Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

RATTAZZI DELUDES GARIBALDI.

83

adverse parties threaten the peace of society, an illness which followed his retirement to rights and pretensions are opposed to each Caprera he appeared in the assembly and other and mar the harmony of the state. Yet after some passages of words, in which he was it must be acknowledged, on the other hand, no match for his opponents, retired from the that the Italian revolution has been conducted contest, and allowed a reconciliation, or rather with singular temper and forbearance. The an expedient truce, to be effected. Rattazzi, subversion of existing power has not been crafty, designing, but not highly capable, nor followed, as is too often the case, by an out- possessing the confidence of either party, seems burst of popular vengeance.

The extreme to have imagined he could follow the policy of views of democrats have nowhere prevailed. Cavour, and to gain the support of the revoluPublic opinion has checked the excesses of the tionary party, or “the party of action," allowed public triumph. The venerated forms of con- it to be understood that he would supply a stitutional monarchy have been associated million francs for an expedition to take Venice with the name of a prince who represents an from the Austrians. ancient and glorious dynasty. Such have been It need scarcely be said that this proposal the causes and concomitant circumstances of was seized upon with alacrity by Garibaldi, the revolution of Italy. Her majesty's govern. who not unnaturally assumed that he might ment can see no sufficient ground for the again raise volunteers for an enterprise in severe censure with which Austria, France, which he could count on the connivance, if Prussia, and Russia have visited the acts of not on the direct assistance of the government. the King of Sardinia. Her majesty's govern- But the attempt to make history repeat itself ment will turn their eyes rather to the gratify- was too hazardous. It had been already dising prospect of a people building up the edifice tinctly declared by Victor Emmanuel that no of their liberties, and consolidating the work attempt should be made against the Austrians of their independence, amid the sympathies at Venetia except by regular Italian troops, and good wishes of Europe."

and in order to avert the suspicion of proIt need scarcely be said that this despatch moting the enrolment of volunteers for such moved the gratitude both of Cavour and of a purpose, it was necessary to take decided Garibaldi, “who," as Earl Russell said in his measures to prevent Garibaldi from calling subsequent account of it, “with the magna- upon men to follow him. It would have been nimity of great men, instead of attributing to well if the general had submitted; but it was themselves the whole merit of rescuing Italy highly improbable that he would be satisfied to from her centuries of servitude and depression, obey without bitterly complaining of having and securing to her the blessings of indepen- been deceived and betrayed. He abandoned dence and freedom, were ever willing to ac- the attack on Venetia, but at the same time knowledge, with gratitude, the efforts made proclaimed his disappointnient, and at the inby British statesmen to help on the good stigation of the “party of action” landed in work.” It may be mentioned that several Sicily, and there raised a small undisciplined gentlemen in Milan combined to send to Earl force. He had attended a rifle meeting at Russell a token of their appreciation in the Palermo, where Prince Humbert, the eldest son shape of a beautiful marble statue, the work of Victor Emmanuel, was present, and where of Carl Romano, representing Young Italy Pallavicini, who had for years been an officer holding in her hands a diadem embossed with of the Piedmontese, was in command of the the arms of the various Italian states thence- Papal troops. There he openly announced his forward to be united in one kingdom. intention of organizing a force for the purpose

The death of Cavour, and a change of minis- of taking Rome from the French who occupied try which brought the cunning Rattazzi into it. Of course this avowal should at once have power, proved disastrous to Garibaldi. He

been denounced as illegal. It would have had been elected to the Italian parliament as been monstrous for the king, who had acquired deputy for Naples, and on his recovery from dominion over a whole territory, and whose

