Gambar halaman

the passage should be attempted at was struggling for her political ex. places at some distance, both above. istence, to throw itfelf into the arms and below the town, where the of her most potent enemy... It was resistance would be considerably therefore with equal surprise and weakened, if not rendered ineffec- indignation that the French governtive. Buonaparte, however, full of ment heard of the conclusion of the confidence in his foldiers, and feels treaty which was formed by Mr. ing that delay was more injurious to Jay, between that country and Eng. his plan of operations than the loss land, the tenor of which was lo to be incurred by marching up to evidently in opposition to treaties the batteries of the Austrians, gave already exitting between America peremptory orders that the attack and France, that it was concluded mhould be made by the bridge. Ac- that an open breach between the cordingly, before day-break, the two nations must have been the imarmy prepared for the enterprise, mediate consequence. and a column of carabineers, fol- For some time past, the conduct lowed by the battalion of grenadiers, of the American administration topassed half-waythe bridge before they wards the republic had been distant were perceived by the Auftrians. and ceremonious; nor did the recall A general discharge destroyed about and disgrace of M. Genet, the feven hundred; the advanced body French ambaffador, whose personal of the column was struck with ter- altercations with the president had ror, and stopped short; but animated led the French government to make by the cries of "Vive la republi. this act of solemn reparation, effect que !” from the generals, who saw any change in its favour. There is the danger, and who threw them- no doubt that the conduct of M. selves at their head, they ruslied Genet was contrary to that spirit of forwards with impetuosity, seized moderation which a person in his the Austrian artillery, broke through official station ought to have ob. the lines, and throwing the whole ferved; but the peculiar fituation of into disorder, ended the contest the French republic should have led by dispersing the imperial troops. the American government to make While one part of the republican great allowances, especially when forces, pursued Beaulieu towards the system of the propagande, which, Mantua, the rest entered Milan on it is said, was attempted to be inthe 18th May, without further re- troduced, by order ofthe committees Gstance; and the French armies of the revolutionary regime, into gained poffefsion of the whole of America, had been formally disLombardy.

claimed by those who afterwards While France by the success of held the reins of power. ber arms was lefleuing the number A momentary gleam of reconciliof her enemies in Europe, the found ation had been thrown across this her infuence decreasing in the made of discontent by the arrival of United States of America. Though a new ambassador, Mr. Monroe, little was to have been expected from America; whose political from national gratitude, it was sup- principles were known to be direct. posed that national honour would ly opposite to those of his predecefhave prevented the American go for, Mr. Morris : and the language yernment from feizing the oppor- of American fraternity and congratunity when the French republic tulation was once more heard at the bar of the national convention. But of this legalized preference shewn to the negotiation for a treaty of com- the Englith intereft. merce with England soon taught An intercepted letter from the the French what value they had to presidene of the United States, ad. affix to these new professions of na- dressed to Mr. Morris, who was tional amity, and what confidence lately the American ambasador in was to be reposed in the benevo. France, and who then officiated as lence of a government, the standard secret agent, of the American g9. of whose attachment, it was said, vernment in London, had already was to be known only by that of its discovered to the directory the hofavarice. The treaty itself was lefs tile views of the government of the heeded in France than the dispoli. United States. This letter, dated tions which led to its formation. It from Philadelphia, the 224 Decem. was observed, that certain articles ber, 1795, was a detailed answer to in this treaty not only infringed on various letters of Mr. Morris rethe treaty concluded between the specting the pending negotiation. United States and the French na- The president complained highly of tion in 1778, but were direct vi- the haughty conduct of the Engliņu olations of it. In that treaty, for administration, and of the arbitrary instance, the United States formally measures which they had parlued, guaranteed to the French their co- and which they were continuing to lonies in the West Indies, in case of pursue, with respect to American attack; in the present, even fup navigation. He requested Mr. plies of provisionis fent to those co- Morris to represent to the minister lonies are stated to be illegal com- not only the injustice, but the immerce.

