Turkish War part 20


For the man they load with blessings and escort and hold in high respect to-day, they treat in exactly the opposite way without feeling any shame, when they see the throw of his life’s die changed. But the Emperor silenced them by a gesture and again spoke, saying, ” There is no need for you to make a noise or try to subvert the decision I have taken. For, as I said, I for my part have granted pardon to all, and shall shew myself the same towards you hereafter as I did before.”

While the Emperor was granting pardon to these men, the originators of the plan sent, without the Emperor’s knowledge, and had Diogenes blinded. They further decreed that the same thing should be done to Cecaumenos Catacalon as he had been Diogenes’ fellow-conspirator. This was the day of the commemoration of the Chief Apostles. This deed has been the subject of discussion from that day until now; but whether the Emperor was let into the secret by its authors, and gave in, or whether he really initiated it himself, God alone knows; up to the present I have been unable to find out for certain.

Invincible hand of the Highest

X Such then were the troubles which beset the Emperor through Diogenes, and the invincible hand of the Highest miraculously preserved him from imminent danger. However his nerve was not weakened by any of these occurrences, but, as he had proposed, he marched straight to Dalmatia. When Bolcanus heard that the Emperor had arrived at Lipenium and saw him in occupation, and realized the impossibility of defying the Roman lines in their close formation and full strategic equipment, he at once asked for terms of peace, proposing at the same time to send those long-promised hostages and never again to commit any hostile act.

So the Emperor received the barbarian with pleasure, for he hated the idea of, and wished to avert, civil war; for though they were Dalmatians, they were still Christians. Then Bolcanus took heart, and soon came bringing some relations and the chief of the Zupani [*=Zoupans, the feudatory lords] with him, and readily handed over his nephews as hostages to the Emperor, Uresis and Stephanus Bolcanus by name, and others as well, bringing up the number in all to twenty. For he could not possibly have made arrangements for the future on any other conditions. The Emperor, having thus peacefully solved what is usually accomplished by blood and iron, returned to the capital.

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