Page images
PDF
EPUB

loans will go on augmenting the debt, and the war-faction tells us, in this respect. the interest of the debt must continue to Their own contradictions and alarms prove be paid after the war is over, let who very clearly, that they think the French will live to see that day. Of course, nation and their chief formidable. The prices will still keep, on an average, rising; same faction vowed eternal war against the difference between prices in England Mr. Madison, whose name they now never and in France will be greater than it is mention. There is no doubt that they now; people will be still more disposed to were, in this latter case, reduced to reason migrate than at present; and, thus will by the battles on the Lakes, on the Ocean, war have augmented the evil instead of re- and on the land of America. It was the moving it.

sword, which brought them to their senses; The war-faction make quite sure of suc- and, is there not reason to believe, that cess against Napoleon. They do not als such will be the case again ? Let us first low him above three months to exist. hear of one or two great battles, and then They say he was brought back by the army; we shall be able to judge of the relative that the army were so attached to him means of the opposing parties. that they never could endure the good And, if the war-faction should be disking Louis; that the army bore down appointed; if war should carry the French txventy-five, or thirty, millions of good arms again into Holland and to Vienna; Frenchmen; that the whole nation was if this coalition, too, should be dissolved, nothing, and the army every thing. and England again left to make war er Yet, in the next breath, they say that he peace single-handed; if this shoukl be the has no army ; that the army, what there case, what will then be our situation ? If is of it, is good for little, and that the migration be an evil now, what would it troops, so far from liking him, are daily. be at the end of such a war, which would deserting to the good king at Ghet. have added another hundred million or Strange fellows this army, or no army, two to the national debt, and, in propormust be composed of! Not a soul of them tion, to our permanent taxes? If we can, would lift a band for the good king while not live in peace with France now; if her he was in France ; but, he having run abundance and her political example are away out of France, they desert from Na- now. objects of terror to the war-faction, poleon to join the king !

what will they be then ? On the other hand, the war-faction re- It is a curious thing to observe, that, present the High Allies as being wondrous while, at this time, all the ports of France strong. They have 800,000 men march- are open to England, and while the mail ing towards the Rhine. They have an comes more frequently than ever from a bandance of caonon, horses, provisions, that country, there is no mail permitted to &c. They are, too, so beloved by all go from England to France. Napoleon their people. All the people in Belgium, seems not to wish to disguise any thing. in Holland, in the new kingdom of Han- He has no law, no regulation, to prevent over, in Prussia, Saxony, Germany, Aus- us from seeing what he is about. Any tria, Italy, Sicily, and Spain are so fond, one may write to us a full account of his so exceedingly fond, of their good Sove- proceedings. He aims at no secrecy. He. reigns, and detest Napoleon so much, that suffers any one to go, or come. the contest cannot be either doubtful, or gues any thing but fear. Ten thousand long. Now, if this be so, why are they assassins may enter France, if they can afraid of Napoleon or his French people? be found. This does not seem as if he Why need they be alarmed ? If all their were in any terror, And yet, there are people are so free and so happy and so persons constantly endeavouring to perfond of their Sovereigns, and such haters suade us, that he lives amidst the most of Napoleon and of the French, why not dreadful alarms. leave Napoleon and the Freuch to this It is with a view of guarding you, my hatred? Why not leave them to their friends of Nottingham, against the falsemisery? And, why are we to be involved hoods and misrepresentations of the warin a new war for the parpose of putting faction that I have offered to you these down a second time a man whom no peo- remarks. Neither you nor I can prevent ple in the world care a straw about? war, if it be to take place; hut it is in our

However, the fact is, I believe, not what power to reject falsehood, to think rightly

This ar

66

[ocr errors]

upon this important subject, to endeavour | Austria first compelled France to unsheath to enlighten others whom we see in error, the sword, the same Assembly declared, and thus to deserve no part of that reproach “ that the French people, faithful to the which will justly fall upon those who principles of its constitution, which forshall have been instrumental in the utter“ bid it every kind of conquest, and from ruin of our country.

