Rienzi: The Last of the Roman Tribunes

By Edward Bulwer Lytton; L. W. Zeigler | Go to book overview
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bitious heart of the Scholar. The voice of the people invested him with the supreme power. He had created a Commonwealth -- to become, if he desired it, a Despot!


CHAPTER VII
LOOKING AFTER THE HALTER WHEN THE MARE IS STOLEN

While such were the events at Rome, a servitor of Stephen Colonna was already on his way to Corneto. The astonishment with which the old Baron received the intelligence may be easily imagined. He lost not a moment in convening his troop; and, while in all the bustle of departure, the Knight of St. John abruptly entered his presence. His mien had lost its usual frank composure.

"How is this?" said he, hastily; "a revolt? -- Rienzi sovereign of Rome? -- can the news be believed?"

"It is too true!" said Colonna, with a bitter smile. "Where shall we hang him on our return?"

"Talk not so wildly, Sir Baron," replied Montreal, discourteously; " Rienzi is stronger than you think for. I know what men are, and you only know what noblemen are! Where is your kinsman, Adrian?"

"He is here, noble Montreal," said Stephen, shrugging his shoulders, with a half-disdainful smile at the rebuke, which he thought it more prudent not to resent; "he is here! -- see him enter!"

"You have heard the news?" exclaimed Montreal.

"I have."

"And despise the revolution?"

"I fear it!"

-181-

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