THE LAST OF THE TRIBUNES
THE TIME, THE PLACE, AND THE MEN
"Fuda sua gioventudine nutricato di latte di eloquenza; buono grammatico, megliore rettorico, autorista buono... Oh, come spesso diceva, 'Dove sono questi buoni Romani? Dove'è loro somma giustizia? Poterommi trovare in tempo che questi fioriscano?' Era bell'omo...Accadde che uno suo irate fu ucciso, e non ne fu fatta vendetta di sua morte; non lo poteò aiutare; pensa lungo mano vendicare 'l sangue di suo frate; pensa lunga mano dirizzare la cittate di Roma male guidata." -- Vita di Cola di Rienzi. Ed. 1828. Forli.
"From his youth he was nourished with the milk of eloquence; a good grammarian, a better rhetorician, well versed in the writings of authors...Oh, how often would he say, 'Where are those good Romans? Where is their supreme justice? Shall I ever behold such times as those in which they flourished?' He was a handsome man...It happened that a brother of his was slain, and no retribution was made for his death: he could not help him; long did he ponder how to avenge his brother's blood; long did he ponder how to direct the misguided state of Rome." -- Life of Cola di Rienzi.
The celebrated name which forms the title to this work will sufficiently apprise the reader that it is in the earlier half of the fourteenth century that my story opens.
It was on a summer evening that two youths might be seen walking beside the banks of the Tiber, not far from that part of its winding course which sweeps by