The Works of Edmund Burke
Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2009 - 368 strán (strany)
Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: interests that Europe formed even long before this. Lewis the Eleventh, who was looked upon as one of the wisest princes in his time, and one who sacrificed every thing to his ambition, sacrificed one of the fairest objects of that ambition to a pique, which since his time could have little influence on the counsels of any prince. His son, Charles the Eighth, as he won Italy without either courage or conduct, so he lost it by a chain of false measures, such as we may venture to say has no parallel in later times. A wild romantic courage in the northern and western parts of Europe, and a wicked policy in the Italian states, was the character of that age. If we look into the manners of the courts, there appear but very faint marks of cultivation and politeness. The interview between our Edward the Fourth and his brother of France, wherein they were both caged up like wild beasts, shows dispositions very remote from a true sense of honor, from the dignity of their stations, or any just ideas of politeness and humanity. All the anecdotes which remain of these and other courts are in the same spirit. If the courts had made such poor advances in policy and politeness, which might seem the natural growth of courts at any time, both the courts and the people were yet less advanced in useful knowledge. The little learning which then subsisted was only the dotage of the scholastic philosophy of words; together with the infancy of politer learning, which only concerned words too, though in another way. The elegance and purity of the Latin tongue was then the highest, and almost the only point of a scholar's ambition. Mathematical learning was little valued or cultivated. The true system of the heavens was not dreamed of. There was no knowledge at all of the real form of the earth; and in ...