Page images
PDF

Tancred's rival for the kingdoms of Naples and Sicily, descended into Italy in 1194. He easily conquered both the mainland and the island, and Tancred's only son William III. surrendered the crown to him. But with the excuse of a pretended plot he put a number of the most conspicuous persons in the kingdoms to death, and had William himself blinded. He then returned to Germany, and during his absence an agitation broke out, provoked by the cruelty of his lieutenants and encouraged by his Norman wife. He hurried back to Italy, and repressed the movement with his usual ferocity, but died The in 1197. Costanza then had her son Frederick emperor (b. 1194) proclaimed king, and obtained the support * of the Holy See on condition that the kingdom should ll. be once more recognized as a fief of the church. The whole history of the ensuing period of south Italian history turns on the claims of the papacy over the kingdoms of Naples and Sicily, based on the recognition of papal suzerainty in 1053. The Hohenstaufen kings refused to admit this claim; hence the persistent hostility of the popes and the calling in of foreign potentates and armies. Costanza died in 1198, leaving Pope Innocent III. regent and tutor to her son; the pope's authority was contested by various nobles, but in 1209 Frederick married Costanza, daughter of the king of Aragon, with whose help he succeeded in reducing a large part of Sicily to obedience. Two years later he was elected king of the Romans at the diet of Nuremberg in opposition to Otto IV., and in 1220 he was crowned emperor in Rome by pope Honorius III., but continued to reside in Sicily. He quelled a rising of Sicilian barons and Saracens, and confined 60,000 of the latter at Lucera in Capitanata, where they ended by becoming a most loyal colony. After the death of Frederick's wife Pope Honorius III. arranged a marriage for him with Yolande, daughter of John of Brienne (1225). But in 1227 Gregory IX. excommunicated him because he delayed the crusade which he had promised to undertake; and although he sailed the following year, and concluded a treaty with the sultan of Egypt whereby the kingdom of Jerusalem was re-established, the pope was not satisfied and sent an army into Neapolitan territory. On his return Frederick defeated the pontificals, and in 1230 peace was made at San Germano and the excommunication withdrawn. In 1231 he issued the celebrated Constitutions of the Sicilian kingdom at the parliament of Melfi. He had further quarrels with successive pontiffs, and was excommunicated more than once. In 1246 a number of his own barons and officials of the mainland conspired against his rule, but were crushed with great ferocity, and even his faithful secretary, Pietro della Vigna, fell a victim to the emperor's suspicions. Frederick's last years were embittered by the hostilities following on the crusade which the pope proclaimed against him and by rebellions in Naples and Sicily. He died in 1250. His policy was anti-feudal and tended to concentrate power into his own hands; hence the frequent risings of the barons. His court at Palermo had been one of the most brilliant in Europe, and attracted learned men from all over the then known world; his somewhat pagan philosophy was afterwards regarded as marking the beginnings of modern rationalism. He opened schools and universities, and he himself wrote poetry in Sicilian dialect. His son Conrad IV succeeded to the empire, while to his illegitimate son Manfred he left the principality of Taranto manned and the regency of the southern kingdom, to be held in Conrad's name. By his political sagacity and moderation Manfred won a strong party to his side and helped Conrad to subjugate the rebellious barons. The emperor died in 1254, leaving an infant son, Conradin (b. 1252), and Manfred was appointed vicar-general during the latter's minority. Manfred, too, encountered the hostility of the popes, against whom he had to wage war, generally with success, and of some of the barons whom the papacy encouraged to rebel; and in 1258, on a rumour of Conradin's death, he was offered and accepted the crown of Naples and Sicily. The rumour proved false, but he retained the crown, promising to leave the kingdom to Conradin at his death and to defend his rights. He now became head of

