Gambar halaman

existed previously to the war? We were | doubtless, in the most strenuous manner, not bound to interfere on account of any recommended those unfortunate royalists aggression by other powers, or of any into the protection and humanity of the ternal commotions in the state. If France first consul. What more could they attempted the dismemberment of Turkey, have done? It was all which, consistently it was a breach of faith, it was a violation with propriety, could have been brought of treaty, and afforded a good ground for forward, and all which they promised in a declaration of war on the part of Eng. the proclamation quoted by the learned land. Was not the same degree of reli- doctor. This proclamation from the ance to be placed upon the honour of the king, in the early part of the war, invited French, as of every other government? such as were discontented with the existing The learned doctor said, No; and averred, order of things in France, lo join the Brithat French perfidy was seen in the chief tish standard, and held out to them an consul having, since the signature of the assurance of protection, but what degree preliminaries with England, ratified a of protection did it pledge? It stated treaty with Portugal, which, according to that every support should be given to the assurance of the noble secretary of them“ which the nature of the case state, he had agreed to cancel. But to would admit.” How then had his majeshim the explanation of the noble secretary ty's government broken faith with the was perfectly satisfactory, and thoroughly French royalists ? He was ready to vindicated Buonaparte against the charge believe, without calling upon them for of infidelity to his engagements. The any declaration whatever, that they had learned doctor would do well to wait until urged their pitiable condition with the an official copy of the treaty in question greatest force; and that they would still could be produced, instead of indulging continue to show the greatest possible himself in rash and ill-grounded invective. attention to their interests. Of the peace -Another objection made to the prelimi- itself, he was free to avow, that it comnaries by the right hon. gentleman (Mr. manded his full and unqualified approbaWindham) and the learned doctor was, tion. He would state the principle upon that no provision was introduced for the which he gave his vote in favour of security of the royalists, who had joined the preliminaries? It was, that such a our standard, and co-operated with us to peace was far preferable to the continu. effect the restoration of monarchical go- ance of the war, and that the chance of vernment. General Menou, it was said, obtaining an island or two was not worth had bargained, in the capitulation of Alex. the blood and treasure which would necesandria, for the security of all persons who sarily be expended in another campaign. had taken up arms against their own go. He was a stranger to those gloomy apprevernment, and had aided his attempt to hensions, as to the insecurity of this peace, separate Egypt from the Turkish empire; which were entertained by some. The but would gentlemen therefore say, that energies of the British nation had been England, in offering a projet of peace to frequently exhibited during the war; and France, should have insisted upon a posi- he was at a loss to discover why our dotive stipulation, that safe return and 'ade- minions, being increased so considerably, quate provision should be granted to all we should be less equal to the defence of those who had used every endeavour to our territories in another than in the past overturn the existing government in that contest. Instead of suffering a low and country? There existed no analogy be- depressed state of spirits, his mind exulted tween the two cases. Was any such with joy. He gave credit to ministers article inserted in the projet at Lisle ? for having concluded the best peace, Certainly not. Was any such provision which the circumstances of the country to be found in the treaty with our Ame- would allow. He was convinced that rican colonies ? Certainly not. For his they had acted from the purest motives. part, he greatly doubted whether France Than the right hon. gentleman at the would have consented to treat at all, if head of his majesty's councils, whom he the preliminaries had contained a condi. was proud to call his tried and faithful tion on the part of his majesty in behalf friend, from earliest youth (the chanof those whom the French government, cellor of the exchequer), a man of more whose legitimacy we had now acknow. private integrity and public virtue did not ledged, regarded in no other light than exist. With the greatest pleasure he rebels. His majesty's ministers had gave his assent to the preliminaries; and

if the future conduct of ministers were | had never, either in form or in substance, conformable to the specimen they had repealed the famous decree of the 19th now given-if the pacific system should November, 1792; nay, she had not only appear to prevail in all their councils-given it up, but she had invariably acted and if they did not continue the existing upon it. Another subject which he encroachments upon the constitution be- thought well worth attention was, the yond the date of their expiration, they situation of St. Domingo. It was the should have his unbounded confidence, intention, he understood, of France, to and cordial support.

send out a very large force to that island, Mr. Baker said, that if the terms of the and they were not to be sent out in the peace were not so good as he could have ordinary way, in transports, but in ships wished, he was convinced that it was not of the line. The consequence of this the fault of ministers, who, he was sure, would be, that France would have a very had done every thing in their power to large force in the West Indies, and we obtain the best possible terms for the must either keep an equal force or our country. The great question for the possessions there would be at the mercy House to decide was, whether the terms of France in case of a rupture with her. of the peace were adequate to our situa. It would therefore, in his opinion, be netion, considering it with relation to the cessary for us to keep up a large force, situation of France? and upon the best He then alluded to some articles which consideration he was able to give the had appeared in the public papers, which subject, he was inclined to think they were represented as secret articles of this were. It had been said that we had now treaty; they stated, that we were to guato contend against the power, and not rantee the king of Etruria, &c. He against the principles of France. To this merely referred to them as having seen proposition he could not accede; because, them in the newspapers, without knowing in fact, we were contending against power whether they were authentic or not. founded upon those very principles. He Upon the whole, however, he decidedly had been very much struck with an ob approved of the peace; but at the same servation which had been made by an time he thought we ought to adopt every hon. gentleman, that France, in the whole precautionary measure that we could, of this transaction, had shown nothing without exciting the suspicions of France. like any principles of conciliation. She Mr. Dawson rose to pay his tribute to retained every one of those possessions those ministers who had concluded a which she had acquired, by the exercise peace which appeared to him to meet of those principles against which it was universal approbation. He was in Ireland now supposed we had no longer to con. when the news of the peace arrived, and tend. It was unnecessary for him, in he did not meet a man who was well supporting this argument, to go over all affected to the constitution, who did not the arguments that could be adduced rejoice at it. With regard to the terms, upon the subject. He need not state the he had such an opinion of the present cases of Holland, Flanders, &c. Her administration, that he was convinced conduct with regard to Flanders showed they were as good as could be obtained. that she set all treaties at defiance when Mr. W. Wynn said, that after so they interfered with her projects; and she many gentleman had so fully and so ably now retained Flanders, which she had so spoken upon this subject, he certainly acquired, to the great danger of this was unable to add any thing new upon it, country. There was another part of the but he could not give a silent vote. He conduct of France which was revolted at could not look upon the peace with the in the negotiations of Paris and Lisle, but same sentiments of satisfaction as many which seemed to have been admitted in gentlemen had done, because he thought this, viz. that whatever they acquired in it was big with danger to the country. the war, and incorporated with their do- Colonel Wood said, that, to form a minions, became so absolutely annexed correct judgment on the subject, we to their dominions, that they would not must consider not merely the relative suffer them to become the subject of ne- situations of France and England, but of gotiation. The case of Belgium and of those countries in respect to other powers Savoy proved this assertion. This consi- of Europe. France he considered as in. deration seemed to have been overlooked vulnerable to any attack from England, in the present treaty. Besides, France for the purpose of abridging her continental power; but he believed few gentlemen of this country. That island, from its considered every part of the united king situation, fortifications, and harbour, was dom, as well as of our extensive colonies, invaluable to this country; and so long as as equally secure from France. Un we held possession of it, France could doubtedly, by blockading her ports, and never look towards Egypt and Syria as destroying her trade, France might have the road to molest us in India. The been induced, within some indefinite Levant trade, although at present incontime, to accede to better terms than the siderable, was, he believed, chiefly to be present, but the dangers and evils likely attributed to the most unwise monopoly io arise from lengthening the contest, no granted to the Turkey company, who do terms could, in his mind, compensate for. not themselves use it, yet by their charter The addition of forty millions a year to precluded others from benefiting. As to national debt, exclusive of keeping many the West India islands, we had still as hundred thousands of our most valuable many of them as could be for the interest subjects idle, who could be employed in of the country; and, unless those we had agriculture, manufactures, and the im- could be retained at a less expense of provement of the country; considering blood and treasure, we had better be ihe present state of our finances, as well without them. The Cape of Good Hope, as the burthens of the people, were undoubtedly, should France re-establish weighty reasons with ministers for con- her marine, might be of consequence; cluding the present peace. But there but under the present circumstances he were many other cogent reasons, in the bad doubts. Ceylon was of infinite impresent state of Europe, which justified portance, on account of its harbour; as them in putting an end to so ruinous a was the Island of Trinidad, in the West contest. Gentleman cannot have so soon Indies, for the same reason. Under all forgotten the confederacy of the northern circumstances, he felt infinite obligations powers to destroy the most important to ministers for putting an end to the interests of this country; and, although war; and particularly to his right hon. the contest is for the present at an end, friend the present minister, who, in an may we not reasonably conjecture that hour of difficulty and danger, charged Denmark and Sweden are not still so well himself with the helm of the state, and disposed towards us, as their own real had for the present brought her safely interests ought to have led them to be? into port. R-ussia, indeed, was now governed by a Mr. Ellison repelled the idea, that the wise and just prince; yet, who would country was in a state of humiliation; on stake the security of their country upon the contrary, he thought her recent conthe life of an individual? What reliance duct peculiarly glorious to her. She was could be had upon the crooked policy of true to her allies, and adequately asserted Prussia ? and Austria, had she even the her own honour and interests. He ability, has she still the inclination to thanked ministers for what they had done. renew the contest? Could we expect The peace, he trusted, would unite every from Turkey any important assistance, at heart and hand in the country in support a time when she can scarcely prevent her of its government. own tottering empire from falling to Mr. Nicholls was confident that the pieces ? Under these untoward circum- peace would prove safe with respect to stances, was England to wage war against this country in every point of view. He France, for the object of reducing her expressed his conviction of the sincerity continental power, at the time that these of the French government. Much seemed powers upon the continent most interested to be apprehended from France becoming bad themselves confirmed it? Such con- a commercial nation; that her character duct would have been more wild than the in that respect would alter, he wished. adventures of Don Quixote. No person He would rather see her attention turned more regretted than he did the overgrown to her commerce and colonies, than her power of France; but no one could power employed in hostile or destructive foresee but that very power, which was at projects. In this view he wished she present so formidable, might contain in it might regain the entire possession of St. the seeds of its own dissolution. In regard Domingo, and he wished it with a view to to the conquests which were to be the safety of our own West India Islands, restored, excepting Malta, none appeared and of Jamaica in particular; for in the Lo him to be very material to the interests present situation of St. Domingo, that invaluable island could not be safe. He | by what had fallen from the hon. gentlealso regarded the peace with satisfaction man who spoke last, he understood, that as the basis of reciprocal commercial those hon. gentlemen who so highly disbenefits, and of the renewal of the com. approved of the peace, were countenanced mercial treaty with France. He firmly in that disapprobation by the feelings and believed that the present treaty was made opinions of the disaffected ; and that so in the true spirit of reconciliation, and he far as their feelings were hurt at the peace, gave

