1355: From the First of the Year to the Flight of the Emperor
The Emperor, who had left Mantua on the last day of December, entered Milan on 4 January. On the 6th he was crowned in Sant' Ambrogio, as King of Italy, with the iron crown of Lombardy: Petrarch must have been present at the coronation.1 On the 8th Charles proclaimed a truce between Milan and the Venetian league, the truce to last until 1 May, and the expectation being that a treaty of peace would be signed thereafter. In accordance with the express desire of the Emperor Petrarch attended the ceremony at which this truce was proclaimed [ Fam. XIX3 ].
On the morning of the 12th Charles left Milan, beginning his southward journey; and in the course of the day he passed through Lodi and Piacenza. Petrarch accompanied the Emperor to a point five miles beyond Piacenza. The Emperor asked him to come to Rome, but he again declined. At the moment of parting a Tuscan officer in the Emperor's retinue took Petrarch by the hand, turned to the Emperor, and said:
"Ecce, imperator, de quo tibi sepe dixeram, qui siquid laude dignum gesseris, nomen tuum tacitum non sinet; alioquin et loqui didicit et tacere" [ Fam. XIX3].
To Neri Morando Petrarch entrusted messages to be given in Rome to Petrarch's friend Paolo Annibaldeschi [ Var.32].____________________