the Ghibellines or Imperialists of Italy, and his position was strengthened by the marriage of his daughter Costanza to Peter, son of King James of Aragon. But he met with opposition from the turbulent nobility and the clergy, who had been deprived of many privileges, and he failed to conciliate the communes, which were oppressed by taxes and beginning to aspire to autonomy. Innocent IV., in his determination to crush the Hohenstaufens, offered the kingdom in turn to Richard, earl of Cornwall, to Edward, son of Henry III. of England, and to Charles of Anjou, brother of Louis IX. of France. After long negotiations with successive popes, Charles was finally induced by Clement IV, to come to Italy in 1265, agreeing to accept the kingdom of the Two Sicilies as a fief of the church, and in 1266 he marched southward with the privileges of Charles I a crusader (see CHARLEs I., king of Naples and Sicily). The defection of many cities and nobles facilitated his task, and Manfred was forced to retire on Benevento, where, on the 26th of February, owing to the treachery of a part of his troops, he was defeated and killed. As a result of this victory Charles was soon master of almost the whole kingdom, and he entered Naples, which now became the capital instead of Palermo. He persecuted the nobles who had sided with Manfred, and established a military despotism which proved more oppressive than that of the Hohenstaufens had ever been. Old laws, customs and immunities were ruthlessly swept away, the people were ground down with taxes, and the highest positions and finest estates conferred on French and Provençal nobles. Although the southern Italians had long been ruled by foreigners, it was the Angevin domination which thoroughly denationalized them, and initiated that long period of corruption, decadence and foreign slavery which only ended in the 19th century. Invited by Sicilian malcontents and Ghibellines, Conradin (Ital. Corradino), the last surviving Hohenstaufen, descended into Italy in 1267 at the head of a small army collected Conradia in Germany, and he found many supporters; but King Charles on hearing of his arrival abandoned the siege of Lucera and came to intercept him. A battle took place at Tagliacozzo (August 23rd, 1268), in which the Imperialists were defeated, and Conradin himself was subsequently caught and handed over to Charles, who had him tried for high treason and beheaded (see CoNRADIN). All who had assisted the unfortunate youth were cruelly persecuted, and the inhabitants of Agosta put to the sword. Thus ended the power of the Hohenstaufens. Although the picturesque figures of Manfred and Conradin awakened sympathy among the people of the kingdom, their authority was never really consolidated and their German knights were hated; which facts rendered the enterprise of another foreigner like the Angevin comparatively easy. In Sicily, however, Charles's government soon made itself odious by its exactions, the insolence and cruelty of the king's French officials and favourites, the depreciation of the currency, and the oppressive personal services, £ia. while the nobles were incensed at the violation of V::. their feudal constitution. Just as Charles was contemplating an expedition to the East, the Sicilians rose in revolt, massacring the French throughout the island. The malcontents were led by the Salernitan noble Giovanni da Procida, a friend of the emperor Frederick and of Manfred, who had taken refuge at the court of Peter III. of Aragon, husband of Manfred's daughter Costanza. He had induced Peter to make good his somewhat shadowy claims to the crown of Sicily, but while preparations were being made for the expedition, the popular rising known as the Sicilian Vespers, which resulted in the massacre of nearly all the French in the island, broke out at Palermo on Easter Day 1282. Peter reached Palermo in September, and by the following month had captured Messina, the last French stronghold. Pope Martin IV, now proclaimed a crusade against the Aragonese, and the war continued for many years. The Sicilian fleet under Ruggiero di Lauria defeated that of the Angevins at Malta in 1283, and 1284 in the Bay of Naples. where the king's son, Charles the Lame, was captured. Charles I. died in 1286, and, his heir being a prisoner, his grandson, Charles Martel (d. 1295), assumed the regency. Peter died the same year, leaving Aragon to his son Alphonso III. and Sicily to his son James, who was consecrated king in spite of the interdict. The war went on uninterruptedly, for the popes prevented all attempts to arrive at an understanding, as they were determined that the rights of the church should be fully recognized. Charles Charles II. the Lame, who had been liberated in 1288, having renounced his rights on Sicily, was absolved from his oath by Pope Nicholas IV., who crowned him king of the Two Sicilies and excommunicated Alphonso. The latter's successor James made peace with Boniface VIII. by renouncing Sicily (in exchange for Sardinia and Corsica and the hand of Charles's daughter) and promising to help the Angevins to reconquer the island. But the Sicilians, led by James's brother, Frederick III., who had been governor of the island and was now proclaimed king, determined to resist. The war went on with varying success, until Charles of Valois, summoned by the pope to conduct the campaign, landed in Sicily and, his army being decimated by disease, made peace with Frederick at Caltabellotta (1302). The Angevins renounced Sicily in favour of Frederick, who was recognized as king of Trinacria (a name adopted so as not to mention that of Sicily), and he was to marry Leonora, daughter of Charles of Valois; at his death the island would revert to the Angevins, but his children would receive compensation elsewhere. In 1303 the pope unwillingly ratified the treaty. (See CHARLEs II., king of Naples and Sicily, and FREDERICK III., king of Sicily.) Charles II. died in 1309 and was succeeded by his second son Robert. (His eldest son had predeceased him, leaving a son, Robert Charles Robert, or Caroberto, at this time king of Hungary.) Robert now became leader of the Guelphs in Italy, and war between Naples and Sicily broke out once more, when Frederick allied himself with the emperor Henry VII. on his descent into Italy, and proclaimed his own son Peter heir to the throne. Robert led or sent many devastating expeditions into Sicily, and hostilities continued under King Peter even after Frederick's death in 1337. Peter died in 1342, leaving an infant son Louis; but just as Robert was preparing for another expedition he too died in the same year. Robert had been a capable ruler, a scholar and a friend of Petrarch, but he lost influence as a Guelph leader owing to the rise of other powerful princes and republics, while in Naples itself his authority was limited by the rights of a turbulent and rebellious baronage (see RoBERT, king of Naples). His son Charles had died in 1328 and he was succeeded by his granddaughter Joanna, wife of Andrew of Hungary, but the princes of the blood Jeann. I and the barons stirred up trouble, and in 1345 Andrew was assassinated by order of Catherine, widow of Philip, son of Charles II., and of several nobles, not without suspicion of Joanna's complicity. Andrew's brother Louis, king of Hungary, now came to Italy to make good his claims on Naples and avenge the murder of Andrew. With the help of some of the barons he drove Joanna and her second husband, Louis of Taranto, from the kingdom, and murdered Charles of Durazzo; but as Pope Clement refused to recognize his claims he went back to Hungary in 1348, and the fickle barons recalled Joanna, who returned and carried on desultory warfare with the partisans of Louis of Hungary. Louis of Taranto and Joanna were crowned at Naples by the pope's legate in 1352, but Niccolò Acciaiuoli, the seneschal, became the real master of the kingdom. In 1374 Joanna made peace with Frederick of Sicily, recognizing him as king of Trinacria on condition that he paid her tribute and recognized the pope's suzerainty. She nominated Louis of Anjou her heir, but while the latter was recognized by the antipope Clement VII, Pope Urban VI. declared Charles of Durazzo (great-grandson of Charles II.) king of Sicily al di qua del Faro (i.e. of Naples). Charles conquered the kingdom and took Joanna prisoner in 1381, and had her murdered the following 1 He was the second king of that name in Sicily, but was known as Frederick III. because he was the third son of King Peter.

