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His ambition and success. A.D. 10541080
Italy. His brothers and countrymen had divided the fertile lands of Apulia; but they guarded their shares with the jealousy of avarice; the aspiring youth was driven forwards to the mountains of Calabria, and in his first exploits against the Greeks and the natives it is not easy to discriminate the hero from the robber. To surprise a castle or a convent, to ensnare a wealthy citizen, to plunder the adjacent villages for necessary food, were the obscure labours which formed and exercised the powers of his mind and body. The volunteers of Normandy adhered to his standard ; and, under his command, the peasants of Calabria assumed the name and character of Normans.
As the genius of Robert expanded with his fortune, he awakened the jealousy of his elder brother, by whom, in a transient quarrel, his life was threatened and his liberty restrained. After the death of Humphrey, the tender age of his sons excluded them from the command; they were reduced to
a private estate by the ambition of their guardian and uncle; (A.D. 1057] and Guiscard was exalted on a buckler, and saluted count of
Apulia and general of the republic. With an increase of authority and of force, he resumed the conquest of Calabria, and soon aspired to a rank that should raise him for ever above the heads of his equals. By some acts of rapine or sacrilege he had incurred a papal excommunication: but Nicholas the Second was easily persuaded that the divisions of friends could terminate only in their mutual prejudice; that the Normans were the
faithful champions of the Holy See; and it was safer to trust (Synod of the alliance of a prince than the caprice of an aristocracy. A 1059, au..synod of one hundred bishops was convened at Melphi; and the
count interrupted an important enterprise to guard the person and execute the decrees of the Roman pontiff. His gratitude and policy conferred on Robert and his posterity the ducal title, with the investiture of Apulia, Calabria, and all the lands, both in Italy and Sicily, which his sword could rescue from the schismatic Greeks and the unbelieving Saracens.64 This apostolic
53 The acquisition of the dacal title by Robert Guiscard is a nice and obscure business. With the good advice of Giannone, Muratori, and St. Marc, I have en. deavoured to form a consistent and probable narrative.
54 Baronius (Annal. Ecoles. A.D. 1059, No. 69) has published the original act. He professes to have copied it from the Liber Censuum, & Vatican Ms. Yet a Liber Censuum of the twelfth century has been printed by Muratori (Antiquit. medii Ævi, tom. v. p. 851-908), and the names of Vatican and Cardinal awaken the sus. » (Not so long : August, 1068-April, 1071. The best source for the siege is Aimé, v. 27. Immediately before he laid siege to Bari, Robert captured Otranto.]
sanction might justify his arms; but the obedience of a free and victorious people could not be transferred without their consent; and Guiscard dissembled his elevation till the ensuing campaign had been illustrated by the conquest of Consenza and Reggio. In the hour of triumph, he assembled his troops, and solicited the Normans to confirm by their suffrage the judgment of the vicar of Christ; the soldiers hailed with joyful acclamations their valiant duke; and the counts, his former equals, pronounced the oath of fidelity, with hollow smiles and secret indignation. After this inauguration, Robert styled himself, “By the grace Duke of of God and St. Peter, duke of Apulia, Calabria, and hereafter A.D. 1060 of Sicily”; and it was the labour of twenty years to deserve and realise these lofty appellations. Such tardy progress, in a
a narrow space, may seem unworthy of the abilities of the chief and the spirit of the nation; but the Normans were few in number; their resources were scanty; their service was voluntary and precarious. The bravest designs of the Duke were sometimes opposed by the free voice of his parliament of barons; the twelve counts of popular election conspired against his authority; and against their perfidious uncle the sons of Humphrey demanded justice and revenge. By his policy and vigour, Guiscard discovered their plots, suppressed their rebellions, and punished the guilty with death or exile; but in these domestic feuds his years, and the national strength, were unprofitably consumed. After the defeat of his foreign enemies, the Greeks, Lombards, and Saracens, their broken forces retreated to the strong and populous cities of the sea coast. They excelled in the arts of fortification and defence; the Normans were accustomed to serve on horseback in the field, and their rude attempts could only succeed by the efforts of persevering courage. The resistance of Salerno was maintained above eight months; the (May-Dec. siege or blockade of Bari lasted near four years.55
In these (A.D. 1068 actions the Norman duke was the foremost in every danger; in every fatigue the last and most patient. As he pressed the picions of a Protestant, and even of a philosopher. [The Liber Censuam, composed at the end of the 12th century (1192), contains the rent-roll of the Roman Church and various original documents, and the Lives of Popes beginning with Leo IX. The oldest Ms. does not contain the Lives. Muratori printed the whole compilation in scr. Rer. Ital., 3, 1, p. 277 899.; the edition in the Ant. Med. Æv. does not include the Lives.)
