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and successful prosecution of a just and necessary war.
Earl Grey was happy to be relieved from the necessity of giving any opposition to the motion before the House; he consequently should not detain the House at any length upon the present occasion, more especially after what had been so ably stated by his noble friend who had just taken his seat. He could not, how ever, avoid making a few observations upon some part of what had fallen from the noble mover of the Address. Among other things it had been observed, that it could not be expected that Europe could revert from a state of military armament to a condition of tranquillity and social happiness, without some convulsion or disturbance in our progress to that condition. All men who contemplated the affairs of Europe with the eye of a statesman, must be sensible of the truth of the remark; but what his lordship complained of was this, that instead of measures having been taken to avert the evils which the noble lord had asserted were foreseen, all the arrangements of Congress had contributed to produce that convulsion and disturbance. At one time there was actually danger, that before the conclusion of any negociations, a war would be commenced between some of the Powers, and the arrangements were not completed without many disputes and differences. Indeed it could scarcely he hoped, even if France should have continued under the reign of the beneficent monarch, whose dethronement all regretted, that she could long remain uninvolved in hostilities. Why had not precautionary measures been taken, if such consequences were foreseen? Ministers might on some future occasion be called to a severe account for the share they had had in this neglect; and if his lordship was not much mistaken, their conduct throughout had been marked with a total absence of principle, and a most culpable blindness to that which they now wished to persuade the House they had contemplated. By their means, in his lordship's judgment, some of the highest interests of Europe and the world had been sacrificed, and to them was principally to be attributed the new war in which we were about to be involved. The noble earl had argued, that it was our interest to conclude a peace honourable to France. Unquestionably that was the fit line of policy. Such conduct would have been wise and (VOL. XXX. )
meritorious; but instead of pursuing it, as the noble marquis had said, our conduct had been totally different, and we had given Buonaparté and the French people reason to say, that we had made the family of Bourbon, instruments in the disgrace and degradation of France in the eyes of the world. Thus, then, ministers had abandoned that very line of policy which the noble lord had declared to be just towards France and politic towards ourselves. For this deviation from their duty ministers had incurred a heavy responsibility, and might be called to a severe account. The noble earl had next adverted to the inducements held out for the Treaty of Fontainbleau. Admitting that Buonaparté was then in power, and that it was necessary to make some concessions to obtain his removal, yet in that very proportion were ministers bound strictly to observe the conditions of the Treaty. If it was then important to obtain it, it was equally important that it should be observed by the good faith of the nation. The noble earl declared, however, that the articles of the Treaty of Fontainbleau had not been broken, and that Buonaparté had not insisted upon it in his declarations. The public journals were the only sources from which he (earl Grey) could of course obtain information, and they contained a proclamation, in which Buonaparté expressly stated as a ground for his conduct, the breach of the article that related to the duchess of Parma and his son. If the noble earl rested the right of this country to make war upon France upon the infraction of the Treaty of Fontainbleau by France, it became him in the first place to shew (and the House would require further information upon that point), that we at least had done our duty, that we had broken no faith-and that before any plea was given by the late emperor of France to renew hostilities against him. He hoped, whatever might be the result, that we never should be reduced to the low and pitiful expedient of arguing, that the terms of the Treaty of Fontainbleau had not been infringed with regard to the pecuniary engagement, because the money stipulated to be paid did not become due until the termination of the year. As to what the noble earl had observed upon the immediate subject of war, his lordship thought that it would have been much more prudent and politic not to make any declaration of a right to make war until the country was prepared to maintain that (2 B)
right by the actual commencement of hostilities. The noble earl admitted, that the question had not yet arrived, whether we should or should not actually declare war; then, where was the prudence or policy, in the mean time, of insisting upon the right? Many inconveniencies might result from such a hasty proceeding; we insisted to France upon our right to make war, and that we would prosecute it if we were able. If, then, we abstained from the prosecution, what was the inevitable inference, but that we were not in a situation to do so from the state of weakness to which we had been reduced? There did not, therefore, appear much wisdom in this premature and hasty assertion of the abstract right. At the same time his lordship readily allowed that it was neces sary to take precautionary measures, by the augmentation of the effective force of the country, as was stated in the first