Prederick lil.

year. Louis, although assisted by Amadeus VI. of Savoy, failed to drive out Charles, and died in 1384. Charles III. died two years later and the kingdom was plunged into anarchy once more, part of the barons siding with his sevenyear-old son Ladislas, and part with Louis II. of Anjou. The latter was crowned by the antipope Clement, while Urban regarded both him and his rival as usurpers. On Urban's death in 1389, Boniface IX, crowned Ladislas Lau king of Naples, who by the year 14oo had expelled Louis and made himself master of the kingdom. In 1407 he occupied Rome, which Gregory XII. could not hold. But Alexander V., elected pope by the council of Pisa, turned against Ladislas and recognized Louis. Ladislas was defeated in 1411 and driven from Rome, but reoccupied the city on Louis's return to France. He died in 1414, and was succeeded by his sister Joanna II. (q.v.), during whose reign the kingdom Joanas it sank to the lowest depths of degradation. In 1415 Joanna married James of Bourbon, who kept his wife in a state of semi-confinement, murdered her lover, Pandolfo Alopo, and imprisoned her chief captain, Sforza; but his arrogance drove the barons to rebellion, and they made him renounce the royal dignity and abandon the kingdom. The history of the next few years is a maze of intrigues between Joanna, Sforza, Giovanni Caracciolo, the queen's new lover, Alphonso of Aragon, whom she adopted as her heir, and Louis III. of Anjou, whom we find pitted against each other in every possible combination. Louis died in 1434 and Joanna in 1435 (see JoANNA II., queen of Naples). The succession was disputed by René of Anjou and Alphonso, but the former eventually renounced his claims and Alphonso was recognized as king of Naples by Pope Eugenius IV, in 1443. Under Alphonso, surnamed “the Magnanimous,” Sicily was once more united to Naples and a new era was inaugurated, for the king was at once a brilliant ruler, a scholar and a patron of letters. He died in 1458, leaving Naples #: to his illegitimate son Ferdinand I. (Don Ferrante), animous. and Sicily, Sardinia and Aragon to his brother John. Ferdinand found, however, that Alphonso had not really consolidated his power, and he had practically to reconquer the whole country. By 1464 he was master of the situation, in spite of the attempt of Pope Calixtus III. :* to enforce the claims of the papacy, and that of John of Anjou to enter into the heritage of his ancestors. In alliance with Pope Sixtus IV. and the Milanese he waged war on Lorenzo de' Medici in 1479; but that astute ruler, by visiting Ferdinand in person, obtained peace on favourable terms (1479). In 1485 the disaffection of the barons, due to the king's harshness and the arrogance and cruelty of his son, found vent in a revolt led by Roberto Sanseverino and Francesco Coppola, which was crushed by means of craft and treachery. Ferdinand died in 1494 full of forebodings as to the probable effects of the invasion of Charles VIII. of France, and was succeeded by Alphonso (see FERDINAND I., king of invasion Naples). The French king entered Italy in September of Charles 1495, and conquered the Neapolitan kingdom without I. much difficulty. Alphonso abdicated, his son Ferrandino and his brother Frederick withdrew to Ischia, and only a few towns in Apulia still held out for the Aragonese. But when the pope, the emperor, Spain and Venice, alarmed at Charles's progress, formed a defensive league against him, he quitted Naples, and Ferrandino, with the help of Ferdinand II. of Spain, was able to reoccupy his dominions. He died much regretted in 1496 and was succeeded by Frederick. The country was torn by civil war and brigandage, and the French continued to press their claims; and although Louis XII. (who had succeeded Charles VIII.) concluded a treaty with Ferdinand of Spain for the partition of Naples, France and Spain fell out in 1502 over the division of the spoils, and with Gonzalo de Cordoba's victory on the Garigliano in December 1502, the whole kingdom was in Spanish hands. On the death of Ferdinand in 1516, the Habsburg Charles became king of Spain, and three years later