Rienzi: The Last of the Roman Tribunes

By Edward Bulwer Lytton; L. W. Zeigler | Go to book overview

sengers were sent to Marino, whither the chief part of the Barons had fled, and which was strongly fortified, demanding their immediate return.

On the day on which the haughty refusal of the insurgents was brought to Rienzi, came fugitives from all parts of the Campagna. Houses burned -- convents and vineyards pillaged -- cattle and horses seized -- attested the warfare practised by the Barons, and animated the drooping Romans, by showing the mercies they might expect for themselves. That evening, of their own accord, the Romans rushed into the place of the Capitol: -- Rinaldo Orsini had seized a fortress in the immediate neighbourhood of Rome, and had set fire to a tower, the flames of which were visible to the city. The tenant of the tower, a noble lady, old and widowed, was burnt alive. Then rose the wild clamour -- the mighty wrath -- the headlong fury. The hour for action had arrived.


CHAPTER III
THE BATTLE

"I have dreamed a dream," cried Rienzi, leaping from his bed. "The lion-hearted Boniface, foe and victim of the Colonna, hath appeared to me, and promised victory. Nina, prepare the laurel-wreath: this day victory shall be ours!"

____________________
*

"Ardea terre, arse la Castelluzza e case, e uomini. Non si schifo di ardere una nobile donna Vedova, veterana, in una torre. Per tale crudeltade li Romani furo più irati," &c. -- Vita di C. di Rienzi, lib. i. cap. 20.

"In questa notte mi è apparito Santo Bonifacio Papa," &c. -- Vit. di Col. Rien. cap. 32.

-329-

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