Quotes and Images From Motley's History of the Netherlands
by John Lothrop Motley
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By John Lothrop Motley


Motley's History of the Netherlands

Title Page

The Siege of Antwerp

Prince William of Orange-Nassau (William the Silent)

The Earl of Leichester

Alexander Farnese, Prince of Parma

John of Barneveld


The Hague

1566, the last year of peace

A pleasantry called voluntary contributions or benevolences

A good lawyer is a bad Christian

A terrible animal, indeed, is an unbridled woman

A common hatred united them, for a time at least

A penal offence in the republic to talk of peace or of truce

A most fatal success

A country disinherited by nature of its rights

A free commonwealth—was thought an absurdity

A hard bargain when both parties are losers

A burnt cat fears the fire

A despot really keeps no accounts, nor need to do so

A sovereign remedy for the disease of liberty

A pusillanimous peace, always possible at any period

A man incapable of fatigue, of perplexity, or of fear

A truce he honestly considered a pitfall of destruction

A great historian is almost a statesman

Able men should be by design and of purpose suppressed

About equal to that of England at the same period

Absolution for incest was afforded at thirty-six livres

Abstinence from unproductive consumption

Abstinence from inquisition into consciences and private parlour

Absurd affectation of candor

Accepting a new tyrant in place of the one so long ago deposed

Accustomed to the faded gallantries

Achieved the greatness to which they had not been born

Act of Uniformity required Papists to assist

Acts of violence which under pretext of religion

Admired or despised, as if he or she were our contemporary

Adulation for inferiors whom they despise

Advanced orthodox party-Puritans

Advancing age diminished his tendency to other carnal pleasures

Advised his Majesty to bestow an annual bribe upon Lord Burleigh

Affecting to discredit them

Affection of his friends and the wrath of his enemies

Age when toleration was a vice

Agreements were valid only until he should repent

Alas! the benighted victims of superstition hugged their chains

Alas! we must always have something to persecute

Alas! one never knows when one becomes a bore

Alexander's exuberant discretion

All Italy was in his hands

All fellow-worms together

All business has been transacted with open doors

All reading of the scriptures (forbidden)

All the majesty which decoration could impart

All denounced the image-breaking

All claimed the privilege of persecuting

All his disciples and converts are to be punished with death

All Protestants were beheaded, burned, or buried alive

All classes are conservative by necessity

All the ministers and great functionaries received presents

All offices were sold to the highest bidder

Allow her to seek a profit from his misfortune

Allowed the demon of religious hatred to enter into its body

Almost infinite power of the meanest of passions

Already looking forward to the revolt of the slave States

Altercation between Luther and Erasmus, upon predestination

Always less apt to complain of irrevocable events

American Unholy Inquisition

Amuse them with this peace negotiation

An inspiring and delightful recreation (auto-da-fe)

An hereditary papacy, a perpetual pope-emperor

An age when to think was a crime

An unjust God, himself the origin of sin

An order of things in which mediocrity is at a premium

Anarchy which was deemed inseparable from a non-regal form

Anatomical study of what has ceased to exist

And give advice. Of that, although always a spendthrift

And now the knife of another priest-led fanatic

And thus this gentle and heroic spirit took its flight

Angle with their dissimulation as with a hook

Announced his approaching marriage with the Virgin Mary

Annual harvest of iniquity by which his revenue was increased

Anxiety to do nothing wrong, the senators did nothing at all

Are apt to discharge such obligations— (by) ingratitude

Are wont to hang their piety on the bell-rope

Argument in a circle

Argument is exhausted and either action or compromise begins

Aristocracy of God's elect


Arrested on suspicion, tortured till confession

Arrive at their end by fraud, when violence will not avail them


As logical as men in their cups are prone to be

As the old woman had told the Emperor Adrian

As if they were free will not make them free

As lieve see the Spanish as the Calvinistic inquisition

As ready as papists, with age, fagot, and excommunication

As with his own people, keeping no back-door open

As neat a deception by telling the truth

At a blow decapitated France

At length the twig was becoming the tree

Atheist, a tyrant, because he resisted dictation from the clergy

Attachment to a half-drowned land and to a despised religion

Attacked by the poetic mania

Attacking the authority of the pope

Attempting to swim in two waters

Auction sales of judicial ermine

Baiting his hook a little to his appetite

Barbara Blomberg, washerwoman of Ratisbon

Batavian legion was the imperial body guard

Beacons in the upward path of mankind

Beating the Netherlanders into Christianity

Beautiful damsel, who certainly did not lack suitors

Because he had been successful (hated)

Becoming more learned, and therefore more ignorant

Been already crimination and recrimination more than enough

Before morning they had sacked thirty churches

Began to scatter golden arguments with a lavish hand

Beggars of the sea, as these privateersmen designated themselves

Behead, torture, burn alive, and bury alive all heretics

Being the true religion, proved by so many testimonies

Believed in the blessed advent of peace

Beneficent and charitable purposes (War)

best defence in this case is little better than an impeachment

Bestowing upon others what was not his property

Better to be governed by magistrates than mobs

Better is the restlessness of a noble ambition

Beware of a truce even more than of a peace

Bigotry which was the prevailing characteristic of the age

Bishop is a consecrated pirate

Blessed freedom from speech-making

Blessing of God upon the Devil's work

Bold reformer had only a new dogma in place of the old ones

Bomb-shells were not often used although known for a century

Breath, time, and paper were profusely wasted and nothing gained

Brethren, parents, and children, having wives in common

Bribed the Deity

Bungling diplomatists and credulous dotards

Burned, strangled, beheaded, or buried alive (100,000)