a

authority had been recognized and established, | Hungarian patriot, wrote a letter to the Italian to sanction the attempt of a subject to levy | journals strongly disapproving the attitude troops or to commence a war, but it was assumed by his brother patriot, and exhorting almost as monstrous to permit any initiatory the Hungarians not to lend their aid to a steps to be taken. No positive command was movement which, by bringing Italy into collisent to Garibaldi to cease at once from any sion with France, would tend to rivet afresh preparation for hostilities; and it was not till the manacles from which the people had been Rattazzi saw to what a fatal termination his freed. But the mischief had been done so far former indirect encouragement was likely to as injury to Garibaldi himself was concerned. lead, that the government found itself com- Cialdini had stipulated that he should be pelled to resort to force to prevent a calamity allowed to choose the troops who were to be which would never have threatened but for sent against his former friend and comrade, the weakness and duplicity of the minister. and he intrusted the capture of the general At any sacrifice of feeling, and even at the to Pallavicini and his Bersaglieri or sharpexpense of appearing dishonourable, it was shooters. It was believed that Garibaldi essential that the followers of the “liberator" would lead his men to the mountains of the should not be suffered to come into conflict Tyrol rather than submit. As the regular with the French troops. Garibaldi had crossed troops advanced it became evident that they to Calabria, where he expected to raise a were in force, and that they had been so disforce large enough to march on Rome and posed as to endeavour to prevent his retreat, expel the French garrison. Only a few but it was equally certain that he had no inweeks earlier, Victor Emmanuel had been tention of giving them battle. From the first expressing his gratitude to Napoleon III. for moment while he was looking at them througli “a careful act of kindness” in sending a his glass he repeatedly gave orders to his men French fleet to Naples for his protection and not to fire, and the order was repeated by his for “sympathy for the cause of Italy.” Prince officers and by sound of trumpet all down Napoleon, too, had visited the king at Naples the line. The Bersaglieri, however, comand had afterwards been to Sicily, where the menced firing, and Garibaldi himself was troops at Messina had marched past his hotel wounded in the thigh by a spent ball, and and shouts were raised by the people of “Long more seriously in the ankle by a bullet which live the defender of Italy! Long live France !” struck with full force. He stood erect for a Shortly before that day 35,000 Italians had moment, shouted “ Long live Italy!” again sent a memorial to the English government called out “Do not fire,” and then was carried asking for its influence in inducing the French to a short distance, where he lay beneath some to relinquish the occupation of Rome. It was trees and began to smoke a cigar vigorously till not till he reached Aspromonte that Garibaldi his foot could be attended to by the surgeon. found himself opposed by the royal troops- His son, Menotti, was brought in also with a a battalion of Bersaglieri. Several officers of wound in his leg, and several others were the army bad thrown up their commissions injured. In one part of the live the Garibalrather than obey orders to fight against the dians had returned the fire of the troops and chief who had done so much for Italy. It a skirmish took place, which was, however, was necessary to take immediate measures, for quickly ended. Friends, old comrades, relathe people were becoming excited and were tives met as the two forces approached. It clamouring against France. At the same time was a scene of regret and of mutual and sorrowthe true friends of Italian liberty saw how ful reproaches. Pallavicini came bareheaded deplorable had been the error into which and with every token of respect to the place Garibaldi had fallen. Opinions were every- where the wounded chief lay. For a very where conflicting, but while Russia came in short time people wondered what would be with an offer of “moral support” to Victor | done with Garibaldi. What could be done Emmanuel in the cause of order, Kossuth, the with him? He was carried to Spezzia to the FAILURE OF ATTEMPT TO LIBERATE ROME.

85

fort of Varigliano, only to be released after a on Rome had been a grievous error,

which was nominal imprisonment. In a few days it was obscured if not obliterated in the pain and the possible to remove him to Caprera, where the pity that were felt not only in Italy but sympathies of his countrymen and of thousands throughout Europe at the event at Asproof others in England, France, and Europe, monte. It has been truly said that had Garireached him. Our concern took a practical baldi been wrecked on the voyage after his shape, and Mr. Partridge, an English surgeon, crowning glory at Naples, or had he reached was sent to Italy to attend him and to extract Caprera with an unshaken determination never the ball from his foot, a task which was diffi- to revisit the mainland, his achievements would cult and tedious. He eventually recovered, have gone down to posterity as a myth hardly however, and though he still suffered from second to the deeds of the ancient demigods; rheumatism and from the results of his wound, but he was elected a deputy, met opponents was able to visit London in 1864 at the invi- in parliament, quarrelled and even squabbled tation of the Duke of Sutherland and a num- with those for whom he was no match in what ber of friends who desired to give him fresh is sometimes called debate, and persisted in assurances of the sympathy and admiration of the opinion that he could somewhere and the English people. The people, that is to say somehow repeat the triumphs that had only the largest proportion of the population, were been possible and could only be possible once eager to show him honour. His appearance in a lifetime. The very simplicity and unin the streets became a public triumph, the selfishness of the man,-qualities which had enthusiasm was tremendous, and though for wrought wonders,-made him the tool of ill a time a number of the leaders of society kept advisers and led him to attempts that ended critically aloof, they were in a minority, and in humiliation and defeat. either from a dislike to appearing singular, In 1864 the seat of the Italian government or because they were unable to withstand the was removed to Florence, and as the idea of obinfluence of the common excitement, became taining Rome seemed to have been abandoned, even more exuberant in their praises and more France agreed to withdraw the garrison. In exacting in their hospitalities than those who 1866 the war between Prussia and Austria, of had first received the “hero” whose picture which we shall have a little to say presently, was in every shop window. Garibaldi was so gave Garibaldi an opportunity of manifesting overwhelmed by a popularity, the violent de- his undying hostility to the tyrants of Italy, and monstrations of which he had neither courted as the soldier of the king he headed a force of nor desired, that his health began to suffer, several thousand volunteers and ineffectually and it was found necessary to enable him to endeavoured to force his way into the Southern escape from his titled and aristocratic admirers Tyrol. He was kept at bay by the Austrian who would have killed him with receptions, rifles, and after defeat at Custozza was comdinners, and deputations. After a short stay, pelled to fall back, sick and wounded, and to therefore, he re-embarked in the Duke of return once more to Caprera. His joy when the Sutherland's yacht and went back to the farm war ended, and one of its results was the liberain his solitary island, grateful for all the tion of Venetia and its reunion with Italy, was sympathy of which he had been the object, probably little affected by the fact that he but glad to be once more in a position to re- had been unable to take a leading part in the member it at a safe distance.