was elected cmperor as Charles W.; in 1522 he appointed John de Lannoy viceroy of Naples, which became henceforth an integral part of the Spanish dominions. The old divisions of nobility, clergy and people were neel... maintained and their mutual rivalry encouraged; the spanish nobles were won over by titles and by the splendour posses of the viceregal court, but many persons of low birth sloa. who showed talent were raised to high positions. The viceroy was assisted by the Collateral Council and the Sacred College of Santa Chiara, composed of Spanish and Italian members, and there was an armed force of the two nationalities. Spanish rule on the whole was oppressive and tyrannical, and based solely on the idea that the dependencies must pay tribute to the dominant kingdom. During the rule of Don Pedro de Toledo (one of the best viceroys) Naples became the centre of a Protestant movement which spread to the rest of Italy, but was ultimately crushed by the Inquisition. In Sicily Spanish rule was less absolute, for the island had not been conquered, but had given itself over voluntarily to the Aragonese; and the parliament, formed by the three bracci or orders (the militare consisting of the nobility, the ecclesiastico, of the clergy, and the demaniale, of the communes), imposed certain limitations on the viceroy, who had to play off the three bracci against each other. But the oppressive character of the government provoked r several rebellions. In 1598 an insurrection, headed : by the philosopher Tommaso Campanella, broke out in Calabria, and was crushed with great severity. In 1647, during the viceroyalty of the marquis de Los Leres in Sicily, bread riots in Palermo became a veritable revolution, and the people, led by the goldsmith Giovanni d'Alessio, drove the viceroy from the city; but the nobles, fearing for their privileges, took the viceroy's part and turned the people against d’Alessio, who was murdered, and Los Leres returned. On the 7th of July 1647, tumults occurred at Naples in consequence of a new fruit tax, and the viceroy, Count d'Arcos, was forced to take refuge in the Castelnuovo. The populace, led by an Massalello. Amalfi fisherman, known as Masaniello (q.v.), obtained arms, erected barricades, and, while professing loyalty to the king of Spain, demanded the removal of the oppressive taxes and murdered many of the nobles. D'Arcos came to terms with Masaniello; but in spite of this, and of the assassination of Masaniello, whose arrogance and ferocity had made him unpopular, the disturbances continued, and again the viceroy had to retire to Castelnuovo and make concessions. Even the arrival of reinforcements from Spain failed to restore order, and the new popular leader, Gennaro Annese, now sought assistance from the French, and invited the duke of Guise to come to Naples. The duke came with some soldiers and ships, but failed to effect anything; and after the recall of d'Arcos the new viceroy, Count d'Ognate, having come to an arrangement with Annese and got Guise out of the city, proceeded to punish all who had taken part in the disturbances, and had Annese and a number of others beheaded. In 1670 disorders broke out at Messina. They began with a riot between the nobles and the burghers, but ended in an antiSpanish movement; and while the inhabitants called : at in the French, the Spaniards, who could not crush the Messina, rising, called in the Dutch, Louis XIV. sent a fleet under the duc de Vivonne to Sicily, which defeated the Dutch under de Ruyter in 1676. But at the peace of Nijmwegen (1679) Louis treacherously abandoned the Messinese, who suffered cruel persecution at the hands of the Spaniards and lost all their privileges. An anti-Spanish conspiracy of Neapolitan nobles, led by Macchia, with the object of proclaiming the archduke Charles of Austria king of Naples, was discovered, but in 1707 an Austrian army conquered the kingdom, and Spanish rule came to an end after 203 years, during which it had succeeded in thoroughly demoralizing the people. In Sicily the Spaniards held their own until the peace of Utrecht in 1713, when the island was given over to Duke

