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that? Suppose that Buonaparté, desirous and renown of the French monarchs, to obtain peace by every means, should surely could not be considered as British sit down to consider how he could suc objects. We complained in the note of ceed in the object of his wishes ; what did the recency of the revolution as precluding the note allow him to do? He would find, immediate negotiation; and we recomthat the restoration of the hereditary line mended to France, in the same breath, to of kings was the only case in which a make another, as the speediest means of speedy peace was admitted to be possi. restoring peace. We talked of the amble: his own government must be proved bition and insincerity of the republic as by experience, and the evidence of fact, objections, and then mentioned as a rebefore it was admitted to negotiate. But medy a government and family proverwhat was this experience and evidence of bially insincere and ambitious. We apfacts ? Formerly, six weeks were judged prehended instability, and then expressed sufficient; now, the probation required a hope that, for the sake of peace, they was neither ascertained by its duration, would adopt a form of government which, nor by the mode in which it was to be in the present circumstances, must be unconducted. In fact, therefore, the resto- stable and precarious. France, however, ration of the hereditary line of kings was by the decision of ministers, was to be put the only alternative in which immediate in a state of probation, if she refused the negotiation was admitted by ministers. alternative of the restoration of royalty, But surely, if the ambition of the French till she had renounced all the principles Republic was so formidable, we could not complained of, or till she was ready to forget this ground of apprehension, and acknowledge the guilt of original aggresthis source of danger, when we talked of sion. But how were we to be satisfied restoring the House of Bourbon. Had that these changes had taken place, unless we forgotten the recorded charges of the we agreed to negociate? The noble lord parliament of this country against the had stated with much pomp and solemambition of the French monarchs of that nity, that the second letter of Talleyrand House, at various periods ? Had we fora contained a principle more detestable than gotten their almost proverbial ambition? any at the very worst periods of the revoAnd was their restoration the remedy for lution. On hearing this assertion, he had evils arising from such a source? Every perused the letter with additional attenFrenchman, however, suspected, that the tion; but he could discover in it nothing restoration of the ancient family would be of this dreadful description. The French so clogged as to render France insigni- minister did not defend every act of every ficant. Frenchmen, therefore, could not preceding government. He stated, that be supposed to enter into our views in that the perseverance of this country had respect. As to that event, if it were driven France into excesses; but if the likely to take place, to him it did not avowal of this principle was atrocious, seem so desirable as some imagined. He what was the practice of it? And, unfor. did not look upon it as affording the tunately, it was too true that the example prospect either of security to this coun- of this country might give to France an try, or of much tranquillity and happiness apology for some part of her violence. to France. It was said, in the note in What had been our conduct to neutral reply to the first communication from the powers? Had we not violated the neutra French government, that the most natural lity of the grand duke of Tuscany, in pledge they could give of sounder prin spite of the most solemn treaties ? Had ciples, was the restoration of that family we not violated the neutrality of Genoa ? which had maintained France in “pros- What was the conduct of our allies? Did perity at home, and in respect and consi- not Russia violate the neutrality of other deration abroad.” It was, indeed, a sin- states? When we saw such unjustifiable gular circumstance, to observe so much proceedings on the side of those who anxiety in ministers for the prosperity of made the crimes of France the cause of France. But what respect and consi- the war, it proved that this was nothing deration was here alluded to? Was it the but a pretext. Ambition was objected to respect of justice, of moderation, of wis France; but was France the only ambidom? No; it was the respect arising from tious power in Europe? It was said, that the power of France, and was founded on interest alone induced France to keep no better claims. To promote the in. well with Prussia ; but might not the same ternal prosperity, and the external respect interest prompt her to observe faithfully the engagements of treaties? Buonaparté, to any overtures; and if it should afterhad given every proof of his sincerity. wards clearly appear that Buonaparté had Much was said of the character of Buona- been sincere, how would their lordships parté. He could not perceive that any ad- reconcile it to their consciences to have vantage could arise to us from blackening given their implicit sanction to measures the character of an individual. It was that prolong the calamities of war, withnot dignified; it was not politic. We had out any motive of honour, interest, or senow taken up the principle so much ob-curity? He therefore gave his decided jected to the Jacobins, of distinguishing support to the amendment. between a people and their government. The Earl of Carnarvon said: I do not What, on the contrary, was the conduct quite like the present question, as it stands of the French? In his letter to the king, on the proposed address, much less on Buonaparté distinctly renounces this prin. the amendment: I should rather have apciple, and acknowledges the title and proved that the address had contained character of his majesty's government. simply thanks to his majesty for his com. On our part, the note of ministers was a munication, and left the conduct and unmanifesto to the royalists, and framed for diminished responsibility to ministers. that purpose. It spoke of the miseries of The present question had been debated

France; but the miseries of France were upon a wrong ground; it has been treated, not the cause of the war. They might as if we were to decide by the vote of tointerest our humanity, but they were not night, whether this country should be fit to be noticed in diplomatic papers. As plunged into a long and ruinous war, or little had we to do with the internal mi- make an immediate peace; this is very far series of the republic, as Talleyrand would from being the true state of the question. have to retaliate, by reproaching us with His majesty has been pleased to commuthe Test act, the want of parliamentary nicate to us proposals of peace, from a reform, the Income tax, or any other government which has just made its appublic measure that might be considered pearance in France, together with the anas a grievance. There was, indeed, one swers made by the noble secretary of argument against a negotiation, and it state; we have to give our approbation or was the only one that had made any disapprobation of those answers. I have impression at all on his mind. This was no difficulty in saying, that they appear the apprehension of sacrificing the Chou- to me well calculated to meet all the posans, with whom we might have engage- sible intricacies of our situation with our ments, and whom he feared we had in- allies. In declining negotiation, the noble cited to their present imprudence by our secretary does not reject distinct propomoney and intrigues. This argument the sitions, which may be considered by our noble sccretary had not urged;

and he did allies, and evidenced by speedy ratificanot blame him for suppressing it, as it was tion and immediate execution. In every a delicate subject, under all circumstances, point of view I approve the answer, it for a minister to talk of; but there could marks with dignity and spirit, that we shall be no impropriety in his saying a few not, through our sincere wish for peace, words on the subject. He would be as be the dupes of artifice; that it is not the averse as any man to sacrifice those whom nature of the government, but its sincerity we had incited; but was it not possible, and faith, of which we bave so many reaif peace, in a spirit of conciliation, was sons to doubt, which alone impedes peace; concluded, that we might render these that we shall not quit our advantageous Chouans a service greater than we did by situation on the first song of peace, nor furnishing them with assistance? Was it betray our security and that of our allies, not possible, he had almost said, was it to the known and experienced perfidy of not certain, that, by continuing the war, an insidious enemy, without something

were dooming them to destruc- more than mere professions. I undertion! It was a dreadful thing to reflect, stand by what the noble secretary has said that by the obstinacy of ministers, we this night, that he means only to justify a might be condemned to carry on the war pause necessary to understand the situa • for years, without gaining any advantage tion of this new ruling power, its force, which we might not receive from nego stability, and interests, not that he retiation at the present moment. He was jects peace. He has detailed, ir. strong convinced that the people at large dis- colours, the numberless perf dies of the approved of their abrupt refusal to listen several revolutionary governments which


have succeeded each other in France; heternal misconduct, by the superior iohas likewise detailed the individual re- terests arising from war; but this policy proaches due to the character of its pre- is by no means applicable to the position sent ruler ; nothing certainly can be more of the present ruler of France." He is disgraceful than his conduct ; but the called out of Egypt that his military repucharacter of the ruling sovereign has tation may be the key-stone to power, never been the sole reason for rejecting a raised by the intrigues of others, out of peace with any nation, nor repeated breach the ruins of an expiring republic. The of national faith the sole reason for con- reign of attornies and mountebanks, continuing a war. Breaches of faith as enor- trolling generals and armies, from the mous and disgraceful, are imputable to capitol, is at an end; the reign of generals the ancient legitimate government of is commenced ; Buonaparte is the first France. Where can be found in the whose military reputation has placed him history of mankind, a more atrocious in- in the seat of power ; he has all the danstance of insidious treachery, or more per gers of newly-acquired power, without fidious breach of faith, than that which having gradually advanced to it by his took place on the treaty of peace which own intrigues, they are dangers equally preceded, and was disturbed by the cap- to be apprehended from his present ture of Falkland's island? At the very friends, and from all those who envy his moment that Spain and France signed exaltation; he must maintain himself by peace with this country, an order was his own intrigues against even bis creasigned by the minister of Spain, in con- tors; he cannot therefore quit the capital, cert with the duke de Choiseul, to attack and command in person the armies of the Falkland's island, on a given date some state; he must trust his armies to the years after, in order to produce a rupture, ablest generals, their failure or their sucresolved on at the very instant of exe- cess are equally fatal to him, and equally cuting a treaty, professing perpetual ami- tend to undermine the foundation of his ty; at the time when this sealed order power. The first advances a Bourbon to was opened and put in execution, it suited the throne; the last raises a formidable the interest and views of neither court, rival, with equal claims to his own, and and produced equal astonishment in both. furnishes him with the means of asserting M. d'Ossun, then ambassador from France it. I cannot doubt, therefore, that it is to the court of Spain, from whom I heard the personal interest of the present ruler this anecdote, was directed to remon. to obtain peace, and preserve it; his stastrate against this act of aggression, which bility is the only doubt I entertain; even embarrassed the court of Paris; he found peace may not be able to confirm his equal surprise at Madrid, for the order power; there can, however, be no great was forgotten by both, nor was recollected difficulty about the terms of peace, as betill the attack was defended by the pro- tween France and this country: and if duction of the order. Is any act of the there was, should Buonaparte feel that revolutionary governments more indefen- peace is necessary for his private interest, sible than the interference in our Ame- he will not scruple to sacrifice the interest rican embarrassments, by the late unfor- of France to acquire it. I am not, there. tunate monarch of France, then in a strict fore, without hopes that the horrors of alliance with us, and professing amity ? war may shortly cease, either by the overHistory is full of disgraceful proofs of na- throw, or the confirmation of the present tional want of faith. Peace must always power in France, but I do not think negobe made when the interests of both parties tiation and suspension of arms necessarily require it, and will seldom last longer. I the shortest road to peace. I am deciown that I cannot agree with the noble dedly against interference with ministers secretary, that peace is not consistent in this critical time, being persuaded they with the interests of Buonaparté. The wish peace as sincerely as I do. I shall noble secretary says, that military govern. therefore concur with the address as it ments in their nature lean to war, and that stands. a sovereign with feeble title, will divert The Earl of Liverpool said, he was sathe people from attention to his title, by tisfied, from every view of the situation the alarms and dangers of war; this po- of the two countries, that it was highly licy seems to me to apply more to old prudent to pause before ministers entered and established governments, who wish to into a negotiation for peace with Buona, divert the attention of the public from in- parté. Let their lordships shortly como pare the two situations. France had lost “ Dissentient, her marine, had lost her commerce, had .“ Because the Address adopted by the lost her trade ; she had not a single mer- House directly approves of the rejection chant ship in any of her ports, for every of an overture for peace, when that invaone of them had been converted into petty, luable blessing might very probably be pilfering privateers, sent out to prey upon attained with honour and security, by our commerce. Her revenue was ade- opening & negotiation with the French quate to her expense in no way whatso- republic, and indirectly approves of the ever. On the other hand, our revenue was language in which the rejection of the offer increasing; our commerce had prospered was conveyed to the French government; beyond all example. In fact we might a language which, in my opinion, can only almost be said to have the commerce of tend to widen the breach between the two the whole world in our hands. Ought we countries, to exasperate the enemy, and then to consent, by a rash and premature prolong the calamities of war. negotiation, to open the ports of France, (Signed) “ HOLLAND." to let them share our commerce, to enable the republic to revive their drooping ma- Debate in the Commons on the King's nufactures ? Much had been said of the Message respecting Overtures of Peace sincerity of Buonaparté ; but would any from the Consular Government of France.] man versed in state affairs, manifest so Feb. 3. The order of the day being read, little judgment as to rely upon the mere for taking into consideration his Majesty's professions of sincerity of an individual Message, and the Papers relating thereto, who had shown so little sincerity in his Mr. Secretary Dundas said :- Sir; ac. military transactions during the war? The custored as I am to take part in the infamous resolution of the 19th November, ternal transactions of his majesty's go1792, declaring the intention of the re- vernment, it will not be thought extraorpublic of France to use their endeavours dinary if I should move an address apto overthrow the government of every proving of that correspondence which has other state in Europe, stood as yet unre- been just read, so far as it respects the pealed: no mention was made of a design administration of this country. Sir, on this to rescind it in Buonaparte's letter to subject I shall trouble the House with a his majesty, nor had they seen any steps few observations: it is a subject which it taken in Paris to rescind it. In like man- is impossible for us to consider properly, ner, had they renounced their unheard-of without adverting to the circumstances practice during a war; of annexing for and situation in which we are placed, as ever to the French republic every state decisive of the conduct which we ought and territory that they subdued by their to pursue. We are not now at a stage of arms, and declaring that they were not to the business to be at liberty to bring forbe made the subject of future negotiation? ward opinion, and conclude from theory Would it not be in the highest point dis- and speculation. Experience has decided advantageous for this country to agree to the question, and, thanks to it, we are to an armistice? Under such an armistice, dispute on the merits of the French reduring negotiation, France would have volution, whether it be that glorious every thing to gain, and this country every work, which some have fondly imagined thing to lose. By the answer given to it, or whether it be a transaction that has Buonaparté and M. Talleyrand, it was produced more mischief, horror, and denot declared that this country would not vastation, than the political history of the Ireat, or wished to wage eternal war. It, world affords example of. Sir, in consion the contrary, declared the express wish dering the question before us, I must call of his majesty to treat for peace, when he the attention of the House to the leading could do it with security,

