The history of the Franks becomes, therefore, the history of the Netherlands.
For a century longer, Rome still retains its outward form, but the swarming nations are now in full career.
A soil, exhausted by the long culture of Pagan empires, was to lie fallow for a still longer period.
A new civilization was not to be improvised by a single mind.
Enthusiasm could not supply the place of experience.
The sword – the first, for a time the only force: the force of iron.
The crusades made great improvement in the condition of the serfs.
A third force, developing itself more slowly, becomes even more potent than the rest: the power of gold.
The ferocious inroads of the Normans scared many weak and timid persons into servitude.
Give us the luxuries of life, and we will dispense with its necessaries.