History shows how feeble are barriers of paper.
– John Lothrop Motley
A new civilization was not to be improvised by a single mind.
For a century longer, Rome still retains its outward form, but the swarming nations are now in full career.
A soil, exhausted by the long culture of Pagan empires, was to lie fallow for a still longer period.
With the Germans, the sovereignty resided in the great assembly of the people.
The history of the Franks becomes, therefore, the history of the Netherlands.
The whole territory of the Netherlands was girt with forests.
The sword – the first, for a time the only force: the force of iron.
The ferocious inroads of the Normans scared many weak and timid persons into servitude.
Thus the liberties of Holland and Flanders waxed, daily, stronger.
The splendid empire of Charles the Fifth was erected upon the grave of liberty.
The rise of the Dutch Republic must ever be regarded as one of the leading events of modern times.
In the tenth century the old Batavian and later Roman forms have faded away.
A good lawyer is a bad Christian.
The gigantic Gaul derided the Roman soldiers as a band of pigmies.
Thus again the Netherlands, for the first time since the fall of Rome, were united under one crown imperial. They had already been once united, in their slavery to Rome.
A third force, developing itself more slowly, becomes even more potent than the rest: the power of gold.
In Gaul were two orders, the nobility and the priesthood, while the people, says Caesar, were all slaves.
A terrible animal, indeed, is an unbridled woman.
Thus the whole country was broken into many shreds and patches of sovereignty.
Give us the luxuries of life, and we will dispense with its necessaries.
When did one man ever civilize a people?
Wealth brings strength, strength confidence.
Enthusiasm could not supply the place of experience.
The crusades made great improvement in the condition of the serfs.