Burned alive if they objected to transubstantiation

Burning with bitter revenge for all the favours he had received

Burning of Servetus at Geneva

Business of an officer to fight, of a general to conquer

But the habit of dissimulation was inveterate

But after all this isn't a war It is a revolution

But not thoughtlessly indulgent to the boy

Butchery in the name of Christ was suspended

By turns, we all govern and are governed

Calling a peace perpetual can never make it so

Calumny is often a stronger and more lasting power than disdain

Can never be repaired and never sufficiently regretted

Canker of a long peace

Care neither for words nor menaces in any matter

Cargo of imaginary gold dust was exported from the James River

Casting up the matter "as pinchingly as possibly might be"

Casual outbursts of eternal friendship

Certain number of powers, almost exactly equal to each other

Certainly it was worth an eighty years' war

Changed his positions and contradicted himself day by day

Character of brave men to act, not to expect

Charles the Fifth autocrat of half the world

Chief seafaring nations of the world were already protestant

Chieftains are dwarfed in the estimation of followers

Children who had never set foot on the shore

Christian sympathy and a small assistance not being sufficient

Chronicle of events must not be anticipated

Claimed the praise of moderation that their demands were so few

Cold water of conventional and commonplace encouragement

College of "peace-makers," who wrangled more than all

Colonel Ysselstein, "dismissed for a homicide or two"

Compassing a country's emancipation through a series of defeats

Conceding it subsequently, after much contestation

Conceit, and procrastination which marked the royal character

Conciliation when war of extermination was intended

Conclusive victory for the allies seemed as predestined

Conde and Coligny

Condemned first and inquired upon after

Condemning all heretics to death

Conflicting claims of prerogative and conscience

Conformity of Governments to the principles of justice

Confused conferences, where neither party was entirely sincere

Considerable reason, even if there were but little justice

Considerations of state have never yet failed the axe

Considerations of state as a reason

Considered it his special mission in the world to mediate

Consign to the flames all prisoners whatever (Papal letter)

Constant vigilance is the price of liberty

Constitute themselves at once universal legatees

Constitutional governments, move in the daylight

Consumer would pay the tax, supposing it were ever paid at all

Contained within itself the germs of a larger liberty

Contempt for treaties however solemnly ratified

Continuing to believe himself invincible and infallible

Converting beneficent commerce into baleful gambling

Could handle an argument as well as a sword

Could paint a character with the ruddy life-blood coloring

Could not be both judge and party in the suit

Could do a little more than what was possible

Country would bear his loss with fortitude

Courage of despair inflamed the French

Courage and semblance of cheerfulness, with despair in his heart

Court fatigue, to scorn pleasure

Covered now with the satirical dust of centuries

Craft meaning, simply, strength

Created one child for damnation and another for salvation

Crescents in their caps: Rather Turkish than Popish

Crimes and cruelties such as Christians only could imagine

Criminal whose guilt had been established by the hot iron

Criminals buying Paradise for money

Cruelties exercised upon monks and papists

Crusades made great improvement in the condition of the serfs

Culpable audacity and exaggerated prudence

Customary oaths, to be kept with the customary conscientiousness

Daily widening schism between Lutherans and Calvinists

Deadliest of sins, the liberty of conscience

Deadly hatred of Puritans in England and Holland

Deal with his enemy as if sure to become his friend

Death rather than life with a false acknowledgment of guilt

Decline a bribe or interfere with the private sale of places

Decrees for burning, strangling, and burying alive

Deeply criminal in the eyes of all religious parties

Defeated garrison ever deserved more respect from friend or foe

Defect of enjoying the flattery, of his inferiors in station

Delay often fights better than an army against a foreign invader

Demanding peace and bread at any price

Democratic instincts of the ancient German savages

Denies the utility of prayers for the dead

Denounced as an obstacle to peace

Depths theological party spirit could descend

Depths of credulity men in all ages can sink

Despised those who were grateful

Despot by birth and inclination (Charles V.)

