would have resulted if Abderrahman's enterprise had not been crushed by the Frankish chief. Schlegel speaks of this "mighty victory" in terms of fervent gratitude; and tells how "the arm of Charles Martel saved and delivered the Christian nations of the West from the deadly grasp of all-destroying Islam;" and Ranke points out as "one of the most important epochs in the history of the world, the commencement of the eighth century; when on the one side Mahommedanism threatened to overspread Italy and Gaul, and on the other the ancient idolatry of Saxony and Friesland once more forced its way across the Rhine. In this peril of Christian institutions, a youthful prince of Germanic race, Karl Martell, arose as their champion; maintained them with all the energy which the necessity for self-defence calls forth, and finally extended them into new regions."
Arnold ranks the victory of Charles Martel even higher than the victory of Arminius, "among those signal deliverances which have affected for centuries the happiness of mankind." In fact the
- "Philosophy of History," p. 331.
- "History of the Reformation in Germany," vol. i. p. 5.
- "History of the later Roman Commonwealth," vol. ii. p. 317.