« ForrigeFortsett »
temporary splendour, ultimately side of the Rhine, into which they wrought their ruin, and introduced had, with much difficulty, found a new order of affairs into the dif- means to penetrate, and from which tracted and fluctuating common- they had been, after much fruitless wealth.
toil and unluccessful efforts, comThe clofe of the year 1795 was pelled to retire with very considernot so favourable to the French as able loties. that of the preceding; they had The failure of the French in their projected at its commencement to expedition into Germany; their exfollow up their succesies in Holland, pulsion from every post they had ocby carrying their victoriolis arms in- cupied on the eaitern banks of the to the heart of Germany; but a va- Rhine; their retreat across that riety of obstructions had either pre- river; the pursuit of their discomfitvented or frustrated their designs. ed army into the borders of France; At home the violence of the many and the leveral defeats they expefadions, open or concealed, stood rienced, were circumliances so little perpetually in the way of govern- hoped for at the commencement of ment, and impaired its proposed this year's military operations in energies. Abroad the remaining those parts that they proportionably parts of the coalition against France, revived the spirit of their enemies, though foiled in their repeated at- and infused a degree of confidence tempis, still preserved their spirit, into them, to which they had been and determination to perfist at all strangers, since the dilatters of the hazards in carrying on the war. preceding campaign.
The principal scene of action had But, notwithstanding their ill born on the banks of the Rhine. success on the Rhine, the French Here it had been generally ex- maintained a decided fuperiority in perted, that after the subjugation of every other quarter. Europe feemer! the feren United Provinces, the to stand at bay, and to wait with French would have met with no anxiety the termination of a quarre! contiderable oppofition; but though that had produced to many ftipenddilpirited, as well as weakened, by ous events. The dissolution of the the levering of lo material a limb confederacy, by the feceflion of froni the great body of the confe- Prusia and Spain, was far from being deracy, it still found fufficient re- confidered as complete: the princifources to inake head against the pal members, Great Britain and French, in a country where thege- Austria were held fully competent, Derality of the inhabitants, though though not to the purpose of fubdiliatisfied at their rulers, were not duing, yet fill to that of represing to imprudent as to prefer a foreign the French; and this was wa domestic voke, and would not viewed as the only object, at tail to co-operate in opposing a which they ought, in prudence, in Frunch invation. To this ditpontion the present lituation of their affairs, of an incomparable majority of the to aim. inhabitants of Germany was, in a During the course of the camgreat meature, due the little pro- paign, the gorronment in France grets of the French in those pro- had entertained fome ideas tending vices of the empire on the rigiit to a general pasification ; but the
loftiness of their pretenfions, dic- to further their designs, and boldly tated by the pride of their nation, was encountered every risk of being defo apparent, that Europe vas not tected in their prosecution. surprised that they were only men- Enraged at these domestic enetioned tranfiently in their occasional mies, the predominant party was discourses on that subject. The in- perpetually occupied in holding out veteracy of the ruling party to Eng- every species of menace and terror land fubfifted almost as violently to repress and discourage them; as ever. The French beheld, with but neither threats nor invitations that rancour which attends an un- availed. Actuated by hatred and fuccefsíul rivalship, the improba- resentment the royalists considered bility of their ever attaining to an themselves as equally justified, by equality with the English at sea. conscience and intereft, in their deIt greatly mortified their pride, that termination to seize every occasion all the European nations should una- of resisting the established powers, nimously ascribe a decided supe- holding them as usurpers, with whom riority in naval tactics to the English, no measures ought to be kept, and and represent those as no less invin- whom they were bound to oppose, cible on the ocean, than the French whenever there appeared the least had hitherto been at land; with likelihood of doing it to any effect. this difference, however, to the dil- Such was the situation of France advantage of the latter, that it would at this period, deeply convulled at prove a much easier task to over- home, and though in poflession of come them at land than the others many extensive countries, yet, fears at sea,
ful that having acquired, and retainOther causes of dissatisfaction mi- ing them only by the right of the liated against the ruling party in sword, they might lose them through France. "The royalists, however de. the same means: an event, whicha, prefed, were not dispirited: their considering the viciffitudes of war, numbers, though inferior to those was not more improbable than the of the republicans, were immense; astonishing fucceites that had atthey maintained a close correspond- tended their arms against all likelience with each other, and cemented hood and expectation. their reciprocal connections with While the people in France were all those acts of friendship and kind- distracted with these internal diviness that bind men fo strongly toge- fions, those of England were agitated ther, when fuffering from the same little less with inccllant differences causes, and acting from the same and disputes on the propriety of conmotives.
