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ancient laws of Normandy, was carried into the Holy Land, together with the greater part of the other regulations relating to the law of fief.
We could multiply these observations and resemblances to a great extent, but we think it useful to examine the literary part, (if we may be allowed the expression,) of the "Assises de Jerusalem."
In comparing the text published by La Thaumassière, with other French writers of the 13th century, a foreign air is observable in this code. Expressions, evidently, borrowed from old contemporary languages, such as English, Spanish, Italian, &c. idioms, frequently present themselves in the Assises, and oblige the reader to have recourse to the glossary at the end of the volume. It may, however, be said, the style is that of the writers of romance in the 14th century.
We frequently meet with words which have not a little served to embarrass critics, who have exercised their learning on the value of expressions belonging to the judicial language of that epoch. Thus, in C. 149, p. 14, we meet with the words hommes liges, and the learned editor, La Thaumassière, has taken care to inform us, that this phrase is very ancient in the French language, and that it is to be found in old authors, who have latinized it, when they wrote in the idiom of the Latin of the middle ages, or who made choice of it in the vulgar tongue. Vassalage was a mark of submission, in consequence of holding a fief. Gugart, in his romance of Royal Families, under the year 1222, says
"Poi aprez envoierent guerre
Le Fils au Roy cil d' Angleterre,
One of the principal effects of Hommage lige was, that the vassal lige was obliged to serve his lord in offensive and defensive warfare: it was his duty to prefer him to all, except his sovereign, against whom he could not make war upon any consideration. It was for this reason, that Ferrand, Count of Flanders, being summoned to join the king of England, in a war against the king of France, answered, Qu'il etait homme lige du roi de France, si n' osoit ce faire ni ces hommes ne le lovoient."*
"Chron. de Flandres," ch. 14.
King Philip, of Valois, writing to King Edward, of England, commanded him, " Vous vous êtes embatis de notre royaume de France, en portant grand dommage à nous, et à notre royaume, et à nostre peuple, meu de volonté, sans rien de raison, non-regardant à cequ' homme lige doit garder à son droit seigneur car vous etes en nostre hommage et reconnoissent, si comme de raison est de feauté et promettant obeissance telle qu'on doit promettre à son Seigneur-lige." Lastly, Matthew Paris, explaining the hommage lige made to the Pope by John, Sans-terre, king of England, expresses himself thus:
Ego, Johannes, rex Angliæ, dominus Hiberniæ, ex hac hora et postea fidelis ero Deo et Beato Petro, et Ecclesiæ Romanæ, et domino nostri Papæ Innocentio ejusque successoribus catholice intrantibus, non ero in facto in dicto, consensu vel consilio ut vitam perdant vel membra, vel mala captione capiantur, eorum damnum si impediam, et removere faciam si potero, alioqui eis quam citius potero intimabo, vel tali personæ dicam quam eis credam pro certo dicturam consilio quod mihi crediderint per se, vel per nuntios suos seu literas secretum tenebo, et ad eorum damnum nulli pandam me sciente patrimonium B. Petri, et specialiter regnum Angliæ et regnum Hiberniæ, adjutor ero ad tenendum et defendendum contra omnes homines pro posse meo, si me adjuvet Deus et hæc Sancta Ecclesia."
In conclusion, we may remark, that the " Assises de Jerusalem," in whatever relation they are viewed, are one of the most instructive monuments of the ancient seignorial jurisprudence. This great work is anterior to those which Beaumonair, the Fontaines, and Saint Louis, bequeathed to France: on this account, no undertaking can be more truly national than that, the end of which is to publish the complete text of the Venetian manuscript to which we have before referred. Whether we regard the Assises as a work of legislation and practical law, or study them as an historical document, or even under a literary point of view, they are equally worthy of attention, and fitted to open new light on the state of Europe at the time of the Crusades. Mr. Mills, in his history of these religious wars, has not failed to find, in the Assises, knowledge which he had vainly sought for in other works. We trust, therefore, that M. Buchon will persevere in the project, which, we understand, he contemplates, of going to Vienna, to make a copy of the Venetian manuscript, where, as we have already said, it is deposited; and in publishing it in his collection of Chronicles, he will give a new value to his work, and be still more entitled to the gratitude of the learned, and of civilians of all countries.
ART. VI. A Journey to Paris in the year 1698. By Dr. Martin Lister. The Third Edition. London: printed for Jacob Tonson, at Gray's Inn Gate, next Gray's Inn Lane. (1699.) 12mo.
Could a parallel be drawn between different nations, at periods, so as to exhibit their relative progress or retrospection, it would form an admirable auxiliary in studying the philosophy of history. By diligently observing the changes in the face of society, the gradual accession of intelligence, the melioration of manners, and the diffusion of comfort and happiness which distinguish one country; and by comparing these cheering appearances with the ignorance, the poverty, and the wretchedness which, during the same period, have made an equal progress in another; we should be necessarily led to inquire into the causes which have been productive of such opposite effects. In inquiries like these, the narratives of persons who have visited the same country, at different periods, are eminently useful, since they comprehend, not only statistical details, but those lively pictures of the spirit and manners of the people, which are so essentially requisite to be known. What a valuable acquisition to our historical collections would be a series of travels, written by intelligent foreigners, who had traversed this country at various periods? What an amusing sketch would they present of our national peculiarities, and of the changes which our national character has sustained? Unfortunately, there exist but few such productions; though of our own travellers into other lands, a more numerous list may be formed. Some few of these have been already noticed in our pages. We have given an account of the travels of the facetious Tom Coryate,* through France and other parts of the continent, at the commencement of the seventeenth century; and also of the "Voyage" of Dr. Heylin,† to the same country, some years afterwards. To these, the "Journey to Paris" of Dr. Martin Lister, which took place at the conclusion of the same century, forms a very proper appendix.
