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Rather than abandon such enterprises, they would their plan with regard to the French nation. I persuade him to a strange alliance between those believe that the chiefs of the Revolution (those
Their grand object being now, as in who led the constituting assembly) have contrived, his brother's time, at any rate to destroy the as far as they can do it, to give the emperour higher orders, they think he cannot compass this satisfaction on this head. He keeps a continual end, as certainly he cannot, without elevating the tone and posture of menace to secure this his only lower. By depressing the one and by raising the point. But it must be observed, that he all along other, they hope in the first place to encrease his grounds his departure from the engagement at treasures and his army; and with these common Pilnitz to the princes, on the will and actions of instruments of royal power they flatter him that the king and the majority of the people, without the democracy which they help, in his name, any regard to the natural and constitutional orders to create, will give him but little trouble. In of the state, or to the opinions of the whole house defiance of the freshest experience, which might of Bourbon. Though it is manifestly under the shew him that old impossibilities are become constraint of imprisonment and the fear of death, modern probabilities, and that the extent to that this unhappy man has been guilty of all those which evil principles may go, when left to their humilities which have astonished mankind, the own operation, is beyond the power of calculation, advisers of the emperour will consider nothing but they will endeavour to persuade him that such a the physical person of Louis, which, even in his democracy is a thing which cannot subsist by present degraded and infamous state, they regard itself; that in whose hands soever the military as of sufficient authority to give a compleat sanccommand is placed, he must be, in the necessary tion to the persecution and utter ruin of all his course of affairs, sooner or later the master; family, and of every person who has shewn any and that, being the master of various uncon- degree of attachment or fidelity to him, or to his nected countries, he may keep them all in order cause ; as well as competent to destroy the whole by employing a military force, which to each of ancient constitution and frame of the French mothem is foreign. This maxim too, however for- narchy. merly plausible, will not now hold water. This The present policy, therefore, of the Austrian scheme is full of intricacy, and may cause him politicians is to recover despotism through demoevery where to lose the hearts of his people. cracy; or, at least, at any expence, every where These counsellors forget that a corrupted army to ruin the description of men who are every where was the very cause of the ruin of his brother-in-the objects of their settled and systematick averlaw; and that he is himself far from secure from sion, but more especially in the Netherlands. a similar corruption.
Compare this with the emperour's refusing at first Brabant.
Instead of reconciling himself heart- all intercourse with the present powers in France,
ily and bona fide according to the with his endeavouring to excite all Europe against most obvious rules of policy to the states of Bra-them, and then, his not only withdrawing all bant, as they are constituted, and who in the pre- assistance and all countenance from the fugitives sent state of things stand on the same foundation who had been drawn by his declarations from their with the monarchy itself, and who might have houses, situations, and military commissions, many been gained with the greatest facility, they have even from the means of their very existence, but advised him to the most unkingly proceeding treating them with every species of insult and which, either in a good or in a bad light, has ever outrage. been attempted. Under a pretext taken from the Combining this unexampled conduct in the emspirit of the lowest chicane, they have counselled perour's advisers, with the timidity (operating as him wholly to break the publick faith, to annul the perfidy) of the king of France, a fatal example is amnesty, as well as the other conditions through held out to all subjects, tending to shew what little which he obtained an entrance into the provinces support, or even countenance, they are to expect of the Netherlands, under the guarantee of Great from those for whom their principle of fidelity may Britain and Prussia. He is made to declare his induce them to risk life and fortune. The empeadherence to the indemnity in a criminal sense, rour's advisers would not for the world rescind one but he is to keep alive in his own name, and to of the acts of this or of the late French Assembly; encourage in others, a civil process in the nature nor do they wish any thing better at present for of an action of damages for what has been suffered their master's brother of France, than that he during the troubles. Whilst he keeps up this should really be, as he is nominally, at the head hopeful law-suit in view of the damages he may of the system of persecution of religion and good recover against individuals, he loses the hearts of order, and of all descriptions of dignity, natural a whole people, and the vast subsidies which his and instituted ; they only wish all this done with ancestors had been used to receive from them. a little more respect to the king's person, and with
This design once admitted, unridEmperour's
more appearance of consideration for his new subconduct with dles the mystery of the whole conduct ordinate office; in hopes, that, yielding himself, regard to France.
