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weakness of its divinities, who could not defend themselves, their temples, or their sacred places. That logic was retaliated now. To many a sincere heart must many an ominous reflexion have occurred. In Western Europe there was a strong common sense which quickly caught the true position of things-a common sense that could neither be blinded nor hoodwinked. The astuteness of the Italian politicians was insufficient to conceal altogether the great fact, though it might succeed in dissembling its real significance for a time. The Europe of that day was very different from the Europe of ours. It was in its Age of Faith. Recently converted, as all recent converts do, it made its belief a living rule of action. In our times there is not upon that continent a nation which, in its practical relations with others, carries out to their consequences its ostensible, its avowed articles of belief. Catholics, Protestants, Mohammedans, they of the Greek communion, indiscriminately consort together under the expediences of the passing hour. Statesmanship has long been dissevered from religion-a fact most portentous for future times. But it was not so in the Middle Ages. Men then believed their form of faith with the same clearness, the same intensity with which they believed their own existence or the actual presence of things upon which they cast their eyes. The doctrines of the Church were to them no mere inconsequential affair, but an absolute, an actual reality, a living and a fearful thing. It would have passed their comprehension if they could have been assured that a day would come when Christian Europe, by a breath, could remove from the holy places the scandal of an infidel intruder, but, upon the whole, would consider it not worth her while to do so. How differently they acted. When, by the preaching of Peter the Hermit and his collaborators, who had received a signal from Rome, a knowledge had come to their ears of the reproach that had befallen Jerusalem and the sufferings of the pilgrims, their plain but straightforward common sense taught them at once what was the right remedy to apply, and forthwith they did apply it, and Christendom, precipitated headlong upon Effect of the the Holy Land, was brought face to face with Crusades. Mohammedanism. But what a scene awaited the zealous,
the religious barbarians—for such they truly were-when Constantinople, with its matchless splendours, came in view! What a scene when they had passed into Asia Minor, that garden of the world, presenting city after city, with palaces and edifices, the pride of twenty centuries! How unexpected the character of those Saracens, whom they had been taught, by those who had incited
of them to their enterprise, to regard as no better opinion in the than bloodthirsty tiends, but whom they found Crusaders. valiant, merciful, just! When Richard the Lion-hearted, King of England, lay in his tent consumed by a fever, there came into the camp camels laden with snow, sent by his enemy, the Sultan Saladin, to assuage his disease, the homage of one brave soldier to another. But when Richard was returning to England, it was by a Christian prince that he was treacherously seized and secretly confined. This was doubtless only one of many such incidents which had often before occurred. Even down to the meanest camp-follower, every one must have recognized the difference between what they had antici. pated and what they had found. They had seen undaunted courage, chivalrous bearing, intellectual culture far higher than their own. They had been in lands filled with the prodigies of human skill. They did not melt down into the populations to whom they returned without imparting to them a profound impression destined to make itself felt in the course of time.
But, secondly, as to the state of things in Rome. The movement into which all Europe had been thrown by these
wars brought to light the true condition of They discover the im- things in Italy as respects morality. Locomomoralities of tion in a population is followed by intellectual Italy.
development. The old stationary condition of things in Europe was closed by the Crusades. National movement gave rise to better observation, better in formation, and could not but be followed by national reflexion. And though we are obliged to speak of the European population as being in one sense in a barbarous state, it was a moral population, earnestly believing the truth of every doctrine it had been taught, and sincerely expecting that those doctrines would be carried to their
stationed by inte
practical application, and that religious profession must, as a matter of course, be illustrated by religious life. The Romans themselves were an exception to this. They had lived too long behind the scenes. Indeed, it may be said that all the Italian penirsula had emancipated itself from that delusion, as likewise certain classes in France, who had become familiar with the state of things during the residence of the popes at Avignon. It has been the destiny of Southern France to pass, on a small scale, under the same influence, and to exhibit the same results as were appointed for all Europe at last.
And now, what was it that awakening Europe found to be the state of things in Italy? I avert my eyes from looking again at the biography of the popes; it would be only to renew a scene of sin and shame. Nor can I, without injustice to truth, speak of the social condition of the inhabitants of that peninsula without relating facts which would compel my reader to turn over the page with a blush. I prefer to look at the maxims of political life which had been followed for many centuries, and which were first divulged by one of the greatest men that Italy has produced, in a work-A.D. 1513—truly characterized as a literary prodigy. Certainly nothing can surpass in atrocity the maxims therein laid down.
Machiavelli, in that work, tells us that there are three degrees of capacity among men. That one the principles understands things by his own natural powers; of Italian
statesmananother, when they are explained to him; a ship-Mathird, not at all. In dealing with these different chiavelli. classes different methods must be used. The last class, which is by far the most numerous, is so simple and weak that it is very easy to dupe those who belong to it. If they cease to believe of their own accord they ought to be constrained by force, in the application of which, though there may be considerable difficulties at first, yet, these once overcome by a sufficient unscrupulousness--veneration, security, tranquillity, and happiness will follow. That, if a prince is constrained to make his choice, it is better for him to be feared than loved; he should remember that all men are ungrateful, fickle, timid, dissembling, and selfinterested; that love depends on them, but fear depends
on him, and hence it is best to prefer the latter, which is always in his own hands. The great aim of statesmanship should be permanence, which is worth everything else, being far more valuable than freedom. That, if a man wants to ruin a republic, his proper course is to set it on bold undertakings, which it is sure to mismanage; that men, being naturally wicked, incline to good only when they are compelled ; they think a great deal more of the present than the past, and never seek change so long as they are made comfortable.
He recommends a ruler to bear in mind that, while the lower class of men may desert him, the superior will not only desert, but conspire. If such cannot with certainty be made trustworthy friends, it is very clearly necessary to put it out of their power to be enemies. Thus it may be observed that the frequent insurrections in Spain, Gaul, and Greece against the Romans were entirely due to the petty chiefs inhabiting those countries; but that, after these had been put to death, everything went on very well. Up to a certain point, it should be the grand maxim of a wise government to content the people and to manage the nobles; but that, since hatred is just as easily incurred by good actions as by bad ones, there will occasionally arise the necessity of being wicked in order to maintain power, and, in such a case, there should be no hesitation; for, though it is useful to persevere in the path of rectitude while there is no inconvenience, we should deviate from it at once if circumstances so advise. A prudent prince ought not keep his word to his own injury; he ought to bear in mind that one who always endeavours to act as duty dictates necessarily insures his own destruction; that new obligations never extinguish the memory of former injuries in the minds of the superior order of men; that liberality, in the end, generally insures more enemies than friends; that it is the nature of mankind to become as much attached to one by the benefits they render as by the favours they receive; that, where the question is as to the taking of life or the confiscation of property, it is useful to remember that men forget the death of their relatives, but not the loss of their patrimony; that, if cruelties should become expedient, they should be com
mitted thoroughly and but once-it is very im politic to resort to them a second time; that there are three ways of deciding any contest-by fraud, by force, or by law, and a wise man will make the most suitable choice; that there are also three ways of maintaining control in newlyconquered states that have once been free-by ruining them, by inhabiting them, or by permitting them to keep their own laws and to pay tribute. Of these the first will often be found the best, as we may see from the history of the Romans, who were experienced judges of such cases. That, as respects the family of a rival but conquered sovereign, the greatest pains should be taken to extinguish it completely; for history proves, what many fabulous traditions relate, that dangerous political consequences have originated in the escape of some obscure or insignificant member; that men of the highest order, who are, therefore, of sound judgment—who seek for actual social truths for their guidance rather than visionary models which never existed-will conform to the decisions of reason, and never be influenced by feelings of sentiment, unless it is apparent that some collateral advantage will arise from the temporary exhibition thereof; and that they will put a just estimate on the delusions in which the vulgar indulge, casting aside the so-called interventions of Divine Providence, which are, in reality, nothing more than the concatenation of certain circumstances following the ordinary law of cause and effect, but which, by interfering with the action of each other, have assumed a direction which the judgment of the wisest could not have foreseen.
Europe has visited with its maledictions the great political writer by whom these atrocious maxims have been recommended, forgetting that his offence consists not in inventing, but in divulging them. His works thus offer the purest example we possess of physical statesmanship. They are altogether impassive. He views the management of a state precisely as he might do the construction of a machine, recommending that such a wheel or such a lever should be introduced, his only inquiry being whether it will accomplish his intention. As to any happiness or misery it may work, he gives