Εικόνες σελίδας
PDF
Ηλεκτρ. έκδοση
[ocr errors]

CHIZKAN sacrificed to his boundless ambition.C. E N T. He invaded his territory, and put to flight his petul. :roops in a bloody battle, where David lost, at he same time, his kingdom and his life [$]. The princes, who governed the Turks, Indians, ind the province of Cathay, fell, in their turn, before the victorious Tartar, and were all either put to death, or rendered tributary; nor did GENGHIZKAN stop here, but proceeding into Persia, India, and Arabia, he overturned the Saricen dominion in those regions, and substituted that of the Tartars in its place [8]. From this period the Christian cause lost much of its authorily and credit in the provinces that had been ruled by PRESTER John and his successor David, and continued to decline and lose ground from day to day, until, at length, it sunk entirely under the weight of oppression, and was succeeded in some places by the errors of MAHOMET, and in others by the superstitions of paganism. We

must

If] The Greek, Latin, and oriental writers are far from being agreed concerning the year in which the emperor of the Tartars attacked and defeated PRESTER John. The most of the Latin writers place this event in the year 1202, and consequently in the thirteenth century. But MARcus PAULUS VENETUS (in his book De Regionibus Orientalibus, lib. i. cap. li, lii, liii.) and other historians, whose accounts I have followed as the most probable, place the defcat of this second PRESTER JOHN in the year 187. The learned and illustrious DEMETRIUS CANTEMIR (in his Præf. ad Histor. inperii Ottomanici, p. 45. tom. i. of the French edition) gives an account of this matter different from the two now mentioned, and affirms, upon the authority of the Arabian writers, that GENGHIZKAN did not invade the territories of his neighbours before the year 1214.

[8] See PETIT DE LA Croix, Histoire de Genghiskan, p. 120, 121. published in 12mo at Paris in the year 170.-HERBELDT, Biblioth. Oriental, at the article GENGHIZKAN, p. 378.--ASSEMANNI Biblioth. Oriental. Vatican. tom. iii. part 1. p. 101, and 295:--JEAN DU PLAN CARPIN, Voyage en Tar. tarie, ch. v. in the Recueil des Voyages au Nord, tom. vii. p. 350.

[ocr errors]

CE N T.must except, however, in this general account,

the kingdom of Tangut, the chief residence of PARTI.

PRESTER JOHN, in which his posterity, who persevered in the profession of Christianity, maintained, for a long time, a certain sort of tributary dominion, which exhibited, indeed, but a fain: shadow of their former grandeur [b].

[b] ASSEMANNI Biblioth. Oriental Vatican. tom. iii. part IL p. 500.

PART

PART II.
The INTERNAL HISTory of the CHURCH,

CH A P.T ER I.
Concerning the state of letters and philosophy during

this century.

I. MTOTWITHSTANDING the decline of the Gre-GE'N TM I cian empire, the calamities in which it

PAR III was frequently involved, and the perpetual revolutions and civil wars that consumed its strength, The state of

learning aand were precipitating its ruin, the arts and sciences mong de still flourished in Greece, and covered with glory Greeks, such as cultivated them with assiduity and success. This was owing, not only to the liberality of the emperors, and to the extraordinary zeal which the family of the COMNENI discovered for the advancement, of learning, but also to the provident vigilance of the patriarchs of Constantinople, who, took all possible measures to prevent the clergy from falling into ignorance and sloth, lest the Greek church should thus be deprived of able champions to defend its cause against the Latins, The learned and ingenious commentaries of EuSTATHIUS, bishop of Thessalonica, upon Homer, and DIONYSIUS the Geographer, are sufficient to shew the diligence and labour that were employed by men of the first genius in the improvement of classical erudition, and in the study of antiquity. And if we turn our view towards the various writers who composed in this century the history of their own times, such as CINNAMUS, GLYCAS, ZONARUS, NICEPHORUS, BRYENNIUS, and others, we shall find in their productions un

doubted

[ocr errors]

CENT.doubted marks of learning and genius, as well as PART II.

10., of a laudable ambition to obtain the esteem and

a pprobation of future ages. The state II. Nothing could equal the zeal and enthusiof philoso- asm with which MICHAEL ANCHIALUS, patriarch phy.

of Constantinople, encouraged the study of philosophy by his munificence, and still more by the extraordinary influence of his illustrious example [a]. It seems, however, to have been the Aristotelian philosophy that was favoured in such a distinguished manner by this eminent prelate; and it was in the illustration and improvement of this profound and intricate system that such of the Greeks, as had a philosophical turn, were principally employed, as appears evident from several remains of ancient erudition, and particularly from the commentaries of EUSTRATIUS upon the ethics and other treatises of the Grecian sage. We are not, however, to imagine that the sublime wisdom of PLATO was neglected in this century, or that his doctrines were fallen into disrepute. It appears, on the contrary, that they were adopted by many. Such, more especially, as had imbibed the precepts and spirit of the Mystics, preferred them infinitely before the Peripatetic philosophy, which they considered as an endless source of sophistry and presumption, while they looked upon the Platonic system as the philosophy of reason and piety, of candour and virtue. This diversity of sentiments produced the famous controversy, which was managed with such vehemence and erudition among the Greeks, concerning the respective merit and excellence

of the Peripatetic and Platonic doctrines. The state of. III. In the western world the pursuit of knowlearning, ledge was now carried on with incredible emuamong the Latins.

lation [a] THEODORUS BALSAMON, Præf. ad Photii Nomocanonem in HENR. JUSTELLI Bibliotheca juris canonici veteris, tom. ii. p. 814.

lation and ardour, and all the various branches O E N F. of science were studied with the greatest applica..

PART la tion and industry. This literary enthusiasm was encouraged and supported by the influence and liberality of certain of the European monarchs, and Roman pontifs, who perceived the happy tendency of the sciences to soften the savage manners of uncivilized nations, and thereby to administer an additional support to civil government, as well as an ornament to human society. Hence learned societies were formed, and colleges established in several places, in which the liberal arts and sciences were publicly taught. The prodigious concourse of students, who resorted thither for instruction, occasioned, in process of time, the enlargement of these schools, which had arisen from small beginnings, and their erection into universities, as they were called, in the succeeding age. The principle cities of Europe were adorned with establishments of this kind; but Paris surpassed them all in the number and variety of its schools, the merit and reputation of its public teachers, and the immense multitude of the studious youth that frequented their colleges. And thus was exhibited in that famous city the model of our present schools of learning; a model indeed defective in several respects, but which, in after-times, was corrected and improved, and brought gradually to higher degrees of perfection [6]. About the same time the famous school of Angers, in which the youth were instructed in various sciences, and particularly and principally in the civil law,was founded by the zeal and industry of ULGERIUS, bishop of

that

[b] DE BOULAY, Hist. Acad. Paris. tom. i. p. 463. PASQUIER, Recherches de la France, livr. iii. ch. xxix. PETRI LAMBECII Histor. Biblioth. Vindebon. lib. ii. cap. v. p. 262. Histoire Litter, de la France, toin. ix. p. 60- 80. .

« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »