« AnteriorContinuar »
not created the fury which has produced these horrors; and let us coolly and deliberately inquire, as friends of that hu. manity which is so incessantly our theme, if we should not better promote the object of restoring France to the happiness of order, tranquillity, and government; if, instead of rendering its leaders furious and desperate, we were to make a specific declaration that we had no defire of interfering in their domestic concerns, and did not presume to arrogate to ourselves the right to dictate what should be their government, or who should be their governors.' ;
The ministerial side of the house went over their old ground of invective against the French, pleaded the necessity of the war, and negatived, by their numbers, the resos lutions moved by the noble duke, which were founded eie ther upon facts recorded on the journals of that house, or upon public papers which had been laid on their tabie.
The same day Mr. Fox brought forward the same buliness in the house of commons; he reprobated, in strong terms, the continuation of the war and the conduct of ministers; he pointed out the rashness of entering into the war, and carrying it on without any fixed object or end. At one time, the design of the war was to protect Holland, at another, to restore Louis XVII. to the crown of France; at another, to put a stop to the dreadful anarchy now raging there, by giving them fome fixed form of government.
Speaking of the king of Prussia, he obferved that we had entered into a treaty with that monarch, by which neither party was to have laid down arms, but by consent of the other. From this engagement he escaped by a loop-hole ; for as none of his dominions were within reach of the ene. my, he had only to withdraw lis troops from the scene of action, and tell us that he had not made peace with France, Though the last campaign was extolled by ministers as successful, the Prufian monarch discovered that such viciories would cost him fomething! This was the unlooked for cir. cumstance that would not permit him to continue the war, Had the public been told in July 1793, that the treaty was binding upon him only for the remainder of the campaign, they would have seen it in a different point of view.
Mr. Fox concluded with reading similar resolutions to those of the duke of Bedford ; upon which the previous guestion was carried by a gicat majority. About this period, the public received the exhilarating 8
intelligence of a victory gained by admiral lord Howe, dated Queen Charlotte at sea, June 2d, 1794.
On the morning of the 28th of May, the enemy was discovered by lord Howe far to windward, and was engaged with him in a partial action that evening and the next day.
The weather-gage having been obtained, in the progress of the last mentioned day by the English fleet, and being in à situation for bringing the enemy to close action, on the first of June the ships bore up together for that purpose, between seven and eight o'clock in the morning.
The French, their force consisting of twenty-fix fhips of the line, opposed to the British fleet of twenty-five (the Audacious having parted company with the sternmost ship of the enemy's line, captured in the night of the twentyeighth) waited for the action, and sustained the attack with their customary resolution.
In less than an hour after, the close action commenced in the centre ; the French admiral, engaged by the Queen Charlotte, after a severe conflict bore off, and was followed by most of the ships of his van in condition to carry fail after him, leaving with the English several of his ships crip. pled or totally difmafted, exclusive of one funk in the en: gagement.
At this time many of the English fhips were also so injured by the action, that they were not able to prevent two or three ships of the enemy, in a disabled state, from getting away under a sprit-fail. Seven remained in poilellion of the English, one of which funk before adequate assistance çould be given to her crew.
All agree that the enemy fought with a courage border, ing on rashness; but the superiority of the British naval fkill, and the excellent state of their ships, turned the for: tune of the day in their favour..
The rejoicings on this occasion were great and general; but in the capital they were blended with those irregularities and disorders, so incident to a London mob; the peaceful inhabitants were awaked in the dead of night, by the barbarous clamour of those who were ready to commit every excess, to fill up the measure of their savage rejoicings; and several windows were broken, before the affrighten inmates had time to illuminate them. In their riotous nocfurnal peranbulations through the strçcts, the mob affailed
the houses of several rerfons, supposed to think differently on politics from the present men in power, and it was afserted that bullets were fired amidst the squibs and crackers, at the houses of marked individuals. The house of earl Stanhope, though previously illuminated, suffered much, and was several times on fire by illuminated candles being beaten from the windows among the furniture. In an advertisement published by his lordship, it was asserted that gentlemen had been seen in coaches distributing money and encouraging the mob in these outrages. To the scandal of the police, these scenes of outrage and riot were permitted and even encouraged for three fucceílive nights.
A few days before the prorogation of parliament, the minister had the mortification to find, that though he had punctually remitted the money from the British treasury for the use of the king of Pruilia, according to treaty, the troops had not moved in the great cause in which he had engaged them; but that his Pruffian majesty thought it more to his intereit, to order them for the protection of his newly acquired dominions in Poland.