tinuing a war, which had occasioned The vigilarce of the republican fuch lotes of men and expence of government found constant employ- treasure, without producing those ment in obviating the dangers that effects which had fo repeatedly been threatened it from the indefatigable represented as infallible. Nothing activity of thote irreconcilalalu an- had been omitted to procure fuctagonitis, who, though furrounded cefs: every ministerial demand had with continual observers of all their been granted, every measure acmotions, neglected no opportunity ceeded to; but the object proposed
remained unaccomplished, and as don led the way, and, in a common. for out of the reach of all reason- hall, the votes, for a petition, were able expectation, as at the first mo- four thousand, and only one hundred ment of its being attempted All againft it. parties seemed, at this period, to
The terms in which it was conunite in the like strain of reafoning. ceived were extremely pointed. Numbers of those who had warmly “ None of the ends proposed by efpoated the cause of the minister, the war, (to use the words of the thought that a sufficient trial had petition) had either been, or apbeen made of the various schemes. peared likely to be, obtained, alhe had brought forward, in order though it had been carried on at an to compel the French to revert to unprecedented expence to this countheir former fituation; and that, hav- try, and had already produced an ing failed, prudence enjoined him alarming increafe of the bational to defift, and to leave the re-estab- debt, augmented by fubsidies, paid lithment of the Frech monarchy to to allies, who had notoriously vio-, a future period, and more auspicious Jated their folemn engagements, and opportunities.
rendered no adequate service for That party, which had opposed large fums actually received by the war from its very commence- them, and wrung from the credua ment, were loud in their reproba- lity of the generous and industrious tion of its continuance, and re- inhabitants of this island.” It conproached miniliers with a total want cluded by expresfing a firm and deof forefight, in uot leeming to have cided conviction, that the principle apprehended the difficulties they on which the war appeared to be would liare to contend with, and, carried on, neither was, por could with equal inability, to encounter be, essential to the liberty, the glor:, them. As the erents of the war or the prosperity, of the Britis emcountenanced thele reproaches, the pire. public joined in them, and the go- Other addresles, in a similar style, vernment was thought very repre. were resolved on in several of the henfible in perlifting agamit reite- principal cities in the kingdom. rated experience, in a contest that The adherents to ministry endeathreatened to watte the firength of voured, on the other hand, to prothe nation ineffectually, and the aim cure counter petitions: but there of which, were it attained, would were faint and languid in comparinot prove an indemnification for its lon to the former; those wlio framed coft.
them, did not venture to speak in Ideas of this nature were now justification of the war; they went generally predominant, and became', no farther than to leave to minitat last, lo prevalent, not only among ters the choice of their own time for the multitude, which had long been pacific negociations. swayed by them, but among the A circumstance that had greatly more reputable clases, that a rariety indifpoled the mercantile and tradof allociations were forined, and ing claties against ministry, was, the meetings held, for the avowed pur- refulal to perinit the Dutch people pole of petitioning the legillature in of property, to deposit their money favour of peace. The city of Lon- and effects in England, without pay
ing the customary duties. Had this ous accesion of real property that ' permission been granted, upwards must have been the neceflary conof twenty millions of fpecie, and fequence of the emigrations of rich other treasure, would, it was said, individuals from the United Prohave been brought into this coun- vinces. try. The reason alleged, for deny- Another oversight, no less real, ing the request of the Dutch mer- though less noticed, was an chants, was, that if they were al- ticle in a trealy which had been lowed to transport their effects into agreed on with the American England, it would operate as a dif- States, by which their trade to the couragement to their countrymen, British islands in the West Indies and prevent them from acting with
was restricted to velels of an intevigour against the French, who, rior lize. This, instead of diminishhaving fubdued the Austrian Ne- ing their commerce thither, tended therlands, were then preparing to rather to encrease it, by adding to carry their victorious arms into the their number of seamon: whether United Provinces : but the reply to in large, or in small vesiels, this this allegation was, that the French commerce was fo profitable to them, party was so powerful in Holland, that whatever obliacles were thrown that it was caly to foresee that all in their way, would quickly be overresistance would be vain. It would come by thieir industry and activity: have been good policy, therefore, the profits of trade would be more to have encouraged the monied- divided, but the number of hands men, in that country, to have lodged employed in it would produce the their property in England; as most doublé confequence, both of graduof them were manifeftly inclined to ally extending it, and of augmenting do, in order to preserve it from the the number of American seamen. rapacity of the French, whofe wants Thefe various confiderations conwere such as would infallibly induce tributert materially to displease the them to fupercede all confiderations, gcnerality of people. The barthens in order to provide for them as of the war were so heavy, and fuch soon as they should find themselves inuititudes felt their weight, that in pofcifion of a country', the wealth difcopients and murmurs abounded of which was competent to fupply every where.
