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aught we know, approve of our own ex. I us, while we had possession of the Myclusion from the ports of Portugal, wbich sore territory; and that noble lord might, was understood to form an article of that he said, have added, that Cochin was no treaty. The comfort given to us by the port, that it had a bar before it, so that noble lord, that we may be better by the none but small craft could approach it. definitive treaty, and cannot be worse With regard to the cape, it could only be than now fixed, is as fallacious as his for. kept at an enormous expense to this mer reasoning; for the same observation country; it had already cost us a million is as just, and I fear will be more effectual, of money; we had, on our first taking in the mouth of France, that they also possession of it, imported home all the may be better by the definitive treaty, corn we found there, hoping to supply and cannot without folly be worse; and this country, and the consequence had then all the undecided points will probably been, that we had since, even during the be influenced by the same predominant great scarcity, been obliged to re-export influence which dictated the preliminaries; corn to the Cape, to preserve the settleand it is impossible, under these circum- ment from starving. As to any necesstances, that I should approve the preli- sity for ships to touch there in their minaries as (under the existing circum- passage to India, he denied it to exist. stances) safe, adequate and honourable, With regard to the alarm, that the peace or that it will produce such a peace, as would encourage the seditious societies, the speeches from the throne have from and the agents of French principles, there the commencement of the war till this was no ground for it. In the first place, hour held out to the country.
France herself had abandoned those perLord Hobart replied to the leading ar- nicious doctrines that the republic at one guments that had been urged against the time held, and disavowed that extraordimotion. With regard to Portugal, he nary declaration of their determined pur. said, the noble lord was under a mistake pose to overthrow all the established gowith respect to the possibility of the vernments of Europe; and as to any French being enabled by the treaty they apprehensions of the Corresponding Sohad concluded with Portugal, to erect a cieties, and the advantage that domestic port within 100 miles of the river Ama. traitors might be inclined to take of the zons, in South America, as far as depended peace, he could assure the House, that on the river Arrouara being the limitation already all the societies and disaffected of the cession made to France. And as persons shrunk their heads with shame to the alarm taken by the poble marquis and despair, exasperated, that so effectual with respect to our being excluded from an end was put to the possibility of carthe usual exercise of our commercial in- rying their traitorous designs into prac. tercourse with Portugal, there was un- tice. In the course of the debate, several doubtedly an article in the treaty between noble lords had taken notice of the stadtthat country, and the French republic, holder, our firm ally, and had objected to which excluded us from all commercial the preliminaries, on the ground that no intercourse with Portugal during the war ; care had been taken of him by his majesbut, on the termination of the war, the ty's ministers: the fact was, they were exclusion was to cease and determine. not insensible to the stadtholder's claims As to the mutiny in our fleets having been on this country, for their best interference one reason for forming the projet in 1797, in his behalf, but it was at his express dein terms so favourable to the French, let sire, that no stipulation was made in his it be remembered, that the mutiny was at favour, in the articles on the table, bean end before that projet was tendered to cause an arrangement was negociating, the French at Lisle, because lord Dun- through the mediation of the court of can's victory over the Dutch feet took Berlin, which promised a favourable issue. place in that year, which proved that there His lordship added a variety of other arwas no mutiny remaining; and after that, guments and observations, in proof that his majesty expressed his inclination, not the present preliminaries were the basis of withstanding the success of his arms, to a peace, as likely to be safe, honourable, listen to any terms that might be safe and and permanent, as the country, under all honourable to this country. His lordship the circumstances could hope for. supported lord Mulgrave's declaration, The House divided : Contents, 94 ; that Cochin was now of no importance to Proxies, 20. Not.contents, 10; Proxies, 0.
List of the Minority.
employed ; and that his lordship be de.
sired to signify the same to them. 4. That Marquis of Bucking. Earls Spencer this House doth highly approve of, and ham
Caeruarvon Earls Pembroke, Lords Grenville
acknowledge, the services of the seamen Warwick
and marines on board the ships and vesFitzwilliam Bishop of Rochester sels under the command of admiral lord Radnor
Keith, and vice admiral Rainier, in the ef.
fectual assistance afforded by them to the The King's Answer to the Lords' Ad- army in Egypt, in the several important dress.] To the Address of the Lords his services on which it has been employed : Majesty returned this answer :
and that the captains of the several ships « My lords ;-I thank you for this dutiful do signify the same to their respective and loyal address. The satisfaction you crews, and thank them for their meritoexpress at the foundation which has been rious conduct. 5. That the thanks of laid by the preliminary articles for the final this House be given to lieutenant general restoration of peace, is highly acceptable the hon sir John Hely Hutchinson, knight to me; and you may rest assured, that I of the most honourable order of the Bath, shall, on my part, use my utmost endea for the ability, zeal, and perseverance, so vours, to bring this important transaction eminently manifested by him in the comto a conclusion, in such a manner as may mand of the army serving in Egypt, by most effectually tend to promote and se- which the honour of the British nation cure the public interests and the welfare has been so signally upheld, and addi. of my people."
