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Montague-- already a catholic at heart-who was privately instructed to open negociations with Richelieu. The fleet manæuvred before Rochelle for five days, re-animating the courage of the Rochellois, but reviving their hopes only the more to damp and disappoint them. The famine was then at its height. Incredible prices were being refused for the most loathsome food—a cat it is asserted was sold for a sum not less than five-andforty pounds. But the beleaguered city had remained firm. Smiling with plenty were the fields, and before the entrance to the harbour was a wellmanned fleet that might render efficient help. No help was rendered ; two ineffectual, probably pretended rather than real, attempts were made by this fleet to force an entrance, after which display it retired to Spithead.

Overcome by famine, their numbers reduced from fifteen thousand to four thousand, their streets encumbered with the dead—and with the prospect of plague as well as famine to complete their destruction—the people of Rochelle were compelled to submit to the exigencies of war. Bitterly they repented the confidence reposed in the promises of the King of England, and sharply were they taught the lesson—"Put not your trust in princes.” So the flag of revolt was hauled down, and the Rochellois surrendered. A deputation of twelve of the principal citizens waited on Richelieu, and besought the royal pardon. “I would rather said Guitin, “yield to a king who is able to conquer, than be allied with one who is unable or unwilling to resist.”

To the credit of Richelieu be it said, he treated the citizens with every courtesy ; there was no vengeance taken, no victims sacrificed, no wanton mockery or insult offered. The town lost its independence, which was indeed incompatible with the sovereignty of the king; but the lives and properties of the inhabitants were spared, and their religious opinions respected. The capitulation was signed on the 29th of October, 1628, and on the following day the royal troops entered the city.

The sight they beheld on their first entry was heart-sickening. The dead and the dying lay huddled together in the street; not three hundred men were there capable of bearing arms, and the people who showed themselves were so worn down by starvation and misery as to seem but the ghosts of their former selves. The first act of the royal troops was to furnish provisions. As they forced their way through the obstructed streets, they cast loaves of bread and other provisions to the famishing people, and one and another would stop to give a drink to some poor sufferer from his flask. Their next care was to clear the streets of the dead and the dying; the former were decently intered, the latter received proper attention, and several of them survived to tell in after years the horrors of that siege.

In due course Louis XIII. and Cardinal Richelieu with all “ the pomp and circumstance of war," made triumphal entry into the city. Amid salvos of artillery, and shouts of “Vive le roi," the stronghold of revolt received back its king—the metropolis of heresy welcomed the Cardinal.

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HILE the events recorded in the Story of the Siege of

Rochelle were taking place in France, and the expressed sympathies of the English Government with the

French Protestants had involved both countries in war, Ferdinand the Second of Germany was teaching Catholic Christianity at the sword's point to the Protestant states of the Fatherland. Generals Wallenstein, Piccolomini, and Tilly were the chief apostles of the emperor, and none were more zealous than they in fighting for the faith.

Compared with the treatment of the German Protestants, who fell under the power of Ferdinand, that of the Huguenots by Richelieu was just and merciful. The wily cardinal, the saintly soldier, was not vindictive. He felt that a stronghold like Rochelle could not be permitted to maintain its independence with safety to the state. He dismantled the town, and forfeited its privileges ; but he did not interfere with the religious liberties of the people; he did not attempt to crush Protestantism with the iron heel of despotism ; he was a politician, not a bigot. Ferdinand, on the contrary, was resolved on the extirpation of the Protestants ; determined by the help of fire and sword, and what help the heaven he besieged with prayer might send, to restore a catholicity of faith, to ignore all that had been accomplished by Luther, Calvin, Erasmus, and other reformers: there should be but one faith—one church-one highway to heaven, a faith and church and highway approved of by Ferdinand the magnificent, or

There is a story told of two Irish chieftains in ancient times, one of whom despatched to the other a dubious message with a threat unexpressed, but emphatic. “Pay me tribute, or else- Not to be intimidated nor outdone in equivoque, the other replied, “I owe you no tribute, and if."

.” Of course they fell to fighting. Something like this was the condition of the quarrel between Ferdinand and the German Protestant States. Nothing was very clearly expressed on either side, but both meant defiance, and victory or death.

The resistance to Austria had, as we have shown, begun in Bohemia : the Protestants had invited Frederick of the Palatinate, son-in-law of James the First, to become their king. Like a young and foolish man, he accepted their offer; assumed the crown, to have it taken from him, and himself driven into exile, losing not only his new kingdom, but his old Palatinate. Spain, Bavaria, and Austria, all leagued against the Protestant States, presented an invulnerable front to the united effortsfeeble it must be owned-of an allied host enlisted in the Protestant cause. All Germany was overrun with the victorious troops, and the most horrible desolation followed the triumphant march of Wallenstein, Piccolomini, and Tilly.

The war had its origin in Frederick of the Palatinate accepting the Bohemian crown;

but it rapidly assumed a wider and more serious aspect than could have been the case, had the mere question been the restoration of this simple-minded man's hereditary possession. It became a battle of belief -the crusade of political and religious intolerance, and it lasted thirty years.

Where commerce had built her giant cities, and enriched her merchants with tribute from the very ends of the earth, where richly laden argosies were moored on rivers more auriferous than fabled Pactolus, and where merchant princes dwelt in state surpassing that of emperors born in the purple, there was ruin-utter and irremediable. Houses marked by smouldering embers-ships burnt to the water's edge-stately halls but charred and blackened timbers—and crushed and mutilated corpses everywhere.



Where cattle grazed and crops ripened, where smiling homesteads gave invitation to the passer by, where orchards exhibited their tempting fruit, and old mills lazily performed their work as if there was no hurry, but plenty of time on hand to stop and think about it-where in the green meadows and the yellow uplands there were all the indications of a happy, prosperous, and contented people—there was now desolation and death. Villages lay in ashes ; where the peasant had so often engaged in the wild frolic of the kermese, there were headless bodies-naked, young, old,

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men, women, rich, poor, literally stripped of everything, and flung together in a ghastly heap. The corn ready for the sickle had been fired— wantonly destroyed; Ruth and Boaz-wealthy landowners and humble gleaners-consumed amid the sheaves ; granaries had been ransacked and thousands of flour sacks emptied of their contents into the river. There was neither the lowing of oxen, nor bleating of sheep-herds and flocks had been driven off by the Austrian soldiers. Everywhere there was wanton destruction, and outrages unnameable. The sword to the throat, and the fire to the roof tree, were mercies compared with some of the

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