'The different mothem with what they 114-del. tives afligned, at different epochis
This refusal, on the part of the of the war, for its continuance, Pritisa administration, was generally were also highly prejudicial to mideemed a very unfeasonable over- nifters, as they led many to think fight. It threw into the hands of that the real notive was purposedly the French an immense quantity of kept ont of light, and was of too money ard wealth of every denomi- imvidious a nature to be frankly acnation, which might evidently have knowledged. centered in England, together with Ideas of this nature were now its owners.
This would, in a very univerfally current among the difconfiderable ineasuri", have compen- approvers of the war, and were alfater for the loss of Holland to the lerted and circulated by them with confederacy, and amply indemni- confiderable effect. But that cir. fied. Grea: Britain, by ihe prodigi- cumstance which was the most un
fortunate fortunate and alarming, in the midit against its liberty, and an abettor of this general ditlatisfaction, was, of arbitrary power. that it liad arisen, in many, to such In this unfortunate disposition of a degree of rancour at the authors mind the nation continued during and abettors of the war, that the the whole year 1795. The summer, attachment, which men naturally in particular, was marked by a vafeel for their country, and its con- riety of tumults and riots. These cerns, had given way to sentiments were accafioned by the methods of the most violent hatred and hof- practised in the enlisting of men for tility to governinent. It was no the army: what with the general longer a simple disapprobation of averseness of the common people to the war; it was a fervent desire the war; 'what with the iniquity of that it might terminate to the dif- the practice itself, those who were advantage of this country, and that concerned in it became fuch objects the French might prevail against of execration to the multitude, that the English. So extraordinary and their persons and dwellings were unnatural an antipathy arose, how- equally exposed to its relentment ever, from other causes besides the and fury. Several houses, either war withi France: the persuasion tenanted, or made use of, by those that no reforms would take place who are vulgarly known by the apin the government, while it was pellation of crimps, were demoable to maintain its ground against lilhed, or stripped of their furniture, France, prompted the determined and the owners put in danger of advocates of there reforms, to ex
their lives. So great was the rage
of press, with marked anxiety, their the populace, that it was not withwithes for the success of this inve- out some difficulty those riots were terate eneniy to England. They fupprefled by the foldiery. Several kemed unconscious, or heedless, of of thole who had been active in the consequences that muft necef- these disturbances were executed; farily follow, were the French to but the public highly disapproved succeed in their defigns against this the condemnation, to death, of incountry, to that extent which they dividuals, guilty of no other offence had projected, and which the gene- than giving way to a fudden imrality of their well-wishers in Eng. pulse of indignation at the violence land appeared to delire with no lets offered to their fellow subjects. ferrour than themselves.
Such was the temper of the comBut the animofities, produced by monalty, previous to the meeting internal divisions, had, in truth, taken of parliament, about the close of frch unhappy pofleffion of most men, October, 1795. A fermentation of that thole who fought to reconcile the most alarming kind seemed to them to moderation, became equally pervade the whole mass of the peoorious to both parties: no medium ple. The various allociations of was allowed; whoever deplored the individuals, united for the purpose war, as pregnant with calamities of obtaining a parliamentary retorn, that might have been avoided, was were, at this period, peculiarly noreputed a foe to his country; who- ticed for their boldness and actiever pronounced it jutt, and necef- vity. That which was known by Gary, was deemed a conspirator the name of the corresponding som
[B 4 )