tional lustre reflected on the reputation of
the British arms. 6. That the thanks of Vote of Thanks to the Navy and Army this House be given to major generals employed in the Expedition to Egypt.) Eyre Coote, John Francis Cradock, the Nov. 12. On the motion of the Chancellor hon. George James Ludlow, John Moore, of the Exchequer, the following Resolu- Richard earl of Cavan, David Baird, the tions were agreed to, nem. con. 1. “That hon. Edward Finch, and to brigadier gethe thanks of this House be given to ad- nerals John Stewart, the hon. John Hope, miral the right hon. lord Keith, knight of John Doyle, John Blake, Hildebrand the most honourable order of the Bath, Oakes and Robert Lawson, and the sevefor the ability and perseverance with which ral officers of the army, for their gallant, he maintained his station on the coast of meritorious, and distinguished services, Egypt, and for the effectual assistance under the command of lieutenant general rendered by his exertions to the army in the honourable sir John Hely Hutchinson, that country, in the several important knight of the most honourable order of services wherein, it has been employed, the Bath, by which the honour of the Briwhich 80 essentially contributed to the tish nation has been so signally upheld, final success of the campaign. 2. That and additional lustre reflected on the rethe thanks of this House be given to rear putation of the British arms. 7. That this admiral John Blankett, and to the cap- House doth highly approve of, and actains and officers of the squadron employ- knowledge the zeal, discipline, and intreed on the coast of the Red Sea, for the pidity, uniformly displayed during the arzeal, activity, and perseverance, manifest. duous and memorable operations of the ed by them in their co-operation with the army in Egypt, by the non-commissioned army in Egypt: and that vice admiral officers and private soldiers serving under Peter Raimier, commander in chief of the the command of lieutenant general the said squadron, be desired to signify the hon. sir John Hely Hutchinson, knight of same to them. 3. That the thanks of this the most honourable order of the Bath ; House be given to rear admirals sir Ri- and that the same be signified by the chard Bickerton, bart. and sir John Bor. commanders of the several corps; who lase Warren, bart., knight of the most ho- are desired to thank them for their exem: nourable order of the Bath, and to the plary and gallant behaviour." several captains and officers of the fleet, Similar Resolutions were, on the same under the command of admiral lord Keith, day, moved in the House of Lords by for the zeal, activity, and perseverance, lord Hobart, supported by lord Nelson, manifested by them in their co-operation and agreed to nem. dis. with the army in Egypt; in the several important services on which it has been Debate in the Lords on the Convention
with Russia.] Nov. 13. The order of to be broken in upon, in order to serve the day being read for taking into consi. the purposes either of assisting one of the deration the Convention with Russia (see belligerent powers, at the expense of the p. 18.)
other; or of obtaining advantages to muThe Earl of Darnley rose, and began tual states, which they were instigated to with expressing the satisfaction he felt in seize upon by the intrigues of one of the having occasion to address the House, courts at war, who were glad to embroil on grounds so different from those on their adversaries, by driving them into a which he had in the course of the last ses- new quarrel, and thus adding to their difsion found it his duty to offer his senti- ficulties and embarrassments. Thus, in ments to their lordships, and to propose the year 1780, while this country was en. an inquiry into the state of public affairs, gaged in an extensive and complicated with a view to a vote of censure on the war with France, Spain, Holland, and the government of that day. He now meant United States of America, the well-known to propose a vote of approbation of the confederacy, termed the Armed Neutraconduct of his majesty's present ministers, lity, was entered into by the northern but not without previous inquiry into the powers, and if they had succeeded in cargrounds on which he hoped to have their rying into effect the principles on which lordships concurrence and support in re- that confederacy was founded, a fatal blow gard to the address, which he would offer would have been given to the commercial to their consideration. He could not but prosperity and maritimegreatness of Great give his testimony in praise of the conduct Britain. 'Their lordships all knew how of his majesty's servants since they came the danger of 1780 was averted, but when into office, contrasted with that of their the glorious successes of this country by predecessors, whose servile imitators they sea, and the unparalleled navigation and had proved themselves not to be. The extension of commerce that we had at.convention on the table, he considered as tained during the war that had just been a striking instance of this. It was evident terminated were considered, it was not from that important document, that they to be wondered at, that a jealousy had not continued to bully and insult the of our superior prosperity should be powers of Europe; but by a judicious excited in other powers by the intrigues mixture of firmness and moderation, of one of the belligerent states, and their had induced them to relinquish their envy and interests awakened, and promptunjust pretensions, and had finally estab. ed to a wish to avail themselves of the lished, upon an equitable and permanent advantages which they hoped to be able basis, the maritime law of nations. Upon to obtain while we were, as they might an admission for the just rights