrary, as when he beat an Ionian noble, whom he found 
beating his wife, and used his horse-whip on the peasants 
engaged in making the roads. He endeavoured to prevent the 
destruction of the Black Forest by the goats, and thereby 
cau.sed the indignation of their owners. He imported a colony 
of Maltese to cultivate the south-east of the island, and thereby 
aroused racial and religious jealousy. Complaints against him 
reached the High Commissioner ; the Napiers were not adapted 
for a secondary station ; and, despite his many services to 
Cephalonia, he was removed. He took his revenge by 
publishing a book, which is a violent tirade against Adam. 

* Napier, The Colonies, 562. 

vi] The Ionian Islands 123 

The High Commissioner, despite his practical merits, was, 
indeed, guilty of extravagance. Maitland had gone to the 
opposite extreme, on one occasion walking into the Senate-hall 
with no other garments than a shirt, a red night-cap, and a 
pair of slippers ! His successor spent the taxes of a small 
island on his gold-laced coat ; and, not content with the palace 
erected by Maitland for his official residence and the meeting- 
place of the Senate, built the charming Villa of Mon Repos 
outside the town, whence the King of the Hellenes now gazes 
restfuUy across the sea at those Epirote mountains, which 
Europe in 1880 had intended should be his. Very popular 
with the Corfiote aristocracy, with which he had mingled before 
his appointment, he is still remembered with gratitude for his 
aqueduct, and deserved the statue which still stands in front 
of the palace. He abolished the system of road-building by 
forced labour, imposing a tax on imported cattle in its place. 
In 1824, the year of his appointment, the relations between the 
Greek Church in the Islands and the (Ecumenical Patriarch 
were regulated ; in the same year Lord Guildford founded the 
" Ionian Academy," where Greek was the vehicle of instruction. 
That ardent Philhellene, whose love of Greece led him to wear 
ancient Greek dress when he presided over the Academy, 
and to be baptised into the Orthodox Church, had wished, as 
Ugo Foscolo had suggested, to make Ithaca the seat of his 
University. But Corfu was chosen — an island of greater 
distractions and a more mixed population. Since the union 
the Ionian Academy has ceased to exist; but its library, a 
statue, and the name of a street still recall to the Corfiotes 
the memory of their enthusiastic benefactor. Besides the 
Academy he established Lancastrian schools ; and in the 
time of Adam the Ionian treasury spent ;^7ooo a year upon 
education -a great change from the days of the Venetians. 
As Foscolo had foreseen, the growth of an educated class, 
taught the principles of freedom from study of the Greek 
classics, would tend to undermine the British protectorate, 

124 '^^^ Creation of the Greek Kingdom [ch. vi 

while the lack of occupation in the restricted sphere of the 
Islands inevitably drove the youthful graduates into political 
agitation. Already in 1819 at Santa Mavra, and in 1820 and 
182 1 at Zante, there had been movements against the British. 
The formation of an independent Greek kingdom naturally 
increased the nationalist movement, and gave the Unionists a 
rallying-point. Already, in Adam's time, there were four 
parties m the Islands — the British, composed of the government 
officials and the majority of the land-owners ; the Russian, 
which drew support from those nobles, whose feudal privileges 
had been restricted ; the French ; and the Greek, which hoped 
for ultimate union but was meanwhile content to live under the 
British protectorate till the young kingdom had become settled. 
As yet this party had no press for the expression of its feelings. 
Such was the state of the Ionian Islands when, in 1832, Sir 
Frederick Adam retired. 


OF TURKEY (1822-45) 

The other Christian nationaUties of the Balkan peninsula, 
with the exception of the Orthodox Albanians, showed little 
concern in the struggle of the Greeks for their independence. 
In vain Rhegas had appealed to the " tigers of Montenegro," 
the " Christian brothers of the Save and of the Danube," to 
" Bulgarians, Serbs, and Roumans " to rise as one people on 
behalf of the liberty of Greece. Had they heeded the poet's 
call, the Turks must have been crushed by the forces of the 
united Christians. But there was no probability of such an 
alliance of the Balkan peoples against the common enemy. 
The Roumans actually opposed, while Prince Milosh of Servia 
abstained from supporting, the Hetairist movement ; not a 
few Serbs and Bulgarians, it is true, were among Hypselantes' 
followers in Wallachia, and a Bulgarian band was ready to 
co-operate with him beyond the Danube. But there was no 
general rising of the Christians. In 1821, as in 1897, the other 
Christian races sought so to shape their policy as to profit by 
the Greco-Turkish war. Not till 191 2 did they unite. 

The Roumans derived the greatest and speediest advantage 
from their Turcophil attitude by the substitution of native for 
Phanariote princes in 1822. The two Hospodars, as repre- 
sentatives of the national party, were delighted to execute the 
instructions which they had received from the Porte at the 
time of their appointment, to drive out the Greek monks, to 

126 The Balkan difficulties [cH. 

replenish their empty treasuries with the funds of the Greek 
monasteries, and to close the Greek schools. French culture 
came more and more into fashion among the nobles ; the 
resuscitation of their mother-tongue was the object of the 
patriots. Whereas, a few years earlier, Caragea and Callimachi 
had drawn up their codes in Greek, as being the language 
''used in the country," a society was formed for founding 
native schools, a national theatre, and a Roumanian newspaper. 
Although first Slavonic, in which the religious books were 
written, and then Greek had been so long the sole vehicles of 
ecclesiastical and secular culture, Roumanian had been adopted, 
owing to the lack of Slav priests, as the language of the Church 
in the seventeenth century, and had survived throughout even 
the Phanariote period in the poorer places of worship. Upon 
this basis, in the last decade of Greek rule, two fervent teachers, 
George Lazar and George Asaki, had begun to build a modest 
fabric of practical instruction in the vernacular. Hindered by 
the events of 182 1, this work was now continued by Asaki and 
John Eliade Radulescu, who may be regarded as the twin 
hierophants of the national idea in literature in their respective 
Principalities. Asaki derived his inspiration from a visit to his 
"ancestors" on the banks of the Tiber; Radulescu was a 
pupil of Lazar, and therefore owed his education to the 
Roumanians of Transylvania, then more advanced than their 
brethren in the Principalities. The former was the first person 
to produce a play in Roumanian; the latter edited in 1829 
the first Roumanian newspaper printed in the "bastard Latin" 
of the Danube, which was quickly followed by a second 
journal under his colleague's direction. Unfortunately, the 
spread of French among the nobles led to an intellectual and 
linguistic chasm being opened between the aristocracy and the 
people, which has not yet been fully bridged. The French 
language and French customs were considered the marks of a 
gentleman, just as at earlier periods a knowledge of Slavonic 
and Greek had distinguished the governing classes from the 

VI I ] Convention of Akkerman 127 

peasants. French schools were opened to supply the craving 
for the idiom of society; and the frequent journeys of the nobles 
to Paris embarrassed their estates and contributed to the 
influence of the Jews, especially in Moldavia. 

Roumanian historians date the national era of their history 
from 1822. But the appointment of native nobles as princes, 
although so much desired, was not without its disadvantages. 
The boyars, who were favourable in the abstract to the election 
of a Roumanian as Hospodar, were jealous of the elevation of 
one of their number over their heads. Many of them had fled 
into Russian or Austrian territory at the time of Hypselantes' 
campaign; and these exiles complained to the Tsar of the 
liberal policy of Sturdza in calling new and low-born men to 
power in Moldavia. When diplomatic relations between 
Russia and Turkey were resumed, they returned, and wrung 
from the prince a Golden Bull, exempting them, as of right, 
from all taxes. Moreover, if Roumanians had emancipated 
themselves from their Greek rulers, they were overshadowed 
by the great empire which had already incorporated one 
Roumanian land and aspired to a protectorate over two of the 
others. The new Tsar, Nicholas I, had not been many 
months on the throne when he massed his troops on the Pruth, 
and haughtily demanded the evacuation of the Principalities by 
the Turks, who still occupied them. Great Britain urged the 
Sultan not to provoke him ; the destruction of the Janissaries 
made it difficult to oppose him; and, on October 7, 1826, he 
imposed upon MahmM II the convention of Akkerman, 
which proclaimed the free navigation of the Black Sea, and 
provided that the Hospodars should be elected from among the 
oldest and ablest native nobles, with the consent of the Porte, 
for seven years. The consent of Russia was required for their 
deposition or resignation; her counsels, expressed by her 
consuls, were to be placed at their disposal ; they were to draw 
up a scheme of administrative reform for their much vexed 
Principalities, which for the next two years were to be exempt 

128 The Balkan difficulties [ch. 

from the Turkish tribute, and were thereafter to pay in 
accordance with the sum fixed in 1802. Russia, it has been 
justly observed, gained more by this convention than by a war. 
But it was only the prelude to the war that soon followed. The 
battle of Navarino made the Tsar eager to attack an enemy 
whose navy had been shattered, before its army had been 
reorganised. Great Britain refused to join him, but the formal 
denunciation of the convention of Akkerman by the Sultan gave 
him the pretext that he sought. He concluded the war, which 
he had been carrying on against Persia, with a treaty which 
secured to him the possession of Edgmiatsin, the seat of the 
Armenian Katholikos, and on April 26, 1828 declared another 
war against Turkey. As usual, the first step was the occupation 
of the Principalities, which on this occasion lasted for six years. 
The two princes were replaced by a provisional government 
under Count Pahlen ; the people, so long as the war lasted, 
experienced the horrors of the transport service, which the 
starving peasants were forced to undertake in place of their 
plague-stricken beasts of burden. 

The second Russo-Turkish war of the nineteenth century 
was not the military promenade that the Tsar had anticipated. 
It was easy to occupy the Principalities; but Braila and the 
great Turkish fortresses to the south of the Danube offered a 
long resistance. Varna was only obtained by treachery due 
to a palace intrigue against its commander; Shumla repelled 
repeated attacks ; Silistria resisted a four months' blockade. 
In Asia the Russian arms were more fortunate. The Black 
Sea fortresses of Anapa and Poti fell ; Paskievich, fresh from 
the Persian war, took Kars, Akhaltsykh, and Ardahan ; Toprak 
Kaleh and Bayazid fell before the invaders. But the nett 
result of the year's operations was a diminution of Russian 
prestige, which rendered a second campaign inevitable. The 
Tsar, whose pride had been wounded by the stubborn resis- 
tance of the despised Turks, withdrew from the field, and 
entrusted the chief command in Europe to General Diebich, 

vii] Russo- Turkish War of 1828-9 129 

an officer of German extraction. The Russian victory at 
Kulevtcha, and the surrender of Silistria in June, 1829, marked 
this change of direction. Diebich's army accomplished what 
the Turks had regarded as the impracticable feat of crossing the 
Balkans ; and this double passage, from Pravadi to Aitos and 
from Varna to Bourgas, was performed almost without opposi- 
tion and with an insignificant loss of life. On July 24 both 
divisions met at RumeUkioi, while the capture of Bourgas and 
other places on the Black Sea enabled them to obtain supplies 
from the Russian fleet. After engagements at Jamboli and 
Sliven, Diebich marched on August 20 into Adrianople, " like 
the commander of a new garrison entering a friendly town^" 
The old capital of the Turkish empire had surrendered without 
resistance to an army of barely 20,000 men. The audacity of 
the Russian general and the ingenuousness of the Turks had 
worked this miracle. Meanwhile, in Asia Paskievich had taken 
Erzerum, and was preparing to march upon Trebizond. But 
these striking military successes of the Russian arms were more 
apparent than real. Mustapha, the reactionary pasha of 
Albanian Scutari, reached Sofia with 40,000 Arnauts to save 
an empire which he had hitherto allowed the Russians to 
weaken ; Shumla, the " virgin fortress " of Vidin, and Rustchuk, 
were still held by Turkish garrisons. But the Russians had to 
face an enemy more insidious than Turks or Albanians — the 
plague and the other diseases, inseparable from the march of a 
foreign army through regions notorious for their rapid and 
enormous changes of temperature. In these circumstances 
the Tsar was anxious to make peace, which Turkish statesmen, 
ignorant of the true size and condition of the invading army 
which they magnified to 60,000, and unaware of Mustapha's 
march, were no less eager to conclude. They feared above all 
else a revolution in Constantinople, which would cost them 
their heads ; and Baron von Muffling, the Prussian envoy, 
exerted his great influence on behalf of Russia. Diebich, on 
^ Moltke, Der russisch-tiirkisch^ Feldzug, p- 370. 
M. L. 9 

130 The Balkan difficulties [cH. 

his side, played to perfection the part of a victorious general ; 
and when the Turkish plenipotentiaries, sent to negotiate peace 
at Adrianople, realised the true state of affairs and threatened 
to break off the negotiations, his advanced guard reached 
Chorlu, more than halfway on the road to Constantinople, 
while Ainos on the ^gean and Midia on the Euxine were held 
by the Russians. Simultaneously their fleets cruised off the 
mouth of the Bosphorus and menaced that of the Dardanelles, 
whither the British fleet would perhaps have followed the 
Russian flag and thus anticipated the Crimean war. The 
British ambassador joined the Prussian representative in urging 
the Sultan to yield; and MahmM II, with tears in his eyes, 
consented to the disastrous peace of Adrianople. Never in 
the history of the eastern question has the policy of "bluff" 
been so successful; never again till 1878 was a Russian army 
so near the goal of Russian ambition. 

The treaty, which was signed in the old Turkish capital on 
September 14, 1829, did not diminish the territory so much as 
the prestige of the Sultan. The Tsar restored all the places 
occupied by his troops in European Turkey, so that the Pruth 
continued to be the Russo-Turkish boundary; but all the 
mouths of the Danube were lost to the Turks, and the Black 
Sea, the Bosphorus, and the Dardanelles were declared free and 
open to Russian merchantmen of any size, and to those of other 
Powers at peace with the Porte. In Asia, the Tsar restored 
Bayazid and Erzerum, but retained Anapa, Poti, and Akhaltsykh, 
so that the warlike population of the Caucasus was isolated. 
Turkey was to pay a war indemnity, subsequently reduced ; and 
the Russians were to occupy the two Principalities and the 
fortress of Silistria till the whole of it should have been paid. 
Wallachia and Moldavia were to continue to enjoy their 
privileges, under the suzerainty of the Porte, but a separate act 
provided that the Hospodars should be elected for life, and 
should be removable for one reason alone, the commission of a 
crime. They were to direct the internal affairs of their 

VI i] Organisation of the Principalities 1 3 1 

respective Principalities in consultation with their extraordinary 
assemblies, or divans ; and no Turkish fort nor settlement was 
to be permitted on the left bank of the Danube, where existing 
Mussulman property was to be sold within 18 months. The 
Principalities were exempted from furnishing corn, mutton, and 
wood to the Turkish government, but were to pay compensa- 
tion for this exemption. On the death or removal of the 
Hospodar a sum equivalent to the annual tribute was payable ; 
but the Principalities were freed from the latter for two years 
after their evacuation by the Russian army of occupation. 
Thus, the sole remaining ties between the Sultan and the 
Roumans were the investiture of their princes and the payment 
of their tribute. But, if the Turkish suzerainty had been 
diminished, the Russian protectorate had been increased, and 
the Russian occupation gave the opportunity of strengthening 
Muscovite influence. 

Count Paul Kisseleff, to whom the Tsar entrusted the 
administration of the PrincipaUties after the peace of Adrianople, 
bestowed real benefits upon their afflicted populations. He 
grappled successively and successfully with the plague, the 
cholera, and the famine, which befell them ; and, after ensuring 
their material welfare, resumed the elaboration of that organic 
statute, which had been promised in the convention of 
Akkerman and had been begun during the war. This reglement 
organique, as it was called, was drawn up by a joint-commission 
of four Wallachian and four Moldavian nobles, under Russian 
auspices, and promulgated in the two Principalities in 1831 
and 1832 respectively. As might have been anticipated from 
its origin, if it put an end to the prevalent anarchy of the 
administration, it left Roumanian society on a strictly olig- 
archical basis, of which the recognised exemption of the nobles 
from all contributions was the most remarkable proof. To 
retain the support of the nobles, Russia sacrificed the cultivators 
of the soil, whose position was made doubly worse by an 
increase in the days of compulsory work for the landlords and 


132 The Balkan difficulties [cH. 

a decrease in the extent of land with which the landlords were 
obliged to furnish them in return. The peasants had thus all 
the burdens, the aristocracy all the honours, of public life : but, 
in order to prevent either the boyars or the future prince from 
becoming too powerful, the Russians resorted to the plan, 
which they adopted in Bulgaria in 1879, of introducing a 
constitutional system of checks and balances so dexterously 
formed as to neutralise the power of the prince by that of the 
nobles, and the power of the nobles by that of the prince. 
Accordingly, an Assembly of boyars was to be elected, and had 
the right of complaining to the suzerain and the protecting 
Powers against him ; but he, on the other hand, might prorogue 
a seditious Assembly, and appeal to the two Imperial guardians 
of his Principality for leave to convoke another. In either 
case, the Tsar would be likely to be the arbitrator. Having 
thus organised the Principalities, the Russians withdrew in 
1834, when a special arrangement between the Tsar and the 
Sultan provided that for this occasion only the two courts 
should name the princes. As such, Alexander II Ghika, younger 
brother of the prince of 1822-8, and Michael Sturdza were 
appointed for Wallachia and Moldavia respectively. Russia 
still, however, continued to exert her influence in the internal 
affairs of the Roumans by means of her consuls ; she actually 
pretended that no change should be made in the organic 
statute without her consent and that of Turkey, and she 
opposed all attempts at propagating the national language. 
Her intrigues culminated in 1842 in the deposition of Ghika. 

While Greece had been the theatre of one war, and the 
Principalities the base of another, Servia had been at peace 
with Turkey and undisturbed by the presence of Russian troops. 
Milosh, already recognised by his own people as their supreme 
and hereditary chief, was promised in 1820 the recognition of 
the Porte, which was also willing to fix the amount of the 
Servian tribute, if the Serbs would accept this as a final settle- 
ment. This offer was rejected, and a Servian deputation, sent 

vii] Servian Autonomy 133 

to negotiate at Constantinople, was arrested, and kept under 
observation for five years. Further negotiations were suspended 
till the convention of Akkerman and the special act relating to 
Servia, which accompanied it, ratified and extended the previous 
Turkish concessions. The Porte undertook to execute without 
delay the eighth article of the treaty of Bucharest, to inform 
the Russian government of the fulfilment of this undertaking, 
and within 18 months to settle in concert with the deputies of 
the Servian people at Constantinople the points demanded by 
the latter. These included internal autonomy, the right to 
choose the chiefs of the nation, and the reunion with Servia of 
the six Servian districts, which had been comprised within the 
jurisdiction of Kara George, but had not taken part in the 
rising of Milosh. The Porte showed, however, no incHnation 
to perform these pledges, given at Akkerman; and matters 
remained as they were until the conclusion of the Russo- 
Turkish war — a struggle in which, by the express desire of 
Diebich, anxious not to provoke Austrian jealousies or Turkish 
reprisals, the Serbs confined themselves to the work of 
hindering the junction of a Bosnian force with the Turkish 
army. In the treaty of Adrianople they had their reward; 
the Porte promised to execute "without the least delay" the 
annexe of the Akkerman convention, and more especially the 
pledge for the restoration of the six detached Servian districts. 
The Imperial decree to this effect was to be communicated to 
Russia in a month's time; but the usual procrastination of 
Turkish diplomacy deferred till 1830 the formal grant of Servian 
autonomy. No Turks, except the garrisons of the fortresses, 
were to live in Servia ; Turkish estates there were to be sold, 
and the incomes of the zaims and timarioies assessed and paid 
to the Sultan, who would compensate his vassals for their lost 
privileges in the land. The Servian tribute was fixed, and 
was to be collected by the Serbs themselves ; and, in place 
of Greek bishops, sent from Constantinople, they might 
choose men of their own race, subject to the approval of the 

134 The Balkan difficulties [cH. 

CEcumenical Patriarch. The entire internal administration 
was entrusted to " the Prince," as Milosh was officially desig- 
nated, who was to exercise his powers in conjunction with the 
Assembly of the elders. That astute personage had offered 
to resign in favour of another, now that the work, which he 
had begun, seemed to be accomplished ; the result of this 
mock abdication was his re-election by the Assembly and his 
formal investiture, on August 3, 1830, as hereditary Prince, 
by the Sultan. Still, however, the Porte hesitated to restore 
the six separated Servian districts, till Milosh selected a 
favourable moment, when Turkey was embroiled with Egypt, 
to foment disturbances among their inhabitants, and then 
invaded them to "restore order." Thus, at last, in 1833, the 
Turks recognised the logic of facts ; and the Servian princi- 
pality, enlarged by one-third, stretched as far as Aleksinatz 
on the south, the Drina on the west, and the Timok on the 
east — boundaries which it retained unaltered till the treaty of 
Berlin. Within these boundaries, however, there still remained 
the Turkish garrisons of the fortresses ; and, by an ingenious 
quibble of the Ottoman government, supported by the Tsar, 
to whom the point was submitted for arbitration, the tumble- 
down defences of the town of Belgrade were held to constitute 
a " fortress," so that the Turkish population remained there. 
Accordingly, in 1833, Belgrade continued to be exempt from 
the fresh order which bade all Mussulmans outside the 
fortresses leave Servia within five years; and in 1838 there 
were still 2700 Turks in the town — a cause of continual friction, 
which 24 years later led to a sanguinary conflict. 

With this exception, the principality of Servia was, so 
far as internal administration was concerned, free from the 
interference of the Turks in politics, of the Greeks in religion. 
A national government and a national church had replaced 
a system of alien rule, although absolute independence had 
not been obtained. But the peasants had not profited by 
this change of masters. They complained of being obliged 

vii] Government of Milosh 135 

to pnmde provisions for the local chiefs on journeys, of forced 
labour, and of other exactions ; and their complaints found 
vent in a revolt, which was suppressed by the powerful chief, 
Vutchich, at the moment when the insurgents were actually 
marching on Kragujevatz, where Milosh had fixed the seat of 
government. The confirmation of his authority by the Sultan 
made Milosh more autocratic than before. If he pretended 
to adapt the Code Napoleon to the use of his subjects, he acted 
as if his will were the only law. He took meadows and houses 
at his own price ; he allowed a suburb of Belgrade to be burned 
down, in order to erect new buildings on the site ; he made the 
Belgrade shopkeepers put up their shutters to unload his hay. 
By enclosing the commons, he tried to secure a monopoly of 
the pig-trade, which was the staple industry of Servia; and 
if, by refusing to grant fiefs, he benefited the cultivators of the 
soil and saved them from feudal oppression, he thereby alien- 
ated many of his own friends. The discontent of the latter 
led to a conspiracy against him in 1835; the conspirators 
occupied Kragujevatz; and Milosh was forced to call an 
Assembly and to promise a constitution. This first essay at 
constitutional government in Servia, called from the place of 
meeting, the " Constitution of Sretenje," created a ministry of 
six persons, chosen from the Council of State, a committee 
of leading men which dated from the early days of Kara 
George's rising. The Prince was bound to sanction any law 
thrice approved by the Council, which was to share with him 
the legislative and executive power, as foreshadowed in the 
Imperial decree of 1830, and of which all present and past 
ministers were ex officio members. As an arbiter between the 
Prince and the Council was instituted an annual Assembly, or 
Skupshttna, of 100 deputies, to be elected by the people — a 
provision which thus regulated and systematised the former 
haphazard method of convoking such Assemblies. For the time 
being, however, the jurisdiction of this body was practically 
restricted to finance. The "Constitution of Sretenje" was, 

136 The Balkan difficulties [ch. 

however, suppressed almost as soon as it had been signed. 
Austria and Russia, aghast at the introduction of such principles 
in a state so near to one, and so dear to the other, protested ; and 
the Sultan encouraged Milosh, who was nothing loth, to suspend 
it. The official press announced that he was the sole ruler 
in Servia, and he became more autocratic and more unpopular 
than ever. He established a monopoly of the salt which was 
imported from Wallachia, and spent the profits of this transaction 
in buying land there. Even his own brother Jephrem joined 
the Opposition, and was compelled, with Vutchich, to leave 
the country ; while Russia viewed with disapproval the pre- 
ponderance of the Prince's authority over that of the oligarchy 
and the consequent failure of her scheme to make the one 
counterbalance the other. 

At that moment Milosh received support from an un- 
expected quarter. Lord Palmerston had come to the conclusion 
that to strengthen the small Christian states of the near east 
was the true policy of both Turkey and Great Britain. He 
saw, as Sir William White saw in our own time, that the 
Balkan peoples would thus become a barrier against Russian 
aggression. Accordingly, in 1837, Col. Hodges arrived in 
Servia as the first British consul ever accredited to that 
principality, and encouraged the Prince in his autocratic and 
anti-Russian attitude. Thus, the little Servian court became 
the scene of a diplomatic battle between the western Powers 
and the Tsar. The Sultan, then under the influence of Russia, 
with which he had concluded the humiliating treaty of Hunkiar 
Iskelesi in 1833 (seep. 147), could not, however, be persuaded 
by British diplomacy to support the authority of the Prince 
against the wishes of his own all-powerful protector. An 
Imperial decree of December, 1838, limited Milosh's sway 
by creating a Senate of 17 life members, corresponding with 
the 17 provinces of the principality. f>om this Senate foui 
ministers were to be chosen, and all disputes between the 
Prince and this Council were to be referred to his suzerain. 

vii] Milosh abdicates 137 

Milosh was not the man to acquiesce in such a limitation of 
his powers. He stirred up the peasants, with the assistance 
of his brother John, by disseminating the statement that 
thenceforth they would have not one master, but seventeen. 
The Senate, however, ordered his enemy Vutchich to suppress 
this revolt ; and the triumphant leader, on his return to Belgrade, 
entered the Prince's house, and plainly told him that the nation 
had no further need of him. On June 13, 1839, the second 
founder of modern Servia abdicated in favour of his invalid 
elder son, Milan Obrenovich II, and crossed the Save. On 
July 9 Milan died, without even knowing that he had been 
Prince of Servia. Meanwhile, Vutchich, Jephrem Obrenovich, 
and the Turcophil Petronievich continued to carry on the 

The Senate then decided to ask for the appointment of 
Milosh's younger son Michael Obrenovich III. The Sultan 
consented, but the patent of investiture omitted all mention 
of the hereditary character of the princely dignity. A Regency 
conducted affairs till Michael attained his majority on March 5, 
1840; and even then the Porte forced upon him as advisers 
the two ex-Regents, Vutchich and Petronievich. This last 
act was in contravention of the recognised right of the Serbs 
to choose their own officials, and aroused widespread opposition. 
The peasants, preferring the rule of one man to that of several, 
clamoured for the prosecution of the two advisers, the recall 
of Milosh, and the restoration of the seat of government to 
Kragujevatz, a place less exposed to foreign influence than 
Belgrade, a Turkish fortress on the Austrian frontier. Michael 
consented to return to the former capital, and his advisers 
sought refuge with the Turkish commander of Belgrade, and 
subsequently in Turkey itself. Unfortunately the innate con- 
servatism of the peasantry was alienated by the too progressive 
policy of Michael's Minister of Justice and Education, an 
Austrian Serb, who sought to convert this agricultural com- 
munity of the orient into a civilised western state. Primitive 

138 The Balkan difficulties [ch. 

peoples have always seen in a census a new engine of taxation, 
for to the oriental mind statistics are the prelude of the tax- 
collector; the social elevation of the clergy meant expense 
to the villagers, who shook their heads over the advantages 
of schools ; while the Turkish authorities complained of the 
creation of a national theatre, where patriotic dramatists 
glorified the Servian hero who had slain Murad I on the 
field of Kossovo. Naturally this progressive policy cost money ; 
and the most unpopular of all Michael's measures was the 
increase of the national tax, into which in 1834 all the various 
imposts had been consolidated. Moreover, the young Prince 
had foes in his own household ; his mother wished for the 
restoration of his father; his uncle John was discontented. 
The recall of the exiles, who had sought shelter in Turkey, 
provided the Opposition with leaders. A '* constitutional " 
party was formed against the Prince; and Vutchich, putting 
himself forward in August 1842 as the spokesman of all those 
who were dissatisfied from one cause or another with the 
government, demanded the dismissal of Michael's ministers 
and the reduction of taxation. The Prince, who had committed 
the mistake of returning to Belgrade, was abandoned by his 
troops when he marched against the insurgents ; and, as the 
Turkish governor of that fortress favoured them, he had no 
option but to cross the Save on August 29, as his father had 
done three years earlier. Vutchich again entered Belgrade 
in triumph, and, as self-styled " leader of the nation," formed 
a provisional government, which summoned a National 
Assembly for the election of a Prince. This Assembly met 
on September 14, 1842, and elected Alexander Karageorgevich, 
younger but sole surviving son of Kara George, a man 
36 years of age, who had been a pensioner of Milosh and 
an adjutant of Michael, and whose name and uncompromised 
past recommended him to the Serbs. The Porte ratified the 
election ; Vutchich, as Minister of the Interior, remained the 
power behind the throne. 

VI i] Bosnian risings 139 

The Tsar, however, who regarded himself as the virtual 
protector of Servia, protested against this change of ruler as 
illegal and revolutionary, and demanded the deposition of 
Prince Alexander, a new election, the removal of the Turkish 
commissioner who had been present at the meeting of the 
Assembly, and the punishment of Vutchich and Petronievich. 
Lord Aberdeen, however, British Foreign Secretary, advocated 
the retention of Alexander ; and a diplomatic compromise was 
made, by which the election was annulled on the understanding 
that the Tsar would not oppose Alexander's re-election. On 
June 15, 1843, ^^ was re-elected ; but the Russian autocrat 
would not be pacified until Vutchich and Petronievich had 
left the country, whither they shortly returned. 

The Serbs of Bosnia had meanwhile been much less 
tractable than their fellows in Servia. The reforms of 
Mahmild II met with a resolute opposition from the privileged 
aristocracy of that feudal land. The discontent of the Bosnian 
nobles, which had begun with the arrival of a Turkish governor, 
determined to deal out even-handed justice to all classes and 
creeds, broke out into open rebellion on the destruction of 
the Janissaries and the subsequent military reforms. Sarajevo 
had been a favourite station of the disbanded corps ; and when 
its fanatical inhabitants learnt that thenceforth the Turkish 
soldier was expected to wear two crossed belts on his breast 
after the Austrian model, they exclaimed with sarcasm, that 
if they had to take the cross at all, it should be from the hands 
of the Austrian or the Russian Emperor. Under the leader- 
ship of Ali Pasha of Zvornik, the rebels drove out the governor 
sent by the " Giaour Sultan " ; and the most vigorous measures 
on the part of his successor were required to re-establish his 
master's authority. But, when the conclusion of the Russo- 
Turkish war gave Mahmild time to continue his well-meant 
reforms, the Bosniaks rose again against a movement, which 
they regarded as a double menace to their class privileges and 
their religious liberty. In Hussein-Aga, the headman of 

140 The Balkan difficulties [cH. 

Gradishka on the Bosnian bank of the Save, they found a 
natural leader. Hussein-Aga is one of the most romantic 
figures of Bosnian history. Young, handsome, and rich, he 
had the courage of a hero, and the reputation of a saint. His 
friends called him "the Dragon of Bosnia"; and, if he had 
been a real dragon, his enemies could not have fled more 
rapidly before him. He had but to unfurl the green flag of 
the Prophet in Banjaluka, and the religious fanaticism of the 
country rose to fever heat. He marched at the head of his 
enthusiastic followers into Sarajevo ; the Sultan's officials were 
either driven out of the towns or killed, and the governor only 
saved his life by flight. But even this did not satisfy the zeal 
of this new apostle. He meditated nothing less than a campaign 
against the Sultan beyond the boundaries of Bosnia. On the 
fatal plain of Kossovo, where four and a half centuries before 
the Bosnian Christians had fought in vain against the Turks, 
the leader of the Bosnian Mussulmans assembled his followers 
against the same foe. The discontented flocked to his standard 
from all quarters — the pasha of Albania, at the head of 20,000 
warlike Arnauts from "bloody Scutari," the pasha of Sofia 
with a detachment from Bulgaria. So long as the three chiefs 
were united, they carried all before them ; but the astute 
Grand Vizier, Reshid Pasha, succeeded in separating the 
Albanians from the Bosniaks and dealing with each apart. 
The newly appointed governor of Bosnia made himself master 
of Sarajevo, and set the native nobility at defiance by estab- 
lishing his residence there, instead of at Travnik, the customary 
abode of the Sultan's representative. Hussein fled across the 
Save into Slavonia, where he was received by the orders of 
the Austrian Emperor with every mark of respect. But his 
presence so near the frontier was a source of embarrassment, 
for Bosnian bands were perpetually plundering the confines 
of the Austrian empire, and on three occasions the Austrian 
government had to take upon itself the duty of chastising the 
Sultan's rebellious subjects. Hussein was accordingly given 

vil J Rizvanbegovich 1 4 1 

the choice of residing under closer supervision or of returning 
to Turkey. He chose the latter, and died in exile on his way 
to Trebizond. But the rising of 1831 was only the precursor 
of further troubles. When the new Sultan, Abdul Mejid, 
proclaimed the equality of all his subjects before the law in 
the famous hatti-sherif of Giil-khaneh, the Bosnian reactionaries 
once more displayed an obstinate resistance. 

At last, in 1849, the rising had attained such formidable 
dimensions that the Sultan resolved to make an end of the 
feudal system altogether. He accordingly dispatched the 
celebrated Omar Pasha, a Croatian renegade, and therefore 
a Mohammedan Slav, like so many Bosniaks, to crush all 
opposition to his will. The rebels were secretly abetted by 
Ali Pasha Rizvanbegovich, the last great figure in the history 
of the Herzegovina, who had taken the side of the Sultan in 
the revolt of 1831, and had been rewarded with the governor- 
ship of that province. In his castle at Stolatz, and in his 
splendid summer residence at Buna, near Mostar, Rizvan- 
begovich lived like an independent prince. He called the 
Herzegovina " my province " ; his subjects called him " a 
second Duke Stephen " after the famous Vuktchich of the 
fifteenth century, from the German form of whose ducal title 
the Herzegovina received its modern name. He was, indeed, 
the father of his people. He taught them to grow rice in the 
marshes of the Narenta; he planted the olive and the vine; 
he strove to extend the culture of the silk-worm. Severe 
against the Christians who dared to revolt, he naturally sym- 
pathised with the refractory Mussulman nobles. But he was 
no match for Omar in cunning. As soon as he had subdued 
Bosnia, the generalissimo of the Sultan entered Mostar. Omar 
invited his wily antagonist to his table, and when the old man 
came had him dragged down to the famous most or " bridge" 
over the Narenta, whence the town derives its name, and 
placed upon an ass as a sign of his contempt. In this 
humiliating position, Rizvanbegovich implored his captor to 

142 The Balkan difficulties [cH. 

send him to the Sultan for judgment. But Omar feared to 
send so wealthy an enemy to the Turkish capital. One of 
those lucky accidents so common in Turkish history relieved 
him of all anxiety. A gun — so the official version ran — chanced 
to go off in the night, and the head of the captive happened 
to be in the way of the bullet. Bosnia and the Herzegovina 
were at Omar's mercy. The begs lost their old feudal privileges, 
and their country was administered from Constantinople. As 
a token of his power, Omar in 1850 made Sarajevo, instead 
of Travnik, the definite seat of government, and retained the 
post of governor-general for nearly 20 years. But even his 
authority was unable to restrain the mutual animosity of 
Christians and Mussulmans. Whenever a Christian rising 
took place in the Herzegovina the Montenegrins came to 
the assistance of their brother Serbs, men of the same race 
and religion as themselves. 

Montenegro was, indeed, a continual source of trouble to 
the Turks. The Prince-Bishop Peter I waged a successful 
campaign against the governor of Bosnia in 181 9; and the 
repulse of a Turkish invasion from the side of Albania during 
the Russo-Turkish war led to the recognition of Montenegrin 
sovereignty over the Piperi tribe. When, in 1830, Peter I 
ended his long reign of 48 years, he had the satisfaction of 
having united to his little state the three districts of the Piperi, 
the Kutchi, and the Bijelopavlich, so called after " the son of 
Paul the White," a relative of the famous medieval hero, 
Lek Dukagin. But not only had he nearly doubled Montenegro, 
he had also given it a code, and obtained the payment of the 
long-discontinued Russian subsidy of 1,000 ducats, and the 
delimitation of the boundary between Montenegro and her 
new neighbour, Austria. Future generations will perhaps 
regard as the most important and fatal event of his long reign 
this substitution of an active European Power for the moribund 
Venetian Republic in the possession of Dalmatia. The French 
annexation of that province was but an episode ; but the 

vii] Peter II of Montenegro 143 

Austrians came to stay, and their occupation of the Herze- 
govina in 1878 and their annexation of it in 1908 increased 
the embarrassment of the mountaineers. 

Peter I, who is venerated as a saint by the pious pilgrims 
to his tomb in the monastery church at Cetinje, and who is 
known as the " Great Vladika^' was succeeded, according to 
the usual custom, by his nephew, who took the name of 
Peter II. The new Prince-Bishop, a combination of poet, 
historical dramatist, and statesman, not uncommon in the 
Petrovich dynasty, began by a series of reforms. He created 
a police force, founded a printing-press, the successor of that 
formed at Obod in 1493, established a paid, permanent 
Senate (or Soviet) of 12 members and a president with 
deliberative and judicial functions, and divided the enlarged 
principality into eight districts (or nahie\ of which the four 
on the other side of the Zeta valley, known as the Brda (or 
" mountains ") gave to the ruler his second title. The popu- 
lation of the little state, thus reorganised, was estimated in 1846 
at 120,000 souls. Peter II further abolished the dual system 
of government, which had prevailed since 15 16. From that 
time the Prince-Bishop had always had at his side a lay official, 
known as the civil "governor," originally chosen from among 
the leading famiHes of the Katounska district, in which 
Cetinje is situated, and latterly always a member of the house 
of Radonich. A dispute arose between Peter and the civil 
governor; and the former settled the question in 1832 by 
decreeing the abolition of the office and the banishment of 
Vuko Radonich, its last holder. Thus, in Montenegro, as in 
Japan, the spiritual authority suppressed the temporal; and 
for the next 20 years Montenegro was a theocracy, but as 
warlike as ever. In vain the Sultan tempted the Prince-Bishop 
to recognise him as his suzerain by the offer of the city of 
Scutari, a frontage on the Adriatic, and a part of the Herze- 
govina for himself and his heirs; but the pride and sturdy 
independence of Peter II would not allow him to accept a 

144 'The Balkan difficulties [ch. 

subordinate position such as that of Milosh. Consequently, 
a fresh Turco-Montenegrin campaign took place in 1832, in 
which the Turks were worsted; in 1835 a body of Montenegrins 
seized the ancient Montenegrin capital of Jablyak, which their 
ruler, however, thought it prudent to hand back to the Sultan; 
in 1840 a scheme for the capture of the still Turkish towns 
of Podgoritza and Spuj provoked another Turkish invasion. 
For several years, too, the indefinite status of the district of 
Grahovo on the Herzegovinian frontier involved the Monte- 
negrins in conflicts with Turkey. A treaty signed in 1838 
had declared Grahovo to be neutral territory, under an 
hereditary vo'ivode, confirmed in his dignity by the Prince- 
Bishop and the governors of Bosnia and the Herzegovina ; 
and this transitory state of things was continued by subsequent 
agreements. Finally, in 1843 the seizure by the Turks of 
the islands of Lessandria and Vranina in the lake of Scutari, 
by interfering with the fishing, severely injured the adjacent 
district of Montenegro. Several years of comparative peace 
with Turkey followed ; but a sanguinary incident with the 
little country's other great neighbour had already arisen. The 
Pastrovich clan, inhabiting the Austrian littoral from Budua 
to Spizza, had sold its lands to the Montenegrins, naturally 
anxious for an outlet on the sea. Austria objected to this 
virtual occupation of her territory by her neighbours, and 
offered to buy out the purchasers. The valuation, however, 
led to a fatal collision between the Austrians and the Monte- 
negrins in 1838, and ;£4o,ooo barely compensated the latter 
for the loss of this strip of coast. More serious still was the 
civil war, a thing almost unknown in the history of Montenegro, 
which broke out in 1847, owing to the attempt of the Piperi 
and Crnitchka districts to secede from a principality which was 
afflicted by famine, and could not relieve them with the 
liberal rations of the Turks. The secessionists were subdued, 
and their ringleaders shot. 

It was not in Europe alone that the reforming Sultan had 

vii] Revolt of Mehemet AH 145 

enemies to face. Scarcely had he ended the war with the 
Greeks and signed the treaty of Adrianople with the Russians 
than in 1830 his prestige was wounded in Africa by the French 
conquest of Algiers, which had acknowledged the nominal 
suzerainty of Turkey since 15 19, but had been long practically 
independent under its Deys. Far more serious than this moral 
defeat was the revolt of Mehemet Ali, Viceroy of Egypt, in 1831, 
which threatened the very existence of the Ottoman throne. 
The ambitious Albanian was not satisfied with the reward 
which he had received for his services to his suzerain during 
the Greek war ; Crete seemed to him an inadequate equivalent 
for the loss of the Morea ; he in vain asked the Sultan to 
compensate his son Ibrahim with the pashaHk of Damascus; and 
refusal made him all the more eager to obtain it. He knew 
that the reforms of Mahmiid II had rendered their author 
unpopular ; religious fanaticism and vested interests had been 
alike wounded by the aboHtion of the Bektash dervishes, which 
had followed that of the Janissaries ; one conflagration after 
another showed the dislike of the Conservatives at Constanti- 
nople to the new methods of their master; one insurrection 
after another in the provinces of Europe suggested a greater, 
and probably more successful, rising in Africa. Mehemet Ali 
could contemplate with self-complacency the condition of 
Egypt as compared with that of the rest of the Turkish empire. 
A French officer had organised his army ; a French constructor 
had rebuilt his fleet ; a French doctor had taught his physicians ; 
he was the sole landowner, the sole manufacturer, the sole 
contractor in the country, where human lives were reckoned 
of as litde account as in the time of the Pharaohs. The one 
thing lacking was complete independence, and the moment 
seemed propitious for its attainment. An excuse was readily 
found in the refusal of Abdullah, Pasha of Acre, to give up 
some Egyptian refugees, victims of Mehemet All's state 
socialism, who had taken refuge in the old city of the 
crusaders. Ibrahim thereupon invaded Syria; Jaffa and 
M. L. 10 

146 The Syrian difficulties [ch. 

Jerusalem were occupied by his troops; the Sultan's tardy resolve 
to declare his rebellious subject an outlaw was followed by 
the capture of Acre, the defeat of the Turkish troops and 
the surrender of Damascus. The diplomacy of the invading 
commander won for him the sympathy of the Syrian population; 
his strategy defeated the Ottoman generals, including Hussein 
Pasha, the commander-in-chief, in three successive battles. 
The victorious Egyptian troops crossed the Taurus mountains 
and entered Asia Minor ; the Egyptian Viceroy demanded 
Syria, already conquered, as the price of peace. Mahmud 
applied for the assistance of Great Britain, and sent Reshid 
Pasha, who had just pacified Albania, to crush the revolt of 
the greatest living Albanian. On December 21, 1832, Reshid 
was defeated and taken prisoner at Konieh ; Constantinople 
itself seemed to be at the mercy of the rebellious vassal. The 
Sultan in vain opened negotiations with Mehemet Ali, at the 
suggestion of the French government; master of Syria, the 
Viceroy asked for Adana as well. This demand was refused ; 
Ibrahim's reply was to order his advance-guard to occupy 
Brusa, the ancient capital of the Ottoman empire. Then 
Mahmild, finding the British government engaged with the 
affairs of Belgium and the French inclined to view with 
sympathy a ruler whose successes had been largely due to 
French organisation, threw himself into the arms of his 
hereditary enemy, the Tsar, whose army less than four years 
earlier had marched upon Constantinople. In February, 1833, 
a Russian fleet entered the Bosphorus; the "protector" of 
Roumans and Serbs against their sovereign had come to 
"protect" that sovereign against his vassal. 

The arrival of the Russians in the Bosphorus caused far 
greater alarm in western Europe than the successes of Ibrahim. 
In their dealings with Turkey, the Christian Powers have 
always shown more zeal for what they believed to be their 
own interests than for those of either the Sultan or his subjects. 
It was a matter of less moment to the statesmen of London 

vii] Treaty of Htmkiar Iskelesi 147 

and Paris that an Albanian dynasty should displace the house 
of Osman than that the Tsar should obtain an exclusive 
influence at Constantinople. But while British and French 
diplomatists wrote dispatches, the Russians strengthened their 
position. A second Russian squadron entered the Bosphorus ; 
a Russian army encamped on its Asian shore. As the Russians 
had not yet evacuated Silistria and the Principalities, further 
forces were easily available. Then Mehemet and Mahmud 
came to terms ; the Viceroy received for himself the whole of 
Syria, for his son the collectorship of Adana. While he had 
thus obtained his price by attacking his sovereign, the Tsar 
was resolved to secure his reward for defending the latter. 
On July 8, 1833, at Hunkiar Iskelesi ("the landing-place of 
the manslayer ") on the Asian shore of the Bosphorus was 
signed a Russo-Turkish treaty of mutual alliance and assistance. 
Russia pledged herself to provide troops for the Sultan in case 
of need ; but a secret article stipulated that if " the need " 
were that of Russia, the Sultan, instead of providing troops, 
should close the Dardanelles to the war-ships of all nations. 
Thus, while Russia could intervene in the affairs of Turkey, 
the other Powers were excluded ; and with a stroke of the pen 
Mahmud II had signed away his own independence. The 
British Foreign Office, taken unawares— for it did not receive 
an accurate text of the treaty till some months after the 
announcement of its signature by a London newspaper — 
pretended to ignore its existence ; British and French influence 
sank at Constantinople, where Russia was all-powerful; nor 
was the Tsar greatly moved by the subsequent protests 
of the two western Powers, whose diplomacy he had out- 

The peace between the Sultan and his Viceroy did not 
last long, for neither was Mahmtid II the man to forget his 
humiliation, nor Mehemet AH to forgo an advantage. The 
Syrians soon became discontented with the rule of their 
new master. Ibrahim, like everyone else who has attempted 

10 — 2 

148 The Syrian difficulties [ch. 

to enforce the equality before the law of all races and creeds 
in Turkey, aroused the opposition of the Mussulmans, long 
accustomed to regard the Christians as their inferiors. By 
his introduction of his father's system of monopolies he crippled 
Syrian commerce; by the enforcement of conscription he 
offended the mountaineers of the Lebanon, just as by a similar 
policy the "Young Turks" of to-day have alienated those of 
Albania. So early as 1834 he was obliged to repress a revolt, 
which Mahmiid was prevented by foreign diplomacy alone 
from assisting. Further risings followed, but an armed peace 
was preserved till 1839, when Mahmud could be restrained 
no longer. Both adversaries had special motives for hastening 
hostilities. Mahmud had lately concluded with Great Britain 
a commercial treaty, which, by repudiating the practice of 
monopolies throughout the Turkish empire, struck a blow at 
the economic system which Mehemet and his son had erected 
in Egypt and Syria. It was, therefore, more than ever their 
interest to sever their possessions from the other Turkish 
dominions by a declaration of independence. Prudence 
suggested the taking of this step before the Turkish troops had 
been thoroughly re-organised by the Prussian officer who was 
destined to plan the German victory of 1870, but who could 
not hinder an Egyptian victory in 1839. Palmerston's re- 
monstrances prevented Mehemet from becoming the aggressor; 
but his warnings to MahmCld were neutralised by the Turcophil 
opinions of his ambassador, and by the passion of the dying 
Sultan for revenge. On April 21 the Turkish army crossed 
the Euphrates ; two months later Ibrahim annihilated it at 
Nezib. Mahmfid, fortunate in the opportunity of his death, 
expired on July i, 1839, without hearing the news of this 
crushing defeat, the last blow of the many that had befallen 
the empire during his long reign. He had witnessed the 
independence of Greece, the autonomy of Servia, the loss of 
Algiers, the revolt of his subjects in Bosnia, Albania, and 
Egypt. He had seen the Russian frontier advanced to the 

vii] Abdul Mejid 149 

Pruth, the Russian protectorate extended first over his own 
Roumanian vassals, then over himself; he had signed the 
three humiliating treaties of Akkerman, Adrianople, and 
Hunkiar Iskelesi. Nor had his efforts as a reformer been 
very successful ; if he had escaped the fate of his predecessor, 
the progressive Selim III, he had gained little but obloquy 
from those whom he had sought to improve in spite of 
themselves. Even to-day it is not yet certain whether Turkey 
be capable of reformation, whether the " Young Turk " be 
not merely the Old Turk in European clothes. No recent 
Sultan, however, has brought to this difficult task the 
energy and the indomitable force of will possessed by 
MahmM II. 

The reign of his son and successor, Abdul Mejid, opened 
with a fresh disaster — the betrayal of the Turkish fleet by its 
admiral to Mehemet Ali at Alexandria. Thus defeated on 
land and deserted at sea, the Turkish government offered to 
make terms with Mehemet Ali, promising him the hereditary 
Viceroyalty of Egypt with Syria as an appanage for Ibrahim 
till such time as, in due course of nature, the latter should 
succeed him on the viceregal throne. The five Cabinets of 
Great Britain, France, Austria, Russia, and Prussia presented, 
however, a joint note to the Porte, urging that no final decision 
should be taken without their concurrence, inasmuch as the 
quarrel between Turkey and her vassal had become a question 
of European concern. But it soon became obvious that this 
striking unanimity of the five governments existed on paper 
alone, and not even on paper for long. While the British 
Foreign Secretary desired to reconfine Mehemet Ali within the 
boundaries of Egypt, the French Ministry could not resist the 
natural pressure of public opinion in favour of the Viceroy, who 
owed so much to France and from whom France might hope 
so much in return. Thiers, who became Premier at this 
juncture, went still further in support of Mehemet Ali ; and the 
British and French governments drifted apart to such an 

150 The Syrian difficulties [ch. 

extent, that, without the knowledge of the latter, the other four 
Powers concluded, in London on July 15, 1840, a convention 
pledging themselves to force Mehemet AH to accept the terms 
arranged by them with the Sultan. These terms were the 
hereditary Viceroyalty of Egypt and the life governorship of 
southern Syria with the possession of the fortress of Acre, on 
condition that he submitted within ten days and evacuated the 
north of Syria, Adana, the holy places of Arabia, and Crete. 
At the end of that time the offer of southern Syria and Acre, 
at the end of ten days more that of the hereditary Viceroyalty 
of Egypt, would be withdrawn. 

Great was the indignation of the French when this quadri- 
lateral convention became known. Thiers, the historian of 
Napoleon, felt that it was " the Waterloo of his diplomacy " ; 
the press, as usual, stirred up public excitement in a question 
which was supposed to affect the national honour ; and 
even the middle-class monarch was constrained to speak of 
''unmuzzling the tiger" of revolution, in order to preserve his 
popularity. Patriots talked of invading Germany and Italy, of 
renewing the exploits of Napoleon, of exacting vengeance from 
his victors. Rival poets hurled challenges across the Rhine ; 
bellicose newspapers exchanged threats across the Channel. 
Meanwhile, the allies were acting ; the appearance of an 
Anglo-Austrian fleet under Sir Charles Napier off Beirdt en- 
couraged the mountaineers of Lebanon, deprived of their 
ancient privileges by the centralising despotism of Ibrahim, 
to rise against him. BeirOt fell ; Acre, which had resisted 
Bonaparte, was taken after a bombardment of three hours. 
Napier, while Ibrahim was retreating towards Egypt, concluded 
a convention with Mehemet Ali at Alexandria, promising to 
obtain for him the hereditary possession of that country as a 
pashalik of the Turkish empire, on condition that he made 
no further claims to Syria but restored the Turkish fleet. In 
the interval Thiers had fallen, and the return to power of 
Marshal Soult, who was highly appreciated in London, with 


] Settlement of Egypt 1 5 1 

Guizot, fresh from the London Embassy, as his Minister of 
Foreign Affairs, banished the fear of an European war, in which 
the Tsar had promised to assist Great Britain. It only remained 
to convince the Porte of the necessity of carrying out Napier's 
promises. After the usual procrastination, the hereditary 
pashalik of Egypt was conferred in 1841 upon Mehemet AH 
and his descendants in order of primogeniture, under pressure 
from the Powers; his army was reduced to 18,000 men, and 
its higher officers were to be appointed by the Sultan, whose 
leave was necessary for the construction of an Egyptian navy, 
and to whom the Viceroy was to pay an annual tribute of 
;;^T.4oo,ooo. The Nubian conquests of Ibrahim were entrusted 
to the Viceroy for life. The Sultan also conferred as an 
appanage upon Mehemet the island of Thasos, where the 
Viceroy's ancestors had once lived; but a Christian primate was 
elected as the assessor of the Egyptian governor. Thence- 
forth Mehemet Ali troubled European diplomacy no more, 
while France, returning to the European Concert, signed with 
the other four governments at London on July 13, 1841, 
the " Convention of the Straits," which closed the Bosphorus 
and the Dardanelles, so long as the Porte was at peace, to the 
vessels of war of all foreign Powers. This dangerous crisis in 
the eastern question was over ; and the young Sultan was able 
to devote his attention to the difficult task of enforcing that 
charter of reforms, which, on November 3, 1839, he had 
solemnly published in the kiosk of Giil-khaneh. The lives, 
property, and honour of all his subjects, irrespective of race or 
creed, were guaranteed; the incidence of taxation was deter- 
mined and its collection regulated ; the European system of 
recruiting introduced. Yet the evils of the Ottoman empire 
have rarely proceeded from lack of good laws, but from the 
want of their application. Nowhere are theory and practice 
so far asunder as in Turkey, and nowhere is the saying of the 
Roman historian truer, that the state is most corrupt, when 
the laws are most numerous. 

152 The Syrian difficulties [ch. 

The Egyptian occupation of Syria had bequeathed a legacy 
of anarchy to the inhabitants of the Lebanon. The bibUcal 
mountain of the cedars had been ruled since 1697 as a feudal 
principality under the suzerainty of the Sultan by a prince of 
the family of Shihab. In 1840, however, Beshir-Shihab, "the 
last great Prince of the Mountain," was deposed by the Turkish 
government, and sent into exile, and his relative Beshir-el- 
Kassim Mulhem invested with the principality. It was the 
object of the Sultan's advisers to destroy the ancient autonomy 
of the Lebanon, and reduce that privileged mountain to the 
dead-level of a provincial governorship. They relied for the 
attainment of this policy upon the weak character of the new 
prince and the mutual animosities of the Maronites and Druses, 
who formed the majority of the inhabitants ; for unfortunately 
this single area was peopled by different races of no less than 
six creeds. The Maronites, Roman Catholics whose services 
in the Crusades had gained them the promise of protection 
from St Louis himself, were under the special patronage of the 
French. At the instigation of France, Suleyman II had twice 
guaranteed to them the exercise of their religion ; they had a 
special college in Rome; and in their churches at home a place 
of honour was reserved for the French consul, who was wont 
to hold his naked sword over the open book of the Gospel, in 
token of his sovereign's protection. The Druses, whose religious 
opinions were flexible but inclined on the whole towards a form 
of Mohammedanism, were the natural enemies of their Maronite 
neighbours, and in the opinion of French writers were considered 
to be the puppets of British policy in Syria. It did not, however, 
require any of those Machiavellian intrigues, which foreign 
publicists are fond of associating with our somewhat ingenuous 
statesmen, to induce the warlike Druses to rise against the 
feeble prince whom the Turks had set over them. In October, 
1 84 1, they rebelled against his authority and massacred the 
Christian villagers, with the complicity of the Turkish authorities, 
who then stepped in to restore order. Beshir-el-Kassim was 

vii] The Lebanon 153 

deposed; and direct Ottoman government, in the person of 
Omar Pasha, the former writing-master, and future Field- 
Marshal of the Sultan, was installed on the Lebanon. This 
remarkable man, who played so conspicuous a part in the 
history of the near east, alike in the Lebanon, in Albania, in 
the Danubian Principalities, in Bosnia, in Montenegro, in the 
Crimea, and in Crete, was an Austrian subject and a Croat by 
birth, whose real name was Michael Lattas. Deserting from 
the frontier guard, he had fled to Vidin, learnt Turkish, atid 
embraced Islam as a means of advancement. After acting for 
some years as clerk to Hussein, then governor of Vidin, he 
had gravitated to Constantinople, where he taught the future 
Sultan, Abdul Mejid, calligraphy, and then, entering the army, 
received his baptism of fire at Nezib. His old pupil naturally 
considered him a fit governor of the Lebanon. The Powers, 
however, protested against this violation of its privileges; 
France, in the interest of her special clients, the Maronites, 
urged the restoration of the local dynasty. The Porte, at the 
suggestion of Austria, accepted a compromise; Omar Pasha, 
an excellent and just administrator, was removed, and a 
" provisional " organisation was adopted, which established a 
dual system of government for the Lebanon. The Mountain 
was divided into two administrative districts, one for the Druses 
and one for the Maronites, each under a kaimakdm^ selected 
from the natives, but to the exclusion of the family of Shihab. 
Thus, .for a single feudal hereditary chief were substituted two 
prefects, appointed by, and removable at, the good pleasure of 
the Ottoman authorities. The Lebanon, after the long enjoy- 
ment of practical independence, was humbled to the category 
of county government. Nay more, in order to complete the 
dismemberment of the former principality, the Turks severed 
from the Maronite district and incorporated with the pashalik 
of Tripoli the exclusively Christian territory of Djebail, which 
comprised the ancient monastery of Kannobin, so long the seat 
of the Maronite Patriarchs, the holy valley, and the famous 

154 The Syrian difficulties [ch. 

cedars. In the villages where a mixed population of Druses 
and Maronites lived together, two under-prefects, one for the 
Christians, the other for the Mohammedans, were appointed. 
These arrangements, however, failed to pacify the mountaineers. 
The break-up of feudalism had kindled in the breasts of the 
peasants the desire for equality with their lords ; and thus to the 
ancient quarrel of rival races and religions (for, besides the 
Druses and Maronites, the Mountain was inhabited by Greeks 
Orthodox and Uniate, by Mussulmans Orthodox and dis- 
sentient) there was added a new antagonism of classes, 
especially bitter when the peasant was a Maronite and the 
noble a Druse. 

In the spring of 1845 the Druses, with the connivance of 
the Turkish military authorities, fell upon the Maronites and 
their French supporters. The French Capuchine monastery 
at Abeih was fired, and its superior, Pere Charles de Lorette, 
massacred, while the American missionaries, who inhabited 
the same village, were left unscathed. Not only was the chief 
murderer acquitted by the Mohammedan tribunal, but Chekib- 
Effendi, the Turkish Minister for Foreign Affairs, who came in 
person to the Lebanon, ordered all European residents and 
travellers to quit the Mountain. When the French consul at 
Beiriit sent his dragoman to protect the Christians, the emissary 
was arrested and thrown into prison. This last outrage to the 
law of nations brought Turkey to the verge of war with France; 
a French frigate prepared to bombard Beirut, unless the drago- 
man were set free ; the French ambassador addressed an 
ultimatum to the Porte, demanding the restoration of French 
subjects to their abodes, the payment of compensation for the 
sack of Abeih, and the punishment of the authors of the 
massacres. As usual, the Porte yielded to the only argument 
which it understands — force — and accepted the French terms. 
The work of restoring order on the mountain still remained. 
Chekib maintained the dual system of administration, but, by 
way of concession to the Christians, created an administrative 

vii] The Druses 155 

council of ten in either of the two districts ; in both councils 
the Christians had a majority, so that they could at least make 
their complaints known. The Druses naturally murmured at 
this diminution of their authority ; but the government was 
fortunate in its choice of the two kaimakdms, and for the next 
nine years the Mountain enjoyed a period of repose. 



When, on February 6, 1833, King Otho landed at Nauplia, 
there was a general feeling of relief. At last, it was hoped, the 
sorely-tried land, after eight years of warfare against the Turks 
and three more of internal convulsions, would obtain that 
repose which it so greatly needed. The monarch was young ; 
he was unconnected with the factions and the intrigues of the 
politicians and the military chiefs ; he was powerfully supported 
by three great nations ; he was well endowed with the funds 
necessary for the organisation of a stable administration. The 
joy of the people, as portrayed in the well-known picture of 
his landing beneath the most beautiful of Venetian fortresses, 
was as natural as it was touching. Unfortunately, from the 
very outset difficulties arose, which, if they did not damage the 
popularity of the youthful King, estranged the loyal Greeks 
from the Bavarians who ruled in his name during his minority. 

The treaty between the three Powers and Bavaria had en- 
trusted the King of Bavaria with the appointment of the three 
Regents, who were to govern Greece for his son. King Louis' 
choice fell upon Count von Armansperg, a former Bavarian 
Minister of Liberal tendencies ; Dr Maurer, a professor of law ; 
and General von Heideck, who had already acted as the King's 
agent in Greece. To these three were added as a consultative 
supplementary member and secretary Councillor von Abel, 
and as director of finance Herr von Greiner. Armansperg 
was appointed President; and it was soon obvious that this 

CH. viii] The Regency 157 

pre-eminent position, combined with their incompatible 
temperaments and different social status, could not but create 
discord between him and his professorial colleague. The 
Count, an aristocrat and a diplomatist, despised the learned 
jurist as a commoner and a pedant; the professor, a serious 
scholar not free from the pettiness of German academic circles, 
regarded the Count as an elegant trifler who cared for nothing 
but society. The airs and graces of the Countess embittered 
their relations, of which the small world of Nauplia was soon 
informed. The discord of the Regents was the opportunity 
of the foreign representatives; and Dawkins, the British 
Resident, became the warm supporter of Armansperg. More- 
over, no member of the Regency, except Heideck, had the 
smallest practical acquaintance with the country which they 
had come to govern. They were, therefore, compelled either 
to consult Greek politicians, who were naturally party men, or 
to adopt the usual German practice of evolving an administra- 
tive system out of their inner consciousness and their legal 
treatises. In these circumstances, the Regency could scarcely 
be successful. 

The first problem which confronted it was the disbanding 
of the irregulars. At the end of every war there are in all 
countries numbers of " heroes," exceedingly useful when there 
is fighting to be done, but very embarrassing when society 
returns to its normal conditions. As it was in Greece after 
the war of 1897, so it was after the disturbances of 1832. It 
was comparatively easy to make the Moreotes beat their swords 
into ploughshares, for they had homes and land, to which they 
could easily return ; but there were Souliotes and Macedonians, 
Cretans and Thessalians, whose abodes had been ravaged by 
the Turks and who had grown up to a distaste of any career 
save that of arms. When these men were suddenly placed 
before the alternative of either returning home or of enlisting 
in ten newly formed battalions of Jdger^ their position was 
desperate. If they enlisted, they had to abandon their 

158 Greece under the Bavarian Autocracy [ch. 

traditional dress for a Bavarian uniform ; if they left the 
country, they had nothing before them but starvation or 
brigandage. Many took to the latter profession ; and it was 
sad to see Arta sacked by Greek irregulars, German troops 
scattering veterans of the War of Independence, and young 
Bavarian officers receiving promotion over the heads of Greeks 
and Philhellenes, whose scars were more honourable than the 
smart uniforms of the Germans. An Opposition, which found 
a spokesman in Sir Richard Church, was at once created by 
this military policy; and the Greeks, who had hailed the 
Bavarian soldiers as a relief from the French, ended by con- 
trasting French activity with Bavarian slowness. 

The next step was the formation of a Greek Ministry under 
Trikoupes, the historian of the Revolution, and the division of 
the kingdom into 10 nomarchies, which were subdivided into 
42 eparchies, and those again into demes. As the demarch, 
or mayor, was nominated by the King, and could be suspended 
by the Minister of the Interior, a highly centralised western 
bureaucratic system was substituted for the ancient municipal 
liberties of the Greeks. What the Turks had respected, the 
Bavarians, like Capo dTstria, sought to destroy. A similar 
policy of centralisation was adopted for the collection of taxes. 
Mavrokordatos, the Minister of Finance, made all the tax- 
collectors independent of the local authorities, claimed all 
pasture-lands as the property of the crown, and established a 
monopoly of salt. Such was the discontent at these measures, 
that they were speedily modified. 

In respect of judicial reform and national education much 
was expected from a Regent, who was both a lawyer and a 
professor ; but Maurer compiled codes too complicated for an 
eastern country in evolution, and drew up an educational 
scheme practicable only on paper, by which the young Hellene 
was forthwith to rise from the elementary school to the university. 
It was not till 1837, when he had ceased to be Regent, that 
the present university was founded. In its treatment of the 

viii] The autocephalous Church 159 

press, the Regency resembled Viaro Capo d'Istria. Editors 
had to deposit so large a sum as caution money, and money 
was so hard to raise at Nauplia, that the Opposition newspapers 
then published there were obliged to cease publication, and 
only the subsidised press of the Regency could live. Thus, 
discontent was driven underground. 

But the most unpopular measure of the Regency was its 
ecclesiastical policy. It was obviously difficult to allow the 
Orthodox Church in the free Greek kingdom to continue in 
subordination to the CEcumenical Patriarch, who resided un- 
der the eye and influence of the Sultan. Accordingly, on 
August 4, 1833, a decree, signed by 34 bishops, proclaimed 
its independence, and created for its governance a synod of 
five prelates, to be appointed by the King. The number of 
bishops was to be reduced ultimately to ten, one for every 
nomarchy ; and all monasteries inhabited by less than six 
monks were suppressed and their lands farmed as national 
property. The opposition, which this policy, the work of 
foreigners and schismatics, aroused, may be easily imagined. 
The Patriarch, the dispossessed monks, those who objected 
to the King because he was a Roman Catholic, those who had 
regarded Russia as the great ally of Orthodox Greece, all 
complained. It was not till 1850 that the Patriarch recognised 
in a "Synodal Tome" the independence of the Orthodox 
Church in Greece; it was not till 1852 that complete peace 
was restored between the Patriarch and the Greek government. 
Outside of the Greek kingdom his authority remained unim- 
paired, till, in 1870, the creation of the Bulgarian Exarchate 
dealt it a blow far more serious than that of the Regency. 

The policy of the Regents and the exclusion of old Koloko- 
trones from royal favour provided him with grievances which, 
at first ventilated in the as yet unfettered press, soon found 
an outlet in a conspiracy. A secret society, called the 
"Phoenix," was formed to protect Orthodoxy and obtain 
liberty, in imitation of the former Philike Hetairla ; and 

i6o Greece under the Bavarian Autocracy [ch. 

the veteran conspirator circulated a sympathetic letter from 
Nesselrode, the Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs, as evidence 
of the Tsar's encouragement. A petition for the recall of all 
three Regents was signed for transmission to Nicholas I, while 
simultaneously a German interpreter petitioned the King of 
Bavaria to recall all the Regents except Armansperg. Thus, 
Nauplia was undermined by intrigues ; the interpreter and 
Kolokotrones were both arrested ; the former was sent home 
without trial ; the latter was condemned to death, together 
with Plapoiitas, his fellow-conspirator, by an indecorous inter- 
ference with the course of justice. To have executed the 
hero of Karytaina and one of the men who had been sent 
to offer the crown to Otho would have been a blunder as well 
as a crime. The sentences were commuted to imprisonment 
for life, but the prisoners were released when Otho attained 
his majority. But Kolokotr6nes and his friends were not the 
only active malcontents. Tenos refused to pay taxes ; Maina 
rose in rebellion. Heedless of the warlike traditions of that 
Spartan race, the Regency had ordered the destruction of the 
towers which abounded there. The Mainates protested that 
their towers were a necessary protection for their lives and 
property ; Maina was still a medieval land, and in the Middle 
Ages a man's castle was his house. A Bavarian corps, sent 
to execute the orders of the government, was surrounded and 
forced to capitulate ; by way of showing their contempt the 
Mainates stripped their prisoners, and then demanded so 
much a head for them. Money, however, proved a more 
serviceable argument than force for the suppression of the 
insurrection. Some of the towers were destroyed, and tactful 
management enrolled the Mainates as soldiers, the best fighting 
material of the Peloponnese. 

Before, however, the revolt of Maina had been suppressed, 
Maurer and Abel had been recalled. The relations between 
Armansperg and his colleagues had become so strained, that 
they had reduced his salary and asked for the removal of his 

VI 1 1] Maurers recall i6i 

chief supporter, Dawkins, the British Resident. Pahnerston 
refused ; but both he and Russia recommended the recall of 
Maurer and Abel. The King of Bavaria thereupon ordered 
their instant return and appointed Herren von Kobel and 
Greiner in their respective places, both old men, one of whom 
was unable to bear the privations of a young country. As 
Heideck was ordered to acquiesce in the President's decisions, 
from July 31, 1834 till he, too, was recalled in 1837, Armansperg 
was practically absolute. Maurer revenged himself by pub- 
lishing the ponderous work on " the Greek people " which is 
the apology of his Regency. 

Scarcely had he been recalled when another insurrection 
broke out, this time in Arkadia and Messenia, the districts 
where Kolokotr6nes and Plapoutas were most influential. 
The leader of the revolt, a relative and namesake of Plapoutas, 
styled himself " director of the kingdom," and demanded the 
release of the two prisoners and the convocation of a National 
Assembly. The success of the insurgents so greatly alarmed 
Armansperg that he allowed Kolettes, the Minister of the 
Interior, to suppress it by the methods traditional with that 
statesman, the employment of Roumeliote irregulars. General 
Schmaltz, the new commander-in-chief of the army, then 
dispersed the rebels ; Armansperg's plan had succeeded, but 
it had the natural result of reviving in the irregulars that taste 
for a roving life which it had been the first aim of the Regency 
to discourage. The disbanded irregulars in many cases became 
brigands, whom the municipalities of western Greece obtained 
leave to enrol as police, seeing that the central authority was 
unable to provide for the security of the provinces. 

Meanwhile, on September 13, 1834, a decree was published 
announcing the removal of the seat of government from Nauplia 
to Athens. The choice of a capital lay between Nauplia, 
Corinth, and Athens. Economy and vested interests were in 
favour of the first ; a central position, abundance of building 
land, and the proximity of two seas had induced the Bavarian 

M. L. II 

1 62 Greece under the Bavarian Autocracy [cH. 

architect to advocate Corinth ; but historical associations, 
which must necessarily count for so much in Greece, decided 
for Athens. The Athens, however, which the King entered 
on December 13, 1834, was very different from that of Perikles, 
that of the Frankish Dukes, or the modern town, which in 
1907 had reached a population of 167,479, and with its 
flourishing port contained 241,058 souls. The sieges and the 
struggles of the war had reduced the city to a heap of ruins, 
amidst which there arose majestically the ancient monuments. 
It was difficult to find accommodation for the court ; even the 
King had to content himself with a simple one-storied house. 
Three wooden huts represented the bustling Piraeus of our 
time. Under such depressing conditions Otho established 
himself in his new capital. Fortunately, the idea of imitating 
the Acciajuoli and building the palace on the Akropolis, which 
was suggested by Prince Maximilian of Bavaria, was vetoed 
by King Louis, who declared that the sacred rocks of the 
Akropolis, the Areiopagos, and the Pnyx must never be 
covered with buildings. Unfortunately, in laying out the 
new city, the Bavarians were less careful of the Byzantine 
antiquities, and not a few medieval churches were destroyed. 
On June i, 1835, Otho attained his majority; but Armans- 
perg, with the title of ''Arch-Chancellor," retained power. 
This appointment, followed as it was by the exile of Kole'ttes, 
the most powerful Greek statesman, who was sent as minister 
to Paris, caused dissatisfaction and proved that Bavarian 
administration had not ended with the King's majority. Otho 
was, however, only carrying out the advice tendered to him 
on this occasion by his father. The King of Bavaria had 
drawn up a whole programme for his son. "The Greeks," 
he admitted, " must not be made into Bavarians " ; but, 
nevertheless, he considered that the time had not yet arrived 
when they could be governed exclusively by Greeks. If, 
therefore, he advised Otho to have none but Greek ministers 
— advice which his son did not then adopt— he urged the 

viii] The King of Bavaria 1 6 


constitution of a Royal Cabinet under a German Chancellor 
with a consultative voice, and for this post he recommended 
Armansperg. The country, he added, was not yet ripe for 
a constitution, which would also offend the autocrats of 
Austria and Russia; but he suggested the promise of a Senate, 
to be nominated by the crown. The speedy dismissal of the 
German infantry ; the distribution of lands to the pallikars ; 
a due regard for proportion in the expenditure of the state, 
for example, the substitution of simple charges d'affaires for 
ministers abroad (an economy partially introduced in 1910); 
and the restoration of the monastic property, concluded this 
paternal letter of advice \ Later in the year the writer visited 
Athens, to see for himself the condition of his son's young 

He found continental Greece cleared of brigandage, thanks 
to the energy of General Gordon ; a portion of the public lands 
assigned to Greek families; a "Royal Phalanx" formed ex- 
clusively of Greeks, and mainly of veterans of the war ; and a 
" Council of State " nominated by the crown, and endowed with 
the power to reject alterations of the fiscal system. But these 
prompt measures of the young King did not pacify public 
opinion. Early in 1836 an insurrection broke out in 
Akarnanfa under three leaders, Demos Tselios, Zervas, and 
Malamas, a former aide-de-camp of Agostino Capo dTstria, 
men who were not brigands but political agitators, and who 
all agreed in demanding the expulsion of the Bavarians and 
the grant of a constitution. Armansperg suppressed this revolt 
by the favourite device of allowing chieftains such as Kitsos 
Tsavellas and Theodore Grivas to enrol irregulars ; while 
Sir Edmund Lyons, who had commanded the frigate that had 
brought Otho to Greece and had been appointed British 
minister at Athens on the King's attainment of his majority, 
made the insurrection the text for an appeal to Palmerston 

^ Trost, Konig Ludwig von Bayern, 127-32 ; AeXriop Trjs'Ia-r. Kal'Edf. 
'Eroi/jtas, ii, 516-20. 

II— 2 

164 Greece under the Bavarian Autocracy [cH. 

to advance the third instalment of the Greek loan, promised 
by the three protecting Powers in 1832. As the Tsar made 
his payment contingent on the indefinite postponement of the 
constitution, while France stipulated for the dismissal of all 
Bavarians, the formation of a national government, and the 
grant of the institutions necessary to its proper working, the 
British Foreign Secretary characteristically asked Parliament 
to guarantee the issue of the British share, without waiting 
any longer for the adhesion of the two other Powers. Mean- 
while, his representative at Athens was instructed to support 

After having laid the foundations of his son's palace on 
February 6, 1836, the anniversary of Otho's landing, on a 
site "sufficiently far from the sea to be out of range of 
a bombardment," as the careful father expressed it, Louis 
returned to Germany, whither later in the year Otho followed 
him. The object of the latter's journey was to find a wife ; 
and, as his father strongly objected to a French princess or 
a Russian Grand-duchess, his choice fell upon Amalia, daughter 
of the Grand-duke Paul of Oldenburg, a high-spirited and 
energetic consort for the hesitating King, whose "native hue 
of resolution " was often " sicklied o'er with the pale cast of 
thought." But Otho brought back with him to Greece a 
Prime Minister as well as a Queen. During his absence 
Armansperg had become more autocratic and consequently 
more unpopular ; and such continual complaints of the Arch- 
Chancellor's conduct had reached the King, that on February 
14, 1837, he appointed another Bavarian, Herr von Rudhart, 
whom he had persuaded to accompany him, in place of 
Armansperg, but with the less pretentious attributes of Prime 
Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs. Thus fell the last 
member of the original Regency. Rudhart's political career 
in Greece was much shorter and not more successful than that 
of the Arch-Chancellor. At the very outset, by a tactless 
visit to Metternich, he obtained the reputation of being a tool 

viii] Rudhart's Premiership ' 165 

of Austria and thereby the suspicion of the democratic Greeks 
and the opposition of the British minister. An outbreak of 
plague at P6ros, the refusal of the merchants of Patras to pay 
the tax imposed upon their business, and the promulgation 
of a severe press-law, which the King of Bavaria had strongly 
urged, made the Premier's position increasingly difficult, while 
the expulsion of an Italian refugee, a certain Usiglio, who was 
the bearer of a British passport, provoked the outspoken 
British minister to one of the most violent letters in the history 
of modern diplomacy. Embittered by these difficulties, the 
well-meaning Bavarian resigned after ten months' experience 
of his task ; and his name is now only connected with the 
opening of the University, which beginning in a hired house 
at the foot of the Akropolis, was subsequently transferred to 
the present handsome building. It is pleasant to note as a 
proof of harmony between the two newly emancipated Balkan 
peoples, that Milosh of Servia was among the subscribers to 
what was at first "the Othonian," but has been rebaptised 
'* the National University of Greece." 