His Italian conquests
citadel of Salerno, an huge stone from the rampart shattered one of his military engines; and by a splinter he was wounded in the breast. Before the gates of Bari, he lodged in a miserable hut or barrack, composed of dry branches, and thatched with straw: a perilous station, on all sides open to the inclemency of the winter and the spears of the enemy.se
The Italian conquests of Robert correspond with the limits of the present kingdom of Naples; and the countries united by his arms have not been dissevered by the revolutions of seven hundred years. The monarchy has been composed of the Greek provinces Calabria and Apulia, of the Lombard principality of Salerno, the Republic of Amalphi,58 and the inland dependencies of the large and ancient duchy of Beneventum. Three districts only were exempted from the common law of subjection: the first for ever, and the two last till the middle of the succeeding century. The city and immediate territory of Benevento had been transferred, by gift or exchange, from the German emperor to the Roman pontiff; and, although this holy land was sometimes invaded, the name of St. Peter was finally more potent than the sword of the Normans. Their first colony of Aversa subdued and held the state of Capua ; and her princes were reduced to beg their bread before the palace of their fathers. The dukes of Naples, the present metropolis, maintained the popular freedom, under the shadow of the Byzantine empire. Among the new acquisitions of Guiscard, the science of Salerno,59
and the trade of Amalphi,60 may detain for a moment the curiSchool of osity of the reader. I. Of the learned faculties jurisprudence implies the previous establishment of laws and property; and theology may perhaps be superseded by the full light of religion and reason. But the savage and the sage must alike implore the assistance of physic; and, if our diseases are inflamed by luxury, the mischiefs of blows and wounds would be more frequent in the ruder ages of society. The treasures of Grecian medicine had been communicated to the Arabian colonies of Africa, Spain, and Sicily; and in the intercourse of peace and war a spark of knowledge had been kindled and cherished at Salerno, an illustrious city, in which the men were honest and the women beautiful.61 A school, the first that arose in the darkness of Europe, was consecrated to the healing art; 62 the conscience of monks and bishops were reconciled to that salutary and lucrative profession; and a crowd of patients, of the most eminent rank and most distant climates, invited or visited the physicians of Salerno. They were protected by the Norman conquerors; and Guiscard, though bred in arms, could discern the merit and value of a philosopher. After a pilgrimage of thirty-nine years, Constantine, an African Christian, returned from Bagdad, a master of the language and learning of the Arabians; and Salerno was enriched by the practice, the lessons and the writings, of the pupil of Avicenna. The school of medicine has long slept in the name of an university ; 63 but her
56 Read the life of Guiscard in the second and third books of the Apulian, the first and second books of Malaterra.
57 The conquests of Robert Guiscard and Roger I., the exemption of Benevento and the twelve provinces of the kingdom, are fairly exposed by Giannone in the second volume of his Istoria Civile, 1. ix., X., xi. and l. xvii. p. 460-470. This modern division was not established before the time of Frederic II.
58 [Amalfi acknowledged the lordship of Robert (" Duke of Amal6 ") from A.D. 1073. Cp. Heinemann, op. cit., p. 268.)
59 Gianpone (tom. ii. p. 119-127), Muratori (Antiquitat. medij Ævi, tom. iii. dissert. xliv. p. 935, 936), and Tiraboschi (Istoria della Letteratura Italiana) have given an historical account of these physicians; their medical knowledge and practice must be left to our physicians.
60 At the end of the Historia Pandectarum of Henry Brenckmann (Trajecti ad Rhenum, 1722, in 4to), the indefatigable author has inserted two dissertations, de Republicâ Amalphitanå, ond de Amalphi a Pisanis direptâ, which are built on the testimonies of one hundred and forty writers. Yet he has forgotten two most important passages of the embassy of Liutprand (A.D. 969), which compare the trade and navigation of Amalphi with that of Venice.
61 Urbs Latii non est hâc delitiosior urbe,
Frugibus arboribus vinoque redundat ; et unde
(Gulielmus Appulus, 1. iii. p. 267.) [It has been commonly maintained that the medical school of Sulerno owed its risé and development to Arabic influence. This view seems to be mistaken ; documents published in De Renzi's Collectio Salernitana (1852) seem decidedly against it. See Rashdall's Universities in the Middle Ages, vol. i. p. 78 (chap. 3, p. 75 sqq. is devoted to Salerno). Rashdall is inclined to connect the revival of medical science in the 17th century at Salerno with the survival of the Greek language in those regions. Salerno went back to Hippocrates independently of Arabia ; and it was when the Arabic methods in medicine became popular in the 13th century that the Salerno school declined.]
62 (At the beginning of the 12th cent. Ordericus Vitalis describes the medical school of Salerno as existing ab antiquo tempore (Hist. Ecc. ii. Bk. 3, 11 in Migne, Patr. Lat., vol. 188, p. 260); see Rashdall, p. 77. The place was famous for its physicians in the 10th cent., and we have works of medical writers of Salerno from the early part of the 11th (e.g., Gariopontus). The fullest account of the school is De Renzi's Storia documentata della scuola medica di Salerno. The school was first recognized by Frederick II., whose edict in 1231 appointed it as the examining body for candidates who desired to obtain the royal licence which he made compulsory for the practice of medicine.]
* [It was a school of doctors, in no way resembling a university. As Rashdall observes (loc. cit., p. 82): " Salerno remains a completely isolated factor in the
precepts are abridged in a string of aphorisms, bound together in
Their trade was ex-
academic polity of the Middle Ages. While its position as a school of medicine was,
a for two centuries at least, as unique as that of Paris in Theology and that of Bologna in Law, while throughout the Middle Ages no school of medicine except Montpellier rivalled its fame, it remained without influence in the development of Academic institutions.”]
64 Murutori carries their antiquity above the year (1066) of the death of Edward the Confessor, the rex Anglorum to whom they are addressed. Nor is this date affected by the opinion, or rather mistake, of Pasquier (Recherches de la France, 1. vii. c. 2) and Ducange (Glossar. Latin.). The practice of rhyming, as early as the seventh century, was borrowed from the languages of the North and East (Muratori, Antiquitat. tom. iii. dissert. xl. p. 686.708). [Constantine translated the Aphorisms of Hippocrates from the Arabic version, c. A.D. 1080.]
65 The description of Amalphi, by William the Apulian (l. vii. p. 267), contains much truth and some poetry; and the third line may be applied to the sailor's compass:
Nulla magis locuples argento, vestibus, auro