policy of this conduct, particularly It was expected that a treaty so at a moment when it was so much hostile to the interest of France, and the interest of England to conciliate fo contrary even to that spirit of the minds of the inhabitants of the neutrality which it was the obvious United States to the acceptance of interest of the American govern the treaty. He detailed the efforts ment to observe, would not have he had made, and the difficultics ne been fanctioned by the American had undergone, to overcome the legislature. Notwithstanding the wayward disposition of his countrypredominancy of Britisi influence men towards French politics, the in the fenate, and the disfavour of a bettors of which were the chief the president towards French prin- opponents of the treaty in question, ciples, were well understood to exist, which, however, he said, had the yet it was supposed that the change approbation and fan&tion of the which had taken place in the situ- greater and more respectable part of ation of France and that of Europe the community. His main ohject, fince the negotiation had been open- he observed, the only object which ed, would have led the American onght to be continually kept in legislature to refuse its ratification. view, was peace, which he was But although it was evident from the most anxious to preserve: and if decision of the congress, what was America was happy enougirto keep the general sentiment in America herself out of European quarrels, respecting this treaty, the French flie might, from the increase of her Government heard with indignation trade, from fecuring the monopoly 2796.



of being the carrier of the world, probable the ensuing election for vie, in twenty years, with the most the presidentship would produce formidable powers of Europe. such changes in American politics

This letter, saved from the wreck as might prove more beneficial to of the Boston packet, which had the interests of France than the most foundered on the coast of France, brilliant and decided success of her was considered as decisive evi. arms. dence of the difpofitions of the These and other representations American government towards the counteracted the effects of the dis

rench republic; of the intrigues covery made by the president's letcarried on with the English; and ter. The directory determined on naturally awakened those feelings continuing the semblance of friendof resentment which arise from a thip with the United States, and sense of injury heightened. by in contented itself with following the gratitude; and excited also a desire same conduct with respect to their of displaying that resentment. Va- vessels bound to England, as Engrious were the representations made land had done, throughout the war, to the executive power of France to with respect to American vessels

calm the indignation which these bound to France. 'provocations had roused. It was While such was the fituation of alleged on the one hand, that the France with respect to one republic, attempts made by the laté commit- her interests with another appeared -tees of government to revolutionize not less 'on the decline. The re

America, had not been forgoiten; publican party in Holland had takthat the English, party, taking ad- en meafures to insure the success

vantage of the imprudence of the of the French arms in that country 'agents of the French republic, had in the campaign of 1793, had not acquired an undue preponderance Dumouriez's precipitate retreat, and in the counsels of the executive his subsequent defection, not only power of the United States; that crushed their efforts, but endangerthis alienation was only temporary, ed their lives. Early in the camarising on the one hand from the paign of 1794, they informed the dread of the English, on the other, commifiioners from the convention, from the powerless state of the who attended the northern armies, French republic at that period ; of their situation, and of the imfrom whom they could, in case of poffibility of attempting to shake off need, hope for no affiftance ; that their yoke without some effective it was very probable the ratification foreign aid. The favourable answer of the treaty would be refused by given by the commissioners, and the the congress; and that the general more certain promises made by the dillike of the inhabitants of the committees of the French governUnited States to any serious con- ment, led them to assemble again on nection with the English govern- all sides in secret committees, to orment, was a decided fact, whatever 'ganize a general plan of national might be the disposition of the exe- insurrection. As the first object was cutive power; that a declaration of to enlighten and instruct the people hoftilities against the United States (as they termed it) they established would be detrimental to the cause of secret printing.offices, and adoptthe republic, by lessening the num- ed various other means to deceive ber of its friends; and that it was the vigilance of the government.



Having instituted popular societies part of the French, had also thrown thror ghout the country, the chiefs them off their guard; and their plan formed themselves into two central of insurrection, which had hitherto committees, of which one was ap- been kept secret by a vast multitude, pointed to correspond with the came to the knowledge of governFrench government and its agents, ment. while the talk of the other was to The stadtholder, alarmed at the watch the motions of the govern- nature and extent of the conspiracy, ment at home, to counteract its was too weak to punish, or too timid operations, and contribute, as far as

to attempt it ; and the only act of their influence extended, to prepare violence committed was the arrest the mass of the nation for a general of fix citizens, who, our readers will reclamation of its rights.