The opposition side of the house did not omit the opportunity of reminding administration of their predictions relative to the conduct of this monarch, and embarrassed the minister by importunate interrogatories. What services, they asked, had the king of Prutlia rendered this country Gince he was subsidized ? Had he marched any troops to co-operate with ours? And if he had, what did their num, . ber amount to? What had they done? . And where were they now stationed? What articles of this or the former treaty had the king of Prussia fulfilled? Had he fulfilled any except one--the receiving of our money? These were. points, they added, into which the house of commons were bound to inquire before they feparated, and they could not face their conflituents without knowing something upon these topics. If the minister should say that he did not imagine the king of Prullia would have acted as he has done; the answer was, that he was warned of it in the course of the debates on the granting of the fubhuy; and he might have been taught to expect it, from past experience of the conduct of that monarch. If, on the contrary, the mią niiter faid that the misfortunes of the campaigu were not owing to the neglect of the king of Prussia, or to the insina cerity of the cniperor, or any of the alles,, but to the pros.
digious numbers of the French, as an armed riation-there again the answer was plain; he knew the French to have been an armed nation, for so they had been most emphati. cally termed by himself.
Mr. Pitt was, however, on the uth of July, relieved from these embarrassments by the prorogation of parliament. .. The same day, in the house of lords, the duke of Norfolk was prevented from making a promised motion, by the lord chancellor absenting himself till too late an hour.
Lord Lauderdale, on this occasion, moved that this house do appoint a speaker, and proceed immediately to bufinels.' No proceeding took place in consequence of this motion, and his majesty arriving soon after, the parliament was prorogued.
About this time the duke of Portland was introduced into administration. .
His grace, ten years ago, declared, in the face of the whole people, his opinion of Mr. Pitt: that he had insulted the house of commons in the groffest manner, and that he never could act in concert with him until he had, by a temporary dereliction of office, acknowledged the offence against the conflitution, of which he had been guilty. Mr. Pitt refused to resign, and his grace refused to act with him. Time has removed those objections, and the duke (as well as the earls Spencer, and Fitzwilliam, Mr. Wyndham, and others, who called themselves thc Whig party) has condefcended to accept an office in subordination to that minister, whom a few years ago he affected to treat with contempt,
WEST INDIE S. The cheering prospect which this quarter wore at the bes ginning of the campaign, has lately been clouded; the sickness raging among the British troops, the treachery of some French royalists, and the exertions of the republicans, have materially lesened the great expectations the English nation had entertained, from the capture of the French iflands.
According to oficial letters from fir Charles Grey, dated Guadaloupe, July 8th, 1794, we learn, that a French fyuadron having landed some troops, the British forces commanded by captain Robertson, endeavoured, on the 2d of July, to gain poilersion of Point a-Petrë, where the French were poited;
but being milled by their guides, the troops entered the town at the part where they were most exposed to the enemies cannon and small arms, and where it was not possible. to scale the walls of the fort; in consequence of which they suffered considerably from round and grape shot,'together with small arms fired from the houses, &c. and a retreat became unavoidable. Sir Charles soon after learnt that the French had retaken Grande Terre.
. A MERIC A.. On the 26th of March, 1794, congress resolved that an embargo be laid on all ships and vessels in the ports of the United States, whether then cleared out or not, bound to any foreign port or place, for the term of thirty-days. .
The congress soon after made an act to empower the prefident of the United States, to lay a further embargo upon fhipping or not, during their recess, as exigencies might réa' quire.
On the 16th of April, general Washington informed the fenate, that the communications which he had received from the American minister in London, contained a serious aspect of affairs between the United States and Great Britain. He therefore had thought proper to nominate Mr. John Jay, as envoy extraordinary of the United States to his Britannic majesty. Going,' says the president, immediately from the United States, such an envoy will carry with him a full knowledge of the existing temper and sensibility of our country; and will thus be able to vindicate our rights with firmness, and to cultivate peace with sincerity,
On the 21st of May, 1794, general Washington laid before the fenate and the house of representatives, fome private information which he had received, that some encroachments » were about to be made upon the American territory, by an officer and party of the British tioops; he also caused a representation to be made to the same effect to the British mi, nilter.
GERMAN Y. The memorials and exhortations of the emperor to the petty princes of Germany, to arm their subjects against the common enemy, have hitherto been ineffectual; too poor to hire their peasants to march with the regular troops of the.. empire, and too timid to put arms in their hands to enable