BENARES. (From a Photograph by Frith and Co.)Napoleon's Designs on Spain—The Continental System—Treaty of Fontainebleau—Junot marches on Portugal—Flight of the Royal Family—The Milan Decree—The Pope imprisoned in the Quirinal—Imbecility of the Spanish Government—Quarrels of the Spanish Royal Family—Occupation of the Spanish Fortresses—The King's Preparations for Flight—Rests at Madrid—Abdication of Charles IV.—Murat occupies Madrid—The Meeting at Bayonne—Joseph becomes King of Spain—Insurrection in Spain—The Junta communicates with England—Ferocity of the War—Operations of Bessières, Duchesne, and Moncey—Dupont surrenders to Casta?os—Joseph evacuates Madrid—Siege of Saragossa—Napoleon's Designs on Portugal—Insurrection throughout the Country—Sir A. Wellesley touches at Corunna—He lands at Figueras—Battle of Roli?a—Wellesley is superseded by Burrard—Battle of Vimiera—Arrival of Dalrymple—Convention of Cintra—Inquiry into the Convention—Occupation of Lisbon—Napoleon's Preparations against Spain—Wellesley is passed over in favour of Moore—Moore's Advance—Difficulties of the March—Incompetency of Hookham Frere—Napoleon's Position in Europe—The Meeting at Erfurth—Napoleon at Vittoria—Destruction of the Spanish Armies—Napoleon enters Madrid—Moore is at last undeceived—The Retreat—Napoleon leaves Spain—Moore retires before Soult—Arrival at Corunna—The Battle—Death of Sir John Moore—The Ministry determine to continue the War—Scandal of the Duke of York—His Resignation—Charges against Lord Castlereagh—Wellesley arrives in Portugal—He drives Soult from Portugal into Spain—His Junction with Cuesta—Position of the French Armies—Folly of Cuesta—Battle of Talavera—State of the Commissariat—Wellesley's Retreat—French Victories—The Lines of Torres Vedras—The Walcheren Expedition—Flushing taken—The Troops die from Malaria—Disastrous Termination of the Expedition—Sir John Stuart in Italy and the Ionian Islands—War between Russia and Turkey—Collingwood's last Exploits—Attempt of Gambier and Cochrane on La Rochelle.The year 1732 was distinguished by little of importance. The Opposition, led on by Pulteney, attacked the Treaty of Vienna, concluded on March 16th, 1731, by which the Pragmatic Sanction had been approved of, and which, they contended, might lead us into a Continental war some day, or into a breach of the public faith, of which, they asserted, this Ministry had perpetrated too many already. They assailed the standing army, but were answered that there was yet a Pretender, and many men capable of plotting and caballing against the Crown. The King was so incensed at Pulteney for his strictures on the army, that he struck his name out of the list of Privy Councillors, and ordered that all commissions of the peace which he held in different counties should be revoked. Amongst the staunchest supporters of the Government was Lord Hervey, a young man of ability who is now best remembered because, having offended Pope, he was, according to custom, pilloried by the contentious poet, as Sporus in the Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot. Pope nicknamed him Lord Fanny, in derision of his dainty and effeminate manners. Hervey contended that the writers who attacked Government ought to be put down by force, and in his own person he attempted to put this in practice; for Pulteney being suspected by him of having written a scarifying article on him in The Craftsman, he challenged him, and both combatants were wounded. Plumer very justly contended that scribblers ought to be left to other scribblers.
