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VIEWS OF FRANCE.
Besides, to prevent the suppression of the insurrections in Italy, the French would have to march through Switzerland and Piedmont, thus violating the territory of two neutral nations, and probably provoking war with one or both of the Swiss and Sardinian governments, as well as with Austria. That is to say, France, attacking Austria in behalf of the Italians, would have given the signal of a general war throughout Europe.
Meanwhile the Pope proceeded to introduce some changes in the fiscal administration of the Roman States, useful, undoubtedly, in the main, but wholly insufficient to quiet or satisfy the discontented inhabitants. Agitation still continued to pervade the Legations, although it did not reach the rest of Italy. In the midst of the disturbances, Charles Joseph, King of Sardinia, died, to be succeeded by the Prince of Carignan, who, by some strange accident, had found himself at the head of the Piedmontese constitutional party in 1821, but who now retained none of the liberal propensities, by which he was then distinguished. The advance of the Austrian troops into Romagna filled with disquietude all those, who, desiring peace in Europe, anxiously apprehended war at every military demonstration on the part of either of the great powers; but these expectations were not realized; for the Austrian troops returned, after having accomplished their object, without giving to France time or opportunity for warlike interposition, had the disposition to undertake this existed. Nevertheless, the example of such open disregard, by Austria, of the principle of non-intervention, was not without its effect upon the King of the French.
This appeared in a measure, which nothing but the peculiar circumstances of Italy, and the peculiar relation of France towards it, could have
prompted or defended. On the 22nd of February '1832, a considerable body of French troops was disembarked at Ancona, and proceeded to take possession of the citadel, in spite of the remonstrances and opposition of the Papal authorities. It was a significant intimation to Austria that the game of intervention had two sides; and that France was not disposed to see her rule in Romagna as she did in Lombardy and Venice. Yet what could so small a force as 1500 men effect, in case of war, against the numerous army of the Austrians in upper Italy? Clearly nothing; and little else, indeed, in time of peace, except, in aiding the Pope in the preservation of order, to see at the same time that the preservation of order was not made the pretext of persecuting and tyrannizing over the people; — and then to withdraw, when the shifting lights of European policy should lead the cabinet of Louis Philippe to leave the Italians to conduct their own affairs.
What may be in store for Italy, at the present time, it is impossible to predict. Her political condition can change only with one of those great convulsions, which from time to time agitate the whole European Republic. The iron hand of Austria is too heavy upon her, for the regeneration of Italy to take place in front of such combinations of conservative influence, as now pervade and control the Peninsula, from Piedmont to Calabria. It is the darling hope, of the Italians, to see the different States of their beautiful country united in a well devised federal league, adapted to their own situation, and built upon those principles of representative freedom, which are so nobly exemplified in the Constitution of the United States. But there is nothing, in the present aspect of affairs, to encourage expectations of the speedy attainment of so desirable a consummation.
Germany.-Formation of the Empire.-Its Dissolution.
The German Confederation.- Constitutions.- Progress of Opinion.—Movement in Brunswick.--Saxony.--Hesse Cassel.--Hanover.-Meeting at Halbach. Proceedings of the Diet.--Austria.-Prussia.-Conclusion.
WITHOUT purposing to enter minutely into the various complicated and copious questions, which belong to the politics of the Germanic Confederation, it is needful we should briefly explain the constitution of that great alliance, and the policy which directs its rulers, not less than the spirit which actuates its people,
so far as may be pertinent to the subject of the Revolution of the Three Days.
One of the singular and remarkable devices, shall we say tricks ? — of the sovereigns of modern Europe to invest themselves with undue authority, has been to assume the name and functions of the Roman Emperors. The dignity of emperor, – in the outset merely implying the post of general, or commander in chief, of some detached body of the forces of the Republic, who received this honorary title in consequence of a victory achieved, having come, by the successful treason of the Cæsars, to signify the monarch or autocrat of Rome and all her subject states and kingdoms, it thus in process of time acquired a certain inherent solemnity in the estimation of the world. Being in its essence a mere badge of honor, like a civic garland, - being also a distinction conferred of free will by the governed upon the governors, the salutation of the soldiers addressed to their chief, -and whatever peculiar power subsequently atVOL, II.
tached to the name being solely the result of military usurpation, it is evident that the possession of the name, whether obtained by hereditary descent, by the voice of the soldiers or people, or by the spontaneous assumption of the holder, could not of itself confer any legitimacy of title to supreme or exclusive command. So far as the Emperor was, in fact, or by any right derived from the express or implied assent of the people of the Empire, their chief magistrate, the depositary of the common authority for the common good, his rank and his power were entitled to consideration. But when the Barbarians broke in upon the Empire, rent asunder its mighty fabric, and appropriated to themselves its disjointed fragments, it is clear that neither Hun, nor Vandal, nor Goth, nor Lombard, nor Frank, gained any exclusive claim to the name or functions of Emperor. or course, when the great Charles, centuries after the Invasion, - having risen by his transcendant genius to exercise dominion over nearly the
whole of Western Europe, ruling from the Saxon Elbe to the Spanish Ebro, — received consecration from Leo III as Emperor of the West (an. 800), this act was merely an expedient of the Bishop of Rome and the King of the Franks to give to power founded on brute force the semblance of power derived from established right. And yet such, in the unsophisticated fact, is the title of the German Cæsars.*
But the Roman Empire, as reconstructed by Charlemagne, was of brief duration. Twenty nine years after his death, the territory of the Empire was permanently divided by treaty into three great divisions, assigned to his grandsons Lothaire, Charles the Bald, and Louis the Germanic,children of his son Louis the Debonair. The Empire was partitioned into longitudinal sections.
* James' Life of Charlemagne.
FORMATION OF THE EMPIRE.
One portion, bounded by the sea on the west, and on the east by a line running nearly north and south, from the Mediterranean, by the Rhone, the Saône, and the Meuse to the coast of Belgium, comprising part of Spain, nearly the whole of France, and part of the Netherlands, was assigned to Charles, as King of the Franks. Another portion, consisting of the entire country east of the Rhine, fell to Louis, with the title of King of Germany. The long intermediate strip, including Italy and Switzerland, and stretching up between the Rhine on one side, and the Rhone, Saône, and Meuse on ihe other, into the Netherlands, was conferred on Lothaire, with the title of King of Italy and Emperor. After some fluctuations in the possession of this name, and of Italy,which seems to have been considered essentially connected with it, they were bothfinally fixed in the German branch by the talents of the princes of the House of Saxony, who, the family of Charlemagne having become extinct, ascended the throne by right of election, Otho the Great being formally consecrated at Rome (an. 961), and assuming the title of Cæsar Augustus.
Thus, then, we have the name of Empire and Emperor established in Germany, the Empire consisting of the original Kingdom of Germany, with such accessions as it had gained from conquest or otherwise, and the Emperor being an elective prince, deriving his power from the free suffrages of the entire German people. It was in this manner that Conrad of Franconia, on the deathof the last German prince of the family of Charlemagne, became King of Germany, as also, Henry of Saxony, and the three Othos. At this period the great feudatories of the Empire nominated the Emperor, and the people approved and confirmed the nomination. Thus it was that Lothaire II