Determined to bring the very name of liberty into contempt

Devote himself to his gout and to his fair young wife

Difference between liberties and liberty

Difficult for one friend to advise another in three matters

Diplomacy of Spain and Rome—meant simply dissimulation

Diplomatic adroitness consists mainly in the power to deceive

Disciple of Simon Stevinus

Dismay of our friends and the gratification of our enemies

Disordered, and unknit state needs no shaking, but propping

Disposed to throat-cutting by the ministers of the Gospel

Dispute between Luther and Zwingli concerning the real presence

Disputing the eternal damnation of young children

Dissenters were as bigoted as the orthodox

Dissimulation and delay

Distinguished for his courage, his cruelty, and his corpulence

Divine right of kings

Divine right

Do you want peace or war? I am ready for either

Doctrine of predestination in its sternest and strictest sense

Don John of Austria

Don John was at liberty to be King of England and Scotland

Done nothing so long as aught remained to do

Drank of the water in which, he had washed

Draw a profit out of the necessities of this state

During this, whole war, we have never seen the like

Dying at so very inconvenient a moment

Each in its turn becoming orthodox, and therefore persecuting

Eat their own children than to forego one high mass

Eight thousand human beings were murdered

Elizabeth, though convicted, could always confute

Elizabeth (had not) the faintest idea of religious freedom

Eloquence of the biggest guns

Emperor of Japan addressed him as his brother monarch

Emulation is not capability

Endure every hardship but hunger

Enemy of all compulsion of the human conscience

England hated the Netherlands

English Puritans

Englishmen and Hollanders preparing to cut each other's throats

Enmity between Lutherans and Calvinists

Enormous wealth (of the Church) which engendered the hatred

Enriched generation after generation by wealthy penitence

Enthusiasm could not supply the place of experience

Envying those whose sufferings had already been terminated

Epernon, the true murderer of Henry

Erasmus of Rotterdam

Erasmus encourages the bold friar

Establish not freedom for Calvinism, but freedom for conscience

Estimating his character and judging his judges

Even the virtues of James were his worst enemies

Even to grant it slowly is to deny it utterly

Even for the rape of God's mother, if that were possible

Ever met disaster with so cheerful a smile

Ever-swarming nurseries of mercenary warriors

Every one sees what you seem, few perceive what you are

Everybody should mind his own business

Everything else may happen This alone must happen

Everything was conceded, but nothing was secured

Evil is coming, the sooner it arrives the better

Evil has the advantage of rapidly assuming many shapes

Excited with the appearance of a gem of true philosophy

Excused by their admirers for their shortcomings

Excuses to disarm the criticism he had some reason to fear

Executions of Huss and Jerome of Prague

Exorcising the devil by murdering his supposed victims

Extraordinary capacity for yielding to gentle violence

Fable of divine right is invented to sanction the system

Faction has rarely worn a more mischievous aspect

Famous fowl in every pot

Fanatics of the new religion denounced him as a godless man

Fate, free will, or absolute foreknowledge

Father Cotton, who was only too ready to betray the secrets

Fear of the laugh of the world at its sincerity

Fed on bear's liver, were nearly poisoned to death

Felix Mants, the anabaptist, is drowned at Zurich

Fellow worms had been writhing for half a century in the dust

Ferocity which even Christians could not have surpassed

Few, even prelates were very dutiful to the pope

Fiction of apostolic authority to bind and loose

Fifty thousand persons in the provinces (put to death)

Financial opposition to tyranny is apt to be unanimous

Find our destruction in our immoderate desire for peace

Fishermen and river raftsmen become ocean adventurers

Fitted "To warn, to comfort, and command"

Fitter to obey than to command

Five great rivers hold the Netherland territory in their coils

Flattery is a sweet and intoxicating potion

Fled from the land of oppression to the land of liberty

Fool who useth not wit because he hath it not

For myself I am unworthy of the honor (of martyrdom)

For faithful service, evil recompense

For women to lament, for men to remember

For us, looking back upon the Past, which was then the Future

For his humanity towards the conquered garrisons (censured)

Forbidding the wearing of mourning at all

Forbids all private assemblies for devotion

Force clerical—the power of clerks

Foremost to shake off the fetters of superstition

Forget those who have done them good service

Forgiving spirit on the part of the malefactor

Fortune's buffets and rewards can take with equal thanks

Four weeks' holiday—the first in eleven years

France was mourning Henry and waiting for Richelieu

French seem madmen, and are wise

Friendly advice still more intolerable

Full of precedents and declamatory commonplaces

Furious fanaticism

Furious mob set upon the house of Rem Bischop

Furnished, in addition, with a force of two thousand prostitutes

Future world as laid down by rival priesthoods

Gallant and ill-fated Lamoral Egmont

Gaul derided the Roman soldiers as a band of pigmies

German-Lutheran sixteenth-century idea of religious freedom

German finds himself sober—he believes himself ill

German Highland and the German Netherland

Gigantic vices are proudly pointed to as the noblest

Give him advice if he asked it, and money when he required

Glory could be put neither into pocket nor stomach

God has given absolute power to no mortal man

God, whose cause it was, would be pleased to give good weather

God alone can protect us against those whom we trust

God of wrath who had decreed the extermination of all unbeliever

God of vengeance, of jealousy, and of injustice

God Save the King! It was the last time

Gold was the only passkey to justice

Gomarites accused the Arminians of being more lax than Papists

Govern under the appearance of obeying

Great transactions of a reign are sometimes paltry things

Great science of political equilibrium

Great Privilege, the Magna Charta of Holland

Great error of despising their enemy

Great war of religion and politics was postponed

Great battles often leave the world where they found it

Guarantees of forgiveness for every imaginable sin

Guilty of no other crime than adhesion to the Catholic faith

Habeas corpus

Had industry been honoured instead of being despised

Haereticis non servanda fides

Hair and beard unshorn, according to ancient Batavian custom

Halcyon days of ban, book and candle

Hanged for having eaten meat-soup upon Friday

Hanging of Mary Dyer at Boston

Hangman is not the most appropriate teacher of religion

Happy to glass themselves in so brilliant a mirror

Hard at work, pouring sand through their sieves

Hardly a distinguished family in Spain not placed in mourning

Hardly a sound Protestant policy anywhere but in Holland

Hardly an inch of French soil that had not two possessors

Having conjugated his paradigm conscientiously

He had omitted to execute heretics

He did his best to be friends with all the world

He was a sincere bigot

He that stands let him see that he does not fall

He was not always careful in the construction of his sentences

He would have no persecution of the opposite creed

He came as a conqueror not as a mediator

He who spreads the snare always tumbles into the ditch himself

He who would have all may easily lose all

He knew men, especially he knew their weaknesses

He had never enjoyed social converse, except at long intervals

He would have no Calvinist inquisition set up in its place

He who confessed well was absolved well

He did his work, but he had not his reward

He sat a great while at a time. He had a genius for sitting

He was not imperial of aspect on canvas or coin

He often spoke of popular rights with contempt

He spent more time at table than the Bearnese in sleep

Heidelberg Catechism were declared to be infallible

Henry the Huguenot as the champion of the Council of Trent

Her teeth black, her bosom white and liberally exposed (Eliz.)

