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History of Friedrich II of Prussia V 2 by Thomas Carlyle

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Prepared by D.R. Thompson

Carlyle's "History of Friedrich II of Prussia"
Vol II



Chapter I.


The Brandenburg Countries, till they become related to the
Hohenzollern Family which now rules there, have no History that
has proved memorable to mankind. There has indeed been a good deal
written under that title; but there is by no means much known,
and of that again there is alarmingly little that is worth knowing
or remembering.

Pytheas, the Marseilles Travelling Commissioner, looking out for
new channels of trade, somewhat above 2,000 years ago, saw the
country actually lying there; sailed past it, occasionally
landing; and made report to such Marseillese "(Chamber of
Commerce" as there then was:--report now lost, all to a few
indistinct and insignificant fractions. [ Memoires de
l'Academie des Inscriptions, t. xix. 46, xxxvii.
439, &c.] This was "about the year 327 before Christ," while
Alexander of Macedon was busy conquering India. Beyond question,
Pytheas, the first WRITING or civilized creature that ever saw
Germany, gazed with his Greek eyes, and occasionally landed,
striving to speak and inquire, upon those old Baltic Coasts,
north border of the now Prussian Kingdom; and reported of it to
mankind we know not what. Which brings home to us the fact that it
existed, but almost nothing more: A Country of lakes and woods,
of marshy jungles, sandy wildernesses; inhabited by bears, otters,
bisons, wolves, wild swine, and certain shaggy Germans of the
Suevic type, as good as inarticulate to Pytheas. After which all
direct notice of it ceases for above three hundred years. We can
hope only that the jungles were getting cleared a little, and the
wild creatures hunted down; that the Germans were increasing in
number, and becoming a thought less shaggy. These latter, tall
Suevi Semnones, men of blond stern aspect (oculi truces
coerulei) and great strength of bone, were known to
possess a formidable talent for fighting: [Tacitus, De
Moribus Germanorum, c. 45.] Drusus Germanicus, it has
been guessed, did not like to appear personally among them: some
"gigantic woman prophesying to him across the Elbe" that it might
be dangerous, Drusus contented himself with erecting some
triumphal pillar on his own safe side of the Elbe, to say that
they were conquered.

In the Fourth Century of our era, when the German populations, on
impulse of certain "Huns expelled from the Chinese frontier," or
for other reasons valid to themselves, began flowing universally
southward, to take possession of the rich Roman world, and so
continued flowing for two centuries more; the old German frontiers
generally, and especially those Northern Baltic countries, were
left comparatively vacant; so that new immigrating populations
from the East, all of Sclavic origin, easily obtained footing and
supremacy there. In the Northern parts, these immigrating Sclaves
were of the kind called Vandals, or Wends: they spread themselves
as far west as Hamburg and the Ocean, south also far over the Elbe
in some quarters; while other kinds of Sclaves were equally busy
elsewhere. With what difficulty in settling the new boundaries,
and what inexhaustible funds of quarrel thereon, is still visible
to every one, though no Historian was there to say the least word
of it. "All of Sclavic origin;" but who knows of how many kinds:
Wends here in the North, through the Lausitz (Lusatia) and as far
as Thuringen; not to speak of Polacks, Bohemian Czechs, Huns,
Bulgars, and the other dim nomenclatures, on the Eastern frontier.
Five hundred years of violent unrecorded fighting, abstruse
quarrel with their new neighbors in settling the marches.
Many names of towns in Germany ending in ITZ (Meuselwitz,
Mollwitz), or bearing the express epithet Windisch italic> (Wendish), still give indication of those old sad
circumstances; as does the word SLAVE, in all our Western
languages, meaning captured SCLAVONIAN. What long-drawn echo of
bitter rage and hate lies in that small etymology!

These things were; but they have no History: why should they have
any? Enough that in those Baltic regions, there are for the time
(Year 600, and till long after Charlemagne is out) Sclaves in
place of Suevi or of Holstein Saxons and Angli; that it is now
shaggy Wends who have the task of taming the jungles, and keeping
down the otters and wolves. Wends latterly in a waning condition,
much beaten upon by Charlemagne and others; but never yet beaten
out. And so it has to last, century after century; Wends, wolves,
wild swine, all alike dumb to us. Dumb, or sounding only one
huge unutterable message (seemingly of tragic import), like the
voice of their old Forests, of their old Baltic Seas:--
perhaps more edifying to us SO. Here at last is a definite date
and event:--

"A.D. 928, Henry the Fowler, marching across the frozen bogs,
took BRANNIBOR, a chief fortress of the Wends;" [Kohler,
Reichs-Historie (Frankfurth und Leipzig, 1737),
p. 63. Michaelis, Chur-und Furstlichen Hauser in
Deutschland (Lemgo, 1759, 1760, 1785), i. 255.]--
first mention in human speech of the place now called Brandenburg:
Bor or "Burg of the Brenns" (if there ever was any TRIBE of
Brenns,--BRENNUS, there as elsewhere, being name for KING or
Leader); "Burg of the Woods," say others,--who as little know.
Probably, at that time, a town of clay huts, with dit&h and
palisaded sod-wall round it; certainly "a chief fortress of the
Wends,"--who must have been a good deal surprised at sight of
Henry on the rimy winter morning near a thousand years ago.

This is the grand old Henry, called, "the Fowler"
(Heinrich der Vogler), because he was in his
Vogelheerde (Falconry or Hawk-establishment, seeing
his Hawks fly) in the upland Hartz Country, when messengers came
to tell him that the German Nation, through its Princes and
Authorities assembled at Fritzlar, had made him King; and that he
would have dreadful work henceforth. Which he undertook; and also
did,--this of Brannibor only one small item of it,--warring right
manfully all his days against Chaos in that country, no rest for
him thenceforth till he died. The beginning of German Kings;
the first, or essentially the first sovereign of united Germany,--
Charlemagne's posterity to the last bastard having died out, and
only Anarchy, Italian and other, being now the alternative.

"A very high King," says one whose Note-books I have got,
"an authentically noble human figure, visible still in clear
outline in the gray dawn of Modern History. The Father of whatever
good has since been in Germany. He subdued his DUKES, Schwaben,
Baiern (Swabia, Bavaria) and others, who were getting too
HEREDITARY, and inclined to disobedience. He managed to get back
Lorraine; made TRUCE with the Hungarians, who were excessively
invasive at that time. Truce with the Hungarians; and then, having
gathered strength, made dreadful beating of them; two beatings,--
one to each half, for the invasive Savagery had split itself, for
better chance of plunder; first beating was at Sondershausen,
second was at Merseburg, Year 933;--which settled them
considerably. Another beating from Henry's son, and they never
came back. Beat Wends, before this,--'Brannibor through frozen
bogs' five years ago. Beat, Sclavic Meisseners (Misnians);
Bohehemian Czechs, and took Prag; Wends again, with huge
slaughter; then Danes, and made 'King Worm tributary' (King
Gorm the Hard, our KNUT'S or Canute's great-
grand-father, Year 931);--last of all, those invasive Hungarians
as above. Had sent the Hungarians, when they demanded tribute or
BLACK-MAIL of him as heretofore, Truce being now out,--a mangy
hound: There is your black-mail, Sirs; make much of that!

"He had 'the image of St. Michael painted on his standard;'
contrary to wont. He makes, or RE-makes, Markgrafs (Wardens of the
Marches), to be under his Dukes,--and not too HEREDITARY. Who his
Markgraves were? Dim History counts them to the number of six;
[Kohler, Reich-Historie, p. 66. This is by
no means Kohler's chief Book; but this too is good, and does, in a
solid effective way, what it attempts. He seems to me by far the
best Historical Genius the Germans have yet, produced, though I do
not find much mention of him in their Literary Histories and
Catalogues. A man of ample learning, and also of strong cheerful
human sense and human honesty; whom it is thrice-pleasant, to meet
with in those ghastly solitudes, populous chiefly with doleful
creatures.] which take in their order:--
"1. SLESWIG, looking over into the Scandinavian countries, and the
Norse Sea-kings. This Markgraviate did not last long under that
title. I guess, it, became Stade-and-Ditmarsch italic> afterwards.
"2. SOLTWEDEL,--which grows to be Markgraviate of BRANDENBURG by
and by. Soltwedel, now called Salzwedel, an old Town still extant,
sixty miles to west and north of Brandenburg, short way south of
the Elbe, was as yet headquarters of this second Markgraf;
and any Warden we have at Brandenburg is only a deputy of him
or some other.
"3. MEISSEN (which we call Misnia), a country at that time still
full of Wends.
"4. LAUSITZ, also a very Wendish country (called in English maps
LUSATIA,--which is its name in Monk-Latin, not now a spoken
language). Did not long continue a Markgraviate; fell to Meissen
(Saxony), fell to Brandenburg, Bohemia, Austria, and had many
tos and fros. Is now (since the Thirty-Years-War time) mostly
Saxon again.
"5. AUSTRIA (OEsterreich, Eastern-Kingdom, EASTERNREY as we might
say); to look after the Hungarians, and their valuable claims to
"6. ANTWERP ('At-the-Wharf,' 'On-t'-Wharf,' so to speak), against
the French; which function soon fell obsolete.

"These were Henry's six Markgraviates (as my best authority
enumerates them); and in this way he had militia captains ranked
all round his borders, against the intrusive Sclavic element.
"He fortified Towns; all Towns are to be walled and warded,--to be
BURGS in fact; and the inhabitants BURGhers, or men capable of
defending Burgs. Everywhere the ninth man is to serve as soldier
in his Town; other eight in the country are to feed and support
him: Heergeruthe (War-tackle, what is called
HERIOT in our old Books) descends to the eldest son of a fighting
man who had served, as with us. 'All robbers are made soldiers'
(unless they prefer hanging); and WEAPON-SHOWS and drill are kept
up. This is a man who will make some impression upon Anarchy,
and its Wends and Huns. His standard was St. Michael, as we have
seen,--WHOSE sword is derived from a very high quarter! A pious
man;--founded Quedlinburg Abbey, and much else in that kind,
having a pious Wife withal, Mechtildis, who took the main hand in
that of Quedlinburg; whose LIFE is in Leibnitz, [Leibnitz,
Scriptores Rerum Brunswicensium, &c.
(Hanover, 1707), i. 196.] not the legiblest of Books.--On the
whole, a right gallant King and 'Fowler.' Died, A.D. 936 (at
Memmleben, a Monastery on the Unstrut, not far from Schulpforte),
age sixty; had reigned only seventeen years, and done so much.
Lies buried in Quedlinburg Abbey:--any Tomb? I know no LIFE of him
but GUNDLING'S, which is an extremely inextricable Piece, and
requires mainly to be forgotten.--Hail, brave Henry: across the
Nine dim Centuries, we salute thee, still visible as a valiant Son
of Cosmos and Son of Heaven, beneficently sent us; as a man who
did in grim earnest 'serve God' in his day, and whose works
accordingly bear fruit to our day, and to all days!"--

So far my rough Note-books; which require again to be shut for
the present, not to abuse the reader's patience, or lead him
from his road.

This of Markgrafs (GRAFS of the Marches, MARKED Places,
or Boundaries) was a natural invention in that state of
circumstances. It did not quite originate with Henry;
but was much perfected by him, he first recognizing how essential
it was. On all frontiers he had his GRAF (Count, REEVE, G'REEVE,
whom some think to be only GRAU, Gray, or SENIOR, the hardiest,
wisest steel-GRAY man he could discover) stationed on the MARCK,
strenuously doing watch and ward there: the post of difficulty,
of peril, and naturally of honor too, nothing of a sinecure by any
means. Which post, like every other, always had a tendency to
become hereditary, if the kindred did not fail in fit men.
And hence have come the innumerable Markgraves, Marquises,
and such like, of modern times: titles now become chimerical, and
more or less mendacious, as most of our titles are,--like so many
BURGS changed into "Boroughs," and even into "Rotten Boroughs,"
with Defensive BURGhers of the known sort: very mournful to
discover. Once Norroy was not all pasteboard! At the heart of that
huge whirlwind of his, with its dusty heraldries, and phantasmal
nomenclatures now become mendacious, there lay, at first, always
an earnest human fact. Henry the Fowler was so happy as to have
the fact without any mixture of mendacity: we are in the sad
reverse case; reverse case not yet altogether COMPLETE, but daily
becoming so,--one of the saddest and strangest ever heard of,
if we thought of it!--But to go on with business.

