ALVA 371 ALVA La Bastia, and Foligno. The predella of the last, which was taken to Frame by Napoleon, still re- mains in the Louvre. One of his banners is in a church at Perugia. ,i»AMo Uo.stsi of Perugia, and S. Frknfaniclli Cibo of Hume, Memoirs, (187-). Augustus Van Cleef. Alva, Feunando Ai-vare/. de Toledo, Ddke of, b. 1508, of one of the most distinguished Cas- tiliaii families, which boasted descent from the By- zantine emperors; d. at Thoniar, 12 January, 1582. From his earliest childhood the boy was trained by a severe discipline for his future career as warrior and statesman. In his sixteenth year he took part in the war against France; a year later he was in the siege of Pavia, and in 1527 fought again.st the Turks in Hungary. He enjoyed the esteem of the Km- peror Charles V, and played a great rule in the numer- ous wars in which Spain was involved for half a century. His chief fame rests upon his mission in 1557 to the riotous Netherlands, where the (iuciix had created systematic opposition to the Spanish regent, Margaret of Parma. In the Netherlands, traditionally accustomed to free government, King Philip, though born a Dutchman, essayed to estab- lish an absolutism such as prevailed in Spain. He rejected the mild measures proposed by moderate counsellors, and held that a swift punishment should be meted out to this rebellious and heretical country. At first, Philip resolved to go him.>self to the Nether- lands, but towards tlio end of November 1507, he suddenly informed .Margaret of Parma that he would send the Duke of .lva to punish the guilty with unbending severity. The "iron duke was to be the ideal instrument for the execution of this pur- pose. The very announcement of Alva's coming spread terror and consternation. Prince William of Orange and other leaders of the Gueux fled to foreign coun- tries. But the popular Counts of Kgmond and Hoorne, through blind confidence or reckless courage, resolved to face .lva. On 22 .-Vugust, Alva, accom- panied by a body of select Spanish troops, made his entry into Bnissels. He immediately appointed a council to condemn without trial those suspected of heresy and rebellion. On 1 Jime, 1568, Brussels witnessed the simultaneous decapitation of twenty- two noblemen; on G June followed the execution of the Counts of Egmond and Hoorne. The "Council of Blood" was the popular designation of Alva's tribunal. The Flemings fled in thousands to Holland and Zeeland, where the elements of the rebellion were concentrated under the leadership of the Prince of Orange. In the meantime Ala began a regular campaign in the northern provinces. His victorious troops, whose banner was mscribed with the legend: "Pro lege, rege, grcge", plundered the cities of Mons, Mechlen, Zutphen, and Naarden, and left them drenched in blood. In triumph, Alva returned to Bru.ssels. Potie Pius V bestowed on him a conse- crated hat ana sword, a present heretofore only given to sovereigns. In Antwerp, the governor erected a bronze statue in his own honour; it represented Alva trampling under his feet two allegorical figiires, the nobility and the people. The dictator had pro- claimed that the expenses of the war must be borne by the Netherlands. In consequence, the resources of the people were drained by taxation. Notwith- standing the protestations of the States-General he introduced the so-called "tax of the one hundredth, twentieth, and tenth penny". This exaction sur- passed all bounds. When on .31 July in Brus.scls the twentieth and tenth penny were extorted, traffic and commerce came to a standstill. The Dutch people, still for the greater part Catholic, felt them- selves outraged in their rights by the "Council of Blood", and in their inborn love of freedom by the I.-24 Spanish Inquisition. When they saw their com- merce and industries trammelled by the odioiLs tenth penny tax, the hatred against the Spanish i^gime grew so manifest and widespread, that Alva, although victorious on the field of battle, sulTered an irremedi- able moral defeat. The surprising conquest of the little seaport of Brielle by the "Beggars of the Sea" was the inspiration that fanned anew the smouldering embers of the rebellion. Haarlem, after a long siege, capitulated to Don Frederic, son of Alva, 12 July 1573; but this victory was speedily followed by the defeat of Alkmaar, which defended itself .so heroi- cally that the popular cry became: "From Alkmaar, victory begiiisl" Alva at last realized that his violent measures were fruitless. " God and mankind are against me ", he exclaimed in despair. In vain he begged the King to let him retire. His soft-hearted successor, the Duke of Medina Cell, who passed througli the country in June 1572, never really assumed the reins of gov- ernment but shortly returned to Spain. The 19 Octo- ber, 1573, Alva was definitively relieved of his office and Wiis succeeded by Don Luis of Requesens. He hastened from the Netherlands, followed by the curse of its people. The Catholic councillor Viglius testi- fied: Tristis vcnil, tridior abiil". Once again in Spain he still retained the royal favour, till a love affair of Don Frederic dragged father and son into disgrace. Alva remained in e.xile at his castle up to 15.S0, when the acknowledged power of his iron hand was sought in the war against Portugal. In the short s|)ace of three weeks he completely sub- dued the Portuguese. Dissension broke out once more between Philip and Alva; but the Duke had made himself so powerful that Philip, though sus- pecting that Alva had enriched himself extraordi- narily with the spoils of war, and knowing that he refused to account to his King, did not dare raise a hand against the first grandee of Spain. A short time after he died at Thomar, 12 January 1582. Alva w;us, as even Motley in "The Uise of the Dutch Republic" (London, 1808, 9, 330), admits, "the most successful and experienced general of Spain, or of Europe, in his day. No man had studied military science more deeply, or practised it more constantly." In sixty years of military service he was never sur- prised, never defeated. He excelled in slow and prudent tactics, deeming that nothing was so un- certain as victory. He stamls amongst the greatest generals of history. Yet his greatness was confined to the battlefield. lie lacked the wisdom of govern- ing. His tyranny, however blameable, was exaggerated by the liatred of opposing parties. Alva boasted, it is said, that he put to death on the scaffold 18,(KX) Dutchmen; but nis succes.sor, Requesens, estimated his executions at 6,000 (Gachard, Etudes, II, 366). Motley paints him in the blackest colours, allowing in his favour only the excuse "that he was but tire blind and fanatically loyal slave of his sovereign" (541). In reality, Alva came to the Netherlands to carry out the royal orders, and save the King's popularity by taking upon himself the odium of tlie rigorous suppression of the rebellion. Ho erected his own statue in .Vntwerp, not to glorify himself, but to pose as the tyrannous suppressor of the re- bellion. In order that Philip might play the role of a bold sovereign, he asked the King to order the demolition of the statue (E. Gos.sart, Bulletin de I'acaddmie de Belgique, 1899, 231-244). While we deplore his tyrannous method we must give credit to the duke's loyalty. When his personal dignity and views were touched, he dared defy even his King. He was an ardent Catholic, who fiercely served his religion when he combated heresy with fire and sword, but who, as a child of such troublous times, unwisely chose his measures. Notwithstanding bis
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