Heresy was a plant of early growth in the Netherlands

Heretics to the English Church were persecuted

Hibernian mode of expressing himself

High officers were doing the work of private, soldiers

Highborn demagogues in that as in every age affect adulation

Highest were not necessarily the least slimy

His inordinate arrogance

His own past triumphs seemed now his greatest enemies

His imagination may have assisted his memory in the task

His insolence intolerable

His learning was a reproach to the ignorant

His invectives were, however, much stronger than his arguments

His personal graces, for the moment, took the rank of virtues

His dogged, continuous capacity for work

Historical scepticism may shut its eyes to evidence

History is a continuous whole of which we see only fragments

History is but made up of a few scattered fragments

History never forgets and never forgives

History has not too many really important and emblematic men

History shows how feeble are barriers of paper

Holland was afraid to give a part, although offering the whole

Holland, England, and America, are all links of one chain

Holy Office condemned all the inhabitants of the Netherlands

Holy institution called the Inquisition

Honor good patriots, and to support them in venial errors

Hope delayed was but a cold and meagre consolation

Hope deferred, suddenly changing to despair

How many more injured by becoming bad copies of a bad ideal

Hugo Grotius

Human nature in its meanness and shame

Human ingenuity to inflict human misery

Human fat esteemed the sovereignst remedy (for wounds)

Humanizing effect of science upon the barbarism of war

Humble ignorance as the safest creed

Humility which was but the cloak to his pride

Hundred thousand men had laid down their lives by her decree

I did never see any man behave himself as he did

I know how to console myself

I am a king that will be ever known not to fear any but God

I hope and I fear

I would carry the wood to burn my own son withal

I regard my country's profit, not my own

I will never live, to see the end of my poverty

Idea of freedom in commerce has dawned upon nations

Idiotic principle of sumptuary legislation

Idle, listless, dice-playing, begging, filching vagabonds

If he had little, he could live upon little

If to do be as grand as to imagine what it were good to do

If he has deserved it, let them strike off his head

Ignoble facts which strew the highways of political life

Ignorance is the real enslaver of mankind

Imagined, and did the work of truth

Imagining that they held the world's destiny in their hands

Impatience is often on the part of the non-combatants

Implication there was much, of assertion very little

Imposed upon the multitudes, with whom words were things

Impossible it is to practise arithmetic with disturbed brains

Impossible it was to invent terms of adulation too gross

In revolutions the men who win are those who are in earnest

In character and general talents he was beneath mediocrity

In times of civil war, to be neutral is to be nothing

In Holland, the clergy had neither influence nor seats

In this he was much behind his age or before it

Incur the risk of being charged with forwardness than neglect

Indecision did the work of indolence

Indignant that heretics had been suffered to hang

Individuals walking in advance of their age

Indoor home life imprisons them in the domestic circle

Indulging them frequently with oracular advice

Inevitable fate of talking castles and listening ladies

Infamy of diplomacy, when diplomacy is unaccompanied by honesty

Infinite capacity for pecuniary absorption

Informer, in case of conviction, should be entitled to one half

Inhabited by the savage tribes called Samoyedes

Innocent generation, to atone for the sins of their forefathers

Inquisition of the Netherlands is much more pitiless

Inquisition was not a fit subject for a compromise

Inquisitors enough; but there were no light vessels in The Armada

Insane cruelty, both in the cause of the Wrong and the Right

Insensible to contumely, and incapable of accepting a rebuff

Insinuate that his orders had been hitherto misunderstood

Insinuating suspicions when unable to furnish evidence

Intellectual dandyisms of Bulwer

Intelligence, science, and industry were accounted degrading

Intense bigotry of conviction

Intentions of a government which did not know its own intentions

International friendship, the self-interest of each

Intolerable tendency to puns

Invaluable gift which no human being can acquire, authority

Invented such Christian formulas as these (a curse)

Inventing long speeches for historical characters

Invincible Armada had not only been vanquished but annihilated

Irresistible force in collision with an insuperable resistance

It was the true religion, and there was none other

It is not desirable to disturb much of that learned dust

It had not yet occurred to him that he was married

It is n't strategists that are wanted so much as believers

It is certain that the English hate us (Sully)

Its humility, seemed sufficiently ironical

James of England, who admired, envied, and hated Henry

Jealousy, that potent principle

Jesuit Mariana—justifying the killing of excommunicated kings

John Castel, who had stabbed Henry IV.

John Wier, a physician of Grave

John Robinson

John Quincy Adams

Judas Maccabaeus

July 1st, two Augustine monks were burned at Brussels

Justified themselves in a solemn consumption of time

Kindly shadow of oblivion

King who thought it furious madness to resist the enemy

King had issued a general repudiation of his debts

King set a price upon his head as a rebel

King of Zion to be pinched to death with red-hot tongs

King was often to be something much less or much worse

King's definite and final intentions, varied from day to day

Labored under the disadvantage of never having existed

Labour was esteemed dishonourable

Language which is ever living because it is dead

Languor of fatigue, rather than any sincere desire for peace

Leading motive with all was supposed to be religion

Learn to tremble as little at priestcraft as at swordcraft

Leave not a single man alive in the city, and to burn every house

Let us fool these poor creatures to their heart's content

Licences accorded by the crown to carry slaves to America

Life of nations and which we call the Past

Like a man holding a wolf by the ears

Little army of Maurice was becoming the model for Europe

Little grievances would sometimes inflame more than vast

Local self-government which is the life-blood of liberty

Logic of the largest battalions

Logic is rarely the quality on which kings pride themselves

Logical and historical argument of unmerciful length

Long succession of so many illustrious obscure

Longer they delay it, the less easy will they find it

Look through the cloud of dissimulation

Look for a sharp war, or a miserable peace

Looking down upon her struggle with benevolent indifference

Lord was better pleased with adverbs than nouns

Loud, nasal, dictatorial tone, not at all agreeable

Louis XIII.