of the emperour's ministers with regard for the present, to the persons who have effected
to France. As soon as they saw the these changes, he may be able to game for the life of the king and queen of France no longer as rest hereafter. On no other principles than these, they thought in danger, they entirely changed can the conduct of the court of Vienna be ac
counted for. The subordinate court of Brussels talks cabal for whatever is mischievous and malignant in the language of a club of Feuillans and Jacobins. this country, particularly among those of rank and
In this state of general rottenness fashion. As the minister of the National Assembly Moderate
among subjects, and of delusion and will be admitted at this court, at least with his
false politicks in princes, comes a new usual rank, and as entertainments will be naturalexperiment. The king of France is in the hands ly given and received by the king's own ministers, of the chiefs of the regicide faction, the Barnaves, any attempt to discountenance the resort of other Lameths, Fayettes, Perigords, Duports, Robes-people to that minister would be ineffectual, and pierres, Camus's, &c. &c. &c. They who had indeed absurd, and full of contradiction. The imprisoned, suspended, and conditionally deposed women who come with these ambassadors will him, are his confidential counsellors. The next assist in fomenting factions amongst ours, which desperate of the desperate rebels call themselves cannot fail of extending the evil. Some of them the moderate party. They are the chiefs of the I hear are already arrived. There is no doubt first assembly, who are confederated to support they will do as much mischief as they can. their power during their suspension from the
Whilst the publick ministers are re- Connexion of sent, and to govern the existent body with as so- ceived under the general law of the
clubs. vereign a sway as they had done the last. They communication between nations, the correspondhave, for the greater part, succeeded ; and they ences between the factious clubs in France and have many advantages towards procuring their ours will be, as they now are, kept up: but this success in future. Just before the close of their pretended embassy will be a closer, more steady, regular power, they bestowed some appearance of and more effectual link between the partisans of prerogatives on the king, which in their first plans the new system on both sides of the water. I do they had refused to him; particularly the mis- not mean that these Anglo-Gallick clubs in chievous, and, in his situation, dreadful, preroga- London, Manchester, &c. are not dangerous in tive of a Veto. This prerogative, (which they hold a high degree. The appointment of festive anas their bit in the mouth of the National Assembly niversaries has ever in the sense of mankind for the time being, without the direct assistance been held the best method of keeping alive the of their club, it was impossible for the king to spirit of any institution. We have one settled shew even the desire of exerting with the smallest in London; and at the last of them, that of effect, or even with safety to his person. However, the 14th of July, the strong discountenance of by playing through this Veto, the Assembly against government, the unfavourable time of the year, the king, and the king against the Assembly, they and the then uncertainty of the disposition of have made themselves masters of both. In this foreign powers, did not hinder the meeting of situation, having destroyed the old government by at least nine hundred people, with good coats their sedition, they would preserve as much of on their backs, who could afford to pay half a order as is necessary for the support of their own guinea a head to shew their zeal for the new prinusurpation.
ciples. They were with great difficulty, and all French ambas- It is believed that this, by farthe worst possible address, hindered from inviting the French
party of the miscreants of France, has ambassador. His real indisposition, besides the received direct encouragement from the counsel- fear of offending any party, sent him out of town. lors who betray the emperour. Thus strengthen- But when our court shall have recognised a goed by the possession of the captive king, (now vernment in France, founded on the principles captive in his mind as well as in body,) and by a announced in Montmorin's letter, how can the good hope of the emperour, they intend to send French ambassador be frowned upon for an attendtheir ministers to every court in Europe ; having ance on those meetings, wherein the establishsent before them such a denunciation of terrour ment of the government he represents is celeand superiority to every nation without exception, brated ? An event happened a few days ago, as has no example in the diplomatick world. which in many particulars was very ridiculous; Hitherto the ministers to foreign courts had been yet, even from the ridicule and absurdity of the of the appointment of the sovereign of France proceedings, it marks the more strongly the previous to the Revolution ; and, either from in- spirit of the French Assembly. I mean the reclination, duty, or decorum, most of them were ception they have given to the Frith-street alcontented with a merely passive obedience to liance. This, though the delirium of a low, the new power. At present, the king, being en drunken alehouse club, they have publickly antirely in the hands of his jailors, and his mind nounced as a formal alliance with the people of broken to his situation, can send none but the en- England, as such