Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

After a short conversation, leave was and Wales, when they are by this meagiven to bring in the bill. It went through sure deprived of the advantages which its several stages without much opposition, they had purchased, namely, those of seand passed the Commons on the 2nd of curity, resulting from a permanent domesOctober.

tic protection for their wives and children,

which, under the faith of parliament, was Protest against the Militia Volunteers held out to them as the valuable considerBill.] Oct. 4. The bill was read a se ation for heavy taxes imposed solely on cond time, after a debate. The following them. Protest was entered on the Journals : 5. “ Because this bill operates with “ Dissentient,

most unjustifiable partiality : it does not 1. “ Because, by this bill, and by the fairly and equally extend to Scotland; recited act of the last session, whose Scotland is still protected in the enjoypowers are by this bill aggravated and ment of a constitutional militia ; neither extended, the constitutional purposes of reduced to the disgraceful condition of a the militia establishment are totally and drill for the army, nor liable to be emfinally subverted.

ployed in the defence of England; from 2. Because, all the purposes of pro- its services (confined and limited solely to curing men for the army might have been the boundaries of Scotland) England and easily obtained by disbanding the supple- Wales can derive no protection, while the mentary war militia (which by its extra. reduced remnants of the militia of Eng. ordinary increase had professedly occa: land and Wales may be removed from the sioned a scarcity of men) without reduc- defence of their own homes to that of the ing the permanent militia establishment most remote parts of Scotland. to a service, in which no gentleman could (Signed) “CARNARVON hereafter hope that his patriotic and dis.

" WENTWORTH FITZWILLIAM interested industry would enable him to • All but the second reason, form his county regiment to a continued

“ BUCKINGHAMSHIRE.' state of discipline, at the head of which he might, with credit and honour to himself, Thanks of the House of Lords to the . answer the purpose of its institution in Earl of Mornington, Lord Clive, General the defence of his country against inva- Harris, &c.] Oct. 4. Lord Grenville sion.

rose to make his promised motion. The 3. “ Because, by this measure, all that task he had undertaken to perform was system and arrangement which nourished as arduous as it was satisfactory, and he the zeal of independent country gentle- had only to lament his inability to do any men is irrecoverably done away in the thing like justice to the claims of superior existing pressure of a formidable and merit and unrivalled services, which he alarming war, and the

peace establishment had that day to recommend to the attenof the militia (if, mangled as it is by this tion of their lordships, and to the gratibill, it can survive the war) will necessarily tude of the nation at large. In his enbe reduced to a mere standing army of deavours to discharge the duty he had the worst sort; independent of an annual imposed upon himself, he would begin by vote of parliament; deprived of all its tracing the origin and progress of a war, former constitutional advantages; con- which had been embarked in after renected with the people by nothing but the peated attempts at amicable negotiation 'unequal and oppressive burthens it im- ) had proved unavailing, and which termiposes on them; and commanded by such nated in the annihilation of a power that persons as may be procured to be regu- had perfidiously planned every measure Jating officers to a mere drill of army re- of hostility against the British interests in cruits.

India, of which it had meditated the ex4. “ Because the landed interest of tinction, by combining with our most England and Wales, already so heavily powerful and inveterate foe to effect our burthened, is most materially affected by total expulsion from that country. It this total revolution in the militia system; was also his task to call their lordships inasmuch as the peculiar expenses of a mi- attention to the merits of those by whose - Jitia originally formed for our unalienable vigilance these mischiefs were averted, domestic defence and insular garrison, are and by whose courage and energy the unjustly continued on the oppressed most glorious triumphs were achieved. owners and occupiers of land in England He was thoroughly sensible how inade(VOL. XXXIV.]

(4 G]