Upon the resignation of Rudhart on December 20, 1837, 
only the Ministry of War was entrusted to a Bavarian; but 
the King neutralised this elimination of the foreign element 
by presiding over the cabinet councils, instead of appointing a 
Prime Minister. The crown was thus held responsible by the 
people for the mistakes of ministers, and could no longer 
shelter itself behind them, while the unpopularity of Armans- 
perg and Rudhart was transferred to the sovereign. Unfor- 
tunately, a series of untoward events contributed towards this 
growing discontent. Riots broke out in 1838 at Hydra, 
occasioned by the application of military conscription to a 
nautical population, which, in the words of a popular poem 
of the day, " preferred suicide to the slavery of service," but 
really caused by the heavy losses of the Hydriote shipowners 
during the war and by the earthquake of the previous year. 
A commercial treaty with Turkey, negotiated by Zographos, 

1 66 Greece under the Bavarian Autocracy [ch. 

the Foreign Minister, in 1839, was denounced as a surrender. 
Previous to that date no Greek diplomatist had been officially 
received by the Sultan, and the relations between the two 
countries had been constantly strained. The immense enthu- 
siasm caused by a private visit of Otho to Smyrna had led 
Mahmiid II to order the (Ecumenical Patriarch to remove the 
too patriotic Metropolitan of that Hellenic city; and this step 
had been followed by the suspension of the Patriarch and the 
prohibition of a commemoration of Koraes, the literary father 
of the Greek revolution, at Constantinople. The Samians, 
too, provoked a Turkish blockade by their demands for union, 
and made loud complaints against Stephen Vogorides, the 
first Prince sent to rule over them till British support secured 
the temporary settlement of their grievances. It was natural, 
however, that those Greeks, who believed in the enlargement 
of their restricted boundaries, should have hoped to profit by 
the difficulties in which Turkey found herself involved during 
her second struggle with Mehemet Ali and his victorious son. 
There is nothing more dangerous to the popularity of a Greek 
statesman than inability to satisfy the national demand for 
the redemption of "enslaved Greece" at a favourable crisis in 
the eastern question; and, accordingly, in 1840, Zographos, 
the author of the Turkish treaty, was forced to retire, and 
was thenceforth politically ostracised. Other difficulties also 
accrued from the Turco-Egyptian settlement of that year. 
France revenged herself for her diplomatic defeat by scheming 
against Great Britain in Greece ; and the Athenian court was 
thus converted into an international arena, where the repre- 
sentatives of the protecting Powers strove less for the welfare 
of the country to which they were accredited than for their 
own governments' interests. Greek statesmen were drawn 
into these rivalries ; and "British," " French," and '* Russian " 
parties flourished under the respective leadership of Mavro- 
kordatos, Kolettes, and Kolokotrones. 

At this moment, moreover, Crete, which was restored from 

VII i] Crete under Egypt 167 

Egyptian to Turkish rule in 1840, rose and demanded union 
with Greece. The islanders had suffered considerably under 
the sway of Mehemet Ali. From the first, Christians and 
Mussulmans alike had been disgusted at the subjection of the 
island to Egypt ; for the former had expected to shake off the 
Turkish yoke for ever, while the latter, who hated the Egyptians, 
had hoped to remain a law unto themselves, as they had been 
before the insurrection. Mehemet, with the usual " kindness 
of kings upon their coronation-day," had begun by promising 
that the Cretans should pay " no taxes, except the tithe (which 
was really one-seventh) and the poll-tax " ; he had established 
two mixed councils, respectively at Candia and Canea, for the 
administration of justice; and till the autumn of 1831 the 
phrase of his governor-general, that his " sole object " was 
"to deliver the Christians from the vexations to which they 
were formerly exposed," corresponded with facts. The law 
was enforced as it had never been before, and the Christians 
were, if anything, favoured by the Sultan's disloyal Viceroy. 
But, just as Crete was beginning to recover from the ravages 
of the insurrection, Mehemet sought to introduce his favourite 
system of monopolies, thus treating a proud and warlike 
mountain-people as if they were Egyptian fellaheen. He had 
begun by taking over the tithes from the local agas^ who had 
been (in many cases) their hereditary proprietors, thus irritating 
the Mussulmans \ his next step was to make the councils his 
subservient instruments. The secrecy of letters was violated ; 
new duties were imposed upon wine and other articles, and 
that upon the export of oil increased ; an octroi was created j 
and all supplies to his government were to be furnished at 
a low tariff. By these means ^6000 a year more than before 
was raised from the island. But the worst came, when in 
1833, Mehemet Ali, accompanied by Col. Campbell, the 
British consul-general, visited Crete, and issued a proclamation, 
punishing all who left their land uncultivated, and confiscating 
it after three years of such neglect. The diminished population, 

1 68 Greece under the Bavarian Autocracy [ch. 

only 129,000 at that time, was not sufficient to till the soil, 
which would therefore have passed into the Viceroy's hands ; 
while a well-meant ordinance for the erection of two schools 
was regarded as a trap to kidnap the Cretan children and 
carry them off to Egypt. One of the traditional Cretan 
Assemblies, mainly composed of Mussulmans, met, some 
thousands strong, at Murnies, three miles from Canea, to ask 
for redress ; and petitions were sent to the Residents at Nauplia 
and to the consuls of the three protecting Powers in Crete. 
Mehemet's Albanian governor, Mustapha, at first offered 
concessions, which a passing British naval officer. Sir Pulteney 
Malcolm, urged the Assembly to accept. But Mehemet 
insisted on making an example ; and by his order Mustapha 
hanged ten of the assembled Cretans — an act of cruelty which 
cowed the others for the next eight years. The Christians had, 
however, no wish to exchange the rule of a Turkish Viceroy 
for that of the Sultan ; and their desire for union with the 
Greek kingdom was increased by the speeches of Palmerston. 
A " Central Committee of the Cretans " was formed in Greece ; 
and among the Greeks who hastened to assist the Cretan 
insurgents was the future Prime Minister, Alexander Koumoun- 
do(iros. In 1841 the warlike Sphakiotes began the insurrection, 
and a provisional government was formed. But the Turks 
speedily suppressed the rising, the failure of which was included 
among the charges brought against Otho's government. 
Mavrokordatos, who was then Prime Minister, found it im- 
possible to remain in office, owing to the constant intervention 
of the crown and the continued existence, under another 
name, of the privy council of Bavarians which stood between 
Otho and his ministers Upon his resignation, the King 
resumed the practice of presiding in person over the delibera- 
tions of the cabinet. In vain Palmerston and Peel urged 
him to grant a constitution ; his father told him that to 
concede it would be the ruin of his throne. The unpopularity 
of this system of personal government was enhanced by the 

viii] The Revolution of 1843 169 

demand of the Russian government for the payment of the 
interest on the loan, by the curtailment of official salaries from 
motives of economy and by the disappointed ambitions of 
those who had been leading politicians. All these things 
combined to cause the revolution of September 3/15, 1843. 
The revolution was planned by the leaders of two out of 
the three parties, Andrew Metaxas, who had succeeded to the 
direction of the "Russian" party on the death of old Kolo- 
kotr6nes in February of that year, and Andrew Lontos, who had 
guided the "British" since the fall of Mavrokordatos. Another 
ex-minister, Zographos, co-operated with a movement which 
seemed likely to restore him to public favour ; but the "French" 
faction, whose chief was still in Paris, abstained from active 
participation in the plot. As usually happens in party politics, 
the two sections of the coalition had different objects. It is 
true that they both desired the expulsion of the Bavarians 
and other foreigners who had not taken part in the War of 
Independence ; but whereas the " British " section wished for 
a constitutional monarch, the " Russian " had long desired 
an Orthodox one. The leaders of both parties anticipated 
that, rather than yield, Otho would resign. The people, 
especially in the provinces, took little interest in the revolu- 
tion, and it therefore became necessary to resort to the army. 
Accordingly, the political chiefs, having selected as their 
instrument Uemetrios Kallerges, then a colonel of cavalry at 
Argos, procured his transference to Athens. Kallerges, still 
in his prime, belonged to the ancient Cretan family which 
had played so prominent a part in insurrections against the 
Venetians. Sixteen years earlier, he had been captured by 
the enemy at the battle of Phaleron ; and it was only the 
greed of his Albanian captor which saved his head and thus 
spared him to overthrow the absolute monarchy of Otho. 
After the assassination of Capo dTstria, he had supported 
the Capodistrian party; and his courage, coolness, and desire 
for distinction recommended him to the conspirators. Another 

170 Greece tinder the Bavarian Autocracy [ch. 

officer, Colonel Makrygiannes, who had won fame at the 
mills of Lerna and during the Turkish siege of the Akropolis, 
was selected as his collaborator. Twenty-four hours before- 
hand, news of the approaching revolution reached the ears 
of the King; but the orders given for the arrest of the ring- 
leaders and their trial by court-martial were issued too late. 

On the night of September 14, Kallerges, who had gone 
to the theatre, in order to allay the suspicions of the court, 
proceeded, at the end of the performance, to the house of 
Makrygiannes. Finding to his surprise that his colleague was 
sitting peacefully in the midst of a few civilians, he resolved 
to act on his own initiative. Traversing the deserted streets, 
he directed his steps to the infantry barracks, where, stammering 
a few incoherent words, he drew his sword, and shouted : 
" Long live the Constitution ! " The soldiers took up the cry, 
and followed him through the silent town to the great square 
in front of the palace, which now bears the name of " the 
Constitution." At the same time, having learned that the 
house of Makrygiannes had been invested by the police, sent 
to arrest that officer, he detached a body of soldiers to raise 
the siege, and ordered others to open the prison and compel 
any citizens whom they met to join in the demonstration 
before the royal residence. It was one o'clock in the morning 
of September 15 ; and the King, as was his wont, was still hard 
at work in his study, when the military music and the shouts of 
" Ix)ng live the Constitution ! " startled him from his desk. An 
aide-de-camp and the Minister of War, who went out to bid the 
soldiers disperse, were arrested by order of Kallerges, while 
the arrival of Makrygiannes and his friends with the detach- 
ment that had repulsed the police increased the strength of 
the revolutionists. The King, despite the prayers of the weep- 
ing Queen, then showed himself at a window, and asked 
Kallerges what he wanted. The revolutionary leader replied 
that both army and people wanted a constitution, to which the 
King angrily answered by an order to the troops to disperse, 

viii] The Revolution of 1843 171 

whereupon he would consider their request. The troops, instead 
of dispersing, awaited the orders of Kallerges ; and the artillery, 
which the King had meanwhile summoned to his assistance, 
fraternised with them. The civilian ringleaders then appeared 
upon the scene, hastily summoned a meeting of the Council 
of State, and induced that body to send a deputation to the 
King, begging him to grant a constitution. While the deputa- 
tion was still in the palace, the representatives of the five 
Powers drove up, and demanded to see the King. Sir E. Lyons 
had, however, already conveyed a significant hint to Kallerges 
not to allow the diplomatists to enter till Otho had promised 
a constitution, because Great Britain feared that their presence 
might make him obdurate and thus favour the schemes of 
the Russian party. Kallerges played his part with admirable 
composure and tact. He told the foreign ministers that they 
could not enter the palace till the audience of the deputation 
was over; and, when the Austrian and Prussian representatives 
attempted to insist, he reminded them that "diplomatic 
etiquette required them to follow the example of their doyen^ 
the Russian envoy." The King thereupon yielded, and signed 
decrees convening within 30 days a National Assembly, which 
consisted of 225 members, for drawing up a constitution; 
dismissing all the foreigners from his service, except the old 
Philhellenes ; and appointing a new ministry under Metaxas. 
The revolutionists were not, however, satisfied till he had also 
promised to decorate those who had taken part in the revolu- 
tion, and had thanked Kallerges and Makrygiannes. Then, 
at last, at 3 o'clock in the afternoon, the army marched past 
the palace with shouts of " Long live the Constitutional King 
Otho I ! " Thus, by a practically bloodless revolution — for 
one man alone was killed in the fighting at Makrygiannes' 
house — Greece became, after ten years of Bavarian despotism, 
a constitutional state. " Great credit," wrote Lord Aberdeen, 
"is due to the Greek nation for the manner in which they appear 
to have universally conducted themselves on this important 

172 Greece under the Bavarian Autocracy [cH. 

occasion ; so different from the example afforded by countries 
more advanced in civilization." The Greeks rightly regard 
the date of "September 3," as they call it in the old style, 
as the birthday of their parliamentary system — a system which, 
with all its faults, faults by no means peculiar to Greece, is 
the only possible form of government for so intensely political 
a people. The names of the chief square at Athens and of 
a leading street commemorate the grant of a '' Constitution " 
through the revolution of " September 3 " ; the sword pre- 
sented by the Athenians to Kallerges is still preserved ; and 
the scene at the palace on that memorable morning is depicted 
in one of the most widely diffused of popular prints. 

The Bavarian autocracy had failed; but its failure must 
not blind us to the real progress made by Greece in those 
ten years. In most countries, and not least in the south and 
east of Europe, the people prospers in spite of, rather than 
because of, its government. Intellectually, the advance of 
the Greeks was marked by the foundation of the Archaeological 
and other societies, and by the opening of the University ; 
the scholar Buchon, who visited Athens in 1841, noticed the 
purification of the language from foreign words, and remarked 
that the country had already two public libraries. Materially, 
the improvement of the young state was shown in the increase 
of the land under cultivation, the consequent multiplication 
of the currant plantations, the considerable export of silk, 
the recovery of the mercantile marine from the damage inflicted 
upon it in the war, and the establishment, thanks to the 
enterprise of an Epirote, George Stavrou, of a National Bank. 
The marble quarries of Pentelikon had been re-opened to 
provide materials for the palace; the population of Athens 
had already reached a total of 35,000 souls ; the Piraeus, 
Patras, and Syra were becoming important commercial towns. 
Outside the narrow frontiers of the kingdom, patriotic and 
industrious Greek communities assisted the commercial and 
intellectual development. Their relations with the Greek 

VI ii] The National Convention 173 

state formed one of the chief problems discussed by the 
National Convention, which met on November 20, 1843, 
but took its name from that memorable "Third of Sep- 
tember" which had ended the government of Greece by an 
absolute monarch and his alien advisers. Thenceforth, the 
fortunes of Hellas were in the hands of the Hellenes themselves, 
and the foreign domination of centuries was over. 



The first difficulty of " the National Assembly of September 
3," which was opened on November 20, was to decide whom 
it was to include. In similar conventions held during the War 
of Independence representatives of Greek communities still 
under Turkish yoke had taken part; but to this Constituent 
Assembly the only delegates of external Hellenism admitted 
were those of Crete, Thessaly, Macedonia, and Epirus ; and 
a vote was passed excluding from all official posts those Greeks 
of the Turkish empire who had borne no active share in the 
war. Thus, the Assembly drew a distinction between the 
"autochthonous" Greeks of the kingdom and the "hetero- 
chthonous" Greeks of the outside world. Similarly, the second 
article of the Constitution, while recognising the "dogmatic 
union of the Orthodox Church of Greece with the Great 
Church in Constantinople," declared the former to be " auto- 
cephalous and administered by a Holy Synod of Archbishops." 
Two other questions excited considerable discussion — that of 
the succession and that of the Senate. The 40th article of 
the Constitution provided, that the heir to the Greek throne 
must belong to the Greek Church ; another series of articles 
created a Second Chamber. There were some who did not 
desire a Senate at all ; there were others, chiefly adherents of 
the " Russian " party, who advocated the nomination of the 
senators for ten years instead of for life. Thus Greece was 
endowed with a bi-cameral system, which lasted down till 1864, 

CH. ix] The Two Chambers 175 

consisting of a Chamber (or BovAt;) of never less than 80 
members, all at least 30 years of age and elected for three years 
in proportion to the population by manhood suffrage ; and of a 
Senate (or Fcpovo-ia) of at least 27 persons, who had reached the 
age of 40 and whose members might be increased to half that 
of the Chamber, nominated by the Crown for life from fourteen 
categories, according to the present Italian method. Both 
senators and deputies received salaries. It was supposed that 
the Senate would act as a check upon the Chamber and 
become a Conservative force in the state. But, as a matter 
of fact, it was the medium of the first attacks upon Otho, 
and provided the Opposition with a permanent platform 
for the exposition of their views. On March 30, 1844, the 
King took the oath to the Constitution ; and Lyons wrote 
enthusiastically about the way in which this "great political 
change " had been consummated. " Such self-command in a 
popular assembly, convoked under very exciting and critical 
circumstances," Aberdeen replied, "is highly creditable to the 
Greek nation." 

It now became necessary to form the first ministry of the 
Constitutional Monarchy. Two politicians stood head and 
shoulders above the other public men of Greece at that moment 
— Mavrokordatos, the chief of the " English," and Kolettes, 
the leader of the "French" party. Both sought what they 
believed to be the welfare of the country which they had so 
long served, but their political programmes for attaining this 
object were widely divergent. Mavrokordatos held that it was 
the first business of the Greeks to make their kingdom a model of 
good government throughout the near east, and that then, and 
then only, when they had been faithful in a few things, would 
Crete and Epirus and Macedonia be added unto them. 
Kolettes advocated the opposite opinion, that the first aim of 
a Greek statesman should be the enlargement of the Greek 
frontiers, arguing that the additional forces which the contracted 
kingdom would thereby gain would prove the best means of 

176 The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. 

its internal development. Unfortunately, the Epirote declined 
to form a coalition cabinet with the Phanariote ; and Mavrokor- 
datos became Prime Minister without his co-operation and ere 
long had to face his opposition. Both politicians, reared under 
systems of government very different from that just implanted 
at Athens, considered the concentration of all power at the 
centre as the best system of administration. It is unnecessary 
to examine the truth of the charges brought against Mavrokor- 
datos by some of his contemporaries and repudiated by others, 
of having used improper influence to obtain a majority at the 
elections of 1844; for even to-day, in many, perhaps most 
countries, the principle of freedom of election is more honoured 
in political programmes than on polling-day. But, in any case, 
the Ministerialists profited nothing by this alleged pressure. 
Mavrokordatos, like a much greater statesman a generation 
later, was defeated at Mesol6nghi ; and the similar defeat of 
Kallerges at Athens, where the hero of the late revolution 
had lost his popularity and where his very candidature was 
considered to be tainted with illegality, led to a disturbance 
which provoked the King's intervention and the resignation of 
the Cabinet. Kolettes came into power, which he retained 
till his death in 1847 by the skill and tact with which he 
managed men. While his spectacled rival was supported by 
the more Europeanised Greeks, who wore black coats and dis- 
cussed western theories of government, the former physician 
of Ali Pasha's son, clad in the national dress and smoking his 
long pipe, was surrounded by the far more numerous body of 
fustanella-wearing Hellenes, by braves of the war whom he 
had led across the Isthmus, by all the picturesque elements of 
what was called "the National party." From morn to eve his 
closet was filled by men anxious for some post, some pension, 
or some mark of distinction; and such was his consummate 
skill that no one quitted his presence without an assurance 
that the Minister would grant his petition. Enjoying the con- 
fidence of the King to an unusual degree, and supported by 

ix] Ko Id ties in Power 177 

the French government with all its influence, Kol6ttes con- 
cerned himself little with speech-making in the Chamber, 
whence a series of election petitions had excluded all but 1 2 
members of the " English " party. His well-known pohcy of 
territorial expansion had, however, the natural effect of arousing 
the suspicions of the Turks ; and his three years' tenure of power 
was marked by several serious incidents, which disturbed the 
relations between Greece and her neighbour. The Turkish 
government began by stopping the free circulation of the Greek 
press in its dominions, because the newspapers preached the 
" Great Idea." The attempt of a Greek to kill the Prince of 
Samos increased the irritation, and in 1847 ^ diplomatic question 
at Athens nearly provoked a crisis. Karatassos, an aide-de-camp 
of Otho, applied for a Turkish vise to his passport in order to 
visit Constantinople. Karatassos had long been suspected by 
the Ottoman government, because he had invaded Thessaly six 
years earlier ; and the Turkish Minister in Athens, Mousouros, 
whose Cretan origin made him the more zealous in the cause 
of his employers, declined to grant the vise. This refusal was 
reported to the King, who at the next court-ball loudly told 
the diplomatist that he should have hoped that the Sovereign 
would have merited more respect than to be treated in this 
manner. The Turkish government demanded from Kolettes 
a personal apology for this speech ; and, on the latter's refusal, 
MousoClros left Athens. A long diplomatic correspondence 
ensued; the Greek consuls were expelled from Turkey, and Greek 
vessels forbidden to ply along the Turkish coasts. Relations were 
still interrupted when Kolettes died, and it required the interven- 
tion of Russia before the honour of the Turks was satisfied. 
Mousoliros returned to his post at Athens, but an attempt upon 
his life convinced the Porte that his prolonged stay there might 
lead to further difficulties. He was, therefore, promoted to 
London, where he remained for more than a generation, the best- 
known, and — as his translation of Dante into Greek proves — the 
most cultured of all Ottoman ambassadors at the British court. 
M. L. 12 

I yS The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. 

This tension with Turkey was not the only difficulty which 
encumbered the long administration of Kolettes. While the 
society of the Greek capital was distracted by the struggle for 
diplomatic influence between the British and French Ministers, 
the British government embarrassed the Francophil Premier 
by complaining of brigandage and by demanding payment of 
the interest on the loan. The last request was met by the 
generosity of Eynard, the Philhellene of Geneva, who advanced 
the ;^2o,ooo required to satisfy the British claim. But the 
disturbed state of the country caused much greater trouble. 
Kolettes, true to his old policy of converting the breakers of 
the law into its guardians, pacified Theodore Grivas, who had 
raised the standard of revolt in Akarnania, by giving him a 
military post ; but this remedy, as might have been expected, 
was only temporary; and ere long the veteran chieftain was 
again at the head of a band in the west, while Kriez6tes, another 
survivor of the war, championed the discontented in Euboea. 
After the death of Kolettes, his immediate successors Kitsos 
Tsav^Uas, a Souliote chief of no political experience but a soldier 
of distinction, and George Kountouriotes found themselves com- 
pelled to grapple with a number of these risings, among which 
those of Pharmakes at Lepanto, of Tzamalas and Valentzas 
(who invaded Greece from the Turkish frontier and burned 
a fine collection of manuscripts at Hypate), by Perrotes at 
Kalamata, and of Merendites (who seized the fine castle of 
Patras, threatened to lay that flourishing town in ashes, and 
then escaped to Malta on a British ship with a large sum of 
money), aroused most attention. Yet, despite these disturbances, 
mostly due to personal motives, Thouvenel', a French diplo- 
matist then at Athens, could write that, in 1849, Greece was 
" materially one of the happiest corners of the world." Minis- 
tries might come and go — for the repercussion caused by the 
French revolution of 1848 caused the fall of Tsavdllas, and the 

* La Grhe du rot Othon, 272 ; cf. his memoir on Greece in 1847, ib. 

ix] Don Pacifico 179 

Cabinets of Kountouriotes and the famous Admiral Kanares 
were but short lived — but the people were little affected by 
political crises due to personal questions or court intrigues. 

Early in 1850 an unfortunate dispute, which reflected litde 
credit on Palmerston's diplomacy, temporarily embittered the 
relations between Great Britain and Greece. For some time 
past efforts had been made to obtain satisfaction of the claims 
of various British and Ionian subjects from the Greek govern- 
ment. Of these claims the largest was made by a certain Don 
Pacifico, a Gibraltar Jew, who had been Portuguese consul- 
general, and whose house at Athens had been pillaged by the 
mob during an antisemitic disturbance at Easter 1847, due to 
the prohibition of the customary burning of Judas Iscariot in 
effigy. The Athenians were not aware, until Don Pacifico 
drew up his bill of damages, how valuable the furniture of this 
unconspicuous individual had been. He sent in a claim for 
;£3 1,534. \s. id. for the loss to his property (including 
^26,618. i6j". M. for the vouchers of certain sums, alleged to 
be due to him from the Portuguese government), and for 
a further sum of ;^5oo as compensation for " the personal 
injuries and sufferings " of himself and his family. The next 
claimant was a very different person, the eminent historian of 
Medieval and Modern Greece, George Finlay, who, after 
taking part in the War of Independence, had settled in Greece 
and in 1830 bought land at Athens. A portion of this land 
had been enclosed in the royal garden, and Finlay demanded 
45,000 dr. as its price. Three other claims were put forward 
on behalf of Ionian subjects, some of whom asked 6000 fr. for 
the pillage of their barks at Selasina near the mouth of the 
Acheloos, while others sought compensation for ill-treatment 
at Patras and Pyrgos. A sixth item was based upon the 
arrest of some British sailors at Patras, for which an apology 
was asked. Finally, besides these personal claims, the British 
government asserted that the two islands of Cervi and Sapienza, 
which lie off the south coast of the Peloponnese, were not 

12 — 2 

i8o The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. 

portions of the Greek kingdom, but belonged to the Ionian 
Islands. This last claim, which dated from 1839, was based 
upon the clauses of the treaties of 1800 and 181 5, and upon 
a law of the "Septinsular Republic" of 1804, which regarded 
the insular dependencies of the Seven Islands. But Cervi had 
long been the property of the inhabitants of the Greek coast 
opposite, who had held it in Turkish times, while the geo- 
graphical position of both islands rendered them respectively 
appendages of Vatika and Modon, rather than of the much 
more distant Cerigo. 

The first six of these claims, lumped together in the 
same ultimatum, were presented to the Greek government 
on January 17, 1850, with a demand for a settlement within 
24 hours, by Mr (afterwards Sir Thomas) Wyse, who had 
succeeded Sir Edmund Lyons as British minister in Athens in 
the previous year. This ultimatum was followed by a blockade 
of the Piraeus, effected by a squadron under the command of 
Sir William Parker, which seized a Greek man-of-war and 
several merchantmen. These proceedings naturally excited 
against the British government public opinion abroad, ever in 
favour of the weak in a contest with the strong, while they 
made Otho very popular with his subjects. The conduct of 
the Greek authorities was patriotic without being aggressive. 
The officers of the Athenian garrison offered to resign half 
their pay, and many private individuals put their fortunes at 
the disposal of the nation ; but the government avoided any- 
thing that might be interpreted as an act of provocation ; and, 
except at CorfCi, where British soldiers ran the risk of being 
insulted in the streets, the Greek people remained calm. 
Meanwhile, France and Russia, the two other protecting Powers, 
addressed representations to Palmerston, who, on February 12, 
accepted the *' good offices " of the former. Baron Gros was 
thereupon sent to Athens to assess the amount due to the 
British claimants; but his award was rejected by Wyse, and the 
blockade renewed. At this, on April 27, the Greek government 

ix] Don Pacifico i8i 

yielded to Wyse's demands, viz., the payment of 30,000 dr. 
to Finlay, of 12,530 dr. 49 lepid to the lonians, and of 
137,538 dr. to Don Pacifico plus a further sum of 150,000 dr. 
as a deposit on account of the papers, constituting the proofs 
of his claims on the Portuguese government. These sums were 
all paid the same evening by the Greek government ; and, 
although a different arrangement had meanwhile been made 
in London between Palmerston and the French ambassador, 
the Athens convention was maintained, and the French ambas- 
sador consequently recalled, as a mark of his government's 
displeasure. As Russia had also complained of the British 
blockade and of the assumption that Great Britain could claim 
Cervi and Sapienza without the consent of the other two pro- 
tecting Powers, it was realised in London that Palmerston had 
by his vehemence not only oppressed a small state, which 
Great Britain had helped to call into existence, but had 
estranged two great nations. Even Finlay admitted that " the 
British government acted with violence, and strained the 
authority of international law." Punch., with its usual shrewd- 
ness in expressing the opinion of the average man, asked why 
the British lion did not hit someone of his own size ; and the 
House of Lords passed a vote of censure upon Palmerston's 
policy by a majority of 37. But the House of Commons 
approved the principles upon which it was conducted, by 46 
votes, after a debate memorable in the annals of parliamentary 
eloquence for the Minister's citation of the famous declaration, 
Civis Romanus sum. But when the rhetoric had died away, 
and an Anglo-Franco-Greek Commission, sitting at Lisbon, 
found the originals of Don Pacifico's alleged lost documents 
in the Portuguese Archives, ascertained that during his residence 
in Portugal he had never asserted his claims, and by the lurid 
light thus thrown upon his case reduced his claims from 
^26,618. 16^-. M. to ;^i5o, people might well wonder whether 
the championship of this cosmopoHtan citizen of the British 
empire had not been exaggerated. As for the question of 

1 82 The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. 

Cervi and Sapienza, which had been omitted from the ultimatum, 
it was quietly dropped. 

Admiral Kriezes, who had been appointed Prime Minister 
just before the Anglo-Greek difficulty became critical and 
remained in office for more than four years, had the satisfaction 
of seeing his Premiership marked by the settlement of another 
long-standing problem — that of the relations between the 
Church in Greece and the (Ecumenical Patriarch. The 
Church of the kingdom had been declared autocephalous in 
1833 and by the constitution of 1844 ; but the Patriarch had 
never formally recognised its administrative independence, and 
Greek public life had accordingly been disturbed by the rival 
contentions of the extreme Orthodox party (of which Oikon6mos 
was the leader, and which desired to obtain the Patriarch's 
recognition) and of the Archimandrite Pharmakides, who repre- 
sented the opinion that such recognition of an accomplished 
fact was alike unnecessary and undesirable. At last, in 1850, 
the Greek government availed itself of a favourable opportunity 
for asking the Patriarch to recognise its ecclesiastical arrange- 
ments. Thanks to Russian influence, the recalcitrant divines, 
assembled at Constantinople, gave way ; and on July 1 1 a 
" Synodal Tome " was read there proclaiming the Church in 
Greece autocephalous. The " Tome " provided that the 
Metropolitan of Athens should be president of the Holy 
Synod of the Greek kingdom ; and that in all questions of 
administration the Church in Greece should be independent ; 
but that it should receive the holy oil from the CEcumenical 
Patriarch, whose opinion should be asked on grave questions 
of dogma. The sad coincidence of the assassination of 
Korphiotakes, Minister for Ecclesiastical Affairs, on the day 
when the " Tome " was read aloud in all the churches of the 
kingdom, and the continued opposition of Pharmakides, did 
not prevent the final acceptance of this settlement ; and in 1852 
the Greek Chamber enacted the above-mentioned provisions. 
Thus the chief ecclesiastical problem of Greece was solved. 

ix] Policy of Lord Nugent 183 

x\nother theological agitation, the so-called " Phil-Orthodox " 
movement, headed by a monk named Papoulakos, who went 
about denouncing the Catholic king and praising the Orthodox 
Tsar, was suppressed by his incarceration at Andros. That 
beautiful island of lemon groves and rushing waters provided 
a theological martyr in the teacher Kaires, whose prosecution 
for unorthodox ideas and death in prison attracted notice in 

The conflict between the British and Greek governments 
in the case of Don Pacifico was not the only cause of friction 
between the two countries at this period. The events of the 
last twenty years in the Ionian Islands had culminated in an 
open agitation for union. In 1832, with the appointment of 
Lord Nugent as Sir F. Adam's successor, Liberal ideas for the 
first time found an exponent in the person of a Lord High 
Commissioner, whose political career at home encouraged the 
Ionian reformers to hope for his support. Nugent began by a 
promise of reforms, but his first attempt to perform it was the 
illegal substitution of the system of election from a triple list of 
candidates for that from a double list, as provided by the 
Constitution of 181 7 ; and this extension of the freedom of 
choice led to the dissolution of the Assembly by the Crown 
long before its natural term had expired. The appointment 
of young and untried officials of Liberal views to administrative 
posts increased the influence of the Liberal party; but the 
High Commissioner was fortunately a good man of business, 
who conferred practical benefits on the Islands by employing 
the pension-fund, created by Maitland, in loans at an easy rate 
of interest to the peasants, by limiting to ;^35,ooo the annual 
sum payable by the lonians to the protectorate, and yet be- 
queathing a large surplus to his successor, Sir Howard Douglas. 
The fourth Lord High Commissioner, a strong Conservative, 
reverted to the benevolent despotism of Maitland and Adam^ 
believing that the Ionian people was not yet ripe for a more 
Liberal form of government. This reaction from Nugent's 

184 The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. 

rule naturally exasperated the Liberal party ; and the presence 
of so doctrinaire a Whig as Lord John Russell at the Colonial 
Office during the latter part of Douglas' Commissionership 
tempted the eminent Corfiote historian, Mustoxidi, to address 
a memorandum to him on the condition of the Islands. 
Mustoxidi admitted that the Islanders preferred the British 
protectorate to any other political connexion, for independence 
was still unobtainable ; but he demanded in their name the 
grant of a freer system of election, annual sessions of the 
Assembly, and a free press. This memorial made some im- 
pression upon the Colonial Secretary, who, however, loyally 
supported his subordinate ; and no essential change of policy 
ensued during the remainder of the latter's term of office. 
Ecclesiastical difficulties, however, accumulated in his path. 
A conflict with the " Phil-Orthodox " party increased the un- 
popularity of his administration. An attempt to reform the 
table of kindred and affinity excited the opposition of the 
QEcumenical Patriarch, who protested that the Orthodox 
religion was in danger, whereupon the British ambassador at 
Constantinople obtained his deposition by the Sultan. The 
indiscretion of a Protestant missionary caused the accusation 
of proselytism to be levelled against the Commissioner, who 
prevented the re-establishment of a Roman Catholic see at 
Corfti. Finally, his rashness in seizing the papers of Mustoxidi 
and of Viaro and Agostino Capo dTstria, whose brother 
George had been mixed up with the " Phil Orthodox Society," 
discovered at Athens in December 1839, gave the historian 
and the members of that family, ever the foes of Great Britain, 
a plausible ground for complaint of his illegality— for the 
papers obviously contained nothing treasonable, or they would 
have been published. Another summary dissolution of the 
Assembly, disapproved by the Colonial Secretary, incensed the 
Opposition. Nevertheless, despite Mustoxidi's long indictment 
of him to the Colonial Secretary, Douglas had the solid 
interests of the Islands at heart, as his improvement of the 

IX ] Douglas and Mackenzie 185 

Corfiote aqueduct, of the roads, the prisons, and the educational 
system proved —benefits, however, which entailed the first 
public debt of the Islands under the British protectorate. He 
continued in two respects the work of his immediate pre- 
decessor — the reduction of the annual contribution of the 
Ionian treasury, and the preparation of a new code, while he 
ordered British officials to learn Greek. His popularity with 
the landed classes, who naturally preferred stability for their 
property to aught else, is still manifested by the obelisk which 
commemorates him at Corfu ; and, after his retirement, by 
becoming a member of the House of Commons, he was able 
to advocate their interests, and thereby embarrass his Liberal 
successor, Mackenzie. 

The new Commissioner's rule was abruptly closed by the 
result of a conflict with the Senate. A convinced reformer, 
he found that body, and more especially Petrits6poulos, its 
President, opposed to his ideas. Accordingly, when the 
President's term of office expired, he availed himself, for the 
first time in Ionian history, of the power of non-reappointment 
conferred by the Constitution, and nominated a moderate 
Liberal, Count Delladecima. The Conservatives were then 
in power at home, and Lord Derby, the Colonial Secretary, 
disapproved of this act. In vain did Count Delladecima 
chivalrously tender his own resignation, in order to save the 
Commissioner ; Mackenzie resigned after barely two years of 
office, during which he had done little but reduce the debt 
initiated by his predecessor. In 1843 his place was occupied 
by Lord Seaton, whose rule was, for weal or woe, the most 
remarkable of the whole protectorate. 

A military man, a Tory peer, and the victor of the 
Canadian insurgents could scarcely have been expected to 
develope into a Radical reformer. And for the first five 
years of his rule, despite the September revolution in Greece, 
Seaton gave no outward sign of his intentions, but followed 
the traditional policy of the protectorate, promoting education, 

1 86 The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. 

establishing district courts for the hearing of petty cases, 
mending the roads, beginning a canal at Santa Mavra, and 
planning a model farm for the teaching of agriculture. But 
the revolutionary movements of 1848 in other countries 
appear to have converted the Conservative soldier into an 
advanced democrat. Immediately after they began, he obtained 
the sanction of the home government to three reforms — a 
free press (which, he trusted, would counteract the attacks 
of the Maltese and Athenian newspapers, hitherto the usual 
organs of aggrieved lonians) ; the right of the Assembly to 
vote the extraordinary expenditure ; and the free election of 
all municipal authorities. Not content with these reforms, 
Seaton proposed to render the Assembly more democratic, 
although Earl Grey, his chief, warned him to proceed gradually, 
and to await the results of the concessions already given before 
granting more. The disturbed state of Cephalonia, always the 
most Radical of the Seven Islands, might have been supposed 
to justify the Colonial Secretary's advice. Class as well as 
national feeling was more rife there than among the other 
lonians ; and Baron d'Everton, a British official of Italian 
experience, who was then Resident of the island, could not 
trust his police. A riot during the procession of the Cepha- 
lonian saint, Gerasimos, increased the local discontent ; the 
Resident reported the existence of a secret society for the 
emancipation of the Greeks; and on September 26, 1848, a 
band of peasants attacked Argostdli. Their attack was repulsed, 
but shortly afterwards the decree for the freedom of the press 
came into force ; and its immediate effect was the publication 
of a swarm of newspapers, of which four appeared in Cephalonia 
alone, written in the vernacular and for the most part hostile 
to the protectorate. An article in one of these journals led 
Seaton to order the arrest of two Cephalonian politicians, 
Zervos and Livad&s, and their banishment to Paxo ; but 
neither this result of his own measure nor the disturbances 
in Cephalonia deterred him from carrying out the rest of his 

ix] The Constitution of 1849 187 

programme. On April 26, 1849, he announced a drastic 
reform of the Constitution of 1 8 1 7 ; and a Radical charter 
was approved, which sanctioned the direct election by ballot 
of the members of the Assembly, increased from 40 to 42, 
by an electorate more than thrice as large as that which had 
hitherto possessed the suffrage. On the other hand, the 
Senators were to be appointed from among the members of 
the Assembly by the Lord High Commissioner — an arrange- 
ment more Conservative than that of 181 7. Indeed, the 
authority of the government over the Second Chamber was 
made doubly sure by an amendment, introduced by Seaton's 
successor, which allowed the Lord High Commissioner to 
choose two Senators from outside the ranks of the Assembly. 
Moreover, as the latter body was summoned only every other 
year, and the only financial reductions which it could make 
were in the salaries of the native officials, its practical powers 
were still limited. But Seaton had provided the lonians with a 
means for airing their grievances such as they had neverpossessed 
before ; and it was thenceforth possible for them to express 
their desire for union with Greece alike in the Assembly and 
in the press. The murder of Captain Parker, the official in 
charge of the forest in Cephalonia, barely a fortnight after 
Seaton had announced his reforms at Corfu, was an ill omen 
of their success. 

Seaton bequeathed to his successor, Sir Henry Ward, who 
had sat as a Liberal in the British Parliament, the difficult 
task of superintending their working, for his own term of 
office ended a little more than a month after their introduction. 
The Liberal commoner proved at once to be more Conservative 
than the Tory peer, and his first official act was to inform the 
Assembly that his predecessor's reforms must be regarded 
as a final settlement of the question ; when that body showed 
signs of demurring, it was prorogued. Further disturbances 
in Cephalonia of both a local and a political character followed, 
on August 26, his grant of an amnesty to the insurgents of the 

1 88 The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. 

previous year and the release of the two exiled politicians. 
The peasantry rose and burnt the country-houses of the land- 
owners, one of whom perished in the flames, and the head-man 
of a village was shot as he stood by the Lord High Com- 
missioner. Martial law was proclaimed — a singular preliminary 
to the exercise of a wide suffrage and vote by ballot ; Zerv6s 
was again sent into banishment ; numbers of peasants were 
flogged with the "cat"; and 21 persons, including the two 
ringleaders, Vlachos and a priest called Nodaros, but nicknamed 
" Father Brigand " by his own countrymen, were executed. 
A section of Liberals in England endeavoured to obtain a 
vote of censure upon these methods of repression ; but their 
attempt failed ; a second amnesty had already been granted, 
and no further riot occurred in Cephalonia during the pro- 

The first Assembly elected under the reformed system met 
in March 1850. Of the three parties, which divided the 
lonians — the " Radicals," the more moderate " Reformers," 
and the reactionary or " Subterranean " party, which supported 
the protectorate— the Reformers had a majority, and only 11 
out of the 42 members were Radicals. But the Radicals, 
if a minority, were the noisiest and most popular party, es- 
pecially in Cephalonia and Zante. Among those chosen by 
Cephalonia were two Radical editors, Zerv6s and Mompherratos, 
whose election was largely due to their banishment by the 
authorities — for the political "fortune of a Radical," as a 
Cephalonian satirist remarked, "was made when the high 
police knocked at his door." In fact, six out of the ten deputies 
of that democratic island belonged to the Radical party, while 
Corfu returned only one. Many members were new to par- 
liamentary life. From the very outset the Assembly gave a 
taste of its quality by its desire to omit the word "indissoluble " 
from the oath, which described the bonds between the Islands 
and the protectorate by that adjective. The epithet was 
omitted, with the assent of the Lord High Commissioner, who 

ix] The Unionist Movement 189 

drew up a new form of oath ; but, in spite of a protest signed 
by five members, four of them Cephalonians, the allusion to 
the "treaty of Paris" and to the "rights of the Protecting 
Sovereign " was maintained in this second formula. To the 
High Commissioner's advice that the Assembly should devote 
itself to such practical reforms as the improvement of ecclesi- 
astical administration and of the status of the clergy, the 
reorganisation of education, and the completion of the Santa 
Mavra canal, the Speaker replied by censuring the policy of 
the British government in the Don Pacifico case, by blaming 
the protectorate for the decline of Ionian trade and agriculture, 
by demanding further reforms, and by alluding to the union 
in one body of all the scattered members of the Greek family. 
It was thus apparent from the beginning that the democratic 
changes of 1849 had whetted, instead of satiating, the appetite 
of the Ionian politicians. The only difference between the 
two Liberal parties was this, that while the Reformers advocated 
constitutional reforms which would not prejudice the ultimate 
removal of the protectorate, the Radicals desired nothing 
short of immediate union with Greece. Consequently Radicals 
and Protectionists alike opposed reforms, because the former 
feared lest they might make the protectorate popular, the 
latter because they feared to lose their privileges. When a 
motion by the Cephalonian Typaldos on December 8, ex- 
pressing the " will " of the islanders for union, was proposed, 
the Assembly was abruptly prorogued for seven months, and, 
before the year 1851 had closed, was dissolved. Ionian 
historians still regard this short-lived legislature as the first 
historic landmark on the road towards union. Its successor, in 
which the Lord High Commissioner believed that he had secured 
the support of the Reformers, whereas he had thereby alien- 
ated many Protectionists, and to which for the first time his 
speech was read in Greek, instead of in Italian, proved to be 
almost equally unmanageable. Banishment had decimated the 
Radicals; Count Caruso, Regent of Cephalonia, "supervised" 

190 The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [cH. 

the elections there; and only one Radical of importance, Con- 
stantine Lombardos, a Zantiote doctor, sat in this Assembly. 
Nevertheless, by a majority of one vote it rejected the reforms 
proposed by the government ; before it met for its second 
session, a general crisis in the east had begun, and Ionian 
nationalism received a yet further stimulus from the events 
which led to the Crimean War. 

The Revolution of 1848, which had indirectly influenced the 
politics of both Greece and the Ionian Islands, produced far more 
violent effects in the Roumanian countries. Upon the deposition 
of Ghika in 1842, George Bibescu, the scion of a noble family 
who had held office as secretary of state, and who was an 
enthusiastic admirer of the great Roumanian hero, Michael 
the Brave, was elected Prince of VVallachia. Before long, 
however, a quarrel with the Assembly, arising out of the grant 
of a mining concession to a Russian subject, led to the suspen- 
sion of that body ; and the Prince, free from the opposition of 
his legislature, was able to devote himself to such practical 
measures as the making of roads, the draining of marshes, and 
the establishment of a customs-union with Moldavia— the first 
step towards the political union of the two Principalities. 
In Moldavia the exceptionally long reign of Michael Sturdza, 
which lasted for 15 years, was a period of social reform. The 
sanitation of the towns, the establishment of strict ordinances 
against infectious diseases, the creation of a police force, 
and a series of measures tending to improve the lot, and 
protect the interests, of the peasants, were the work of this 
active prince. He removed from Moldavia, as his colleague 
removed from Wallachia, the last taint of slavery by the 
emancipation of the gypsies, who were the property of the state 
and of the monasteries. Most difficult task of all, he attempted 
to grapple with the Jewish question, which is still one of the 
gravest problems of Roumanian statesmanship. The Jews, 
already numerous in Moldavia at the beginning of the 
19th century, had become in the time of Michael Sturdza, 

ix] The Moldavian Jews 191 

owing to the opening of the Black Sea to the commerce of all 
countries, an important element in the population. Alarmed 
at their increase, he forbade them to reside in his principality, 
unless they either possessed a ^certain amount of capital or 
had learned a trade ; he treated as vagabonds those Hebrew 
travellers who came unprovided with passports ; and he com- 
pelled them to close their shops on Sundays and feast days. But 
while, on the one hand, he thus endeavoured by direct means 
to diminish their numbers and influence, on the other, by 
allowing them to become members of the local commercial 
associations without payment of the charges payable by the 
Christian members, he gave them an enormous advantage over 
the native traders. At that period, trade was generally regarded 
as fit for foreigners alone ; but a day arrived when the Roumans 
looked back with dismay at this fiscal exemption of the Mol- 
davian Jews. Naturally, the liberal measures of both Bibescu 
and Sturdza procured for their authors the animosity of 
the greater nobles, always inclined to resent the domination 
of a prince who had been but yesterday one of themselves. 
Both rulers were forced in self-defence to cripple as far as 
possible the power of these haughty magnates. Bibescu, by 
a strict enforcement of an article of the reglefnent orga?iigue, 
excluded the great nobles from his new Assembly on the ground 
that they did not reside in their electoral districts but were 
absentees at the capital; Sturdza aimed at weakening their 
power by a profuse creation of magnates from the ranks of the 
lesser nobility. But the discontented usually found support 
from the Russian consul, and it was against the (jonstant 
interference of this foreign Power in their affairs that the 
Roumanian edition of the Revolution of 1848 was mainly 

The spirit of nationalism had developed apace during the 
14 years of the reglevient organique. Michael Kogalniceanu 
and others, who had studied history abroad, returned home to 
describe the glories of the Roumanian race's past and the 

192 The Greek and Ionian Co7istitutions [cH. 

degradation of its present condition. The Colleges of St Sava 
at Bucharest and the Academy at Jassy, founded by Michael 
Sturdza and called by his name, enabled those who did not 
belong to the aristocracy to obtain the same education as their 
social superiors. The sons of the nobles were often defeated 
in the class rooms by the children of those whom they despised ; 
and the opening of public posts to those who had gained 
a diploma was equivalent to a social revolution. The Russians 
and their clients, the native magnates, took alarm ; and excuses 
were found for suppressing the upper classes of the two 
Roumanian colleges. But a generation had been prepared 
for the Revolution of 1848, and when that movement passed 
over Europe, it did not stop at the Carpathians. 

In Moldavia, where the revolution broke out on April 8, it 
was speedily suppressed by the Prince, without the aid which 
Russia offered him. There the demands of the ringleaders 
were confined to the redress of certain abuses in the administra- 
tion, and the agitation left the masses cold. A more advanced 
programme of reforms put forward by Kogalniceanu, in 
which the latter attacked the reglement organique and the 
Russian protectorate and demanded a national constitution 
with the union of the Principalities, led to the exile of 
its author. But in Wallachia events of a more stirring 
character took place. So little was the movement there directed 
against the Prince, that the members of the revolutionary 
committee invited Bibescu to put himself at their head. 
Bibescu, too weak or too well informed to champion a cause 
which was sure to incur the opposition of the Tsar, declined 
their overtures ; and the revolution began at Islaz, a village 
near the Danube. On this, the Prince arrested several of the 
committee ; but an attempt upon his life and the slowness of 
the army in responding to his orders convinced him that he 
could not check the movement which he had refused to lead. 
On June 23 a great crowd surrounded his palace, and forced 
him to sign a constitution which annulled the reglement 

ix] The Roumanian Revolution 193 

organique; whereupon, the Russian consul-general protested, 
and bade him quit the country. Bibescu obeyed and abdi- 
cated, leaving the revolutionary committee in possession of 
the government. But, as always happens on such occasions, 
there were two parties among the leaders — a moderate section, 
of which Eliade Radulescu was the chief, and which carefully 
refrained from touching the suzerain rights of Turkey, contenting 
itself with emancipation from the Russian protectorate, with 
agrarian reform, and with a liberal constitution ; and a Radical 
wing, which aimed at the immediate establishment of an united 
and independent Roumania, without reflecting that such an 
attempt would involve a disastrous war against Turkey, Russia, 
and Austria simultaneously. Of these two schools of thought 
the Moderates were successful in obtaining the chief influence 
in the provisional government, which was formed after the 
abdication of Bibescu. 

Neither the agrarian nor the foreign policy of the provisional 
government was successful. Of the great noble families only 
seven took part in the revolution ; and the land commission, 
appointed to examine the condition of the peasants, to abolish 
forced labour, and to make the cultivator of the soil in some 
measure its owner, was a failure. The Metropolitan called 
down the thunders of the Church upon what he described as 
"the ruin of the family and of private property"; the Russians 
invited the Turks to come forward as the champions of those 
institutions. The Turks fell into the trap laid for them by 
Russian diplomacy, and occupied Wallachia. The provisional 
government was dissolved at the bidding of the Turkish 
commissioner, and a Lieutenancy set up, consisting of Eliade 
Radulescu and two other members of the moderate party. 
The Sultan was satisfied ; not so the Russians ; they insisted 
upon a further enquiry, in which the Turkish commissioner 
should be " assisted " by a Russian general, while the Radical 
party by its violent attacks upon Russia in the press played 
unconsciously the Russian game. The excuse for the 
M. L. 13 

194 The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. 

employment of force was afforded when the manuscript of the 
precious reglement organique was publicly burned by the people 
of Bucharest after having been previously dragged in a mock 
funeral procession past the windows of tl?b Russian consulate. 
The Russian authorities in the town thereupon begged of 
Omar Pasha, the Turkish commander, to protect them; a 
collision between the Ottoman troops and the local firemen led 
to bloodshed; and the Russians once again occupied the 
Principalities to restore order. A final attempt of the Radicals 
was abandoned on the advice of the British consul. The 
Lieutenancy of three was abolished, and a rich noble, Con- 
stantine Cantacuzene, appointed sole Lieutenant-Governor. 
On May i, 1849, Russia and Turkey concluded the Convention 
of Balta Liman, which limited the duration of the Princes' 
reigns to seven years, abolished the Assemblies, and substituted 
for them divans (or Councils) named by the Princes. A 
considerable Russo-Turkish army was to occupy the Princi- 
palities till their complete pacification ; and a Russian and a 
Turkish commissioner were to assist the Princes to reorganise 
the administration. Michael Sturdza, who had preserved his 
throne throughout the revolution, declined to reign any longer 
on these terms, and retired to Paris, the usual exile of 
Roumanian rulers in retirement. In his place Gregory V 
Ghika, who had taken part in the movement of the previous 
years, was appointed Prince of Moldavia; while Bibescu was 
succeeded in Wallachia by Barbe Stirbeiu, his brother, who had 
exchanged the family name for that of his adopted father, and 
had had a large experience of public life during the late reigns. 
The Roumanian revolution of 1848, suppressed though it 
had been, left its mark upon the history of the people. 
Abroad, the exiled revolutionaries stirred up public opinion in 
favour of their nationality; and western Europe learnt, to its 
satisfaction, that in that distant corner of the continent there 
was a race, neither Slav nor Greek, which might, if supported 
in its aspirations, became a buffer-state between Turkey 

ix] Results of the Revolution 195 

and Russia. This discovery made most impression upon the 
two Liberal Powers, France and Great Britain, so soon to 
engage in a common struggle against Russia ; and, whilst 
French and French-speaking Roumanian writers enlightened 
the first of Latin nations on the lot of this oppressed scion of 
the Latin family, Palmerston himself raised the Roumanian 
question in the House of Commons. At home, the two 
Princes, instituted on the ruins of the revolution, continued, in 
a quieter manner, the work of its authors. Both Stirbeiu 
and Ghika re-established the system of instruction in the 
vernacular, and encouraged the publication of the national 
history. Both grappled with the agrarian question, which the 
Wallachian ruler endeavoured to solve by reducing the daily 
hours, while increasing the days, of the peasant's compulsory 
labour for his landlord, and by substituting a money payment 
for the old practice of forced work upon the roads. The 
reorganisation of the army and the reduction of the debt 
incurred by the occupation, which ended in 185 1, were due to 
his policy ; his Moldavian colleague was less wise in permitting 
the Jews to open drink-shops in the villages, thus laying the 
foundation of a grave social evil, which modern legislation has 
sought to diminish. But the work of both Princes was prema- 
turely interrupted by the outbreak of hostilities between their 
great neighbours in 1853. Russia informed them that they 
might retain their thrones on condition of severing their 
connexion with their suzerain. The Princes, well knowing that 
this time Turkey would have the western Powers behind her, 
refused to accept this order, and fled to Vienna, there to await 
the tide of affairs which should restore them to their respective 

Servia, although in a much less degree than the Roumanian 
Principalities, was affected by the European convulsion of 1848. 
Alexander Karageorgevich, whose throne remained unshaken 
by an attempt at an Obrenovich restoration in 1845, was 
naturally well-disposed to Austria and Turkey, the two Powers 


196 The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. 

which had supported him. These good relations between 
Austria and Servia were greatly strengthened by the action 
of the Serbs during the revolution in the Austrian empire. 
On May 13 a National Assembly of the Austrian Serbs met 
at Karlovitz, the seat of the Metropolitan, and demanded the 
nomination of a Patriarch and a Voivode, naming to the latter 
dignity Colonel Shuplikatz, an officer who had served in the 
Napoleonic wars. Under the banner of "Emperor and 
Nationality " they aided the Austrians against the Magyars, 
and were joined by many volunteers from the principality, 
despite the remonstrances of the Turkish government. So far 
as the Serbs of Austria were concerned, they gained little but 
the addition of the title of " Grand Voivode of the Servian 
Voivodina " to the already numerous designations of the 
Austrian Emperor; but this co-operation of the two neighbour- 
ing branches of the Servian race led many of the Austrian 
Serbs to enter the service of Prince Alexander, where their 
experience was valuable to the principality, and kept the 
foreign policy of Servia within the orbit of Austria at a critical 
period of the eastern question. 

Montenegro, like Servia, was stirred by the movement of 
the Austrian Serbs. Peter II offered the aid of 10,000 of his 
subjects to Jellatchich the Ban of Croatia ; but the latter 
declined to allow the Montenegrins to take part in the civil 
war between Hungarians and Croats. A series of frontier 
skirmishes between the mountaineers and their Turkish and 
Albanian neighbours provided, however, that military exercise 
which was the chief occupation of the Vladtkd's subjects. 
In these circumstances Peter II died, on October 31, 1851, 
the last ruler of the Black Mountain who united the chief 
ecclesiastical and political functions in his own person. 
His remains repose on the summit of the Lovtchen — the lofty 
mountain, recently fortified, which commands the sea of stones 
that he had ruled so wisely ; and his name is preserved in 
Servian literature by two dramas, "The Mountain Garland," 

ix] Secularisation of Montenegro 197 

and " Stephen the Little," and by a series of poems, in which 
he extolled the heroism of his subjects. 

The dying Vladika had nominated his nephew Danilo, then 
absent in Vienna, as his successor, charging Pero Tomaso 
Petrovich, President of the Senate and likewise uncle of the 
young heir, with the duty of governing the country till the 
latter could arrive. Pero was, however, acclaimed by the war- 
party, which wished for a vigorous policy against the Turks; 
and, when his nephew reached Cetinje, he found the usurper 
installed in his palace. Danilo promptly appealed to the 
people for the execution of the late ruler's testament, and his 
uncle was constrained to acknowledge him as his sovereign. 
Instead, however, of pardoning the bellicose chiefs who had 
endeavoured to rob him of his heritage, Danilo warned them 
that he would punish their disloyalty, thus from the outset 
creating a party against his authority. 

The new ruler began his reign by changing the theocratic 
system of government, which had prevailed in Montenegro 
since 15 16. He was young, he was in love with a fair damsel 
of Trieste, he wanted to marry, he desired to found a family, 
he had no calling for an ecclesiastical life. Already the late 
Vladika had shown by moving his residence from the 
Monastery to the so-called " Billiard-table," that the separation 
of a Montenegrin sovereign's dual attributes was impending. 
Danilo sent a message to the Senate, proposing this change in 
the ancient constitution. In 1852 Montenegro was declared to 
be an hereditary, temporal principality ; the succession to the 
throne was to be by order of primogeniture in the male line ; 
and another member of the Petrovich family or of the Monte- 
negrin aristocracy was to be appointed head of the Church. 
Communication of these changes was made to the Ortho- 
dox Tsar, who approved them ; Austria had already been con- 
sulted ; Turkey alone resented the erection of Montenegro 
into a secular principality, especially as her suspicions were 
aroused by this practical recognition of the Tsar as patron of 

198 The Greek and Ionian Constitutions [ch. ix 

the newly-created Prince. Omar Pasha, the Croatian vvho had 
been in the Lebanon and in the PrincipaUties, but was then 
Governor of Bosnia, tried to detach the Piperi from the rest of 
Montenegro by the promise of fiscal exemption and a grant 
of lands ; a band of Montenegrins again seized the ancient 
capital of Jablyak by a coup de main ; nor did its evacuation by 
the prudent Prince prevent the indignant Turks, anxious for 
war, from invading the Black Mountain. Attacked simul- 
taneously by five separate Turkish forces, Danilo begged 
Austria and Russia to intervene, while he held the Turks at 
bay. Austria, incensed against Turkey for her recent hospitality 
to Polish and Hungarian refugees, played the game of Slavonic 
Orthodoxy by supporting Montenegro. An Austrian envoy. 
Count Leiningen, informed the Sultan that the Austrian Em- 
peror was bound as a Christian sovereign to intervene on 
behalf of his Christian neighbours ; the Sultan consented to 
desist from hostilities ; and on March 3, 1853, peace was signed 
on the basis of the status quo, after the Turks had sustained 
serious losses. Austria had performed a service to the little 
state, which now regards her as a more dangerous foe than 
Turkey; and the Austrian envoy had insisted by a reference to 
the Turkish firman of 1799 that the Prince of Montenegro 
was not a vassal of the Sultan. Danilo personally thanked 
the Austrian Emperor for his intervention ; and, peace being 
restored, his own marriage, and the appointment of another 
member of the Petrovich clan as bishop, completed the change 
of the ancient constitution. 



The war between Turkey and Montenegro had scarcely 
ended, when another and a far more serious conflict began, 
which involved the western Powers and ended the long period 
of peace, unbroken, so far as Great Britain was concerned, 
since the battle of Waterloo. Russia, regarding herself as 
the special protectress of the Orthodox Church, had intended 
to make a Turkish refusal to conclude peace with Montenegro 
a casus belli. But the prompt and vigorous action of Austria 
and the sudden acceptance of Count Leiningen's summons 
by the Porte had removed this ground of complaint. The 
Balkan Slavs in general, and the Montenegrins in particular, 
had in the spring of 1853 no special need of Russian inter- 
vention on their behalf. 

There was, however, a more distant part of the Orient, 
where the unhappy divisions of Christian doctrine engaged 
the attention of diplomatists and furnished an excuse for the 
activity of fleets and armies. By one of those tragic circum- 
stances, which make the believer sigh and the cynic smile, 
the holiest spot on earth, the scene of Our Lord's birth, had 
become the subject of a theological dispute between monks 
of opposing sects, and was soon to be made the occasion for 
a war between monarchs of rival races. By the Capitulations 
of 1535 the custody of the Holy Places had been entrusted 
to French Catholics ; and this French protectorate, reaffirmed 
in 1673, had been solemnly confirmed and enlarged by the 

200 • The Crimean War [ch. 

famous Capitulations of 1740. Articles 33 and 82 of that 
instrument, the Magna Carta of the French in the Levant, 
provided that the French religious Orders should not be 
disturbed in their occupation of the church of the Holy 
Sepulchre at Jerusalem, and that, whenever the fabric of the 
Holy Places required repair, the requisite leave should be 
granted at the request of the French ambassador. These 
exclusive privileges of "the eldest daughter of the Church," 
derived from a period when the Russian empire had not yet 
sprung into being, had been undermined by certain firmans 
conceded to the Greek Church from 1634 onwards, at times 
when France was either hostile to Turkey, or indifferent to 
ecclesiastical questions and to that political importance which 
they always assume in the east. The Orthodox naturally 
gained ground during seasons when pure reason directed 
French foreign policy, for it is a result of anticlericalism in 
Latin countries that it cripples the national influence otherwise 
exercised by the Church abroad. When, however, Louis 
Napoleon became President of the Second French Republic, 
the support of the French Catholics was essential to him. 
Alike in Rome and at Jerusalem he came forward as the 
champion of the Catholic cause and instructed his ambassador 
at Constantinople to insist upon the strict execution of the 
Capitulations of 1740, thus, in the words of the British Foreign 
Secretary, " making the tomb of Christ a cause of quarrel 
among Christians." The Porte, embarrassed by the rival 
claims of France on behalf of the Latin, and of Russia in 
favour of the Orthodox monks, endeavoured to please both 
parties. By a note of February 9, 1852, it directed that keys 
of the north and south gates of the great church at Bethlehem 
and of the grotto of the Holy Manger " must be given " to 
the Latins, *'as of old," and they were allowed to erect a silver 
star adorned with the French arms in the shrine of the Nativity. 
By a firman, issued under Russian pressure, it reaffirmed the 
custom of giving keys of these sanctuaries to the Greeks, I>atins, 

x] The Holy Places 201 

and Armenians, and provided that " no change " should " be 
made in the present state of the gates of the church of 
Bethlehem." The French were naturally indignant that the 
Porte had ratified the privileges of the Greeks, which they 
considered as an infringement of their own treaty rights. 
The Russians wished that this confirmation of their clients' 
contention should be publicly announced at Jerusalem ; the 
French were equally desirous that what they regarded as a 
diplomatic defeat should not be proclaimed aloud. 

The unpleasant task of communicating the decision of the 
Porte to the rival sects of the Holy Land was entrusted to Afif 
Bey, who followed the Fabian policy for which Turkish diplo- 
macy is famous. This Mussulman, whom the irony of history 
had made a judge between warring Christians, delivered a 
series of the usual platitudes on the relations between the 
Sultan and his Christian subjects. When these beatitudes 
failed to satisfy the impatience of the Orthodox party, he 
adjourned the assembly to Gethsemane, and there read an 
order of his master, permitting the Latins to celebrate mass 
once a year in the church of the Virgin, provided that the 
altar and its ornaments remained undisturbed. This permission 
irritated the Latins, without appeasing the Greeks. The 
former declared it impossible to celebrate mass " upon a 
schismatic slab of marble, with a covering of silk and gold,... 
and before a crucifix which has the feet separated " ; the latter 
observed, that the firman, which Afif had been presumably 
sent to read, had not been read. Pressed by the Russian 
consul-general, Afif sought refuge in subterfuges, and finally 
admitted that he had no instructions to read the firman at 
all. Thus, the Greeks were defeated, and their defeat was 
rendered all the more galling when, on December 22, the 
silver star of the French was placed by the Latin Patriarch 
in the sanctuary of the Nativity, and the keys of the great 
door of the church of Bethlehem and of the sacred manger 
were handed over to the adherents of the filioque clause. The 

202 The Crimean War [ch. 

Russian government, in the name of outraged Orthodoxy 
and injured autocracy, called for " an act of reparation," and 
ordered an army corps to advance to the frontiers of the 
Danubian Principalities — the usual prelude of a Russo-Turkish 
war. Thus the Russian " heir of Byzantium " in the true 
spirit of Byzantine history, had found in a quarrel of theological 
schools a pretext for armed intervention. If the Tsar could 
no longer come forward as the protector of the Montenegrin 
mountaineers, whose grievances had been removed, he might 
still pose as the champion of the humiliated Orthodox monks of 
Palestine. In this frame of mind, he sent Prince Mentschikoff, 
a Chauvinist without diplomatic training, on an extraordinary 
mission to Constantinople, to demand not only a prompt 
settlement of the question of the Holy Places, but, as subse- 
quently transpired, a Russian protectorate over the whole of 
the Orthodox Church in the Ottoman empire. 

Mentschikoff's methods of diplomacy soon convinced the 
Turkish government that coercion, not conciliation, was his 
aim. He began by refusing to call upon the Turkish Minister 
for Foreign Affairs, who at once resigned. The Grand Vizier, 
in alarm, begged Col. Rose (afterwards Lord Strathnairn), then 
British charge d'affaires^ to summon the British fleet from 
Malta to Vourla near Smyrna. The British government dis- 
approved its agent's request; but, just at the moment when 
its disapproval seemed likely to mollify the Tsar, the French 
fleet was suddenly ordered to anchor off" Salamis. The 
Emperor Napoleon HI, as the Prince-President had now 
become, had personal no less than political reasons for 
pursuing a vigorous foreign policy towards the Tsar. Trifles 
count for much in the highest and most august circles, where 
the fate of nations is often decided ; and the parvenu^ who 
had assumed the Imperial style and was eager for the recog- 
nition of the long-established sovereigns of Europe, was stung 
to the quick by the Tsar's description of him in official corre- 
spondence as " my dear friend," instead of the customary 

x] Lord Aberdeen 203 

phrase of monarchs, " my brother." Moreover, the brand-new 
Emperor, still fresh from the coup diktat and not yet securely 
established on the throne, had need of some striking success ^ 
abroad, which would divert the minds of his discontented 
and critical subjects from domestic politics. If he could obtain 
this success by co-operation with a great Power of old-standing 
and unimpeachable reputation, such as Great Britain, he would 
raise himself in the social scale and make people forget his 
origins and his methods — the ridiculous failures of Strassburg 
and Boulogne, the prison of Ham, the exile in London, and the 
second of December. 

So far the British government had not been involved in 
the question at issue between France, Russia and Turkey ; nor 
did there seem to be any adequate reason why it should be. 
Great Britain was the protectress of neither the Roman 
Catholics nor the Orthodox in the near east; and, as the 
greatest commercial community in the world, she was assumed 
to be specially desirous of peace. Her Prime Minister at this 
time. Lord Aberdeen, was not only a friend of peace but a 
friend of Nicholas, whom he had met in London nine years 
earlier. On that occasion the Tsar had discussed the eastern 
question with the future Prime Minister, then Foreign Secretary, 
and urged upon him the desirability of a mutual understanding 
between their two countries. A memorandum of the supposed 
common interests of Great Britain and Russia in the near east 
was drawn up ; and the Tsar left with the impression that he 
could rely upon Aberdeen's co-operation, and left behind him 
the conviction that he was a man of his word, upon whom 
strict reliance could be placed. Accordingly, when his friend 
became Prime Minister, the Tsar felt that he was sure of 
his support ; and a month after Aberdeen's Cabinet had been 
formed, he spoke freely with Sir Hamilton Seymour, the 
British ambassador to his court, on the state of Turkey. " We 
have on our hands," he said, " a sick man — a very sick man ; 
it will be, I tell you frankly, a great misfortune if one of these 

204 The Crimean War [cii. 

days he should slip away from us, especially before all necessary 
arrangements were made." He disclaimed Catherine the 
Great's dreams of territorial expansion, but alluded to his 
rights and duties towards the Christian subjects of the Sultan, 
and suggested that, in the event of the dissolution of Turkey, 
Servia and the Bulgarians should receive the same form of 
government as the Danubian Principalities, and that Egypt 
and Crete should become British possessions. As for Con- 
stantinople, he stated that he would neither allow Great Britain 
to establish herself there, nor would he annex it himself; as 
to a temporary " occupation " of the Turkish capital, that was 
another matter. These overtures were politely rejected in 
London. Our only interest in Egypt, Sir Hamilton Seymour 
said, was one of transit to India ; the other Turkish territories 
Great Britain did not covet. Nor did the Cabinet believe 
that the end of Turkey was nigh. In this it was right. 

But, while the Tsar's desire to co-operate with Great Britain 
and his friendship with the head of the British government 
seemed to augur well for the preservation of good relations 
between the two countries, the ambassador whom the British 
Cabinet now bade return to Constantinople was a man whom, 
of all diplomatists, Nicholas hated most. Lord Stratford de 
Redcliffe, as he now was, had played a great part in the tortuous 
politics of the Levant. We have seen him intervene with 
authority in the affairs of Greece ; he had already won an over- 
powering influence at Constantinople. But the Tsar had once 
slighted him by refusing to receive him as ambassador at 
St Petersburg; and this affront, like that to Napoleon III, 
intensified the strength of " the Great Eltchi's," as of the French 
Emperor's, opposition to the Russian plans. In those days an 
ambassador was not what he is said now to have become — a 
clerk at the end of a telegraph wire. Lord Stratford did not 
merely repeat his instructions, he sometimes ignored them ; and, 
while a hesitating Cabinet in London was making up its mind, 
he had already made history, and made it irrevocably. But 

x] Lord Stratford's advice 205 

the great ambassador was not only " the voice of England in 
the east"; he stood behind the trembling Turkish Ministers ^ 
and gave them courage and advice, so that they left his presence 
men and statesmen. Before his arrival on April 5, 1853, 
Mentschikoff had already unfolded to the Turkish government 
the real scope of his mission, which went far beyond the 
question of the Holy Places. Russia through her envoy offered 
the Turks the aid of her fleet and 400,000 men against any 
western Power in return for an addition to the fatal treaty of 
Kutchuk-Kainardji, placing the Orthodox Church entirely 
under her protection. This proposal was to be kept secret 
from Great Britain ; but, within four days of his return to 
Constantinople, the British ambassador was aware of its nature. 
He at once advised the Turkish Ministers to keep the question 
of the Holy Places distinct from that of the general protectorate, 
to remove any grievance that Russia might have by the prompt 
settlement of the former, and to decline to entertain the latter, 
without, however, refusing the spontaneous redress of any 
abuses. Thus, the ground of legitimate complaint would be 
completely cut away from under Mentschikoff's feet. The 
Turks acted upon his advice ; and by his timely interposition 
between the Russian envoy and the new French ambassador 
he managed on April 22 to secure the settlement of the original 
cause of dispute, the question of the Holy Places. It was 
arranged that, while the key of the church of Bethlehem and 
the silver star should not be removed, their presence there was 
to be understood to confer no new right upon the Latins ; that 
the doorkeeper of the church should continue to be a Greek, 
but should not prevent the ingress of people of other creeds ; 
that Greeks, Armenians, and Latins should have daily pre- 
cedence in that order at the tomb of the Virgin; that the 
gardens of the convent of Bethlehem should remain under 
the joint care of the two rival sects; and that the repairs to the 
cupola of the church of the Holy Sepulchre should be carried 
out by the Sultan on the lines of the existing plan ; while the 

2o6 The Crimean War [ch. 

windows of the buildings overlooking its terraces should be 
walled up. Thus, both the Montenegrin and the monkish 
questions had been settled ; the peace of Europe might seem 

But, nine days earlier, fresh Russian dispatches, penned 
under the influence of the news that the French fleet had been 
ordered to Salamis, had reached Mentschikoff". In obedience 
to the pressing orders of his incensed master, the Russian 
envoy demanded from the Turkish government a treaty 
guaranteeing to the Orthodox clergy and Church in the Ottoman 
empire all their ancient privileges and all the advantages 
accorded to other Christian bodies. Such a treaty, in the 
words of the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, " would be 
giving to Russia an exclusive protectorate over the whole 
Orthodox population, their clergy, and their churches." When- 
ever an Orthodox bishop— and in the Turkish empire the 
bishops are usually politicians first and spiritual pastors after- 
wards — had any grievance, he would have appealed to the 
Tsar, who would thus have had an excuse at any moment for 
interfering in the internal affairs of Turkey. An i?nperium in 
imperio would thus have been erected, compared with which 
the intervention of the Papacy in English politics under the 
Plantagenets or the existing French protectorate over the com- 
paratively few Roman Catholics of Turkey were as nothing. For 
the Tsar was near at hand, and at the head of armies and fleets, 
while the Orthodox subjects of the Sultan were legion, and 
numbers of those who were officially labelled as "Greeks," 
because they belonged to the Greek Church, were Slavs of a 
race akin to that of the Russians. The Turkish government 
consulted Lord Stratford as to their policy, and decided to 
reject the proposed Russian treaty. Meanwhile, the settlement 
of the question of the Holy Places had placed the Tsar in a 
far worse position, as that of a man who was bent upon picking 
a quarrel with his neighbour. Mentschikoff", unable to go back, 
repeated his demand in the form of a convention, which he 

x] ''The Great Eltchr 207 

requested the Turkish government to accept. Once again the 
British ambassador, now the real power behind the Turkish 
throne, counselled firmness, and, in a private audience with 
the Sultan, informed him that, in the event of imminent danger, 
the British Mediterranean squadron would be held in readiness. 
Mentschikoff, after further attempts to wring consent from the 
Sultan and his Ministers, thus causing a Ministerial crisis at 
Constantinople, orally received from Reshid Pasha, the new 
Foreign Minister, on May 1 8, a refusal to grant the protectorate 
over the Greek Church in Turkey, demanded by the Tsar. 
In vain, at Lord Stratford's suggestion, the representatives of 
the other three Powers joined him in expressing to Mentschikoff 
their regret at the threatened rupture of Russo-Turkish relations. 
He merely consented to accept the promise of the protectorate 
through the less formal channel of a note, in place of a conven- 
tion or a treaty. When the Turkish government rejected this 
ultimatum, he left Constantinople with his staff. His Imperial 
master attributed his defeat to the supremacy of Lord Stratford, 
and filled the European courts with his complaints of the 
British ambassador. These complaints were not without some 
foundation, for the latter is said to have boasted openly that 
the Crimean war had been his revenge for the Tsar's refusal to 
receive him. Yet, while the Tsar recognised that behind the 
Sultan stood the commanding figure of " the Great Eltchi," he 
could not believe that either the British government, presided 
over by his friend Aberdeen, or the British people, immersed 
in commerce, would permit their ambassador to lead them 
into war. In this Nicholas was wrong, though a superficial 
survey of our recent history might have tended to confirm him 
in this fatal error. 

The British people is almost always a riddle to foreign 
statesmen ; and at that time public utterances had more than 
usually obscured its real character. Two years earlier the 
Cobdenite School, still in the glory of the Free-trade triumph, 
bad foretold that the Great Exhibition would mark the end of 

2o8 The Crimean War [ch. 

wars, and that the British lion would lie down with the 
Manchester lamb. In 1853 nearly 40 years of peace had 
passed over the heads of the British people, and a generation 
had grown up which knew the horrors of war from books alone. 
This last fact was, in reality^ a danger rather than a hopeful 
sign ; for we have learnt in our own day that, when the Crimean 
war had ceased to be a personal recollection, the populace was 
eager for a great colonial campaign. But the Tsar believed 
that he knew the pacific nature of Great Britain, just as 45 
years later sapient German politicians vowed that the British 
would never go to war for the sake of a distant colony. He 
was misled by the undue prominence given to the utterances 
of the peace party, forgetting that the vast, silent mass of the 
British public rarely takes part in public meetings, but quietly 
decides the fate of governments on polling-day. He did not 
foresee that the mere fact of Cobden's and Bright's rooted and 
high principled antipathy to all wars would inevitably destroy 
their influence in opposing any particular war, whereas the 
opposition of a Liberal to a particular Liberal measure is of far 
more value than that of a Conservative, the enemy on principle 
of all Liberal proposals. The middle classes, whom Nicholas 
had studied at a distance during his visit to P^ngland, seemed 
to him sunk in material prosperity ; the British Jeshurun had 
waxed fat, he was not likely to kick. So reasoned the Tsar ; 
and the peace party honestly, but unfortunately for its own 
cause, did all that it could to confirm him in this strong 

Confident that Great Britain would not fight against him, 
the Tsar, on July 2, 1855, ordered his forces to cross the Pruth 
and occupy the two Danubian Principalities, whose Princes 
I were informed that they might keep their thrones, on condition 
of breaking off all relations with the Porte. The Princes, 
ordered by the latter to disobey the Russian orders and to 
pay their tribute as usual, as soon as they became convinced 
that the Turks would be supported by the western Powers, 

x] The Vienna Note 209 

refused to carry out the Tsar's behests, and in October fled 
to Vienna. The Russian occupation was followed by a mani- 
festo, declaring the Orthodox Church to be in danger, 
disclaiming "the intention to commence war" or to make 
conquests, and protesting that the Tsar regarded the Princi- 
palities merely as a " security " for " the restoration " of his 
rights. Thus, war was even yet not officially declared ; but, 
as the Tsar had given to his operations the colour of a crusade, 
the Turks retaliated by preaching a religious war. As for 
the Powers, Austria naturally felt alarm at the occupation of 
territories on her own frontier, inhabited by the same race 
as some of her own subjects ; Prussia, whose romantic sovereign, 
Frederick William IV, was the Tsar's brother-in-law, and 
whose foreign policy had been hitherto subservient to that 
of Russia, united with Austria ; and Great Britain and France, 
while they sent their fleets to Besika Bay near the mouth of 
the Dardanelles, consulted with the two chief German states 
at Vienna as to the best means of averting a conflict. There 
their representatives approved with some modifications a 
document, which had originated in Paris but which came to 
be called from the place of their meeting, "the Vienna Note." 
This document stated that "whereas, if at all times the 
Emperors of Russia have evinced their active solicitude for 
the maintenance of the immunities and privileges of the 
Orthodox Greek Church in the Ottoman Empire, the Sultans 
have never refused to confirm them;. ..the government of 
His Majesty the Sultan will remain faithful to the letter and 
to the spirit of the treaties of Kainardji and Adrianople relative 
to the protection of the Christian religion, and His Majesty 
considers himself bound in honour... to cause the Greek rite 
to share in the advantages conceded to the other Christian 
rites by convention or special arrangement." The Tsar, as 
was anticipated, accepted this note ; and Lord Clarendon, the 
British Foreign Secretary, ordered Lord Stratford to procure 
"the assent of the Turkish government thereto." 

M. L. 14 

2IO The Crimean War [ch. 

