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manding genius, and her power of arming herself with sternness, contributed much more to the same effect.

The first movement of the human mind in the sixteenth century which may be called Lutheran, was very distinguishable from the religious convulsions which afterwards ensued. The German reformation was effected by princes in form subordinate, in fact independent. As soon as the revolt of the boors was suppressed, the new religion coalesced with the established government as perfectly as the ancient faith had before done. All changes were introduced by legal authority, and the same power restrained them within their original limits. If some German states had not adopted a Calvinistic system, which gave rise to the distinction between “ Evangelicals and Reformed,” there would have been no inlet left for toleration among the rigid doctors of the Saxon reform. But after a time, being most reluctantly compelled to make common cause against the church of Rome, they very slowly learned the necessity of extending the boundaries of toleration beyond those of common belief. The principle of the Lutherans was the right of the civil ruler to reform religion, and to maintain it as it was reformed. Laws had established Lutheranism: it had been the object of negotiation, and consequently liable to some compromise. Treaties had secured the religion of each separate state. At the point where we now pause, the face of Germany was calm, and its general quiet was for many years after undisturbed.

The second religious movement, called Calvinistic, was of more popular origin, and rose in defiance of the authorities of the world. In France and the Low Countries, its principal seat, it had to struggle with bigoted sovereigns and cruel laws. The reformation was indeed every where connected with civil liberty. But among the Lutherans the connection was long invisible, and the fruits of it very slowly ripened. Among the French and Belgic Calvinists who were obliged to resist the civil as well as the ecclesiastical superiors, the connection of civil and religious liberty was no longer indirect. It forced itself on the eyes and hearts of all protestants. It had long before been foretold that a revolt against the ancient authority of the church would shake the absolute power of monarchs to its foundation. But it was not till princes became religious persecutors that persecuted subjects enquired into the source and boundaries of political power. The Calvinists resisted their monarch in order to defend themselves. The wars, whether we call them foreign or civil, were fiercer and more bloody, but especially more disorderly, lawless, and irreconcilable than those which had distracted Germany in the reign of Charles V. National attachments were more nearly dissolved. Agreement in religion grew to be the prevalent principle of union; and dissension on that subject became an incentive to hatred over which the ties of country and kindred were often unable to prevail. The protestants of France, Britain, and Belgium forgot their national jealousies amidst the fervour of religious attachment. The inquisitors of Spain embraced the leaguers of France as their brethren by a dearer tie than that of a common country. A civil war between the catholic and protestant factions spread over a considerable portion of Europe. Germany was restrained by the circumstances which have been mentioned. Italy was enslaved by Spain. Elizabeth, after she had suppressed all hostility in Great Britain, brought the whole of the united strength of her people to the aid of the continental protestants.

Her first exertions, conformably to the maxims of her policy at that time, were limited and guarded. Something has already been said of the proscriptive edicts of Henry II. against the protestants, who were termed huguenots in France, from a German word used in Switzerland, which signifies bound to each other by oaths.* The house of Bourbon led the huguenots, the house of Lorrain was at the head of the catholics. In the spring of 1560 the protestants, with other chiefs who were weary of the domination of the princes of Lorrain, were detected in a plan of revolt for taking the infant king out of the hands of the Guises, and for expelling that foreign family from the administration of France; which their opponents punished as a conspiracy to establish Calvinism on the ruins of the catholic religion, and to substitute for monarchy a republican confederacy like that of the Helvetic body. Hence arose the executions, or, as the sufferers with reason called it, the massacre of Amboise; one of those daring and atrocious measures from which sanguine hopes are entertained by furious partisans, but of which the sequel is generally most crowded with difficulties, and the event often most disastrous.

* Eidgenossen - Conjurati.

The revenge of the victors was peculiarly barbarous. A few strokes of the description of it will suffice to characterise the opening of these unhappy wars. Orders were issued to put to death every man taken on the high roads in arms. As few then journeyed without arms, most of the travelling traders were robbed and murdered. Of those who were hurried through some forms of trial, some were hanged by night to the pinnacles of the castle ; others, bound hand and foot, were thrown into the river, which as it passed the town seemed to be swelled by blood. The roads, says the historian, struck the eye with horror by the forest of gibbets through which they appeared to pass. Villemongey, a protestant, as he was about to die, dipping his hands in the blood of his friends who perished before him, lifted them up to heaven, and exclaimed,- “ This, O God! is the innocent blood of thy martyrs for which thou wilt visit their destroyers.' It is a terrible feature of savage manners, that the ladies of the court carried on their accustomed gaieties amidst these scenes of horror.

Some time afterwards the slaughter of Vassy, one of the accidental meetings of parties resolved on each other's destruction, foreboded more surely the approach of civil

Guise, on his march at the head of a great armed retinue, had stopped at Vassy, a small town on the


* Thuan, i 830, &c.


borders of Champagne, where a considerable congregation of the reformers were assembled for the purpose of worship. The insolent and bigoted followers of the prince appear to have taken fire at the Calvinistic worship. An armed scuffle ensued, which terminated in a cruel slaughter of the undisciplined and ill-armed huguenots; and which all French protestants, with an exaggeration inevitable in a moment of such violence, considered as an assault on their worship, and a foretaste of the doom which awaited themselves.

In the summer of 1562 the first civil war burst forth. The protestants were most formidable in the opulent and maritime province of Normandy, where the new opinions had struck a deep root. As a revolt against a regent, though directed against the royal authority, could hardly be aimed at the royal person, it became easy to represent this war, in which both parties called themselves royalists, as a contest between the prince of Condé and the duke of Guise. Hence arose the plausibility of Elizabeth's interference in support of her fellow religionists. * By this treaty, which professed to be for the defence of the faithful subjects of the king of France against the Guisian faction, Havre was surrendered to Elizabeth, who was to garrison it with 3000 men, and to supply 3000 more for the defence of Rouen and Dieppe. The war was short. It was closed, in March, 1563, by a convention at Amboise, which left the huguenot party in a worse condition than that in which they had been under the former edicts.

The English were expelled from Havre in autumn, 1563, by the protestants to whose aid they had come; and a definitive treaty of peace was concluded, at Troyes, in April, 1569, between Elizabeth and Charles IX. +, in which the negotiators on the part of England, sir Thomas Smith and sir Nicholas Throgmorton, de *Traité entre Eliz. Reine d'Angleterre, le Prince de Condé, et la Ligue des Réformés, Septembre 20. 1562. Hampton Court. Dum. Corps Diplom, v. serve a higher rank than history has allotted to them among the statesmen of that extraordinary age.

+ Dumont, v. 1. 126.


The most memorable event which occurred during these hostilities was the assassination of the duc de Guise; a hero and a renowned captain ; who seems to have been sincere in his religion, and whose sense of public duty was not entirely swallowed up by faction and ambition. The maxims of tyrannicide began to steal into the minds of both parties. Poltrot, a protestant, put Guise to death, at the siege of Orleans ; probably actuated more by a fanatical hatred of the oppressor of his faith, than yielding to the supposed suggestions of the admiral Coligny, as catholic writers are prone to believe. In a case where escape was nearly impossible, it is not easy to conceive how such a deed could be proposed ; and if there were any human virtues which could resist the violent passions of civil dissensions, the accounts of Coligny, transmitted to us by those who were not his friends, might authorise us to conclude that he could not be the man. says Brantôme,“ prudent, deliberate, addicted to mature counsels, brave, weighing every circumstance, and loving honour and virtue above all things besides.

The atrocity of the warfare sprung partly from the object of the contending parties, which were so irreconcilable as long as toleration was unknown, that neither could aim at any thing short of the destruction of the other ; partly from the circumstance that legal authority was altogether on the side of one faction ; in some degree, perhaps, from the proneness of the French nation to enter into the feelings and to catch the passions of their fellows, to which, as they owe many amiable and shining qualities, their urbanity and pleasantry, their quickness and vivacity, their flexibility and good humour, their companionable ease and brilliant enterprise ; so, it must be owned, that they also owe a

* Cuvres de Brant. viii. 168. The language of Brantôme himself conveys most strongly the estimation in which Coligny was held :-“Un seigneur d'honneur, homme de bien, sage, mûr, avisé, politique, brave, pesant les choses, et aimant l'honneur et la vertu.”

“ He was,”

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