Loving only the persons who flattered him

Ludicrous gravity

Luther's axiom, that thoughts are toll-free

Lutheran princes of Germany, detested the doctrines of Geneva

Luxury had blunted the fine instincts of patriotism

Made peace—and had been at war ever since

Made no breach in royal and Roman infallibility

Made to swing to and fro over a slow fire

Magistracy at that moment seemed to mean the sword

Magnificent hopefulness

Maintaining the attitude of an injured but forgiving Christian

Make sheep of yourselves, and the wolf will eat you

Make the very name of man a term of reproach

Man is never so convinced of his own wisdom

Man who cannot dissemble is unfit to reign

Man had only natural wrongs (No natural rights)

Man had no rights at all He was property

Mankind were naturally inclined to calumny

Manner in which an insult shall be dealt with

Many greedy priests, of lower rank, had turned shop-keepers

Maritime heretics

Matter that men may rather pray for than hope for

Matters little by what name a government is called

Meantime the second civil war in France had broken out

Mediocrity is at a premium

Meet around a green table except as fencers in the field

Men were loud in reproof, who had been silent

Men fought as if war was the normal condition of humanity

Men who meant what they said and said what they meant

Mendacity may always obtain over innocence and credulity

Military virtue in the support of an infamous cause

Misanthropical, sceptical philosopher

Misery had come not from their being enemies

Mistake to stumble a second time over the same stone

Mistakes might occur from occasional deviations into sincerity

Mockery of negotiation in which nothing could be negotiated

Modern statesmanship, even while it practises, condemns

Monasteries, burned their invaluable libraries

Mondragon was now ninety-two years old

Moral nature, undergoes less change than might be hoped

More accustomed to do well than to speak well

More easily, as he had no intention of keeping the promise

More catholic than the pope

More fiercely opposed to each other than to Papists

More apprehension of fraud than of force

Most detestable verses that even he had ever composed

Most entirely truthful child he had ever seen

Motley was twice sacrificed to personal feelings

Much as the blind or the deaf towards colour or music

Myself seeing of it methinketh that I dream

Names history has often found it convenient to mark its epochs

National character, not the work of a few individuals

Nations tied to the pinafores of children in the nursery

Natural to judge only by the result

Natural tendency to suspicion of a timid man

Nearsighted liberalism

Necessary to make a virtue of necessity

Necessity of extirpating heresy, root and branch

Necessity of deferring to powerful sovereigns

Necessity of kingship

Negotiated as if they were all immortal

Neighbour's blazing roof was likely soon to fire their own

Neither kings nor governments are apt to value logic

Neither wished the convocation, while both affected an eagerness

Neither ambitious nor greedy

Never peace well made, he observed, without a mighty war

Never did statesmen know better how not to do

Never lack of fishers in troubled waters

New Years Day in England, 11th January by the New Style

Night brings counsel

Nine syllables that which could be more forcibly expressed in on

No one can testify but a householder

No man can be neutral in civil contentions

No law but the law of the longest purse

No two books, as he said, ever injured each other

No retrenchments in his pleasures of women, dogs, and buildings

No great man can reach the highest position in our government

No man is safe (from news reporters)

No man could reveal secrets which he did not know

No authority over an army which they did not pay

No man pretended to think of the State

No synod had a right to claim Netherlanders as slaves

No qualities whatever but birth and audacity to recommend him

No generation is long-lived enough to reap the harvest

No man ever understood the art of bribery more thoroughly

No calumny was too senseless to be invented

None but God to compel me to say more than I choose to say

Nor is the spirit of the age to be pleaded in defence

Not a friend of giving details larger than my ascertained facts

Not distinguished for their docility

Not to let the grass grow under their feet

Not a single acquaintance in the place, and we glory in the fact

Not safe for politicians to call each other hard names

Not his custom nor that of his councillors to go to bed

Not of the genus Reptilia, and could neither creep nor crouch

Not strong enough to sustain many more such victories

Not to fall asleep in the shade of a peace negotiation

Not many more than two hundred Catholics were executed

Not upon words but upon actions

Not for a new doctrine, but for liberty of conscience

Not of the stuff of which martyrs are made (Erasmus)

Not so successful as he was picturesque

Nothing could equal Alexander's fidelity, but his perfidy

Nothing cheap, said a citizen bitterly, but sermons

Nothing was so powerful as religious difference

Notre Dame at Antwerp

Nowhere was the persecution of heretics more relentless

Nowhere were so few unproductive consumers

O God! what does man come to!

Obscure were thought capable of dying natural deaths

Obstinate, of both sexes, to be burned

Octogenarian was past work and past mischief

Of high rank but of lamentably low capacity

Often much tyranny in democracy

Often necessary to be blind and deaf

Oldenbarneveld; afterwards so illustrious

On the first day four thousand men and women were slaughtered

One-half to Philip and one-half to the Pope and Venice (slaves)

One-third of Philip's effective navy was thus destroyed

One golden grain of wit into a sheet of infinite platitude

One could neither cry nor laugh within the Spanish dominions

One of the most contemptible and mischievous of kings (James I)

Only healthy existence of the French was in a state of war

Only true religion

Only citadel against a tyrant and a conqueror was distrust

Only kept alive by milk, which he drank from a woman's breast

Only foundation fit for history,— original contemporary document

Opening an abyss between government and people

Opposed the subjection of the magistracy by the priesthood

Oration, fertile in rhetoric and barren in facts

Orator was, however, delighted with his own performance

Others that do nothing, do all, and have all the thanks

Others go to battle, says the historian, these go to war

Our pot had not gone to the fire as often

Our mortal life is but a string of guesses at the future

Outdoing himself in dogmatism and inconsistency

Over excited, when his prejudices were roughly handled

Panegyrists of royal houses in the sixteenth century

Pardon for crimes already committed, or about to be committed

Pardon for murder, if not by poison, was cheaper

Partisans wanted not accommodation but victory

Party hatred was not yet glutted with the blood it had drunk

Passion is a bad schoolmistress for the memory

Past was once the Present, and once the Future

Pathetic dying words of Anne Boleyn

Patriotism seemed an unimaginable idea

Pauper client who dreamed of justice at the hands of law

Paving the way towards atheism (by toleration)

Paying their passage through, purgatory

Peace founded on the only secure basis, equality of strength

Peace was desirable, it might be more dangerous than war

Peace seemed only a process for arriving at war

Peace and quietness is brought into a most dangerous estate

Peace-at-any-price party

Peace, in reality, was war in its worst shape

Peace was unattainable, war was impossible, truce was inevitable

Peace would be destruction

Perfection of insolence

Perpetually dropping small innuendos like pebbles

Persons who discussed religious matters were to be put to death

Petty passion for contemptible details

Philip II. gave the world work enough

Philip of Macedon, who considered no city impregnable

Philip IV.

