The news of this astonishing cowardice of the soldiery caused great consternation in Paris. Lafayette and Rochambeau wrote complaining of Dumouriez and the Gironde Ministry; the Girondists accused the Jacobins of inciting the troops to this conduct; and the Jacobins blamed the incompetence of the Gironde. The king proceeded to dismiss his Girondist Ministry, and to rule with something like independence. In the early part of July it was known at the Tuileries that the Prussians, having joined the Austrians, had marched on Coblenz, to the number of eighty thousand men, all old soldiers of the great Frederick, and commanded by the Duke of Brunswick, the nephew of Frederick, who had won so much distinction in the Seven Years' War. Marshal Luckner, not deeming himself strong enough to resist this force, had retired upon Lille and Valenciennes. The Court was in high spirits; the queen told her ladies, in confidence, that the Allies would be in Paris in six weeks. The king wrote to the allied camp recommending moderation. In this moment of effervescence appeared the proclamation of the Duke of Brunswick as commander of the allied armies, and in the name of the allied monarchs. This proclamation arrived in Paris on the 28th of July, though it was dated Coblenz, July 25th. It was far from being of the reasonable nature which the king had recommended, and was calculated to do the most fatal injuries to his interests. It stated that the Emperor and the King of Prussia, having seen the manner in which the authority of the King of France had been overturned by a factious people, how his sacred person and those of his family had been subjected to violence and restraint, in which those who had usurped his Government had, besides destroying the internal order and peace of France, invaded the Germanic Empire, and seized the possessions of the princes of Alsace and Lorraine, had determined to march to his assistance, and had authorised himself, a member of the Germanic body, to march to the aid of their friend and ally; that he came to restore the king to all his rights, and to put an end to anarchy in France; that he was not about to make war on France, but on its internal enemies, and he called on all the well-disposed to co-operate in this object; that all cities, towns, villages, persons, and property would be respected and protected, provided that they immediately concurred in the restoration of order. He summoned all officers of the army and the State to return to their allegiance; all Ministers of Departments, districts, and municipalities were likewise summoned, and were to be held responsible, by their lives and properties, for all outrages and misdemeanours committed before the restoration of order; and all who resisted the royal authority, and fired on the royal troops or the Allies, should be instantly punished with all rigour, and their houses demolished or burned. Paris, in case of any injury done to the royal family, was to be delivered up to an exemplary and ever-memorable vengeance; that no laws were to be acknowledged as valid but such as proceeded from the king when in a state of perfect liberty.
Buonaparte, in his bulletin of June 21st, found a reason for this utter defeat in a panic fear that suddenly seized the army, through some evil-disposed person raising the cry of "Sauve qui peut!" But Ney denied, in his letter to the Duke of Otranto, that any such cry was raised. Another statement made very confidently in Paris was, that the Old Guard, being summoned to surrender, replied, "The Guard dies, but never surrenders!"—a circumstance which never took place, though the Guards fought with the utmost bravery.LORD BUTE AND THE LONDONERS. (See p. 175.)
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[See larger version]Dr. Erasmus Darwin assumed the hopeless task of chaining poetry to the car of science. He was a physician of Derby, and, like Sir Richard Blackmore, "rhymed to the rumbling of his own coach wheels;" for we are told that he wrote his verses as he drove about to his patients. His great poem is the "Botanic Garden," in which he celebrates the loves of the plants, and his "Economy of Vegetation," in which he introduces all sorts of mechanical inventions. Amongst the rest he announces the triumphs of steam in sonorous rhymes—
The British Ministry was at length becoming aware of the mischief of allowing the Empress of Russia to make continual inroads on the Turkish Empire. The British Ambassador, Mr. Fawkener, had been instructed to inform Catherine that Britain could not quietly acquiesce in these usurpations, which were seriously disturbing the balance of power in Europe. Catherine replied, haughtily, that she did not recognise the right of Britain to interfere, and that she should keep possession of Oczakoff, and all her conquests between the Bug and the Dniester. On the 28th of March Pitt communicated this answer to the House, in a message from his Majesty, and that he had deemed it necessary to come to an understanding with his allies, Prussia and Austria, on the subject, and to maintain the fleet in its augmented condition. He moved, the next day, an address to his Majesty, thanking him for his care in these respects. The Whigs, almost to a man, condemned this policy. Coke of Norfolk, Lord Wycombe, Mr. Lambton, afterwards Earl of Durham, and others, stoutly opposed it. Fox treated the idea of Russia having become a power formidable to the peace of Europe as ludicrous. Both he and Burke contended that there was nothing in the aggressions of Russia to occasion any alarm; that Turkey was a decaying nation, which it was useless to attempt to support; and that to bolster it up was only to maintain a barbarous people in domination over Christian populations. Fox upbraided the Government with their folly and inconsistency, if such were their fears of Russia, in having till recently encouraged her in her plan of aggressions in that direction. He reminded them that, twenty years ago, Great Britain, on war breaking out between Russia and the Porte, had aided Catherine in sending a fleet to the Mediterranean, and had thus enabled her to acquire a maritime force in the Black Sea. The truth, however, was that it was not the present Ministry that had committed this folly, but a Whig Ministry, of which Fox was one. He confessed to this, and also to the fact that in 1782, when Catherine seized more completely on the Crimea and Kuban Tartary, France and Spain had urged us to unite with them in preventing this, but that we had declined, and these countries had become permanently united to Russia. Now all this was, in truth, a simple confession of the incapacity of the Whigs, and of Fox himself included, to see the dangerous tendency of the Russian policy, and the only circumstance on which he could justly condemn the Ministry of Pitt was for not strenuously supporting Turkey and Sweden, the ally of Turkey against Russia, when they did see this tendency. By mean and parsimonious conduct they had allowed Sweden to be driven out of her territories on the eastern shore of the Baltic by Russia, when, had they given her but moderate support, that Power would have become a permanent check on the aggressive spirit of Russia. The motion of Pitt was carried by a large majority. A few days afterwards Mr. Grey renewed the subject in a series of resolutions, condemning all interference on behalf of Turkey, and contending that Russia was only weakening instead of strengthening herself by extending her dominions. But Pitt, in reply, showed the very obvious facts that the retention of Oczakoff opened the way to Constantinople, and that the possession of Constantinople prepared the way for the seizure of Egypt, and the supremacy of the Mediterranean, with the most formidable consequences to our commerce. The resolutions of Grey were negatived; but twice again during the session the Whigs returned to the charge—on the 15th of April and on the 25th of May,—but with no better success. The armament was maintained, but the isolated threats of England had little effect on Catherine. Pitt was accordingly compelled to change his policy, and acquiesce in a peace by which she retained the territory between the Bug and the Dniester, and the fortress of Oczakoff.10FRANKFORT. (From a Photograph by Frith & Co., Reigate.)