The powerful ambassador had already persuaded his 
colleagues in Constantinople to approve a note inspired by 
himself, informing the Russian government that the Sultan had 
issued firmans in confirmation of the privileges of the Orthodox 
Church. He none the less executed his orders as the agent 
of his government, but at the same time let the Turkish 
Ministers see that his mind did not approve what his tongue 
was bound to utter. They amended the note by making the 
above-cited passages run as follows : "Whereas, if at all times 
the Emperors of Russia have evinced their active solicitude for 
the Orthodox Greek religion and Church, the Sultans have 
never ceased to provide for the maintenance of the immunities 
and privileges which they have spontaneously granted at 
different times to that religion and to that Church in the 
Ottoman Empire, and to confirm them;... the government 
of His Majesty the Sultan will remain faithful to the stipulations 
of the treaty of Kainardji, confirmed by that of Adrianople, 
relative to the protection by the Sublime Porte of the Christian 
religion, and. . .His Majesty considers himself bound in honour. . . 
to cause the Greek rite to share in the advantages granted, 
or which might be granted, to the other Christian communities, 
Ottoman subjects." Russia rejected the note, as thus amended ; 
and this difference of phraseology, which was, indeed, more 
than merely verbal, caused the final rupture. The Porte 
summoned the Russian general to evacuate the Principalities 
within 15 days; and, as he disregarded this summons, on 
October 23, the third Russo-Turkish war of the century 
formally began. A day earlier, and therefore, in technical 
violation of the convention of 1841 (unless the Russian 
occupation of the Principalities were considered as constituting 
a breach of the peace), the British fleet had, at the request 
of France, entered the Dardanelles. Russia protested at this 
breach of the "Convention of the Straits"; and for the first 
time the Tsar was brought face to face with the hard fact of 
a probable war against Great Britain. The probability was 

x] Hostilities begin 211 

increased by the substitution of a separate Anglo-French under- 
standing for the concert of the four Powers. While Austria, the 
Power nearest, most directly concerned, and most capable of 
striking quickly, held back, and Prussia followed Austria, the 
French Emperor and the forward party in the divided British 
Cabinet, headed by Palmerston and Russell, pushed Great 
Britain into war. A spark was now alone needed to cause 
an explosion of popular indignation, no less dangerous because 
it was unreasonable. 

Five dgi]^s after the two empires were in a state of hostility, 
Omar Pasha, commander-in-chief of the Ottoman forces in 
Europe, crossed the Danube at Vidin, and entrenched himself 
at Kalafat in Wallachia ; a few days later the Russian occupants 
were defeated at Oltenitza. The Tsar's reply was to send out 
his Black Sea fleet ; on November 30, his admiral annihilated 
the Turkish fleet in the port of Sinope. An outburst of rage 
against the Tsar and the British Premier greeted the news of 
this affair in London. Aberdeen durst not show himself in 
the streets; Palmerston, with his unerring comprehension of 
what the average Englishman of the middle classes wanted, 
resigned his seat in the Cabinet, nominally on an internal 
question, really because he saw that strong measures were 
what the country demanded. Yet, there were both precedent 
and justification for the destruction of the Turkish fleet at 
Sinope. At Navarino, 26 years earlier, we had aided in 
destroying another Turkish squadron ; and we had not then 
the excuse of being, as the Tsar was, at war with Turkey. 
Yet Sinope was called a " massacre," Navarino an " untoward 
event.'' The blame, if any, attached to the British and French 
commanders, who had been authorised to engage, if necessary, 
in defensive operations in the Black Sea. But the British 
Cabinet adopted the suggestion of the French Emperor to 
notify the Russian government "that every Russian ship 
thenceforward met in the Euxine would be requested, and, 
if necessary, constrained, to return to Sebastopol." Thereupon, 


212 The Crimean War [ch. 

Palmerston, the war advocate /«r excellence^ rejoined his former 
colleagues. The Tsar, on receipt of this notification, recalled 
his ambassadors from London and Paris, just at the moment 
when the representatives of the four Powers at Constantinople 
had drawn up a fresh note and persuaded the Porte to accept 
it. Nor were the prospects of peace improved by the visit 
of a deputation from the Society of Friends to St Petersburg. 
The worthy Quakers were charmed with the simplicity of an 
Autocrat, who spoke of Her Imperial Majesty the Empress 
as " my wife," but they did more harm than good to the cause 
which they had at heart. The majority of their countrymen 
wanted war, and the Cabinet " drifted " into it. 

If a war against Russia were to be successfully and speedily 
conducted it was obviously desirable that the four Powers 
should act together ; for Austria, from her geographical position, 
could at once pour troops into the Principalities, while Prussia 
would be tolerably certain to follow the lead of Austria. If, 
on the other hand, war could by any means have been avoided 
at that eleventh hour, then the close union of the four Powers 
^offered the best guarantee for a pacific settlement; for even 
the Russian Autocrat would scarcely have cared to oppose 
the unanimous decision of the European Areiopagos. More- 
over, Count Buol, the Austrian Minister of Foreign Affairs, 
actually offered on February 22, 1854, to support Great Britain 
and France, if they would fix a period within which the Russian 
troops should evacuate the Principalities under pain of hostilities. 
There is no reason to doubt that the Austrian Emperor, despite 
the services rendered to him by Russia against the Hungarians 
in 1849, would have been as good as his word, and that 
Austria, in the famous phrase of Schwarzenberg, would have 
"astonished the world by her ingratitude." For national 
gratitude, with a few rare exceptions, chiefly to be found in 
the Balkan states, has little practical value, however useful 
it may be to an after-dinner speaker, while national interests 
are always powerful motives with statesmen. Austria, with 

x] British action 213 

her millions of Slav subjects, could not contemplate with 
indifference a Russian campaign, undertaken on behalf of 
the Slavs of Turkey; nor could she, the greatest of all Danubian 
states, acquiesce in the occupation by another great Power 
of the Danubian Principalities, inhabited by kinsmen of her 
own Roumanian people. Unfortunately, the British Ministry 
telegraphed for confirmation of Count Buol's offer and a clear 
statement of Prussia's intentions. The Austrian and Prussian 
replies — the former merely a repetition of Count Buol's proposal, 
the latter characteristically undecided — were of no practical 
value, for the simple reason that, on February 27, the day 
before they arrived in London, the British ultimatum had 
been dispatched to St Petersburg. Thus, the impatience of 
the British public, excited by the press, and the pressure 
exercised by the French Emperor, who had actually taken 
upon himself to write to the Tsar in the name of Queen 
Victoria and in reply had received for his pains a cutting 
allusion to the retreat from Moscow in 18 12, hustled the 
British government into taking an irretrievable step, before 
it had even received answers from two possible allies. 

The British ultimatum informed the Russian government 
that its refusal or omission to send an answer within six days 
from the date of delivery, promising to withdraw all its troops 
from the Principalities before April 30, would be regarded as a 
declaration of war. A French ultimatum, couched in the same 
terms, was sent at the same time. As the Russian government 
refused to answer, simultaneous messages were sent by the 
British and French sovereigns to their respective Parliaments 
on March 2 7 ; and on the morrow the British declaration of war 
was published. It enumerated the successive phases of the 
various questions which had led up to the final arbitrament 
of the sword ; but it did not explain why Great Britain 
and France alone had decided to champion a cause which 
concerned Prussia equally with, and Austria even more 
than, themselves; for the question which was the gist of 

2 14 ^^^ Crimean War [cii. 

the ultimatum was the occupation of the Principalities, and 
that was an Austrian rather than a Franco-British concern. 
On April ii the Tsar replied, and twelve days later, in a 
manifesto to his people, gave a religious colour to the im- 
pending war. Prince Gortchakoff, the commander of his 
army of occupation, and himself a warm admirer of the British, 
had already, on March 24, crossed the Danube and entered 
the dreary Oobrudja, reviving in the classically educated 
politicians of that day memories of those lachrymose " Pontic 
Epistles," which the exiled Ovid had composed in that dismal 
region. Already, also, two treaties had been signed — one 
between the two western Powers and Turkey, pledging Great 
Britain and France to defend the Ottoman empire and Turkey 
to make no separate peace with Russia ; the other between Great 
Britain and France for common action against the Tsar. Cynics, 
reading of these alliances, may have recalled with a smile, how 
the French Emperor had said not long before, that " the Empire 
means peace," and how the peace party had been identified by 
the Tsar with the British people ! As for Austria and Prussia, 
they on paper supported the " step taken directly by France 
and England... as being founded in right," guaranteed one 
another's territories against attack, and, while desiring " to 
avoid every participation in the war," deprecated "the in- 
definite continuance of the occupation of the territories on 
the Lower Danube." Only in the event of a Russian 
annexation of the Principalities, or in that of a Russian 
"attack on, or passage of, the Balkan," would the two 
German Powers act on the offensive. These contingencies 
never arose. But, on May 23, the four governments were 
still protesting "that the integrity of the Ottoman Empire, 
and the evacuation of that portion of its territory which is 
occupied by the Russian army," were, and would be, the 
objects of their united endeavours. 

Meanwhile, amidst immense enthusiasm, a British fleet, 
under Sir Charles Napier, the hero of Acre, had set sail for 

x] Defence of Silistria 2 1 5 

the Baltic, escorted by the Queen in person from its moorings. 
But this Baltic expedition proved to be a bitter disappoint- 
ment ; and the capture of a single island was small compensation 
for the failure to take the Russian fleet and attack the Russian 
arsenal of Kronstadt. But it was not in the north that the 
northern Colossus was vulnerable. The allied armies, the 
British commanded by Lord Raglan, a pupil and secretary 
of Wellington, the French led by Marshal St Arnaud, whose 
Algerian reputation had been confirmed in his master's eyes 
by his co-operation in the coup d'etat^ encamped by the Dar- 
danelles not far from the spot where, five centuries before, 
the Turks had made their first settlement in Europe. Thence, 
in the month of June, they moved to Varna, now the first 
harbour of Bulgaria, and then the chief port of European 
Turkey on the Euxine. But the early successes of the Turks 
were due not to the armies of the Allies, but to the energy 
of three young British officers. The veteran Paskievich, the 
famous commander of the last Russo-Turkish war, had advised 
the Tsar to direct his forces first against Silistria, the fortress 
taken by the Russians 25 years before ; and thither in May 
he had himself marched to execute his plan. But the con- 
queror of Erivan found himself baffled by Capt. Butler and 
Lieuts. Nasmyth and Ballard, who had assumed the direction 
of the defence and had inspired that devotion which Mussul- 
mans often feel for British officers. Then, for the first time 
the Arab Tabia earthwork, notorious in the diplomatic negotia- 
tions of 25 years later, became a household word in England, 
where the exploits of its gallant defenders were read with all 
the more pride because they were our fellow-countrymen. 
When Butler was mortally wounded, Ballard took his place ; 
and so spirited was the resistance that on June 22 the old 
Russian strategist raised the siege. A fortnight later, Ballard 
and six other young British officers crossed the Danube with 
the Turks, and defeated the Russians at Giurgevo ; nor did 
Gortchakoff dare to retrieve this defeat in the presence of a 

2i6 The Crimean War [ch. 

little squadron of British gunboats. He retreated upon 
Bucharest, leaving the Turks masters of the lower Danube ; 
on August 2 the last Russian soldier recrossed the Pruth. 

To this ignominious retreat the threatening attitude of Austria 
had contributed even more than the bravery of the Turkish 

^ soldiers and the pluck of a handful of British officers at 
Silistria and Giurgevo. On June 3, Austria had summoned 
the Tsar to evacuate the PrincipaHties ; and the ease with which 
her army could invade them lent weight to her summons, 
which Prussia was ready to support. Eleven days afterwards, 

^ the Austrian Emperor signed a convention with the Porte, 
pledging himself '' to exhaust all means," even force, " to 
obtain the evacuation of the Danubian Principalities, ... to 
re-establish the legal state of things " there, and to withdraw 
his army as soon as peace was concluded. In further pur- 
suance of this aim, the Austrian government sent an officer 
to the British headquarters to concert a joint plan of campaign. 
Before significant measures of this kind the Tsar could but 
yield, unless he wished for a war against Austria, in which 
she might be supported by Prussia and the minor German 
states. With the departure of the Russian army ceased the 
provisional administration which the Russian generals had 
created on the flight of the two Hospodars. During this inter- 
regnum two Russian " presidents " had held office, Kalkinsky 
at Bucharest, Urusoff at Jassy; but their conduct was far 
milder than that of former Russian armies of occupation. 
Efforts were made to gain the sympathies and utilise the 
services of the local aristocracy, but the burden of supporting 
the costs of the occupation fell upon the two countries. 'I'he 
Princes returned with the Austrian army, which remained 
there, despite Russian protests, till March 1857, long after 
the termination of the war. Thus, with the Austrians en- 
camped in the PrincipaHties, Russia could not, as in 1828 
and 1877, march through them to attack the Turks beyond 
the Danube. A Balkan campaign was excluded ; and with 

x] Policy of Servia 217 

little bloodshed and without a blow from the allied armies, 
the object of the British ultimatum — the evacuation of Walla- ^ 
chia and Moldavia — had been attained. Common-sense would 
have suggested that this was the moment for peace. 

Before following the allied armies from Varna to the 
Crimea, whither the national craving of the British for a 
sensational triumph and the desire of the French Emperor for ^ 
that " glory " which is the foundation of brand-new dynasties 
were about to send them, it is desirable to note the effects of 
the struggle upon the Balkan Christians. While the Rouman- 
ians, as usual, had had to bear the brunt of the Russian passage 
to the Danube, the stolid Bulgars, whose fortress of Silistria 
and port of Varna had been the scenes of a Russian defeat 
and a Franco-British encampment, remained indifferent to the 
operations conducted in their midst. Servia, whose geographical 
position was more difficult and whose historic consciousness 
was more awake than that of the plodding Bulgarian peasants, 
was placed in a situation of no slight embarrassment. Turkey 
was her suzerain, Russia her protectress, while Austria was not 
only her neighbour but had acquired influence and sympathy 
among her leading men, many of whom had been Austrian 
subjects and had aided against the Hungarians during the 
revolution of 1848. Alexander Karageorgevich owed much to 
the support of Turkey and Austria ; nor had he forgotten, that, 
while the Tsar had opposed his election, the British Premier, 
when Foreign Secretary in 1843, had instructed Lord Stratford 
to keep him on the throne. But Russia had numerous 
adherents among the peasants, who even spoke of the 
Orthodox Tsar as " our Emperor." Such were the tendencies 
of the Servian public men and populace, when the three Powers 
most nearly concerned demanded, the intentions of the little 
principality. Mentschikoff, with his usual violence, ordered 
Alexander to dismiss Garashanin, a representative of modern 
ideas, who had succeeded Petronievich as his chief adviser. 
But this was Russia's sole diplomatic success in Servia. A 

2i8 The Crimean War [ch. 

Turkish army approached the southern frontier of the princi- 
pality and extracted from the Prince a pledge of armed 
neutrality, while, at Lord Stratford's suggestion, the Sultan 
V issued a new firman, guaranteeing the Servian privileges. 
An Austrian force was massed along the frontier to prevent 
a Russian occupation ; and the importation of war material 
through Austrian territory was prohibited. Nevertheless, the 
Serbs resolved to be prepared to defend their country, if it were 
menaced — and the menace seemed to many to come rather 
from the Austrian force on the Save than from the Russians on 
the lower Danube. The principality was militarily organised ; 
Austria showed signs of impatience ; and both the British and 
French governments urged the Servian envoy, Marinkovich, to 
give her the satisfaction that she sought by disarming. All 
excuse for alarm of a Russian invasion disappeared with the 
withdrawal of the Russian troops across the Pruth. Austria 
dominated the councils of the Prince; Russia had the sym- 
pathies of the people ; but neither Prince nor people moved a 

From Montenegro the Tsar had stronger reason to expect 
support. Despite the fact that one war against Turkey was 
barely over, a considerable party at Cetinje, headed by 
Danilo's uncle, George Petrovich, was anxious for another. 
Danilo, however, at the advice of Austria, which had just 
rendered him so considerable a service, again resolutely opposed 
a warlike policy, at the risk of his popularity and even of his 
throne. A conspiracy was formed against him, in which his 
uncles George and Pero were implicated ; and the agitation 
for war became acute when the Turks massed troops along the 
Herzegovinian frontier, thus provoking the bellicose mount- 
aineers. Some urged an attack upon Antivari, others raided 
the Herzegovina. Danilo protested that he could no longer 
keep in his subjects ; and their discontent rose to such a pitch, 
that the Piperi, the Kutchi, and the Bijelopavlich districts 
of the Brda, comparatively recent and still unamalgamated 

x] Excitement in Greece 219 

acquisitions of the principality, proclaimed themselves, in July 
1854, an independent state. Danilo was forced to take the 
field against his rebellious subjects ; some fled into Turkish 
territory, others submitted, and were made to pay an in- 
demnity for the civil war which they had caused. But, while 
maintaining neutrality, the Prince thought it prudent to 
conciliate both his subjects and the Tsar by ordering a three 
days' fast for the success of the Russian arms. The Catholic 
Mirdites, on the other hand, under their Prince Bib Doda, 
followed Omar Pasha to the Danube, as they had followed him 
a year before against Montenegro. 

The effects of the Russo-Turkish quarrel were far more 
serious in Greece than in the Slav states of the near east. 
The Greeks inevitably sided with Orthodox Russia against 
Catholic France in the question of the Holy Places ; they also 
considered that the moment when Turkey was involved in 
war with Russia would be favourable to their national aspira- 
tions for the annexation of Epirus and Thessaly. " Nine-tenths 
of the Greek nation," it was said by a competent observer, 
sincerely sympathised with Russia; nor could this sympathy 
be matter for wonder when she was fighting their hereditary 
and apparently only enemy — for, at that time, the danger to 
Hellenism of an independent Bulgaria did not exist. It was 
believed at Athens that all the Orthodox subjects of the Sultan, 
whom it was still the official usage to classify collectively as 
Greeks, because they belonged to the Greek Church, would 
rise at a given signal. Both the King and Queen, and 
especially the latter, considered that the time had come for 
that expansion of their kingdom's narrow borders, in which they 
both fervently believed, and identified themselves with a cause 
which was at once national and popular. " Do not all the 
Greeks beyond our frontiers without exception desire their 
liberation ? Do not we all without exception desire the unity 
of the Nation?" said the King to his doubting advisers. During 
the winter of 1853 money was collected, and bands were 

220 The Crimean War [ch. 

enlisted at Athens under the Queen's undisguised patronage, 
in view of a rising in the spring ; while, when the time for 
the expected insurrection arrived, a number of Greek officers 
resigned their commissions in order to join the bands on the 
frontier, among them the sons of Karaiskakes and Theodore 
Grivas. Secret societies were formed in the Ionian Islands ; 
and despite British efforts to keep the lonians neutral and the 
imprisonment of several priests, a body of Cephalonians and 
Zantiotes crossed over to join the insurgents in Epirus. 

On January 27, 1854, Radovitzi near Arta raised the standard 
of revolt ; Arta itself was besieged ; but the Turkish relief forces, 
although twice repulsed at Pente Pegadia, the famous " Five 
Wells " between Joannina and Arta which gained notoriety in 
the war of 1897, managed to enter the town by sea from 
Sala6ra on the Ambrakian Gulf. On March 15 a first battle 
at Peta, the scene of the defeat of 1822, resulted in the victory 
of the Greeks, while Theodore Grivas entered Metzovon. But 
these successes were not permanent. Grivas was forced to 
evacuate Metzovon and retire to Thessaly ; a second battle at 
Peta on April 2 5 drove the Greeks from that position ; a third 
attack upon the "Five Wells" dislodged them thence; an 
enthusiastic Radical deputy from Zante was beheaded by the 
Turks, and the insurrection in Epirus was over. Meanwhile, 
in the middle of February, bands, of which Christodoulos 
Hajji Pe'tros was the principal leader, had entered Thessaly 
from the then frontier town of Lamia; but, on April 22, the 
Greeks failed to take Domok6s — the scene, 43 years later, of 
the fatal battle — their failure, as at Peta, being due to divisions 
between their own leaders. Hajji Petros, however, fixed his 
camp at Kalabaka, the present terminus of the Thessalian 
railway, close to the famous monasteries " in Air," the Meteora 
of medieval and modern times, whose inmates celebrated a 
Te Deum to commemorate a victory which he won at that spot. 
But this success bore no fruit, owing to the intervention of 
Great Britain and France at Athens ; and Mr Blunt, our consul 

x] Ultimatum to Greece 221 

at Salonika, warned the Thessalian insurgents of the futility of 
further bloodshed. As for Macedonia, the landing of Kara- 
tassos, the hero of the incident with Turkey in 1847, near 
Mt Athos, was paralysed by a French man-of-war, which sank 
a vessel bearing his ammunition. As usually happens in 
irregular warfare of this kind, the combatants did not always 
distinguish between friends and foes ; and it is probable that 
the material losses inflicted upon the Epirotes and Thessa- 
lians by those who had come to deliver them cooled their ardour. 
Meanwhile, on March 19, the Porte had sent an ulti- 
matum to the Greek government, demanding the recall 
within ten days of all Greek officers then participating in the 
insurrection, the closure of the frontier to armed bands and 
the punishment of officials concerned in the agitation, the 
public repudiation of the collection of money for the insurgents, 
the moderation of the nationalist press, and an enquiry into 
the release of the inmates of the gaol at Chalkis that they 
might serve against Turkey. As the Greek reply was con- 
sidered unsatisfactory, diplomatic relations between the two 
countries were broken off, and all Greek subjects were ordered 
to quit the Ottoman empire within 15 days. Otho at once 
commanded his troops to prepare for an advance to the 
frontier, and at one moment resolved to put himself at their 
head. A tent with the royal colours was actually pitched near 
the palace garden ; and the Queen, who was the soul of the 
war party, regarded with indifference a possible occupation of 
Athens and a blockade of the Greek ports by the Powers, 
provided the King could enter Thessaly. But the majority of 
the Kriezes Cabinet, and especially the Ministers of Justice 
and Finance^ Pelikas and Provelengios, as well as the Greek 
representatives in London, Paris, and Constantinople, urged 
the expediency of peace. The opposition of the Ministers 
roused the high-spirited Queen to a fury of indignation. 
" Europe," she told the two leaders of the peace party in the 
Cabinet, " in giving the throne of Greece to Otho, imagined 

222 The Crimean War [ch. 

that she would have him here as a simple instrument of her 
own interests and her own policy ; but Europe was mistaken. 
Otho has identified his fortunes with those of the Nation." 
" The only safety for the Greek government, the Nation, and 
its future," she added, "lies in the progress of the insurrection \" 
But Greece, however enthusiastic, could not withstand the 
pressure of the Powers, who addressed a collective note to her. 
The King of Bavaria and the Austrian Emperor privately 
warned Otho of the difficult position in which his patriotism 
was placing him ; Wyse, then British minister in Athens, 
insisted in regarding this national movement as entirely 
financed with Russian roubles, although Pelikas told him that 
for the Greeks it was " a question not of Russian conquests but 
of Greek freedom " ; and his French colleague, Baron Rouen, 
did not hesitate to tell Otho, that if he, as a Catholic, was 
afraid of taking up an attitude hostile to Orthodoxy, Napoleon 
III would send him an army to protect him against his own 
subjects. As this argument was naturally repudiated by a 
sovereign, who, though a foreigner by birth, was no less ardent 
a nationalist than his subjects and nobly scorned to support 
his throne on foreign bayonets, the French Emperor con- 
sidered the advisability of dethroning him — a scheme in which 
he had been encouraged by Kallerges, the hero of the 
September revolution, who was then in France. The British 
government was not prepared to take so violent a step; but, on 
May lo, the British and French ministers addressed notes to 
the Greek government, threatening the strict enforcement of 
the treaty of 1832, which had placed Otho on the throne, and 
which provided that he should "appropriate to the payment of 
the interest and sinking fund... of the loan," guaranteed by the 
protecting Powers, "the first revenues of the State," should 
these revenues be employed in attacking Turkey. This threat 
was not enforced, but towards the end of May the allied troops 
occupied the Piraeus. Otho was made to declare that he 

' ' \iroixvi)fjLOvei)n.aTa t^j virovpylai 2). llTjXttca, 154-5. 

x] Occupation of the Pirceus 223 

would "observe faithfully a strict and complete neutrality," 
and would call to his " counsels new ministers most competent 
to carry this engagement into execution." This " Occupation 
Cabinet," as it was called, was presided over by Alexander 
Mavrokordatos, the veteran statesman of the War of Inde- 
pendence, at that time minister in Paris, who alone enjoyed 
the full confidence of the two western Powers. But 
Mavrokordatos, as not infrequently happens with diplomatists, 
had lost touch with his own country ; he had not held office 
there for ten years ; and he returned to the ungrateful task of 
executing an unpopular policy, forced upon court and country 
by the bayonets of a foreign army of occupation. His most 
active colleague, Kallerges, who became Minister of War, was 
specially unpopular at the palace, where his share in the 
revolution of 1843 had not been forgotten, and where his 
unconcealed desire to dethrone the King must have been 
known. As Mavrokordatos did not arrive immediately, while 
Kallerges was already in Athens, plotting against the King and 
giving it out that the western Powers desired his dethronement 
by a national movement, there was some danger of a con- 
spiracy until the arrival of the Prime Minister and his un- 
compromising loyalty kept his anti-dynastic subordinate in 
check. Thus, the King and Queen underwent a terrible 
ordeal. Otho and Amalia may have acted undiplomatically, 
perhaps unwisely, in 1854, for, alas ! the great Powers have 
one law for weak states and another for the strong. Italy might 
take Mohammedan Tripoli, but Greece might not touch 
Greek Thessaly. Now, however, in the land which he loved 
not always wisely but too well, there is recognition of the 
patriotism of Otho and his noble Queen at the crisis of the 
Russo-Turkish war ; and a modern dramatist has portrayed in 
a brilliant historical play, "The Occupation," the agony within 
the palace. 

The Franco-British occupation of the Piraeus, like the 
Austrian occupation of the Danubian Principalities, lasted till 

224 ^^^ Crimean War [ch. 

1857. The French commanders at the outset unnecessarily- 
humiliated the royal couple by marching their troops past the 
windows of the palace — an affront which made Otho more 
popular than ever with his people, who regarded him as a 
martyr of the national idea. The French also broke up the 
type of a Russophil newspaper, arrested its editor, and insisted 
upon the prosecution of another journal. But these inroads 
upon the dignity of the Crown and the liberty of the press were 
less serious than those of the cholera, which, imported into the 
Allies' camp in the summer of 1854, spread from the Piraeus 
to Athens. The classic plague, described for all time in the 
prose of Thucydides and the verse of Lucretius, seemed to 
have returned to a city long immune from its visitations — for 
cholera rarely scourges Greece. For five months it ravaged 
Athens, decimating the population, then some 30,000, and 
slaying many of the refugees who had emigrated thither from 
Turkey. Many citizens fled ; the streets were deserted ; even 
politics were hushed ; no sound was heard save that of the cars 
conveying the sick to the hospitals, the dead to the cholera-pits, 
the survivors to the country or the sea. But amid the general 
panic, the King and Queen nobly did their duty, comforted 
the bereaved, and stood by the dying. Another scourge was 
added to the cholera. Many adventurers, who had been engaged 
in the insurrection, took to the road when the bands were 
dispersed ; and even on the highway between Athens and the 
Piraeus two French officers were robbed, and an artillery 
captain carried off to the mountains. Meanwhile, however, 
official relations with Turkey had improved. The first act of 
the " Occupation Cabinet " had been to resume them ; and in 
the following year the commercial treaty of Kanlijeh, at the 
" bloody village " on the Bosphorus, bloodlessly regulated the 
mutual trade of the two countries. But Hellenism, alike in 
Constantinople as at Athens, was compelled by force to repudiate 
all sympathy with the Orthodox Autocrat. The CEcumenical 
Patriarch, the official head of the Greeks in Turkey, has always 

x] Sebastopol 225 

been liable, from his place of residence, to pressure from the 
Sultan ; and at this crisis, Abdul Mejid, true to the policy of 
Mohammed II, ordered Anthimos VI to issue an encyclical, 
denouncing the Tsar's motives as hypocritical. 

The bellicose passion, kindled in the breasts of the British, 
had received very meagre satisfaction from the operations on 
the Danube and in the Baltic. It was not so much a good 
peace, but a good war, that was wanted in England in the 
summer of 1854; and the people thought that an army and 
fleet should not have been assembled for nothing. War 
correspondence, then a novel form of excitement, enabled the 
public sitting comfortably at home to witness, as in a theatre, 
the movements of soldiers in the field ; and the sporting element, 
which plays so large a part in our popular politics, found a still 
finer arena in an offensive war. The Crimean harbour of 
Sebastopol, of which Catherine the Great had been quick to 
recognise the potentialities, had been indicated to the Tsar by 
his Corsican counsellor Pozzo di Borgo, a quarter of a century 
earlier, as the probable goal of a hostile British fleet ; the 
traveller Oliphant in 1853 had first drawn the attention of the 
British public to this remote spot ; and, before the siege of 
Silistria had been raised, the Times and Lord Lyndhurst had 
advised its capture, as the best means of crippling Russia. 
The Times wrote with peculiar animation, because Nasmyth, 
the hero of Silistria, was its special correspondent. In the 
Cabinet, the Minister of War, then the Duke of Newcastle, 
shared the opinion of these amateur strategists, who professed 
to speak in the name of the British people. The rest of the 
Cabinet yielded to pressure from outside, and approved on 
June 28, it is said, while in a state of post-prandial drowsiness, 
an urgent dispatch to Raglan, instructing him " to concert 
measures for the siege of Sebastopol." St Arnaud had already 
received from Paris cryptic orders not to advance towards 
the Danube but to anticipate the transport of his troops 
from Varna by sea. Raglan sent for Sir George Brown, who 
M. L. 15 

2 26 The Crimean War [ch. 

commanded the Light Division, and asked for his opinion on 
the question, whether such an undertaking, as the dispatch 
put it, could "be undertaken with a reasonable prospect of 
success." Brown replied that, as they had no information 
about the strength of the forces in Sebastopol, the Duke of 
Wellington in their place would have refused so heavy a 
responsibility, but that the tone of the dispatch showed the 
determination of the government that Sebastopol should be 
besieged, if not by their present Commander-in-Chief, then by 
someone less scrupulous. Raglan allowed his deference to the 
government of civilians at home to outweigh his own better 
judgment as a soldier. St Arnaud and his staff, likewise 
opposed to so rash an undertaking, had orders to concur with 
the decision of his British colleague ; and thus, against the 
wish of both commanders, the war was transferred to the 
Crimea. Nearly two months, however, were spent at Varna 
before the expedition sailed ; for, besides the time required for 
preparing the means of embarkation, nature protested against 
a prompt departure. Fire destroyed many of the British 
military stores ; the crowded cemetery at Varna still bears 
silent witness to the ravages of cholera among the allied troops. 
It was not till September 13 that the allied fleets reached the 
Crimea; and on the following day a body of British troops 
occupied without opposition the port of Eupatoria. The main 
force landed near the lake of Kamishlu ; and soon 37,000 French, 
27,000 British, and 7000 Turks were encamped upon the 
shores of what was to most of them an absolutely unknown land. 
Only the Turks could claim some connexion with the country, 
for its natives shared their faith, and from 1475 ^" the time of 
Mohammed II till the latter part of the eighteenth century Crim 
Tartary, once the seat of Genoese colonisation, had been a part 
of the Ottoman empire. Only as recently as 1783 had it been 
finally incorporated by Catherine II in the Russian dominions. 
Thus in the Crimea began that secular strife between Turk and 
Muscovite, of which this war was not to be the last phase. 

x] Battle of the Alma 227 

On September 19 the allied armies started for Sebastopol. 
Their march led them to the stream of the Bulganak, where the 
first skirmish between the western forces and their enemy 
took place. Next day, on the banks of another river, since 
then more famous than many a greater stream, the Alma, they 
fought and won their first great battle. The Russians, com- 
manded by Mentschikoff, who was now called to support his 
blustering diplomacy by force, were obliged to retreat after a 
struggle in which the British took the principal part, owing to 
the slowness of the French commander. A similar delay after 
the victory was even more dangerous ; for, had Raglan's 
proposal to march on at once to Sebastopol been adopted, it 
was believed that that fortress would have succumbed without 
resistance to the Allies within five days of their landing, and all 
the losses and labours of twelve weary months would have been 
spared. Indeed, alike in London, Paris, and St Petersburg, it 
was thought that Sebastopol was lost. St Arnaud, however, 
refused, on the ground that his men were tired and that it was 
too costly a sacrifice to attack the Russians in the position 
which they were said to occupy. Two whole days were spent 
in embarking the wounded, and it was not till the 23rd that 
the march was resumed. Even then, however, the invaders 
did not go straight to the point where Sebastopol was most 
vulnerable. Months before, two British naval officers, who 
knew the place, had pointed out that, in the event of an invasion 
of the Crimea, the Russian arsenal should be attacked from the 
north side, the Severnaya, as the Russians called it, and had 
argued that the capture of the Star fort, which stood above 
that shore of the roadstead, would lead to the immediate fall 
of the town and the forts on the south bank and to the 
destruction of all the shipping in the harbour. Moreover, it 
was the opinion of the Russians that an occupation of the 
north would have enabled the Allies to cut off all communications 
with the outside, and thus, if they could not capture Sebastopol 
by immediate force, they could prevent reinforcements from 

J 5— 2 

228 The Crimean War [ch. 

relieving the garrison. The great engineer, Todleben, whc 
contributed so much to the defence of the town, stated afterwards 
that had the Allies attacked the Star fort at once, they must 
inevitably have taken it. This was also the plan advocated b> 
Raglan and Sir Edmund Lyons, who, after his experience ol 
diplomacy in Greece, was then commanding the in-shore 
squadron off Sebastopol. But St Arnaud, already suffering from 
the disease which a few days later proved fatal, declined once 
more to adopt the scheme of his British colleague ; and, as the 
task of attacking the fort would have naturally devolved upon the 
French in virtue of their position opposite to it, the British 
commander reluctantly suggested a flank march right round 
Sebastopol, crossing the Tchernaya, which flows into the 
harbour, and thus attacking the place from the south. This 
alternative, strongly supported by Sir John Burgoyne, the 
British engineering expert, was accepted by St Arnaud. 

Accordingly, the Allies set out upon a venture into the 
unknown ; for, with the usual carelessness of the British War 
Office, little previous study had been made officially of the 
land defences of a town which a British engineer had first 
seriously fortified for Nicholas 24 years earlier and which had 
been recently streVigthened. A report by a British officer, 
written 19 years before the war, had been almost neglected : 
and the recent book of a private traveller was the best guide 
which our generals had to the Russian stronghold. Moltke, 
it may be surmised, would not thus lightly have besieged a 
fortress. On the march round to the south a surprise occurred, 
which, had it not been for Raglan's presence of mind, might 
have been a disaster. Suddenly, the British commander, while 
executing a reconnaissance, found himself in sight of a Russian 
force. The surprise was mutual, for neither army was aware 
of the movements of the other. What had happened was that 
Mentschikoff, after his defeat at the Alma, convinced that 
Sebastopol must fall and that his communications would be cut 
off, had ordered the closing of the roadstead, in which the Black 

x] OccMpation of Balaclava 229 

Sea fleet lay at anchor, by sinking some of the ships. This 
desperate measure, bitterly resented by the naval officers who 
had toiled to create and hoped to use this instrument of war, 
was executed by the reluctant Admiral Korniloff, who thus saw 
seven of his vessels scuttled and the rest imprisoned by their 
sunken hulls. Having thus Hberated the crews for the defence 
of the town, Mentschikoff marched out with his main army 
along the high road which led to the interior of Russia, in- 
tending to hang upon the flank of the Allies. It was the rear 
of this army upon which Lord Cardigan had suddenly come ; 
and only the arrival of the British cavalry and the ignorance of 
Mentschikoff" prevented what might have been a serious British 
defeat. P'ortunately the Russian rear-guard retreated; the 
Russian opportunity was lost ; and next day both the British 
army and the co-operating fleet occupied, after a few shots, the 
small harbour of Balaclava to the south of Sebastopol. Thus, 
after the lapse of centuries, this old Genoese colony, formerly 
the see of a Latin bishop, fell once more under the sway of a 
western Power. 

A further delay in beginning the siege now intervened ; 
and three weeks elapsed between the occupation of Balaclava 
and the first attack upon Sebastopol. Raglan and Lyons 
urged immediate action, but Burgoyne advised first landing 
the siege-trains; and General Canrobert, who had succeeded 
St Arnaud in the command of the French, was of the same 
opinion. Todleben, the Russian engineer of German extraction, 
who was the brain, as Korniloff" was the soul, of the defence, 
used this respite to strengthen the Malakoff" tower and other 
outworks of the town, and thus the scientific organisation of 
the one completed the religious enthusiasm of the other ; the 
engineer believed in grape-shot, the admiral in the God of 
battles. But an immediate attack, in the opinion of Todleben, 
would have prevailed over his science and the soldiers' en- 
thusiasm. Thus a third chance of prompt success was allowed 
to slip; and when, at last, on October 17, the siege began, 

230 The Crimean War [ch. 

the place was in a far stronger position than three weeks 
earlier. Encamped on the south, the Allies could not, as 
would have been possible from the north, spare sufficient 
forces to prevent communications from the interior of Russia 
with the beleaguered town. Mentschikoff, stung by Korniloff s 
heroism and suspecting his formal remonstrances, was thus 
enabled to throw 16 battalions back into the place, so that, 
when the bombardment began, the total number of its defenders 
was equal to the available forces of the Allies. Ere long the 
Russian troops rendered available by the evacuation of the 
Danubian Principalities swelled the hostile numbers in and 
round Sebastopol to nearly double those of the besiegers. 
Nor was the first day's bombardment decisive ; Korniloff, 
indeed, was mortally wounded while going his rounds, but the 
fleets failed in their attack, sustaining some material and no 
little moral damage. 

For the next week the bombardment was continued 
without much effect ; and on October 25 the assailants were 
themselves assailed. Mentschikoff had resolved to regain 
possession of the port of Balaclava, whence the British drew 
their supplies ; and early on that day, Liprandi, one of his 
subordinates, attacked the redoubts which Sir Colin Campbell, 
who was in command at Balaclava, had caused to be thrown 
up hastily on the causeway to the north of the harbour. The 
Russians drove from the redoubts the Turks who manned 
them ; and, had it not been for the bravery of the 93rd High- 
land regiment, the Russian cavalry would have seized the 
little town. But the battle of Balaclava is chiefly memorable 
for the two great charges— that of the Heavy and that of the 
Light Brigade — both celebrated, and the latter immortalised, 
by Tennyson. The exploit of General Scarlett, who at the 
head of a small squadron of heavy cavalry wedged himself 
into the centre of a large Russian force, and in eight minutes 
forced it to retreat, resembled the deeds of warriors in days 
when battles were decided by hand-to-hand combat, and 

x] Charge of the Light Brigade 231 

generals strove to win the spolia opi?na from the rival com- 
manders. The Russians, however, still held the captured 
redoubts ; and Raglan ordered Lord Lucan, who was in 
command of the cavalry, to send them " rapidly to the front, 
and try to prevent the enemy carrying away the guns." Lucan 
misunderstood this order, and believed that his chief had 
commanded the cavalry to attack the Russian guns at the end 
of the north valley beyond the causeway — a task of extraordinary 
danger, because the attacking horsemen would be exposed to 
a fire from " cannon to right of them, cannon to left of them, 
cannon in front of them." Nevertheless, he ordered his 
brother-in-law, Lord Cardigan, who was in command of the 
Light Brigade, to execute this terrible operation. Cardigan 
was a formalist, who always executed his instructions in the 
most literal sense; he had just preserved a strict neutrality 
while the Heavy Brigade had been engaged, because he had 
not been ordered to attack; he now, although well aware 
that "someone had blundered," rode with his six hundred 
" into the valley of death," which was flanked on either side by 
Russian forces stationed on the causeway and the Fedioukine 
heights and raked by the battery at the end. The brigade, 
or that portion of it which survived this murderous ride, 
charged into the jaws of this battery, seized it, and made its 
way back with diminished danger, owing to the chivalrous 
and successful attack of the Chasseurs d'Afrique, which silenced 
the guns on the Fedioukine heights. Of 673 horsemen, 113 
had been killed, 134 wounded, and 475 had had their horses 
slain. The leader of the brigade described his act of heroism 
under misapprehended orders as " a mad-brained trick," but the 
just appreciation of the charge fell from the lips of General 
Bosquet, who summed it up in a phrase which has become 
classic : C'est magnifique ; mais ce n! est pas la guerre. Despite 
these two exploits, the battle was not decisive. The Russians 
were left in undisturbed possession of the captured redoubts, 
and the moral confidence of the garrison in Sebastopol was 

2^2 The Crimean War [en. 

proportionately increased. Eleven days later took place the third 
and last great battle of the war in which the British were engaged. 
The ruins of what was once the "magnificent citadel" of 
Inkerman, the creation of Greek princes, lay a little to the east 
of the besieged stronghold. The name was now immortalised 
by the struggle on a not distant hill, where, on November 5, 
Sir J. Pennefather held the British position for hours in the 
mist against a vastly superior Russian force, while officers and 
soldiers fought Homeric battles, man against man, till the 
intervention of the French assured the victory to the AUies. 
But now more insidious foes than the Russians attacked the 
armies of the besiegers, little more than half as numerous as 
the besieged. On November 14 a cyclone destroyed 21 vessels 
laden with stores for the British and tore in pieces their tents 
and canvas hospitals, while a biting snow-storm gave the 
soldiers a foretaste of the Crimean winter. Men and horses 
alike died from the consequent exposure on the wind-swept 
downs, where the British, owing to the lack of an efficient 
War Office, suffered more than the better organised and more 
experienced French army. Cholera and other diseases helped 
to diminish the number of the combatants ; and in seven 
months 10,053 of our men died from sickness alone. The 
deplorable condition of the expeditionary force was depicted 
in trenchant language by Russell, the war correspondent of 
the Times^ whose messages aroused the intense indignation of 
the people against the authorities. When the newspaper 
denounced our military system as " that huge imposture," and 
deplored the "destruction of the British army," the public 
became furious with its rulers. As soon as Parliament met 
for the session of 1855, Roebuck gave notice of a motion for 
a Committee of Enquiry; and before the discussion upon it 
began. Lord J. Russell resigned. The adoption of the motion 
by a large majority involved the fall of the Aberdeen Ministry; 
and Palmerston, the choice of the nation, became Prime 
Minister, with Lord Panmure as Secretary of State for War. 

x] Death of Nicholas I 2.33 

The British people rejoiced that a strong man who knew his 
own mind was at the head of the government, instead of the 
statesman who had ruined his reputation by his tenure of 
the Premiership. Always fortunate, Palmerston profited by 
improvements already beginning at the seat of war ; a road, 
and even a railway, at last facilitated the transport of stores 
from the tiny port of Balaclava ; in the person of Florence 
Nightingale a human angel combatted and almost subdued 
the " angel of death," the " beating" of whose wings had been 
heard in the hospitals at Scutari. 

Meanwhile, diplomacy had been striving to end the war. 
After the battle of Tnkerman the Tsar authorised Prince 
Gortchakoff to discuss the question of peace on the principles, 
known as "the four points," postulated by Great Britain, 
France, and Austria, viz. the cessation of the Russian protec- 
torate over Moldavia and Wallachia and the application of 
a collective guarantee of the Powers to all the three Danubian 
Principalities ; the freedom of the navigation of that river ; 
the revision of the treaty of July 13, 1841, so as to terminate 
Russian preponderance in the Euxine ; and the abandonment 
of Russia's claim to protect the Orthodox subjects of the 
Sultan. Austria, however, on December 2 concluded a treaty 
with the two western Powers to meet the event of the Tsar's 
refusal to accept these "points "; and the danger of her armed 
intervention induced him to agree to participate in a conference 
at Vienna. But before it met, Nicholas I was dead. " Russia," 
he had boasted, " has two generals, upon whom she can rely, 
Generals January and February." One of the finest cartoons 
ever published in Punch represented "General February turned 
traitor," and laying his icy hand on the proud Autocrat. The 
news that the despised Turks had repulsed his troops at the 
harbour of Eupatoria on February 1 7 aggravated the seasonable 
malady which fell upon him ; and on March 2 he died, be- 
queathing the war and the peace negotiations to his son, 
Alexander II. Thirteen days later the conference of Turkey 

2 34 The Crimean War [ch. 

and the Powers (with the exception of Prussia, excluded by 
the hesitation of her King to resort to war in case of failure) 
met. Agreement on the first two " points " was soon attained ; 
but the third naturally aroused Russian opposition, while the 
Russian amendment, proposing to throw the Straits open to 
the fleets of all nations, as naturally met with a refusal from 
the Porte and the Powers, Gortchakoff" was ordered by the 
new Tsar, desirous of peace but afraid to purchase it by the 
loss of prestige, to decline any reduction of the Black Sea fleet ; 
and with this answer the peace negotiations practically ended. 
An Austrian proposal to establish a collective guarantee of the 
Ottoman empire, a system of counterpoise in the Euxine, and 
the Hmitation of the Russian fleet there to the number of ships 
maintained before the war, was approved by Russell, the chief 
British delegate, and his French colleague, but rejected by the 
British government and the French Emperor. At this rebuff", 
Austria, considering that the responsibility for the continuance 
of the war rested upon the Allies, reduced her armaments and 
accorded to France and Britain nothing more substantial than 
her " moral support." They had, however, gained an unexpected 
increase of strength in 15,000 Sardinian troops, which Cavour 
had sent under La Marmora to take part in the war, with the 
object of thus enabling Sardinia to be represented at the ultimate 
peace negotiations. This act of far-sighted statesmanship, op- 
posed by the Piedmontese unofficial press, led to the raising 
of the Italian question at the Congress of Paris ; and thus the 
unity of Italy is perhaps the only lasting result of the Crimean 

Even before the diplomatists had ceased to confer at 
Vienna, the bombardment of Sebastopol was resumed ; in 
May the Allies captured the stores laid up at Kertch and 
Yeni Kaleh in the east of the peninsula, and penetrated through 
the Cimmerian Bosphorus into the Sea of Azov, where they 
destroyed a flotilla of transports sailing over what had till 
then been a Russian lake. Two places in Circassia fell, thus 

x] Fall of Sebastopol 235 

completing the rapid and easily-won success of this expedition, 
which contrasted so markedly with the long-drawn siege of 
Sebastopol. On June 18 the assaults on the two defences 
known as Fort Malakoff and the Redan proved abortive ; and 
this disappointment hastened the end of the British commander. 
General Simpson, Raglan's successor, and Pelissier, who had 
relieved Canrobert in the command of the French, pressed 
on the siege; but the victory of August 16 over the Russians 
on the river Tchernaya was largely the work of the Sardinian 
troops, who thereby redeemed the disastrous defeat of Novara 
and popularised the policy of Cavour in sending them to fight 
in a cause which had seemed to be none of theirs. The 
French, by a second and successful assault upon the Malakoff, 
more than compensated for another British failure to carry 
the Redan ; and on September 9 Sebastopol fell. The object 
of the Crimean expedition having been attained and with 
considerable glory to his arms, Napoleon III, who had at 
one time wished to command in person, now showed a desire 
for peace. If the British public, disappointed at the lack of 
dramatic British triumphs since Inkerman, wished for a con- 
tinuance of the war, it soon became clear to statesmen that 
Britain would have to fight without her French ally. The 
Tsar, too, might now seek peace without loss of honour ; for 
on November 28, Kars had succumbed to famine after a 
gallant defence by Fenwick Williams, and for the second time 
a Russian army entered that famous fortress. Austria, stepping 
in as a mediator, presented an ultimatum to the Tsar, approved 
by France and (with certain reserves) by Britain, which was 
accepted by Russia; and, on February 25, 1856, a Congress, 
at which Clarendon, the Foreign Secretary, represented the 
British government, met in Paris. Hostilities were promptly 
suspended, and such was the desire for peace that an agreement 
was easily reached. 

On March 30, 1856 was signed the solemn instrument, 
which regulated, at least, in their main outlines, the affairs 

236 The Crimean War [ch. 

of the near east till the next great European Congress met 
at Berlin in 1878. The treaty of Paris left the map, with one 
exception, exactly as it stood before the war. The conquests 
of the Allies in the Crimea and at Kinburn, and the Russian 
acquisition of Kars, were restored, this last for the second time, 
to their previous owners ; but, as recompense for the restoration 
of the Crimean towns and ports, and "in order to secure the 
better the free navigation of the Danube," the Tsar ceded to 
the Principality of Moldavia the southern part of Bessarabia 
and the delta of the Danube (the islands forming the latter, 
however, were "replaced under the immediate sovereignty of 
the Sublime Porte" by the treaty of June 19, 1857), thus 
restoring a portion of what Russia had annexed in 181 2. The 
mouths of the Danube, although thus re-included within the 
Turkish empire, were put under the authority of a commission, 
upon which each of the signatories was represented by a 
delegate, for the purpose of removing obstacles to the traffic 
from Isaccea to the sea. At the conclusion of this task, the 
powers of this body were to be transferred to a permanent 
commission, composed of a delegate apiece from each of the 
seven riverain states — Wiirttemberg, Bavaria, Austria, Turkey, 
Servia, Wallacliia, and Moldavia, the delegates of these last 
three vassal Principalities being approved by the Porte. The 
navigation of both the Danube and the Black Sea was declared 
free, subject only to necessary police and sanitary regulations. 
The Black Sea was neutralised, and its waters and ports were 
closed to the navies of both the riverain empires and of any 
other Power ; consequently the establishment of naval arsenals 
on its shores became unnecessary, and both the Tsar and the 
Sultan pledged themselves neither to create nor to maintain 
them there. Turkey was admitted to the dubious privileges 
of participation in the public law and the Concert of Europe ; 
and the other signatories undertook '* to respect the in- 
dependence and the territorial integrity of the Ottoman 
Empire," guaranteed " in common the strict observance of this 

x] Treaty of Paris 237 

engagement," and promised to " consider every act calculated 
to do injury thereto as a question of general interest." Should 
any threatening disagreement arise between the Porte and one 
or more of the Powers, the Porte and its opponent were to 
invoke the mediation of the other signatories, before resorting 
to force. 

Other clauses of the treaty provided for the welfare of the 
Sultan's Christian subjects. Abdul Mejid communicated to 
the other high contracting parties the firman of February 18, 
which had proclaimed liberty of worship, civil equality of all 
Ottoman subjects, admitted Christians to military service, and 
reorganised (on paper) the fiscal system. " The high value 
of this communication," naively observed the Powers, impressed 
them so strongly that they disclaimed any right to collective 
or separate intervention between the Sultan and his subjects. 
As regards the Principalities, Wallachia and Moldavia (the 
latter slightly increased in size) were to enjoy, under Turkish 
suzerainty and the guarantee of the Powers, their previous 
privileges. No exclusive protection over them should thence- 
forth be exercised by any one of the guarantors ; no special 
right of interference in their internal affairs would be allowed. 
Russia's pretentions having been thus repudiated, the Porte 
undertook to maintain there "an independent and national 
administration," no less than full liberty of worship, legislation, 
commerce, and navigation. A special commission, composed 
by the Powers, with a Turkish commissioner, was to " meet 
without delay, at Bucharest " for the revision of their existing 
legislation, the study of their condition, and their future 
organisation. The Sultan promised to convoke at once in 
each of the two Principalities an Assembly, or "divan ad hoc ^^' 
so composed as to represent most exactly the interests of all 
classes, with the function of expressing the wishes of the 
population concerning their definite organisation. The com- 
mission, " taking into consideration the opinion expressed by 
the two divans/' was to " transmit, without delay, to the present 

238 The Crimean War [ch. 

seat of the Conferences, the result of its own labours." A 
convention, to be concluded at Paris between the high con- 
tracting parties, was to sanction the final agreement with the 
Porte; and, in conformity therewith, an Imperial ordinance 
was to " constitute definitely the organisation of these provinces, 
placed thenceforth under the collective guarantee of all the 
signatory Powers." A national army would maintain peace 
in the interior and on the frontiers of the Principalities ; and 
no armed intervention, even by their suzerain, for the purpose 
of maintaining or restoring internal repose, was permitted 
except after previous agreement with the Powers. Servia 
was to continue in the same position as before, her " rights 
and immunities" being "placed thenceforth under the collective 
guarantee of the contracting Powers " ; her " independent and 
national administration, as well as full liberty of worship, of 
legislation, of commerce, and of navigation," was preserved. 
The Porte retained the right of garrison, but no armed interven- 
tion was to be made without the previous consent of the Powers. 

Two conventions, signed the same day, regulated the 
questions of the Straits and of the Black Sea. The former 
merely recapitulated the treaty of 1841, with the addition 
that the passage of the Dardanelles and the Bosphorus would 
be permitted to the light craft, not more than two apiece, 
which the Powers were authorised to station at the mouths 
of the Danube ; the second convention provided that Russia 
and Turkey might each keep six small steamers and four 
light craft in the Black Sea for the service of the coasts. 

Of the historic treaty of Paris not much has stood the 
strain of time, national sentiment, and interests of state. The 
creation and complete independence of Roumania and the 
independence of Servia have made of merely antiquarian 
importance the clauses concerning the vassal Principalities of 
1856; Russia, so early as 1870, availed herself of the defeat 
of one of her Crimean opponents to repudiate the Black Sea 
clauses of the treaty; Sebastopol saw in 1886 the rebirth of 

x] Results of the Treaty 239 

the Black Sea fleet; while Batum, still Turkish in 1856, has 
become a fortified port of the Russian Euxine. The strip of 
Bessarabia, ceded to Moldavia at Paris, was handed back 
to Russia at Berlin ; Kars has long been a Russian town. 
How the signatories of the treaty of Paris have observed their 
undertaking "to respect the independence and the territorial 
integrity of the Ottoman Empire " may be seen by the Austrian 
annexation of Bosnia and the Herzegovina, the Italian an- 
nexation of Tripoli, and the British occupation of Cyprus 
and Egypt, while the clause which pledged Russia and Sardinia 
to invoke the mediation of their co-signatories in the event 
of a disagreement with the Porte was disregarded by Russia 
in 1877 and by Italy in 191 1, and Cavour's signature thus dis- 
honoured. The blessings promised to the Sultan's Christian 
subjects, which seemed of such "high value" to the diplomatists 
of Paris, have proved to be absolutely worthless, even when 
disguised under the form of a Constitution. Of all the 
provisions of the treaty those for the regulation of the Danube 
have proved to be most useful. The powers of the European 
commission were extended in 187 1 for 12 further years, and 
at the expiration of that period for 21 years more; and the 
removal of piracy no less than sandbanks has been its work. 
As usual, the least showy section of this great international 
document has been the most successful. 

Looking back upon the war which was ended by the treaty 
of Paris, we may well ask ourselves whether the gain was » 
such as to compensate us for the death of 28,000 men and the 
addition of 30 millions to the national debt. Lord Salisbury 
years afterwards told his countrymen that in 1854 they had 
" put their money on the wrong horse." For the free Balkan 
states have arisen as a barrier to a Russian advance upon 
Constantinople by land, while that city no longer possesses for ' 
us the supreme importance that it occupied in public esteem 
before we held the keys of the Suez Canal. A British states- 
man who, after the Armenian massacres, the Macedonian 

240 The Crimean War [ch. 

muddle, and the fiasco of the " Young " Turkish constitution, 
should think it desirable to draw the sword of the British 
empire in defence of Turkey, would, indeed, have learned 
little from history. Year by year it has become more evident 
that the Turks must leave Europe ; nor is it likely that Russia 
will take their place. That belongs to the Balkan states. 

Besides the subjects contained in the treaty of Paris, two 
others affecting the near east were discussed in the sittings of 
the Congress. Austria, in the 14th protocol, obtained from 
the Russian delegates a disclaimer of any such Russian pro- 
tectorate over Montenegro as the Tsar had formerly claimed to 
exercise over the Danubian Principalities. Mutual sympathy 
was declared to be the sole bond of union between the 
Muscovites and the mountaineers; while Aali Pasha, on behalf 
of Turkey, stated that the Porte regarded the Black Mountain 
as an " integral part of the Ottoman empire." This statement 
in direct violation of the firman of 1799, ^^ ^^ Turco- 
Montenegrin treaties of 1838 and 1842 and of the hard facts 
of many a Turkish defeat at the hands of the mountaineers, 
was warmly repudiated by Prince Danilo in a memorandum 
addressed to the signatory Powers on May 31. He pointed 
out with considerable exaggeration that, with more reason he 
might claim '.'half Albania and all the Herzegovina," on the 
groun^hat the Balsha dynasty, which ruled over the Zeta in 
the f^^Knth and fifteenth centuries, had once possessed 
those ^Ks, while the Turks had never possessed Monte- 
negro; that "for 466 years," that is, since the battle of 
Kossovo, " the Montenegrin people had never been subjected 
by any Power " ; that " for four and a half centuries it had 
waged continual warfare with Turkey " ; but that, notwith- 
standing these services to Christendom, Montenegro, owing to 
the theocratic constitution which had only recently been 
abolished, had never been received officially within the family 
of European states. The Prince claimed the official recog- 
nition of Montenegrin independence, the expansion of the 

x] Montenegrin MernorandMm i\i 

Principality at the expense of Albania and the Herzegovina, 
the delimitation of the Turco-Montenegrin frontiers, and the 
concession of the town and harbour of Antivari, which his 
predecessor the Vladika Danilo had tried to secure a century 
and a half earlier, and which was a commercial necessity for 
a people, deprived by the loss of Cattaro in 1 8 14 of all access 
to the sea. In support of this memorandum, Danilo, who in 
1855 had married Darinka Kuechich, daughter of a Serb 
merchant of Trieste, visited Napoleon III in 1857. The 
French Emperor, who two years before had established a 
French vice-consulate at Cetinje and sent thither as his 
representative M. Hecquard, the well-known writer on Albania, 
received the princely couple with the honours due to an 
independent ruler. But the only immediate result of this 
visit was a Turkish offer to bestow upon the Prince a part of 
the Herzegovina with a civil list and a Turkish title, and to 
open all Turkish ports to his subjects, on condition that he did 
homage to the Sultan as his suzerain. Danilo, who in the 
previous summer had refused the wish of the people of 
Nikshich to become his subjects, from fear of provoking a 
fresh war with Turkey, was disposed to accept the Turkish 
offer, which his warlike people considered a disgrace. Nothing 
eventually came of the proposal; but Danilo's unpopularity, 
already demonstrated by another rising of the Kutchi against 
his tax-collectors, became such that a conspiracy against his 
life was discovered and two of the ringleaders shot. 

The second Oriental question which, though excluded from 
the treaty, found a place in the 22nd protocol, was the un- 
happy condition of Greece. Walewski, Napoleon's Minister, 
observed that the Franco-British occupation of the Piraeus could 
not end without serious inconvenience, so long as the abnormal 
situation of that country continued. Clarendon supported his 
French colleague with the argument that, before withdrawing her 
troops from Greece, Great Britain must have " solid guarantees 
for the maintenance of a satisfactory state of things." Russia, 
M. L. 16 

242 The Crimean War [ch. x 

through her spokesman, willingly joined the other two protecting 
Powders in all measures calculated to improve the condition 
of the Hellenic kingdom. The "Occupation Cabinet" had 
ere this ceased to exist ; for the refusal of the Queen to receive 
a lady friend of Kallerges had led to the final retirement of 
Mavrokordatos and the appointment of the Hydriote D. 
Boillgares as Prime Minister in October 1855. The veteran 
statesman, who thus quitted the political stage, had made the 
mistake of increasing the salaries of the deputies and senators, 
and thus attaching to the irremovable Second Chamber an 
odium which led to its abolition after the revolution of 1862. 
But he had maintained Greek neutrality in spite of the 
national enthusiasm for Russia ; and his withdrawal from public 
life, followed by the death of Metaxas, and the absence of 
Trikoiipes at the London legation, removed all the old 
leaders and with them the three " foreign " parties from the 
arena, leaving it clear for a new and self-reliant generation, 
which had grown up since the War of Independence, Boill- 
gares, whose flowing robes and inherited dignity won him 
the nickname of Artaxerxes from the Queen, was an honest 
man, who endeavoured to grapple with one of the two plagues 
of the country which had aroused the concern of the protecting 
Powers at Paris — brigandage and financial disorder. A Greco- 
Turkish convention was signed for the suppression of the 
former; and the peasants, convinced that the government 
meant business and that brigands would not be protected in 
high places, co-operated with the authorities in hunting them 
down, shooting them whenever possible to make sure of their 
removal. It was then that the bold lieutenant Megas slew, 
and was slain by, the brigand Daveles at the classic " cross- 
roads," where CEdipus had slain his father Laios. The three 
Powers, on their part, created a financial commission, com- 
posed of their representatives at Athens, which met in February 
1857. On the 27th of the same month the occupation ended. 




The Congress of Paris had not ended the difificulties of the 
near east. On the contrary, it had expressly provided, in a 
series of articles, for the regulation of the two Principalities. 
The Roumanian question at once became the order of the day ; 
and public attention passed from the Crimea to the lower 

The union of Wallachia and Moldavia had been gradually 
maturing. Two articles of the reglemeyii organiqice had antici- 
pated its possibility ; and Cavour had recalled this fact to the 
memory of his colleagues at the Congress. Bibescu, initiating 
a policy which led afterwards, in the hands of Bismarck, to the 
unity of Germany, had suppressed the fiscal barrier between 
the two Principalities, so that thenceforth " the impotent stream 
of the Milcov" no longer divided their mutual trade. The 
Revolution of 1848 had further strengthened the unionist idea; 
and the refugees in Paris had influenced the mind of Napoleon 
III, who saw in the union a barrier against the advance of 
Russia. A Roumanian pamphlet, published in Paris, ad- 
vocated the election of the same ruler for both the Roumanian 
states ; and, at the conferences of Vienna in 1855, the French 
government put forward their union as the best solution, while 
Turkey, supported by Great Britain and Austria, opposed it. 
During the Congress of Paris, Napoleon III expressed the 
opinion that the only means of satisfying the Moldavian and 


244 Union of Danubian Principalities [ch. 

Wallachian peoples was to unite them under a foreigD prince, 
while preserving the suzerainty of the Sultan. Queen Victoria 
likewise advocated an hereditary monarchy; and Clarendon 
agreed w^ith the Emperor that such a plan might perhaps be 
the best solution for the Principalities, but that the selection 
of a foreign prince would create a second Greece close to the 
Russian frontier ; for, argued the British statesman, a foreign 
ruler, if a Catholic, would be forced by the attacks of his 
Orthodox clergy to lean upon Russia, and, if Orthodox, would 
voluntarily gravitate towards her. However, when Walewski 
raised the question in the Congress of Paris, and advocated the 
union. Clarendon and Orloflf supported him, while the Turkish 
and Austrian spokesmen naturally opposed. The latter suggested 
that the population of the two provinces should be asked their 
opinion ; and this idea was adopted. From that moment the 
result depended upon the electoral skill of the rival parties and 
upon the amount of pressure which the Turkish government 
could exercise and the French permit. 

The seven years' term of office, which the convention of 
Balta Liman had prescribed for the two Princes, expired in 
1856; and in the room of Stirbeiu and Gregory Ghika, both 
disinterested adherents of the union, the Porte nominated two 
lieutenant-generals, Alexander Ghika, the old and incapable 
Hospodar, deposed in 1842, and Theodore Balsh, whose zeal 
against the union was increased by his desire to become 
Prince, as the reward of his services to his employers. It was 
obvious to everyone that the real struggle would be fought out 
in Moldavia, which, as the smaller Principality, would have 
most to lose by the union, involving, as it must, the degrada- 
tion of Jassy from the rank of a capital to that of a provincial 
town. Before quitting office there, however, Gregory Ghika 
had prepared the way for the unionist idea by appointing its 
partisans as prefects, while his Wallachian colleague addressed 
a memorandum to Napoleon III in favour of the appointment 
of a foreign hereditary Prince. Balsh undid his predecessor's 

xi] The Osborne Visit 245 

work by substituting Separatists for Unionists as prefects, and 
by collecting signatures against the union. Behind the scenes 
stood, as usualj the consuls of the Powers, the Austrians 
assisting the Separatists, the French representative Place pro- 
tecting the Unionists, and himself protected by Thouvenel, 
whom we last saw at Athens but who then held the French 
embassy at Constantinople. The death of Balsh, the evacuation 
of the Principalities by the Austrian troops, and the arrival of 
the international commission, created by the treaty of Paris, 
in March 1857, did not diminish the conflict. The new 
lieutenant-general, Nicholas Vogorides, son of the similar 
official of 182 1-2 who had afterwards been first Prince of 
Samos, disregarded his promise to respect the manifestations 
of the people's will. Two divans ad hoc, composed respectively 
of 112 VVallachs and 84 Moldaves, were elected; but the 
Moldavian registers were manipulated in such a manner that 
the landed proprietors and professional men were decimated, 
while a solid block of 167,222 ignorant and malleable peasants 
swamped all the other voters. Napoleon protested, and 
threatened to recall his ambassador from Constantinople ; 
Russia, Prussia, and Sardinia supported him ; but the British 
government was opposed to the union, which it had come to 
regard as the first step towards the dismemberment of Turkey. 
A compromise was effected during a visit paid by Napoleon to 
Osborne ; Great Britain joined France in causing the Porte to 
annul the elections in both Principalities ; France gave way 
on the question of their union. This time Vogorides was 
impartial ; and the Moldavian divan, thus freely elected, con- 
tained only two Separatists. By this overwhelming majority a 
motion was carried, embodying the four points of the Moldavian 
charter : the autonomy and neutrality of the two Principalities, 
their union in a single state, the selection of their ruler from 
among the reigning dynasties of Europe on condition that his 
heirs should embrace the national religion, and the creation of 
a single representative Assembly. The same four points were 

246 Union of Da^iubian Principalities [ch. 

formulated by the Wallachian divan, in which the two ex- 
Princes, Bibescu and Stirbeiu, patriotically sacrificed their own 
chances in favour of a foreigner whose nomination would 
silence local rivalries. The divans had thus answered the 
Austrian and Turkish objection, that the peoples of the two 
Principalities desired to remain separate. It was now the duty 
of the Powers, according to the treaty of Paris, to examine the 
report of the commission and draw up a convention for the 
definite organisation of the two provinces. 

This convention, signed at Paris on August 19, 1858, was 
based upon the Osborne visit rather than the votes of the 
Danubian divans. In vain both Gladstone and the future 
Lord Salisbury had advocated union ; both Disraeli and 
Palmerston opposed it. Thanks to the compromise arranged 
between the British and French governments, a scheme of 
organisation was adopted, which was neither union nor 
separation. The two provinces were thenceforth to be known 
as " the United Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia," and 
were to remain under the suzerainty of the Sultan and the* 
collective guarantee of the signatories of the treaty of Paris. 
Fokshani, from its position the mutual frontier, was selected as 
the seat of a Central Commission, composed of eight Wallachs 
and eight Moldaves, for the preparation of laws common to 
the two Principalities, and of the federal Court of Appeal. The 
two armies were to receive the same organisation, and to be 
united in case of need under one commander, nominated 
alternately by either Prince; but their flags were to remain 
separate, with the addition of a blue streamer common to both! 
These more or less Unionist provisions were counterbalanced 
by such frankly Separatist arrangements as the election of two 
Hospodars for life, and the creation of two Assemblies elected by 
a new septennial act, to which the voting of laws peculiar to 
either Principality was entrusted. The Turkish tribute was 
fixed at 1,500,000 piastres annually for the smaller, and 
2,500,000 for the larger province; and such approved western 

xi] Colonel Coicza 247 

principles as the equality of all citizens before the tax-collector, 
and the abolition of all feudal privileges, exemptions, and 
monopolies, were combined with the admission of all Christians 
to full political rights. Agrarian reform was forthwith to 
improve the lot of the Roumanian peasants. Pending the 
election of the new Princes by the respective Assemblies, the 
provisional government was entrusted to three Commissioners, 
named in virtue of their official positions, in either Principality. 
Thus diplomacy imagined that it had solved the question of 
the lower Danube. 

But human nature is stronger than parchment bonds ; and 
the astute politicians of Bucharest and Jassy found a means of 
eluding the cunning devices of the Powers for keeping them 
divided. The Convention of Paris had provided for many 
contingencies, but not for that which actually happened — the 
election of the same person as Hospodar by both Assemblies. 
At first such a choice did not occur even to the Roumanians 
themselves, for in Wallachia all the three Commissioners, 
whose duty it was to hold the elections, were opposed to the 
union and favoured the elevation of either of the two former 
Princes, Bibescu or Stirbeiu, to the throne ; while in Moldavia 
two of the three were Unionists, but neither Unionists nor 
Separatists could agree upon their respective candidate. The 
fatal day had almost arrived and would have found the 
Unionists still undecided, when at a party meeting at Jassy 
Pisoski put his back against the door with a pistol in his hand, 
and threatened to shoot himself, if his colleagues did not make 
up their minds before leaving the room. At the same time 
he proposed a new candidate, Colonel Couza, a Moldave of 
Galatz descended from a small noble family, which had given 
two victims to its country. Couza, then Minister of War, was 
in his thirty-ninth year ; he had studied law in Paris, served on 
the bench and in the army, and had won popularity during the 
lieutenancy of Vogoridcs by resigning the prefecture of Galatz 
as a protest against the illegalities of his chief. Galatz had just 

248 Union of Danubian Principalities [ch. 

elected him to the Assembly; the Assembly, on January 17, 
1859, unanimously elected him Prince. It now remained to 
secure his election by the Wallachian Assembly, in which 
Bibescu's partisans had a majority. Fortunately, the Wallachs 
had waited to see how the Moldaves would vote ; and a Moldave 
agent now assured them that France and Russia were favourable 
to Couza and would recognise the accomplished fact of his 
double election. On the day of the vote at Bucharest, the 
Unionists organised a popular demonstration in his favour; the 
mob invaded the galleries of the Chamber, and the butchers 
whetted their knives in an unmistakeable manner. This practical 
argument was enforced by an appeal to patriots to vote for the 
Union in the person of Couza and to the partisans of Bibescu, 
its former advocate, to support it. Pressure and principle 
prevailed ; the Wallachian Assembly on February 5, unani- 
mously elected Couza. The Prince took the title of Alexander 
John I. The personal union was accompHshed. 

The election had occurred at a most favourable moment of 
international politics. Austria, one of the two chief opponents 
of the union, could not intervene owing to the Italian war; 
and Couza even concluded a secret arrangement with an agent 
of Kossuth for co-operation with the Hungarian patriots, of 
which the occupation of the Bukovina was to be the reward. 
Great Britain withdrew her opposition ; towards the end of 
1 86 1 Couza was received at Constantinople, and the signatories 
of the treaty of Paris recognised the union. The Central 
Commission of Fokshani was suppressed ; the two Assemblies 
and the Ministries, which had existed since Couza's election, 
were fused into one ; and the seat of government was trans- 
ferred to Bucharest. In 1862 the first united Roumanian 
Assembly met there. Looking back, we must admit that 
Gladstone and Salisbury were right in advocating the union, 
which has led to the creation of the present strong and 
flourishing kingdom of Roumania. 

Almost at the same time at which Couza was raised to the 

xi] Alexander Karageorgevich 249 

throne of the united Roumanian Principalities, Alexander 
Karageorgevich was forced to abandon that of Servia. His 
neutrality during the Crimean war had, as he told his people, 
found its reward in the favourable Servian clauses of the treaty 
of Paris, which largely nullified the Turkish right of garrison. 
But his Austrophil policy, which had won him the sympathy 
of the western Powers but had not commended itself to his 
people, was now less pleasing to one of the former, owing to 
the close relations between France and Russia after the war. 
Thus, while the French and Russian consuls at Belgrade were 
now united against Austrian influence, a plot for Alexander's 
removal, on the ground that he was an Austrian puppet, was 
discovered among the senators. Regardless of the article in the 
Charter of 1838, which proclaimed that senators could not be 
punished without the consent of the Porte, the Prince arrested 
the conspirators, who were tried for high treason, and of whom 
eight were sentenced to death — a sentence commuted into 
imprisonment for life. This illegal act provoked the interven- 
tion of the Porte, which sent a commissioner to Belgrade to 
hold an enquiry. Thereupon the Prince gave way, released 
the prisoners, restored the fallen senators to their dignities, and 
called a Francophil Ministry, of which Vutchich and Garashanin 
were the leading spirits, to his counsels. But the Senate, having 
thus vindicated its rights against the Prince, sought to humiliate 
him, and to change the Servian government into a Venetian 
oligarchy. A proposal, thrice approved by the Senate, was to 
become ipso facto law, even without his approval, so that his 
veto would be practically abolished. At this moment, an 
incident between the British government and the Porte 
increased the difficulties of the situation. The British consul, 
Fonblanque, was one day sitting on the glacis of the Turkish 
fortress of Belgrade, the beautiful promenade so well-known 
to every modern visitor under the Turkish name of Kalimegdan. 
While feasting his eyes on the magnificent view of river and 
plain which stretches out before the gaze, he was attacked and 

250 Union of Danubian Principalities [cii. 

wounded by a Mussulman soldier belonging to the Turkish 
garrison. Other Albanians tried to pull down the flagstaff 
from the front of the consulate ; and Sir Henry Bulwer, our 
ambassador at Constantinople, who chanced to be at Semlin, 
demanded and obtained satisfaction from the Porte. But 
Bulwer's action did not stop there ; he had a colloquy with 
the Servian leaders, and is said to have advised them to 
summon a National Assembly — the usual British panacea — to 
discuss the evils from which their country was suffering. No 
such Assembly had been held for ten years; no Assembly, 
elected by the tax-payers in European fashion, had ever been 
convened before. But, despite Austrian and Turkish opposi- 
tion, this parliament, called from the day of its meeting, " the 
Skupshtina of St Andrew," and composed of 500 deputies, was 
held at Belgrade ; and the senators fondly believed that by its 
aid they would get rid of the Prince and place in his stead one 
of the oligarchy, perhaps Garashanin. 

The result was very different from what the Senate had 
anticipated. The Assembly had no desire to substitute oli- 
garchical rule for that of the Prince ; what it wished was the 
substitution of a strong man for the existing ruler. After 
demanding that it should be thenceforth annually summoned 
for the consideration of all the government's acts, it criticised 
the Prince's neutral policy during the Crimean war, and 
requested his abdication. Ministers and senators alike advised 
him to yield ; but he fled to the Turkish fortress, whereupon 
the Assembly, to the dismay of the oligarchs, insisted that 
old Milosh, the hero of the second War of Independence, 
should be recalled from his exile at Bucharest. For a moment 
the army meditated a reaction against the Assembly in 
the joint interest of the two former rivals, the Prince and 
the Senate. But the. citizens supported the Assembly ; the 
consuls advised the Prince to disavow the army. Thereupon 
the Assembly declared Alexander Karageorgevich deposed, 
and appointed a provisional triumvirate pending the return 

xi] Restoration of Milosh 251 

of Milosh. The people had thus abandoned the Prince ; there 
only remained the Powers. Russia, never his friend, main- 
tained the right of the Serbs to choose their own ruler ; 
Turkey, afraid of the spread of discontent among the Southern 
Slavs, and Austria, desirous that the fortress of Belgrade should 
not fall into Servian hands yet afraid to violate the treaty of 
Paris by armed intervention, both abandoned him ; Bulwer's 
influence was on the side of peace. Accordingly, on January 3, 
Alexander abdicated and crossed over to Semlin ; but his 
wily old successor declined to accept the dignity, thus restored 
to him by his fellow-countrymen, until he had obtained the 
consent of his suzerain. The Porte did not hesitate to ratify 
his election, merely passing over in silence the hereditary 
character which the Assembly had impressed upon it. Then, 
on February 6, Milosh re-entered in state, with his son Michael, 
the country which he had left an exile 20 years before, and 
began his second reign. 

Milosh was 79 years old when he returned to power, and 
his character was no longer capable of adapting itself to 
restraint. He at once resumed the arbitrary methods of his 
former reign, dissolved the Assembly, banished his chief 
opponents, and threw Vutchich into prison, where that power- 
ful chief died under circumstances suggestive of poison. When 
the Porte demanded an autopsy of the body, Milosh refused 
it ; when the consuls paid him official visits, he treated them 
with the barest courtesy, telling the British representative, 
that in Servia the Prince's will was the law, and that neither 
the Porte nor the Powers should command there. In accord- 
ance with these autocratic principles, he quashed the decisions 
of judges and increased his own civil list, while carefully 
excluding from the Assembly which he convened the repre- 
sentatives of European culture. In foreign affairs, however, 
he showed much greater prudence, abstaining from exploiting 
the anti-Austrian and pro-Sardinian sympathies of his people 
during the war of 1859, and promising to send back the 

252 Union of Danubian Principalities [ch. 

fugitive Bosniaks who implored his aid on condition that the 
Porte recognised the Servian Princedom as hereditary in his 
family. In view of his great age and of the prospects of a 
disputed succession at his death — for already there was a 
rumour of a Karageorgevich restoration in the person of 
Alexander's son, the present King of Servia — both the Serbs 
and the Powers were anxious for a settlement of this thorny 
question. A Servian deputation was sent to Constantinople, 
and pointed out in a memorandum that Mahmud II had 
granted the hereditary dignity of Prince to Milosh and his 
descendants in 1830 and in 1838, that this privilege had not 
lapsed in consequence of the change of dynasty, and that it 
constituted an " anchor of safety " for the country. The 
deputation further requested the enforcement of the Imperial 
ordinance of 1830, which forbade Mussulmans to reside in 
Servia, unless they formed part of the Turkish garrisons. 
This provision had been violated by another ordinance in 
1833, which allowed the Mohammedan inhabitants of Belgrade 
to remain indefinitely (because a Turkish quibble and a Russian 
award had declared the then town of Belgrade to be a 
" fortress "), and those of the other parts of Servia for five 
more years. Indeed, till after i860, a squalid Mussulman 
population still lingered on beneath the shadow of the fortress, 
the cause of frequent quarrels and the object of conflicting 
jurisdictions. Finally, in place of the charter of 1838, the 
germ of conflicts between the Prince and the Senate, the 
Serbs asked for leave to work out a constitution by themselves 
suited to their requirements. Before these requests had been 
granted, Milosh died, on September 26, i860, in the house 
which he inhabited among the trees of Topchider, the park 
of Belgrade. The house has been preserved as it was at the 
time of his death, and there the traveller may still see the 
collection of wax fruits and the garments of modern Servia's 
second founder — a man with the defects of his age and 
country, but still one of those masterful personalities who 

xi] Michael Obrenovich III 253 

on a larger stage would have received from historians the 
epithet of " great." 

