Page:The Life of Michael Angelo.djvu/104

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THE LIFE OF MICHAEL ANGELO

Michael Angelo abandoned his house and refused Clement VII.'s allowance.[1] He was passing through a fresh period of discouragement. The heirs of Julius II. could not pardon him for having abandoned the work he had commenced; they threatened him with legal proceedings and questioned his loyalty. At the idea of a lawsuit Michael Angelo lost his head; his conscience told him that his adversaries, were in the right—that he had broken his engagements. It seemed to him that it was impossible for him to accept Clement VII.'s money until he had returned that which he had received from Julius II.

"I work no longer, I live no longer," he wrote.[2] He entreated the Pope to intervene with the heirs of Julius II. in order to assist him to pay everything he owed them.

"I will sell everything, do anything necessary to accomplish this restitution."

Or else he asked to be allowed to devote himself entirely to the monument of Julius II.:

"The carrying out of this obligation is dearer to me than life."

At the thought that, should Clement VII. die, he would be abandoned to his enemies, he became like a child, weeping and despairing:

"If the Pope leaves me there I can no longer remain in this world ... I know not what I am writing. I have completely lost my head. . . ."[3]

  1. March 1524.
  2. Letter from Michael Angelo to Giovanni Spina, agent of the Pope. (April 19, 1525.)
  3. Letter from Michael Angelo to Fattucci. (October 24, 1525.)