# Victor of Savoy, who assumed the title of king. In £. 1718 he had to hand back his new possession to

Spain, who, in 1720, surrendered it to Austria and gave Sardinia to Victor Amadeus In 1733 the treaty of the Escurial

between France, Spain and Savoy against Austria was signed. Don Carlos of Bourbon, son of Philip V of Spain easily conquered both Naples and Sicily, and in 1738 he was recognized as king of the Two Sicilies, Spain renouncing all her claims. Charles was well received, for the country now was an independent kingdom once more. With the Tuscan Bernardo Tanucci as his minister, he introduced many useful reforms, improved the army, which was thus able to repel an Austrian invasion in 1744, embellished the city of Naples and built roads. In 1759 Charles III., having succeeded to the Spanish crown, abdicated that of the Two Sicilies in favour of his son Ferdinand, who became Ferdinand IV. of Naples and III. of Sicily. Being only eight years old, a regency under Tanucci was appointed, and the young king's education was Ferdlaand purposely neglected by the minister, who wished to V. dad dominate him completely. The regency ended in 1767, and the following year Ferdinand married the masterful and ambitious Maria Carolina, daughter of the empress Maria Theresa. She had Tanucci dismissed and set herself to the task of making Naples a great power. With the help of John Acton, an Englishman whom she made minister in the place of Tanucci, she freed Naples from Spanish influence and secured a rapprochement with England and Austria. On the outbreak of the French Revolution the king and queen were not at first hostile to the new movement; but after the fall of the French monarchy they became violently opposed to it, and in 1793 joined the first coalition against France, instituting severe persecutions against all who were remotely suspected of French sympathies. Republicanism, however, gained ground, especially among the aristocracy. In 1796 peace with France was concluded, but in 1798, during Napoleon's absence in Egypt and after Nelson's victory at Aboukir, Maria Carolina induced Ferdinand to go to war with France once more. Nelson arrived in Naples in September, where he was enthusiastically received. The king, after a somewhat farcical occupation of Rome, which had been evacuated by the French, hurried back to Naples as soon as the French attacked his troops, and although the lazzaroni (the lowest class of the people) were devoted to the dynasty and ready to defend it, he fled with the court to Palermo in a panic on board Nelson's ships. The wildest confusion prevailed, and the lazzaroni massacred numbers of persons suspected of republican sympathies, while the nobility and the educated classes, finding themselves abandoned by their king in this cowardly manner, began to contemplate a republic under French auspices as their only means of salvation from anarchy. In January 1799 the French under Championnet reached Naples, but the lazzarani, ill-armed and ill-disciplined as they were, resisted the enemy with desperate courage, and it was not until the 20th that the invaders were masters of the city. On the 23rd the Parthenopaean republic was proclaimed. The Republicans were men of culture and high character, but doctrinaire and unpractical, and they knew very little of the lower classes of their own country. The government soon found itself in financial difficulties, owing to Championnet's demands for money; it failed to organize the army, and met with scant success in its attempts to “democratize” the provinces. Meanwhile the court at Palermo sent Cardinal Fabrizio Ruffo, a wealthy

Charles III.

french in Maples and the Parthenopaean republic.

and influential prelate, to Calabria, to organize a £" counter-revolution. He succeeded beyond expectation, and the and with his 'Christian army of the Holy Faith" £,