principles of that revolution, whatever The House then divided :-Contents, form or shape it may assume. I do not, 79; Proxies, 13. Not-Contents, 6; however, mean to enter into a detail of cirProxy, 0. Majority, 86. The minority cumstances on this point. Experience were, the, duke of Bedford, the earl of has saved me the trouble; for I state it Albemarle, lords Ponsonby, Holland, as an undeniable fact, that the leading King, and Camelford.

feature of the French revolution, illus

trated by the uniform tenor of its conduct Protest against the Address. ] The to foreign states, is a total disregard for all following Protest was entered on the treaties and obligations, and a sovereign Journals :

contempt for the rights and privileges of|tion resolves itself simply into this, wheother powers. If it were necessary to ad. ther that constitution, such as I have deduce à proof, I should refer merely to scribed it, does or does not exist ? In one transaction. Has there been, I ask, arguing this point I have no occasion to any attempt to palliate the French decree resort to abstract reasoning, I have only of the 19th of November 1792 ? a decree to state the authority of the supporters constituting it a part of their bounden and advocates of the late revolution, duty to excite insurrection and sedition every one of whom is of opinion, that, in other states, for the purpose of over- it was impossible, from the nature and throwing their existing governments. I constitution of the French government, contend, that this proclamation contains that it could present any thing but conthe code of the revolution, and that its tinual war to all nations within its sphere spirit never has been departed from. I of action. This is no description of have no hesitation to confess, that the mine; it is the account given of it by French revolution professed its object to those who have lived under it, who have be purely pacific, and at an early period taken an active part in its administration, proclaimed such to be its intention. I and who judge, from a ten years experiadmit a proclamation to that effect, ence of its merits. Having thus ascer. shortly after the revolution ; but it is ne tained, from the testimony of the French cessary to recollect whether this that was themselves, what the government of professed was its real genius and charac- France was, I am led, by the natural proter? and a singular thing it is, truly, that gress of discussion to inquire what it is in the interval between the date of that now. Are the practices of which all proclamation and the present moment, other nations have complained, now reprothere is scarcely a nation that lias not bated by France? Are the principles of been either at 'war with Francé, or on aggression and ambition on which she has the eve of being so; not from any ambio acted laid aside ? It is a mistake to suppose tion or want of faith on their part, but in that these principles were essentially conconsequence of the open violation of sub- nected with the Jacobinical form of governsisting treaties, and direct aggression by ment, and therefore must stand or fall the French republic. In proof of this as- with such form. In one part, no doubt, sertion, I beg leave merely to recite the the Jacobinical government is at an end, names of the different nations with which in point of form; but in substance and it has been at war within that time, essence all the other qualities of the reSpain, Naples, Sardinia, Tuscany, Genoa, volutionary government are as much in Geneva, Modena, Venice, Austria, Rus- force at this moment as they were in the sia, England, Egypt, age, and even that days of Barrere and Robespierre. creature of its creation, the Cisalpine re- What, then, the peculiar nature of the public; so that Denmark and Sweden are change that has recently taken place may the only two kingdoms that have not been be, or whether it be for the better or for in actual hostility with it. Sir, is it nothing the worse, with respect to the people of that this should arise, not from accident, France themselves, I shall leave others to

fortuitous combination of circum- decide. But if we consider the change stances, but from the inherent principles in relation to other governments, and the of the revolution; and that, from a strict degree of confidence which they ought to adherence to them, negotiation has been place in the future conduct of France, the ineffectually tried, or, in case of its success, only difference that I see between the grossly violated by France, with respect present and any of her former governto the nations with which she was at war; ments is this, that the others were derived and that in the case of the two countries from republican assemblies, representing to which I have alluded, they have, in the people; and, though the people consequence of her hostile conduct and always, and these assemblies often, were aggression, been under the necessity of nothing but the blind instruments of the recalling their ambassadors? This, then, executive, the appearance of the constitubeing the strong feature of the revolution, tion was still preserved; whereas all this the peculiar character of the Jacobinical is now at an end. Form and substance government of France, and it being ma- are all now concentrated and consolidated nifest that a principle in opposition to the in the hands of Buonaparte, and the spirit of peace and treaties, has charae- government stands with a military despot terized the French revolution, the ques. at its head, with unlimited power and au

or any

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