On the 1st of June her Majesty arrived at St. Omer, intending to embark at Calais without delay for England. She wrote a letter to the Prime Minister, the Earl of Liverpool, commanding him to prepare a palace in London for her reception; another to Lord Melville, to send a yacht to carry her across the Channel to Dover; and a third to the Duke of York, repeating both demands, and complaining of the treatment she had received. Two days later Lord Hutchinson, with Mr. Brougham, who was her legal adviser, arrived with a proposition from the king, offering her fifty thousand pounds a year for life if she would remain on the Continent, and relinquish her claims as Queen of England. The queen instantly and indignantly rejected the offer, and started for England with all haste, having dismissed her foreign suite, including Bergami, her chamberlain, and the prime cause of the scandal that attached to her name. She would not even be dissuaded by Mr. Brougham, who most earnestly implored her to refrain from rushing into certain trouble and possible danger; or, at least, to delay taking the step until Lord Hutchinson should have received fresh instructions. She was peremptory, and sailed at once for Dover, accompanied by Lady Anne Hamilton and Alderman Wood, landing on the 6th of June. As this event was quite unexpected by Government, the commandant, having had no orders to the contrary, received her with a royal salute. The beach was covered with people, who welcomed her with shouts of enthusiasm. From Dover to London her journey was a continued ovation. In London the whole population seemed to turn out in a delirium of joy and triumph, which reached its climax as the procession passed Carlton House. No residence having been provided for her by the Government, she proceeded to the house of Alderman Wood in Audley Street.Through all these arrangements Lord North continued to persist in his resignation. If the king had had any glimmering of what was necessary to save the colonies, he would himself have removed North long ago. But the only man who could take the place with any probability of success, or with any of the confidence of the public, was Lord Chatham, whom the king regarded with increasing aversion. Chatham's pride, which would not stoop an inch to mere outside royalty, feeling the higher royalty of his own mind, so far from seeking office, must himself be sought, and this deeply offended the monarch. Lord North could point to no other efficient successor, and George angrily replied that, as regarded "Lord Chatham and his crew," he would not condescend to send for "that perfidious man" as Prime Minister; he would only do it to offer him and his friends places in the Ministry of Lord North.
[See larger version]The king, in his speech on opening Parliament, mentioned the fleets which we had dispatched to the West Indies and South America, and his determination to continue those armaments so as to bring Spain to reason. He professed to rely with confidence on our allies, although we had scarcely one left, whilst in the same breath he admitted the no longer doubtful hostility of France at the very moment that our only ally—namely, Austria—was calling on us for assistance, instead of being able to yield us any, should we need it. On the proposal of the address, the Opposition proceeded to condemn the whole management of the war. The Duke of Argyll led the way, and was followed by Chesterfield, Carteret, Bathurst, and others, in a strain of extreme virulence against Walpole, calling him a Minister who for almost twenty years had been demonstrating that he had neither wisdom nor conduct. In the Commons Wyndham was no longer living to carry on the Opposition warfare, but Pitt and Lyttelton more than supplied his place.
In 1734 England was the witness of war raging in different parts of Europe without having any concern in it, generally known as the War of the Polish Succession. A sharp Parliamentary campaign had been conducted at home. The Opposition talked loudly of the lamentable and calamitous situation of England, because she was wise enough to keep out of the war. Their motions were all guided by the secret hand of Bolingbroke, whose restless and rancorous mind could not brook that partial obscurity to which he was doomed by the immovable spirit of Walpole. But the grand attack was on the Septennial Act. This was a delicate subject for the Whigs in Opposition, for they, and Pulteney especially, had, in 1716, supported this Act with many specious arguments. But Wyndham led the way again with amazing eloquence, and discharged a philippic against Walpole of such ruthless and scathing vigour, as must have annihilated a less adamantine man.详情
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