Philip, who did not often say a great deal in a few words

Picturesqueness of crime

Placid unconsciousness on his part of defeat

Plain enough that he is telling his own story

Planted the inquisition in the Netherlands

Played so long with other men's characters and good name

Plea of infallibility and of authority soon becomes ridiculous

Plundering the country which they came to protect

Poisoning, for example, was absolved for eleven ducats

Pope excommunicated him as a heretic

Pope and emperor maintain both positions with equal logic

Portion of these revenues savoured much of black-mail

Possible to do, only because we see that it has been done

Pot-valiant hero

Power the poison of which it is so difficult to resist

Power to read and write helped the clergy to much wealth

Power grudged rather than given to the deputies

Practised successfully the talent of silence

Pray here for satiety, (said Cecil) than ever think of variety

Preferred an open enemy to a treacherous protector

Premature zeal was prejudicial to the cause

Presents of considerable sums of money to the negotiators made

Presumption in entitling themselves Christian

Preventing wrong, or violence, even towards an enemy

Priests shall control the state or the state govern the priests

Princes show what they have in them at twenty-five or never

Prisoners were immediately hanged

Privileged to beg, because ashamed to work

Proceeds of his permission to eat meat on Fridays

Proclaiming the virginity of the Virgin's mother

Procrastination was always his first refuge

Progress should be by a spiral movement

Promises which he knew to be binding only upon the weak

Proposition made by the wolves to the sheep, in the fable

Protect the common tranquillity by blood, purse, and life

Provided not one Huguenot be left alive in France

Public which must have a slain reputation to devour

Purchased absolution for crime and smoothed a pathway to heaven

Puritanism in Holland was a very different thing from England

Put all those to the torture out of whom anything can be got

Putting the cart before the oxen

Queen is entirely in the hands of Spain and the priests

Questioning nothing, doubting nothing, fearing nothing

Quite mistaken: in supposing himself the Emperor's child

Radical, one who would uproot, is a man whose trade is dangerous

Rarely able to command, having never learned to obey

Rashness alternating with hesitation

Rather a wilderness to reign over than a single heretic

Readiness to strike and bleed at any moment in her cause

Readiness at any moment to defend dearly won liberties

Rearing gorgeous temples where paupers are to kneel

Reasonable to pay our debts rather than to repudiate them

Rebuked him for his obedience

Rebuked the bigotry which had already grown

Recall of a foreign minister for alleged misconduct in office

Reformer who becomes in his turn a bigot is doubly odious

Reformers were capable of giving a lesson even to inquisitors

Religion was made the strumpet of Political Ambition

Religion was rapidly ceasing to be the line of demarcation

Religion was not to be changed like a shirt

Religious toleration, which is a phrase of insult

Religious persecution of Protestants by Protestants

Repentance, as usual, had come many hours too late

Repentant males to be executed with the sword

Repentant females to be buried alive

Repose under one despot guaranteed to them by two others

Repose in the other world, "Repos ailleurs"

Republic, which lasted two centuries

Republics are said to be ungrateful

Repudiation of national debts was never heard of before

Requires less mention than Philip III himself

Resolve to maintain the civil authority over the military

Resolved thenceforth to adopt a system of ignorance

Respect for differences in religious opinions

Result was both to abandon the provinces and to offend Philip

Revocable benefices or feuds

Rich enough to be worth robbing

Righteous to kill their own children

Road to Paris lay through the gates of Rome

Rose superior to his doom and took captivity captive

Round game of deception, in which nobody was deceived

Royal plans should be enforced adequately or abandoned entirely

Ruinous honors

Rules adopted in regard to pretenders to crowns

Sacked and drowned ten infant princes

Sacrificed by the Queen for faithfully obeying her orders

Safest citadel against an invader and a tyrant is distrust

Sages of every generation, read the future like a printed scroll

Saint Bartholomew's day

Sale of absolutions was the source of large fortunes to the priests

Same conjury over ignorant baron and cowardly hind

Scaffold was the sole refuge from the rack

Scepticism, which delights in reversing the judgment of centuries

Schism in the Church had become a public fact

Schism which existed in the general Reformed Church

Science of reigning was the science of lying

Scoffing at the ceremonies and sacraments of the Church

Secret drowning was substituted for public burning

Secure the prizes of war without the troubles and dangers

Security is dangerous

Seeking protection for and against the people

Seem as if born to make the idea of royalty ridiculous

Seemed bent on self-destruction

Seems but a change of masks, of costume, of phraseology

Sees the past in the pitiless light of the present

Self-assertion—the healthful but not engaging attribute

Self-educated man, as he had been a self-taught boy

Selling the privilege of eating eggs upon fast-days

Senectus edam maorbus est

Sent them word by carrier pigeons

Sentiment of Christian self-complacency

Sentimentality that seems highly apocryphal

Served at their banquets by hosts of lackeys on their knees

Seven Spaniards were killed, and seven thousand rebels

Sewers which have ever run beneath decorous Christendom

Shall Slavery die, or the great Republic?

Sharpened the punishment for reading the scriptures in private

She relieth on a hope that will deceive her

She declined to be his procuress

She knew too well how women were treated in that country

Shift the mantle of religion from one shoulder to the other

Shutting the stable-door when the steed is stolen

Sick soldiers captured on the water should be hanged

Sick and wounded wretches were burned over slow fires

Simple truth was highest skill

Sixteen of their best ships had been sacrificed

Slain four hundred and ten men with his own hand

Slavery was both voluntary and compulsory

Slender stock of platitudes

Small matter which human folly had dilated into a great one

Smooth words, in the plentiful lack of any substantial

So much responsibility and so little power

So often degenerated into tyranny (Calvinism)

So much in advance of his time as to favor religious equality

So unconscious of her strength

Soldier of the cross was free upon his return

Soldiers enough to animate the good and terrify the bad

Solitary and morose, the necessary consequence of reckless study

Some rude lessons from that vigorous little commonwealth

Sometimes successful, even although founded upon sincerity

Sonnets of Petrarch

Sovereignty was heaven-born, anointed of God

Spain was governed by an established terrorism

Spaniards seem wise, and are madmen

Sparing and war have no affinity together

Spendthrift of time, he was an economist of blood

Spirit of a man who wishes to be proud of his country

St. Peter's dome rising a little nearer to the clouds

St. Bartholomew was to sleep for seven years longer

Stake or gallows (for) heretics to transubstantiation

Stand between hope and fear

State can best defend religion by letting it alone

States were justified in their almost unlimited distrust

Steeped to the lips in sloth which imagined itself to be pride

Storm by which all these treasures were destroyed (in 7 days)

Strangled his nineteen brothers on his accession

Strength does a falsehood acquire in determined and skilful hand

String of homely proverbs worthy of Sancho Panza

Stroke of a broken table knife sharpened on a carriage wheel

Studied according to his inclinations rather than by rule

Style above all other qualities seems to embalm for posterity

Subtle and dangerous enemy who wore the mask of a friend

Succeeded so well, and had been requited so ill

Successful in this step, he is ready for greater ones

Such a crime as this had never been conceived (bankruptcy)

Such an excuse was as bad as the accusation

Suicide is confession

Superfluous sarcasm

Suppress the exercise of the Roman religion

Sure bind, sure find

Sword in hand is the best pen to write the conditions of peace

Take all their imaginations and extravagances for truths

Talked impatiently of the value of my time


Taxation upon sin

Taxed themselves as highly as fifty per cent

Taxes upon income and upon consumption

Tempest of passion and prejudice

Ten thousand two hundred and twenty individuals were burned

Tension now gave place to exhaustion

That vile and mischievous animal called the people

That crowned criminal, Philip the Second

That unholy trinity—Force; Dogma, and Ignorance

That cynical commerce in human lives

That he tries to lay the fault on us is pure malice

The tragedy of Don Carlos

The worst were encouraged with their good success

The history of the Netherlands is history of liberty

The great ocean was but a Spanish lake

The divine speciality of a few transitory mortals

The sapling was to become the tree

The nation which deliberately carves itself in pieces

The expenses of James's household

The Catholic League and the Protestant Union

The blaze of a hundred and fifty burning vessels

The magnitude of this wonderful sovereign's littleness

The defence of the civil authority against the priesthood

The assassin, tortured and torn by four horses

The Gaul was singularly unchaste

The vivifying becomes afterwards the dissolving principle

The bad Duke of Burgundy, Philip surnamed "the Good,"

The greatest crime, however, was to be rich

The more conclusive arbitration of gunpowder

The disunited provinces

The noblest and richest temple of the Netherlands was a wreck

The voice of slanderers

The calf is fat and must be killed

The illness was a convenient one

The egg had been laid by Erasmus, hatched by Luther

The perpetual reproductions of history

The very word toleration was to sound like an insult

The most thriving branch of national industry (Smuggler)

The pigmy, as the late queen had been fond of nicknaming him

The slightest theft was punished with the gallows

The art of ruling the world by doing nothing

The wisest statesmen are prone to blunder in affairs of war

The Alcoran was less cruel than the Inquisition

The People had not been invented

The small children diminished rapidly in numbers

The busy devil of petty economy

The record of our race is essentially unwritten

The truth in shortest about matters of importance

The time for reasoning had passed

The effect of energetic, uncompromising calumny

The evils resulting from a confederate system of government

The vehicle is often prized more than the freight

The faithful servant is always a perpetual ass

The dead men of the place are my intimate friends

The loss of hair, which brings on premature decay

The personal gifts which are nature's passport everywhere

The nation is as much bound to be honest as is the individual

The fellow mixes blood with his colors!

Their existence depended on war

Their own roofs were not quite yet in a blaze

Theological hatred was in full blaze throughout the country

Theology and politics were one

There is no man who does not desire to enjoy his own

There was but one king in Europe, Henry the Bearnese

There are few inventions in morals

There was no use in holding language of authority to him

There was apathy where there should have been enthusiasm

There is no man fitter for that purpose than myself

Therefore now denounced the man whom he had injured

These human victims, chained and burning at the stake

They had come to disbelieve in the mystery of kingcraft

They chose to compel no man's conscience

They could not invent or imagine toleration

They knew very little of us, and that little wrong

They have killed him, 'e ammazato,' cried Concini

They were always to deceive every one, upon every occasion

They liked not such divine right nor such gentle-mindedness

They had at last burned one more preacher alive

Things he could tell which are too odious and dreadful

Thirty thousand masses should be said for his soul

Thirty-three per cent. interest was paid (per month)

Thirty Years' War tread on the heels of the forty years

This Somebody may have been one whom we should call Nobody

This, then, is the reward of forty years' service to the State

This obstinate little republic

This wonderful sovereign's littleness oppresses the imagination

Those who fish in troubled waters only to fill their own nets

Those who "sought to swim between two waters"

Those who argue against a foregone conclusion

Thought that all was too little for him

Thousands of burned heretics had not made a single convert

Three hundred fighting women

Three hundred and upwards are hanged annually in London

Three or four hundred petty sovereigns (of Germany)

Throw the cat against their legs

Thus Hand-weapen, hand-throwing, became Antwerp

Time and myself are two

Tis pity he is not an Englishman

To think it capable of error, is the most devilish heresy of all

To stifle for ever the right of free enquiry

To attack England it was necessary to take the road of Ireland

To hear the last solemn commonplaces

To prefer poverty to the wealth attendant upon trade

To shirk labour, infinite numbers become priests and friars

To doubt the infallibility of Calvin was as heinous a crime

To negotiate with Government in England was to bribe

To milk, the cow as long as she would give milk

To work, ever to work, was the primary law of his nature

To negotiate was to bribe right and left, and at every step

To look down upon their inferior and lost fellow creatures

Toil and sacrifices of those who have preceded us

Tolerate another religion that his own may be tolerated

Tolerating religious liberty had never entered his mind

Toleration—that intolerable term of insult

Toleration thought the deadliest heresy of all

Torquemada's administration (of the inquisition)

Torturing, hanging, embowelling of men, women, and children

Tranquil insolence

Tranquillity rather of paralysis than of health

Tranquillity of despotism to the turbulence of freedom

Triple marriages between the respective nurseries

Trust her sword, not her enemy's word

Twas pity, he said, that both should be heretics

Twenty assaults upon fame and had forty books killed under him

Two witnesses sent him to the stake, one witness to the rack

Tyrannical spirit of Calvinism

Tyranny, ever young and ever old, constantly reproducing herself

Uncouple the dogs and let them run

Under the name of religion (so many crimes)

Understood the art of managing men, particularly his superiors

Undue anxiety for impartiality

Unduly dejected in adversity

Unequivocal policy of slave emancipation

Unimaginable outrage as the most legitimate industry

Universal suffrage was not dreamed of at that day

Unlearned their faith in bell, book, and candle

Unproductive consumption being accounted most sagacious

Unproductive consumption was alarmingly increasing

Unremitted intellectual labor in an honorable cause

Unwise impatience for peace

Upon their knees, served the queen with wine

Upon one day twenty-eight master cooks were dismissed

Upper and lower millstones of royal wrath and loyal subserviency

Use of the spade

Usual phraseology of enthusiasts

Usual expedient by which bad legislation on one side countered

Utter disproportions between the king's means and aims

Utter want of adaptation of his means to his ends

Uttering of my choler doth little ease my grief or help my case

Uunmeaning phrases of barren benignity

Vain belief that they were men at eighteen or twenty

Valour on the one side and discretion on the other

Villagers, or villeins

Visible atmosphere of power the poison of which

Volatile word was thought preferable to the permanent letter

Vows of an eternal friendship of several weeks' duration

Waiting the pleasure of a capricious and despotic woman

Walk up and down the earth and destroy his fellow-creatures

War was the normal and natural condition of mankind

War was the normal condition of Christians

War to compel the weakest to follow the religion of the strongest

Was it astonishing that murder was more common than fidelity?

Wasting time fruitlessly is sharpening the knife for himself

We were sold by their negligence who are now angry with us

We believe our mothers to have been honest women

We are beginning to be vexed

We must all die once

We have been talking a little bit of truth to each other

We have the reputation of being a good housewife

We mustn't tickle ourselves to make ourselves laugh

Wealth was an unpardonable sin

Wealthy Papists could obtain immunity by an enormous fine


Weary of place without power

Weep oftener for her children than is the usual lot of mothers

Weight of a thousand years of error

What exchequer can accept chronic warfare and escape bankruptcy

What could save the House of Austria, the cause of Papacy

What was to be done in this world and believed as to the next

When persons of merit suffer without cause

When all was gone, they began to eat each other

When the abbot has dice in his pocket, the convent will play

Whether dead infants were hopelessly damned

Whether murders or stratagems, as if they were acts of virtue

Whether repentance could effect salvation

While one's friends urge moderation

Who the "people" exactly were

Who loved their possessions better than their creed

Whole revenue was pledged to pay the interest, on his debts

Whose mutual hatred was now artfully inflamed by partisans

William of Nassau, Prince of Orange

William Brewster

Wise and honest a man, although he be somewhat longsome

Wiser simply to satisfy himself

Wish to sell us the bear-skin before they have killed the bear

Wish to appear learned in matters of which they are ignorant

With something of feline and feminine duplicity

Wonder equally at human capacity to inflict and to endure misery

Wonders whether it has found its harbor or only lost its anchor

Word peace in Spanish mouths simply meant the Holy Inquisition

Word-mongers who, could clothe one shivering thought

Words are always interpreted to the disadvantage of the weak

Work of the aforesaid Puritans and a few Jesuits

World has rolled on to fresher fields of carnage and ruin

Worn crescents in their caps at Leyden

Worn nor caused to be worn the collar of the serf

Worship God according to the dictates of his conscience

Would not help to burn fifty or sixty thousand Netherlanders

Wrath of the Jesuits at this exercise of legal authority

Wrath of bigots on both sides

Wrath of that injured personage as he read such libellous truths

Wringing a dry cloth for drops of evidence

Write so illegibly or express himself so awkwardly

Writing letters full of injured innocence

Yes, there are wicked men about

Yesterday is the preceptor of To-morrow

You must show your teeth to the Spaniard

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