Rienzi: The Last of the Roman Tribunes

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

he passed to Nina's chamber; and in her smile and wistful tenderness, forgot for a while -- that he was a great man!


CHAPTER VIII
THE THRESHOLD OF THE EVENT

The next morning the Senator of Rome held high Court in the Capitol. From Florence, from Padua, from Pisa, even from Milan, (the dominion of the Visconti,) from Genoa, from Naples, -- came Ambassadors to welcome his return, or to thank him for having freed Italy from the freebooter De Montreal. Venice alone, who held in her pay the Grand Company, stood aloof. Never had Rienzi seemed more prosperous and more powerful, and never had he exhibited a more easy and cheerful majesty of demeanour.

Scarce was the audience over, when a messenger arrived from Palestrina. The town had surrendered, the Colonna had departed, and the standard of the Senator waved from the walls of the last hold of the rebellious Barons. Rome might now at length consider herself free, and not a foe seemed left to menace the repose of Rienzi.

The Court dissolved. The Senator, elated and joyous, repaired towards his private apartments, previous to the banquet given to the Ambassadors. Villani met him with his wonted sombre aspect.

"No sadness to-day, my Angelo," said the Senator, gaily; "Palestrina is ours!"

"I am glad to hear such news, and to see my Lord of so fair a mien," answered Angelo. "Does he not now desire life?"

-603-

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