13 June 2022

The Fall of the Parthenopaean Republic; and King Henry IX

13 June, 1799, is commonly regarded as the date of the Fall of the Parthenopaean Republic. 

Lord Nelson's arrival was a little later; but he was rewarded with the smiles of Queen Maria Carolina because of the resolute way in which he dealt with the surviving Parthenopaean insurrectionaries. His rigour not only attracted Whig attacks in the House of Commons, but even the disapproval of Cardinal Ruffo, commander of the Royalist army. 

Earlier, Nelson is recorded as giving hospitality on his Ship to our late Sovereign Liege Lord, King Henry IX, known as "Cardinal York"; destitute as a result of the Napoleonic Enlightenment. "The old man shed tears when he left his benefactor, and was regretted by all on board, to whom he was endeared by his mild and unassuming manners. Nelson frequently spoke of him with admiration, and said: 'That man's example would almost make me a convert to the Catholic faith'." 

On another occasion, Nelson found himself engaging a Spanish Captain, Don Jacobo Stuart, descendant of the Marshal Duke of Berwick (eldest but bastard son of James VII and II). He was "my brave opponent; for which I have returned him his sword, and sent him with a flag of truce to Spain. I felt it consonant to the dignity of my country, and I always act as I feel right, without regard to custom."

Considering what a dull and stiff old Proddy country Britain was, it is gratifying to recollect how becomingly we acquitted ourselves in shoring up ancien regime monarchies over the water. Nelson seems to have been distinctly more pleased with his reward, the Dukedom of Bronte in the peerage of the Two Sicilies, than he was with his British Barony (later, Viscountcy).

Wellington, of course, had two dukedoms: Ciudad Rodrigo and Victoria. He was also Knight of the Golden Fleece; and Knight of the Saint Esprit. Good going for a sprig of the Irish Protestant Ascendancy.

And he had quite a lot more gongs and titles ... 

God bless and rest Your Graces.

Long live Old Catholic Europe.


Matthew F Kluk said...

The days when Cardinals were not just oppressive papal lackeys, but rather they were positive influences.

armyarty said...

A Polish friend, who habitually attends the traditional mass, once told me that he was trying to locate a book commissioned by Lord Nelson about the Knights of St. John, for his own reading. I wonder if it still exists.

As for Wellington, as a boy, he went to school in the building that later became Bewley's Oriental Cafe on Grafton Street in Dublin.