arming against the liberty of any people, You will please to observe, that I am “ is now arming only for its own freedom, very far from thinking, that we can live in “ its independence, and its sovereignpeace with Fraoce, unless we change our 6 ty.”—It is true, these principles were system. With taxes to the amount of afterwards departed from; but this was Sixty millions a year, while France is in not the spontaneous act of the French goher present state, we never can live in vernment. It was not with them a matter peace with her and retain our greatness. of choice when they proclaimed " peace People, who are able to remove, never “ to the cottage and war to the palace." will long continue to walk on foot on this We must look to the Duke of Brunswick's side of the water, if they can ride in Manifesto for the cause of this. Here incoaches on the other. Where the rich deed we shall find enough to palliate, if are, thither will go those arts which the not to justify, all the subsequent hostile rich support. I am well aware of all this; proceedings of France against her external but, it is not by war that I would endea- enemies, and all the dreadful convulsions vour to keep Englishmen at home. By with which she was so long agitated interpeace, by æconomy, by reducing the mili- nally.--" The inhabitants of cities, towns, tary establishment, by conciliatory laws, " or villages, who shall dare to defend and especially by a constitutional Reform" themselves against the troops of their in the Commons' House of Parliament, I “ Imperial and Royal Majesties, and fire would make Englishmen feel, I would upon them either in the open country, not tell them, but I would make them feel, “ or from the windows, doors, or other that there was nothing for them to envy, openings of their houses, shall be pu

, or to seek after, in France, in America, nished on the spot with all the rigour of or in any other country upon earth. 6 martial law, and their houses shall be

With that respect to which your good pulled down or burnt.—“ The city of sense and public spirit entitle you from Faris and all its inhabitants without disall your countrymen,

tinction shall be bound without the I remain your friend, 6 smallest delay, to submit to the king, to

WM. COBBETT. 66 set him at full and perfect liberty, and Botley, May 2, 1815.

secure to him, a's also to all the royal persons of his family, the inviolability

and respect which, according to the WAR AGAINST FRANCE.

6 laws of nature and of nations, are due MR. COBBETT,—You have already, and “ from subjects to their sovereigns; their most ably shewn, that there exists, at this Imperial and Royal Majesties declaring, period, å striking similarity between the “ that all the members of the National Asinvasion of France in 1792, and that which 5 sembly, of the departments, districts, is again threatened in 1915.--In nothing munịcipalities, national guards, justices is the resemblance more obvious than in 6 of the peace, and all other persons whatthe pacific and moderate language now soever, shall be answerable with their used by Napoleon, and that employed by“ lives and fortuneş for all events ; tried the National Assembly when it met to de- “ by martial law, and punished without termine this great question, whether the hopes of pardon: their said Majesties right of making war and peace belonged to further declaring, upon the faith and

6 the king or to the nation? Having decided word of an emperor and of a king, in favour of the exclusive right of the peo- 66 * That if the palace of the Thuilleries ple, they decreed, " that the French na- " shall be forced or insulted, if the least « tion formally disclaims all wars from “ violenee, the least outrage shall be of. 66 motives of ambition, or yiews of con- 66 fered to their Majesties the King and

quest; and engages never to employ Queen, or the Royal Family; if provi. “ her forces against the liberty of any other “sion shall not be made immediately for

people."-Even when the conduct ofl “ their safety, their preservation, and their

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

1

66

6

en:

" liberty, they will take a signal and me-" to France, would again become French,

, morable vengeance, by delivering up the “and the triumphant eagles would again city of Paris to military execution and 5 carry beyond the Rhine, the Alps, and complete subversion: and the revolters, “ the Pyrenees, the independence and the who shall have given occasion for such emancipation of nations. But if the vengeance, to the just punishment of nation is respected, if her rights are not

6 thcir crimes.Such are the 7th and 66 contemned, all her energy will subside 8th articles of that humane Manifesto, " into the only wish which she forms-which served as a signal to rouse, and to

6 that of a free Constitution. Then all render furious the minds of almost the “ France may proudly repeat what Pliny whole population of France, and which,“ said to Trajan, “ If we have a Prince, it instead of tending to preserve the life of “ is to preserve us from having a master'the unfortunate monarch, hastened his It is much to be regretted, that there are conveyance to the scaffold. The Times so few who are capable of justly appreci. newspaper asserts, that “it is not histori- ating the causes of the war of 1793, or of

cally true that the Duke of Brunswick’s that with which we are now threatened. " Manifesto occasioned the failure of the The ignorance generally prevailing on this “ first invasion of France.”—Critically subject, seems to arise from the implicit respeaking, it may be that the mere publica- liance that is placed in the statements of tion of this document had not that effect; our newspaper press, the sole object of but it is also true that the measures pur- whick is to obscure truth, to paralyze the sued by the Allies, which were exactly in mind, and to excite the ferocious passions the spirit of the Manifesto, were the cause of cannibals, who delight in war because of their armies being driven from the soil it satiates their thirst for human blood.of France, and of the war being after-How few are there, of the present day, wards carried into the bosom of their own that have any recollection of that “ territory. The object of the Times writer thusiasm" which animated Frenchmen, was to make it be believed, that the De- when the soil of France was first invaded; claration of the Allies against Napoleon, how comparatively few are to be found, would not occasion any new disaster, in that are any way acquainted with those case they should again enter France. The individual traits of valour and attachment disgraceful termination of the campaign to liberty, which a former violation of her which followed the Duke of Brunswick's territory called forth amongst that brave Manifesto, is sufficiently conclusive as to and gallant people. France was then its effects; and although the new fulmina- fighting for freedom, for independence, and tion against the “rebel and his adherents," for sovereignty. She is now arming in the is not so bloody in its aspect, though same sacred cause. It was the efforts of equally sanguinary, its consequences must her citizens that then insured her the vice be, indeed already have been, to unite tory. Why may not similar efforts again all the energies of the French nation in crown her with new triumphs ?-The sasupport of Napoleon. It is not justice tellites of corruption tell us, that Napoleon