Markgraviates there continued to be ever after,--Six in Henry's
time:--but as to the number, place, arrangement of them, all this
varied according to circumstances outward and inward, chiefly
according to the regress or the reintrusion of the circumambient
hostile populations; and underwent many changes. The sea-wall you
build, and what main floodgates you establish in it, will depend
on the state of the outer sea. Markgraf of SLESWIG grows into
Markgraf of DITMARSCH and STADE; retiring over the Elbe, if Norse
Piracy get very triumphant. ANTWERP falls obsolete; so does
MEISSEN by and by. LAUSITZ and SALZWEDEL, in the third century
hence, shrink both into BRANDENBURG; which was long only a
subaltern station, managed by deputy from one or other of these.
A Markgraf that prospered in repelling of his Wends and Huns had
evidently room to spread himself, and could become veiy great,
and produce change in boundaries: observe what OESTERREICH
(Austria) grew to, and what BRANDENBURG; MEISSEN too, which
became modern Saxony, a state once greater than it now is.

In old Books are Lists of the primitive Markgraves of Brandenburg,
from Henry's time downward; two sets, "Markgraves of the Witekind
race," and of another: [Hubner, Genealogische Tabellen
(Leipzig, 1725-1728), i. 172, 173. A Book of rare
excellence in its kind.] but they are altogether uncertain, a
shadowy intermittent set of Markgraves, both the Witekind set and
the Non-Witekind; and truly, for a couple of centuries, seem none
of them to have been other than subaltern Deputies, belonging
mostly to LAUSITZ or SALZWEDEL; of whom therefore we can say
nothing here, but must leave the first two hundred years in
their natural gray state,--perhaps sufficiently conceivable by
the reader.

But thus, at any rate, was Brandenburg (BOT or Burg of the BRENNS,
whatever these are) first discovered to Christendom, and added to
the firm land of articulate History: a feat worth putting on
record. Done by Henry the Fowler, in the Year of Grace 928,--while
(among other things noticeable in this world) our Knut's great-
grandfather, GORMO DURUS, "Henry's Tributary," was still King of
Denmark; when Harald BLUETOOTH (Blaatand) was still a young
fellow, with his teeth of the natural color; and Swen with the
Forked Beard (TVAESKAEG, Double-beard, "TWA-SHAG") was not born;
and the Monks of Ely had not yet (by about a hundred years) begun
that singing, [Without note or comment, in the old, BOOK OF ELY
date before the Conquest) is preserved this stave;--giving
picture, if we consider it, of the Fen Country all a lake (as it
was for half the year, till drained, six centuries after), with
Ely Monastery rising like an island in the distance; and the music
of its nones or vespers sounding soft and far over the solitude,
eight hundred years ago and more.

Merie sungen the Muneches binnen Ely
Tha Cnut ching rew therby:
Roweth enites near the lant,
And here we thes Muneches saeng.

Merry (genially) sang the Monks in Ely
As Knut King rowed (rew) there-by:
Row, fellows (knights), near the land,
And hear we these Monks's song.
See Bentham's History of Ely (Cambridge,
1771), p, 94.] nor the tide that refusal to retire, on behalf of
this Knut, in our English part of his dominions.

That Henry appointed due Wardenship in Brannibor was in the common
course. Sure enough, some Markgraf must take charge of Brannibor,
--he of the Lausitz eastward, for example, or he of Salzwedel
westward:--that Brannibor, in time, will itself be found the fit
place, and have its own Markgraf of Brandenburg; this, and what in
the next nine centuries Brandenburg will grow to, Henry is far
from surmising. Brandenburg is fairly captured across the frozen
bogs, and has got a warden and ninth-man garrison settled in it:
Brandenburg, like other things, will grow to what it can.

Henry's son and successor, if not himself, is reckoned to have
founded the Cathedral and Bishopric of Brandenburg,--his Clergy
and he always longing much for the conversion of these Wends and
Huns; which indeed was, as the like still is, the one thing
needful to rugged heathens of that kind.

Chapter II.


Five hundred miles, and more, to the east of Brandenburg, lies a
Country then as now called PREUSSEN (Prussia Proper), inhabited
by Heathens, where also endeavors at conversion are-going on,
though without success hitherto. Upon which we are now called to
cast a glance.

It is a moory flat country, full of lakes and woods, like
Brandenburg; spreading out into grassy expanses, and bosky
wildernesses humming with bees; plenty of bog in it, but plenty
also of alluvial mud; sand too, but by no means so high a ratio of
it as in Brandenburg; tracts of Preussen are luxuriantly grassy,
frugiferous, apt for the plough; and the soil generally is
reckoned fertile, though lying so far northward. Part of the great
plain or flat which stretches, sloping insensibly, continuously,
in vast expanse, from the Silesian Mountains to the amber-regions
of the Baltic; Preussen is the seaward, more alluvial part of
this,--extending west and east, on both sides of the Weichsel
(VISTULA), from the regions of the Oder river to the main stream
of the Memel. BORDERING-ON-RUSSIA its name signifies: BOR-RUSSIA,
B'russia, Prussia; or --some say it was only on a certain
inconsiderable river in those parts, river REUSSEN, that it
"bordered" and not on the great Country, or any part of it,
which now in our days is conspicuously its next neighbor.
Who knows?--

In Henry the Fowler's time, and long afterwards, Preussen was a
vehemently Heathen country; the natives a Miscellany of rough
Serbic Wends, Letts, Swedish Goths, or Dryasdust knows not what;--
very probably a sprinkling of Swedish Goths, from old time,
chiefly along the coasts. Dryasdust khows only that these PREUSSEN
were a strong-boned, iracund herdsman-and-fisher people; highly
averse to be interfered with, in their religion especially.
Famous otherwise, through all the centuries, for the AMBER they
had been used to fish, and sell in foreign parts.

Amber, science declares, is a kind of petrified resin, distilled
by pines that were dead before the days of Adam; which is now
thrown up, in stormy weather, on that remote coast, and is there
fished out by the amphibious people,--who can likewise get it by
running mine-shafts into the sandhills on their coast;--by whom it
is sold into the uttermost parts of the Earth, Arabia and beyond,
from a very early period of time. No doubt Pytheas had his eye
upon this valuable product, when he ventured into survey of those
regions,--which are still the great mother of amber in our world.
By their amber-fishery, with the aid of dairy-produce and plenty
of beef and leather, these Heathen Preussen, of uncertain
miscellaneous breed, contrived to support existence in a
substantial manner; they figure to us as an inarticulate, heavy-
footed, rather iracund people. Their knowledge of Christianity was
trifling, their aversion to knowing anything of it was great.

As Poland, and the neighbors to the south, were already Christian,
and even the Bohemian Czechs were mostly Converted, pious wishes
as to Preussen, we may fancy, were a constant feeling: but no
effort hitherto, if efforts were made, had come to anything.
Let some daring missionary go to preach in that country, his
reception is of the worst, or perhaps he is met ou the frontier
with menaces, and forbidden to preach at all; except sorrow and
lost labor, nothing has yet proved attainable. It was very
dangerous to go;--and with what likelihood of speeding? Efforts,
we may suppose, are rare; but the pious wish being continual and
universal, efforts can never altogether cease. From Henry the
Fowler's capture of Brannibor, count seventy years, we find
Henry's great-grandson reigning as Elective Kaiser,--Otto III.,
last of the direct "Saxon Kaisers," Otto Wonder of the World;--and
alongside of Otto's great transactions, which were onoe called
MIRABILIA MUNDI and are now fallen so extinct, there is the
following small transaction, a new attempt to preach in Preussen,
going on, which, contrariwise, is still worth taking notice of.

About the year 997 or 996, Adalbert, Bishop of Prag, a very
zealous, most devout man, but evidently of hot temper, and liable
to get into quarrels, had determined, after many painful
experiences of the perverse ungovernable nature of corrupt
mankind, to give up his nominally Christian flock altogether;
to shake the dust off his feet against Prag, and devote himself
to converting those Prussian Heathen, who, across the frontiers,
were living in such savagery, and express bondage to the Devil,
worshipping mere stocks and stones. In this enterprise he was
encouraged by the Christian potentates who lay contiguous;
especially by the Duke of Poland, to whom such next-neighbors,
for all reasons, were an eye-sorrow.

Adalbert went, accordingly, with staff and scrip, two monks
attending him, into that dangerous country: not in fear, he;
a devout high-tempered man, verging now on fifty, his hair getting
gray, and face marred with innumerable troubles and provocations
of past time. He preached zealously, almost fiercely,--though
chiefly with his eyes and gestures, I should think, having no
command of the language. At Dantzig, among the Swedish-Goth kind
of Heathen, he had some success, or affluence of attendance;
not elsewhere that we hear of. In the Pillau region, for example,
where he next landed, an amphibious Heathen lout hit him heavily
across the shoulders with the flat of his oar; sent the poor
Preacher to the ground, face foremost, and suddenly ended his
salutary discourse for that time. However, he pressed forward,
regardless of results, preaching the Evangel to all creatures who
were willing or unwilling;--and pressed at last into the Sacred
Circuit, the ROMOVA, or Place of Oak-trees, and of Wooden or Stone
Idols (Bangputtis, Patkullos, and I know not what diabolic dumb
Blocks), which it was death to enter. The Heathen Priests, as we
may conceive it, rushed out; beckoned him, with loud
unintelligible bullyings and fierce gestures, to begone;
hustled, shook him, shoved him, as he did not go; then took to
confused striking, struck finally a death-stroke on the head of
poor Adalbert: so that "he stretched out both his arms ('Jesus,
receive me thou!') and fell with his face to the ground, and lay
dead there,--in the form of a crucifix," say his Biographers:
only the attendant monks escaping to tell.

Attendant monks, or Adalbert, had known nothing of their being on
forbidden ground. Their accounts of the phenomenon accordingly
leave it only half explained: How he was surprised by armed
Heathen Devil's-servants in his sleep; was violently set upon,
and his "beautiful bowels ( pulchra viscera )
were run through with seven spears:" but this of the ROMOVA, or
Sacred Bangputtis Church of Oak-trees, perhaps chief ROMOVA of the
Country, rashly intruded into, with consequent strokes, and fall
in the form of a crucifix, appears now to be the intelligible
account. [Baillet, Vies des Saints (Paris,
1739), iii. 722. Bollandus, Acta Sanetorum, Aprilis
tom. iii (DIE 23; in Edition venetiis,
1738), pp. 174-205. Voigt, Geschichte Preussens italic> (Konigsberg, 1827-1839), i. 266-270.] We will take it for
the real manner of Adalbert's exit;--no doubt of the essential
transaction, or that it was a very flaming one on both sides.
The date given is 23d April, 997; date famous in the Romish
Calendar since.

He was a Czech by birth, son of a Heathen Bohemian man of rank:
his name (Adalbert, A'lbert, BRIGHT-in-Nobleness) he got "at
Magdeburg, whither he had gone to study" and seek baptism; where,
as generally elsewhere, his fervent devout ways were admirable to
his fellow-creatures. A "man of genius," we may well say: one of
Heaven's bright souls, born into the muddy darkness of this
world;--laid hold of by a transcendent Message, in the due
transcendent degree. He entered Prag, as Bishop, not in a carriage
and six, but "walking barefoot;" his contempt for earthly shadows
being always extreme. Accordingly, his quarrels with the SOECULUM
were constant and endless; his wanderings up and down, and
vehement arguings, in this world, to little visible effect, lasted
all his days. We can perceive he was short-tempered, thin of skin:
a violently sensitive man. For example, once in the Bohemian
solitudes, on a summer afternoon, in one of his thousand-fold
pilgrimings and wayfarings, he had lain down to rest, his one or
two monks and he, in some still glade, "with a stone for his
pillow" (as was always his custom even in Prag), and had fallen
sound asleep. A Bohemian shepherd chanced to pass that way,
warbling something on his pipe, as he wended towards looking after
his flock. Seeing the sleepers on their stone pillows, the
thoughtless Czech mischievously blew louder,--started Adalbert
broad awake upon him; who, in the fury of the first moment,
shrieked: "Deafness on thee! Man cruel to the human sense of
hearing!" or words to that effect. Which curse, like the most of
Adalbert's, was punctually fulfilled: the amazed Czech stood deaf
as a post, and went about so all his days after; nay, for long
centuries (perhaps down to the present time, in remote parts), no
Czech blows into his pipe in the woodlands, without certain
precautions, and preliminary fuglings of a devotional nature.
[Bollandus, ubi supra.]--From which miracle, as indeed from many
other indications, I infer an irritable nervous-system in poor
Adalbert; and find this death in the Romova was probably a furious
mixture of Earth and Heaven.

