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A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times
The Kingship In France.
by Guizot, M.


That the kingship occupied an important place and played an important part in the history of France is an evident and universally recognized fact. But to what causes this fact was due, and what particular characteristics gave the kingship in France that preponderating influence which, in weal and in woe, it exercised over the fortunes of the country, is a question which has been less closely examined, and which still remains vague and obscure. This question it is which we would now shed light upon and determine with some approach to precision. We cannot properly comprehend and justly appreciate a great historical force until we have seen it issuing from its primary source and followed it in its various developments.

At the first glance, two facts strike us in the history of the kingship in France. It was in France that it adopted soonest and most persistently maintained its fundamental principle, heredity. In the other monarchical states of Europe—in England, in Germany, in Spain, and in Italy—divers principles, at one time election, and at another right of conquest, have been mingled with or substituted for the heredity of the throne; different dynasties have reigned; and England has had her Saxon, Danish, and Norman kings, her Plantagenets, her Tudors, her Stuarts, her Nassaus, her Brunswicks. In Germany, and up to the eighteenth century, the Empire, the sole central dignity, was elective and transferable. Spain was for a long while parcelled out into several distinct kingdoms, and since she attained territorial unity the houses of Austria and Bourbon have both occupied her throne. The monarchy and the republic for many a year disputed and divided Italy. Only in France was there, at any time during eight centuries, but a single king and a single line of kings. Unity and heredity, those two essential principles of monarchy, have been the invariable characteristics of the kingship in France.

A second fact, less apparent and less remarkable, but, nevertheless, not without importance or without effect upon the history of the kingship in France, is the extreme variety of character, of faculties, of intellectual and moral bent, of policy and personal conduct amongst the French kings. In the long roll of thirty-three kings who reigned in France from Hugh Capet to Louis XVI. there were kings wise and kings foolish, kings able and kings incapable, kings rash and kings slothful, kings earnest and kings frivolous, kings saintly and kings licentious, kings good and sympathetic towards their people, kings egotistical and concerned solely about themselves, kings lovable and beloved, kings sombre and dreaded or detested. As we go forward and encounter them on our way, all these kingly characters will be seen appearing and acting in all their diversity and all their incoherence. Absolute monarchical power in France was, almost in every successive reign, singularly modified, being at one time aggravated and at another alleviated according to the ideas, sentiments, morals, and spontaneous instincts of the monarchs. Nowhere else, throughout the great European monarchies, has the difference between kingly personages exercised so much influence on government and national condition. In that country the free action of individuals has filled a prominent place and taken a prominent part in the course of events.

It has been shown how insignificant and inert, as sovereigns, were the first three successors of Hugh Capet. The goodness to his people displayed by King Robert was the only kingly trait which, during that period, deserved to leave a trace in history. The kingship appeared once more with the attributes of energy and efficiency on the accession of Louis VI., son of Philip I. He was brought up in the monastery of St. Denis, which at that time had for its superior a man of judgment, the Abbot Adam; and he then gave evidence of tendencies and received his training under influences worthy of the position which awaited him. He was handsome, tall, strong, and alert, determined and yet affable. He had more taste for military exercises than for the amusements of childhood and the pleasures of youth. He was at that time called Louis the Wide-awake. He had the good fortune to find in the Monastery of St. Denis a fellow-student capable of becoming a king's counsellor. Suger, a child born at St. Denis, of obscure parentage, and three or four years younger than Prince Louis, had been brought up for charity's sake in the abbey, and the Abbot Adam, who had perceived his natural abilities, had taken pains to develop them. A bond of esteem and mutual friendship was formed between the two young people, both of whom were disposed to earnest thought and earnest living; and when, in 1108, Louis the Wide-awake ascended the throne, the monk Suger became his adviser whilst remaining his friend.

A very small kingdom was at that time the domain belonging properly and directly to the King of France. Ile-de-France, properly so called, and a part of Orleanness (l'Oreanais), pretty nearly the five departments of the Seine, Seine-et-Oise, Seineet-Marne, Oise and Loiret, besides, through recent acquisitions, French Vexin (which bordered on the Ile-de-France and had for its chief place Pontoise, being separated by the little River Epte from Norman Vexin, of which Rouen was the capital), half the countship of Sens and the countship of Bourges—such was the whole of its extent. But this limited state was as liable to agitation, and often as troublous and as toilsome to govern, as the very greatest of modern states. It was full of Petty lords, almost sovereigns in their own estates, and sufficiently strong to struggle against their kingly suzerain, who had, besides, all around his domains, several neighbors more powerful than himself in the extent and population of their states. But lord and peasant, layman and ecclesiastic, castle and country and the churches of France, were not long discovering that, if the kingdom was small, it had verily a king. Louis did not direct to a distance from home his ambition and his efforts; it was within his own dominion, to check the violence of the strong against the weak, to put a stop to the quarrels of the strong amongst themselves, to make an end, in France at least, of unrighteousness and devastation, and to establish there some sort of order and some sort of justice, that he displayed his energy and his perseverance. "He was animated," says Suger, "by a strong sense of equity; to air his courage was his delight; he scorned inaction; he opened his eyes to see the way of discretion; he broke his rest and was unwearied in his solicitude." Suger has recounted in detail sixteen of the numerous expeditions which Louis undertook into the interior, to accomplish his work of repression or of exemplary chastisement. Bouchard, Lord of Montmorency, Matthew de Beaumont, Dreux de Mouchy-le-Chatel, Ebble de Roussi, Leon de Mean, Thomas de Marle, Hugh de Crecy, William de la Roche-Guyon, Hugh du Puiset, and Amaury de Montfort learned, to their cost, that the king was not to be braved with impunity. "Bouchard, on taking up arms one day against him, refused to accept his sword from the hands of one of his people who offered it to him, and said by way of boast to the countess his wife, 'Noble countess, give thou joyously this glittering sword to the count thy spouse: he who taketh it from thee as count will bring it back to thee as king.'" "In this very campaign, Bouchard, by his death," says Suger, "restored peace to the kingdom, and took away himself and his war to the bottomless pit of hell." Hugh du Puiset had frequently broken his oaths of peace and recommenced his devastations and revolts; and Louis resumed his course of hunting him down, "destroyed the castle of Puiset, threw down the walls, dug up the wells, and razed it completely to the ground, as a place devoted to the curse of Heaven." Thomas de Marle, Lord of Couci, had been committing cruel ravages upon the town and church of Laon, lands and inhabitants; when "Louis, summoned by their complaints, repaired to Laon, and there, on the advice of the bishops and grandees, and especially of Raoul, the illustrious Count of Vermandois, the most powerful, after the king, of the lords in this part of the country, he determined to go and attack the castle of Couci, and so went back to his own camp. The people whom he had sent to explore the spot reported that the approach to the castle was very difficult, and in truth impossible. Many urged the king to change his purpose in the matter; but he cried, 'Nay, what we resolved on at Laon stands: I would not hold back therefrom, though it were to save my life. The king's majesty would be vilified, if I were to fly before this scoundrel.' Forthwith, in spite of his corpulence, and with admirable ardor, he pushed on with his troops through ravines and roads encumbered with forests. . . . Thomas, made prisoner and mortally wounded, was brought to King Louis, and by his order removed to Laon, to the almost universal satisfaction of his own folk and ours. Next day, his lands were sold for the benefit of the public treasury, his ponds were broken up, and King Louis, sparing the country because he had the lord of it at his disposal, took the road back to Laon, and afterwards returned in triumph to Paris."

Sometimes, when the people, and their habitual protectors, the bishops, invoked his aid, Louis would carry his arms beyond his own dominions, by sole right of justice and kingship. "It is known," says Suger, "that kings have long hands." In 1121, the Bishop of Clermont-Ferrand made a complaint to the king against William VI., Count of Auvergne, who had taken possession of the town, and even of the episcopal church, and was exercising therein "unbridled tyranny." The king, who never lost a moment when there was a question of helping the Church, took up with pleasure and solemnity what was, under these circumstances, the cause of God; and having been unable, either by word of mouth or by letters sealed with the seal of the king's majesty, to bring back the tyrant to his duty, he assembled his troops, and led into revolted Auvergne a numerous army of Frenchmen. He had now become exceeding fat, and could scarce support the heavy mass of his body. Any one else, however humble, would have had neither the will nor the power to ride a-horseback; but he, against the advice of all his friends, listened only to the voice of courage, braved the fiery suns of June and August, which were the dread of the youngest knights, and made a scoff of those who could not bear the heat, although many a time, during the passage of narrow and difficult swampy places, he was constrained to get himself held on by those about him. After an obstinate struggle, and at the intervention of William VII., Duke of Aquitaine, the Count of Auvergne's suzerain, "Louis fixed a special day for regulating and deciding, in parliament, at Orleans, and in the duke's presence, between the bishop and the count, the points to which the Auvergnats had hitherto refused to subscribe. Then triumphantly leading back his army, he returned victoriously to France." He had asserted his power, and increased his ascendency, without any pretension to territorial aggrandizement.

Into his relations with his two powerful neighbors, the King of England, Duke of Normandy, and the Emperor of Germany, Louis the Fat introduced the same watchfulness, the same firmness, and, at need, the same warlike energy, whilst observing the same moderation, and the same policy of holding aloof from all turbulent or indiscreet ambition, adjusting his pretensions to his power, and being more concerned to govern his kingdom efficiently than to add to it by conquest. Twice, in 1109 and in 1118, he had war in Normandy with Henry I., King of England, and he therein was guilty of certain temerities resulting in a reverse, which he hastened to repair during a vigorous prosecution of the campaign; but, when once his honor was satisfied, he showed a ready inclination for the peace which the Pope, Calixtus II., in council at Rome, succeeded in establishing between the two rivals. The war with the Emperor of Germany, Henry V., in 1124, appeared, at the first blush, a more serious matter. The emperor had raised a numerous army of Lorrainers, Allemannians, Bavarians, Suabians, and Saxons, and was threatening the very city of Rheims with instant attack. Louis hastened to put himself in position; he went and took solemnly, at the altar of St. Denis, the banner of that patron of the kingdom, and flew with a mere handful of men to confront the enemy, and parry the first blow, calling on the whole of France to follow him. France summoned the flower of her chivalry; and when the army had assembled from every quarter of the kingdom at Rheims, there was seen, says Suger, "so great a host of knights and men a-foot, that they might have been compared to swarms of grasshoppers covering the face of the earth, not only on the banks of the rivers, but on the mountains and over the plains." This multitude was formed in three divisions. The third division was composed of Orleanese, Parisians, the people of Etampes, and those of St. Denis; and at their head was the king in person: "With them," said he, "I shall fight bravely and with good assurance; besides being protected by the saint, my liege lord, I have here of my country-men those who nurtured me with peculiar affection, and who, of a surety, will back me living, or carry me off dead, and save my body." At news of this mighty host, and the ardor with which they were animated, the Emperor Henry V. advanced no farther, and, before long, "marching, under some pretext, towards other places, he preferred the shame of retreating like a coward to the risk of exposing his empire and himself to certain destruction. After this victory, which was more than as great as a triumph on the field of battle, the French returned, every one, to their homes."

The three elements which contributed to the formation and character of the kingship in France,—the German element, the Roman element, and the Christian element,—appear in con-junction in the reign of Louis the Fat. We have still the warrior-chief of a feudal society founded by conquest in him who, in spite of his moderation and discretion, cried many a time, says Suger, "What a pitiable state is this of ours, to never have knowledge and strength both together! In my youth had knowledge, and in my old age had strength been mine, I might have conquered many kingdoms;" and probably from this exclamation of a king in the twelfth century came the familiar proverb, "If youth but knew, and age could do!" "We see the maxims of the Roman empire and reminiscences of Charlemagne in Louis's habit of considering justice to emanate from the king as fountain head, and of believing in his right to import it everywhere. And what conclusion of a reign could be more Christian-like than his when, exhausted by the long enfeeblement of his wasted body, but disdaining to die ignobly or unpreparedly, he called about him pious men, bishops, abbots, and many priests of holy Church; and then, scorning all false shame, he demanded to make his confession devoutly before them all, and to fortify himself against death by the comfortable sacrament of the body and blood of Christ! Whilst everything is being arranged, the king on a sudden rises, of himself, dresses himself, issues, fully clad, from his chamber, to the wonderment of all, advances to meet the body of our Lord Jesus Christ, and prostrates himself in reverence. Thereupon, in the presence of all, cleric and laic, he lays aside his kingship, deposes himself from the government of the state, confesses the sin of having ordered it ill, hands to his son Louis the king's ring, and binds him to promise, on oath, to protect the Church of God, the poor, and the orphan, to respect the rights of everybody, and to keep none prisoner in his court, save such a one as should have actually transgressed in the court itself."

This king, so well prepared for death, in his last days found great cause for rejoicing as a father. William VII., Duke of Aquitaine, had, at his death, intrusted to him the guardianship of his daughter Eleanor, heiress of all his dominions, that is to say, of Poitou, of Saintonge, of Gascony, and of the Basque country, the most beautiful provinces of the south-west of France, from the lower Loire to the Pyrenees. A marriage between Eleanor and Louis the Young, already sharing his father's throne, was soon concluded; and a brilliant embassy, composed of more than five hundred lords and noble knights, to whom the king had added his intimate adviser, Suger, set out for Aquitaine, where the ceremony was to take place. At the moment of departure the king had them all assembled about him, and, addressing himself to his son, said, "May the strong hand of God Almighty, by whom kings reign, protect thee, my dear son, both thee and thine! If, by any mischance, I were to lose thee, thee and those I send with thee, neither my life, nor my kingdom would thenceforth be aught to me." The marriage took place at Bordeaux, at the end of July, 1137, and, on the 8th of August following, Louis the Young, on his way back to Paris, was crowned at Poitiers as Duke of Aquitaine. He there learned that the king, his father, had lately died, on the 1st of August. Louis the Fat was far from foreseeing the deplorable issues of the marriage, which he regarded as one of the blessings of his reign.

In spite of its long duration of forty-three years, the reign of Louis VII., called the Young, was a period barren of events and of persons worthy of keeping a place in history. We have already had the story of this king's unfortunate crusade from 1147 to 1149, the commencement at Antioch of his imbroglio with his wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine, and the fatal divorce which, in 1152, at the same time that it freed the king from a faithless queen, entailed for France the loss of the beautiful provinces she had brought him in dowry, and caused them to pass into the possession of Henry II., King of England. Here was the only event, under Louis the Young's reign, of any real importance, in view of its long and bloody consequences for his country. A Petty war or a sullen strife between the Kings of France and England, petty quarrels of Louis with some of the great lords of his kingdom, certain rigorous measures against certain districts in travail of local liberties, the first bubblings of that religious fermentation which resulted before long, in the south of France, in the crusade against the Albigensians—such were the facts which went to make up with somewhat of insipidity the annals of this reign. So long as Suger lived, the kingship preserved at home the wisdom which it had been accustomed to display, and abroad the respect it had acquired under Louis the Fat; but at the death of Suger it went on languishing and declining, without encountering any great obstacles. It was reserved for Louis the Young's son, Philip Augustus, to open for France, and for the kingship in France, a new era of strength and progress.

Philip II., to whom history has preserved the name of Philip Augustus, given him by his contemporaries, had shared the crown, been anointed, and taken to wife Isabel of Hainault, a year before the death of Louis VII. put him in possession of the kingdom. He was as yet only fifteen, and his father, by his will, had left him under the guidance of Philip of Alsace, Count of Flanders, as regent, and of Robert Clement, marshal of France, as governor. But Philip, though he began his reign under this double influence, soon let it be seen that he intended to reign by himself, and to reign with vigor. "Whatever my vassals do," said he, during his minority, "I must bear with their violence and outrageous insults and villanous misdeeds; but, please God, they will get weak and old whilst I shall grow in strength and power, and shall be, in my turn, avenged according to my desire." He was hardly twenty, when, one day, one of his barons seeing him gnawing, with an air of abstraction and dreaminess, a little green twig, said to his neighbors, "If any one could tell me what the king is thinking of, I would give him my best horse." Another of those present boldly asked the King. "I am thinking," answered Philip, "of a certain matter, and that is, whether God will grant unto me or unto one of my heirs grace to exalt France to the height at which she was in the time of Charlemagne."

It was not granted to Philip Augustus to resuscitate the Frankish empire of Charlemagne, a work impossible for him or any one whatsoever in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries; but he made the extension and territorial construction of the kingdom of France the chief aim of his life, and in that work he was successful. Out of the forty-three years of his reign, twenty-six at the least were war-years, devoted to that very purpose. During the first six, it was with some of his great French vassals, the Count of Champagne, the Duke of Burgundy, and even the Count of Flanders, sometime regent, that Philip had to do battle, for they all sought to profit by his minority so as to make themselves independent and aggrandize themselves at the expense of the crown; but, once in possession of the personal power as well as the title of king, it was, from 1187 to 1216, against three successive kings of England, Henry II., Richard Coeur de Lion, and John Lackland, masters of the most beautiful provinces of France, that Philip directed his persistent efforts. They were in respect of power, of political capacity and military popularity, his most formidable foes. Henry II., what with his ripeness of age, his ability, energy, and perseverance, without any mean jealousy or puerile obstinacy, had over Philip every advantage of position and experience, and he availed himself thereof with discretion, habitually maintaining his feudal status of great French vassal as well as that of foreign sovereign, seeking peace rather than strife with his youthful suzerain, and some-times even going to his aid. He thus played off the greater part of the undeclared attempts or armed expeditions by which, from 1186 to 1189, Philip tried to cut him short in his French possessions, and, so long as Henry IL lived, there were but few changes in the territorial proportions of the two states. But, at Henry's death, Philip found himself in a very different position towards Henry's two sons, Richard Coeur de Lion and John Lackland. They were of his own generation; he had been on terms with them, even in opposition to their own father, of complicity and familiarity: they had no authority over him, and he had no respect for them. Richard was the feudal prince, beyond comparison the boldest, the most unreflecting, the most passionate, the most ruffianly, the most heroic adventurer of the middle ages, hungering after movement and action, possessed of a craving spirit for displaying his strength, and doing his pleasure at all times and in all places, not only in contempt of the rights and well-being of his subjects, but at the risk of his own safety, his own power, and even of his crown. Philip was of a sedate temperament, patient, persevering, moved but little by the spirit of adventure, more ambitious than fiery, capable of far-reaching designs, and discreet at the same time that he was indifferent as to the employment of means. He had fine sport with Richard. We have already had the story of the relations between them, and their rupture during their joint crusade in the East. On returning to the West, Philip did not wrest from King Richard those great and definitive conquests which were to restore to France the greater part of the marriage-portion that went with Eleanor of Aquitaine; but he paved the way for them by petty victories and petty acquisitions, and by making more and more certain his superiority over his rival. When, after Richard's death, he had to do with John Lackland, cowardly and insolent, knavish and addle-pated, choleric, debauched, and indolent, an intriguing subordinate on the throne on which he made pretence to be the most despotic of kings, Philip had over him, even more than over his brother Richard, immense advantages. He made such use of them that after six years' struggling, from 1199 to 1205, he deprived John of the greater part of his French possessions, Anjou, Normandy, Touraine, Maine, and Poitou. Philip would have been quite willing to dispense with any legal procedure by way of sanction to his conquests, but John furnished him with an excellent pretext; for on the 3d of April, 1203, he assassinated with his own hand, in the tower of Rouen, his young nephew Arthur, Duke of Brittany, and in that capacity vassal of Philip Augustus, to whom he was coming to do homage. Philip had John, also his vassal, cited before the court of the barons of France, his peers, to plead his defence of this odious act. "King John," says the contemporary English historian Matthew Paris, "sent Eustace, Bishop of Ely, to tell King Philip that he would willingly go to his court to answer before his judges, and to show entire obedience in the matter, but that he must have a safe-conduct. King Philip replied, but with neither heart nor visage unmoved, 'Willingly; let him come in peace and safety.' 'And return so too, my lord?' said the bishop. 'Yes,' rejoined the king, 'if the decision of his peers allow him.' And when the envoys from England entreated him to grant to the King of England to go and return in safety, the King of France was wroth, and answered with his usual oath, 'No, by all the saints of France, unless the decision tally therewith.' 'My lord king,' rejoined the bishop, 'the Duke of Normandy cannot come unless there come also the King of England, since the duke and the king are one and the same person. The baronage of England would never allow it in any way, and if the king were willing, he would run, as you know, risk of imprisonment or death.' King Philip answered him, 'How now, my lord bishop? It is well known that my liegeman, the Duke of Normandy, by violence got possession of England. And so, prithee, if a vassal increase in honor and power, shall his lord suzerain lose his rights? Never!'

"King John was not willing to trust to chance and the decision of the French, who liked him not; and he feared above everything to be reproached with the shameful murder of Arthur. The grandees of France, nevertheless, proceeded to a decision, which they could not do lawfully, since he whom they had to try was absent, and would have gone had he been able."

The condemnation, not a whit the less, took full effect; and Philip Augustus thus recovered possession of nearly all the territories which his father, Louis VII., had kept but for a moment. He added, in succession, other provinces to his dominions; in such wise that the kingdom of France, which was limited, as we have seen, under Louis the Fat, to the Ile-de-France and certain portions of Picardy and Orleanness, comprised besides, at the end of the reign of Philip Augustus, Vermandois, Artois, the two Vexins, French and Norman, Berri, Normandy, Maine, Anjou, Poitou, Touraine, and Auvergne.

In 1206 the territorial work of Philip Augustus was well nigh completed; but his wars were not over. John Lackland, when worsted, kicked against the pricks, and was incessantly hankering, in his antagonism to the King of France, after hostile alliances and local conspiracies easy to hatch amongst certain feudal lords discontented with their suzerain. John was on intimate terms with his nephew, Otho IV., Emperor of Germany and the foe of Philip Augustus, who had supported against him Frederick II., his rival for the empire. They prepared in concert for a grand attack upon the King of France, and they had won over to their coalition some of his most important vassals, amongst others, Renaud de Dampierre, Count of Boulogne. Philip determined to divert their attack, whilst anticipating it, by an unexpected enterprise—the invasion of England itself. Circumstances seemed favorable. King John, by his oppression and his perfidy, had drawn upon him the hatred and contempt of his people; and the barons of England, supported and guided by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Stephen Langton, had commenced against him the struggle which was to be ended some years afterwards by the forced concession of Magna Charta, that foundation-stone of English liberties. John, having been embroiled for five years past with the court of Rome, affected to defy the excommunication which the pope had hurled at him, and of which the King of France had been asked by several prelates of the English Church to insure the efficient working. On the 8th of April, 1213, Philip convoked, at Soissons, his principal vassals or allies, explained to them the grounds of his design against the King of England, and, by a sort of special confederation, they bound themselves, all of them, to support him. One of the most considerable vassals, however, the sometime regent of France during the minority of Philip, Ferrand, Count of Flanders, did not attend the meeting to which he had been summoned, and declared his intention of taking no part in the war against England. "By all the saints of France," cried Philip, "either France shall become Flanders, or Flanders France!" And, all the while pressing forward the equipment of a large fleet collected at Calais for the invasion of England, he entered Flanders, besieged and took several of the richest cities in the country, Cassel, Ypres, Bruges, and Courtrai, and pitched his camp before the walls of Ghent, "to lower," as he said, "the pride of the men of Ghent and make them bend their necks beneath the yoke of kings." But he heard that John Lackland, after making his peace with the court of Rome through acceptance of all the conditions and all the humiliations it had thought proper to impose upon him, had just landed at Rochelle, and was exciting a serious insurrection amongst the lords of Saintonge and Poitou. At the same time Philip's fleet, having been attacked in Calais roads by that of John, had been half destroyed or captured; and the other half had been forced to take shelter in the harbor of Damme, where it was strictly blockaded. Philip, forthwith adopting a twofold and energetic resolution, ordered his son Philip to go and put down the insurrection of the Poitevines on the banks of the Loire, and himself took in hand the war in Flanders, which was of the most consequence, considering the quality of the foe and the designs they proclaimed. They had at their head the Emperor Otho IV., who had already won the reputation of a brave and able soldier; and they numbered in their ranks several of the greatest lords, German, Flemish, and Dutch, and Hugh de Boves, the most dreaded of those adventurers in the pay of wealthy princes who were known at that time by the name of roadsters (routiers, mercenaries). They proposed, it was said, to dismember France; and a promise to that effect had been made by the Emperor Otho to his principal chieftains assembled in secret conference. "It is against Philip himself, and him alone," he had said to them, "that we must direct all our efforts; it is he who must be slain first of all, for it is he alone who opposes us and makes himself our foe in everything. When he is dead, you will be able to subdue and divide the kingdom according to our pleasure; as for thee, Renaud, thou shalt take Peronne and all Vermandois; Hugh shall be master of Beauvais, Salisbury of Dreux, Conrad of Mantes, together with Vexin, and as for thee, Ferranti, thou shalt have Paris."

The two armies marched over the Low Countries and Flanders, seeking out both of them the most favorable position for commencing the attack. On Sunday, the 27th of August, 1214, Philip had halted near the bridge of Bouvines, not far from Lille, and was resting under an ash beside a small chapel dedicated to St. Peter. There came running to him a messenger, sent by Guerin, Bishop of Senlis, his confidant in war as well as government, and brought him word that his rear-guard, attacked by the Emperor Otho, was not sufficient to resist him. Philip went into the chapel, said a short prayer, and cried as he came out, "Haste we forward to the rescue of our comrades!" Then he put on his armor, mounted his horse, and made swiftly for the point of attack, amidst the shouts of all those who were about him, "To arms! to arms!"

Both armies numbered in their ranks not only all the feudal chivalry on the two sides, but burgher-forces, those from the majority of the great cities of Flanders being for Otho, and those from sixteen towns or communes of France for Philip Augustus. It was not, as we have seen, the first time that the forces from the French rural districts had taken part in the king's wars; Louis the Fat had often received their aid against the tyrannical and turbulent lords of his small kingdom; but since the reign of Louis the Fat the organization and importance of the communes had made great progress in France; and it was not only rural communes, but considerable cities, such as Amiens, Arras, Beauvais, Compiegne, and Soissons, which sent to the army of Philip Augustus bodies of men in large numbers and ready trained to arms. Contemporary historians put the army of Otho at one hundred thousand, and that of Philip Augustus at from fifty to sixty thousand men; but amongst modern historians one of the most eminent, M. Sismondi, reduces them both to some fifteen or twenty thousand. One would say that the reduction is as excessive as the original estimate. However that may be, the communal forces evidently filled an important place in the king's army at Bouvines, and maintained it brilliantly. So soon as Philip had placed himself at the head of the first line of his troops, "the men of Soissons," says William the Breton, who was present at the battle, "being impatient and inflamed by the words of Bishop Guerin, let out their horses at the full speed of their legs, and attacked the enemy." But the Flemish knights prick not forward to the encounter, indignant that the first charge against them was not made by knights, as would have been seemly, and remain motionless at their post. The men of Soissons, meanwhile, see no need of dealing softly with them and humoring them, so thrust them roughly, upset them from their horses, slay a many of them, and force them to leave their place or defend themselves, willy nilly. At last, the Chevalier Eustace, scorning the burghers and proud of his illustrious ancestors, moves out into the middle of the plain, and with haughty voice, roars, "Death to the French!" The battle soon became general and obstinate; it was a multitude of hand-to-hand fights in the midst of a confused melley. In this melley, the knights of the Emperor Otho did not forget the instructions he had given them before the engagement: they sought out the King of France himself, to aim their blows at him; and ere long they knew him by the presence of the royal standard, and made their way almost up to him. The communes, and chiefly those of Corbeil, Amiens, Beauvais, Compiegne, and Arras, thereupon pierced through the battalions of the knights and placed themselves in front of the king, when some German infantry crept up round Philip, and with hooks and light lances threw him down from his horse; but a small body of knights who had remained by him overthrew, dispersed, and slew these infantry, and the king, recovering himself more quickly than had been expected, leaped upon another horse, and dashed again into the melley. Then danger threatened the Emperor Otho in his turn. The French drove back those about him, and came right up to him; a sword thrust, delivered with vigor, entered the brain of Otho's horse; the horse, mortally wounded, reared up and turned his head in the direction whence he had come; and the emperor, thus carried away, showed his back to the French, and was off in full flight. "Ye will see his face no more to-day," said Philip to his followers: and he said truly. In vain did William des Barres, the first knight of his day in strength, and valor, and renown, dash off in pursuit of the emperor; twice he was on the point of seizing him, but Otho escaped, thanks to the swiftness of his horse and the great number of his German knights, who, whilst their emperor was flying, were fighting to a miracle. But their bravery saved only their master; the battle of Bouvines was lost for the Anglo-Germano-Flemish coalition. It was still prolonged for several hours; but in the evening it was over, and the prisoners of note were conducted to Philip Augustus. There were five counts, Ferrand of Flanders, Renaud of Boulogne, William of Salisbury, a natural brother of King John, Otho of Tecklemburg, and Conrad of Dartmund; and twenty-five barons "bearing their own standard to battle." Philip Augustus spared all their lives; sent away the Earl of Salisbury to his brother, confined the Count of Boulogne at Peronne, where he was subjected "to very rigorous imprisonment, with chains so short that he could scarce move one step," and as for the Count of Flanders, his sometime regent, Philip dragged him in chains in his train.

