History of Spain

About the opening of the fifth century, when Alaric, the terrible king of the Visigoths, had sacked and burned the City of the Seven Hills, his brother, Adolph, crossing the Pyrenees, penetrated into Spain, and founded, in that secluded province of the Roman Empire, a kingdom, of which the capital was Toledo - situated on a steep rock, which was washed on three sides by the waters of the Tagus.

The Gothic monarchy, thus established, lasted for three centuries, when Roderick, who wore the crown of Spain, ravished the daughter of a Count named Julian, and thus created an implacable foe. Boiling with resentment, and panting for vengeance, Count Julian crossed to Barbary, and invoked the aid of the adventurous Moors; and forthwith the sound of Moorish horns, and the neighing of war-steeds, and the waving of the Crescent, announced that a Saracenic host had invaded the sunny fields of Spain.

King Roderick encountered the Moors in several battles; and at length, in the summer of 711, a decisive conflict took place at Xeres. There the king king and the flower of his chivalry perished; and the cities quietly yielding to the turbaned victors, a splendid Moorish monarchy was instituted under princes of the line of Omeyades. They exercised a temporal as well as spiritual authority, selected Cordova as their seat of empire, and adorn ed that city with magnificent palaces, colleges, libraries, hospitals, mosques, bridges, and fountains.

The vanquished Spaniards, so far from being harshly treated, enjoyed so much civil and religious liberty, that many remained in their native regions; and the Spanish women freely availed themselves of the invitation to intermarry with the conquerors. Such of the proud barons, indeed, as disdained to submit, escaped to neighboring countries; while others, departing from Andalusia, with its sunny skies and fair landscapes, moved northward, and formed themselves into petty states, at such mortal enmity with each other, and so exposed to the predatory incursions of the Arab cavalry, that the chieftains were under the necessity of keeping their followers in harness night and day.

Notwithstanding their internal feuds, the eyes of the Spaniards were perpetually turned, with the longing of exiles, toward the land of corn and wine of which they had been dispossessed; and they contemplated, with fierce indignation, the Crescent glittering on mosques under which their sires had worshiped the Christian's God. Invoking as their patron St. James, on his white steed, bearing the banner of the Cross, they deemed themselves the champions at once of their country and Christendom; and the Spanish nobles, thus trained from infancy to serve against the Moors, were continually advancing southward, and in the stern school of adversity regained among the mountains of Gallicia so much of their ancestral valor as to render them formidable foes.

In the thirteenth century the Cordovan empire had been reduced to the little province of Granada, in the midst of which stood the beautiful city of that name, on one of whose hills rose the far-famed Alhambra; while the kingdom Of Castile was not only receiving the homage of other states, but even the homage of the Moorish king, who pledged himself to pay an annual rent, to serve in war with a certain number of knights, and to attend the Cortes, or legislative assembly, when summoned.

A hundred years later, Castile was the scene of fierce civil war. Pedro, surnamed the Cruel, had rendered himself unpopular by the severity with which he treated his enemies; and his illegitimate brother, Henry of Trastamare, conceived the idea of seizing the throne. With this view, he applied to Charles V of France, who sent to his aid several companies of Free Lances, commanded by Bertrand Du Guesclin, one of the most valiant warriors of the age. These terrible adventurers, after passing Avignon, and compelling the Pope to bestow upon them gold and his blessing, entered Spain. Pedro disbanded his troops and sought shelter in Gascony, at the court of Edward the Black Prince, by whom he was honorably received; while his rival was proclaimed king in his stead.

Henry of Trastamare transmitted the crown of Castile to his descendants, whose disputed title was decidedly favorable to public liberty, and rendered them deferential to public opinion, till the reign of Henry IV, who ascended the Castilian throne with the promise of a crusade against the Moors of Granada. The preparations made by him for that purpose were attended by results so inadequate, that he fell into contempt with friends and foes.

In the year 1465, on a plain outside the walls of Avila, a platform was erected; and thereon was placed, in royal robes, an effigy of Henry, with the crown on his head, the sceptre in his hand, and the sword of justice by his side. A sentence of deposition was pronounced: the archbishop of Toledo tore off the crown; one Count snatched away the sword; another re moved the sceptre; a third tumbled the figure headlong to the ground; and proclamation was made that Don Alphonso was king of Castile and Leon. But Alphonso died in 1468; and Henry, though reduced to the depths of despair, continued to reign till his decease in 1474.

