Francis Lieber.

Library of universal knowledge. A reprint of the last (1880) Edinburgh and London edition of Chambers' encyclopaedia, with copious additions by American editors (Volume 13) online

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income from other sources, and 21 by universal suffrage. The government is adminis-
tered by three heads of departments. As a member of the empire, Saxe-Weimar-Eisuuaeh
has one voice in the federal council, and elects three deputies to the imperial diet. The
troops of Saxe- Weimar-Eisenach form part of one of the Thuriugiau regiments in the
llth corps d'armee of the empire. The budget for the financial period 1875-77 shows
annual receipts amounting to 316,000, and an annual expenditure of 314,000, leaving
a small balance in favor of the exchequer. The public debt amounted in 1876 to a total
of 438,340. The grand-duke of Weimar is the chief of the Ernestine branch of the
house of Saxony. The most celebrated of the Weimar family was duke Karl-August,
the Maecenas of the art, literature, and science of Germany, who took the reins of gov-
ernment in 1775, and displayed extreme anxiety to favor the development of public
prosperity and the progress of education. Under his fostering care, the university of
Jena became a focus of intellect and knowledge to Germany; and the presence of
Herder, Goethe, Schiller, and others, at his court well entitled it to be denominated tlu
abode of the muses. He also elevated the theater of Weimar to its present position ns
the chief German school of dramatic art. In 1806 he joined the confederation of tut)
Rhine with the title of duke, and received from the congress of Vienna an accession of
territory, and the title of grand-duke. In 1816 he granted a liberal representative con-
stitution to his subjects, expressly guaranteeing the liberty of the press, and died June
14, 1823. His successors have followed iu his footsteps. See GERMANY.

SAX IFRAGE, Saxifraga, a genus of plants of the natural order saxifragea, or saxi-
fragacecR. This order has a calyx, usually of five sepals more or less cohering at the
base; a corolla usually of five perigynous petals, alternate with the sepals, rarely want-
ing; perigynous stamens; a hypogynous or perigynous disk; an ovary, usually of two
carpels, cohering more or less by their face, but diverging at the apex; fruit generally a
1 or 2 celled capsule, the cells opening at the ventral suture, and often divaricating when
ripe; the seeds usually minute and numerous. The order saxifrages is sometimes
regarded as including above 900 species, divided into several suborders, which are
elevated by some botanists into distinct orders leaving, however, more than 300 species,
to tlic reduced order SAXIFRAGES, which contains herbaceous plants, often growing in
patches, with entire or divided alternate exstipulate leaves, natives chiefly of mountain-
ous tracts in the northern hemisphere, and often found up to the limits of perpetual
snow, some of them forming there a rich and beautiful turf, and adorning it with their
very pleasing flowers. A considerable number are natives of Britain. Some of the
genus saxifraga are well known in gardens, and are employed to cover rock-works, etc.
'B. umbrofta, London pride, or none-so-pretty, is familiar in all cottage gardens. It is a
native of the hills of Spain, and of the s. and w. of Ireland.

SAXO-GRAMMATICUS (i.e., Saxo the "grammarian" or "scholar"), the most cele-
brated of the early Danish chroniclers, flourished in the 12th c., and was secretary to
archbishop Absalom. He is said to have died at Koeskilde in 1204. Saxo-Grammaticus
undoubtedly formed his style on that of the later Roman historians, particularly Valerius
Maximus, yet iu his whole mode of representation he belongs to the school of mediaeval
chroniclers, although ranking first in that school. Erasmus half wondered at hi*
elegance. Moreover, it adds mightily to our respect for Saxo-Grammaticus that,
although a cleric, he did not in the very least degree allow r himself to be swayed in his
historical conceptions by the prejudices incident to his profession. His work is entitled
Hixtoria Danictt, and consists of 16 books. The earlier portions are of course not very
critical, but in regard to times near his own, Saxo-Grammaticus is a most invaluable
authority. According to his own statement, he derived his knowledge of the remoter
period of Danish history the "heroic age" of the n. from old songs, runic inscrip-
tions, and the historical notices and traditions of the Icelanders; but he is not sharply
critical in his treatment of the Danish sagas, although a rudimentary critical tendency is
occasionally visible. The best edition of the Histwia Danica is that undertaken by P.
E. Miiller, and finished by J. M. Velschov (Copen. 1839). It is furnished with a

Saxon. 198


complete critical apparatus. There are good translations from the original Latin into

SAXON AKCHITECTTIEE the style of building used in England before the introduc-,
tiou of the Norman architecture at "the conquest. There are few specimens remaining
which can be depended upon as genuine. The Saxons built chiefly vu wood, and all
their wooden edifices are now lost. It seems probable that a rude and simple style, not
unlike early Norman, was that used by the Saxons. There are several buildings in Eng-
land which Mr. Rickman considers entitled to rank as Saxon. Amongst these, tue
tower of earl's Barton, Northamptonshire, is one of the best examples. The peculiar
'lon- and short" -work of the quoins, the projecting fillets running up the face of the
walls, and interlacing like wood-work, and the baluster-like shafts between the openings
of the upper windows, are all characteristic of the style.


SAXON STATES, MINOK. The capitulation of Wittenberg, which followed the rout
of Muhlberg (see SAXONY), and deprived John Frederick the magnanimous of the elec-
torate of Saxony, at the same time despoiled him of a large portion of the hereditary
possessions of the Ernestine branch. The remainder, amounting after the acquisition
of Coburg, Altenburg, Eisenberg, etc., in 1554 to little more than one-fifth of the
whole Saxon territory, was divided into two portions, Saxe-Gotha and Save- Weimar, the
former falling to John Frederick II., and the latter to John William, the two sons of
the deposed elector. Each of these portions was afterward subdivided, the former into
Saxe-Coburg and Saxe-Eisenach, and the latter (1573) into Saxe-Weimar and Scuv-Atiert-
burg. It would only bewilder the reader to attempt to follow the endless subdivisions
and reunions that followed. Suffice it to say that the gradual adoption of the law of
primogeniture during the 18th c., and the extinction of various cadet branches, has left
the four states of Saxe-Altenburg, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Saxe-Meiningeu, and Saxe-
Weimar-Eisenach, as described under their several names. Should the Albertine or
Saxon-royal line become extinct, the duke of Weimar succeeds to the throne; and failing
his family, the lines of Saxe-Meiuingen, Saxe-Altenburg, and Saxe-Coburg-Gotha obtain
in this order the right of succession.


SAXONS (Lat. Saxvnes, Ger. Sachsen), a German people, whose name Is usually derived
from an old German word salts, meaning a "knife," are first mentioned by Ptolemy,
who makes them inhabit a district s. of the Cimbrian peninsula. Toward the end of the
3d c., a "Saxon league" or "Confederation" makes its appearance in north-western
Germany, to which belonged, besides Saxons proper, the Cherusci, the Angrivarii, and
the largest part of Chauci. In the times of the emperors Julian and Valeniiuiau, Sax-
ons and Franks invaded the Roman territory; but their piratical descents on the coasts
of Britain and Gaul are far more famous. . At what period these commenced, it ia
impossible to tell, but it is believed to have been much earlier than Is commonly sup-
posed. Recent investigations seem to prove that Saxons had established therr.Reivp.-i iu
England long before the time of the mythical Hengist and Horsa (see ANI*LO-SAXONS);
and we know that as early as 287 A.D. , Carausius, a Belgic admiral in the Roman ser-
vice, made himself "Augustus" in Britain by their help. They had firmly rooted them-
selves, at the beginning of the 5th c., in the present Normandy, where a tract of land
was named after them, the Limes Saxonicus. They fought against Attila (q.v.) in the
Catalaunian plain, 451 A.JX They also obtained a footing at the mouth of the Loire;
but all the Saxons who settled in France " disappeared" before the Franks, i.e., were
probably incorporated with their more powerful kinsmen of southern Germany. At
home, the Saxons (called Alt Sachsen, or "Old Saxons," to distinguish them from the
emigrant hordes who found their way to England and France) enlarged, by conquest,
their territory n. and n.w. as far as the North Sea, the Yssel, and the Rhine; s., as far
as the Sieg, and nearly to the Eder; eastward, to the Weser andWerra, the southern
Harz, the Elbe, and the Lower Saale. Along with the Franks, they destroyed the king-
dom of the Thuringians in 531, and obtained possession of the land between the Harz
and theUnstrut; but Hiis district was in turn forced to acknowledge the Frankish sover-
eignty. From 719, wars between the Saxons and the Franks became constant; but the
the latter, after 722, were generally successful, in spite of the vigorous resistance offered
by Wittekind; and 804, the Saxons were finally subjugated by the arms of Charlemagne.
Wittekind was the last Saxon king, and the first Saxon duke of the German empire. A
collection of the old national laws and usages of the Saxons, under the'title of Lex Sax~
num, was made during the reign of Charlemagne.

During 1830-40, A. Schmeller published (from two manuscripts, one preserved at
Munich, and the other in the British museum) an " Old Saxon" poem of the 9th c., called
Heliand, i.e., the "Healer,"or " Saviour," which narrates in alliterative verse the ' His-
tory of Christ" according to the gospels, whence it is also called the " Old Saxon Gospel
Harmony." It is probably a part of a more comprehensive work, embracing a poetical
treatment of the history of the Old and New Testament, which Ludvig the pious
intrusted to some celebrated Saxon singer. This unknown poet lived, as his language
lads us to conjecture, somewhere between Munster, Essen, and Kleve. His work is

-I QQ Sason.


not only the almost sole monument of the old Saxon tongue left us, but is also of high
poetical value, through its warmth of feeling, and the strength aud splendor of its dic-
tion worth}-, indeed, to take its place alongside the contemporary Anglo-Saxon aud old
Norse poetry. See Yihnar's Deutsclw Altertliuruer iui Hcliand (Alarb. 1845).

SAXONY (Ger. Sachnett), KINGDOM OF, the second in importance and population of
the minor German states, though inferior to three of them in extent, is bounded on the
n. and n.c. by Prussia, s.e. and s. by Austria, and w. by Bavaria, Thuringia (q.v.), and
Prussia. It is divided, for administrative purposes, into the following circles:

English Sq. Miles. Pop. in 1PT5.

Dresden 1680 749, .Ida

Leipsic 1870 639,731

Zwickau 1790 1,031,905

Bautzen , 950 339,203

Total, 5,790 2,760,343

The kingdom is somewhat of the form of a right-angled triangle, with the right angle
in the n.w., and the longer side lying along' the foot of the Erz-gebirge range, which
sends its spurs northward over the southern half of the country, giving to that portion
a somewhat mountainous character, while the northern half remains a Hat or undulating
plain. The whole country, with the exception of a small portion in the extreme e.,
which belongs to the Oder basin, and is watered by the Neisse. is drained by the Elbe
(which is \\holly navigable in Saxony) and its tributaries the Muglitz, Wilde-
\Vcisseritz, Trubsch, Mulde, and White Elster, on the w., aud the "\Yessnitz, Black
Elster, and Spree on the east. From the point where the Elbe bursts through
the Erz-gebirge chain to within about' 8 m. of Dresden, it traverses a district rich
in picturesque scenery, to which the somewhat inappropriate name of Saxon
Switzerland has been given. This district, which averages about 24 m. long by
23 broad, is an elevated plateau of coarse crumbling sandstone (much resembling the
English green-sand); and though destitute of the perpetually snow-clad mountains,
glaciers, serrated ridges, and escarped peaks which give a character of lofty grandeur to
its namesake, it can boast of features equally peculiar and strikingly romantic. From
the soft nature of the rock, it has yielded freely to the action of the mountain rills,
which rise iron> the hills on its e. and w. borders, and converge to the Elbe, and is cut
up in all directions by deep narrow gorges (so symmetrical in their formation as to
resemble artificial lanes), the constantly deepening beds of these mountain torrents,
which here form cascades, there sullenly glide through deep vales bordered by rocks of
the most fantastic forms, or by steep rugged slopes thickly clad with trees. High above
the level of the plateau rise towering rocks, some of them pyramidal or conical, others
pillar-like, while a few taper almost to a point, and then bulge out at the top; all clearly
testifying to the agency by which they have been produced. The mediaeval knights took
advantage of these curious results of nature's so-called freaks, to erect castles upon the
summitfTof some of (hem; several of the?e castles still exist, and one of them, Konigs-
tein, is almost the only virgin fortress in Europe. The most remarkable of these peaks
are Konigstein (864 ft.), Lflienstein (1254 ft.), the Bastei (600 ft.), Nonnenstein, Jung-
fenisprmig, and seven others, each of which possesses its group of traditionary gnomes
and kobolds. The lakes of Saxony are unimportant, and the only canals are those con-
structed between the mines and ore mills.

Climate, Soil, Products, ct. The climate is healthy, and on the whole temperate,
though occasionally severe in the south-western districts. Of the whole surface, more
than one half is arable, nearly one-third is in forest, about one-ninth in meadow, while
the rest is occupied by gardens and vineyards, coarse pasture and waste land, or quar-
ries and mines. The arable land has long been in a high state of cultivation, as is the
case with the whole of Upper Saxony (see History), yet notwithstanding this, and its
extreme fertility, the produce is hardly sufficient to supply the wants of the dense popu-
lation (441 to the English sq. mile). The agricultural products consist of the usual
cereals and leguminous plants, with rape, buckwheat, hops, flax, and potatoes, and all
kinds of fruits suited to the climate. The forests, the largest of which are in the Voigt-
lund (the s.w. corner of Zwickau), and along the northern slopes of the Erz-gebirge,
supply timber of excellent quality, and in such abundance as to render them one of tho
great sources of wealth and industry. The rearing of cattle is an important employment
in the mountainous districts of the s.w. Sheep, for which Saxony was formerly so
famous, have been less generally attended to of late years, though, from the introduction
of merinos, and increased care in breeding and rearing, the quality of the wool lias much
improved, and at the present day it occupies a high position in the markets of the world.
Minerals are another great source of national wealth, the ore being both rich and abun-
dant, and the processes of excavation and smelting in a high state of perfection. Most of
the mines belong to the crown; they are situated in Zwickau and Dresden, and mostly
on or near the northern slope of the Erz-gebirge. The mineral wealth includes silver,
tin, iron, cobalt, bismuth,, lead, nickel, arsenic, antimony, and other metals, besides
coal, marble, porcelain-earth, vitriol, and various gems. In 1870 there were in opera-



tion 548 mines; 10,045 men were employed in the el

The products raised in that year had a value of 12,929,360 thaleis (il 9oJ,4U4)