At all events, he lies there, beautiful though bloody, "in the
form of a crucifix;" zealous Adalbert, the hot spirit of him now
at last cold;--and has clapt his mark upon the Heathen country,
protesting to the last. This was in the year 997, think the best
Antiquaries. It happened at a place called FISCHHAUSEN, near
Pillau, say they; on that, narrow strip of country which lies
between the Baltic aad the Frische Haf (immense Lake, WASH, as we
should say, or leakage of shallow water, one of two such, which
the Baltic has spilt out of it in that quarter),--near the Fort
and Haven of Pillau; where there has been much stir since; where
Napoleon, for one thing, had some tough fighting, prior to the
Treaty of Tilsit, fifty years ago. The place--or if not this
place, then Gnesen in Poland, the final burial-place of Adalbert,
which is better known--has ever since had a kind of sacredness;
better or worse expressed by mankind: in the form of canonization,
endless pilgrimages, rumored miracles, and such like. For shortly
afterwards, the neighboring Potentate, Boleslaus Duke of Poland,
heart-struck at the event, drew sword on these Heathens, and
having (if I remember) gained some victory, bargained to have the
Body of Adalbert delivered to him at its weight in gold. Body, all
cut in pieces, and nailed to poles, had long ignominiously
withered in the wind; perhaps it was now only buried overnight for
the nonce? Being dug up, or being cut down, and put into the
balance, it weighed--less than was expected. It was as light as
gossamer, said pious rumor, Had such an excellent odor too;--and
came for a mere nothing of gold! This was Adalbert's first miracle
after death; in life he had done many hundreds of them, and has
done millions since,--chiefly upon paralytic nervous-systems, and
the element of pious rumor;--which any Devil's-Advocate then
extant may explain if he can! Kaiser Otto, Wonder of the World,
who had known St. Adalbert in life, and much honored him, "made a
pilgrimage to his tomb at Gnesen in the year 1000;"--and knelt
there, we may believe, with thoughts wondrous enough, great and
sad enough.

There is no hope of converting Preussen, then? It will never leave
off its dire worship of Satan, then? Say not, Never; that is a
weak word. St. Adalbert has stamped his life upon it, in the form
of a crucifix, in lasting protest against that.

Chapter III.


Meanwhile our first enigmatic set of Markgraves, or Deputy-
Markgraves, at Brandenburg, are likewise faring ill. Whoever these
valiant steel-gray gentlemen might be (which Dryasdust does not
the least know, and only makes you more uncertain the more he
pretends to tell), one thing is very evident, they had no
peaceable possession of the place, nor for above a hundred years,
a constant one on any terms. The Wends were highly disinclined to
conversion and obedience: once and again, and still again, they
burst up; got temporary hold of Brandenburg, hoping to keep it;
and did frightful heterodoxies there. So that to our distressed
imagination those poor "Markgraves of Witekind descent," our first
set in Brandenburg, become altogether shadowy, intermittent,
enigmatic, painfully actual as they once were. Take one instance,
omitting others; which happily proves to be the finish of that
first shadowy line, and introduces us to a new set very slightly
more substantial.


In the year 1023, near a century after Henry the Fowler's feat,
the Wends bursting up in never-imagined fury, get hold of
Brandenburg again,--for the third and, one would fain hope, the
last time. The reason was, words spoken by the then Markgraf of
Brandenburg, Dietrich or Theodoric, last of the Witekind
Markgraves; who hearing that a Cousin of his (Markgraf or Deputy-
Markgraf like himself) was about wedding his daughter to "Mistevoi
King of the Wends," said too earnestly: "Don't! Will you give your
daughter to a dog?" Word "dog" was used, says my authority. [See
Michaelis Chur und Furstlichen Hauser,
i. 257-259: Pauli, Allgemeine Preussische Staats-
Geschichte (Halle, 1760-1769), i. l-182 (the
"standard work" on Prussian History; in eight watery quartos,
intolerable to human nature): Kloss, Vuterlandische
Gemalde (Berlin, 1833), i. 59-108 (a Bookseller's
compilation, with some curious Excerpts):--under which lie modern
Sagittarius, ancient Adam of Bremen, Ditmarus
Merseburgensis, Witichindus Corbeiensis, Arnoldus Lubecensis, italic> &c. &c. to all lengths and breadths.] Which threw King
Mistevoi into a paroxysm, and raised the Wends. Their butchery of
the German population in poor Brandenburg, especially of the
Priests; their burning of the Cathedral, and of Church and State
generally, may be conceived. The HARLUNGSBERG,--in our time
MARIENBERG, pleasant Hill near Brandenburg, with its gardens,
vines, and whitened cottages:--on the top of this Harlungsherg
the Wends "set up their god Triglaph;" a three-headed Monster of
which I have seen prints, beyond measure ugly. Something like
three whale's-cubs combined by boiling, or a triple porpoise dead-
drunk (for the dull eyes are inexpressible, as well as the
amorphous shape): ugliest and stupidest of all false gods.
This these victorious Wends set up on the Harlungsberg, Year 1023;
and worshipped after their sort, benighted mortals,--with joy, for
a time. The Cathedral was in ashes, Priests all slain or fled,
shadowy Markgraves the like; Church and State lay in ashes;
and Triglaph, like a Triple Porpoise under the influence of
laudanum, stood (I know not whether on his head or on his tail)
aloft on the Harlungsberg, as the Supreme of this Universe, for
the time being.


Whereupon the DITMARSCH-STADE Markgrafs (as some designate them)
had to interfere, these shadowy Deputies of the Witekind breed
having vanished in that manner. The Ditmarschers recovered the
place; and with some fighting, did in the main at least keep
Triglaph and the Wends out of it in time coming. The Wends were
fiercely troublesome, and fought much; but I think they never
actually got hold of Brandenburg again. They were beginning to get
notions of conversion: well preached to and well beaten upon,
you cannot hold out forever. Even Mistevoi at one time professed
tendencies to Christianity; perhaps partly for his Bride's sake,--
the dog, we may call him, in a milder sense! But he relapsed
dreadfully, after that insult; and his son worse. On the other
hand, Mistevoi's grandson was so zealous he went about with the
Missionary Preachers, and interpreted their German into Wendish:
"Oh, my poor Wends, will you hear, then, will you understand?
This solid Earth is but a shadow: Heaven forever or else Hell
forever, that is the reality!" SUCH "difference between right and
wrong" no Wend had heard of before: quite tremendously "important
if true!"--And doubtless it impressed many. There are heavy
Ditmarsch strokes for the unimpressible. By degrees all got
converted, though many were killed first; and, one way or other,
the Wends are preparing to efface themselves as a distinct people.

This STADE-AND-DITMARSCH family (of Anglish or Saxon breed,
if that is an advantage) seem generally to have furnished the
SALZWEDEL Office as well, of which Brandenburg was an offshoot,
done by deputy, usually also of their kin. They lasted in
Brandenburg rather more than a hundred years;--with little or no
Book-History that is good to read; their History inarticulate
rather, and stamped beneficently on the face of things. Otto is a
common name among them. One of their sisters, too, Adelheid
(Adelaide, NOBLENESS) had a strange adventure with "Ludwig the
Springer:" romantic mythic man, famous in the German world,
over whom my readers and I must not pause at this time.

In Salzwedel, in Ditmarsch, or wherever stationed, they had a
toilsome fighting life: sore difficulties with their DITMARSCHERS
too, with the plundering Danish populations; Markgraf after
Markgraf getting killed in the business. "ERSCHLAGEN, slain
fighting with the Heathen," say the old Books, and pass on to
another. Of all which there is now silence forever. So many years
men fought and planned and struggled there, all forgotten now
except by the gods; and silently gave away their life, before
those countries could become fencible and habitable! Nay, my
friend, it is our lot too: and if we would win honor in this
Universe, the rumor of Histories and Morning Newspapers,--which
have to become wholly zero, one day, and fall dumb as stones,
and which were not perhaps very wise even while speaking,--will
help us little!--


The Ditmarsch-Stade kindred, much slain in battle with the
Heathen, and otherwise beaten upon, died out, about the year 1l30
(earlier perhaps, perhaps later, for all is shadowy still);
and were succeeded in the Salzwedel part of their function by a
kindred called "of Ascanien and Ballenstadt;" the ASCANIER or
ANALT Markgraves; whose History, and that of Brandenburg, becomes
henceforth articulate to us; a History not doubtful or shadowy any
longer; but ascertainable, if reckoned worth ascertaining.
Who succeeded in Ditmarsch, let us by no means inquire. The Empire
itself was in some disorder at this time, more abstruse of aspect
than usual; and these Northern Markgrafs, already become important
people, and deep in general politics, had their own share in the
confusion that was going.

It was about this same time that a second line of Kaisers had died
out: the FRANKISH or SALIC line, who had succeeded to the SAXON,
of Henry the Fowler's blood. For the Empire too, though elective,
had always a tendency to become hereditary, and go in lines:
if the last Kaiser left a son not unfit, who so likely as the son?
But he needed to be fit, otherwise it would not answer,--otherwise
it might be worse for him! There were great labors in the Empire
too, as well as on the Sclavic frontier of it: brave men fighting
against anarchy (actually set in pitched fight against it, and not
always strong enough),--toiling sore, according to their faculty,
to pull the innumerable crooked things straight. Some agreed well
with the Pope,--as Henry II., who founded Bamberg Bishopric, and
much else of the like; [Kohler, pp. 102-104. See, for instance,
Description de la Table d'Aute1 en or fin, donnee a la
Cathedrale de Bale, par l'Empereur Henri II. en 1019
(Porentruy, 1838).] "a sore saint for the crown," as was said of
David I., his Scotch congener, by a descendant. Others disagreed
very much indeed;--Henry IV.'s scene at Canossa, with Pope
Hildebrand and the pious Countess (year 1077, Kaiser of the Holy
Roman Empire waiting, three days, in the snow, to kiss the foot of
excommunicative Hildebrand), has impressed itself on all memories!
Poor Henry rallied out of that abasement, and dealt a stroke or
two on Hildebrand; but fell still lower before long, his very Son
going against him; and came almost to actual want of bread, had
not the Bishop of Liege been good to him. Nay, after death, he lay
four years waiting vainly even for burial,--but indeed cared
little about that.

Certainly this Son of his, Kaiser Henry V., does not shine in
filial piety: but probably the poor lad himself was hard bested.
He also came to die, A.D. 1125, still little over forty, and was
the last of the Frankish Kaisers. He "left the REICHS-INSIGNIEN
[Crown, Sceptre and Coronation gear] to his Widow and young
Friedrich of Hohenstauffen," a sister's son of his,--hoping the
said Friedrich might, partly by that help, follow as Kaiser.
Which Friedrich could not do; being wheedled, both the Widow and
he, out of their insignia, under false pretences, and otherwise
left in the lurch. Not Friedrich, but one Lothar, a stirring man
who had grown potent in the Saxon countries, was elected Kaiser.
In the end, after waiting till Lothar was done, Friedrich's race
did succeed, and with brilliancy,--Kaiser Barbarossa being that
same Friedrich's son. In regard to which dim complicacies, take
this Excerpt from the imbroglio of Manuscripts, before they go
into the fire:--

"By no means to be forgotten that the Widow we here speak of,
Kaiser Henry V.'s Widow, who brought no heir to Henry V., was our
English Henry Beauclerc's daughter,--granddaughter therefore of
William Conqueror,--the same who, having (in 1127, the second year
of her widowhood) married Godefroi Count of Anjou, produced our
Henry II. and our Plantagenets; and thereby, through her
victorious Controversies with King Stephen (that noble peer whose
breeches stood him so cheap), became very celebrated as 'the
Empress Maud,' in our old History-Books. Mathildis, Dowager of
Kaiser Henry V., to whom he gave his Reichs-Insignia at dying:
she is the 'Empress Maud' of English Books; and relates herself in
this manner to the Hohenstauffen Dynasty, and intricate German
vicissitudes. Be thankful for any hook whatever on which to hang
half an acre of thrums in fixed position, out of your way;
the smallest flint-spark, in a world all black and unrememberable,
will be welcome."--

And so we return to Brandenburg and the "ASCANIEN and BALLENSTADT"
series of Markgraves.

Chapter IV.


This Ascanien, happily, has nothing to do with Brute of Troy or
the pious AEneas's son; it is simply the name of a most ancient
Castle (etymology unknown to me, ruins still dimly traceable) on
the north slope of the Hartz Mountains; short way from
Aschersleben,--the Castle and Town of Aschersleben are, so to
speak, a second edition of Ascanien. Ballenstadt is still older;
Ballenstadt was of age in Charlemagne's time; and is still a
respectable little Town in that upland range of country.
The kindred, called GRAFS and ultimately HERZOGS (Dukes) of
"Ascanien and Ballenstadt," are very famous in old German History,
especially down from this date. Some reckon that they had
intermittently been Markgrafs, in their region, long before this;
which is conceivable enough: at all events it is very plain they
did now attain the Office in SALZWEDEL (straightway shifting it
to Brandenburg); and held it continuously, it and much else that
lay adjacent, for centuries, in a highly conspicuous manner.

