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WILLIAM STUBBS Seventeen lectures on the study of medieval and modern history and kindred subjects


Sir John Froissart's Chronicles of England, France, Spain and the Ajoining Countries from the latter part of the reign of Edward II to the coronation of Henry IV in 12 volumes 

Chronicles of Enguerrand De Monstrelet (Sir John Froissart's Chronicles continuation) in 13 volumes 

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Seventeen lectures on the study of medieval and modern history and kindred subjects
page 237

VIII.] VENICE AND GENOA. 231 violence of the Genoese exemplified in the war of 1374, and the seizure of Famagosta. But I confess that I see little to choose between the two, and that what little there is seems in favour of Venice. Neither republic looked at the defence of Christendom as the great thing to be sought. The trading inte jst, or territorial ambition complicated with trading intei c, was the main thing. If Venice profited most by the common policy, it is not so much a proof of previous diplomacy as a result of her longer tenure of power. That the Venetians however had an equal share with the Genoese in weakening the Frank kingdom it is impossible to prove : the Genoese hold on Famagosta was a fatal if not a mortal wound. But still more powerful agencies were at work. The hands of Christendom were paralysed, and the barbarians were gaining strength and unity. The close of the fourteenth century, an exceptional but a very critical era, seems to show us all nations, all royalties, churches, religions, civilised and barbarous, in a cauldron or a whirlpool from which there was very small chance of emerging whole. A madman on the throne of France, an impotent drunkard claiming the crown of the Cœsars, a frantic absolutist overthrowing the constitution of England ; the see of S. Peter divided between two, three, four Popes; the Emperor of Constantinople begging money openly in the courts of the West ; the three barbarian powers pitted against each other—providentially, we may say, for who could have resisted their united force ?— the Ottoman sultan the prisoner of Tamerlane; the Mameluke sultan only sustained in independence by the contest between the Turks and the Tartars. Yet Europe does emerge ; the battle of Nicopolis puts an end to the Crusades ; the retreat of the Tartars enables the Ottomans to recover their ground ; Byzantium has a respite of half a century, and Egypt of more than a hundred years of Mameluke tyranny. It takes a

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