Another ground of attack upon the Government at the opening of the Session was their conduct in not bringing up Mr. O'Connell for judgment. It was alleged that they had entered into a corrupt compromise with the great Irish agitator, in order to avert his hostility and secure his support at the elections. This was indignantly denied both by Mr. Stanley and Lord Plunket. They contended that as the Act expired with the Parliament, so did the conviction, and that Mr. O'Connell could not be legally punished. This was the opinion of the law officers of the Crown in Ireland, an opinion in which the English law officers concurred. Mr. Stanley said:—"Not only was there no collusion or compromise, but I should have been most glad if Mr. O'Connell could have been brought up for judgment; but then we have been told that we ought not to have dissolved Parliament, because by so doing Mr. O'Connell had escaped. Now, no man can be more sensible than I am of the importance of showing to the people of Ireland that if Mr. O'Connell chooses to go beyond the law, he is not above the law; but, without meaning the slightest disrespect to Mr. O'Connell, I must say that if I put on the one hand the success of a great and important measure like the Reform Bill, and on the other the confinement of Mr. O'Connell in his Majesty's gaol of Kilmainham for three, six, or nine months, I must say that what became of Mr. O'Connell was as dust in the balance. Besides, the impression of the supremacy of the law was made upon the people by the fact of the verdict having been obtained against him, and an immediate change was wrought in the system of agitation, which, indeed, ceased. Such being the case, the question of what might be the personal consequences to any individual by the dissolution became of still less importance than it was before."On April 6th a great meeting was held in Westminster, avowedly to add weight to the county petitions for economical reform, which were now pouring into the House of Commons. Fox presided, and was supported by the Dukes of Devonshire and Portland. Government, to throw discredit on the meeting, affected alarm, and, at the request of the Middlesex magistrates, who were believed to have been moved by Ministers to make it, a body of troops was drawn up in the neighbourhood of Westminster Hall. The indignation of the Opposition was so much excited that Burke, in the House of Commons, commenting on this attempt to insinuate evil designs against the friends of reform, denounced the Middlesex magistrates as creeping vermin—the very "scum of the earth;" and Fox declared that if soldiers were to be let loose on the constitutional meetings of the people, then all who went to such meetings must go armed!The Bills were highly necessary, and, on the whole, well calculated to nip in the bud those ever-growing abuses of India and its hundred millions of people which, some seventy years later, compelled Government to take the control out of the hands of a mere trading company, whose only object was to coin as much money as possible out of the country and the folk. But it needed no sagacity to see that the means of defeat lay on the very surface of these Bills. Those whose sordid interests were attacked had only to point to the fact that Parliament, and not the Crown, was to be the governing party under these Bills, in order to secure their rejection. This was quickly done through a most ready agent. Thurlow had been removed by the Ministry from the Woolsack, where he had remained as a steady opponent of all the measures of his colleagues; and it required but a hint from the India House, and he was at the ear of the king. Nothing was easier than for Thurlow to inspire George III. with a deep jealousy of the measure, as aiming at putting the whole government of India into the hands of Parliament and of Ministers, and the effect was soon seen.
With these superb demonstrations on the part of England terminated the war. Her enemies discovered that her hoped-for fall was yet far off, and were much more inclined to listen to overtures of peace, of which they were now all in great need. These negotiations had been begun by Fox immediately on the accession of the Rockingham Ministry to office. Unfortunately the division of work between two Secretaries of State entailed a double negotiation. To Fox as Secretary of Foreign Affairs fell the arrangements for peace with France and Spain and Holland, to Lord Shelburne as Colonial Secretary fell all arrangements connected with the colonies, that is, with the United States. It was most important that the two Ministers should be in close accord. Unfortunately their views differed widely. Fox was for the immediate recognition of the independence of America; Shelburne urged that to give independence at once was to throw away a trump card. Further, Mr. Oswald, Shelburne's agent, was duped by Franklin into accepting from him a paper, in which the surrender of Canada was laid down as a basis of peace. This paper Shelburne probably showed to the king, but, with great duplicity, refrained from mentioning its existence to his colleagues. On the 8th of May Mr. Thomas Grenville, Fox's agent, arrived at Paris, and negotiations were begun in real earnest. But the na?ve confession of Oswald that peace was absolutely necessary to England greatly hampered his efforts, and in a conversation with Lord Shelburne's envoy the existence of the Canada paper leaked out. Fox was naturally furious, but the majority of the Cabinet were opposed to him, and voted against his demand for the immediate recognition of American independence. He only refrained from resigning because he would not embitter Lord Rockingham's last moments in the world. Lord Shelburne became Premier in July.Hon. J. Hutchinson, made Lord Hutchinson, and a general.