It is difficult to determine, from the evidence of contemporaries, which was the more rejoiced at and proud of this victory, king or people. "The same day, when evening approached," says William the Breton, "the army returned laden with spoils to the camp; and the king, with a heart full of joy and gratitude, offered a thousand thanksgivings to the Supreme King, who had vouchsaved to him a triumph over so many enemies. And in order that posterity might preserve forever a memorial of so great a success, the Bishop of Senlis founded, outside the walls of that town, a chapel, which he named Victory, and which, endowed with great possessions and having a government according to canonical rule, enjoyed the honor of possessing an abbot and a holy convent. . . . Who can recount, imagine, or set down with a pen, on parchment or tablets, the cheers of joy, the hymns of triumph, and the numberless dances of the people; the sweet chants of the clergy; the harmonious sounds of warlike instruments; the solemn decorations of the churches, inside and out; the streets, the houses, the roads of all the castles and towns, hung with curtains and tapestry of silk and covered with flowers, shrubs and green branches; all the inhabitants of every sort, sex, and age running from every quarter to see so grand a triumph; peasants and harvesters breaking off their work, hanging round their necks their sickles and hoes (for it was the season of harvest), and throwing themselves in a throng upon the roads to see in irons that Count of Flanders, that Fernand whose arms they had formerly dreaded!"

It was no groundless joy on the part of the people, and a spontaneous instinct gave them a forecast of the importance of that triumph which elicited their cheers. The battle of Bouvines was not the victory of Philip Augustus, alone, over a coalition of foreign princes; the victory was the work of king and people, barons, knights, burghers, and peasants of Ile-de-France, of Orleanness, of Picardy, of Normandy, of Champagne, and of Burgundy. And this union of different classes and different populations in a sentiment, a contest, and a triumph shared in common was a decisive step in the organization and unity of France. The victory of Bouvines marked the commencement of the time at which men might speak, and indeed did speak, by one single name, of the French. The nation in France and the kingship in France on that day rose out of and above the feudal system.

Philip Augustus was about the same time apprised of his son Louis's success on the banks of the Loire. The incapacity and swaggering insolence of King John had made all his Poitevine allies disgusted with him; he had been obliged to abandon his attack upon the King of France in the provinces, and the insurrection, growing daily more serious, of the English barons and clergy for the purpose of obtaining Magna Charta was preparing for him other reverses. He had ceased to be a dangerous rival to Philip.

No period has had better reason than our own to know how successes and conquests can intoxicate warlike kings; but Philip, whose valor, on occasion, was second to none, had no actual inclination towards war or towards conquest for the sole pleasure of extending his dominion. "Liking better, according to his custom," says William the Breton, "to conquer by peace than by war," he hasted to put an end by treaties, truces, or contracts to his quarrels with King John, the Count of Flanders, and the principal lords made prisoners at Bouvines; discretion, in his case, was proof against the temptations of circumstances, or the promptings of passion, and he took care not to overtly compromise his power, his responsibility, and the honor of his name by enterprises which did not naturally come in his way, or which he considered without chances of success. Whilst still a youth, he had given, in 1191, a sure proof of that self-command which is so rare amongst ambitious princes by withdrawing from the crusade in which he had been engaged with Richard Coeur de Lion; and it was still more apparent in two great events at the latter end of his reign—the crusade against the Albigensians and his son Louis's expedition in England, the crown of which had, in 1215, been offered to him by the barons at war with King John in defence of Magna Charta.

The organization of the kingdom, the nation, and the kingship in France was not the only great event and the only great achievement of that epoch. At the same time that this political movement was going on in the State, a religious and intellectual ferment was making head in the Church and in men's minds. After the conquest of the Gauls by the Franks, the Christian clergy, sole depositaries of all lights to lighten their age, and sole possessors of any idea of opposing the conquerors with arguments other than those of brute force, or of employing towards the vanquished any instrument of subjection other than violence, became the connecting link between the nation of the conquerors and the nation of the conquered, and, in the name of one and the same divine law, enjoined obedience on the subjects, and, in the case of the masters, moderated the transports of power. But in the course of this active and salutary participation in the affairs of the world, the Christian clergy lost somewhat of their primitive and proper character; religion in their hands was a means of power as well as of civilization; and its principal members became rich, and frequently substituted material weapons for the spiritual authority which had originally been their only reliance. When they were in a condition to hold their own against powerful laymen, they frequently adopted the powerful laymen's morals and shared their ignorance; and in the seventh and eighth centuries the barbarism which held the world in its clutches had made inroads upon the Church. Charlemagne essayed to resuscitate dying civilization, and sought amongst the clergy his chief means of success; he founded schools, filled them with students to whom promises of ecclesiastical preferments were held out as rewards of their merit, and, in fine, exerted himself with all his might to restore to the Christian Church her dignity and her influence. When Charlemagne was dead, nearly all his great achievements disappeared in the chaos which came after him; his schools alone survived and preserved certain centres of intellectual activity. When the feudal system had become established, and had introduced some rule into social relations, when the fate of mankind appeared no longer entirely left to the risks of force, intellect once more found some sort of employment, and once more assumed some sort of sway. Active and educated minds once more began to watch with some sort of independence the social facts before their eyes, to stigmatize vices and to seek for remedies. The spectacle afforded by their age could not fail to strike them. Society, after having made some few strides away from physical chaos, seemed in danger of falling into moral chaos; morals had sunk far below the laws, and religion was in deplorable contrast to morals. It was not laymen only who abandoned themselves with impunity to every excess of violence and licentiousness; scandals were frequent amongst the clergy themselves; bishoprics and other ecclesiastical benefices, publicly sold or left by will, passed down through families from father to son, and from husband to wife, and the possessions of the Church served for dowry to the daughters of bishops. Absolution was at a low quotation in the market, and redemption for sins of the greatest enormity cost scarcely the price of founding a church or a monastery. Horror-stricken at the sight of such corruption in the only things they at that time recognized as holy, men no longer knew where to find the rule of life or the safeguard of conscience. But it is the peculiar and glorious characteristic of Christianity that it is unable to bear for long, without making an effort to check them, the vices it has been unable to prevent, and that it always carries in its womb the vigorous germ of human regeneration. In the midst of their irregularities, the eleventh and twelfth centuries saw the outbreak of a grand religious, moral, and intellectual fermentation, and it was the Church herself that had the honor and the power of taking the initiative in the reformation. Under the influence of Gregory VII. the rigor of the popes began to declare itself against the scandals of the episcopate, the traffic in ecclesiastical benefices, and the bad morals of the secular clergy. At the same time, austere men exerted themselves to rekindle the fervor of monastic life, re-established rigid rules in the cloister, and refilled the monasteries by their preaching and example. St. Robert of Moleme founded the order of Citeaux; St. Norbert that of Premontre; St. Bernard detached Clairvaux from Meaux, which he considered too worldly; St. Bruno built Chartreuse; St. Hugo, St. Gerard, and others besides gave the Abbey of Cluni its renown; and ecclesiastical reform extended everywhere. Hereupon rich and powerful laymen, filled with ardor for their faith or fear for their eternal welfare, went seeking after solitude, and devoted themselves to prayer in the monasteries they had founded or enriched with their wealth; whole families were dispersed amongst various religious houses; and all the severities of penance hardly sufficed to quiet imaginations scared at the perils of living in the world or at the vices of their age. And, at the same time, in addition to this outburst of piety, ignorance was decried and stigmatized as the source of the prevailing evils; the function of teaching was included amongst the duties of the religious estate; and every newly-founded or reformed monastery became a school in which pupils of all conditions were gratuitously instructed in the sciences known by the name of liberal arts. Bold spirits began to use the rights of individual thought in opposition to the authority of established doctrines; and others, without dreaming of opposing, strove at any rate to understand, which is the way to produce discussion. Activity and freedom of thought were receiving development at the same time that fervent faith and fervent piety were.

This great moral movement of humanity in the eleventh and twelfth centuries arose from events very different in different parts of the beautiful country which was not yet, but was from that time forward tending to become, France. Amongst these events, which cannot be here recounted in detail, we will fix upon two, which were the most striking, and the most productive of important consequences in the whole history of the epoch, the quarrel of Abelard with St. Bernard and the crusade against the Albigensians. We shall there see how Northern France and Southern France differed one from the other before the bloody crisis which was to unite them in one single name and one common destiny.

In France properly so called at that time, north of the Rhone and the Loire, the church had herself accomplished the chief part of the reforms which had become necessary. It was there that the most active and most eloquent of the reforming monks had appeared, had preached, and had founded or regenerated a great number of monasteries. It was there that, at first amongst the clergy, and then, through their example, amongst the laity, Christian discipline and morals had resumed some sway. There, too, the Christian faith and church were, amongst the mass of the population, but little or not at all assailed; heretics, when any appeared, obtained support neither from princes nor people; they were proceeded against, condemned, and burned, without their exciting public sympathy by their presence, or public commiseration by their punishment. It was in the very midst of the clergy themselves, amongst literates and teachers, that, in Northern France, the intellectual and innovating movement of the period was manifested and concentrated. The movement was vigorous and earnest, and it was a really studious host which thronged to the lessons of Abelard at Paris, on Mount St. Genevieve, at Melun, at Corbeil, and at the Paraclete; but this host contained but few of the people; the greater part of those who formed it were either already in the church, or soon, in various capacities, about to be. And the discussions raised at the meetings corresponded with the persons attending them; there was the disputation of the schools; there was no founding of sects; the lessons of Abelard and the questions he handled were scientifico-religious; it was to expound and propagate what they regarded as the philosophy of Christianity, that masters and pupils made bold use of the freedom of thought; they made but slight war upon the existing practical abuses of the church; they differed from her in the interpretation and comments contained in some of her dogmas; and they considered themselves in a position to explain and confirm faith by reason. The chiefs of the church, with St. Bernard at their head, were not slow to descry, in these interpretations and comments based upon science, danger to the simple and pure faith of the Christian; they saw the apparition of dawning rationalism confronting orthodoxy. They were, as all their contemporaries were, wholly strangers to the bare notion of freedom of thought and conscience, and they began a zealous struggle against the new teachers; but they did not push it to the last cruel extremities. They had many a handle against Abelard: his private life, the scandal of his connection with Heloise, the restless and haughty fickleness of his character, laid him open to severe strictures; but his stern adversaries did not take so much advantage of them as they might have taken. They had his doctrines condemned at the councils of Soissons and Sens; they prohibited him from public lecturing; and they imposed upon him the seclusion of the cloister; but they did not even harbor the notion of having him burned as a heretic, and science and glory were respected in his person, even when his ideas were proscribed. Peter the Venerable, Abbot of Cluni, one of the most highly considered and honored prelates of the church, received him amongst his own monks, and treated him with paternal kindness, taking care of his health, as well as of his eternal welfare; and he who was the adversary of St. Bernard and the teacher condemned by the councils of Soissons and Sens, died peacefully, on the 21st of April, 1142, in the abbey of St. Marcellus, near Chalon-sur-Saone, after having received the sacraments with much piety, and in presence of all the brethren of the monastery. "Thus," wrote Peter the Venerable to Heloise, abbess for eleven years past of the Paraclete, "the man who, by his singular authority in science, was known to nearly all the world, and was illustrious wherever he was known, learned, in the school of Him who said, 'Know that I am meek and lowly of heart,' to remain meek and lowly; and, as it is but right to believe, he has thus returned to Him."

The struggle of Abelard with the Church of Northern France and the crusade against the Albigensians in Southern France are divided by much more than diversity and contrast; there is an abyss between them. In their religious condition, and in the nature as well as degree of their civilization, the populations of the two regions were radically different. In the north-east, between the Rhine, the Scheldt, and the Loire, Christianity had been obliged to deal with little more than the barbarism and ignorance of the German conquerors. In the south, on the two banks of the Rhone and the Garonne, along the Mediterranean, and by the Pyrenees, it had encountered all manner of institutions, traditions, religions, and disbeliefs, Greek, Roman, African, Oriental, Pagan, and Mussulman; the frequent invasions and long stay of the Saracens in those countries had mingled Arab blood with the Gallic, Roman, Asiatic, and Visigothic, and this mixture of so many different races, tongues, creeds, and ideas had resulted in a civilization more developed, more elegant, more humane, and more liberal, but far less coherent, simple, and strong, morally as well as politically, than the warlike, feudal civilization of Germanic France. In the religious order especially, the dissimilarity was profound. In Northern France, in spite of internal disorder, and through the influence of its bishops, missionaries, and monastic reformers, the orthodox Church had obtained a decided superiority and full dominion; but in Southern France, on the contrary, all the controversies, all the sects, and all the mystical or philosophical heresies which had disturbed Christendom from the second century to the ninth, had crept in and spread abroad. In it there were Arians, Manicheans, Gnostics, Paulicians, Cathars (the pure), and other sects of more local or more recent origin and name, Albigensians, Vaudians, Good People and Poor of Lyons, some piously possessed with the desire of returning to the pure faith and fraternal organization of the primitive evangelical Church, others given over to the extravagances of imagination or asceticism. The princes and the great laic lords of the country, the Counts of Toulouse, Foix, and Comminges, the Viscount of Beziers, and many others had not remained unaffected by this condition of the people: the majority were accused of tolerating and even protecting the heretics; and some were suspected of allowing their ideas to penetrate within their own households. The bold sallies of the critical and jeering spirit, and the abandonment of established creeds and discipline, bring about, before long, a relaxation of morals; and liberty requires long time and many trials before it learns to disavow and rise superior to license. In many of the feudal courts and castles of Languedoc, Provence, and Aquitaine, imaginations, words, and lives were licentious; and the charming poetry of the troubadours and the gallant adventures of knights caused it to be too easily forgotten that morality was but little more regarded than the faith. Dating from the latter half of the eleventh century, not only the popes, but the whole orthodox Church of France and its spiritual heads, were seriously disquieted at the state of mind of Southern France, and the dangers it threatened to the whole of Christendom. In 1145 St. Bernard, in all the lustre of his name and influence, undertook, in concert with Cardinal Alberic, legate of the Pope Eugenius III., to go and preach against the heretics in the countship of Toulouse. "We see here," he wrote to Alphonse Jourdain, Count of Toulouse, "churches without flocks, flocks without priests, priests without the respect which is their due, and Christians without Christ; men die in their sins without being reconciled by penance or admitted to the holy communion; souls are sent pell-mell before the awful tribunal of God; the grace of baptism is refused to little children; those to whom the Lord said, 'Suffer little children to come unto Me,' do not obtain the means of coming to salvation. Is it because of a belief that these little children have no need of the Saviour, inasmuch as they are little? Is it then for nought that our Lord from being great became little? What say I? Is it then for nought that He was scourged and spat upon, crucified and dead?" St. Bernard preached with great success in Toulouse itself, but he was not satisfied with easy successes. He had come to fight the heretics; and he went to look for them where he was told he would find them numerous and powerful. "He repaired," says a contemporary chronicler, "to the castle of Vertfeuil (or Verfeil, in the district of Toulouse), where flourished at that time the scions of a numerous nobility and of a multitude of people, thinking that, if he could extinguish heretical perversity in this place where it was so very much spread, it would be easy for him to make head against it elsewhere. When he had begun preaching, in the church, against those who were of most consideration in the place, they went out, and the people followed them; but the holy man, going out after them, gave utterance to the word of God in the public streets. The nobles then hid themselves on all sides in their houses; and as for him, he continued to preach to the common people who came about him. Whereupon, the others making uproar and knocking upon the doors, so that the crowd could not hear his voice, he then, having shaken off the dust from his feet as a testimony against them, departed from their midst, and, looking on the town, cursed it, saying, 'Vertfeuil, God wither thee!' Now there were, at that time, in the castle, a hundred knights abiding, having arms, banners, and horses, and keeping themselves at their own expense, not at the expense of other."

After the not very effectual mission of St. Bernard, who died in 1153, and for half a century, the orthodox Church was several times occupied with the heretics of Southern France, who were before long called Albigensians, either because they were numerous in the diocese of Albi, or because the council of Lombers, one of the first at which their condemnation was expressly pronounced (in 1165), was held in that diocese. But the measures adopted at that time against them were at first feebly executed, and had but little effect. The new ideas spread more and more; and in 1167 the innovators themselves held, at St. Felix-de-Caraman, a petty council, at which they appointed bishops for districts where they had numerous partisans. Raymond VI., who, in 1195, succeeded his father, Raymond V., as Count of Toulouse, was supposed to be favorably disposed towards them; he admitted them to intimacy with him, and, it was said, allowed himself, in respect of the orthodox Church, great liberty of thought and speech. Meanwhile the great days and the chief actors in the struggle commenced by St. Bernard were approaching. In 1198, Lothaire Conti, a pupil of the University of Paris, was elected pope, with the title of Innocent III.; and, four or five years later, Simon, Count of Montfort l'Amaury, came back from the fifth crusade in the East, with a celebrity already established by his valor and his zeal against the infidels. Innocent III., no unworthy rival of Gregory VII., his late predecessor in the Holy See, had the same grandeur of ideas and the same fixity of purpose, with less headiness in his character, and more knowledge of the world, and more of the spirit of policy. He looked upon the whole of Christendom as his kingdom, and upon himself as the king whose business it was to make prevalent everywhere the law of God. Simon, as Count of Montfort l'Amaury, was not a powerful lord; but he was descended, it was said, from a natural son of King Robert his mother, who was English, had left him heir to the earldom of Leicester, and he had for his wife Alice de Montmorency. His social status and his personal renown, superior as they were to his worldly fortunes, authorized in his case any flight of ambition; and in the East he had learned to believe that anything was allowed to him in the service of the Christian faith. Innocent III., on receiving the tiara, set to work at once upon the government of Christendom. Simon de Montfort, on returning from Palestine, did not dream of the new crusade to which he was soon to be summoned, and for which he was so well prepared.

Innocent III. at first employed against the heretics of Southern France only spiritual and legitimate weapons. Before proscribing, he tried to convert them; he sent to them a great number of missionaries, nearly all taken from the order of Citeaux, and of proved zeal already; many amongst them had successively the title and power of legates; and they went preaching throughout the whole country, communicating with the princes and laic lords, whom they requested to drive away the heretics from their domains, and holding with the heretics themselves conferences which frequently drew a numerous attendance. A knight "full of sagacity," according to a contemporary chronicler, "Pons d'Adhemar, of Rodelle, said one day to Foulques, Bishop of Toulouse, one of the most zealous of the pope's delegates, 'We could not have believed that Rome had so many powerful arguments against these folk here.' 'See you not,' said the bishop, 'how little force there is in their objections?' 'Certainly,' answered the knight. 'Why, then, do you not expel them from your lands?' 'We cannot,' answered Pons; 'we have been brought up with them; we have amongst them folk near and dear to us, and we see them living honestly.'" Some of the legates, wearied at the little effect of their preaching, showed an inclination to give up their mission. Peter de Castelnau himself, the most zealous of all, and destined before long to pay for his zeal with his life, wrote to the pope to beg for permission to return to his monastery. Two Spanish priests, Diego Azebes, Bishop of Osma, and his sub-prior Dominic, falling in with the Roman legates at Montpellier, heard them express their disgust. "Give up," said they to the legates, "your retinue, your horses, and your goings in state; proceed in all humility, afoot and barefoot, without gold or silver, living and teaching after the example of the Divine Master." "We dare not take on ourselves such things," answered the pope's agents; "they would seem sort of innovation; but if some person of sufficient authority consent to precede us in such guise, we would follow him readily." The Bishop of Osma sent away his retinue to Spain, and kept with him only his companion Dominic; and they, taking with them two of the monks of Citeaux, Peter de Castelnau and Raoul,—the most fervent of the delegates from Rome,—began that course of austerity and of preaching amongst the people which was ultimately to make of the sub-prior Dominic a saint and the founder of a great religious order, to which has often, but wrongly, been attributed the origin, though it certainly became the principal agent, of the Inquisition. Whilst joining in humble and pious energy with the two Spanish priests, the two monks of Citeaux, and Peter de Castelnau especially, did not cease to urge amongst the laic princes the extirpation of the heretics. In 1205 they repaired to Toulouse to demand of Raymond VI. a formal promise, which indeed they obtained; but Raymond was one of those undecided and feeble characters who dare not refuse to promise what they dare not attempt to do. He wished to live in peace with the orthodox Church without behaving cruelly to a large number of his subjects. The fanatical legate, Peter de Castelnau, enraged at his tergiversation, instantly excommunicated him; and the pope sent the count a threatening letter, giving him therein to understand that in case of need stronger measures would be adopted against him. Raymond, affrighted, prevailed on the two legates to repair to St. Gilles, and he there renewed his promises to them; but he always sought for and found on the morrow some excuse for retarding the execution of them. The legates, after having reproached him vehemently, determined to leave St. Gilles without further delay, and the day after their departure (January 15th, 1208), as they were getting ready to cross the Rhone, two strangers, who had lodged the night before in the same hostelry with them, drew near, and one of the two gave Peter de Castelnau a lance-thrust with such force, that the legate, after exclaiming, "God forgive thee, as I do!" had only time to give his comrade his last instructions, and then expired.

Great was the emotion in France and at Rome. It was barely thirty years since in England, after an outburst of passion on the part of King Henry II., four knights of his court had murdered the Archbishop Thomas-a-Becket in Canterbury Cathedral. Was the Count of Toulouse, too, guilty of having instigated the shedding of blood and the murder of a prelate? Such was, in the thirteenth century, the general cry throughout the Catholic Church and the signal for war against Raymond VI.; a war undertaken on the plea of a personal crime, but in reality for the extirpation of heresy in Southern France, and for the dispossession of the native princes, who would not fully obey the decrees of the papacy, in favor of foreign conquerors who would put them into execution. The crusade against the Albigensians was the most striking application of two principles equally false and fatal, which did more than as much evil to the Catholics as to the heretics, and to the papacy as to freedom; and they are, the right of the spiritual power to claim for the coercion of souls the material force of the temporal powers, and its right to strip temporal sovereigns, in case they set at nought its injunctions, of their title to the obedience of their people; in other words, denial of religious liberty to conscience and of political independence to states. It was by virtue of these two principles, at that time dominant, but not without some opposition, in Christendom, that Innocent III., in 1208, summoned the King of France, the great lords and the knights, and the clergy, secular and regular, of the kingdom to assume the cross and go forth to extirpate from Southern France the Albigensians, "worse than the Saracens;" and that he promised to the chiefs of the crusaders the sovereignty of such domains as they should win by conquest from the princes who were heretics or protectors of heretics.

Throughout all France, and even outside of France, the passions of religion and ambition were aroused at this summons.

Twelve abbots and twenty monks of Citeaux dispersed themselves in all directions preaching the crusade; and lords and knights, burghers and peasants, laymen and clergy, hastened to respond. "From near and far they came," says the contemporary poet-chronicler, William of Tudela; "there be men from Auvergne and Burgundy, France and Limousin; there be men from all the world; there be Germans, Poitevines, Gascons, Rouergats, and Saintongese. Never did God make scribe who, whatsoever his pains, could set them all down in writing, in two months or in three." The poet reckons "twenty thousand horsemen armed at all points, and more than two hundred thousand villeins and peasants, not to speak of burghers and clergy." A less exaggerative though more fanatical writer, Peter of Vaulx-Cernay, the chief contemporary chronicler of this crusade, contents himself with saying that, at the siege of Carcassonne, one of the first operations of the crusaders, "it was said that their army numbered fifty thousand men." Whatever may be the truth about the numbers, the crusaders were passionately ardent and persevering: the war against the Albigensians lasted fifteen years (from 1208 to 1223), and of the two leading spirits, one ordering and the other executing, Pope Innocent III. and Simon de Montfort, neither saw the end of it. During these fifteen years, in the region situated between the Rhone, the Pyrenees, the Garonne, and even the Dordogne, nearly all the towns and strong castles, Beziers, Carcassonne, Castelnaudary, Lavaur, Gaillac, Moissae, Minerve, Termes, Toulouse, &c., were taken, lost, retaken, given over to pillage, sack, and massacre, and burnt by the crusaders with all the cruelty of fanatics and all the greed of conquerors. We do not care to dwell here in detail upon this tragical and monotonous history; we will simply recall some few of its characteristics. Doubt has been thrown upon the answer attributed to Arnauld-Amaury, Abbot of Citeaux, when he was asked, in 1209, by the conquerors of Beziers, how, at the assault of the city, they should distinguish the heretics from the faithful: "Slay them all; God will be sure to know His own." The doubt is more charitable than reasonable; for it is a contemporary, himself a monk of Citeaux, who reports, without any comment, this hateful speech. Simon de Montfort, the hero of the crusade, employed similar language. One day two heretics, taken at Castres, were brought before him; one of them was unshakable in his belief, the other expressed a readiness to turn convert: "Burn them both," said the count; "if this fellow mean what he says, the fire will serve for expiation of his sins, and, if he lie, he will suffer the penalty for his imposture." At the siege of the castle of Lavaur, in 1211, Amaury, Lord of Montreal, and eighty knights, had been made prisoners: and "the noble Count Simon," says Peter of Vaulx-Cernay, "decided to hang them all on one gibbet; but when Amaury, the most distinguished amongst them, had been hanged, the gallows-poles, which, from too great haste, had not been firmly fixed in the ground, having come down, the count, perceiving how great was the delay, ordered the rest to be slain. The pilgrims therefore fell upon them right eagerly and slew them on the spot. Further, the count caused stones to be heaped upon the lady of the castle, Amaury's sister, a very wicked heretic, who had been cast into a well. Finally our crusaders, with extreme alacrity, burned heretics without number."

In the midst of these atrocious unbridlements of passions supposed to be religious, other passions were not slow to make their appearance. Innocent III. had promised the crusaders the sovereignty of the domains they might win by conquest from princes who were heretics or protectors of heretics. After the capture, in 1209, of Beziers and Carcassonne, possessions of Raymond Roger, Viscount of Albi, and nephew of the Count of Toulouse, the Abbot of Citeaux, a legate of the pope, assembled the principal chiefs of the crusaders that they might choose one amongst them as lord and governor of their conquests. The offer was made, successively, to Eudes, Duke of Burgundy, to Peter de Courtenay, Count of Nevers, and to Walter de Chatilion, Count of St. Paul; but they all three declined, saying that they had sufficient domains of their own without usurping those of the Viscount of Beziers, to whom, in their opinion, they had already caused enough loss. The legate, somewhat embarrassed, it is said, proposed to appoint two bishops and four knights, who, in concert with him, should choose a new master for the conquered territories. The proposal was agreed to, and, after some moments of hesitation, Simon de Montfort, being elected by this committee, accepted the proffered domains, and took immediate possession of them on publication of a charter conceived as follows: "Simon, Lord of Montfort, Earl of Leicester, Viscount of Beziers and Carcassonne. The Lord having delivered into my hands the lands of the heretics, an unbelieving people, that is to say, whatsoever He hath thought fit to take from them by the hand of the crusaders, His servants, I have accepted humbly and devoutly this charge and administration, with confidence in His aid." The pope wrote to him forthwith to confirm him in hereditary possession of his new dominions, at the same time expressing to him a hope that, in concert with the legates, he would continue to carry out the extirpation of the heretics. The dispossessed Viscount, Raymond Roger, having been put in prison by his conqueror in a tower of Carcassonne itself, died there at the end of three months, of disease according to some, and a violent death according to others; but the latter appears to be a groundless suspicion, for it was not to cowardly and secret crimes that Simon de Montfort was inclined.