achievement. He was too high-minded and Garibaldi’s day was done, so far as actively therefore had too little self-consciousness for effective service of his country was concerned. that, but he was too easily ensnared in the It might have been better if the “Sword of toils laid by Rattazzi, who, returning to power Italy” had not been again unsheathed. Deeds in 1867, again attempted to imitate Cavour's heroic in themselves lose their force and value subtle sagacity by an exercise of easily deif they are the consequence of perverse or tected cunning. Cavour had, at great risk, mistaken enthusiasm. The attempt to march surmounted the difficulty of at once promoting

was over.

and appearing to restrain an insurrection. found himself opposed not only to the much He had made an edge-tool of Garibaldi, and larger forces of the Papal army, but to French but for his own energy and adroitness his own battalions sent for the rescue and protection of hand would have been seriously wounded and the pope and commanded by De Failly. All Italy maimed. As it was, Garibaldi, first

Wounded alike in body and in secretly encouraged and then ostentatiously soul and sick at heart, the hero went once checked, had added Southern to Northern more to his solitary island like a broken eagle Italy and united the kingdom for Victor to its eyrie, and again after three years saw Emmanuel. Cavour stopped short at Venetia Rome,--to restore which he would have given and at Rome. Rattazzi, now that Venetia had his life,taken after a brief struggle, by the fallen again into the lap of Italy, began to Italian army and made the true capital of repeat the tactics which had before brought United Italy, while he had no hand in the himself as well as Garibaldi to grief, and the achievement, and the French emperor who victim of Aspromonte was again fired with had so long prevented it was rushing on his ready enthusiasm at the cry of “Rome for fate at Sedan. Italy,”—was again caught in the net which cun- Reference has already been made to an ning folly had spread for him. Rome had been Irish brigade formed for the protection of the relieved of the French garrison and was sup- Papal territory, and in this association the posed to be comparatively defenceless. If the

name of Mr. Pope Hennessey will occur to minister could only excite an attempt to seize some readers. Mr. Pope Hennessey, who, upon the capital, and could at the same time with Sir George Bowyer, was an ardent supappear to be strenuously opposing it, he might porter of the Papal authority in Italy, had achieve the desire of the extreme party, and occupied the office of a civil clerk in the couneither deceive Napoleon III. or so awaken cil office, and was afterwards returned for his sympathies for the Italian cause as to pre- King's County. As an Irish Roman Catholic vent his effectual interference.