Michael Obrenovich III, who, after the lapse of 18 years, 
a second time ascended the throne, represented a new era 
in the history of Servia. The Prince was now a man in the 
prime of life, who had travelled to European capitals and 
imbibed ideas very different from those of his rugged sire. 
His proclamation told his people, that in his reign the law 
would be supreme ; and the legislation of his first Assembly, 
establishing an universal income-tax, a national militia of 
50,000 men with a French officer as Minister of War, and a 
legislature, based on the payment of taxes and destined to 
meet every three years, displayed a desire for the reorganisation 
of the country which aroused the suspicions of the Porte. 
Availing himself of the European conference, held in 1861 
at Constantinople for the formal recognition of the Union 
of Wallachia and Moldavia, he raised the Servian question, 
and specially insisted that those Turks who still resided in 
Servia outside the fortresses should be subject to the jurisdic- 
tion of his courts. Turkey complained to the guaranteeing 
Powers ; and Lord Russell, then our Foreign Secretary, espoused 
the Turkish cause, from fear lest Servian independence should 
endanger the integrity of the Turkish empire. Ere long, 
however, an event occurred which demonstrated the practical 
justice of the Servian argument. A few hours' cannonade 
proved, as usual, more eloquent than any notes. 

Cunibert, the physician of Milosh, had predicted years 
before that one day the presence of Turks and Serbs, side 
by side in Belgrade, would inevitably provoke a sanguinary 
conflict between them. The British traveller Denton, who 
visited Belgrade in the spring of 1862, observed the anomaly 
of a guard, half Turkish, half Serb, which nightly patrolled 
the decaying "fortifications" — "four dilapidated gates," a 
" partly palisaded " ditch, and " the remains of some earthen 
entrenchment" — which marked the boundaries of the old. 

2 54 Union of Danubian Principalities [ch. 

or Turkish town, the dortjol^ as it was called. So much had 
Belgrade grown by that time, that the Constantinople gate, 
"the ruinous arch" which alone offered "any show of defence," 
was " in the centre " of the town. The Turkish quarter itself 
was invaded by Christian houses ; and nothing kept the re- 
maining Turks in Belgrade but the policy of the Porte, which 
regarded every Turkish shopkeeper in Servia as a possible 
artilleryman in case of need, whose services were paid in 
anticipation by a small annual retaining fee. Naturally the 
Servian government, as it became more independent, found 
this state of things intolerable. The regular garrison of 
4000 regulars was less obnoxious than' the existence of this 
Turkish preserve in the heart of the Servian capital. 

On June 15, 1862, a scuffle ensued at a well near the boundary 
between the Turkish and the native quarters, in which two Serbs 
were killed by two Turkish soldiers. Servian policemen arrested 
the soldiers, and were conducting them to the Turkish police- 
station, when a volley of musketry from that building was 
discharged with fatal effect into their ranks. A general conflict 
then began, and the populace broke into the Turkish shops. 
The Prince was absent from Belgrade, but Ilija Garashanin, 
the Prime Minister, and the consular corps exerted themselves 
to restore order; and Longworth, the British representative, 
at last succeeded in persuading the pasha in command of the 
fortress to withdraw his police from the town, on condition 
that Garashanin guaranteed their safe transit. The rest of 
the Mussulman population followed them; quiet seemed to 
be restored. On the morning, however, of the 17th, at the 
very moment when the consuls were on their way to visit the 
pasha, the fortress suddenly opened fire upon the town, and 
for five hours bombarded Belgrade. The Prince hastened 
back to his capital ; the pasha was induced by Austrian 
representations, and ordered by his government, to cease firing ; 
and, to restore confidence, the British and French consuls- 
general went under canvas in full range of the Turkish and 

xi] Bombardment of Belgrade 255 

Servian guns. The pasha was recalled, an Ottoman com- 
missioner sent to Belgrade, and a conference of the Powers 
convened at Constantinople. Between the two extremes of 
the Turkish demand for the restoration of the status quo and 
the Servian claim for the withdrawal of all Turks from Servia 
a compromise was effected. Russell had already pointed out 
that the logic of facts forbade the acceptance of the Turkish, 
the 29th article of the treaty of Paris that of the Servian 
contention ; Bulwer at the conference carried out his chiefs 
instructions ; his Austrian colleague pointed out that the 
evacuation of the fortress of Belgrade would excite the Austrian 
Serbs. It was finally agreed that the Turks should abandon 
the Turkish quarter of Belgrade, retaining the fortress, and 
evacuate the fortresses of Sokol near the Bosnian frontier and 
Ujitze — the latter of special strategic importance as commanding 
the communication across the sanjak of Novibazar with Monte- 
negro. These two fortresses were dismantled and are now 
picturesque ruins ; the Turkish quarter of Belgrade with the 
exception of the Jewish houses, two mosques (one of them 
now used as a gasometer !), an occasional fountain and the 
crumbling remains of the Constantinople gate — tanti nominis 
U7nbra — was pulled down; and the Turkish garrisons held 
nothing but the river fortresses of Shabatz on the Save, 
Belgrade, Semendria, Fetislam, and the island-castle of Ada 
Kaleh on the Danube, and the position of Little Zvornik on 
the Drina, opposite the larger Bosnian town of the same name. 
The Mussulman residents were to sell their property and leave 
Servia as soon as possible. Bulwer's suggestion that the Servian 
army, which he considered too large for a vassal state, should 
be reduced to 12,000 men, was rejected, thanks to the diplo- 
matic activity of John Ristich, the future Regent and Premier. 
Michael had been induced to accept this compromise by 
the result of the conflict which the sister Servian state had 
been waging contemporaneously against the Turks. Since 
the presumed pacification of the near east at Paris, the 

256 Union of Danubian Principalities [ch. 

Montenegrins had fought two campaigns with their hereditary 
enemies. Despite Danilo's efforts to maintain peace, the 
murder of a Montenegrin priest, whose head was fixed on 
the ramparts of the frontier-fortress of Spuj, followed by a 
cattle-lifting raid of its inhabitants, necessitated a formal protest. 
The Turkish reply was to concentrate its Herzegovinian gar- 
risons on the Montenegrin frontier. The people of the 
Sutorina, the long, narrow tongue of the Herzegovina, which 
Ragusan fear of Venice had caused to be ceded to Turkey 
at the treaty of Passarovitz, and which then ran down to the 
sea as an enclave of Dalmatia, successfully opposed, with 
Montenegrin aid, the Turkish advance; one or two villages 
of the Adriatic coast proclaimed their union with the Princi- 
pality ; and a Montenegrin senator seized for a moment the 
adjacent fortress of Spizza on the bay of Antivari, destined 
to such European notoriety 20 and 50 years later. Danilo 
appealed to Paris, Vienna, and St Petersburg, with the result 
that a French squadron and a Russian frigate arrived off 
Ragusa to watch events. Meanwhile, Hussein Pasha received 
orders to occupy the territory of Grahovo, which by the com- 
promises of 1842-3 had been declared neutral ground. On 
the rocky plain of Grahovo the Prince's elder brother Mirko, 
in two successive engagements of May 12 and 13, completely 
routed the greatly superior Turkish force; an Austrian officer 
a little later counted 2237 skeletons on the field; and many 
Turkish standards, cannon and rifles fell into the hands of 
the Montenegrins, while British medals, won before Sebastopol, 
went to adorn Cetinje. Grahovo is considered to have been 
the Marathon of Montenegro ; and 50 years later Prince 
Nicholas solemnly celebrated the jubilee of his father's victory. 
The Turks withdrew; and a conference of ambassadors at 
Constantinople in the autumn led to a rectification of the 
Montenegrin frontiers, by which the districts of Grahovo with 
the adjacent Rudine, Jupa, and the Upper Vasojevich were 
added to the Principality, i'o Danilo's reign might thus be 

xi] The murder of Danilo 257 

ascribed some increase of Montenegrin territory, as well as 
the secularisation of the theocratic government; he had 
introduced in 1855 a new code, which punished brigandage, 
even when it was justified in popular estimation by being 
practised against the Turks, and severely reprobated theft ; 
he had supplemented his predecessor's corps of perianiks^ 
or body-guards, by establishing a regular system of conscrip- 
tion and a military hierarchy; and he had established a sort 
of college in his own palace, where he sometimes acted as 
professor. But he was not popular, and he met his end by 
the usual fate of Balkan rulers — assassination. On August 13, 
i860, the Prince and Princess, who were taking the baths 
at Perzagno on the Bocche di Cattaro, had been walking in 
the cool of the evening on the quay of Cattaro, when a 
Montenegrin exile, one Kadich, shot him as he was handing 
the Princess into his boat. The victim expired next day; 
his assassin was hanged, without revealing his accomplices. 
Some ascribed his crime to political motives, others to private 
revenge ; the gossip of Cetinje attributed it to the rage of 
an injured husband. The Princess, without delay, accom- 
panied the corpse to the capital, where it lies within the 
monastery church; and, as Danilo had only left one little 
daughter Olga, the succession passed, as he had arranged, 
to his nephew Nicholas — for Mirko, the latter's father, was 
regarded as too bellicose and too destitute of European culture 
to govern Montenegro at so critical a time. The hero of 
Grahovo, whom people called " the sword of Montenegro/' 
patriotically stood aside in favour of his son, as nine years 
before he had acquiesced in the election of his younger 
brother, and was content to serve the new Prince as President 
of the Senate, representing in his councils the old, exclusive 
Montenegrin spirit, which regarded with distrust French in- 
fluences and European education, represented by the cultured 
and ambitious Princess -Dowager Darinka. 

Nicholas I was not quite nineteen years old when he began 
M. L, 17 

258 Union of Danubian Principalities [cH. 

his reign — the longest and most glorious of any Montenegrin 
ruler. Sent as a child to reside in the family of the future 
Princess Darinka at Trieste, he had completed at the college 
of Louis-le-Grand in Paris, thanks to the generosity of Napo- 
leon III, the education begun at the cosmopolitan seaport. 
But like all true Highlanders, his heart was always in his 
own country, and his devotion to his rugged mountains enabled 
him to blend successfully in a transition period the old national 
traditions with the culture of the west. Over a young Prince, 
reared in her own home and educated in France, the Princess- 
Dowager hoped to exercise her sway ; but, the old Montenegrin 
party, which saw in the foreign marriage of the late ruler a 
cause of the national discontent with his rule, hastened the 
marriage of the new sovereign with Milena, the daughter of 
a native chieftain ; and ere long the Princess-Dowager retired 
to Paris. Corfu, and St Petersburg, leaving the little court 
of Cetinje free to steer its way through the sea of politics. 
Finally she settled, like the last Princess three centuries before 
her, at Venice. 

The Prince had been barely a year on the throne when 
the Herzegovina rose once more against the Turks. The 
victory of their Montenegrin brethren at Grahovo had excited 
the Serbs of the ancient "Duchy"; and the Christians of 
the Sutorina, Nikshich and other frontier districts, under the 
leadership of Luka Vukalovich, defeated in 1861 the troops 
of the redoubtable Omar Pasha. The Montenegrins were 
naturally filled with enthusiasm at the success of their kins- 
men ; and, if the decision had depended on the people, war 
would have begun at once. Nicholas himself could not but 
sympathise personally with the Herzegovinian insurgents. Born 
at Njegush, the first village which the traveller on the way 
up from Cattaro to Cetinje passes, whither his family had 
emigrated from the Herzegovina centuries before, he regarded 
the Herzegovina as the cradle of his race; a lover of his 
native language, he knew that it was there spoken in its 

xi] Montenegrin War 0/ 1S62 259 

greatest purity ; a student of the national history, he might 
desire the re-union of the scattered members of the Serb race 
under one sceptre. But diplomatic considerations and the 
advice of the Powers constrained him to preserve, at the risk 
of his popularity at home and in the South Slavonic world, 
more than a strict neutrality ; for, if his subjects daily joined 
the insurgents as volunteers and the rumour of a violation 
of the Montenegrin frontier was eagerly welcomed as an 
excuse for war, he allowed the Turks to revictual the fortress 
of Nikshich by sending supplies from Albania across his own 
territory. None the less, Omar Pasha, having put down the 
insurrection, blockaded Montenegro during the winter, and 
in the spring of 1862 invaded the Principality on the pretext 
of re-establishing order on the frontier. The Turkish plan 
of campaign was to take advantage of the unfavourable con- 
formation of the little state, invading it at either end of 
the short Montenegrin funnel (then only 12 miles long) which 
connected Albania with the Herzegovina, viz. through the 
Zeta valley and the Duga pass, while a third corps created 
a diversion in the Brda to the east of this passage. Although 
greatly outnumbered, Mirko and the Prince's father-in-law, 
Vukotich, held the Turks in check for two months, till they 
at last outflanked Vukotich, took Mirko between two fires, 
and compelled him to leave the fertile Zeta valley at their 
mercy. Montenegro was thus cut in two by the Turkish 
forces ; but, while they ravaged the valley, Mirko reorganised 
the resistance in the mountains to the west of it, and, when 
they resumed the offensive, defeated them at Zagaratz and 

Meanwhile, the Powers looked on at this unequal struggle ; 
for France, hitherto the protectress of Montenegro, was 
occupied in Mexico, while Palmerston, usually the friend 
of struggling nationalities, regarded the mountaineers as rebels 
whom the Sultan was justified in chastising. There was talk 
of an Italian expedition to Antivari in support of Montenegro ; 

17 — 3 

26o Union of Danubian Principalities [ch. 

but only the Pope showed such sympathy as he could give, 
by forbidding the Roman Catholics of Albania to aid the 
Turks, and at Athens subscriptions for the Montenegrins were 
opened. Omar again renewed the attack, this time along the 
Rjeka which flows into the lake of Scutari. A long-disputed 
battle below the picturesque little town which takes its name 
from the river convinced the Montenegrins that further re- 
sistance was useless, and the Prince, who had providentially 
escaped assassination during the war, accepted the Convention 
of Scutari, dictated by the Turkish commander. The frontiers 
of 1859, and the internal administration of the Principality 
remained intact. Turkey allowed the Montenegrins to im- 
port and export whatever they pleased, except arms, through 
the haven of Antivari, and to rent agricultural lands in Turkish 
territory — concessions intended to remedy the two chief 
Montenegrin grievances, the lack of access to the sea, and 
the lack of arable land. In return, the mountaineers were to 
abstain from frontier raids, from the support of insurrections 
of Turkish subjects, and from erecting frontier forts. The two 
severest clauses — that which exiled Mirko for ever, and that 
which authorised the Turkish troops to occupy and fortify 
strategic points on the Montenegrin route between Scutari 
and the Herzegovina — were fortunately annulled by mutual 
consent. For five years more Mirko, the bard as well as 
the warrior of the nation, remained by his son's side till 
cholera slew the hero who had defended the cavernous 
monastery of Ostrog from the Turks, who had won the fight 
of Grahovo, and twice merited the praise of the Roman poet : 
Imperium asseruit non sibi^ sed patriae. These years were 
devoted to repairing the ravages of the war, while the Prince, 
in 1866, almost succeeded in achieving the greatest aim of 
Montenegrin policy for half a century — a seaport. The Sultan 
had actually consented to cede to him a strip of coast at 
Novasella near Spizza ; but France and (ircat Britain, fearful 
lest it should become in Montenegrin hands a mere Russian 

xi] Greek Finance 261 

haven, opposed the cession. British statesmanship 14 years 
later repaired this injustice at Dulcigno. 

The year 1862 had been eventful in south-eastern Europe. 
Besides the bombardment of Belgrade and the war in Monte- 
negro, a revolution had driven Otho from the Greek throne. 
Five years earlier, such a disastrous termination of his reign 
seemed improbable, for the occupation had made the King 
extremely popular. For some time after the departure of the 
allied armies this state of things continued ; and the year 
1858, in which Otho celebrated the 25th anniversary of his 
accession, was quietly occupied with practical economic works, 
such as the opening of the Euripus to traffic and the laying 
of a cable between Syra and the Piraeus. Meanwhile, the 
financial commission of the three protecting Powers was en- 
gaged in examining the financial resources and administration 
of the country. Its report, drawn up in 1859, suggested that 
in lieu of the sinking fund and interest on the allied loan of 
^^2,400,000 Greece should be compelled to pay an annual 
sum of ^36,000, which was to be increased as her resources 
improved. It also advocated some modification of the system 
of collecting the tithe and the publication of accounts. There 
was, however, one question which caused the court serious 
difficulty, that of the succession. The constitution of 1844 
had indicated as heir Otho's next brother, who must become 
a member of the Orthodox Church. But, as the Convention 
of 1832, which conferred the crown on Otho, had said nothing 
about his successor's change of religion, an agreement was 
made in London in 1852 between Greece, Bavaria, and the 
three Powers, imposing upon the heir the necessity of his 
conversion. The Bavarian representative, however, added 
a minute, that either the heir should not be forced to change 
his religion till the moment of his accession to the throne, 
or else he should obtain on his conversion a guarantee that 
he would succeed to it ; otherwise he might have abandoned 
the faith of his ancestors for nothing. Otho's next brother, 

262 Union of Danubian Principalities [ch. 

Luitpold (afterwards Prince-Regent of Bavaria) resigned his 
rights ; and the succession seemed to lie between his son 
Lewis, and Luitpold's next brother Adalbert, who had, how- 
ever, married a Spanish, and therefore, Roman Catholic, 
princess. The reluctance of the Bavarian princes to change 
their religion so greatly impressed some Greek politicians, 
that their thoughts fell upon Peter of Oldenburg, the brother 
of the Queen. Amalia, whose popularity had been further 
increased by the speed with which she transacted business 
as Regent during her consort's absence in " Europe " — as a 
French wit remarked: "he read documents without deciding, 
she decided without reading " — felt flattered by this idea, which 
thenceforth divided the court into two factions and neutralised 
the influence of Bavaria at Athens at a critical moment. 

For two years after the departure of the Allies Otho's 
popularity continued ; but the outbreak of the Austro-Italian 
war of 1859 placed him in a difficult position. Crispi, visiting 
Athens in that year, found the people enthusiastic for the 
Italian cause ; and a Te Deum was sung after every Italian 
victory. But the King, as was natural in a Bavarian, sympathised 
with Austria, and even desired to extend the protection of the 
Greek flag to the Austrian vessels. But, while his people 
accused him of Austrian sentiments, the British and French 
governments suspected him, as in 1854, of favouring an 
insurrection in Turkey, proclaimed by Karatdssos, the aide- de- 
camp, who had been the cause of the Greco-Turkish incident 
of 1847. The Opposition, eager to embarrass the government, 
made capital out of Otho's Austrophil views ; and a riot due to 
the students' protests against the sale of expensive straw-hats 
was magnified into a political question. The elections were, 
indeed, favourable to the Cabinet of Athandsios Miaoilles, a 
son of the admiral, and a devoted loyalist, who had come into 
oflSce after the occupation ; but at the historic Mesoldnghi the 
idol of the Athenian youth and subsequent author of Otho's de- 
position, Epamindndas Delege<5rges, entered parliamentary life. 

xi] Difficulties of Otho 263 

The Syrian massacres of i860 diverted attention for a time 
from these internal affairs ; but the achievements of Garibaldi 
in southern Italy rekindled the democratic feeling. The defeat 
of the Ministerial candidate for the Speakership was followed 
by the seizure of Opposition newspapers and the dissolution of 
the Chamber. These acts irritated the Opposition ; and the 
newly elected body received the nickname of " the Chamber of 
Mayors," from the number of those officials whom government 
influence sent to sit in it. A large batch of new senators was 
created, in the hope of securing that branch of the legislature 
also. In vain Sir Thomas Wyse pointed out the danger of 
thus shutting the safety-valves of public opinion, while a 
combination of circumstances at this time rendered not only 
the Bavarian Court, but also the three protecting Powers 
hostile or indifferent to the King's preservation — Russia for the 
opposite reason to that of Bavaria; Great Britain because she 
suspected him of designs against both her protectorate over 
the Ionian Islands and the integrity of Turkey, which she 
still cherished as the secret of her Indian empire; France 
because her advice had been disregarded and perhaps from the 
personal influence of Kallerges, then Greek minister in Paris, 
over the Emperor. Thus, in 1861, all the stars in their courses 
seemed to fight against Otho. 

In May a plot was discovered in the army; and the 
government made the mistake of sending the ringleaders to 
Nauplia, which thus became the headquarters of the revolu- 
tionary movement. Meanwhile, the Opposition became more 
systematic ; the new men, who had entered public life, notably 
Delege6rges, were supported by the students, whose heads 
were full of the theoretic beauties of the French revolution 
and who were veritable missionaries of their ideas because they 
propagated all over the Greek world the anti-dynastic principles 
which they had imbibed at Athens. Thus was realised the 
prophecy of shrewd old Kolokotr6nes, who years before, 
pointing to the newly founded University and to the palace, 

264 Union of Danubian Pi'incipalities [cii. 

remarked : " this house will eat up that one ! " As usually 
happens, the more advanced democrats placed in front of them 
an elderly champion of unquestionable respectability, the 
venerable Kanares, whose fame and popularity, won in the 
War of Independence and recently confirmed by his inde- 
pendence in the Senate, they exploited for their own purpose. 
In the press they found two powerful exponents of their 
programme in the Future of the Fatherland and the British 
Star, the latter a Greek newspaper founded in London by 
Stephanos Xenos, a brilliant novelist, who was one of the first 
persons to name, so early as 1859, Prince Alfred (subsequently 
Duke of Edinburgh) as the best successor to Otho. An 
attempt to assassinate the Queen, on September 18, by a lad 
named D6sios during the King's absence abroad, created a 
violently royalist reaction ; but six weeks later a plot of some 
cavalry officers to kidnap the returning monarch showed that 
it was merely temporary. Miaoiiles, conscious that public 
opinion demanded the change of a Ministry over which he 
had presided since 1857, tendered his resignation; and 
Kanares, the most popular man in Greece, was summoned 
to the palace in January 1862. But the task of forming a 
Ministry proved that it was easier for the old seaman to fire 
a Turkish ship than to steer his way through the shoals of 
politics. His programme was excellent, but his list of Ministers 
caused such a revulsion of feeling that the King was able to 
withdraw his mandate. Miaoiiles remained in office, and the 
events of the next few months earned for his Cabinet the name 
of " the Ministry of blood." 

On February 13, 1862, the garrison of Nauplia revolted. 
That city, where 29 years before Otho had been received by 
his subjects with such enthusiasm, was the seat of the dis- 
content ; and the eloquent and charming widow of a senator, 
Mme. Kalli6pe Papalexopoiilou, and the Belgian consul 
Zavitzanos, were the ringleaders there. The insurgents de- 
manded the abolition of the *' system" identified with the 

xi] Revolt of Nauplia 265 

existing Ministry, the dissolution of " the Chamber of Mayors," 
and the convocation of a National Constituent Assembly, and 
addressed a petition to the ministers of the three Powers. On 
the same day a revolt took place at Argos ; Tripolitsa and 
Kyparissia followed these examples ; but the only serious 
danger was presented by the risings at Nauplia and Syra, 
where, however, the Catholic town remained loyal. The 
government formed a camp on the Isthmus under General 
Hahn, a veteran Swiss Philhellene, who occupied Argos and 
Tiryns and besieged Nauplia. Although the garrison found 
aid from a Cretan colony established in the suburb of Pr6noia, 
where the Assembly had sat in 1832, the royalist troops soon 
carried the outworks ; but the refusal of the King to grant 
a general pardon united the garrison in the resolve to resist, 
and the dauntless Kalliope stood on her balcony as the shells 
whizzed past her, shouting that " Mesol6nghi secured the 
nation's independence, Nauplia will secure its liberties ! " An 
amnesty for all but 19 conspirators was at last accepted; the 
excepted persons were removed on French and British 
steamers ; and on April 20 Hahn entered Nauplia. Order was 
restored in Syra by Tsiros, a well-known brigand-hunter, who 
met and defeated the insurgents in Kythnos. There was no 
enthusiasm at these victories of Greeks over Greeks ; a sea-girt 
graveyard at Nauplia guards the remains of those who fell 
in 1862; the slain of Kythnos were hymned as martyrs. A 
secret memorandum of the Minister of the Interior to the 
King depicted the discontent in the provinces, except among 
the working-classes, the growth of an intellectual proletariat, 
spoiled for manual labour but unable to obtain posts in the 
civil service, and the danger which he ran, unless he changed 
his "system," allowed freedom of election, and settled the vexed 
question of the succession, by proclaiming to his Orthodox 
subjects an Orthodox heir-presumptive. These representations 
were supported by Mr (afterwards Sir) Henry Elliot, the extra- 
ordinary envoy of Great Britain, who communicated his chiefs 

266 Union of Danubian Principalities [cii. 

desire for a change of Ministry, a dissolution, and the observance 
of the constitution. Otho fulfilled the first of these wishes ; and 
on June 7 the long-lived Miaoiiles administration gave place to 
a Cabinet, the last of the reign, under the Court Marshal, 
Gennaios Kolokotrdnes, son of the famous klepht, and himself 
more of a soldier than a statesman. The new Premier likewise 
urged Otho to decide the question of the succession, while 
Russell advised the Greek and Bavarian representatives in 
London to send one of Prince Luitpold's sons to reside in 
Greece while he was still of an impressionable age. Otho, 
however, preferred that his nephew should not be required to 
change his religion till he came of age in the following 
January. But ere that date Otho had ceased to reign. 

Informed of the discontent at home, the King now tried to 
divert attention to " the Great Idea," of which he had been so 
fervent an apostle at the time of the Crimean war. Emissaries 
were sent to negotiate with Garibaldi for his co-operation in 
creating an insurrection in Turkey ; subscriptions were opened 
for the Montenegrins then struggling against the Porte ; the 
King hoped that Servia would declare war on the Sultan. So 
serious did the agitation appear to Russell, that he ordered 
Scarlett, the new British minister at Athens, to "inform the 
King of Greece that war against Turkey will precede for a 
very short time his deposition and abdication." Nor did our 
Foreign Minister use threats alone ; he offered the Ionian 
Islands to Otho, on condition that he promised not to raise 
the eastern question. Otho refused, and his refusal did him 
honour, for he argued that the lonians were the subjects of 
a civilised European Power, whereas the enslaved Greeks of 
Thessaly and Epirus lived under an Asiatic despotism. Be- 
lieving in the success of Montenegro and an alliance with 
Servia, he was doomed to complete disappointment. Garibaldi, 
instead of landing in Epirus, was wounded at Aspromonte; 
the Montenegrins made peace; the Serbs accepted the decisions 
of the conference at Constantinople. All hopes of a diversion in 

xi] Rising at Athens 267 

Turkey disappeared. Then the Queen, ever impetuous, urged her 
consort to undertake a long tour in the provinces at the moment 
when prudence advised his continued presence in the capital. 

An insurrection in Akarnania under the auspices of Theo- 
dore Gri'vas, the veteran leader of irregulars whose exploits 
went back to the anarchy of 1832, was foretold by the British vice- 
consul at Mesol6nghi for the beginning of October. The time 
passed without anything untoward occurring ; and on October 
13 the royal couple, believing that the alarm was groundless, 
started on what was to be the last of their many Greek cruises. 
The King seems to have had some foreboding of his coming 
deposition, for on the day of his departure he said to Nicholas 
Dragoumes, his Minister for Foreign Affairs : " I have read 
that the people consider it unlucky to reign more than 30 years. 
My 30 years are almost accomplished." The royal yacht had 
been gone but three days when Gri'vas caused the garrison of 
Vonitza, a place on the gulf of Arta that had been conspicuous 
in the medieval, and now made a page in the modern history 
of Greece, to raise the standard of revolt. Mesol6nghi, Patras 
(at the instigation of the former Minister, Venizelos Roiiphos), 
and other places quickly followed. Otho received at Kalamata, 
on his voyage round the Morea, the news of the revolt of 
V6nitza, and at once gave the order to return. But, before his 
yacht could reach the Piraeus, Athens had risen. On the 
night of the 22nd the garrison revolted ; the Premier, who had 
come to the conclusion that the deposition of ^ Otho was 
inevitable, made no effort to save the throne, and refused to 
order the arrest of the conspirators. As in 1843, the streets 
were deserted ; and even the civilian ringleaders of the revolution 
thought it more prudent to remain indoors until dawn. Then 
they proceeded to the artillery barracks, where Delegeorges, 
using a cannon as a desk, scribbled on a scrap of paper a 
proclamation, declaring the fall of Otho's sovereignty and the 
formation of a provisional government, composed of Boiilgares, 
Kanares, and Roiiphos, which should hold office till a National 

268 Union of Danubian Principalities [en. 

Convention should have elected a new King. A rush was 
made upon the defenceless palace, where Hahn offered no 
resistance; the King's effects were mostly spared, but his 
correspondence was carried off and read by the provisional 
government. The dethroned King's letters were found to be 
animated by feelings of the warmest love for Greece ; and it is 
related that Kanares, who had been persuaded to join the 
government against his will, wept with remorse at their perusal. 
Boulgares, the president of the triumvirate, then formed a 
Cabinet, in which Delege6rges and two other future Premiers, 
Koumoundotiros and Thrasyboulos Zaimes, had seats. Order, 
however, was not restored for two days ; armed men discharged 
their rifles in the streets, in sign of joy ; several innocent people 
were killed by accident ; several shops were plundered ; the 
museum on the Akropolis lost some of its treasures ; and the 
prison was relieved of some of its less valuable inmates. On 
the evening of the- 23rd the royal yacht was signalled, and 
anchored just outside the entrance of the Piraeus. A crowd, 
whose revolutionary sentiments were manifested by shouts and 
shots, had already assembled to prevent the sovereigns from 
landing. A copy of the proclamation and a fatal shot, fired 
from the shore at a loyal officer, who had ventured to shout 
" Long live the King ! ", convinced them that disembarkation 
was impossible. A hasty council was held on deck ; the 
Queen urged an instant return to Kalamata or Lime'ni, where 
they had just received enthusiastic receptions ; Otho, as usual, 
hesitated to make up his mind till he had received more 
detailed information. A modern Greek historian has expressed 
the opinion that the Queen's advice, if modified by a return to 
loyal Gytheion, might perhaps have saved the Bavarian dynasty. 
But meanwhile the diplomatic corps arrived, and unofficially 
counselled resignation. That night Otho spent in the classic 
waters of Salamis, meditating on his decision. Next morning 
he informed the British minister of his intention to quit 
Greece, and, after writing a farewell proclamation to his people. 

xi] Othds Deposition 269 

in which he recalled his love and labours for their land, and 
declared that he left it to avoid further bloodshed, he em- 
barked, as he had come nearly 30 years before, on board a 
British ship, the Scylla, for Venice. The last drop in his 
cup of bitterness was the spectacle, as the vessel rounded the 
Morea, of the blazing arch of triumph, which the people of 
Kalamata had erected only a few days before to welcome their 
now exiled monarch. The new state of things was accepted 
everywhere. The protecting Powers raised no voice against 
his deposition ; and Liberal Britain, by the mouth of Russell, 
declared, in accordance with the Whig principles of 1688 so dear 
to that statesman, that Greece, being " an independent nation," 
had the right " of changing its governing dynasty upon good 
and sufficient cause." This condition the British government, 
always severe to Otho, believed to exist. 

Time has, however, modified the judgment of that day 
upon the first King of Greece. That Otho was a great ruler, 
no one will pretend ; that he was a bad man, his worst enemy 
could not assert. His faults were those of a weak and 
pedantic character, absorbed in details and unable to arrive 
at rapid decisions ; his misfortune was that he had no heir. 
If he had governed his country less, and had been blessed 
with offspring, possibly his descendants would be still sitting 
on the Hellenic throne. Time has, however, yet more clearly 
demonstrated his ardent, if at times impolitic, patriotism ; even 
in his retirement at Bamberg, where he died in 1867, he 
continued to wear the Greek dress and to interest himself in 
the fortunes of Greece. His former subjects have generously 
recognised his merits ; modern Greek literature has depicted 
him and his Consort in a more favourable light; the son of 
one who was prominent in overthrowing him admitted that 
perhaps his expulsion was a mistake ; and a Greek statesman 
confessed that he had made a pilgrimage to his tomb in the 
Theatiner church of Munich and stood in meditation over the 
last remains of one who never ceased to love Greece. 



The revolution of 1862 had been as bloodless as that of 
1843 '} but the mere removal of Otho did not necessarily mean 
the immediate reign of law. " The troops at Athens," wrote 
an eye-witness, were in a state of complete insubordination ; 
they "broke into houses, and robbed passers-by in broad 
daylight"; a British watchmaker was plundered ; and liberated 
gaol-birds, taking to the road, displayed their " constitutional " 
principles to the harmless Boeotians and Megareans. But the 
town was speedily patrolled by a civic guard, composed of 
students and leading citizens, and the richest Athenian banker 
was seen shouldering a musket in the defence of property 
and order. Shops were re-opened, and the British minister 
reported that there had "probably never been a general rising 
attended with so little bloodshed and resistance." 

Every moment, however, the arrival of Theodore Gri'vas 
with his myrmidons and the consequent deposition of the 
provisional government were expected ; but the death of that 
dreaded chief removed its fears. The elections for the pro- 
mised National Assembly, in which representatives of the 
Greek colonies abroad were allowed to sit, while every con- 
stituency in Greece elected twice the usual number of deputies, 
took place; and on December 22 this, the second National 
Assembly held at Athens, met. Meanwhile, the selection of a 
King had been occupying the diplomatists of the three protecting 
Powers. The most popular candidate in Greece was Prince 

CH. xii] Prince Alfred's Popularity 271 

Alfred, second son of Queen Victoria, who had made an 
excellent impression some three years before during a visit to 
Athens, where a secret petition in his favour had been signed 
before Otho's deposition. It was believed in Greece that, if 
elected, the British Prince would not arrive empty-handed, but 
would bring the Ionian Islands and perhaps Thessaly and 
Epirus with him. British capital, it was pointed out, would 
follow in his train, and the lean years of Bavarian rule would 
be thus followed by fat years of Anglo-Saxon enterprise. 
Portraits of " our Alfred " were circulated at Athens ; he was 
actually proclaimed King at Lamia; popular demonstrations 
were organised in front of the British Legation ; and a depu- 
tation entered to interview the British minister, no little 
embarrassed by the lack of instructions from home. The 
British government was, in fact, more anxious to defeat the 
Russian nominee, the Duke of Leuchtenberg, who, as the 
grandson of Eugene Beauharnais as well as the nephew of 
Alexander II, was also the French candidate, than to secure 
the election of Prince Alfred. Russell pointed out that the 
Prince then stood next to the Prince of Wales in order of 
succession to the British throne, that he was heir-presumptive 
to the Duchy of Saxe-Coburg, and that the Queen had resolved 
to refuse her consent to his acceptance of the Greek crown. 
In order to prevent the election of the Duke of Leuchtenberg, 
the British government had already invited Russia and France 
to respect the protocol of February 3, 1830, which excluded 
members of the reigning families of the three protecting 
Powers from the Greek throne, and had asked Russia to state 
whether she considered the Duke as such. When it had 
become clear that their candidate had no chance, Russia and 
France assented, with the view of annulling Prince Alfred's 
election, in case the Greeks should persist in voting for him 
despite the official British disclaimer ; and Russia promised to 
regard an eventual election of the Duke as null and void. 
Such was the attitude of the three Powers, when from December 

272 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

6 to 15 the voting for a sovereign took place, not, as in the 
case of the Roumanian Principalities, in the National Assembly, 
but by the more democratic and imposing method of a popular 
plebiscite of Greeks at home and abroad. When the urns were 
opened, it was found that the Greeks had ignored the dis- 
claimer of the British government in their zeal for a British 
King, and that 230,016 Hellenes had voted for Prince Alfred, 
2400 for the Duke of Leuchtenberg, and smaller numbers for 
various royal personages. Only 93 desired a Republic ; only 
six voted for a Greek ; the same number for the Danish prince 
who was destined to be King. Not a vote was recorded for a 
Bavarian, although the Bavarian consul canvassed for Otho's 
nephew, Lewis. On February 3, 1863 the National Assembly 
ratified the election ; but the British government adhered to 
its statement, undertaking, however, by way of compensation, 
to find a king. 

Elliot, who meanwhile had arrived on a second mission to 
Athens, informed the provisional government that, if the 
Greeks chose a constitutional king agreeable to Great Britain 
and respected the integrity of Turkey, Great Britain would 
reward them with the Ionian Islands. The eyes of the British 
were, of course, first cast upon the inevitable house of Saxe- 
Coburg, which, in the phrase of a witty Frenchman, "has 
candidates for all thrones of all religions." Two Coburgers 
were suggested — the former King-Consort Ferdinand of 
Portugal and Duke Ernest II of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. Both 
of them fulfilled Russell's requirement that the choice should 
fall not upon "a prince under 20 years of age, but rather a 
prince of mature years and of some experience." But there 
were objections to both ; for the former was a Catholic, and 
the latter childless. As Duke Ernest's heir was Prince Alfred, 
the British government had to find another successor. A close 
study of the Almanack de Gotha revealed the existence of 
another Coburger in Austria. But eventually all three Coburg 
candidatures collapsed. The ex-King-Consort of Portugal 

xii] ''Mountain''^ and '' Plain ^ 273 

declined to renew his kingship in Greece. The reigning Duke 
of Saxe-Coburg discovered that his people would not let him 
leave his Duchy and that he could not promise to be always 
sound on the integrity of Turkey ; he wanted larger boundaries, 
while retaining his position as a German prince. The Austrian 
held that it was better to lose Otho's crown than omit the 
filioque clause. Meanwhile, the National Assembly was even 
more distracted than the British government. Personal factions 
took the place of parties with well-defined policies ; and, in 
imitation of the French Revolution, the followers of Kanares and 
Demetrios Grivas were styled "men of the mountain," those of 
Bodlgares " men of the plain." The military took sides, for 
discipline was at an end j the 6th battalion under Leotsakos, 
brother of one of the victims of Kythnos, was for Boiilgares, 
the rest of the army supported the " mountaineers." Local 
chiefs, who had seats in the Assembly, were accompanied by 
bands of armed retainers who occupied the lobbies or the 
courtyard of the house where it met. With so much inflam- 
mable material about, it did not require much to produce civil 
war. Four ministers and the triumvir Kanares resigned ; the 
formation of a new Ministry by his two colleagues was branded 
by the " mountain " as unconstitutional ; their adherents 
outside fortified a strong position in the town; a collision 
occurred, and, in proper French fashion, the October revolution 
was followed by the " days of February." Pending a definite 
decision, the Assembly assumed the executive power, which it 
exercised through its vice-president, Moraitines. His first act 
was to call out the recently-created national guard; a committee 
of leading politicians interposed its good offices between the 
combatants ; the Assembly elected a new Ministry under 
Bdlbes ; and the army, drawn up in the appropriately-named 
Concord Square, swore before the Assembly to obey its 

At last, after the Greek crown had been hawked about 
Europe for three months, the Premier was able to announce, 
M. L. 18 

274 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

on March 30, that the three protecting Powers had proposed 
as king Prince Christian William Ferdinand Adolphus George, 
second son of Prince Christian of Schleswig-Holstein (a few 
months later Christian IX of Denmark), and that King Frederick 
VII of Denmark had given his conditional consent. The 
British choice had fallen upon one who could not possess the 
experience which Russell had considered desirable — for he was 
at the time a young lieutenant of 1 7 in the Danish navy. But 
the Greeks in the Assembly knew that none of themselves would 
be allowed by the jealousy of their compatriots to reign, like 
the Obrenovich dynasty in Servia, or like Couza in Roumania, 
over the young state. They resolved, therefore, to repeat, 
under more favourable auspices, the experiment of a youthful 
foreigner as sovereign, and unanimously elected the Danish 
prince as " King of the Greeks " (not, as Otho had been, " of 
Greece"), adding a rider to the effect that his heirs should 
belong to the Orthodox Church. A deputation, composed of 
Kanares, Zaimes, and Grivas, departed for Copenhagen to offer 
him the crown. Several weeks passed, however, before the 
King of Denmark's conditions had been rendered acceptable ; 
on June 6 the crown was finally accepted; and on July 13, 
despite two Bavarian protests, the arrangements, already 
tabulated in protocols, were set forth in a treaty between the 
three Powers and the King of Denmark. This treaty provided 
that the new sovereign should bear the title of " George I King 
of the Greeks " (subsequently altered to " Hellenes "), that his 
kingdom should be increased by the union of the Ionian Islands, 
that the crowns of Greece and Denmark should never be united 
on the same head, that King George's successors should belong 
to the Orthodox Church, and that his majority might be 
accelerated by a decree of the National Assembly. Very 
favourable financial provisions were made for the new monarch. 
Besides the civil list which he would receive from his subjects, 
the three Powers each relinquished the annual amount of 
;£4ooo out of the sums which the Greek government had 

xii] Anarchy at Athens 275 

agreed in i860 to pay them, in accordance with the findings 
of the financial commission ; while Great Britain promised to 
advise the Ionian government, at the moment of the union, 
to set aside ;£i 0,000 a year for the new King. A secret 
Anglo-Danish treaty pledged him to refrain from promoting 
insurrectional movements against Turkey in return for the 
Ionian Islands. 

While the negotiations between the Powers and the Danish 
court were proceeding, Athens was left in a state of anarchy. 
The strife between the two rival factions in the Assembly 
became bitterer as the moment of the new King's arrival drew 
nearer ; for, as before the advent of Otho, the leaders of either 
party wished to be in power at the moment of his coming. 
Brigands penetrated to the outskirts of the capital, while the 
abduction of an Austrian circus-rider by a band of soldiers 
provoked a diplomatic incident. In the absence of any con- 
stituted authority, cabinets were elected by a vote of the 
Assembly ; and thus the election as Minister of War of Panos 
Koronaios, one of the conspirators of Nauplia, commander 
of the national guard, and a prominent " mountaineer," was 
regarded by himself as a means of securing the executive power, 
by the Opposition as a danger against which force was the only 
remedy. Both factions appealed to arms. Kyriakos, a brigand 
in sympathy with the "men of the plain," occupied the 
monastery of the Holy Angels, the ancient Kynosarges, near 
the road to Marathon ; Leotsakos, the most formidable rival of 
the would-be military dictator, when ordered to dislodge the 
brigand, fraternised with him in the style of the officer in Le 
Rot des Montagnes. Koronaios thereupon arrested his insub- 
ordinate officer; the latter's men retaliated by capturing two 
Ministers as hostages for his release. These reprisals were 
the signal for civil war. Again, in French revolutionary 
fashion, Athens having had her " days of February," now had 
her "days of July." At dawn on July i the fighting began 
between the Ministerialists under Koronaios and the " men of 


2/6 Cessio7t of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

the plain " under Papadiamant6poulos, an artillery officer who 
had taken a prominent part in the October revolution. The 
" mountaineers " occupied the palace, the school which takes 
its name from its founder Barbakes, and the Akropolis ; their 
rivals bombarded the palace and killed its defender, Aristeides, 
son of Admiral Kanares. A deputation of three members of 
the Assembly obtained an armistice of 24 hours ; but complete 
anarchy continued to prevail, for half the ministry had resigned, 
and the sole constituted authority was D. Kyriakofi, the 
President of the Assembly, who could not secure a quorum of 
deputies to confer legality upon his efforts to restore peace. 
Next day the fighting was renewed; Koronaios besieged the 
National Bank, whose director belonged to the opposite faction, 
and whose strong-room contained a large sum in specie. The 
"mountain" artillery swept Stadion Street, one of the chief 
thoroughfares of Athens, and from the "Frog*s Mouth" the 
Opposition howitzers replied. In the evening the ministers of 
the three Powers sent their secretaries to the President of the 
Assembly and the two rival leaders, and induced them to 
conclude an armistice of 48 hours, threatening to leave Athens 
unless this proposal were adopted. Some 200 people had 
fallen ; and Kjoronaios alone offered any further objection to a 
peace, which he rightly interpreted as his political extinction. 
The Assembly then met in the Barbakeion ; Rodphos recon- 
stituted the Ministry with men of so little influence as to allay 
suspicion ; and this "Cabinet of Affairs" held office till the arrival 
of the King. The army was ordered to leave Athens, which it 
quitted on July 5 ; its rival leaders resigned, whereupon their 
submissive forces were exiled respectively to Mesol6nghi and 
Sparta. The security of the capital was confided to the 
national guard. Thus, the reign of disorder, which had 
prevailed more or less continuously since Otho's deposition, 
came to an end — a struggle for place not for principle, which 
the ministers of the three Powers unanimously stigmatised in 
the strongest language as a conflict of "culpable ambitions." 

xii] Arrival of King George 277 

Modern Greek historians have joined in this condemnation ; 
but, after all, revolutions are rarely made with rose-water. 

The coming of King George had been delayed by a tour 
of the European courts in the company of Count Sponneck, 
a Danish ex-Minister, who had been attached to his person as 
a political mentor, but who, even before he had ever set foot 
on Greek soil, offended the whole class of Greek public men 
by proclaiming his own position to be "so exalted that no one 
in Greece could overshadow it." Great was the joy, when at 
last the young King arrived at Athens on October 30. The 
rejoicings of Nauplia upon Otho's arrival 30 years earlier were 
renewed under the shadow of the illuminated Akropolis ; but a 
British diplomatist could not refrain from wondering how this 
" slight, delicate stripling," whom he saw take the oath in the 
National Assembly, and whom he heard proclaim that he 
would aim at *' making Greece a model kingdom in the east," 
would succeed in the task that lay before him. This observer 
lived to admit that the experiment of choosing for the second 
time a youth to wear the Greek crown had turned out far 
better than even optimists could have expected. King George 
has had difficult crises to face — the war of 1897, the military 
uprising of 1909; but he has not only kept his throne and 
founded a dynasty, but has seen his country — what Otho yearned 
in vain to see— thrice enlarged. 

The first of these acquisitions — that of the Ionian Islands 
— was the present brought by the King to his own subjects. 
The British government, after 50 years' experience, had come 
to the conclusion that it was desirable to sever its connexion 
with the Seven Islands. The repressive measures adopted 
during the Russo-Turkish war, culminating in the suppression 
of the sole remaining Liberal paper in CorfCi for its criticisms 
of British sympathy with Turkey, had kept alive the discontent 
of the priests and people. Many of the nobles and gentry were 
still attached to the protectorate ; but, owing to the reforms of 
1849, the Assembly was in the hands of the Opposition, whose 

278 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

election and the salary attached thereto depended upon the 
Orthodox zeal of the clergy and the new-born freedom of the 
enfranchised peasantry. The children in Cephalonia used " to 
write, as a copy, a prayer for the expulsion of the English "; and 
Ward declared that the system of government bequeathed to 
him by Seaton " was not to be worked by any human power." 
From outside, too, came criticisms of the British administration 
— from the press of autocratic Russia and Napoleonic France, 
neither of which countries enjoyed a tithe of the real 
liberty accorded by British statesmen to the lonians. Even 
an Austrian minister defended the Neapolitan Bourbons by 
citing British methods in the Islands. It is true that, when 
Sir John Young, who had succeeded Ward as Lord High 
Commissioner in 1855, held a general election at the close of 
the following year, the measures taken by his predecessor 
against the Cephalonian Radicals proved so efficacious that all 
the ten members returned by that island, the birthplace of 
Ionian Radicalism, were ministerialists, and Lombardos of 
Zante was the leading representative of Unionism. But this 
eleventh Assembly had not been long in session, when a rumour, 
subsequently proved to be well-founded, aroused a storm against 
the protectorate. Young, at the suggestion of Bowen, his 
secretary, who knew the language and was supposed to know 
the habits of the islanders better than most British officials, 
proposed to the home government, that the Ionian question 
should be solved by the cession of the five southern islands to 
Greece and the conversion of Corfii and Paxo, the most 
important strategically, the most attached to the protectorate, 
and the least difficult of management, into a British colony. 
When a report leaked out at Corfu that a petition with this 
object was being surreptitiously circulated, and that three Ionian 
signatures had actually been obtained, a gust of patriotic 
indignation swept over the Assembly. That body, disregarding 
the official denial of the Attorney-General, who was entitled to 
speak, without voting, on behalf of the government, applauded 

xii] Gladstone s Mission 279 

vociferously the invective of Lombardos, and unanimously 
adopted a motion for the appointment of a committee of 
enquiry, on which every island should have a representative. 
The suspicions thus aroused had begun to subside when, on 
November 12, 1858, the Daily News published Young's 
dispatches, dated June 10 of the previous year and July 14, 
1858, containing the colonisation scheme. The publication 
of these despatches, abstracted from the pigeon-holes of the 
Colonial Office, was, in the phrase of the Colonial Secretary, 
"an inconceivable misfortune"; for they not only rekindled 
excitement in the Islands but alarmed the other signatories of 
the treaty of 1815. Worst of all, the event occurred at the very 
moment when the most Philhellenic of then living British 
statesmen was on his way as " High Commissioner Extra- 
ordinary " to enquire "into the administration of the Ionian 
Islands under the Charter." 

The Derby Ministry, then in office, had in its chief a 
translator of Homer, in its Colonial Secretary the novelist 
Bulwer Lytton. To these literary statesmen the suggestion 
of Lord Carnarvon, Under-Secretary for the Colonies, that 
Gladstone, another Homeric scholar, should be sent out on 
this mission naturally commended itself. Gladstone's political 
friends were almost, unanimously opposed to his acceptance 
of the offer. Aberdeen shrewdly doubted whether Homer 
would be a war-horse strong enough to carry his rider through 
this Ionian Iliad ; Sidney Herbert only trusted that the result 
of the mission would be to hand the Islands over to Greece. 
But to Gladstone, the scholar and the churchman, the proposal 
was welcome as an opportunity of visiting the scenes of the 
"Odyssey" and studying the Orthodox Establishment. To 
the existing Lord High Commissioner his coming was scarcely 
acceptable. For Young, despite the tempest aroused by the 
rumour of his colonisation scheme, could truthfully affirm that 
during his tenure of office " the power of the high police " had 
"not been resorted to in any single instance," while, at this 

28o Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

time not a single Ionian was "in exile, in confinement, or 
any kind of legal process, for a political offence." Trade was 
growing; the effects of the cholera at Zante had been ob- 
literated by a splendid olive crop and the consequent reduction 
of the debt. The only recent incidents had been a display of 
anti-Turkish feeling by the municipal officer superintending 
the market of CorfiCi in forbidding the supply of bread to Turkish 
troopships, and the refusal of himself and his colleagues to halt 
before the palace during the procession of St Spiridon, the 
patron-saint of the island. It was, therefore, a surprise, as 
disagreeable to the Lord High Commissioner as it was agree- 
able to the Ionian Unionists, to learn that his old schoolmate 
and colleague in Parliament was coming out to examine his 
work. The task, difficult for anyone unacquainted with the 
peculiar conditions of the Islands, was rendered harder by 
the indiscretion of the London Liberal newspaper ; and Glad- 
stone, then in Vienna, had to make, not for the last time, 
a practical apology to the Austrian government. When, 
accompanied by his Neapolitan friend Lacaita, upon whose 
knowledge of this old Venetian colony he relied, the eminent 
statesman arrived, on November 24, 1858, at Corfu, he soon 
found that the stolen dispatches, the policy of which was 
repudiated alike by Young and himself, had done their work. 
In vain he told the Senate and the ten Corfiote deputies that 
there was no question of altering the treaty of 181 5, and that 
he had come not to discuss the British protectorate but to 
examine how it could be harmonised with local interests. 
In vain he offered Radical reforms in place of union. At 
Santa Mavra, whither he proceeded from Corfu, the Greek 
authorities reiterated their abhorrence of Young's unlucky 
dispatches, and heard without conviction that union was an 
Utopia which was the main obstacle to practical improvements. 
At Ithaca the memories of the " wily Odysseus " may have 
interested the scholarly Commissioner more than the plaints 
of his political descendants. At Cephalonia he was greeted. 

xii] Gladstones Tour 281 

to his disgust, with cries of " Down with the Protectorate ! " 
as well as shouts of " Long live the Union ! " while copies of 
the historic vote of December 8, 1850, were thrust into his 
carriage. He attributed this bitterness of Cephalonian feeling, 
which the local politicians formally disavowed, to the repressive 
measures of 1849, but was impressed with the tragic appeal 
of the aged Archbishop for union of " this unhappy island " 
with Greece. In Zante, the constituency of the protectorate's 
most vehement opponent, he was constrained once again to 
point out the impracticability of union in the then condition 
of Europe, but was received with the habitual courtesy of the 
lonians towards a friend of their race. Thence he went to 
Athens, where he received the impression that there was no 
general desire for the annexation of the Islands — an impression 
somewhat disproved by the relations believed to exist between 
Otho and a leading Unionist newspaper there. To the in- 
fluence of the press Gladstone attributed the Unionist senti- 
ments which he found in ~ Paxo, where two exiled Corfiote 
editors had employed their compulsory leisure in propaganda 
against the protectorate. 

After paying this cursory visit to all the outlying islands 
except remote Cerigo, Gladstone settled down to work at 
Corfti, besieged by needy lonians who regarded him as an 
earthly providence able to provide places for themselves 
and even dowries for their daughters, and regarded by the 
British as a political Jacob, the supplanter of the rightful 
Lord High Commissioner. Having decided on a plan of 
reforms as an antidote to union, which he considered detri- 
mental to the Islands so long as Otho ruled over Greece, 
Gladstone advised Young's recall and offered himself as tem- 
porary successor to introduce the reform scheme. There was 
no room for two High Commissioners at Corfu ; Young left 
on January 25, 1859; and, on the same day, Gladstone, whose 
offer had been gladly accepted by the Queen, entered upon 
his office and opened the extraordinary session of the Assembly. 

282 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

Two days later, that body passed a motion, " that the sole and 
unanimous will {Ok\-t](Tii) of the Ionian people has been, and 
is, the union of all the Seven Islands with the Kingdom of 
Greece." Gladstone told the Assembly that its only legal 
means of expression was by petition ; and, when the motion 
was repeated in that form, he characteristically quibbled about 
the meaning of the word ^cXiyo-i?, w^hich he insisted upon 
translating " disposition," instead of the obvious signification. 
The lonians were doubtless amused at this not uncommon 
pretention of a foreign scholar to know more about their own 
language than they themselves, while his scholarly chief was 
probably edified by the philological criticism, which accom- 
panied his transmission of their petition to the Queen. The 
royal reply, as was expected, was a flat refusal " to abandon 
the obligations " laid upon the British monarchy by the treaty 
of 1815, or to "permit any application to any other Power 
in furtherance of any similar design." Thereupon, the eminent 
statesman in his best Italian introduced into the Assembly 
his Ionian reform bill. His study of Ionian affairs had con- 
vinced him, that, while union was undesirable, " not Cherubim 
and Seraphim could work " the existing system ; he saw that, 
although, as Greek and French writers admitted, the material 
prosperity of the lonians was greater than that of the free 
Greeks, the fiscal system weighed heavily on the peasantry, 
crippled the export trade and discriminated unfairly between 
town and country. The civil service, as he remarked, was 
*' disproportionate to the number of the population, and to the 
work done " ; for *' the paid servants of the public " were 
"above 2200 among 240,000 inhabitants," and had increased 
by one-quarter since the reforms of 1849, so that the lonians 
were the most official-ridden people in Europe. The nobles 
and the gentry naturally liked to have it so, just as the deputies 
were glad of their salaries, which Gladstone found excessive 
and sought to halve and pay only while the Assembly was 
sitting. He could, therefore, scarcely expect either the office- 


] Gladstone s Proposals 283 

holders, who were the mainstay of the protectorate, or the 
Radicals, who were its fiercest enemies, to approve of a 
retrenchment which would touch their vested interests. 

Nor were his political reforms calculated to win the favour of 
either British or lonians. His proposed transformation of the 
Senate from an executive body into a partly-elected, partly- 
nominated Second Chamber presupposed the existence of a 
wealthy and powerful aristocracy. But the Ionian nobles had 
neither the means nor the moral courage to oppose a strong resis- 
tance to the measures of a democratic Assembly, which, under 
the Gladstonian scheme, would have met annually to vote the 
budget, could have impeached all officials before the Senate, 
and with that body would have enjoyed the revived Venetian 
privilege of petitioning the Crown against "grave malversation" 
on the part of the Lord High Commissioner. The proposed 
Ministry, to which the executive powers of the Senate were 
to be transferred, would have owed its nomination to that 
official ; but the authority over the high police, with which 
he had been invested since 181 7 and which empowered him 
to banish whomsoever he chose, was abolished. Frequently 
exercised by earlier High Commissioners, it had never been 
used by Young. These proposals, regarded by the British 
and their friends as Hkely to increase the power of the Ionian 
democrats, were feared by the democrats as an indefinite 
postponement of the union — a "national suicide," as a 
Zantiote Radical journal called their acceptance. Count 
Dusmani, the future historian of Gladstone's mission, a Pro- 
tectionist who had been 30 years in public life, warned their 
author that they would be rejected. A few voices, those of 
Count Flamburiari, the president of the Assembly, of Sir Peter 
Brailas, of Sokrates Koures, were raised in their defence. One 
deputy, whose name Padovan showed his Venetian origin, 
spoke for two whole days against them — a feat worthy of the 
great parliamentarian himself. Meanwhile, the would-be legis- 
lator of the lonians had showed a strange ignorance of the 

284 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

laws of his own country. He had ignored the constitutional 
rule that the acceptance of the Commissionership had vacated 
his seat in Parliament and disqualified him from seeking re- 
election. Upon learning that he was no longer a member 
of Parliament, he had formally resigned the Commissionership 
on February i, leaving his friends at home to solve the nice 
problem in truly Gladstonian fashion by first appointing 
Sir Henry Knight Storks, an Italian-speaking colonel of Ionian 
experience, as High Commissioner, and then making him 
name Gladstone as his temporary deputy. During this brief 
interregnum the debate dragged on, till, on February 16, 1859, 
the evening of Storks' arrival, the Assembly adopted with only 
one adverse vote and nine abstentions a motion rejecting the 
whole scheme. Three days later, Gladstone left Corfu, after 
having demonstrated that lecal knowledge is more valuable 
than genius in the near east, and that neither a great name 
nor high station imposes upon the Greek democracy. His 
biographer has admitted that the Ionian mission was a failure, 
which, if it did not injure the temporary Commissioner's future 
at home, prejudiced the position alike of his predecessor and 
of his successor in the Ionian Islands. 

The tenth and last Lord High Commissioner, at the time 
of his appointment a simple colonel, chiefly known for his 
management of the hospitals at Scutari during the Crimean 
War, found that the Assembly was not disposed to let the 
question of union slumber. The outbreak of the Italian War 
(April 1859) had a natural influence upon Ionian politics. Corfu 
was the traditional refuge of Italian exiles ; it was thence that 
the Bandiera brothers had started on their fatal expedition to 
Calabria in 1844 ; a Greco-Italian society, the "Great Brother- 
hood," had suffered imprisonment under Ward; Ionian Radicals 
were members of similar bodies in Italy; and a central com- 
mittee in Zante was in correspondence with Garibaldi through 
the restless Loml)drdos, whose inspiration might be traced 
in the writings of the French scholar and traveller, Lenormant, 

xii] opinion in London 285 

against British rule. But the Unionists founded some of their 
most specious arguments upon the utterances of British 
ministers. When Russell, in his famous dispatch of Oct. 27, 
i860, proclaimed " the Italians " to be " the best judges of their 
own interests " and spoke with enthusiasm of " their liberties " 
and "independence," the Ionian Dandolo invited him to 
apply these doctrines to the Greeks of the Seven Islands. 
When, four months later, the Assembly met early in 1861, 
an attack upon Gladstone's mission was followed by proposals 
to submit the question of union in Italian fashion to a plebiscite 
and to appeal to the parliamentarians, governments, and 
philanthropists of Europe for their co-operation. After warning 
it of the unconstitutional character of these motions, Storks 
prorogued it for six months — a weapon robbed of half its 
terrors by the practice of paying the deputies' salaries even 
when parliament was not sitting. This incident led to a 
debate at Westminster, which gave both the Duke of Newcastle, 
then Colonial Secretary, and Gladstone, then Chancellor of 
the Exchequer, an opportunity of upholding the protectorate. 
Cession to Greece, argued the great Philhellene, would logically 
involve that of Crete, Thessaly, and Epirus, and would at 
the same time be a reckless waste of public money spent on 
fortifications and "a crime against the safety of Europe." 
These words were spoken on May 7, 1861 ; on December 8, 
1862, the same Cabinet, of which the speaker was a member, 
decided, with the solitary opposition of Lord Westbury, to 
give up the Islands — only one of many examples of British 
inconsistency in the eastern question. Palmerston himself, 
the head of the government, consented to the cession of 
Corfu, whose surrender he had declared in 1850 to be an 
act of folly, whose retention, even if the southern islands were 
ceded, he had again urged in 185 1 as an act of wisdom. Such 
is statesmanship ! 

The statements of Newcastle and Gladstone had some 
influence upon Ionian politics. When the twelfth Ionian 

286 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

Assembly met in 1862, it learnt with surprise that its newly- 
elected President, Zerv6s, the fervent Cephalonian Radical 
and exile of earlier days, had toned down into a " Reformer," 
so moderating was the effect of office, so slight seemed the 
prospect of union on the very eve of its accomplishment. The 
Radicals, however, under Lombardos, continued their protests 
against the protectorate, in some cases blaming the British 
authorities for what, since the reforms of 1849, was really the 
fault of their own free municipalities. If since that date the 
roads were no longer kept up and the splendid forest of the 
Black Mountain inadequately protected, it was because those 
local bodies allowed politics to enter into their work and feared 
to punish the authors of forest fires in view of the next muni- 
cipal election. In order to remedy these abuses. Storks 
persuaded the Senate to restrict, through the Regents of the 
islands, the powers of the municipalities, while he threw open 
to competition the smaller posts in the public service. It 
was too late, however, for a system of benevolent despotism. 
Already, in this very year, Russell had offered the Ionian 
Islands to Otho on condition that he abstained from causing 
trouble in Turkey. After his deposition, the election of Prince 
Alfred, who had visited Corfu in 1859 and whose elder brother 
had landed in Cephalonia in the summer of 1862, caused 
Great Britain to be much more popular than before, except 
among the extreme Radicals ; while Elliot's promise that the 
Ionian Islands would be the reward of the Greeks for choosing 
a suitable monarch, who would respect the Greek constitution 
and the integrity of Turkey, was the first official announcement 
to the lonians of the new British policy. The Queen's speech 
of 1863 repeated the offer, provided also that the lonians 
themselves expressed their definite desire for union — a desire 
only doubted by those who regarded the local aristocracy and 
the officials as the sole representatives of public opinion, and by 
cynics who believed, to the last, that the Radicals would shrink 
from an act that would put an end to their salaries and close 

xii] British Conditions 287 

the political career of most of them for ever. At Westminster, 
however, the abandonment of the Islands was strongly 
criticised by Lords Derby and Carnarvon and by Disraeli, 
while Palmerston contended that the cession of the protectorate 
was the affair not of Parliament but of the prerogative. 

Article 4 of the treaty of July 13, 1863, relative to the ac- 
cession of King George, between the three protecting Powers and 
the King of Denmark, provided for the union of the Islands with 
Greece, when it should " have been found to be in accordance 
with the wishes of the Ionian Parliament," and should " have 
obtained the consent of the Courts of Austria, France, Prussia, 
and Russia." These Powers in a protocol of August i agreed 
to this revision of the treaty of 1815, of which three of them 
had been signatories ; a newly-elected Ionian Assembly on 
October 5 voted with only three dissentients for the Union 
of the Seven Islands and their dependencies with Greece. 
The Anglo-Ionian honeymoon was, however, of short duration. 
In his message to the Assembly, Storks had stated five 
conditions, whereas the late elections had been fought on 
the cry of " Union without conditions." Of these conditions 
the most important were the preservation of the British 
cemeteries in the Islands — a question raised in 1902, when 
it was proposed to erect a casino on that at CorfCi — the annual 
charge on the Ionian revenues of ;^i 0,000 in augmentation 
of the new King's civil list, and the abandonment of all 
Ionian claims in return for the quittance for a debt of ;^9o,289 
due to the protectorate " for arrears of military contribution." 
These conditions were accepted, although the payment made 
by the lonians to their future sovereign aroused the just 
criticism that the expiring protectorate had no right to mortgage 
the future of an integral part of his kingdom. But a still greater 
surprise was in store for them. By a treaty between Great 
Britain and the above-mentioned Powers, signed in London on 
November 14, 1863, the Ionian Islands were declared neutral 
territory, and consequently the forces maintained there were 

288 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

to be limited, and the fortifications of the island of Corfu and 
its immediate dependencies were to be destroyed before the 
departure of the British troops. The announcement of these 
further conditions caused indignation alike in the Islands and 
in Greece. The Greek plenipotentiary, Charilaos Trikoupes, 
son of the historian, and himself a future Premier, who thus 
made his first appearance in public life, arrived in London 
after the treaty was signed, and described the imposition of 
these conditions as "the immolation of Greece to Austria." 
Both Austria and Turkey regarded the fortifications of Corfu 
as a danger, the one to the Adriatic, the other to Epirus, 
while Palmerston defended the treaty by the precedents of the 
demolition of the Belgian fortresses and the neutralisation of 
Chablais and Faucigny. The Greek government pointed out 
that the neutrality of such islands as Cerigo and Santa Mavra 
would be nonsense, because they were geographically continua- 
tions of the Morea and Akarnania, and cited the British bom- 
bardment of Copenhagen as a proof of what neutrality was 
worth in the event of war between two strong naval Powers. 
A compromise was made and embodied, on January 25, 
1864, in a protocol which neutralised only the two northern- 
most islands — Corfu and Paxo with their dependencies, and 
removed the limit imposed upon Greek forces in all of them. 
These terms were incorporated in the definite treaty of union, 
signed on March 29, 1864, by the three protecting Powers 
and the King of the Hellenes, who took over the existing 
contracts with the Ionian Bank and the Austrian Lloyd, and 
promised to pay the pensions and compensations, enumerated 
in a separate convention and amounting to ;£io,676, due to 
certain British subjects and Ionian officials, whose services 
would be no longer needed. This last condition the Greek 
government considered unreasonable, for thus not only had 
the lonians to pay ;£io,ooo as an annuity to their new King, 
but the Greeks the same sum in pensions to the old Ionian 
establishment. Great Britain acted generously in ceding the 

xii] Destruction of the Forts 289 

Islands ; she need not have spoiled her splendid act of 
self-sacrifice by petty pecuniary considerations. 

The last sad act in the drama of the protectorate now 
began — the destruction of the Corfiote fortifications. For- 
tunately, the picturesque " Old Fort," from whose KopvffiM (or 
"twin peaks ") the island received its present name, was spared ; 
but the marine defences of the " New Fort," the adjacent 
'* Fort Abraham " and the fortifications of the islet of Vido, 
which commands the entrance of the harbour, were blown up. 
lonians argued that the British had no right to destroy these 
works without consulting them, because about two-thirds of 
their cost during the protectorate had been paid out of Ionian 
money. The great blocks of masonry, on one of which the 
author read the date of 1837, still cumber the islet of Vido ; and 
such was the force of the explosion that an officer in charge 
of it told him that it broke all the windows in the opposite 
houses of Corfu. The destruction of these fortifications em- 
bittered the local press against the departing protectors; but 
when, on the last morning of British rule, June 2, 1864, 
two of our men were told off" to sever the statue of Britannia 
from the Phaiakian gallery, which still stands on the top of 
the palace, a friend heard some native bystanders, exclaim, 
" she never did us any harm." At noon, Thrasyboulos Zaimes 
took over the Islands as extraordinary envoy of the Greek 
government ; and four days later King George landed at Corfti, 
subsequently visiting the other six islands. It is pleasant to 
relate, on the authority of the British diplomatist who accom- 
panied him, that at Santa Mavra alone was any bitterness 
exhibited towards the dethroned protectorate. The last scene 
in the drama of union was the entrance of the 84 Ionian 
deputies, or twice the ordinary number, elected for the first 
time by manhood suffrage, into the National Assembly at 
Athens on August 3. From the Corfiote deputation the 
landed class was wholly excluded ; the country swamped the 

M. U 19 

290 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

Thus ended the connexion of half a century between 
Britain and the Ionian Islands. The lapse of well-nigh 
another half century since the union enables us to form some 
opinion upon the step then taken. The question may be con- 
sidered from various standpoints. From that of the Greeks of 
the kingdom the union was an advantage, not only because 
it gave them seven beautiful islands, all in a better material 
condition, so far as roads and public works were concerned, 
than the older provinces, but also because the lonians furnished 
a cultured and aristocratic element to the state, which was 
due to the long Venetian domination. The Ionian Islands 
have produced one Prime Minister, several prominent 
politicians, and some distinguished diplomatists to Greece, 
while the great natural beauty of Corfu has favoured the 
growth of art there. To the lonians themselves the union 
was an ethical gain ; for most nationalities, and not least the 
Hellenic, prefer to be governed even less well by their own 
fellow-countrymen — and in the east the rulers should also 
profess the same faith as the ruled — than to be governed 
better by strangers, especially if these be of a different creed. 
The moral key-note of the Ionian agitation for union was not 
so much Uberty as nationality and religion, the two coefficients 
of Hellenism. Moreover, as Lytton pointed out, there were 
social, as well as political, difficulties. " The cordial amenities 
of bearing, and the judicious consideration for national pride, 
and even national prejudices," which he recommended in a 
memorable dispatch, were not always found among our 
officials. An Englishman, wrote a French observer, repeats 
that he is an Englishman twenty times a day, but once extra 
in the Ionian Islands. But from the material point of view — 
and ordinary mortals do not live by great ideas alone — the 
lonians, and more particularly the Corfiotes, who benefited 
principally by the British occupation, have suffered since the 
union, as they soon discovered. Life in CorfCi was a very 
different thing under the British from what it is to-day. 

xii] Results of the Union 291 

Then a number of highly-paid officials spent their money 
freely in the town, trade was brisk, and the station was known 
as *'the soldier's paradise." Posts there were in plenty for 
the Corfiotes, while the amusements which always follow the 
British officer attracted natives and strangers alike to the 
place. No doubt this concentration of interests in the town 
had the bad effect of inducing the landowners to leave their 
estates in the interior of the island, in order to have their 
share in the social gaities and lucrative employments which 
the capital offered. So far the Greek government has not 
done as much as was expected for the Ionian Islands, and 
there is a melancholy air about the untenanted residences 
of the former High Commissioners, which is only dispersed 
when the annual visit of the German Emperor to Gastouri 
attracts Greek royalty to Mon Repos. Lastly, there remains 
the strategic and political aspect of the cessions. Napoleon, 
Nelson, and other commanders placed a high value upon 
Corfu, while Bismarck considered the withdrawal of our 
protectorate as a sign of weakness. Certainly the German 
statesman did not usually err on the side of generosity ; and 
it may be doubted whether an enlarged and grateful Greek 
state be not more to our advantage than the protectorate over 
one discontented section of a hostile nationality. To sum up : 
the union will be differently judged by political economists, 
who ignore flesh and blood, and by politicians, who, being 
patriots themselves, admire patriotism in other nations. 

The traces of the British occupation have not quite died 
away. The initials " G.R." and "V.R." may still be seen in 
the palace at Corfu ; the townspeople still drink the excellent 
water which Adam brought from Benizze ; and the square 
which now bears his name was so called because of the solemn 
doxology held there to commemorate the opening of the 
aqueduct. Roads and monuments to High Commissioners, 
a few graveyards and a few gray-beards remind the islanders 
of their former benefactors ; the Ionian Bank still carries on 


292 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

business ; and cricket is still played at Corfti, where a few 
scraps of English have been incorporated in the vernacular. 
But the generation is fast passing away which knew the pro- 
tectorate ; to most the British history of the Islands has passed 
into that chapter of our national renunciations, which records 
the lost possessions of Britain in the Mediterranean — Tangier 
and Port Mahon. 

The entry of the Ionian deputies into the National Assembly 
enabled that body to begin the discussion of the new con- 
stitution, of which a draft had been prepared by a committee. 
During the nine months since the young King's arrival the 
Assembly had used up three more Ministries ; and party spirit 
ran so high that the decision of the Ionian members to give 
a patriotic support to the government of the day soon gained 
for them the reproaches of the Opposition. One deputy pro- 
tested against the interference of Sponneck in the deliberations 
of the Assembly ; and the discussion of the articles proceeded 
so slowly that the royal mentor begged the British government 
to use its influence with the Opposition— a request which 
evoked the excellent, if somewhat tardy, recognition of the 
principle, that the less the three Powers intervened in Greek 
politics, the better would it be for Greece. The complete 
unification of the Ionian Islands with the rest of the kingdom 
proved to be an apple of discord even among the lonians 
themselves ; for, while the Corfiote and Cephalonian deputies, 
supported by the Opposition, desired the full and immediate 
application in the Islands of the Greek legal and fiscal system, 
the other Ionian members followed the government, then 
headed by Kanares, in supporting the gradual adoption of 
uniformity. The result was that the lonians retained their 
fiscal system, introduced in 1803 and preserved during the 
British protectorate, by which an export duty of 22*2 per cent, 
on wine and oil represented the sole contribution of the 
inhabitants to the state. As weeks and months were still 
passing, the King, at the advice of the French minister, sent 

xii] Greek Constitution (7/1864 293 

a message to the Assembly on October 18, reminding it that 
nearly a year had elapsed since his arrival, that more than 
two months had gone by since the arrival of the Ionian 
deputies, and that the delay in voting the constitution was 
causing discontent among the people and embarrassment to 
the Crown. He, therefore, requested the Assembly to vote 
upon the rest of the constitution in ten days, reserving full 
liberty of action to himself in case of its non-completion within 
that period. This hint at his possible departure from the 
country had its immediate effect. Despite Opposition protests, 
the Assembly, which was still engaged in the discussion of 
the 71st article when the royal message arrived, voted that 
and the remaining 39 by October 29. One verbal amendment 
relating to the Roman Catholic priests in Greece was accepted 
at the suggestion of the Crown to please the French govern- 
ment ; and on November 28 the King took the oath to the 
constitution and the President declared the labours of the 
Assembly over. Thus, after sitting for nearly two years, the second 
National Assembly held in Athens had provided the kingdom 
of Greece with a second King and a second constitution, the 
sixth drawn up since 182 1, which, however, lasted longer than 
any of its predecessors. 

The constitution of 1864 created an uni-cameral system. 
The Senate was abolished by a majority of 211 to 62, although 
the leaders of both the government and the Opposition were 
favourable to some sort of Second Chamber. The difficulty 
of forming such a body in a country, where there was (except 
in the Ionian Islands) no aristocracy, where democracy is 
engrained in the blood, and where large fortunes were then 
very rare, argued for a single Chamber, while the practical 
experience of the Othonian Senate had discredited that branch 
of the legislature in the eyes of the people. It is true, that 
the first parliamentary criticisms of Otho had been made in 
the Senate ; but what specially damaged the senators in popular 
estimation, usually based on the attitude of the governing 

294 Cession of the Ionian Islands [ch. 

classes towards their salaries, was the extension of the senatorial 
sessions so as to obtain remuneration for the largest number 
of months, and the subsequent conversion of the monthly 
wage, fixed by the constitution of 1844, into a larger annuity. 
Sponneck's attempt to introduce into the constitution a paid 
Council of State, as a check, was only temporarily successful, 
for the articles creating it were repealed next year. The 
Senate having been thus abolished and the Crown restricted 
within the limits of constitutional monarchy, which King 
George has been careful not to overstep, the Chamber of 
Deputies became omnipotent, and parliamentarism was in- 
stalled in all its latest developments. The BouU^ as it was 
classically called, was composed of deputies, elected for four 
years by universal, secret, simultaneous suffrage, in proportion 
to the population. Its numbers, in no case less than 150, have 
been as high as 234, but were reduced in 1905 to 177 and 
are now 181. The unfortunate proviso, which fixed the 
quorum at so great a figure as half the total number of 
deputies plus one, gave opportunity for obstruction by means 
of abstention on a large scale, which at times paralysed public 
business. Members were paid 2000 dr. (about £,^0) for each 
ordinary session of not less than three or more than six months, 
and their travelling expenses alone for any extraordinary session. 
In 1884 this salary was altered to 1800 dr.^ which was 
occasionally increased in case of a very long extension of the 
sittings, while in practice a compensation of from 1500 to 
2000 dr. was paid latterly for attendance at an extraordinary 
session. But Ministers, pensioners, or officers already in 
receipt of state pay, were only entitled to the difference 
between the legislative and their official salary. Special 
representation was continued in the electoral law of 1864, 
which accompanied the constitution, to the people of Hydra 
and Spetsai and to the colonists of New Psara — as Eretria 
had been re-baptised — in gratitude for the services of the Nautical 
Islands in the War of Independence; and similar feelings 

xii] Greek Constitution ^1864 295 

of pity and patriotism awarded Greek citizenship to the 
refugees of Parga, Soiili and Hagia. The restriction of elec 
tion to men of 30 prevented, as in Italy, the accession of 
young and enthusiastic politicians to power ; and the provision 
that a deputy must be either a native of, or at any rate settled 
for at least two years in, his constituency, tended to narrow 
the choice of the electorate to local magnates and to the 
exclusion of national statesmen, who, as often happens, 
chanced to be unpopular in their native place. Salaried civil 
servants and mayors were further declared ineligible, but 
officers of the forces were allowed to become deputies, being 
placed in retreat during the whole period of the legis- 
lature. This last provision scarcely tended to the maintenance 
of discipline, for the army might have the spectacle of a 
subordinate officer criticising his superiors from his place 
in Parliament. But the insertion of this clause, which had 
not existed in the constitution of 1844, is traceable to the 
military character of the revolution of 1862, of which this was 
the reward. Later legislation endeavoured to diminish the 
evil by regarding the period of an officer's parliamentary life 
as so much lost time in his military career. A Cabinet of 
seven Ministers, not necessarily members of the BouU^ in 
which, however, they all had a right to speak, continued to 
carry on the work of government. On five occasions King 
George availed himself of the privilege to form extra-parlia- 
mentary Cabinets ; on six he dismissed a Ministry which had 
not been forced by the Chamber to resign. But these were 
exceptions to the normal working of the ministerial system. 
Excluding the ;j^i 2,000 a year paid to King George by the 
three protecting Powers, the civil list was fixed at 1,125,000 dr., 
inclusive of the ;^io,ooo contributed by the Ionian Islands. 