ministers full credit for their conduct those feelings (unexpectedly no doubt by in procuring it for the country. At the them) were in unison with those of the same time, he was induced to tommend United Irish. His right hon. friend who the moderation displayed by Buonaparté, had led the debate that evening, seemed particularly with respect to Austria, to think that peace could not be sincerely which, he thought, was highly honoura- made on both sides, or firmly established ble to him. If riches were the object of with France, until, not only the governthe French, they, who were an enlightened ment and political principles of France and wise people, well knew that they were were changed, but even the morals and not to be acquired by the means of plun. manners of her people were radically der and pillage. Such a line of conduct reformed. With respect to these meanever made a nation rich, or Algiers sures, he should observe, that an answer would be one of the richest countries in to them all was comprised in a question the world. No, the French were well asked by that hon. gentleman himself:aware, that it was alone by habits of " Are we never to be at Peace?" He peace and industry that riches were to be would answer— Yes ;” and at the same acquired, and by commercial pursuits, time would say, that he hoped and trusted, which it was obvious could alone be suc. that, upon the principles cited from his cessfully cultivated in the interval of peace. right hon. friend, the government or the

Mr. Babington spoke in favour of the parliament of Great Britain would never peace, and adverted to the article between | be influenced to act. He had the highFrance and England, respecting the est respect for the character of his right guarantee of integrity to the Turkish hon. friend. He well knew the uprightterritories, which principle he treated as ness and firmness of his principles, and highly impolitic and dangerous. He en- the ardour and sincerity of his patriotism. tertained a jealousy with respect to guaran. His regret at differing from him in points tees in general, though he was aware that of such incalculable importance was, circumstances might arise which might therefore, the more considerable. His render such measures expedient. He right hon. friend had seemed to start at considered Russia and Austria as the the bare idea of an end to our resources : natural allies of this country, and as form- With respect to these, he certainly could ing the most efficacious reciprocal checks not say they were inexhaustible; yet,

God be thanked, the national resources Mr. R. Thornton approved of the were far from being in that situation peace, for which he thought ministers which some gentlemen seemed to consider deserved the thanks and gratitude of the them; and he would observe in the concountry: it was the more acceptable, templation of their being farther removed because unexpected by the great body of from such a state, that he rejoiced that the people; and he had reason to think the sovereign had yielded to the advice ministers had obtained the most favour- of his confidential servants, in consenting able terms that could be had. France to the preliminaries of peace. With remight be increased in bulk; but she was spect to what had been said, in a compa. not proportionally so in real strength and rative view, in regard to the negotiations muscle. Peace was desirable at almost at Lisle, he contended, that, in the way any rate.

