By Frederick Baron Corvo
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Extra info for A History of the Borgias
On Good Friday, the 4th of April, after the Adoration of the Cross, the Mass of the Presanctified, and the Exposition of the Vernicle (or True Image of our Divine Redeemer, vulgarly known as The Veronica), had been performed in the Vatican Basilica, the cardinals were immured; the doors and windows of the Vatican were bricked up; Pandolfo, Prince Savelli, Hereditary Marshal of the Holy Roman Church, entered upon the guardianship of the Conclave and the election was begun. The College of Cardinals consisted then of twenty members.
Slight quarrel arising A A HISTORY OF 24 in the THE BORGIAS crowd between one of the Orsini and a retainer of Anguillara (hereditary foes of Orsini) provided a pretext. Instantly shouts ascended, and men of arms coursed through the city roaring Or so, Or so (Bear, Bear war- cry of Orsini, alluding to their badge). From every dark and narrow alley of the Regions of Campo Marzo and Ponte, from the Albergo dell' Orso (Bear Inn) by the Torre di Nona, from the castellated fortress which Orsini had made of Pompey's Theatre, came the clang of arms, with the rush of hurrying feet of desperate brigands, adherents and mercenaries of Orsini and Don Napoleone Orsini was at the head of three thousand men.
After three and fifty days of siege, Constantinople fell to the Great Turk, the Sultan Muhammed II. loannes Palaiologos, "King and Autocrat of the Romans," was dead and his successor in a parlous ; Konstantinos Dragases XIII, the last Christian Emperor of the East, was slain in defence of his capital. By the fall of the great Byzantine Empire, the bulwarks of Christendom were broken down; the Infidel was raiding on her borders. Alone, with no ally, Jan Hunniades desperately defended Hungary's frontier.
A History of the Borgias by Frederick Baron Corvo