(says the Guzette de France), which has no regular army, and ihat he is destin “ arms the Sovereigns of Europe, but pas- tute of every thing necessary to fit one “ sion and anger. Let them beware: all out. Be it. so. It was not by regular " the coalitions directed against France armies that France vanquished her ene“ for twenty years were unsuccessful, mies in 1793; it was not by Swiss guards, 6 whilst they presented only a confedera- nor by mercenary troops, that she carried “ tion of Princes, and not a league of na- terror into the ranks of her invaders. It 66 tions, and whilst France remained con- was the energies of an undisciplined, an “ centrated in herself, and was united by almost unarmed population, animated by

a national will. Let them not then re- the enthusiasm of liberty, indignant at the “ vive in France the frenzy of 1793. The haughty threat of punishing the defenders

same violation of her territory, the least of their country, and resolved to revenge $ insult to the moral character of the na- the insults offered to the national honour, “ tion, would produce the same enthu. that delivered France from the terrible

siasm, the same exasperation, and the state of degradation with which she was

same vengeance. Soon all the provinces, then threatened. A departure from first " which, daring twenty years, were united | principles, subsequently placed her, in

66

some measure, at the mercy of her inva- | nerable to all attacks that could be made ders; but although she was believed to be against her?-I admit that the Volunteers overcome, the spirit of independence was of France will have no dominant church, not subdued. It was only in appear- no overgrown nobility, to fight for, beunce she yielded for a moment, that cause every religion in that country is she might derive new life, new vigour, to alike protected, and because the division resist her assailants. Of what consequence of property is more equalized than before is it, then, whether France has regular ar, the Revolution. But they will have much mies or not; whether her forces are train- more powerful stimulants, They will have ed to battle; whether they wear red coats, equality of rights to contend for; they yellow coats, or green? The whole popu- will have that admirable code of laws lation are resolved, like the Americans which Napoleon consolidated, those bein the late war,

“ to defend their country, nevolent institutions which he established, “ or to perish in the contest.” The spirit those unrivalled specimens of the fine arts which enabled these patriots to combat so which he collected, those extensive nas, successfully for liberty, and to triumph tional improvements which he created and over those who threatened their indepen- patronized. All this, and the integrity of dence, now animates all Frenchmen. Nor that delightful country which produces so has Napoleon neglected to take advantage many comforts for the use of man, the of this noble feeling, to which he has given Volunteers of France will have to protect, a direction similar to that which, even in to defend, and to succour in the hour of this country, is said to have, at one period, danger. They will also have to guard

. bamed his designs against us, and to have against the return of that system which saved us from a foreign domination. In- formerly rendered existence almost into, dependent of the National Guards, esti-lorable in France, and țended only to in, mated at two millions of men, corps of crease the luxuries of an insolent nobility, volunteers are every where forming in and to augment the power of a contempti, , France, who are not, as with us, to wear ble race of monarchs. But above all, gaudy uniforms, and, in all cases, are to these brave defenders of their country will serve without pay. If this species of mili- have to protect it against the encroach, tary defence was regarded of such vast ments of the priesthood, who, more than impor Britain

here; if to the Volunteers of any other set of men,, have desolated Great we are now indebted for the France, and subjected the sovereign as possession of our invaluable Constitution, well as the people to the most degrading of the whole of that “Social System,” and abject slavery. These are objects those ancient, those sacred, those venera- worthy the attention of every people. ble institutions, in which our fathers so Without these, life is not worth having. much delighted, and which they took so To defend them to the last extremity, iş much pains to hand down unimpaired to what constitutes real patriotizm; and when

