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The bellicose Julius was followed in 1513 by Leo X, a son of Lorenzo the Magnificent. Like his father, he loved art and literature, but he was apparently utterly without religious feelings. He was willing that the war should continue, in the hope that he might be able to gain a couple of duchies for his nephews.

The military operations fading away in the duchies without being succeeded by permanent peace, the Count, as he was called, with no particular claim to such title, had accepted a thousand florins a year as retainer from the Union and had found occupation under Charles Emmanuel. Here the Spanish soldier of a year or two before found much satisfaction and some profit in fighting Spanish soldiers.

Moreover, the law of succession in the duchies excluded the female line, and when there was a prospect that the male line of the Danish dynasty would die out the Germans wished the duchies to become independent under an Augustenburg prince while the Danes wished to absorb the duchies in Denmark.

"If their upright intention," he said, "is that no actual, hostile, violent attack shall be made upon the duchies, or upon any of the princes, estates, or cities of the Holy Empire, as is required for the peace and tranquillity of Christendom, and if all the powers interested therein will come into a good and solid convention to that effect.

France and Austria came to an arrangement in October, 1735, upon terms to which Sardinia and Spain afterward acceded, the principal points of which were as follows: The French claimant to the Polish throne gave up his claim to it, and received instead the duchies of Bar and Lorraine on the east of France, with the provision that upon his death they were to go to his son-in-law, the King of France, in full sovereignty; the two kingdoms of Sicily and Naples were confirmed to the Spanish Bourbon prince, Don Carlos; and Austria received back Parma.

"If their upright intention," he said, "is that no actual, hostile, violent attack shall be made upon the duchies, or upon any of the princes, estates, or cities of the Holy Empire, as is required for the peace and tranquillity of Christendom, and if all the powers interested therein will come into a good and solid convention to that effect.

It may, however, I think, be said that although there were objections, which might invalidate his right to at least a part of the Duchies, it is almost certain that a quite impartial tribunal would have decided that he had at least a better claim than any of his rivals. This at least would have been true fifteen years before.

The envoy of Matthias was in Paris demanding recognition of his master as King of Hungary, and Henry did not suspect the wonderful schemes of Leopold, the ferret in the rabbit warren of the duchies, to come to the succour of his cousin and to get himself appointed his successor and guardian.

The Duc de Rovigo shared all my forebodings; and if he and those who thought like him had been listened to, the war would probably have been avoided. Through him I learnt who were the individuals who urged the invasion. The eager ambition with which they looked forward to Viceroyalties, Duchies, and endowments blinded them to the possibility of seeing the Cossacks in Paris.

For the seeds of the Thirty Years' War of Germany were already sown broadcast in those fatal duchies, and it was the determination of the agents of Spain to acquire the mastery of that most eligible military position, that excellent 'sedes belli, whenever Protestantism was to be assailed in England, the Netherlands, or Germany.