quate he was to the performance of such ment of the Isle of France, but to the a task, and how short every the most for. Executive Directory of France, openly incible expression must fall of the public vited them to conclude an offensive and merits and services which distinguished défensive alliance with him, and offered the exertions of those to whom he in- to subsidize whatever troops France might tended to move the thanks of their lord- furnish bim with, to enable him to comships. Nor did he imagine that the great mence hostilities against the British forces. degree of intimacy and friendship in The first notice which lord Mornington which, without interruption, he had passed received of this proposed alliance, was in his life with the present governor general June 1798, and coupling it with the inof Bengal, could in the least tend to formation he had likewise received of the weaken the faint tribute of praise which naval expedition which sailed from Toulon he was anxious to pay to his signal de. he took' every measure which prudence serts. In attempting the panegyric of could suggest, and activity and decision that noble lord, he obeyed the call of his could enforce. On the 18th Jane, 1798, public duty, and of the gratitude of the the governor-general received an authentic public, full as much as he did any private account of the proclamation that had propensity; for the highest strain of been issued in the Isle of France, and of eulogy in which he could indulge would the design which that proclamation uninadequately represent the talents and folded. He then formed the resolution, virtues which he had so long loved and not to wait, but to anticipate the attack admired. They happily, however, spoke of the enemy. He accordingly dispatched loudly for themselves, in actions, the re- orders to the governors of Madras and sult of which had proved so glorious to Bombay, to prepare for the event; and the country. A detail of those actions so forward were the preparations, that a might be deemed necessary to show the decisive blow was struck even that year. extent and solidity of these services, and Great doubts and difficulties, however, the wisdom and honour of those by whom arose in assembling the army at Madras, they were performed. On his arrival in and it was much feared that long before India, lord Mornington found the princes it was in readiness to act, Tippoo's alarms of the country at peace with our India might be excited, which would defeat the company; but that peace' was not of long measures which the governor-general was duration. Their lordships were well ac- concertiog. No situation could be more quainted with the great efforts that had critical, or more fall of perplexing anxiety, been made by France to fit out the for- than that in which lord Mornington was midable expedition which sailed from then placed to await the danger with his Toulon; nor was any man here ignorant eyes open to its approach, would be a fia. of its destination; it meditated destruc- grant neglect of his duty, to attempt to tion to the British empire in India, which avert it by a sudden and abrupt attack, France aimed at effecting by gaining over seemed to the most experienced military some of the native powers. Tippoo men a measure of very hazardous issue; Sultaun was the first and the most eager to such was the trying dilemma in which the go every length to derive advantage from governorgeneral was entangled, and that expedition, and to lend it every as. whatever side he embraced he felt that he sistance in his power. For this purpose must incur the whole of the responsibility. he sent an embassy to the Isle of France. The co-operation he was to expect from not with a view to complain of any griev- the native powers in alliance with Great ance, or to solicit any redress, but to en: Britain, was either doubtful or of little courage the attempts of the French, and advantage. The Mahrattas were rendered embark himself in the design, for our | unable to afford any substantial assistance; utter expulsion from our India possessions nor was their good-will to be called in —such was his perfidious conduct towards question. The absence of their support those from whom he had experienced the arose from real inability. From the co. utmost forbearance, the most unparalleled operation of the Nizam, little or nothing magnanimity. The motives of this em could be expected; his councils and bassy Tippoo did not endeavour to con army were at that period under the influ. ceal. They were avowedly an attachment ence of a French faction, and two French to the cause of the French republic, and officers were at the head of the sepoys in hostility to the interests of England. His the nizam's service, and indeed the wbole letters, addressed not only to the govern- of his military force was at the disposal of cause of and also, to major generals John Floyd, tive provision, to enable his majesty to Thomas Bridges, William Popham, James fulfil the seventh article of the treaty Hartley, and David Baird, and to the re- of the 22nd of June 1799, which enspective officers of the armies employed gages for the maintenance of a body on that occasion against the enemy, for of Russian troops within these kingdoms, their distinguished and meritorious ser- upon certain contingencies; but at the vices. 6. That this House doth highly same time humbly to represent to his maapprove of, and acknowledge, the services jesty, that we have seen the stipulation of the non-commissioned officers and pri- above alluded to with the most serious vate soldiers employed against the enemy concern and anxiety, as from the unprein the late glorious and decisive war in the cedented manner in which it has been East Indies; and that the same be signified concluded, and in which it has been comto them by the commanders of the several municated to this House, there is too much corps, who are desired to thank them for reason to fear that those persons who their gallant behaviour.”

the French officers. These difficulties hatched, and in the fall of that power created, neither despondency nor fear in who acted such a perfidious part against the heart of the governor-general : he, on us, not only therefore great military skill the contrary, adopted the most spirited and talent have been displayed, but the and decisive measures; an armed force most consumnjate, wisdom and firmness. was immediately detached into the terri. With this crafty and perfidious power lord tories of the nizam; the French army Mornington had, however, proposed to was not only surrounded and made pri. open a negotiation, even when Tippoo soners; but a new treaty was concluded was doing all the mischief in his power, with the nizam, by which the disposal of without ultering one word of grievance or his forces were put into the hands, of the complaint. Notwithstanding his flagrant British, and that very army which had violations of all faith towards the English been destined to attack them, was imme- government, lord Mornington renewed diately turned against the enemy. What his offers to remove every

disafcould display greater ability than this mas- fection, if any really existed. The whole terly manœuvre ?. But if it was great in of these pacific offers were received either ability, how much more useful was it in with sullen silence or studied duplicity, its consequences, which so powerfully and at last with open, preparations of hoscontributed to our subsequent successes, tile aggression. When Tippoo saw the by placing us in a situation to frustrate ruin he was drawing down upon his own all the plans that had been ineditated head, his inveterate animosity suggested against us. Till that was accomplished, lo his wicked imagination that he already pothing was safe : but as soon as it was saw the gigantic plan of the French achieved a negotiation was opened. Lord republic on the eve of being realized, Mornington was not unmindful that it and that the hour was come for the was the best policy to remain contented downfal of the British dominions in India. with our situation in India; to offend no He was also, anxious to gain time, and power. by our encroachments, or give defer the measures that were taking against umbrage to them by any plan of ambition him, in order that the season of the year or aggrandizement; but faithfully, and might intervene, and allow time to receive punctually to observe the faith of existing the succours with which he was to co treaties. Such, indeed, was the nature operate in our overthrow.-But was it not and tendency of the orders, under which, unnecessary to dwell any longer on these as governor-general, he was bound to act details; or on the wisdom, firmness, and He had, however, ample justification for sound policy of the measures adopted by pursuing an opposite plan; for what more the governor-general, who, month after clear and undisguised hostility, could there month, had made proposals for negotia. be, than that which he experienced from tion to an enemy, who instead of a sincere those who would negociate with our desire to establish peace, was secretly en. worst enemy for our ruin, and enter into deavouring, to destroy us? And if after offensive aliance with him for our des these repeated provocations, his noble truction; who stood forward in military friend had resolved upon offensive opera array, against our troops; and who as- tions, it was easy to relieve the governorsumed, if not the measures of actual hos- general from all responsibility for his contility, at least the attitude of hostile pre- duct, a conduct which, when rightly apparation and menace; who proposed to preciated, would be discovered not only France that if she would succour them to have averted the formidable perils which with a military force from Europe, they hung over our Indian empire, but to have would favour their landing at Porto-novo; established it on a basis of more permanent that they would lead them into the heart security than it ever before enjoyed. of the Dutch territories, into which they There was one point more, to which he were ready to penetrate themselves, and would advert, and that was the judicious co-operate with the French arms in ex. manner in which the governor - general pelling us from our dominion in India? had proceeded to compose and reconcile Nor was it against the British establish- all the discordant opinions which formerly ments alone that they concerted this hos- prevailed among the servants of the India tile attack, but also against those of Por- company. In this he had succeeded by a tugal, on account of her alliance with wise and temperate use of the sole conGreat Britain. In the storming of that trolling power with which he was invested; capital, where these machinations were and a greater and more refined satisfac

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

tion arose in his breast from observing the late war by the capture of Seringathis salutary effect, when he perceived patam ; during which period, by opposing that this discord of sentiment was si. to the perfidy of the late Sultaun of Myienced, not merely by the interposition of sore a uniform moderation, dignity, and this superior control, but by an appeal to firmness, and by counteracting with the wisdom and good sense of the different equal promptitude and ability the dangovernors. Among them the conduct of gerous intrigues and projects of the lord Clive stood peculiarly eminent, and re- French, particularly by destroying their flected the greatest honour on his heart and power and influence in the deccan, he head. That noble lord, spurning all little prepared the way for the rapid and briljealousies had not only expressed a decided liant operations carried on under bis suopinion, in favour of the propriety of the perintendance and direction, the result of measures pursued by the governor-general, which has finally disappointed all the debut by his zeal and spirit had principally con- signs of our enemies in that quarter, and tributed to secure the benefits, which the has established, on a basis of permanent adoption of these measures had in contem- security, the tranquillity and prosperity of plation. The same spirit animated the exer- the British empire in India. 2. That tions of the governor of Bombay, Mr. Dun. the Thanks of this House be given to the can. In consequence of these spirited, and right hon. lord Clive, governor of the setwell-concerted measures, when the army tlement of Fort St. George, for his zealous, was put in motion, it evidently appeared to cordial, and honourable concurrence, in be composed of troops the best disciplined forwarding the wise and dignified views of and appointed of any that were ever col- the governor-general in council, by which lected in India. The event, indeed, best he has furnished a salutary and memorable showed the zeal and spirit, the courage example of the advantage of unanimity and intrepidity with which it glowed, and and concord among the persons employed by which all its movements were directed. in high stations in the British dominions It was not his intention to detail its dif- in the East Indies, and has, to the utmost ferent operations, or the successes with of his power, promoted the success of which they were crowned. He could not, those measures, from which the most imhowever, forbear mentioning the gallant portant public benefits have resulted to action of the 6th of March, when a small this country. 3. That the Thanks of division of the British army attacked this House be given to Jonathan Duncan, and defeated a numerous force of the esq. governor of Bombay for the zeal and enemy, and by that victory laid the promptitude of his conduct in preparing ground of the subsequent successful the army of that presidency for the field, actions, which were closed by that bril- agreeably to the orders of the governor liant event which was brought about by general in council, whereby that army an army composed almost entirely of Eu- was enabled materially to contribute to ropeans, who during the intense heat of the successful and glorious termination of the day, attacked and took by assault one the late war in India. 4. " That the of the strongest fortresses, and in the Thanks of this House be given to lieutespace of two hours made themselves nant general George Harris, for the whole masters of the capital of the most impla of his able and meritorious conduct in cable and perfidious foe, whom the Bri- the command of the forces of his majesty tish interests had to dread in India. and of the East India company, during These were achievements which soared the late glorious and decisive war with above all praise; he would not, therefore, the Sultaun of Mysore, and particularly attempt a word more in their com for the ability, judgment, and energy mendation, His lordship then concluded with which he planned and directed the by moving, “ That the Thanks of this assault of Seringapatam, the success of House be given to the right hon. Richard which brilliant achievement has so highly Jord Wellesley, earl of Mornington in the contributed to the glory of the British kingdom of Ireland, and governor-general name, and to the permanent tranquillity of the British possessions in the East of our possessions in the East. 5. That Indies, for the wisdom, decision, and the Thanks of this House' be given to energy, with which he discharged the lieutenant-general James Stuart, comarduous duties of his station, from the mander in chief of the 'Bombay army, time of his taking upon him the said go- which so gloriously. co-operated in the vernment to the glorious termination of success of the late campaign in India ;

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

have advised his majesty to this measure, The several Resolutions were agreed to and whose conduct, in this instance, we nem, dis.

cannot too severely condemn, entertain Similar resolutions were this day moved an opinion that a power is vested in the in the Commons by Mr. Secretary Dun- crown of introducing and maintaining das, and agreed to nem. con.

within these kingdoms a foreign force,

without the consent or sanction of parliaLord Holland's Motion for an Address ment, and that we therefore feel ourselves respecting the Treaties with Russia.] particularly called upon to guard against Oct. 11. Lord Holland went into an the establishment of such a power, which is able examination of the Treaties with totally inconsistent with the ancient laws Russia, (See p. 1168) and concluded with of this realm, and with the security of moving,

those indubitable rights which our ances“ That an humble Address be pre- tors asserted at the Revolution, and which sented to his majesty, to return our most we are determined to maintain. Farther humble thanks for the gracious communi- to express to his majesty, that in cheercation of the two treaties, which his ma- fully adopting such measures as may be jesty, by the advice of his ministers, has necessary for a vigorous prosecution of been pleased to enter into with his majesty the war, we entertain a confident expecthe emperor of all the Russias. To ex- tation that his majesty will faithfully adpress our sincere satisfaction at perceiving here to the pledge which he has so that his majesty has entered into no engage solemnly given to this country, and to ment with the powers at war with France, Europe, in his declaration of the 28th of which can lead to an interference with October 1797, and humbly to suggest to the internal affairs of that country, or pre- his majesty, that the present moment clude the conclusion of peace upon just seems peculiarly favourable to the adopand equitable terms with the French tion of moderate and pacific counsels, republic. That though considering the when the improved situation of affairs, unparalleled sacrifices which his majesty's and the successes of his majesty and his faithful subjects have already made, and allies, will give an additional grace and that we are now engaged in the seventh dignity to measures of a conciliatory nayear of an expensive and destructive war, ture, and when the joint weight of the from the calamities of which Russia has allies, sincerely exerted in a fair and hobeen hitherto exempt, we might have ex. nourable negociation for peace, may be pected a more gratuitous exertion of the expected to produce the happiest effects. force of that powerful empire in the com. That it is far from the wish or intention mon cause; we shall nevertheless not fail of this House to reflect upon any of his to concur in such measures as the wisdom majesty's allies, or to excite suspicions of parliament may suggest for the purpose injurious to that sincere and cordial of meeting the additional and heavy exco-operation, which is no less essential to penses which his majesty's engagements a successful prosecution of the war than with the emperor of all the Russias will to an effective negotiation for peace. necessarily occasion. To assure his ma- But we cannot conceal from ourselves, jesty that our anxious desire to maintain nor will we, by any ill-timed Aattery, dishis majesty's personal honour inviolate, semble from his majesty the dangers will induce us also to concur in a legisla- which may result from not endeavouring

« ZurückWeiter »