of argument, those who defended the Mr. G. Ogle observed, that there was preliminaries had a right to put the case not a loyal man in Ireland who did not as they had done ; and that the House, receive the tidings of the peace with joy which approved of the negotiation at and satisfaction; and, on the contrary, Lisle, could not, in consistency or justice, there was not a rebel, or a disaffected refuse their approbation in this instance. individual, who did not receive it with It had been said, that the continental disapprobation and regret.

power of France was not abridged, and Mr. Chancellor Addinglon said, that that Britain was confessedly unable to

upon France.

[ocr errors]

contest that power. It was never meant | as that war was in which the immortal to say, that the power of Great Britain Chatham presided at the helm of affairs, was not such, that, if properly used, it the present is equally splendid ; our fleets might, with every desirable effect be' have been victorious to a greater extent placed in the scale opposite to that of than even in the Seven Years war: they France; in this idea, he did not mean have crushed the navy, and annihilated hostilely opposed, but in the way of com- the commerce of our enemy: the whole parison of their political power and influ- of maritime Europe, jealous of our naval ence. He must revolt at the idea, that, power, combined to attempt its humiliabecause France had made considerable tion; they found all vain endeavours reacquisitions, England could not raise its coil on themselves. Egypt has witnessed head-far from it; and in proof of this he the glorious exertions of the British troops. had only to desire those who doubted, to In that country we had to contend with look at the state of our army and navy, an army much more numerous than our and consider their achievements—to con- own, inured to the climate, and comtemplate our national commerce, resources, manded by an able and skilful general. and wealth—and, above all, our inesti. They were the chosen troops of France, mable constitution. He should not omit, who had fought under the conqueror of in a statement of this kind, the extent of Italy in all his triumphant campaigns : our dominions and possessions, as well at and with reason had styled themselves the home as broad: added to this, let the Invincible Legion; for invincible they national character of both countries be were till they encountered British soldiers. thrown into the scale of consideration, In every other enterprize where Britons and then compare the whole with all that only were concerned, we succeeded. France possessed, and he had no hesita. Success is the season for concluding tion in putting the question, let any wise peace. It is not wise nor politic to be, and candid man lay his hand upon his even in victory, pertinacious beyond the heart and say, on which side lay the object of the contest, or to insist on terms advantage ?

more advantageous than those for which The Address was then agreed to, and we originally fought. We have secured ordered to be presented to his majesty by our religion, our laws, our constitution, the whole House.

our property, and our independence.

The treaty before the House secured all The King's Answer to the Commons Ad- the important objects for which the war dress.] To the Address of the Commons had been carried on. The setilements of his Majesty returned this Answer: Ceylon and Trinidad, which we have

“ Gentlemen ; I return you my thanks retained, are of considerable importance. for this loyal and dutiful Address. The In India we have gained signal victories. sentiments which you have expressed We have conquered Mysore, and entirely upon this important occasion are highly destroyed the principal friend of France, satisfactory to me, and calculated to pro- who, with his father Hyder Ally, has duce the happiest effects."

been always forming projects hostile to

England. We have also procured restiDebate in the Lords on the Preliminaries tution to the allies who continued to of Peace with France.] Nov. 3. The adhere to us. We had driven from the order of the day being read, the Prelimi- Turkish dominions an enemy who had nary Articles of Peace were read at seized the most valuable part of the Sullength by the clerk. After which, tan's territories, and the granary of his

The Earl of Romney rose and said : metropolis. To our allies, during the My lords; we have terminated a war, the war, we behaved with magnanimous libemost momentous in which Britain has rality. When fidelity to us was no longer ever been engaged; a war productive of beneficial to themselves, we released them the heaviest burthens, though patriotically from their engagements. France had, no and loyally borne. It was war of doubt, obtained additions to her territories, necessity, for the defence of our allies far surpassing any conquests that Louis and for the preservation of our religion, 14th had conceived possible. But the law and social order; and as it was on conquests of France were not the fault our part necessary, so, where we only of Britain. We could not prevent its were concerned, has it been accompanied gigantic effort on the continent. Were by the most signal successes. Glorious we to persevere in a hopeless contest?


« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »