The Attorney-General, Sir R. Gifford, was then called in, when he proceeded to state the case against the queen. He traced her Majesty's conduct from the time at which she left England, in 1814. Her suite consisted of Lady Charlotte Lindsay and Lady Elizabeth Forbes, and the Hon. Keppel Craven; Sir William Gell and a Mr. Fitzgerald as chamberlains, with Captain Hash as equerry; Dr. Holland as physician; and other persons, in various capacities. She went first to Brunswick, her native place, and thence to Milan, where she remained three weeks. There Bartolomeo Bergami was received into her service as a courier, having been a servant in a similar capacity to a General Picco. The princess went next to Rome, and thence to Naples, where she arrived on the 8th of November, 1814. Her adopted child, William Austin, then only six or seven years of age, to whom she was particularly attached, had been in the habit of sleeping in a bed in the same room with her, while, according to the domestic arrangements that had been adopted, Bergami slept, among other menial servants, at a distance. On the 9th of November, three weeks after his appointment, an apartment was assigned to Bergami near her own bedroom, and communicating with it by means of a corridor. The surprise occasioned by this alteration was increased when the princess directed that the child Austin should no longer sleep in her room. There was an air of hurry, agitation, and embarrassment about her manner which awakened suspicion, which was increased in the morning, according to the story of the witnesses, when they found that her own bed had not been occupied, and instead of summoning her female attendants at the usual time, she remained in the apartment of Bergami until a late hour. Her recent arrival at Naples naturally induced persons of consequence to pay their respects to her, but she was not accessible. The Attorney-General thought their lordships could have no doubt that "this was the commencement of that most scandalous, degrading, and licentious intercourse which continued and increased." The natural effect of this was that Bergami assumed airs of importance, and became haughty and arrogant with the other servants. A few days afterwards the princess gave a masked ball to the person then filling the Neapolitan throne. She first appeared as a Neapolitan peasant, but soon retired to assume another character, taking the courier with her, for the purpose of changing her costume. She then came forth as the genius of history, in a dress, or rather want of dress, of a most indecent and disgusting kind. The Attorney-General referred to a number of facts of a similar kind to those already detailed; also to instances of indelicacy and indecency, in which the queen was said to have indulged in the presence of her attendants and of strangers. On the fourth day, after the conclusion of his address, he proceeded to call his witnesses, and for more than a month the House was occupied in hearing their evidence.Prince Ferdinand this summer had to contend with numerous armies of the French. De Broglie marched from Frankfort into Hesse with a hundred thousand men. On the 10th of July they met the hereditary Prince of Brunswick at Corbach, and defeated him, though he gained a decided advantage over them a few days after at Emsdorf, taking the commander of the division and five battalions prisoners. This was followed by Ferdinand himself, who was at Warburg, where he took ten pieces of artillery, killed one thousand five hundred of the French, and drove them into the Dimel, where many were drowned. The British cavalry had the greatest share in this victory. In fact, the Marquis of Granby led them on all occasions with such spirit and bravery, that Ferdinand placed them continually in the post of danger, where of course they suffered more severely than the other troops.
Notwithstanding these rejoicings, however, there is no doubt that the imprisonment completely broke the spirit of O'Connell. During 1843 he had been urged forward by the impetuosity and warlike spirit of the Young Ireland party, and the excitement of the monster meetings seems to have filled his mind with the notion that he could really wield the physical power of the country in an actual contest with the Queen's forces. His prison reflections dissipated all such illusions. The enforced inactivity, at his time of life, of one accustomed to so much labour and to such constant speaking, no doubt affected his health. Probably the softening of the brain, of which he died, commenced about this time. At all events he was thenceforward an altered man, excessively cautious and timid, with a morbid horror of war and blood, and a rooted dislike of the Young Ireland leaders, which the Old