From this time forth the war in Southern France changed character, or, rather, it assumed a double character; with the war of religion was openly joined a war of conquest; it was no longer merely against the Albigensians and their heresies, it was against the native princes of Southern France and their domains that the crusade was prosecuted. Simon de Montfort was eminently qualified to direct and accomplish this twofold design: sincerely fanatical and passionately ambitious; of a valor that knew no fatigue; handsome and strong; combining tact with authority; pitiless towards his enemies as became his mission of doing justice in the name of the faith and the Church; a leader faithful to his friends and devoted to their common cause whilst reckoning upon them for his own private purposes, he possessed those natural qualities which confer spontaneous empire over men and those abilities which lure them on by opening a way for the fulfilment of their interested hopes. And as for himself, by the stealthy growth of selfishness, which is so prone to become developed when circumstances are tempting, he every day made his personal fortunes of greater and greater account in his views and his conduct. His ambitious appetite grew by the very difficulties it encountered as well as by the successes it fed upon. The Count of Toulouse, persecuted and despoiled, complained loudly in the ears of the pope; protested against the charge of favoring the heretics; offered and actually made the concessions demanded by Rome; and, as security, gave up seven of his principal strongholds. But, being ever too irresolute and too weak to keep his engagements to his subjects' detriment no less than to stand out against his adversaries' requirements, he was continually falling back into the same condition, and keeping off attacks which were more and more urgent by promises which always remained without effect. After having sent to Rome embassy upon embassy with explanations and excuses, he twice went thither himself, in 1210 and in 1215; the first time alone, the second with his young son, who was then thirteen, and who was at a later period Raymond VII. He appealed to the pope's sense of justice; he repudiated the stories and depicted the violence of his enemies; and finally pleaded the rights of his son, innocent of all that was imputed to himself, and yet similarly attacked and despoiled. Innocent III. had neither a narrow mind nor an unfeeling heart; he listened to the father's pleading, took an interest in the youth, and wrote, in April, 1212, and January, 1213, to his legates in Languedoc and to Simon de Montfort, "After having led the army of the crusaders into the domains of the Count of Toulouse, ye have not been content with invading all the places wherein there were heretics, but ye have further gotten possession of those where-in there was no suspicion of heresy. . . . The same ambassadors have objected to us that ye have usurped what was another's with so much greed and so little consideration that of all the domains of the Count of Toulouse there remains to him barely the town of that name, together with the castle of Montauban. . . . Now, though the said count has been found guilty of many matters against God and against the Church, and our legates, in order to force him to acknowledgment thereof, have excommunicated his person, and have left his domains to the first captor, nevertheless, he has not yet been condemned as a heretic nor as an accomplice in the death of Peter de Castelnau, of sacred memory, albeit he is strongly suspected thereof. That is why we did ordain that, if there should appear against him a proper accuser, within a certain time, there should be appointed him a day for clearing himself, according to the form pointed out in our letters, reserving to ourselves the delivery of a definitive sentence thereupon: in all which the procedure hath not been according to our orders. We wot not, therefore, on what ground we could yet grant to others his dominions which have not been taken away either from him or from his heirs; and, above all, we would not appear to have fraudulently extorted from him the castles he hath committed to us, the will of the Apostle being that we should refrain from even the appearance of wrong."

But Innocent III. forgot that, in the case of either temporal or spiritual sovereigns, when there has once been an appeal to force, there is no stopping, at pleasure and within specified limits, the movement that has been set going and the agents which have the work in hand. He had decreed war against the princes who were heretics or protectors of heretics; and he had promised their domains to their conquerors. He meant to reserve to himself the right of pronouncing definitive judgment as to the condemnation of princes as heretics, and as to dispossessing them of their dominions; but when force had done its business on the very spot, when the condemnation of the princes as heretics had been pronounced by the pope's legates and their bodily dispossession effected by his laic allies, the reserves and regrets of Innocent III. were vain. He had proclaimed two principles—the bodily extirpation of the heretics and the political dethronement of the princes who were their accomplices or protectors; but the application of the principles slipped out of his own hands. Three local councils assembled in 1210, 1212, and 1213, at St. Gilles, at Arles, and at Lavaur, and presided over by the pope's legates, proclaimed the excommunication of Raymond VI., and the cession of his dominions to Simon de Montfort, who took possession of them for himself and his comrades. Nor were the pope's legates without their share in the conquest; Arnauld Amaury, Abbot of Citeaux, became Archbishop of Narbonne; and Abbot Foulques of Marseilles, celebrated in his youth as a gallant troubadour, was Bishop of Toulouse and the most ardent of the crusaders. When these conquerors heard that the pope had given a kind reception to Raymond VI. and his young son, and lent a favorable ear to their complaints, they sent haughty warnings to Innocent III., giving him to understand that the work was all over, and that, if he meddled, Simon de Montfort and his warriors might probably not bow to his decisions. Don Pedro II., king of Aragon, had strongly supported before Innocent III. the claims of the Count of Toulouse and of the southern princes his allies. "He cajoled the lord pope," says the prejudiced chronicler of these events, the monk Peter of Vaulx-Cernay, "so far as to persuade him that the cause of the faith was achieved against the heretics, they being put to distant flight and completely driven from the Albigensian country, and that accordingly it was necessary for him to revoke altogether the indulgence be had granted to the crusaders. . . . The sovereign pontiff, too credulously listening to the perfidious suggestions of the said king, readily assented to his demands, and wrote to the Count of Montfort, with orders and commands to restore without delay to the Counts of Comminges and of Foix, and to Gaston of Beam, very wicked and abandoned people, the lands which, by just judgment of God and by the aid of the crusaders, he at last had conquered." But, in spite of his desire to do justice, Innocent III., studying policy rather than moderation, did not care to enter upon a struggle against the agents, ecclesiastical and laic, whom he had let loose upon Southern France. In November, 1215, the fourth Lateran council met at Rome; and the Count of Toulouse, his son, and the Count of Foix brought their claims before it. "It is quite true," says Peter of Vaulx-Cernay, "that they found there—and, what is worse, amongst the prelates—certain folk who opposed the cause of the faith, and labored for the restoration of the said counts; but the counsel of Ahitophel did not prevail, for the lord pope, in agreement with the greater and saner part of the council, decreed that the city of Toulouse and other territories conquered by the crusaders should be ceded to the Count of Montfort, who, more than any other, had borne himself right valiantly and loyally in the holy enterprise; and, as for the domains which Count Raymond possessed in Provence, the sovereign pontiff decided that they should be reserved to him, in order to make provision, either with part or even the whole, for the son of this count, provided always that, by sure signs of fealty and good behavior, he should show himself worthy of compassion."

This last inclination towards compassion on the part of the pope in favor of the young Count Raymond, "provided he showed himself worthy of it," remained as fruitless as the remonstrances addressed to his legates; for on the 17th of July, 1216, seven months after the Lateran council, Innocent III. died, leaving Simon de Montfort and his comrades in possession of all they had taken, and the war still raging between the native princes of Southern France and the foreign conquerors. The primitive, religious character of the crusade wore off more and more; worldly ambition and the spirit of conquest became more and more predominant; and the question lay far less between catholics and heretics than between the old and new masters of the country, between the independence of the southern people and the triumph of warriors come from the north of France, that is to say, between two different races, civilizations, and languages. Raymond VI. and his son recovered thenceforth certain supports and opportunities of which hitherto the accusation of heresy and the judgments of the court of Rome had robbed them; their neighboring allies and their secret or intimidated partisans took fresh courage; the fortune of battle became shifty; successes and reverses were shared by both sides; and not only many small places and castles, but the largest towns, Toulouse amongst others, fell into the hands of each party alternately. Innocent III.'s successor in the Holy See, Pope Honorius III., though at first very pronounced in his opposition to the Albigensians, had less ability, less perseverance, and less influence than his predecessor. Finally, on the 20th of June, 1218, Simon de Montfort, who had been for nine months unsuccessfully besieging Toulouse, which had again come into the possession of Raymond VI., was killed by a shower of stones, under the walls of the place, and left to his son Amaury the inheritance of his war and his conquests, but not of his vigorous genius and his warlike renown.

The struggle still dragged on for five years with varied fortune on each side, but Amaury de Montfort was losing ground every day, and Raymond VI., when he died in August, 1222, had recovered the greater part of his dominions. His son, Raymond VII., continued the war for eighteen months longer, with enough of popular favor and of success to make his enemies despair of recovering their advantages; and, on the 14th of January, 1224, Amaury de Montfort, after having concluded with the Counts of Toulouse and Foix a treaty which seemed to have only a provisional character, "went forth," says the History of Languedoc, "with all the French from Carcassonne, and left forever the country which his house had possessed for nearly fourteen years." Scarcely had he arrived at the court of Louis VIII., who had just succeeded his father, Philip Augustus, when he ceded to the King of France his rights over the domains which the crusaders had conquered by a deed conceived in these terms: "Know that we give up to our Lord Louis, the illustrious King of the French, and to his heirs forever, to dispose of according to their pleasure, all the privileges and gifts that the Roman Church did grant unto our father Simon of pious memory, in respect of the countship of Toulouse and other districts in Albigeois; supposing that the pope do accomplish all the demands made to him by the king through the Archbishop of Bourges, and the Bishops of Langres and Chartres; else, be it known for certain that we cede not to any one aught of all these domains."

Whilst this cruel war lasted Philip Augustus would not take any part in it. Not that he had any leaning towards the Albigensian heretics on the score of creed or religious liberty; but his sense of justice and moderation was shocked at the violence employed against them, and he had a repugnance to the idea of taking part in the devastation of the beautiful southern provinces. He took it ill, moreover, that the pope should arrogate to himself the right of despoiling of their dominions, on the ground of heresy, princes who were vassals of the King of France; and, without offering any formal opposition, he had no mind to give his assent thereto. When Innocent III. called upon him to co-operate in the crusade, Philip answered, "that he had at his flanks two huge and terrible lions, the Emperor Otho, and King John of England, who were working with all their might to bring trouble upon the kingdom of France; that, consequently, he had no inclination at all to leave France, or even to send his son; but it seemed to him enough, for the present, if he allowed his barons to march against the disturbers of peace and of the faith in the province of Narbonne." In 1213, when Simon de Montfort had gained the battle of Muret, Philip allowed Prince Louis to go and look on when possession was taken of Toulouse by the crusaders; but when Louis came back and reported to his father, "in the presence of the princes and barons who were, for the most part, relatives and allies of Count Raymond, the great havoc committed by Count Simon in the city after surrender, the king withdrew to his apartments without any ado beyond saying to those present, 'Sirs, I have yet hope that before very long Count de Montfort and his brother Guy will die at their work, for God is just, and will suffer these counts to perish thereat, because their quarrel is unjust.'" Nevertheless, at a little later period, when the crusade was at its greatest heat, Philip, on the pope's repeated entreaty, authorized his son to take part in it with such lords as might be willing to accompany him; but he ordered that the expedition should not start before the spring, and, on the occurrence of some fresh incident, he had it further put off until the following year. He received visits from Count Raymond VI., and openly testified good will towards him. When Simon de Montfort was decisively victorious, and in possession of the places wrested from Raymond, Philip Augustus recognized accomplished facts, and received the new Count of Toulouse as his vassal; but when, after the death of Simon de Montfort and Innocent III., the question was once more thrown open, and when Raymond VI., first, and then his son Raymond VII., had recovered the greater part of their dominions, Philip formally refused to recognize Amaury de Montfort as successor to his father's conquests: nay, he did more; he refused to accept the cession of those conquests, offered to him by Amaury de Montfort and pressed upon him by Pope Honorius III. Philip Augustus was not a scrupulous sovereign, nor disposed to compromise himself for the mere sake of defending justice and humanity; but he was too judicious not to respect and protect, to a certain extent, the rights of his vassals as well as his own, and, at the same time, too discreet to involve himself, without necessity, in a barbarous and dubious war. He held aloof from the crusade against the Albigensians with as much wisdom, and more than as much dignity, as he had displayed, seventeen years before, in withdrawing from the crusade against the Saracens.

He had, in 1216, another great chance of showing his discretion. The English barons were at war with their king, John Lackland, in defence of Magna Charta, which they had obtained the year before; and they offered the crown of England to the King of France, for his son, Prince Louis. Before accepting, Philip demanded twenty-four hostages, taken from the men of note in the country, as a guarantee that the offer would be supported in good earnest; and the hostages were sent to him. But Pope Innocent III. had lately released King John from his oath in respect of Magna Charta, and had excommunicated the insurgent barons; and he now instructed his legate to oppose the projected design, with a threat of excommunicating the King of France. Philip Augustus, who in his youth had dreamed of resuscitating the empire of Charlemagne, was strongly tempted to seize the opportunity of doing over again the work of William the Conqueror; but he hesitated to endanger his power and his kingdom in such a war against King John and the pope. The prince was urgent in entreating his father: "Sir," said he, "I am your liegeman for the fief you have given me on this side of the sea; but it pertains not to you to decide aught as to the kingdom of England; I do beseech you to place no obstacle in the way of my departure." The king, "seeing his son's firm resolution and anxiety," says the historian Matthew Paris, "was one with him in feeling and desire; but, foreseeing the dangers of events to come, he did not give his public consent, and, without any expression of wish or counsel, permitted him to go, with the gift of his blessing." It was the young and ambitious Princess Blanche of Castille, wife of Prince Louis, and destined to be the mother of St. Louis, who, after her husband's departure for England, made it her business to raise troops for him and to send him means of sustaining the war. Events justified the discreet reserve of Philip Augustus; for John Lackland, after having suffered one reverse previously, died on the 19th of October, 1216; his death broke up the party of the insurgent barons; and his son, Henry III., who was crowned on the 28th of October, in Gloucester cathedral, immediately confirmed the Great Charter. Thus the national grievance vanished, and national feeling resumed its sway in England; the French everywhere became unpopular; and after a few months' struggle, with equal want of skill and success, Prince Louis gave up his enterprise and returned to France with his French comrades, on no other conditions but a mutual exchange of prisoners, and an amnesty for the English who had been his adherents.

At this juncture, as well as in the crusade against the Albigensians, Philip Augustus behaved towards the pope with a wisdom and ability hard of attainment at any time, and very rare in his own: he constantly humored the papacy without being subservient to it, and he testified towards it his respect, and at the same time his independence. He understood all the gravity of a rupture with Rome, and he neglected nothing to avoid one; but he also considered that Rome, herself not wanting in discretion, would be content with the deference of the King of France rather than get embroiled with him by exacting his submission. Philip Augustus, in his political life, always preserved this proper mean, and he found it succeed; but in his domestic life there came a day when he suffered himself to be hurried out of his usual deference towards the pope; and, after a violent attempt at resistance, he resigned himself to submission. Three years after the death of his first wife, Isabel of Hainault, who had left him a son, Prince Louis, he married Princess Ingeburga of Denmark, without knowing anything at all of her, just as it generally happens in the case of royal marriages. No sooner had she become his wife than, without any cause that can be assigned with certainty, he took such a dislike to her that, towards the end of the same year, he demanded of and succeeded in obtaining from a French council, held at Compiegne, nullity of his marriage on the ground of prohibited consanguinity. "O, naughty France! naughty France! O, Rome! Rome!" cried the poor Danish princess, on learning this decision; and she did in fact appeal to Pope Celestine III. Whilst the question was being investigated at Rome, Ingeburga, whom Philip had in vain tried to send back to Denmark, was marched about, under restraint, in France from castle to castle and convent to convent, and treated with iniquitous and shocking severity. Pope Celestine, after examination, annulled the decision of the council of Compiegne touching the pretended consanguinity, leaving in suspense the question of divorce, and, consequently, without breaking the tie of marriage between the king and the Danish princess. "I have seen," he wrote to the Archbishop of Sens, "the genealogy sent to me by the bishops, and it is due to that inspection and the uproar caused by this scandal that I have annulled the decree; take care now, therefore, that Philip do not marry again, and so break the tie which still unites him to the Church." Philip paid no heed to this canonical injunction; his heart was set upon marrying again; and, after having unsuccessfully sought the band of two German princesses, on the borders of the Rhine, who were alarmed by the fate of Ingeburga, he obtained that of a princess, a Tyrolese by origin, Agnes (according to others, Mary) of Merania, that is, Moravia (an Austrian province, in German Moehren, out of which the chroniclers of the time made Meranie or Merania, the name that has remained in the history of Agnes). She was the daughter of Berthold, Marquis of Istria, whom, about 1180, the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa had made Duke of Moravia. According to all contemporary chronicles, Agnes was not only beautiful, but charming; she made a great impression at the court of France; and Philip Augustus, after his marriage with her in June, 1196, became infatuated with her. But a pope more stern and bold than Celestine III., Innocent III., had just been raised to the Holy See, and was exerting himself, in court as well as monastery, to effect a reformation of morals. Immediately after his accession, he concerned himself with the conjugal irregularity in which the King of France was living. "My predecessor, Celestine," he wrote to the Bishop of Paris, "would fain have put a stop to this scandal, but he was unsuccessful; as for me, I am quite resolved to prosecute his work, and obtain by all and any means fulfilment of God's law. Be instant in speaking thereof to the king on my behalf; and tell him that his obstinate refusals may probably bring upon him both the wrath of God and the thunders of the Church." And indeed Philip's refusals were very obstinate; for the pride of the king and the feelings of the man were equally wounded. "I had rather lose half my domains," said he, "than separate from Agnes." The pope threatened him with the interdict,—that is, the suspension of all religious ceremonies, festivals, and forms in the Church of France. Philip resisted not only the threat, but also the sentence of the interdict, which was actually pronounced, first in the churches of the royal domain, and afterwards in those of the whole kingdom. "So wroth was the king," says the chronicle of St. Denis, "that he thrust from their sees all the prelates of his kingdom, because they had assented to the interdict." "I had rather turn Mussulman," said Philip; "Saladin was a happy man, for he had no pope." But Innocent III. was inflexible; he claimed respect for laws divine and human, for the domestic hearth and public order. The conscience of the nation was troubled. Agnes herself applied to the pope, urging her youth, her ignorance of the world, the sincerity and purity of her love for her husband. Innocent III. was touched, and before long gave indisputable evidence that he was, but without budging from his duty and his right as a Christian. For four years the struggle went on. At last Philip yielded to the injunction of the pope and the feeling of his people; he sent away Agnes, and recalled Ingeburga. The pope, in his hour of victory, showed his sense of equity and his moral appreciation; taking into consideration the good faith of Agnes in respect of her marriage, and Philip's possible mistake as to his right to marry her, he declared the legitimacy of the two children born of their union. Agnes retired to Poissy, where, a few months afterwards, she died. Ingeburga resumed her title and rights as queen, but without really enjoying them. Philip, incensed as well as beaten, banished her far from him and his court, to Etampes, where she lived eleven years in profound retirement. It was only in 1212 that, to fully satisfy the pope, Philip, more persevering in his political wisdom than his domestic prejudices, restored the Danish princess to all her royal station at his side. She was destined to survive him.

There can be little doubt but that the affection of Philip Augustus for Agnes of Merania was sincere; nothing can be better proof of it than the long struggle he maintained to prevent separation from her; but, to say nothing of the religious scruples which at last, perhaps, began to prick the conscience of the king, great political activity and the government of a kingdom are a powerful cure for sorrows of the heart, and seldom is there a human soul so large and so constant as to have room for sentiments and interests so different, both of them at once, and for a long continuance. It has been shown with what intelligent assiduity Philip Augustus strove to extend, or, rather, to complete the kingdom of France; what a mixture of firmness and moderation he brought to bear upon his relations with his vassals, as well as with his neighbors; and what bravery he showed in war, though he preferred to succeed by the weapons of peace. He was as energetic and effective in the internal administration of his kingdom as in foreign affairs. M. Leopold Delisle, one of the most learned French academicians, and one of the most accurate in his knowledge, has devoted a volume of more than seven hundred pages octavo to a simple catalogue of the official acts of Philip Augustus, and this catalogue contains a list of two thousand two hundred and thirty-six administrative acts of all kinds, of which M. Delisle confines himself to merely setting forth the title and object. Search has been made in this long table to see what part was taken by Philip Augustus in the establishment and interior regulation of the communes, that great fact which is so conspicuous in the history of French civilization, and which will before long be made the topic of discourse here. The search brings to light, during this reign, forty-one acts confirming certain communes already established, or certain privileges previously granted to certain populations, forty-three acts establishing new communes, or granting new local privileges, and nine acts decreeing suppression of certain communes, or a repressive intervention of the royal authority in their internal regulation, on account of quarrels or irregularities in their relations either with their lord, or, especially, with their bishop. These mere figures show the liberal character of the government of Philip Augustus, in respect of this important work of the eleventh, twelfth, and thirteenth centuries. Nor are we less struck by his efficient energy in his care for the interests and material civilization of his people. In 1185, "as he was walking one day in his palace, he placed himself at a window whence he was sometimes pleased, by way of pastime, to watch the Seine flowing by. Some carts, as they passed, caused the mud with which the streets were filled to emit a fetid smell, quite unbearable. The king, shocked at what was as unhealthy as it was disgusting, sent for the burghers and provost of the city, and ordered that all the thoroughfares and streets of Paris should be paved with hard and solid stone, for this right Christian prince aspired to rid Paris of her ancient name, Lutetia (Mud-town)." It is added that, on hearing of so good a resolution, a moneyed man of the day, named Gerard de Poissy, volunteered to contribute towards the construction of the pavement eleven thousand silver marks. Nor was Philip Augustus less concerned for the external security than for the internal salubrity of Paris. In 1190, on the eve of his departure for the crusade, "he ordered the burghers of Paris to surround with a good wall, flanked by towers, the city he loved so well, and to make gates thereto;" and in twenty years this great work was finished on both sides of the Seine. "The king gave the same orders," adds the historian Rigord, "about the towns and castles of all his kingdom;" and indeed it appears from the catalogue of M. Leopold Delisle, at the date of 1193, "that, at the request of Philip Augustus, Peter de Courtenai, Count of Nevers, with the aid of the church-men, had the walls of the town of Auxerre built." And Philip's foresight went beyond such important achievements. "He had a good wall built to enclose the wood of Vincennes, heretofore open to any sort of folk. The King of England, on hearing thereof, gathered a great mass of fawns, hinds, does, and bucks, taken in his forests in Normandy and Aquitaine; and having had them shipped aboard a large covered vessel, with suitable fodder, he sent them by way of the Seine to King Philip Augustus, his liege-lord at Paris. King Philip received the gift gladly, had his parks stocked with the animals, and put keepers over them." A feeling, totally unconnected with the pleasures of the chase, caused him to order an enclosure very different from that of Vincennes. "The common cemetery of Paris, hard by the Church of the Holy Innocents, opposite the street of St. Denis, had remained up to that time open to all passers, man and beast, without anything to prevent it from being confounded with the most profane spot; and the king, hurt at such indecency, had it enclosed by high stone walls, with as many gates as were judged necessary, which were closed every night." At the same time he had built, in this same quarter, the first great municipal market-places, enclosed, likewise, by a wall, with gates shut at night, and surmounted by a sort of covered gallery. He was not quite a stranger to a certain instinct, neither systematic nor of general application, but practical and effective on occasion, in favor of the freedom of industry and commerce. Before his time, the ovens employed by the baking trade in Paris were a monopoly for the profit of certain religious or laic establishments; but when Philip Augustus ordered the walling in of the new and much larger area of the city "he did not think it right to render its new inhabitants subject to these old liabilities, and he permitted all the bakers to have ovens wherein to bake their bread, either for themselves, or for all individuals who might wish to make use of them." Nor were churches and hospitals a whit less than the material interests of the people an object of solicitude to him. His reign saw the completion, and, it might almost be said, the construction of Notre-Dame de Paris, the frontage of which, in particular, was the work of this epoch. At the same time the king had the palace of the Louvre repaired and enlarged; and he added to it that strong tower in which he kept in captivity for more than twelve years Ferrand, Count of Flanders, taken prisoner at the battle of Bouvines. It would be a failure of justice and truth not to add to these proofs of manifold and indefatigable activity on the part of Philip Augustus the constant interest he testified in letters, science, study, the University of Paris, and its masters and pupils. It was to him that in 1200, after a violent riot, in which they considered they had reason to complain of the provost of Paris, the students owed a decree, which, by regarding them as clerics, exempted them from the ordinary criminal jurisdiction, so as to render them subject only to ecclesiastical authority. At that time there was no idea how to efficiently protect freedom save by granting some privilege.

A death which seems premature for a man as sound and strong in constitution as in judgment struck down Philip Augustus at the age of only fifty-eight, as he was on his way from Pacy-sur-Eure to Paris to be present at the council which was to meet there and once more take up the affair of the Albigensians. He had for several months been battling with an incessant fever; he was obliged to halt at Mantes, and there he died on the 14th of January, 1223, leaving the kingdom of France far more extensive and more compact, and the kingship in France far stronger and more respected than he had found them. It was the natural and well-deserved result of his life. At a time of violence and irregular adventure, he had shown to Europe the spectacle of an earnest, far-sighted, moderate, and able government, and one which in the end, under many hard trials, had nearly always succeeded in its designs, during a reign of forty-three years.

He disposed, by will, of a considerable amount amassed without parsimony, and even, historians say, in spite of a royal magnificence. We will take from that will but two paragraphs, the first two:—

"We will and prescribe first of all that, without any gainsaying, our testamentary executors do levy and set aside, out of our possessions, fifty thousand livres of Paris, in order to restore, as God shall inspire them with wisdom, whatsoever may be due to those from whom they shall recognize that we have unjustly taken or extorted or kept back aught; and we do ordain this most strictly."

"We do give to our dear spouse Isamber (evidently Inyeburya), Queen of the French, ten thousand livres of Paris. We might have given more to the said queen, but we have confined ourselves to this sum in order that we might make more complete restitution and reparation of what we have unjustly levied."

There is in these two cases of testamentary reparation, to persons unknown on the one hand and to a lady long maltreated on the other, a touch of probity and honorable regret for wrong-doing which arouses for this great king, in his dying hour, more moral esteem than one would otherwise be tempted to feel for him.

His son, Louis VIII., inherited a great kingdom, an undisputed crown, and a power that was respected. It was matter of general remark, moreover, that, by his mother, Isabel of Hainault, he was descended in the direct line from Hermengarde, Countess of Namur, daughter of Charles of Lorraine, the last of the Carlovingians. Thus the claims of the two dynasties of Charlemagne and of Hugh Capet were united in his person; and, although the authority of the Capetians was no longer disputed, contemporaries were glad to see in Louis VIII. this two-fold heirship, which gave him the perfect stamp of a legitimate monarch. He was, besides, the first Capetian whom the king his father had not considered it necessary to have consecrated during his own life so as to impress upon him in good time the seal of religion. Louis was consecrated at Rheims no earlier than the 6th of August, 1223, three weeks after the death of Philip Augustus; and his consecration was celebrated, at Paris as well as at Rheims, with rejoicings both popular and magnificent. But in the condition in which France was during the thirteenth century, amidst a civilization still so imperfect and without the fortifying institutions of a free government, no accidental good fortune could make up for a king's want of personal merit; and Louis VIII. was a man of downright mediocrity, without foresight, volatile in his resolves and weak and fickle in the execution of them. He, as well as Philip Augustus, had to make war on the King of England, and negotiate with the pope on the subject of the Albigensians; but at one time he followed, without well understanding it, his father's policy, at another he neglected it for some whim, or under some temporary influence. Yet he was not unsuccessful in his wax-like enterprises; in his campaign against Henry III., King of England, he took Niort, St. Jean d'Angely, and Rochelle; he accomplished the subjection of Limousin and Perigord; and had he pushed on his victories beyond the Garonne, he might perhaps have deprived the English of Aquitaine, their last possession in France; but at the solicitation of Pope Honorius III., he gave up this war, to resume the crusade against the Albigensians. Philip Augustus had foreseen this mistake. "After my death," he had said, "the clergy will use all their efforts to entangle my son Louis in the matters of the Albigensians; but he is in weak and shattered health; he will be unable to bear the fatigue; he will soon die, and then the kingdom will be left in the hands of a woman and children; and so there will be no lack of dangers." The prediction was realized. The military campaign of Louis VIII. on the Rhone was successful; after a somewhat difficult siege, he took Avignon; the principal towns in the neighborhood, Nimes and Arles, amongst others, submitted; Amaury de Montfort had ceded to him all his rights over his father's conquests in Languedoc; and the Albigensians were so completely destroyed or dispersed or cowed that, when it seemed good to make a further example amongst them of the severity of the Church against heretics, it was a hard matter to rout out in the diocese of Narbonne one of their former preachers, Peter Isarn, an old man hidden in an obscure retreat, from which he was dragged to be burned in solemn state. This was Louis VIII.'s last exploit in Southern France. He was displeased with the pope, whom he reproached with not keeping all his promises; his troops were being decimated by sickness; and he was deserted by Theobald IV., Count of Champagne, after serving, according to feudal law, for forty days.

Louis, incensed, disgusted, and ill, himself left his army, to return to his own Northern France; but he never reached it, for fever compelled him to halt at Montpensier, in Auvergne, where he died on the 8th of November, 1226, after a reign of three years, adding to the history of France no glory save that of having been the son of Philip Augustus, the husband of Blanche of Castille, and the father of St. Louis.

We have already perused the most brilliant and celebrated amongst the events of St. Louis's reign, his two crusades against the Mussulmans; and we have learned to know the man at the same time with the event, for it was in these warlike outbursts of his Christian faith that the king's character, nay, his whole soul, was displayed in all its originality and splendor. It was his good fortune, moreover, to have at that time as his comrade and biographer, Sire de Joinville, one of the most sprightly and charming writers of the nascent French language. It is now of Louis in France and of his government at home that we have to take note. And in this part of his history he is not the only royal and really regnant personage we encounter: for of the forty-four years of St. Louis's reign, nearly fifteen, with a long interval of separation, pertained to the government of Queen Blanche of Castille rather than that of the king her son. Louis, at his accession in 1226, was only eleven; and he remained a minor up to the age of twenty-one, in 1236, for the time of majority in the case of royalty was not yet specially and rigorously fixed. During those ten years Queen Blanche governed France; not at all, as is commonly asserted, with the official title of regent, but simply as guardian of the king her son. With a good sense really admirable in a person so proud and ambitious, she saw that official power was ill suited to her woman's condition, and would weaken rather than strengthen her; and she screened herself from view behind her son. He it was who, in 1226, wrote to the great vassals, bidding them to his consecration; he it was who reigned and commanded; and his name alone appeared on royal decrees and on treaties. It was not until twenty-two years had passed, in 1248, that Louis, on starting for the crusade, officially delegated to his mother the kingly authority, and that Blanche, during her son's absence, really governed with the title of regent, up to the 1st of December, 1252, the day of his death.

During the first period of his government, and so long as her son's minority lasted, Queen Blanche had to grapple with intrigues, plots, insurrections, and open war, and, what was still worse for her, with the insults and calumnies of the crown's great vassals, burning to seize once more, under a woman's government, the independence and power which had been effectually disputed with them by Philip Augustus. Blanche resisted their attempts, at one time with open and persevering energy, at another dexterously with all the tact, address, and allurements of a woman. Though she was now forty years of age, she was beautiful, elegant, attractive, full of resources, and of grace in her conversation as well as her administration, endowed with all the means of pleasing, and skilful in availing herself of them with a coquetry which was occasionally more telling than discreet. The malcontents spread the most odious scandals about her. It so happened that one of the most considerable amongst the great vassals of France, Theobald IV., Count of Champagne, a brilliant and gay knight, an ingenious and prolific poet, had conceived a passion for her; and it was affirmed not only that she had yielded to his desires, in order to keep him bound to her service, but that she had, a while ago, in concert with him, murdered her husband, King Louis VIII. In 1230, some of the greatest barons of the kingdom, the Count of Brittany, the Count of Boulogne, and the Count of St. Pol formed a coalition for an attack upon Count Theobald, and invaded Champagne. Blanche, taking with her the young king her son, went to the aid of Count Theobald, and, on arriving near Troyes, she had orders given, in the king's name, for the barons to withdraw: "If you have plaint to make," said she, "against the Count of Champagne, present before me your claim, and I will do you justice." "We will not plead before you," they answered, "for the custom of women is to fix their choice upon him, in preference to other men, who has slain their husband." But in spite of this insulting defiance, the barons did withdraw. Five years later, in 1235, the Count of Champagne had, in his turn, risen against the king, and was forced, as an escape from imminent defeat, to accept severe terms.

An interview took place between Queen Blanche and him; and "'Pardie, Count Theobald,' said the queen, 'you ought not to have been against us; you ought surely to have remembered the kindness shown you by the king my son, who came to your aid, to save your land from the barons of France when they would fain have set fire to it all and laid it in ashes.' The count cast a look upon the queen, who was so virtuous and so beautiful that at her great beauty he was all abashed, and answered her, 'By my faith, madame, my heart and my body and all my land is at your command, and there is nothing which to please you I would not readily do; and against you or yours, please God, I will never go.' Thereupon he went his way full pensively, and often there came back to his remembrance the queen's soft glance and lovely countenance. Then his heart was touched by a soft and amorous thought. But when he remembered how high a dame she was, so good and pure that he could never enjoy her, his soft thought of love was changed to a great sadness. And because deep thoughts engender melancholy, it was counselled unto him by certain wise men that he should make his study of canzonets for the viol and soft delightful ditties. So made he the most beautiful canzonets and the most delightful and most melodious that at any time were heard." (Histoire des Dues et des Comtes de Champagne, by M. d'Arbois de Jubainville, t. iv. pp. 249, 280; Chroniques de Saint-Denis, in the Recueil des Historiens des Gaules et de France, t. xxi. pp. 111, 112.)

Neither in the events nor in the writings of the period is it easy to find anything which can authorize the accusations made by the foes of Queen Blanche. There is no knowing whether her heart were ever so little touched by the canzonets of Count Theobald; but it is certain that neither the poetry nor the advances of the count made any difference in the resolutions and behavior of the queen. She continued her resistance to the pretensions and machinations of the crown's great vassals, whether foes or lovers, and she carried forward, in the face and in the teeth of all, the extension of the domains and the power of the kingship. We observe in her no prompting of enthusiasm, of sympathetic charitableness, or of religious scrupulousness, that is, none of those grand moral impulses which are characteristic of Christian piety, and which were predominant in St. Louis. Blanche was essentially politic and concerned with her temporal interests and successes; and it was not from her teaching or her example that her son imbibed those sublime and disinterested feelings which stamped him the most original and the rarest on the roll of glorious kings. What St. Louis really owed to his mother —and it was a great deal—was the steady triumph which, whether by arms or by negotiation, Blanche gained over the great vassals, and the preponderance which, amidst the struggles of the feudal system, she secured for the kingship of her son in his minority. She saw by profound instinct what forces and alliances might be made serviceable to the kingly power against its rivals. When, on the 29th of November, 1226, only three weeks after the death of her husband, Louis VIII., she had her son crowned at Rheims, she bade to the ceremony not only the prelates and grandees of the kingdom, but also the inhabitants of the neighboring communes; wishing to let the great lords see the people surrounding the royal child. Two years later, in 1228, amidst the insurrection of the barons, who were assembled at Corbeil, and who meditated seizing the person of the young king during his halt at Montlhery on his march to Paris, Queen Blanche had summoned to her side, together with the faithful chivalry of the country, the burghers of Paris and of the neighborhood; and they obeyed the summons with alacrity. "They went forth all under arms, and took the road to Montlhery, where they found the king, and escorted him to Paris, all in their ranks and in order of battle. From Montlhery to Paris, the road was lined, on both sides, by men-at-arms and others, who loudly besought Our Lord to grant the young king long life and prosperity, and to vouchsafe him protection against all his enemies. As soon as they set out from Paris, the lords, having been told the news, and not considering themselves in a condition to fight so great a host, retired each to his own abode; and by the ordering of God, who disposes as he pleases Him of times and the deeds of men, they dared not undertake anything against the king during the rest of this year." (Vie de Saint Louis, by Lenain de Tillemont, t. i. pp. 429, 478.)

Eight years later, in 1236, Louis IX. attained his majority, and his mother transferred to him a power respected, feared, and encompassed by vassals always turbulent and still often aggressive, but disunited, weakened, intimidated, or discredited, and always outwitted, for a space of ten years, in their plots.

When she had secured the political position of the king her son, and as the time of his majority approached, Queen Blanche gave her attention to his domestic life also. She belonged to the number of those who aspire to play the part of Providence towards the objects of their affection, and to regulate their destiny in everything. Louis was nineteen; he was handsome, after a refined and gentle style which spoke of moral worth without telling of great physical strength; he had delicate and chiselled features, a brilliant complexion, and light hair, abundant and glossy, which, through his grandmother Isabel, he inherited from the family of the Counts of Hainault. He displayed liveliness and elegance in his tastes; he was fond of amusements, games, hunting, hounds and hawking-birds, fine clothes, magnificent furniture. A holy man, they say, even reproached the queen his mother with having winked at certain inclinations evinced by him towards irregular connections. Blanche determined to have him married; and had no difficulty in exciting in him so honorable a desire. Raymond Beranger, Count of Provence, had a daughter, his eldest, named Marguerite, "who was held," say the chronicles, "to be the most noble, most beautiful, and best educated princess at that time in Europe. . . . By the advice of his mother and of the wisest persons in his kingdom," Louis asked for her hand in marriage. The Count of Provence was overjoyed at the proposal; but he was somewhat anxious about the immense dowry which, it was said, he would have to give his daughter. His intimate adviser was a Provencal nobleman, named Romeo de Villeneuve, who said to him, "Count, leave it to me, and let not this great expense cause you any trouble. If you marry your eldest high, the more consideration of the alliance will get the others married better and at less cost." Count Raymond listened to reason, and before long acknowledged that his adviser was right. He had four daughters, Marguerite, Eleanor, Sancie, and Beatrice; and when Marguerite was Queen of France, Eleanor became Queen of England, Sancie Countess of Cornwall and afterwards Queen of the Romans, and Beatrice Countess of Anjou and Provence, and ultimately Queen of Sicily. Princess Marguerite arrived in France escorted by a brilliant embassy, and the marriage was celebrated at Sens, on the 27th of May, 1234, amidst great rejoicings and abundant largess to the people. As soon as he was married and in possession of happiness at home, Louis of his own accord gave up the worldly amusements for which he had at first displayed a taste; his hunting establishment, his games, his magnificent furniture and dress, gave place to simpler pleasures and more Christian occupations. The active duties of the kingship, the fervent and scrupulous exercise of piety, the pure and impassioned joys of conjugal life, the glorious plans of a knight militant of the cross, were the only things which took up the thoughts and the time of this young king, who was modestly laboring to become a saint and a hero.

There was one heartfelt discomfort which disturbed and troubled sometimes the sweetest moments of his life. Queen Blanche, having got her son married, was jealous of the wife and of the happiness she had conferred upon her; jealous as mother and as queen, a rival for affection and for empire. This sad and hateful feeling hurried her into acts as devoid of dignity as they were of justice and kindness. "The harshness of Queen Blanche towards Queen Marguerite," says Joinville, "was such that Queen Blanche would not suffer, so far as her power went, that her son should keep his wife's company. Where it was most pleasing to the king and the queen to live was at Pontoise, because the king's chamber was above and the queen's below. And they had so well arranged matters that they held their converse on a spiral staircase which led down from the one chamber to the other. When the ushers saw the queen-mother coming into the chamber of the king her son, they knocked upon the door with their staves, and the king came running into his chamber, so that his mother might find him there; and so, in turn, did the ushers of Queen Marguerite's chamber when Queen Blanche came thither, so that she might find Queen Marguerite there. One day the king was with the queen his wife, and she was in great peril of death, for that she had suffered from a child of which she had been delivered. Queen Blanche came in, and took her son by the hand, and said to him, 'Come you away; you are doing no good here.' When Queen Marguerite saw that the queen-mother was taking the king away, she cried, 'Alas! neither dead nor alive will you let me see my lord; and thereupon she swooned, and it was thought that she was dead. The king, who thought she was dying, came back, and with great pains she was brought round."

Louis gave to his wife consolation and to his mother support. Amongst the noblest souls and in the happiest lives there are wounds which cannot be healed and sorrows which must be borne in silence.

When Louis reached his majority, his entrance upon personal exercise of the kingly power produced no change in the conduct of public affairs. There was no vain seeking after innovation on purpose to mark the accession of a new master, and no reaction in the deeds and words of the sovereign or in the choice and treatment of his advisers; the kingship of the son was a continuance of the mother's government. Louis persisted in struggling for the preponderance of the crown against the great vassals; succeeded in taming Peter Mauclerc, the turbulent Count of Brittany; wrung from Theobald IV., Count of Champagne, the rights of suzerainty in the countships of Chartres, Blois, and Sancerre, and the viscountship of Chateaudun, and purchased the fertile countship of Macon from its possessor. It was almost always by pacific procedure, by negotiations ably conducted, and conventions faithfully executed, that he accomplished these increments of the kingly domain; and when he made war on any of the great vassals, he engaged therein only on their provocation, to maintain the rights or honor of his crown, and he used victory with as much moderation as he had shown before entering upon the struggle. In 1241, he was at Poitiers, where his brother Alphonso, the new Count of Poitou, was to receive, in his presence, the homage of the neighboring lords whose suzerain he was. A confidential letter arrived, addressed not to Louis himself, but to Queen Blanche, whom many faithful subjects continued to regard as the real regent of the kingdom, and who probably continued also to have her own private agents. An inhabitant of Rochelle, at any rate, wrote to inform the queen-mother that a great plot was being hatched amongst certain powerful lords, of La Marche, Saintonge, Angoumois, and perhaps others, to decline doing homage to the new Count of Poitou, and thus to enter into rebellion against the king himself. The news was true, and was given with circumstantial detail. Hugh de Lusignan, Count of La Marche, and the most considerable amongst the vassals of the Count of Poitiers, was, if not the prime mover, at any rate the principal performer in the plot. His wife, Joan (Isabel) of Angouleme, widow of the late King of England, John Lackland, and mother of the reigning king, Henry III., was indignant at the notion of becoming a vassal of a prince himself a vassal of the King of France, and so seeing herself—herself but lately a queen, and now a king's widow and a king's mother—degraded, in France, to a rank below that of the Countess of Poitiers. When her husband, the Count of La Marche, went and rejoined her at Angouleme, he found her giving way alternately to anger and tears, tears and anger. "Saw you not," said she, "at Poitiers, where I waited three days to please your king and his queen, how that when I appeared before them, in their chamber, the king was seated on one side of the bed, and the queen, with the Countess of Chartres, and her sister, the abbess, on the other side: They did not call me nor bid me sit with them, and that purposely, in order to make me vile in the eyes of so many folk. And neither at my coming in nor at my going out did they rise just a little from their scats, rendering me vile, as you did see yourself. I cannot speak of it, for grief and shame. And it will be my death, far more even than the less of our land which they have unworthily wrested from us; unless, by God's grace, they do repent them, and I see them in their turn reduced to desolation, and losing somewhat of their own lands. As for me, either I will lose all I have for that end or I will perish in the attempt." Queen Blanche's correspondent added, "The Count of La Marche, whose kindness you know, seeing the countess in tears, said to her, 'Madam, give your commands: I will do all I can; be assured of that.' 'Else,' said she, 'you shall not come near my person, and I will never see you more.' Then the count declared, with many curses, that he would do what his wife desired."

And he was as good as his word. That same year, 1241, at the end of the autumn, "the new Count of Poitiers, who was holding his court for the first time, did not fail to bid to his feasts all the nobility of his appanage, and, amongst the very first, the Count and Countess of La Marche. They repaired to Poitiers; but, four days before Christmas, when the court of Count Alphonso had received all its guests, the Count of La Marche, mounted on his war-horse, with his wife on the crupper behind him, and escorted by his men-at-arms also mounted, cross-bow in hand and in readiness for battle, was seen advancing to the prince's presence. Every one was on the tiptoe of expectation as to what would come next. Then the Count of La Marche addressed himself in a loud voice to the Count of Poitiers, saying, 'I might have thought, in a moment of forgetfulness and weakness, to render thee homage; but now I swear to thee, with a resolute heart, that I will never be thy liegeman; thou dost unjustly dub thyself my lord; thou didst shamefully filch this countship from my step-son, Earl Richard, whilst he was faithfully fighting for God in the Holy Land, and was delivering our captives by his discretion and his compassion.' After this insolent declaration, the Count of La Marche violently thrust aside, by means of his men-at-arms, all those who barred his passage; hasted, by way of parting insult, to fire the lodging appointed for him by Count Alphonso, and, followed by his people, left Poitiers at a gallop." (Histoire de Saint Louis, by M. Felix Faure, t. i. p. 347.)

This meant war; and it burst out at the commencement of the following spring. It found Louis equally well prepared for it and determined to carry it through. But in him prudence and justice were as little to seek as resolution; he respected public opinion, and he wished to have the approval of those whom he called upon to commit themselves for him and with him. He summoned the crown's vassals to a parliament; and, "What think you," he asked them, "should be done to a vassal who would fain hold land without owning a lord, and who goeth against the fealty and homage due from him and his predecessors?" The answer was, that the lord ought in that case to take back the fief as his own property. "As my name is Louis," said the king, "the Comet of La Marche doth claim to hold land in such wise, land which hath been a fief of France since the days of the valiant King Clovis, who won all Aquitaine from King Alaric, a pagan without faith or creed, and all the country to the Pyrenean mount." And the barons promised the king their energetic co-operation.

The war was pushed on zealously by both sides. Henry III., King of England, sent to Louis messengers charged to declare to him that his reason for breaking the truce concluded between them was, that he regarded it as his duty towards his step-father, the Count of La Marche, to defend him by arms. Louis answered that, for his own part, he had scrupulously observed the truce, and had no idea of breaking it; but he considered that he had a perfect right to punish a rebellious vassal. In this young King of France, this docile son of an able mother, none knew what a hero there was, until he revealed himself on a sudden. Near two towns of Saintonge, Taillebourg and Saintes, at a bridge which covered the approaches of one and in front of the walls of the other, Louis, on the 21st and 22d of July, delivered two battles, in which the brilliancy of his personal valor and the affectionate enthusiasm he excited in his troops secured victory and the surrender of the two places. "At sight of the numerous banners, above which rose the oriflamme, close to Taillebourg, and of such a multitude of tents, one pressing against another and forming as it were a large and populous city, the King of England turned sharply to the Count of La Marche, saying, 'My father, is this what you did promise me? Is yonder the numerous chivalry that you did engage to raise for me, when you said that all I should have to do would be to get money together?' 'That did I never say,' answered the count. 'Yea, verily,' rejoined Richard, Earl of Cornwall, brother of Henry III.: 'for yonder I have amongst my baggage writing of your own to such purport.' And when the Count of La Marche energetically denied that he had ever signed or sent such writing, Henry III. reminded him bitterly of the messages he had sent to England, and of his urgent exhortations to war. 'It was never done with my consent,' cried the Count of La Marche, with an oath; 'put the blame of it upon your mother, who is my wife; for, by the gullet of God, it was all devised without my knowledge.'"

It was not Henry III. alone who was disgusted with the war in which his mother had involved him; the majority of the English lords who had accompanied him left him, and asked the King of France for permission to pass through his kingdom on their way home. There were those who would have dissuaded Louis from compliance; but, "Let them go," said he; "I would ask nothing better than that all my foes should thus depart forever far away from my abode." Those about him made merry over Henry III., a refugee at Bordeaux, deserted by the English and plundered by the Gascons. "Hold! hold!" said Louis; "turn him not into ridicule, and make me not hated of him by reason of your banter; his charities and his piety shall exempt him from all contumely." The Count of La Marche lost no time in asking for peace; and Louis granted it with the firmness of a far-seeing politician and the sympathetic feeling of a Christian. He required that the domains he had just wrested from the count should belong to the crown, and to the Count of Poitiers, under the suzerainty of the crown. As for the rest of his lands, the Count of La Marche, his wife and children, were obliged to beg a grant of them at the good pleasure of the king, to whom the count was, further, to give up, as guarantee for fidelity in future, three castles, in which a royal garrison should be kept at the count's expense. When introduced into the king's presence, the count, his wife, and children, "with sobs, and sighs, and tears, threw themselves upon their knees before him, and began to cry aloud, 'Most gracious sir, forgive us thy wrath and thy displeasure, for we have done wickedly and pridefully towards thee.' And the king, seeing the Count of La Marche such humble guise before him, could not restrain his compassion amidst his wrath, but made him rise up, and forgave him graciously all the evil he had wrought against him."

A prince who knew so well how to conquer and how to treat the conquered might have been tempted to make an unfair use, alternately, of his victories and of his clemency, and to pursue his advantages beyond measure; but Louis was in very deed a Christian. When War was not either a necessity or a duty, this brave and brilliant knight, from sheer equity and goodness of heart, loved peace rather than war. The successes he had gained in his campaign of 1242 were not for him the first step in an endless career of glory and conquest; he was anxious only to consolidate them whilst securing, in Western Europe, for the dominions of his adversaries, as well as for his own, the benefits of peace. He entered into negotiations, successively, with the Count of La Marche, the King of England, the Count of Toulouse, the King of Aragon, and the various princes and great feudal lords who had been more or less engaged in the war; and in January, 1213, says the latest and most enlightened of his biographers, "the treaty of Lorris marked the end of feudal troubles for the whole duration of St. Louis's reign. He drew his sword no more, save only against the enemies of the Christian faith and Christian civilization, the Mussulmans." (Histoire de St. Louis, by M. Felix Faure, t. i. p. 388.)

Nevertheless there was no lack of opportunities for interfering with a powerful arm amongst the sovereigns his neighbors, and for working their disagreements to the profit of his ambition, had ambition guided his conduct. The great struggle between the Empire and the Papacy, in the persons of Frederick II., Emperor of Germany, and the two popes, Gregory IX. and Innocent IV., was causing violent agitation in Christendom, the two powers setting no bounds to their aspirations of getting the dominion one over the other, and of disposing one of the other's fate. Scarcely had Louis reached his majority when, in 1237, he tried his influence with both sovereigns to induce them to restore peace to the Christian world. He failed; and thenceforth he preserved a scrupulous neutrality towards each. The principles of international law, especially in respect of a government's interference in the contests of its neighbors, whether princes or peoples, were not, in the thirteenth century, systematically discussed and defined as they are nowadays with us; but the good sense and the moral sense of St. Louis caused him to adopt, on this point, the proper course, and no temptation, not even that of satisfying his fervent piety, drew him into any departure from it. Distant or friendly, by turns, towards the two adversaries, according as they tried to intimidate him or win him over to them, his permanent care was to get neither the State nor the Church of France involved in the struggle between the priesthood and the empire, and to maintain the dignity of his crown and the liberties of his subjects, whilst employing his influence to make prevalent throughout Christendom a policy of justice and peace.

That was the policy required, in the thirteenth century more than ever, by the most urgent interests of entire Christendom.

She was at grips with two most formidable foes and perils. Through the crusades she had, from the end of the eleventh century, become engaged in a deadly struggle against the Mussulmans in Asia; and in the height of this struggle, and from the heart of this same Asia, there spread, towards the middle of the thirteenth century, over Eastern Europe, in Russia, Poland, Hungary, Bohemia, and Germany, a barbarous and very nearly pagan people, the Mongol Tartars, sweeping onward like an inundation of blood, ravaging and threatening with complete destruction all the dominions which were penetrated by their hordes. The name and description of these barbarians, the fame and dread of their devastations, ran rapidly through the whole of Christian Europe. "What must we do in this sad plight?" asked Queen Blanche of the king, her son. "We must, my mother," answered Louis (with sorrowful voice, but not without divine inspiration, adds the chronicler), "we must be sustained by a heavenly consolation. If these Tartars, as we call them, arrive here, either we will hurl them back to Tartarus, their home, whence they are come, or they shall send us up to Heaven." About the same period, another cause of disquietude and another feature of attraction came to be added to all those which turned the thoughts and impassioned piety of Louis towards the East. The perils of the Latin empire of Constantinople, founded, as has been already mentioned, in 1204, under the headship of Baldwin, Count of Flanders, were becoming day by day more serious. Greeks, Mussulmans, and Tartars were all pressing it equally hard. In 1236, the emperor, Baldwin II., came to solicit in person the support of the princes of Western Europe, and especially of the young King of France, whose piety and chivalrous ardor were already celebrated everywhere. Baldwin possessed a treasure, of great power over the imaginations and convictions of Christians, in the crown of thorns worn by Jesus Christ during His passion. He had already put it in pawn at Venice for a considerable loan advanced to him by the Venetians; and he now offered it to Louis in return for effectual aid in men and money. Louis accepted the proposal with transport. He had been scared, a short time ago, at the chance of losing another precious relic deposited in the abbey of St. Denis, one of the nails which, it was said, had held Our Lord's body upon the cross. It had been mislaid one ceremonial day whilst it was being exhibited to the people; and, when he recovered it, "I would rather," said Louis, "that the best city in my kingdom had been swallowed up in the earth." After having taken all the necessary precautions for avoiding any appearance of a shameful bargain, he obtained the crown of thorns, all expenses included, for eleven thousand livres of Paris, that is, they say, about twenty-six thousand dollars of our money. Our century cannot have any fellow-feeling with such ready credulity, which is not required by Christian faith or countenanced by sound criticism; but we can and we ought to comprehend such sentiments in an age when men not only had profound faith in the facts recorded in the Gospels, but could not believe themselves to be looking upon the smallest tangible relic of those facts without experiencing an emotion and a reverence as profound as their faith. It is to such sentiments that we owe one of the most perfect and most charming monuments of the middle ages, the Holy Chapel, which St. Louis had built between 1245 and 1248 in order to deposit there the precious relics he had collected. The king's piety had full justice and honor done it by the genius of the architect, Peter de Montreuil, who, no doubt, also shared his faith.

It was after the purchase of the crown of thorns and the building of the Holy Chapel that Louis, accomplishing at last the desire of his soul, departed on his first crusade. We have already gone over the circumstances connected with his determination, his departure, and his life in the East, during the six years of pious adventure and glorious disaster he passed there. We have already seen what an impression of admiration and respect was produced throughout his kingdom when he was noticed to have brought back with him from the Holy Land "a fashion of living and doing superior to his former behavior, although in his youth he had always been good and innocent and worthy of high esteem." These expressions of his confessor are fully borne out by the deeds and laws, the administration at home and the relations abroad, by the whole government, in fact, of St. Louis during the last fifteen years of his reign. The idea which was invariably conspicuous and constantly maintained during his reign was not that of a premeditated and ambitious policy, ever tending towards an interested object which is pursued with more or less reasonableness and success, and always with a large amount of trickery and violence on the part of the prince, of unrighteousness in his deeds, and of suffering on the part of the people. Philip Augustus, the grandfather, and Philip the Handsome, the grandson, of St. Louis, the former with the moderation of an able man, the latter with headiness and disregard of right or wrong, labored both of them without cessation to extend the domains and power of the crown, to gain conquests over their neighbors and their vassals, and to destroy the social system of their age, the feudal system, its rights as well as its wrongs and tyrannies, in order to put in its place pure monarchy, and to exalt the kingly authority above all liberties, whether of the aristocracy or of the people. St. Louis neither thought of nor attempted anything of the kind; he did not make war, at one time openly, at another secretly, upon the feudal system; he frankly accepted its principles, as he found them prevailing in the facts and the ideas of his times. Whilst fully bent on repressing with firmness his vassals' attempts to shake themselves free from their duties towards him, and to render themselves independent of the crown, he respected their rights, kept his word to them scrupulously, and required of them nothing but what they really owed him. Into his relations with foreign sovereigns, his neighbors, he imported the same loyal spirit. "Certain of his council used to tell him," reports Joinville, "that he did not well in not leaving those foreigners to their warfare; for, if he gave them his good leave to impoverish one another, they would not attack him so readily as if they were rich." To that the king replied that they said not well; for, quoth he, if the neighboring princes perceived that I left them to their warfare, they might take counsel amongst themselves, and say, 'It is through malice that the king leaves us to our warfare; then it might happen that by cause of the hatred they would have against me, they would come and attack me, and I might be a great loser there-by. Without reckoning that I should thereby earn the hatred of God, who says, 'Blessed be the peacemakers!' So well established was his renown as a sincere friend of peace and a just arbiter in great disputes between princes and peoples that his intervention and his decisions were invited wherever obscure and dangerous questions arose. In spite of the brilliant victories which, in 1212, he had gained at Taillebourg and Saintes over Henry III., King of England, he himself perceived, on his return from the East, that the conquests won by his victories might at any moment become a fresh cause of new and grievous wars, disastrous, probably, for one or the other of the two peoples. He conceived, therefore, the design of giving to a peace which was so desirable a more secure basis by founding it upon a transaction accepted on both sides as equitable. And thus, whilst restoring to the King of England certain possessions which the war of 1242 had lost to him, he succeeded in obtaining from him in return "as well in his own name as in the names of his sons and their heirs, a formal renunciation of all rights that he could pretend to over the duchy of Normandy, the countships of Anjou, Maine, Touraine, Poitou, and, generally, all that his family might have possessed on the continent, except only the lands which the King of France restored to him by the treaty and those which remained to him in Gascony. For all these last the King of England undertook to do liege-homage to the King of France, in the capacity of peer of France and Duke of Aquitaine and to faithfully fulfil the duties attached to a fief." When Louis made known this transaction to his counsellors, "they were very much against it," says Joinville. "It seemeth to us, sir," said they to the king, "that, if you think you have not a right to the conquest won by you and your antecessors from the King of England, you do not make proper restitution to the said king in not restoring to him the whole; and if you think you have a right to it, it seemeth to us that you are a loser by all you restore." "Sirs," answered Louis, "I am certain that the antecessors of the King of England did quite justly lose the conquest which I hold; and as for the land I give him, I give it him not as a matter in which I am bound to him or his heirs, but to make love between my children and his, who are cousins-german. And it seemeth to me that what I give him I turn to good purpose, inasmuch as he was not my liegeman, and he hereby cometh in amongst my liegeman." Henry III., in fact, went to Paris, having with him the ratification of the treaty, and prepared to accomplish the ceremony of homage. "Louis received him as a brother, but without sparing him aught of the ceremony, in which, according to the ideas of the times, there was nothing humiliating any more than in the name of vassal, which was proudly borne by the greatest lords. It took place on Thursday, December 4, 1259, in the royal enclosure stretching in front of the palace, on the spot where at the present day is the Place Dauphine. There was a great concourse of prelates, barons, and other personages belonging to the two courts and the two nations. The King of England, on his knees, bareheaded, without cloak, belt, sword, or spurs, placed his folded hands in those of the King of France his suzerain, and said to him, 'Sir, I become your liegeman with mouth and hands, and I swear and promise you faith and loyalty, and to guard your right according to my power, and to do fair justice at your summons or the summons of your bailiff, to the best of my wit.' Then the king kissed him on the mouth and raised him up."

