A league was made with the Sienese for twenty-five years, and our fortresses were restored to us. At this time there died at Faenza a Brother of the Order of the Servi di Maria,(1) who had performed many miracles; the bells having rung of their own accord when anyone died, and sick persons being healed. People went to him from all the country round. I spoke to a trustworthy man, who said that he had witnessed these facts. Miracles were constantly happening; sometimes down by the river and sometimes up in the mountains; and sometimes he was seen speaking with a woman, who was the Virgin. I mention this to show that people were in the mood to expect great things from God.
(1) From the Historie di Faenza by Giulio Cesare Tonduzzi, and the Annali dell' Ordine de' Serviti by Arcangelo Giani, we find that this was the Beato Jacopo Filippo Bertoni, who died on the 25th May, 1483. These writers also testify to the prodigies referred to by Landucci, which so moved the Faentini that they wished honours to be conferred upon Misserino Bertoni dalla Cella di Monte Chiaro, father of the defunct, by a public decree.
Giovan Simone, — Some days ago I received a letter from thee which gave me much pleasure. Since then I have written thee two letters, and I suppose I have had the same good fortune with respect to them that I usually have, that is to say, I suppose they have not arrived.
I may tell thee that, please God, two months will not pass before I return to Florence : and all that I have promised to do for Buonarroto and for thee I am prepared to carry out. I do not write to thee of my intentions at full length, nor do I say how eager I am to help you, because I am loath that others should get to know of our affairs : be of good cheer, however, for greater — or rather, better — things are in store for thee than thou thinkest. I have no more to tell thee on this head. Thou must know that here everyone is preparing for war, and this is the fourth day that the whole district has been under arms and a prey to rumoured dangers, with which the Church in especial is threatened : the cause of it being the Bentivogli, p46 who have made an attempt to enter the city with a great following of people. The high courage and prudence of his lordship the Legate, however, and the admirable precautions he has taken have, I believe, saved the patrimony from them once more, since at the twenty-third hour this evening we had news from their forces that they were turning back again with small honour to themselves, No more. Pray God for me : and live in happy expectation, because soon I shall be back in Florence.
The 2nd day of May.
The Bentivogli, sometime lords of Bologna, had been driven out by the Papal forces, and it was as a result of this reoccupation that Julius visited the city, as related in Michelangelo's letters. Shortly after the Pope's departure, however, Annibale Bentivoglio made the attempt to which this letter refers, but was repulsed by the Papal Legate, the Cardinal di Pavia.