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might of intelligence and thought. A system of espionage was ever at work to detect all who sought to ameliorate the condition of the country or reform its institutions; nor were those who pursued these objects by efforts the most legitimate, treated more leniently than those who sought to effect them by means the most violent. The rulers were leagued together for the oppression of the people, and the people were united by a common hatred against the tyranny of the rulers. First in one part and then in another of the Italian Peninsula revolutionary movements broke out. Sometimes so formidable were they as to necessitate the intervention of Austrian armies to prevent the overthrow of the dynasty attacked. Such was the case in Sardinia and Naples in 1821, in Parma, Modena, and the Papal States in 1831. But, throughout the whole period, smaller movements were continually recurring. Thus the list of sanguinary repressions, and of their victims increased together, and with them increased the hatred of the people to Austria and to the princes whom her arms and policy upheld. Vainly did the great powers attempt by the Congress of Laybach in 1820, and by that of Verona in 1822, to maintain tranquillity in Italy by propping up the system established by their diplomacy at the Congress of Vienna. “There was," says an Italian, writing of these sad times, “scarcely a year which did not see many executions in some one or other of our provinces; but, amongst the record of our sufferings, the years 1831, 1833, 1837, 1841, and 1844 will remain, more than all others, engraven in
characters of blood.” In a letter written to a friend in 1832, the then young and unknown Cavour says :
“Pressed upon one side by Austrian bayonets, and on the other by the excommunications of the Pope (Gregory XVI.), our condition is truly deplorable. Every free exercise of thought, every generous sentiment is stifled, as if it were a sacrilege or a crime against the State.”
The Marquis Massimo d'Azeglio; who died at the beginning of this year (1866), one of the most able and upright public men of the day, thus defines Austria's Italian policy in his pamphlet, entitled “La Politique et le Droit Chrétien :" —"The system
" adopted by Austria, since 1815, reduces itself to this, to kill Italy, morally and politically, in order to reign in her place.” He also relates an anecdote of himself, which illustrates to what an extent Austria carried her dictation. When a young man,
. prosecuting his studies in Rome, in the year 1820, he was sent for one day by the Governor, Monsignore Bernetti, and questioned upon political matters. The suspicions entertained about him having been proved utterly groundless, the Governor said to him, _“Cavaliere, this affair displeases me, it is odious, but what can we do? Austria forces us; the Duke of Modena sends us notices; they are stronger than we are." The Marquis d'Azeglio goes on to say how surprised he was at the embarrassed manner and apologetic tone of the Roman Governor. Such language but proved to him how utterly prostrate was Italy beneath the all-pervading influence of Austria.
A young Milanese nobleman, an intimate friend
of M. d'Azeglio, known as hostile to the Austrian rule, was, says M. d'Azeglio, sent for one day by the chief of the police, who politely warned him of the danger he incurred by mixing himself up with political matters, and then added :"Good God, Signor Count ! you are young, rich, noble, and amiable, why do you mix yourself up in such troubles ? Are you afraid of the ballet-girls of the Scala? The Emperor is fond of young people, and wishes them to amuse themselves. What is wanted of you is very easy ; lend yourself to it with a will, and listen to my advice." Well may M. d'Azeglio add :-“If Europe knew all that has been done in Italy to beat down the strongest minds, to sear the conscience, to darken the intellect, great would be her surprise at seeing that virtue, sound judgment, and magnanimity still live amongst us."
Such, then, was the new condition of Italy which was to “excite admiration;" such were the fruits of that Austrian supremacy in Italy established by the Congress of Vienna. Yet amidst this conflict engendered by misrule; despite proscription, exile, imprisonment, and death, patriotic aspirations and liberal opinions continued to gain ground. At length the rulers, unable to stem the swelling current, yielded in a degree to demands which they could no longer resist. Some of the princes were only actuated by fear, mingled with crafty designs, others were influenced by timid hopes, united to worthy motives. Thus it was that, in 1847, Pius IX., recently elected
to the Papal throne, promulgated a general amnesty. Iniquitous courts of so-called justice were abolished; unpopular public functionaries were removed; commissioners for carrying out reforms were named ; the municipal system was sensibly improved ; and soon the name of Pio Nono became the rallying-cry of Italian patriots.
Such a course pursued at Rome produced an immediate effect at Turin, Florence, and Naples. Early in the following year (1848), Constitutional Governments were inaugurated in all four capitals.
What occurred in Venice is characteristic of the Austrian system of government. The Venetians, headed by Daniel Manin (one of the purest and the most enlightened public men of our own or any other time), to whom Tommaseo and other of their fellowcitizens united themselves, reminded the Austrian authorities of the various liberties and reforms promised to the inhabitants of the Lombardo-Venetian kingdom ever since 1815; liberties which had never been granted—promises which had never been fulfilled. They kept carefully within the prescribed legal means of making known their wishes, both in reference to what had been promised in 1815, and also as regarded further reforms much needed. The result was, that every concession was refused, and both Manin and Tommaseo were thrown into prison. The former relates what took place in these words :
"I asked the Austrian government to execute, and to cause to be executed, the laws which it had itself given, and to keep the promises it had made ever since 1815; to ac
cord the reforms demanded by the wants and wishes of the populations, and by the spirit of the times. The government replied by throwing M. Tommaseo and myself into prison, as well as others who had written in the same sense.
As in Venice, so in Milan, the course taken by the Austrian authorities was that of violent repression. Not until the revolution of March 1848 in Vienna itself had shaken to its foundation the throne of the Hapsbourgs, did its officials yield in any degree to the demands of the Venetians and the Milanese. Thus it was manifest that nothing but the direst necessity could wring from the German rulers of Northern Italy any concession of even the commonest justice. Hence followed the natural consequence, that the inhabitants of Venice and Milan, once in possession of power, drove out their foreign masters, and proclaimed their own freedom.
Every Italian, of every shade of political opinion, felt assured that the freedom of Italy, whatever form that freedom might assume, could only be secured by the expulsion of the Austrians from the Peninsula. So surely as they remained in any part, so surely was all hope of the permanency of Italian liberty a mere delusion. Subsequent events confirmed only too fully this opinion, and proved that the maintenance of German rule to the south of the Alps is certain de- , struction to the freedom of Italy. But to effect this vital object of driving out the hated foreigner, the co-operation of all Italians, governors as well as governed, was absolutely necessary. The people of