Dr. Martin Lister was born in the year 1638. Having studied, for some time, at Cambridge, he visited the continent, and, on his return, settled at York, where he first practised his profession. After a residence of some years, in that city, he removed to London, and became a member of the royal college of physicians. On the accession of Queen Anne, his reputation stood so high, that he was appointed one of her
* R. R., vol. iv., p. 206.
majesty's physicians. He was the author of many highly esteemed and scientific works on natural history, as well as of numerous papers in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, of which learned body he was an active member.
Having, upon several occasions, experienced great benefit to his health, from the milder climate of France, Dr. Lister was induced, on the conclusion of the peace between this country and France, to accept the post of physician to Lord Portland, who was despatched, as ambassador extraordinary, to the court of Louis XIV. Of the observations made by him, during that visit, the result is given in the little volume before us, in the introduction to which he has explained his reasons for presenting it to the public. Of the wonders of Paris, and the splendours of the French court, he confesses that descriptions, superior to his own, are to be found; for that his attention had been directed neither to the ceremonies of the state or the church, nor to the situation of political affairs; and that he was "no more concerned in the embassy, than in the sailing of the ship which carried him over."
"I took more pleasure," (adds the philosophical Doctor,)" to see Monsieur Breman, in his white waistcoat, digging in the royal physic. garden, and sowing his couches, than Monsieur de Saintot making room for an ambassador; and I found myself better disposed, and more apt to learn the names and physiognomy of a hundred plants, than of five or six princes. After all, I had much rather have walked a hundred paces, under the meanest hedge in Languedoc, than any the finest alley at Versailles or St. Cloud; so much I prefer fair nature and a warm sun, before the most exquisite performances of art in a cold and barren climate."
On the entrance of the embassy into Paris, Dr. Lister remarked that taste for spectacles, which still distinguishes the French people. He speaks of the great "curiosity of the Parisians, who are much more delighted in fine shows than the people of London."
"One thing was an evident argument of this humour, that there were some hundreds of coaches of persons of the best quality, even some bishops and lords, which I saw, who had placed themselves in a file to line the streets, and had had the patience to have so remained for some hours."
In contrasting the general aspect of Paris with that of London, Dr. Lister observes, that, "for the quantity of ground possessed by the common people, that city is more populous than any part of London."
"This difference between the two cities, also, is true; that here the palaces and convents have eat up the people's dwellings, and
crowded them excessively together; and possessed themselves of far the greatest part of the ground: whereas, in London, the contrary may be observed, that the people have destroyed the palaces, and placed themselves upon the foundations of them, and forced the nobility to live in squares or streets, in a sort of community; but this they have done very honestly, having fairly purchased them."
The growth of London, compared with that of Paris, at once shews the superior increase of wealth in our own capital, in which, year after year, the merchants and mechanics are "forcing the nobility" westward. The city palaces have, some centuries ago, yielded to these "base mechanicals," and the splendid line of noble mansions, which adorned the Strand, have yielded in their turn. In Dr. Lister's time, the Duke of Buckingham and the Earl of Shaftesbury still retained mansions in the city, while Lord Craven's palace was situated in Drury Lane. The English, however, are a most aristocratical people, and our nobility view the approaches of their plebeian neighbours with all the spleen of a back-woodsman, when he hears of the founding of a village within twenty miles of the place of his retreat. The French nobles, on the contrary, display so little disgust at the proximity of their poorer brethren, that marquesses and counts scruple not to reside over the shops of tailors and plumassiers.
In the ornamental arts of life, for which our countrymen in general have little taste, the French have always surpassed us. In the elegance and magnificence of their furniture, and in their style of dress, we have, for centuries, been their humble imitators; but, in many matters of more importance, we, as decidedly, are their superiors. Thus, after detailing the magnificence which struck him in the finishing and furniture of the French mansious, Dr. Lister adds, " yet, after all, many utensils and conveniences of life are wanting here, which we, in England, have." We believe that this observation is equally applicable at the present day.
"All the houses of persons of distinction are built with portecocheres, that is, wide gates to drive in a coach, and, consequently, have courts within; and, mostly, remises to set them up. There are reckoned above seven hundred of these great gates; and many of these are after the most noble patterns of ancient architecture.
"The lower windows of all houses are grated with strong bars of iron, which must be a vast expense.
"As the houses are magnificent without, so the finishing within side and furniture answer in richness and neatness; as hangings of rich tapestry, raised with gold and silver threads: crimson damask, and velvet beds, or of gold and silver tissue cabinets and bureaus of ivory, inlaid with tortoiseshell, and gold and silver plates, in a hundred different manners: branches and candlesticks of crystal: but,
VOL. XIII. PART I.