Page:Cambridge Modern History Volume 1.djvu/428

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1482). Early in the same year Mary had died, leaving two children. The duchy of Burgundy was lost for ever to her heirs and incorporated with the royal domain. Artois, the county of Burgundy, and some minor lands were retained by Louis as the dowry of Margaret of Burgundy, who was betrothed to the infant Dauphin. After this marriage had been finally broken off in 1491, Charles VIII restored Artois and Franche Comte to the house of Burgundy by the Treaty of Senlis (1493).

Thus ended the great duel of war and intrigue between Louis XI and Charles the Bold. The struggle had taxed the strength of France, which had hardly yet recovered from the Hundred Years' War. But the result was all or nearly all that could be wished. The old feud reappears in a new form in the rivalry of Charles V and Francis I. The danger was however then distinctly foreign; Charles the Bold, on the other hand, was still a French prince and relied on French territory and French support.

Second, but far inferior in power, to the Duke of Burgundy came the Duke of Britanny,—Duke by the grace of God. His duchy was indeed more sharply severed from the rest of France by conscious difference of blood; his subjects were not less warlike and of equal loyalty. But his province stood alone, and was not, like that of Charles the Bold, supported by other even more rich and populous territories forming part of France or of the Empire. The undesirable aid of England could be had for a price, and was occasionally invoked, but could never be a real source of strength. On the other hand, like Burgundy, Britanny was exempt from royal faille and aides, and was not even bound to support the King in his wars. The Duke of Britanny did only simple homage to the King for his duchy. The homage of his subjects to their Duke was without reserve. He had his own Court of appeal, his "great days," for his subjects. Only after this Court had pronounced, was resort allowed to the Parlement, on ground of deni de justice, or faux jugement.

Britanny sent no representatives to the French States-General. She had her own law, her own coinage, of both gold and silver. In 1438 she refused to recognise the Pragmatic. Yet French had here since the eleventh century been the language of administration. The Breton youth were educated at Paris or Angers. Breton nobles rose to fame and fortune in the King's service. In 1378 Jean IV was driven out for supporting too warmly the English cause. French tastes and sympathies were thus consistent with obstinate attachment to Breton independence.

To preserve this cherished independence, the Dukes maintained a long and unequal struggle. Charles V had attempted to annex the duchy by way of forfeiture, but soon found the task beyond his powers. In all the intrigues of the reign of Louis XI, the Duke of Britanny was either an open or a covert foe. His isolated position exposed him to the King's attacks, and although at one time, when