If to those ardent and patriotic sup- a nation is once convinced, as it appears to porters of church and state we owe so me the French nation now is, that the war many blessings, is it not reasonable to ex- threatened against her is for the purpose pect that France will feel equal benefit of depriving her of so many advantages, it from the exertions of her volunteers? If can scarcely be a matter of doubt that she we confided our all to them; if it be true will ultimately triumph over all her ene, that our embodying this description of mies.--But if this conclusion is fairly force obliged the enemy to abandon his drawn on the supposition that France has intention of invading this country, why no regular army, and mụst rely upon her should not the Volunteers of France ap- Volunteers and her National Guards, how pear equally terrible to her invaders ? much greater must the probability of her Why should not Napoleon have as much success be, when it is recollected that Na. reliance upon them as our Government poleou has at this very moment under his bad upon our volunteers? And where command, an army of veteran soldiers, is the prospect of the Allies being able to amounting to little short of 300,000 men, subdue France with such an armed force and that they are known to be well equip:

to oppose them, when it was so confidently ped, and amply supplied with every neces. bibelieved that a similar force rendered sary for carrying on active operations,

Con Britain, even single handed, invul- Supposing it true, that the Allies will be
Great

[ocr errors]

us.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

able to bring forward double this number; | thousand reasons which might be given. supposing that so large a body of Russians, IIe was the upholder of those laws to whicla Austrians, Prussians, Saxons, Bavarians, they looked for security and happiness Belgians, English, Swedes, Danes, and the in the undisturbed enjoyment of those Lord knows what; supposing that so he advantages which the Revolution had given terogeneous a mass could be brought into them.. The majority were sti

agers to the field, to co-operate cordially with each the Bourbons, and had grown up with other; that a general could be found ca- Napoleon, whose brilliant exploits against pable of giving so vast an accumulation of the enemies of France reflecting its lustre discordant materials a proper direction; on his subjects, completely identified this that he was in no risk of being counter- susceptible people with their Emperor, acted in his schemes by the jealousy of whose successes and misfortunes they felt other generals, of equal rank and talents, to be their own. But to shew why Boover whom he might be placed. Supposing naparte is popular in France would be only all this likely to happen, we find that Na- to repeat, what you, Sir, so clearly proved poleon is sufficiently prepared for it.—“If must be the case,

in
your

letter addressed " the enemies of France,” says he,“ bring to Louis the 18th. Every where, and "600,000 men against her, she will meet among all classes, I found admirers of Na“ them with two millions.”-Laying out poleon. At Paris, I was told by a Merof view, therefore, the probability that chant, at whose house I visited, (an asserBelgium, that Italy, that Swisserland, that tion which was confirmed by many of his Saxony, that Poland, and that Denmark, guests,) that an immense number of young are friendly to France, and may be prepa- men in that city applied for arms to defend ring to assist her. Making no account of it against the Allies, but that none could this, or of the military operations, already be obtained. Their number was stated at begun, of Murat king of Naples, France 100,000. In several companies, where I has, in my opinion, the means within her- afterwards mentioned this circumstance, self of maintaining her independence; and the answers were, “Oui, Monsieur, c'est directed, as these means will be, by the 7 bien vrai.” At fontainbleau, their exiled only man in the world possessing talents Emperor was the subject of the most unfor so great an exertion, France must ul- qualified panegyric. " Ah, Monsieur! c'est timately triumph.-Yours, &c.

un grand Homme. La France est bien May 2, 1815.

ARISTIDES. malheureuse de l'avoir perdu," was

the universal answer to any questions

concerning him. At a Table d'Hote in THE EMPEROR NAPOLEON.

that town, I frequently met an elderly Mr. COBBETT, - I was in France last Captain who had made the campaign of summer nearly ten weeks, and as far as Russia with Napoleon; he had narrowly my observations extended, I can bear tes- escaped with life, and was covered with timony to the truth of Mr. Birkbeck's wounds. The enthusiasm of this veteran statements respecting the condition of her soldier for his master, it is impossible to do peasantry and the cultivation of her soil. justice to; but as his popularity with the It is, therefore, with much pleasure I find military has been never called in question, this interesting publication is now in its it is needless to retail the words of the third edition, and that you have enriched Captain.—Why should we not make peace your Register by such copious extracts with Bonaparte ?-But he is a violator of from it. Mr. A. Young's account of the treaties, and no confidence can be safely state of France under Louis the 16th, and reposed in him. This only appears Mr. B's book, ought to be read by every clear to those who have never read the person in Great Britain, since a want of suf- French side of the question. How does ficient information on this subject, coupled it appear that he broke the peace of Amiens, with the ceaseless attempts of a lying press to which we concluded with him ? Was it blacken the character of Napoleon, have not the refusal of the English to give up the unfortunate effect of reconciling the Malta, after that Island had been conceded people to a renewal of the war against to France, which occasioned the renewal that celebrated character. It is impossible of the war ?-Aided by English money, that Napoleon should not be popular with were not the continental powers conţinuthe present race of Frenchmen, for a Tally leaguing against their conqueror, and

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »