In 1492 Lorenzo died and his son Piero succeeded him. But Savonarola now became the most powerful man in the republic, and he exerted himself for reformation of his own monastery, the Church, and the state itself. Soon he prophesied the downfall of the Medici, against whom he arrayed a considerable part of the Florentine people.
They would find little hindrance in this course if the Republic did not show its teeth, and especially if it did not stiffly oppose all encroachments of the Roman religion, without even showing any deference to the King in this regard, who was much importuned on the subject.
You may now, I think, form a tolerable idea of the liberty that has accrued to the French from the revolution, the dethronement of the King, and the establishment of a republic.
He was greatly influenced by his mother, Livia, an artful and ambitious princess, and by Sejanus, his favorite, a man of rare energy and ability, who was prefect of the prætorian guards. This office, unknown to the republic, became the most important and influential under the emperors.
"No," said the king, hastily; "I left it open, intentionally, so that your eyes, when wearied with the gloom of my republic, could refresh themselves on the glittering costumes of my courtiers." "He left it open," thought the duke, "for these courtiers to hear all that is said. He wishes the whole world to know how he rejected the friendship of France."
That too the New Republic must in its very development overcome. In the preceding chapter it is clearly implicit that I believe that the New Republic, as its consciousness and influence develop together, will meet, check, and control these things; but the broad principles upon which the control will go, the nature of the methods employed, still remain to be deduced.
Being asked if, since the peace, he had not kept up correspondence with the interior of the republic, he said, "I have written to a few friends who are still attached to me, who have been my companions in war, about their affairs and my own; these correspondences are not, I think, those to which it is intended to refer."
In anticipation of these operations, the South African Republic had been accumulating for many years past military stores on an enormous scale, which by their character could only have been intended for use against Great Britain. 'Your Honours make some observations of a negative character upon the object with which these preparations were made.
The Emperor, however, put him again at the head of the police, because Savary was worn out in that employment, and a skillful man was wanted there. Fouche accepted the office, but without giving up his plan of deposing the Emperor, to put in his place either his son or a Republic under a President.
"Never, I tell you, never!" cried Roland, who, faithful to the honour and integrity of spirit which conducted the men of that day, the mighty fathers of the republic, through the vicissitudes of revolution to the rewards of liberty, would not stoop to the meanness of falsehood and deception even in that moment of peril and fear; "anything but that but that, never!"