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race, exposed to the danger of desecration for the sake of the gold or jewels they might be supposed to contain, he despatched some trusty agents, escorted by a strong body of troops, to disinter and convey them to his dominions. Nearly five hundred years had elapsed since the remains of the empress Anne had quitted Vienna, when this funeral cortége reached the metropolis of Germany, and found, it is to be hoped, a final resting place in the same mausoleum which Maria Theresa had constructed some years previously for her beloved husband, and illustrious family, under the roof of the Capuchin convent.

When the tomb of the empress was opened at Bâsle, the coffin, or rather coffer, being found in too decayed a state to encounter a second journey, the padlocks were removed, and the body carefully transferred to one of solid mahogany, in the presence of the German commissioners and Swiss authorities, to whom a very extraordinary and awful spectacle was then exposed. The whole person of the empress was found in a perfect state, changed only to a deep black -her diadem still rested on her brows, and her golden collar encircled her throat-her royal habiliments preserved their graceful contour - but every hue, every shade of colour, had fled.

As the empress Maria Theresa demanded the ashes of her ancestors only, the commissioners gave the Imperial ornaments to the city of Bâsle, in memorial

FATE OF THE RELICS.

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of a former benefactress, and they remained in the public Museum attached to the library, till the unhappy war of 1830, between Bâsle City and Bâsle Campagne, when a division of the public treasure being made, after the settlement of the dispute, they unfortunately fell to the lot of Bâsle Campagne. Little appreciating these curious wrecks of a by-gone age, they were, with many other relics of the same interesting nature, put up to auction, and sold for less than their intrinsic worth in bullion. The necklace was purchased by a jeweller, and the crown became the property of a wandering Israelite !*

Sic transit Gloria Mundi.

A letter from this empress, written in 1275, about two years after her elevation to the throne of Germany, preserved in the German chronicle of Tschudi, throwing light at once over the manners of the age

* Amongst the rich and rare objects thus scattered abroad or lost to posterity, was a votive table in pure gold, offered by Henry II., emperor of Germany, indiscriminately termed the Lame, or the Saint, who rebuilt the cathedral in 1010. This magnificent relic, which dated from the very commencement of the eleventh century, was made of plates of pure gold exquisitely chiselled, and its graceful proportions recalled the best models of the Byzantian style. It was sold to a gentleman, who carried his cheaply acquired treasure into Holland, and last year was desirous of disposing of it by a public lottery.

and her own character, may not unfitly close this notice. Rudolph of Stauffacher, father of one of the liberators of the Grütli, having, as Ammann or chief magistrate of the district of Schwytz, required the convent of Steinen, a small village in the neighbourhood of the lake of Löwerz within his jurisdiction, to pay a certain contribution levied alike on all landed proprietors, the abbess repeatedly refused, when, in virtue of his office, he arrested a horse belonging to that religious corporation, and declared he would keep possession of it till the sum was duly discharged. The haughty abbess, probably far more indignant at this plebeian insult than the loss of the horse, immediately complained in no measured terms of Stauffacher's conduct to the empress, at that time visiting the château of Kybourg in Switzerland; and, doubtless influenced by pious and compassionate motives, she in consequence wrote the following letter:

"Anna by the Grace of God queen of the Romans. To the prudent and honest Ammanns Rudolph of Stauffacher, and Werner of Seeven- Salutation and all good: Know, that having by the good pleasure of our illustrious Lord and King taken under our especial care, protection, and safe guard our dear sisters in Christ, the nuns of Steinen belonging to the Cistercean order in the diocese of Constance, with all their goods and domains, We do not intend

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that they should be constrained by our officers to the payment of any taxes of whatever sort they may be. Now being informed that you Rudolph of Stauffacher landmann, have seized and do detain a horse belonging to the before mentioned Cistercean nuns of Steinen, We address ourselves to your discretion, and require you immediately to restore the said horse without delay, or opposition of any kind; recommending moreover to you both, Rudolph de Stauffacher and Werner de Seeven, not merely to molest no more in any fashion, but on the contrary to defend in all their rights and privileges, these the said holy sisters with all your power faithfully, and on every occasion, against the insults and vexations of others.

Given at Kybourg the fourth day of September of the second year of the reign of our aforesaid Lord and King. – Anna.” * The style of this epistle is right royal, showing that Anne was fully imbued with a sense of her importance, and had glided gracefully into her high position; but she had yet to learn that an

*There is considerable difficulty in determining baptismal names in Swiss and German history. Agnes, mother of the emperor Henry IV., is occasionally called Innes. Müller styles the wife of Rudolph of Habsburg, Gertrude-Würstisen invariably speaks of her as Anna- whilst Tschudi names her indiscriminately Anna or Gertrude. Her own letter is signed Anna alone. It is therefore probable that after her elevation to the Imperial Crown, she relinquished her first appellation, and, like our beloved queen, adopted exclusively her second.

empress is not an emperor! and the lesson was speedily taught her by the stout old landmann. Undismayed by this queenly mandate, he addressed himself forthwith to the fountain-head of power, through the medium of Conrad Hanno, who lived in the vicinity of Steinen, and had fought with Rudolph on many a battle-field, and represented that the tax* demanded was both equitable, and necessary for the well-being and good government of the country. Rudolph, who was naturally frank and generous as well as politic, especially in the earlier period of his career, before the influence of his sons warped his better feelings, listened to the reasonable arguments of his old comrade in arms; and, despite of his attachment to Anne, pronounced in favour of Stauffacher, though she had also endeavoured to strengthen her cause by enlisting into the service of the nuns of Steinen, Rudolph's especial friend, Count Hartmann of Baldegk. †

* Distraints of cattle were common for the payment of public rates of whatever nature. The dean and chapter of Lausanne, at a later period, having refused to pay their appointed quota towards the necessary repair of the town walls, were in like manner visited by the seizure of some cows; on which occasion they threatened a papal excommunication against the perpetrators of the offence. But the age was growing hourly bolder, and the burghers kept the cows till, the hapless dignitaries pining for milk, discharged the debt.

†This was not the only instance where his love of justice was displayed under similar circumstances: in 1289, he decided

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