History of Florence and of the Affairs of Italy eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 472 pages of information about History of Florence and of the Affairs of Italy.
having been terminated by the kindness of others rather than by any merit of their own.  The formula of agreement and benediction was then read; and, in addition to what had already been considered and agreed upon between the parties, the pope said, that if the Florentines wished to enjoy the fruit of his forgiveness, they must maintain fifteen galleys, armed, and equipped, at their own expense, as long as the Turks should make war upon the kingdom of Naples.  The ambassadors complained much of this burden in addition to the arrangement already made, but were unable to obtain any alleviation.  However, after their return to Florence, the Signory sent, as ambassador to the pope, Guidantonio Vespucci, who had recently returned from France, and who by his prudence brought everything to an amicable conclusion, obtained many favors from the pontiff, which were considered as presages of a closer reconciliation.

Having settled their affairs with the pope, Sienna being free, themselves released from the fear of the king, by the departure of the duke of Calabria from Tuscany, and the war with the Turks still continuing, the Florentines pressed the king to restore their fortresses, which the duke of Calabria, upon quitting the country, had left in the hands of the Siennese.  Ferrando, apprehensive that if he refused, they would withdraw from the alliance with him, and by new wars with the Siennese deprive him of the assistance he hoped to obtain from the pope and other Italian powers, consented that they should be given up, and by new favors endeavored to attach the Florentines to his interests.  It is thus evident, that force and necessity, not deeds and obligations, induce princes to keep faith.

The castles being restored, and this new alliance established, Lorenzo de’ Medici recovered the reputation which first the war and then the peace, when the king’s designs were doubtful, had deprived him of; for at this period there was no lack of those who openly slandered him with having sold his country to save himself, and said, that in war they had lost their territories, and in peace their liberty.  But the fortresses being recovered, an honorable treaty ratified with the king, and the city restored to her former influence, the spirit of public discourse entirely changed in Florence, a place greatly addicted to gossip, and in which actions are judged by the success attending them, rather than by the intelligence employed in their direction; therefore, the citizens praised Lorenzo extravagantly, declaring that by his prudence he had recovered in peace, what unfavorable circumstances had taken from them in war, and that by his discretion and judgment he had done more than the enemy with all the force of their arms.

CHAPTER V

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History of Florence and of the Affairs of Italy from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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