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of Orange, whom he reproached as the prompter of the addresses for the removal of the Spanish troops with which the states of the Flemish provinces had lately importuned him. The prince answered humbly, that these addresses flowed from the spontaneous feelings of the states. Philip, in a transport of rage, replied, “Not the states, but thou, thou, thou!"*

Notwithstanding the warnings of his most faithful and experienced counsellors, Philip, in 1565, resolved on introducing into the Netherlands the most grievous part of the Spanish system, the holy inquisition, of which he believed that he had sufficiently proved the efficacy, for the extirpation of heretics, by his successful employment of it in Spain. The council of the Netherlands entreated that the king would suspend the execution of his orders to this effect, on the ground that the establishment of this new tribunal would be destructive of the jurisdiction of the ancient courts, and an infraction of the fundamental laws. These remonstrances were in vain; but the manifest designs of Philip excited the same alarm, and roused the people to the same resistance, which fears from the projects of the holy league had produced in France. The nobility confederated in 1566 against the inquisition. They petitioned Margaret of Parma, the governess of the Netherlands, to obtain security against this tremendous tribunal. A great crowd, who attended count Louis of Nassau, in the presentation of the petition to the governess at Brussels, were sneered at by the courtiers as Beggarst, on account of the torn apparel of some of their numbers. The courtiers lived to regret their insolence, and their sarcastic name was adopted as a title

* Mémoires de la Hollande, par Aubrey Dumaurier, 9. Paris, 1668. Vander Wynkt, Troubles des Pays Bas, i. 102. I find no mention of this conversation in Van Meteren, Wagenaar, or Grotius. It has not, however, the appearance of forgery. The English language has no corresponding pronoun of contempt for the Spanish "vos." I have been obliged to render it in the French idiom, which is known to most readers. In that language, tutoyer, "to thee and thou," is a term of disparagement. Every one knows that "you" is employed as a second person singular; and that “thou," when it is not a poetical term, is sometimes employed by playful fondness, but generally denotes a deeper veneration than can be reasonably felt towards imperfect beings.

+ Gueux.

of honour by the enemies of the inquisition. The confederated nobles fortified themselves in monasteries deserted by the monks. The protestant populace, more unresisted and more indiscriminately than in France, assailed and destroyed the churches on account of the images deemed idolatrous, which in their eyes profaned these sacred edifices. A general confusion appeared to threaten these provinces, while the most formidable of enemies was about to enter the country with forces sufficient to exterminate heretics, and to reduce the mutinous Belgians to irretrievable servitude.

The duke de Feria, who had been ambassador in England, was proposed by the moderate party for the command in Flanders. The choice of a commander in Flanders was considered so decisive of the policy likely to be adopted, that the prince of Eboli, the most popular of royal favourites *, ventured to represent to Philip the peril which might attend the appointment of Alva. The inflexible Philip, according to his custom, made no answer. Alva's conversation on the heretical provinces was always harsh, and often savoured of blood. The poignancy of his language, and his use of national proverbs, caused his cruel phrases to be generally circulated, easily remembered, and never forgiven. The sentence in which he expressed, at Bayonne, his preference of the murder of chiefs to the massacre of multitudes, that one salmon's head was worth a thousand frogs," is mentioned by nearly all contemporaries. He was rumoured in Flanders to have spoken of his expedition as if it were like one of those invasions to exterminate the natives of America, which had dishonoured the Spanish name. As soon as these circumstances were noised abroad, industry and wealth began to seek an asylum in other lands. An emigration began of protestant manufacturers and capitalists, chiefly to England; which Alva's subsequent measures increased to such an extent, that the ancient opulence and commerce of the Flemish towns disappeared. When the


* Herrera calls him speio de privados-the mirror of favourites.

employers abandoned their country, the unemployed workmen resorted to the camp of the insurgents, where they took revenge on those whose tyranny had caused their ruin.*

The troops of Alva were accounted the best disciplined, and his officers the most skilful, that the modern world had seen. The sixty years which had passed over his head had enriched his experience without abating his enterprise, and still more without weakening his determination. The resistance of the ploughmen of Brabant, the woollen manufacturers of Flanders, and the herring-fishers of Holland to so great a captain, at the head of a veteran army, seemed rather an object of derision, than of the slightest apprehension.