(Esercito Cristiano della Santa Fede), consisting of brigands, convicts, peasants and some soldiers, marched through the kingdom plundering, burning and massacring. An English squadron approached Naples and occupied the island of Procida, but after a few engagements with the Republican fleet commanded by Caracciolo, an ex-officer in the Bourbon navy, it was recalled to Palermo, as the Franco-Spanish fleet was expected. Ruffo, with the addition of some Russian and Turkish allies, now marched on the capital, whence the French, save for a small force under Méjean, withdrew. The scattered Republican detachments were defeated, only Naples and Pescara holding out. On the 13th of June Ruffo and his hordes reached Naples, and after a desperate battle at the Ponte della Maddalena, entered the city. For weeks the Calabresi and lazzaroni continued to pillage and massacre, and Ruffo was unable, even if willing, to restrain them. But the Royalists were not masters of the city, for the French in Castel Sant Elmo and the Republicans in Castelnuovo and Castel dell’Uovo still held out and bombarded the streets, while the Franco-Spanish fleet might arrive at any moment. Consequently Ruffo was desperately anxious to come to terms with the Republicans for the evacuation of the castles, in spite of the queen's orders to make no terms with the rebels. After some negotiation an armistice was concluded and a capitulation agreed upon, whereby the castles were to be evacuated, the hostages liberated and the garrisons free to remain in Naples unmolested or to sail for Toulon. While the vessels were being prepared for the voyage to Toulon all the hostages in the castles were liberated save four; but on the 24th of June Nelson arrived with his fleet, and on hearing of the capitulation he refused to recognize it save in so far as it concerned the French. Ruffo indignantly declared that once the treaty was signed, not only by himself but by the Russian and Turkish commandants and by the British captain Foote, it must be respected, and on Nelson's refusal he said that he would not help him to capture the castles. On the 26th Nelson changed his attitude and authorized Sir William Hamilton, the British minister, to inform the cardinal that he (Nelson) would do nothing to break the armistice; while Captains Bell and Troubridge wrote that they had Nelson's authority to state that the latter would not oppose the embarcation of the Republicans. Although these expressions were equivocal, the Republicans were satisfied and embarked on the vessels prepared for them. But on the 28th Nelson received despatches from the court (in reply to his own), in consequence of which he had the vessels brought under the guns of his ships, and many of the Republicans were arrested. Caracciolo, who had been caught whilst attempting to escape from Naples, was tried by a court-martial of Royalist officers under Nelson's auspices on board the admiral's flagship, condemned to death and hanged at the yard arm. For the part played by Nelson in these transactions see the articles CARAcciolo and NElson. On the 8th of July, King Ferdinand arrived from Palermo, and the state trials, conducted in the most arbitrary fashion, resulted in wholesale butchery; hundreds of persons were executed, including some of the best men in the country, such as the philosopher Mario Pagano, the scientist Cirillo, Manthonè, the minister of war under the republic, Massa, the defender of Castel dell'Uovo, and Ettore Caraffa, the defender of Pescara, who had been captured by treachery, while thousands of others were immured in horrible dungeons or exiled. War with France continued until March 1801, when peace was made, and after the peace of Amiens in 1802 the court returned to Naples, where it was well received. But when the European war broke out again in the following year, Napoleon (then first consul) became very exacting in his demands on King Ferdinand, who consequently played a double game, appearing to accede to these demands while negotiating with

Melson at Naples.

Bourbon vengeance.

England. After Austerlitz Napoleon revenged himself by de

claring that “the Bourbon dynasty had ceased to reign,” and sent an army under his brother Joseph to occupy the kingdom. Ferdinand and Maria Carolina fled to Palermo in January 1805; in February 1806 Joseph Bonaparte cntered Naples Jesses : king. A cultivated, well-meaning, not very in£ne telligent man, he introduced many useful reforms on a basis of benevolent despotism, abolished feudalism and built roads, but the taxes and forced contributions which he levied proved very burdensome. Joseph's authority did not exist throughout a large part of the kingdom, where royalist risings, led by brigand chiefs, maintained a state of anarchy, and a British force under Sir John Stuart, which landed in Calabria from Sicily, defeated the French at Maida (July 6th, 1806). Both the French and the royalists committed atrocities,