The relations of Church and State caused considerable 
debate. The Orthodox Ionian deputies desired the main- 
tenance of their union with the CEcumenical Patriarch, which 
had been sanctioned by the Ionian charter of 181 7 and which 

296 Cession of the Ionian Islands [cii. 

they regarded as a national, no less than an ecclesiastical, 
question. But the Orthodox Church in Greece was once 
more proclaimed autocephalous, in an article, identical, save 
for one adverb, with that of the constitution of 1 844 ; and 
an arrangement was made with the Patriarch respecting the 
cession of his jurisdiction over the lonians, and allowing the 
chief Corfiote ecclesiastic to retain for his life the coveted 
title of " Metropolitan." It was provided that the heir to the 
Greek throne^ simply styled "the successor" (for the "Euro- 
pean " title of " Duke of Sparta " is not used in Greece) must 
belong to the Orthodox Church. Finally, it was enacted that 
a revision of the constitution could only take place, if, after 
the lapse of ten years, the Bouli in two successive legislatures 
requested by a majority of three-quarters of its whole number 
the revision of specified provisions. In that event, a revisionary 
Chamber, composed of twice the ordinary number of deputies, 
was to be specially convened. An exception, however, was 
allowed in the case of article 83, which created a Council 
of State; the revision of this article was permitted in the 
next legislature, if three-quarters of the members demanded 
it. The Council of State of from 15 to 20 persons, nominated 
for ten years by the Crown on the proposal of the Cabinet for 
the purpose of preparing and examining bills, had formed no 
part of the original draft; but it had seemed to Sponneck 
to provide a possible check on democracy, and had therefore 
been recommended to the Assembly. But to the Greek 
democrats it smacked of Bavarian autocracy — for Otho had 
had a similar Council of State from 1835 ^o 1S44 — ^"d it 
was accepted as part of the constitution by only a small 
majority. Scarcely had the constitution been passed than 
a large group of deputies signed a protest against the restora- 
tion of this institution; and in the next legislature it was 
abolished, and the four articles of the constitution relating to 
it consequently annulled, by 120 votes to 26. When, however, 
a thorough revision of the constitution was imperatively 

xii] Greek Constitution (7/1864 297 

demanded in 19 10, the Crown did not — perhaps could not — 
wait till two successive legislatures had demanded revision by 
a three-quarters' majority. It was felt that the country could 
not afford the time for the nice performance of those pre- 
liminary obligations. 

The constitution of 1864, with that one exception and 
a few smaller changes, regulated Greek public life for 46 years. 
Nowhere has the democratic ideal been more clearly expressed 
in writing; whether the national interests were equally well 
interpreted by it, is another question. 


AND CRETE (1856-69) 

Sanguine statesmen, who had undertaken the Crimean war 
to maintain the integrity of the Ottoman empire, hoped that 
the sacrifices of the western Powers would be at least rewarded 
by the reform of Turkish administration and by the amelioration 
of the conditions under which the Christian subjects of the 
Sultan lived. Believers in paper reforms were encouraged in 
this belief by the publication, on February 18, 1856, a week 
before the meeting of the Congress at Paris, of an " Illustrious 
writing," or Haiti- Humayun^ confirming the promises made at 
Giil-khaneh in 1839. This second charter, granted by Abdul 
Mejid to his people, ratified all "the spiritual privileges and 
immunities'' accorded "to all Christian communities or to 
other non-Mussulman religions." Patriarchs were to be nomin- 
ated for life, and thus the scandal of frequent changes avoided ; 
their revenues were to be fixed, and the temporal affairs of 
their respective communities placed under the control of a 
committee, chosen from among them. The fabric of churches 
schools, and hospitals might be repaired, provided — it was 
added with a fine respect for archaeology, which no one would 
have expected from the Turks—that " the primitive plans " 
were followed ! All injurious appellations, tending to wound 
the susceptibilities of this or that creed or race, were to be 
severely punished ; compulsory conversion was prohibited ; 
office was thrown open to every nationality ; civil and military 

CH. xiii] The Sultans Promises 299 

education was offered to all who complied with the regulations. 
Justice was to be administered in public, and witnesses were 
to swear in the fashion of their respective creeds ; codes of law 
were to be prepared and translated into all the languages of 
the empire ; any corporal punishment approaching to torture 
was abolished ; the police was to be reorganised in a manner 
to inspire confidence and security. Christians were declared 
admissible to the army ; and equality of rights was stated to 
involve equality of taxation. Reform of the tithe-system and 
abolition of the tax-farmer were promised ; an annual budget 
was to show how the taxes had been spent ; roads and canals 
were to be made, banks founded, European capital attracted 
for the development of the Sultan's dominions. In short, an 
Asiatic despotism, based upon the Koran and which in Europe 
was still rather in the nature of a garrison than a settlement, 
was to be transformed by a stroke of the pen into a western 
empire. The history of the next half-century is the best 
commentary on the Utopian programme contained in this op- 
timistic document, which was communicated to the signatories 
of the treaty of Paris — a communication which they ingenu- 
ously declared in article 9 to be of '* high value " and yet as 
not authorising their collective or separate intervention in the 
internal affairs of Turkey. In other words, the charter was 
treated as the " spontaneous emanation of the Sultan's sovereign 
resolve " to govern on European lines but without European 

No one acquainted with the Turks, or indeed with any 
nationality accustomed for centuries to regard itself as a govern- 
ing and superior race, could have expected these reforms to be 
palatable to the Mussulmans. A reaction naturally set in ; and 
little more than two years had passed, when an outbreak of 
fanaticism — repeated at the same place in 1895 — resulted in 
the murder of the British and French consuls at Jedda, the 
active intervention of the two late allies of the Sultan, and 
the bombardment of the town by a British vessel. Ere long the 

300 Reforms and their Results [ch. 

horrors of the Lebanon aroused the attention of Europe and 
occasioned the dispatch of a French expedition to Syria. A 
little while more, and Crete rose against her masters. 

The settlement of the Lebanon in 1845 ^^^ secured peace 
as long as the Emir Haydar, who governed the Maronite section 
of the Mountain, lived. But, upon his death in 1854, the Porte 
selected as his successor a certain Emir Beshir- Ahmed Bellamah, 
whose appointment not only divided the British from the 
French government, but was also challenged by other native 
chiefs. A social revolution was at this time developing among 
the Maronites, the fertility of whose wives was in striking 
contrast with the barrenness of the soil. As a natural con- 
sequence of this disproportion between the Christian population 
and the land available for its support, the young Maronites 
found themselves compelled to emigrate or obtain such an 
agrarian law as would end, or at least modify, the feudal system 
then still prevailing on the Lebanon. In this agitation, the 
peasants found leaders, as usually happens, in the younger sons 
of the nobility, who, excluded by primogeniture from the 
advantages of the first-born, " took the people into partnership," 
like the aristocratic Athenian demagogue of old. The priests, 
too, sprung from the loins of the people, espoused the popular 
cause, under the leadership of the bishop of Beiriit ; while the 
new governor of the Maronite district was glad to exploit for 
the destruction of his rivals the socialistic sentiments of the 
peasantry. An agrarian insurrection began, and a peasant 
commonwealth was formed with a gigantic farrier as its presi- 
dent. So far the movement had been confined to the Maronites, 
for the Druse nobility was at first inclined to side with the 
Maronite aristocracy against the peasants, who seemed to be 
the common enemy of the upper class, whether Maronite or 
Druse. But the fabric of feudalism among the Druses was 
more substantial than among the Christians ; and the Turkish 
authorities, glad of an excuse to abolish the local autonomy, 
were able to direct the Druses, peasants no less than chiefs, 

xiii] The Syrian Atrocities 301 

against the Maronites, by whom they regarded themselves 
menaced. Fanaticism was met by fanaticism; and, while French 
diplomacy naturally blamed the Druses, British accused the 
Catholic Maronites. But the latest and most exhaustive study 
of the question points to the Turkish authorities rather than 
the Maronite priests as responsible for kindling the inflammable 
material accumulated by racial, religious, and class hatred on 
the Lebanon. 

On April 27, 1860, the Druses began the massacres of the 
Maronites; a month later 32 blazing villages illuminated the 
Mountain. Sites familiar to Christendom from the Bible, Sidon 
and " Baal-gad, in the valley of Lebanon under Mount Hermon," 
were turned into shambles, where defenceless refugees were 
butchered; in Deir el-Kamar, the lofty "monastery of the 
moon," the ancient palace was strewn with the corpses of 
Maronites, slowly done to death by the Druses under the eyes 
of the Turkish soldiers. Even the pasha of Beirilt professed 
his regret at these horrors ; and, owing to his influence, on 
July 6 the Druses and Maronites signed a treaty of peace. 
But "the Syrian atrocities" were not yet over. Three days 
later, the Mussulmans of Damascus, whither numbers of 
fugitives had fled, attacked the Christian quarter ; for ten days 
the pillage lasted, and the British consul reported that 5500 
Christians perished there. The carnage would have been 
greater, had it not been for the noble conduct of Abd el-Kader, 
the Skanderbeg of Algeria, then living in exile at Damascus. 
The brave defender of northern Africa against the French strove 
to prevent and, when he could not prevent, to mitigate the 
massacre, even at the risk of his life. His retainers escorted 
hundreds, who would otherwise have been killed, to Beiriit 
beneath the shadow of the foreign consulates. Thither, as 
soon as the news of the massacre reached him, Thouvenel, then 
French Minister of Foreign Affairs, resolved to send an expedi- 
tion. Such a policy was defensible on political no less than 
humanitarian grounds, for France was the special protectress 

302 Reforms and their Results [ch. 

of the Maronites, and her Emperor hoped to recover in Syria 
those clerical sympathies which he had lost the year before in 
Italy. Russell, however, fearing the creation of a French 
principality or protectorate in Syria, desired the proposed 
intervention to be regulated by a special convention, which 
Russia, already dissatisfied with the progress of the promised 
Turkish reforms, wished to extend to the general condition of 
the Christians in Turkey, to the Balkans no less than to the 
Lebanon. The Russian suggestion was rejected ; a Greek offer 
to send a detachment of Svzonoi and two warships was declined ; 
and on August 3 the signatory Powers of the treaty of Paris, 
with the exception of Sardinia, signed in that capital a protocol, 
which was converted a month later into a convention. A body 
of not more than 12,000 European troops, of which Napoleon 
III at once furnished 6000, was "to contribute to the restora- 
tion of tranquillity," but this occupation was not to exceed six 
months. This " active co-operation " of the Powers with the 
Sultan was justified by that very article 9 of the treaty of Paris, 
which seemed to exclude their intervention in the internal 
affairs of his empire. Before, however, the French expedition 
under General Beaufort d'Hautpoul, an officer of Syrian 
experience, had arrived, Fuad Pasha, the Turkish Minister of 
Foreign Affairs, whom the Sultan had sent as his commissioner 
extraordinary to Syria on the news of the massacres, had exacted 
exemplary punishment at Damascus. By his orders, 1 1 1 soldiers 
were shot, 57 civilians hanged, the pasha himself secretly 
executed, and Abd el-Kader decorated. But when the French 
proceeded to clear the Lebanon, the Druses were allowed to 
escape through the connivance of Fuad or the stupidity of his 
agents; and the French expedition thus became merely "a 
charitable promenade." Thouvenel strove to obtain an ex- 
tension of its duration. Russell, however, fearing Napoleonic 
designs against Syria and Egypt, opposed it ; and it was finally 
arranged that by June 5 the evacuation of the country should be 
complete. Beyond increasing the popularity of the Napoleonic 

xiii] Organisation of the Lebanon 303 

song, Partant pour la Syrie^ the nine months' French occupa- 
tion of Syria had not achieved much. International jealousy 
had again favoured the Turks ; and in the commission which 
had been sitting at Beirilt Lord Dufiferin's championship 
of the Druses tempered their punishment with mercy; 245 
Druses were exiled to Tripoli in Africa, and others to the castles 
of Belgrade and Vidin ; the pasha of Beirut escaped death by 
transportation to Constantinople ; indemnities were paid by the 
Ottoman authorities, of course irregularly, to the Christians of 
Damascus and the Lebanon, and were supplemented by a French 

It now remained to reorganise the administration of the 
Mountain. The international commission decided that the 
Lebanon should form an autonomous province under an 
Ottoman governor-general, chosen from among the Sultan's 
Christian subjects. The frontiers of this province were restric- 
ted by the exclusion of Beiriit and several villages; it was divided 
into six districts, three administered by Maronites, one by a 
Druse, one by an Orthodox Greek, and one by an Uniate. 
The capital was fixed at Deir el-Kamar, a Christian enclave in 
the Druse district, from which it was detached. Advisory 
provincial and district councils, a local police, and a tribute, 
upon which the Mountain had a first charge, completed the 
charter of 186 1. Its signature was almost the last act of Abdul 
Mejid; on June 25, 1861 he died, leaving behind him the 
memory of a humane ruler, who had attempted, if in vain, to 
continue the reforms of his father, and bequeathing to his 
brother Abdul Aziz, till then regarded as the hope of the 
reactionary party, an embarrassed exchequer, an unfulfilled 
policy of progress, a threatening situation in the Balkan 
peninsula, and an untried organisation on the Lebanon, which 
satisfied none of its inhabitants. 

The first Christian governor-general of the Mountain, a 
CathoHc Armenian of learning and experience alike in diplomacy 
and administration, was received with suspicion and discontent. 

304 Reforms and their Results [cH. 

The Maronites had demanded a governor-general of their own 
race ; the Druses had lost their feudal privileges and were placed 
in an inferior position to the Greeks ; the Greeks, who might 
appear to be the chief gainers by the reorganisation, regarded 
Daoud Pasha as an enemy, because he was an Armenian. The 
democratic section of the Maronites refused to pay taxes to an 
autocratic foreigner, who relied on the local aristocracy. But 
the clever Armenian triumphed over all these obstacles. First, 
he secured by a ruse the deportation of the Maronite tribune, 
Karam ; then he removed the Turkish soldiers, and traversed 
the Mountain to hear in person the grievances of its inhabitants. 
Confidence was thus gradually restored ; private vengeance gave 
way to law ; and all was going well when, in 1863, the release 
of some of the exiled Druses brought back to the Lebanon the 
authors of the massacres. Daoud solved even this difficulty 
by a scheme of land purchase ; the Druses sold their real 
property and emigrated in such large numbers to the fertile 
Hauran, the Bashan of the Bible, that the district has obtained 
the name of "the Druse Mountains." These successes secured 
the governor-general's unanimous re-nomination at the expira- 
tion of his three years' term. But experience had disclosed 
defects in the practical working of the theoretical organisation, 
compiled by diplomatists ignorant of the peculiar conditions of 
the Lebanon. Accordingly a new statute was drawn up and 
signed by the representatives of Turkey and of the five Powers 
at Constantinople on September 6, 1864, which modified and 
simpHfied that of 1861. The Lebanon continued to be ad- 
ministered by a Christian governor, nominated by the Porte ; 
and Daoud's tenure was prolonged for five years. In order to 
give to the Maronites, the most numerous element of the 
population, a representation proportionate to their numbers, 
a seventh district, administered by a Maronite, was created ; 
the district councils were annulled ; and the provincial council 
was so reorganised, that out of its 12 members four were 
Maronites, three Druses, three Greeks of the two rites, and two 

xiii] Later History of the Lebanon 305 

Mussulmans — one Sunnite, or Orthodox^ the other a Metawileh^ 
or dissenter. All feudal privileges and the right of asylum, 
enjoyed by ecclesiastical establishments, were abolished, but 
litigation between ecclesiastics was left within the sole jurisdic- 
tion of the ecclesiastical authorities. Each village became a 
commune, whose mayor and petty justice of the peace was 
a local sheikh. A body of police was responsible for the 
preservation of order ; and it was reiterated that the 3500 purses 
(;^ 1 4, 5 83. 6^. 8^.), at which the tribute was assessed for the 
time being, should be devoted to local requirements, any surplus 
being paid to the Imperial treasury. 

This statute, which cannot be altered without the consent 
of the Powers, still remains, after nearly half a century, the 
charter of the Lebanon, and has likewise served as a model for 
Crete. With the exception of an insurrection headed by the 
escaped Maronite democrat, Karam, in 1866, and terminated 
by the severity of Daoud and the final deportation of its leader, 
the Mountain has enjoyed unbroken peace. A succession of 
strong governors, notably Rustem Pasha, subsequently ambas- 
sador in London, a firm and economical administrator, kept 
both Maronites and Druses in order. Their mutual hatred 
has almost disappeared ; and emigration has reduced the Druses 
to the third place numerically among the inhabitants of the 
Lebanon, which, according to the latest figures, contains 229,680 
Maronites, 54,208 Orthodox Greeks, 49,812 Druses, 34,472 
Uniates, and 30,422 Muslims. The policy of the Sultan's 
representative has been to rely upon the aristocratic and con- 
servative element, thereby checking the democrats and the 
clergy. The most pressing question on the Lebanon is now 
agrarian, for, despite the large numbers of emigrants, land can 
scarcely be purchased on the Lebanon, where more than one- 
third of the soil, and that the best, is owned by the monasteries. 
Mortmain is the curse of the Mountain, because the peasant, 
even if he return from abroad with his little pile, cannot gratify 
his earth-hunger. If he wish to cultivate the land of his beloved 

M. L. 20 

3o6 Reforms and their Results [cH. 

Mountain, he must do so as a monk or a mitayer. Nevertheless, 
the Lebanon is, on the whole, the most successful example of 
autonomy applied to a Turkish province. Samos has had 
frequent difficulties with her princes; Eastern Roumelia was 
soon merged in Bulgaria; Crete will never rest till she has 
obtained union with the Greek kingdom. 

The " great Greek island " had enjoyed — -if for the Cretans 
it could be called " enjoyment " — an unusually long period of 
repose after the abortive insurrection of 1841. In 1858, 
however, 8000 islanders mustered together, and an Assembly, 
convened at Perib61ia near Canea, threatened to resort to force 
unless the reforms promised at Giil-khaneh and re-affirmed in 
the Haiti- Hiimayun of 1856, were realised. The fiscal burdens 
of the Cretans were not onerous, for besides the tithe of 
agricultural produce, estimated at an average of \os. per head, 
they paid only one tax, that in commutation of military service. 
But the collectors of this tax, not in itself heavy (for it was only 
^5560 for the whole island, or about M. per head), demanded 
the simultaneous payment of two years' arrears, and some too 
zealous agents threatened the introduction of other taxes, of 
which the recent census seemed to be the preliminary. Vely 
Pasha, the governor-general, a native of Crete, and a son of 
Mustapha, for so many years vd,li of the island, had acted 
humanely and liberally on the system which he had learned 
when ambassador in Paris ; but his road-making policy, at first 
hailed with enthusiasm, had made him unpopular with the 
peasants, who had to provide the labour and pay 9^. per head, 
and his toleration of changes of religion had led to squabbles 
about proselytism. But underlying all these causes was the 
desire of the Christians for union with Greece, or at least for 
a Cretan principality under Kallerges, the hero of the revolution 
of 1843 and himself of Cretan extraction ^ The moment was 
favourable to the Cretans, for France was on their side and the 

* Consul-general Longworth's report of 1858 in Parliamentary Papers 
1867-8, vol. Ixxiii, No. 3965, i. 

xiii] Cretan Grievances 307 

Turks were occupied with the Montenegrin war ; and thus the 
Servian highlanders rendered their first, but not their last, 
service to the Greek islanders, equally attached to liberty and 
equally ready to fight for it. The Porte, therefore, before much 
blood had been shed, wisely replaced the well-meaning but 
obnoxious governor by a milder official, Sami Pasha, promising 
provincial councils and other concessions on the lines of the 
Haiti- Hujnayiin of 1856. 

But these promises, which had stayed, or rather postponed, 
the insurrection, were disregarded by the next governor- 
general, Ismail Pasha, whose objects were to increase his 
fortune and advance his own career. A petition to the 
Sultan in 1864, setting forth the Cretan grievances, was 
neutralised by a counter-petition, so that discontent, increased 
by two bad crops, continued to spread until, in May 1866, 
some 4000 Christians met at Peribolia to discuss the situation. 
On May 26, a fresh petition, resembling that of 1864, was 
drawn up for presentation to the Sultan. The Christians 
complained of the exorbitant duties levied since 1858 upon 
various articles of food, upon the sale of wine, upon tobacco, 
and upon salt — this last a special grievance, because it crippled 
the Cretan staple manufacture of soap ; nor were they pacified 
by the Turkish argument that the rise in these taxes was 
intended to compensate the treasury for the loss entailed by 
the reduction of the export dues throughout the empire. They 
further complained of the vexatious system of farming the taxes, 
of the want of bridges and roads — for the Turks had done 
practically nothing to improve the communications of the island 
in the two centuries of their occupation — and of the undue 
interference of Ismail in the elections to the " Councils of the 
elders," as they were picturesquely called, despite the promises 
made eight years earlier. They asked for a bank to prevent 
the usury of the oil-merchants, to whom alone the farmers 
could apply for loans; they claimed judicial reform— for the 
awards of the courts were issued in Turkish, not in the tongue 

20 — 2 

3o8 Reforms and their Results [ch. 

understanded of the people, the evidence of a Christian was 
unavailing against that of a Mussulman, imprisonment was 
often indefinitely protracted, and it was the custom to arrest 
the relative of an escaped or contumacious culprit as a hostage. 
The lack of schools, the closing of all the Cretan ports save 
three, and the restrictions upon religious freedom, which com- 
pelled a converted Mussulman to quit the island, completed 
the list of grievances. 

So far reform, not revolution, was mentioned ; it was only 
later that the Cretans petitioned Queen Victoria, Napoleon III, 
and the Tsar for union with Greece, or, if that were im- 
possible, for a reformed political organisation. Clarendon, 
then at the Foreign Office, replied that reforms should be 
granted, but that " the condition and prospects of the Ionian 
Islands ought to deter the Cretans from wishing to be united 
with Greece." The Foreign Secretary's opinion was based 
upon the discouraging reports ^ which he had received from his 
consuls in the three principal islands since the union, and 
especially from Corfti, whose inhabitants felt that they had been 
treated "as a conquered people," or, in the words of a Corfiote, 
as " a fief of the politicians at Athens." The wholesale dismissal 
and reduced payment of Ionian officials, the abolition of 
imprisonment for debt — the only guarantee which the land- 
owner had for the fulfilment of contracts by his tenants — and 
the assimilation of the legal system to that of the rest of Greece, 
caused the landed proprietors of the island to petition the King, 
and Padovan, so lately the leader of Corfiote Unionism, to quit 
the Boule in disgust at what he called "the slaughter of the 
Seven Islands, and particularly of Corfu." While a " state of 
penury and despondency reigned in that island," and the six 
rural deputies openly advocated the extinction of all private 
debts — the yfif.(ov diroKOTrai of the ancients — by means of a 
heavy property tax and heavy import-duties, the Metropolitan 

1 Contradicted by M. S. Dragoiimes, the subsequent Premier, then a 
judge in Corfu. 

XI 1 1] British Policy in Crete 309 

of Cephalonia protested against the separation of the Ionian 
Church from the Patriarchate and its union with that of the 
Greek kingdom, finally accomplished in 1866. Still, the British 
Minister's argument was not convincing, for it took no account 
of the sentiment of nationality ; moreover, the lonians had had 
the material advantages of the British protectorate for nearly 
half a century, while the Cretans had obtained practically no 
benefits, material or other, from the uncovenanted mercies of 
the Turk, whose administration even the most ardent defender 
of "the integrity of the Ottoman Empire" would scarcely place 
on a level with our own. However, both Lord Stanley, who 
succeeded Clarendon on the faft of the Liberal government (June 
1866), and his French colleague, continued to bolster up Turkish 
rule in Crete, thereby prolonging for over 30 years a question 
which is even now not yet definitely solved. Upon Stanley, in 
particular, lies a heavy responsibility for the Iliad of woes 
which this procrastination has involved. 

The dilatoriness of the Porte and its ultimate refusal to 
remit taxes, the exhortations of the militant priest Parthenios 
Kelides, the influence of Cretans in Athens and of unofficial 
Greek agents, and the warlike preparations of Ismail, who 
gathered the Mussulmans into the three chief fortresses of the 
island, brought on an insurrection, which might have been 
prevented, or at least again postponed, by a prompt redress of 
Cretan grievances. The Porte was, indeed, anxious to provoke 
an armed rising, which would enable it to transfer the trouble- 
some island to its vassal, the Khedive Ismail, to whose famous 
predecessor it had been subjected from 1832 to 1840; and this 
plan was not unpleasing to France, then extending her influence 
in Egypt by the construction of the Suez Canal. Egyptian 
troops were landed, as in 1823 ; and Egyptian offers of a bank, 
schools, and roads were made to the Cretans, if they would 
consent to union with Egypt. Instead of accepting them, a 
"General Assembly of the Cretans" held at Sphakia, on Sep- 
tember 2, declared Ottoman rule abolished and proclaimed 

3IO Reforms and their Results [ch. 

union with Greece. Already blood had begun to flow ; an 
Egyptian defeat at the Springs of Apokorona led to the 
recall of Ismail and the appointment as special commissioner 
of Mustapha Pasha, a severe but just, if merciless Albanian, 
who had hanged the Cretans at Murnie's in 1833 and from his 
previous 30 years' governorship of the island was known as 
" Kiritli " (or " the Cretan "). He was assisted by the Egyptian 
Minister of War, himself a Cretan, converted to Islam. 

The Cretan insurrection of r866 naturally aroused the keenest 
sympathy in Greece, and profoundly affected Greek politics. 
Since the adoption of the constitution, Greek public life had 
been agitated by constant ministerial changes, chiefly due to 
the disturbing presence of Sponneck, as the power behind 
the young King. With his aid, in March 1865, Alexander 
Koumoundouros succeeded in displacing his chief Kanares as 
Prime Minister, and thus beginning his series of Premierships ; 
but the first parliament elected under the new constitution 
resulted in a confusion of parties which rendered it impossible 
to form a stable administration. Five Cabinets followed one 
another in almost as many weeks ; and even Sponneck's de- 
parture did not completely allay the apprehensions of Europe 
or the discontent of the Greeks. Such was the state of affairs, 
when the news that " the great Greek island " had risen 
reached Athens. Delege6rges, then Minister of Foreign 
Affairs, was at first desirous of not only assisting unofficially 
the Cretan insurgents but of encouraging another insurrection 
in Thessaly and Epirus. But the King, whose position was 
difficult, and the Premier Boillgares, realising that Greece was 
not then prepared for war with Turkey, decided not to repeat 
the experiment of 1854, but to restrict the co-operation of the 
government to a passive attitude towards the volunteers who 
were flocking to Crete, and who found capable leaders in 
Koronaios, commander of the national guard and chief of 
the "Mountaineers" during the street fighting at Athens in 
1863, and Zymbrakakes, a Cretan officer of the Greek army. 

xiii] The Cretan Insurrection 3 1 1 

educated in France. The insurgents divided the island into 
three military commands — the western held by Zymbrakakes, 
the central by Koronaios, and the eastern by the Cretan chief 
Korakas, while a little steamer, the Panhellenion^ worked by 
British engineers, fearlessly ran the Turkish blockade. Possible 
complications with Servia, anxious to be rid of the remaining 
Turkish garrisons, were added to the calculations of Ottoman 

The crushing defeat of the insurgents under Zymbrakakes 
by Mustapha at Baphe on October 24 caused the temporary 
subsidence of the insurrection, and some of the Sphakiotes 
even came to terms with the Turks. But Koronaios restored 
the enthusiasm of the islanders by his successes in the centre, 
where he had established his headquarters at the monastery 
of Arkadion, a strongly-fortified building near Reth)^mne, 
destined to be the scene of this insurrection's most heroic 
drama. Within its walls a number of women and children 
had taken refuge ; and, in the absence of K oronaios, its 
defence had been entrusted to Demak6poulos, another Greek 
officer. Against this sacred fortress Mustapha directed his 
attack ; but its massive construction proved superior to the 
force of his mountain artillery, while within soldiers and monks, 
with the cry of " Liberty or death " upon their lips, defended 
the position for two whole days. " Never in their recollection," 
said the islanders, " had such a battle been fought in Crete." 
At last, on November 21, the Turks forced the iron gate ; the 
Egyptians, pressed on by the bayonets of their comrades, 
effected an entrance into the courtyard ; then Maneses, the 
abbot, put a match to the powder-magazine, uniting defenders 
and assailants in one common hecatomb. The survivors, 
who had surrendered their arms on a promise that their lives 
should be spared, were mostly massacred ; the refectory ran 
red with the blood of women and children ; and a British 
correspondent, visiting the monastery some months later, 
found the charred and mutilated remains of the victims still 

312 Reforms and their Results [ch. 

strewn on the floor. The heroic garrison of Arkadion did not 
die in vain. The verses of the poet Paraschos commemorated 
their resistance, worthy of the best days of ancient Sparta ; public 
opinion abroad was deeply stirred by the recital of the siege ; 
a fund for the Cretan refugees was started in London ; a com- 
mittee of British residents, including the historian Finlay, was 
formed in Athens ; and, to the embarrassment of the Turcophil 
Cabinet of St James, the transport of 315 fugitives by H.M.S. 
Assurance from Selino Kastelli caused pro-British demonstra- 
tions in Greece, where Koumoundoftros, again at the head 
of affairs, found a neutral attitude increasingly difficult, owing 
to the sympathy of the Greeks with the Cretans. So strong 
was this feeling, that a riot broke out at the Piraeus, where 
the people attacked and drove back into the sea a body of 
returning and disillusioned volunteers, transported on Turkish 
and French vessels. 

In January 1867 the two Cabinets hitherto most favourable 
to Turkey suddenly modified their Cretan policy. Stanley, 
while still obdurate on the question of union, suggested the 
application to Crete of the system of autonomy, recently 
adopted for the Lebanon. The Marquis de Moustier, the 
new French Minister of Foreign Affairs, who as ambassador 
at Constantinople had been Turcophil and on a recent visit 
to Athens had used to the King and government language 
frank to the verge of brutality, went much further. " It would 
be far better," he said on January 24, " for the Porte to give 
up Candia " than to grant autonomy. He declared that " the 
country was lost to Turkey," and added that "Crete had 
become a permanent sore limb of the empire, and it was 
better to amputate it than to allow it to become the nucleus 
of gangrene, which might spread to every part of the empire." 
Union, in his opinion, "was the only plan to be now adopted," 
while he "would not hesitate also to abandon Thessaly." 
Gortchakoff, on behalf of Russia, likewise advocated union 
as the remedy ; and, on March 30, all the Powers, except 

xiii] The Cretan Insurrection 313 

Great Britain, supported the French proposal to allow the 
Cretans to decide by a plebiscite on the future form of govern- 
ment — Samian autonomy, the Moldo-Wallachian system, or 
union with Greece. Never has there been so favourable a 
chance for solving the Cretan question ; well might Fuad 
Pasha, the Turkish Foreign Minister, remark, that his sole 
consolation was the refusal of the British government to join 
in this suggestion. 

The changed attitude of the Powers and the heavy losses 
of Mustapha, of whose army, originally 17,850 strong, only 
6000 had returned to Canea, induced the Porte to promise 
a commission in Constantinople, to which the Cretans were 
invited to send delegates, for the purpose of drawing up a 
new system of government. This scheme proved to be futile ; 
for the delegates went reluctantly to the capital, and seven 
of them prematurely quitted it as a protest. Meanwhile, a 
provisional government was formed by the insurgents at Sphakia 
in the name of King George ; and Demetrios Mavrokordatos, 
ex-Minister of Education, was elected governor of the island. 
Dissatisfied with Mustapha, the Porte sent Omar Pasha, the 
famous Croatian general, to take command. But Omar was 
now an old man, full of his own importance, and disposed to 
underrate the difficulties of a Cretan campaign after his Monte- 
negrin experiences. His plan of driving the insurgents into the 
mountains of Sphakia and annihilating them there, cost him, 
despite the discord between the Cretan leaders, two defeats, 
avenged by savage outrages. The diary of a German officer, 
who accompanied him, told how the Croat "ordered the 
division to ravage and rape," and how "all prisoners were 
murdered or worse." By his orders, one of the horrors of 
the insurrection of 1823 was re-enacted, and a body of fugitives 
was stifled in a cave by the smoke of a huge fire, kindled 
at its mouth. Still, the insurgents, though lacking in unison, 
remained unsubdued. Koronatos nearly destroyed Omar's 
army in a ravine between Rethj^mne and Candia ; Hajji 

3 1 4 Reforms and their Results [ch. 

Michales Jannares, son of the likenamed leader of '' the great 
insurrection " and himself the most remarkable figure of this, 
displayed the picturesque bravery and manly stature of a 
Cretan chief in many a skirmish; while a second blockade- 
runner, called the Arkddion from the famous monastery, and 
bought by the Greek colony in England, made one trip after 
another, and, when its crew had at last to burn it to avoid 
capture, was speedily replaced by another vessel, the Enosis 
(or Union). If at the end of his three months' campaign, the 
Sultan's favourite general had destroyed 600 villages, he had lost 
more than 20,000 men. Trikoilpes, the Greek Minister of 
Foreign Aflfairs, protested against his outrages; Gortchakoff 
sarcastically remarked that Britain " had on other occasions 
been disposed to support the aspirations of a people struggling 
for independence." Then the Sultan himself resolved to try 
conciliation, granted an amnesty, and, as his foremost strategist 
had failed, sent his Grand Vizier, Aali Pasha, to create a new 
Cretan organisation. The provisional government protested 
against the amnesty, and under the influence of a deputation 
from Athens, rejected Aali's offers, declaring that a mixed 
international commission and a pUbiscite to determine the 
wishes of the population provided the only satisfactory solution. 
Aali, however, summoned a General Assembly of four delegates 
from each district to meet him ; and his proposals were formu- 
lated in the ** Organic Statute of 1868," which was the law 
of the island for the next ten years. Under this arrangement 
Crete was divided into five provinces and subdivided into 
19 districts; the two principal authorities were a governor- 
general (or vd,li) and a commander-in-chief, who were to be 
usually distinct persons but who on occasion might be one 
and the same individual. The vali had two assessors, of 
whom one was to be a Christian, and was to be assisted by 
a Council of Administration, likewise composed of Christians 
and Mussulmans, partly elected, and partly consisting of ex 
officio members, such as the Greek Metropolitan. Similarly, 

xiii] Organic Statute of 1868 315 

each provincial governor (or mutes sarif), if a Christian, was to 
have a Mohammedan assessor (or mouavin), if a Mussulman, 
a Christian ; and he was to be assisted by an administrative 
council. Official correspondence was to be conducted in both 
languages. A General Assembly, consisting of four delegates 
elected by the " Council of the Elders " of each district, and of 
four from each of the three towns, all paid a salary for their 
services, was to meet at Canea in an annual session of not 
more than 40 days for the discussion of measures of public 
utility. Religious questions were to be discussed in special 
sittings, in which the members of the particular religion could 
alone participate. While no fresh tax was to be imposed, 
those already existing were specified to be the tithe, the 
payment for exemption from military service, the duties on 
liquor, salt, and tobacco, and the customs dues. The tithe 
was to be remitted for the next two years, and reduced by 
one-half for two more^ 

The half-regretted decision of the provisional government 
to continue the insurrection involved Crete in another year 
of desultory warfare. Hussein Avni Pasha, who had succeeded 
as both civil and military governor towards the end of 1867, 
neither gained nor lost any decisive battle. Koronaios had 
returned to Greece, whither, after an ineffectual attempt to 
defend the lofty plateau of Homal6s, Zymbrakakes followed 
him. A last attempt to keep the insurrection alive was made 
at Athens, whence towards the end of November the veteran 
Mainate chief, Petropoulakes, set out with a body of volunteers 
for Crete. This incident almost led to war with Turkey. On 
December 11, 1868, a Turkish ultimatum was presented to 
the Greek government, demanding the dispersion of the 
volunteers, the disarming of the three blockade-runners or 
their exclusion from Greek ports, and protection for all 
Cretan refugees who sought to return home. Five days' 

^ Parliamentary Papers, 1867-8, vol. Ixxiii, 469-83. 

3i6 Reforms and their Results [ch. 

grace was given, and the expulsion of Greek subjects from 
Turkey was threatened. 

Public opinion in Athens, as the British minister reported, 
was " unanimous in wishing for a rupture." The Greeks had 
from the outset sympathised with the Cretans ; and no sooner 
did Koumoundouros, who had taken part in the insurrection 
of 1 841, become Premier at the end of 1866 than he began 
warlike preparations and sent an emissary to Belgrade to 
conclude an alliance with Servia, while Trikoilpes, his Foreign 
Minister, issued a circular asking for Crete, Thessaly, and 
Epirus. The King's marriage, however, in October 1867, 
with the Russian Grand-duchess Olga had hindered the Pan- 
hellenistic designs of the war-party; and, when the King 
returned to take up the reins from his uncle John of Gliicks- 
burg, who had been Regent in his absence, his first act was 
to dismiss Koumoundofiros, although the Premier had a large 
majority in the Chamber. The Russian ideal was a general 
rising in the near east under Muscovite auspices ; and at this 
moment the Russians were preparing to give to Hellenism the 
greatest blow which it had received since the creation of the 
Greek kingdom — the erection of the Bulgarian Exarchate. 
Boiilgares, who returned to office in 1868 after a Cabinet 
of Affairs had been tried, was Russophil and indifferent about 
foreign policy ; anxious for peace, he would have gladly stifled 
the insurrection, and refused to allow the Cretan deputies 
to sit in the newly elected Greek parliament. His Foreign 
Minister, however, Peter Deligiannes, was openly in favour 
of union with Crete, for which he had tried to obtain British 
support. When, in December 1868, Gladstone became Prime 
Minister, the hopes of the Greeks revived, for they believed 
that the great Philhellene, who had contributed towards giving 
the Ionian Islands to them, would also support the annexation 
of Crete. Clarendon, his Foreign Secretary, in vain informed 
them that his chief, because he was anxious for the progress 
of Greece, condemned aggressive action as likely to injure 

xiii] Admiral Hob art at Syr a 317 

the country financially. But, like the lonians in their attitude 
towards union with Greece, the Greeks have always regarded 
union with Crete not as a question of cash but as one of national 
sentiment — a quality too often ignored by diplomatists as a 
factor in politics. Accused by Koumoundoiiros of deserting 
their Cretan brethren, and forced to support nearly 50,000 
Cretan refugees, the Greek ministers were in a difficult 
position ; Karam, the Maronite leader, then in Athens, offered 
to raise a revolt in the Lebanon, while Peter Deligiannes, who 
directed Greek foreign policy, continued to advocate the 
Cretan cause. Accordingly, the Greek government's reply 
amounted to a practical rejection of the Turkish demands ; 
and Photiades Bey, the Ottoman minister, left Athens on 
December 17. Three days earlier a fresh incident had 
occurred, which made the situation still more critical. The 
famous blockade-runner, Enosis, when summoned to stop, 
fired at a ship commanded by Admiral Hobart Pasha, a 
British seaman in the Turkish service ; the admiral demanded 
that the authorities of Syra (where the Enosis had taken refuge) 
should treat her as a pirate, and blockaded her in the harbour ; 
whereupon the Greek government dispatched a corvette with 
orders to invite Hobart to raise the blockade, and, in case 
he persisted, to attack him. It has been suggested that in 
this affair there was collusion between the Greeks and the 
Turks ; at any rate, the corvette returned to the Piraeus, 
while Hobart remained outside Syra watching the Enosis for 
nearly six weeks, until the nomarch of the Cyclades had 
promised that she should be detained there until the legal 
proceedings against her were over. The blockade-runner 
was ere that harmless, for on December 26 the elder Petro- 
poulakes, with 600 insurgents, had surrendered at Askyphon 
in Sphakia ; the insurrection was obviously dying, unless a 
Greco-Turkish war reanimated it. 

Meanwhile, at the proposal of Bismarck, a Conference 
of the signatory Powers of the treaty of Paris was held there 

3i8 Reforms and their Results [ch. xiii 

on January 9, 1869, for the purpose of settling the Greco- 
Turkish dispute. Despite an initial difficulty, due to the 
claim of the Greek delegate, to whom had been accorded a 
merely consultative voice, to be placed on an equal footing 
with the Turkish representative, although Greece had not 
been a signatory of the historic treaty of 1856, Peter Deli- 
giannes submitted to the Conference a written statement, 
complaining of the dismemberment of the Hellenic race, and 
asking for the definite settlement of the Cretan question and 
the rectification of the land frontiers of the Greek kingdom. 
This radical solution had already been excluded, and the 
Conference, having persuaded the Turkish government to 
suspend its measures of expulsion, drew up a declaration on 
January 20, requesting Greece to abstain from tolerating the 
formation of armed bands on her territory and the equipment 
of armed vessels in her ports with a view to aggression against 
Turkey. The Turkish government agreed to this declaration, 
and Russia urged King George to accept it. At this juncture 
a Cabinet crisis at Athens brought Thrasyboulos Zatmes into 
power; and Theodore Deligiannes (the future Premier), his 
Foreign Minister, on February 6 adhered to the declaration, 
while proclaiming that the country was unprepared for war. 
Turkey then cancelled her hostile dispositions against Greek 
subjects, and diplomatic relations were resumed. The situation 
at Athens had been aggravated by a decree for the issue of 
treasury notes for ^^5 35,4 14 — a measure which was withdrawn 
on condition that the National and Ionian Banks consented 
to a forced loan to the government of ;£ 7 5 6,000. The Cretan 
insurrection, now that all hope of Greek intervention had 
disappeared, died a natural death. Dr Sphakianakes and Hajji 
Michales held out for a little longer in the east, but in the 
spring the three years' struggle ended. A nominal amnesty 
was granted ; a liberal governor-general, Mehemet Ali, the 
Prussian pasha afterwards murdered in Albania, was appointed ; 
and for the next four years Crete slept the sleep of exhaustion. 



The Cretan insurrection was not the only event which 
drew public attention to the east of Europe in 1866. The 
Roumanians did not long remain content with the native 
officer whom they had elected Prince of the united Principalities 
in 1859. Couza had succeeded in gaining the recognition of 
the Porte and the Powers ; but he found it impossible to pacify 
the politicians of his own country. The Roumanian Assembly 
was the battle-ground of three parties — the Conservatives or 
"Whites," the Radicals or "Reds," and the Moderate 
Liberals, whose views coincided with those of the Prince. The 
country, a large proportion of whose inhabitants were peasants 
unable to read or write and totally ignorant of political 
questions, was unsuited for parliamentary government, which 
in practice degenerated into the "management" of elections 
by the party in power and the manufacture of disturbances by 
the party in opposition. Couza had been little more than a 
year on the throne when the "Reds" roused the people of 
Craiova and Ploeshti against the coalition government ; in 1862 
the land bill of the Conservative statesman, Barbe Catargi, 
based on the liberty alike of property and of labour, excited 
the violent opposition of the " Reds." The latter, conscious 
that they were in a minority in the Assembly, announced their 
intention of convening a mass-meeting on June 23, the anni- 
versary of the revolution of 1848, in close proximity to the 

320 Roumanian and Servian Questions [en. 

house of parliament. The government replied that it would 
prohibit the meeting ; but the Premier, driving back from the 
Assembly, was shot by an assassin — a foreigner, it was said, 
hired by his enemies. The murderer has never been brought 
to justice ; for when Constantine Rosetti and John Bratianu, 
the " Red " leaders, were haled before the police court, the 
former threatened the Prince that he would denounce the real 
culprit, unless the proceedings were stopped. Couza was never 
proved to have instigated the crime ; but, in any case, he gave 
orders to hush up the enquiry. This interference with the 
course of justice failed, however, to remove the hostility of the 
" Reds." They accused the Prince of being a Russian agent, 
and thus discredited him in the eyes of the French, because 
he ordered the disarmament of Polish volunteers crossing his 
territory on their way to aid their insurgent fellow-countrymen 
during the Polish rising of 1863. In the same year a "mon- 
strous coalition " of " Whites " and " Reds " was formed against 
the Prince's favourite minister, Kogalniceanu, and addressed 
a memorial to the Powers, praying for Couza's removal. The 
story is told that the Prince considered the memorial of so little 
importance as to subscribe towards the travelling expenses of 
the politician who was to be the bearer of it. But events 
proved that he had under-estimated the gravity of the campaign 
against him, not only in Paris, but also at home. His bold 
policy of reforms, while benefiting the peasantry, only exas- 
perated the politicians. 

Brief as was his reign, Couza's name is associated with 
three acts of the first importance — the secularisation of the 
monasteries, the agrarian law, and free education. The mon- 
astic question in Roumania had long exercised the ingenuity of 
native statesmen. The country was dotted over with numerous 
religious establishments, founded by the piety of former princes 
and nobles, who, in order to secure their endowments, had 
"dedicated" their foundations to the Holy Places of Jeru- 
salem, to Mounts Athos and Sinai, and to other ecclesiastical 

xiv] The Monasteries 321 

corporations dependent upon the OEcumenical Patriarchate. It 
was calculated that one-fifth of the Roumanian soil, including 
some of the most fertile districts, was the property of these 
" dedicated " monasteries, whose surplus revenues went abroad 
and whose abbots, being Greeks, were regarded as foreigners 
by Roumanian nationalists. Accordingly, after the downfall 
of Phanariote rule, successive efforts had been made to solve 
this economic, ecclesiastical and national question. Gregory IV 
Ghika had expelled the Greek abbots and assigned two years' 
revenues of the Wallachian monasteries to pay the national 
debt ; the Porte, under Russian influence in 1827, had restored 
the abbots, who successfully resisted the attempts of the 
Russian organisers and of the native princes who followed to 
compel them to devote a considerable proportion of their 
income to the schools, hospitals and other pubHc establishments 
of the Principalities. Couza, after fruitless negotiations at 
Constantinople and Bucharest, resolved to settle the matter 
finally; and a decree of 1863 transformed nearly all the 
monasteries into hospitals or prisons, expelled the abbots, and 
secularised their property. By way of compensation, a lump 
sum of ;^i, 080,000 was set aside for the benefit of the Holy 
Places, but by the authorities of those establishments indignantly 
refused. The Orthodox Church was furious at what it con- 
sidered to be an act of sacrilege and confiscation ; and its 
indignation was increased by the Prince's proposals for making 
the Roumanian Synod more independent of the OEcumenical 
throne. . 

The agrarian law, the second item in Couza's daring 
programme, was greeted with a vote of censure. Thereupon, 
the Prince, on May 14, 1864, ordered a battalion of infantry to 
clear the hall in which the deputies were assembled, and 
dissolved parliament. A proclamation justified this Cromwellian 
coup d^itat^ and invited the people to choose by a plebiscite 
between " the Elect of the Roumanians " and " a factious 
oligarchy." The plebiscite by 682,62 1 votes against 1307 ratified 
M. L. 21 

332 Roumanian and Servian Questions [ch. 

Couza's acts ; and both the Porte and the ambassadors of the 
Powers were convinced by his arguments and his personal charm 
at Constantinople. In accordance with what he interpreted as 
the popular wish, he " developed " the convention . of Paris of 
1858 into a new "Statute," or constitution, by the creation of 
a Senate largely nominated by himself, and of a Chamber 
elected by manhood suffrage. In the then condition of 
Rou mania, such an arrangement would have placed both 
branches of the legislature at the disposition of the Prince, for 
his prefects would take care that the peasants should vote for 
government candidates, while the nominated senators, having to 
retire by lot every two years, would likewise be his creatures. 
There was only one element in the state which could overthrow 
this benevolent autocracy — the army ; and as soon as Couza lost 
its support, he fell. Meanwhile, he strove to popularise his coup 
cT^tat by "the rural law" of 1864, which abolished forced 
labour, tithe, free transport of wood for the landlord, and 
similar feudal burdens, on payment of an annual sum to the 
state during a maximum of 15 years, and established a peasant 
proprietorship with a fixed rate of compensation to the former 
owners To prevent the Jews from acquiring the control of 
the peasants' holdings, these were declared inalienable, nor 
could they be mortgaged except at the end of 30 years. Couza's 
land scheme was welcomed by the peasants, but it has had the 
defect of not providing for the growth of the peasants' families, 
for a plot of ground sufficient for one man has been found 
inadequate for his numerous offspring. Moreover, despite 
repeated prohibitions, the small owner has evaded the provisions 
against sale and mortgage, so that Couza did not solve the 
most difficult Roumanian problem — that of the land. Still his 
name has become legendary with the Danubian peasants, who 
long after his death expected his return to pacify their earth- 
hunger by a fresh distribution of estates. A third law, 
establishing free education, nominally compulsory in its ele- 
mentary stage, opened, six years before Forster's act in England, 

XI v] Conspiracy against Cottza 323 

the path of civil and mih'tary employment to the peasants' sons. 
To this reform the growth of Roumanian democracy and of an 
intellectual proletariat is mainly due. 

It was not to be expected that the politicians would quietly 
acquiesce in the coup d'etat. A society was formed " for the 
defence of constitutional government"; and the leaders of the 
Opposition pledged themselves, " in case of a vacancy on the 
throne, to support by every means the election of a foreign 
prince belonging to one of the reigning families of the west." 
The "Reds," whose chiefs were Rosetti and Bratianu, sought 
to bring about the " vacancy " which they desired to see filled 
by a foreigner, and excited a rising in the capital during Couza's 
absence abroad in 1865. An amnesty was interpreted as an act 
of weakness by the Radicals ; while the aristocracy, from which 
the politicians then mainly sprang, viewed with jealousy the 
" new man's " appointment of foreigners to well-paid posts and 
his adoption of two illegitimate sons whom he had had by a 
Roumanian lady, Princess Marie Obrenovich, the mother of the 
future King Milan of Servia. " Reds " and " Whites " thus sank 
their mutual differences in a common desire to rid themselves 
of the " tyrant," whose successor Bratianu set out to Paris to 
find. He had not long to seek, for the name of Prince Charles 
Lewis of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen had already been suggested 
to Napoleon III by Mme Hortense Cornu, an intimate friend 
of both the French Emperor and the Hohenzollern family. 
While the "Red" leader prepared European opinion for the 
deposition of Couza by a pamphlet denouncing him as sur- 
rounded by Russian instruments, and thus played upon French 
suspicion of Russian designs in the east, the committee of 
Conservatives and Radicals, which had been formed to upset 
the throne, acted at Bucharest. A number of officers were 
induced to put their services at the disposal of the conspirators, 
who decided to dethrone Couza and proclaim the Count of 
Flanders, brother of Leopold II King of the Belgians, on the 
night when the chasseurs, Couza's favourite corps, were on guard 

21 — 2 

324 Roumanian and Servian Questions [ch. 

at the palace, that is to say, on that of February 22, 1866. 
Early on the fatal evening the Prince was warned of the 
approaching revolution ; but he paid no heed to the warning 
beyond informing the chief of police, who reported the city 
quiet. The Prince retired to rest, confident in his beloved 
chasseurs; but about four on the morning of the 23rd he was 
aroused by an officer of the guard, who, followed by other 
officers and some civilians, entered his bedroom. Seeing that 
the army had abandoned him, he signed a document abdicating, 
and "deposing the reins of government in the hands of a 
lieutenancy and of a ministry elected by the people." Having 
obtained his signature, the conspirators helped him to dress, 
and led him by a back-door to a house, where he remained a 
prisoner till the evening, when in a carriage with the blinds 
down he quitted his capital for ever. Couza never saw 
Roumania again, for his petition to be allowed to return as 
a private citizen in 1867 was refused ; but seven years after his 
fall his remains were laid to rest in the soil, which he had striven 
to win for the peasant and of which he had been the first sole 
ruler. In 191 2, amidst enormous enthusiasm, his successor 
unveiled his statue at Jassy. Of Couza it may be said, that 
the good which he did lives after him. Too late his public 
merits were appreciated, and, if his private life was not above 
reproach, the most recent Roumanian historian describes him 
as a *' beneficent and noble autocrat." 

The people of Bucharest accepted the revolution without 
protest. When they woke up in the morning, they found already 
installed a provisional government, composed of Lascar Catargi, 
a Conservative, Golescu, a Liberal, and Colonel Haralambie, 
representing the officers, while a new ministry promised them 
a foreign prince in the place of him who had " deceived their 
expectations." The same day Count Philip of Flanders was 
acclaimed Prince of Roumania. The Count, however, at once 
declined the difficult task of reigning over " the Belgium of the 
lower Danube"; and both the Porte and the Tsar protested 

xiv] Prince Charles^ candidature 325 

against Couza's deposition. A conference of Turkey and the 
Powers accordingly met in Paris on March 10, in which the 
Turkish representative objected to both a foreign prince and 
an hereditary Hospodar. But the Powers deUberated slowly ; 
and, while they were discussing the fate of Roumania, the 
• (uestion was settled outside the conference room by the 
irrevocable logic of facts. Bratianu proceeded to Diisseldorf, 
where the Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen then was, told 
him that Napoleon III had suggested the candidature, and 
offered the crown to his son. King William I of Prussia, as 
head of the family, was asked for his approval, which he was 
loth to give ; but Bismarck, who saw that a Prussian beyond 
the Carpathians might be an embarrassment to Austria, advised 
Prince Charles " to go at once," for, argued the great statesman, 
'* if you are once in Roumania, the question will be soon solved"; 
as for the Powers, they would protest, "but a protest exists 
only on paper." Bismarck added that there would not be 
**much to fear" from Austria, which would otherwise try to 
wreck his candidature, for he intended *'to keep Austria 
occupied for some time to come " — an allusion to the impending 
Austro-Prussian war. Even in case of failure, he concluded, 
*' you will always remember with pleasure a coup which can 
never be a reproach to you." Meanwhile, the candidature had 
become known in Roumania, where, despite a separatist riot 
at Jassy, which had suffered economically by the union, a 
plebiscite on April 20 adopted Prince Charles by 685,969 to 
224 votes. The conference declined to accept this decision, 
because it had already adopted a motion to the effect that the 
future Prince must be a native and elected by the Assembly, — 
the Constituent Assembly did, indeed, ratify the result of the 
popular vote. Furnished, however, with leave of absence from 
his military duties as lieutenant in the Prussian dragoons, Prince 
Charles travelled under the name of " Hettingen " and on the 
pretext of business at Odessa, to the Hungarian port of Bazias 
on the Danube, in whose modest inn he overheard his fellow- 

326 Roumanian and Sei^oian Questions [cii. 

guests discussing the probable failure of his mission and 
prophesying for him the fate of Couza. Here he was joined 
by Bratianu, but it was not till he first set foot on Roumanian 
soil at Turnu-Severin on May 20 that his future Premier publicly 
recognised in the spectacled second-class passenger by the 
Danube boat the Prince of Roumania. Fifteen days later the 
conference separated without having arrived at any decision, 
after both the British and French delegates had opposed 
coercive measures. Clarendon, then our Foreign Minister, 
suggested that it might be wiser for the Porte to recognise 
Prince Charles, provided he paid homage to the Sultan, than 
to have a Russian intervention. The Cretan insurrection 
happily divided the attention of the Turks, who contented 
themselves with massing troops at Rustchuk ; the outbreak of 
the Austro-Prussian war prevented, as Bismarck had predicted, 
the Austrian schemes ; indeed Magyar and Servian emissaries 
tried to persuade Prince Charles to create a diversion against 
the Austrians ; Sardinia, as the ally of Prussia against Austria, 
favoured a Prussian prince ; while Napoleon III looked with 
satisfaction on one who was connected through his mother 
with the Imperial family of France. To the Roumanian poli- 
ticians the liberal tendencies displayed by his father when 
Prussian Premier were a further recommendation. 

The new Prince's position was not, however, easy. He 
found himself practically alone among a people of whose 
language and customs he was ignorant, whose finances were in 
a desperate condition, whose officials had been mostly unpaid 
for months. First appearances were not encouraging; the 
Roumanian soldiers made a bad impression on the prim Prussian 
officer, who realised that with such material he could not fight 
Austria; there was not a mile of railway, and not many 
roads, in the whole country ; the streets of the capital were 
a "bottomless morass"; he could scarcely believe that a 
one-storied building looking out on a dirty square was the 
"palace." Still, he was young — 27 years old at the time— he 

XI v] The Jewish problem 327 

was hopeful, he was a HohenzoUern, and he surmounted all his 

The first problem that awaited solution was the passing of 
the new constitution, for which a Constituent Assembly had been 
elected by the provisional government. The two most salient 
features of the charter of 1866 were the Prince's right of absolute 
veto, upon which he insisted, and the famous article 7, which 
provided that " foreigners of Christian denominations can alone 
obtain naturalisation." Bratianu and Rosetti, the two Radical 
members of the Prince's first Cabinet, which was composed of 
both "Whites" and "Reds," had proposed that "rehgion is 
no obstacle to naturalisation in Roumania," and had promised 
a special law for the naturalisation of the Jews. This proposal 
aroused a storm of indignation among the Moldave deputies. 
An anti-Semite editor roused the rabble of Bucharest against 
the ministry ; the synagogue of the capital was destroyed ; and 
article 7 was substituted for the original draft. Thus early in his 
reign Prince Charles had proof of the feeling against the Jews 
in Moldavia. His reconstruction of the synagogue out of his 
privy purse did not satisfy the powerful Jewish communities of 
western Europe. In 1867, Bratianu, abandoning his tolerant 
poHcy in order to win Moldave support for the reorganisation 
of the army, revived the Russian regulation against Jewish 
publicans and leaseholders, thus calling down upon his head the 
remonstrances of the British and French governments. A year 
later 31 Moldave deputies introduced a still stronger measure 
against the Jews, absolutely prohibiting their residence outside 
the towns, their acquisition of real property, and their acceptance 
of national or municipal contracts. The expulsion of the Jewish 
publicans began ; anti-Semite riots followed ; Sir Moses Monte- 
fiore visited Bucharest; and the British government twice— in 
1868 and 1872- -accused Roumania of violating article 46 of 
the convention of Paris, which had declared " all Moldaves and 
Wallachs equal before the law." As the Prince's father wrote, 
" the Jewish question is a 7ioli me tangere^ for the Jews have 

328 Roumanian and Servian Questions [ch. 

money and the whole press." Ten years afterwards the treaty 
of Berlin again impressed this hard fact upon the Roumans. 

The constitution settled, the next question was the recogni- 
tion of the Prince by his suzerain. To a HohenzoUern the 
notion of vassalage was peculiarly repulsive ; indeed, the 
existence of such a bond had been one of the reasons for which 
King William had objected to his relative's acceptance of the 
throne. But, while already determined to sever the last link 
that bound him to Turkey at the first favourable opportunity, 
the Prince had meanwhile to eat his leek. Thanks to the 
influence of John Ghika, who, as a former Prince of Samos, 
was popular at Constantinople, the Sultan was induced to 
receive him ; and during the audience the proud vassal contrived 
so to comport himself as to save his own dignity while conveying 
to his suzerain that the days of Phanariote humility were over. 
On October 24 he received the firman of investiture, which 
recognised him as Hereditary Prince of " the United Princi- 
palities," as the Turks were still pleased to style Roumania, 
with the right of a separate currency but without that of making 
separate treaties or of conferring decorations ; the annual tribute 
was to be increased; the army not to exceed 30,000 men. 
Six months had thus sufficed to regulate the Prince's anomalous 

In his adopted country however, his situation was long 
uncertain. Although the former Hospodars, Bibescu, Michael 
Sturdza, and Stirbeiu, acknowledged him, his first general elec- 
tion showed that the Couzist and Separatist party was still 
strong in Moldavia, for one-third of the new members was 
chosen on that programme. Already a deputation of officers 
had put his tact to the proof, by begging him to dismiss for a 
breach of discipline their comrades who had deposed his 
predecessor. In 1870 Couza was elected to the Chamber, and 
the French government offered him its assistance in recovering 
his throne— an off*er which the patriotic Rouman haughtily 
declined, refusing to owe his restoration to foreign intervention. 

xiv] Prince Charles and France 329 

Napoleon III had speedily repented the part which he had 
played in placing a Prussian prince on the lower Danube. 
The victory of the Prussians at Sadowa had revealed to him the 
growing power of his future adversary ; the Prussianising of the 
Roumanian army, the organisation of which had hitherto been 
confided to a French military mission, convinced him that 
French influence over '' the little Latin sister " in the east was 
waning. In the meeting which he had in 1867 at Salzburg 
with the Emperor of Austria, the idea, suggested immediately 
after the fall of Couza by Nigra, the Italian representative in 
Paris, that Austria should be compensated for the loss of 
Venice by the occupation of Roumania, was revived. Accord- 
ingly, on the advice of Bismarck, the Prince drew close to 
Russia, and endeavoured to assuage the alarm felt in Hungary 
at the Roumanian propaganda there. This change of foreign 
policy lost him the support of the "Reds," who represented 
him as Bismarck's agent, ready to sacrifice the interests of his 
adopted to those of his native country. His marriage in 1869 
with Princess Elizabeth of Wied temporarily restored his popu- 
larity ; but riots broke out at the " exclusively Red " commercial 
town of Ploeshti, and a conspiracy was discovered, in which 
the national guard was involved. At this moment the outbreak 
of the Franco-Prussian war, arising out of the candidature of the 
Prince's brother for the Spanish crown, rendered the situation 
still more critical. The sympathies of the Roumans and their 
foreign Prince were diametrically opposed; they, as Latins, 
naturally hoped for the success of the French ; he, as a former 
Prussian officer, was heart and soul with his old comrades of 
the Danish war. 

The French government avowed its intention of treating 
him as an enemy ; his own Minister of Foreign Affairs declared 
that Roumanian interests and sympathies were with the French 
colours. The " Reds " only awaited the news of a Prussian 
defeat to proclaim the republic at Ploeshti. But the tidings of 
the Prussian victories, the arrest of the " Red " leaders, and 

330 Roumanian and Se^'vian Questions [ch. 

the birth of a princess somewhat calmed the agitation. The 
conspirators, however, were acquitted ; and the scandals arising 
out of the concession of the contract for the Roumanian 
railways to Strousberg, a Prussian, caused a fresh outcry against 
the Prussian Prince. It had been his object from the first, as 
he himself wrote, to develop "the material welfare of these 
richly-endowed lands": and he had "taken as the basis" for 
this work " the construction of a network of roads and railways'." 
Accordingly, he had entered with perhaps too much zeal and 
too little knowledge of financial and technical details into the 
schemes of the Prussian railway-king, whose refusal to pay the 
coupon of January 187 1 was a blow alike to the shareholders, 
who were mostly Prussians, induced to invest in the stock on 
the security offered by the presence of a Prussian ruler at 
Bucharest, and to the Prince, whose government was requested 
by Bismarck to pay the interest in lieu of the defaulting con- 
tractor. The fact that the Roumanian railway commissioner, 
appointed by the Prince, had formerly been in the service of 
the Hohenzollern family, was interpreted by the Opposition as 
a proof of jobbery; and the Prince, who had already expressed 
n a circular to the Powers his inability to cope with party 
passion any longer, poured forth the bitterness of his soul in 
a letter to a correspondent, published in a German journal. 
A leading Roumanian statesman declared that at that moment 
the Prince had " no one in the country for him," while the 
British ambassador at Constantinople began already to talk 
of a Turkish commission to the United Principalities. The 
climax was reached on March 22, 1871, when the German 
colony in Bucharest, assembled at a banquet under the chair- 
manship of the North-German consul-general to celebrate the 
Emperor's birthday, was bombarded with stones by the mob 
while the police looked on complacently. Next morning the 
Prince sent for the two members of the provisional government 
of 1866 who were then in the capital, and informed them that 
* Aus dem Leben, ii, 270. 

xiv] The Catargi Cabinet 331 

he wished to hand back to them the authority which he had 
received five years earlier. Lascar Catargi, one of the two, 
implored him to think of the country, and undertook the 
responsibility of forming a Cabinet. The Prince consented ; 
and at midnight the Conservative chief was able to announce 
the formation of a ministry of resolute men, which remained in 
power for five years — a thing till then unknown in Roumanian 
public life. The recalcitrant Chamber was dissolved ; a docile 
majority was obtained in the new legislature by " moral suasion" 
at the elections ; and Rosetti, the editor of the anti-dynastic 
Romanul, finding an agitator's occupation gone, left for France, 
the haven of all Roumanian politicians out of work, whether 
deposed princes or uncrowned demagogues. The crisis was 
over, and the Prince noted with pleasure that his strongest 
supporters were precisely those who had supported his pre- 
decessor — men of principle, who believed in the stability which 
monarchy affords, even irrespective of the person of the monarch. 
His chief embarrassment was now his former friend Bismarck, 
whose appeal to the Porte to force its vassal to settle the 
claims of the Prussian shareholders, by wounding Roumanian 
national feeling in its most sensitive spot, only increased the 
bitterness against the Prussians ; but an arrangement was made 
through Austrian mediation. This step marked the beginning 
of better relations with the Dual Monarchy, of which a 
commercial treaty signed in 1875, the centenary of Austria's 
annexation of the Roumanian Bukovina, was the first fruit. 
This act, however, offended both the Porte, which declined to 
recognise the claim of its vassal to conclude international treaties, 
and the coalition of the Opposition leaders, some violently 
opposed to Austria-Hungary, all eager for office after five years 
in the wilderness. Once more, the throne was attacked ; and 
rumour was busy with the name of a Colonel Dabija, to whom 
the crown had been offered. Then came the revolution in the 
Herzegovina and therewith the revival of the eastern question, 
which was destined to make Roumania an independent kingdom. 

332 Roumanian and Servian Questions |^ch. 

The neighbouring principaHty of Servia, whose friendship 
Prince Charles was careful to cultivate, had already made an im- 
portant advance on the same road. Prince Michael's object was to 
obtain the withdrawal of the Turkish garrisons from the fortresses 
in Servia, which they still occupied after the settlement of 1862. 
While he devoted his energies at home to the improvement of 
his army, his wife, Princess Julia, and Philip Christich were 
sent to London to influence British opinion, hitherto ill-disposed 
towards Servia. Favourable speeches in parliament by Cobden 
and Gregory, a member much interested in the eastern question, 
and an attack upon Michael by the Morning Post drew attention 
to the Servian question, and a subsequent mission of the Servian 
diplomatist, Marinkovich, elicited from Clarendon the admis- 
sion, that the British government would have no objection to 
see the remaining fortresses in Servian hands, provided that 
the Porte consented. The decline of Austrian influence owing 
to the Prussian victory of 1866 and the Cretan insurrection 
were favourable to Servia, as to Roumania; and a correspondence 
took place between Ristich and Koumoundoiiros on the subject 
of a Serbo-Greek alliance. Although neither King George nor 
the Boiilgares ministry considered an alliance desirable, the 
possibiHty of such a general rising of the Balkan peoples as it 
would have provoked so greatly alarmed Russia and France 
that they prevailed upon Austria and Great Britain to support 
Michael's request for the evacuation of the remaining fortresses. 
The decision, as in most Servian questions; really depended 
upon Austria ; and Beust, who then directed her policy, found, 
in his anxiety to give her repose after her recent defeat at 
Sadowa, that Belgrade in Servian hands would not be a menace 
to her interests. Michael assured the Porte that a contented 
Servia would be a better defence to the Turkish empire than 
the fortresses on the Save and on the Danube ; Stanley argued, 
erroneously as subsequent history has shown, that a free Servia 
would probably care but little how the Bosniaks or Bulgars 
were governed ; he added that Turkish honour might be salved 

xiv] Evacuation of fortresses 333 

by the maintenance of the Turkish flag on the walls of Belgrade. 
Thus abandoned by Austria and Great Britain, the Porte 
yielded, and on March 3, 1867, expressed its willingness to 
** confide the guard of the fortresses " to Michael, completely 
withdrawing the Mussulman garrisons, on condition that the 
Turkish and Servian colours should wave together from the 
ramparts. Michael then visited his suzerain; on April 18 the 
keys of the fortresses were handed to the Servian authorities ; 
and on May 6 the last Turkish soldier quitted Servian soil. 
Even externally, save for its one mosque, Belgrade is no longer 
a Turkish town ; even the Constantinople gate has been 
destroyed since 1867. 

Michael's moderation had rendered a signal service to his 
country, but he had failed to content the rasher politicians 
who dreamt, like Garashanin, of a Balkan confederation, and 
regarded his journey to Constantinople as an act of servility. 
Great projects were in the air of Belgrade ; the Mohammedan 
Serbs of Bosnia offered their neutrality, in case the Servian 
army should enter their country, if their lands and faith were 
respected ; Michael visited Roumania, and signed treaties of 
alliance with Prince Charles and Prince Nicholas of Monte- 
negro ; a pact was made with the Bulgarian committee, whose 
seat was Bucharest, for the resurrection of a Bulgarian state. 
The dismissal of Garashanin indicated, however, that Michael 
was not disposed to go so far as his Prime Minister wished in 
foreign policy, while his internal administration was too auto- 
cratic for the admirers of parliamentary institutions, who 
clamoured for a modern constitution. Their opposition to 
him was focussed by the Omladina ("Youth"), a secret society, 
originally founded for literary objects by a body of Servian 
students at Pressburg, which advocated the union and inde- 
pendence of the Servian nation, and carried on from Neusatz 
in southern Hungary a journalistic propaganda, all the more 
vehement after the prohibition of its meeting in Belgrade in 
1867. To these enemies was added the exiled dynasty, living 

334 Roumanian and Servian Questions [ch. 

and plotting in the neighbouring Dual Monarchy against a 
prince, who, like Couza in Roumania and Otho in Greece, had 
no legitimate heir of his body. Anxious to provide for this 
contingency, Michael, who had separated from his gifted 
consort, meditated a second marriage with his cousin Catherine 
Constantinovich. While walking with that lady and her mother 
Anka in the park of Toptchider on June to, 1868, where three 
years before he had celebrated the jubilee of Takovo, three men 
fired at him and his companions. Michael fell dead upon the 
ground, Anka was killed, her daughter wounded. The actual 
assassins, criminals from the neighbouring prison, were only 
the tools of more influential persons. Public opinion held the 
Karageorgevich family responsible for this brutal murder of the 
best ruler that modern Servia has yet had ; the public prosecutor 
accused Alexander, the politicians his more ambitious wife, 
Persida, acting, it was supposed, in the interest of her son 
Peter, the present King of Servia. Others believed that 
Radovanovich, Alexander's business manager in Belgrade, 
planned the deed, hoping by means of a draft constitution, 
compiled by himself and signed by Prince Peter, to become the 
power behind the young pretender's throne, and thence distribute 
the spoils to his own family and friends. The plot was, however, 
only half successful. The ex-Premier, Garashanin, who chanced 
to be taking the air at Toptchider, was attracted by the cries 
of Michael's attendant^ and hastened with great presence of 
mind to the city to warn the authorities. On the way he came 
up with a carriage, the pace and inmate of which aroused his 
suspicions. By ordering his arrest, he prevented communica- 
tion between the murderers and their confederates in Belgrade. 
The Ministry and the Senate at once met, and a provisional 
government was formed, consisting of Marinkovich,the President 
of the Senate, Leshjanin, the Minister of Justice, and Petrovich, 
the President of the Appeal Court. They acted with prompti- 
tude and energy, arrested Radovanovich, summoned a Grand 
Skupshtina, and sent Ristich, then Minister of the Interior, to 

xiv] The Servian Regency 335 

fetch the late Prince's next-of-kin, Milan, from Paris, where he 
was studying. It was rumoured at first that Michael had left 
his natural son Velimir his heir, and the Dowager Princess 
once thought of adopting him and playing the part of Regent ; 
but, as no will was forthcoming, the crown passed to Michael's 
cousin, then not yet 14 years old. Consequently, the Grand 
Skupshtina, a practical body, whose 523 members included 
only one lawyer, proclaimed Milan Obrenovich IV, and elected 
three Regents — Colonel Blaznavatz, Minister of War, Ristich, 
and Gavrilovich, a Senator and geographer — for three years, 
with a further extension of their Regency in case of need. A 
Liberal Cabinet was formed ; the Regents declared that they 
would keep Michael's maxim " the law is the highest will in 
Servia " ; and it was arranged that a Skupshtina should meet 
annually. The assassins were tried; 13 persons were shot as 
principals or accomplices ; and Alexander Karageorgevich, 
acquitted by an Austrian court, was sentenced in default by a 
Servian tribunal, and he and his family were forbidden to enter 
Servian territory. Alexander died an exile in 1885, and it was 
only after a still more awful tragedy, enacted on the 35 th 
anniversary of Michael's murder, that his son mounted the 
blood-stained throne of the last Obrenovich. Happily a new 
pretender did not arise in the person of Michael's bastard, who 
lived and died an artist in Bavaria. 

The murdered Prince had been considering the desirability 
of granting a larger measure of liberty to his people ; and the 
Regency, despite a law forbidding all modification of the 
existing form of government during a minority, accordingly 
produced a constitution in 1869, which remained in force for 
the next 20 years. The single chamber, or Skupshtina^ — for 
Ristich confessed that he could find no elements for a second 
— was to be three-quarters elective, and one-quarter nominated. 
Not only officials but also lawyers were declared ineligible 
(just as they were excluded from the " unlearned parliament " 
of our Henry IV), but the Prince could nominate any Serb of 

33^ Roumanian and Servian Questions [ch. 

30 years of age, who paid 30 dinara in direct taxes. This 
assembly could be convoked where, and dissolved when, the 
Prince chose ; and its members had no right to initiate legisla- 
tion. As the government could, and often did, suspend acts 
dealing with the liberty of the subject, of speech, and of the 
press, in case of danger, the constitution of 1869 has been 
described as "a thinly-veiled autocracy," against which the 
Radicals, first organised in 1881, began at once to agitate. A 
national currency removed the previous confusion of foreign 
coinage ; Ministerial responsibility was established ; and the 
Regency devoted much attention to internal politics during the 
lull in the eastern question. The three Regents, representing 
what were called in Servia " Liberal," but what we should 
consider as moderate Conservative, principles, remained in 
power till, on August 22, 1872, Milan came of age, and assumed 
the reins of government. 

Milan possessed excellent natural abilities, but his birth 
and education did not promise well for his reign. His father 
had died at 33 of the fast life which he had led in Vienna ; his 
mother, a Catargi, had been Couza's mistress, and had been 
found in the palace at Bucharest on the night of the Roumanian 
Prince's deposition. A Parisian education is not the best 
moral tonic for a Balkan heir; and the royal pupil once 
remarked, that if he was what he was, his Regents and 
Ministers had only themselves to blame. Brought to the 
corrupt atmosphere of Belgrade at an age when most boys are 
at school, isolated in the palace without brothers, sisters, or 
playmates of his own age, early initiated into the arts of intrigue, 
and taught to believe that most things can be had for money, 
he came to be regarded as the type of the man of pleasure. 
Visits to Vienna and Paris soon after his accession turned his 
head ; he, too, desired in little Servia to repeat the luxury of 
the Austrian and French capitals, with the natural result that 
within three years of his majority he was loaded with debts ; 
and such was his unpopularity at Belgrade, that a strong party 

xiv] King Milan s difficulties 2)Z1 

desired the candidature for the Servian throne of that far wiser 
and more serious ruler of the sister-state, Nicholas of Monte- 
negro. Meanwhile, the intrigues of the exiled dynasty and the 
jealousy of the family of Garashanin, always envious of the 
Obrenovich clan, to which it had hoped to provide a successor 
in Ilija's son, Milutin, rendered Milan's position still more 
difficult, until, when the great Balkan crisis began in 1875, 
competent observers saw that there were only two courses 
before him — war or revolution. 

M. L. 22 



Hitherto the history of the Balkan peninsula during the 
nineteenth century had been occupied with the formation and 
development of Servian, Greek, and Roumanian states out of 
the Ottoman empire, and with the struggles of the Montene- 
grins to maintain their freedom. Now, however, under the 
influence of Russia, a long-forgotten, silent nationality, destined 
to play an important part in the events of the last third of the 
century, sprang into independent ecclesiastical existence — the 
prelude of its resurrection, after the lapse of nearly five 
centuries, as a Balkan state. 

Despite the literary efforts of Bulgarian patriots, such as 
the historian Paysij of Samokov and his disciple, Sofronij, 
bishop of Vratza, author of the first printed book in modern 
Bulgarian, the stolid Bulgars had remained comparatively 
unmoved by the stirring events of which their own and the 
neighbouring lands had been the theatre. They lacked local 
leaders, such as the Serbs and Greeks possessed ; their 
ecclesiastical authorities belonged to a foreign race ; their 
practical experience of warfare was small. They took little 
part in the Russo-Turkish war of 1806-12; but in 182 1, 
instigated by the Greek clergy, many of them had enlisted 
with the Hetairists in Wallachia, and subsequently others had 
aided the Greeks in Greece. The Russo-Turkish war of 1828-9 
aroused their active sympathy to a greater degree than its 
predecessor. A captain of volunteers, Mamartchov of Kotel — 

CH. xv] Bulgarian risings 339 

the tx)wn which, from Sofronij downwards, has given so many 
patriots to Bulgaria— believing that the hour of his country's 
redemption had struck, called his fellow-townsmen to arms, 
but was arrested by Cossacks while attempting to unfurl the 
banner of a free Bulgaria at Trnovo, the medieval capital. 
A deputation to Diebich found the treaty of Adrianople 
already signed; the permission to emigrate to Bessarabia, 
Wallachia and Moldavia, the institution of a Russian consulate 
at Sliven, and the maintenance of a Russian garrison at 
Silistria till the payment of the war indemnity in 1836, were all 
the advantages that the Bulgars reaped from this struggle in 
their midst. Russia had clearly shown that she did not desire 
an independent Bulgaria ; the people of Sliven soon expressed 
their dislike of the Russian consul's patronage ; but a British 
visitor to Sliven and Kotel had foreshadowed the later policy 
of Lord Salisbury two generations afterwards — that it was the 
interest of Britain to create a Bulgarian buffer-state between 
Russia and Turkey. Between the peace of Adrianople and 
the epoch of the Crimean war a few isolated and local risings 
alone broke the quiet of the land. In 1836 the energetic 
Mamartchov, who had meanwhile held a post under the 
Russians at Silistria, planned an insurrection at the monastery 
of Kapinovo ; but the secret was betrayed to the Greek 
Metropolitan of Trnovo, who informed the Turkish com- 
mander in time to seize the conspirators. Some were executed, 
Mamartchov exiled. Five years later the oppression of the 
tax-collectors aroused a rebellion of the Bulgars on the Servian 
frontier; Europe received through a French emissary a fore- 
taste of the " Bulgarian atrocities " of 1876 ; but the change of 
dynasty in Servia prevented an extension of the movement. 
Similar exactions produced in 1851 a rising in the district of 
Vidin. Unprovided with firearms — for Alexander Karageor- 
gevich prevented their importation from his adjacent princi- 
pality — the insurgents nevertheless attacked the strong natural 
fortress of Belogradtchik, only to be repulsed. More massacres 

22 — 2 

340 The Bulgarian Exarchate [ch. 

followed, but this hopeless insurrection, the most serious that 
had occurred, convinced Turkish statesmen of the desirability 
of making some concessions to this hitherto unrecognised 

A powerful agency of nationalism had begun to exert its 
influence over the Bulgars. The perusal of a book on " The 
old and new Bulgarians" by the Slavonic scholar Venelin 
inspired Aprilov, a merchant of Gabrovo, to found in 1835 the 
first purely Bulgarian school at that flourishing little town, 
whose traders were the first Bulgars to do business with Russia. 
The Bell-Lancaster system was adopted ; the school-books 
were printed in Servia ; and ten years later 53 Bulgarian schools 
were already at work. Well might the Bulgarian colony at 
Odessa inscribe upon the tomb of Venelin the sentence, that 
he had "recalled to memory the forgotten, but once famous 
and mighty people of the Bulgars." The first national school 
was followed in 1844 by the first national periodical, published 
at Smyrna ; but books and newspapers continued to be printed 
abroad, for down to 1877 what is now Bulgaria contained only 
one printing-press. Nevertheless, such was the zeal of the 
Bulgars for education, that books and schools prepared them 
to become ecclesiastically independent of the Greek Patriarchate 
and politically independent of the Turkish empire. 

The former of these two movements began with the 
demand for national bishops ; and its first success, due to the 
Archimandrite Neofyt Bozveli and to Stephen Vogorides, the 
first prince of Samos, both natives of Kotel, the cradle of the 
Bulgarian nationalist movement, was the erection of the first 
Bulgarian church at Constantinople in 1848. The next step 
was the omission of the Patriarch's name from the prayers in 
this church — an example speedily followed throughout Bul- 
garian lands, where the demand for separation from the 
Patriarchate became so general that the Grand Vizier was 
ordered by Abdul Mejid to hear on the spot the complaints of 
the Bulgarian peasants. Meanwhile others, taught by the 

xv] Overtures to Rome 341 

failures of the Russians during the war in Bulgaria and in the 
Crimea, turned their eyes towards Rome, just as the Bulgarian 
Tsars had done in the thirteenth century, and for a similar 
reason. Dragan Zankov, the literary leader of this party, 
pleaded in his journal Bulgaria for union with the Roman 
Catholic Church, in the hope of obtaining thereby the protection 
of France, traditionally extended to the Eastern Catholics. 
Zankov proceeded to Rome at the head of a deputation ; and 
in 1 86 1 Pius IX consecrated Sokolski, an ex- brigand turned 
monk. Archbishop of the Bulgarian Uniate Church. It was, 
however, at once evident that comparatively few Bulgars 
thought French protection worth a mass ; Sokolski mysteriously 
disappeared to Russia ; and the plan of including the Bulgarian 
people within the papal fold remained unrealised. Still, the 
CEcumenical Patriarch was seriously alarmed by these move- 
ments. While rejecting the Bulgarian demands — the so-called 
*' seven points" — for a national hierarchy and ecclesiastical 
autonomy under an elected archbishop, who should acknow- 
ledge his supremacy, the Patriarch was willing to appoint 
Bulgarians or at least Bulgarian-speaking bishops in purely 
Bulgarian dioceses, and to make other concessions. These 
the Bulgars rejected ; eight more " points " were presented, 
and refused ; the demands of the Bulgars rose ; they declined 
to accept the Patriarch's offer of a semi-independent "Ex- 
archate of all Bulgaria " beyond the Balkans, made to them 
under the influence of the Cretan insurrection in 1866; 
nothing would content them but an independent national 
Church, not limited to the district between the Balkans and 
the Danube. 

Besides the Greek bishops and the Turkish pashas, two 
other elements combined to spread discontent among the 
Bulgarian peasants during the early sixties. In 1861 some of 
the richest villages were assigned to 12,000 Tartars, who had 
emigrated from the Crimea. It was not the first time that 
Tartars had settled in the Balkan peninsula ; the Thracian town 

342 The Bulgarian Exarchate [ch. 

of Tatar- Pazardjik still preserves the name of its founders ; the 
Balkan village of Vrbitza had been colonised by another band 
of emigrants from the Crimea. Encouraged by the Turkish 
government for political reasons, the newcomers were a fresh 
burden to the peasants, who had to yield up to them the best 
portions of their fields and to build houses for them without 
payment. Lured by Russian promises, io,odo disgusted 
Bulgars emigrated to occupy the sites which the Tartars had 
abandoned, only to return disillusioned the following year. 
But the Crim Tartars were, at least, mild and laborious; 
whereas the second batch of immigrants, the Circassians, who 
arrived in 1864 after the Russian conquest of their native 
mountains, were a terror to the natives, once again forced to 
build houses and relinquish land for the use of their unwelcome 
guests. Nature, however, came to the aid of the Bulgars. 
While there are still Tartars in Bulgaria, the Circassians in 
14 years had almost entirely disappeared; disease, war, and 
emigration account for the fact that of the 40,000 families 
which entered Bulgarian districts, nearly all have vanished. 
But such immigrations, supervening upon the ecclesiastical 
difficulty, naturally provided material for patriotic agitators. 
In 1862, excited further by the bombardment of Belgrade, 
where the Bulgarian journalist Rakovski organised a legion of 
his fellow-countrymen, and by the warlike movements in 
Montenegro and the Herzegovina, a band of political brigands 
under Panajot Hitov held the Shipka pass. Like the great 
klephtic leader of the Greek War of Independence, Hitov has 
left memoirs of his adventures, which were, however, cut short 
by the arrangement of the Serbo-Turkish differences. 

In 1864, the Turkish empire was divided administratively 
into 28 vilayets. Consequently, the creation of one great 
vilayet of the Danube out of the previous small pashaliks, and 
the appointment of Midhat Pasha as governor with residence 
at his native town of Rustchuk, which thenceforth remained 
the seat of the Turkish administration, were real boons to the 

xv] Midhafs governorship 343 

Bulgars. Midhat's governorship, which lasted for four years, 
was undoubtedly a great success. There has, perhaps, been 
no period in the Turkish history of that troublesome region 
when so much was done for the development of its natural 
resources ; but free Bulgaria has achieved, during its 34 years 
of practical independence, far more than even the most 
enlightened of modern Turkish statesmen could accomplish. 
So far as the Balkan provinces of Turkey were concerned, 
Midhat came too late to save them for the Turkish empire; 
but it is not so much good laws, as good, honest administration 
such as was his in the Balkans, such as was Rustem's in the 
Lebanon, that Turkey wants. Under him the " model vilayet''' 
of the empire was that of the Danube. He made military 
roads ; he saw an English company construct the first railway 
in Bulgaria from Rustchuk to the port of Varna, which thus 
became the link between Constantinople and the west ; he 
began another line, intended to connect Plevna with the 
Danube ; he built the great bridge of Bela over the Yantra ; 
he began the quay at Rustchuk, founded an orphanage at 
Sofia, a school at Shumla, a hospital at Plevna and a town at 
Orchanieh. A service of diligences and an establishment of 
fire-engines were due to his initiative ; he created savings-banks 
and tried to improve the system of agriculture ; in fact the 
traveller Kanitz found that, wherever he went, such progress 
as he saw was the work of Midhat. But the " Pasha of the 
Giaours" was not content with material progress alone. He 
treated the Christians as human beings; he made a serious 
attempt to realise the promises contained in the Hatti- 
Humayun of 1856 ; his police no longer insulted the Bulgars ; 
his officials were sometimes natives. Thirty years earlier, 
when, in 1837, the reforming Sultan Mahmiid H had made a 
royal progress through Bulgaria, the timid Christians, whom 
he had come to benefit, had bowed their* heads to the 
ground at the passage of the Great Lord, upon whose face it 
was not meet for them to look But if Midhat knew how to 

344 T^he Bulgarian Exarchate [ch. 

treat the Bulgars as men, he knew also how to treat them as 

Since the time of the Crimean war a number of Bulgarian 
exiles, discontented with the small prospects which the Turkish 
rule offered to educated men in their own country, had emi- 
grated to Bucharest. The emigrants were divided into two 
camps, the " old " Bulgars — men of some substance who 
intrigued with Russia and were called " Christian Turks " by 
their opponents — and the " young '' — mostly students, who 
preferred the programme of the Servian Omladina and the 
methods of conspirators, and were despised as " vagabonds " 
in the "old" Bulgarian press. While some advocated a 
South Slavonic federation with Servia, the ''Secret Bulgarian 
Central Committee," influenced by the Austro-Hungarian 
Ausgleich of 1867, sent a memorial to the Sultan, begging 
him to assume the medieval title of "Tsar of the Bulgarians," 
to grant Bulgaria a constitution, and to establish a Turco- 
Bulgarian Dual Monarchy. Meanwhile, the party of action 
among the emigrants raised the ancient lion-standard of 
Bulgaria on Bulgarian soil. In 1867 two small bands under 
Panajot Hitov and Totjov crossed the Danube; but the 
coldly calculating peasants showed no belief in the success 
of this movement, which was suppressed with extreme severity. 
A few survivors cut their way over the Servian frontier; a 
bloody assize was held at Svishtov ; but Midhat's temerity 
in shooting two passengers on an Austrian steamer, accused 
of complicity, led to the protests of the Powers and his recall. 
The Porte was not sorry for an excuse for removing so inde- 
pendent a governor, while the Christians saw with mixed 
feelings the departure of one who had been the greatest 
supporter of their material interests, yet at the same time 
the strongest opponent of their national aspirations. Five 
successive governors ruled over the province during the next 
six years, of whom one alone attempted to continue the work 
of Midhat. A second revolutionary movement, the product 

xv] The Firman of iZyo 345 

of Michael Obrenovich's plans for a general Slavonic rising, 
was not checked by the Prince's assassination. The Servian 
Regency, occupied with domestic politics, vainly strove to 
restrain the Bulgarian emigrants at Bucharest ; a band of 
well-drilled volunteers again unfurled the lion-banner between 
the Danube and the Balkans ; and, though they were almost 
annihilated, their bravery impressed both Turks and Christians 
alike. Among those inspired by their fate to work out the 
salvation of his country was the future Prime Minister of 
Bulgaria, Stambulov, then a lad at Trnovo. 

The Cretan insurrection and the hostility of Greece made 
Turkish statesmen adopt the advice, given by Fuad Pasha 
in his political testament, " to isolate the Greeks as much as 
possible from other Christians," and "to withdraw the Bul- 
garians from the domination of the Greek Church." Aali 
Pasha, fresh from Crete, supported the opinion of Fuad; 
Ignatyeff, the Russian ambassador at Constantinople, advocated 
the foundation of a separate Bulgarian Church in the interest 
of Panslavism. The Patriarch, when pressed, referred the 
Turkish Ministers to the Canons of the Church ; the Turks, 
invited to decide a nice point of Christian theology, preferred 
to consider arguments of statecraft. On March 11, 1870, a 
firman created a Bulgarian Exarchate, comprising the whole 
vilayet of the Danube, except notoriously non-Bulgarian towns 
and villages such as Varna, but including the now Servian 
towns of Nish and Pirot. The firman further stated that 
other places might pass under the authority of the Exarch, 
if two-thirds of their inhabitants so desired. The Exarch was 
to obtain a berat from the Sultan, to mention the name of the 
Patriarch in his prayers, and to receive from him the holy 
oil. Both races at once saw the importance of this act, 
which laid the foundations of a new power in the east ; 
Christian and Greek were thenceforth no longer synonymous 
in European Turkey. The Bulgars thanked Aali for his boon; 
the Patriarchate struggled against the execution of the firman, 

34^ The Bulgarian Exarchate [cH. 

and succeeded in postponing for two years the appoint- 
ment of the first Bulgarian Exarch. Then, finding further 
resistance impossible, the Patriarch excommunicated the 
Exarch and his clergy as schismatic. From that moment 
there was war to the knife between Patriarchists and Exarch- 
ists ; and Macedonia became the battle-field of the rival Greek 
and Bulgarian propaganda. Bishoprics became pawns in the 
political struggle, and peasants killed each other in the name 
of contending ecclesiastical establishments. The Bulgarian 
Exarchate had brought not peace, but a sword. The Exarchs 
since 1872 have resided at neither Trnovo, the seat of the 
medieval Patriarchs, nor at Sofia, the modern capital, but 
at Constantinople, thus accentuating their claim to ecclesiastical 
jurisdiction over the "unredeemed" Bulgars of the Turkish 

The creation of the Exarchate did not pacify the Bulgarian 
revolutionists of Bucharest, whose leaders were, since the 
death of Rakovski, the ex-deacon Vasil Levski and the novelist 
Ljuben Karavelov, whose motto was that Bulgaria must free 
herself, and that what she wanted was not an Exarch but a 
leader of insurgents. In 1870 a secret congress, held in 
Bucharest, drew up a programme for the liberation of the 
Bulgarians by a revolution, which was to be directed not 
against the Turks as such, but only against the Turkish 
government ; alliances were to be made with the other Balkan 
states ; local committees were formed in Bulgaria, which 
"Apostles," headed by Levski, traversed in all directions. 
This organisation, which recalls the Greek " Friendly Society," 
spread rapidly ; numbers of peasants and small tradesmen were 
initiated ; and all went well till a cosmopolitan adventurer, who 
had joined the society, fatally compromised it by an act of 
brigandage, committed on a Turkish convoy. The authorities 
discovered that the criminals were not only highwaymen but 
conspirators ; Levski was wounded and taken ; on the spot, 
where he was hanged at Sofia, his monument now stands. 

xv] The Black Sea clauses 347 

Karavelov's complicity was discovered, and his expulsion from 
Roumania demanded by the Turkish government. Accused 
of malversation by his younger comrades, he abandoned 
revolutionary journalism for literature. 

Russia obtained another diplomatic triumph besides the 
creation of the Bulgarian Exarchate in 1870. Availing himself 
of the Franco-German war and of the consequent inability of 
the French to offer opposition, Gortchakoff announced in 
a circular of October 31, that Russia would no longer be 
bound by the Black Sea clauses of the treaty of Paris. Earl 
Granville, then our Foreign Secretary, pointed out that one 
party to a treaty could not declare its conditions to be no 
longer binding without the consent of the other parties. This 
high-handed action on the part of Russia provoked much 
indignation, especially in the United Kingdom, where the 
memories of the Crimea were still green ; and it was felt that 
Gortchakoff would not have thus defied Europe, if he had 
not assured himself of the support of Bismarck. For the 
sake of form, the Prussian statesman proposed a conference, 
which met in London in January 187 1, and at which all the 
signatory Powers of the treaty of Paris were represented, except 
France. The articles of that treaty regarding the neutralisation 
of the Black Sea were abrogated ; the Sultan was allowed 
to open the Dardanelles and the Bosphorus in time of peace 
to the fleets of his friends and allies ; the European Commission 
of the Danube was prolonged for 1 2 years; and the works already 
created there were neutralised, subject to the right of the Porte 
to send vessels of war into the river. Thus the audacity of Gort- 
chakoff, aided by circumstances, was successful ; the last benefit 
to Great Britain from the Crimean war was lost only 15 years 
after that costly conflict had closed; while in 191 1 another 
signatory Power of the treaty of Paris might have cited 
Gartchakoff's circular as .a precedent for declaring that she, 
too, was no longer bound by that instrument. 

The creation of the Bulgarian Exarchate was not the only 

34^ The Bulgarian Exarchate [ch. 

misfortune which befell the Greeks in 1870 — a year full of 
import for eastern as for western Europe. On April 11 a 
party consisting of Lord and Lady Muncaster, Mr and Mrs 
Lloyd and their child, Mr Vyner, Mr Herbert, secretary of 
the British, and Count de Boyl, secretary of the Italian legation 
at Athens, with an Italian servant and a Greek courier, made 
an excursion to the battle-field of Marathon. Previously to 
their departure, Erskine, the British minister, had enquired 
of the chief of police whether there was any danger, but no 
hint of insecurity had been given by that official. Four 
mounted gendarmes, however, accompanied the excursionists. 
On the return journey, at Pikermi, 13 miles from Athens, a 
band of 21 brigands fired out of the wood; two of the 
gendarmes fell wounded, whereupon the brigands hurried 
up the mountain side with the tourists and the other two 
gendarmes. Six infantrymen, who had been unable to keep 
pace with the horses, then came up, and fired upon the 
brigands ; but, finding that their fire made no impression 
and fearing to wound the prisoners, they desisted from their 
attempt at rescue. The brigands, not wishing to saddle 
themselves with unnecessary encumbrances, told the two 
ladies that they might return to Athens with the child, the 
Italian servant, and the two unwounded gendarmes, whither, 
on April 13, Lord Muncaster was sent to arrange for the 
payment of the ransom, otiginally fixed at ;£"3 2,000, but 
reduced to ;£2 5,000 or an amnesty — a demand quickly 
expanded into ;£"2 5,000 and an amnesty. The two chiefs, 
Takos (or Demetrios) Arvanitakes and his brother Christ6s, 
who managed all the negotiations for the band, attached 
more importance to the amnesty than to the ransom, because 
Takos was a man of means, who had been an outlaw since 
1857 and wanted to return to society ; while they were 
encouraged to insist upon the amnesty by emissaries from 
Athens, who, in Erskine's phrase, were " believed by Zaimes 
[the Premier] to have been despatched by some of the leading 

xv] ''The Drama of Oropos'' 349 

members of the Opposition," with the object of making the 
government commit an unconstitutional act and of then 
turning it out. In fact, by article 39 of the Constitution, 
specially framed to prevent the wholesale remission of punish- 
ment to brigands, the King possessed the prerogative of 
granting an amnesty for political offences only. Erskine 
accordingly wrote to the brigands as follows : " There will 
be no difficulty as to the payment of the money, but you must 
not insist on an amnesty, which government have not the 
power to grant. Persons will be sent to treat with you, and 
in the meantime both the King and the President of the 
Council [who had both just returned from the Archipelago] 
have assured the English minister that you shall not be 
molested. Make your prisoners as comfortable as you can. 
You can even put them under cover in some rural habitation 
without any fear." There was, therefore, never any doubt 
about the payment of the ransom; the only question was, 
whether the brigands could be induced to waive their demand 
for the amnesty. Curiously enough, both the British Secretary 
for Foreign Affairs and the brigand chief thought that the 
amnesty should be granted, despite the fact that it was un- 
constitutional. Clarendon, when referred by the Greek 
minister in London to the law, replied : " I could not admit 
the validity of the constitutional objection. ...The Greek Con- 
stitution had so often been violated by the government... that 
I could not listen to a plea founded on it as an excuse." " The 
representatives of England and Italy," remarked the chief 
brigand, "should say to the Greek government, that they 
do not care at all how the thing is done, whether by 
amnesty or no, whether an amnesty be legal or not." At the 
same time this high constitutional authority was willing to 
provide means of keeping within the letter of the law. He 
suggested, that, if so much fuss were made about the un- 
constitutional nature of the act, a fresh National Convention 
should be summoned, and the Constitution amended to meet 

350 The Bulgarian Exarchate [ch. 

his requirements ! Or again, playing upon the double meaning 
of the word " political," which in Greek also means " civilian," 
he would beg to point out that, as all the persons concerned 
were civilians, His Majesty could constitutionally grant the 
amnesty ! The Greek government, on its part, offered to 
close its eyes while a British man-of-war gave the brigands 
the means of leaving Greece, or to promise them a pardon 
after a trial at Athens. The brigands were, however, not 
particularly anxious to enjoy an affluent exile at Malta — the 
place suggested— while they absolutely declined to trust their 
lives in Athens; they were willing, however, to submit to a 
trial at Orop6s, whither they had in the meantime transferred 
themselves and their prisoners, provided that it was followed 
by a pardon. The leading lawyer of Greece declared this 
original idea of a sham local assize to be impossible, and 
thus for some days negotiations went on without result, while 
the prisoners, except for the inclement weather, had no cause 
to complain of their treatment. The brigands took them to 
church on Sunday, and introduced them to the parish priest ; 
there were dances, jumping, and throwing the stone, and one 
brigand, the scholar of the party, read history for two hours 
one evening ! 

The British minister had urged General SoAtsos, Minister 
of War, and the latter had promised, not to send troops 
against the brigands, who in that case would be certain to 
kill their prisoners. The government was therefore compelled 
to treat with the robbers as if they had been an independent 
state. The King "showed the most eager wish to place 
himself in the hands of the brigands," and emissaries of in- 
creasing rank were sent to argue with them. Mr Frank Noel, 
the squire of Achm^taga in Eubcea, who had two brothers 
of the chiefs in his employ, and who possessed a great know- 
ledge of the people among whom he and his family had lived 
for three generations, generously went, at considerable personal 
risk, to interview the captors. At last, on April i8, the Cabinet 

xv] Negotiations with the Brigands 351 

commissioned Col. Theagenes, aide-de-camp of General Church, 
and a man of great probity, who had traversed the Turkish 
lines during the siege of the Akropolis in 1827, to parley 
with them. His instructions were to tell them that the 
ransom was at their disposal, and that they could leave Greek 
soil by land or sea (in the latter case, on an English vessel), 
but that they could not be amnestied, and that meanwhile 
under no pretext must they leave Orop6s ; otherwise the 
government would feel itself released from the obligation taken 
not to pursue them. On April 20 Theagenes communicated 
to Takos at Oropos the above terms, but without any result 
beyond irritating him. When allusion was made to the 
necessity of remaining at Oropos, the chief produced Erskine's 
letter, and contended that the promise of immunity, which 
it contained, was absolute and not conditional, so that he 
claimed the right to go whithersoever he pleased. Then, 
turning to the prisoners, he bade them write to their ministers 
that, if this affair were not terminated by the following evening, 
he would cut their throats, "for that," he added, "is the 
colonel's desire, since he threatens us with the detachments." 
Theagenes then departed, and next day proceeded, in accor- 
dance with the orders of the government, to shut the brigands 
within Orop6s. But hearing that they had crossed the river 
Asop6s with their prisoners to the neighbouring village of 
Sykamin6n, he changed his plans, and resolved to surround 
that village, and thus force them to accept the proposals made 
to them. At the same time a Greek gun-boat lay at anchor 
off the skdla of Oropos. A despatch from the Cabinet, ordering 
Theagenes not to attack them at Sykaminon, but simply to 
blockade that place, and only to attack, if they attempted 
to leave it, arrived too late. When the brigand chief saw 
the soldiers, he sent Anemogiannes, the Greek dragoman of 
the prisoners, with Erskine's letter, to Theagenes, and ordered 
the emissary to warn the colonel not to allow his men to 
approach nearer. Theagenes, on receipt of this message, told 

352 The Bulgarian Exarchate [ch. 

the dragoman to inform the brigands that they would not 
be molested at Sykaminon, where they would receive the 
money. Anemogiannes, however, under pretext of finding 
a horse, delayed his return to the brigands, so that this 
message was never delivered. While this conversation was 
going on, Theagenes saw the robbers with their prisoners 
escaping in the direction of Delisi (the ancient Delion), with 
the ultimate intention of gaining the fastnesses of Agrapha. 
The soldiers set out in pursuit ; and at Delisi, Herbert, who 
could run no more, was cut down and then shot by the 
brigands. Infuriated at this spectacle, the soldiers fired, 
whereupon, 40 paces beyond the spot where they had mas- 
sacred their first victim, the brigands stabbed and shot Lloyd. 
They then divided, one party, under Christ6s (who was shot 
by the troops) running towards the sea, the others towards 
Skimatari, the present junction of the line to Chalkis. Near 
Skimatari, Vyner and Boyl gave out, and were shot by the 
brigands, more fortunate than their two comrades in the 
manner of their deaths, for no yataghan mangled their bodies. 
Of the brigands 7 were killed, 4 wounded and captured, while 
10, including the chief, escaped. The heads of the 7 slain 
malefactors were exhibited on the Plain of Mars at Athens. 
The news of the massacre of the prisoners caused an 
immense sensation in England. Debates took place in both 
Houses ; newspapers published articles of incredible violence, 
and nothing short of the destruction of Greece would satisfy 
some of the most vehement critics. Gradually people came 
to see that it was unjust to blame a whole nation, because 
21 brigands, of whom only two were Greeks and the rest 
Albanian-Wallachs, had murdered a party of distinguished 
Englishmen. The whole affair, as Mr Noel, the Englishman 
who knew the country best, pointed out, had been grievously 
mismanaged. The brigands had threatened and meant to 
kill their prisoners, if pursued, and had relied for immunity 
on the British minister's letter ; while, as Mr Noel wrote on 

xv] Suppression of Brigandage 353 

the morrow of the massacre, "had the government suspended 
hostilities, everything would have been arranged," for they 
had told him that they would accept the ransom alone, and 
leave the country, if they failed to obtain their demand for 
an amnesty. A month after the murders, the trial of the 
four men concerned in them, and of other brigands, including 
two former members of this band, began at Athens, and a 
sensation was created when two wounded robbers were borne 
into the court on litters. All four were condemned to death, 
and three of them, together with two others, were publicly 
guillotined on the Plain of Mars. No less than in persons 
were accused of complicity in this affair, and 62 of them were 
committed for trial, among the latter, to the general amazement, 
Mr Noel ; but the court eventually decided that there was 
no case against him. It was generally felt, as the President 
of the Crirninal Court had said, that the national honour 
could "be vindicated only by the speedy and complete ex- 
tirpation of brigandage" — a plague, which had diminished 
between 1856 and 1862 but had revived after the revolution 
and the anarchy that followed. Accordingly, a circular 
against it was issued ; and, although a Greek deputy was 
captured later in the year, Granville was able, before it closed, 
to express the satisfaction of the British Cabinet at the 
energetic measures of the Greek government. Gladstone's 
prophecy that this sad affair appeared " likely to be a great 
event in the history of Greece " has been verified ; for, since 
the capture of Lord Muncaster's party, no foreigner has been 
taken by brigands in Greece. The murder of a Greek near 
Lamia in 1894 was a repetition on a much smaller scale of 
" the drama of Oropos " ; but that incident was a rare ex- 
ception to the public security of the country. 

In another way, Gladstone's remark was true. Four 

deputies protested against the alleged remark of Zaimes 

about the communications between ''some of the leading 

members of the Opposition " and the brigands ; the resignation 

M. L. 23 

354 ^'^^^ Bulgarian Exarchate [ch. 

of General Soiitsos was followed by that of the rest of the 
Cabinet ; and a series of short-lived ministries ensued, one of 
which, under the guidance of Koumoundoiiros, carried a 
drastic measure against brigandage. 

The excitement caused by "the drama of Orop6s" had 
scarcely subsided, when the question of the I^vrion mines 
became acute. Lavrion is just such a place as the political 
economist loves ; for it reproduces, as far as it is possible to 
do so beneath the blue sky and in the sun of Greece, the 
conditions of our own " black country." It is essentially a 
workmen's town, where alone in Greece the thin edge of a 
labour question sometimes makes itself felt. Yet the prose 
of mining is, at least, refined at Lavrion by the tradition of 
over two thousand years. Aeschylus wrote that the Athenians 
had "a fountain of silver, a treasure of their land"; and 
Herodotus relates how Themistokles, like the shrewd statesman 
that he was, persuaded his fellow-citizens to devote the profits 
of the Lavrion silver-mines, which were to have been divided 
among them, to the building of 200 ships — the origin of the 
naval power of Athens, which saved Greece at Salamis. Soon 
after the Roman conquest we hear of an insurrection of slaves 
employed there ; but a Httle later the mines were supposed 
to have been worked out ; and Pausanias describes Lavrion 
as a place " where once were silver mines." For nineteen 
centuries they were abandoned; but in 1864 an Italo-French 
company bought lands at Ldvrion with the object of pursuing 
mining operations. The reasons which led to its formation 
were quite romantic. The late Lord Sherbrooke once re- 
marked in the course of one of his sallies at the expense of his 
classical education, that in his Australian days he was walking, 
without knowing it, upon hidden gold-fields, which a scientific 
training would have enabled him to discover. But — so the 
story runs — it was the study of the classics which led a certain 
Signor Serpieri to found his company for the exploitation of 
the long-neglected mineral wealth of Lavrion. This gentleman 

xv] The Mines of Ldvrion 355 

had read the passage of Strabo\ in which the great geographer, 
writing some 30 years before Christ, said that, though the 
ancient silver mines had given out, yet the workmen were still 
able to extract the precious metal by smelting over again the 
refuse and the scoriae. He then proceeded to Lavrion, ex- 
amined the heaps of old refuse that were lying about, and 
returned to " Europe " with some specimens in his pocket. 
A concession was granted to him and to M. Roux of Marseilles 
to work the mines, but a question arose as to the right of 
the company to extract ore from the refuse which Strabo had 
mentioned. The disputes which followed formed a not in- 
considerable part of Greek political history during the next 
few^ years, and led to some unpleasantness between the Greek 
government and the representatives of France and Italy. 
Like everything else in Greece, the Lavrion mines became 
a political question ; and the Opposition of the day sought to 
extract political capital from the ancient refuse. The news- 
papers represented the spoil-banks of Strabo as a second 
California, which ought to have belonged by natural right 
to the nation but were being exploited by greedy foreign 
capitalists. The real value of the minerals was immensely 
exaggerated \ public opinion became excited ; and a law was 
passed in 187 1, declaring the refuse-heaps to be national 
property. France and Italy protested against this law, and, 
when the Greek government replied that the Greek courts 
were open to the aggrieved company, threatened force, and 
appealed to the other Powers. Austria proposed, and the 
Greek government refused, arbitration with the company ; and 
matters had come to a deadlock, when in 1873 the company 
sold its rights, and a new company, of which Sig. Serpieri was 
again the leading spirit, obtained a concession to work the 
minerals, on condition of paying a heavy royalty of 44 per 
cent, on the ore extracted from the refuse and slag. As this 
was soon found to be heavier than the mining company could 


35^ The Bulgarian Exarchate [ch. 

bear, it was subsequently reduced, but not before the Athenian 
pubHc had paid the usual penalty of speculators in such 

The next two years, which preceded the great crisis of the 
eastern question^ were occupied in Greece with parliamentary 
and constitutional struggles. Politicians, like Delegeorges and 
Boiilgares, who had played an important part in the overthow 
of Otho, found when they became Prime Ministers that it 
was not easy to translate into practice the advanced democratic 
doctrines which they had preached when in opposition. 
Liberals in power often turn conservative, but they thereby 
lose their popularity with their former admirers. Poetic 
justice decreed that Delegeorges, who had risen to office by 
the agitation about the mines of Lavrion, should fall by the 
same agency, and that the idol of the students in 1862 should 
become the object of their hostile demonstrations in 1873, 
because he declined to reconstitute the phalanx created in 
the revolutionary year. Boiilgares, his successor, was accused 
of violating article 56 of the constitution, because at the 
sitting of December 12, 1874, he considered as legal a quorum 
composed not of half the total number of deputies plus one, 
but of half the total number of deputies actually living and 
elected plus one. The leaders of the Opposition thereupon 
declared the constitution to be in danger; 19 newspapers 
of Athens appealed to the people to save it ; the names of 
ministerial deputies who formed this irregular quorum were 
pilloried, and the nickname of o-TryXiTat (" dishonoured ") 
applied to them, while two members of the Cabinet were 
accused of bribery in connexion with the appointment of 
several archbishops. The Ministry was compelled to resign 
in 1875 ; and Charilaos Trikoupes, who had recently been 
arrested for a strong article, supposed to reflect upon the 
Crown, became for the first time Prime Minister. Son of the 
former minister in London and historian of the Greek revolu- 
tion, he had learnt as his father's secretary of legation to 

xv] hnpeachjnent of BoT^lgares 357 

appreciate British methods, had sat in the National Assembly, 
had been sent to London to negotiate in the matter of 
the Corfiote forts, and had gained his first experience of office 
as Minister of Foreign Affairs during part of the Cretan 
insurrection. Trikoupes' hour, however, was not yet come; 
but the elections which he held were free from all government 
interference, and it was reserved for his successor Koumoun- 
douros to obtain from the new Chamber a vote annulling all 
laws passed by the imconstitutional quorum. In 1876 the 
whole Boiilgares Cabinet was impeached for a breach of the 
constitution, and two of its members were tried and convicted 
of bribery; the archbishops were punished for simony. But 
the international situation in the east diverted the attention 
of the Greeks from these internal problems and united rival 
politicians in a common bond of patriotism. 



In the summer of 1875 ^ revolt in an obscure village of 
the Herzegovina, judged at the outset to be merely "an 
internal affair of Turkey," was the beginning of a movement 
which spread all over the Balkan peninsula, involved three 
of the Balkan states, as well as Russia, in war with Turkey, 
and terminated in the most important Congress that has ever 
met to settle the affairs of south-eastern Europe. Except 
for the revolt of the highlanders of Krivoshije, the mountainous 
district above Risano on the Bocche di Cattaro, in 1869 
against service in the Austrian army, that corner of the South 
Slavonic world had not attracted the attention of diplomatists 
since the Herzegovinian insurrection of 1861 and the Turco- 
Montenegrin war that had arisen therefrom. Despite a poetic 
appeal to their brethren of Montenegro and the Herzegovina, 
the men of Krivoshije had not found allies ; but even so they 
had amazed Europe by the vigour of their resistance to the 
army of a first-class Power. Prince Nicholas, anxious not to 
offend his great neighbour, had then preserved a strict 
neutrality, while three years later his diplomacy smoothed 
over a frontier incident at Kolashin between his warlike 
subjects and the Turks. But, if the Herzegovina had remained 
quiet, the Christians were far from contented. The Cretan 
insurrection of 1866-9 had set an example which was not lost 
upon them — for the social condition of the two countries was 
not unlike. In both there were practically no Turks, except 

CH. xvi] The Herzegovina 359 

the officials, sent from Constantinople and usually changed 
before they had time to learn the language or study the needs 
of the people; in both the native Mussulman oppressors 
belonged to the same race and spoke the same tongue as their 
Christian victims. The latter had benefited but little from 
the formal declaration of equality before the law, made so 
ostentatiously by Abdul Mejid. Whatever the theory might 
be, the Christians of Bosnia and the Herzegovina, which formed 
one government, were virtually debarred from giving evidence 
in the higher courts, and could only obtain justice against 
members of the dominant creed by enormous bribes. "All 
provincial authorities," wrote the British consul some years 
before the final insurrection broke out, " with rare exceptions, 
act according to the inspirations of their own personal interest "; 
and he added the significant warning that " without some 
powerful intervention, Bosnia and the Herzegovina might soon 
witness scenes similar to those which have lately terrified 
Europe in Syria." No Christians were employed in the ad- 
ministration; the police purchased their places, and reimbursed 
themselves by extorting money from those whom they were 
supposed to defend ; and, worst of all, the exactions of the 
tax-farmers were such that the peasant, when all was paid, 
seldom kept for himself more than one-third of his crop. 

The harvest of 1874 had been very bad, yet the tax-farmers 
did not on that account diminish their demands ; what litde 
had been yielded by the green oases in the stony plateau of 
Nevesinje, a village some 25 miles from Mostar, lay rotting 
on the ground ; for the peasants could not gather 'it into their 
barns till the dilatory publicans, a Christian and two Moham- 
medan Serbs, had assessed it. Unable to obtain redress against 
their tardy and exorbitant assessment, 164 inhabitants fled 
to Montenegro in February 1875, whence they did not return 
for some months. Meanwhile, two events had excited the 
Christian population. The slaughter of a band of Monte- 
negrins by the Turks at Podgoritza in October 1874 had 

360 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [gh. 

provoked a protest from Prince Nicholas, to whom the 
Orthodox Serbs of the Herzegovinian border looked as their 
natural champion ; the visit of the Austrian Emperor to 
Dalmatia in the spring of 1875 encouraged the Catholic 
clergy, who had long looked to Austria for aid ; and oppressed 
subjects of the Turks told their tale of woes to the powerful 
ruler of their Dalmatian kinsmen. Thus, a rising, of which 
the origin was traceable to internal maladministration, was 
encouraged by circumstances in two neighbouring states. 
Finding the fugitives from Nevesinje a burden on his exiguous 
treasury, Prince Nicholas obtained leave for them to return 
to their homes, which in some cases were burned over their 
heads. Outrage succeeded outrage, till at last, on July i, 
Nevesinje rose, refusing either to pay taxes or to admit the 
police. After two Turkish commissioners had failed to pacify 
the insurgents, the consuls of the Powers were sent to disclaim 
all active sympathy with the insurrection, and Server Pasha, 
who had played the same part in Crete, was commissioned 
" to redress abuses." 

These missions Hkewise failed, for the Christians, often 
deceived, had no faith in the Turks. The insurgents, however, 
laid before the consuls a statement of their grievances. They 
complained that the ancient tithe had been increased to 
12J per cent, upon grain, tobacco, vegetables, fruit, and hay, 
which in practice had become still more. For the tax-farmers 
were in the habit of living for several days at the expense of 
the peasants, while the latter could not touch the fruits of 
their fields until the tax had been paid. Tobacco and the 
juice of the grape were liable to a further excise; every 
Christian male had to pay 30 piastres a year as poll-tax for 
exemption from military service ; taxes on land, houses, 
pasture-lands, small animals, hogs, and beehives were added ; 
and the peasants' burdens were made still heavier by com- 
pulsory work on the roads and by horse service for the 
conveyance of troops. Besides these grievances against the 

xvi] The Herzegovinian rising 361 

government and its agents, the Christians complained of the 
feudalism of the landowners, or agas^ mostly Mohammedan 
Serbs, converted to Islam after the fall of the old Bosnian 
kingdom in 1463 and of the "Duchy" of S. Sava, whence 
the Herzegovina takes its name, some 20 years later. These 
landlords treated their Christian tenants, or kmets, as serfs, 
and extracted from these struggling cultivators of the stony 
Herzegovina a quarter of the produce, an annual animal of 
the flock, a large amount of gratuitous labour, and free food 
whenever they descended upon the peasants' huts. Thus, 
between the Imperial tax-farmer and the native aga, the lot 
of the Christian was intolerable. Before the law he was always 
at a disadvantage ; the chief functionaries were Turks, ignorant 
of Serb ; the language of the courts was Turkish, which he 
did not understand ; in short, the petitioners summed up their 
condition in the sentence that they had " no security for life, 
for honour, or for property." Nevertheless, at that stage of 
the insurrection, they still wished to remain subjects of the 
Sultan, and, with the exception of those who inhabited the 
frontier districts, did not desire union with Montenegro. They 
demanded lands in some foreign country, to which they could 
emigrate, or autonomy under a foreign Christian prince, or 
else a foreign occupation till justice had been accorded to 
them. For Turkish reforms, without European intervention 
as a guarantee of their performance, had been proved to be 
valueless. Thus, at first, just as in Servia in 1804, the revolt 
was not against the Sultan, but against the local authorities, 
who misgoverned in his name, and the native Mohammedan 
landlords, in whom pride of birth was combined with the 
arrogance of apostasy. 

The insurrection spread to an extent which seriously 
alarmed the statesmen of Constantinople. The Krivoshijans, 
who had beaten the Austrians in 1869, poured across the 
frontier. On August 15, 1875, a similar movement, Hkewise due 
to the extortions of the tax-farmers, had begun at Kozaratz near 

362 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [cH. 

Prjedor in north-west Bosnia, where the two religions had 
lived more harmoniously than in the Herzegovina. This 
Bosnian revolt extended rapidly eastward to Brod and Dervent, 
while the bulk of the Turkish troops, reduced below their 
proper strength before the outbreak in the Herzegovina, was 
engaged in grappling with the latter. Consequently the native 
Mussulmans took the law into their own hands; and in Bosnia 
there raged a civil war, in which the combatants were of the 
same race and speech but of different creeds. The theatre 
of this struggle being near the frontiers of the Dual Monarchy, 
the Slavs of Hungary could assist their brethren of Bosnia, 
while the Herzegovinian insurgents pitched their head-quarters 
in an old monastery some three hours from Ragusa, where 
the survivors of the massacre, perpetrated on the Catholics 
of the neighbouring plain of Popovo, found refuge, and where 
the Christian combatants found sympathy and supplies. A 
distributing committee sat at Castelnuovo on the Bocche di 
Cattaro, and rifles were landed in the Sutorina. The pass 
of Muratovitza proved to be the Marathon of the Herzegovina, 
where a local chief, Lazar Socitza, drove back the Turkish 
army with signal success ; and on December 1 2 the Sultan 
issued a new firman, completing the Hatti-Humayun of 
1856, and promising administrative reforms. But as Count 
Andrassy, the Austro-Hungarian Foreign Minister, pointed 
out in the note which he drew up on December 30, the 
Turkish reforms were vague and inadequate, while the Turkish 
arms had been unsuccessful. There was " no district of Euro- 
pean Turkey," he wrote, " where the antagonism which exists 
between the Cross and the Crescent takes such an acrimonious 
form." He therefore suggested the immediate suppression 
of tax-farming, the expenditure of the amount raised by direct 
taxation in the country, religious liberty, a special commission 
of Christians and Mussulmans in equal numbers to superintend 
the reforms, and the amelioration of the rural population. 
Lord Derby, then our Foreign Secretary, gave a general 

xvi] The Berlin Memorandum 363 

support to these proposals; and the Porte accepted all but 
the second point. But neither the Andrassy note, nor the 
conference of Baron Rodich, the Slav governor of Dalmatia, 
with the insurgent chiefs in the Sutorina, nor yet the Berlin 
Memorandum of the three Imperial Cabinets — which proposed 
an armistice and a mixed commission, adding that the Christians 
should be allowed to retain their arms, and that the Turkish 
troops should be concentrated — availed to stay the insurrection. 
The Berlin Memorandum met with no support from the 
Turcophil government of Great Britain. The imprisonment of 
Ljubibratich, one of the insurgent chiefs, an agitator rather than 
a guerrilla leader, by the Austrian authorities as a concession to 
Magyar hatred of the Slavs, could not cripple a movement 
with which the two neighbouring principalities of Servia and 
Montenegro were about to announce their co-operation. 

From the outset it was to have been expected that a 
prolongation of the insurrection would involve those two states. 
At first, indeed, neither of the Princes was anxious for war 
with Turkey. Milan, when a deputation from his parliament 
presented him with an address, expressing the impossibility 
of Servian indifference to the fate of the Bosniaks and Herze- 
govinians, had replied by dismissing Ristich, his bellicose 
Premier, and the leading advocate of the " great Servian " idea. 
But the Prince of Servia soon found that he had to reckon 
with two outside competitors for his shaky throne as well as 
with the war-party in his own country. Peter Karageorgevich, 
son of the exiled Prince, and a man of far more military 
capacity than himself, placed at the disposal of the Bosnian 
insurgents his experience gained during the Franco-German 
war, and distributed medals bearing his image and a telling 
allusion to the historic plain of Kossovo. Nicholas of Monte- 
negro, a born leader of men, after sending the wily old warrior, 
Peko Pavlovich, to quiet the insurgents, had allowed him to 
become one of their most active chiefs, while numbers of his 
subjects crossed the frontier, whence his own father-in-law 

364 The Balkmi Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

directed operations. Embarrassed by the comparisons which 
were drawn between his attitude and that of his two rivals. 
Milan recalled Ristich to power in the spring of 1876, and 
accepted the services of Tchernaieff, a Russian general, who 
appeared in Servia nominally as correspondent of a Pan- 
slavist journal. Nicholas' next step was to send a memorandum 
to Lord Derby, pointing out the " intolerable position " in 
which the insurrection had placed him ; nor was the advice of 
the Tsar and the British government, that the Turks should 
placate the two Servian rulers by ceding a port and a little 
territory to Montenegro and Little Zvornik to Servia, adopted 
in time to prevent war. Ristich demanded that the adminis- 
tration of Bosnia, which was still in revolt, should be entrusted 
to Milan in return for a fixed payment ; and on June 30 the 
Prince of Servia issued a manifesto to his people, in which, 
after allusions to the medieval Tsar Dushan and to Milosh, 
he announced that his army was " about to enter the disturbed 
provinces in self-defence." On July i^ Servia, and on the 
morrow Montenegro, declared war against Turkey on behalf 
of their brother Serbs. The moment had at last come — so 
Prince Nicholas told his subjects — to restore the Servian empire, 
which had fallen with the first Murad and should revive with 
the fifth, who had just ascended the blood-stained Turkish 

The situation of the Turkish empire in the summer of 1876 
might, indeed, justify the sanguine rhetoric of the poet-Prince 
of the Black Mountain. The insurrection in the Herzegovina 
had not only aroused the sympathies of the two neighbouring 
Serb states, but had quickened the national feeling of the 
Bulgars. A fresh revolutionary committee was formed in 
Bucharest ; and the failure of Stambulov, the future Premier, 
and of Stojanov, the future Speaker of the Sobranje, to rally 
the peasants to his fiag at Stara Zagora only redoubled the 
efforts of the ardent patriots. Giurgevo became their head- 
quarters ; in the winter nights they would cross the frozen 

xvi] The Massacre of Batak 365 

Danube to the Bulgarian bank ; wooden cannon were hollowed 
out of cherry-trees : a congress of conspirators was held in 
a clearing of the forest. The Bulgarian leader, known as 
" Benkovski " from the name on his Polish passport, fancied 
himself a second Napoleon ; but this " revolt in the Sredna 
Gora," or " middle range of mountains " between the Balkans 
and the Thracian plain, which began on May 2, lasted only 
10 days, and was repressed with terrible severity. In the 
words of a British official, the Turks committed " cruelties 
worthy of Red Indians " at the sack of Panagjurishte. At the 
sight of the ruined town, the insurgents separated in despair ; 
" Benkovski," betrayed by a shepherd, was killed by the Turks. 
But, although unimportant in itself, this insurrection incident- 
ally caused the eyes of the whole civilised world to be directed 
to Bulgaria. The national movement had spread across the 
Maritza to Mount Rhodope, where the Christians fought 
against the Mohammedan Bulgars, or Potnaks^ who were, like 
the Mohammedan Serbs in Bosnia and the Mohammedan 
Greeks in Crete, the most fanatical adherents of Turkish rule. 
The village of Batak on the northern spurs of Rhodope was 
preparing to join the national movement, when a force of 
Bashi-Bozuks under the command of Achmet Aga of Dospat 
and his colleague, Mohammed Aga of Dorkovo, arrived there. 
After some attempt at defence, the villagers surrendered on 
the distinct promise that their lives should be spared. Then 
began what Mr Baring, the British Commissioner, stigmatised 
in his official report, drawn up after a visit to the spot, as 
" perhaps the most heinous crime that has stained the history 
of the present century." Achmet Aga and his men spared 
neither age nor sex. When the terrified Christians, to the 
number of over a thousand, took refuge in the church and 
churchyard, the Bashi-Bozuks fired through the windows, and 
then, tearing off the tiles, threw burning rags dipped in petro- 
leum among the helpless fugitives below. Only one old woman 
would seem to have escaped from within those desecrated 

366 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

walls; and when, more than two months later, the British 
Commissioner visited the spot, the stench of the unburied 
corpses was overpowering. "In the streets at every step," 
wrote Mr Baring, " lay human remains — here a skull of an 
old woman — there the false tress of some unhappy girl." It 
was estimated that 50^0 out of a population of 7000 had 
perished at Batak alone, while the Christians slaughtered 
throughout Bulgaria in that fatal month of May made up a 
total of 12,000. But the massacred Bulgars did not die in 
vain ; their death was the birth of their country. 

The " Bulgarian Atrocities " aroused the indignation of 
the whole Christian world. To the correspondent of the 
Daily N'ews belongs the credit of having first disclosed the 
infamies of Batak ; the British and American Commissioners 
confirmed his story. Gladstone left his theological studies 
on " Future Retribution " to write on the " Bulgarian Horrors "; 
and his famous pamphlet, sold by tens of thousands, awakened 
the righteous anger of the British people against the system 
of government, which could not only allow, but reward, such 
crimes — for Achmet Aga had been decorated for his conduct. 
The great Liberal statesman, whose services to the eastern 
Christians did more to raise British prestige in the Balkan 
peninsula than our fleets or armies, urged "the extinction 
of the Turkish executive power in Bulgaria." " Let the Turks," 
he wrote, " now carry away their abuses in the only possible 
manner, namely by carrying off themselves. Their Zaptiehs 
and their Mudirs, their Bimbashis and their Yuzbashis, their 
Kaimakams and their Pashas, one and all, bag and baggage, 
shall, I hope, clear out from the province they have desolated 
and profaned." Even the Conservative Foreign Secretary 
telegraphed to Constantinople that "any renewal of such 
outrages would. prove more disastrous to the Porte than the 
loss of a battle," and admitted, that " any sympathy which 
was previously felt " in Great Britain for Turkey had " been 
completely destroyed by the lamentable occurrences in 

xvi] Murder of the Consuls 367 

Bulgaria." His ambassador at Constantinople, Sir Henry Elliot, 
might callously remark that " we have been upholding what 
we know to be a semi-civilized nation," and that it did not 
matter how many Bulgars had been butchered, provided 
British " interests " were maintained. But the feeling of the 
British public towards the Turkish government was no longer 
that which had prompted the Crimean war ; indeed, a former 
member of the Aberdeen Cabinet was now the leading op- 
ponent of Turkey. " Even if Russia were to declare war against 
the Porte," Lord Derby added, " Her Majesty's government 
would find it practically impossible to interfere." An Ottoman 
official, perceiving when it was too late the full political import 
of the Batak massacre, asked one of its authors, how much 
Russia had paid him for a deed which would furnish her with 
a fresh excuse for intervention on behalf of the persecuted 
Slavs of the Balkan peninsula. Since that day there have 
been atrocities in the Turkish empire on a far larger scale, 
but the Armenian massacres had much less effect upon politics 
than the butchery of Batak. 

Western governments are generally less moved by the 
massacre of Christian subjects of the Sultan than by the 
murder of one of their own consuls. But the ferment of 
May 1876 produced both these incentives to intervention. 
A Bulgarian girl of dubious antecedents, who had embraced 
Islam, was seized by some Greeks at the Salonika railway- 
station ; her yashmak was torn off, and she was taken to the 
American consulate. An excited mob of Mussulmans vented 
its fanaticism upon the French and German consuls (the latter 
a British subject), who were forcibly detained in a mosque 
and murdered on May 6. The six murderers were promptly 
hanged ; but the movement of unrest was not confined to the 
provinces The National party at Constantinople, discontented 
with the weakness of the Russophil Grand Vizier, raised the 
cry of " Turkey for the Turks " ; several thousand softas, or 
theological students, forced the Sultan to dismiss his Minister. 

368 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

The British fleet arrived in Besika Bay ; and on May 29 the 
new Grand Vizier and his confederates, having obtained a 
fetvah from the Sheikh-ul-Islam authorising the deposition of 
Abdul Aziz on the ground of his incapacity and extravagance, 
declared the throne vacant and on the following day proclaimed 
his nephew Sultan under the title of Murad V. Four days 
later the death of Abdul Aziz prevented all danger of a 
restoration. The nature of his end has been much contested ; 
five years afterwards Midhat Pasha and others were tried and 
convicted of the Sultan's assassination ; but the trial, held 
under the shadow of Yildiz, was an absurd travesty of justice, 
and the late Dr Dickson of Constantinople, who saw the dead 
man's body, informed the present writer that Abdul Aziz 
committed suicide by cutting his arteries with a pair of scissors. 
The removal of his uncle did not, however, long confirm 
Murad on the throne. The tragedy of his sudden elevation 
to power affected a mind naturally feeble ; the National party 
soon recognised that he was not the man to direct the fortunes 
of the empire in a time of dire distress. On August 31 he 
was deposed in his turn, and his brother Abdul Hamid II 
took his place. Murad vanished in the palace of Cheragan 
on the Bosphorus, which had witnessed his uncle's tragic death. 
There he remained a prisoner till his death in 1904, but it 
was not till the revolution of 1908 that his wives were allowed 
to leave the mysterious palace, which had been isolated for 
over 30 years from the outside world. 

Seldom had a Sultan begun his reign under greater diffi- 
culties than the astute diplomatist who thus ascended the 
throne. He found Bosnia and the Herzegovina in revolt- 
against his authority, Servia and Montenegro fighting on their ( 
behalf. The Servian army, increased by a body of volunteers, 
was under the command of Tchernaieff, whose plan of campaign 
was to invade the Turkish territory on the south and east by 
the valleys of the Morava and the Timok, while at the same 
time despatching detachments to the frontiers of Bosnia and 

xvi] First Servian campaign 369 

of the sa?ijak of Novibazar. But the Russian commander's 
strategy was neutralised by the inferior material of which the 
Servian forces were composed. Unlike the warlike Monte- 
negrins, between whose Prince and their own there could be 
no unity of purpose, the Serbs had been at peace for two 
generations with their former masters, for whom they were no 
match in the field ; while the Bulgars, cowed by the massacres, 
did not rise, as was expected, and a Bulgarian legion retired 
in disorder. Tchernaieff, indeed, crossed the Turkish frontier 
to the south, and carried the Turkish camp by a sudden attack. 
But, while one Ottoman general checked the Servian advance 
to the east at Zajetchar and laid the important strategic post 
of Knajajevatz in ashes, another descended the valley of the 
Morava, and completely defeated the retreating army of the 
south at Aleksinatz. Milan, from his headquarters at Parachin, 
had already invited the Powers to intervene. An armistice was 
granted, but the negotiations for a settlement were hindered 
by his ill-timed proclamation as King at Deligrad on Septem- 
ber 16, at Tchernaieff 's suggestion, and the fighting was resumed. 
The Serbs made a desperate stand at Djunis, but in vain ; 
Aleksinatz was lost; all southern Servia was in the power of 
the Turks, and the road was open to Belgrade. Then the Tsar 
intervened to save Servia from annihilation, General Ignatyeff 
handed a Russian ultimatum to the Porte, demanding the 
conclusion of an armistice within 48 hours with both Servia 
and Montenegro. The Turkish government yielded ; and on 
November i an armistice of two months was signed, which 
was subsequently extended till March i, 1877, when a definite 
peace was concluded between Milan and the Sultan. Servia 
neither lost nor gained by the war of 1876 ; her territory was 
left undiminished ; her finances were unencumbered by a war 

Meanwhile the Montenegrins had fought with far more 
success than their Servian allies. The forces of the Black 
Mountain were divided into two armies, that of the north, 

M. r,. 24 

370 The Balkan Ovists of 1875-8 [ch. 

which, under the command of the Prince, invaded the Herze- 
govina, and that of the south, under Bojo Petrovich, his cousin 
and subsequent Prime Minister, whose instructions were to 
watch the Albanian frontier. The northern army defeated the 
Turks with great loss at the village of Vutchidol, and the 
advance guard reached the old castle of Duke Stephen only 
a few miles from Mostar. But the Austrian military attache 
warned the Prince not to enter the Herzegovinian capital, and 
bad news from the south compelled him to hasten back to the 
defence of his country, only to find that his cousin had twice 
routed the enemy at Medun near Podgoritza. Another Monte- 
negrin victory at Danilograd in the Zeta valley and the 
capitulation of Medun concluded the campaign of 1876. 
Montenegro signed an armistice with the Porte on the basis of 
uti possidetis ; Bojo Petrovich was sent to Constantinople to 
negotiate peace, with instructions to ask for an increase of 
territory, including the cession of the then Turkish fortress of 
Spizza. The Porte was willing to cede Spizza, to which Austria 
and Italy, as Adriatic states, objected ; but it declined to give 
up Nikshich, whereupon the Prince recalled his envoy and 
prepared for a second campaign. 

European c^plomacy did not remain idle while Servia and 
Montenegro were keeping their truce with Turkey. Despite 
the despatch of the British fleet to Besika Bay and a bellicose 
speech from Lord Beaconsfield, Lord Salisbury, least chauvin- 
istic of our Conservative statesmen, was sent to represent Great 
Britain and modify the Turcophil attitude of her ambassador 
at a conference of the Powers for the settlement of the eastern 
question, which met at Constantinople in December. Salisbury's 
instructions were to take the integrity of Turkey as a basis ; to 
endeavour to obtain for Bosnia, the Herzegovina, and Bulgaria 
such local autonomy as would give the inhabitants some control 
over their affairs ; to preserve, with the addition of Little 
Zvornik, the Servian status quo ; and to enlarge Montenegro by 
the Herzegovinian districts of Piva, Drobniak, Banjani and 

xvi] Midhafs Parliament 371 

Zubci and by the port of Spizza — districts which yielded 
nothing to the Ottoman treasury but would, it was thought, 
appease Prince Nicholas. The conference, however, was 
doomed to failure. On December 23, while the delegates were 
at work, salvos of artillery suddenly distracted their attention 
from their papers and protocols ; and they were informed that 
the cannon were announcing to the people the proclamation of 
a constitution, which created a bicameral legislature — a Senate 
named for life and a Chamber of Deputies elected in ratio of 
I to 50,000 — and declared all " Ottomans " (for such was 
thenceforth to be the official name of all the Sultan's subjects 
of whatever creed) to be equal before the law. Salisbury was 
not deceived by the specious arrangements of " Midhat's 
Parliament," as this first Turkish legislature was called after 
the Liberal statesman who had just returned to power. When 
the Turks argued that the reforms proposed at the conference 
were unnecessary, because there was now a constitution, the 
shrewd British statesman pointed out that constitutions require, 
even in western Europe, some time to bear practical fruit, and 
that there was "no probability of the appearance of popular 
leaders," who, even if they did appear, could be exiled by the 
mere word of the Sultan. But the Turkish delegates showed 
that they were versed in at least one parliamentary art, that of 
obstruction. In the name of the integrity of the Ottoman 
empire, which formed the corner-stone of their new con- 
stitutional edifice, they rejected, or declined to discuss, the 
chief proposals of their foreign colleagues. When " Bulgaria " 
was mentioned, they first professed not to know what the word 
meant, and then said that it was a geographical term for the 
region north of the Balkans. They strenuously refused to 
settle the long-vexed question of Little Zvornik, even though it 
was pointed out that that hamlet had been assigned to Servia 
by the delimitation which followed the treaty of Adrianople 
and by the Imperial ordinance of 1833; that it had lost all 
strategic value ; and that the Sultan might still keep his 

24 — 2 

372 The Balkan Cinsis of 1^"]^-% [ch. 

suzerainty over it. In vain Salisbury recalled to Midhat the 
lessons of 1828 and the loss of Greece; a National Council, 
convoked for the purpose, refused to accept the proposals of 
the conference, of which the chief were the rectification of the 
Montenegrin frontier, and the autonomy of Bulgaria, Bosnia, 
and the Herzegovina, under governors-general to be named 
by the Porte with the consent of the Powers. On this the 
conference broke up, in January, 1877 ; and Gortchakoff, in a 
circular note to the other governments concerned, asked what 
measures they now proposed to take for enforcing the decisions 
of Europe. Salisbury remarked before he left Constantinople, 
that he and his colleagues had " all tried to save Turkey, but 
she" would "not allow" them "to save her"; from that 
moment he regarded war as certain. Still, his journey to the 
Turkish capital had not been in vain ; his eyes had been opened 
to the fact that the average British consul, through whose eyes 
our government looked at the Balkan peninsula, had taken his 
information almost wholly from Turkish officials, and he vowed 
that he would reform the service. From that resolve dates its 
re-organisation ; even now the British Foreign Office relies too 
much upon non-British consuls ; but the obvious bias, which 
strikes the reader of the voluminous blue-books of 35 years 
ago, has almost entirely disappeared. This is not the least of 
Salisbury's many services to the near east. 

The British government made one further attempt to 
preserve peace. A fresh conference was held in London ; and 
on March 3 1 the representatives of the Powers signed a protocol, 
taking cognisance of the conclusion of peace between Turkey 
and Servia, asking for a rectification of the Montenegrin frontier 
with the freedom of the river Bojana, which flows out of the 
lake of Scutari, and begging the Porte to place the Turkish 
army on a peace footing. Meanwhile, Midhat Pasha had 
fallen, and with him all hope of serious reform had disappeared; 
the parliament, which he had created, had neither experience 
of public life nor independence of the government, and supported 

xvi] The Russo- Turkish War y^^i 

the latter in rejecting the London protocol. War was now 
inevitable ; Russia signed a military convention with the Prince 
of Roumania for the passage of her troops across his territory ; 
and on April 24 the Russian troops crossed alike the European 
and the Asiatic frontiers of Turkey. The fourth and last 
Russo-Turkish war of the century had begun. Five days later 
Montenegro re-opened hostilities. 

Both Turks and Russians realised that Roumania was the 
key of the situation. Powerless in the Black Sea, where the 
Turkish fleet was then superior, the invaders could attack 
Turkey by land alone ; and in Europe every faciHty for doing 
so was placed at their disposal by the Principality. Prince 
Charles had always chafed at the legal fiction of vassalage, 
which affected his people far less than himself, and had, from 
the moment when he accepted the throne, resolved to shake 
off that irksome yoke as soon as possible. But the '* Reds," 
suspecting already that the independence of Roumania would 
be purchased by the sacrifice of that part of Bessarabia which 
had been restored in 1856, just as the independence of Italy 
had been bought by the sacrifice of Nice and Savoy, had 
opposed the Prince's desire, till, in 1876, he contrived to rid 
himself of the irresolute Conservative Cabinet, which had been 
five years in ofifice, and placed Bratianu in power. As usually 
happens, the responsibilities of place changed the ideas of the 
Radicals ; and Bratianu began to negotiate with Russia for the 
participation of the Roumanian army in the coming war. The 
convention was not submitted to parliament until the Russians 
had actually entered the country, and even then voted only 
after considerable opposition. Some pointed out that it was 
an infraction of the treaty of Paris, and that the Russian pledge 
which it contained "to maintain and to protect the actual 
integrity of Roumania " was an inadequate guarantee. Others, 
while approving the principle of the convention, opposed the 
active co-operation of the army with the invaders. Upon this, 
however, both Prince and Premier insisted; and, although 

374 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

Gortchakoff haughtily replied that Russia had " no need of the 
assistance of the Roumanian army " — a piece of arrogance for 
which Plevna was soon to be the punishment — they ultimately 
carried their point. The Porte, which had invited the co-ope- 
ration of its vassal against the Russians, not only protested, but 
also ordered the bombardment of the Roumanian town of 
Kalafat — an act which provoked the declaration of war by 
Roumania, and the proclamation of Roumanian independence 
on May 21. But, as Gortchakoff, whose lesson was yet to 
come, still declined his aid, the Prince continued to mass his 
troops on the left bank of the Danube ; while, a month later, 
the Russian army crossed the river almost without opposition 
at two points, one facing the Dobrudja, the other opposite 
Svishtov, and Bulgaria thus became the theatre of the war. 
Alexander II, confident of the success which seemed to await 
him in this Slavonic province, attended a solemn thanksgiving 
in the church of Svishtov ; and General Gourko surprised Trnovo, 
the former residence of the Bulgarian Tsars, traversed the 
Balkans by the low pass of Hainkoi, entered the valley of the 
Tundja, and took the Shipka pass in the rear. It seemed as if 
this daring officer would reach Adrianople, or even appear at 
the head of his cavalry before the walls of Stambul. A panic 
broke out at the Turkish capital. Mehemet Ali, the German 
renegade of French extraction, whom we last saw as governor- 
general of Crete, was appointed Ottoman commander in Europe, 
while Suleiman was recalled from Montenegro to Thrace. 
Then the fortune of war turned ; Gourko, despite the desperate 
bravery of his Bulgarian allies, was defeated at Stara Zagora 
and driven back to the Balkans; Osman Pasha, hitherto 
stationed in compulsory idleness at Vidin, occupied Plevna, 
whose defence was to be the most heroic episode of the 
campaign. That small town, easily captured in the first 
Turkish war of the century, proved to be the chief barrier to 
Russian success in the last. 

The siege of Plevna began on July 20 with a Russian 

XVI ] Siege of Plevna 375 

repulse, which was followed ten days later by a second and far 
more crushing defeat. Then the Grand-duke Nicholas tele- 
graphed in despair, begging Prince Charles to lead his despised 
army across the Danube. But the Prince declined to move 
until his conditions were accepted. His desire was to assist 
the Russians as the chief of an independent army; the 
Roumanians were, however, fused with the others, but, as 
compensation, their Prince was appointed commander-in-chief 
of the allied forces before the beleaguered town. On Sep- 
tember 1 1 they attacked the strongest of all the defences of 
Plevna, the "indomitable Grivitza redoubt," and after three 
attempts placed the Roumanian colours on its summit. But 
the assault upon a second redoubt failed. Unable to take 
Plevna by storm, the allies shut in the garrison so closely on 
every side that at last Osman's supplies ran out. He was com 
pelled to resort to a general sortie, and, after performing prodigies 
of valour, surrendered on December 10 with all that was left of 
his gallant army. Next day the Tsar and the Prince entered 
the town, and the former returned to Russia. Meanwhile, the 
Turks had in vain endeavoured to dislodge the Russians from 
the Shipka pass, and in Asia had lost, for the third time in 
history, the strong citadel of Kars, captured by an Armenian 
general, Loris Melikoff. On the west of the Balkan peninsula 
the Montenegrins, for whose cause the letters of Stillman in 
the Times, an article by Gladstone and a poem by Tennyson 
had aroused interest in England, managed to defeat the usual 
Turkish tactics of invading the principality simultaneously 
through the Duga pass on the north and the Zeta valley on the 
south, thus cutting the little state in two, by repulsing the 
southern army ; and, when Suleiman, after great losses, reached 
Spuj from the north, he was called away to oppose the Russians 
in Bulgaria. Mehemet Ali, who was to have started from the 
south-east and met his colleagues at Danilograd, was likewise 
defeated, and summoned away, as we saw, to command on a 
more important field. Thus relieved from all danger of an 

2f76 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

attack upon his capital, Prince Nicholas was able to devote 
his energies to the wearisome siege of Nikshich, which at last 
surrendered, on September Z, after having been almost con- 
tinuously blockaded by insurgents or Montenegrins ever since 
the revolt in the Herzegovina began. The fortress of Bilek 
speedily hoisted the white flag ; the Montenegrins had thus con- 
quered an important piece of the Herzegovina. But Austria and 
the autumn rains vetoed an advance on Trebinje and Mostar ; 
so the mountaineers, turning back towards the sea, which it 
had so long been their object to reach by diplomacy, occupied 
Spizza and began the siege of Antivari. Thus everywhere, in 
Montenegro, in Bulgaria, in Asia Minor, the Turks were worsted. 
Two days after the fall of Plevna, the Porte invoked the 
mediation of the Powers. 

A fresh enemy simultaneously appeared in the field. On 
the very day of the vain Turkish appeal, Servia again declared 
war against her old masters. More fortunate than in their 
previous campaign, the Serbs defeated the Turks at Pirot, 
whilst Milan, amidst general enthusiasm, entered the ancient 
Servian town of Nish. All the Slavonic armies, Russian, Servian, 
and Montenegrin, continued to advance, while the Roumanians 
blockaded Vidin. Gourko recrossed the Balkans, took Sofia, 
and routed Suleiman nearPhilippopolis; Skobeleffand Radetzky 
surrounded the Turkish army, which had fought so valiantly in 
the Shipka pass, at the neighbouring wood of Shejnovo on 
January 9, 1878; eleven days later the Russians, as in 1829, 
entered Adrianople. The terrified Mussulmans fled before 
them to the fastnesses of Rhodope ; and the brutality of the 
Cossacks towards these refugees almost equalled that of the 
Turkish irregulars to the Bulgarians in 1876. A third Servian 
victory by General Belimarkovich at Vranja brought the arms 
of the modern principality to the verge of the plain of Kossovo ; 
the Montenegrins occupied Antivari and Dulcigno ; and their 
poetic ruler expressed in an ode to the sea the joy which he 
felt at having at last cut his way to the Adriatic. The advance 

xvi] BiHtish Policy 2>77 

of the Serbs into Old Servia and of the Montenegrins upon 
Scutari in Albania, and the Roumanian siege of Vidin, were 
only cut short by the news of the armistice, which, like the 
treaty of 1829, had been signed at Adrianople on January 31, 

It seemed as if, unaided, the Turkish empire must this 
time collapse before the combination of Russia and her three 
Balkan allies. But the Russian advance had alarmed the other 
great Powers specially interested in the solution of the eastern 
question. Austria-Hungary, expelled from Italy in 1866, had 
looked since then upon the western half of the Balkan 
peninsula as her sphere of influence; the Emperor Francis 
Joseph had, indeed, promised his neutrality during the war at 
his meeting with the Tsar at Reichstadt on July 8, 1876, on 
condition that the occupation of Bosnia and the Herzegovina 
should be his reward ; but the Austrian government feared lest 
this condition should not be observed by the victorious Russians, 
who would thus have been accused — as they were, in fact, 
accused 30 years later — of betraying the cause of the Slavs. 
In Great Britain, the Prime Minister was an avowed friend of 
Turkey — an attitude attributed by his friends to political 
insight, by his foes to his Jewish blood and his Asiatic imagina- 
tion ; while public opinion, so deeply moved by the Bulgarian 
atrocities that Derby had doubted in 1876 whether even 
a Russo-Turkish war would revive the old Crimean sympathy 
with Turkey, was in 1877 less influenced by the sufferings and 
aspirations of Christian nationalities rightly struggling to be 
free than by fear of a Russian occupation of Constantinople. 
Even Gladstone in private admitted the decline of humanitarian 
enthusiasm ; his second pamphlet, " Lessons in Massacre," 
made little impression ; his five resolutions against support of 
Turkey and in favour of local self-government, moved in the 
House of Commons in a speech of extraordinary grandeur, 
describing England as the former hope of the oppressed all 
the world over, frightened timid Liberals. As the Russians 

2,yS The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [cH. 

became more successful, the British public became more 
warlike ; the press and the music-halls pandered to, and thus 
increased, the revived desire for a new Crimean war; and the 
language of politics was enriched with the word " Jingo," which 
denotes a state of mind likely to last as long as human nature 
and certainly fostered by hysterical democracy. As usual, the 
violence of extreme men Hke Professor Freeman, who professed 
his willingness to see India perish rather than Turkey saved, 
damaged the cause for which that eminent historian had done 
so much. Not yet entrenched in Egypt, even though she had 
half the Suez Canal shares in her pocket. Great Britain still 
regarded the Russians at Constantinople as a menace to her 
Indian empire, nor was much importance attached to the fact 
that the Tsar had expressly discountenanced the occupation of 
the New Rome ; for he had returned to Russia, leaving generals 
•in the field who might be tempted to set diplomacy at defiance 
and win eternal glory by planting the cross once more over 
Santa Sophia. The Conservative Cabinet was, indeed, divided : 
but its most powerful member was in favour of war, which in 
the early weeks of 1878 seemed to be inevitable. The British 
fleet was ordered to Constantinople — a destination at once 
altered, after the resignation of Lord Carnarvon, the Colonial 
Secretary, for its former station of Besika Bay — and parliament 
was asked to vote six millions for armaments. The Russians 
moved their lines close to the Turkish capital ; a part of the 
British fleet was ordered to enter the sea of Marmara for the 
protection of British life and property there. Thus, the forces 
of the two rivals of the Crimea were once more separated by 
a few miles only ; the Grand-duke Nicholas established his 
headquarters at the maritime village of San Stefano, ten miles 
from Constantinople ; the British admiral was stationed off the 
island of Prinkipo. In the general confusion, on February 14, 
Abdul Hamid dissolved his parliament, and suspended the 
constitution, which remained in abeyance till July 24, 1908. 
At this moment the intervention of another eastern 

xvi] ''The Hellenic Factor'' 379 

nationality threatened to complicate the situation still further. 
The Greeks had hitherto taken no part in the struggle. The 
insurrection of the Slavs in Bosnia and the Herzegovina, and 
the first Servian and Montenegrin campaigns, had found the 
Hellenes merely interested spectators; the brief Bulgarian rising 
could scarcely have been expected to command their sympathy. 
Koumoundoilros had merely thought it prudent, in view of an 
extension of the movement in the Balkan peninsula, to buy 
arms; and in the autumn of 1876 a popular demonstration, 
held on the classic Pnyx, after protesting against the neglect of 
Hellenic rights by the advocates of Bosnian and Bulgarian 
autonomy, urged the Cabinet to make further military prepara- 
tions. Similar meetings took place in the provinces ; yet the 
politicians continued to play the party game of ins and outs. 
But when Russia, the great Orthodox Power, which had been 
one of the three protectresses of the young Greek kingdom, 
entered the field, the position changed. There were some who 
wished to avail themselves of this Russo-Turkish war, as they 
had desired in that of 1854, to excite insurrections in the 
Greek provinces of Turkey ; while the national pride rejected 
the idea of a fresh, and perhaps final, settlement of the eastern 
question, in which " the Hellenic factor," as Gladstone called 
it, should be ignored. It was felt at Athens that party 
dissensions must cease in the face of this crisis, in which the 
future of Hellenism, the realisation of " the Grand Idea," might 
be at stake. A coalition Cabinet, an " CEcumenical government," 
as it was called, was formed in June, 1877, under the presidency 
of old Admiral Kanares, who more than fifty years before had 
fired the capitan-pasha's ship at Chios, and who had as 
colleagues no less than four ex-Premiers. Such a " Ministry 
of All the Talents," from which Boulgares was the only leading 
statesman excluded, has never been constructed in Greece 
before or since ; and Freeman, looking down from the Akropolis 
on the spectacle of a people demanding "that personal and 
party jealousies should be put aside," rejoiced that there was 

8o The Balkan Cinsis of 1875-8 [ch. 

"still life" in Greece. Trikoupes, who occupied the Foreign 
Office in this " Great Ministry," at once declared his readiness 
to prevent, as far as he could, outbreaks among the Greek 
subjects of Turkey, provided that the British government 
recognised, when the time for a settlement arrived, that there 
was " an Hellenic question before Europe." Derby was willing 
to concede equal " administrative reforms or advantages " with 
those likely to be granted to other Christian nationalities, but 
declined to promise his support of territorial aggrandisement. 
Nevertheless, despite the employment of Albanian irregulars 
by the Turks in Thessaly and the pressure of the " Brother- 
hood " society in Greece, the majority of the Cabinet, following 
the advice of the British government and the national dis- 
inclination of the Hellenes to identify their cause with that of 
the Balkan Slavs, declined the Russian invitation during the 
siege of Plevna to join in the conflict and share in the spoils. 
But when the news of the Russian advance on Adrianople 
arrived, the excitement of the populace became intense. The 
"(Ecumenical government," whose chief was already dead, 
resigned ; the populace demanded war ; Koumoundoiiros, who 
formed the new Cabinet, had to satisfy public opinion by 
supporting insurrections in Epirus, Thessaly, and Crete ; and 
his Foreign Minister, Theodore Deligiannes, announced on 
February 2, 1878, that the government had " resolved to occupy 
provisionally with its army the Greek provinces of Turkey." 
But the news of the Russo-Turkish armistice checked this 
invasion. Earlier in the year it might have been good policy, 
as Trikoupes had suggested, to obtain a seat at the coming 
Congress of Berlin by participating in the Balkan war, just as 
Cavour had won a place for Sardinia at the Congress of Paris 
by sending her troops to the Crimea. Greece had, however, 
waited too long ; if she attacked Turkey after the armistice, 
she would fight alone. The Greek troops were stopped by the 
government, when they had reached Domok6s, and recalled 
on condition that "an Hellenic question be discussed at the 

xvi] Thessaly and C^^ete 381 

Congress"'; but the insurrections went on, and volunteers 
crossed the frontier. The movement in Epirus was soon 
suppressed; but that in Thessaly was more serious. The 
picturesque villages which gleam on the slopes and nestle in 
the folds of Pelion rose in rebellion ; a provisional government 
was formed, which proclaimed union with Greece ; and from 
the classic rocks of Olympus another band of insurgents 
announced to the Powers " the annexation of Macedonia," as 
a protest against its inclusion in Bulgaria. The Turks, however, 
captured the two headquarters of both these organisations at 
Lit6choron on Olympus and at Makrinitza on Pelion. The 
fall of the latter place is still associated with the death of Ogle, 
the Times correspondent, who was beheaded by the barbarians 
on his way to save its inhabitants, but whose name, is still 
preserved by a street at Volo. At last, British intervention 
through consuls Blunt and Merlin ended the Thessalian 
insurrection in May by telling the insurgents that " Hellenic 
interests " would " not be injured by acceding to English 
advice," and by proposing an amnesty, a year's remittance of 
taxes, and the separate administration of Thessaly from Epirus. 
The Porte accepted these proposals, and the other insurgent 
leaders laid down their arms. 