This was

of the extreme school-the Ultramontanists, Rattazzi's absurd attempt to imitate Cavour. as men of his way of thinking were then There was no difficulty in raising volunteers, called he had been conspicuous in the forand arms were ready to be distributed. Menotti mation of the Irish Brigade, which irreverent Garibaldi was on the borders of the diminished | jesters had nicknamed “the Pope's Brass Papal States enlisting men. Garibaldi him- Band," and he was of course opposed to the self was at Genoa almost as soon as he heard course taken by the government in relation to that the farce of 1862 was to be forgotten in a Italian independence, since he sympathized repetition of the original drama of 1860. He with the King of Naples and regarded Gariwent from Genoa to Florence, his addresses to baldi as a bandit and Victor Emmanuel as a the people were ardent and so imprudent as to robber. At all events he had the courage of be almost inexcusable if he remembered with bis convictions, for in a well-arranged and whom he had to deal. The government, dis- well-delivered speech, which lasted two hours sembling still in the eye of France, condemned and a half, he denounced the conduct of the his language, and affecting to be shocked at government, and delivered opinions which his attitude ordered his arrest and his removal were directly opposed to those of the great to Caprera, where government cruisers lay off majority of the house. As he was then only shore to watch him and prevent his escape twenty-seven years old this was an achievetill the time came for the blow to be actually ment, and though he had very few supporters struck against Rome. Then he was allowed he was listened to with something like into get off quite easily, to land at Leghorn, and to terest, or at all events without interruption; join the force mustered on the Papal frontier. but when Mr. Layard rose to reply, the house It was too late—the drama ended in a pitiful rapidly filled, and it was evident from the fiasco-in a wretched tragedy rather. When cheering which accompanied his retorts, as Garibaldi advanced with his followers he well as the remarks of Mr. Edwin James and

MR. POPE HENNESSEY AND SIR GEORGE BOWYER.

87

Sir Robert Peel, that neither Mr. Hennessey Mr. Hennessey was not without supporters nor Sir George Bowyer could bring censure who condemned both Garibaldi and Victor upon the foreign policy of the government in Emmanuel, but in the House of Commons Italian affairs. In such a debate Mr. Glad- they were few, and a tempest of applause stone naturally felt that he could not sit silent, greeted Mr. Gladstone's reply. Referring to and indeed he was entitled to some reply, if the assertions put forward, he said Sir George only for the reason that Lord Derby in the Bowyer and Mr. Hennessey had called upon House of Lords bad condemned the policy of the house to lament the foreign policy of the government towards France and Italy, the government, which they alleged was which he said placed on the people an amount founded on injustice and could not prosper; of taxation "absolutely unprecedented in time and they also said that the cause which of peace, and only made more intolerable by we favoured in Italy was the persecution of the financial freaks of the chancellor of the righteous governments. The member for exchequer.” In a speech, fervid, eloquent, Dundalk had asserted that a revolution which and almost passionate, Mr. Gladstone replied the people of England looked upon

with wonto Mr. Hennessey's accusations; and having der was the result of a wicked conspiracy commented upon the breach of faith committed carried on by an unprincipled king and a by the old King of Naples towards the people cunning minister; and that the people of in reference to the promised constitution of Naples, governed by benignant laws wisely May, 1848, characterized the reign of that administered, were devoted to their sovereign. monarch as built up by, and founded upon, a As to the courage “that miserable monarch," denial of justice and a violation of all law. Francis II., was said to have manifested durThat king's son, who had succeeded him, had ing the siege of Gaeta, Mr. Gladstone said, thrown away a splendid opportunity for im- “ It is all very well to claim consideration for pressing a glorious name upon the pages of his- him on account of his courage, but I confess tory. No one had marred a brilliant fortune I feel much more admiration for the courage more completely than the miserable and un- of the hon. member for Dundalk (Sir G. Bowhappy Francis II. But sad as were the records yer) and the hon. member for King's County of Neapolitan rule, the ecclesiastical authorities (Mr. Pope Hennessey); for I think I would of the States of the Church were still more rather live in a stout and well-built casemate fruitful of oppression and injustice. The man- listening to the whizzing of bullets and the

. ner in which the inhabitants of these States

bursting of shells, than come before a free had been handed over once to the military assembly to vindicate such a cause as that government of Austria was such, that had the which these honourable gentlemen have espeople borne it they would have been no better

poused.” than worms fit to be trodden under foot. By Both these gentlemen returned to the charge documentary evidence Mr. Gladstone proved a year later, however (in April, 1862), when the atrocities which had been committed in Sir George Bowyer violently attacked the the States of the Church and in the territory policy of the government, which he said had of the Duke of Modena; and he concluded by set up Victor Emmanuel as a French viceroy declaring that the consolidation of Italy would --made France the dominant power in Italy, be a boon not only to the Italians themselves, and broken the power of Austria, but had not but also to every power in Europe.

secured what was called the unity of Italy. To the not altogether new imputation of The kingdom of the Two Sicilies still existed,

, Lord Derby, only a practical answer was while that of Italy had only been organized necessary, and the reply was forthcoming in by France and England. He declared that the successive budgets, which, even in a time we had not made Rome the capital of Italyof difficulty and trial, were directed as much and that Rome never would be the capital of as possible to diminish pressure of taxation Italy. on articles of necessary consumption.

This was such an extraordinary statement,

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »