13 Pages

at the death of Philippe Ie Bel knows that it must "take their place in the French unity" ; for if Navarre, marked on the map as one of the vassal

Byat the other end of the chain by the provisional absence of

From the earliest times rivers have alternated with mountains in forming the natural boundaries of States. When we read again the beginning of the first book of Caesar's Commentaries, a book of such singular historic value in all respects, we find that rivers are the only frontiers mentioned: GaUos ab Aquitanis Garumna jlumen, a Belgis Matrona et Sequana dividit; the Germans, as we know, are those who trans Rhenum incolunt, a celebrated statement which has caused much blood to flow in the past. Still the idea persists that a stream of water, even a tiny stream of water easy to cross, is a boundary; that a stream, which we do not see as it is-a narrow thread of water amongst meadows bordered by peaceful willows-but which we imagine to ourselves according to the map as a line only, is necessarily a boundary, an indispensable and ineluctable boundary which must not even be discussed; it persists with so much force even in our own days that not even the most powerful and evident interest in so doing so is able to· banish it.