In Crete also there had been desultory fighting. In May 
1876 the Cretans, after seven years of comparative repose, 
broken only by a threat to take up arms against a new tax, 
demanded such modifications of the Organic Law of 1868 as 
would make it consonant with that " self-government " promised 
by Aali Pasha. The demand was repeated in 1877, but the 
Porte refused ; and a meeting of Cretans was held in Athens, 
which determined on a revolt. Hajji Michales landed in the 
island ; a committee was formed there under the style of '' the 
General Assembly of the Cretans " ; and, owing to the excite- 
ment caused by the Russian advance, this body demanded 
complete autonomy, a chief of the executive elected by the 
people, the payment of an annual tribute of 500,000 piastres. 

382 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [cH. 

and a guarantee of these concessions by the Great Powers. 
There was among the Christians a large party of peace, which 
had not forgotten the hardships of the last insurrection ; and 
the influence of the women was thrown into the scale against 
war ; but the returned chiefs were in favour of fighting. On 
February 15, 1878, the General Assembly, having had no answer 
from the Porte to its demands, declared all negotiations at an 
end, and appealed to the Powers. Fighting began, and the 
Panhellenion (p 314) re -appeared off the coast; but a truce was 
quickly concluded, because the Turks had so few troops in the 
island, owing to their late Balkan campaign, while the insurgents 
had little food. After the arrival of reinforcements, the Turks 
broke this truce; but the British government mediated on 
behalf of the Christians with the Porte, which promised that 
it would, " in concert with England, make arrangements for a 
new form of government for Crete, in accordance with the 
legitimate demands and requirements of the island." The 
provisional government of seven members, which by this time 
had been created, agreed on May 26 to accept British mediation 
with an armistice on the basis of uii possidetis ; and the ripening 
barley harvest increased the desire of the Mussulmans, who 
had fled, as usual, to the towns, to return to their farms. 
British consuls had thus made peace alike in Thessaly and 

The treaty of San Stefano, which had meanwhile been 
signed by the Russian and Turkish delegates on March 3, was 
not calculated to satisfy Hellenic aspirations. That abortive 
instrument, long regretted in Bulgaria, would have restored the 
Bulgarian empire of the Middle Ages, and, while hopelessly 
dismembering Turkey, would have put a final end to Greek 
ambitions in Macedonia. It provided for the creation of a 
vassal principality of Bulgaria with a frontage on both the 
Euxine and the Aegean, with an inland frontier which marched 
with the Danube on the north and comprised the Macedonian 
lakes of Prespa and Ochrida, once the home of the Bulgarian 

xvi] The Treaty of San Stefano 383 

Tsars and the seat of the Bulgarian Church. To Servia, as the 
reward of her two campaigns, was assigned a considerable slice 
of territory, which included Nish and Little Zvornik, while her 
south-western frontier was drawn in so favourable a manner as 
almost to touch the enlarged eastern boundary of Montenegro. 
The two Serb states would thus have practically joined one 
another ; and an all-Servian railway might have united Belgrade 
with the Adriatic, and thereby provided the Switzerland of the 
Balkans with an outlet on the sea. To these territorial 
advantages were added the recognition of Servian independence 
and the cessation of the tribute, which since 1867 had been 
the last vestige of Turkish suzerainty. Montenegro was more 
than trebled in size, and doubled in population ; she was to 
retain her recent conquests ; Nikshich, Bilek, and Gatzko in 
the Herzegovina, Spizza, Antivari, and Dulcigno on the 
Adriatic, Spuj, Podgoritza, Plava, Gusinje, and the medieval 
Montenegrin capital of Jablyak on the side of Albania, and 
Priepolje in the sanjak of Novibazar, were included in the en- 
larged principality. Montenegrin independence, which had really 
existed for five centuries, and had been already thrice acknow- 
ledged by the Turkish firman of 1799 and by the Turco-Monte- 
negrin treaties of 1838 and 1842, yet subsequently ignored 
by the Turks, was formally recognised by the Sultan. 
Roumania, which had rendered such splendid service to Russia 
at Plevna and had isolated the garrison of Vidin while the 
Slavs advanced towards Constantinople, was treated far less 
generously than the Bulgars, whose country had, indeed, been 
the theatre of operations, but who had played a much less 
important part in the actual fighting. While the independence 
of Roumania was admitted by the Porte, Russia acted with 
base ingratitude towards her Latin allies. She was resolved to 
re-acquire at all costs, preferably at that of her Roumanian 
neighbours, the southern part of Bessarabia, which had been 
taken from her and joined to Moldavia in 1856. She, therefore, 
obtained from Turkey in lieu of part of the war indemnity the 

384 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [cH. 

sanjak of Toultcha, which comprised a large part of the barren 
Dobrudja, as well as the islands of the delta and the Isle of 
Serpents, with the object of exchanging them compulsorily for 
that far more desirable strip of Bessarabia. Further, in lieu 
of a portion of the war indemnity, Russia stipulated for the 
cession to herself of Ardahan, Kars, Bayazid, and Batiim 
with a strip of coast in Asia, so that Trebizond and Erzerum 
would become the first important towns within the new 
Turkish frontier. In order still further to cripple her adversary, 
she insisted on the demolition of all the Danubian fortresses 
and a war indemnity, which after the above deductions 
amounted to 310,000,000 roubles, 10,000,000 payable at once 
and the rest according to a subsequent understanding. On 
behalf of the Christian populations still left under Turkish rule, 
she demanded autonomy for Bosnia and the remaining portion 
of the Herzegovina under a Christian governor-general, subject 
to modifications thereafter to be made by Turkey, Austria- 
Hungary, and herself. In Crete the Porte promised "to apply 
scrupulously the Organic Law of 1868," and to introduce "an 
analogous law adapted to local requirements into Epirus, 
Thessaly, and the other parts of Turkey in Europe." Finally, by 
article 16 Turkey engaged *' to carry into effect, without further 
delay, the improvements and reforms demanded by local 
requirements in the provinces inhabited by Armenians, and to 
guarantee their security from Kurds and Circassians." The 
subsequent Armenian massacres form a striking commentary 
on this article. 

The treaty of San Stefano was a wholly Slavonic settlement 
of a question which concerns other races as well. It would 
have given the final blow to the Turkish empire in Europe 
by cutting the remaining Ottoman territory in two separate parts, 
and by imposing a Bulgarian barrier between the two chief 
cities of European Turkey. More than that, it would have ag- 
grandised the Bulgarian at the expense of the Greek nationality 
in Macedonia and Thrace, and would have sacrificed the 

xvi] The Treaty of San Stefano 385 

Albanians to the aggrandisement of Montenegro and Bulgaria. 
From every part of the ceded districts came protests against 
this flagrant violation of justice and ethnology. The Greeks 
addressed an erudite disquisition to the British government 
on this complete disregard of their historic claims ; the 
Mussulmans appealed to Queen Victoria as the Empress of 
a hundred milHon Moslem subjects ; the Lazes begged for 
British protection to prevent the cession of Batum and the 
consequent ruin of Trebizond ; the Serbs protested against 
the inclusion of Servian regions in Bulgaria; the Albanians 
formed a league to " resist until death " any attempt upon 
the inviolability of their land ; the Roumanians bitterly re- 
proached Russia for having treated them with such base 
ingratitude, and contended that no modification of the treaty 
of Paris, the charter of their country, could be legally effected 
by two of the signatories without the consent of the others. 
The British government replied sympathetically to both the 
Greek and Roumanian claims to be represented at the 
Congress, and told the Greek Cabinet that it was "prepared 
to exert all its influence to prevent the absorption into a Slav 
state of any Greek population." But the chief motive of 
British opposition to the treaty was the conviction that the 
" big Bulgaria " of San Stefano would be merely a Russian 
province, a constant menace to Constantinople, and a basis 
for a future Russian attack upon it. The idea of the late 
Sir William White had not then gained acceptance in England, 
that our true policy in the east is the formation of strong and 
independent Balkan states, which would serve as a barrier 
between Russia and her goal and might even become the 
allies and the outposts of a reformed Turkey against Muscovite 
aggression. Yet close observers of the attitude of the Bulgars 
during the war might have noticed that the " little brothers," 
whom the Russians had come to free, were very glad of 
freedom, but had no desire to exchange one despotism for 
another, even though the latter were Orthodox and Slavonic. 
M. L. 25 

386 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

"Liberated nations," wrote Bismarck some years later, *'are 
not grateful but exacting " ; and that most realistic of then 
living statesmen supported his thesis by the examples of the 
Greeks, the Roumanians, the Serbs, and the Bulgars. " All 
these races," he pointed out, " have gladly accepted Russian 
help for liberation from the Turks ; but since they have been 
free they have shown no tendency to accept the Tsar as 
successor of the Sultan.... Even if the peace of San Stefano 
had been carried out intact " the permanent dependence of 
Bulgaria on Russia *' would probably have proved false." But 
at that moment all the appearances justified the British 
suspicions. The past policy of Russia towards the eastern 
Christians had not been disinterested ; her past relations with 
Greece proved that what she did not want was the erection 
of a really strong Christian state on the ruins of Turkey. All 
the circumstances attending the birth of the new Bulgaria 
pointed in the same direction — the Prince to be " freely elected 
by the population," and the future administrative organisation 
to be drawn up by an assembly of notables, " under the 
superintendence of an Imperial Russian Commissioner," who 
would watch for two years over its application. Nor was 
Great Britain the only Power opposed to the treaty. Austria- 
Hungary had greater interests in the Balkan peninsula ; she 
had been promised at Reichstadt the occupation of Bosnia 
and the Herzegovina ; she contemplated that Drang nach 
Osten^ which would have been as effectually barred as the Greek 
advance to Constantinople by a " big Bulgaria," cutting her 
off from Salonika; and, if Hungarian sympathies were with 
the Turks as the foes of the Slavs, Andrassy in 1869 had 
recalled the rights of the Crown of St Stephen over medieval 
Bosnia. In France, Waddington, the new Foreign Minister, 
educated at Rugby and Cambridge, had strongly British pre- 

Even before the treaty of San Stefano, Austria-Hungary 
had proposed the summons of a conference at Vienna, which 

xvi] The Congress of Berlin 387 

subsequently became the Congress of Berlin — the capital of 
the Power least interested in the eastern question, and the 
abode of the great statesman who had both the frankness to 
offer himself as " an honest broker " and the authority to 
secure the acceptance of his friendly offices. Russia was 
willing to entertain the proposal, provided that she might 
select what clauses of the treaty she pleased for discussion 
at the Congress. The British government, on the other hand, 
demanded the examination of the treaty as a whole, and 
followed up its demands by action. Derby, indeed, declined 
to be responsible any longer for a warlike policy, with which 
he had long been out of sympathy, and resigned the Foreign 
Office to Salisbury, fresh from his practical experience of 
Turkish tactics at the Constantinople conference, who lived 
to make the sorrowful confession that in her pro-Turkish 
policy Great Britain had "backed the wrong horse." Beacons- 
field then called out the reserves, and ordered a force of 
native Indian troops to Malta, while his new Foreign Secretary 
in a circular addressed to the other Powers summed up the 
British government's objections to the treaty of San Stefano. 
The mobilisation of the Austrian army, the indignation of 
Roumania at Russian ingratitude, the discontent at home, 
all contributed to induce the Tsar to listen to the British 
arguments. Through the mediation of Count Schouvaloff, 
the Russian ambassador in London, a secret agreement, which 
speedily found its way into print, was made between the two 
governments for the modification of the " big Bulgaria," and 
the way was paved for the meeting of the European Areopagos 
at Berlin. 

The Congress of Berlin, which opened on June 13 and 
closed on the same day of the following month, was the most 
important gathering of statesmen that had met since the last 
great liquidation of the eastern question at Paris 22 years 
earlier. All the Great Powers were represented by their 
leading statesmen — Great Britain by the Prime Minister and 


388 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

the Foreign Secretary ; Russia by Gortchakoff and the Russian 
ambassador in London ; France by Waddington ; Austria- 
Hungary by Andrassy and Haymerle ; Italy by Corti, her 
Minister for Foreign Affairs ; Germany by the " Iron Chan- 
cellor," who was elected president of the Congress. Each 
Power was also assisted by the counsels of its ambassador in 
Berlin ; while Turkey, the object of this surgical operation, 
found in Alexander Karatheodori and Mehemet AH, respect- 
ively a Greek and a German, characteristic advocates of Moslem 
interests. In pursuance of the British pledge to see that 
Greek claims should not suffer from Greek neutrality in the 
war, and of his favourable reply to the Roumanian note, 
Salisbury championed the admission of both Greece and 
Rou mania. He pointed out that the creation of the Bulgarian 
Exarchate had made the Greeks and Bulgars rivals, and that, 
while the latter enjoyed the protection of Russia, the former 
were unrepresented at the council which was about to decide 
on the future of the east. With his customary irony he added 
that, "after having heard the delegates of a nation which 
claimed the provinces of another state, it would be equitable 
to listen to the representatives of a country which demanded 
territories already belonging to it." The Congress decided, 
however, that the Greek delegates, Theodore Deligiannes and 
Alexander Ragkaves, like the Roumanian representatives, 
Bratianu and Kogalniceanu, should be merely admitted to 
state their views without the right of voting. Thus, none 
of the small states immediately concerned in the settlement 
were allowed direct representation at the council-board : and the 
discussion was conducted by men personally unacquainted 
for the most part with the geography and racial characteristics 
of the vast and complicated region which they were about 
to partition, much as Pope Alexander VI partitioned Africa, 
without having seen it. 

The Congress, in spite of the threatened departure of 
the British delegates at a critical stage of the negotiations, 

xvt] The Treaty of Berlin 389 

accomplished its work, and drew up on July 13 what for 34 years 
was, at least on paper, the charter of the Balkan peninsula. 
The treaty of San Stefano was almost entirely nullified by the 
treaty of Berlin. Instead of a " big Bulgaria " stretching from 
the Danube to the Aegean and from the Black Sea beyond the 
Macedonian lakes, it created a small "autonomous and 
tributary principality under the suzerainty of the Sultan," 
which was bounded by the Danube, the Balkans, the Black 
Sea and the Servian and Macedonian frontiers, and had a 
harbour at Varna. South of the Balkans there was artificially 
formed an autonomous province, known by the diplomatic 
name of "Eastern Roumelia," and placed "under the direct 
political and military authority of the Sultan," but administered 
by " a Christian Governor-General " " named by the Porte, 
with the assent of the Powers, for a term of five years." The 
recent history of Moldavia and Wallachia might have suggested 
the reflection that national feeling will sooner or later join 
together what diplomacy has severed. But for the moment 
the separation of Bulgaria into two sections was regarded as 
a triumph of British statesmanship and a diminution of Russian 
influence. Such is the short-sightedness of the ablest diploma- 
tists, that when the union of the two Bulgarias was accomplished 
only seven years later, it was the British government that 
supported, and the Russian that condemned it. It was further 
provided that the Prince of Bulgaria should be " freely elected 
by the population and confirmed by the Porte, with the 
consent of the Powers," and that no member of any great 
reigning dynasty should be eligible. Until a Bulgarian 
" Assembly of Notables " should have drawn up an organic 
law for the principality, a Russian commissioner was to direct 
the administration, but the duration of this provisional arrange- 
ment was limited to nine months. The organisation of 
Eastern Roumelia, on the other hand, was entrusted to an 
European commission, to which three months were assigned 
for its labours. 

390 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

While the articles affecting Bulgaria were intended to 
minimise Russian influence in the eastern Balkans, the clauses 
regarding the Serb population were favourable to the growth 
of Austria in the west. In pursuance of the Reichstadt 
agreement, and on the proposal of Salisbury, without any 
protest but merely " with some apparent reluctance " on the 
part of the representatives of Italy (which 30 years later expressed 
such popular indignation at their annexation), Bosnia and the 
Herzegovina were to be " occupied and administered by Austria- 
Hungary," which thus became what she had been for two 
decades of the eighteenth century— a Balkan state. Arguments, 
alike practical and historical, could be advanced for this arrange- 
ment. Even the author of the Illyrian Letters\ Mr (now Sir) 
Arthur Evans, no friend of Austria, had admitted that it was "the 
only solution within the sphere of practical politics." The two 
provinces contained few Turks, and were distant from the 
Turkish capital ; while the co-existence of two Slav races and of 
three religions. Orthodox, Roman Catholic, and Mussulman, 
suggested the administration of a strong foreign Power as a better 
means of securing order and good government than the annexa- 
tion of part of Bosnia to unsettled Servia, and of the Herzegovina 
to a principality so devoid of material resources as Montenegro, 
which an exclusive attention to the doctrine of nationalities 
might have demanded. Austria-Hungary had already a number 
of Croats and Serbs among her subjects ; Dalmatia was the 
natural frontage of Bosnia ; and, besides the Hungarian claims 
to the medieval Bosnian kingdom, the north of it had been 
annexed by Austria so recently as 1718. Moreover, the British 
Secretary for Foreign Affairs saw in an Austrian occupation 
the best means of preventing a chain of Slav states from 
stretching across the Balkan peninsula. In a secret Austro- 
Turkish agreement, signed on the day of the signature of the 
Berlin treaty, the Austrian plenipotentiaries declared that the 
above-mentioned article contained nothing derogatory of " the 
1 Pp. 239-40. 

xvi] The Treaty of Berlin 391 

Sultan's sovereign rights," and that " the occupation " would 
be "considered as provisional." 

This was not the only blow dealt by the Berlin treaty at the 
hopes of Servian and Montenegrin patriots. Article 25 further 
gave to the Dual Monarchy "the right of keeping garrisons 
and having military and commercial roads" in the sanjak of 
Novibazar, which remained as a Turkish wedge between the two 
Servian states, a funnel through which Austrian influences and 
perhaps Austrian armies (unless the Morava route were preferred) 
could penetrate into North Albania and Macedonia. A further 
convention, dated April 21, 1879, between Austria-Hungary 
and Turkey, while confirming this treaty right, stated that 
Austrian troops would only be placed at the three points of 
Priboj, Priepolje, and Bijelopolje, which last place was almost 
immediately exchanged for Plevlje. In accordance with 
Austrian wishes, the territorial additions made to modern 
Servia at Berlin were not in Old Servia, the heart of the 
medieval Servian kingdom, which still remained Turkish, 
but at Nish and Vranja, and in the Bulgarian-speaking district 
of Pirot, thus increasing the principality by one-fourth. Servia 
also obtained the formal recognition of her independence ; 
but, Hke the other two. Slav states, she was to pay her share 
of the Ottoman debt for these new possessions. Montenegro, 
at last definitely recognised by everyone as a sovereign state, 
had to be content with twice, instead of thrice, her original 
territory. She kept Nikshich, and received the districts of 
Piva and Banjani with the Duga pass on the side of the 
Herzegovina, Podgoritza, Spuj, Jablyak, and the towns of 
Gusinje and Plava with their dependent villages on that of 
Albania. She obtained an outlet on the sea at the bay of 
Antivari, but was forced to restore Dulcigno to Turkey and 
to cede Spizza to Austria. The former of these grievances 
was redressed in 1880; the latter has never been forgotten, for 
the guns of what has been since 1878 the southernmost village 
of Dalmatia command the bay and dominate the King's 

392 The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

palace on the shore. Yet further to prevent Antivari from 
becoming a possible naval base for Russia, article 29 provided 
that all Montenegrin waters should " remain closed to the 
ships of war of all nations,'^ that the principality should have 
neither fleet nor naval flag, and that the maritime and sanitary 
police of the small strip of Montenegrin coast should be in 
the hands of Austria-Hungary. These inexorable conditions, 
feebly criticised by one of the Italian representatives and 
maintained intact for 31 years, were a bitter disappointment 
to Prince Nicholas. He saw the Herzegovina, the cradle of 
his race, the stony land where he had fought so valiantly 
against his hereditary enemy, occupied by his arch-foe — that 
Erzfeind which is now so much more feared at Cetinje than 
the Erbfeind of other times. He saw, too, Spizza, the poor 
man's " ewe lamb," as his ardent admirer. Freeman, called it, 
taken from him, its captor, by a Power to which it had never 
belonged. These acts, especially the latter, he has never 
forgiven, nor are his people likely ever to forget. 

A still greater injustice was perpetrated by the articles 
dealing with Roumania. Roumanian independence was made 
conditional on the retrocession of South Bessarabia to Russia 
in exchange for " the islands forming the delta of the Danube 
as well as the Isle of Serpents," which had been transferred 
from Moldavia to immediate Turkish sovereignty in 1857, "the 
sanjak of Toultcha," and '' the territory situated south of 
the Dobrudja as far as a line starting eastward from Silistria 
and terminating in the Black Sea, south of Mangalia." Against 
this cruel condition, first foreshadowed and denounced by 
Rosetti at the end of 1875, ^"^ plainly advanced at the 
Russian headquarters in Roumania in 1877, Prince Charles 
and his high-spirited people protested in vain. Russia insisted 
on thus rewarding the splendid services of her Latin allies, 
to whose assistance her victory had been largely due, while 
Ithe extra piece of land given as a consolation to Roumania 
was benevolently taken from Bulgaria. In the phrase of a 

xvi] The Treaty of Berlin 393 

Roumanian statesman, it was "not vanquished Turkey who 
paid Russia for the expenses of the war, but Roumania." 
The empire of the Tsar was thus once more bounded by the 
"accursed stream," the Pruth which, after 22 years of union, 
again separated the free Roumanians from their brothers in Bess- 
arabia, a region historically and ethnographically Roumanian, 
while the Dobrudja contained large Bulgarian and Turkish 
elements, as well as Turkish- speaking Gagauzes, Christianised 
descendants of the Cumans, and was still as desolate as when 
Ovid had lamented that it was his place of exile. Moreover, 
the consignment of a Bulgarian population to Roumanian rule 
tended, and was perhaps intended, to sow discord between 
the two adjacent states. Roumanian energy has, indeed, 
made the best of this compulsory and unpopular exchange; 
the splendid bridge of Cernavoda now spans the Danube, 
uniting the trans-Danubian province to the rest of the country, 
and making the barren Dobrudja a highway, by the now 
flourishing port of Constantza, from Berlin to the Bosphorus. 
But the ingratitude of Russia still rankles in the minds of 
the Roumans, and' has had the effect of driving that Latin 
country into the orbit of the Triple Alliance. The other 
and much more plausible condition of her independence — 
the abolition of Jewish disabilities — Roumania has sometimes 
evaded and sometimes ignored. It is argued by Roumanian 
statesmen that in their country, and especially in Moldavia, 
the Jewish question is not religious but social and economic, 
and that the admission of these Semitic outlanders to full 
rights would swamp the native population. In order, however, 
to obtain recognition by the Powers, the Roumanian government 
had to revise article 7 of the constitution, which permitted the 
naturalisation of Christian aliens only ; but even then the 
naturalisation of the Jews was limited by various legal restric- 
tions, with which a pre-occupied Europe did not trouble to 
interfere. Roumania received a seat on the European com- 
mission of the Danube, whose powers continued "as far as 

394 ^'^^ Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

Galatz in complete independence of the territorial authorities." 
From there to the Iron Gates the regulations for the river 
were to " be elaborated by the European commission, assisted 
by delegates of the riverain states," while to Austria-Hungary 
was entrusted the removal of the Iron Gates, accomplished in 

Greece received by the Berlin treaty no increase of territory. 
Deligiannes told the Congress that, in view of the general 
desire of a pacific settlement, his government would be content 
for the time being with the annexation of Crete and of the 
Turkish provinces bordering on the Greek kingdom — an 
arrangement which, as he justly argued, would be a guarantee 
of peace. Accordingly, the Congress, on the proposal of 
Waddington, invited the Porte, in its 13th protocol, so to 
rectify the Greek frontier as to make the northern boundary 
of Hellas march with the Penei6s on the east, and with the 
Kalamas, which flows into the sea opposite the southern half 
of Corfu, on the west. The 24th article of the treaty reserved 
to the Powers the right of their mediation to facilitate this 
settlement, which had been originally suggested by Salisbury 
in a despatch of May 28, and for which the Greek Premier 
expressed his gratitude to England. Crete, on the other hand, 
was to remain Turkish, the Porte promising to apply the 
Organic Law of 1868 ; and the Cretans, who had hoped more 
from the collective wisdom of the Powers at Berlin than from 
British intervention, were so keenly disappointed that the 
General Assembly requested the mediation of the British 
government with the Porte, while petitions for a British 
protectorate were sent to consul Sandwith by Cretan Christians. 
The rest of the Turkish empire, for which no special adminis- 
tration was provided, had to be content with the prospect of 
an organisation similar to that which had failed to satisfy the 
Cretans, the details being left to "special commissions," 
representing the native populations. This article, destined 
to cover Macedonia, Thrace, Albania, and the larger part 

xvi] The Cyprus Convention 395 

of Epirus, has remained a dead letter, and thus, in 1912, 
provided a casus belli. 

Such were the main provisions of this new charter of the 
near east, so far as it affected Europe. In Asia, the Black 
Sea frontier, as fixed at San Stefano, was preserved at Berlin ; 
the Porte ceded Ardahan, Kars, and Batilm to Russia, but 
retained Bayazid ; while the Tsar promised that Batiim should 
be made "a free port, essentially commercial." Eight years 
later his successor, despite the protests of the British govern- 
ment, repudiated this solemn promise, thus affording a further 
example of Russian good faith. Finally — most futile of all 
these pledges — by article 61 the Porte undertook "to carry 
out, without further delay, the ameliorations and reforms 
demanded by local requirements in the provinces inhabited 
by the Armenians, and to guarantee their security against the 
Circassians and Kurds." Periodical statements of these 
reforms were to be made to the Powers, who would " super- 
intend their application." A special responsibility for the 
protection of the Armenians devolved upon Great Britain in 
virtue of the Cyprus convention, which had been hastily 
signed on June 4, and the publication of which during the 
Congress came as a thunder-clap upon the diplomatic world. 
By this convention Great Britain engaged to join the Sultan 
in the defence of his Asiatic dominions against any further 
Russian attack, and the Sultan promised, in return, " to 
introduce necessary reforms" there, in consultation with his 
ally. In order to enable the latter to fulfil her engagement, 
he assigned to her " the island of Cyprus to be occupied and 
administered by" her as "a place of arms" in the Levant, 
on payment of an annual tribute, calculated by the average 
surplus of the five previous years, and on the understanding 
that a Russian evacuation of the recent Asiatic conquests 
should be followed by a British evacuation of Cyprus. Thus 
Beaconsfield " consolidated " the Turkish empire by assigning 
the administration of Bosnia and the Herzegovina to Austria- 

39^ The Balkan Crisis of 1875-8 [ch. 

Hungary and that of Cyprus to Great Britain, with which 
its sole historical connexion had been the ephemeral conquest 
by Coeur-de-Lion nearly seven centuries earlier. The Turks 
were indignant at this pacific cession of their territory ; 
Cypriotes and British now alike condemn the financial arrange- 
ments. But the Premier's own opinion of these diplomatic 
achievements was summed up in the memorable phrase, in 
which he told the British people on his return from Berlin, 
that he had brought them " peace with honour." 

The experience of the generation that has elapsed since 
the signature of the Berlin treaty forces us, however, to qualify 
the estimate which the British plenipotentiaries formed of its 
provisions; the recent victories of the Balkan League have 
destroyed the status quo which it created. But even before the 
great upheaval of 191 2 it had not proved in any sense a 
permanent "settlement of an eternal question"; it had not 
secured the peace of the Balkan peninsula ; it had not ensured 
the just treatment of the Christian races which it left under 
Turkish rule. Almost every signatory Power, and more than 
one small state, had violated some provision of this solemn 
international instrument. Turkey had broken articles 23 and 61 
by doing nothing to reform the lot of the Macedonian and 
Armenian populations, while no Power had taken effective steps 
on behalf of the latter. Russia had torn up article 59 by closing 
and fortifying Batdm ; Austria-Hungary had arbitrarily ex- 
tended the provisions of article 25 by annexing Bosnia and 
the Herzegovina. Italy by her annexation of Tripoli and 
the Cyrenaica had ignored article 63, which proclaimed the 
maintenance of the treaty of Paris. Bulgaria had already con- 
temptuously and successfully annulled two whole series of 
clauses by the union of Eastern Roumelia and the declaration of 
Bulgarian independence. Roumania had defied article 44 by 
her persecution of the Jews; the Albanians article 28 by 
their refusal to be included in Montenegro. The Monte- 
negrin frontier had been modified by an armed demonstration, 

xvi] ResiUts of the settlement 397 

whereas Greece had received only a portion of the territory 
indicated as hers in the 13th protocol, and Crete had protested 
against article 23 to such purpose, that after four of the 
signatory Powers had placed her under the government of 
a Greek commissioner, she proclaimed her union with Greece. 
Two short but desperate wars, one of them fratricidal, 
a third barely averted, various insurrections in Crete and 
Albania, and the sanguinary conflict of rival propagandas in 
Macedonia, had demonstrated the futility of supposing that 
the paper panaceas and parchment bonds of western diplomacy 
would heal the racial and religious jealousies or restrain the 
racial ambitions of centuries in a part of Europe — if Europe 
it can be called — where the claims derived from medieval, and 
even ancient, history are constantly invoked as if a thousand 
years were but as yesterday. Yet, if the treaty of Berlin 
presents a still more lacerated appearance to-day, it neverthe- 
less marked an advance towards the ultimate solution of the 
eastern question, for it greatly diminished Turkish rule over 
the Balkan Christians, now wholly destroyed by the Balkan 
Christians themselves. Whatever Servian nationalists may sayj 
the 34 years of Austrian administration in Bosnia and the 
Herzegovina, with which we may compare the British occupa- 
tion of Egypt and the French protectorate of Tunisia, have 
converted two wild Turkish provinces into a civilised Balkan 
state, even if the subjects do not love their civilisers; free 
Bulgaria has proved to be a triumphant success ; while the 
exemption of the Macedonian Greeks from Bulgarian rule 
led Greek politicians to bless the name of Salisbury for his 
services in helping to destroy the treaty of San Stefano. But 
to regard the tattered Berlin treaty as an inviolable law of 
nature was to ignore the fact that, in the imperfect world of 
politics, international arrangements are only binding, so long 
as the contracting parties choose to be bound by them, or the 
populations concerned are weak and disunited. When, for 
the first time in history, the "little neighbours" of Turkey 

39^ The Balkan Crisis 0/ iSy^-S [ch. xvi 

joined hands against her with the double strength of enthusiasm 
and organisation, the treaty of Berlin, like all artificial creations, 
succumbed before the great forces of nature ; and the principle 
of "the Balkans for the Balkan peoples" proved to be 
stronger than the barriers, erected by the Powers in their own 
interests, between the free and the unredeemed members of the 
same family. 



The three years immediately following the Berlin Congress 
were occupied with the delimitation of the new frontiers and 
the establishment of the new order of things, which in the 
cases" of Roumania, Bosnia, Montenegro, and Greece proved 
to be more difficult than had been expected. The Roumanian 
authorities took possession of the Dobrudja in November 1878, 
but nearly two years elapsed before the boundary between this 
trans-Danubian province and Bulgaria was fixed. Article 2 
of the Berlin treaty had laid down that this boundary was to 
be drawn " to the east of Silistria," and a struggle now ensued 
between the Russian delegate and his colleagues on the 
European commission with regard to this line. While he 
strove to remove the Roumanian frontier as far away as 
possible from the celebrated fortress, they desired to fix it 
so close to the walls as to leave the town slaughter-house in 
Roumanian territory ! While this point was being argued, 
the Roumanian government occupied the Arab Tabia redoubt, 
rendered famous by the exploits of our countrymen in the 
siege of 1854 ; and this act so greatly irritated Russia that she 
insisted upon the evacuation of the position by her late allies — 
a second humiliation which naturally wounded the pride of 
a young and valiant nation. At last, in June 1880, the frontier 
was definitely drawn, so as to give the celebrated redoubt 
to the Roumanians, who also evaded the obligation of building 
their bridge so close to Silistria as to be at the mercy of its 

400 Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

Bulgarian garrison. Thus the Bulgaro-Roumanian frontier 
was unsatisfactory to both parties : it gave to Bulgaria the 
strong fortress which dominated the Dobrudja, it gave to 
Roumania valuable appurtenances of that place. Further 
difficulties arose out of the regulations for the Danube between 
the Iron Gates and Galatz. Austria-Hungary, although not 
a riverain state in this portion of the Danube, succeeded in 
obtaining the presidency of, and a casting vote on, a mixed 
commission of those states instituted for its regulation. 
Against this interference of the Dual Monarchy in the Servian, 
Bulgarian, and Roumanian reaches of the river, Roumania 
protested. It was not till 1883 that the treaty of London, 
signed by the signatory Powers of the treaty of Berlin, finally 
decided this question. The authority of the European com- 
mission, prolonged to 1904 and thereafter automatically 
renewable for periods of three years, was extended as high 
as Braila, but removed from the Kilia arm of the river, 
which is partly Russian and partly Roumanian ; while from 
Braila to the Iron Gates simultaneous jurisdiction was exer- 
cised by a mixed commission, composed of five delegates, 
selected from Austria- Hungary, the three riverain states, and 
the European commission, under the chairmanship of the 
Austrian delegate and with its seat at Giurgevo. The three 
riverain states were excluded from this conference ; Great 
Britain alone had pleaded for the admission of Roumania to 
its discussions. 

Ere this, Roumania, on March 26, 1 881, had been proclaimed 
a kingdom, on the proposal of the same General Lecca who 
had been instrumental in dethroning Couza 15 years earlier. 
The Roumanian crown was made from a Turkish cannon 
captured at Plevna, in token of the manner in which the 
country's independence had been won. A few months earlier, 
the succession to the throne had been settled -for " Carmen 
Sylva's" only child had died in 1875 — by the adoption as heir 
of Ferdinand, son of that Leopold of Hohenzollern, whose 

xvii] Austrian Occupation of Bosnia 401 

candidature to the Spanish crown had been the occasion of 
the PVanco-German war. The marriage of this nephew of 
King Charles with Princess Marie, daughter of the late Duke 
of Coburg, and grand-daughter of Queen Victoria, has connected 
the Roumanian dynasty with that of Great Britain. With the 
Germanic Powers the political relations of Roumania became 
close. After the conclusion of the Triple Alliance in 1882, 
Bratianu, following the foreign policy already advocated by the 
"Junimists," or "Young" Conservatives of Moldavia, had 
interviews with Kalnoky and Bismarck in 1883, thus bringing 
the Latin nation on the Danube within the orbit of the three 
central states, in opposition to Russia and France. This 
connexion involved the abandonment of Roumanian Irre- 
dentism at the expense of Austria-Hungary, just as Italy's 
partnership in the Triple Alliance has necessitated official 
discouragement of the corresponding Italian movement. Thus 
Roumania has become, under a German sovereign, a repre- 
sentative of German interests in the near east, and Bucharest 
a fortified outpost of the Triple Alliance. 

Sixteen days after the signature of the Berlin treaty, the 
Austrian troops under Baron von Philippovich crossed the 
Save in four columns to take possession of Bosnia. The chief 
column followed the historic route along the Bosna valley 
which Prince Eugene had taken on the occasion of his famous 
dash on Sarajevo in 1697. But the Austrians had reckoned 
without the fanaticism of the Bosnian Mussulmans. On 
August 3 the Moslems of Maglaj treacherously cut to pieces a 
squadron of hussars ; and a series of skirmishes followed, until 
the second column, having captured the ancient city of Jajce, 
where the last Bosnian king had met his death in 1463, effected 
a junction with the main body and pressed on to Sarajevo. 
When the Austrians approached, an insurrection broke out in 
the capital ; the Turkish governor was deposed ; and a fanatic, 
named Hajji Loja, preached a holy war against the Christians. 
On the 19th the Austrians opened fire upon the city, which, 
M. L. 26 

402 Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

after a desperate resistance, fell into their hands ; a large part 
of the town perished in the flames, and the grave of many an 
Austrian soldier still bears silent testimony to the fury of the 
defenders. Meanwhile, a guerrilla warfare had broken out in 
the rear, under the command of Muktija Effendi, an Albanian 
from No vi bazar, who was joined by some Turkish regulars. 
The Bosna valley was once more the scene of constant conflicts ; 
and the Herzegovina, which had at first submitted to Baron 
Jovanovich almost without a blow, became restive. It was 
necessary to send four more corps to the relief of the army of 
occupation. The valley of the Bosna was then cleared ; the 
Herzegovina was subdued by the end of September ; and on 
October 20 the last stronghold of the Bosnian insurgents 
surrendered. In 1882, however, another insurrection broke 
out in the Herzegovina ; and it was not till the appointment of 
Baron von Kallay, the historian of the Serbs and former 
consul-general at Belgrade, to direct the destinies of "the 
Occupied Territory," that the constructive work, which has 
gone on ever since, began. 

The military occupation of the three points in the sanjak 
of Novi bazar began with the entrance of the Austro-Hungarian 
troops into Plevlje on September 10, 1879. The Austrians sent 
only one civil official thither ; and the Turkish administrative, 
judicial, and financial authorities continued to co-exist with 
them, while Turkish troops were stationed in the same towns 
as the Austrian garrisons. The delimitation of the Novibazar 
frontier, in which Germany supported the Turks, was a cause 
of Russian resentment; but friendly relations between the 
Austrians and the Turkish authorities were largely maintained 
during the period of this mixed occupation by the tact of Ferik 
Suleiman, the perpetual pasha of Plevlje, who was appointed 
soon after this strange and hybrid arrangement began. The 
exclusion of Turkish irregulars from the sanjak by the Austro- 
Turkish convention of 1879 ^^so had an excellent effect ; while 
Ottoman pride was characteristically salved by the diplomatic 

xvii] Gusinje and Plava 403 

device of forming the three towns and the four small intervening 
watch-posts occupied by the Austrians into a new and smaller 
sanjak of Plevlje. But with the natives of this district, mostly 
Serbs — for here was Rascia, the nucleus of the old Servian 
monarchy — the " Europeans " were never popular. These 
" enslaved " Slavs were never allowed by their free Servian and 
Montenegrin neighbours to forget the treaty of San Stefano; 
and they regarded the Austro-Turkish wedge which prevented 
the union of the two states on either side of them as an obstacle 
to that dream of a revived Servian empire, which, after the 
lapse of five centuries, was still ever present to the imaginative 
minds of the scattered Serbs. In 1881, however, M. Mijatovich, 
then Servian Minister for Foreign Affairs, signed a secret con- 
vention with Austria, promising to discourage Servian agitation 
in Bosnia, on condition that Austria promised to support 
Servian pretensions to territory in Old Servia, or rather "in the 
direction of the Vardar valley." This convention, which 
expired in 1889, is said to have been described by King 
Alexander as "an act of treason." 

While Austria was thus taking up her new position as the 
" sentinel of the Balkans," her neighbour, the Prince of Mon- 
tenegro, was unable to obtain the two Albanian districts of 
Gusinje and Plava, which had been assigned to him at Berlin. 
Their inhabitants were first-class fighting men, who cared for 
neither the Congress nor the Sultan, and objected to have their 
homes and themselves transferred without their consent to 
another state, which, being admittedly better governed than 
their own, might interfere with their time-honoured privileges 
of lawlessness. The fact that the Gusinjiotes could almost all 
speak Serb and were converts from Orthodoxy to Islam^ only 
increased the hostility between them and their Montenegrin 
neighbours, while the alleged " pagan " origin of the dwellers 
by the lake of Plava may account for their fierce defiance of 
both Turkish officials and Montenegrin braves. The Sultan's 
first envoy, sent to induce the Albanians to obey the orders of 

26 — 2 

404 Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

the Berlin Congress, was Mehemet Ali, one of the Turkish 
plenipotentiaries; but the Arnauts were no respecters of persons, 
and they set fire to his house at Djakova and murdered him as 
he fled from the blazing building in September 1878. A second 
emissary failed to make them yield. Accordingly, in 1879 
hostilities broke out between them and the Montenegrins ; and 
the "Albanian League," which had been formed to combat 
the treaty of San Stefano, was revived, probably at the sugges- 
tion, certainly to the satisfaction, of the Porte, which was thus 
able to make the national sentiment of a race, which had had 
no separate existence since the days of Skanderbeg, and no 
great local leader since Ali of Joannina, an excuse for not 
carrying out its inconvenient engagements. A compromise, 
suggested by Count Corti, the Italian ambassador at Constanti- 
nople, according to which Montenegro should receive instead 
of the towns of Gusinje and Plava a portion only of the former 
district and a larger strip of territory between Podgoritza and the 
lake of Scutari (including a part of the Gruda tribe with the 
town of Tuzi, famous during the Maltsori^ insurrection of 
191 1), was accepted on April 12, 1880, but proved incapable 
of execution, owing to the determined opposition of the 
Albanians. Those who inhabited this region were Roman 
Catholics ; and, if the Mussulman Albanians had objected to 
Prince Nicholas as a Christian, the Catholics repudiated him 
as what was worse — an Orthodox one. Prenk Bib Doda, the 
Mirdite Prince, whose territory to the south of the Drin was 
not menaced by the proposed aggrandisement of Montenegro, 
marched at the head of his tribe to the aid of his brothers in 
faith ; and ere long 10,000 men were on the frontier. Meanwhile, 
Gladstone had returned to power in England, and his well-known 
Montenegrin sympathies facilitated a solution of the question. 
The plenipotentiaries of the Powers met in conference at Berlin 
in June to consider the best means of securing the performance 

^ This appears to be the correct speUing of the word usually spelt 

xvii] The Dulcigno Demonstration 405 

by Turkey of the unfulfilled engagements made there two years 
before, and proposed in lieu of Count Corti's scheme, that 
Montenegro should receive the town of Dulcigno and a strip 
of seaboard as far as the river Bojana. This proposal the 
Porte refused to accept on the ground that Dulcigno contained 
a Moslem population, and secretly urged the Albanians to 
resist its cession. Thereupon, at the suggestion of the British 
government, a naval demonstration of the Powers was held in 
September before the old Venetian colony, while Montenegrin 
troops approached it by land. As the Porte still held out, 
and the admirals were anxious not to bombard the town, this 
existence of Diilcig?io far niente, as Beust wittily called it, might 
have continued indefinitely, had not the British government 
suggested the seizure of the rich custom-house at Smyrna. 
The mere suggestion had the desired effect; Dervish Pasha, 
the Turkish commander, drove out the Albanians, and at last, 
on November 26, the Montenegrins peaceably occupied Dul- 
cigno. Prince Nicholas publicly expressed his gratitude to 
Great Britain, and has never forgotten the part which she 
played in procuring for him this fresh outlet on the sea. 
Dulcigno is not, however, the natural frontage of the Black 
Mountain, but of Albania, as the Arnauts still remember ; it is 
an apple of discord between them and the Slavs, while the 
latter have not developed it ; indeed, it is a mere open roadstead, 
and the neighbouring bay of Val di Noce has never been 
exploited. But, at any rate, if Montenegro still lacked a good 
harbour, if her haven of Antivari was till 1909 still bound by 
Austrian fetters, she had a seaboard of 30 miles, and she owed 
its extension, as she owed her brief occupation of Cattaro in 
18 1 3, to the aid of a British fleet. Dulcigno, however, has been 
our last service to the Black Mountain. Gladstone's successors 
cared nothing about the " smallest among peoples " ; for years 
they left their country unrepresented at Cetinje, published no 
reports on its progress, and took no part in its Sovereign's Jubilee, 
thus allowing British prestige to decline in one of those states 

4o6 Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

where it stood highest. Dervish Pasha completed the pacifica- 
tion of northern Albania by inviting Prenk Bib Doda to visit a 
Turkish man-of-war, then lying off San Giovanni di Medua. 
The young Mirdite Prince unsuspectingly accepted the invita- 
tion ; but he was no sooner on board than the vessel got up 
steam and carried him off to a 28 years' exile, mostly spent at 
Kastamuni in Asia Minor, whence he returned in 1908. A 
corps of gendarmes, the so-called " Mirdite zaptiehs," was 
formed for the preservation of order in his native land ; but 
during the exile of the Prince and the absence of his mother 
and sister from the ruined home of the family at Oroshi, the 
Mirdite capital, all real authority was exercised by the Mirdite 
Abbot, who had learnt in Newfoundland and Bombay what 
freedom and civilisation meant. Other leaders of the " League" 
were exiled, but a fresh bond was formed in 1883 between the 
four Catholic tribes of Kastrati, Hoti, Gruda, and Skreli, to 
oppose the definitive delimitation of the Montenegrin frontier. 
Even in 191 1 there were two points where the boundary of the 
principality was undefined — at Muzechka on the Albanian, and 
near Grahovo on the Herzegovinian side; and this purely 
political line had been so badly drawn in other places, that 
men of the same family and of the same rights in pasture-land 
had been placed on opposite sides of this most unscientific 
and anti-ethnographic frontier. Hence may be traced most 
of the subsequent disputes between the Montenegrins and 
Albanians, disputes apt to be magnified into international 

The rectification of the Greek frontier, suggested at the 
Berlin Congress, gave even more trouble than that of the 
) Montenegrin boundary. Beaconsfield had told Greece that 
she had a future, and that she could accordingly afford to wait. 
She had to wait three years before she obtained one portion of 
the new territory indicated as her due ; she waited over 30 for 
the remainder. The Porte pursued its usual dilatory policy ; 
the Turkish military authorities maintained that the Penei6s- 

xvii] The Greek Frontier 407 

Kalamas line would not be defensible ; and the " Albanian 
League " made its appearance in Epirus, as well as in northern 
Albania. When the Porte appointed its commissioners, the 
Epirote village where they were to meet their Greek colleagues 
could not be found upon the map ; when the meeting at last 
took place in February 1879 at Preveza, the commissioners 
could not agree. The Greeks considered inadequate and in- 
consistent with the Berlin protocol the frontier offered by the 
Turks, which ran from a point between Halmyr6s and Volo to 
the valley of the Aspropotamds, thus leaving a large portion of 
the gulf of Volo Turkish, while ceding Halmyros, Domok6s 
and portions of the districts of Karditza and Pharsala to Greece. 
Accordingly on March 18 the commission broke up, while 
Albanian delegates visited the chief European capitals and peti- 
tions and counter-petitions rained upon the British government 
from the Greek and Albanian inhabitants of what the former 
called " Epeiros " and the latter "Albania," the former begging 
for union with Greece, the latter declaring their intention to fight 
rather than permit the cession of Preveza, Arta, and Joannina. 
VVaddington then proposed that the negotiations, broken off at 
Preveza, should be renewed at Constantinople, under the super- 
vision of the ambassadors of the Powers ; and Salisbury in a 
masterly despatch pointed out that the frontier of 1832 had been 
badly chosen, that it had been largely responsible for brigand- 
age, and that the territory in question was " rather a source of 
weakness than of strength to the Sultan." Accordingly, a fresh 
Greco-Turkish commission met on the Bosphorus in August, but 
with the same result as before ; nor was Salisbury's proposal of 
a frontier commission more fortunate. The accession of Glad- 
stone to power in 1880 was welcomed in Greece, as in Monte 
negro, for the new Prime Minister was gratefully remembered in 
connexion with the last extension of Hellas 16 years earlier. 
Great Britain and France thereupon co-operated in convening a 
conference of the Powers at Berlin in June for the settlement of 
the Greek and Montenegrin questions. The frontier there 

4o8 Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

adopted on the proposal of the British and French delegates 
was very favourable to Greece ; it ran from the mouth of the 
Kalamas on the Ionian Sea to the eastern extremity of the crest 
of Olympus on the Aegean, leaving both Joannina and Metzovon 
to Greece ; indeed France wished to include the whole of 
Olympus, the abode of the Greek gods, in Greek territory. 
Athens went wild with excitement at the news ; Trikoupes, who 
had again succeeded Koumoundotiros as Prime Minister, at 
once accepted the proposal of the conference, and, when the 
Porte rejected it, mobih'sed the Greek army. A change of 
ministry in France, however, seriously injured the Greek cause. 
Hitherto the British and French governments had been the 
best friends of Greece ; but Barthelemy St-Hilaire, the new 
French Minister of Foreign Affairs, whom the Greeks had 
ingenuously regarded as a Philhellene because he had translated 
Aristotle, adopted arguments which his British colleague quali- 
fied as those of the Turks, in opposition to those of the Powers. 
The result was that the Porte, finding the Powers disunited, 
made a firmer resistance, while Greece went on with her military 
preparations. A French proposal for an arbitration of the 
Powers on the frontier question failed, because neither of the 
parties directly concerned desired to pledge itself beforehand 
to accept the award of the arbitrators. The Porte instead 
suggested a conference at Constantinople between itself and 
the representatives of the Powers; and this gathering, from 
which Greece was excluded, ultimately decided the question. 
Had the Greeks so desired, they could probably have had 
Crete, which Bismarck desired to give them instead of the 
Mussulman population of Epirus, and which the Turkish 
delegates actually oflfered, together with a narrow strip of 
continental territory along the existing boundary and "a few 
little islands" thrown in, on March 14. But it was naturally 
the policy of Greece to prefer an increase of territory on the 
mainland, where there were other Christian competitors, to the 
union of Crete, which, containing a wholly Greek population, 

xvii] Cession of Thessaly and Arta 409 

was certain sooner or later to be joined to the Hellenic kingdom. 
Goschen, the British delegate, pleaded for the strategic frontier 
of Olympus an<i would have wished to secure Preveza for Greece, 
while Granville admitted that, after what had happened, " the 
Greek people " had " the amplest justification for holding that 
there ought to be a rectification, based on a line traversing 
the valley of the Kalamas and that of the Penei6s." But it 
was clear from the outset that the Turks would make the cession 
of Preveza a casus belli; and, while all the Powers wanted peace, 
Greece was not prepared for war. P'inally, on May 24, 1881, 
a convention was signed, drawing the frontier line from near 
the defile of Karalik-Dervend, a little north of the vale of 
Tempe and about three miles south of Platamona, to the river 
of Arta, and thence along the course of that river to its mouth 
on the Ambrakian gulf. Thus Greece received nearly the 
whole of Thessaly and that portion of Epirus which formed 
the district of Arta, whose famous bridge became, and long 
remained, the boundary between the free Greeks and their 
Epirote brethren — in all a territory of some 14,000 square 
kilometres. Punta, the " point " at the mouth of the Ambra- 
kian gulf opposite Preveza, with the strip of Turkish territory 
behind it, was ceded; and thus one of the two keys of the gulf, 
which had been specially left to Turkey in 1832, was given to 
Greece. Both there and at Preveza the fortifications were to 
be dismantled, and the navigation of the gulf was to be free. 
The religious property, or vakouf^ and the religion of the 
Mussulmans were to be respected; Greece was to take over 
"a part of the Ottoman public debt proportionate to the 
revenues of the ceded territories." The frontier was not ideal ; 
the summit of the most typical of all Greek mountains was 
excluded from Greece, in which Pe'lion and Ossa were included ; 
while Arta became Greek, the fields of its inhabitants remained 
Turkish ; and Goschen admitted that Greece deserved a larger 
share of Epirus, where a journey from Arta or Preveza to 
Joannina will convince the traveller of the predominantly 

4IO Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

Hellenic character of that then unredeemed district. But the 
arrangement was probably the best that could be made in 
the circumstances, nor has Great Britain cause to be ashamed 
of her part therein. Koumoundoiiros, who was in his last 
Premiership, accepted it ; and thus Greece gained the valuable 
plain of Thessaly and the historic capital of the medieval 
Despotat of Epirus. Fighting, however, ensued in the follow- 
ing year for the possession of Karalik-Dervend, seized by the 
Turks in defiance of the convention, but definitely assigned to 
Greece by a mixed commission. Thus ended the long-drawn 
question of the northern frontier, which had cost Greece from 
first to last two loans, amounting altogether to i8o millions of 
drackmai, caused an aggregate deficit of 140 millions in her 
budgets, and led to the introduction in 1877 of the forced paper 
currency. Trikoiipes accordingly during his long administration 
of over three years devoted his attention to economic questions. 
In 1884 he was able to abolish the forced currency; but the 
higher taxes, which he had imposed, produced a re-action, and, 
in 1885, raised his rival, Theodore Deligiannes, for the first 
time to the Premiership. For from the death of Koumoun- 
doiiros in 1883 to that of Trikoiipes in 1896 Greek politics were 
a duel between those two men, the one a great statesman, the 
other a consummate parliamentary manager. 

Crete, still left under Ottoman domination, had to content 
herself with a modification of the Organic Law of 1868. This 
modified charter, called the Pact of Halepa, from the consular 
suburb of Canea, where it was signed in October 1878, provided 
that the Governor-General should hold office for five years, and 
should be assisted by an adviser of the opposite religion ; that 
there should be a General Assembly sitting publicly for 40, or 
at most, 60 days in the year, and composed of 49 Christians 
and 31 Mussulmans; that Greek should be the language of 
both the Assembly and the law-courts; that natives should have 
the preference for official posts ; and that, after the cost of local 
administration had been deducted from the insular revenues, 

XVI i] The Pact of Haldpa 4 1 1 

the surplus should be divided in equal shares between the 
Imperial treasury and the houses of detention, schools, hospitals, 
harbours, and roads of the island, upon which practically 
nothing had been spent since the days of the Venetians, for 
Vely Pasha's well-meant effort to make a road from Rethymne 
had led to his recall in 1858. Paper money was prohibited; 
salaries were to be paid in specie ; newspapers were allowed ; 
and an amnesty and the remission of arrears of taxation 
promised. In theory, at any rate, the Pact of Halepa was the 
high-water mark of Ottoman concessions to Crete. The bulk 
of the Christians were better satisfied than the Mussulmans ; and 
during the seven years governorship of Photiades Pasha, formerly 
Ottoman minister at Athens and himself a Greek of conciliatory 
disposition and administrative capacity, the island had little 
history. If the Christians desired the Greek government to 
accept the Turkish offer to cede the island in place of Thessaly 
in 1 88 1, they acquiesced in its refusal for the sake of the 
future aggrandisement of the whole race; for advice from 
Athens usually has much weight in Crete. 

The most important creation of the Berlin treaty — the 
principality of Bulgaria — was entrusted to Russian hands during 
the interregnum which lasted until a Prince could be elected. 
The Russian Commissioner, Prince Dondukov-Korsakov, was 
a rich man who kept open house and was personally popular, 
but he treated the country as a Russian province. All the 
chief posts were filled by the Russian "liberators," regardless 
of the fact that the Bulgarian peasants are extremely suspicious 
of foreigners. At first, while the memories of Turkish rule 
were fresh in men's minds, recognition of Russia's services 
reconciled the natives to this alien domination; but political 
gratitude, even in the Balkans, is usually short-lived, and ere 
long the Bulgarians began to show that they had not ceased to 
be Turkish rdyahs in order to become Russian subjects. Yet 
further to strengthen the hold of Russia, the Commissioner 
prepared the draft of a constitution, at once ultra-democratic 

412 Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

and ultra-conservative, which was so devised that the Prince 
could be checkmated by the people and the people by the 
Prince, while the real power would remain with the Tsar; un- 
fortunately, paper constitutions never produce in practice the 
results which they are intended to achieve. It never occurred 
to the astute framer of the Bulgarian charter, that he had not 
provided against one contingency which actually arose — 
the union of Prince and people against their "liberators." 
Meanwhile, Bulgaria, a land of peasants without the smallest 
experience of parliamentary institutions, was suddenly endowed 
with a single Chamber, or ordinary Sobranje^ elected by manhood 
suffrage, with free, compulsory, elementary education, equal 
electoral districts, payment of members, and a free press. 
As against these democratic provisions, the Ministers were 
made independent of the Chamber and creatures of the Prince, 
who was given the further power of dissolving the Sobranje 
whenever he chose. No second Chamber was instituted, nor 
would it have been easy to devise one in a land without an 
aristocracy, without great fortunes, and without a leisured or 
a highly cultured class. But for great changes, such as the 
election of a Prince, the nomination of Regents, the extension, 
cession, or exchange of territory, or the revision of the constitu- 
tion, an extraordinary assembly, or Grand Sobranje^ was declared 
necessary. This body was formed of twice the number of 
members composing the ordinary Chamber. The constitution 
was passed by an Assembly of Notables, held not at Sofia, the 
newly-chosen capital, but at the ancient Imperial city of Trnovo 
on April 28, 1879. Next day. Prince Alexander of Battenberg, 
son of Prince Alexander of Hesse and nephew of the Tsar, was 
elected first Prince of Bulgaria. Two months later the new 
ruler set foot in his principality and took the oath to the 
constitution at Trnovo. 

Prince Alexander, at the time of his election, was only 
22 years of age ; but he had already seen service in the land 
of his adoption. He had taken,part in the Russo-Turkish war, 

XVI i] Prince Alexander 413 

had crosed the Danube at Svishtov and the Balkans with 
Gourko; he had fought at Nova Zagora and had stood in the 
trenches at Plevna; at the time of his election he was serving 
as a Prussian lieutenant at Potsdam. If, however, his military 
experience and his tall^ martial bearing fitted him for one part 
of his duties, his complete lack of both political education 
and statesmanlike capacity were serious drawbacks to the 
performance of the other. He was obstinate, talkative, and apt 
to quarrel with his advisers, and he had the great disadvantage of 
having to trust for some time to interpreters in his intercourse 
w^ith them. A stranger to the tortuous politics of a newly- 
emancipated oriental land, in which personal questions naturally 
played a prominent part, he was certain to make mistakes in 
council, which, however, he fully redeemed on the field of battle. 
For the first two years of his reign, the Prince, who had 
ascended the throne as the nominee of Russia, naturally in- 
clined towards the Russophil, or Conservative party, although 
the Nationalists, or Liberals, were in a majority. Finding himself 
unable to work with his parliament, in 1881 he suddenly issued 
a proclamation announcing his resignation unless irresponsible 
authority were conferred upon him for seven years, and ap- 
pointed the Russian general Ernroth president of the provisional 
administration. A packed Assembly, held at Svishtov under 
threat of the Prince's instant departure on the steamer which 
lay ready in the Danube, conceded his demands; the coup 
d'itat had succeeded, and he was, to all appearance, master 
of the country. But Russia was the power behind the brand- 
new Bulgarian throne; two more Russian generals, Sobolev 
and Alexander Kaulbars, arrived from St Petersburg to assume 
the posts of Premier and Minister of War ; and representative 
institutions were reduced to a small Chamber which had no 
function beyond that of voting the budget. Both the 
Prince and his people soon resented the tactless conduct and 
imperious ways of the Russian generals, who treated the free 
Bulgarians as Asiatics, and loathed their ruler as a German. 

414 Union of the two Bulgarias [cH. 

Accordingly, in 1883, he restored the constitution of Trnovo ; 
and his two Russian Ministers retired to their own country. 
From that moment Russia began to intrigue against the too 
independent Prince, who was compensated by the affection 
of his hitherto indifferent people for the loss of Russian 

Meanwhile, the International Commission had drawn up the 
Organic Statute for Eastern Roumelia; and in 1879 Alexander 
Vogorides, son of the Roumeliote who had been first Prince of 
Samos, and himself a Turkish official, was appointed the first 
Governor-General. Aleko Pasha, as he was called in the 
Turkish service, thus represented in his own person the three 
nationalities of the province — Bulgarians, Greeks, and Turks — 
whose languages were all declared to be official. The Roumelian 
constitution was more conservative than that of the neighbouring 
principality. The local assembly consisted of 56 members, of 
whom 36 were elected on a property or educational franchise, 
while the others were either nominated or ex officio members. 
Politics were excluded from its discussions, which were occupied 
with financial and administrative questions; the "spoils system," 
apt to be the curse of the Balkan states, was avoided by a 
permanent civil service ; and the chief posts were filled by well- 
to-do Roumeliotes of good family. Six Directors conducted 
the administration, the chief of whom, the Secretary-General, 
Gavril Krstjovich, was, like the Governor, a Roumeliote 
with Samian experience. In these circumstances, Eastern 
Roumelia was materially better off than the principality; the 
Thracian plain is naturally the richest part of the two Bulgarias ; 
and the absence of political agitation is the greatest of blessings 
that any Balkan land can enjoy. Only in the Rhodope 
mountains, where a half-English, half-Polish adventurer, named 
St Clair, owner of a hunting-box near the coast of the Black 
Sea, had been hailed as a "saviour" by the Mussulman insur- 
gents at the close of the war, 22 communities of 19,000 
Bulgarian Moslems formed the so-called "Pomak Republic," 

XVI i] The Philippopolis Revolution 415 

independent alike of Turkey and of Eastern Roumelia, to which 
the Berlin treaty had assigned them. One of the authors of 
the massacres of 1876 maintained himself as the chief of this 
band of fanatical robbers, until, in 1883, the Porte, heedless of 
the Berlin treaty, annexed the "Republic" by the cheap device 
of decorating and giving official uniforms to the leading 
" Republicans." 

Nationalist feeling was maintained, despite the prosperity of 
Eastern Roumelia, by the Bulgars of Sliven, the industrial town 
which regarded the capital as cosmopolitan ; and, when the first 
Governor-Generars five years of office expired, there was an 
Unionist party, which advocated the nomination of Alexander 
as his successor. For the moment, however, the Unionists 
were defeated, and the Russophil Krstjovich was appointed 
under the name of Gavril Pasha. But the tactless exercise 
of the Porte's right of veto on Roumeliote legislation, and the 
wish for a Bulgarian customs union, increased the desire for 
political unity. A secret gathering fixed the coming revolution 
for September, 1885 ; and on the morning of the i8th, Majors 
Nikolajev, Filov, and Mutkurov surrounded the Pasha's konak 
at Philippopolis, while Stojanov, the leader of the Unionist 
agitation, entered his room and told him that he was a prisoner. 
The aged Governor-General yielded to superior force; he was 
drawn round the town in mock triumph with a Bulgarian 
schoolmistress holding an unsheathed sabre by his side, and 
then sent away to Sofia, and thence to Constantinople. Not a 
single drop of blood stained the revolution; the Union of the 
two Bulgarias under Alexander was proclaimed ; and a provisional 
government, of which Dr Stranski was the head, was formed 
to await his decision. The Prince had been forewarned of the 
conspirators' plans, but he hesitated at first to defy Turkey and 
the Powers by accepting their offer. Stambulov, then Speaker 
of the Chamber, told him, however, plainly, that, if he did not 
advance to PhilippopoHs, he must retire to Darmstadt; for 
Bulgarian opinion wanted the Union, and would abandon a 

41 6 Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

Prince who had not the moral courage to achieve the national 
desire. Alexander, accordingly, ordered the mobilisation of 
the army, and on September 21 entered Philippopolis. The 
Sobranje at once approved the Union, and voted an extra- 
ordinary credit for its defence. 

To the general surprise, the Sultan contented himself with 
protests and merely defensive preparations, hesitating between 
the fear of complications in Albania and Macedonia and that 
of offending the Moslems. The Powers, especially Russia, 
professed to be scandalised at so flagrant an infraction of the 
Berlin treaty; but Great Britain, where SaHsbury, then in 
power, was convinced that the movement was national and 
anti-Russian, insisted that the wishes of the Roumeliote popu- 
lation should be consulted. One of the first acts of the 
provisional government and of the people of Philippopolis was 
to implore British aid and to appeal to British love of liberty ; 
and our consuls were ordered to recognise that body as the 
de facto authority. The Tsar Alexander III was so indignant 
at his cousin's audacity, that he struck his name off the army 
list, and recalled all Russian officers from Bulgaria. Still more 
violent was the opposition of Bulgaria's two rivals in the Balkans, 
Greece and Servia. Both countries demanded territorial com- 
pensation for the aggrandisement of the principality ; and the 
Cretans proclaimed once more their union with Greece. Servia 
sought to obtain the former sanjaks of Vidin and Sofia as far 
as the river Isker; three members of the Deligiannes Cabinet 
advocated immediate naval action in Crete and the seizure in 
Epirus of the frontier proposed at the Berlin conference. But 
their policy was not adopted; and, while Greece went on with 
her preparations, a conference of the ambassadors of the 
Powers met at Constantinople to consider the Eastern Roume- 
lian question. Salisbury, in direct opposition to the policy 
adopted after the treaty of San Stefano, strongly supported the 
Union, realising that Bulgaria was not, as had been feared in 
1878, merely a Russian outpost. His instructions to Sir William 

xvii] SerbO' Bulgarian War 417 

White, who represented Great Britain in the conference, were 
to induce the Sultan to abstain from military intervention, to 
secure, if possible, the appointment of Alexander as Governor- 
General of Eastern Roumelia for life, and to resist all proposals 
for his deposition. The fact that the Prince was a Battenberg 
assured to him the sympathy of Queen Victoria. 

The only serious danger was on the side of Servia. On 
March 6, 1882, Prince Milan, to show the superiority of his 
position, had been proclaimed King, and Servia raised to the 
dignity of a kingdom. But the glamour of this title did not 
make King Milan popular; his life was attempted in the 
Belgrade cathedral; his peasant subjects rose in rebellion 
against the arbitrary measures of his "iron Minister," Christich; 
while the Karageorgevich pretender was more threatening 
because he had married a daughter of Prince Nicholas of 
Montenegro. Dynastic reasons, therefore, suggested a spirited 
foreign policy as the best means of raising the prestige and 
increasing the popularity of the Obrenovich family. Nor were 
there lacking other motives for a conflict. The Bulgarians 
coveted Pirot, the Serbs desired Vidin; and the river Timok, 
by changing its course, had created a delicate question of 
frontier between the mutually jealous neighbours. A tariff war 
yet further embittered their relations, so that the news of the 
Philippopolis revolution found both King and people predis- 
posed for war. Financially in a desperate position — for she 
had spent much on her railways — Servia had little to lose; as 
Garashanin expressed it in a pithy Servian proverb "a naked 
man will jump far." All parties were unanimous for war, and] 
the clergy inflamed the peasants. The result was a complete 
surprise. When, on November 14, Servia began hostilities, the 
general belief was that the "King of Servia and Macedonia," as 
the Belgrade populace styled Milan, would have a triumphal 
march to Sofia. Appearances pointed to such a conclusion, for 
the Bulgarian army was denuded of its Russian instructors, 
whose places had been hastily taken by young officers, while 
M. L. 27 

41 8 Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

the Servians had had the experience of two campaigns. But 
the Bulgarians were fired with zeal for the national cause; even 
the Moslems of the principaUty rallied to the side of a leader 
who had shown them toleration; recruits from Macedonia 
crossed the frontier ; and the main body of the Servian army, 
when on November i6 it approached the picturesque village of 
Slivnitza, which lies on the direct route to Sofia, found Prince 
Alexander facing it at the head of his hastily collected forces. 
The battle of SHvnitza, which lasted for the next three days, 
was the Bulgarian principality's baptism of fire. The 'night 
before the battle, the raw Bulgarian levies were still doubtful; 
but, when the fighting began, the splendid example of the 
Prince inspired them with firmness. The critical moment 
was reached on the third day, when a rumoured march of the 
Serbs on the capital from the south caused a panic at Sofia and 
the Prince had to reassure the terrified citizens by his presence. 
The alarm proved to be false; the Serbs were defeated at Slivnitza; 
their siege of Vidin proved fruitless; King Milan asked in vain 
for an armistice; and the Bulgarians, after a two days' battle 
at Pirot, occupied that coveted town. The road to Belgrade 
lay open to the invaders, but next day Austria intervened to 
save her protege; and Count Khevenhiiller informed Prince 
Alexander that, if he advanced further, he would find an 
Austrian army before him. Thus, on November 28, ended 
this fourteen days' fratricidal war; an armistice was signed in 
Pirot ; and on March 3, 1886, the treaty of Bucharest restored 
the status quo. Bulgaria gained from Servia neither territory 
nor money, neither Pirot nor pigs; but she had established that 
right which comes of might to the possession of Eastern Rou- 
melia. Meanwhile, the conference had been interrupted ; but 
the Bulgarian Foreign Minister, Tsanov, had negotiated terms 
with the Porte, and on April 5 the revived conference ratified 
this arrangement. The government of Eastern Roumelia was to 
be "entrusted to the Prince of Bulgaria, in accordance with 
article 17 of the treaty of Berlin"; so long as the administration 

xvii] Results of Slivnitza 419 

of Bulgaria and Eastern Roumelia remained in the same hands, 
the Mussuhnan villages in the canton of Kirdjali and the 
adjacent home of the Pomaks in the Rhodope (hitherto ex- 
cluded from the administration of Eastern Roumelia) were to 
be administered directly by Turkey, in lieu of the Porte's right 
(as set forth in article 15 of the Berlin treaty) to provide for the 
defence of the Eastern Roumelian frontiers by raising fortifica- 
tions and keeping troops on them; and a commission, appointed 
by the Prince and the Porte, was to examine the Organic 
Statute of Eastern Roumelia, with a view to its revision. The 
diplomatic cleverness of this settlement is obvious. The letter 
of the Berlin treaty was preserved; the Turkish annexation of 
the "Pomak Republic" was legalised; in the eyes of Turkish 
theorists. Eastern Roumelia remained a separate province, 
united by a limited personal union with the principality; while 
the practical Bulgarians regarded it as "Southern Bulgaria," 
whose administration was merged in that of the north, and 
whose 91 representatives sat with their northern brothers in the 
same National Assembly. Thus, Alexander was a Prince for 
life at Sofia, a pasha for five years at Philippopolis — a position 
somewhat galling to his dignity but of little real disadvantage 
to his people. 

The Bulgarian triumph at Slivnitza had yet further increased 
the excitement in Greece. Deligiannes had reintroduced the 
forced paper currency, abolished in 1884, and raised a "patriotic" 
loan of 30 millions o{ drachmat. I'wo collective notes, addressed, 
at Salisbury's suggestion, by the representatives of the six 
Powers to the Greek Premier, the former inviting him to disarm, 
the latter informing him that "no naval attack by Greece upon 
the Porte could be admitted," produced no effect upon him, 
but were, on the contrary, followed by warlike demonstrations 
in various provincial towns. The advent of Gladstone to power 
at this juncture, with Lord Rosebery at the Foreign Office, in 
no wise modified Salisbury's Greek policy; and men-of-war began 
to concentrate in Suda bay. Deligiannes called up two more 

27 — 2 

420 Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

classes of the reserves, and, on hearing of the decision of the 
conference to permit the practical union of the two Bulgarias, 
reiterated the necessity of conceding to Greece the frontier 
promised to her at Berlin, as a means of "re-establishing the 
equilibrium between the various races of the Balkan peninsula." 
On April 26, the Powers, with the exception of France, who 
restricted herself to friendly advice, invited the Greek govern- 
ment to place its forces on a peace footing. As Deligiannes' 
replies were not considered adequate, on May 8 the five Powers, 
whose ministers left Athens, proclaimed the blockade of the 
Greek coasts from Cape Malea to the north-eastern frontier 
and of the entrance to the gulf of Corinth. By the irony of 
fate, the chief command of the blockading squadron off the 
island of Keos was entrusted to the Duke of Edinburgh, who, 
as Prince Alfred, 23 years earlier had been elected king of the 
country that he was now coercing. Upon the establishment of 
the blockade, Deligiannes resigned; and, after a brief Cabinet of 
affairs under Balbes, Trikoupes returned to power. Meanwhile, 
skirmishes had taken place on the frontier, where the two armies 
were facing one another ; but an armistice was arranged and a 
disarmament decree issued by the new Ministry. Thereupon the 
blockade was raised on June 7 . The military preparations of this 
lengthy crisis cost Greece deficits to the amount of 95 millions of 
drachmai and a forced currency, destined to remain in circula- 
tion for many years, while it temporarily diminished the 
popularity of Gladstone in the Hellenic world. A long period 
of repose ensued in Greece, where Trikoupes, installed in 
power for the next four years, reduced the number of deputies 
to 150, developed the railway system, strengthened the navy, 
and spent freely upon public works. 

Prince Alexander did not long enjoy his triumph. An 
enemy more insidious than Turkey or Servia was scheming 
for his overthrow. Russia had not forgotten his audacity in 
achieving for himself what she had failed to accomplish for 
her own ends at San Stefano; even before the union she had 

XVI i] Prince Alexander kidnapped 421 

sought to rid the principality of a ruler, whose motto since 
1883 had been "Bulgaria for the Bulgars." In May a plot 
against his life, organised in the Russian interest, was discovered 
at Bourgas; and in many other towns of Eastern Roumelia the 
centralising tendencies of the Bulgarian government, which 
dismissed or transferred local ofificials, replacing them by men 
from the principality, caused dissatisfaction. In the army there 
were discontented officers, whose services had not been ade- 
quately rewarded and who were ready to play the Russian 
game, certain to be disavowed in case of failure, sure to be 
recognised in case of success. Of these the chief were Major 
Grujev, the head of the Military Academy, and Capt. Benderev, 
the Acting Minister of War. The conspirators, some 80 in 
number, selected the moment when Sofia was almost denuded 
of troops in consequence of an alarm on the Servian frontier, 
and at two in the morning of August 21, 1886, entered the 
palace, and forced Alexander, by pointing their loaded revolvers 
at his head, to sign a paper abdic^iting the throne. Three 
hours later he was driven with his brother Francis Joseph to 
the monastery of Etropol and next day to the Danube, where 
he was conveyed on board his yacht, and on the morning of 
August 23 landed at the Russian port of Reni, whence he was 
allowed to proceed to Lemberg. Thus, the first Prince of 
Bulgaria, like Couza 20 years earlier, was kidnapped and 
deposed before Europe could say a word. Despite railways 
and telegraphs, the Balkan states still furnished materials fit 
for medieval romances. 

As soon as the officers had successfully performed their part 
of the plot, the civilian element made its appearance, under the 
leadership of Dragan Zankov, who had been in his time mer- 
chant, journalist, schoolmaster, Turkish official, and Bulgarian 
Prime Minister, and who had never forgiven Alexander for 
having once dismissed him from office and arrested him as an 
agitator. In former days an advocate of ecclesiastical union 
with Rome, latterly a Liberal but a partisan of Russia, he held 

42 2 " Union of the two Bulgarias [ch. 

a meeting of youths, idlers, hawkers, and professional politicians 
— for the mass of the population was apathetic — at which the 
late Prince was denounced as "a German foreigner who had 
tried to estrange" Bulgaria's natural protectress and to ally her 
"with her hereditary enemy." The meeting was then ad- 
journed to the cathedral, where, as not infrequently happens in 
Balkan states, an intriguing churchman was found, in the person 
of the Metropolitan Clement, ready to pronounce the blessing 
of Almighty God upon the band of traitors. The next move 
was to the Russian agency, in front of which the free Bulgars 
were ordered by their leaders to go down on their knees in the 
mud, while the Metropolitan, addressing the representative of 
the Tsar, begged that Russia would "take the interests, liberty, 
and future of Bulgaria under her high protection at this grave 
moment, and defend her from danger." After this degrading 
scene, the conspirators proceeded to form a provisional govern- 
ment. As Peter Karavelov, who was Radical Prime Minister 
at the time, declined to have anything to do with them and 
strongly repudiated the use which they had made of his name 
to lend a colour of authority to their coup d'etat^ the supple 
Metropolitan assumed the Premiership, with Zankov at the 
Ministry of the Interior ; and a proclamation was issued, in- 
forming the people that "the mighty Russian Tsar, the protector 
of Bulgaria," would not leave their "fatherland without his 
powerful protection." Sofia remained, however, for only three 
days in the hands of the conspirators. Stambulov, then Speaker 
of the Sobranje, held his native city of Trnovo for the Prince, 
and thence issued a counter-proclamation, declaring Clement 
and his colleagues to be outlaws, appointing Mutkurov, who was 
at Philippopolis, Commander-in-Chief, and invoking the aid of 
the whole nation against the traitors. The threat of the pro- 
vincial regiments to march on the capital, the tepid response 
of Russia, and the dislike of the Bulgars for the interference of 
ecclesiastics in temporal affairs, caused the Metropolitan and 
his colleagues to resign. Popov, a loyalist officer, occupied the 

xvii] Alexanders Abdication 423 

palace; Karavelov resumed office, with Stoilov, who had been 
Alexander's private secretary, as Foreign Minister; but Stam- 
bulov declined to co-operate with the restored Premier, whose 
sincerity he doubted ; and the country was governed by a 
Regency, composed of Slavejkov, Stranski, and himself. As soon 
as the whereabouts of the kidnapped Prince had been discovered, 
a telegram was despatched to him, begging him to return to 
his faithful people. Alexander accepted the invitation, and on 
August 29 set foot on Bulgarian soil at Rustchuk, where he was 
enthusiastically received. After confirming the arrangements 
made by the Regency, he was so weak as to transmit to the Tsar 
through the Russian consul, who had met him on his landing, 
a telegram, containing the fatal words: "Russia having given 
me my crown, I am ready to return it into the hands of her 
sovereign." The Tsar personally disliked his cousin, and 
had grown distrustful of one whose independence was resented 
as ingratitude by the Russians. He therefore replied, that he 
could not approve the Prince's return, the consequences of 
which would be disastrous for Bulgaria; that he should abstain 
from all intervention in its affairs, so long as the Prince 
remained there; and that he reserved his decision as to his 
own future action. This fatal mistake cost the Prince his 
throne. Despite his warm welcome in his capital, and the 
pressing arguments of Stambulov, he publicly announced his- 
abdication on September 7; and, after appointing a Regency 
composed of that energetic statesman, Mutkurov, and Karavelov 
(subsequently replaced by Jivkov), with a strong coalition 
Ministry under Radoslavov, next day left Bulgaria for ever. 
Under the name of Count Hartenau, the. first Prince of " the 
peasant state " lived for seven years more the happier life of an 
Austrian officer — another example of the historic truth that 
assassination or abdication, execution or exile, is the normal fate 
of Balkan rulers. 