Three years later Louis gave not only to the King of England, but to the whole English nation, a striking proof of his judicious and true-hearted equity. An obstinate civil war was raging between Henry III. and his barons. Neither party, in defending its own rights, had any notion of respecting the rights of its adversaries, and England was alternating between a kingly and an aristocratic tyranny. Louis, chosen as arbiter by both sides, delivered solemnly, on the 23d of January, 1264, a decision which was favorable to the English kingship, but at the same, time expressly upheld the Great Charter and the traditional liberties of England. He concluded his decision with the following suggestions of amnesty: "We will also that the King of England and his barons do forgive one another mutually, that they do forget all the resentments that may exist between them; by consequence of the matters submitted to our arbitration, and that henceforth they do refrain reciprocally from an offence and injury on account of the same matters." But when men have had their ideas, passions, and interests profoundly agitated and made to clash, the wisest decisions and the most honest counsels in the world are not sufficient to re-establish peace; the cup of experience has to be drunk to the dregs; and the parties are not resigned to peace until on or the other, or both, have exhausted themselves in the struggle and perceive the absolute necessity of accepting either defeat compromise. In spite of the arbitration of the King of France the civil war continued in England; but Louis did not seek any way to profit by it so as to extend, at the expense of his neighbors, his own possessions or power; he held himself also from their quarrels, and followed up by honest neutrality ineffectual arbitration. Five centuries afterwards the great English historian, Hume, rendered him due homage in these terms: "Every time this virtuous prince interfered in the affairs of England, it was invariably with the view of settling differences between the king and the nobility. Adopting an admirable course of conduct, as politic probably as it certainly was just, he never interposed his good offices save to put an end the disagreements of the English; he seconded all the measures which could give security to both parties, and he made persistent efforts, though without success, to moderate the fiery ambition of the Earl of Leicester." (Hume, History of England, t. ii. p. 465.)

It requires more than political wisdom, more even than virtue, to enable a king, a man having in charge the government of men, to accomplish his mission and to really deserve the title of Most Christian; it requires that he should be animated by a sentiment of affection, and that he should, in heart as well as mind, be in sympathy with those multitudes of creatures over whose lot he exercises so much influence. St. Louis more perhaps than any other king was possessed of this generous and humane quality: spontaneously and by the free impulse of his nature he loved his people, loved mankind, and took a tender and comprehensive interest in their fortunes, their joys, or their miseries. Being seriously ill in 1259, and desiring to give his eldest son, Prince Louis, whom he lost in the following year, his last and most heartfelt charge, "Fair son," said he, "I pray thee make thyself beloved of the people of thy kingdom, for verily I would rather a Scot should come from Scotland and govern our people well and loyally than have thee govern it ill." To watch over the position and interests of all parties in his dominions, and to secure to all his subjects strict and prompt justice, this was what continually occupied the mind of Louis IX. There are to be found in his biography two very different but equally striking proofs of his solicitude in this respect. M. Felix Faure has drawn up a table of all the journeys made by Louis in France, from 1254 to 1270, for the better cognizance of matters requiring his attention, and another of the parliaments which he held, during the same period, for considering the general affairs of the kingdom and the administration of justice. Not one of these sixteen years passed without his visiting several of his provinces, and the year 1270 was the only one in which he did not hold a parliament. (Histoire de Saint Louis, by M. Felix Faure, t. ii. pp. 120, 339.) Side by side with this arithmetical proof of his active benevolence we will place a moral proof taken from Joinville's often-quoted account of St. Louis's familiar intervention in his subjects' disputes about matters of private interest. "Many a time," says he, "it happened in summer that the king went and sat down in the wood of Vincennes after mass, and leaned against an oak, and made us sit down round about him. And all those who had business came to speak to him without restraint of usher or other folk. And then he demanded of them with his own mouth, 'Is there here any who hath a suit?' and they who had their suit rose up; and then he said, 'Keep silence, all of ye; and ye shall have despatch one after the other.' And then he called my Lord Peter de Fontaines and my Lord Geoffrey de Villette (two learned lawyers of the day and counsellors of St. Louis), and said to one of them, 'Despatch me this suit.' And when he saw aught to amend in the words of those who were speaking for another, he himself amended it with his own mouth. I sometimes saw in summer that, to despatch his people's business, he went into the Paris garden, clad in camlet coat and linsey surcoat without sleeves, a mantle of black taffety round his neck, hair right well combed and without coif, and on his head a hat with white peacock's plumes. And he had carpets laid for us to sit round about him. And all the people who had business before him set themselves standing around him; and then he had their business despatched in the manner I told you of before as to the wood of Vincennes." (Joinville, chap. xii.)

The active benevolence of St. Louis was not confined to this paternal care for the private interests of such subjects as approached his person; he was equally attentive and zealous in the case of measures called for by the social condition of the times and the general interests of the kingdom. Amongst the twenty-six government ordinances, edicts, or letters, contained under the date of his reign in the first volume of the Recueil des Ordonnances des Rois de France, seven, at the least, are great acts of legislation and administration of a public kind; and these acts are all of such a stamp as to show that their main object is not to extend the power of the crown or subserve the special interests of the kingship at strife with other social forces; they are real reforms, of public and moral interest, directed against the violence, disturbances, and abuses of the feudal system. Many other of St. Louis's legislative and administrative acts have been published either in subsequent volumes of the Recueil des Ordonnances des Rois, or in similar collections, and the learned have drawn attention to a great number of them still remaining unpublished in various archives. As for the large collection of legislative enactments known by the name of Etailissements de Saint Louis, it is probably a lawyer's work, posterior, in great part at least, to his reign, full of incoherent and even contradictory enactments, and without any claim to be considered as a general code of law of St. Louis's date and collected by his order, although the paragraph which serves as preface to the work is given under his name and as if it had been dictated by him.

Another act, known by the name of the Pragmatic Sanction, has likewise got placed, with the date of March, 1268, in the Recueil des Ordonnances des Rois de France, as having originated with St. Louis. Its object is, first of all, to secure the rights, liberties, and canonical rules, internally, of the Church of France; and, next, to interdict "the exactions and very heavy money-charges which have been imposed or may hereafter be imposed on the said Church by the court of Rome, and by the which our kingdom hath been miserably impoverished; unless they take place for reasonable, pious, and very urgent cause, through inevitable necessity, and with our spontaneous and express consent and that of the Church of our kingdom." The authenticity of this act, vigorously maintained in the seventeenth century by Bossuet (in his Defense de la Declaration du Clerge de France de 1682, chap. ix. t. xliii. p. 26), and in our time by M. Daunou (in the Histoire litteraire de la France, continuee par des Hembres de l'Institut, t. xvi. p. 75, and t. xix. p. 169), has been and still is rendered doubtful for strong reasons, which M. Felix Faure, in his Histoire de Saint Louis (t. ii. p. 271), has summed up with great clearness. There is no design of entering here upon an examination of this little historical problem; but it is a bounden duty to point out that, if the authenticity of the Pragmatic Sanction, as St. Louis's, is questionable, the act has, at bottom, nothing but what bears a very strong resemblance to, and is quite in conformity with, the general conduct of that prince. He was profoundly respectful, affectionate, and faithful towards the papacy, but, at the same time, very careful in upholding both the independence of the crown in things temporal, and its right of superintendence in things spiritual. Attention has been drawn to his posture of reserve during the great quarrel between the priestdom and the empire, and his firmness in withstanding the violent measures adopted by Gregory IX. and Innocent IV. against the Emperor Frederick II. Louis carried his notions, as to the independence of his judgment and authority, very far beyond the cases in which that policy went hand in hand with interest, and even into purely religious questions. The Bishop of Auxerre said to him one day, in the name of several prelates, "'Sir, these lords which be here, archbishops and bishops, have told me to tell you that Christianity is perishing in your hands.' The king crossed himself and said, Well, tell me how that is made out!' 'Sir,' said the bishop, 'it is because nowadays so little note is taken of excommunications, that folk let death overtake them excommunicate without getting absolution, and have no mind to make atonement to the Church. These lords, therefore, do pray you, sir, for the love of God and because you ought to do so, to command your provosts and bailiffs that all those who shall remain a year and a day excommunicate be forced, by seizure of their goods, to get themselves absolved.' Whereto the king made answer that he would willingly command this in respect of the excommunicate touching whom certain proofs should be given him that they were in the wrong. The bishop said that the prelates would not have this at any price, and that they disputed the king's right of jurisdiction in their causes. And the king said that he would not do it else; for it would be contrary to God and reason if he should force folks to get absolution when the clergy had done them wrong. As to that,' said the king, 'I will give you the example of the Count of Brittany, who for seven years, being fully excommunicate, was at pleas with the prelates of Brittany; and he prevailed so far that the pope condemned them all. If, then, I had forced the Count of Brittany, the first year, to get absolution, I should have sinned against God and against him.' Then the prelates gave up; and never since that time have I heard that a single demand was made touching the matters above spoken of." (Joinville, chap. xiii. p. 43.)

One special fact in the civil and municipal administration of St. Louis deserves to find a place in history. After the time of Philip Augustus there was malfeasance in the police of Paris. The provostship of Paris, which comprehended functions analogous to those of prefect, mayor, and receiver-general, became a purchasable office, filled sometimes by two provosts at a time. The burghers no longer found justice or security in the city where the king resided. At his return from his first crusade, Louis recognized the necessity for applying a remedy to this evil; the provostship ceased to be a purchasable office; and he made it separate from the receivership of the royal domain. In 1258 he chose as provost Stephen Boileau, a burgher of note and esteem in Paris; and in order to give this magistrate the authority of which he had need, the king sometimes came and sat beside him when he was administering justice at the Chatelet. Stephen Boileau justified the king's confidence, and maintained so strict a police that he had his own godson hanged for theft. His administrative foresight was equal to his judicial severity. He established registers wherein were to be inscribed the rules habitually followed in respect of the organization and work of the different corporations of artisans, the tariffs of the dues charged, in the name of the king, upon the admittance of provisions and merchandise, and the titles on which the abbots and other lords founded the privileges they enjoyed within the walls of Paris. The corporations of artisans, represented by their sworn masters or prud'hommes, appeared one after the other before the provost to make declaration of the usages in practice amongst their communities, and to have them registered in the book prepared for that purpose. This collection of regulations relating to the arts and trades of Paris in the thirteenth century, known under the name of Livre des Metiers d'Etienne Boileau, is the earliest monument of industrial statistics drawn up by the French administration, and it was inserted, for the first time in its entirety, in 1837, amongst the Collection des Documents relatifs d l'Histoire de France, published during M. Guizot's ministry of public instruction.

St. Louis would be but very incompletely understood if we considered him only in his political and kingly aspect; we must penetrate into his private life, and observe his personal intercourse with his family, his household, and his people, if we would properly understand and appreciate all the originality and moral worth of his character and his life. Mention has already been made of his relations towards the two queens, his mother and his wife; and, difficult as they were, they were nevertheless always exemplary. Louis was a model of conjugal fidelity, as well as of filial piety. He had by Queen Marguerite eleven children, six sons and five daughters; he loved her tenderly, he never severed himself from her, and the modest courage she displayed in the first crusade rendered her still dearer to him. But he was not blind to her ambitious tendencies, and to the insufficiency of her qualifications for government. When he made ready for his second crusade, not only did he not confide to Queen Marguerite the regency of the kingdom, but he even took care to regulate her expenses, and to curb her passion for authority. He forbade her to accept any present for herself or her children, to lay any commands upon the officers of justice, and to choose any one for her service, or for that of her children, without the consent of the council of the regency. And he had reason so to act; for, about this same time, Queen Marguerite, emulous of holding in the state the same place that had been occupied by Queen Blanche, was giving all her thoughts to what her situation would be after her husband's death, and was coaxing her eldest son, Philip, then sixteen years old, to make her a promise on oath to remain under her guardianship up to thirty years of age, to take to himself no counsellor without her approval, to reveal to her all designs which might be formed against her, to conclude no treaty with his uncle, Charles of Anjou, King of Sicily, and to keep as a secret the oath she was thus making him take. Louis was probably informed of this strange promise by his young son Philip himself, who got himself released from it by Pope Urban IV. At any rate, the king had a foreshadowing of Queen Marguerite's inclinations, and took precautions for rendering them harmless to the crown and the state.

As for his children, Louis occupied himself in thought and deed with their education and their future, moral and social, showing as much affection and assiduity as could have been displayed by any father of a family, even the most devoted to this single task. "After supper they followed him into his chamber, where he made them sit down around him; he instructed them in their duties, and then sent them away to bed. He drew their particular attention to the good and evil deeds of princes. He, moreover, went to see then in their own apartment when he had any leisure, informed himself as to the progress they were making, and, like another Tobias, gave them excellent instructions. . . . On Holy Thursday his sons used to wash, just as he used, the feet of thirteen of the poor, give them a considerable sum as alms, and then wait upon them at table. The king having been minded to carry the first of the poor souls to the Hotel-Dieu, at Compiegne, with the assistance of his son-in-law, King Theobald of Navarre, whom he loved as a son, his two eldest sons, Louis and Philip, carried the second thither." They were wont to behave towards him in the most respectful manner. He would have all of them, even Theobald, yield him strict obedience in that which he enjoined upon them. He desired anxiously that the three children born to him in the East, during his first crusade, John Tristan, Peter, and Blanche, and even Isabel, his eldest daughter, should enter upon the cloistered life, which he looked upon as the safest for their salvation. He exhorted them thereto, especially his daughter Isabel, many and many a time, in letters equally tender and pious; but, as they testified no taste for it, he made no attempt to force their inclinations, and concerned himself only about having them well married, not forgetting to give them good appanages, and, for their life in the world, the most judicious counsels. The instructions, written with his own hand in French, which he committed to his eldest son, Philip, as soon as he found himself so seriously ill before Tunis, are a model of virtue, wisdom, and tenderness on the part of a father, a king, and a Christian.

Pass we from the king's family to the king's household, and from the children to the servitors of St. Louis. We have here no longer the powerful tie of blood, and of that feeling, at the same time personal and yet disinterested, which is experienced by parents on seeing themselves living over again in their children. Far weaker motives, mere kindness and custom, unite masters to their servants, and stamp a moral character upon the relations between them; but with St. Louis, so great was his kindness, that it resembled affection, and caused affection to spring up in the hearts of those who were the objects of it. At the same time that he required in his servitors an almost austere morality, he readily passed over in silence their little faults, and treated them, in such cases, not only with mildness, but with that consideration which, in the humblest conditions, satisfies the self-respect of people, and elevates them in their own eyes. "Louis used to visit his domestics when they were ill; and when they died he never failed to pray for them, and to commend them to the prayers of the faithful. He had the mass for the dead, which it was his custom to hear every day, sung for them." He had taken back an old servitor of his grandfather, Philip Augustus, whom that king had dismissed because his fire sputtered, and John, whose duty it was to attend to it, did not know how to prevent that slight noise. Louis was, from time to time, subject to a malady, during which his right leg, from the ankle to the calf, became inflamed, as red as blood, and painful. One day, when he had an attack of this complaint, the king, as he lay, wished to make a close inspection of the redness in his leg; as John was clumsily holding a lighted candle close to the king, a drop of hot grease fell on the bad leg; and the king, who had sat up on his bed, threw himself back, exclaiming, "Ah! John, John, my grandfather turned you out of his house for a less matter!" and the clumsiness of John drew down upon him no other chastisement save this exclamation. (Vie de Saint Louis, by Queen Marguerite's confessor; Recueiz des Historiens de France, t. xx. p. 105; Vie de Saint Louis, by Lenain de Tillemont, t. v. p. 388.)

Far away from the king's household and service, and without any personal connection with him, a whole people, the people of the poor, the infirm, the sick, the wretched, and the neglected of every sort occupied a prominent place in the thoughts and actions of Louis. All the chroniclers of the age, all the historians of his reign, have celebrated his charity as much as his piety; and the philosophers of the eighteenth century almost forgave him his taste for relics, in consideration of his beneficence. And it was not merely legislative and administrative beneficence; St. Louis did not confine himself to founding and endowing hospitals, hospices, asylums, the Hotel-Dieu at Pontoise, that at Vernon, that at Compiegne, and, at Paris, the house of Quinze-Vingts, for three hundred blind, but he did not spare his person in his beneficence, and regarded no deed of charity as beneath a king's dignity. "Every day, wherever the king went, one hundred and twenty-two of the poor received each two loaves, a quart of wine, meat or fish for a good dinner, and a Paris denier. The mothers of families had a loaf more for each child. Besides these hundred and twenty-two poor having out-door relief, thirteen others were every day introduced into the hotel, and there lived as the king's officers; and three of them sat at table at the same time with the king, in the same hall as he, and quite close." . . . "Many a time," says Joinville, "I saw him cut their bread, and give them to drink. He asked me one day if I washed the feet of the poor on Holy Thursday. 'Sir,' said I, 'what a benefit! The feet of those knaves! Not I.' 'Verily,' said he, 'that is ill said, for you ought not to hold in disdain what God did for our instruction. I pray you, therefore, for love of me accustom yourself to wash them.'" Sometimes, when the king had leisure, he used to say, "Come and visit the poor in such and such a place, and let us feast them to their hearts' content." Once when he went to Chateauneuf-sur-Loire, a poor old woman, who was at the door of her cottage, and held in her hand a loaf, said to him, "Good king, it is of this bread, which comes of thine alms, that my husband, who lieth sick yonder indoors, doth get sustenance." The king took the bread, saying, "It is rather hard bread." And he went into the cottage to see with his own eyes the sick man.

When he was visiting the churches one Holy Friday, at Compiegne, as he was going that day barefoot according to his custom, and distributing alms to the poor whom he met, he perceived, on the yonder side of a miry pond which filled a portion of the street, a leper, who, not daring to come near, tried, nevertheless, to attract the king's attention. Louis walked through the pond, went up to the leper, gave him some money, took his hand and kissed it. "All present," says the chronicler, "crossed themselves for admiration at seeing this holy temerity of the king, who had no fear of putting his lips to a hand that none would have dared to touch." In such deeds there was infinitely more than the goodness and greatness of a kingly sold; there was in them that profound Christian sympathy which is moved at the sight of any human creature suffering severely in body or soul, and which, at such times, gives heed to no fear, shrinks from no pains, recoils with no disgust, and has no other thought but that of offering some fraternal comfort to the body or the soul that is suffering.

He who thus felt and acted was no monk, no prince enwrapt in mere devoutness and altogether given up to works and practices of piety; he was a knight, a warrior, a politician, a true king, who attended to the duties of authority as well as to those of charity, and who won respect from his nearest friends as well as from strangers, whilst astonishing them at one time by his bursts of mystic piety and monastic austerity, at another by his flashes of the ruler's spirit and his judicious independence, even towards the representatives of the faith and Church with whom he was in sympathy. "He passed for the wisest man in all his council." In difficult matters and on grave occasions none formed a judgment with more sagacity, and what his intellect so well apprehended he expressed with a great deal of propriety and grace. He was, in conversation, the nicest and most agreeable of men; "he was gay," says Joinville, "and when we were private at court, he used to sit at the foot of his bed; and when the preachers and cordeliers who were there spoke to him of a book he would like to hear, he said to them, 'Nay, you shall not read to me, for there is no book so good, after dinner, as talk ad libitum, that is, every one saying what he pleases.'" Not that he was at all averse from books and literates: "He was sometimes present at the discourses and disputations of the University; but he took care to search out for himself the truth in the word of God and in the traditions of the Church. . . . Having found out, during his travels in the East, that a Saracenic sultan had collected a quantity of books for the service of the philosophers of his sect, he was shamed to see that Christians had less zeal for getting instructed in the truth than infidels had for getting themselves made dexterous in falsehood; so much so that, after his return to France, he had search made in the abbeys for all the genuine works of St. Augustin, St. Ambrose, St. Jerome, St. Gregory, and other orthodox teachers, and, having caused copies of them to be made, he had them placed in the treasury of Sainte-Chapelle. He used to read them when he had any leisure, and he readily lent them to those who might get profit from them for themselves or for others. Sometimes, at the end of the afternoon meal, he sent for pious persons with whom he conversed about God, about the stories in the Bible and the histories of the saints, or about the lives of the Fathers." He had a particular friendship for the learned Robert of Sorbon, founder of the Sorbonne, whose idea was a society of secular ecclesiastics, who, living in common and having the necessaries of life, should give themselves up entirely to study and gratuitous teaching. Not only did St. Louis give him every facility and every aid necessary for the establishment of his learned college, but he made him one of his chaplains, and often invited him to his presence and his table in order to enjoy his conversation. "One day it happened," says Joinville, "that Master Robert was taking his meal beside me, and we were talking low. The king reproved us, and said, 'Speak up, for your company think that you may be talking evil of them. If you speak, at meals, of things which should please us, speak up; if not, be silent.'" Another day, at one of their reunions, with the king in their midst, Robert of Sorbon reproached Joinville with being "more bravely clad than the king; for," said he, "you do dress in furs and green cloth, which the king doth not." Joinville defended himself vigorously, in his turn attacking Robert for the elegance of his dress. The king took the learned doctor's part, and when he had gone, "My lord the king," says Joinville, "called his son, my lord Philip, and King Theobald, sat him down at the entrance of his oratory, placed his hand on the ground and said, 'Sit ye down here close by me, that we be not overheard;' and then he told me that he had called us in order to confess to us that he had wrongfully taken the part of Master Robert; for, just as the seneschal [Joinville] saith, ye ought to be well and decently clad, because your womankind will love you the better for it, and your people will prize you the more; for, saith the wise man, it is right so to bedeck one's self with garments and armor that the proper men of this world say not that there is too much made thereof, nor the young folk too little." (Joinville, ch. cxxxv. p. 301; ch. v. and vi. pp. 12 16; t. v. pp. 326, 364, and 368.)

Assuredly there was enough in such and so free an exercise of mind, in such a rich abundance of thoughts and sentiments, in such a religious, political, and domestic life, to occupy and satisfy a soul full of energy and power. But, as has already been said, an idea cherished with a lasting and supreme passion, the idea of the crusade took entire possession of St. Louis. For seven years, after his return from the East, from 1254 to 1261, he appeared to think no more of it; and there is nothing to show that he spoke of it even to his most intimate confidants. But, in spite of apparent tranquillity, he lived, so far, in a ferment of imagination and a continual fever, resembling in that respect, though the end aimed at was different, those great men, ambitious warriors or politicians, of natures forever at boiling point, for whom nothing is sufficient, and who are constantly fostering, beyond the ordinary course of events, some vast and strange desire, the accomplishment of which becomes for them a fixed idea and an insatiable passion. As Alexander and Napoleon were incessantly forming some new design, or, to speak more correctly, some new dream of conquest and dominion, in the same way St. Louis, in his pious ardor, never ceased to aspire to a re-entry of Jerusalem, to the deliverance of the Holy Sepulchre, and to the victory of Christianity over Mohammedanism in the East, always flattering himself that some favorable circumstance would recall him to his interrupted work. It has already been told, at the termination, in the preceding chapter, of the crusaders' history, how he had reason to suppose, in 1261, that circumstances were responding to his desire; how he first of all prepared, noiselessly and patiently, for his second crusade; how, after seven years' labor, less and less concealed as days went on, he proclaimed his purpose, and swore to accomplish it in the following year; and how at last, in the month of March, 1270, against the will of France, of the pope, and even of the majority of his comrades, he actually set out—to go and die, on the 25th of the following August, before Tunis, without having dealt the Mussulmans of the East even the shadow of an effectual blow, having no strength to do more than utter, from time to time, as he raised himself on his bed, the cry of Jerusalem! Jerusalem! and, at the last moment, as he lay in sackcloth and ashes, pronouncing merely these parting words: "Father, after the example of our Divine Master, into Thy hands I commend my spirit!" Even the crusader was extinct in St. Louis; and only the Christian remained.

The world has seen upon the throne greater captains, more profound politicians, vaster and more brilliant intellects, princes who have exercised, beyond their own lifetime, a more powerful and a more lasting influence than St. Louis; but it has never seen a rarer king, never seen a man who could possess, as he did, sovereign power without contracting the passions and vices natural to it, and who, in this respect, displayed in his government human virtues exalted to the height of Christian. For all his moral sympathy, and superior as he was to his age, St. Louis, nevertheless, shared, and even helped to prolong, two of its greatest mistakes; as a Christian he misconceived the rights of conscience in respect of religion, and, as a king, he brought upon his people deplorable evils and perils for the sake of a fruitless enterprise. War against religious liberty was, for a long course of ages, the crime of Christian communities and the source of the most cruel evils as well as of the most formidable irreligious reactions the world has had to undergo. The thirteenth century was the culminating period of this fatal notion and the sanction of it conferred by civil legislation as well as ecclesiastical teaching. St. Louis joined, so far, with sincere conviction, in the general and ruling idea of his age; and the jumbled code which bears the name of Etablissements de Saint Louis, and in which there are collected many ordinances anterior or posterior to his reign, formally condemns heretics to death, and bids the civil judges to see to the execution, in this respect, of the bishops' sentences. In 1255 St. Louis himself demanded of Pope Alexander IV. leave for the Dominicans and Franciscans to exercise, throughout the whole kingdom, the inquisition already established, on account of the Albigensians, in the old domains of the Counts of Toulouse. The bishops, it is true, were to be consulted before condemnation could be pronounced by the inquisitors against a heretic; but that was a mark of respect for the episcopate and for the rights of the Gallican Church rather than a guarantee for liberty of conscience; and such was St. Louis's feeling upon this subject, that liberty, or rather the most limited justice, was less to be expected from the kingship than from the episcopate. St. Louis's extreme severity towards what he called the knavish oath (vilain serment), that is, blasphemy, an offence for which there is no definition save what is contained in the bare name of it, is, perhaps, the most striking indication of the state of men's minds, and especially of the king's, in this respect. Every blasphemer was to receive on his mouth the imprint of a red-hot iron. "One day the king had a burgher of Paris branded in this way; and violent murmurs were raised in the capital and came to the king's ears. He responded by declaring that he wished a like brand might mark his lips, and that he might bear the shame of it all his life, if only the vice of blasphemy might disappear from his kingdom. Some time afterwards, having had a work of great public utility executed, he received, on that occasion, from the landlords of Paris numerous expressions of gratitude. 'I expect,' said he, 'a greater recompense from the Lord for the curses brought upon me by that brand inflicted upon blasphemers than for the blessings I get because of this act of general utility.'" (Joinville, chap. cxxxviii.; Histoire de Saint Louis, by M. Felix Faure, t. ii. p. 300.)

Of all human errors those most in vogue are the most dangerous, for they are just those from which the most superior minds have the greatest difficulty in preserving themselves. It is impossible to see, without horror, into what aberrations of reason and of moral sense men otherwise most enlightened and virtuous may be led away by the predominant ideas of their age. And the horror becomes still greater when a discovery is made of the iniquities, sufferings, and calamities, public and private, consequent upon the admission of such aberrations amongst the choice spirits of the period. In the matter of religious liberty, St. Louis is a striking example of the vagaries which may be fallen into, under the sway of public feeling, by the most equitable of minds and the most scrupulous of consciences. A solemn warning, in times of great intellectual and popular ferment, for those men whose hearts are set on independence in their thoughts as well as in their conduct, and whose only object is justice and truth.