In Brandenburg they lasted for about two hundred years; in their
Saxon dignities, the younger branch of them did not die out (and
give place to the Wettins that now are) for five hundred. Nay they
have still their representatives on the Earth: Leopold of Anhalt-
Dessau, celebrated "Old Dessauer," come of the junior branches, is
lineal head of the kin in Friedrich Wilhelm's time (while our
little Fritzchen lies asleep in his cradle at Berlin); and a
certain Prince of Anhalt-Zerbst, Colonel in the Prussian Army,
authentic PRINCE, but with purse much shorter than pedigree, will
have a Daughter by and by, who will go to Russia, and become
almost too conspicuous, as Catharine II., there!--

"Brandenburg now as afterwards," says one of my old Papers,
"was officially reckoned SAXON; part of the big Duchy of Saxony;
where certain famed BILLUNGS, lineage of an old 'Count Billung'
(connected or not with BILLINGS-gate in our country, I do not
know) had long borne sway. Of which big old Billungs I will say
nothing at all;--this only, that they died out; and a certain
Albert, 'Count of Ascanien and Ballenstadt' (say, of ANHALT, in
modern terms), whose mother was one of their daughters, came in
for the northern part of their inheritance. He made a clutch at
the Southern too, but did not long retain that. Being a man very
swift and very sharp, at once nimble and strong, in the huge
scramble that there then was,--Uncle Billung dead without heirs,
a SALIC line of emperors going or gone out, and a HOHENSTAUFFEN
not yet come in,--he made a rich game of it for himself; the
rather as Lothar, the intermediate Kaiser, was his cousin, and
there were other good cards which he played well.

"This is he they call 'Albert the Bear ( Albrecht der Bar
);' first of the ASCANIEN Markgraves of Brandenburg;
--first wholly definite MARKGRAF OF BRANDENBURG that there is;
once a very shining figure in the world, though now fallen dim
enough again. It is evident he had a quick eye, as well as a
strong hand; and could pick what way was straightest among crooked
things. He got the Northern part of what is still called Saxony,
and kept it in his family; got the Brandenburg Countries withal,
got the Lausitz; was the shining figure and great man of the North
in his day. The Markgrafdom of SALZWEDEL (which soon became of
BRANDENBURG) he very naturally acquired (A.D. 1142 or earlier);
very naturally, considering what Saxon and other honors and
possessions he had already got hold of."--

We can only say, it was the luckiest of events for Brandenburg,
and the beginning of all the better destinies it has had.
A conspicuous Country ever since in the world, and which grows
ever more so in our late times.

He had many wars; inextricable coil of claimings, quarrellings and
agreeings: fought much,--fought in Italy, too, "against the
Pagans" (Saracens, that is). Cousin to one Kaiser, the Lothar
above named; then a chief stay of the Hohenstauffen, of the two
Hohenstauffens who followed: a restless, much-managing, wide-
warring man. He stood true by the great Barbarossa, second of the
Hohenstauffen, greatest of all the Kaisers; which was a luck for
him, and perhaps a merit. He kept well with three Kaisers in his
time. Had great quarrels with "Henry the Lion" about that
"Billung" Saxon Heritage; Henry carrying off the better part of it
from Albert. Except that same Henry, head of the Guelphs or Welfs,
who had not Albert's talent, though wider lands than Albert, there
was no German prince so important in that time.

He transferred the Markgrafdom to BRANDENBURG, probably as more
central in his wide lands; SALZWEDEL is henceforth the led
Markgrafdom or MARCK, and soon falls out of notice in the world.
Salzwedel is called henceforth ever since the "Old Marck (
Alte Marck, Altmarck );" the Brandenburg countries
getting the name of "New Marck." Modern NEUMARK, modern "Middle-
Marck" (in which stands Brandenburg itself in our time), "UCKER-
Marck" (OUTSIDE Marck,--word UCKER is still seen in UKRAINE, for
instance): these are posterior Divisions, fallen upon as
Brandenburg (under Albert chiefly) enlarged itself, and needed new
Official parcellings into departments.

Under Albert the Markgrafdom had risen to be an ELECTORATE withal.
The Markgraf of Brandenburg was now furthermore the KURFURST of
Brandenburg; officially "Arch-treasurer of the Holy Roman Empire;
"and one of the Seven who have a right (which became about this
time an exclusive one for those Seven) to choose, to KIEREN the
Romish Kaiser; and who are therefore called KUR Princes, KURFURSTE
or Electors, as the highest dignity except the Kaiser's own.
In reference to which abstruse matter, likely to concern us
somewhat, will the uninstructed English reader consent to
the following Excerpt, slightly elucidatory of KURFURSTS and
their function?

"FURST (Prince) I suppose is equivalent originally to our noun of
number, First. The old verb KIEREN (participle ERKOREN still in
use, not to mention 'Val-KYR' and other instances) is essentially
the same word as our CHOOSE, being written KIESEN as well as
KIEREN. Nay, say the etymologists, it is also written KUSSEN (to
KISS,--to CHOOSE with such emphasis!), and is not likely to fall
obsolete in that form.--The other Six Electoral Dignitaries who
grew to Eight by degrees, and may be worth noting once by the
readers of this Book; are:--

"1. Three Ecclesiastical, MAINZ, COLN, TRIER (Mentz, Cologne,
Treves), Archbishops all, with sovereignty and territory more or
less considerable;--who used to be elected as Popes are,
theoretically by their respective Chapters and the Heavenly
Inspirations, but practically by the intrigues and pressures of
the neighboring Potentates, especially France and Austria.

"2. Three Secular, SACHSEN, PFALZ, BOHMEN (Saxony, Palatinate,
Bohemia); of which the last, BOHMEN, since it fell from being a
Kingdom in itself, to being a Province of Austria, is not very
vocal in the Diets. These Six, with Brandenburg, are the Seven
Kurfursts in old time; SEPTEMVIRS of the Country, so to speak.

"But now PFALZ, in the Thirty-Years War (under our Prince Rupert's
Father, whom the Germans call the `Winter-King'), got abrogated,
put to the ban, so far as an indignant Kaiser could; and the vote
and KUR of Pfalz was given to his Cousin of BAIERN (Bavaria),--
so far as an indignant Kaiser could. However, at the Peace of
Westphalia (1648) it was found incompetent to any Kaiser to
abrogate PFULZ or the like of Pfalz, a Kurfurst of the Empire.
So, after jargon inconceivable, it was settled, That PFALZ must be
reinstated, though with territories much clipped, and at the
bottom of the list, not the top as formerly; and that BAIERN,
who could not stand to be balked after twenty years' possession,
must be made EIGHTH Elector. The NINTH, we saw (Year 1692), was
Gentleman Ernst of HANOVER. There never was any Tenth; and the
Holy ROMISCHE REICH, which was a grand object once, but had gone
about in a superannuated and plainly crazy state for some
centuries back, was at last put out of pain, by Napoleon,
'6th August, 1806,' and allowed to cease from this world."
[Ms. penes me. ]

None of Albert's wars are so comfortable to reflect on as those he
had with the anarchic Wends; whom he now fairly beat to powder,
and either swept away, or else damped down into Christianity and
keeping of the peace. Swept them away otherwise; "peopling their
lands extensively with Colonists from Holland, whom an inroad of
the sea had rendered homeless there." Which surely was a useful
exchange. Nothing better is known to me of Albert the Bear than
this his introducing large numbers of Dutch Netherlanders into
those countries; men thrown out of work, who already knew how to
deal with bog and sand, by mixing and delving, and who first
taught Brandenburg what greenness and cow-pasture was. The Wends,
in presence of such things, could not but consent more and more to
efface themselves,--either to become German, and grow milk and
cheese in the Dutch manner, or to disappear from the world.

The Wendish Princes had a taste for German wives; in which just
taste the Albert genealogy was extremely willing to indulge them.
Affinities produce inheritances; by proper marriage-contracts you
can settle on what side the most contingent inheritance shall at
length fall. Dim but pretty certain lies a time coming when the
Wendish Princes also shall have effaced themselves; and all shall
be German-Brandenburgish, not Wendish any more.--The actual
Inhabitants of Brandenburg, therefore, are either come of Dutch
Bog-farmers, or are simple Lower SAXONS ("Anglo-Saxon," if you
like that better), PLATT-TEUTSCH of the common type; an
unexceptionable breed of people. Streaks of Wendish population,
extruded gradually into the remoter quagmires, and more
inaccessible, less valuable sedgy moors and sea-strands, are
scattered about; Mecklenburg, which still subsists separately
after a sort, is reckoned peculiarly Wendish. In Mecklenburg,
Pommern, Pommerellen (Little Pomerania), are still to be seen
physiognomies of a Wendish or Vandalic type (more of cheek than
there ought to be, and less of brow; otherwise good enough
physiognomies of their kind): but the general mass, tempered with
such admixtures, is of the Platt-Deutsch, Saxon or even Anglish
character we are familiar with here at home. A patient stout
people; meaning considerable things, and very incapable of
speaking what it means.

Albert was a fine tall figure himself; DER SCHONE, "Albert the
Handsome," was his name as often as "Albert the Bear." That latter
epithet he got, not from his looks or qualities, but merely from
his heraldic cognizance: a Bear on his shield. As was then the
mode of names; surnames being scant, and not yet fixedly in
existence. Thus too his contemporaries, Henry THE LION of Saxony
and Welfdom, William THE LION of Scotland, were not, either of
them, specially leonine men: nor had the PLANTAGENETS, or Geoffrey
of Anjou, any connection with the PLANT of BROOM, except wearing a
twig of it in their caps on occasion. Men are glad to get some
designation for a grand Albert they are often speaking of, which
shall distinguish him from the many small ones. Albert "the Bear,
DER BAR," will do as well as another.

It was this one first that made Brandenburg peaceable and notable.
We might call him the second founder of Brandenburg; he, in the
middle of the Twelfth Century, completed for it what Henry the
Fowler had begun early in the Tenth. After two hundred and fifty
years of barking and worrying, the Wends are now finally reduced
to silence; their anarchy well buried, and wholesome Dutch cabbage
planted over it: Albert did several great things in the world;
but, this, for posterity, remains his memorable feat. Not done
quite easily; but, done: big destinies of Nations or of Persons
are not founded GRATIS in this world. He had a sore toilsome time
of it, coercing, warring, managing among his fellow-creatures,
while his day's work lasted,--fifty years or so, for it began
early. He died in his Castle of Ballenstadt, peaceably among the
Hartz Mountains at last, in the year 1170, age about sixty-five.
It was in the time while Thomas a Becket was roving about the
world, coming home excommunicative, and finally getting killed in
Canterbury Cathedral;--while Abbot Samson, still a poor little
brown Boy, came over from Norfolk, holding by his mother's hand,
to St. Edmundsbury; having seen "SANTANAS s with outspread wings"
fearfully busy in this world.

Chapter V.


It was in those same years that a stout young fellow, Conrad by
name, far off in the southern parts of Germany, set out from the
old Castle of Hohenzollern, where he was but junior, and had
small outlooks, upon a very great errand in the world.
>From Hohenzollern; bound now towards Gelnhausen, Kaiserslautern,
or whatever temporary lodging the great Kaiser Barbarossa might
be known to have, who was a wandering man, his business lying
everywhere over half the world, and needing the master's eye.
Conrad's purpose is to find Barbarossa, and seek fortune
under him.

This is a very indisputable event of those same years. The exact
date, the figure, circumstances of it were, most likely, never
written anywhere but on Conrad's own brain, and are now rubbed out
forevermore; but the event itself is certain; and of the highest
concernment to this Narrative. Somewhere about the year 1170,
likeliest a few years before that, [Rentsch,
Brandenburgischer Ceder-Hein (Baireuth, l682),
pp. 273-276.--See also Johann Ulrich Pregitzern,
Teutscher Regierungs-und Ehren-Spiegel, vorbildend &c. des Hauses
Hohenzollern (Berlin, 1703), pp. 90-93. A learned
and painful Book: by a Tubingen Professor, who is deeply read in
the old Histories, and gives Portraits and other Engravings of
some value.] this Conrad, riding down from Hohenzoliern, probably
with no great stock of luggage about, him,--little dreams of being
connected with Brandenburg on the other side of the world; but IS
unconsciously more so than any other of the then sons of Adam.
He is the lineal ancestor, twentieth in direct ascent, of the
little Boy now sleeping in his cradle at Berlin; let him wait till
nineteen generations, valiantly like Conrad, have done their part,
and gone out, Conrad will find he is come to this! A man's destiny
is strange always; and never wants for miracles, or will want,
though it sometimes may for eyes to discern them.