X/X, Commerce, ^.-Manufacturing industry has also been great y deve -
ooed and several branches have been carried to a high degree of perfection This
Sea of labor employs nearly three-fifths of the whole population The oldest manu-
facture is hat of 1 nen which at present employs more than 16,000 ooins; but it is now
ecCed by the cotton-spinning and weaving, which is the most important branch of
Saxon industry has its chief selts at Chemnitz, Frankenberg, Zschoppau, Folkland, and
LaSu^ and gives work to upward of 150 spinning-mills. The woolen manufacturer
are alo extensive. Broadcloth, thread, merinos, silks, mixed silk, and woolen wares,
etc are also produced in considerable quantity, and of excellent quality; the muslin de
fames being still preferred by many to those of England and France while the laces and
embroiderk'snreserve their ancient well-won reputation. Saxon pottery and porcelain
bave long be\n famous. The chief centers of manufacturing industry are in Bautzen
and in the mountainous country to the n. of the Erz-gebu;ge. Owing to his extension
of manufacturing industry, combined with a deficiency in the supply of home-grown
articles of consumption, an extensive foreign commerce is rendered necessary and this
is chiefly carried on through the medium of the great fairs of Leipsic (q.v). Ihe chi
imports are corn, wine, salt (not found in Saxony, though common enough in Prussian
Saxony), cotton, silk, flax, hemp, wool, coffee, tea, etc. The country is well pro-
vided with roads, railways, and lines of telegraph.

Government Religion, Education, Revenue, etc. The government of this very mterest-
inff country the reading of the history of which leaves on one's mind a firm sense of
both past a^es and present activity is a limited monarchy, hereditary in the Albertme
line and is carried on according to the constitution of Sept. 4, 1831, modified by changes
In 1849 1851 1860, 1861, 1868, and 1874. By the electoral law passed in the year K
the first of the two chambers which constitute the legislature consists of the princes of
the royal family, certain nobles, representatives of the Lutheran and Roman Catholic
churches, the chief proprietors, representatives of the universities, and the burgomasters
of the eight principal towns. The second chamber comprises 35 deputies from the
towns, and 45 from the rural communes. The supreme administration is managed by
six ministers (of justice, finance, the interior, war, religion and education, and foreign
affairs) The established religion is the Lutheran, though the reigning family, since the
time of Fr. Augustus I., have been Roman Catholic. The church department must,
so Ion"- as the reigning family remains Catholic, be administered by a member
of the established church. In 1871 there were 2,484,075 Lutherans; 9,347 Re-
formed; 53,642 Roman Catholics. The population of Saxony is by no means
purely German; in 1875 there still were upward of 50,000 who spoke Weudish.
Saxony has upward of 2,000 elementary schools, 11 gymnasia, and 12 real-sc?t>ilen; the
university is at Leipsic. The budget for 1876-77 showed receipts to the amount of
53,856.977 marks; the expenditure was a little less. The public debt at the beginning
of 1877 amounted to 404,^882,925 marks (of which a large proportion was incurred for
railways). The Saxon troops form the twelfth corps d'arrnee of the German empire.
Saxony has a war ministry of its own; but after the war of 1866 Saxony paid the penalty
of her opposition to Prussia by being compelled to make over to the king of Prussia the
supreme military command of the Saxon army, the right to garrison the fortress of
KOnigstein, the management of the postal, railway, and telegraphic systems, and the
charge of the diplomatic representation of Saxony abroad. As a member of the German
empire, Saxony has four voices in the federal council, and has a right to send 23 deputies
to the diet.

History of tfie Great Duchy of Lower Saxony, and of tlie Ascanian Electorate of Upper
Saxony. After the final conquest of the Saxons by Charlemagne they became one of the
components of the German empire; but their country by no means corresponded to what
is now known as Saxony. It included the most of the country between the Elbe, the
Harz mountains, the Rhine, and Friesland; and, in 850, was erected into a dukedom,
with Lubeck for its capital, and ruled by hereditary princes. Ludolf, the first duke, is
snid to have been the great-grandson of Wittekind, but nothing is certainly known of
his ancestry. His second son, Otho the illustrious (880-912), was the most distinguished
of the German princes; he fought valiantly against the Normans, and, on the extinction
of the Carlovingian dynasty (911), refused the crown of Germany which was unanimously
offered him by the electors. His son duke Henry (912-936), surnamed "the Fowler,"
obtained the throne (919). and commenced the Saxon line of German sovereigns, which
was continued by Otho I. (q.v.), Otho II. (q.v.), Otho III. (q.v.), and Henry II., and
ended in 1024. Otho I. handed over the great duchy of Saxony to Hermann Billung in
960, on condition of military service; and this family held it till il06. Under the Billung
dynasty the prosperity of the country greatly increased, and Meissen, Thuringia, East
Saxony in Lusalia, Saxony in the Northern Mark, Anhalt, Snltzwedel, and Slesvig
were all dependent on the Saxon duke. A portion of Saxony had, however, been
reserved by the emperor, Otho I., for his nephew Bruno, who founded a lordship of
Buxony-Brunswick; and, in the middle of the llth c., a duchy of " Saxony on the Weser"
was niHo founded; but both of these (united by marriage in 1090 or 109(5) came (1113) by
marriage to count Lothar of Suppliuburg, who was also invested (1106) with the great

