Abbildungen der Seite

the property of royal blood is to have such compassion and mercy that it cannot suffer any cruelty, murder, or treason whatever; and of this blood my late lord of Orleans had a large share, for he was the son of a king and queen. “O king Charles' if thou wert now alive, what wouldst thou say? What tears could appease thee ? What would have hindered thee from doing justice for so base a murder ? Alas! how hast thou loved, and to what honour hast thou diligently trained the tree that has brought forth the fruit which has put to death thy very dear son 2 Alas! king Charles, thou mayest now say with Jacob, “Fera pessima devoravit filium meum.' The worst of beasts has devoured my son. Our adversary has made a miserable return to thee, oh, Charles' for all the great riches thou hast heaped on his father. This is the gratitude for the expedition to Flanders, wherein thou and thy kingdom were in such peril, out of love to him. In truth, all the magnificent gifts thou madest the father are already forgotten. Sire, look down, and hear the lady of Orleans, crying in the words of the Psalmist, “Domine, deduc me in justitia tua propter inimicos meos.' Lord, lead me to thy judgment on account of mine enemies. “This concludes my second argument. My third is founded on pity, considering the desolate state of the supplicants; namely, the widowed lady of Orleans, in despair, with her innocent children, thy nephews, now become orphans, having no other father to look to but thee. It becomes thee, therefore, to incline thyself diligently to do them justice, as they have no other refuge but in thee, who art their lord and sovereign; and they are besides thy very near relations, as thou well knowest. “Let pity move thy breast; for as Saint James the apostle says, “Religio munda et immaculata est visitare pupillos et viduas in tribulatione eorum.” To visit orphans and widows in their distress is the duty of a pure and undefiled religion. It is melancholy that so great a lady should suffer thus undeservedly; and she may be compared to her whom Valerius speaks of in the sixth book. A widow had a son who had been unjustly slain: she went to the emperor Octavian to demand justice, and said, “Sire, do me justice for the cruel death of my son. The emperor had already mounted his horse, to perform a long journey, but replied, ‘Woman, wait until I be returned, when I will do thee justice.” The woman answered instantly, “Alas! my lord, thou knowest not if ever thou shalt return, and I wish not justice to be delayed.’ The emperor said, “Should I not return, my successor will see thee righted; but the widow replied, “Sire, thou knowest not if thy successor would wish to see me righted : he may, perhaps, have something to prevent it like to thee; and supposing that he should do me justice, what honour would it be to thee, or what merit canst thou claim for it from the gods? Thou art bound to do me justice: wherefore then seekest thou to throw the burden on others?' The emperor, observing the firmness of the woman, and the reasonableness of her arguments, dismounted, and, without more delay, did her ample justice. It was for this meritorious conduct, that when the emperor died, five years after, in the pagan faith, he was brought to life again by the prayers of St. Gregory, then pope, and baptised, as the histories relate. The example of this emperor, O king of France 1 thou oughtest to follow in regard to the disconsolate widow of the late duke of Orleans, who is now a supplicant to thee, and has formerly demanded, and now again demands, justice for the inhuman and barbarous murder of her lord and husband, who was thy brother. Delays, or reference to thy successors, will have no avail; for thou, as king, art singularly obliged to do this, considering the rank of the supplicants, the duchess of Orleans and her children. “This lady is like to the widow of whom St. Jerome speaks, in his second book against Jovinian; wherein he relates, that the daughter of Cato, after the death of her husband, was in the deepest sorrow, uttering nothing but groans and lamentations. Her relations and neighbours asked her how long this grief was to last,-when she replied, that her life and her sorrow would end together. Such, without doubt, is the state of my lady the duchess, —for she can have no remedy for her loss, but by means of the justice she is soliciting. In truth, she does not require any hostile measures,-for were that the case, she and her children, with their allies, are so much more powerful than the duke of Burgundy, that they are well able to avenge themselves. This act of justice thou canst not refuse, nor can the adverse party raise any objections to it, considering the persons who demand it. O, sovereign king! act in such wise that the words the Psalmist spoke of the Lord may be applied to thee: “Justus Dominus et justitiam dilexit; acquitatem widit vultus ejus.' Our Lord is just, and loves justice: equity is the light of his countenance.—This concludes my third argument. “My fourth argument is founded partly on the act itself, which was so abominably cruel, the like was never seen; and all men of understanding must feel compassion for it. This, if duly considered, should incline thee the more to do justice, from the usages of the ancient kings, who, through compassion, bewailed even the death of an enemy: how much the more then does it become thee to bewail the death of thy brother, and to exert thy courage to punish the authors of it ! Should it not be so, great disgrace will attach to thee and to many others. We read, that Caesar seeing the head of his enemy Pompey, wept, and said, that such a man ought not to have died. He was also very much grieved at the death of Cato, though his enemy, and did all in his power to aid and console his children. O, most courteous king of France thou oughtest likewise to give consolation for the death of thy brother, who was thy dear and loyal friend. Weigh well the manner of his death, which was piteously lamentable. Alas! my lord, could the spirit of thy brother speak, what would it not say? It would certainly address thee in words similar to these: “Oh, my lord and brother, see how through thee I have received my death, for it was on account of the great affection that subsisted between us! Look at my wounds, five of which are mortal. See Iny body beat to the ground, and covered with mud behold my arm cut off, and my brains scattered about! See if any pains were equal to my sufferings. It was not, alas! sufficient for mine enemy to take away my life so cruelly, and without cause; but he suddenly surprised me when coming from the residence of the queen to thee, which has put me in danger of damnation; and even after my death, he has attempted to blast my reputation by his false and defamatory libel.” “My sovereign king, attend to these words, as if thy brother had spoken them; for such they would have been, could he have addressed thee. Be then more active to do justice; and having heard the petition of my lady of Orleans, act so that thou mayest verify what is said in the second chapter of the first book of Kings : “Dominus retribuet unicuique secundum justitiam suam.' Our Lord will render to all according to his justice. And this concludes my fourth argument. “My fifth is grounded on the great evils and mischiefs that might ensue if justice be not done on such crimes, –for every one will in future take the law into his own hand, and be judge and party. Treasons and murders will be the consequence, by which the kingdom may be ruined, as I shall demonstrate; for, according to the doctors, the surest way to preserve peace in a country is to do equal justice to all. St. Cyprian declares this, in his book on the twelve errors, saying, “Justitia regis, pax populorum, tutamen pueris, munimentum gentis, terrae foecunditas, solatium pauperum, hereditas filiorum, et sibimet spes futurae beatitudinis.’ The justice of a king is peace to the people, the defender of orphans, the safety of the subject, the fertility of the earth, the comfort of the poor, the inheritance of sons, and to himself a hope of future happiness. It is an everlasting glory. And on this occasion the Psalmist says, “Justitia et pax osculatae sunt.' Righteousness and peace have kissed each other. Should it be urged, that if due punishment be inflicted on this crime, greater evils might ensue from the reputed power of the duke of Burgundy. To this, which has more of appearance than reality, it may be answered, that the duke of Burgundy is as nothing compared with the power of the monarch; for what power or force can he have but what thou givest him or sufferest him to enjoy 7 Justice and truth, however they may be delayed, always in the end, through Divine mercy, are the mistresses, and there is no security like working for them. Who are the knights or esquires that would dare to serve him against thee ? or where are the strangers that would risk their lives in his traitorous quarrel ? Certainly none. “O ! ye knights of Burgundy and Flanders, clerks and laymen, and all ye vassals of our adversary, send hither men unbiassed by favour or hatred to hear this cause pleaded, truth declared, and justice adjudged to the right, according as it shall be plainly shown. O most Christian king! ye dukes, counts, and princes, have the goodness to give your aid that justice may be administered, for which end you have been principally constituted and ordained. O my lord king ! consider how small a power, when compared with thine, thy ancestors enjoyed, and yet they punished criminals of yet superior rank to our opponent, as any one may see who shall read our history of former times. Besides, who are they that would dare to oppose their sovereign lord, who, doing an act of justice according to the evidence of truth, becomes a true and upright judge, as Tully showeth, in his second book of Offices: “Judicis est semper verum sequi.’ A good judge should give judgment according to truth. “The same author says, in one of his orations before he went into banishment, ‘Nemo tam facinorosus inventus est vita, ut non tamen judicum prius sententiis convinceretur, quam suppliciis applicaretur.' No one has led so wicked a life but that a verdict has been passed upon his case before he was put to the torture. Thou art bounden, most potent king, to do justice; and should any evil result from it, it will fall on the adverse party, on account of his crimes, as I shall show to you hereafter. The judgment of our LoRD JESUS CHRIST will not certainly fail of having its effect: ‘Qui de gladio percutit, gladio peribit.' Whoso kills with the sword shall die by the sword. And Ovid, in his Art of Love, says, “Neque lex est aequior ulla, quam necis artifices arte perire sua.” No law is more just than that murderers should perish by their own arts. O my lord king ! open the gates of justice, and listen to the very reasonable complaints which my lady of Orleans makes to thee, that thou mayest verify in thyself the words of the prophet, ‘Dilexisti justitiam et odisti iniquitatem, propterea unxit te Deus tuus oleo laetitiae prae consortibus tuis; ' that is to say, Thou hast loved justice, and hast hated iniquity, wherefore the Lord thy God has anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows;–and this finishes my fifth argument. “My sixth and last argument, for the present, is founded on the conduct and demeanour of our opponent after this cruel and detestable crime. There is nothing in this world a king should so much dread and check as the overbearing pride of any subject in regard to his government; and thou, O king ! oughtest to follow, in thy governance, the example of the King of kings, of whom holy writ says, “Deus superbis resistit, humilibus autem dat gratiam.” God humbles the proud, and raises up the weak-hearted. Thou art therefore bound to humble the pride of our opponent, which has increased to such a pitch as to make him resist thy power in the support of this his wicked deed. “Oh! king of France, and all ye my lords, weigh well then the rebellion and disobedience of our adversary, not only against the commands of the king, but contrary to the orders of the whole royal council. It is a well known fact, that the king of Sicily, my lord of Berry, and several others, went lately to Amiens, notwithstanding the great severity of the season, to attempt bringing about a reconciliation between the parties, for the general good of the king and kingdom; but these lords, in truth, could not effect this, though they signified to our opponent the king's commands,--but he contended that he would not wait upon his sovereign until he should be sent for by the king himself. When the aforesaid lords advised him to obey the king's commands, they could scarcely obtain from him a promise not to come to the king with a great power of men-at-arms; and even then he delayed his coming for fifteen days. Consider, my lords, what sort of obedience this is, and what fatal consequences may ensue from it. After the conference at Amiens, what was his conduct ' Why, he assembled so large a force of men-at-arms, that when he came to Paris, he seemed as if he would conquer the whole kingdom. It is true, indeed, that the king and the princes of his blood, hearing of this, collected a sufficient power to provide a remedy. But when the king had commanded him, by especial messengers, not to enter Paris with more than two hundred men-at-arms, he came accompanied by more than six hundred, in direct opposition to the king's orders. —On his arrival in Paris with so large a force, it seemed to him that the king, queen, and other princes, ought to act according to his will; and for certain, such was the state of affairs that nothing was refused him, but the whole court behaved courteously toward him, to appease his anger. “O government of France 1 if thou wilt suffer such things to pass with impunity, thou wilt soon have cause for lamentations. Our adversary next caused all the barricadoes and defences round the king's palace to be taken away, that his wicked intentions, already begun, might be completed. Such deeds are strong proofs of subjects having evil designs against their king. It behoved him to have come to humble himself and seek for pardon; but, on the contrary, he came with his sword drawn, and accompanied by a numerous body of menat-arms, the greater part of whom were foreigners.