and many conspirators in Naples were tried by the French state courts and shot. In 1808 Napoleon conferred the crown of Spain on Joseph, and appointed Joachim Murat king of Naples. Murat continued Joseph's reforms, swept away many old abuses and. reorganized the army; and although he introduced the French codes and conferred many appointments and estates on Frenchmen, his administration was more or less native, and he favoured the abler Neapolitans. His attempts to attack the English in Sicily ended disastrously, but he succeeded in crushing brigandage in Calabria by means of General Manhés, who, however, had to resort to methods of ferocity in order to do so. The king, owing to his charm of manner, his handsome face, and his brilliant personality, gained many sympathies, and began to aspire to absolute independence. He gradually became estranged from Napoleon, and although he followed him to Russia and afterwards took part in the German campaign, he secretly opened negotiations with Austria and Great Britain. In January 1814 he signed a treaty with Austria, each power guaranteeing the dominions of the other, while Sicily was to be left to Ferdinand. The following month he proclaimed his separation from Napoleon and marched against Eugène Beauharnais, the French viceroy of Lombardy. But no important engagements took place, and when Napoleon escaped from Elba, Murat suddenly returned to the allegiance of his old chief. He marched at the head of 35,000 men into northern Italy, and from Rimini issued his famous proclamation in favour of Italian independence, which at the time fell on deaf ears (March 30th, 1815). He was subsequently defeated by the Austrians several times and forced to retreat, and on the 18th of May he sailed from Naples for France (see MURAT, JoACHIM). Generals Guglielmo Pepe and Carrascosa now concluded a treaty with the Austrians at Casalanza on favourable terms, and on the 23rd the Austrians entered Naples to restore Bourbon rule. Ferdinand and Maria Carolina had continued to reign in Sicily, where the cxtravagance of the court and the odious Neapolitan system of police espionage rendered their presence a burden instead of a blessing to the island. The king £n. obtained a subsidy from Great Britain and allowed in skiy. British troops to occupy Messina and Agosta, so that they might operate against the French on the mainland. A bitter conflict broke out between the court and the parliament, and the British minister, Lord William Bentinck, favoured the opposition, forced Ferdinand to resign his authority and appoint his son regent and introduced many valuable reforms. The queen perpetually intrigued against Bentinck, and The even negotiated with the French, but in 1812 a more Engfish liberal constitution on British lines was introduced, and * a Liberal ministry under the princes of Castelnuovo and Belmonte appointed, while the queen was exiled in the following year. But after the fall of Napoleon Sicily ceased to have any importance for Great Britain, and Bentinck, whose memory is still cherished in the island, departed in 1814. Ferdinand succeeded in getting a reactionary ministry appointed, and dissolved parliament in May 1815, after concluding a treaty with Austria-now freed by Murat's defection from her engagements with him—for the recovery of his mainland dominions

Joschlm AMurat.

[blocks in formation]

di Calabria, but was immediately captured by the police and the peasantry, court-martialled and shot. Ferdinand to some extent maintained French legislation, but otherwise reorganized the state with Metternich's approval on Bourbon lines; he proclaimed himself king of the Two Sicilies at the congress of Vienna, incorporating Naples and Sicily into one state, and abolished the Sicilian constitution (December 1816). In 1818 he concluded a Concordat with the Church, by which the latter renounced its suzerainty over the kingdom, but was given control over education, the censorship and many other privileges. But there was much disaffection throughout the country, and the Carbonarist lodges, founded in

The Murat's time with the object of freeing the country revolution - - - - - £" from foreign rule and obtaining a constitution, had

made much progress (see CARBONARI). The army indeed was honeycombed with Carbonari, and General Pepe, himself a member of the society, organized them on a military basis. In July 1820 a military mutiny broke out at Caserta, led by two officers and a priest, the mutineers demanding a constitution although professing loyalty to the king. Ferdinand, feeling himself helpless to resist, acceded to the demand, appointed a ministry composed of Murat's old adherents, and entrusted his authority to his son. The ultra-democratic single-chamber Spanish constitution of 1812 was introduced, but proved utterly unworkable. The new government's first difficulty was Sicily, where the people had risen in rebellion demanding their own charter of 1812, and although the Neapolitan troops quelled the outbreak with much bloodshed the division proved fatal to the prospects of liberty. The outbreak of the military rising in Naples, following so shortly on that in Spain, seriously alarmed the powers responsible for the preservation of the peace in Europe. The position was complicated by the somewhat enigmatic attitude of Russia; for the Neapolitan Liberals, with many of whom Count Capo d’Istria, the Russian minister of foreign affairs, had been on friendly terms, proclaimed that they had the “moral support ’’ of the tsar. This idea, above all, it was necessary for Austria to destroy once for all. The diplomatic negotiations are discussed in the article on the history of Europe (q.v.). Here it suffices to say that these issued in the congress of Troppau (October 1820) and the proclamation of the famous Troppau protocol affirming the right of collective “Europe” to interfere to crush dangerous internal revolutions. Both France and Great Britain protested against the general principle laid down in this instrument; but neither of them approved of the Neapolitan revolution, and neither of them was opposed to an intervention in Naples, provided this were carried out, not on the ground of a supposed right of Europe to interfere, but by Austria for Austrian ends. By general consent King Ferdinand was invited to attend the adjourned congress, fixed to meet at Laibach in the spring of the following year. Under the new constitution, the permission of parliament was necessary before the king could leave Neapolitan territory; but this was weakly granted, after Ferdinand had sworn the most solemn oaths to maintain the constitution. He was scarcely beyond the frontiers, however, before he repudiated his engagements, as exacted by force. A cynicism so unblushing shocked even the seasoned diplomats of the congress, who would have preferred that the king should have made a decent show of yielding to force. The result was, however, that the powers authorized Austria to march an army into Naples to restore the autocratic monarchy. This decision was notified to the Neapolitan government by Russia, Prussia and Austria-Great Britain and France maintaining a strict neutrality. Meanwhile the regent, in spite of his declaration that he would lead the Neapolitan army against the invader, was secretly undermining the position of the government, and there were divisions of opinion in the ranks of the Liberals themselves, General Pepe : ". was sent to the frontier at the head of 8ooo men, but £, was completely defeated by the Austrians at Rieti on the 7th of March. On the 23rd the Austrians entered Naples, followed soon afterwards by the king; every