part of the Message, and, as in the second, to establish such an intimate connexion and concert with our Allies, as to enable us to act with vigour and decision, should we unfortunately be reduced to that extremity. His lordship begged to state, in a few words, the grounds of his opinion, with respect to the question of the right of war. The noble earl, in arguing this point, had, in his opinion, rested it upon the very worst grounds that he could have chosen, when he argued, that Buonaparté had broken the conditions of the Treaty of Fontainbleau; and, therefore, that we had a right of war, although he (earl Grey) was not at all prepared to deny the conclusion; on the contrary, he was about to argue in its favour, but on different grounds. It would be right, considering the circumstances under which they were executed, to contemplate the treaty of Fontainbleau, the Convention of Paris, and the Treaty of Paris, as but one instrument; and there was no principle of the law of nations more clear than this, that if in a treaty between two powers, certain conditions are inserted, grounded upon a particular state of circumstances, if those circumstances should be altered with respect to one of the powers, the other party to the Treaty is absolved from all the obligations which were binding, until the condition of affairs was so altered. Consequently, the right of making war, and of demanding additional securities, reverted to the power whose circumstances remained unchanged. His lordship further established his position by a quotation from Vattel. He then proceeded to apply
this principle to the case of France: the Treaty of Fontainbleau had been signed in contemplation of Louis the 18th continuing upon the throne of France; those were the circumstances, which were now totally changed by the invasion of Buonaparté; consequently the conditions of the Treaty were abrogated, as far as related to this country, and we were ab. solved from any adherence to it. On this ground, setting aside the flimsy pretences of the noble earl who moved the Address, his lordship was of opinion that we had a claim to demand from France, under the new circumstances of the case, additional securities, and a right of resorting to arms in case the Government of that country should refuse to afford Great Britain those securities. Such were the general prin ciples of the law of nations on which his lordship grounded the abstract right of Great Britain to make war upon France, should such a step, on future consideration, be deemed necessary, politic, or expedient. He begged leave, however, to disclaim that against which he had ever protested, the interference of this country with the people of France, or of any other kingdom, in the internal arrangements they may think fit to adopt. In all that had been so eloquently stated by his noble friend (lord Grenville) upon the general interests and the true mode of promoting the general welfare of Europe, he fully concurred, and he hoped that the Allied Powers, should they again be called upon to legislate for Europe, would revert to those general and generous principles for which they professed to have fought, and upon which their declarations originally avowed that they were determined to a No opinions upon this subject were how ever contained in the Address; and he therefore cordially approved of its terms, and rejoiced that he was placed in a situa tion to concur in its spirit and its letter, the ulterior question being still left undecided. His lordship hoped that before Parliament was called upon to make any decision on a question of such incalculable magnitude, such communications would be made as would enable the House to exercise a sound judgment and a wise dis cretion, without hurrying the country into a war in which its best interests were in. volved. So important to England and to Europe, did his lordship consider a state of tranquillity, that to the last he should fondly cherish a hope that peace might be maintained.
The Address was thenagreed to,nem. diss.
HOUSE OF COMMONS.
DECLARATION OF THE ALLIES, DATED VIENNA, MARCH 13, 1815.] Lord Castlereagh presented, by command of the Prince Regent, a Copy of " the Declaration of the Allies, dated March 13, 1815;" and Translation: viz.
"Les Puissances qui ont signé le Traité de Paris, rassemblées en Congrès à Vienne, ayant été informées de l'évasion de Napoléon Buonaparté, et de son entrée en France avec une force armée, doivent à leur dignité et aux intérêts de l'ordre social de faire une déclaration solennelle des sentimens que cet événement leur a inspirés.
"En violant ainsi la Convention qui l'a établi dans l'Ile d'Elbe, Buonaparté détruit le seul titre légal dont son existence dépendait; en reparaissant en France avec des projets de confusion et de désordre, il s'est mis hors de la protection de la loi, et il manifeste à l'univers qu'il ne peut y avoir ni paix ni treve avec lui.
"Les Puissances déclarent en conséquence que Napoléon Buonaparté s'est exclu des relations civiles et sociales, et que comme ennemi et perturbateur du monde, il a encouru la vindicte publique.
"Elles déclarent en même temps qu'étant fermement résolues à maintenir dans son intégrité le traité de Paris du 30 Mai 1814, et les dispositions sanctionnées par ce traité, ainsi que celles qui ont été arrêtées ou le seront par la suite, pour le completter et le consolider, elles employeront tous leurs moyens et réuniront tous leurs efforts pour que la paix générale, l'objet des vœux de l'Europe, et le but constant de leurs travaux, ne soient pas troublée de nouveau, et pour se garantir de toutes les tentatives qui menaceraient de replonger l'univers dans les désordres et les malheurs des Révolutions.