ordered it to be presented to thusiasts of the system-men framed by the secret their king, and to be published in every procommittee of the Feuillans, who meet in the house vince in France. This leads more directly, and of Madame de Stahl, M. Necker's daughter. Such with much greater force, than any proceeding is every man whom they have talked of sending with a regular and rational appearance, to two hither. These ministers will be so many spies and very material considerations. First, it shews that incendiaries; so many active emissaries of demo- they are of opinion that the current opinions of the cracy. Their houses will become places of ren- English have the greatest influence on the minds dezvous here, as every where else, and centers of of the people in France, and indeed of all the people in Europe, since they catch with such asto- a draft of a declaration to the king, which the nishing eagerness at every the most trifling shew Assembly published before it was presented. of such opinions in their favour. Next, and what Condorcet (though no marquis, as he styled appears to me to be full as important, it shews himself before the Revolution) is a man of another that they are willing publickly to countenance and sort of birth, fashion, and occupation from Briseven to adopt every factious conspiracy that can sot; but in every principle, and every disposition be formed in this nation, however low and base to the lowest as well as the highest and most dein itself, in order to excite in the most miserable termined villanies, fully his equal. He seconds wretches here an idea of their own sovereign im- Brissot in the Assembly, and is at once his coadportance, and to encourage them to look up to jutor and his rival in a newspaper, which, in his France, whenever they may be matured into some- own name and as successor to M. Garat, a memthing of more force, for assistance in the subversion ber also of the Assembly, he has just set up in that of their domestick government. This address of empire of Gazettes. Condorcet was chosen to the alehouse club was actually proposed and ac- draw the first declaration presented by the Assemcepted by the Assembly as an alliance. The proce- bly to the king, as a threat to the elector of dure was in my opinion a high misdemeanour in Treves, and the other provinces on the Rhine. In those who acted thus in England, if they were not that piece, in which both Feuillans and Jacobins so very low and so very base, that no acts of theirs concurred, they declared publickly, and most can be called high, even as a description of cri- proudly and insolently, the principle on which minality; and the Assembly, in accepting, pro- they mean to proceed in their future disputes with claiming, and publishing this forged alliance, has any of the sovereigns of Europe; for they say, been guilty of a plain aggression, which would " that it is not with fire and sword they mean to justify our court in demanding a direct disavowal, “ attack their territories, but by what will be if our policy should not lead us to wink at it. more dreadful to them, the introduction of
Whilst I look over this paper to have it copied, liberty." I have not the paper by me to give I see a manifesto of the Assembly, as a preliminary the exact words—but I believe they are nearly as to a declaration of war against the German princes I state them. Dreadful indeed will be their hostion the Rhine. This manifesto contains the whole lity, if they should be able to carry it on according substance of the French politicks with regard to to the example of their modes of introducing foreign states. They have ordered it to be circu- liberty. They have shewn a perfect model of their lated amongst the people in every country of Eu- whole design, very complete, though in little. rope--even previously to its acceptance by the This gang of murderers and savages have wholly king, and his new privy council, the club of the laid waste and utterly ruined the beautiful and Feuillans. Therefore, as a summary of their po- happy country of the Comtat Venaiffin and the licy avowed by themselves, let us consider some city of Avignon. This cruel and treacherous outof the circumstances attending that piece, as well rage the sovereigns of Europe, in my opinion, with as the spirit and temper of the piece itself. a great mistake of their honour and interest,
It was preceded by a speech from have permitted, even without a remonstrance, to against the Brissot, full of unexampled insolence be carried to the desired point, on the principles
towards all the sovereign states of on which they are now themselves threatened in Germany, if not of Europe. The Assembly, to their own states; and this, because, according to the express their satisfaction in the sentiments which poor and narrow spirit now in fashion, their brother it contained, ordered it to be printed. This Brissot sovereign, whose subjects have been thus traitorhad been in the lowest and basest employ under ously and inhumanly treated in violation of the law the deposed monarchy: a sort of thief-taker, or of nature and of nations, has a name somewhat difspy of police; in which character he acted after ferent from theirs, and instead of being styled king, the manner of persons in that description. He or duke, or landgrave, is usually called pope. had been employed by his master, the lieutenant The electors of Treves and Mentz State of the de police, for a considerable time in London, in were frightened with the menace of a the same or some such honourable occupation. similar mode of war. The Assembly, however, not The