Hohenzollern lies far south in SCHWABEN (Suabia), on the sunward
slope of the Rauhe-Alp Country; no great way north from Constance
and its Lake; but well aloft, near the springs of the Danube;
its back leaning on the Black Forest; it is perhaps definable as
the southern summit of that same huge old Hercynian Wood, which is
still called the SCHWARZWALD (Black Forest), though now
comparatively bare of trees. ["There are still considerable
spottings of wood (pine mainly, and 'black' enough); HOLZ-HANDEL
(timber-trade) still a considerable branch of business there;--and
on the streams of the country are cunning contrivances noticeable,
for floating down the article into the Neckar river, and thence
into the Rhine and to Holland." ( Tourist's Note. italic>)] Fanciful Dryasdust, doing a little etymology, will tell
you the name ZOLLERN is equivalent to TOLLERY or Place of Tolls.
Whereby HOHENZOLLERN comes to mean the HIGH or Upper TOLLERY;--
and gives one the notion of antique pedlers climbing painfully,
out of Italy and the Swiss valleys, thus far; unstrapping their
pack-horses here, and chaffering in unknown dialect about TOLL.
Poor souls;--it may be so, but we do not know, nor shall it
concern us. This only is known: That a human kindred, probably of
some talent for coercing anarchy and guiding mankind, had,
centuries ago, built its BURG there, and done that function in a
small but creditable way ever since;--kindred possibly enough
derivable from "Thassilo," Charlemagne, King Dagobert, and other
Kings, but certainly from Adam and the Almighty Maker, who had
given it those qualities;--and that Conrad, a junior member of the
same, now goes forth from it in the way we see. "Why should a
young fellow that has capabilities," thought Conrad, "stay at home
in hungry idleness, with no estate but his javelin and buff
jerkin, and no employment but his hawks, when there is a wide
opulent world waiting only to be conquered?" This was Conrad's
thought; and it proved to be a very just one.

It was now the flower-time of the Romish Kaisership of Germany;
about the middle or noon of Barbarossa himself, second of the
Hohenstauffens, and greatest of all the Kaisers of that or any
other house. Kaiser fallen unintelligible to most modern readers,
and wholly unknown, which is a pity. No King so furnished out with
apparatus and arena, with personal faculty to rule and scene to do
it in, has appeared elsewhere. A magnificent magnanimous man;
holding the reins of the world, not quite in the imaginary sense;
scourging anarchy down, and urging noble effort up, really on a
grand Scale. A terror to evil-doers and a praise to well-doers in
this world, probably beyond what was ever seen since. Whom also we
salute across the centuries, as a choice Beneficence of Heaven.
Encamped on the Plain of Roncaglia [when he entered Italy, as he
too often had occasion to do], his shield was hung out on a high
mast over his tent;" and it meant in those old days, "Ho, every
one that has suffered wrong; here is a Kaiser come to judge you,
as he shall answer it to HIS Master." And men gathered round him;
and actually found some justice,--if they could discern it when
found. Which they could not always do; neither was the justice
capable of being perfect always. A fearfully difficult function,
that of Friedrich Redbeard. But an inexorably indispensable one
in this world;--though sometimes dispensed with (to the huge joy
of Anarchy, which sings Hallelujah through all its Newspapers)
for a season!

Kaiser Friedrich had immense difficulties with his Popes, with his
Milanese, and the like;--besieged Milan six times over, among
other anarchies;--had indeed a heavy-laden hard time of it, his
task being great and the greatest. He made Gebhardus, the anarchic
Governor of Milan, "lie chained under his table, like a dog, for
three days." For the man was in earnest, in that earnest time:--
and let us say, they are but paltry sham-men who are not so, in
any time; paltry, and far worse than paltry, however high their
plumes may be. Of whom the sick world (Anarchy, both vocal and
silent, having now swoln rather high) is everywhere getting
weary.--Gebhardus, the anarchic Governor, lay three days under the
Kaiser's table; as it would be well if every anarchic Governor, of
the soft type and of the hard, were made to do on occasion; asking
himself, in terrible earnest, "Am I a dog, then; alas, am not I a
dog?" Those were serious old times.

On the other hand, Kaiser Friedrich had his Tourneys, his gleams
of bright joyances now and then; one great gathering of all the
chivalries at Mainz, which lasted for three weeks long, the
grandest Tourney ever seen in this world. Gelnhausen, in the
Wetterau (ruin still worth seeing, on its Island in the Kinzig
river), is understood to have been one of his Houses;
Kaiserslautern (Kaiser's LIMPID, from its clear spring-water) in
the Pfalz (what we call PALATINATE), another. He went on the
Crusade in his seventieth year; [1189, A.D.; Saladin having, to
the universal sorrow, taken Jerusalem.] thinking to himself,
"Let us end with one clear act of piety:"--he cut his way through
the dangerous Greek attorneyisms, through the hungry mountain
passes, furious Turk fanaticisms, like a gray old hero: "Woe is
me, my son has perished, then?" said he once, tears wetting the
beard now white enough; "My son is slain!--But Christ still lives;
let us on, my men!" And gained great victories, and even found his
son; but never returned home;--died, some unknown sudden death,
"in the river Cydnus," say the most. [Kohler (p. 188), and the
Authorities cited by him. Bunau's Deutsche Kaiser-und
Reichs-Historie (Leipzig, 1728-1743), i., is the
express Book of Barbarossa: an elaborate, instructive Volume.]
Nay German Tradition thinks he is not yet dead; but only sleeping,
till the bad world reach its worst, when he will reappear. He sits
within the Hill near Salzburg yonder,--says German Tradition, its
fancy kindled by the strange noises in that Hill (limestone Hill)
from hidden waters, and by the grand rocky look of the place:--
A peasant once, stumbling into the interior, saw the Kaiser in his
stone cavern; Kaiser sat at a marble table, leaning on his elbow;
winking, only half asleep; beard had grown through the table, and
streamed out on the floor; he looked at the peasant one moment;
asked him something about the time it was; then dropped his
eyelids again: Not yet time, but will be soon! [Riesebeck's
Travels (English Translation, London, 1787),
i. 140, Busching, Volks-Sagen, &c. (Leipzig,
1820), i. 333, &c. &x.] He is winking as if to awake. To awake,
and set his shield aloft by the Roncalic Fields again, with:
Ho, every one that is suffering wrong;--or that has strayed
guideless, devil-ward, and done wrong, which is far fataler!


This was the Kaiser to whom Conrad addressed himself; and he did
it with success; which may be taken as a kind of testimonial to
the worth of the young man. Details we have absolutely none:
but there is no doubt that Conrad recommended himself to Kaiser
Redbeard, nor any that the Kaiser was a judge of men. Very earnest
to discern men's worth and capabilities; having unspeakable need
of worth, instead of unworth, in those under him! We may conclude
he had found capabilities in Conrad; found that the young fellow
did effective services as the occasion rose, and knew how to work,
in a swift, resolute, judicious and exact manner. Promotion was
not likely on other terms; still less, high promotion.

One thing farther is known, significant for his successes: Conrad
found favor with "the Heiress of the Vohburg Family," desirable
young heiress, and got her to wife. The Vohburg Family, now much
forgotten everywhere, and never heard of in England before, had
long been of supreme importance, of immense possessions, and
opulent in territories, and we need not add, in honors and
offices, in those Franconian Nurnberg regions; and was now gone to
this one girl. I know not that she had much inheritance after all;
the vast Vohburg properties lapsing all to the Kaiser, when the
male heirs were out. But she had pretensions, tacit claims;
in particular, the Vohburgs had long been habitual or in effect
hereditary Burggrafs of Nurnberg; and if Conrad had the talent for
that office; he now, in preference to others, might have a chance
for it. Sure enough, he got it; took root in it, he and his; and,
in the course of centuries, branched up from it, high and wide,
over the adjoining countries; waxing towards still higher
destinies. That is the epitome of Conrad's history; history
now become very great, but then no bigger than its neighbors, and
very meagrely recorded; of which the reflective reader is to make
what he can.

There is nothing clearly known of Conrad more than these three
facts: That he was a cadet of Hohenzollern (whose father's name,
and some forefathers' names are definitely known in the family
archives, but do not concern us); that he married the Heiress of
the Vohburgs, whose history is on record in like manner; and that
he was appointed Burggraf of Nurnberg, year not precisely known,--
but before 1170, as would seem. "In a REICHSTAG (Diet of the
Empire) held at Regensburg in or about 1170," he formally
complains, he and certain others, all stanch Kaiser's friends (for
in fact it was with the Kaiser's knowledge, or at his
instigation), of Henry the Lion's high procedures and
malpractices; of Henry's League with the Pope, League with the
King of Denmark, and so forth; the said Henry having indeed fallen
into opposition, to a dangerous degree;--and signs himself
BURGGRAF OF NURNBERG, say the old Chronicles. [Rentsch, p. 276
(who cites Aventinus, Trittheim, &c.).]
The old Document itself has long since perished, I conclude: but
the Chronicles may be accepted as reporters of so conspicuous a
thing; which was the beginning of long strife in Germany, and
proved the ruin of Henry the Lion, supreme Welf grown over-big,--
and cost our English Henry II., whose daughter he had married,
a world of trouble and expense, we may remark withal. Conrad
therefore is already Burggraf of Nurnberg, and a man of mark,
in 1170: and his marriage, still more his first sally from the
paternal Castle to seek his fortune, must all be dated earlier.

More is not known of Conrad: except indeed that he did not perish
in Barbarossa's grand final Crusade. For the antiquaries have
again found him signed to some contract, or otherwise
insignificant document, A.D. 1200. Which is proof positive that he
did not die in the Crusade; and proof probable that he was not of
it,--few, hardly any, of those stalwart 150,000 champions of the
Cross having ever got home again. Conrad, by this time, might have
sons come to age; fitter for arms and fatigues than he: and indeed
at Nurnberg, in Deutschland generally, as Official Prince of the
Empire, and man of weight and judgment, Conrad's services might be
still more useful, and the Kaiser's interests might require
him rather to stay at home in that juncture. Burggraf of Nurnberg
he continued to be; he and his descendants, first in a selective,
then at length in a directly hereditary way, century after
century; and so long as that office lasted in Nurnberg (which
it did there much longer than in other Imperial Free-Cities),
a COMES DE ZOLRE of Conrad's producing was always the man

Their acts, in that station and capacity, as Burggraves and
Princes of the Empire, were once conspicuous enough in German
History; and indeed are only so dim now, because the History
itself is, and was always, dim to us on this side of the sea.
They did strenuous work in their day; and occasionally towered up
(though little driven by the poor wish of "towering," or "shining"
without need) into the high places of Public History. They rest
now from their labors, Conrad and his successors, in long series,
in the old Monastery of Heilsbronn (between Nurnberg and Anspach),
with Tombs to many of them, which were very legible for slight
Biographic purposes in my poor friend Rentsch's time, a hundred
and fifty years ago; and may perhaps still have some quasi-use,
as "sepulchral brasses," to another class of persons. One or two
of those old buried Figures, more peculiarly important for our
little Friend now sleeping in his cradle yonder, we must endeavor,
as the Narrative proceeds, to resuscitate a little and render
visible for moments.


As to the Office, it was more important than perhaps the reader
imagines. We already saw Conrad first Burggraf, among the magnates
of the country, denouncing Henry the Lion. Every Burggraf of
Nurnberg is, in virtue of his ofice, "Prince of the Empire:" if a
man happened to have talent of his own, and solid resources of his
own (which are always on the growing hand with this family), here
is a basis from which he may go far enough. Burggraf of Nurnberg:
that means again GRAF (judge, defender, manager, G'REEVE) of the
Kaiser's BURG or Castle,--in a word Kaiser's Representative and
ALTER EGO,--in the old Imperial Free-Town of Nurnberg; with much
adjacent very complex territory, also, to administer for the
Kaiser. A flourishing extensive City, this old Nurnberg, with
valuable adjacent territory, civic and imperial, intricately
intermixed; full of commercial industries, opulences, not without
democratic tendencies. Nay it is almost, in some senses, the
LONDON AND MIDDLESEX of the Germany that then was, if we will
consider it!

This is a place to give a man chances, and try what stuff is in
him. The office involves a talent for governing, as well as for
judging; talent for fighting also, in cases of extremity, and what
is still better, a talent for avoiding to fight. None but a man of
competent superior parts can do that function; I suppose, no
imbecile could have existed many months in it, in the old earnest
times. Conrad and his succeeding Hohenzollerns proved very capable
to do it, as would seem; and grew and spread in it, waxing bigger
and bigger, from their first planting there by Kaiser Barbarossa,
a successful judge of men. And ever since that time, from "about
the year 1170," down to the year 1815,--when so much was changed,
owing to another (temporary) "Kaiser" of new type, Napoleon his
name,--the Hohenzollerns have had a footing in Frankedand;
and done sovereignty in and round Nurnberg, with an enlarging
Territory in that region. Territory at last of large compass;
which, under the names MARGRAFDOM OF ANSPACH, and of BAIREUTH, or
in general MARGRAFDOM OF CULMBACH, which includes both, has become
familiar in History.

For the House went on steadily increasing, as it were, from the
first day; the Hohenzollerns being always of a growing, gaining
nature;--as men are that live conformably to the laws of this
Universe, and of their place therein; which, as will appear from
good study of their old records, though idle rumor, grounded on no
study, sometimes says the contrary, these Hohenzollerns eminently
were. A thrifty, steadfast, diligent, clear-sighted, stout-hearted
line of men; of loyal nature withal, and even to be called just
and pious, sometimes to a notable degree. Men not given to
fighting, where it could be avoided; yet with a good swift stroke
in them, where it could not: princely people after their sort,
with a high, not an ostentatious turn of mind. They, for most
part, go upon solid prudence; if possible, are anxious to reach
the goal without treading on any one; are peaceable, as I often
say, and by no means quarrelsome, in aspect and demeanor;
yet there is generally in the Hohenzollerns a very fierce flash of
anger, capable of blazing out in cases of urgency: this latter
also is one of the most constant features I have noted in the long
series of them. That they grew in Frankenland, year after year,
and century after century, while it was their fortune to last,
alive and active there, is no miracle, on such terms.

Their old big Castle of Plassenburg (now a Penitentiary, with
treadmill and the other furnishings) still stands on its Height,
near Culmbach, looking down over the pleasant meeting of the Red
and White Mayn Rivers and of their fruitful valleys; awakening
many thoughts in the traveller. Anspach Schloss, and still more
Baireuth Schloss (Mansion, one day, of our little Wilhelmina of
Berlin, Fritzkin's sister, now prattling there in so old a way;
where notabilities have been, one and another; which Jean Paul,
too, saw daily in his walks, while alive and looking skyward):
these, and many other castles and things, belonging now wholly to
Bavaria, will continue memorable for Hohenzollern history.

The Family did its due share, sometimes an excessive one, in
religious beneficences and foundations; which was not quite left
off in recent times, though much altering its figure. Erlangen
University, for example, was of Wilhelmina's doing. Erlangen
University;--and also an Opera-House of excessive size in
Baireuth. Such was poor Wilhelmina's sad figure of "religion."
In the old days, their largest bequest that I recollect was to the
TEUTSCHE RITTER, Order of Teutonic Knights, very celebrated in
those days. Junior branches from Hohenzollern, as from other
families, sought a career in that chivalrous devout Brotherhood
now and then; one pious Burggraf had three sons at once in it;
he, a very bequeathing Herr otherwise, settled one of his
mansions, Virnsperg, with rents and incomings, on the Order.
Which accordingly had thenceforth a COMTHUREI (Commandery) in that
country; Comthurei of Virnsperg the name of it: the date of
donation is A.D. 1294; and two of the old Herr's three RITTER
sons, we can remark, were successively COMTHURS (Commanders,
steward-prefects) of Virnsperg, the first two it had. [Rentsch,

This was in 1294; the palmy period, or culmination time of the
TEUTSCHES RITTERTHUM. Concerning which, on wider accounts, we must
now say a word.

Chapter VI.


Barbarossa's Army of Crusaders did not come home again, any more
than Barbarossa. They were stronger than Turk or Saracen, but not
than Hunger and Disease; Leaders did not know then, as our little
Friend at Berlin came to know, that "an Army, like a serpent, goes
upon its belly." After fine fighting and considerable victories,
the end of this Crusade was, it took to "besieging Acre," and in
reality lay perishing as of murrain on the beach at Acre, without
shelter, without medicine, without food. Not even Richard Coeur-
de-Lion, and his best prowess and help, could avert such issue
from it.

Richard's Crusade fell in with the fag-end of Barbarossa's; and it
was Richard chiefly that managed to take Acre;--at least so
Richard flattered himself, when he pulled poor Leopold of
Austria's standard from the towers, and trailed it through the
gutters: "Your standard? YOU have taken Acre?" Which turned out
ill for Richard afterwards. And Duke Leopold has a bad name among
us in consequence; much worse than he deserves. Leopold had stuff
in him too. He died, for example, in this manner: falling with his
horse, I think in some siege or other, he had got his leg hurt;
which hindered him in fighting. Leg could not be cured: "Cut it
off, then!" said Leopold. This also the leech could not do;
durst not, and would not; so that Leopold was come quite to a
halt. Leopold ordered out two squires; put his thigh upon a block
the sharp edge of an axe at the right point across his thigh:
"Squire first, hold you that axe; steady! Squire second, smite you
on it with forge-hammer, with all your strength, heavy enough!"
Squire second struck, heavy enough, and the leg flew off;
but Leopold took inflammation, died in a day or two, as the leech
had predicted. That is a fact to be found in current authors
(quite exact or not quite), that surgical operation: [Mentzel,
Geschichte der Deutschen (Stuttgard and
Tubingen, 1837), p. 309.] such a man cannot have his flag trailed
through the gutters by any Coeur-de-Lion.--But we return to the
beach at Acre, and the poor Crusaders, dying as of murrain there.
It is the year 1190, Acre not yet taken, nor these quarrels got
to a height.

"The very Templars, Hospitallers, neglect us," murmured the dying
Germans; "they have perhaps enough to do, and more than enough,
with their own countrymen, whose speech is intelligible to them?
For us, it would appear, there is no help!" Not altogether none.
A company of pious souls--compassionate Lubeck ship-captains
diligently forwarding it, and one Walpot von Bassenheim, a citizen
of Bremen, taking the lead--formed themselves into a union for
succor of the sick and dying; "set up canvas tents," medicinal
assuagements, from the Lubeck ship-stores; and did what utmost was
in them, silently in the name of Mercy and Heaven. "This Walpot as
not by birth a nobleman," says one of the old Chroniclers, "but
his deeds were noble." This pious little union proved
unconsciously the beginning of a great thing. Finding its work
prosper here, and gain favor, the little union took vows on
itself, strict chivalry forms, and decided to become permanent.
"Knights Hospitallers of our dear Lady of Mount Zion," that or
something equivalent was their first title, under Walpot their
first Grand-Master; which soon grew to be "German Order of St.
Mary" (TEUTSCHE RITTER of the MARIE-ORDEN), or for shortness
TEUTSCHES RITTERTHUM; under which name it played a great part in
the world for above three centuries to come, and eclipsed in
importance both the Templars and Hospitallers of St. John.

This was the era of Chivalry Orders, and GELUBDE; time for Bodies
of Men uniting themselves by a Sacred Vow, "GELUBDE"--which word
and thing have passed over to us in a singularly dwindled
condition: "CLUB" we now call it; and the vow, if sacred, does
not aim very high! Templars and Hospitallers were already famous
bodies; the latter now almost a century old. Walpot's new
GELUBDE was of similar intent, only German in kind,--the
protection, defence and solacement of Pilgrims, with whatever
that might involve.


The Teutsch Ritters earned character in Palestine, and began to
get bequests and recognition; but did not long continue there,
like their two rival Orders. It was not in Palestine, whether the
Orders might be aware of it or not, that their work could now lie.
Pious Pilgrims certainly there still are in great numbers;
to these you shall do the sacred rites: but these, under a Saladin
bound by his word, need little protection by the sword. And as for
Crusading in the armed fashion, that has fallen visibly into the
decline. After Barbarossa, Coeur-de-Lion and Philippe Auguste have
tried it with such failure, what wise man will be in haste to try
it again? Zealous Popes continue to stir up Crusades; but the
Secular Powers are not in earnest as formerly; Secular Powers,
when they do go, "take Constantinople," "conquer Sicily," never
take or conquer anything in Palestine. The Teutsch Order helps
valiantly in Palestine, or would help; but what is the use of
helping? The Teutsch Order has already possessions in Europe, by
pious bequest and otherwise; all its main interests lie there;
in fine, after less than thirty years, Hermann von der Salza,
a new sagacious TEUTSCHMEISTER or HOCHMEISTER (so they call the
head of the Order), fourth in the series, a far-seeing,
negotiating man, finds that Venice will be a fitter place of
lodging for him than Acre: and accordingly during his long
Mastership (A.D. 1210-1239), he is mostly to be found there, and
not at Acre or Jerusalem.

He is very great with the busy Kaiser, Friedrich II., Barbarossa's
grandson; who has the usual quarrels with the Pope, and is glad of
such a negotiator, statesman as well as armed monk. The usual
quarrels this great Kaiser had, all along, and some unusual.
Normans ousted from Sicily, who used to be so Papal: a Kaiser NOT
gone on the Crusade, as he had vowed; Kaiser at last suspected of
freethinking even:--in which matters Hermann much serves the
Kaiser. Sometimes he is appointed arbiter between the Pope and
Kaiser;--does not give it in the Kaiser's favor, but against him,
where he thinks the Kaiser is wrong. He is reckoned the first
great Hochmeister, this Hermann von der Salza, a Thuringer by
birth, who is fourth in the series of Masters: perhaps the
greatest to be found there at all, though many were considerable.
It is evident that no man of his time was busier in important
public affairs, or with better acceptance, than Hermann.
His Order, both Pope and Emperor so favoring the Master of it, was
in a vigorous state of growth all this while; Hermann well proving
that he could help it better at Venice than at Acre.

But if the Crusades are ended,--as indeed it turned out, only one
other worth speaking of, St. Louis's, having in earnest come to
effect, or rather to miserable non-effect, and that not yet for
fifty years;--if the Crusades are ended, and the Teutsch Order
increases always in possessions, and finds less and less work,
what probably will become of the Teutsch Order? Grow fat, become
luxurious, incredulous, dissolute, insolent; and need to be burnt
out of the way? That was the course of the Templars, and their sad
end. They began poorest of the poor, "two Knights to one Horse,"
as their Seal bore; and they at last took FIRE on very opposite
accounts. "To carouse like a Templar:" that had become a proverb
among men; that was the way to produce combustion, "spontaneous"
or other! Whereas their fellow Hospitallers of St. John, chancing
upon new work (Anti-Turk garrison-duty, so we may call it,
successively in Cyprus, Rhodes, Malta, for a series of ages), and
doing it well, managed to escape the like. As did the Teutsch
Order in a still more conspicuous manner.


Ever since St. Adalbert fell massacred in Prussia, stamping
himself as a Crucifix on that Heathen soil, there have been
attempts at conversion going on by the Christian neighbors, Dukes
of Poland and others: intermittent fits of fighting and preaching
for the last two hundred years, with extremely small result.
Body of St. Adalbert was got at light weight, and the poor man
canonized; there is even a Titular Bishop of Prussia;
and pilgrimages wander to the Shrine of Adalbert in Poland,
reminding you of Prussia in a tragic manner; but what avails it?
Missionaries, when they set foot in the country, are killed or
flung out again. The Bishop of Prussia is titular merely; lives in
Liefland (LIVONIA) properly Bishop of RIGA, among the Bremen
trading-settlers and converted Lieflanders there, which is the
only safe place,--if even that were safe without aid of armed men,
such as he has there even now. He keeps his SCHWERTBRUDER
(Brothers of the Sword), a small Order of Knights, recently got up
by him, for express behoof of Liefland itself; and these, fighting
their best, are sometimes troublesome to the Bishop, and do not
much prosper upon Heathendom, or gain popularity and resources in
the Christian world. No hope in the SCHWERTBRUDER for Prussia;--
and in massacred Missionaries what hope? The Prussian population
continues Heathen, untamable to Gospel and Law; and after two
centuries of effort, little or no real progress has been made.

But now, in these circumstances, in the year 1226, the Titular
Bishop of Prussia, having well considered the matter and arranged
it with the Polish Authorities, opens a communication with Hermann
von der Salza, at Venice, on the subject; "Crusading is over in
the East, illustrious Hochmeister; no duty for a Teutsch Order
there at present: what is the use of crusading far off in the
East, when Heathenism and the Kingdom of Satan hangs on our own
borders, close at hand, in the North? Let the Teutsch Order come
to Preussen; head a Crusade there. The land is fruitful; flows
really with milk and honey, not to speak of amber, and was once
called the TERRESTRIAL PARADISE"--by I forget whom. [Voigt, (if he
had an Index!) knows.] In fact, it is clear, the land should
belong to Christ; and if the Christian Teutsch Ritterdom could
conquer it from Satanas for themselves, it would be well for all
parties. Hermann, a man of sagacious clear head, listens
attentively. The notion is perhaps not quite new to him: at all
events, he takes up the notion; negotiates upon it, with Titular
Bishop, with Pope, Kaiser, Duke of Poland, Teutsch Order; and in
brief, about two years afterwards (A.D. 1228), having done the
negotiatings to the last item, he produces his actual Teutsch
Ritters, ready, on Prussian ground.

