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Sylvester Syropulus", has composed f a free and c H A P.
curious history of the false union f. Of the clergy that reluctantly obeyed the summons of the EmPeror and the patriarch, submission was the first duty, and patience the most useful virtue. In a chosen list of twenty bishops, we discover the metropolitan titles of Heraclea and Cyzicus, Nice and Nicomedia, Ephesus and Trebizond, and the personal merit of Mark and Bessarion, who, in the confidence of their learning and eloquence, were promoted to the Episcopal rank. Some monks and philosophers were named to display the science and sanctity of the Greek church ; and the service of the choir was performed by a select band of singers and musicians. The patriarchs of Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem, appeared by their genuine or fictitious deputies, the primate of Russia represented a national church, and the Greeks might
H 2 contend
* The Christian name of Sylvester is borrowed from the Latin Calendar. In modern Greek, waxes, as a diminutive, is added to the end of words; nor can any reasoning of Creyghton, the editor, excuse his changing into Sguropulus (Sguros, fuscus) the Syropulus of his own manuscript, whose name is subscribed with his own hand in the acts of the council of Flo
rence. Why might not the author be of Syrian extraction 2
+ From the conclusion of the history, I should fix the date
to the year 1444, four years after the synod, when the great ecclesiarch had abdicated his office, (sectio xii. p. 330–350.). His passions were cooled by time and retirement ; and, although Syropulus is often partial, he is never intemperate.
t Pera historia unioni, non were inter Gracor et Latinos, (Hage Gomuir, 1660, in folio), was first published with a loose and florid version, by Robert Creyghton, chaplain to Charles II. in his exile. The zeal of the editor has prefixed a polemic title, for the beginning of the original is wanting. Syropulus may be ranked with the best of the Byzantine writers for the merit of his narration, and even of his style; but he is excluded from the orthodox collections of the councils.
contend with the Latins in the extent of their spiri-
the Latin of Creyghton may afford a specimen of his florid paraphrase. Ut pompå circumductus noster Imperator Italiae
populis aliquis deauratus Jupiter crederetur, aut Croesus ex
the adoration, of the Doge and senators". They c H.A.P.
sailed in the Bucentaur, which was accompanied by twelve stately gallies; the sea was overspread with innumerable gondolas of pomp and pleasure; the air resounded with music and acclamations; the mariners, and even the vessels, were dressed in silk and gold; and in all the emblems and pageants, the Roman eagles were blended with the lions of St Mark. The triumphal procession, ascending the great canal, passed under the bridge of the Rialto ; and the eastern strangers gazed with admiration on the palaces, the churches, and the populousness of a city, that seems to float on the bosom of the waves f. They sighed to behold the spoils and trophies with which it had been decorated after the sack of Constantinople. After an hospitable entertainment of fifteen days, Palaeologus pursued his journey by land and water, from Venice to Ferrara ; and on this occasion, the pride of the Vatican was tempered by policy to indulge the ancient dignity of the Emperor of the East. He made his entry on a black horse; but a milk-white steed, whose trappings were embroidered with golden eagles, was led before him; and the canopy was borne over his head by the princes of Este, the
H 3 SOInS
* At the time of the synod, Phranzes was in Peloponnesus; but he received, from the despot Demetrius, a faithful account of the honourable reception of the Emperor and patriarch, both at Venice and Ferrara, (Dux . . . . sedentem Imperatorem:
into Ferrara, Feb. 28.
adorat), which are more slightly mentioned by the Latins,
(l. ii. c. 14–16.).
CHAP. sons or kinsmen of Nicholas, marquis of the city,
-- and a sovereign more powerful than himself ".
Palaeologus did not alight till he reached the bottom of the stair-case; the Pope advanced to the door of the apartment; refused his proffered genuflexion; and, after a paternal embrace, conducted
the Emperor to a seat on his left-hand. Nor would
the patriarch descend from his galley, till a ceremony, almost equal, had been stipulated between the bishops of Rome and Constantinople. The latter was saluted by his brother with a kiss of union and charity; nor would any of the Greek ecclesiastics submit to kiss the feet of the Western
primate. On the opening of the synod, the place of
honour in the centre was claimed by the temporal and ecclesiastical chiefs; and it was only by alledging that his predecessors had not assisted in person at
Nice or Chalcedon, that Eugenius could evade the
ancient precedents of Constantine and Marcian. After much debate, it was agreed, that the right and left sides of the church should be occupied by the two nations; that the solitary chair of St Peter should be raised the first of the Latin line; and that the throne of the Greek Emperor, at the head of his clergy, should be equal and opposite to the second place, the vacant seat of the Emperor of the West f.
* Nicholas III. of Fiste reigned forty-eight years, (A. D. 1593–1441), and was Lord of Ferrara, Modena, Reggio, Parma, Rovigo, and Commachio. Sce his life in Muratori, (Antichiţă îstense, tom. ii. p. 159—201.).
+ Tie Latin vulgar was provoked to laughter at the strange ăresses of the Greeks, and especially the length of their garments, their sleeves, and their be aids; nor was the Emperor
But as soon as festivity and form had given place to a more serious treaty, the Greeks were dissatisfied with their journey, with themselves, and with the Pope. The artful pencil of his emissaries had painted him in a prosperous state; at the head of the princes and prelates of Europe, obedient, at his voice, to believe, and to arm. The thin appearance of the universal synod of Ferrara betrayed his weakness; and the Latins opened the first session with only five archbishops, eighteen bishops, and ten abbots, the greatest part of whom were the subjects or countrymen of the Italian pontiff. Except the Duke of Burgundy, none of the potentates of the West condescended to appear in person, or by their ambassadors; nor was it possible to suppress the judicial acts of Basil against, the dignity and person of Eugenius, which were finally concluded by a new election. Under these circumstances, a truce or delay was asked and granted, till Palaeologus could expect from the consent of the Latins, some temporal reward for an unpopular union; and, after the first session, the public proceedings were adjourned above six months. The Emperor, with a chosen band of his favourites and Janizarics, fixed his summer-residence at a pleasant spacious monastery, six miles from Ferrara; forgot, in the
pleasures of the chace, the distress of the church and state; and persisted in destroying the game, without listening to the just complaints of the marquis
H 4 Or
tiara with a jewel on the top, (Hody de Graecis Illustribus, P. 31.). Yet another spectator confesses, that the Greek fashion was piu grave epiu degna than the Italian, (Vespasiano, in Vit. Eugen. IV, in Murarori, tom. xxv, p. 261.).
... and Lat
its at Ferrara and Florence, A. 1). 1438, Oct. 8– A. D. 1.3492 July 6.