recoilect, in disobedience ofa proclaThe insurrection was to take place mation, presented a petition against at Amsterdam: and although the the resolution adopted by the gosuccess of the French arms in the vernment of inundating the counLow Countries had filled Holland try on the approach of the French with the retreating armies of the armies. The forming of a revolustadthoider, and of England, it tionary army on the eastern frontiers, was determined by the co:nmittees to be commanded by Dutch officers to take advantage of the favourable then in the French service, among events which the brilliant successes other projects of insurrection, was of the French at Fleurus, and on proposed by the French commissionthe Meuse, gave them, and declare ers, and approved by the Dutch

pathemselves openly both in the capi-triots, who, though the plan was diftal and in the provinces. General cult and dangerous, resolved to put Pichegru, who was made acquainted it into execution, and sent a depuwith this resolution, informed them tation, to concert the means with the by letter (on the 6th of Septem- French generals. Those deputies ber), that, according to the instruc- on their arrival found the plan altotions he had received from the com- gether abandoned, and the French mittees of government, he Mould commillioners disposed to receive attack in a few days the armies that theni rather as vanquished enemies covered the frontiers, and should than as allies or brethren. detach thirty thousand men who On the invasion of Holland, fawere on the Meufe, across the cilitated by the severity of the seaWaal, to prevent the march of the son, which had frozen the rivers enemy to Amsterdam; to which and the inundations, the Dutch, who place the French troops should re- had experienced how little confiderpair on the news of the insurrection ation was to be expected from the of the patriotic party, who were agents of the French government, urged to make provifion at Utrecht applied immediately to the gofor the speedy arrival of their auxi- vernment itself, and presented a liaries. A variety of obstacles to long chain of evidence to prove how the accomplishment of their purpose, necessary their co-operation with the on the part of the French, once French arms had been for the submore spread confternation and dis- version of the power of the stadtmay among the Dutch patriots. holder, with whom they had conThe assurance of success in the pro- fidered themselves, equally with mises of immediate support on the France, as being at war, and had



osed the most effective means in the refpective powers or claims of their power to assure the triumph of each belligerent country,-Holland, the principles of liberty in their whose independence has hitherto own country, which they prefumed been an avowed or secret article in was also the object of the French. every treaty which the French reThe moderation, with which the public has concluded, will have to Dutch republicans acted towards boast of her alliance; - whether, intheir opponents, gave additional Itead of obtaining the blessings of lustre to the unremitting perseve- liberty, they have only lifted their rance with which they conducted, fetters for a more brilliant depenand the courage by which they ef- dence; or, if their freedom be evenfected, their revolution. Except the tually established, whether it be not grand penfionary, who was impri- attained by sacrifices that shall greatIc ned, no one was punislied or per- ly diminish its value, by treaties with secuted for his previous conduct or their friends or concessions to their opinions; and those even, who had enemies, which shall contract the been most actively engaged in plun- limits of their empire or the boundering and prosecuting the patriots daries of their industry, and bring after their ineffectual attempt in down their country from that higa 1787, were suffered to remain in commercial rank which it has hipeace,

therto held among the nations of Whatever may be the future de Europe, tiny of Holland under the esta- After long contests between the blishment of a free and liberal go- various parties respecting the convernment, released from the infu- vocation of a conventional aslemence of England, and the oppression bly, the two provinces of Friseland of Prussia; her situation at present, and Zeeland, which had been moft in having the former country for averse to the propofition, aflented her enemy, and France exacting to the wish of the majority; and the supplies in every quarter, as her national assembly was installed on friend, is embarrassing and critical. the first of March 1796. T'he citiThe treaty between the two repub. zens of the United Provinces were lics was esteemed by a great party formed into two great divisions; the in Holland rather as the requisitions one composed of the proprietor, the of a conqueror than the conditions merchant, the capitalist, and all of an ally; and the levies which the those who were generally ranked in French government has made on the classes of the rich; which divi. the properties of those who were fion was for a general revolution; most attached to their interests, and the other, comprehending all the the heavy contributions which they classes of the poor and dependent, have raised, have led the Dutch to flattered and supported by the party pause in their prognostications of of the stadtholder, were averse to the future. They may perhaps any considerable change. These doubt, whether, in the winding "pof great diviGons were afterwards fubthis eventful drama, when the time divided into various parts; and the Thall come that all the present dif. primary assemblies were composed cordancies. Mall be hushed into of citizens of very opposite ways of peace, and the lofies or advantages thinking. While some were attachproduced by this widely extended ed to the ancient government by the contcat thall be lettied according to Itates, with certain reformations,


« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »