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Heroes of Modern Europe   By:

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HEROES OF MODERN EUROPE

BY

ALICE BIRKHEAD B.A.

AUTHOR OF

'THE STORY OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION' 'MARIE ANTOINETTE' 'PETER THE GREAT' ETC.

WITH EIGHT ILLUSTRATIONS

GEORGE G. HARRAP & CO. LTD.

LONDON CALCUTTA SYDNEY

[Transcriber's note: Page numbers in this book are indicated by numbers enclosed in curly braces, e.g. {99}. They have been located where page breaks occurred in the original book, in accordance with Project Gutenberg's FAQ V 99. For its Index, a page number has been placed only at the start of that section. In the HTML version of this book, page numbers are placed in the left margin.]

First published July 1913

by GEORGE G. HARRAP & Co.

39 41 Parker Street, Kingsway, London, W.C.2

Reprinted in the present series:

February 1914; August 1917; May 1921; January 1924; July 1926

Contents

CHAP.

I. THE TWO SWORDS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 II. DANTE, THE DIVINE POET . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 III. LORENZO THE MAGNIFICENT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 IV. THE PRIOR OF SAN MARCO . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 V. MARTIN LUTHER, REFORMER OF THE CHURCH . . . . . . . . 52 VI. CHARLES V, HOLY ROMAN EMPEROR . . . . . . . . . . . . 63 VII. THE BEGGARS OF THE SEA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74 VIII. WILLIAM THE SILENT, FATHER OF HIS COUNTRY . . . . . . 86 IX. HENRY OF NAVARRE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 X. UNDER THE RED ROBE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 XI. THE GRAND MONARCH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 128 XII. PETER THE GREAT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 137 XIII. THE ROYAL ROBBER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 145 XIV. SPIRITS OF THE AGE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 156 XV. THE MAN FROM CORSICA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 168 XVI. "GOD AND THE PEOPLE" . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 183 XVII. "FOR ITALY AND VICTOR EMMANUEL!" . . . . . . . . . . 195 XVIII. THE THIRD NAPOLEON . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 207 XIX. THE REFORMER OF THE EAST . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 216 XX. THE HERO IN HISTORY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 228 INDEX . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 233

Illustrations

LEO TOLSTOY IN HIS BARE APARTMENTS AT YASNAYA POLYANA ( Repin ). . . . . . . . . . Frontispiece

DANTE IN THE STREETS OF FLORENCE ( Evelyn Paul ) . . . . . . . 22

THE LAST SLEEP OF SAVONAROLA ( Sir George Reid, P.R.S.A. ) . . 60

PHILIP II PRESENT AT AN AUTO DA FÉ ( D. Valdivieso ) . . . . . 78

LAST MOMENTS OF COUNT EGMONT ( Louis Gallait ) . . . . . . . . 90

AN APPLICATION TO THE CARDINAL FOR HIS FAVOUR ( Walter Gay ) 124

FREDERICK THE GREAT RECEIVING HIS PEOPLE'S HOMAGE ( A. Menzel ) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 152

THE MEETING OF VICTOR EMMANUEL AND GARIBALDI ( Pietro Aldi ) 204

{9}

Heroes of Modern Europe

Chapter I

The Two Swords

In the fourth century after Christ began that decay of the Roman Empire which had been the pride of the then civilized world. Warriors of Teutonic race invaded its splendid cities, destroyed without remorse the costliest and most beautiful of its antique treasures. Temples and images of the gods fell before barbarians whose only fear was lest they should die "upon the straw," while marble fountains and luxurious bath houses were despoiled as signs of a most inglorious state of civilization. Theatres perished and, with them, the plays of Greek dramatists, who have found no true successors. Pictures and statues and buildings were defaced where they were not utterly destroyed. The Latin race survived, forlornly conscious of its vanished culture.

The Teutons had hardly begun to impose upon the Empire the rude customs of their own race when Saracens, bent upon spreading the religion of Mahomet, bore down upon Italy, where resistance from watchtowers and castles was powerless to check their cruel depredations. Norman pirates plundered the shores of the Mediterranean and sailed up the River Seine, {10} always winning easy victories... Continue reading book >>




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