of this imagine, enfeebled by the enormous excountry, founded in the pure and unalter- pense and continued exertions made able principles of the law of nations, de during a nine year's war with one of the pended altogether the greatness and most powerful nations in Europe. His prosperity of Great Britain as a maritime lordship said, he was persuaded that our power. That code of law was not a novel resources were far from being exhausted; institution; it was as ancient as the intro and that, had it been necessary, we were duction of navigation and commerce, and able to continue the contest, even though had been explicitly laid down by the ablest a new war had unfortunately been superministers of different countries at different added to that which was then raging. periods of time, and had been uniformly He thanked God, the firmness and energy admitted by all the states of Europe, as a of his majesty's ministers had resorted to code of law built upon a basis firm as the the best means of putting an end to their rock, because its materials were truth, farther insisting on their pretensions, and justice, and the general convenience of all had afforded them an opportunity of being nations. Notwithstanding this undeniable convinced, from the specimen given them character of the law of nations, such was by a noble lord (Nelson) whom he had the nature of mankind, and such the ope- the pleasure of seeing near him, that if ration of the political interests and preju. they persisted in their unjustifiable predices of the powers of Europe, during the tensions, this country had the spirit and existence of a long.continued war between the power to maintain its undoubted rights. any two of them, possessed of a marine Having thus traced the circumstances that that the law of nations had even in mo- had led to the engagement off Copenhagen, dern times been more than once attempted he proceeded to the consideration of the (VOL. XXXVI.)
convention which had set at rest the dif- merce with his Britannic majesty." By ferences that had last year arisen between the treaty with Denmark of 1670, as exe the northern powers and this country, and plained by a subsequent treaty concluded established our maritime claims on a firm in 1780, and by that of 1661, concluded footing. Among the various parts of the with Sweden, naval stores are deemed treaty principally to be regarded as most contraband of war, and are considered as worthy of their lordships notice and atten- such by the law of nations, in respect to tion, the first and most important, was the all other nations who are not protected abandonment of that false and dangerous by the special conditions of a treaty. The proposition, that free ships make free fourth important matter to be found in the goods. This proposition was effectually treaty, was explained in the fourth paradone away by the third article of the con- graph of the third article, and defined the vention, in the different paragraphs of character of a blockaded port. By the which there was a discrimination and de- words of that paragraph, the denomination finition of what were to be regarded as of a blockaded port is given only to a port contraband of war, and enemy's property where there is, by the disposition of the liable to seizure. The next point of im- power, which attacks it with ships staportance was the right of search of ships tionary, or sufficiently near, an evident under convoy; which was clearly ascer- danger of entering. The term " suffitained and admitted, but with the limita- ciently near” extended beyond the astion of exempting privateers from the ex- sumption of the armed neutrality, and ercise of the right in question. Many placed in question as to what constituted a good reasons offered themselves in proof blockaded, port, on an explicit and satisof the propriety of ministers having had factory ground. Having stated that these the moderation to consent to this restricfour points were the most important of all tion, and perhaps, it might have been as provided for in the treaty, and ascertained well, if the right of search had never been and established by it, and having expaextended to privateers; but in saying this, tiated at some length upon each, liis lordhe begged their lordships not to under ship took notice of the first paragraph of stand him to have given a decided opinion the third article, viz, " that the ships of the upon this matter. With regard to con- neutral power may navigate freely to the traband of war, the third important point ports, and upon the coasts of the nations to be found in the treaty, it could not at war.” He said, he thought considerable have escaped their lordships, that in the stress was to be laid on the words " to third paragraph of the third article, the the ports” as contradistinguished from the enumeration of what was to be considered words " from port to port,” which had contraband of war in future, with respect been the language of the claim of the to Russia, military warlike stores alone, armed neutrality. The difference of ex. were to be found. He had no objection pression in this particular appeared to his to confining that enumeration to Russia lordship, to secure an effectual prevention only, because naval stores were not the of the neutral from carrying the coasting chief of the produce of Russia, and the trade of the belligerent powers during war, imperfect state of her marine, added to and it was manifested, he contended, by the circumstance of her seas and rivers the definitions and conditions stipulated being rendered impassable, and locked by the different articles of the treaty, that from navigation during six or eight the ships of neutrals were only to be remonths of the year by the frost, made it a garded as free ships when they had, bona point of no great importance. Russia fide, neither enemy's property nor contracould injure Great Britain when at war band on board. Upon the whole he with France in a very trifling degree only, maintained that the treaty had secured by the few naval stores she could possibly every substantial advantage for which we furnish the enemy with. The matter had contended, though he admitted, that stood on a different ground with Denmark it bore evident marks of haste, and that and Sweden. By the ninth article of the the wording of parts of it might be liable convention, Denmark and Sweden were to to cavil, but before any lord proceeded to be immediately invited by his imperial ma- object to it, candour and impartiality rejesty, in the name of the two contracting quired, that they should take into consi. parties, to accede to the present conven- deration the very difficult circumstances tion, and at the same time to renew and under which the present ministers came confirm their respective treaties of com- ) inte ofice; the situation of unprecedented danger and apprehension in which the prope, respecting this country, in the country stood when the rupture with the course of most of the wars in which we northern powers broke out; the unjustifi. had been engaged within the last century, able combination entered into against the and pointed out the particular periods at maritime power and importance of Great which they had manifested a jealousy of Britain; the perilous and expensive war our greatness as a naval power. Indeed, in which the country was engaged; the when it was considered how much our supressure of the public burthens, and periority at sea, accompanied by our exvarious other circumstances, which com- tended commercial navigation, had been bined, rendered the part which ministers evinced in several wars, but more pecuhad to act, with respect to the northern liarly so in the war that had been now confederacy, extremely arduous and deli- brought to a conclusion, it was scarcely to cate, Nor, he repeated, did he in the be wondered at, that the enmity of other least despair of our resources, or doubted maritime states should be excited, and that the power and spirit of the country to they should easily be made the agents and contest the point to the utmost with the instruments of those in hostilities against northern powers, had such an unfortunate us, who had spared neither influence nor alternative been necessary; he only made intrigue to induce them to adopt nieathese observations to show the difficult sures, that, prima facie, promised advanpart that ministers had to act at the time, tages to them; and which, as they were and that their bringing their opponents to likely to distress Great Britain, niust at such terms as appeared on the face of the all events prove beneficial to them. The convention, was the more worthy of the claims which the northern powers had set approbation of the House. Indeed, one up during the complicated war in which of the strongest arguments in favour of the we were engaged in 1780, was formed trealy was, that it had contributed mate- under the fostering hand of the late emrially to the peace with France, a matter press of Russia, and assumed the title of which he did not intend to consider and the armed neutrality. The principles discuss at that moment, though he gave it upon which that confederacy was estathis decided approbation, not because he lished, were directly contrary to the though it a great and glorious, but on known law of nations, and the acknowmany accounts necessary, and the best ledged rights of Great Britain. These Lhat under the circumstances of the case claims, which threatened the most fatal we had a right to expect. If it was not a consequences to our existence as a mariglorious peace, their lordships must ask time power, were then got rid of, and them to what and to whom the situation had, in a great measure, laid dormant of the country had been owing? To since the affair in 1780, till their recent the late administration, and to their revival : all the sanctions of public law, misconduct of the war. His lordship the treaties of different nations, the geneconcluded with moving, “ That an hum- ral and acknowledged practice of Europe, ble Address be presented to his majesty, the interests of various people were again to return bis majesty the thanks of discarded or despised: A new maritime thiş House for his gracious communica- code, formed upon other principles, and tion of the convention which has been regulated by new theories, was to dignify lately entered into between his majesty this age of reason. But we had lived to and the emperor of Russia, to which the see the discomfiture of all these vain and kings of Denmark and Sweden have envious projects, and, through victory, to declared their readiness to accede. To arrive at the blessings of peace.
His express our just and grateful sense of his lordship then adverted to some of the majesty'sexertions for the maintenance and most striking parts of the treaty, and establishment of our maritime interests, pointed their lordships' attention to the whereby the essential rights for which we mode in which the principle, that free have contended have been secured to us, bottoms made free goods, was disposed and provision made for exercising them of. The regulations of the present treaty with as little molestation as possible to he conceived to be founded in true wisthe commercial concerns of the contracting dom, and to be dictated by a vigorous poparties."
licy. The conduct of ministers with reLord Cathcart took a summary but spi- spect to the northern confederacy, was rited view of the general disposition and such, in his opinion, as reflected the highconduct of the maritime powers of Eu- est credit, not only on themselves, but on