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prisons, which had been with difficulty defended on the CHAP. preceding day, broke open the doors, burst through the barriers, and, amidst frightful yells on both sides, liberated
1820, eight hundred galley-slaves, who instantly joined their ranks. Encouraged by this great reinforcement, they proceeded, amidst revolutionary cries and shouts of triumph, to assail the troops which were concentrated on the Piazza del Castello, to the number of seventeen hundred. Assailed on all sides by a highly excited multitude twenty thousand strong, armed with the weapons they had won on the preceding day, and led on by a fanatic monk named Vagleia, the troops were soon broken, and immediately a frightful massacre ensued. Prince Catolica, who had, in the first instance, declared in favour of the cause of independence, but subsequently united with the troops to coerce the excesses of the people, was inhumanly massacred, his head put on a pike in the centre of the city, and his four quarters exposed in four of its principal streets. Prince Aci and Colonel Sanzas, who had resisted the seizure of the artillery in the forts, shared the same fate; and General Naselli, who was besieged in the governor's palace, with great difficulty made bis escape by a back way with a hundred soldiers, and, reaching the harbour, set sail in the utmost consternation for Naples. Nearly the whole remainder of the troops, fifteen hundred in number, were put to death; the whole Neapolitans in Palermo, to the number of six thousand, were thrown into prison ; a new junta, com-, posed of the most ardent revolutionists, was appointed by iii. 500,501;
Ann. Reg. the populace ; and during the remainder of the day and 1820, 248;
Colletta, ií. following night the town was abandoned to pillage, and 378, 379.". all the horrors of a fortress taken by assault. The first care of the new junta, as is generally the
112. case in such instances, after the victory has been gained, First mea
sures of the was to coerce the excesses of the unruly allies by whom se it had been achieved. The galley-slaves were with some difficulty persuaded to give up their arms, a general
Ann. Hist. VII.
CHAP. amnesty for all offences was proclaimed, and they all - received a free pardon upon condition of leaving the
city; the whole murders and robberies of the preceding day were hushed up, and their perpetrators declared to have deserved well of their country ; the most prominent of them received golden medals; the monk Vagleia was declared a colonel in the national army, and the Piazza del Castello, where the troops had been massacred, was directed to be called “Piazza della Vittoria.” More efficient means were taken to assert the national independence, and restore the order which had been so fearfully disturbed. A national guard was established, and soon acquired in
Palermo a tolerable degree of efficiency; circulars were De sent to the other towns in the island, inviting them to 1 Ann. Reg. 1820, 241; join the patriots in its capital, and a deputation of eight Ann. Hist. iii, 501; . persons was sent to Naples to arrange the terms of an acColletta, ii. 379, 380.". commodation, on the footing of the political independence
But the republicans of Naples were by no means Failure of inclined to these sentiments; and the revolutionists of
a- Sicily soon found, as those of Ireland had done in the Naples.
days of Cromwell, that whatever changes the elevation of the people to power may produce in the measures of government, it makes none in the ambition by which it is animated, and that a democratic rule is even more hard to shake off than a monarchical. So far from being inclined to agree to a separation of the two governments, the popular leaders at Naples were determined to uphold the union, and animated with the most intense desire to take vengeance on the Sicilians for the frightful atrocities with which the revolution had commenced. When the deputation from Sicily approached, it was only allowed to come to Procida, an island in the Bay of Naples; and the first question asked, was whether they recognised King Ferdinand, which having been answered in the affirmative, the negotiation commenced ; but it soon broke off upon discovering that the sine quâ
Colletta, un arquico ii. 384,385;
non of the Sicilian deputies was a separate parliament CHAP. and constitution for themselves. “Repeal of the Union", was their watchword, which was answered in equally loud terms from the Parthenopeian shores, “ Unity and Indivisibility of the Constitution.” So far from acquies-Colletta, cing in the demand for a separation, the Neapolitan gov- Ann. Hist.
iii.501,503; ernment made the most vigorous preparations for assert- Ann. Reg.