Ireland party did all they could to strengthen. Mr. Smith O'Brien had been the Conservative member for the county of Limerick, and had been opposed to the Repeal agitation; but the moment O'Connell was arrested, he joined the Association, taking the vacant position of leader, and adopting the policy of the Young Ireland party, which avowedly tended to war and revolution. Boasting of a lineal descent from the conqueror of the Danes at Clontarf, and hailed by some of his admirers as one who had a right to wear his crown, the new convert to Repeal seemed determined to go all lengths for the liberation of his country from the Saxon yoke. O'Connell at first seemed to rejoice in the accession of strength to the cause, but signs of jealousy and dislike were soon manifested. In private there was a marked coolness between the two leaders, and when, at the meetings of the Association, any of the Young Ireland orators gave utterance to martial sentiments, they were promptly called to order by O'Connell; but they revenged themselves by frequently outvoting him in committee, which was a grievous mortification to one so long accustomed to almost absolute rule among his followers. He attended Parliament during the Session of 1845-46, diligently performing his duties as a representative, sitting in committees, and taking part in the debates of the House. During his absence the Young Ireland party gained a complete ascendency in the Repeal Association. Mr. Smith O'Brien, who refused to sit on any committee in the House of Commons not connected with Irish business, and was imprisoned in the cellar for his contumacy, made himself an idol with the revolutionary party at home by his refractory spirit and the perversity of his conduct. The other leaders of that party who exerted the greatest influence were Thomas Davis, Charles Gavan Duffy, D'Arcy M'Gee, and Thomas Meagher—all men of superior ability, whose organ, the Nation, exerted great influence throughout the country. Ultimately, a series of "peace resolutions," which were proposed in the Repeal Association, pledging its members to abjure the sword as an instrument for redressing the grievances of Ireland, caused an open rupture between the two parties. The Young Irelanders seceded in a body from Conciliation Hall, and established an organisation of their own—"The Irish Confederation." From this time the Repeal rent rapidly fell off, and when O'Connell again returned to Dublin he found that the spell of his enchantment, once so potent, was broken; and the famine came soon after, to consummate his affliction and break his heart. Before the sad close of his public career had arrived, and pending the issue of the State trial, O'Connell had a proof of the magnanimity of the English people, of those Saxons whose national character he had so often assailed and maligned. When he appeared at one of the Anti-Corn-Law meetings in Covent Garden Theatre, his reception by the assembled multitude is described as one of the most magnificent displays of popular enthusiasm ever witnessed. They remembered only that his jury was packed, that his judges were prejudiced, and that he had been for thirty years the able and consistent opponent of the Corn Laws. He declared himself that he was not prepared for such a demonstration, even by the experience of the monster meetings. This great triumph on English ground seemed to infuse new life into the veteran agitator, for his speech on that occasion was one of the finest and most effective he ever delivered.There only needed now one thing to render the expedition triumphant, and place the Hudson from Albany to New York in the absolute power of the British army—that General Howe should have been prepared to keep the appointment there with a proper fleet and armed force. But Howe was engaged in the campaign of Philadelphia, and seems to have been utterly incapable of conducting two such operations as watching Washington and supporting Burgoyne. As soon as Burgoyne discovered this fatal want of co-operation on the part of Howe, he ought to have retreated to the lakes, but he still determined to advance; and before doing so, he only awaited the coming up of the artillery and baggage under General Philips, and of Colonel St. Leger, who had been dispatched by the course of the Oswego, the Oneida Lake, and Wood Creek, and thence by the Mohawk river, which falls into the Hudson between Saratoga and Albany. St. Leger had two hundred regulars—Sir John Johnson's Royal Queen's and Canadian Rangers—with him, and a body of Indians under Brandt. St. Leger, on his way, had laid siege to Fort Schuyler, late Fort Stanwix, near the head of the Mohawk. General Herkimer raised the militia of Tryon county, and advanced to the relief of the place.
Whilst this powerful confederacy was putting forth all its strength to drive from the seat of supremacy the man who had so long guided the fortunes of England, another confederacy was knitting together its selfish members to rend in pieces and share amongst them the empire of the young Queen of Austria. Frederick was willing enough to make a league with France, but he was cautious enough not to make it too soon. He wanted to know whether he could keep England out of the campaign, in which case he could deal easily with Austria himself. Walpole's attempts to prevent the war from becoming European, however, failed, and the treaty being signed with the Prussian king, Marshal Maillebois marched an army across the Rhine, and Belleisle and Broglie went with another. Maillebois pursued his course direct for Hanover, where George was drilling and preparing a number of troops, but in no degree capable of making head against the French. Panic-stricken at their approach, he made haste to come to terms, and agreed to a year's neutrality for Hanover, leaving Maria Theresa to her fate, and, moreover, engaging not to vote for the election of her husband, the Duke of Lorraine, to be Emperor. The news of this conduct of the King of England in the person of the Elector of Hanover, was received in Great Britain with the utmost indignation. Belleisle and De Broglie had, during this time, joined their forces to those of the old Elector of Bavaria, the constant enemy of Austria and the friend of France, and had marched into Austria. He took Linz, on the Danube, and commenced his march on Vienna. As this allied army approached Vienna, Maria Theresa fled with her infant son, afterwards Joseph II., into Hungary, her husband and his brother, Prince Charles of Lorraine, remaining to defend the city. The Hungarians received their menaced queen with enthusiasm. She had done much since the recent commencement of her reign to win their affections. She had been crowned in the preceding month of June in their ancient capital, and had sworn to maintain their ancient constitution in all its force, and the people were fervent in their loyalty. When, therefore, she appeared before the Hungarian Parliament in Presburg with her son in her arms, and called upon that high-spirited nation to defend her against her perfidious and selfish enemies, the sensation was indescribable. All rose to their feet, and, drawing their swords half-way from the scabbard, they exclaimed, "Our lives and our blood for your majesty! We will die for our king, Maria Theresa!""But perhaps it might be possible to get a Bill passed to disfranchise the Irish forty-shilling freeholders—a class of voters who, as they had been created for acknowledged purposes of corruption in the Irish Parliament, would have nobody to stand up for them in high places, now that they refused to play their patrons' game. This was quite as improbable an issue as the other. The disfranchisement of forty-shilling freeholders had, indeed, been talked of in former years; but, if effected at all, it was to be in connection with a measure of Catholic Emancipation. To propose it now for the avowed purpose of rendering Catholic Emancipation impossible would be to insure the rejection of the Bill. That plan, therefore, fell at once to the ground; and there remained but two others.
This result was due to important negotiations behind the scenes. For many months the more extreme section of the Cabinet had urged Lord Grey to recommend the king to swamp the hostile majority by a creation of peers. Both he and Althorp objected to this course, and fresh overtures were made to the waverers, while the king undertook to convert the Bishops. Both attempts failed, and then the Cabinet was nearly rent in twain. Lord Durham attacked his father-in-law in language which Althorp declared to be "brutal," and for which, said Lord Melbourne, he deserved to be knocked down. At last the king resolved to agree to a creation of peers on condition that the new creations should not exceed the number of 24. This alarmed the waverers, and with the aid of Charles Greville they came to terms with the Government. Lord Harrowby and Lord Wharncliffe secured a majority on the second reading, on condition that no new peers should be created.
When such acts as the burning of the Gaspee had been done with impunity, and whilst the American mind was rankling with the Franklin poison of the purloined letters, three vessels arrived at Boston, laden with tea, under the conditions of Lord North's Bill. On the arrival of the ships the commotion was intense. The captains themselves would gladly have sailed away with their obnoxious cargoes in safety, but the governor very foolishly gave orders that they should not pass the ports without a permit from himself, and he sent Admiral Montague to guard the passages out of the harbour with two ships of war. As the evening grew dark, those who had quitted the meeting held on the 16th of December to demand that the ships should be sent home again, were met by mobs of men arrayed as wild Indians, who hurried down to Griffin's Wharf, where the tea ships lay. Rushing tumultuously on board, and hoisting out the tea chests, they emptied them into the sea amid much cheering and noise. Having thus destroyed teas to the amount of eighteen thousand pounds, the triumphant mob retreated to their houses.
For this rebuff, to which he did not even venture an answer, Lord Palmerston speedily obtained a dexterous revenge. Kossuth, Bem, Dembinski, and some thousands of the Hungarian leaders, found refuge at Shumla, within the Turkish frontier. A joint and imperative demand was made by Austria and Russia upon the Sultan to deliver them up. This demand was enforced by two envoys from each Court. The pressure was resisted by the Sultan, who refused to yield to a demand which required him to violate his own honour, the national dignity, the dictates of humanity, and the most sacred rights of hospitality. He took this course at the risk of a rupture with Russia, and though he was pledged by treaty to refuse to shelter both Austrian and Russian malcontents. But he was strongly supported by Lord Palmerston and the French Government, who having gained time by the Sultan's despatch of a special mission to St. Petersburg, ordered the British and French fleets to move up to the Dardanelles and Smyrna. Thereupon the autocratic Powers lowered their tone, Russia demanding only the expulsion of the Poles, Austria the internment of some thirty of the refugees. The refugees were removed to Kutaya, in Asia Minor, where they remained till August 22nd, 1851. On the 1st of September in that year Kossuth left Turkey. On his arrival at Marseilles he was refused permission to travel through France; but he was hospitably received at Gibraltar and Lisbon, and on the 28th of October arrived safely in England, where he was welcomed with unbounded enthusiasm. During these negotiations Palmerston had displayed a courage which raised his reputation both at home and abroad.