As for the crusades, the situation of Louis was with respect to them quite different and his responsibility far more personal. The crusades had certainly, in their origin, been the spontaneous and universal impulse of Christian Europe towards an object lofty, disinterested, and worthy of the devotion of men; and St. Louis was, without any doubt, the most lofty, disinterested, and heroic representative of this grand Christian movement. But towards the middle of the thirteenth century the moral complexion of the crusades had already undergone great alteration; the salutary effect they were to have exercised for the advancement of European civilization still loomed obscurely in the distance; whilst their evil results were already clearly manifesting themselves, and they had no longer that beauty lent by spontaneous and general feeling which had been their strength and their apology. Weariness, doubt, and common sense had, so far as this matter was concerned, done their work amongst all classes of the feudal community. As Sire de Joinville, so also had many knights, honest burghers, and simple country-folks recognized the flaws in the enterprise, and felt no more belief in its success. It is the glory of St. Louis that he was, in the thirteenth century, the faithful and virtuous representative of the crusade such as it was when it sprang from the womb of united Christendom, and when Godfrey de Bouillon was its leader at the end of the eleventh. It was the misdemeanor of St. Louis, and a great error in his judgment, that he prolonged, by his blindly prejudiced obstinacy, a movement which was more and more inopportune and illegitimate, for it was becoming day by day more factitious and more inane.

In the long line of kings of France, called Most Christian Kings, only two, Charlemagne and Louis IX., have received the still more august title of Saint. As for Charlemagne, we must not be too exacting in the way of proofs of his legal right to that title in the Catholic Church; he was canonized, in 1165 or 1166, only by the anti-pope Pascal III., through the influence of Frederick Barbarossa; and since that time, the canonization of Charlemagne has never been officially allowed and declared by any popes recognized as legitimate. They tolerated and tacitly admitted it, on account, no doubt, of the services rendered by Charlemagne to the papacy. But Charlemagne had ardent and influential admirers outside the pale of popes and emperors; he was the great man and the popular hero of the Germanic race in Western Europe. His saintship was welcomed with acclamation in a great part of Germany, where it had always been religiously kept up. Prom the earliest date of the University of Paris, he had been the patron there of all students of the German race. In France, nevertheless, his position as a saint was still obscure and doubtful, when Louis XI., towards the end of the fifteenth century, by some motive now difficult to unravel, but probably in order to take from his enemy, Charles the Rash, Duke of Burgundy, who was in possession of the fairest provinces of Charlemagne's empire, the exclusive privilege of so great a memory, ordained that there should be rendered to the illustrious emperor the honors due to the saints; and he appointed the 28th of January for his feast-day, with a threat of the penalty of death against all who should refuse conformity with the order. Neither the command nor the threat of Louis XI. had any great effect. It does not appear that, in the Church of France, the saintship of Charlemagne was any the more generally admitted and kept up; but the University of Paris faithfully maintained its traditions, and some two centuries after Louis XI., in 1661, without expressly giving to Charlemagne the title of saint, it loudly proclaimed him its patron, and made his feast-day an annual and solemn institution, which, in spite of some hesitation on the part of the parliament of Paris, and in spite of the revolutions of our time, still exists as the grand feast-day throughout the area of our classical studies. The University of France repaid Charlemagne for the service she had received from him; she protected his saintship as he had protected her schools and her scholars.

The saintship of Louis IX. was not the object of such doubt, and had no such need of learned and determined protectors. Claimed as it was on the very morrow of his death, not only by his son Philip III., called The Bold, and by the barons and prelates of the kingdom, but also by the public voice of France and of Europe, it at once became the subject of investigations and deliberations on the part of the Holy See. For twenty-four years, new popes, filling in rapid succession the chair of St. Peter (Gregory X., Innocent V., John XXI., Nicholas III., Martin IV., Honorius IV., Nicholas IV., St. Celestine V., and Boniface VIII.), prosecuted the customary inquiries touching the faith and life, the virtues and miracles, of the late king; and it was Boniface VIII., the pope destined to carry on against Philip the Handsome, grandson of St. Louis, the most violent of struggles, who decreed, on the 11th of August, 1297, the canonization of the most Christian amongst the kings of France, and one of the truest Christians, king or simple, in France and in Europe.

St. Louis was succeeded by his son, Philip III., a prince, no doubt, of some personal valor, since he has retained in history the nickname of The Bold, but not otherwise beyond mediocrity. His reign had an unfortunate beginning. After having passed several months before Tunis, in slack and unsuccessful continuation of his father's crusade, he gave it up, and re-embarked in November, 1270, with the remnants of an army anxious to quit "that accursed land," wrote one of the crusaders, "where we languish rather than live, exposed to torments of dust, fury of winds, corruption of atmosphere, and putrefaction of corpses." A tempest caught the fleet on the coast of Sicily; and Philip lost, by it several vessels, four or five thousand men, and all the money he had received from the Mussulmans of Tunis as the price of his departure. Whilst passing through Italy, at Cosenza, his wife, Isabel of Aragon, six months gone with child, fell from her horse, was delivered of a child which lived barely a few hours, and died herself a day or two afterwards, leaving her husband almost as sick as sad. He at last arrived at Paris, on the 21st of May, 1271, bringing back with him five royal biers, that of his father, that of his brother, John Tristan, Count of Nevers, that of his brother-in-law, Theobald King of Navarre, that of his wife, and that of his son. The day after his arrival he conducted them all in state to the Abbey of St. Denis, and was crowned at Rheims, not until the 30th of August following. His reign, which lasted fifteen years, was a period of neither repose nor glory. He engaged in war several times over in Southern France and in the north of Spain, in 1272, against Roger Bernard, Count of Foix, and in 1285 against Don Pedro III., King of Aragon, attempting conquests and gaining victories, but becoming easily disgusted with his enterprises and gaining no result of importance or durability. Without his taking himself any official or active part in the matter, the name and credit of France were more than once compromised in the affairs of Italy through the continual wars and intrigues of his uncle Charles of Anjou, King of Sicily, who was just as ambitious, just as turbulent, and just as tyrannical as his brother St. Louis was scrupulous, temperate, and just. It was in the reign of Philip the Bold that there took place in Sicily, on the 30th of March, 1282, that notorious massacre of the French which is known by the name of Sicilian Vespers, which was provoked by the unbridled excesses of Charles of Anjou's comrades, and through which many noble French families had to suffer cruelly.

At the same time, the celebrated Italian Admiral Roger de Loria inflicted, by sea, on the French party in Italy, the Provincal navy, and the army of Philip the Bold, who was engaged upon incursions into Spain, considerable reverses and losses. At the same period the foundations were being laid in Germany and in the north of Italy, in the person of Rudolph of Hapsburg, elected emperor, of the greatness reached by the House of Austria, which was destined to be so formidable a rival to France. The government of Philip III. showed hardly more ability at home than in Europe; not that the king was himself violent, tyrannical, greedy of power or money, and unpopular; he was, on the contrary, honorable, moderate in respect of his personal claims, simple in his manners, sincerely pious and gentle towards the humble; but he was at the same time weak, credulous, very illiterate, say the chroniclers, and without penetration, foresight, or intelligent and determined will. He fell under the influence of an inferior servant of his house, Peter de la Brosse, who had been surgeon and barber first of all to St. Louis and then to Philip III., who made him, before long, his chancellor and familiar counsellor. Being, though a skilful and active intriguer, entirely concerned with his own personal fortunes and those of his family, this barber-mushroom was soon a mark for the jealousy and the attacks of the great lords of the court. And he joined issue with them, and even with the young queen, Maria of Brabant, the second wife of Philip III. Accusations of treason, of poisoning and peculation, were raised against him, and, in 1276, he was hanged at Paris, on the thieves' gibbet, in presence of the Dukes of Burgundy and Brabant, the Count of Artois, and many other personages of note, who took pleasure in witnessing his execution. His condemnation, "the cause of which remained unknown to the people," says the chronicler William of Nangis, "was a great source of astonishment and grumbling." Peter de la Brosse was one of the first examples, in French history, of those favorites who did not understand that, if the scandal caused by their elevation were not to entail their ruin, it was incumbent upon them to be great men.

In spite of the want of ability and the weakness conspicuous in the government of Philip the Bold, the kingship in France had, in his reign, better fortunes than could have been expected.

The death, without children, of his uncle Alphonso, St. Louis's brother, Count of Poitiers and also Count of Toulouse, through his wife, Joan, daughter of Raymond VII., put Philip in possession of those fair provinces. He at first possessed the count-ship of Toulouse merely with the title of count, and as a private domain which was not definitively incorporated with the crown of France until a century later. Certain disputes arose between England and France in respect of this great inheritance; and Philip ended them by ceding Agenois to Edward I., King of England, and keeping Quercy. He also ceded to Pope Urban IV. the county of Venaissin, with its capital Avignon, which the court of Rome claimed by virtue of a gift from Raymond VII., Count of Toulouse, and which, through a course of many disputations and vicissitudes, remained in possession of the Holy See until it was reunited to France on the 19th of February, 1797, by the treaty of Tolentino. But, notwithstanding these concessions, when Philip the Bold died, at Perpignan, the 5th of October, 1285, on his return from his expedition in Aragon, the sovereignty in Southern France, as far as the frontiers of Spain, had been won for the kingship of France.

A Flemish chronicler, a monk at Egmont, describes the character of Philip the Bold's successor in the following words: "A certain King of France, also named Philip, eaten up by the fever of avarice and cupidity." And that was not the only fever inherent in Philip IV., called The Handsome; he was a prey also to that of ambition, and, above all, to that of power. When he mounted the throne, at seventeen years of age, he was handsome, as his nickname tells us, cold, taciturn, harsh, brave at need, but without fire or dash, able in the formation of his designs, and obstinate in prosecuting them by craft or violence, by means of bribery or cruelty, with wit to choose and support his servants, passionately vindictive against his enemies, and faithless and unsympathetic towards his subjects, but from time to time taking care to conciliate them, either by calling them to his aid in his difficulties or his dangers, or by giving them protection against other oppressors. Never, perhaps, was king better served by circumstances or more successful in his enterprises; but he is the first of the Capetians who had a scandalous contempt for rights, abused success, and thrust the king-ship, in France, upon the high road of that arrogant and reckless egotism which is sometimes compatible with ability and glory, but which carries with it in the germ, and sooner or later brings out in full bloom, the native vices and fatal consequences of arbitrary and absolute power.

Away from his own kingdom, in his dealings with foreign countries, Philip the Handsome had a good fortune, which his predecessors had lacked, and which his successors lacked still more. Through William the Conqueror's settlement in England and Henry II.'s marriage with Eleanor of Aquitaine, the Kings of England had, by reason of their possessions and their claims in France, become the natural enemies of the Kings of France, and war was almost incessant between the two kingdoms. But Edward I., King of England, ever since his accession to the throne, in 1272, had his ideas fixed upon, and his constant efforts directed towards, the conquests of the countries of Wales and Scotland, so as to unite under his sway the whole island of Great Britain. The Welsh and the Scotch, from prince to peasant, offered an energetic resistance in defence of their independence; and it was only after seven years' warfare, from 1277 to 1284, that the conquest of Wales by the English was accomplished, and the style of Prince of Wales became the title of the heir to the throne of England. Scotland, in spite of dissensions at home, made a longer and a more effectual resistance; and though it was reduced to submission, it was not conquered by Edward I. Two national heroes, William Wallace and Robert Bruce, excited against him insurrections which were often triumphant and always being renewed; and after having, during eighteen years of strife, maintained a precarious dominion in Scotland, Edward I. died, in 1307, without having acquired the sovereignty of it. But his persevering ardor in this two-fold enterprise kept him out of war with France; he did all he could to avoid it, and when the pressure of circumstances involved him in it for a time, he was anxious to escape from it. Being summoned to Paris by Philip the Handsome, in 1286, to swear fealty and homage on account of his domains in France, he repaired thither with a good grace, and, on his knees before his souzerain, repeated to him the solemn form of words, "I become your liegeman for the lands I hold of you this side the sea, according to the fashion of the peace which was made between our ancestors." The conditions of this peace were confirmed, and, by a new treaty between the two princes, the annual payment of fifty thousand dollars to the King of England, in exchange for his claims over Normandy, was guaranteed to him, and Edward renounced his pretensions to Querey in consideration of a yearly sum of three thousand livres of Tours. In 1292, a quarrel and some hostilities at sea between the English and Norman commercial navies grew into a war between the two kings; and it dragged its slow length along for four years in the south-west of France. Edward made an alliance, in the north, with the Flemish, who were engaged in a deadly struggle with Philip the Handsome, and thereby lost Aquitaine for a season; but, in 1296, a truce was concluded between the belligerents, and though the importance of England's commercial relations with Flanders decided Edward upon resuming his alliance with the Flemish, when, in 1300, war broke out again between them and France, he withdrew from it three years afterwards, and made a separate peace with Philip the Handsome, who gave him back Aquitaine. In 1306, fresh differences arose between the two kings; but before they had rekindled the torch of war, Edward I. died at the opening of a new campaign in Scotland, and his successor, Edward II., repaired to Boulogne, where he, in his turn, did homage to Philip the Handsome for the duchy of Aquitaine, and espoused Philip's daughter Isabel, reputed to be the most beautiful woman in Europe. In spite, then, of frequent interruptions, the reign of Edward I. was on the whole a period of peace between England and France, being exempt, at any rate, from premeditated and obstinate hostilities.

In Southern France, at the foot of the Pyrenees, Philip the Handsome, just as his father, Philip the Bold, was, during the first years of his reign, at war with the Kings of Aragon, Alphonso III. and Jayme II.; but these campaigns, originating in purely local quarrels, or in the ties between the descendants of St. Louis and of his brother, Charles of Anjou, King of the Two Sicilies, rather than in furtherance of the general interests of France, were terminated in 1291 by a treaty concluded at Tarascon between the belligerents, and have remained without historical importance.

The Flemish were the people with whom Philip the Handsome engaged in and kept up, during the whole of his reign, with frequent alternations of defeat and success, a really serious war. In the thirteenth century, Flanders was the most populous and the richest country in Europe. She owed the fact to the briskness of her manufacturing and commercial undertakings, not only amongst her neighbors, but throughout Southern and Eastern Europe, in Italy, in Spain, in Sweden, in Norway, in Hungary, in Russia, and even as far as Constantinople, where, as we have seen, Baldwin I., Count of Flanders, became, in 1204, Latin Emperor of the East. Cloth, and all manner of woollen stuffs, were the principal articles of Flemish production, and it was chiefly from England that Flanders drew her supply of Wool, the raw material of her industry. Thence arose between the two countries commercial relations which could not fail to acquire political importance. As early as the middle of the twelfth century, several Flemish towns formed a society for founding in England a commercial exchange, which obtained great privileges, and, under the name of the Flemish hanse of London, reached rapid development. The merchants of Bruges had taken the initiative in it; but soon all the towns of Flanders—and Flanders was covered with towns—Ghent, Lille, Ypres, Courtrai, Furnes, Alost, St. Omer, and Douai, entered the confederation, and made unity as well as extension of liberties in respect of Flemish commerce the object of their joint efforts. Their prosperity became celebrated; and its celebrity gave it increase. It was a burgher of Bruges who was governor of the hanse of London, and he was called the Count of the Hanse. The fair of Bruges, held in the month of May, brought together traders from the whole world. "Thither came for exchange," says the most modern and most enlightened historian of Flanders (Baron Kervyn de Lettenhove, Histoire de Flandre, t. ii. p. 300), "the produce of the North and the South, the riches collected in the pilgrimages to Novogorod, and those brought over by the caravans from Samarcand and Bagdad, the pitch of Norway and the oils of Andalusia, the furs of Russia and the dates from the Atlas, the metals of Hungary and Bohemia, the figs of Granada, the honey of Portugal, the wax of Morocco, and the spice of Egypt; whereby, says an ancient manuscript, no land is to be compared in merchandise to the land of Flanders." At Ypres, the chief centre of cloth fabrics, the population increased so rapidly that, in 1247, the sheriffs prayed Pope Innocent IV. to augment the number of parishes in their city, which contained, according to their account, about two hundred thousand persons. So much prosperity made the Counts of Flanders very puissant lords. "Marguerite II., called the Black, Countess of Flanders and Hainault, from 1244 to 1280, was extremely rich," says a chronicler, "not only in lands, but in furniture, jewels, and money; and, as is not customary with women, she was right liberal and right sumptuous, not only in her largesses, but in her entertainments, and whole manner of living; insomuch that she kept up the state of queen rather than countess." Nearly all the Flemish towns were strongly organized communes, in which prosperity had won liberty, and which became before long small republics sufficiently powerful not only for the defence of their municipal rights against the Counts of Flanders, their lords, but for offering an armed resistance to such of the sovereigns their neighbors as attempted to conquer them or to trammel them in their commercial relations, or to draw upon their wealth by forced contributions or by plunder. Philip Augustus had begun to have a taste of their strength during his quarrels with Count Ferdinand of Portugal, whom he had made Count of Flanders by marrying him to the Countess Joan, heiress of the countship, and whom, after the battle of Bouvines, he had confined for thirteen years in the tower of the Louvre. Philip the Handsome laid himself open to and was subjected by the Flemings to still rougher experiences.

At the time of the latter king's accession to the throne, Guy de Dampierre, of noble Champagnese origin, had been for five years Count of Flanders, as heir to his mother, Marguerite II. He was a prince who did not lack courage, or, on a great emergency, high-mindedness and honor; but he was ambitious, covetous, as parsimonious as his mother had been munificent, and above all concerned to get his children married in a manner conducive to his own political importance. He had by his two wives, Matilda of Bethune and Isabel of Luxembourg, nine sons and eight daughters, offering free scope for combinations and connections, in respect of which Guy de Dampierre was not at all scrupulous about the means of success. He had a quarrel with his son-in-law, Florent V., Count of Holland, to whom he had given his daughter Beatrice in marriage; and another of his sons-in-law, John I., Duke of Brabant, married to another of his daughters, the Princess Marguerite, offered himself as mediator in the difference. The two brothers-in-law went together to see their father-in-law; but, on their arrival, Guy de Dampierre seized the person of the Count of Holland, and would not release him until the Duke of Brabant offered to become prisoner in his place, and found himself obliged, in order to obtain his liberty, to pay his father-in-law a tough ransom. It was not long before Guy himself suffered from the same sort of iniquitous surprise that he had practised upon his sons-in-law. In 1293 he was secretly negotiating the marriage of Philippa, one of his daughters, with Prince Edward, eldest son of the King of England. Philip the Handsome, having received due warning, invited the Count of Flanders to Paris, "to take counsel with him and the other barons touching the state of the kingdom." At first Guy hesitated; but he dared not refuse, and he repaired to Paris, with his sons John and Guy. As soon as he arrived he bashfully announced to the king the approaching union of his daughter with the English prince, protesting, "that he would never cease, for all that, to serve him loyally, as every good and true man should serve his lord." "In God's name, Sir Count," said the enraged king, "this thing will never do; you have made alliance with my foe, without my wit; wherefore you shall abide with me;" and he had him, together with his sons, marched off at once to the tower of the Louvre, where Guy remained for six months, and did not then get out save by leaving as hostage to the King of France his daughter Philippa herself, who was destined to pass in this prison her young and mournful life. On once more entering Flanders, Count Guy oscillated for two years between the King of France and the King of England, submitting to the exactions of the former, at the same time that he was privily renewing his attempts to form an intimate alliance with the latter. Driven to extremity by the haughty severity of Philip, he at last came to a decision, concluded a formal treaty with Edward I., affianced to the English crown-prince the most youthful of his daughters, Isabel of Flanders, youngest sister of Philippa, the prisoner in the tower of the Louvre, and charged two ambassadors to go to Paris, as the bearers of the following declaration: "Every one doth know in how many ways the King of France hath misbehaved towards God and justice. Such is his might and his pride, that he doth acknowledge nought above himself, and he hath brought us to the necessity of seeking allies who may be able to defend and protect us. . . . By reason whereof we do charge our ambassadors to declare and say, for us and from us, to the above said king, that because of his misdeeds and defaults of justice, we hold ourselves unbound, absolved, and delivered from all bonds, all alliances, obligations, conventions, subjections, services, and dues whereby we may have been bounden towards him."

This meant war. And it was prompt and sharp on the part of the King of France, slow and dull on the part of the King of England, who was always more bent upon the conquest of Scotland than upon defending, on the Continent, his ally, the Count of Flanders. In June, 1297, Philip the Handsome, in person, laid siege to Lille, and, on the 13th of August, Robert, Count of Artois, at the head of the French chivalry, gained at Furnes, over the Flemish army, a victory which decided the campaign. Lille capitulated. The English re-enforcements arrived too late, and served no other purpose but that of inducing Philip to grant the Flemings a truce for two years. A fruitless attempt was made, with the help of Pope Boniface VIII., to change the truce into a lasting peace. The very day on which it expired, Charles, Count of Valois, and brother of Philip the Handsome, entered Flanders with a powerful army, surprised Douai, passed through Bruges, and, on arriving at Ghent, gave a reception to its magistrates, who came and offered him the keys. "The burghers of the towns of Flanders," says a chronicler of the age, "were all bribed by gifts or promises from the King of France, who would never have dared to invade their frontiers, had they been faithful to their count." Guy de Dampierre, hopelessly beaten, repaired, with two of his sons, and fifty-one of his faithful knights, to the camp of the Count of Valois, who gave him a kind reception, and urged him to trust himself to the king's generosity, promising at the same time to support his suit. Guy set out for Paris with all his retinue. On approaching the City-palace which was the usual residence of the kings, he espied at one of the windows Queen Joan of Navarre, who took a supercilious pleasure in gazing upon the humiliation of the victim of defeat. Guy drooped his head, and gave no greeting. When he was close to the steps of the palace, he dismounted from his horse, and placed himself and all his following at the mercy of the king. The Count of Valois said a few words in his favor, but Philip, cutting his brother short, said, addressing himself to Guy, "I desire no peace with you, and if my brother has made any engagements with you, he had no right to do so." And he had the Count of Flanders taken off immediately to Compiegne, "to a strong tower, such that all could see him," and his comrades were distributed amongst several towns, where they were strictly guarded. The whole of Flanders submitted; and its principal towns, Ypres, Audenarde, Termonde, and Cassel, fell successively into the hands of the French. Three of the sons of Count Guy retired to Namur. The constable Raoul of Nesle "was lieutenant for the King of France in his newly-won country of Flanders." Next year, in the month of May, 1301, Philip determined to pay his conquest a visit; and the queen, his wife, accompanied him. There is never any lack of galas for conquerors. After having passed in state through Tournai, Courtrai, Audenarde, and Ghent, the King and Queen of France made their entry into Bruges. All the houses were magnificently decorated; on platforms covered with the richest tapestry thronged the ladies of Bruges; there was nothing but haberdashery and precious stones. Such an array of fine dresses, jewels, and riches, excited a woman's jealousy in the Queen of France: "There is none but queens," quoth she, "to be seen in Bruges; I had thought that there was none but I who had a right to royal state." But the people of Bruges remained dumb; and their silence scared Philip the Handsome, who vainly attempted to attract a concourse of people about him by the proclamation of brilliant jousts. "These galas," says the historian Villani, who was going through Flanders at this very time, "were the last whereof the French knew aught in our time, for Fortune, who till then had shown such favor to the King of France, on a sudden turned her wheel, and the cause thereof lay in the unrighteous captivity of the innocent maid of Flanders, and in the treason whereof the Count of Flanders and his sons had been the victims." There were causes, however, for this new turn of events of a more general and more profound character than the personal woes of Flemish princes. James de Chiltillon, the governor assigned by Philip the Handsome to Flanders, was a greedy oppressor of it; the municipal authorities whom the victories or the gold of Philip had demoralized became the objects of popular hatred; and there was an outburst of violent sedition. A simple weaver, obscure, poor, undersized, and one-eyed, but valiant, and eloquent in his Flemish tongue, one Peter Deconing, became the leader of revolt in Bruges; accomplices flocked to him from nearly all the towns of Flanders; and he found allies amongst their neighbors. In 1302 war again broke out; but it was no longer a war between Philip the Handsome and Guy de Dampierre: it was a war between the Flemish communes and their foreign oppressors. Everywhere resounded the cry of insurrection: "Our bucklers and our friends for the lion of Flanders! Death to all Walloons!" "Philip the Handsome precipitately levied an army of sixty thousand men," says Villani, "and gave the command of it to Count Robert of Artois, the hero of Furnes. The forces of the Flemings amounted to no more than twenty thousand fighting men. The two armies met near Courtrai. The French chivalry were full of ardor and confidence; and the Italian archers in their service began the attack with some success. My lord," said one of his knights to the Count of Artois, "these knaves will do so well that they will gain the honor of the day; and, if they alone put an end to the war, what will be left for the noblesse to do?" "Attack, then!" answered the prince. Two grand attacks succeeded one another; the first under the orders of the Constable Raoul of Nesle, the second under those of the Count of Artois in person. After two hours' fighting, both failed against the fiery national passion of the Flemish communes, and the two French leaders, the Constable and the Count of Artois, were left, both of them, lying on the field of battle amidst twelve or fifteen thousand of their dead. "I yield me! I yield me!" cried the Count of Artois; but, "We understand not thy lingo," ironically answered in their own tongue the Flemings who surrounded him; and he was forthwith put to the sword. Too late to save him galloped up a noble ally of the insurgents, Guy of Namur. "From the top of the towers of our monastery," says the Abbot of St. Martin's of Tournai, "we could see the French flying over the roads, across fields and through hedges, in such numbers that the sight must have been seen to be believed. There were in the outskirts of our town and in the neighboring villages, so vast a multitude of knights and men-at-arms tormented with hunger, that it was a matter horrible to see. They gave their arms to get bread."

A French knight, covered with wounds, whose name has remained unknown, hastily scratched a few words upon a scrap of parchment dyed with blood; and that was the first account Philip the Handsome received of the battle of Courtrai, which was fought and lost on the 11th of July, 1302.

The news of this great defeat of the French spread rapidly throughout Europe, and filled with joy all those who were hostile to or jealous of Philip the Handsome. The Flemings celebrated their victory with splendor, and rewarded with bounteous gifts their burgher heroes, Peter Deconing amongst others, and those of their neighbors who had brought them aid. Philip, greatly affected and a little alarmed, sent for his prisoner, the aged Guy de Dampierre, and loaded him with reproaches, as if he had to thank him for the calamity; and, forthwith levying a fresh army, "as numerous," say the chroniclers, "as the grains of sand on the borders of the sea from Propontis to the Ocean," he took up a position at Arras, and even advanced quite close to Douai; but he was of those in whom obstinacy does not extinguish prudence, and who, persevering all the while in their purposes, have wit to understand the difficulties and clangers of them. Instead of immediately resuming the war, he entered into negotiations with the Flemings; and their envoys met him in a ruined church beneath the walls of Douai. John of Chalons, one of Philip's envoys, demanded, in his name, that the king should be recognized as lord of all Flanders, and authorized to punish the insurrection of Bruges, with a promise, however, to spare the lives of all who had taken part in it. "How!" said a Fleming, Baldwin de Paperode; "our lives would be left us, but only after our goods had been pillaged and our limbs subjected to every torture!" "Sir Castellan," answered John of Chalons, "why speak you so? A choice must needs be made; for the king is determined to lose his crown rather than not be avenged." Another Fleming, John de Renesse, who, leaning on the broken altar, had hitherto kept silence, cried, "Since so it is, let answer be made to the king that we be come hither to fight him, and not to deliver up to him our fellow-citizens;" and the Flemish envoys withdrew. Still Philip did not give up negotiating, for the purpose of gaining time and of letting the edge wear off the Flemings' confidence. He returned to Paris, fetched Guy de Dampierre from the tower of the Louvre, and charged him to go and negotiate peace under a promise of returning to his prison if he were unsuccessful. Guy, respected as he was throughout Flanders on account of his age and his long misfortunes, failed in his attempt, and, faithful to his word, went back and submitted himself to the power of Philip. "I am so old," said he to his friends, "that I am ready to die whensoever it shall please God." And he did die, on the 7th of March, 1304, in the prison of Compiegne, to which he had been transferred. Philip, all the while pushing forward his preparations for war, continued to make protestation of pacific intentions. The Flemish communes desired the peace necessary for the prosperity of their commerce; but patriotic anxieties wrestled with material interests. A burgher of Ghent was quietly fishing on the banks of the Scheldt, when an old man acosted him, saying sharply, "Knowest thou not, then, that the king is assembling all his armies? It is time the Ghentese shook off their sloth; the lion of Flanders must no longer slumber." In the spring of 1304, the cry of war resounded everywhere. Philip had laid an impost extraordinary upon all real property in his kingdom; regulars and reserves had been summoned to Arras, to attack the Flemings by land and sea. He had taken into his pay a Genoese fleet commanded by Regnier de Grimaldi, a celebrated Italian admiral; and it arrived in the North Sea, and blockaded Zierikzee, a maritime town of Zealand. On the 10th of August, 1304, the Flemish fleet which was defending the place was beaten and dispersed. Philip hoped for a moment that this reverse would discourage the Flemings; but it was not so at all. A great battle took place on the 17th of August between the two land armies at Mons-en-Puelle (or, Mont-en-Pevele, according to the true local spelling), near Lille; the action was for some time indecisive, and even after it was over both sides hesitated about claiming the victory; but when the Flemings saw their camp swept off and rifled, and when they no longer found in it, say the chroniclers, "their fine stuffs of Bruges and Ypres, their wines of Rochelle, their beers of Cambrai, and their cheeses of Bethune," they declared that they would return to their hearths; and their leaders, unable to restrain them, were obliged to shut themselves up in Lille, whither Philip, who had himself retired at first to Arras, came to besiege them. When the first days of downheartedness were over, and at sight of the danger which threatened Lille and the remains of the Flemish army assembled within its walls, all Flanders rushed to arms. "The labors of the workshop and the field were everywhere suspended," say contemporary Historians: "the women kept guard in the towns: you might traverse the country without meeting a single man, for they were all in the camp at Courtrai, to the number of twelve hundred thousand, according to popular exaggeration, swearing one to another that they would rather die fighting than live in slavery." Philip was astounded. "I thought the Flemings," said he, "were destroyed; but they seem to rain from heaven;" and he resumed his protestations and pacific overtures. Circumstances were favorable to him: old Guy de Dampierre was dead; Robert of Bethune, his eldest son and successor, was still the prisoner of Philip the Handsome, who set him at liberty after having imposed conditions upon him. Robert, timid in spirit and weak of heart, accepted them, in spite of the grumblings of the Flemish populations, always eager to recommence war after a short respite from its trials. The burghers of Bruges had made themselves a new seal, whereon the old symbol of the bridge of their city on the Reye was replaced by the lion of Flanders wearing the crown and armed with the cross, with this inscription: "The lion hath roared and burst his fetters" (Rugiit leo, vincula fregit). During ten years, from 1305 to 1314, there was between France and Flanders a continual alternation of reciprocal concessions and retractations, of treaties concluded and of renewed insurrections, without decisive and ascertained results. It was neither peace nor war; and, after the death of Philip the Handsome, his successors were destined, for a long time to come, to find again and again amongst the Flemish communes deadly enmities and grievous perils.