1820, 241, ing their supremacy by force, and reducing the sanguinary 242. and rebellious Sicilians to entire subjection.1 In the beginning of September, General Floridan Pepe,
epe, 114. brother to the generalissimo at Naples, landed at Malazzo Suppression in Sicily, four leagues from Palermo, at the head of four surrection thousand men; and though he met with some opposition incl. alermo he easily overcame it, and in a few days appeared before the gates of the capital. Its inhabitants were nearly reduced to their own resources, for the other boroughs in the island, horror-struck, and terrified at the frightful excesses of which Palermo had been the theatre, hung back, and had forwarded none of the required contingents for the support of the cause of separation in that city. The guerillas which infested his flanks, composed almost entirely of the liberated galley-slaves, who dreaded the reimposition of their fetters, having been cleared away, the attack on the forces of Palermo began in good earnest on the 3d and 4th of September. They at first at- Sept. 3. tempted to keep the field, but their raw levies proved no match for the regular troops of Naples. Defeated with serious loss in several encounters, their forces were soon shut up in Palermo ; and the principal towns in the island having sent in their adhesion to General Pepe, and the regular troops in the garrisons, which still held out for the royal cause, having joined their forces to his, the junta of Palermo became convinced that the contest was hopeless, and were disposed to lend an ear to an accommodation. To facilitate and enforce it, Pepe moved forward on the 25th September to the very gates of the city. Sept. 25. He then renewed his propositions ; but the violent party
vithin ? Withánd, to
CHAP. in the city had now regained the ascendancy, and dis
- possessed their own junta ; the flag of truce was fired .1820.
on, and the people seemed prepared for a desperate Sept. 26. resistance. But it was seeming only. On the next day
the Neapolitan forces succeeded in penetrating into the city by the royal park, and the Neapolitan flotilla in the roads
drew near, and prepared to second Pepe by a general Sept. 27. bombardment. The most furious republicans, now con
vinced that further resistance was hopeless, and could end only in the destruction of themselves and their city, listened to terms of accommodation. Pepe humanely acceded to their offer of submission, and, to save the city from the horrors of an assault, withdrew his troops from the posts they had won within its walls. The populace, seeing the troops withdraw, ascribed it to fear, and recommenced hostilities; but the retribution was immediate and terrible. On the 27th the bombardment commenced, and with the most dreadful effect. The town was soon on fire in several places, and the infuriated mob, passing from one
extreme to another, ere long craved peace in the most 1 Collet ii. 385, 387; abjeco ver
taz. abject terms. A capitulation was concluded on the 5th, Ann. Hist, and General Pepe was put in possession of the forts. Ann. Reg.' The Neapolitan constitution was proclaimed, a new 1820, 241,
junta named, and the Prince of Palermo appointed to its head.1
Hitherto everything had succeeded to a wish with the 115. Renewal of Neapolitans, but they soon found that great difficulties hostilities.
remained behind. The question of separation was not yet decided ; the second article of the capitulation had provided that that difficult matter should be decided by a majority of votes in the Sicilian parliament legally con
voked. This article, as well it might, was extremely ill Oct. 15. received at Naples ; the capitulation was annulled, as
having been entered into by General Pepe without any authority to leave the question of separation unsettled. He was dismissed from his command, which was conferred on General Colletta. He was soon reinforced by six
ament. Oct. 1.
thousand troops from Calabria, with the aid of which he CHAP. reduced Palermo to entire subjection, disarmed the in- habitants, and imposed on the city a heavy military con
1820, tribution, which had a surprising effect in cooling their revolutionary ardour. Hostilities immediately ceased through the whole island, and the Sicilians soon found, to 1 Ann. Hi their cost, that they had gained little by their change of iii. 505,506 ; masters, and that their revolutionary rulers at Naples 1820, 242;
Colletta, ií. were more difficult to deal with than their former feeble 398, 399." monarch had been.
By the Spanish Constitution, now adopted as that of Naples, there was to be one deputy for every thirty Meeting of
the Neapothousand inhabitants, which gave seventy-four deputies litan par for Naples, and twenty-four for Sicily; the inhabitants of oamento the former being 5,052,000, of the latter 1,681,000. The electors were anxiously adjured in a proclamation to choose wise and patriotic representatives—a vain recommendation in a country recently convulsed by the passions and torn by the desires of a revolution. The deputies were such as in these circumstances usually acquire an ascendancyviolent democrats, village attorneys, revolutionary leaders of the army, a few professors and literary men, and some renegade priests. The report of the Minister of Foreign Affairs announced that all the great powers had refused to recognise the revolutionary changes at Naples ; that of the Minister of the Interior signalised the numerous abuses which had prevailed in the internal administration of the kingdom, and which it was proposed to remedy, and recommended the sale of a large part of the national domains to meet the deficiencies of the exchequer; that of the Minister at War, the measures which were in progress for providing for its external defence. This consisted in a regular army of 52,000 men, movable, natiotal, guards 219,000 strong, and an immovable one of 400,000 iii. 399,403;
Ann. Éist.' men. But these forces existed on paper only, notwith-iii. 506,507;
Ann. Reg. standing all the efforts of the Carbonari ; 2 the recruiting 1820, 243. went on extremely slowly ; disorder and corruption per