"Et quoique bien persuadées que toute la France, se ralliant autour de son Souverain légitime, anéantira immédiatement ce dernier effort d'un délire coupable et impuissant, tous les Souverains de l'Europe, animés des mêmes sentimens et guidés par les mêmes principes, déclarent que si, contre toute attente, il résultait aucun danger réel de cet événement, ils seront prêts à donner au Roi de France et à la nation Française, ou à tout autre Gouvernement qui sera attaqué, aussitôt qu'ils
en seront requis, toute l'assistance nécessaire pour rétablir la tranquillité, et à faire cause commune contre tous ceux qui tenteraient de la compromettre.
"La présente Déclaration, insérée au protocole du Congrès assemblé à Vienne, le 13 Mars 1815, sera rendue publique.
"Fait et attesté par les Plénipotentiaires des Hautes Puissances qui ont signé le traité de Paris, à Vienne le 13 Mars 1815. [Suivent les signatures par ordre alphabétique des Cours.] AUTRICHE.-Le Prince METternich, le Baron de WESSENBERG. ESPAGNE.-P. GOMEZ Labrador. FRANCE.-Le Prince TALLEYRAND, le Duc de DALBERG, Latour Du Pin, le Comte Alexis de NOAILLES.
GRande Bretagne.-Wellington, Clan-
Le Comte RASOUMOUSKY, le
SUEDE. Le Comte LOEWENHIELM.
and the dispositions sanctioned by that Treaty, and those which they have resolved on, or shall hereafter resolve on, to complete and to consolidate it, they will employ all their means, and unite all their efforts; that thus the general peace, the object of the wishes of Europe, and the constant purpose of their labours, may not again be troubled, and to guard themselves against every attempt which shall threaten to re-plunge the world in the disorders and miseries of revolution.
"And although entirely persuaded that all France, rallying round its legitimate Sovereign, will immediately annihilate this last effort of a criminal and impotent delirium, all the Sovereigns of Europe, animated by the same sentiments, and guided by the same principles, declare, that, if contrary to all calculations, there should result from this event any real danger, they will be ready to give to the King of France, and the French nation, or to any other government that shall be attacked, as soon as they shall be called upon, all the assistance requisite to restore public tranquillity, and to make a common cause against all those who should undertake to compromise it.
"The present Declaration, inserted in the Register of the Congress, assembled at Vienna, on the 13th of March, 1815, shall be made public.
"Done and attested by the Plenipotentiaries who signed the Treaty of Paris."
Vienna, March, 13th, 1815."
FRANCE.-Prince TALLEYRAND, le Duc de
Paris, April 13th, 1814.
My Lord; I arrived here on the 10th in the evening. The great and auspicious events which had intervened between my last dispatches from Dijon, I had the satisfaction to find had been regularly transmitted home by viscount Cathcart and sir Charles Stewart. The hurry of a first arrival must excuse me to your lordship, for adding little to the mass of important and interesting matter, which you will find detailed in the various Journals, with respect to the progress of the happy change which has been effected. I shall therefore, on the present occasion, confine myself to an explanation of what has passed with respect to the future destination and settlement of Napoleon and his family.
Your lordship has been already informed, by lord Cathcart, of the Act of Abdication which was passed by Buonaparté on the 4th instant, and of the assurance given him by the Emperor of Russia and the provisional Government, of a pecuniary provision of six millions of francs, with a safe asylum in the Island of Elba. The Act in question was deposited in the hands of M. de Caulain court and the marshals Ney and Macdonald, to be given up upon the due execution of engagements on the part of the Allies, with respect to the proposed arrangement. These persons were also al-authorized to agree to an armistice, and to settle such a line of demarcation as might be satisfactory to the Allies, and, in the mean time, prevent an unnecessary effusion of blood.
Count RASOUMOUSKY, Count STACKELBERG, Count NESSElrode. SPAIN. Prince GOMEZ LABrador. SWEDEN.-Loewenhielm.
No. 1.-Viscount CASTLEREAGH to Earl
PAPERS RELATIVE TO THE PERSON AND FAMILY OF BUONAPARTE.] Lord Castlereagh presented, by command of the Prince Regent, the following Papers, relative to the person and family of Napoleon Buonaparté.
On my arrival I found this arrangement on the point of execution. A convention had been discussed, and would have, in fact, been signed in the course of the day, by the Russian minister, had not the approach of the allied ministers been announced. The motives for accelerating the immediate conclusion of this Act were the inconvenience, if not the danger, of Napoleon's remaining at Fontainbleau, surrounded by troops, who still, in a considerable degree, remained faithful to him, the apprehension of intrigues in the army and in the capital, and the importance attached, by a considerable portion of the officers, to some arrangement favourable to their Chief, in satisfaction of their personal honour, before they left him.
On the night of my arrival, the four
ministers had a conference with the prince de Benevent on the subject of the proposed Convention, to which I stated my objections, desiring, at the same time, to be understood as not urging them then, at the hazard of the internal tranquillity of France, nor in impeachment of what was due, in good faith, to the assurance given, under the exigency of the moment, by Russia.
the alternative, which M. de Caulaincourt assured me Buonaparté repeatedly mentioned, namely, an asylum in England.
On the same night the allied ministers had a conference with M. de Caulaincourt and the marshals, at which I assisted. The Treaty was gone through and agreed to with alterations; it has been since signed and ratified, and Buonaparté will commence his movement towards the South to-morrow, or the day following. (Signed) CASTLEREAGH.
The prince of Benevent admitted the weight of many of the objections stated, but declared that he did consider it, on the part of the provisional Government, (First Inclosure in No. 1.)-Protocol. as an object of the first importance, to avoid any thing that might assume the character of a civil war, even for the shortest time :-That he also found some such measure essential to make the army pass over in a temper to be made use of, Upon these declarations, and the count de Nesselrode's, that the Emperor his master had felt it necessary, in the absence of the Allies, to act for the best in their name as well as his own, I withdrew any further opposition to the principle of the measure, suggesting only some alterations in the details. I desired however to decline, on the part of my Government, being more than an acceding party to the Treaty, and declared that the Act of Accession on the part of Great Britain should not go beyond the territorial arrangements proposed in the Treaty. My objections to our being unnecessarily mixed in its forms, especially in the recognition of Napoleon's title under present circumstances, were considered as perfectly reasonable; and I now inclose the protocol and note which will explain the extent to which I have taken upon me to give assurances on the part of my Court.
At my suggestion the recognition of the imperial titles in the family were limited to their respective lives, for which there was a precedent in the case of the King of Poland, when he became Elector of Saxony.
To the arrangement in favour of the Empress I felt not only no objection, but considered it due to the distinguished sacrifice of domestic feelings which the Emperor of Austria was making to the cause of Europe. I should have wished to substitute another position in lieu of Elba for the seat of Napoleon's retirement; but none having the quality of security, on which he insisted, seemed disposable, to which equal objections did not occur; and I did not feel, that I could encourage
The Plenipotentiaries of his Majesty the Emperor Napoleon, and those of the Allied Powers, having met this day, have agreed upon the Articles of the Treaty containing the final arrangements with respect to the Emperor Napoleon and his family.
Lord Castlereagh, minister of his Britannic Majesty, declared that England could not become a party to the above Treaty; but engaged to notify, as soon as possible, the accession of his Court to so much of that Treaty, as concerns the free possession and the peaceable enjoyment, in full sovereignty, of the Isle of Elba, and of the duchies of Parma, Placentia, and Guastalla, lord Castlereagh promised likewise, to furnish the necessary passports and safe conducts for the voyage.
The Plenipotentiaries of his Majesty the emperor Napoleon having demanded, that her majesty the empress Maria Louisa sho be allowed, in full property, an annual revenue of two millions, for herself and heirs, to be paid out of the funds placed by the Emperor either in the Great Book, in the Bank of France, in the Actions des Forêts, or in any other manner, all which funds his Majesty gives up to the Crown; the Plenipotentiaries of the Allied Courts declared, that, as the provisional Government of France had refused taking, of itself, a determination to this effect, their Courts engaged to employ their good offices with the new Sovereign of France, to grant to her majesty the empress Maria Louisa such allowance.
An agreement was subsequently made with the Plenipotentiaries of the Allied Powers, that the provisional Government of France should deliver to the Plenipotentiaries of his majesty the emperor Napoleon, a declaration containing their adhesion and their full and entire guarantee