Page:Cambridge Modern History Volume 1.djvu/178

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arrival, restored the tottering fortunes of the French. Towards mid-day the defeated army withdrew in good order with its wounded towards Milan. The pursuit was not vigorous, for the victors were exhausted, and their losses, if not so heavy as those of the Swiss, were serious. Two days after the fight the Swiss started for home, since no money was forthcoming for their needs. They made their retreat by Como, harassed by Venetian Stradiots.

The success of Francis was complete. Cardona withdrew to Naples. The Pope began to treat. The Swiss, though the Forest Cantons were opposed to peace, were sick of a league which had left all the hard work to them and did not even supply the sinews of war. Sforza surrendered the castles of Milan and Cremona and became a pensioner of France. In December the Pope and King met in Bologna, and conditions were arranged which restored peace between the Holy See and the Most Christian King. But the claims of Venice still presented difficulties, and Maximilian could not acquiesce in the occupation of Milan. The Swiss League was seriously divided. Eight cantons were ready for a peace, even for a league with France, but five were eager to renew the struggle. With the aid of these latter Maximilian invaded Milan in March, 1516; but the Swiss were unwilling to fight against their countrymen in French service, and finally the imperial host broke up. In November the whole Swiss League concluded an everlasting peace with Francis. Early in the same year Ferdinand had died, and his successor, Charles, was not for the present ready to take up his heritage of hostility to France. So at Noyon it was arranged between Charles and Francis to dispose of Naples by way of marriage (August, 1516); and at length, in December, the Emperor made terms at Brussels, which closed the war of Cambray by a precarious truce. Soon after Verona was restored to Venice, who had in the interval conquered Brescia.

Here we may halt, while war is hushed awhile, to glance at the results of all these years of strife. France is established temporarily in Milan, Spain more lastingly in Naples. The extent of the papal possessions has been increased, and the papal rule therein has been made firmer and more direct. A close alliance between the Papacy and the interests of the Medici family has been established. Venice has recovered all her territory, though the sacrifices of the war and the shifting of trade-routes will prevent her from ever rising again to her former pride of place. The short-lived appearance of the Swiss among the great and independent powers of Europe is at an end. The international forces of the West have assumed the forms and the proportions that they are to retain for many years to come.

Little has been accomplished to compensate for all this outpouring of blood and treasure. The political union of the Italian nation is as far removed as ever. Misfortune has proved no cure for moral degeneration. Little patriotism worthy of the name has been called out by