Revolution, which has brought forward all thinking that the electors of Treves and Mentz merit of that kind, raised him, with others of a had done enough under their first terrour, have similar class and disposition, to fame and emi- again brought forward Condorcet, preceded by nence. On the Revolution he became a publisher Brissot, as I have just stated. The declaration, of an infamous newspaper, which he still continues. which they have ordered now to be circulated in He is charged, and I believe justly, as the first all countries, is in substance the same as the first, mover of the troubles in Hispaniola. There is no but still more insolent, because more full of detail. wickedness, if I am rightly informed, in which he There they have the impudence to state that is not versed, and of which he is not perfectly they aim at no conquest; insinuating that all the capable. His quality of news writer, now an em- old, lawful powers of the world had each made a ployment of the first dignity in France, and his constant, open profession of a design of subduing practices and principles, procured his election into his neighbours. They add, that if they are prothe Assembly, where he is one of the leading mem- voked, their war will be directed only against those bers. M. Condorcet produced on the same day who assume to be masters. But to the people
Effect of fear on the sove
they will bring peace, law, liberty, &c. &c. There | fear or addressed to it are, I well know, of doubtis not the least hint that they consider those whom ful appearance. To be sure, bope is in general the they call
persons assuming to be masters,” to incitement to action. Alarm some men-you do be the lawful government of their country, or not drive them to provide for their security; you persons to be treated with the least management put them to a stand; you induce them, not to or respect. They regard them as usurpers and take measures to prevent the approach of danger, enslavers of the people. If I do not mistake but to remove so unpleasant an idea from their they are described by the name of tyrants in Con- minds; you persuade them to remain as they are, dorcet's first draft. I am sure they are so in Bris- from a new fear that their activity may bring on sot's speech, ordered by the Assembly to be printed the apprehended mischief before its time. I conat the same time and for the same purposes. The fess freely that this evil sometimes happens from an whole is in the same strain, full of false philosophy overdone precaution ; but it is when the measures and false rhetorick, both however calculated to are rash, ill chosen, or ill combined, and the effects captivate and influence the vulgar mind, and to rather of blind terrour than of enlightened foreexcite sedition in the countries in which it is or- sight. But the few to whom I wish to submit my dered to be circulated. Indeed it is such, that if thoughts are of a character which will enable them any of the lawful, acknowledged sovereigns of to see danger without astonishment, and to provide Europe had publickly ordered such a manifesto to against it without perplexity. be circulated in the dominions of another, the am- To what lengths this method of circulating mubassador of that power would instantly be ordered tinous manifestoes, and of keeping emissaries of to quit every court without an audience.
sedition in every court under the name of ambasThe powers of Europe have a pre-sadors, to propagate the same principles and
text for concealing their fears, by say to follow the practices, will go, and how soon reign powers.
ing that this language is not used by they will operate, it is hard to say—but go on it the king; though they well know that there is in will—more or less rapidly, according to events, effect no such person, that the Assembly is in re- and to the humour of the time. The princes meality, and by that king is acknowledged to be, the naced with the revolt of their subjects, at the same master ; that what he does is but matter of forma- time that they have obsequiously obeyed the sovelity, and that he can neither cause nor hinder, ac- reign mandate of the new Roman senate, have celerate nor retard, any measure whatsoever, nor received with distinction, in a publick character, add to nor soften the manifesto which the As- ambassadors from those who in the same act had sembly has directed to be published, with the de- circulated the manifesto of sedition in their doclared purpose of exciting mutiny and rebellion minions. This was the only thing wanting to the in the several countries governed by these powers. degradation and disgrace of the Germanick body. By the generality also of the menaces contained in The ambassadors from the rights of man, and this paper (though infinitely aggravating the out their admission into the diplomatick system, I hold rage) they hope to remove from each power sepa- to be a new æra in this business. It will be the rately the idea of a distinct affront. The persons most important step yet taken to affect the existfirst pointed at by the menace are certainly the ence of sovereigns, and the higher classes of life princes of Germany, who harbour the persecuted - I do not mean to exclude its effects upon all house of Bourbon and the nobility of France; classes—but the first blow is aimed at the more the declaration, however, is general, and goes prominent parts in the ancient order of things. to every state with which they may have a cause What is to be done ? of quarrel. But the terrour of France has fallen It would be presumption in me to do more than upon all nations.
A few months since all sove- to make a case. Many things occur. But as they, reigns seemed disposed to unite against her; at like all political measures, depend on dispositions, present they all seem to combine in her favour. tempers, means, and external circumstances, for At no period has the power of France ever ap- all their effect, not being well assured of these, I peared with so formidable an aspect. In parti- do not know how to let loose any speculations of cular the liberties of the empire can have nothing mine on the subject. The evil is stated, in my more than an existence the most tottering and opinion, as it exists. The remedy must be where precarious, whilst France exists with a great power power, wisdom, and information, I hope, are more of fomenting rebellion, and the greatest in the united with good intentions than they can be with weakest ; but with neither power nor disposition me. I have done with this subject, I believe, for to support the smaller states in their independ- ever. It has given me many anxious moments ence against the attempts of the more powerful.
for the two last years.
If a great change is to be I wind up all in a full conviction within my made in human affairs, the minds of men will be own breast, and the substance of which I must re- fitted to it, the general opinions and feelings will peat over and over again, that the state of France draw that way. Every fear, every hope, will foris the first consideration in the politicks of Europe, ward it; and then they, who persist in opposing and of each state, externally as well as internally this mighty current in human affairs, will appear considered.
rather to resist the decrees of Providence itself, Most of the topicks I have used are drawn from than the mere designs of men. They will not be fear and apprehension. Topicks derived from resolute and firm, but
perverse and obstinate.
HEADS FOR CONSIDERATION
PRESENT STATE OF AFFAIRS.
WRITTEN IN NOVEMBER, 1792.
That France by its mere geographical posi- seems to me, even if it went no further, truly tion, independently of every other circumstance, serious. must affect every state of Europe; some of them Circumstances have enabled France to do all immediately, all of them through mediums not this by land. On the other element she has begun very remote.
to exert herself; and she must succeed in her deThat the standing policy of this kingdom ever signs, if enemies very different from those she has has been to watch over the external proceedings hitherto had to encounter do not resist her. of France, (whatever form the interiour government She has fitted out a naval force, now actually at of that kingdom might take,) and to prevent the sea, by which she is enabled to give law to the extension of its dominion, or its ruling influence, whole Mediterranean. It is known as a fact (and over other states.
if not so known, it is in the nature of things highly That there is nothing in the present internal probable) that she proposes the ravage of the Ecstate of things in France, which alters the national clesiastical state, and the pillage of Rome, as her policy with regard to the exteriour relations of that first object; that next she means to bombard country.
Naples; to awe, to humble, and thus to command, That there are, on the contrary, many things in all Italy—to force it to a nominal neutrality, but to the internal circumstances of France, (and perhaps a real dependence—to compel the Italian princes of this country too,) which tend to fortify the and republicks to admit the free entrance of the principles of that fundamental policy; and which French commerce, an open intercourse, and, the render the active assertion of those principles more sure concomitant of that intercourse, the affiliated pressing at this than at any former time.
societies, in a manner similar to those she has That, by a change effected in about three weeks, established at Avignon, the Comtat, Chamberry, France has been able to penetrate into the heart of London, Manchester, &c. &c. which are so many Germany; to make an absolute conquest of Savoy; colonies planted in all these countries, for extend to menace an immediate invasion of the Nether-ing the influence, and securing the dominion, of lands; and to awe and overbear the whole Hel- the French republick. vetick body, which is in a most perilous situation. That there never has been hitherto a period in The great aristocratick cantons having, perhaps, which this kingdom would have suffered a French as much or more to dread from their own people fleet to domineer in the Mediterranean, and to whom they arm, but do not choose or dare to em-force Italy to submit to such terms as France ploy, as from the foreign enemy, which against all would think fit to impose—to say nothing of what publick faith has butchered their troops, serving has been done upon land in support of the same by treaty in France. To this picture it is hardly system. The great object for which we preserved necessary to add the means by which France has Minorca, whilst we could keep it, and for which been enabled to effect all this, namely, the appa- we still retain Gibraltar, both at a great expence, rently entire destruction of one of the largest, and was, and is, to prevent the predominance of France certainly the highest disciplined and best appoint- over the Mediterranean. ed, army ever seen, headed by the first military Thus far as to the certain and immediate effect sovereign in Europe, with a captain under him of of that armament upon the Italian states. The the greatest renown; and that without a blow probable effect which that armament, and the other given or received on any side. This state of things | armaments preparing at Toulon, and other ports,