201 Saxony ;

duchy of Saxony, which was now more extensive than ever, stretching from the Unstrut
iu Gotha, to the Eider, and from the Rhine to Pomerania. After Lothar's accession to
the imperial throne in 1125, he handed over (1127) the duchy to his son-in-law, Henry
the proud, the Guelphic duke of Bavaria, who was thus the ruler of more than half of
Germany; but this overgrown dominion did not long exist, for under his son, Henry the
lion (q.v.), it was wrested (1180) from the house of Guelph, Bavaria being given to the
house of \Vittelsbach; East Saxony created an electorate, and given to Bernhard of
Ascania; Brunswick and Luuehurg mostly restored to Henry's son; while the numerous
nnd powerful bishops of Northern Germany divided among themselves Westphalia,
Oldenburg, and many portions of Luneburg and Brunswick; Mecklenburg and Holstein
became independent, and the Saxon palatinate in Thuringia went to the landgraf Lud-
wig. Saxony, now shorn of its former greatness, consisted chiefly of what is now Prus-
sian Saxony, a few districts separated from Brandenburg, and Saxe-Laueuburg, the last
being the only portion of the great duchy of Saxony, or Lower Saxony, as it is called,
which retained the name. Wittenberg was the capital of the new duchy. Saxony was
diminished in 1211 by the separation of Anhalt as a separate principality; and in 1260 it
was permanently divided into two portions, Saxe-Lauenburg and Saxe- Wittenberg, to the
latter of which the electoral dignity remained, and to which, on subsequent dispute
between the two branches, it was confirmed by the celebrated golden bull (1356). The
Ascaniau line became extinct in 1422 with duke Albert III., and the duchy then passed
to Frederick the warlike, markgraf of Misnia, and landgraf of Thuringia, who was
invested with it by the emperor Sigismund in 1428. His possessions consisted of Thu-
ringia, the present kingdom of Saxony, Prussian Saxony, in fact the whole of Upper
Saxony, with the exception of Anhalt.

History oft/ie country now known as Saxony. The earliest inhabitants of upper Sax-
ony, since the Christian era, were the Hermunduri (see THURINGIA), and on the destruc-
tion of the great Thuringian kingdom iu the beginning of the 6th c., their settlements
were taken possession of by the Sorbs, a Slavic race, who practiced agriculture and
cattle-breeding. The Carlovingian rulers, dissatisfied with the ingress of. those non-
German tribes, erected "marks" to bar their progress; and duke Otho the illustrious of
Saxony, and his celebrated son, Henry the fowler, warred against them, the latter
subduing the Heveller, the Daleminzer, and the Miltzer founded in their country the
marks of Brandenburg (q.v.), Misnia (Meissen), and Lusatia (Lausitz), and planted col-
onies of Germans among the Sorbs. In 1090 the mark was bestowed on the house of
Wettin (a supposed off -shoot of the race of Wittekiud), and was confirmed as a heredi-

Online LibraryFrancis LieberLibrary of universal knowledge. A reprint of the last (1880) Edinburgh and London edition of Chambers' encyclopaedia, with copious additions by American editors (Volume 13) → online text (page 46 of 203)