History of United Netherlands 1590 to 1599
During the past quarter of a century there had been tragic scenes enough in France, but now the only man who could have conducted Philip's schemes to a tragic if not a successful issue was gone. Friendly death had been swifter than Philip, and had removed Alexander from the scene before his master had found fitting opportunity to inflict the disgrace on which he was resolved. Meantime, Charles Mansfeld made a feeble attempt to lead an army from the Netherlands into France, to support the sinking fortunes of the League; but it was not for that general-of-artillery to attempt the well-graced part of the all-accomplished Farnese with much hope of success. A considerable force of Spanish infantry, too, had been sent to Paris, where they had been received with much enthusiasm; a very violent and determined churchman, Sega, archbishop of Piacenza, and cardinal- legate, having arrived to check on the part of the holy father any attempt by the great wavering heretic to get himself readmitted into the fold of the faithful.
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