At the same time that he was prosecuting this interminable war against the Flemings, Philip was engaged, in this case also beyond the boundaries of his kingdom, in a struggle which was still more serious, owing to the nature of the questions which gave rise to it and to the quality of his adversary. In 1294 a new pope, Cardinal Benedetto Gaetani, had been elected under the name of Boniface VIII. He had been for a long time connected with the French party in Italy, and he owed his elevation to the influence, especially, of Charles II., King of Naples and Sicily, grandson of St. Louis and cousin-german of Philip the Handsome. Shortly before his election, Benedetto Gaetani said to that prince, "Thy pope (Celestine V.) was willing and able to serve thee, only he knew not how; as for me, if thou make me pope, I shall be willing and able and know how to be useful to thee." The long quarrel between the popes and the Emperors of Germany, who, as Kings of the Romans, aspired to invade or dominate Italy, had made the Kings of France natural allies of the papacy, and there had been a saying ever since, arising from a popular instinct, which had already found its way into poetry,—
"'Tis a goodly match as match can be,
To marry the Church and the fleurs-de-lis:
Should either mate a-straying go,

Then each—too late—will own 'twas so."
Boniface VIII. did not seem fated to withdraw from this policy; he was old (sixty-six); his party-engagements were of long standing; his personal fortune was made; three years before his election he possessed twelve ecclesiastical benefices, of which seven were in France; by his accession to the Holy See his ambition was satisfied; and as legate in France in 1290 he had made the acquaintance there of the young king, Philip the Handsome, and had conceived a liking for him. King Philip must have considered that he had ground for seeing in him a faithful and useful ally.

Neither of the two sovereigns took into account the changes that had come, during two centuries past, over the character of their power, and of the influence which these changes must exercise upon their posture and their relations one towards the other. Louis the Fat in the first instance, and then in a special manner Philip Augustus and St. Louis, each with very different sentiments and by very different processes, had disentangled the kingship in France from the feudal system, and had acquired for it a sovereignty of its own, beyond and above the rights of the suzerain over his vassals. The popes, for their part, Gregory VII. and Innocent III. amongst others, had raised the papacy to a region of intellectual and moral supremacy whence it looked down upon all the terrestrial powers. Gregory VII., the most disinterested of all ambitious men in high places, had dedicated his stormy life to establishing the dominion of the Church over the world, kings as well as people, and also to reforming internally the Church herself, her morals and her discipline. "I have loved justice and hated iniquity; and that is why I am dying in exile," he had said on his death-bed: but his works survived him, and a hundred years after him, in spite of the troubles which had disturbed the Church under eighteen mediocre and transitory popes, Innocent III., whilst maintaining, only with more moderation and prudence, the same principles as Gregory VII. had maintained, exercised peacefully, for a space of eighteen years, the powers of the right divine, whilst Philip Augustus was extending and confirming the kingly power in France. This parallel progress of the kingship and the papacy had its critics and its supporters. Learned lawyers, on the authority of the maxims and precedents of the Roman empire, proclaimed the king's sovereignty in the State; and profound theologians, on the authority of the divine origin of Christianity, laid down as a principle the right divine of the papacy in the Church and in the dealings of the Church with the State.

Thus, at the end of the thirteenth century, there were found face to face two systems, one laic and the other ecclesiastical, of absolute power. But the teachers of the doctrine of the right divine do not expunge from human affairs the passions, errors, and vices of the individuals who put their systems in practice; and absolute power, which is the greatest of all demoralizers, entails before long upon communities, whether civil or religious, the disorders, abuses, faults, and evils which it is the special province of governments to prevent or keep under. The French kingship and the papacy, the representatives of which had but lately been great and glorious princes, such as Philip Augustus and St. Louis, Gregory VII. and Innocent III., were, at the end of the thirteenth century, vested in the persons of men of far less moral worth and less political wisdom, Philip the Handsome and Boniface VIII. We have already had glimpses of Philip the Handsome's greedy, ruggedly obstinate, haughty and tyrannical character; and Boniface VIII. had the same defects, with more hastiness and less ability. The two great poets of Italy in that century, Dante and Petrarch, who were both very much opposed to Philip the Handsome, paint Boniface VIII. in similar colors. "He was," says Petrarch (Epistoloe Ramiliares, bk. ii. letter 3), "an inexorable sovereign, whom it was very hard to break by force, and impossible to bend by humility and caresses;" and Dante (Inferno, canto xix. v. 45 57) makes Pope Nicholas III. say, "Already art thou here and proudly upstanding, O Boniface? Hast thou so soon been sated with that wealth for which thou didst not fear to deceive that fair dame (the Church) whom afterwards thou didst so disastrously govern?" Two men so deeply imbued with evil and selfish passions could not possibly meet without clashing; and it was not long before facts combined to produce between them an outburst of hatred and strife which revealed the latent vices and fatal results of the two systems of absolute power of which they were the representatives.

Philip the Handsome had been nine years king when Boniface VIII. became pope. On his accession to the throne he had testified an intention of curtailing the privileges and power of the Church. He had removed the clergy from judicial functions, in the domains of the lords as well as in the domain of the king, and he had everywhere been putting into the hands of laymen the administration of civil justice. He had considerably increased the percentage to be paid on real property acquired by the Church (called possessions in mortmain), by way of compensation for the mutation-dues which their fixity caused the State to lose. At the time of the crusades the property of the clergy had been subjected to a special tax of a tenth of the revenues, and this tax had been several times renewed for reasons other than the crusades. The Church recognized her duty of contributing towards the defence of the kingdom, and the chapter-general of the order of Citeaux wrote to Philip the Handsome himself, "On all grounds of natural equity and rules of law we ought to bear our share of such a burden out of the goods which God hath given us." In every instance, the question had been as to the necessity for and the quota of the ecclesiastical contribution, which was at one time granted by the bishops and local clergy, at another expressly authorized by the papacy. There is nothing to show that Boniface VIII., at the time of his elevation to the Holy See, was opposed to these augmentations and demands on the part of the French crown; he was at that time too much occupied by his struggle against his own enemies at Rome, the family of the Colonnas, and he felt the necessity of remaining on good terms with France; but in 1296, Philip the Handsome, at war with the King of England and the Flemings, imposed upon the clergy two fresh tenths. The bishops alone were called upon to vote them; and the order of Citeaux refused to pay them, and addressed to the pope a protest, with a comparison between Philip and Pharaoh. Boniface not only entertained the protest, but addressed to the king a bull (called Clericis laicos, from its first two words), in which, led on by his zeal to set forth the generality and absoluteness of his power, he laid down as a principle that churches and ecclesiastics could not be taxed save with the permission of the sovereign pontiff, and that "all emperors, kings, dukes, counts, barons, or governors whatsoever, who should violate this principle, and all prelates or other ecclesiastics who should through weakness lend themselves to such violation, would by this mere fact incur excommunication, and would be incapable of release therefrom, save in articulo mortis, unless by a special decision of the Holy See." This was going far beyond the traditions of the French Church, and, in the very act of protecting it, to strike a blow at its independence in its dealings with the French State. Philip was mighty wroth, but he did not burst out; he confined himself to letting the pope perceive his displeasure by means of divers administrative measures, amongst others by forbidding the exportation from the kingdom of gold, silver, and valuable articles, which found their way chiefly to Rome. Boniface, on his side, was not slow to perceive that he had gone too far, and that his own interests did not permit him to give so much offence to the King of France. A year after the bull Clericis laicos, he modified it by a new bull, which not only authorized the collection of the two tenths voted by the French bishops, but recognized the right of the King of France to tax the French clergy with their consent and without authorization from the Holy See, whenever there was a pressing necessity for it. Philip, on his side, testified to the pope his satisfaction at this concession by himself making one at the expense of the religious liberty of his subjects. In 1292 he had ordered the seneschal of Carcassonne to place limits to the power of the inquisitors in Languedoc by taking from them the right of having their sentences against heretics executed without appeal; and in 1298 he issued an ordinance to the effect that "to further the proceedings of the Inquisition against heretics, for the glory of God and for the augmentation of the faith, he laid his injunctions upon all dukes, counts, barons, seneschals, bailiffs, and provosts of his kingdom, to obey the diocesan bishops and the inquisitors deputed by the Holy See in handing over to them, whenever they should be requested, all heretics and their creed-fellows, favorers, and harborers, and to see to the immediate execution of sentences passed by the judges of the Church, notwithstanding any appeal and any complaint on the part of heretics and their favorers."

Thus the two absolute sovereigns changed their policy and made temporary sacrifice of their mutual pretensions, according as it suited them to fight or to agree. But there arose a question in respect of which this continual alternation of pretensions and compromises, of quarrels and accommodations, was no longer possible; in order to keep up their position in the eyes of one another, they were obliged to come to a deadly clash; and in this struggle, perilous for both, Boniface VIII. was the aggressor, and with Philip the Handsome remained the victory.

On the 2d of February, 1300, Boniface VIII., who had much at heart the lustre and popularity of the Holy See, published a bull which granted indulgences to the pilgrims who should that year, and every centenary to come, visit the church of the apostles St. Peter and St. Paul at Rome. At this first celebration of the centenarian Christian jubilee the concourse was immense; the most moderate historians say that there were never fewer than a hundred thousand pilgrims at Rome; others put the numbers as high as two hundred thousand, and contemporary poetry as well as history has celebrated this pious assemblage of Christians of every nation, language, and age around the tomb of their fathers in the faith. "The old man with white hair goeth far away," says Petrarch (Sonnet xiv.), "from the sweet haunts where his life hath been passed, and from his little family astonished to find their dear father missing. As for him, in the last days of his age, broken down by weight of years and a-weary of the road, he draggeth along as best he may by force of willing spirit his old and tottering limbs, and cometh to Rome to fulfil his desire of seeing the image of Him whom he hopeth to see ere long up yonder in the heavens." The success of the measure and the solemn homage of Christendom filled with joy and proud confidence the heart of the septuagenarian pontiff. He had three years before decreed to Louis IX., the most Christian of the Kings of France, the honors of canonization and the title of Saint. Being chosen as mediator, in 1298, by the Kings of France and England in a war which pressed heavily on both, the decree of arbitration which he pronounced, favorable rather to Philip than to Edward I., had been accepted by both of them; and the pope, on laying his injunctions upon them with some severity of language, had exhibited authority in a manner salutary for both kingdoms. Everything seemed at that time to smile on Boniface, and to invite him to believe himself the real sovereign of Christendom.

An opportunity for a splendid confirmation of his universal supremacy in the Christian world came to tempt him. A quarrel had arisen between Philip and the Archbishop of Narbonne on the subject of certain dues claimed by both in that great diocese. Boniface was loud in his advocacy of the archbishop against the officers of the king: "If, my son, thou tolerate such enterprises against the Churches of thy kingdom," he wrote to Philip (on the 18th of July, 1300), "thou mayest thereafter have reasonable fear lest God, the author of judgments and the King of kings, exact vengeance for it; and assuredly His vicar will not, in the long run, keep silence. Though he wait a while patiently, in order not to close the door to compassion, there will be full need at last that he rouse himself for the punishment of the wicked and the glory of the good." Nor did Boniface content himself with writing: he sent to Paris, to support his words, Bernard de Saisset, whom he, on his own authority, had just appointed Bishop of Pamiers. The choice of bishops was not yet, at that time, subject to any fixed and generally recognized rule: most often it was the chapter of the diocese that elected its bishop, with a subsequent application for the approbation of the king and the pope; sometimes the king and also the pope made such appointments directly and independently. Boniface VIII. had quite recently created a new bishopric at Pamiers in order to immediately appoint to it Bernard de Saisset, hitherto simple Abbot of St. Antonine in that city. Bernard, who was devoted to his patron, was, further, a passionate Languedocian and a foe to the dominion of the French kings of the North over Southern France; and he gave himself out as a personal descendant of the last Counts of Toulouse. On arriving in Paris as the pope's legate, he made use there of violent and inconsiderate language; he even affirmed, it was said, that St. Louis had predicted the disappearance of his line in the third generation, and that King Philip was only an illegitimate descendant of Charlemagne. He was accused of having incessantly labored to excite revolts against the king in the south, at one time for the advantage of the local lords, at another in favor of foreign enemies of the kingdom. Being summoned before the king and his council at Senlis (October 14, 1301), he denied, but with an air of arrogance and aggression, the accusations against him. Philip had, at that time, as his chief councillors, lay-lawyers, servants passionately attached to the kingship. They were Peter Flotte his chancellor, William of Nogaret, judge-major at Beaucaire, and William of Plasian, Lord of Vezenobre, the two latter belonging, as Bernard de Saisset belonged, to Southern France, and determined to withstand, in the south as well as the north, the domination of ecclesiastics. They, in their turn, rose up against the doctrine and language of the Bishop of Pamiers. He was arrested and committed to the keeping of the Archbishop of Narbonne; and Philip sent to Rome his chancellor Peter Flotte himself and William of Nogaret, with orders to demand of the pope "that he should avenge the wrongs of God, the king, and the whole kingdom, by depriving of his orders and every clerical privilege that man whose longer life would taint the places he inhabited; and this in order that the king might make of him a sacrifice to God in the way of justice, for there could be no hope of his amendment if he were suffered to live, seeing that, from his youth up, he had always lived ill, and that baseness and abandonment only became more and more confirmed in him by inveterate habit."

To this violent and threatening language Boniface replied by changing the venue to his own personal tribunal in the case of the Bishop of Pamiers. "We do bid thy majesty," he wrote to the king, "to give this bishop free leave to depart and come to us, for we do desire his presence. We do warn thee to have all his goods restored to him, not to stretch out for the future thy rapacious hands towards the like things, and not to offend the Divine Majesty or the dignity of the Apostolic See, lest we be forced to employ some other remedy; for thou must know that, unless thou canst allege some excuse founded on reason and truth, we do not see how thou shouldest escape the sentence of the holy canons for having laid rash hands on this bishop."

"My power,—the spiritual power,"—said the pope to the Chancellor of France, "embraces the temporal, and includes it." "Be it so," answered Peter Flotte; "but your power is nominal, the king's real."

Here was a coarse challenge hurled by the crown at the tiara: and Boniface VIII. unhesitatingly accepted it. But, instead of keeping the advantage of a defensive position by claiming, in the name of lawful right, the liberties and immunities of the Church, he assumed the offensive against the kingship by proclaiming the supremacy of the Holy See in things temporal as well as spiritual, and by calling upon Philip the Handsome to acknowledge it. On the 5th of December, 1301, he addressed to the king, commencing with the words, "Hearken, most dear son" (Ausculta, carissime fili), a long bull, in which, with circumlocutions and expositions full of obscurity and subtlety, he laid down and affirmed, at bottom, the principle of the final sovereignty of the spiritual power, being of divine origin, over every temporal power, being of human creation. "In spite of the insufficiency of our deserts," said he, "God hath established us above kings and kingdoms by imposing upon us, in virtue of the Apostolic office, the duty of plucking away, destroying, dispersing, dissipating, building up and planting in His name and according to His doctrine; to the end that, in tending the flock of the Lord, we may strengthen the weak, heal the sick, bind up the broken limbs, raise the fallen, and pour wine and oil into all wounds. Let none, then, most dear son, persuade thee that thou hast no superior, and that thou art not subject to the sovereign head of the ecclesiastical hierarchy; for he who so thinketh is beside himself; and if he obstinately affirm any such thing, he is an infidel, and hath no place any longer in the fold of the good Shepherd." At the same time Boniface summoned the bishops of France to a council at Rome, "in order to labor for the preservation of the liberties of the Catholic Church, the reformation of the kingdom, the amendment of the king, and the good government of France."

Philip the Handsome and his councillors did not misconceive the tendency of such language, however involved and full of specious reservations it might be. The final supremacy of the pope in the body politic, and over all sovereigns, meant the absorption of the laic community in the religious, and the abolition of the State's independence, not in favor of the national Church, but to the advantage of the foreign head of the universal Church. The defenders of the French kingship formed a better estimate than was formed at Rome of the effect which would be produced by such doctrine on France, in the existing condition of the French mind; they entered upon no theological and abstract polemics; they confined themselves entirely to setting in a vivid light the pope's pretensions and their consequences, feeling sure that, by confining themselves to this question, they would enlist in their opposition not only all laymen, nobles, and commoners, but the greater part of the French ecclesiastics themselves, who were no strangers to the feeling of national patriotism, and to whom the pope's absolute power in the body politic was scarcely more agreeable than the king's. In order to make a strong impression upon the public mind, there was published at Paris, as the actual text of the pope's bull, a very short summary of his long bull, "Hearken, most dear Son," in the following terms: "Boniface, bishop, servant of the servants of God, to Philip, King of the French. Fear thou God, and keep His commandments. We would have thee to know that thou art subject unto us in things spiritual and temporal. The presentation to benefices and prebends appertaineth to thee in no wise. If thou have the keeping of certain vacancies, thou art bound to reserve the revenues of them for the successors to them. If thou have made any presentations, we declare them void, and revoke them. We consider as heretics all those who believe otherwise." Together with this document there was put in circulation the king's answer to the pope, in the following terms: "Philip, by the grace of God, King of the French, to Boniface, who giveth himself out for sovereign pontiff, little or no greeting. Let thy Extreme Fatuity know that we be subject to none in things temporal, that the presentation to churches and prebends that be vacant belongeth to us of kingly right, that the revenues therefrom be ours, that presentations already made or to be made be valid both now and hereafter, that we will firmly support the possessors of them to thy face and in thy teeth, and that we do hold as senseless and insolent those who think otherwise." The pope disavowed, as a falsification, the summary of his long bull; and there is nothing to prove that the unseemly and insulting letter of Philip the Handsome was sent to Rome. But, at bottom, the situation of affairs remained the same; indeed, it did not stop where it was. On the 11th of February, 1302, the bull, Hearken, most dear Son, was solemnly burned at Paris in presence of the king and a numerous multitude. Philip convoked, for the 8th of April following, an assembly of the barons, bishops, and chief ecclesiastics, and of deputies from the communes to the number of two or three for each city, all being summoned "to deliberate on certain affairs which in the highest degree concern the king, the kingdom, the churches, and all and sundry." This assembly, which really met on the 10th of April, at Paris, in the church of Notre-Dame, is reckoned in French history as the first "states-general." The three estates wrote separately to Rome; the clergy to the pope himself, the nobility and the deputies of the communes to the cardinals, all, however, protesting against the pope's pretensions in matters temporal, the two laic orders writing in a rough and threatening tone, the clergy making an appeal "to the wisdom and paternal clemency of the Holy Father, with tearful accents, and sobs mingled with their tears." The king evidently had on his side the general feeling of the nation: and the news from Rome was not of a kind to pacify him. In spite of the king's formal prohibition, forty-five French bishops had repaired to the council summoned by the pope for All Saints' day, 1302, and, after this meeting, a papal decree of November 18 had declared, "There be two swords, the temporal and the spiritual; both are in the power of the Church, but one is held by the Church herself, the other by kings only with the assent and by sufferance of the sovereign pontiff. Every human being is subject to the Roman pontiff; and to believe this is necessary to salvation." Philip made a seizure of the temporalities of such bishops as had been present at that council, and renewed his prohibition forbidding them to leave the kingdom. Boniface ordered those who had not been to Rome to attend there within three months; and the cardinal of St. Marcellinus, legate of the Holy See, called a fresh council in France itself, without the king's knowledge. On both sides, there were at one time words of conciliation and attempts to keep up appearances of respect, at another new explosions of complaints and threats; but, amidst all these changes of language, the struggle was day by day becoming more violent, and preparations were being made by both parties for something other than threats.

On the 12th of March and the 13th of June, 1303, at two assemblies of barons, prelates, and legists held at the Louvre, in presence of the king, which several historians have considered to have been states-general, one of the crown's most intimate advisers, William of Plasian, proposed, against Boniface, a form of accusation which imputed to him, beyond his ambition and his claims to absolutism, crimes as improbable as they were hateful. It was demanded that the Church should be governed by a lawful pope, and the king, as defender of the faith, was pressed to appeal to the convocation of a general council. On the 24th of June, in the palace-garden, a great crowd of people assembled; and, after a sermon preached in French, the form of accusation against Boniface, and the appeal to the future council, were solemnly made public. The pope meanwhile did not remain idle; he protested against the imputations of which he was the subject. "Forty years ago," he said, "we were admitted a doctor of laws, and learned that both powers, the temporal and the spiritual, be ordained of God. Who can believe that such fatuity can have entered into our mind? But who can also deny that the king is subject unto us on the score of sin? . . . We be disposed to grant unto him every grace. . . . So long as I was cardinal, I was French in heart; since then, we have testified how we do love the king. . . . Without us, he would not have even one foot on the throne. We do know all the secrets of the kingdom. We do know how the Germans, the Burgundians, and the folks who speak the Oc tongue do love the king. If he mend not, we shall know how to chastise him, and treat him as a little boy (sicut unum garcionem), though greatly against our will." On the 13th of April, Boniface declared Philip excommunicate if he persisted in preventing the prelates from attending at Rome. Philip, being warned, effected the arrest at Troyes of the priest who was bringing the pope's letter to his legate in France. The legate took to flight. Boniface, on his side, being warned that the king was appealing against him to an approaching council, declared by a bull, on the 15th of August, that it appertained to him alone to summon a council. After this bull, there was full expectation that another would be launched, which would pronounce the deposition of the king. And a new bull was actually prepared at Rome on the 5th of September, and was to be published on the 8th. It did not expressly depose the king; it merely announced that measures would be taken more serious even than excommunication. Philip had taken his precautions. He had demanded and obtained from the great towns, churches, and universities more than seven hundred declarations of support in his appeal to the future council, and an engagement to take no notice of the decree which might be issued by the pope to release the king's subjects from their oath of allegiance. Only a few, and amongst them the Abbot of Citeaux, gave him a refusal. The order of the Templars gave only a qualified support. At the approaching advent of the new bull which was being anticipated, the king resolved to act still more roughly and speedily. Notification must be sent to the pope of the king's appeal to the future council. Philip could no longer confide this awkward business to his chancellor, Peter Flotte; for he had fallen at Courtrai, in the battle against the Flemings. William of Nogaret undertook it, at the same time obtaining from the king a sort of blank commission authorizing and ratifying in advance all that, under the circumstances, he might consider it advisable to do. Notification of the appeal had to be made to the pope at Anagni, his native town, whither he had gone for refuge, and the people of which, being zealous in his favor, had already dragged in the mud the lilies and the banner of France. Nogaret was bold, ruffianly, and clever. He repaired in haste to Florence, to the king's banker, got a plentiful supply of money, established communications in Anagni, and secured, above all, the co-operation of Sciarra Colonna, who was passionately hostile to the pope, had been formerly proscribed by him, and, having fallen into the hands of corsairs, had worked at the oar for them during many a year rather than reveal his name and be sold to Boniface Gaetani. On the 7th of September, 1303, Colonna and his associates introduced Nogaret and his following into Anagni, with shouts of "Death to Pope Boniface! Long live the King of France!" The populace, dumbfounded, remained motionless. The pope, deserted by all, even by his own nephew, tried to touch the heart of Colonna himself, whose only answer was a summons to abdicate, and to surrender at discretion. "Those be hard words," said Boniface, and burst into tears. But this old man, seventy-five years of age, had a proud spirit, and a dignity worthy of his rank. "Betrayed, like Jesus," said he, "shall I die; but I will die pope." He donned the cloak of St. Peter, put the crown of Constantine upon his head, took in his hands the keys and the cross, and, as his enemies drew nigh, he said to them, "Here is my neck, and here is my head." There is a tradition, of considerable trustworthiness, that Sciarra Colonna would have killed him, and did with his mailed hand strike him in the face. Nogaret, however, prevented the murder, and confined himself to saying, "Thou caitiff pope, confess, and behold the goodness of my lord, the King of France, who, though so far away from thee in his own kingdom, both watcheth over and defendeth thee by my hand." "Thou art of heretic family," answered the pope: "at thy hands I look for martyrdom."

The captivity of Boniface VIII., however, lasted only three days; for the people of Anagni, having recovered themselves, and seeing the scanty numbers of the foreigners, rose and delivered the pope. The old man was conducted to the public square, crying like a child. "Good folks," said he to the crowd around him, "ye have seen that mine enemies have robbed me of all my goods and those of the Church. Behold me here as poor as Job. Nought have I either to eat or drink. If there be any good woman who would give me an alms of wine and bread, I would bestow upon her God's blessing and mine." All the people began to shout, "Long live the Holy Father!" He was reconducted into his palace: "and women thronged together thither, bringing him bread, wine, and water. Finding no proper vessels, they poured them into a chest. . . . Any one who liked went in, and talked with the pope, as with any other beggar." So soon as the agitation was somewhat abated, Boniface set out for Rome, with a great crowd following him; but he was broken down in spirit and body. Scarcely had he arrived when he fell into a burning fever, which traditions, probably invented and spread by his enemies, have represented as a fit of mad rage. He died on the 11th of October, 1303, without having recovered his reason. It is reported that his predecessor, Celestine V., had said of him, "Thou risest like a fox; thou wilt rule like a lion, and die like a dog." The last expression was unjustified. Boniface VIII. was a fanatic, ambitious, proud, violent, and crafty, but with sincerity at the bottom of his prejudiced ideas, and stubborn and blind in his fits of temper: his death was that of an old lion at bay.

We were bound to get a good idea and understanding of this violent struggle between the two sovereigns of France and Rome, not only because of its dramatic interest, but because it marks an important period in the history of the papacy and its relations with foreign governments. From the tenth century and the accession of the Capetians the policy of the Holy See had been enterprising, bold, full of initiative, often even aggressive, and more often than not successful in the prosecution of its designs. Under Innocent III. it had attained the apogee of its strength and fortune. At that point its motion forward and upward came to a stop. Boniface had not the wit to recognize the changes which had taken place in European communities, and the decided progress which had been made by laic influences and civil powers. He was a stubborn preacher of maxims he could no longer practise. He was beaten in his enterprise; and the papacy, even on recovering from his defeat, found itself no longer what it had been before him. Starting from the fourteenth century we find no second Gregory VII., or Innocent III. Without expressly abandoning their principles, the policy of the Holy See became essentially defensive and conservative, more occupied in the maintenance than the aggrandizement of itself, and sometimes even more stationary and stagnant than was required by necessity or recommended by foresight. The posture assumed and the conduct adopted by the earliest successors of Boniface VIII. showed how far the situation of the papacy was altered, and how deep had been the penetration of the stab which, in this conflict between the two aspirants to absolute power, Philip the Handsome had inflicted on his rival.

