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A FULFILMENT OF PROPHECY
“They shall cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be removed: their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord.”—Ezek. 7:19; Zeph. 1:18.
NO DOUBT some others as well as we overlooked important items of news respecting the ferocity of the bread riots in Italy during the early Summer. These accounts are so graphic, and so clearly foreshadow what may be expected during the dark trouble approaching, in which all law and order will go down before anarchy, that we think it well to give them space here even tho too late to present as news. The items were cabled from London and Berlin, as follows:—
“London.—Italy has got to the brink of revolution almost unobserved by a world intent on Spanish-American affairs. Years of discontent and grinding poverty on one side and tremendous taxation and almost unparalleled official corruption and thievery on the other, then a few bread riots as advance rumblings of the storm, have so inflamed the masses, that to-day throughout the peninsula there are burnings and murders, a peasantry in arms against the existing order.
“A secret junta has been at work organizing rebellions. The present outbreak was sooner than they planned, but may serve their purpose. It is against the dynasty, against the nobility and against the rich. Scenes already enacted bear startling similarity to those in France before the fall of the Bastile. The murder of Miller Bartella, who thanked the Virgin for dear bread, then offered the mob in vain his fortune for his life, is a picture throwing lurid light upon the situation.
“Reports coming in to-day are of renewed fighting by well armed mobs, the government in panic and a growing fear that the army may go over to the populace. Only the sternest repressive measures will serve to check the rebellion, and these are acknowledged inadequate for the bottom trouble.”
“Berlin.—The accounts that reach here of the troubles in Italy show that in some parts of the country the worst outrages of anarchism have occurred. Murder and incendiarism are the order of the day. It is already known how the mob did Physician Brandis to death at Minerveno. From his house, which was set on fire, the rioters went to the residence of a mill owner named Bartella, whose mills had already been plundered. This man did not have the reputation of being a philanthropist. Only a few days before he had a thanksgiving mass read in the presence of all his employes in his private chapel because the madonna had made it possible for him to sell corn at 50 francs per hundred-weight.
“When the mob reached the house of this miller millionaire he had shots fired from the windows at them. This doing no good, he threw 1,000 francs in small nickel pieces into the crowd, but all in vain. The doors of the house were battered in, and a terrible scene followed.
“Bartella bargained for his life. He offered thousands upon thousands of francs, all his fortune, but amid savage cries of ‘We want your head,’ the old usurer was beaten to death. His wife was frightfully injured by blows from a hatchet, and the children barely escaped being dashed from a balcony.
“The mob then went on plundering. They penetrated all the houses occupied by the better classes, robbing and burning. After eight hours plundering the military arrived on the scene and the mob fled, heavily laden with loot.”
— November 15, 1898 —