In Canada the management of the war was more successful. To maintain the war in that quarter, Congress had ordered nine regiments to be raised. One of these was to be raised in Canada itself, and for this purpose a commission was given to Moses Hazen, who had formerly been a captain of rangers, under Wolfe. He was not, however, very successful. The Canadians were not to any extent disaffected to the British Government, and by no means well affected to the New Englanders, who were bitterly bigoted against Catholics, which the Canadians chiefly were. When Hazen and Arnold saw that the Canadians would neither enlist nor bring provisions to their camps, without cash payment, they commenced plundering for all that they wanted, and thus confirmed that people in their hatred of the Americans. They, moreover, insulted the Canadians by ridiculing their rites of worship.Whilst Clive had been reducing our enemies in Bengal and Oude, a more powerful antagonist than any whom we had yet encountered in India was every day growing more formidable in Mysore, and combining several of the petty chiefs of the different States of Madras as his allies against us. He was now far more considerable than when he had appeared against us as the ally of the French general, Lally, in the neighbourhood of Pondicherry. Hyder Ali was a self-made man. He was originally the grandson of a wandering fakir; then the captain of banditti; then at the head of an army composed of freebooters; continually growing in the number of his followers, and in the wealth procured by plunder, he at length became Commander-in-Chief of the Rajah of Mysore. Soon rising in his ambition, he seized the Rajah, his master, pensioned him off with three lacs of rupees, and declared himself the real Rajah. In 1761 he was become firmly established on the throne of Mysore, but this distinction did not satisfy him. He determined to be the founder of Mysore as a great kingdom, and extended his power to near the banks of the Kistnah. There he was met and repulsed by the Peishwa of the Mahrattas, who crossed the Kistnah, defeated him repeatedly, seized some of his newly-acquired territory, and levied on him thirty-two lacs of rupees. Hyder returned to Seringapatam, which he had made his capital, and had strongly fortified, and he thence conducted an expedition against Malabar, which he conquered, and put the chiefs to death to make his hold of it the more secure. It is unnecessary to go minutely into the history of the next few years. Hyder organised an army of 100,000 men, officered by Frenchmen, and sometimes in confederation with the Nizam of the Deccan, sometimes in conjunction with the Mahrattas of the Western Ghauts, waged perpetual war on the English. In 1769 Indian Stock fell sixty per cent. The resources of the Company were fast becoming exhausted, when Hyder Ali, by an artful feint, drew the English army, in the spring of 1769, a hundred and forty miles to the south of Madras. Then, by a rapid march, he suddenly appeared, with a body of five thousand horse, on the heights of St. Thomas, overlooking Madras. The whole of the city and vicinity, except the port of St. George itself, lay at his mercy. The terrified Council, in all haste, offered most advantageous terms of peace, which it was the very object of Hyder to accept, and that, too, before the English commander, Colonel Smith, could arrive and intercept his retreat. Hyder gladly consented to the terms, which were those of mutual restitution, and of alliance and mutual defence: the last, a condition which, with Hyder's disposition to aggrandisement, was sure to bring the English into fresh trouble.
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The military transactions of the Continent this year had been of the most remarkable kind. Buonaparte, after his repulse at Pultusk, had retired to Warsaw, which he entered on the first day of the year 1807. He calculated on remaining there till the return of spring. But Benningsen, the Russian general, was determined to interrupt this pleasant sojourn. He had an army of eighty thousand or ninety thousand men, with a very bad commissariat, and equally badly defended from the severity of the winter. The King of Prussia was cooped up in K?nigsberg, with an army of a very few thousand men, and his situation was every day rendered more critical by the approach of the divisions of Ney and Bernadotte, whom the treacherous surrender of the Prussian fortresses by their commanders had set at liberty. But Benningsen hastened to relieve the King of Prussia at K?nigsberg; his Cossacks spread themselves over the country with great adroitness, surprising the French convoys of provisions. More Cossacks were streaming down to their support out of the wintry wilds of Russia, and the French were forced from their pleasant quarters in Warsaw, to preserve the means of their existence. Buonaparte, alarmed at these advances, determined to turn out and force the Russians eastward, towards the Vistula, as he had forced the Prussians at Jena with their rear turned to the Rhine. To take the Russians thus in the rear, he ordered Bernadotte to engage the attention of Benningsen on the right whilst he made this man?uvre on the left. But Benningsen, fortunately, learned their stratagem, by the seizure of the young French officer who was carrying Buonaparte's dispatches to Bernadotte. Benningsen was therefore enabled to defeat Buonaparte's object. He concentrated his troops on Preuss-Eylau, where he determined to risk a battle. But he was not allowed to occupy this position without several brisk encounters, in which the Russians lost upwards of three thousand men. The battle of Eylau took place on the 7th of February. It was such a check as Buonaparte had never yet experienced. He had been beaten at every point; Augereau's division was nearly destroyed; that of Davoust, nearly twenty thousand in number, had been repulsed by a much inferior body of Prussians. Fifty thousand men are said to have been killed and wounded, of whom thirty thousand were French. Twelve eagles had been captured, and remained trophies in the hands of the Russians.(After the Portrait by A. E. Challon, R.A.)The General Election—Crime in Ireland—Increased Powers granted to the Executive—Ireland on the Verge of Rebellion—Death of O'Connell—Viceroyalty of Lord Clarendon—Special Commission in Clare, Limerick, and Tipperary—The Commission at Clonmel—Rise of the Young Ireland Party—The Nation—Meagher and Smith O'Brien—They try to dispense with the Church—The Irish Confederation—The United Irishman—News of the French Revolution—Panic in Dublin—Lord Clarendon and Mr. Birch—The Deputation to Paris—Smith O'Brien in Parliament—Preparations for Civil War—Young and Old Ireland at blows—Arrest and Trial of Mitchel, Smith O'Brien, and Meagher—Transportation of Mitchel—Lord Clarendon's Extraordinary Powers—Smith O'Brien in the South—Commencement of the Insurrection—Battle of Ballingarry—Arrest of Smith O'Brien—Collapse of the Rebellion—Trial of the Conspirators—Trials and Sentences—The Rate in Aid—The Encumbered Estates Act—The Queen's Visit to Ireland—Cove becomes Queenstown—A Visit to Cork—Kingstown and Dublin—Departure from Dublin—An Affecting Incident—Belfast.