On the 22d of October, 1303, eleven days after the death of Boniface VIII., Benedict XI., son of a simple shepherd, was elected at Rome to succeed him. Philip the Handsome at once sent his congratulations, but by William of Plasian, who had lately been the accuser of Boniface, and who was charged to hand to the new pope, on the king's behalf, a very bitter memorandum touching his predecessor. Philip at the same time caused an address to be presented to himself in his own kingdom and in the vulgar tongue, called a supplication from the people of France to the King against Boniface. Benedict XI. exerted himself to give satisfaction to the conqueror; he declared the Colonnas absolved; he released the barons and prelates of France from the excommunications pronounced against them; and he himself wrote to the king to say that he would behave towards him as the good shepherd in the parable, who leaves ninety and nine sheep to go after one that is lost. Nogaret and the direct authors of the assault at Anagni were alone excepted from this amnesty. The pope reserved for a future occasion the announcement of their absolution, when he should consider it expedient. But on the 7th of June, 1304, instead of absolving them, he launched a fresh bull of excommunication against "certain wicked men who had dared to commit a hateful crime against a person of good memory, Pope Boniface." A month after this bull Benedict XI. was dead. It is related that a young woman had put before him at table a basket of fresh figs, of which he had eaten and which had poisoned him. The chroniclers of the time impute this crime to William of Nogaret, to the Colonnas, and to their associates at Anagni; a single one names King Philip. Popular credulity is great in matters of poisoning; but one thing is certain, namely, that no prosecution was ordered. There is no proof of Philip's complicity; but, full as he was of hatred and dissimulation, he was of those who do their best to profit by crimes which they have not ordered. It is clear that such a pope as Benedict XI. would not do either for his passions or his purposes.

He found one, however, from whom he flattered himself, not without reason, that he would get more complete and efficient co-operation. The cardinals, after being assembled in conclave for six months at Perouse, were unable to arrive at an agreement about a choice of pope. As a way out of their embarrassment, they entered into a secret convention to the effect that one of them, a confidant of Philip the Handsome, should make known to him that the Archbishop of Bordeaux, Bertrand de Goth, was the candidate in respect of whom they could agree. He was a subject of the King of England and a late favorite of Boniface VIII., who had raised him from the bishopric of Comminges to the archbishopric of Bordeaux. He was regarded as an enemy of France; but Philip knew what may be done with an ambitious man, whose fortune is only half made, by offering to advance him to his highest point. He, therefore, appointed a meeting with the archbishop. "Hearken," said he: "I have in my grasp wherewithal to make thee pope if I please; and provided that thou promise me to do six things I demand of thee, I will confer upon thee that honor; and to prove to thee that I have the power, here be letters and advices I have received from Rome." After having heard and read, "the Gascon, overcome with joy," says the contemporary historian Villani, "threw himself at the king's feet, saying, 'My lord, now know I that thou art my best friend, and that thou wouldest render me good for evil. It is for thee to command and for me to obey: such will ever be my disposition.'" Philip then set before him his six demands, amongst which there were only two which could have caused the archbishop any uneasiness. The fourth purported that he should condemn the memory of Pope Boniface. "The sixth, which is important and secret, I keep to myself," said Philip, "to make known to thee in due time and place." The archbishop bound himself by oath taken on the sacred host to accomplish the wishes of the king, to whom, furthermore, he gave as hostages his brother and his two nephews. Six weeks after this interview, on the 5th of June, 1305, Bertrand de Goth was elected pope, under the name of Clement V.

It was not long before he gave the king the most certain pledge of his docility. After having held his pontifical court at Bordeaux and Poitiers he declared that he would fix his residence in France, in the county of Venaissin, at Avignon, a territory which Philip the Bold had remitted to Pope Gregory X. in execution of a deed of gift from Raymond VII., Count of Toulouse. It was renouncing, in fact, if not in law, the practical independence of the papacy to thus place it in the midst of the dominions and under the very thumb of the King of France. "I know the Gaseous," said the old Italian Cardinal Matthew Rosso, dean of the Sacred College, when he heard of this resolution; "it will be long ere the Church comes back to Italy." And, indeed, it was not until sixty years afterwards, under Pope Gregory XI., that Italy regained possession of the Holy See; and historians called this long absence the Babylonish captivity. Philip lost no time in profiting by his propinquity to make the full weight of his power felt by Clement V. He claimed from him the fulfilment of the fourth promise Bertrand de Goth had made in order to become pope, which was the condemnation of Boniface VIII.; and he revealed to him the sixth, that "important and secret one which he kept to himself to make known to him in clue time and place;" and it was the persecution and abolition of the order of the Templars. The pontificate of Clement V. at Avignon was, for him, a nine years' painful effort, at one time to elude and at another to accomplish, against the grain, the heavy engagements he had incurred towards the king.

He found the condemnation of Boniface VIII. rather an embarrassment than a danger. He shrank, on becoming pope, from condemning the pope his predecessor, who had appointed him archbishop and cardinal. Instead of an official condemnation, he offered the king satisfaction in various ways. It was only from headstrong pride and to cloak himself in the eyes of his subjects that Philip clung to the condemnation of the memory of Boniface; and, after a long period of mutual tergiversation, it was agreed in the end to let bygones be bygones. The principal promoter of the assault at Anagni, William of Nogaret, was the sole exception to the amnesty; and the pope imposed upon him, by way of penance, merely the obligation of making a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, which he never fulfilled. On the contrary he remained, in great favor, about the person of King Philip, who made him his chancellor, and gave him, in Languedoc, some rich lands, amongst others those of Calvisson, Massillargues, and Manduel. For Philip knew how to liberally reward and faithfully support his servants.

And he knew still better how to persecute and ruin his foes. He had no reason, of a public kind, to consider the Templars his enemies. It is true that they had given him a merely qualified support on his appeal to the council against Boniface VIII.; but, both before and after that occurrence, Philip had shown them marks of the most friendly regard. He had asked to be affiliated to their order; and he had borrowed their money. During a violent outbreak of the populace at Paris, in 1306, on the occasion of a fresh tax, he had sought and found a refuge in the very palace of the Temple, where the chapters-general were held and where its treasures were kept. It is said that the sight of these treasures kindled the longings of Philip, and his ardent desire to get hold of them. At the time of the formation of the order, in 1119, after the first crusade, the Templars were far from being rich. Nine knights had joined together to protect the arrival and sojourning of pilgrims in Palestine; and Baldwin II., the third Christian King of Jerusalem, had given them a lodging in his own palace, to the east of Solomon's temple, whence they had assumed the name of "Poor United Champions of Christ and the Temple." Their valor and pious devotion had soon rendered them famous in the West as well as the East; and St. Bernard had commended them to the Christian world. At the council of Troyes, in 1123, Pope Honorius II. had recognized their order, and regulated their dress, a white mantle, on which Pope Eugenius III. placed a red cross. In 1172 the rules of the order were drawn up in seventy-two articles, and the Templars began to exempt themselves from the jurisdiction of the patriarch of Jerusalem, recognizing that of the pope only. Their number and their importance rapidly increased. In 1130 the Emperor Lothaire II. gave them lands in the Duchy of Brunswick. They received other gifts in the Low Countries, in Spain, and in Portugal. After a voyage to the West, Hugh des Payens, the chief of the nine Templars, returned to the East with three hundred knights enlisted in his order; and a hundred and fifty years after its foundation the order of the Temple, divided into fourteen or fifteen provinces,—four in the East and ten or eleven in the West,—numbered, it is said, eighteen or twenty thousand knights, mostly French, and nine thousand commanderies or territorial benefices, the revenue of which is calculated at fifty-four millions of francs (about ten and a half million dollars). It was an army of monks, once poor men and hard-working soldiers, but now rich and idle, and abandoned to all the temptations of riches and idleness. There was still some fine talk about Jerusalem, pilgrims, and crusades. The popes still kept these words prominent, either to distract the Western Christians from intestine quarrels, or to really promote some new Christian effort in the East. The Isle of Cyprus was still a small Christian kingdom, and the warrior-monks, who were vowed to the defence of Christendom in the East, the Templars and the Hospitallers, had still in Palestine, Syria, Armenia, and the adjacent lands, certain battles to fight and certain services to render to the Christian cause. But these were events too petty and too transitory to give serious employment to the two great religious and military orders, whose riches and fame were far beyond the proportions of their public usefulness and their real strength; a position fraught with perils for them, for it inspired the sovereign powers of the state with the spirit rather of jealousy than fear of them.

In 1303 the king and the pope simultaneously summoned from Cyprus to France the Grand Master of the Templars, James do Molay, a Burgundian nobleman, who had entered the order when he was almost a child, had valiantly fought the infidels in the East, and fourteen years ago had been unanimously elected Grand Master. For several months he was well treated, to all appearance, by the two monarchs. Philip said he wished to discuss with him a new plan of crusade, and asked him to stand godfather to one of his children; and Molay was pall-bearer at the burial of the king's sister-in-law. Meanwhile the most sinister reports, the gravest imputations, were bruited abroad against the Templars; they were accused "of things distasteful, deplorable, horrible to think on, horrible to hear, of betraying Christendom for the profit of the infidels, of secretly denying the faith, of spitting upon the cross, of abandoning themselves to idolatrous practices and the most licentious lives." In 1307, in the month of October, Philip the Handsome and Clement V. had met at Poitiers; and the king asked the pope to authorize an inquiry touching the Templars and the accusations made against them. James de Molay was forthwith arrested at Paris with a hundred and forty of his knights; sixty met the same fate at Beaucaire; many others all over France; and their property was put in the king's keeping for the service of the Holy Land. On the 12th of August, 1308, a papal bull appointed a grand commission of inquiry charged to conduct, at Paris, an examination of the matter "according as the law requires." The Archbishops of Canterbury in England and of Mayence, Cologne, and Troves in Germany, were also named commissioners, and the pope announced that he would deliver his judgment within two years, at a general council held at Vienne, in Dauphiny, territory of the Empire. Twenty-six princes and laic lords, the Dukes of Burgundy and Brittany, the Counts of Flanders, Nevers, and Auxerre, and the Count of Talleyrand de Perigord, offered themselves as the Templars' accusers, and gave powers of attorney to act in their names. On the 22d of November, 1309, the Grand Master, Molay, was, called before the commission. At first he firmly denied all that his order had been accused of; afterwards he became confused and embarrassed, said that he had not the ability to undertake the defence of his order, that he was but a poor, unlettered knight, that the pope had reserved to himself the decision in the case, and that, for his part, he only wished the pope would summon him as soon as possible before him. On the 28th of March, 1310, five hundred and forty-six knights, who had declared their readiness to defend their order, appeared before the commission; and they were called upon to choose proctors to speak in their name. "We ought also, then," said they, "to have been tortured by proxy only." The prisoners were treated with the uttermost rigor and reduced to the most wretched plight: "out of their poor pay of twelve deniers per diem they were obliged to pay for their passage by water to go and submit to their examination in the city, and to give money besides to the man who undid and riveted their fetters." In October, 1310, at a council held at Paris, a large number of Templars were examined, several acquitted, some subjected to special penances, and fifty-four condemned as heretics to the stake, and burned the same day in a field close to the abbey of St. Anthony; and nine others met the same fate at the hands of a council held at Senlis the same year: "They confessed under their tortures," says Bossuet, "but they denied at their execution." The business dragged slowly on; different decisions were pronounced, according to the place of decision; the Templars were pronounced innocent, on the 17th of June, 1310, at Ravenna, on the 1st of July at Mayence, and on the 21st of October at Salamanca; and in Aragon they made a successful resistance. Europe began to be wearied at the uncertainty of such judgments and at the sight of such horrible spectacles; and Clement V. felt some shame at thus persecuting monks who, on more than one occasion, had shown devotion to the Holy See.

But Philip the Handsome had attained his end: he was in possession of the Templars' riches. On the 11th of June, 1311, the commission of inquiry terminated its sittings, and the report of its labors concluded as follows: "For further precaution, we have deposited the said procedure, drawn up by notaries in authentic form, in the treasury of Notre-Dame, at Paris, to be shown to none without special letters from Your Holiness." The council-general, announced in 1308 by the pope, to decide definitively upon this great case, was actually opened at Vienne, in October, 1311; more than three hundred bishops assembled; and nine Templars presented themselves for the defence of their order, saying that there were at Lyons, or in the neighborhood, fifteen hundred or two thousand of their brethren, ready to support them. The pope had the nine defenders arrested, adjourned the decision once more, and, on the 22d of March in the following year, at a mere secret consistory, made up of the most docile bishops and a few cardinals, pronounced, solely on his pontifical authority, the abolition of the order of the Temple: and it was subsequently proclaimed officially, on the 3d of April, 1312, in presence of the king and the council. And not a soul protested.

The Grand Master, James de Molay, in confinement at Gisors, survived his order. The pope had reserved to himself the task of trying him; but, disgusted with the work, he committed the trial to ecclesiastical commissioners assembled at Paris, before whom Molay was brought, together with three of the principal leaders of the Temple, survivors like himself. They had read over to them, from a scaffold erected in the forecourt of Notre-Dame, the confessions they had made, but lately, under torture, and it was announced to them that they were sentenced to perpetual imprisonment. Remorse had restored to the Grand Master all his courage; he interrupted the reading, and disavowed his avowals, protesting that torture alone had made him speak so falsely, and maintaining that
"Of his grand order nought he wist
'Gainst honor and the laws of Christ."
One of his three comrades in misfortune, the commander of Normandy, made aloud a similar disavowal. The embarrassed judges sent the two Templars back to the provost of Paris, and put off their decision to the following day; but Philip the Handsome, without waiting for the morrow, and without consulting the judges, ordered the two Templars to be burned the same evening, March 11, 1314, at the hour of vespers, in Ile-de-la-Cite, on the site of the present Place Dauphine. A poet-chronicler, Godfrey of Paris, who was a witness of the scene, thus describes it: "The Grand Master, seeing the fire prepared, stripped himself briskly; I tell just as I saw; he bared himself to his shirt, light-heartedly and with a good grace, without a whit of trembling, though he was dragged and shaken mightily. They took hold of him to tie him to the stake, and they were binding his hands with a cord, but he said to them, 'Sirs, suffer me to fold my hands a while, and make my prayer to God, for verily it is time. I am presently to die; but wrongfully, God wot. Wherefore woe will come, ere long, to those who condemn us without a cause. God will avenge our death.'"

It was probably owing to these last words that there arose a popular rumor, soon spread abroad, that James de Molay, at his death, had cited the pope and the king to appear with him, the former at the end of forty days, and the latter within a year, before the judgment-seat of God. Events gave a sanction to the legend: for Clement V. actually died on the 20th of April, 1314, and Philip the Handsome on the 29th of November, 1314, the pope, undoubtedly, uneasy at the servile acquiescence he had shown towards the king, and the king expressing some sorrow for his greed and for the imposts (maltote, maletolta, or black mail) with which he had burdened his people.

In excessive and arbitrary imposts, indeed, consisted the chief grievance for which France, in the fourteenth century, had to complain of Philip the Handsome; and, probably, it was the only wrong for which he upbraided himself. Being badly wounded, out hunting, by a wild boar, and perceiving himself to be in bad case, he gave orders for his removal to Fontainebleau, and there, says Godfrey of Paris, the poet-chronicler just quoted in reference to the execution of the Templars, "he said and commanded that his children, his brothers, and his other friends should be sent for. They were no long time in coming; they entered Fontainebleau, into the chamber where the king was, and where there was very little light. So soon as they were there, they asked him how he was, and he answered, 'Ill in body and in soul; if our Lady the Virgin save me not by her prayers, I see that death will seize me here; I have put on so many talliages, and laid hands on so much riches, that I shall never be absolved. Sirs, I know that I am in such estate that I shall die, methinks, to-night, for I suffer grievous hurt from the curses which pursue me: there will be no fine tales to be told of me.'" Philip's anxiety about his memory was not without foundation; his greed is the vice which has clung to his name; not only did he load his subjects with poll taxes and other taxes unauthorized by law and the traditions of the feudal system; not only was he unjust and cruel towards the Templars in order to appropriate their riches; but he committed, over and over again, that kind of spoliation which imports most trouble into the general life of a people; he debased the coinage so often and to such an extent, that he was everywhere called "the base coiner." This was a financial process of which none of his predecessors, neither St. Louis nor Philip Augustus, had set him an example, though they had quite as many costly wars and expeditions to keep up as he had. Some chroniclers of the fourteenth century say that Philip the Handsome was particularly munificent and lavish towards his family and his servants; but it is difficult to meet with any precise proof of this allegation, and we must impute the financial difficulties of Philip the Hand-some to his natural greed, and to the secret expenses entailed upon him by his policy of dissimulation and hatred, rather than to his lavish generosity. As he was no stranger to the spirit of order in his own affairs, he tried, towards the end of his reign, to obtain an exact account of his finances. His chief adviser, Enguerrand de Marigny, became his superintendent-general, and on the 19th of January, 1311, at the close of a grand council held at Poissy, Philip passed an ordinance which established, under the headings of expenses and receipts, two distinct tables and treasuries, one for ordinary expenses, the civil list, and the payment of the great bodies of the state, incomes, pensions, &c., and the other for extraordinary expenses. The ordinary expenses were estimated at one hundred and seventy-seven thousand five hundred livres of Tours, that is, according to M. Boutaric, who published this ordinance, fifteen million nine hundred thousand francs (about three million eighty-four thousand dollars). Numerous articles regulated the execution of the measure; and the royal treasurers took an oath not to reveal, within two years, the state of their receipts, save to Enguerrand de Marigny, or by order of the king himself. This first budget of the French monarchy dropped out of sight after the death of Philip the Handsome, in the reaction which took place against his government. "God forgive him his sins," says Godfrey of Paris, "for in the time of his reign great loss came to France, and there was small regret for him." The general history of France has been more indulgent towards Philip the Handsome than his contemporaries were; it has expressed its acknowledgments to him for the progress made, under his sway, by the particular and permanent characteristics of civilization in France. The kingly domain received in the Pyrenees, in Aquitaine, in Franche-Comte, and in Flanders territorial increments which extended national unity. The legislative power of the king penetrated into and secured footing in the lands of his vassals. The scattered semi-sovereigns of feudal society bowed down before the incontestable pre-eminence of the kingship, which gained the victory in its struggle against the papacy. Far be it from us to attach no importance to the intervention of the deputies of the communes in the states-general of 1302, on the occasion of that struggle: it was certainly homage paid to the nascent existence of the third estate; but it is puerile to consider that homage as a real step towards public liberties and constitutional government. The burghers of 1302 did not dream of such a thing; Philip, knowing that their feelings were, in this instance, in accordance with his own, summoned them in order to use their co-operation as a useful appendage for himself, and absolute kingship gained more strength by the co-operation than the third estate acquired influence. The general constitution of the judiciary power, as delegated from the kingship, the creation of several classes of magistrates devoted to this great social function, and, especially, the strong organization and the permanence of the parliament of Paris, were far more important progressions in the development of civil order and society in France. But it was to the advantage of absolute power that all these facts were turned, and the perverted ability of Philip the Handsome consisted in working them for that single end. He was a profound egotist; he mingled with his imperiousness the leaven of craft and patience, but he was quite a stranger to the two principles which constitute the morality of governments, respect for rights and patriotic sympathy with public sentiment; he concerned himself about nothing but his own position, his own passions, his own wishes, or his own fancies. And this is the radical vice of absolute power. Philip the Handsome is one of the kings of France who have most contributed to stamp upon the kingship in France this lamentable characteristic, from which France has suffered so much, even in the midst of her glories, and which, in our time, was so grievously atoned for by the kingship itself when it no longer deserved the reproach.

Philip the Handsome left three sons, Louis X., called le Hutin (the Quarreller), Philip V., called the Long, and Charles IV., called the Handsome, who, between them, occupied the throne only thirteen years and ten months. Not one of them distinguished himself by his personal merits; and the events of the three reigns hold scarcely a higher place in history than the actions of the three kings do. Shortly before the death of Philip the Handsome, his greedy despotism had already excited amongst the people such lively discontent that several leagues were formed in Champagne, Burgundy, Artois, and Beauvaisis, to resist him; and the members of these leagues, "nobles and commoners," say the accounts, engaged to give one another mutual support in their resistance, "at their own cost and charges." After the death of Philip the Handsome, the opposition made head more extensively and effectually; and it produced two results: ten ordinances of Louis the Quarreller for redressing the grievances of the feudal aristocracy, for one; and, for the other, the trial and condemnation of Enguerrand de Marigny "coadjutor and rector of the kingdom" under Philip the Hand-some. Marigny, at the death of the king his master, had against him, rightly or wrongly, popular clamor and feudal hostility, especially that of Charles of Valois, Philip the Handsome's brother, who acted as leader of the barons. "What has become of all those subsidies, and all those sums produced by so much tampering with the coinage?" asked the new king one day in council. "Sir," said Prince Charles, "it was Marigny who had the administration of everything; and it is for him to render an account." "I am quite ready," said Marigny. "This moment, then," said the prince. "Most willingly, my lord: I gave a great portion to you." "You lie!" cried Charles. "Nay, you, by God!" replied Marigny. The prince drew his sword, and Marigny was on the point of doing the same. The quarrel was, however, stifled for the moment; but, shortly afterwards, Marigny was accused, condemned by a commission assembled at Vincennes, and hanged on the gibbet of Montfaucon which he himself, it is said, had set up. He walked to execution with head erect, saying to the crowd, "Good folks, pray for me." Some months afterwards, the young king, who had indorsed the sentence reluctantly, since he did not well know, between his father's brother and minister, which of the two was guilty, left by will a handsome legacy to Marigny's widow "in consideration of the great misfortune which had befallen her and hers;" and Charles of Valois himself, falling into a decline, and considering himself stricken by the hand of God "as a punishment for the trial of Enguerrand de Marigny," had liberal alms distributed to the poor with this injunction: "Pray God for Euguerrand de Marigny and for the Count of Valois." None can tell, after this lapse of time, whether this remorse proceeded from weakness of mind or sincerity of heart, and which of the two personages was really guilty; but, ages afterwards, such is the effect of blind, popular clamor and unrighteous judicial proceedings, that the condemned lives in history as a victim and all but a guileless being.

Whilst the feudal aristocracy was thus avenging itself of kingly tyranny, the spirit of Christianity was noiselessly pursuing its work, the general enfranchisement of men. Louis the Quarreller had to keep up the war with Flanders, which was continually being renewed; and in order to find, without hateful exactions, the necessary funds, he was advised to offer freedom to the serfs of his domains. Accordingly he issued, on the 3d of July, 1315, an edict to the following effect: "Whereas, according to natural right, every one should be born free, and whereas, by certain customs which, from long age, have been introduced into and preserved to this day in our kingdom . . . many persons amongst our common people have fallen into the bonds of slavery, which much displeaseth us; we, considering that our kingdom is called and named the kingdom of the Free (Franks), and willing that the matter should in verity accord with the name . . . have by our grand council decreed and do decree that generally throughout our whole kingdom . . . such serfdoms be redeemed to freedom, on fair and suitable conditions . . . and we will, likewise, that all other lords who have body-men (or serfs) do take example by us to bring them to freedom." Great credit has very properly been given to Louis the Quarreller for this edict; but it has not been sufficiently noticed that Philip the Handsome had himself set his sons the example, for, on confirming the enfranchisement granted by his brother Charles to the serfs in the countship of Valois, he had based his decree on the following grounds: "Seeing that every human being, which is made in the image of Our Lord, should generally be free by natural right." The history of Christian communities is full of these happy inconsistencies; when a moral and just principle is implanted in the soul, absolute power itself does not completely escape from its healthy influence, and the good makes its way athwart the evil, just as a source of fresh and pure water ceases not to flow through and spread over a land wasted by the crimes or follies of men.

It is desirable to give an idea and an example of the conduct which was already beginning to be adopted and of the authority which was already beginning to be exercised in France, amidst the feudal reaction that set in against Philip the Handsome and amidst the feeble government of his sons, by that magistracy, of such recent and petty origin, which was called upon to defend, in the king's name, order and justice against the count-less anarchical tyrannies scattered over the national territory. During the early years of the fifteenth century, a lord of Gascony, Jordan de Lisle, "of most noble origin, but most ignoble deeds," says a contemporary chronicler, "abandoned himself to all manner of irregularities and crimes." Confident in his strength and his connections,—for Pope John XXII. had given his niece to him in marriage,—"he committed homicides, entertained evil-doers and murderers, countenanced robbers, and rose against the king. He killed, with the man's own truncheon, one of the king's servants who was wearing the royal livery according to the custom of the royal servants. When his misdeeds were known, he was summoned for trial to Paris; and he went thither surrounded by a stately retinue of counts, nobles, and barons of Aquitaine. He was confined, at first, in the prison of Chatelet; and when a hearing had been accorded to his reply and to what he alleged in his defence against the crimes of which he was accused, he was finally pronounced worthy of death by the doctors of the parliament, and on Trinity-eve he was dragged at the tail of horses and hanged, as he deserved, on the public gallows at Paris." It was, assuredly, a difficult and a dangerous task for the obscure members of this parliament, scarcely organized as it was and quite lately established for a permanence in Paris, to put down such disorders and such men. In the course of its long career the French magistracy has committed many faults; it has more than once either aspired to overstep its proper limits or failed to fulfil all its duties; but history would be ungrateful and untruthful not to bring into the light the virtues this body has displayed from its humble cradle, and the services it has rendered to France, to her security at home, to her moral dignity, to her intellectual glory, and to the progress of her civilization with all its brilliancy and productiveness, though it is still so imperfect and so thwarted.

Another fact which has held an important place in the history of France, and exercised a great influence over her destinies, likewise dates from this period; and that is the exclusion of women from the succession to the throne, by virtue of an article, ill understood, of the Salic law. The ancient law of the Salian Franks, drawn up, probably, in the seventh century, had no statute at all touching this grave question; the article relied upon was merely a regulation of civil law prescribing that "no portion of really Salic land (that is to say, in the full territorial ownership of the head of the family) should pass into the possession of women, but it should belong altogether to the virile sex." From the time of Hugh Capet heirs male had never been wanting to the crown, and the succession in the male line had been a fact uninterrupted indeed, but not due to prescription or law. Louis the Quarreller, at his death, on the 5th of June, 1316, left only a daughter, but his second wife, Queen Clemence, was pregnant. As soon as Philip the Long, then Count of Poitiers, heard of his brother's death, he hurried to Paris, assembled a certain number of barons, and got them to decide that he, if the queen should be delivered of a son, should be regent of the kingdom for eighteen years; but that if she should bear a daughter he should immediately take possession of the crown. On the 15th of November, 1316, the queen gave birth to a son, who was named John, and who figures as John I. in the series of French kings; but the child died at the end of five days, and on the 6th of January, 1317, Philip the Long was crowned king at Rheims. He forthwith summoned—there is no knowing exactly where and in what numbers—the clergy, barons, and third estate, who declared, on the 2d of February, that "the laws and customs, inviolably observed among the Franks, excluded daughters from the crown." There was no doubt about the fact; but the law was not established, nor even in conformity with the entire feudal system or with general opinion. And "thus the kingdom went," says Froissart, "as seemeth to many folks, out of the right line." But the measure was evidently wise and salutary for France as well as for the king-ship; and it was renewed, after Philip the Long died on the 3d of January, 1322, and left daughters only, in favor of his brother Charles the Handsome, who died, in his turn, on the 1st of January, 1328, and likewise left daughters only. The question as to the succession to the throne then lay between the male line represented by Philip, Count of Valois, grandson of Philip the Bold through Charles of Valois, his father, and the female line represented by Edward III., King of England, grandson, through his mother, Isabel, sister of the late King Charles the Handsome, of Philip the Handsome. A war of more than a century's duration between France and England was the result of this lamentable rivalry, which all but put the kingdom of France under an English king; but France was saved by the stubborn resistance of the national spirit and by Joan of Arc, inspired by God. One hundred and twenty-eight years after the triumph of the national cause, and four years after the accession of Henry IV., which was still disputed by the League, a decree of the parliament of Paris, dated the 28th of June, 1593, maintained, against the pretensions of Spain, the authority of the Salic law, and on the 1st of October, 1789, a decree of the National Assembly, in conformity with the formal and unanimous wish of the memorials drawn up by the states-general, gave a fresh sanction to that principle, which, confining the heredity of the crown to the male line, had been salvation to the unity and nationality of the monarchy in France.

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