vestige of freedom was suppressed, the reactionary Medici.

ministry appointed, and the inevitable state trials instituted with the usual harvest of executions and imprisonment. Pepe saved himself by flight. (See FERDINAND IV, king of Naples.) Ferdinand died in 1825, and his son and successor, Francis I., an unbridled libertine, at once threw off the mask of Liberalism; the corruption of the administration under Medici R 1. assumed unheard-of proportions, and every office was openly sold. The Austrian occupation lasted until 1827, having cost the state 31o,ooo,ooo lire, but in the meanwhile the Swiss Guard had been established as a further protection for autocracy, and the revolutionary outbreak at Bosco on the Cilento was suppressed with the usual cruelty. (See FRANCIS I., king of the Two Sicilies.) Francis died in 1830 and was succeeded by his son, Ferdinand II., who at first awoke hopes that the conditions of the country would be improved. He was not devoid of good Ferdinand qualities, and took an interest in the material welfare it. &n of the country, but he was narrow-minded, ignorant and bigoted; he made the administration more efficient, and reorganized the army which became purged of Carbonarism, and such Carbonarist plots as there were in the 'thirties were not severely punished. Ferdinand was impatient of Austrian influence, but on the death of his first wife, Cristina of Savoy, he married Maria Theresa of Austria, who encouraged him in his reactionary tendencies and brought him closer to Austria. An outbreak of cholera in 1837 led to disorders in Sicily, which, having assumed a political character, were repressed by Del Caretto with great severity. The government tended to become more and more autocratic and to rely wholly on the all-powerful police, the spies and the priests; and, although the king showed some independence in foreign affairs, his popularity waned; the desire for a constitution was by no means dead, and the survivors of the old Carbonari gathered round Carlo Poerio, while the Giovane Italia society (independent of Mazzini), led by Benedetto Musolino, took as its motto “Unity, Liberty and Independence.” But as yet the idea of unity made but little headway, for southern Italy was too widely separated by geographical conditions, history, tradition and custom from the rest of the peninsula, and the majority of the Liberals—themselves a minority of the population-merely aspired to a constitutional Neapolitan monarchy, possibly forming part of a confederation of Italian states. The attempt of the Giovane Italia to bring about a general revolution in 1843 only resulted in a few sporadic outbreaks easily crushed. The following year the Venetian brothers Bandiera, acting in concert with Mazzini, landed in Calabria, believing the whole country to be in a state The of revolt; they met with little local support and were : quickly captured and shot, but their death aroused much sympathy, and the whole episode was highly significant as being the first attempt made by north Italians to promote revolution in the south. In 1847 a pamphlet by L. Settembrini, entitled “A Protest of the People of the Two Sicilies,” appeared anonymously and created a deep impression as a most scathing indictment of the government; and at the same time the election of Pius IX., a pope who was believed to be a Liberal, caused widespread excitement throughout Italy. Conspiracy was now rife both in Naples and Sicily, but as yet there was no idea of deposing the king. Many persons were arrested, including Carlo Poerio, who, however, continued to direct the agitation. On the 12th of January 1848 a revolution under the leadership of Ruggiero Settimo broke out at Palermo to the cry of “independence or the 1812 constitution,” and by the end

of February the whole island, with the exception of :* Messina, was in the hands of the revolutionists. These £

events were followed by demonstrations at Naples;

the king summoned a meeting of generals and members of his family on the 27th of January, and on the advice of Filangieri (q.v.), who said that the army was not to be relied upon, he dismissed the Pietracatella ministry and Del Caretto, and summoned the duke of Serracapriola to form another administration. On the 28th he granted the constitution, and the Liberals Bozzelli and Carlo Poerio afterwards joined the cabinet. The

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »