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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.

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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER
The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.
page 376



A.D. 774. THE KTJre OP PB ANCE REDUCES ITALY. the festival of the Holy Resurrection, and after that, he returned and took Papia ; and again returning to Rome, he held a council in union -with pope Adrian, and a hundred and fiftythree other religious abbots and bishops, in which pope Adrian and the general council gave him the right of electing the Pontiff, and of regulating the Apostolic See, and the dignity of patrician,8 and moreover, settled that all the archbishops and bishops in all the provinces should receive their investi-* titure from him ; and that a bishop should be consecrated by no one, unless he had been first approved and invested by the king. And the council anathematized all who rebelled against this decree, and confiscated all their possessions, unless they came to their senses. This is the statement of Sigebert. A.D. 774. Charles, the most mighty king of France, besieged and blockaded Ticino, a most noble city of the Lombards, and took it, with Desiderale, the king, and reduced all Italy under his power. " After the recovery of Italy and Africa by the arms of Justinian, the importance and danger of this remote province required the presence of a supreme magistrate : he was indifferently styled the Exarch or Patrician. And these governors of Ravenna, who fill their place in the chronology of princes, extended their jurisdiction over the Roman city. Since the revolt of Italy and the loss of the exarchate, the distress of the Romans had exacted some sacrifice of their independence, and the decrees of the senate and people successively invested Charles Martel and his posterity with the honours of patrician of Rome. The leaders of a powerful nation would have disdained a servile title and subordinate onice, but the reign of the Greek emperors was suspended, and in the vacancy of the empire they derived a more glorious commission from the pope and the republic. The Roman ambassadors presented these patricians with the keys of the shrine of St. Peter as a pledge and symbol of sovereignty, and with a holy banner, which it was their right and duty to unfurl in defence of the church and city. .. . And the patriciate represented only the title, the service, the alliance of these distant protectors. The power and policy of Charlemagne annihilated an enemy and imposed fl master. In his first visit to the capital, he was received with all the honours which had formerry been paid to the exarch, the representative of the emperor, and these honours obtained some new decorations from the joy and gratitude of Pope Adrian the First In the twenty-six years which bad elapsed between the conquest of Lombardy and his imperial coronation, Rome, which had been delivered by the sword, was subject, as his own, to the sceptre of Charlemagne. The people swore allegiance to his person and family ; in his name money was coined and justice was administered, and the election of the popes was examined and confirmed by his authority."—GIBBON, c. xlix. voL ix. p. 153, Edit. 1820.


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