pt.1. The Byzantine empire.--pt. 2. The modern Greeks and the Albanians.--pt. 3. The Turkish-Slavonians, the Wallachians, and the Gypsies. Supplementary chapter: Turkey since the Congress of Berlin [1878-1898]
From the introduction:
Nearly a hundred and fifty years ago, Bishop Berke- ley penned that famous line, a line which has passed into a proverb, and become familiar as household words to all peoples whose mother tongue is the English language — "Westward the course of empire takes its way." Never, surely, did the poet express a great historic truth more tersely, or more happily.
For twenty-five centuries, steadily, unvaryingly, the seat of imperial dominion in the civilized world has been moving towards the West. From Persia to Macedon, from Macedon to Rome, from Rome to the Empire of Charlemagne, from mediaeval Germany to France and England, from France and England across the Atlantic to these distant shores of the New World, the imperial seat of civilization and political power has constantly advanced in the direction of the setting sun. But now at last, having reached the waters of the Pacific, and thus completed the circuit of that part of the earth's surface occupied by the royal Aryan race, the Star of Empire has turned in its course.
At the present time, aside from the fortunes of our own country, the progress of civilization and political power is not toward the West, but toward the East; and this eastward movement of the course of empire is plainly destined to continue for generations and centuries to come. Within the past few years, we have seen Germany rise to the ascendant in the political horizon of Europe.
The history of the German people has been strange and sad. A people whose blood flows in our own veins; one of the grandest, noblest races that live on the earth; simple, true-hearted, and earnest; ever toiling on with an industry which nothing can weary or discourage; standing at the post of duty or of danger with courage as quiet and immovable as the rocks beneath their feet; with a power end scope of thought which long ago gave them the intellectual leadership of the world; and, to crown all, a preeminently reverent and God-fearing people, the Germans have lain, through weary centuries, paralyzed by their endless and hopeless divisions, awaiting their time, filling no place, taking no part in the great movements of the political world at all commensurate with their powers or their worth. First Italy, then Spain, then France, then England, then England and France together, rose to positions of controlling influence in Europe; but still Ger- many lay shorn of her strength, divided and despised. But at last her time also has come.
Her ancient wounds have been healed. She has risen in her full strength, and, with a step of imperial majesty, has taken that foremost place which is her right. To every man of Teutonic blood, this grand unification of Germany may well be the occasion of profound satisfaction, of devoutest thankfulness. For the predominance, the controlling influence, of this simple, earnest, laborious, and thoughtful people forebodes to the world nothing of evil, but only good. Passing north-east, from Germany into the vast Em- pire of Russia, we seem to have stepped backwards three hundred years in the order of human advancement We find a people still in the childhood of their political and social development.
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