-During his residence in Paris, he frequently excited to rebellion the simple inhabitants, by spreading abroad his defamatory libels, and various false promises. The citizens, believing he was to do wonders, and to be the regent of the kingdom, have been so much deceived by him that they paid great honour to him and to his writings, even by cries of joy, and shoutings of the populace whenever he appeared; by which and other like means, his pride and cruelty are increased, and make him. obstinately persist in his iniquities. “Alas! my lord king, is it not the very height of presumption to ride through Paris openly armed, after having committed such a crime, and to attend thy peaceful council with his battle-axes and lances? where thou oughtest not to have suffered any one to have entered more armed than thyself, lest the devil, who had instigated him to commit the base act he did, should unfortunately have urged him to commit a still greater, because the princes of the council did not approve of the wickedness he had done. Therefore thou shouldest never allow any one culpable like him, who takes the law into his own hands, to be in thy presence, more strongly armed than thou art thyself; for it is possible for such as he to beguile the people by the means before mentioned, and to lead them to thy own destruction as well as that of thy realm. Be pleased, therefore, to humiliate our opponent, and show thyself an upright and fearless judge in the cause of truth, that it may be said of thee as it is written in the 8th chapter of the 3d book of Kings, ‘Judicabit servos suos, justificans quod justum est, attribuens eis secundum justitiam.’ He will judge his servants, justifying them that are upright, and giving to each according to his deserts. From this, as well as from the preceding arguments, it plainly appears, that thou art bounden to do the justice required by my lady of Orleans. “I shall now demonstrate the crime of our adversary, and how he perpetrated such an unpardonable deed; to which I shall add six arguments to prove the fealty and loyalty of my lord of Orleans, taking for my theme the words of the advocate of our opponent, namely, ‘Radix omnium malorum cupiditas.” It seems to me, that covetousness has been the original cause of this murder, not covetousness of wealth alone, but likewise covetousness of honours and ambition.—Covetousness has then been the original cause, as shall more plainly be shown hereafter. “To prove the greatness and abomination of this crime, I shall use six arguments. The first is founded on our adversary having not the power or authority of a judge over the deceased. Secondly, Supposing he may have had any authority over him, he proceeded in his own way, contrary to every maxim of law and of justice. My third argument is grounded on the strict alliance that had been formed between my late lord of Orleans and our adversary. Fourthly, That this is a damnable murder, and cannot any way be defended or explained. Fifthly, That our opponent caused my lord of Orleans to be slain with a wicked intention. Sixthly, That, not satisfied with having caused the duke of Orleans to be deprived of his life, he has exerted himself to disgrace his fame, by defamatory libels, thus, as it were, slaying him a second time. “As to my first argument, it plainly appears, that the malice of our adversary is incorrigible, seeing that he had not any authority over the deceased; for, according to the laws and decrees, as well as to reason and the holy Scriptures, no one can put another to death without authority from the judge or judicial. Otherwise, any one may slay another at his pleasure, and tumults and confusion would reign without any chief or head, and every one would alternately, when strongest, make himself king. So far was our adversary from having any power or authority over my lord of Orleans, that he was bound to do him honour and reverence as son to a king, and to call him his lord, and respect him in his words and actions, for such are the privileges and prerogatives belonging to the sons of kings. This usurpation, therefore, of authority is apparent in our adversary, and consequently his wickedness has been unjustly perpetrated. “That authority is required as essential to enable any one to put another to death, appears clearly in many parts of the holy Scriptures: and in fact, St. Austin, when VoI. I. H

discussing the saying of our Lord, in the 26th chapter of the gospel of St. Matthew, “Omnis qui gladium acceperit, gladio peribit; that is, Whosoever useth the sword shall perish by the sword; adds, “All who shall, without lawful authority, make use of the sword, or shall arm himself against another, is bold in his wickedness.’ He afterwards asserts, that even a malefactor cannot be put to death without lawful authority; for in his Civitas Dei, “Qui, inquit, sine publica administratione maleficum interfecerit, velut homicida judicabitur." That is, Whoever shall slay a malefactor without the forms of public administration of justice, shall be judged guilty of murder. This the law confirms, ‘Vigor, inquit, publicus tutela in medio constituta est, me quis de aliquo, etiam sceleribus implicato sumere valeat ultionem :'—which is, That the public strength is as a defence constituted and ordained to prevent any one from taking vengeance, even upon him who is involved in great and abominable crimes. “In truth, the advocate for our adversary may say, that the laws should only take cognizance of such as act contrary to law; and that as a tyrant proceeds directly in opposition to them, he will affirm that this murder is no way contrary to the law. Alas! and does the advocate of our opponent know that my late lord of Orleans was a tyrant ' Who is the judge that declares him such The fallacy of this assertion must be strictly examined, for on this deception is founded the supposition of my lord being a tyrant; and as our adversary groundlessly asserts, that the late duke of Orleans was a tyrant in the eye of reason, he concludes that it was lawful to put him to death. Let us, however, consider the properties of tyranny, and who should be accounted tyrants. The philosopher says, in his 4th chapter on morals, “Tyrannus est, cum aliquis princeps, vi et violentia potestatis, sine titulo terram usurpat alienam, et de facto aliquam occupat civitatem vel patriam, et qui incorrigibilis est, et nulli obediens.' Now let us see whether my lord of Orleans had these properties. Certainly not ; for he never took possession of another's land: if any one know the contrary, let him say so. Our opponent, therefore, ought not to have called the duke of Orleans a tyrant, for he never usurped any dominion, excepting over such places as were given him as appanages by the king, or what he had himself justly acquired. The duke of Burgundy, on the contrary, withholds three castles and their dependencies, without any just title, from the inheritance and domain of the king, namely, Lille, Douay, and Orches, notwithstanding his oaths on the holy sacrament to the king, that he would restore them to the crown, according to the conditions and agreements then made. “My lord of Orleans was never incorrigible; for I firmly believe that never did so great a prince pay more respect and honour to the laws. Let our opponent say what acts or opposition the duke of Orleans ever committed or made against the laws. There are many noble persons now living, who can testify that no lord ever supported or maintained the dignity of justice more than the duke of Orleans during his whole life. If we consider the properties of a tyrant according to the philosophers, they declare that a tyrant bends his whole mind to slay and destroy the prudent and wise: he seeks the ruin of churches and colleges of learning, and is solely occupied with destruction. He is much to be feared for his wickedness, whilst he studies to preserve his personal safety by strong guards. Such were not the qualities of my late lord, for his were the direct opposite. “In the first place, he never caused either wise men or fools to be put to death, but was particularly fond of the learned, and desirous of seeing any new improvements. In regard to churches, so far from destroying them, he repaired many, and founded some new ones, to which he gave large estates, as is well known. As for guarding his personal safety, he felt himself so innocent and pure toward all mankind, that he suspected no one of attempting to hurt him, and took no precautions, as you have seen, against his murderers. In fact, had he been of a suspicious temper, he would not have been thus treacherously slain. It is, therefore, wonderfully astonishing how our adversary should have dared to have called the duke of Orleans a tyrant, by way of excusing his abominable act, when it is apparent that his qualities were directly the reverse to those of a tyrant. This I think a sufficient answer to the damnable proposition of our opponent. “But the advocate for our adversary says, That whatever he may have done contrary to the letter of the law was not, however, contrary to the intention of the maker of the law,

« ZurückWeiter »