Year 1225, thinks Dryasdust, after a struggle. Place where, proves
also at length discoverable in Dryasdust,--not too far across the
north Polish frontier, always with "Masovia" (the now Warsaw
region) to fall back upon. But in what number; how; nay almost
when, to a year,--do not ask poor Dryasdust, who overwhelms
himself with idle details, and by reason of the trees is unable to
see the wood. [Voigt, ii. 177, 184, 192.]--The Teutsch Ritters
straightway build a Burg for headquarters, spread themselves on
this hand and that; and begin their great task. In the name of
Heaven, we may still say in a true sense; as they, every Ritter of
them to the heart, felt it to be in all manner of senses.

The Prussians were a fierce fighting people, fanatically Anti-
Christian: the Teutsch Ritters had a perilous never-resting time
of it, especially for the first fifty years. They built and burnt
innumerable stockades for and against; built wooden Forts which
are now stone Towns. They fought much and prevalently; galloped
desperately to and fro, ever on the alert. In peaceabler ulterior
times, they fenced in the Nogat and the Weichsel with dams,
whereby unlimited quagmire might become grassy meadow,--as it
continues to this day. Marienburg (MARY'S Burg), still a town of
importance in that same grassy region, with its grand stone
Schloss still visible and even habitable; this was at length their
Headquarter. But how many Burgs of wood and stone they built, in
different parts; what revolts, surprisals, furious fights in woody
boggy places, they had, no man has counted. Their life, read in
Dryasdust's newest chaotic Books (which are of endless length,
among other ill qualities), is like a dim nightmare of
unintelligible marching and fighting: one feels as if the mere
amount of galloping they had would have carried the Order several
times round the Globe. What multiple of the Equator was it, then,
O Dryasdust? The Herr Professor, little studious of abridgment,
does not say.

But always some preaching, by zealous monks, accompanied the
chivalrous fighting. And colonists came in from Germany; trickling
in, or at times streaming. Victorious Ritterdom offers terms to
the beaten Heathen; terms not of tolerant nature, but which will
be punctually kept by Ritterdom. When the flame of revolt or
general conspiracy burnt up again too extensively, there was a new
Crusade proclaimed in Germany and Christendom; and the
Hochmeister, at Marburg or elsewhere, and all his marshals and
ministers were busy,--generally with effect. High personages came
on crusade to them. Ottocar King of Bohemia, Duke of Austria and
much else, the great man of his day, came once (A.D. 1255);
Johann King of Bohemia, in the next century, once and again.
The mighty Ottocar, [Voigt, iii. 80-87.] with his extensive far-
shining chivalry, "conquered Samland in a month;" tore up the
Romova where Adalbert had been massacred, and burnt it from the
face of the Earth. A certain Fortress was founded at that time,
in Ottocar's presence; and in honor of him they named it KING'S
FORTRESS, "Konigsberg:" it is now grown a big-domed metropolitan
City,--where we of this Narrative lately saw a Coronation going
on, and Sophie Charlotte furtively taking a pinch of snuff.
Among King Ottocar's esquires or subaltern junior officials on
this occasion, is one RUDOLF, heir of a poor Swiss Lordship and
gray Hill-Castle, called HAPSBURG, rather in reduced
circumstances, whom Ottocar likes for his prudent hardy ways;
a stout, modest, wise young man,--who may chance to redeem
Hapsburg a little, if he live? How the shuttles fly, and the
life-threads, always, in this "loud-roaring Loom of Time!"--

Along with Ottocar too, as an ally in the Crusade, was Otto III.
Ascanier Markgraf and Elector of Brandenburg, great-grandson of
Albert the Bear;--name Otto THE PIOUS in consequence. He too
founded a Town in Prussia, on this occasion, and called it
BRANDENBURG; which is still extant there, a small Brandenburg the
Second; for these procedures he is called Otto THE PIOUS in
History. His Wife, withal, was a sister of Ottocar's; [Michaelis,
i. 270; Hubner, t. 174.]--which, except in the way of domestic
felicity, did not in the end amount to much for him; this Ottocar
having flown too high, and melted his wings at the sun, in a sad
way, as we shall see elsewhere.

None of the Orders rose so high as the Teutonic in favor with
mankind. It had by degrees landed possessions far and wide over
Germany and beyond: I know not how many dozens of BALLEYS (rich
Bailliwicks, each again with its dozens of COMTHUREIS,
Commanderies, or subordinate groups of estates), and Baillies and
Commanders to match;--and was thought to deserve favor from above.
Valiant servants, these; to whom Heaven had vouchsafed great
labors and unspeakable blessings. In some fifty or fifty-three
years they had got Prussian Heathenism brought to the ground;
and they endeavored to tie it well down there by bargain and
arrangement. But it would not yet lie quiet, nor for a century to
come; being still secretly Heathen; revolting, conspiring ever
again, ever on weaker terms, till the Satanic element had burnt
itself out, and conversion and composure could ensue.

Conversion and complete conquest once come, there was a happy time
for Prussia: ploughshare instead of sword; busy sea-havens, German
towns, getting built; churches everywhere rising; grass growing,
and peaceable cows, where formerly had been quagmire and snakes.
And for the Order a happy time? A rich, not a happy. The Order was
victorious; Livonian "Sword-Brothers," "Knights of Dobryn," minor
Orders and Authorities all round, were long since subordinated to
it or incorporated with it; Livonia, Courland, Lithuania, are all
got tamed under its influence, or tied down and evidently tamable.
But it was in these times that the Order got into its wider
troubles outward and inward; quarrels, jealousies, with Christian
neighbors, Poland, Pommern, who did not love it and for cause;
--wider troubles, and by no means so evidently useful to
mankind. The Order's wages, in this world, flowed higher than
ever, only perhaps its work was beginning to run low! But we will
not anticipate.

On the whole, this Teutsch Ritterdom, for the first century and
more, was a grand phenomenon; and flamed like a bright blessed
beacon through the night of things, in those Northern Countries.
For above a century, we perceive, it was the rallying place of all
brave men who had a career to seek on terms other than vulgar.
The noble soul, aiming beyond money, and sensible to more than
hunger in this world, had a beacon burning (as we say), if the
night chanced to overtake it, and the earth to grow too intricate,
as is not uncommon. Better than the career of stump-oratory,
I should fancy, and ITS Hesperides Apples, golden and of gilt
horse-dung. Better than puddling away one's poor spiritual gift of
God (LOAN, not gift), such as it may be, in building the lofty
rhyme, the lofty Review-Article, for a discerning public that
has sixpence to spare! Times alter greatly.--Will the reader take
a glimpse of Conrad von Thuringen's biography, as a sample of
the old ways of proceeding? Conrad succeeded Hermann von der
Salza as Grand-Master, and his history is memorable as a
Teutonic Knight.


Conrad, younger brother of the Landgraf of Thuringen,--which
Prince lived chiefly in the Wartburg, romantic old Hill-Castle,
now a Weimar-Eisenach property and show-place, then an abode of
very earnest people,--was probably a child-in-arms, in that same
Wartburg, while Richard Coeur-de-Lion was getting home from
Palestine and into troubles by the road: this will date Conrad for
us. His worthy elder brother was Husband of the lady since called
SAINT Elizabeth, a very pious but also very fanciful young woman;
--and I always guess his going on the Crusade, where he died
straightway, was partly the fruit of the life she led him; lodging
beggars, sometimes in his very bed, continually breaking his
night's rest for prayer, and devotional exercise of undue length;
"weeping one moment, then smiling in joy the next;" meandering
about, capricious, melodious, weak, at the will of devout whim
mainly! However, that does not concern us. [Many LIVES of the
Saint. See, in particular, Libellus de Dictis Quatuor
Ancillarum, &c.--(that is, Report of the evidence got
from Elizabeth's Four Maids, by an Official Person, Devil's-
Advocate or whatever he was, missioned by the Pope to question
them, when her Canonization came to be talked of. A curious
piece):--in Meuckenii Scriptores Rexum Germanicarum italic> (Lipsia, 1728-1730), ii. dd.; where also are other
details.] Sure enough her poor Landgraf went crusading, Year 1227
(Kaiser Friedrich II.'s Crusade, who could not put it off longer);
poor Landgraf fell ill by the road, at Brindisi, and died,--not to
be driven farther by any cause.

Conrad, left guardian to his deceased Brother's children, had at
first much quarrel with Saint Elizabeth, though he afterwards took
far other thoughts. Meanwhile he had his own apanage, "Landgraf"
by rank he too; and had troubles enough with that of itself.
For instance: once the Archbishop of an Mainz, being in debt, laid
a heavy tax on all Abbeys under him; on Reichartsbronn, an Abbey
of Conrad's, among others. "Don't pay it!" said Conrad to the
Abbot. Abbot refused accordingly; but was put under ban by the
Pope;--obliged to comply, and even to be "whipt thrice" before the
money could be accepted. Two whippings at Erfurt, from the
Archbishop, there had been; and a third was just going on there,
one morning, when Conrad, travelling that way, accidentally stept
in to matins. Conrad flames into a blazing whirlwind at the
phenomenon disclosed. "Whip my Abbot? And he IS to pay, then,--
Archbishop of Beelzebub?"--and took the poor Archbishop by the
rochets, and spun him hither and thither; nay was for cutting him
in two, had hot friends hysterically busied themselves, and got
the sword detained in its scabbard and the Archbishop away.
Here is a fine coil like to be, for Conrad.

Another soon follows; from a quarrel he had with Fritzlar,
Imperial Free-Town in those parts, perhaps a little stiff upon its
privileges, and high towards a Landgraf. Conrad marches, one
morning (Year 1232) upon insolent Fritzlar; burns the environs;
but on looking practically at the ramparts of the place, thinks
they are too high, and turns to go home again. Whereupon the idle
women of Fritzlar, who are upon the ramparts gazing in fear and
hope, burst into shrill universal jubilation of voice,--and even
into gestures, and liberties with their dress, which are not
describable in History! Conrad, suddenly once more all flame,
whirls round; storms the ramparts, slays what he meets, plunders
Fritzlar with a will, and leaves it blazing in a general fire,
which had broken out in the business. Here is a pair of coils for
Conrad; the like of which can issue only in Papal ban or worse.

Conrad is grim and obstinate under these aspects; but secretly
feels himself very wicked; knows not well what will come of it.
Sauntering one day in his outer courts, he notices a certain
female beggar; necessitous female of loose life, who tremulously
solicits charity of him. Necessitous female gets some fraction of
coin, but along with it bullying rebuke in very liberal measure;
and goes away weeping bitterly, and murmuring about "want that
drove me to those courses." Conrad retires into himself: "What is
her real sin, perhaps,to mine?" Conrad "lies awake all that
night;" mopes about, in intricate darkness, days and nights;
rises one morning an altered man. He makes "pilgrimage to
Gladbach," barefoot; kneels down at the church-door of Fritzlar
with bare back, and a bundle of rods beside him. "Whip me, good
injured Christians for the love of Jesus!"--in brief, reconciles
himself to Christian mankind, the Pope included; takes the
Teutsch-Ritter vows upon him; [A.D. 1234 (Voigt, ii. 375-423).]
and hastens off to Preussen, there to spend himself, life and
life's resources thenceforth, faithfully, till he die. The one
course left for Conrad. Which he follows with a great strong
step,--with a thought still audible to me. It was of such stuff
that Teutsch Ritters were then made; Ritters evidently capable
of something.

Saint Elizabeth, who went to live at Marburg, in Hessen-Cassel,
after her Husband's death, and soon died there, in a most
melodiously pious sort, [A.D. 1231, age 24.] made the Teutsch
Order guardian of her Son. It was from her and the Grand-
Mastership of Conrad that Marburg became such a metropolis of the
Order; the Grand-Masters often residing there, many of them
coveting burial there, and much business bearing date of the
place. A place still notable to the ingenuous Tourist, who knows
his whereabout. Philip the Magnanimous, Luther's friend, memorable
to some as Philip with the Two Wives, lived there, in that old
Castle,--which is now a kind of Correction-House and Garrison,
idle blue uniforms strolling about, and unlovely physiognomies
with a jingle of iron at their ankles,--where Luther has debated
with the Zwinglian Sacramenters and others, and much has happened
in its time. Saint Elizabeth and her miracles (considerable,
surely, of their kind) were the first origin of Marburg as a Town:
a mere Castle, with adjoining Hamlet, before that.