Russia, having got rid of Alexander, made a bold but 
mistaken attempt to recover her lost influence. As her agent 

424 Union of the hvo Btilgarias [ch. 

for this purpose she selected Major-General Nicholas Kaulbars, 
brother of the former Minister of War, ostensibly to "assist" 
the Bulgars at this crisis. But the methods of this strange 
diplomatist did more than aught else to alienate the sympathies 
of the stubborn peasants from their Russian patrons. While the 
Regents wisely desired the interregnum to be as short as 
possible, Kaulbars demanded in peremptory language the im- 
mediate raising of the state of siege, the immediate release of 
all the conspirators, and the postponement of the elections 
for the Grand Sobranje^ which was to choose the new Prince. 
With this object he stumped the country as an Imperial anti- 
election agent, only to find that his interference had aroused 
the national spirit of the country. When, despite his eiforts, 
the elections w^ere held, he declared that the Russian govern- 
ment considered them to be illegal, and expressed his "strong 
censure" of the Bulgarian government— a piece of impertinence 
which drew upon him the well-deserved retort that "the 
Bulgarian Ministers accept censure only from the representative 
National Assembly, as is the custom in all constitutional 
countries." Another Russophil conspiracy at Bourgas failed ; 
and on November 10 the Grand Sobranje unanimously elected 
at Trnovo Prince Waldemar of Denmark, brother of Queen 
Alexandra and of the King of the Hellenes and brother-in-law 
• of the Tsar. Not meeting with that autocrat's approval, the 
Danish Prince, who had been mentioned as a candidate in 
1879, declined the offer; and the ineffable Kaulbars took his 
departure, followed by all the Russian consuls. Meanwhile, 
without Russian aid, the Regency had conducted the internal 
affairs of the country with a success that won for Bulgaria the 
admiration of British statesmen, while it had concluded an 
arrangement with Servia for the settlement of the Timok 
boundary question by an exchange of territory, and the con- 
struction of the Bulgarian railway to the frontier. It only 
remained to find a Prince. 

For the next six months the Bulgarian crown went a-begging, 

xvii] The Search for a Prince 425 

while Russian plots, continued at Silistria and Rustchuk after 
the departure of Kaulbars and his staff, but suppressed by the 
patriotism of the national guard, rendered the appointment of 
a definite form of government all the more desirable. A depu- 
tation, consisting of Grekov, Stoilov, and the Roumeliote 
deputy Kaltchev, set out on an European tour in quest of a 
Prince. St Petersburg refused to receive them, but in London 
Lord Iddesleigh, then at the Foreign Office, congratulated 
Bulgaria "on possessing statesmen so well qualified" for their 
difficult task. Various names were suggested for the throne. 
Russia would have liked to see the election of the Prince of 
Mingrelia, a college-friend of the Tsar and a Russian subject; 
but Grekov, in the name of the deputation, declared that no As- 
sembly would elect a man with such antecedents. Oldenburg 
and Leuchtenberg candidatures — the usual resource of Musco- 
vite diplomacy when oriental thrones are vacant — met with an 
equally cold reception. At one moment, a personal union 
under the King of Roumania was suggested; at another, 
Alexander was invited to return to his faithful people ; and, 
when he refused, there was talk of a single temporary Regent, 
such as Aleko Pasha, the deposed Governor-General of 
Eastern Roumelia, or Von der Goltz Pasha, the German 
organiser of the Turkish army. Meanwhile, Zankov, despite 
the smallness of his following, was intriguing at the Porte to 
obtain the suppression of the Regency — a step to which the 
British government stated plainly that it would not be a party, 
and which would have been repudiated by the vast majority of 
Bulgars. At last a Prince was found willing to accept the 
crown. So early as December, Prince Ferdinand of Coburg 
had received the deputation at Vienna, his name having been 
suggested to M. Kaltchev at the marble-topped table of a 
Viennese circus. The successful candidate was the youngest 
son of Prince Augustus of Saxe-Coburg and descended through 
his mother from King Louis-Philippe. Except in point of age 
— he was at this time 26 years old — the second Prince of 

426 Unio7t of the tivo Bulgarias [ch. xvii 

Bulgaria bore no resemblance to the first; by training and 
temperament he was the exact opposite of his future subjects. 
A poor horseman and an officer only in name, he was fonder of 
botany than of sport ; he was a Roman Catholic, while they were 
preponderantly Orthodox ; he was a stickler for etiquette, while 
they were convinced democrats. But he was well-connected, 
wealthy, and willing; and, accordingly, on July 7, 1887, he was 
elected at Trnovo Prince of Bulgaria. The news of his election 
was received 'Svithout any marked enthusiasm" at Sofia; and 
his pedantic reply to the deputation which notified it to him 
produced a chilling effect. Natchevich, however, the Minister of 
Foreign Affairs, induced him to come without further hesitation 
to Bulgaria, leaving time to legalise his position. From the 
ancient capital of Trnovo the Prince issued a proclamation 
announcing that he had mounted ^'the throne of the glorious 
Bulgarian Kings," and concluded with the cry of "free and 
independent Bulgaria." Thus, from the outset he connected 
his name with the medieval Bulgarian empire and indicated 
the ultimate aim of his policy — an aim attained at Trnovo 21 
years later. Russia, however, protested against his election, 
proposed General Ernroth as Regent, and long withheld her con- 
sent to the Prince's recognition — a course which involved his 
social boycott by the Powers but had no other serious conse- 
quences. In fact, the absence of a Russian agent was a positive 
advantage. Salisbury, who at first adopted an attitude of reserve, 
gradually acquiesced in the rule of a " Coburger," and therefore a 
relative of Queen Victoria. The Prince, who is one of the 
ablest of Balkan diplomatists, bided his time ; and for nearly 
seven years his great Minister, Stephen Stambulov, defied Russia 
and won the admiration of Great Britain as "the Bulgarian 



The Armenian, Cretan, and Macedonian questions were 
the most serious problems which Europe had to face in the 
near east between the arrival of Prince Ferdinand in Bulgaria 
and the revolution which overthrew the Hamidian system in 
Turkey. The first concerned the Powers and the Sultan ; the 
second involved Greece in war with Turkey; the third 
aroused the mutual jealousies of almost every Balkan state, 
which saw in Macedonia to a greater or less extent "the 
promised land" of its future expansion. 

The Armenian question differed totally from Balkan pro- 
blems. The Armenians were in a different position from all the 
other Christian races of Turkey. While the Greeks, Bulgars, 
Serbs, and Koutzo-Wallachs could look for support to Athens, 
Sofia, Belgrade, and Bucharest, the Armenians had no Armenian 
state to which they could turn for protection. In that respect 
they resembled the Albanians, but with this important difference, 
that the Albanians were first-rate fighting-men who could defend 
themselves, while the Armenians, with the exception of a few 
in the Russian service, were not. Unfortunately this unwarlike 
race has as its neighbours the savage Kurds, the Albanians of 
Asia Minor, who treat it much as the Arnauts treated the Serbs of 
Old Servia. Divided between Russia, Turkey, and Persia, de- 
prived for more than five centuries of the last remnant of 
national independence, split up ecclesiastically into Gregorians, 
Catholics and Protestants, with the spiritual head of the 

428 Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [en. 

Gregorian Church under Russian, and its Patriarch under 
Turkish, authority, the Armenians, in a secret petition presented 
to the Congress of Berlin, had disclaimed political ambition and 
had begged for an arrangement modelled on that of the 
Lebanon, under a Christian governor. Instead of this, the 
collective wisdom of Europe was content with a vague 
promise of security and reforms. Great Britain did indeed 
send consuls to report on the condition of Asia Minor ; but even 
Gladstone, when he came into power in 1880, dropped the 
' Armenian question at a hint from Bismarck. A so-called 
"Armenian constitution," granted in 1863, which entrusted 
Armenian affairs to a "National General Assembly" meeting 
biennially at Constantinople under the presidency of the 
Patriarch, with two smaller councils for religious and civil 
business, alone represented Armenian nationality in Turkey. 

Down to 1889 the question attracted no further attention. 
But in that year the first news of outrages in the Armenian 
provinces of Turkey reached England. Abdul Hamid II had 
meanwhile established a system of highly centralised personal 
government; Midhat's short-lived parliament had long been 
dissolved, and its author had died in exile; the Palace had 
superseded the Porte ; and the Sultan's favourites had more 
influence in the affairs of the empire than his Ministers. At 
the same time the Armenians had become the objects of sus- 
picion to the Sultan and the Tsar alike, and both Russians and 
Turks professed to discern an "Armenian peril" in the material 
progress of these clever and industrious, but unpopular, men of 
business. When the cry of oppression was raised, the Turkish 
authorities merely prosecuted Moussa Bey, a Kurdish chief, 
who was acquitted, but ultimately exiled. The Armenians, on 
their part, were already agitating; their societies, of which the 
chief bore the significant name of Hindchak ("the Bell"), 
sounded the alarm in the ears of somnolent diplomacy. The 
Kurds, reinforced by the fanatical Mussulmans whom the events 
of 1878 had driven "bag and baggage" into Asia, redoubled 

xviii] The Armenian Massacres 429 

their exactions; conflicts arose, and the Armenian massacres 

For three weeks in the late summer of 1894 the district of 
Sasun in the province of Bith's became the scene of horrors 
which recalled those of Batak. The Kurds, aided by Turkish 
troops, under the command of Zekki Pasha, destroyed 24 
villages, and butchered, with the most revolting cruelty, every 
Armenian whom they could find. Zekki was decorated for his 
"services"; but Great Britain demanded the appointment of a 
commission of enquiry, which British, French, and Russian 
delegates should accompany. The commission, officially de- 
signated as intended "to enquire into the criminal conduct of 
Armenian brigands," conducted its proceedings with the 
partiality which might have been expected from this statement 
of its object, and proved as dilatory as most Turkish institutions. 
In vain, the three Powers presented a scheme of Armenian 
reform; in vain, great meetings were held in London and 
Paris on behalf of the Armenians. An x^rmenian demonstra- 
tion at Constantinople on September 30, 1895, only resulted in 
a massacre of many in the capital and of many more at 
Trebizond But this was nothing compared with what was to 
come. While the ambassadors were presenting a new scheme 
of reforms to the Sultan, which he promised to see carried out 
faithfully, a gigantic massacre was taking place in Asia Minor. 
During part of October and the whole of November the Ar- 
menians were murdered wholesale ; and the murders were 
organised by the Sultan's officials, headed by Shakir Pasha. The 
British ambassador wrote home that "over an extent of territory 
considerably larger than Great Britain" all the large towns save 
three and almost all the villages had suffered, and that a 
moderate estimate put the loss of life in those six weeks at 
30,000. Still, however, the massacres continued. The cathedral 
of Urfa, the Edessa of the Crusaders, was the scene of a human 
holocaust, in which nearly 3000 persons perished; Van, hitherto 
spared, was selected for the next great crime; while the Powers, 

430 Armenia^ Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

fearful of reopening the eastern question by active intervention, 
which would have aroused mutual suspicions, left the Armenians 
to their fate and contented themselves with demanding the 
presence at Constantinople of a second stationnaire for the pro- 
tection of their own subjects. But Europe was soon to learn 
that under the very shadow of the em.bassies the unhappy 
Armenians could be butchered with impunity. A body of the 
latter, more desperate than the rest, indignant at the supineness 
of the Powers and infuriated at the forced resignation of the 
Armenian Patriarch and the irregular appointment of his 
successor, seized the premises of the Ottoman bank and only 
left them under promise of a safe conduct and the protection of 
the ambassadors. Scarcely had they been shipped on board a 
French steamer, than the infuriated Sultan took a terrible 
vengeance upon their innocent compatriots. For the next two 
days, August 27 and 28, 1896, the streets of Constantinople 
were the theatre of an organised massacre. The Armenian 
quarter was attacked by gangs of men, armed with clubs, who 
bludgeoned every Armenian whom they met, and forced their 
way into the houses of Armenians or foreigners who had 
Armenian servants, in pursuit of their victims. Police officers 
and soldiers aided, and even directed, this Turkish St Bartholo- 
mew ; and it was not till the representatives of the Powers, who 
had seen with their own eyes what had occurred, sent a strongtjp 
worded note to the palace, that the order was issued to stqpl;Ke 
slaughter. Some 6000 persons perished in this horrible carnage ; 
and, in the words of a British diplomatist, it seems to have been 
"the intention of the Turkish authorities to exterminate the 
Armenians." The perfect organisation of the shambles was 
proved by the fact that scarcely anyone who did not belong to 
that race perished, and that those few exceptions were due to 
such accidents as will happen even in the best regulated 

The "disturbances at Constantinople," as they were euphe- 
mistically called by diplomatists, convinced even the most 

XVI ii] The Armenian Massacres 431 

incredulous that the previous massacres in remote parts of the 
empire had not been mere inventions. Gladstone, once more 
sallying forth from his retirement, as he had done at the moment 
of the Bulgarian atrocities, made his last great public utterance 
at Liverpool on behalf of the Armenians, and branded Abdul 
Hamid II as "the Great Assassin," while French writers pilloried 
him as "the Red Sultan." But no steps were taken to punish 
the author of the Armenian horrors. Germany, anxious for 
concessions in Asia Minor, constituted herself his protrectress, 
and reaped the reward of her selfish and inhuman policy. 
Austria-Hungary was too deeply interested in the Balkan 
peninsula to risk action, of which it was difficult to foresee the 
results. Russia had cynically declared through the mouth of 
Lobanov, that she did not, after her experiences in Europe, 
desire the creation of another Bulgaria in Asia Minor. Salisbury, 
again in power, solemnly and publicly warned the Sultan of the 
consequences of his misgovernment, and suggested the eventual 
necessity of employing force; the French ambassador at Con- 
stantinople advocated the despatch of a fleet as the only means 
of intimidating Abdul Hamid; and among British residents 
there the opinion was expressed that Great Britain should, and 
could, have acted with more vigour. The most that can be 
said is that, having, in virtue of the Cyprus convention, greater 
responsibilities towards the Armenians than any other signatory 
of the Berlin treaty, she did a little more to support them. 
Further, but smaller, massacres at Tokat formed a sequel to the 
atrocities. Then Crete supplanted Asia Minor in the attention 
of the European public ; and the sufferings of the Armenians 
were forgotten till in 1909 the massacres at Adana renewed 

The presence of the European squadron in Cretan waters 
in 1886 and the collapse of the warlike movement in Greece 
had restricted the movements of the Christian islanders to a 
Platonic declaration of union at that crisis; and it was not till 
1889 that a fresh insurrection took place, which differed, 

432 Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

however, in its origin from those which had preceded it. On 
this occasion the quarrel was not, in its inception, between the 
Christians and the Moslems, but between two political parties, 
described as Liberals and Conservatives, but really only actuated 
by the desire to obtain, or retain, office with the spoils attaching 
thereto. The Liberals, having obtained an overwhelming 
majority at the elections of that year, excluded their adversaries 
from all the available posts ; whereupon five Conservative depu- 
ties brought forward a motion for union with Greece, in order 
to embarrass their opponents. Trikoilpes, who was still in power 
at Athens, through M. Grypares, the Greek consul at Canea, did 
all that he could to discourage an agitation which he considered 
inopportune, and pointed out that Crete was only a part of the 
general Hellenic question. But the magic word of union, once 
uttered, rekindled the latent enmity of the rival creeds; what 
had been originally a party quarrel between two gangs of place- 
hunters became a religious struggle between Christians and 
Moslems. The mission of an Imperial special commissioner, 
with power to offer ;£T. 20,000 and an agricultural bank, only 
alarmed the Mussulmans without contenting the Christians. 
Murders occurred; retaliation ensued; one sect fired the 
villages of the other; Moslem peasants crowded into the 
coast-towns; Christian refugees fled to Athens; and, while the 
Porte sent troops by driblets, Trikoilpes urged the Powers, and 
especially Great Britain, to act. The Sultan, having recalled 
his Polish vali, issued a firman on November 24, which virtually 
repealed the Pact of Halepa, declared the office of Governor- 
General to be unlimited by time, reduced the numbers of the 
Assembly to 57 members (of whom 35 were to be Christians), 
announced the formation o\ 2, gendarmerie from natives of other 
Ottoman provinces, established a fixed sum in lieu of the tithe 
of oil, and gave a preference to those who knew Turkish 
(which is not the language of Crete) in official appointments. 
This firman created widespread disappointment, while its 
democratic proviso, that judges should continue to be popularly 

xviii] Disturbances in Crete \j^ 

elected, perpetuated one of the worst evils in the island. The 
insurrection ceased; but desultory outrages continued, and an 
outlaw, named Liapes, who had many murders to his account, 
was depicted as a hero to the Athenian populace, till Deli- 
giannes, who had ousted Trikoupes in 1890, but who pursued 
his rival's pacific policy, prohibited this cult. Meanwhile, three 
Mussulmans successively held the post of Governor-General, to 
the manifest advantage of the minority, until the Sultan, in 
1895, at last yielded to the violent importunities of the Cretans, 
and appointed Alexander Karatheodori Pasha, a Christian who 
had been Prince of Samos, as vdli. The increase of the numbers 
of the Assembly, which had not met since 1889, to 65 — 40 
Christians and 25 Mussulmans — seemed to have dissipated the 
dangers of further disputes. 

But the Cretan Moslems, like most minorities accustomed 
to the exercise of power, were resolved to demonstrate the 
futility of attempting to govern Crete through the medium of a 
Christian. Murders of Christians began; a Christian Com- 
mittee of Reform was founded and embittered the situation ; 
while Karatheodori, who had made himself personally popular 
with the Mussulmans, was deprived by his government of the 
means of paying his gendarmerie. The re-appointment of a 
Mussulman as his successor, instead of satisfying the Moslem 
party, disgusted both sides, for the Mussulmans wanted a 
military governor, while the Christians desired another Christian. 
Such was the state of tension when the insurrection, which 
was to end in the practical destruction of Turkish rule over 
Crete, broke out on May 24, 1896, with a sanguinary conflict 
in the streets of Canea. Too late, the Sultan accepted the 
advice of the Powers, revived the Pact of Halepa, promised tc 
summon the General Assembly and to grant an amnesty, and 
appointed a Christian governor in the person of George 
Berovich, who also had been Prince of Samos. One commis- 
sion, comprising European officers, was to organise the gend- 
armerie; another to reform the tribunals. This arrangement, 
M. L. 28 

4^-'2>4 Armenia^ Crete, and Macedonia [cH, 

accepted by the Christians, was regarded by the Mussulmans, 
who derived their inspiration from the palace, as one of 
the usual paper reforms which they were expected to resist ; 
and the arrival of the Turkish officer, who had been connected 
with the Armenian massacres at Van, encouraged their resis- 
tance. The customary delay in beginning the work of organising 
the police made the Christians also suspicious ; and a Mussul- 
man outbreak at Canea on February 4, 1897, followed by the 
burning of a large part of the Christian quarter, renewed the 
civil war. The Christians occupied Akroteri, the "peninsula" 
between Canea and Suda bay, and proclaimed union with 

Meanwhile, the news of a massacre at Canea had caused 
immense excitement at Athens, where, since the last Cretan 
outbreak, the politicians had been mainly occupied with 
economic questions, culminating in the financial crisis of 1893, 
and the currant, and likewise the currency, crisis of 1894-5, 
when the exchange went up to 46 dr. 87 /. to the j[^. Trikodpes, 
who had counselled quiet at the time of the last insurrection, 
was now dead ; and Deligiannes, the bellicose Minister of 1885, 
was once more in power. But even the greatest of Greek 
statesmen could no longer have resisted public opinion. 
Greece had incurred enormous expenses for the maintenance 
of the Cretan refugees at Athens, while there were numbers of 
Cretans established in Greece, whose influence was naturally in 
favour of intervention. Prince George, the King's second son, 
left the Piraeus, amidst enthusiastic demonstrations, with a 
flotilla of torpedo boats to prevent the landing of Turkish 
reinforcements ; and on February 1 5 a Greek force under 
Col. Vassos, with orders to occupy Crete in the name of King 
George, to restore order and to drive the Turks from the forts, 
landed a little to the west of Canea. The same day the 
admirals of the five European Powers, whose ships were then 
in Cretan waters, occupied the town, whence the last Turkish 
governor of the island had fled for ever. The insurgents on 

xviii] Excitement in Greece 435 

Akroteri then attacked the Turkish troops, until the admirals 
forced them to desist by a bombardment, which caused intense 
indignation at Athens and some disgust in London among those 
who remembered Navarino. A note of the Powers promising 
autonomy on condition of the withdrawal of the Greek ships 
and troops met with an unfavourable reply; and, though the 
admirals issued a proclamation of autonomy, they followed it 
up by a blockade of the island, and by another bombardment 
of the insurgents at Malaxa above Suda bay. 

The conflict between Hellenism and its hereditary foe 
could no longer be confined to "the great Greek island." In 
Greece a body called the "National Society" forced the hand 
of the government; an address from 100 British members of 
parliament encouraged the masses, ignorant of the true con- 
ditions of British politics, to count upon the help of Great 
Britain; the King, in a speech to the people, talked of putting 
himself at the head of an army of 100,000 Hellenes. The 
secret history of the weeks immediately preceding the war is 
still only a matter of surmise; but the opinion is now held in 
Greece, that King George expected the Powers to prevent 
hostilities at the last moment; he could then have yielded 
to their pressure without risking his position with his subjects. 
Neither he nor the Sultan wanted a war, from which the latter 
knew that, if successful, he would gain nothing; and at the 
outbreak of hostilities he was less unpopular at Athens than the 
German Emperor, whose officers accompanied the Turkish 
army, whose policy throughout had been bitterly hostile to the 
country, of which his sister would one day be Queen, and who 
is still held largely responsible for the war. Among the Greeks, 
who had had no war with Turkey since that of Independence, but 
who had wished to fight in 1854, in 1878, and in 1886, there 
was intense enthusiasm, unfortunately as yet unaccompanied by 
organisation. Greece is a profoundly democratic land where 
the soldier does not recognise a social superior in his officer, 
where the critical faculty is highly developed, and the national 


436 Armenia, C^^ete, and Macedonia [ch. 

tactics were aptly described by the phrase "klephtic war" (kXcc^- 
TOTToAcyu-os), while the military qualities of the Turks were then 
universally recognised, and their army had been schooled by 
German instructors. Thus, the contest was unequal, even 
though a band of red-shirted " Garibaldians " of various nations, 
under a son of the great captain, came to the aid of the Greeks 
and money poured into the war fund from abroad. 

On April 9 armed bands of the "National Society" crossed 
into Macedonia; further conflicts occurred on the Thessalian 
frontier ; and on April 1 7 Turkey declared war. True to his 
traditional policy of dividing the Christian races of the near 
east against each other, the Sultan secured the neutrality of 
Bulgaria and Servia by an opportune grant of bishoprics, com- 
mercial agents, and schools in Macedonia. An Austro-Russian 
note to the Balkan courts warned them not to interfere in the 
struggle. Thus any hopes of common action by the Christians 
were dissipated, and the ring was confined to the two com- 
batants. The "Thirty Days' War" was an almost unbroken 
series of Greek disasters. The Greek navy, which was superior 
to that of the Turks, and upon which great hopes had been 
placed, effected nothing except the futile bombardment of 
Preveza, the capture of a cargo of vegetables at Santi Quaranta 
and that of a Turcophil British member of parliament. This 
inaction of the fleet was doubtless due to the influence of the 
Powers. A bombardment of Smyrna or Salonika would have 
mainly damaged the Greek populations of those cities; but 
Turkish islands could easily have been taken, as by the Italian 
and Greek fleets in 19 12, and better terms thereby obtained at 
the peace. Thus, Greece was deprived of her most valuable 
arm. On land, the campaign naturally fell into two divisions, 
one in Thessaly, the other in Epirus. In Thessaly Edhem 
Pasha, the Turkish commander, after severe fighting in the 
Melofina pass, and an obstinate battle at Reveni, occupied 
Larissa, whence the Crown Prince's troops had fled in disorder; 
in Epirus the battle of Pente Pegddia, the "Five Wells," between 

xviii] Greco-Turkish War of 1897 437 

Arta and Joannina, where the Greeks had twice defeated the 
Turks in 1854, saved the latter town, and cost the Hfe of Clement 
Harris, a British Philhellene. The Turkish advance across the 
Thessalian plain aroused a reaction at Athens. The indignant 
crowd marched on the unprotected palace ; and the King owed 
the preservation of his throne to the prompt intervention of 
M. Demetrios Rhalles, a democratic politician, who had formed 
a party of his own in Attica and had become the most influential 
leader of the Opposition, and the idol of the Athenians. The 
scene of Kleon, demanding to be entrusted with authority, was 
re-enacted; and M. Rhalles was forthwith appointed Prime 
Minister on April 29. Next day Col. Smolenski, "the hero of 
Reveni," who had fought in Crete as a volunteer in 1868, and 
was the one officer who had distinguished himself in the war, 
repulsed the Turks in a first attack on Velestino, the site of the 
legend of Alkestis, but had to yield in a second battle ; the 
classic field of Pharsalos was the scene of one Greek defeat, and 
the unknown village of Gn'bovo in Epirus that of another; 
and the climax was reached when, on May 17, the battle of 
Domokos, in which the Italian Fratti renewed the heroic 
tradition of Santa Rosa, as Harris had that of Byron, opened 
to the Turks the Phoiirka pass which leads down to 
Lamia. A panic seized the Athenians at the news; the royal 
family durst not show itself in the streets; the royal liveries 
were changed; pictures of Smolenski replaced the royal por- 
traits in the shop-windows. Then the Powers intervened; an 
armistice was signed on May 19 and 20 in Epirus and Thessaly; 
and Col. Vassos, who had already left Crete, was followed by 
the rest of his men. A treaty of peace was concluded at 
Constantinople on December 4, which provided for the evacua- 
tion of Thessaly by the Ottoman troops, and the cession for the 
second time of that province to Greece, except one village 
and certain strategic positions, which brought the Turkish 
frontier very near Larissa. Greece was ordered to pay a war 
indemnity of ^T.4,000,000, and submitted to an International 

43^ Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

Commission of Control over "the collection and employment 
of revenues sufficient for the service of the war indemnity loan 
and the other national debts." The six Powers were each 
represented by a delegate on this Commission ; and the govern- 
•ment monopolies of salt, petroleum, matches, playing cards, 
cigarette paper, and Naxian emery, the tobacco and stamp 
dues, and the import duties collected at the Piraeus were 
ear-marked for its disposal. In the following year the Turkish 
troops left Thessaly and with them almost all the remaining 
Moslem landowners; of this brief second Ottoman occupation 
a series of Turkish postage-stamps is almost the sole record. 
Soon, in Thessaly, as at Chalkis, a few mosques — the finest 
has perished by fire — will alone remind the traveller that 
there for nearly five centuries the Turk held sway. 

The final settlement of the Cretan question long vexed the 
diplomatists of Europe. Eighteen months were spent in the 
search for a governor. A Swiss Federal Councillor, a Luxem- 
burg colonel, a Montenegrin minister were in turn proposed. 
Meanwhile, Germany, followed by Austria, had retired from 
the European Concert on the Cretan question ; and the forces 
of the four other Powers, supported by their fleets under the 
command of the Italian Admiral Canevaro, had occupied 
the coast-towns, the British holding Candia, the Russians 
Reth^mne, the French Siti'a and the islet of Spinalonga, the 
Italians Hierapetra, and all four Canea. In these places, 
especially within the cordon of Candia, the Mussulmans were 
herded, while the Christians held the whole of the open 
country, and a migratory assembly, presided over by Dr 
Sphakianakes, issued decrees under the seal of Minos. An 
attack upon the British in the harbour of Candia and the 
murder of their vice-consul on September 6, 1898, hastened 
a settlement of the Cretan question. Admiral Noel's energy 
achieved what diplomacy had long striven to obtain ; the ring- 
leaders were hanged, and two months after the affray at Candia 
the last detachment of Turkish troops left the island ; the fort 

xviii] Prince George in Crete 439 

on the islet in Suda bay was thenceforth alone occupied by 
Ottoman soldiers. On November 26, the representatives of 
the four protecting Powers at last met at the palace at Athens, 
and offered to Prince George of Greece the post of their 
High Commissioner in Crete for three years, under the 
suzerainty of the Sultan. Each Power promised to advance 
;£4o,ooo for the initial expenses of the new administration. 
Their offer, due to the influence of the Tsar Nicholas II 
(whose life Prince George had saved in Japan), was accepted ; 
and on December 21, the Greek Prince landed at Suda. Five 
days later the admirals left ; and, though the troops of the four 
Powers still remained, the High Commissioner was the sole 
responsible authority in the island, while their representatives 
in Rome under the presidency of Admiral Canevaro, who had 
become Italian Foreign Minister, formed a Cretan Areopagos, 
before which the affairs of the island were still discussed. The 
Prince's appointment, originally made for three years, lasted 
for nearly eight ; and for the first five Crete remained tranquil. 
Naturally popular with the Christians, he endeavoured to 
reassure the Mussulmans ; and, if he made a pilgrimage to the 
historic monastery of Arkadion, he also visited the chief 
mosque at Canea. Even the Sphakiote chiefs were induced 
to give up their weapons. A mixed commission, under the 
chairmanship of Dr Sphakianakes, was appointed for the 
purpose of drawing up a constitution ; and in 1899 the first 
Assembly of Autonomous Crete, composed of 138 Christians 
and 50 Moslems, met to examine its draft. In accordance 
with this constitution, as definitely accepted, the Prince 
appointed five "Councillors" (one a Mussulman), while he 
was allowed to nominate 10 members of the Chamber of 
Deputies, a body otherwise elected biennially, which was to 
meet every year. Dr Sphakianakes, who had played so 
prominent a part in the emancipation of his country, then 
retired into private life. " For the first time for 1900 years, 
since the Roman conquest by Metellus," wrote an enthusiastic 

440 Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

Athenian journal, " Crete possesses a completely autonomous 
government." Finally, the Russian authorities retired from 
Rethymne and the British from Candia ; the disarmament of 
this, the most dangerous district of the island, the complete 
extinction of crime there, the institution of a postal service, 
and the increase of the provincial revenue had all been 
achieved at Candia by Sir H. Chermside and his assistants. 
The departure of the British gave a further impetus to the 
Moslem emigration, which was encouraged by the Sultan ; and 
the census of 1900 showed that the Mussulmans had dwindled 
to only one-ninth of the population, and that they were mainly 
confined to the three chief towns. A gendarmerie of Cretans, 
organised and officered by Italian carabineers, took the place 
of the Montenegrins in the preservation of order. A Cretan 
flag, postage-stamps, and small coins were further steps towards 
independence ; and M. Eleutherios Venizelos, the ablest of the 
Prince's Councillors, suggested the formation of the island into 
a principality, like Samos, at the end of his three years' term. 
This proposal naturally aroused indignation at Athens, where 
it was then feared that Crete, having once tasted the sweets of 
complete independence, might no longer desire union with 
Greece ; and the consequent dismissal of the presumptuous 
Councillor caused a serious breach between him and the High 
Commissioner. The election of mayors and the censorship of 
the press, both of which the Prince wished to have in his own 
hands, led to difficulties with the Assembly; and early in 1904 
discontent became rife in the island. The Italian Foreign 
Office warned the Prince to act constitutionally; but a crisis 
was reached when, in March, 1905, the Opposition took to the 
mountains and established its headquarters at Therisso, a 
strong position already famous in the annals of Cretan warfare. 
The insurgents there declared themselves a provisional National 
Assembly, proclaimed union with Greece, and held out till 
winter forced them to surrender to the European consuls. 
The following summer Prince George, weary of Cretan politics, 

xviii] Zaimes in Crete 441 

resigned, despite a petition of many deputies in his favour. 
Thereupon the four Powers entrusted to King George the 
selection of a new High Commissioner. His choice in 
September, 1906, fell upon M. Alexander Zaimes, the most 
Conservative and most silent of Greek statesmen, who had 
been Premier at the time of the conclusion of peace in 1898. 
Little more was heard of Crete under his sway. The 
Powers, while peace reigned, allowed the island to become 
more and more hellenised. In pursuance of their promises, 
made on July 23, Greek officers out of active service replaced 
the Italian carabineers in the command of the ge?idarnierie 
and were summoned to organise the militia. As soon as those 
two bodies should have been formed, order restored, and the 
safety of the Moslems assured, the international troops were to 
be gradually withdrawn. Accordingly, on May 11, 1908, in 
answer to an appeal from M. Zaimes, who showed that their 
conditions had been realised, they announced that the 
evacuation of the island would begin that summer and would 
be concluded within a year from the departure of the first 
detachment, which took place on July 29. Such was the 
condition of the island when on October 7, 1908, the news of 
the annexation of Bosnia and Bulgarian independence once 
more provoked the proclamation of union with Greece. 

Armenia and Crete had scarcely ceased to occupy the 
attention of Europe when a third question, more complex than 
either of them, became acute. Macedonia was the land of 
conflicting races and overlapping claims. During a large part 
of its history it had been entirely Greek ; in the Middle Ages 
it was alternately under the hegemony of Bulgarian, Servian, 
and Byzantine Emperors, until the all-conquering Turk ground 
these respective empires to powder. But in the tenacious 
traditions of the near east their memories have survived ; and, 
while no Englishman would found a claim to large portions of 
France upon the conquests of Edward III, Serbs speak of his 
contemporary, Stephen Dushan, as if his coronation as Tsar at 

442 Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

Uskiib had been but yesterday, and Greeks of Alexander the 
Great as if the centuries that have elapsed since his death were 
a watch in the night. A fourth propaganda, mainly the work 
of a certain Ap6stolos Margan'tes, had evolved from the 
" Lame " or Koutzo-Wallachs, previously regarded as Greeks, 
" Macedonian Roumanians," brothers of the Roumans beyond 
the Danube; while in Salonika and other towns the Jews, 
descendants of the Hebrew emigrants from Spain, formed a large 
and Turcophil element. Religious differences revived these 
racial hatreds. The firman creating the Bulgarian Exarchate 
in 1870 provided that, outside of what soon became Bulgaria, 
a petition by two-thirds of the inhabitants could secure the 
transfer of a district from the Patriarch to the Exarch ; and 
" Patriarchists " and " Exarchists " thenceforth represented 
respectively the Greek and the Bulgarian cause in Macedonia, 
while Servia and Roumania, seeing the political advantages of 
an ecclesiastical propaganda, began to agitate for the restora- 
tion of the Servian Patriarchate of Ipek and the erection of 
a separate Roumanian Church. Schools and churches became 
the favourite weapons of the rival nationalities ; so early as 
1869 Prince Charles of Roumania had sent books for the 
Koutzo-Wallach pupils ; from 1885, the millenary of Methodios, 
the apostle of the Slavs, dates the great spread of Bulgarian 
schools in Macedonia. The treaties of 1878 naturally made 
the Balkan states regard Macedonia as their promised land. 
Servia, cut off from expansion in Bosnia and the Herzegovina 
by the Austrian occupation, and bound by a secret treaty not 
to agitate there, looked to the south of the Shar mountains, to 
Uskiib, and even to Salonika ; Bulgaria remembered the 
frontiers which were awarded her at San Stefano ; Roumania 
saw that by first fostering and then sacrificing the Koutzo- 
Wallachs, she might claim compensation nearer home; while 
Greece regarded these newer nationalities as upstarts who had 
no rights in the land redeemed from " the barbarians " by 
Basil n, who had celebrated in the church, which had once 

xviii] The Macedonian Races 443 

been the Parthenon, his triumph over the Bulgars. Austria- 
Hungary, from selfish reasons, was glad to divert the attention 
of Servia from the Bosnian Serbs, and that of Roumania from 
the " unredeemed " Roumans of the Dual Monarchy ; while, 
at the same time, established in the sanjak of Novibazar, she 
could contemplate a descent upon the valley of the Vardar 
and Salonika, until her military authorities discovered that it 
would be better strategy to march towards the Aegean through 
the valley of the Morava, than to traverse the cut-throat defile 
of Katchanik. Similarly, the Turkish government saw that to 
increase the confusion of the Macedonian races was its best 
chance of retaining a country where genuine Turks, as distinct 
from Mohammedan Albanians, Circassian immigrants and 
nomad Tartars, were, except in two or three districts, com- 
paratively few. So the Porte favoured now the Bulgar, 
now the Serb, now the Greek, and now the Koutzo-Wallach, 
according to the weakness or importunity of each. Thus in 
1890, despite the opposition of Russia but with the approval 
of Salisbury, the boldness of Stambulov wrung from the 
suzerain, by the covert threat of proclaiming the independence 
of the principality, two berats for the appointment of the first 
Bulgarian bishops of Macedonia at the sees of Ochrida and 
Uskiib. Great was the indignation of the (Ecumenical Patri- 
archate ; in vain it demanded that the Bulgarian clergy should 
wear a distinctive garb, as the badge of their " schism " ; in 
vain it closed, as a protest, the Orthodox churches throughout 
Turkey. In 1894 two more Bulgarian bishops were appointed ; 
and further concessions to the Bulgars rewarded the neutrality 
of that principality during the Greco-Turkish war of 1897, when 
Bulgaria, by cutting the railway between Constantinople and 
Salonika, might have hindered the despatch of troops to 
Thessaly. Thus, too, the appointment of a Serb as bishop of 
Uskiib in 1902 divided the Slavs, while the protest of the 
Koutzo-Wallachs against the cession of Thessaly to Greece was 
recompensed in Macedonia, and in 1905 theirs was again the 

444 Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

propaganda favoured by the Turks. In fact, whenever Greece 
was troublesome to the Porte, the Bulgars and the Koutzo- 
Wallachs benefited, while the latter, as having of all the 
Christian races least to gain and most to lose by an immediate 
liquidation of the Macedonian question, were consequently 
almost as much interested as the Jews in the maintenance of 
Ottoman rule. In Macedonia, as elsewhere, that rule meant 
misgovernment ; of the reforms stipulated in article 23 of the 
Berlin treaty none was carried out. 

The Greco-Turkish war of 1897 seemed to idealists an 
excellent opportunity of uniting the Christian races of the 
Balkans in a struggle against the common enemy. But, under 
the pressure of their mutual jealousies and conflicting ambitions, 
and in consequence of the Austro-Russian agreement, which 
aimed at preserving the status quo and withheld the two great 
Powers most directly interested from exercising a separate 
influence in the Balkan peninsula, the Macedonian question 
was stifled. Two years had not, however, elapsed before a 
Macedonian Committee, which had its seat at Sofia, and 
summarised its programme in the phrase " Macedonia for the 
Macedonians," addressed a memorial to the Powers in January 
1899, advocating the formation of an autonomous province of 
Macedonia with Salonika as its capital, under a governor- 
general " belonging to the predominant nationality," who 
should hold office for five years. It was believed that this 
nationality would be Bulgarian ; and it was hoped that an 
autonomous Macedonia under a Bulgarian governor would be 
a step towards the "big Bulgaria" of San Stefano. As this 
memorial proved, however, to be waste paper, and a Macedonian 
congress at Geneva came to nothing owing to internal dis- 
sensions, the party of action took the field. Bulgarian bands 
crossed the frontier, and conflicts with the Turks took place. 
But it was soon apparent that the Turks were not the only 
objects of the Committee's hostility. In 1900 one of its 
emissaries shot at Bucharest a Roumanian professor who 

xviii] The Macedonian Committee 445 

edited a newspaper favourable to the Roumanian claims in 
Macedonia. Thereupon the Roumanian government, already 
at variance with Bulgaria about an islet in the Danube, de- 
manded the punishment of the Committee. The Powers and 
the Porte supported the Roumanian demand ; and Boris 
Sarafov, the president of the organisation, was arrested with 
other leading members. The court, however, under the in- 
fluence of pubHc opinion in Bulgaria, whose army, schools, 
and press were largely officered by Macedonians, acquitted the 
accused. A split then occurred in the Committee, the extreme 
section under Sarafov favouring force, the moderate men 
preferring legal means and an educational propaganda. The 
former were aware of the fact that the European press was only 
concerned with the Balkan races when they were either cutting 
each other's throats or inflicting damage upon some foreigner; 
and the whole world became aware of the existence of a 
Macedonian question, when Miss Stone, an American mis- 
sionary, was captured by a gang of political brigands. Mean- 
while, Old Servia was the scene of Albanian feuds, culminating 
in the murder of Mollah Zekko, a donkey-boy who had risen 
to be the leader of a movement for an autonomous Albania, 
and whom even the Sultan, always the patron of the Albanians, 
feared and conciliated. So serious was the state of things, 
that the Sultan appointed Hilmi Pasha Inspector-General of 
Macedonia, while Moslems as well as Christians were agreed 
I " that the provinces of Turkey in Europe cannot be allowed to 
I remain in their present deplorable condition." 

Austria-Hungary and Russia, the two Powers most im- 
mediately interested, were of the same opinion ; their Foreign 
Ministers met at Vienna and drew up in February, 1903, a 
modest scheme of reforms for the three Macedonian vilayets of 
Salonika, Monastir, and Kossovo, which the other Powers 
supported. They recommended the Sultan to appoint an 
Inspector-General for a fixed number of years ; to re-organise 
the gendarmerie with the aid of foreign officers, composing it 

44^ Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch." 

of Christians and Moslems in proportion to their respective 
numbers ; and to establish a separate budget for each of the 
three vilayets, upon the revenues of which the cost of local 
administration was to be a first charge. The Sultan accepted 
the Austro-Russian reform scheme, but its sole result was to 
increase the disorder. The Albanians of Kossovo, suspecting 
interference with their liberties, rose in rebellion, shot the 
Russian consul at Mitrovitza, and held up the Sultan's envoys 
at Ipek ; a gendarme shot another Russian consul at Monastir. 
The Bulgarian bands, despite the dissolution of the Macedonian 
committees by the Bulgarian government, blew up railway 
bridges, placed bombs on steamers, and mined the Ottoman 
bank at Salonika. The Greeks were terrorised by the Bulgarian 
committeemen and plundered by the Turkish irregulars. The 
former seized Krushevo, a largely Patriarchist town, and levied 
blackmail on its inhabitants ; when the latter recovered it, 
" a golden powder rose round the Turks and prevented them 
from seeing " (and sacking) the Bulgarian quarter. These 
occurrences nearly provoked a Turco-Bulgarian war. The 
position of the Bulgarian government was extremely difficult. 
Nearly one-half of the population of Sofia consisted of Mace- 
donian emigrants and refugees, of whom there were no less 
than 150,000 in the whole principality, while a military con- 
spiracy complicated the situation. While Prince Ferdinand 
sought to pacify his suzerain by appointing the Turcophil 
General Petrov Prime Minister, Austria and Russia in October, 
1903, issued a second edition of their reform scheme, called, 
from the place of signature, the Miirzsteg programme. This 
programme, accepted by the Sultan, attached Austrian and 
Russian civil agents to Hilmi Pasha, the Inspector-General, 
entrusted the reorganisation of the gendarmerie to a foreign 
general, aided by military officers of the Powers, who would 
divide Macedonia among them ; and demanded the reform of 
the administrative and judicial institutions of the country with 
the participation of the Christian population. General de 

xviii] The Milrzsteg Programme 447 

Giorgis, an Italian officer, was appointed to command the 
gendarmerie ; and his successor was another Italian, Count di 
Robilant. All the Powers, except Germany, sent a small 
contingent of officers, subsequently slightly increased ; and 
Macedonia was, for police purposes, divided up into five 
secteurs^ the British taking Drama, a rich district almost wholly 
peopled by Pomaks, the French Serres, the Italians Monastir, 
the Austrians Uskiib, and the Russians Salonika. Most of the 
vilayet of Kossovo, the worst of all, and part of that of 
Monastir, were excluded from this arrangement. An agree- 
ment between Bulgaria and Turkey for the prevention of 
armed bands helped to improve the condition of Macedonia in 
1904, while a British committee did much to relieve its distress. 
But in the autumn of that year a new disturbing element 
arose. Unable to obtain protection for their fellow-countrymen 
against the Bulgarians, the Greeks organised bands in their 
turn ; and Paul Melas, one of their leaders, who fell in Mace- 
donia, became a national hero, commemorated by a monument 
at Athens. The rival parties, which took their titles from the 
Greek Patriarch and the Bulgarian Exarch, and were secretly 
encouraged by consuls and ecclesiastics, murdered one another 
in the name of religion, which in Macedonia was a pretext for 
racial patriotism ; while the Sultan widened the breach between 
Greece and Roumania by recognising the Koutzo-Wallachs as 
a separate nationality, with the right of using their language in 
their churches and schools. These national quarrels spread 
beyond Macedonia. The Bulgarians destroyed the Greek 
quarters of Anchialos and Philippopolis, and the inhabitants 
of the former sought a new home in Thessaly; the Roumanians 
demonstrated against the Greeks resident in their country; 
a common danger caused Greeks and Serbs to fraternise ; and 
an Athenian street received a Servian name. Meanwhile, the 
British government, disgusted with the slow progress made by 
the Miirzsteg programme, proposed in 1905, with the approval 
of the Macedonian congress at Sofia, its extension to the 

44 8 Ai'nienia, Ci-ete, and Macedonia [cH. 

vilayet of Adrianople, and the appointment of a commission of 
delegates, nominated by the Powers, under the presidency of 
the Inspector-General, for the purpose of framing financial 
reforms. The Sultan at first refused to allow foreign interference 
in his finances ; but the occupation of the custom-house and 
telegraph-office at Mitylene by an international fleet on 
November 26 and of the Kastro of Lemnos ten days later 
forced him to recognise the four financial experts whom the 
other Powers had already sent to Salonika as colleagues of the 
Austrian and Russian civil agents. In March, 1908, all the 
arrangements made for the pacification of Macedonia — the 
appointments of Inspector-General, civil and financial agents, 
and gendarmerie officers, originally made for two, were pro- 
longed for six years. Meanwhile, Sir Edward Grey, in the 
name of the British government, had caused remonstrances to 
be made at Athens and Sofia against the continued passage of 
Greek and Bulgarian bands into Macedonia, and secured the 
recall of the Metropolitan of Drama and the Greek consul at 
Ka valla, as active propagandists. Towards the end of 1907 
Sarafov was murdered at Sofia by a Macedonian, at the insti- 
gation of Sandanski, leader of the terrorist section of the 
organisation, and advocate of an entirely independent Mace- 
donia. But still the bands increased, while the British 
proposal to augment the gendarmerie met with no support from 
the other Powers, mainly occupied with the rival railway 
schemes of Austria and Servia. In short, the result of European 
intervention in Macedonia had been ineffective. If the taxes 
had been better collected and administered, if the Turkish 
troops had committed fewer outrages, the strife between 
Greeks, Bulgars, and Koutzo-Wallachs had been bitterer than 
ever. Such was the situation when the Turkish revolution 
of 1908 broke out. 

The Macedonian question naturally affected the internal, 
as well as the external politics of the Balkan states. But it 
was not the only difficult problem which they had to solve 

xviii] Stambulov Premier of Bulgaria 449 

during the period of 21 years which separated the election of 
Prince Ferdinand from the Turkish revolution. Bulgaria was 
governed for the first seven years of the new reign by the 
ex-Regent, Stambulov, the most considerable statesman whom 
Bulgaria has so far produced. 

Alike in his methods and in his fall, the son of the Trnovo 
innkeeper resembled the great German Chancellor. During 
his long tenure of the premiership, he was absolute master of 
Bulgaria; for the Prince was at first much in the position of 
our George I, ignorant of the language and the customs of his 
subjects, and Stambulov was consequently for some years 
indispensable to him. The Minister had no constitutional 
scruples; he held that his end — the maintenance of Bulgarian 
freedom — justified his means, which included the manipulation 
of elections and the persecution of political opponents. He 
saw clearly that it was the interest of Bulgaria to establish 
friendly relations with Turkey; he was thus able to secure 
Turkish support against Russian schemes and to establish 
Bulgarian schools and bishoprics as the nucleus of a Bulgarian 
propaganda against the Greeks and Serbs in Macedonia. When 
Trikoilpes proposed to him a Balkan Federation, he betrayed 
the Greek statesman's offer to the Porte, in order to conciliate 
it. Supported by both Salisbury and Crispi in his opposition 
to Russian attempts to secure the diplomatic removal of Prince 
Ferdinand, he suppressed Russophil conspiracies with the 
utmost severity. A Montenegrin raid near Bourgas failed ; and 
Major Panitza, who had trusted that Russia would save him 
from paying the penalty of treason against his Prince, was tried 
by court-martial and shot as a traitor. Brigandage, which had 
discredited the country by the seizure of two Austrians at the 
Bellova railway-station, he put down with as firm a hand as 
the intrigues of Orthodox churchmen against the Catholic 
Prince. Political assassination became the weapon of the 
discontented; Beltchev, one of Stambulov's colleagues, was shot 
by his side at Sofia; Vulkovich, his agent, was stabbed in the 
M. L. 29 

45 o Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

street at Constantinople. These acts of violence rendered it 
imperative to provide for the future of the throne; accordingly, 
the Prince, in 1893, married a Bourbon Princess, Marie Louise 
of Parma — an union which necessitated a modification of 
article 38 of the constitution, permitting the baptism of the heir 
in the Roman Catholic faith. Stambulov not only succeeded 
in obtaining the adoption of this amendment by the Grand 
Sobranje, but shut up the recalcitrant Metropolitan Clement in 
a monastery for having opposed it publicly. This marriage, by 
providing an heir who received the name of the ancient Bul- 
garian Tsar Boris, strengthened the throne, but proved to be 
the cause of the great statesman's fall. United to a Bourbon, 
the Prince naturally desired diplomatic society for his wife and 
social recognition for himself, while by this time he had acquired 
sufficient knowledge of the language and character of his people 
to feel competent to govern without his too powerful and most 
unceremonious minister. The relations between Prince and 
Premier became more and more strained; Col. Petrov, the 
Prince's favourite, was forced upon the unwilling Premier as a 
colleague; and a princely telegram, accusing his First Minister 
of "vulgarity," caused the latter to resign. On May ^i, 1894, 
Stoilov succeeded him, and for nearly five years remained in 
office. Unfortunately, the fallen statesman, like his German 
prototype, vented his spleen in newspaper interviews, which 
provoked his prosecution for defamation. The end came on 
July 15, 1895, when he was brutally assaulted by three assassins; 
three days later he died of his wounds, and the tardy trial of 
his murderers of whom only Hallio Stavrev, the principal, was 
condemned to death and then sentenced instead to 15 years' 
imprisonment, cast suspicion upon the government and discredit 
upon the country. 

Freed from all control, the Prince then made his peace with 
Russia. Alexander III was now dead ; and a few days before 
Stambulov's murder, a deputation, of which Mgr Clement and 
Stoilov formed part, had gone to St Petersburg to lay a wreath 

XVI 1 1] Conversion of Pi^ince BofHs 451 

on the dead Tsar's grave and to effect a reconciliation with his 
successor. The Russian conditions were the conversion of 
Prince Boris to the Orthodox Church ; and this solemn farce 
was enacted in 1896, after a more than usually unseemly 
theological controversy. Nicholas II acted as godfather by 
proxy ; Russia formally recognised Prince Ferdinand as the 
reward of this apostasy ; the other Powers followed ; and the 
Prince de jure, as well as de facto, basked in the smiles of his 
suzerain and his protector. Thenceforth his policy became 
steadily Russophil. The officers implicated in the kidnapping 
of his predecessor were- reinstated and those appointed under 
the anti-Russian regime removed; Russian training was en- 
couraged in the army; a Russian admiral and a Russian 
financier visited Bulgaria. Russian Grand-dukes came to 
celebrate the 25th anniversary of Shipka and the 30th of 
Plevna ; and Ignatyeff urged the Bulgars to transmit to their 
children the sacred duty of realising the treaty of San Stefano, 
thus exciting their desire for Macedonia. Notwithstanding 
that agitation and the instability of Bulgarian Cabinets after the 
fall of Stoilovin 1899, owing to dissatisfaction with his financial 
and railway policy, the principality made substantial progress, 
thanks to the grit of its inhabitants. In Bulgaria it is necessary 
to distinguish between the people and the politicians. Unlike 
the Greek, the Bulgarian peasant dislikes politics, and wishes to 
cultivate his field in peace; while political parties, increased 
from two to eight without any corresponding difference of 
principles, fight for office in the name of this or that party 
leader. The politicians are mainly recruited from the towns- 
men and especially from the lawyers ; and it was noted as 
significant that in 1908, thirty years after the creation of 
Bulgaria, nearly one-third of the deputies were graduates, and 
Sofia had nine daily papers. Consequently, the kaleidoscopic 
succession of nine Cabinets, now Russophil. now Stambulovist, 
in the same number of years, scarcely affected the stabiHty of 
the country ; nor did such public scandals as the impeachment 

29 — 2 

452 Armenia, Crete, and Afacedonia [ch. 

of four Ministers for the violation of the constitution in 
their personal interest reflect discredit on the laborious masses, 
who had no concern with lucrative contracts. But lavish 
expenditure on railways and harbour-works inevitably caused 
financial difficulties; and these, aggravated by bad harvests, 
forced the government in 1900 to impose a tithe on agricul- 
tural produce, which provoked a serious peasant riot near 
Rustchuk. A new tariff, intended to protect native industries, 
raised the cost of living, while free and compulsory education 
produced, as usual, an overflow of professional men and a 
consequent supply of professional agitators. Hence, even in 
''the pea '■ant state," which had seemed to British observers in 
the early nineties to be an almost ideal country for the tillers of 
the soil, a Socialist movement has arisen in the last 20 years. 
There, too, as in older communities, the students became so 
troublesome that in 1907 Stambulov's successor, Petkov, the 
"Haussmann of Bulgaria," closed the University, only to fall a 
victim to assassination by a discharged official. These were 
I signs that progress in Oriental countries, if rapid, had its draw- 
backs, and that there was much of the old Adam still latent 
beneath the surface of their European civilisation. The history 
of Servia since the Bulgarian war tells the same tale. 

For some years after that event Servian history mainly con 
sisted of the domestic squabbles of the royal family. Milan, 
though an able man, had the usual vices of the Europeanised 
Oriental, while his beautiful wife, Queen Natalie, possessed a 
strong will of her own. International politics widened the 
breach between the royal couple, for the King was an Austrophil, 
while the Queen, as befitted the daughter of a colonel in the 
Russian army, was an adherent of the Tsar. Servian public 
life reflected these tendencies, for the Radicals, or rural party, 
were Russophil, and of the urban parties, the Progressives and 
the Liberals, the former was pro-Austrian. At last Milan 
obtained a divorce from his wife, and followed this domestic 
victory by summoning a commission, on which all the three 

XV III] King Milajis Abdication 453 

political parties were represented, and in the labours of which 
he himself took part with marked ability, for drawing up a 
constitution far more Liberal than that of 1869. Its most 
important article was that which made all classes of the com- 
munity, and not peasants alone, eligible as deputies, but one- 
fourth of the National Assembly was still to be nominated by 
the King. Freedom of the press and a lower suffrage were 
granted ; and iMilan informed the deputies that they must accept 
the constitution as a whole without amendment— a threat which 
induced them to pass it en bloc on January 2, 1889. Scarcely, 
however, had this new charter come into force, than he ab- 
dicated in favour of his son, Alexander, on March 6, 1889. 
As the young King was only 1 3 years of age, three Regents, all 
Liberals, were appointed to govern the country, the chief of 
them being Ristich, the ablest Servian statesman, who 2 1 years 
before had been one of Milan's own guardians ; the others were 
Generals Protich and Belimarkovich. The bickerings of the 
divorced couple and the Queen's assertion of her right to 
reside in her son's capital kept Servia, however, in a constant 
ferment ; an attempt to expel her was at first frustrated by the 
mob and the students ; blood was shed in the scuffle ; but next 
day Ristich ordered the police to break into her house and 
escort her to the station. At last both the ex-King and Queen 
not only consented to live abroad for their country's good, but 
made up their private differences in order to save the throne 
from the Karageorgevich pretender. Meanwhile, Alexander, 
who had been hitherto apparently immersed in the study of 
constitutional history, suddenly amazed his Regents by ordering 
their arrest at his dinner-table on April 13, 1893, proclaiming 
himself of age, and dissolving the National Assembly. The suc- 
cess of this coup d'etat directed against the Regents encouraged 
him to make another against the Radicals. Accordingly, on 
May 21 of the following year, he abolished the constitution 
of 1889 and restored that of 1869. This drastic act was 
followed, five years later, by a wholesale proscription of the 

454 Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

Radical and Russophil party, which the Court sought to 
implicate in the attempted assassination of Milan, then com- 
mander-in-chief, by a certain Knezevich, said to be an 
agent of the pretender ; and the way in which this " Servian 
Dreyfus case " was conducted aroused general indignation. 

In August, 1900, Alexander, who had hitherto been success- 
ful, committed the serious political mistake of marrying a lady- 
in-waiting of his mother, Madame Draga Mashin, widow of a 
Bohemian engineer and herself of " Bohemian " tendencies, 
which Belgrade gossip at once exaggerated This union proved 
his ruin. The Tsar, indeed, hastened to congratulate the 
King ; and in the following year the death at Vienna of Milan, 
who had retired in disgust, removed one of the constant 
irritants of Servian public life and Russia's greatest enemy. 
But the lack of an heir, the suspicion that Queen Draga was 
scheming to secure the succession for one of her brothers, 
Nikodem Lunjevitza, and the petty jealousies of Belgrade 
society rendered the King's position insecure. In vain he 
granted an amnesty to the proscribed Radicals ; in vain, in 
1 90 1, he celebrated the anniversary of the Turkish evacuation 
of Belgrade by the issue of a constitution more Liberal than 
that of 1869, less Radical than that of 1889, giving the country 
the safeguards of a second Chamber for the first time in its 
history and a Council of State. He described this new charter 
as "the result of an understanding between the sovereign and 
the leaders of the three political parties"; and the first elections 
held under it aroused unusual interest. But still discontent 
grew apace in a soil so congenial to political intrigue as is that 
of the Servian capital. The first sign of the coming tragedy 
was the proclamation of Peter Karageorgevich as King by an 
adventurer at Shabatz in 1902. To secure himself against 
similar conspiracies Alexander appointed a military Cabinet 
under General Tsintsar-Markovich, and on April 7, 1903, 
perpetrated a third coup d'etat^ by which he suspended the 
new constitution until he liad rid himself of his old enemies, 

xviii] The Servian Regicides 455 

the Radicals. After having repealed all obnoxious laws by his 
own authority, abolished the Council of State, the ballot and 
the freedom of the press, and dismissed the senators and the 
Radical judges, he appointed a new batch of life-senators and 
Councillors, all innocent of Radicalism, and then at once 
restored in this form the suspended constitution, which he had 
so arbitrarily revised, with the object, as he told his people, of 
maintaining "order, unity, and peace." The result was the 
very opposite. Cut off by the abolition of the ballot from the 
sure support of their peasant adherents, and thus deprived of 
their constitutional remedies, the Radicals sought refuge in the 
usual Balkan device for desperate emergencies — a palace 

The spring of 1903 was ominous for the royal couple. 
A scullion in the palace kitchen was suspected of trying to 
poison their food; a plot was formed to shoot the King at the 
door of the cathedral on Palm Sunday, the national festival. 
Ultimately, another and more appropriate anniversary was 
selected for the deed — June 10, the day when Michael had 
been assassinated thirty-five years before. The conspirators 
were officers who had taken the oath to Alexander ; and their 
leader was Colonel Mashin, brother of the Queen's first husband 
and her personal enemy. Others, it was said, were well paid for 
their murderous work ; while behind the actual assassins stood 
the smug, black-coated politicians, ready to profit by what was 
cynically proclaimed to be a "glorious revolution." On the 
night of June 10, 1903, the conspirators met at the " Servian 
Crown " to arrange their plans ; the 6th regiment occupied the 
approaches to the palace; the door was exploded with dynamite; 
and in the ensuing darkness the murderers groped about for 
two hours till at last they found the royal couple hiding in a 
cupboard where the Queen kept her dresses. The wretches 
who wore the King's uniform showed no mercy to their 
sovereign. Pierced by over 30 bullets the last Obrenovich fell, 
clasping his wife in his arms, while the ruffians who profaned 

45^ A7'}72enia, Crete ^ and Macedonia [cii. 

the name of officer stabbed and outraged the body of the 
Queen. Throwing the two mangled corpses out of the window, 
the assassins continued their work in the city. The Queen's 
two brothers, the Prime Minister and the Minister of War, were 
shot in cold blood; the Minister of the Interior was seriously 
wounded ; the occasion was seized for gratifying private revenge ; 
and Belgrade proved to the world that she was still, after a 
century of practical freedom, inhabited by thinly polished 
barbarians. Nor was this impression diminished, when, in the 
morning, the capital was decorated with flags, the church bells 
rang, and dance music enlivened the squares. When night 
fell, two carts conveyed the bodies of the King and Queen to 
their last resting-place in the church of St Mark, where the 
second and least conspicuous Obrenovich Prince had been 
buried. No friend was present at their humble funeral. A few 
hours after the tragedy a new Ministry under M. Avakumovich, 
of which the chief conspirator was a member, issued a pro- 
clamation temporarily reviving the constitution of 1901 and 
summoning the National Assembly for the election of a king. 
The country had but a short interregnum. Prince Peter 
Karageorgevich may not have been privy to the murders, but 
it was he who profited by them, for on June 15 the National 
Assembly unanimously elected him King. The new sovereign, 
who nine days later mounted the blood-stained Servian throne, 
had spent 45 of his 57 years in exile — now in Hungary, now at 
the court of his Montenegrin father-in-law, now at Geneva — 
and was therefore practically a stranger to the land, over which 
his father Alexander had ruled for sixteen. He had fought in 
the Franco-German war and in the Bosnian insurrection, and 
was therefore more of a soldier than his two predecessors ; he 
had translated Mill On Liberty^ but the English philosopher's 
speculations were scarcely adapted to the society of Servia. 
Even before his arrival, the politicians had restored, with some 
alterations, the constitution of 1889. This constitution of 
June 18, 1903, which still remains in force, provided for a 

xviii] King Pete7' of Servia 457 

single chamber, elected by citizens who paid 15 dinara a year 
in direct taxes, and convened annually in the capital on October 
I o. Election was to take place by departmental scrutin de Hste^ 
thus embodying the principle of proportional representation ; 
and it was provided that in each department there must be two 
candidates furnished with an University degree or the diploma 
of a high school. A Grand Skiipsht'ma of twice the usual number 
of deputies was to be summoned to decide upon a regency, 
the succession to the throne, a modification of the constitution, 
or any cession or exchange of territory. The new sovereign 
took the oath to this constitution, and unlike Milan and 
Alexander, has kept his promise to be "a true constitutional 
King of Servia." A day before, the time-serving Metropolitan 
had invoked the divine blessing upon the new, as he had 
already invoked it upon the murderers of the late King, in the 
self-same cathedral where he had baptized and married his 
murdered sovereign. But, if the head of the Servian Church 
could thus apologise for assassination, foreign governments 
were more scrupulous. Italian officers sent back their Servian 
decorations; the King of Roumania withdrew his name from 
his Servian regiment. Austria and Russia, traditional rivals for 
influence in Servia, alone recognised King Peter; but the 
Austrian Emperor stigmatised the act, to which he owed his 
throne, as "a heinous and universally reprobated crime." 
The British and other ministers were withdrawn; and the 
humorous element, never wanting in Balkan tragedies, was 
supplied by the author of the Armenian massacres, who 
expressed his horror at the midnight murders committed by his 
Christian neighbours. 

Boycotted by Europe, King Peter soon had to face internal 
difficulties. He was the prisoner of the regicides, who occupied 
all the best posts and whom he dared not offend. Both they 
and the politicians intended that he should be merely a puppet, 
while even in Servia there was still a party which cherished the 
memory of the old dynasty ; and the conspiracy of the garrison 

45 8 Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

of Nish, where it had always been popular, and the existence 
of a bastard son of Milan at Constantinople, menaced the early 
days of the new. The presence of the Crown Prince of 
Montenegro, when Peter was anointed at Jitcha in the ancient 
coronation church of the Servian kings, seemed to secure him 
the support of a dangerous rival ; but the marriage of Prince 
Nicholas' second son Mirko, with Mile Natalie Constantinovich, 
the nearest relative of the murdered King, might prove an 
embarrassment to the new, as it had proved to the old dynasty. 
Moreover, in his own family the new ruler had a source of anxiety 
in the person of his heir, Prince George, a youth of violent 
temper, whose antics soon kept Belgrade gossip busy with the 
doings of the palace. Foreign diplomatists not unnaturally 
declined to sit down with assassins at the royal table ; a 
reaction against them began, and a " league for " their " legal 
punishment" was formed; but it was not till 1906, when the 
chief regicides were placed on the retired list, that Great 
Britain resumed official relations with Servia, whose export 
trade to the United Kingdom had entirely disappeared since 
their rupture. Still the antagonism between regicides and 
anti-regicides, who formed a " Nationalist party," continued ; 
the former attacked two Nationalist deputies in the street ; and 
two anti-regicide officers were murdered without the culprits 
being brought to justice. One foreign potentate, indeed, the 
Prince of Bulgaria, exchanged visits with King Peter almost in 
the year after his accession ; and this fraternal feeling was the 
forerunner of a Serbo-Bulgarian convention in 1906, which, as 
the first step to a customs union of the two Slav states, caused 
a tariff war with Austria-Hungary and the usual embargo upon 
the export of Servian swine into the Dual Monarchy. But this 
conflict was not an unmixed evil, for it led to the discovery of 
other outlets for Servian live-stock and tended towards a better 
understanding with Great Britain, of which the effect was seen 
in the eastern crisis of 1908. When, too, the Austrian 
Foreign Minister, Baron Aehrenthal, earlier in that year 

xviii] Progress of Montenegro 459 

announced that leave had been asked to survey the route 
for a railway across the sanjak of Novibazar, uniting the 
Bosnian terminus at Uvatz with the Turkish station of 
Mitrovitza, a Servian counter-proposal for a line from the 
Danube to the Adriatic at San Giovanni di Medua obtained 
Italian and Russian support. Thus, under the Karageorgevich 
restoration, Servia ceased to pursue the Austrophil policy of 
Milan ; the Progressive party almost disappeared ; the Liberals 
were merged in the new Nationalist group; and the "Old" 
Radicals, under M. Pashich, the veteran democrat of the 
eighties, became, with the " Young " Radicals, the most 
important factors in public life. 

Prince Nicholas of Montenegro was occupied, after the 
definite enlargement of his principality in 1880, with the 
problem of adapting a Homeric state of society, where fighting 
had been the main occupation of the men for nearly five 
centuries, to the changed requirements of a modern com- 
munity. Excellent roads were made ; trade was encouraged, 
tobaceo cultivated, and each mountaineer ordered to plant a 
vine. The first Montenegrin public library and museum, and 
a theatre, where the Prince's two plays w^ere performed amidst 
loud applause, increased the intellectual resources of the little 
capital ; and the 400th anniversary of the first Slavonic printing- 
press, celebrated in 1893, reminded the world of Montenegrin 
aspirations after knowledge in the past. Five years earlier, a 
new code, the work of M. Bogoshich, was promulgated. 
Meanwhile, the Highlanders had kept their hands in by 
repeated brushes with the Albanians on the frontier ; and in 
1895 the Prince made the experiment of a standing army. 
Famines continued, however, to tax the resources of the 
country; and many Montenegrins emigrated to Servia. 

The mountain principahty, so long cut off from the world, 
has become much more closely connected with western Europe 
since 1896. On October 24 of that year, the Prince's fourth 
daughter, Elena, married the heir to the Italian throne, who four 

460 Ar^nenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

years later became King of Italy. This union, which recalls the 
marriages of the Montenegrin Black Princes with fair Venetians 
in the 15 th century, was a love match, but has none the less 
had important political and economic results for the little 
mountain state. It not only brought the Petrovich dynasty, the 
bicentenary of which was celebrated a few months later, within 
the family circle of " European " Courts, but induced Italians 
to regard the country of their Queen as a field for economic 
enterprise and incidentally to take more interest in Balkan 
politics. Two other Montenegrin Princesses had married 
Russians, so that, after the accession of another son-in-law to 
the Servian throne, Prince Nicholas became on a small scale 
the "father-in-law of Europe"; while the marriage of his 
second son, Mirko, might conceivably unite the two Servian 
states in one hand. Finally, two other marriages, that of 
his fifth daughter to Prince Francis Joseph of Battenberg, and 
that of his eldest son to the Duchess Jutta of Mecklenburg- 
Strelitz, brought his family into special favour with the late 
Queen Victoria, whom he visited at Windsor in 1898. It was, 
perhaps, as much in virtue of his exalted connexions as to 
commemorate the fortieth anniversary of his accession that 
Prince Nicholas assumed the style of " Royal Highness" at the 
close of 1900, and that of King at his Jubilee in 19 10. But 
the increased importance of the reigning house has considerably 
augmented its expenditure, while the usual discord of married 
brothers who live in the same small place has been aggravated 
by the lack of an heir to the Crown Prince, whose brother 
Mirko has offspring. 

In 1905, the Prince amazed Europe by issuing two 
edicts, announcing the grant of parliamentary institutions and 
liberty of the press to his people. A Liberal in theory, 
especially in British politics, the Prince had always been an 
autocrat in practice, although in 1868 he had transferred some 
of his functions to the Senate, increased to 16 members, and 
in 1874 had created a Ministry. But neither the Senate nor 

xviii] The Moniefiegrin Constitution 461 

the Ministry had any real power. Consequently this sudden 
new departure seemed a dangerous experiment. The example of 
Russia, the growing desire of those young Montenegrins who had 
been educated at Belgrade to have a share in the government 
of their country, and the reflection that the change, if inevitable, 
had better be made in his own lifetime rather than in that of 
his nmch less experienced successor, doubtless influenced so 
shrewd a ruler as Prince Nicholas in his decision, although his 
official explanation was that he had been actuated by the 
Liberal ideas imbibed at Paris in his youth. The constitution 
— a lengthy document of 222 articles — was borrowed, however, 
from Servian sources, especially the Servian constitution of 
1889. The Prince continued to represent the state in all its 
foreign relations ; primogeniture in the male line was declared 
to be the law of the succession to the throne ; the Senate was 
preserved ; the country was divided into departments {oblasH), 
districts {capitanie)^ and communes {opshtine) ; the Church was 
proclaimed autocephalous, and all other cults free ; a free press 
and free compulsory elementary education, a Council of State of 
six, and a Court of Accounts of three members, formed parts of 
the charter. A National Assembly {Narodna Skupshtina\ partly 
elected by universal suff"rage, and partly composed of ex officio 
nominees of the Prince, was to meet annually on October 31. 
This body, the term of which was four years, was composed of 
62 members elected by the 56 districts and the six towns, and 
of 14 nominated or ex officio members, viz. the Metropolitan, 
the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Antivari (who bears the 
title of " Primate of Servia "), the Mohammedan Mufti, the six 
Councillors of State, the presidents of the Grand Tribunal and 
of the Court of Accounts, and the three brigadiers. Deputies 
must be at least 30 years of age and pay 15 kronen in taxes 
annually. The first general election under this constitution was 
held in November, 1 905. On December 1 9 the first Montenegrin 
parliament met ; the old Ministers who had so long executed 
their master's edicts resigned ; and a new Ministry of younger 

462 Armeniay Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

men took their places. "Nothing," said the Prince, "would 
afflict my heart more than to hear it said : ' the old Prince, 
though meaning well, has acted with precipitation, and esteemed 
his people to be more advanced than it really is'." So far, 
however, parliamentary government has not been a success. 
Until the appointment of M. Tomanovich as Premier in 1907 
Cabinet crises were frequent ; a group of Socialists has made 
its appearance ; the country has been divided into factions ; 
and, whenever the present ruler's strong hand is withdrawn, it 
may be found that parliamentarism, at present more or less a 
comedy, is a dangerous gift to a poor and primitive Balkan 
state. Already, at the general election of 1907, feeling ran so 
high that the office of a Radical journal was wrecked, the 
Radicals refused to take part in the voting, and all the deputies 
elected were consequently Conservatives. Then came the 
discovery of bombs from Servia in Montenegro. Montenegrin 
ex-ministers were prosecuted ; a democratic ex-Premier was sent 
to prison at Podgoritza ; and accusations were made against the 
Servian government of complicity in a plot against Prince 
Nicholas, which led to a rupture of diplomatic relations between 
the two sister-states, whose rulers had private reasons for not 
greatly loving one another. 

Another influence which is tending to modernise Monte- 
negro is that of the emigrants who return from the United 
States. This is a comparatively new feature in the social life 
of the Black Mountain, whose sons, if they emigrated, usually 
went, till recently, to some other part of the near east. It is 
calculated that there are now some 30,000 Montenegrins in 
America; and their country is thus drained of its young men, with 
evil results to the damsels who remain behind. These emigrants, 
on their return, like the " intellectuals " whom the government 
sends to study abroad, are apt to become discontented with their 
highland home. Nor is it without risks for a small and poor 
state to allow foreigners, and those mainly of one nationality, to 
conduct its chief commercial enterprises. Commercially to-day 

XVI 1 1] Prog7^ess of Roumama 463 

Montenegro is practically an Italian colony. Italians manage 
the tobacco monopoly ; they conduct, under the Montenegrin 
flag, the navigation on the lake of Scutari ; they control the 
Marconi station at the haven of Antivari. No wonder that 
this system of foreign concessions, perhaps inevitable in a 
country where capital is scarce, is causing some to raise the 
cry of " Montenegro for the Montenegrins." Still, despite 
these disadvantages of progress, the country has reaped advan- 
tages also. Since 1906 it has had its own coinage, based on 
the silver unit, called, with a fine flavour of the Middle Ages, 
a perper. As a natural corollary, a bank has been founded. 
A railway was inaugurated in 1908, which connects Vir Bazar 
on the lake of Scutari with the harbour of Antivari ; a motor- 
service joins the capital with Cattaro and Podgoritza; tele- 
phones enable the Ministers to issue their orders from the new 
offices, whither they have emigrated from the old " billiard- 
table " ; and the village-capital, grown in size, is lighted by 
electricity. Princes and officers dressed in khaki represent, 
among giants clad in the splendid national costume, the 
transition stage upon which Montenegro has now, for weal or 
woe, inevitably entered. 

Roumania continued, during the quarter of a century which 
followed her practical accession to the Triple Alliance, a course 
of peaceful progress, broken by occasional political disturb- 
ances and by serious social upheavals. When, in 1906, the 
Jubilee exhibition, held to commemorate the fortieth anni- 
versary of the sovereign's first arrival in his adopted country, 
enabled visitors to compare the present with the past, they 
saw that Roumania had assumed, in little more than a gene- 
ration, all the externals of western civilisation. A railway 
system of nearly 2,000 miles facilitated travelling where, at the 
Prince's coming, there had not been a single train. The Iron 
Gates had been blasted, and a noble bridge spanned the 
Danube at Cernavoda, which, by uniting the rest of the king- 
dom with its newly-won haven of Constantza, has given 

464 Armenia, Crete, and Macedonia [ch. 

importance to the despised Dobrudja and made Roumania the 
highway from Berh'n to Constantinople. The credit of the 
Government was such that it could borrow at a trifle over 
4 per cent. ; the production of petroleum in large quantities 
had tended to modify the purely agricultural character of the 
country, which, with a population of between six and seven 
millions, was the largest, as it was likewise the steadiest, of the 
Balkan states. But of this population 80 per cent, depended 
upon the land for their living ; and about one-half of the land 
belonged to a comparatively small number of large proprietors, 
who in many cases let their property to middlemen, often 
Jewish capitalists. The peasant, whenever his rent was raised, 
had either to borrow at usurious interest, or to pay by labour 
what he could not pay in cash. He was thus reduced to the 
condition of either a debtor or a serf, unless he chanced to be 
a small proprietor himself. Even then his prospects were not 
rosy, for ignorance and sometimes physical weakness prevented 
him from making his little plot of land feed his large family. 
Even after the second revision of the constitution, proposed by 
Bratianu in 1884, he was almost wholly excluded by the 
electoral system from parliamentary representation, while the 
time of the legislature was too often wasted in the barren 
conflicts of Liberals, Conservatives, and " Young " Con- 
servatives or ''Junimists" — meaningless party labels without 
underlying principles. Thus the peasantry became the natural 
victims of the glib agitators, whom free education had provided 
in its customary fashion. The great peasant risings of 1888 
and 1907 were the results — the latter a veritable Roumanian 
Jacquerie, in which many lives were lost and much machinery 
was destroyed. A corollary of this agrarian movement was the 
continued Anti-Semitic agitation, which had so greatly em- 
barrassed the earlier years of the reign. In 1897 Anti-Semitic 
riots took place; and in 1902 the United States addressed a 
note to the signatories of the Berlin treaty on the subject of the 
persecution of the Roumanian Jews and their consequent 

XViii] Foreign Policy of Rouniania 465 

exodus in large numbers, in direct contravention of article 44 
of that famous instrument. But, except for the exclusion of 
the Roumanian minister in London from the Guildhall banquet, 
nothing was done in response to this appeal, and the Rou- 
manians could retort that almost every nation concerned had 
broken some article of the Berlin treaty. 

Foreign policy has been throughout under the direct 
control of the King, and therefore pro-German and at times 
pro-Turkish. Since the visit of the Austrian Emperor to 
Bucharest in 1896, after the opening of the Iron Gates in the 
presence of the three riverain sovereigns, this connexion with 
the three central Powers, begun by Bratianu and Bismarck in 
1883, has become closer. A military convention has bound 
the fortunes of the Roumanian army of 200,000 men to those 
of Austria-Hungary under certain conditions ; and on one 
occasion Roumania mobilised at the bidding of Germany, in 
order to save the embarrassed Turks from denuding their 
Asiatic provinces of troops. The fortification of the capital 
by General Brialmont has further strengthened the barrier 
which Roumania could offer to a Russian advance on Con- 

Her friendship with Austria-Hungary has had, however, the 
effect of forcing Roumania to interest herself in the Mace- 
donian question, thus offending the susceptibilities of the only 
other non-Slavonic Christian state in the near east — Greece. 
Compelled to relinquish, at least for a time, the idea of 
redeeming the " unredeemed " Roumanians of the Dual 
Monarchy, she has cast her eyes afar upon the long-forgotten 
' Koutzo-Wallachs of Macedonia and Epirus, whom Rou- 
iimanians state to be Roumanians and Greeks assert to be 
jGreeks. Whenever this propaganda has been relaxed, the 
Latin and the Greek races of the peninsula have fraternised, 
as when their two governments concluded a commercial con-