His daughter Joanna not being considered worthy of occupying the throne, his sister Isabella was recognized as heir to the deceased sovereign. The young queen, one of the most interesting characters in history, was highly endowed both in mind and person. Intelligence beamed in her mild blue eye, and was displayed in a manner which, though modest, was particularly gracious and dignified. In her nineteenth year she had been united to Ferdinand, the hereditary sovereign of Arragon, in conjunction with whom she now began to reign over the united kingdoms. They were not, however, undisturbed; for Alphonso, king of Portugal, whose victories over the Barbary Moors had gained for him the cognomen of the African,' having been affianced to the princess Joanna, invaded Castile to vindicate her claim to the crown. Ferdinand, by a herald, challenged the invader to fight with his whole army or by single combat, and the hostile ranks en countered. Castilian valor prevailed; the standard of Portugal was torn to shreds; the king escaped to a fortified castle, and soon after he withdrew with his youthful bride into Portugal; but the Pope having forbid den their marriage, the hapless princess sought consolation in a con vent.

Ferdinand and Isabella, being now secure, introduced several important reforms for the observance of law, the administration of justice, and the regulation of trade. The Moorish kingdom of Granada was so tempting a prize, that they determined on annexing it to their dominions. Hitherto the two nations, in spite of their natural enmity, had enjoyed much, and not unimportant, friendly intercourse. The Spaniards had acquired something of Arabian gravity of demeanor, magnificence of air, and reserve in conversation, from communicating with their Saracenic neighbors. As late as 1463, Henry had held a personal interview with the king of Granada, under a splendid pavilion erected in the vega, at the foot of the Alhambra, and after an exchange of presents, the Spanish sovereign had been escorted to the frontiers by Moorish cavaliers; but in 1476, when the annual tribute was demanded, the Moorish king proudly replied, that the mints of Granada coined gold no longer, but steel; and he soon after at tacked and carried off the population of the town of Zahara. At this crisis the high-spirited Moor died, and was succeeded by his nephew, the weak and unfortunate Boabdil. Thereupon Ferdinand, entering Granada with the whole force of Arragon and Castile, besieged the city for eight months. The Moorish king then came to the gates, and presenting the keys on a cushion to Ferdinand and Isabella, implored their protection. The valley of Piorchena was assigned him as a residence; but being discontented with his lot, he after a little delay went over to Barbary. On Friday, the 6th of January, 1492, Ferdinand and his queen made their entrance into Granada; the Moslem crescents were plucked from the minarets of the Alhambra, and the arms of Castile and Arragon were displayed in their stead.

The conquest of Granada made Ferdinand master of the fairest province in the Peninsula; and, assuming the title of King of Spain, he recovered from France the districts of which Louis the Crafty had taken possession. He then established the Court of Inquisition, which consigned thousands of his subjects to the flames for heresy, and was put in force against the Jews, who fled by thousands, with their industry and intelligence, to the other states of Europe. For these services, Ferdinand and Isabella were rewarded by the Pope with the title of Catholic Majesties.

About this time Christopher Columbus received from the court of Spain the encouragement which led to discoveries so important. A native of Genoa, he had unsuccessfully applied to the Government of that state for aid in his daring project of sailing to the East Indies by the west, and then made proposals to the Kings of England and Portugal, which were rejected. In 1486 he came to urge his schemes upon the sovereigns of Spain; but after six years of fruitless entreaty, was on the point of leaving the country, when Isabella, at the instance of her confessor, summoned the suitor to her presence. At this interview, the solemn aspect, grave air, and dignified appearance of Columbus, made so favorable an impression on the Queen that she ordered a fleet of three vessels to be fitted out at Palos. At that port, with a hundred and twenty companions, Columbus embarked on the 3d of August, 1492; and on the 12th of October, after thirty days' sail from Canary, came in sight of land, which proved to be one of the Bahama Islands. When the sun rose, the adventurers, manning their boats, rowed ashore, playing martial music, and displaying the royal standard. Columbus, in a scarlet dress, and bearing a naked sword, set his foot on the soil of the new world, and after taking possession of the island on behalf of the Castilian sovereigns, gave it the name of San Salvador. The natives gazed on in silent surprise, and in the simplicity of their hearts be-believed the Spaniards to be preternatural beings.

Pursuing his career of discovery, Columbus took possession of Cuba and St. Domingo, and then returned in triumph to Spain. At Barcelona he was received by Ferdinand and Isabella, with the utmost favor, and de sired to sit covered, like a grandee of the realm. A fleet of seventeen ships was fitted out, and he undertook a second voyage, which ended in disappointment; but during a third, on the 1st of August, 1498, he discovered the continent of America, and carried six of the natives to St. Domingo, as evidence of his success. But the great navigator was doomed to humiliating reverses: his enemies prevailed at Madrid; he was displaced from his offices, and sent home in chains. Being set at liberty on arrival, he undertook a fourth expedition, from which, after being shipwrecked on the island of Jamaica, he arrived in Spain in 1505; but Isabella having meantime died, he was allowed by Ferdinand to drag out his career in obscurity at Valladolid.

Ferdinand, after taking an important part in the Italian wars, where his general, Gonsalvo de Cordova, the Great Captain, signalized his military skill against the French, died in 1516, and an Austrian prince ascended the Spanish throne.

Mary of Burgundy, daughter and heiress of that fiery Duke who fell fighting against the Swiss, became wife of Maximilian, afterward Emperor of Germany. In the month of February, 1482, that noble lady was holding her court in the city of Bruges, in Flanders, then a great commercial emporium of Europe; and, mounting her palfrey one day, she rode forth, with a small retinue, to fly her hawks at the herons, which abounded in the vicinity. While pursuing the sport and leaping a fence, the girths of her saddle burst, and she was thrown violently against a tree. Dying from the effects of the accident, Mary left a son, named Philip, who espoused Ferdinand's daughter, Jane the Foolish, and had a son Charles, born at Ghent in 1500. On the demise of Isabella, Jane, as her daughter, became Queen of Castile; but immediately after, the sudden death of Philip bereft his young widow of her reason. Her case was hopeless; and on Ferdinand's death, young Charles of Austria was associated with his insane mother on the Spanish throne, while the aged Cardinal Ximenes, a consummate states man, grasped the reins of government with vigor and dexterity. Three years later, on the death of his grandfather Maximilian, the ambitious King of Spain was elected Emperor of Germany; and thus becoming the most powerful monarch in Europe, he commenced that long and arduous struggle with Francis I of France, which has been previously sketched.

At the time when Charles received the imperial crown there was residing on the island of Cuba a Spaniard, named Hernando Cortez, the scion. of an ancient and honorable family. He had left the mother country at nineteen, became proprietor of a flourishing plantation, married a young woman of beauty and excellence, and acquired high favor with Velasquez, governor of the colony. Yet, though apparently destined to a prosperous and peaceful career, so adventurous was the spirit of Cortez, that he sought and obtained the command of a squadron which the governor was fitting out for a voyage of discovery to the American continent. Dreading the bold and ambitious nature of Cortez, the governor recalled this promise, and appointed another as captain; but Cortez got under way in the night, with the ships half-stored and equipped, and sailed from Cuba, never more to re turn. Arriving in the river Tabasco, he landed in spite of a desperate resistance, made the natives swear allegiance to the King of Spain, caused mass to be celebrated in the principal temples, formed an alliance with the Tlascalans, a warlike Indian tribe, and rolled the tide of conquest toward the capital of Mexico.

Montezuma, the Mexican Emperor, received the strangers with veneration, swore fealty to Spain, placed himself in the custody of Cortez, and assigned a temple as a Christian place of worship. This last concession was too much for his heathen subjects, who, instigated by their priests, declared that the Spaniards must perish on the altars they had violated. Cortez was preparing for a fierce struggle, when informed that a fleet had, anchored off the coast, commanded by Narvaez, commissioned by the Governor of Cuba to supersede him. Aware that his only chance lay in a sudden stroke, Cortez, with seventy picked men, set out for the camp of Narvaez, and after arresting his rival in a dark night, allured the soldiers to his standard, and returned to the capital. There the fury of the Mexicans had become so great, that Montezuma in vain attempted to allay the storm; and mortified at his loss of authority, the Emperor expired, while the streets were thronged with countless multitudes, who for successive days besieged the palace where the Spaniards were lodged.

In this terrible situation, Cortez resolved to cut his way to the territory of his Tlascalan allies; and on a July night, after hearing mass, he led his followers from their quarters in the centre of the city. After a bloody fight on the causeway he effected an escape, and reached the open country; but there his little army was suddenly attacked by an overwhelming force. The position of the Spaniards seemed desperate, when Cortez, ever cool and courageous, suddenly penetrated to where the enemy's banner was displayed, killed with his own hand the Mexican general, and instantly changed the fortune of the day. Resting from his fatigues till the autumn, he returned to the capital, where Gautemozin now reigned as Emperor, and commenced warlike operations. But in May, 1521, Cortez, hopeless of otherwise accomplishing his object, took the terrible resolution of destroying every house as he advanced. Burning palaces and temples, he gradually made his way into the market-place, and then reluctantly gave orders for a general assault. The battle, which lasted for two days, was decisive: the youthful Emperor, being taken in a canoe, was executed: and the independence of Mexico was extinguished.

Soon after the conquest of Mexico, Francis Pizarro, landing in Peru with a formidable force, subdued that large, powerful, and flourishing empire, compelled the Peruvians to work the mines for their advantage, and added the conquered territory to the possessions of the Spanish crown.

While his gallant subjects, stimulated by the desire of wealth, were winning for Charles an empire on which the sun never set, war was carried on in Europe; and his great rival, Francis, taken at Pavia, was lying at his mercy in Madrid. But though the might of the Emperor overshadowed the princes of Europe, the Spaniards, regarding him as a stranger and foreigner, revolted in defense of their political rights; the civil wars of the Communeros were the consequence; and Charles, having excluded the grandees from the representation, succeeded in withering by his despotism the free spirit that had long animated the ancient institutions of Castile and Arragon.

While the religious reformation was agitating the other states of Europe, the Spanish nation remained unmoved by the shock, and out of it came Ignatius Loyola, destined not only to rescue the imperiled Papacy, but to breathe new life into the expiring system by which. Rome had for centuries held the human intellect in sacerdotal bondage.

Eight years after his rival Francis had gone to the grave, Charles, in 1556, abdicated the Spanish throne in favor of his son Philip, and a few months later, weary of war and disgusted with grandeur, he resigned the imperial crown to his brother Ferdinand, and retired to indulge his melancholy mood in the monastery of St. Just, on the frontiers of Castile. While there he is reported to have enacted no less extraordinary a scene than the celebration of his own funeral obsequies. After causing a tomb to be erected in the chapel, and making his attendants walk thither in procession, the ex-Emperor followed in his shroud, and was laid in his coffin. The monks then chanted the service for the dead, prayed for the repose of his soul, and shed tears for his departure. This singular ceremony is said to have thrown Charles into a fever, of which he expired in his fifty-ninth year.

Philip II, inherited one of the wealthiest and most magnificent empires on which the sun ever shone, and he sought to increase his hereditary influence by espousing Mary, queen of England, who loved him with the utmost tenderness. But, notwithstanding her displays of affection, Philip, tiring of the society of a spouse so destitute of attractions, and indignant that her subjects would not allow England to be made a fief of Spain, escaped to his Continental dominions. However, when the Pope, jealous of the King's enormous power, formed an alliance with Henry II of France, to detach Milan and the Sicilies from the crown of Spain, Philip considered it expedient to feign some esteem for his Queen, and paying her a visit at Greenwich, obtained the aid of England in his struggle. His army was victorious over the French, led by the Constable Montmorency, at St Quentin; and at Gravelines the Count Egmont vanquished the old Marshal Thermos; after which the King of France, by the Treaty of Cambresis, surrendered to Spain eighty-nine fortified towns in Italy and the Low Countries.

Philip was destined to deal with a sovereign infinitely less accommodating: for, ere the treaty of peace was signed, Queen Mary had breathed her last, and been succeeded on the English throne by a princess whose policy baffled his schemes, and whose courage defied his vengeance. After in vain soliciting the coveted hand of Elizabeth, Philip wedded a daughter of Catherine de Medici; and becoming disquieted on the score of religion, he resolved to gratify his natural bigotry by extirpating from his dominions every species of heresy. He began with the Netherlands, where the Reformed doctrines had made considerable progress, and established the Inquisition with plenary power; but this alienated the hearts of the inhabitants, who, choosing as their leader William of Orange, a Count of the Empire, bravely resisted the power of Spain. Philip proscribed, and set a price on the head of, the Prince of Orange, who was soon assassinated; but his son, Maurice, appeared as his successor, and, with the aid of Queen Elizabeth, ere long secured the independence of the United Provinces.

Philip, exasperated by the assistance which the English Queen had afforded to the revolted Netherlands, having meantime seized on Portugal, commenced fitting out the Invincible Armada for the invasion of England; and preparations were in full progress when suddenly Sir Francis Drake made a dash at Cadiz, and after destroying thirty vessels, scoured the Spanish coast, burning and shattering many castles and ships. The King's naval operations were thus delayed till May, 1588, when the Armada, consisting of a hundred and thirty sail, left the Tagus under the command of the Duke of Medina, who hoped to steer through the Channel to Flanders, and form a junction with the Duke of Parma. But being attacked by the English Admiral, and after several engagements driven toward Orkney, the fleet was so effectually scattered by a tempest, that the Duke returned to Spain with not more than sixty shattered vessels.

In 1596, war being formally declared, the Spaniards seized Calais, with other walled towns; and in alarm Queen Elizabeth dispatched a fleet to Cadiz, under the young and accomplished Earl of Essex. Landing spite of the fire from the forts and battlements, the English forced the town to capitulate, made the inhabitants pay for their lives, razed the fortifications, and burned the houses. In revenge, Philip sent ships to threaten the English coast, though without any success; and at length, satiated with the blood which had been shed in promotion of his various ambitious designs, he signed the Peace of Vervins. On the eve of the battle of St. Quentin, Philip vowed, in the event of victory, to build, in honor of St. Lawrence, a church, a monastery and a palace, and in fulfillment of this vow, he erected near Madrid the magnificent palace of the Escurial, which contained the residence and mausoleum of the sovereigns of Spain. Expiring in 1598, he was laid in the cemetry which the had formed beneath the pavement of the church; and his son, Philip III, ascended the throne.

From that period Spain declined in power and importance, though her empire was long, to outward appearance, great and magnificent. The new king, who was not less bigoted than his gloomy sire, prosecuted the war against the United Provinces, but, in 1609, was forced to conclude a treaty at the Hague, which secured civil and religious freedom to the new republic, and restored the confiscated estates of the house of Orange. Yet, untaught by experience, and under the inspiration of his minister, the Duke of Lerma, he issued an edict, ordering the Morescoes, or descendants of the Moors, to leave the kingdom within thirty days, and thus farther enfeebled a state which war and emigration had previously deprived of so many energetic and industrious inhabitants. The Morescoes had been conspicuous for their skill and ingenuity in arts and manufactures, and this depopulation produced a most baneful effect.

Philip IV succeeded, on his father's decease, to an empire more extensive indeed than the realms of the Grand Monarch, but corrupt in all its parts, and in a state of hopeless prostration. The result soon appeared. Brazil was taken by the Dutch; Catalonia revolted to France; and to suppress the rebellion, the Portuguese were intrusted with arms. The latter turning against their oppressive governors, placed the Duke of Braganza on the throne; and Philip was one of the last personages in Europe who heard of the important event. Shut up in the recesses of the Escurial, he was indulging in licentious dissipation, when one day his able and artful minister, Olivarez, craved an audience. I bring,' said he, good news to your majesty. The Duke of Braganza's whole fortune is yours. He has presumptuously got himself declared King of Portugal, and, consequently, you are entitled to the forfeiture of all his estates.' Philip, lost in luxurious enjoyment, only replied, Let the sequestration be ordered.' And Portugal was lost to him beyond the hope of recovery.

A war which broke out with France was terminated, in 1659, by the Peace of the Pyrenees, which was negotiated by the crafty Mazarin; and by this treaty it was stipulated that Louis XIV should espouse the King's eldest daughter, she renouncing all claim to the succession.

In 1665, Philip expired, and his son Charles succeeded. The kingdom was in a deplorable state, and its ruler a prey to listless melancholy and extravagant superstitions; so the Kings of France and England, seeing that Charles had no heirs, and that his days were numbered, agreed to a treaty of partition. This roused the languishing monarch into temporary indignation, which Louis, though the chief offender, succeeded in turning entirely against the other powers. Thus it happened, that while the Spanish 'ambassador was so insolent in his remonstrances at the court of St. James, that William commanded him to leave England, Charles, in making a destination of his territories by will, after numerous consultations with the Pope, the Spanish Universities, and his own Council, nominated as his heir Philip, duke of Anjou, second son of the Dauphin of France, and grandson of Louis. Having thus laid the foundation of a memorable war, Charles died on the 3d of November, 1700.

When it was publicly announced that the kingdom of Spain had been bequeathed to the Duke of Anjou, Louis, with an unscrupulous disregard of the obligations he had incurred by treaties, acknowledged his grandson as Philip V, and rejoiced in the thought of all the rich possessions of the crown of Spain being transferred to the house of Bourbon. Philip has tened to take possession of the magnificent legacy; his brothers accompanied him to the frontier; and Louis made use of the vain, but significant words 'The Pyrenees exist no longer.'

Ferdinand V, a prince of a mild and pacific disposition, succeeded his father in 1746, and gave much encouragement to arts, commerce and manufactures; but the death of his Queen overwhelmed him in such grief that he died in 1759. His brother Don Carlos, ascending the throne with the title of Charles III, was induced to sign, with France, that family compact which stipulated for reciprocal aid between the different branches of the Bourbons, and denounced as the enemy of all, any power that might hereafter be at war with one.

Ferdinand and his subjects had soon cause to repent of this temerity; for the Seven Years' War began, and the arms of England were signally triumphant. Havana was taken by the English in 1762, and Spain suffer ed enormous losses, till the Treaty of Fontainebleau put an end to the war, and restored her possessions.

Charles was once more drawn into war with England; and in 1779 commenced that siege of Gibraltar, which for two years was persisted in with out effect. At length, in 1782, when the defense had been intrusted to General Elliot, a grand attack was resolved upon, and King Charles inquired every morning on waking, 'Is it taken?' On the 13th of September a mighty effort was made; a French engineer had constructed floating batteries which he said could neither be sunk nor set on fire; and four hundred pieces of the heaviest artillery were brought to bear on the fortress. But the red-hot balls fired by the garrison were irresistible in their effect; the hostile batteries were destroyed, the ships sunk, and most of the besiegers with them. Elliot, for his gallant and memorable defense, was ennobled, with the title of Lord Heathfield, and peace was concluded next year.

Soon after this failure, King Charles made an attempt to reform the dress and manners of his subjects, and carried his measures to so imprudent a length, that an insurrection occurred at Madrid, and he was under the necessity of dismissing his favorite minister, Squillace. The earthly career of Charles closed in 1788, and he was succeeded by his son, Charles IV.

When, in 1793, a confederacy was formed against the French Republic, Charles joined in the league; but a French army being sent into Spain, he chan g ed sides, and was soon inspired with a high admiration of the Emperor Napoleon. His subjects being still animated by their ancient hatred toward England, Charles was not averse to minister to Napoleon's ambition, and in 1805 they declared war in concert; but their united fleets were destroyed in the great battle of Trafalgar.

Still it was in Bonaparte's power to exercise a sovereign influence over Spain, without infringing on that national spirit which, a century earlier, had resisted the allies of the House of Austria; till the dissensions in the royal family stimulated his ambition. Charles, a feeble prince, entirely under the influence of Godoy, the Queen's favorite, had fallen into con tempt. His son, Ferdinand, was the idol of the nation; and Napoleon was entreated to arbitrate in regard to their differences. He seized the occasion to send an army across the Pyrenees under Murat, who suddenly took possession of Barcelona and several strongholds. Soon after, Napoleon demanded a surrender of the provinces on the left bank of the Ebro. Charles and his spouse were dumb with surprise; Godoy advised the King and Queen to embark for their American dominions; and preparations were made with that view. But their son, Ferdinand, opposing the step, summoned the populace, raised an insurrection, in which the royal troops took part, caused Godoy to be arrested, kept the Kin g prisoner, and after procuring an abdication in his own favor, entered Madrid in haughty triumph as Sovereign of Spain.

Brief was his ovation; for on the following day Murat marched his army into the capital, and Charles protested against his compulsory abdication; but though Murat refused to acknowledge the royalty of Ferdinand, he administered no comfort to Charles - ' Napoleon alone,' he said can decide between the father and the son.'

What that meant was ere long beyond all doubt; for the Emperor going to Bayonne, summoned thither the King as well as his undutiful heir. He then decided the matter by making Charles abdicate in his own favor, by imprisoning Ferdinand in the Château of Valency, and by assigning that of Compiegne as a residence for the deposed monarch.

Murat, meanwhile, retained possession of Madrid; and, under French influence, the Council of Castile demanded as King the Emperor's eldest brother, Joseph. The latter, resigning the crown of Naples to Murat, hastened to Bayonne, where he was acknowledged as sovereign of Spain by various deputations. But, ere his entry into Madrid, the Spanish peasantry had indignantly taken up arms; the clergy had inflamed their enthusiasm by representing Napoleon as Antichrist; the royal troops joined the insurgents; a cry of vengeance arose throughout the land; and at Cadiz the French fleet was seized and the crew slaughtered. The victory of Bessicres opened the gates of Madrid to King Joseph; who, however, was fain, when Dupont capitulated at Bayleu, to leave the city within a week of his triumphant entry; and he soon possessed in all Spain no more than Navarre, Biscay, and Barcelona.

Ambitious of subjugating Spain, the Emperor summoned thither his still unconquered legions, and placing himself at their head, was victorious in three engagements. Entering Madrid, he tempted the inhabitants with promises of franchises and the abolition of feudalism; but their ears were closed against all offers.

The Spaniards were resolutely rising in organized bands, and the English army was approaching, when the news arrived that Austria had form ed a new coalition with England. Bonaparte withdrew to the Rhine, while the Spaniards hailed their ancient enemies as deliverers, and the English defeated King Joseph in the battle of Talavera. The victory of Wellington over Marmont at Salamanca, in 1812, and that over King Joseph at Vittoria, in 1813, brought the English to the Pyrenees; and Spain was irreclaimably lost to the Empire of the French.

Emerging from his prison at Valencay, Ferdinand VII returned to take possession of his ancestral throne; but the princes of restored dynasties are the most infatuated of beings, and the new King of Spain did not escape the general doom. Instead of granting liberal institutions, he, at the instigation of the priests, reestablished the hateful Inquisition, and practiced his tyrannies so ruthlessly, that, in 1820, the endurance of his subjects was at an end. Riego, rising in arms, proclaimed the Constitution which the Cortes had adopted in 1812; and, though he was unsuccessful, the great er part of the nation rose. The army joined the insurgents, and, though Ferdinand announced his intention of convening the Cortes and granting reforms, his offers were despised. The populace thronged and clamored around his palace; and the wretched King was fain to proclaim the Constitution.

At that time, the Congress of Verona convoked to consider the affairs of Greece, found the Spanish revolution a much more exciting topic; a French army on the frontier was ready to aid Ferdinand, but the Duke of Wellington, as representative of England, objected to intervention. Nevertheless, in 1823, the troops, under the Duke of Angouleme, crossed the Pyrenees, and entered Madrid. Ferdinand, who had previously been deposed by the Cortes, on being restored by French arms annulled every act of the Constitutional Government, and Riego was hanged on a very high gibbet, without being permitted to address the people.

In 1833, Ferdinand, from indulging to excess in eating, died of apoplexy, having previously nominated his Queen as Regent during the minority of her daughter, Isabella II, then three years of age. The new reign began with civil strife, for Don Carlos, uncle of the youthful sovereign, aspired to the crown, and on his return from exile the Carlist war for years desolated the unfortunate country.