The result of these victories was that the Punjab was annexed to our Indian Empire, the reasons for this step being explained by the Governor-General in a proclamation, which announced favourable terms for the conquered people. Henry Lawrence, as is well known, was against the annexation, but his arguments were overridden by the strenuous Governor-General, and he became chief of the Commission, with his brother John as a member, for the administration of the Punjab. Moolraj was subsequently tried for the murder of Mr. Agnew and Mr. Anderson, and being found guilty, he was sentenced to death. The sentence was afterwards commuted to imprisonment for life.
Choiseul made, undoubtedly, a large offer for peace. It was that each power should retain all such of its conquests as should be in its hands, subject to exchanges and equivalents, in Europe, on the 1st of May next; in America, the West Indies, and Africa, on the 1st of July; and in the East Indies on the 1st of September. But Pitt had declared that he would never make another peace of Utrecht. He considered that we had France down, and he determined to retain everything of value. He therefore replied that the proper period for the principle of the treaty to take place was that on which the treaty was really signed, that it might so happen that it would not be signed at the dates named, and he did this in order to complete a scheme, which he had already nearly accomplished, that of seizing on Belleisle, an island on the coast of France. It surrendered in July, and the news of this loss was speedily followed in Paris by that of the loss of Dominica in the West, and of Pondicherry in the East Indies.
Sceptra tenens; mollitque animos et temperat iras;
Cumberland was now appointed to command the troops in Hanover intended to co-operate with Prussia against France and Austria; but he had an intuitive dread of Pitt, and was very unwilling to quit the kingdom whilst that formidable man was Paymaster of the Forces. He therefore never rested till the king dismissed him from office. George himself required little urging. He had always hated Pitt for his anti-Hanoverian spirit; nor had his conduct in office, however respectful, done away with his dislike. George, therefore, was desirous to get rid of the able Pitt and recall the imbecile Newcastle. He complained that Pitt made harangues, even in the simplest matters of business, which he could not comprehend; and as for Lord Temple, his brother-in-law, he declared him to be pert and insolent. George therefore sent Lord Waldegrave to Newcastle to invite him to return to office, saying, "Tell him I do not look upon myself as king whilst I am in the hands of these scoundrels, and am determined to be rid of them at any rate." Newcastle longed to regain his favour, but he was afraid of a notice made in the House of Commons for an inquiry into the causes of the loss of Minorca. The king, nevertheless, dismissed Temple and Pitt, and Legge and others resigned. Cumberland, in great delight, then embarked for Hanover, thinking the main difficulty over; but, in fact, it had only just begun. The inquiry into the Minorca affair was, indeed, so managed that it did not absolutely condemn the Ministry of Newcastle, neither did it fully acquit them; whilst, at the same time, the public were highly incensed at the dismissal of Pitt, whom they rightly deemed the only man in the two Houses with abilities capable of conducting the affairs of the nation successfully. Addresses and presentations of the freedom of their cities came pouring in on Pitt from all the great towns of the kingdom. Horace Walpole said it literally rained gold boxes. Legge, as the firm ally of Pitt, received also his share of these honours.Besides the miscellaneous poets, the dramatic ones numbered Congreve, Vanbrugh, Farquhar, Colley Cibber, Nicholas Rowe—already mentioned—Savage, Lansdowne, Ambrose Philips, and others. In many of the plays of these authors there is great talent, wit, and humour, but mingled with equal grossness. Congreve's dramas are principally "The Old Bachelor," "The Incognita," "The Double Dealer," "The Way of the World," comedies, and "The Mourning Bride," a tragedy. Vanbrugh, the celebrated architect, produced "The Relapse," "The Provoked Wife," "The Confederacy," "The Journey to London," and several other comedies. Farquhar's principal plays are "The Beaux's Stratagem," "Love and a Bottle," and "The Constant Couple." Savage was the author of the tragedy of "Sir Thomas Overbury;" Nicholas Rowe, of five or six tragedies and one comedy, the most popular of which are "The Fair Penitent" and "Jane Shore." Rowe also translated Lucan's "Pharsalia." As for Colley Cibber, he was a mere playwright, and turned out above two dozen comedies, tragedies, and other dramatic pieces. Lord Lansdowne was the author of "The She-gallants," a comedy, and "Heroic Love," a tragedy of some merit; and John Hughes wrote "The Siege of Damascus," a tragedy, which long remained on the stage.详情
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