The appointment of a commissary-general, and the choice of Serbelloni, a distinguished officer, to command the ordnance in this army, indicated remarkable progress in the art of war. The quality and size of their muskets, which were such as had never been seen in the Netherlands, at once manifested their superior science, and aided their physical power. The old officers of Charles V., who had served and conquered in every country from Tunis to the Elbe, were Alva's lieutenants. He confined himself to 9000 chosen men of the renowned Spanish infantry, and to a select body of 1200 cavalry, because they were better fitted for so long a march than a larger mass, and because they were a stock on which recruits might be safely and easily engrafted in the Burgundian provinces. This army began its march from Asti in the beginning of July, 1567; and, having crossed Mont Cenis, marched through Savoy, the free country of Burgundy, and Lorraine, to the frontiers of the provinces of Luxemburg and Namur, which it reached in the end of August, after having been reinforced on its march, at Thionville, by Austrian auxiliaries under count Mansfield. The advance of military science was manifested by Alva's rigorous enforcement of discipline before he reached the devoted territory. In their whole march through neutral domi* Vander Wynkt, i. 244-250.

nions, it was their boast that no outrage was committed but the stealing of a few sheep, for which Alva ordered three of his artillerymen to be instantly hanged. That many of the officers and soldiers on whom he most relied were Italians, is a remarkable proof of the proneness of military arts and habits to migrate from nation to nation.*

Brantôme, who went to visit his old friends in that army on the frontiers of Lorraine, tells us that the bystanders looked upon them rather as an army of generals than of soldiers t; and at the same time mentions a circumstance, in appearance almost equally incompatible with the piety of their professions, and with the ferocity of their true purpose. 66 Among them," says he,

66 were 400 courtesans on horseback, like princesses in beauty and bravery, while 800 more, not to be contemned, marched on foot." +

One of the earliest acts of Alva's government was to detach a body of troops into France to quell the huguenots, whom the alarm of his expedition had roused to arms. For a time he used the popular name of the duchess of Parma, whom he was to succeed, for the purpose of quietly occupying the fortified places, as well as to draw into his snares counts Egmont and Horn, two of the chiefs of the Netherlands, whom, with many others of the nobility, he had invited to Brussels, under pretence of a consultation on public affairs. They were imprisoned. Egmont being required to give up his sword, answered, "It has often been drawn for the king." Cardinal Granvelle, who had retired to Rome when he heard of the capture, asked whether ❝ the Taciturn" was taken? On being answered "No;" he replied, "Alva has done nothing." Such were already the terrors of the name of the prince of Orange, who was commonly called "the Taciturn." Egmont, a descendant from the ancient counts of Holland, and * Strada de Bello Belgico, lib. vi. sub initio. + Brantôme, ix. 76.

+ Ibid.

The peculiar importance of Strada terminates with the departure of the duchess of Parma, to whose papers he had access. From that time he owns that he writes from sources accessible to common industry.

Horn, the representative of the elder branch of the house of Montmorency, were considered among the Belgic patricians as second only to the prince of Orange. Both had bled and conquered for the house of Austria. In hopes of preserving peace by obtaining the redress of grievances, they had both trusted themselves to the faith and mercy of Philip, by a journey to Spain, whence they were suffered to depart; though Horn's brother, the baron de Montigny, a deputy with the same pacific object, was secretly put to death at Segovia, with or without the vain formality of a pretended trial.*

Alva, after the departure of the duchess of Parma, erected" a council of troubles," which the people called "the Council of Blood." He appointed himself to be president; but John de Vargas, the vice-president, was the chief labourer in the scenes of blood which ensued. He was an ignorant, pitiless, and brutal Spaniard, whose cruelty seems to have been the longer remembered in the Netherlands for the jumble of bad Latin with Spanish, in which it was expressed. The privy-counsellors of the Netherlands, under various pretences, escaped from the necessity of becoming members of a detestable tribunal; and Viglius, the president, a Frisian lawyer of celebrity,· took refuge from all share in the proceedings, which he foresaw, by becoming an ecclesiastic, which rendered it unlawful for him to vote in capital cases. The proscriptions of this murderous council are by catholic historians compared to those of the Roman triumvirates. Egmont and Horn, who vainly objected to the jurisdiction, were beheaded at Brussels in June, 1568. The rank and the popularity of both these noblemen so much interested all classes of men, that their death exasperated instead of intimidating the oppressed people. The emperor Maximilian had almost openly expostulated against the savage policy adopted by Alva. It was

Vander Wynkt, Troubles des Pays Bas, i. 264. A catholic historian, attached to the house of Austria, who wrote from the archives at Brussels. Van Meteren, Grotius, &c. &c.

+"Non curamus vestros privilegios," is a sample. Vander Wynkt, i. 265. 276.

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