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threatened Venice, which was reduced to extremi. ties. At this time, the 1st of January, 1380, arrived Carlo Zeno, who had been cruising on the Genoese coast with fourteen galleys. The Venetians were now strong enough to besiege the Ge. noese. Doria was killed on the 22d of Jamuary by a stone bullet 195 pounds weight, discharged from a bombard called the Trevisan. Chioza was then closely invested: 5000 auxiliaries, amongst whom were some English Condottieri, commanded by one Captain Ceccho, joined the Venetians. The Genoese, in their turn, prayed for conditions, but none were granted, uniil, at last, they surrendered at discretion; and, on the 24th of June, 1380, the Doge Contanini made his triumphal entry into Chioza. Four thousand prisoners, nineteen galleys, many smaller vessels and barks, with all the ammunition and arms, and outfit of the expedition, fell into the hands of the congnerors, who, had it not been for the inexorable answer of Doria, would have gladly reduced their dominion to the city of Venice. An account of these transactions is found in a work called the War of Chioza, Written by Daniel Chinazzo, who was in Vegice at the time 1).
The “Planter of the Lion..
Stanza xiv. line 3. Plant the Lion - that is, the Lion of St. Mark, the standard of the republic, which is the origin of the word Pantaloon - Piantaleone, Pantaleon, Pantaloon.
10. Thin streets, and foreign aspects, such as must Too oft remind her who and what enthrals.
Stanza xv. lines 7 and 8. The population of Venice at the end of the se. venteenth century amounted to nearly two hundred 1) "Chronaca della guerra di Chioza,etc. Script. Rer. Italic.
tom. xv. Pp. 699. to 804.
thousand souls. At the last census, taken two years ago, it was no more than about one hundred and three thousand, and it diminishes daily. The commerce and the official employments, which were to be the unexhausted source of Venetian grandeur, have both expired 1). Most of the pa. trician mansions are deserted, and would gradually disappear, had not the government, alarmed by the demolition of seventy-two, during the last two years, expressly forbidden this sad resource of poverty. Many remnants of the Venetian nobility are now scattered and confounded with the wealthier Jews upon the banks of the Brenta, whose palladian palaces have sunk, or are sinking, in the general decay, Of the “gentiluomo Veneto, the name is still known, and that is all. He is but the shadow of his former self, but he is polite and kind. It surely may be pardoned to him if he is querulous. Whatever may have been the vices of the republic, and although the natural term of its existence may be thought by foreigners to have arrived in the due course of mortality, only one sentiment can be expected from the Venetians themselves. At no time were the subjects of the republic so unanimons in their resolution to rally round the standard of St. Mark, as when it was for the last time unfurled; and the cowardice and the treachery of the few patricians who recommended the fatal neutrality were confined to the persons of the traitors themselves. The present race cannot be thought to regret the loss of their aristocratical forms, and too despotic government; they think only on their vanished independence. They pine away at the remembrance, and on this subject suspend for a moment their gay good humour. Venice may be said, in the words of the scripture, "to die daily;, and so general and so apparent is the decline, as to become pain
1) "Nonnullorum e nobilitate immeusae sunt opes, adeo ut vix
aestimari possint: id quod tribus e rebus oritur, parsimonia, commercio, atque iis emolumentis, quae e Repub. percipiunt, quae hanc ob causam diuturna fore creditur. » See de Principatibus Italiae, Tractatus, edit. 1631.
ful to a stranger, not reconciled to the sight of a
Stanza xvi, line 3.
12. And Otway, Radcliffe, Schiller, Shakspeare's art.
Stanza xviii. line 5. Venice preserved; Mysteries of Udolpho; the Ghost - seer, or Armenian; the Merchant of Ve nice; Othello.
But from their nature will the tannen grow Loftiest on loftiest and least shelter'd rocks.
Stanza xx. lines 1 and 2. Tannen is the plural of tanne, a species of fir peculiar to the Alps, which only thrives in very rocky parts, where scarcely soil sufficient for its nourishment can be found. On these spots it grows to a greater height than any other mountain tree.
A single star is at her side, and reigns
Stanza xxviii. lines 1 and 2. The above description may seem fantastical or exaggerated to those who have never seen an Oriental or an Italian sky, yet it is but a literal and hardly sufficient delineation of an August evening (the eighteenth) as contemplated in one of many rides along the banks of the Brenta near La Mira.
15. Watering the tree which bears his lady's name With the melodious tears, he gave himself to fame.
Stanza xxx. lines 8 and 9. Thanks to the critical acumen of a Scotchman, we now know as little of Laura as ever 1). The
1) See An Historical and Critical Essay on the Life and Cha
racter of Petrarch; and a Dissertation on an Historical Hy. pothesis of the Abbé de Sade: the first appeared about the year 1784; the other is inserted in the fourth volume of the Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinbuurgh, and both have been incorporated into a work, published, under the first title, by Ballantyne in 1810.
discoveries of the Abbé de Sade, his triumphs, his sneers, can no longer instruct or amuse '). We must not, however, think that these memoirs are as much a romance as Belisarius or the lacas, although we are told so by Dr. Beattie, a great name, but a little authority ?). His "labour, has not been in vain, notwithstanding his "love, has, like most other passions, made him ridiculous 3). The hypothesis which overpowered the struggling Italians, and carried along less interested critics in its current, is run out. We have another proof that we can be never sure that the paradox, the most singular, and therefore having the most agreeable and authentic air, will not give place to the re-established ancient prejudice.
It seems, then, first, that Laura was born, lived, died, and was buried, not in Avignon, but in the country. The fountains of the Sorga, the thickets of Cabrieres, may resume their pretensions, and the exploded de la Bastie again be heard with complacency. The hypothesis of the Abbé had no stronger props than the parchment sonnet and medal found on the skeleton of the wife of Hugo de Sade, and the manuscript note to the Virgil of Petrarch, now in the Ambrosian library. If these proofs were both incontestable, the poetry was written, the medal composed, cast, and deposited within the space of twelve hours; and these deliberate duties were performed round the carcass of one who died of the plague, and was hurried to the grave on the day of her death. These do. cuments, therefore, are too decisive: they prove not the fact, but the forgery. Either the sonnet or the Virgilian note must be a falsification. The Abbé cites both as incontestably true; the conse
1) Mémoires pour la vie de Pétrarque, 2) Life of Beattie, by Sir W. Forbes, t. ii. p. 106. 3) Mr. Gibbon called his Memoirs, “a labour of love, (see De
cline and Fall, cap. Ixx. note 1.), and followed him with confidence and delight. The compiler of a very voluminous work must take much criticism upon trust; Mr. Gibbon has done so, though not so readily as some other authors.