Strange gray old silent Town, rich in so many memories; it stands
there, straggling up its rocky hill-edge, towards its old Castles
and edifices on the top, in a not unpicturesque manner; flanked by
the river Lahn and its fertile plains: very silent, except for the
delirious screech, at rare intervals, of a railway train passing
that way from Frankfurt-on-Mayn to Cassel. "Church of St.
Elizabeth,"--high, grand Church, built by Conrad our Hochmeister,
in reverence of his once terrestrial Sister-in-law,--stands
conspicuous in the plain below, where the Town is just ending.
St. Elizabeth's Shrine was once there, and pilgrims wending to it
from all lands. Conrad himself is buried there, as are many
Hochmeisters; their names, and shields of arms, Hermann's
foremost, though Hermann's dust is not there, are carved,
carefully kept legible, on the shafts of the Gothic arches,--from
floor to groin, long rows of them;--and produce, with the other
tombs, tomb-paintings by Durer and the like, thoughts impressive
almost to pain. St. Elizabeth's LOCULUS was put into its shrine
here, by Kaiser Friedrich II. and all manner of princes and
grandees of the Empire, "one million two hundred thousand people
looking on," say the old records, perhaps not quite exact in their
arithmetic. Philip the Magnanimous, wishing to stop "pilgrimages
no-whither," buried the LOCULUS away, it was never known where;
under the floor of that Church somewhere, as is likeliest.
Enough now of Marburg, and of its Teutsch Ritters too.

They had one or two memorable Hochmeisters and Teutschmeisters;
whom we have not named here, nor shall. [In our excellent Kohler's
Muntzbelustigungen (Nurnberg, 1729 et seqq.
ii. 382; v. 102; viii. 380; &c.) are valuable glimpses into the
Teutonic Order,--as into hundreds of other things. The special
Book upon it is Voigt's, often cited here: Nine heavy Volumes;
grounded on faithful reading, but with a fatal defect of almost
every other quality.] There is one Hochmeister, somewhere about
the fiftieth on the list, and properly the last real Hochmeister,
Albert of Hohenzollern-Culmbach by name, who will be very
memorable to us by and by.

Or will the reader care to know how Culmbach came into the
possession of the Hohenzollerns, Burggraves of Nurnberg? The story
may be illustrative, and will not occupy us long.

Chapter VII.


In the Year 1248, in his Castle of Plassenburg,--which is now a
Correction-House, looking down upon the junction of the Red and
White Mayn,--Otto Duke of Meran, a very great potentate, more like
a King than a Duke, was suddenly clutched hold of by a certain
wedded gentleman, name not given, "one of his domestics or
dependents," whom he had enraged beyond forgiveness (signally
violating the Seventh Commandment at his expense); and was by the
said wedded gentleman there and then cut down, and done to death.
"Lamentably killed, jammerlich erstochen,"
says old Rentsch. [P. 293. Kohler, Reichs-Historie, italic> p. 245. Holle, Alte Geschichte der Stadt Baireuth
(Baireuth, 1833), pp. 34-37.] Others give a different
color to the homicide, and even a different place; a controversy
not interesting to us. Slain at any rate he is; still a young man;
the last male of his line. Whereby the renowned Dukes of Meran
fall extinct, and immense properties come to be divided among
connections and claimants.

Meran, we remark, is still a Town, old Castle now abolished, in
the Tyrol, towards the sources of the Etsch (called ADIGE by
Italian neighbors). The Merans had been lords not only of most of
the Tyrol; but Dukes of "the Voigtland;"--Voigtland, that is
BAILLIE-LAND, wide country between Nurnberg and the Fichtelwald;
why specially so called, Dryasdust dimly explains, deducing it
from certain Counts von Reuss, those strange Reusses who always
call themselves HENRY, and now amount to HENRY THE EIGHTIETH AND
ODD, with side-branches likewise called Henry; whose nomenclature
is the despair of mankind, and worse than that of the Naples
Lazzaroni who candidly have no names!--Dukes of Voigtland, I say;
likewise of Dalmatia; then also Markgraves of Austria; also Counts
of Andechs, in which latter fine country (north of Munchen a day's
ride), and not at Plassenburg, some say, the man was slain.
These immense possessions, which now (A.D. 1248) all fall asunder
by the stroke of that sword, come to be divided among the slain
man's connections, or to be snatched up by active neighbors, and
otherwise disposed of.

Active Wurzburg, active Bamberg, without much connection, snatched
up a good deal: Count of Orlamunde, married to the eldest Sister
of the slain Duke, got Plassenburg and most of the Voigtland:
a Tyrolese magnate, whose Wife was an Aunt of the Duke's, laid
hold of the Tyrol, and transmitted it to daughters and their
spouses,--the finish of which line we shall see by and by:--
in short, there was much property in a disposable condition.
The Hohenzollern Burggraf of Nurnberg, who had married a younger
Sister of the Duke's two years before this accident, managed to
get at least BAIREUTH and some adjacencies; big Orlamunde, who had
not much better right, taking the lion's share. This of Baireuth
proved a notable possession to the Hohenzollern family: it was
Conrad the first Burggraf's great-grandson, Friedrich, counted
"Friedrich III." among the Burggraves, who made the acquisition
in this manner, A.D. 1248.

Onolzbach (On'z-BACH or "-brook," now called ANSPACH) they got,
some fourscore years after, by purchase and hard money down
("24,000 pounds of farthings," whatever that may be), [A.D. 1331:
Stadt Anspach, by J. B. Fischer (Anspach,
1786), p. 196.] which proved a notable twin possession of the
family. And then, in some seven years more (A.D. 1338), the big
Orlamunde people, having at length, as was too usual, fallen
considerably insolvent, sold Plassenburg Castle itself, the
Plassenburg with its Town of Culmbach and dependencies, to the
Hohenzollern Burggraves, [Rentsch, p. 157.] who had always ready
money about them. Who in this way got most of the Voigtland, with
a fine Fortress, into hand; and had, independently of Nurnberg and
its Imperial properties, an important Princely Territory of their
own. Margraviate or Principality of CULMBACH (Plassenburg being
only the Castle) was the general title; but more frequently in
later times, being oftenest split in two between brothers
unacquainted with primogeniture, there were two Margraviates
made of it: one of Baireuth, called also "Margraviate On the
Hill;" and one of Anspach, "Margraviate Under the Hill:" of which,
in their modern designations, we shall by and by hear more
than enough.

Thus are the Hohenzollern growing, and never declining: by these
few instances judge of many. Of their hard labors, and the storms
they had to keep under control, we could also say something:
How the two young Sons of the Burggraf once riding out with their
Tutor, a big hound of theirs in one of the streets of Nurnberg
accidentally tore a child; and there arose wild mother's-wail;
and "all the Scythe-smiths turned out," fire-breathing, deaf to a
poor Tutor's pleadings and explainings; and how the Tutor, who had
ridden forth in calm humor with two Princes, came galloping home
with only one,--the Smiths having driven another into boggy
ground, and there caught and killed him; [Rentsch, p. 306 (Date
not given; guess, about 1270).] with the Burggraf's commentary on
that sad proceeding (the same Friedrich III. who had married
Meran's Sister); and the amends exacted by him, strict and severe,
not passionate or inhuman. Or again how the Nurnbergers once, in
the Burggraf's absence, built a ring-wall round his Castle;
entrance and exit now to depend on the Nurnbergers withal! And how
the Burggraf did not fly out into battle in consequence, but
remedied it by imperturbable countenance and power of driving.
With enough of the like sort; which readers can conceive.


This same Friedrich III., Great-grandson of Conrad the first
Burggraf, was he that got the Burggraviate made hereditary in his
family (A.D. 1273); which thereby rose to the fixed rank of
Princes, among other advantages it was gaining. Nor did this
acquisition come gratis at all, but as the fruit of good service
adroitly done; service of endless importance as it proved.
Friedrich's life had fallen in times of huge anarchy; the
Hohenstauffen line gone miserably out,--Boy Conradin, its last
representative, perishing on the scaffold even (by a desperate
Pope and a desperate Duke of Anjou); [At Naples, 25th October,
1268.] Germans, Sicilian Normans, Pope and Reich, all at daggers-
drawn with one another; no Kaiser, nay as many as Three at once!
Which lasted from 1254 onwards; and is called "the Interregnum,"
or Anarchy "of Nineteen Years," in German History.

Let us at least name the Three Kaisers, or Triple-elixir of
No-Kaiser; though, except as chronological landmarks, we have not
much to do with them. First Kaiser is William Count of Holland,
a rough fellow, Pope's protege, Pope even raising cash for him;
till William perished in the Dutch peat-bogs (horse and man,
furiously pursuing, in some fight there, and getting swallowed up
in that manner); which happily reduces our false Kaisers to two:
Second and Third, who are both foreign to Germany.

Second Kaiser is Alphonso King of Castille, Alphonso the Wise,
whose saying about Ptolemy's Astronomy, "That it seemed a crank
machine; that it was pity the Creator had not taken advice!" is
still remembered by mankind;--this and no other of his many
sayings and doings. He was wise enough to stay at home; and except
wearing the title, which cost nothing, to concern himself very
little about the Holy Roman Empire,--some clerk or two dating
"TOLETI (at Toledo)," did languidly a bit of official writing
now and then, and that was all. Confused crank machine this of
the German Empire too, your Majesty? Better stay at home, and
date "TOLETI."

The Third false Kaiser--futile call him rather, wanting clear
majority--was the English Richard of Cornwall; younger Son of John
Lackland; and little wiser than his Father, to judge by those
symptoms. He had plenty of money, and was liberal with it;--no
other call to Germany, you would say, except to get rid of his
money;--in which he succeeded. He lived actually in Germany,
twice over for a year or two:--Alphonse and he were alike shy of
the Pope, as Umpire; and Richard, so far as his money went, found
some gleams of authority and comfortable flattery in the Rhenish
provinces: at length, in 1263, money and patience being both
probably out, he quitted Germany for the second and last time;
came home to Berkhamstead in Hertfordshire here, [Gough's
Camden, i.339.] more fool than he went. Till his
death (A.D. 1271), he continued to call himself, and was by many
persons called, Kaiser of the Holy Roman Empire;--needed a German
clerk or two at Berkhamstead, we can suppose: but never went back;
preferring pleasant Berkhamstead, with troubles of Simon de
Montfort or whatever troubles there might be, to anything Germany
had to offer him.

These were the Three futile Kaisers: and the LATE Kaiser Conrad's
young Boy, who one day might have swept the ground clear of them,
perished,--bright young Conradin, bright and brave, but only
sixteen, and Pope's captive by ill luck,--perished on the
scaffold; "throwing out his glove" (in symbolical protest) amid
the dark mute Neapolitan multitudes, that wintry morning. It was
October 25th, 1268,--Dante Alighieri then a little boy at
Florence, not three years old; gazing with strange eyes as the
elders talked of such a performance by Christ's Vicar on Earth.
A very tragic performance indeed, which brought on the Sicilian
Vespers by and by; for the Heavens never fail to pay debts,
your Holiness!--

Germany was rocking down towards one saw not what,--an Anarchic
Republic of Princes, perhaps, and of Free Barons fast verging
towards robbery? Sovereignty of multiplex Princes, with a Peerage
of intermediate Robber Barons? Things are verging that way.
Such Princes, big and little, each wrenching off for himself what
lay loosest and handiest to him, found it a stirring game, and not
so much amiss. On the other hand, some voice of the People, in
feeble whimperings of a strange intensity, to the opposite effect,
are audible to this day. Here are Three old Minstrels
(MINNESANGER) picked from Manesse's Collection by an obliging
hand, who are of this date, and shall speak each a word:--

No. 1 LOQUITOR (in cramp doggerel, done into speech): "To thee,
O Lord, we poor folk make moan; the Devil has sown his seeds in
this land! Law thy hand created for protection of thy children:
but where now is Law? Widows and orphans weep that the Princes do
not unite to have a Kaiser."

No. 2: "The Princes grind in the Kaiser's mill: to the Reich they
fling the siftings; and keep to themselves the meal. Not much in
haste, they, to give us a Kaiser."

No. 3: "Like the Plague of Frogs, there they are come out;
defiling the Reich's honor. Stork, when wilt thou appear, then,"
and with thy stiff mandibles act upon them a little? [Mentzel,
Geschichte der Deutschen, p. 345.]

It was in such circumstances, that Friedrich III., Burggraf of
Nurnberg, who had long moaned and striven over these woes of his
country, came to pay that visit, late in the night (1st or 2d of
October, 1273), to his Cousin Rudolf Lord of Hapsburg, under the
walls of Basel; a notable scene in History. Rudolf was besieging
Basel, being in some feud with the Bishop there, of which
Friedrich and another had been proposed as umpires; and Friedrich
now waited on his Cousin, in this hasty manner,--not about the
Basel feud, but on a far higher quite unexpected errand,--to say,
That he Rudolf was elected Kaiser, and that better times for the
Holy Roman Empire were now probable, with Heaven's help. [Rentsch,
pp. 299, 285, 298.] We call him Cousin; though what the kindred
actually was, a kindred by mothers, remains, except the general
fact of it, disputable by Dryasdust. The actual visit, under the
walls of Basel, is by some considered romantic. But that Rudolf,

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