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terous notion that the Italian princes have leagued together, at the instigation of Austria, to govern ill, in order that the superior administration of the Lombard provinces might be more conspicuous. The truth, however-though we too make our adınission with reluctance-must be told-it is extremely difficult to find among Italians a sufficient quantity of the sober and homely qualities necessary for administrative justice. The reason of this is to be sought rather in their history, perhaps, than in their lively impressible character; but at present we are only concerned with ihe fact. If the German acts too uniformly with the passionless, unreflecting regularity of a machine, the Italian can with difficulty be made to understand the apathetic, impartial consistency of the law; and the consequence is, that with the mass of the people the German government is infinitely more popular than that of their native sovereigns. We would wish to be clearly understood : we inean that the government is respected as just and impartial, while the persons of the Germans are certainly disliked—disliked, perhaps, as much for some of the most respectable points of their national character, as for its defects. The foreign rule, indeed, is much resented amongst the upper and those of the middle classes who think that under other systems they should be esteemed and employed; but the mass of the people look on that with considerable indifference. As foreigners the Germans, no doubt, are disliked by them also ; but in the sight of a Lombard, the Piedmontese, the Tuscan, and the Roman are equally foreigners; nor bas this sceling of disunion in the least diminished, however much party writers have agreed to misrepresent the state of public opinion. The nobility of Italy, generally idle and insignificant, and too often dissipated, have little command over the respect or the sympathy of the lower classes. The landowners, known only through their agents, have no hold on the affections of their peasantry. The priests, by principle and by interest, are attached to their princes, and their influence is generally enlisted on the side of authority. So very cold, however, is the feeling in every part of the social body to their governors, that we have seen dynasties changed and principalities severed and united without a murmur, and almost without an observation. The revolution in Piedmont in 1820, so discreditable to all that were engaged in it, is a proof of this. A few discontented and ambitious persons, tampering with lukewarm or disaffected troops, were able to force one prince to abdicate and to instal another in his place. As far as any popular sentiment was manilested at all, it was favourable towards the late sovereign, Victor Emanuel. The provisional government, regarded by the people with surprise rather than with favour, existed without support,
and was overthrown without resistance. None of the peasantry, and few of the towns-people, took any part in the struggle.
In Lombardy there is too much substantial comfort for the existence of general discontent, and if the crisis should arrive, it will be found that careless landlords and tyrannical stewards are objects of greater dislike than the phlegmatic Germans. The administration of justice is entirely unimpeachable ; nor could we name an executive government more free from abuses. Many causes have contributed to mislead opinion in England on this point. The stranger is disgusted at first by the existence of a custom-house (an institution which the English have no particular title to cavil at); he is irritated by the formal demands of the German sergeant, and complains of his stupidity, because he himself cannot explain his meaning. On entering the city, he is in the hands of a valet-de-place, who is in nine cases out of ten a ruined adventurer, and who has no need to be told that abuse of authority is usually popular with an Englishman ; he therefore indulges his own spleen, and gratifies his employer, by abuse of the Germans. The same gentleman takes up a French newspaper, where he finds the editor (who cannot forget the ejection of his countrymen) eloquent in abuse of Austria and the woes of Italy: accordingly the stupidity of the Germans, the hatred of the Italians towards them, and the general sympathy of Europe, become favourite themes with our tourist, and are noted down in his journal, to be spread abroad as far as his opportunities permit
. Those only who have lived in Lombardy can be aware of the good faith and honesty, the patience and forbearance of these much-belied Germans. But, however it may be concealed, the Austrians are the objects of attack to all Italian liberals, and to those who espouse their cause; and it is on a very simple principle that they are systematically represented as universally detested.
The Papal government, which by common consent has hitherto been admitted to contain most abuses, is, however, thoroughly Italian, and in it are illustrated all the defects of the Italian character, for though the Pope himself is rarely a Roman, and his advisers may be natives of other districts, they are invariably Italians-but it is also a government of priests, of childless men, of persons who at best have but a life interest in the state, whose office depends solely on the life of their patron; whose object it is, therefore, to make a rapid fortune for themselves and their families while the opportunity lasts. This is a defect common in some degree to all elective governments; but that of the Pope has others peculiarly its own. Its jealousy and its weakness have made it repress the energies of its lay subjects; while it has
always found its interest in the rivalities of foreign princes and in the discord of its neighbours. Macchiavelli felt and deplored this evil; the pretensions of the Church, he perceived, must ever be a barrier to the freedom of Italy; he thought it possible, however, to make them subservient to this end, by appealing to the family pride of the reigning pontiff. Could a vast sovereignty be accumulated in the house of Medicis, the support of the Pope (a member of that family) would be secured, and the minor states might by degrees be absorbed in the larger monarchy. The character of Lorenzo, the favoured prince to be placed in this elevated position, promised but little; his successors, however, might be less feeble than himself—and by these means national independence might be secured, if civil liberty (of which he despaired) were to be sacrificed. The constant complaint of that profound politician is the want of public spirit in his countrymen—their want of virtue and disinterestedness. This lovely country,' he exclaims, 'is given as a prey to the spoiler, to the dissolute Frenchman, the rapacious Spaniard, and the mercenary Swiss—but worst of all! it is the Italians themselves that have abandoned their paradise to these demons!'
The restoration of the nationality of Italy has been the cry of her patriots in every age. It is now revived, and its herald and champion is the sovereign whose political existence is its greatest obstacle, and who, whatever may be his personal character, will ultimately be most opposed to it. The abuses of the Papal government had reached a point that called imperiously for reform, and, on his elevation, Pius IX. acceded to the general wish; it would not have been in his power, had it been his inclination, to continue the system of Gregory XVI.—that system, indeed, must have fallen had Gregory himself lived a short time longer. It is not, then, the projected reforms of Pius that we blame- we admit reforms to have been necessary; but some of his errors we believe he must himself have already discovered. The liberty of the press in Rome was usurped rather than accorded; but the Pope would have judged more wisely in using his influence to curb its licence than in contenting himself with being the object of its idolatry. The difficulties of his position were numerous; had he possessed all the talents and virtues that have been attributed to him, and had he found all the agents of government as disinterested as patriots are supposed to be by poets, his difficulties would not still have been surmounted. His practical reforms have hitherto, in fact, been few; the misgovernment of ages is not to be amended by the flattering exhortations of a wellmeaning prince, nor by the declamations of the Lentuli and the Gracchi of a newspaper. But we are afraid that a prodigious
difficulty has been needlessly created by the quarrel with Austria
-most ill-timed, and which might certainly have been avoided; and that the policy of the Pope, or rather, we should say at once, the desire of innovation fostered by his imprudence, has spread a general distrust and anxiety throughout Italy—a vague indefinite discontent, which will not be quieted till serious calamities have been inflicted.
To give any intelligible outline of the state of Italy and of the Popedom at this moment, it will be necessary to take a retrospect: but we need not go into the invasion of the French, their occupation of Rome, and the melancholy fate of Pius VI. The election of Pius VII. took place at a moment, and in a country, to which French influence did not extend. In the subsequent disputes between Buonaparte and the Pope, the violence of the despot defeated its object. The passive resistance of Pius, which was not to be overcome, and the persecutions to which he was exposed, rendered him an object of interest to all Europe. Roman Catholics resented the imprisonment of the head of their Church; sovereigns were alarmed at the violence offered to an independent prince, and felt a common interest in supporting him; while all men agreed in condemning the indignities exercised on an amiable and high-minded old inan.
It is highly probable that the temporal power of the Pope would have been curtailed at the general settlement of Europe in 1814, had not the sudden escape of Buonaparte from Elba put an abrupt end to many deep-laid projects and roused Europe again to active resistance. His subsequent defeat, which placed the world for the moment at the disposal of the conquerors, might not so entirely have altered the political destiny of Italy, but for the illadvised proceedings of Murat. The intrusive king of Naples had purchased the favour of the allies by his timely desertion of his benefactor, and his political alliance with Austria. Alarmed, perhaps surprised, at the return of Napoleon, staggered by his success, undecided and hesitating, he found himself an object of suspicion to the Austrian general; and at last, in defiance of the best advice, when the movement was too late, he declared himself the ally of France, and marched towards the north of Italy. The Pope deserted Rome as the Neapolitan army advanced, nor did the Grand Duke of Tuscany remain to receive these unwel. come guests. Romagna, which had all along been occupied by the troops of Murat, became the scene of his military operations. A flush of success gave him confidence. The Austrian commanders, unprepared for such an attack, retired before him : his triumphs were announced in exulting proclamations, and the manifesto of a French adventurer, dated from Bologna, ad
monished all Italy that the moment had arrived when a small exertion would free it for ever from the yoke of foreigners. Nor can it be denied that the moment was favourable. Austria, startled by the rapidity of Buonaparte's success, had concentrated her troops in the hereditary dominions. Marshal Bellegarde had hardly a sufficient force to garrison Milan, and would certainly not have ventured to face the Neapolitan army, had it been seconded by any appearance of support from the people. This was not, however, the case. Murat's bust was crowned in several theatres, and in some market-places; processions awaited him at city-gates, and streets were strewed with flowers; sonnets were showered upon him ; but no recruits joined his standard ; on the contrary, his muster-roll was daily thinned by desertion, even while fortune seemed to befriend him. The enemy gained courage as he appeared to lose it—and be abandoned his last chance by opening a negotiation when he should have pushed his advantages; this imprudence hastened the inevitable catastrophe—the destruction of one of the best appointed armies that ever took the field, the flight and despair of its chief.
The Austrian army was now in possession of Southern Italy; and Marshal Bianchi, ruling with sovereign authority in Naples, treated with King Ferdinand for the restitution of his hereditary dominions.
It was not without reluctance that the Emperor resigned the possession of a kingdom which had long been a dependency of the House of Austria, and which had only been conquered from it during the last century; but the jealousy of powerful neighbours proved a stronger bar to his wishes, perhaps, than the rights of Ferdinand; he was obliged to look elsewhere for an indemnification for his losses, and at first there was little doubt that this would be assigned to him out of the spoils of the Church. The legations had never yet been restored to the Pope. Murat had occupied them; to Murat the possession of all his dominions had formerly been guaranteed by Austria, and his spoils were now the legitimate prize of the conqueror. There was, however, on the other hand, a returning respect for ancient and prescriptive rights ; perhaps, too, reflection on the vast efforts called for by the demonstration of the hundred days' had taught moderation. Such at least are the motives that it becomes the dignity of history' to assign; but something, we think, may be attributed to the personal character of the patient and long-suffering Pope, and more, perhaps, to the skilful diplomacy of Cardinal Consalvi. Never did any man possess a more graceful address, or a more imposing presence: the dignity of his features—the intelligence of his eye -the wisdom of his pallid brow-worked powerfully in his favour,