It was with this object that Mr. Pierce Mahony got up the celebrated "Leinster declaration," so called from the signature of Ireland's only duke. But the experiment served only to reveal the weakness of the moderate party, for after lying for signature in Latouche's Bank for two months, only forty-two names were attached to it within that period. When, however, the struggle between the two parties was on the point of having a bloody issue, the alarm spread through the ranks of moderate men on both sides, and the document rapidly received signatures. The declaration set forth that the disqualifying laws which affected Roman Catholics were productive of consequences prejudicial in the highest degree to the interests of Ireland—the primary cause of her poverty—the source of political discontents and religious animosities—destructive alike of social happiness and national prosperity. Unless the legislature should speedily apply a remedy to those evils, they must in their rapid progression assume such a character as would, perhaps, render their removal impossible. It was stated, therefore, to be a matter of paramount importance that the whole subject should be taken into immediate consideration by Parliament, "with a view to such a final conciliatory adjustment as may be conducive to the peace and strength of the United Kingdom, to the stability of our national institutions, and to the general satisfaction and concord of all classes of his Majesty's subjects."
On the 5th of June, the day after the king's birthday, Pitt introduced his plan of military defence. It was to leave the militia what it was, but to increase the regular army by making it compulsory on parishes to furnish each a certain number of men to what was called the Army of Reserve—a body called out for five years, and only to be employed within the United Kingdom. He desired to break down the distinctions between this and the regular army by attaching the Reserve to the Regulars as second battalions, and encouraging volunteering thence into the Regulars. This was known as the Additional Force Bill, which was denounced by the Opposition as veiled conscription. In other ways, notably by the erection of his martello towers, Pitt set himself to rouse the spirit of the nation, in face of the very real danger of invasion.This note contained much that was not true. It implied that Buonaparte had come voluntarily and without necessity on board the Bellerophon, whilst it was well known that perhaps another hour would have been too late to secure him from seizure by the officers of Louis, king of France. He affected to claim the protection of British laws, when he was a notoriously proclaimed outlaw, so proclaimed by the whole of the Allied Powers for the breach of his solemn engagement to renounce all claims on the throne of France. There was, therefore, no answer whatever to that note from the Prince Regent, who was under engagement to his Allies, as they to him, to hold no communication with a man who had so shamefully broken his word, and had, moreover, thereby sacrificed so many valuable lives. The reply was from Lord Melville, First Lord of the Admiralty, announcing to him that the British Government, with the approbation of its Allies, had determined that, to prevent any further opportunity for the disturbance of the peace of Europe by General Buonaparte, he should be sent to St. Helena; that they had been guided in this choice, not only by the desire of his security, but also by the consideration that the island was extremely healthy, and would afford him much greater liberty than he could enjoy in a nearer locality; and that he might select three officers, with his surgeon, and twelve domestics to attend him. From the number of the officers Savary and Lallemand were expressly excepted. It also added that the persons permitted to accompany him would be subject to a certain degree of restraint, and would not be permitted to leave the island without the sanction of the British Government. It was finally added that General Buonaparte should make no delay in the selection of his suite, as Rear-Admiral Sir George Cockburn, appointed to the command of the Cape of Good Hope, would convey him in the Northumberland to St. Helena, and would be presently ready to sail. Napoleon left Plymouth Sound on the 5th of August, and died at St. Helena on May 5th, 1821, having spent his last years in quarrelling with his gaoler, Sir Hudson Lowe, and in an elaborate attempt to falsify history.详情
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