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James M'Cleland, made Baron of Exchequer.

At this juncture Sir Henry Pottinger succeeded Captain Elliot, with orders to bring the war to a satisfactory conclusion. His measures were prompt; Amoy fell on the 26th of August, Chusan, which had been abandoned, was recaptured in September, and the Chinese experienced further reverses in 1842. At length the Chinese saw that resistance was vain, and that they must come to terms, as the "barbarians" could not be exterminated. Full powers had been given to three Commissioners to negotiate a treaty of peace, which, after various conferences, was concluded on the 26th of August, 1842. It embraced the following stipulations:—The payment by the Chinese of an indemnity of £4,375,000 in addition to the ransom of £1,250,000 already surrendered; the opening of the new ports of Canton, Amoy, Fou-chow-fou, Ning-po, and Shang-hai to British merchants, with permission to consular officers to reside there; the cession of the island of Hong Kong to the British in perpetuity; correspondence to be conducted on terms of perfect equality between the officers of both Governments; and the islands of Chusan and Ku-lang-su to be held by the British until the money payments were made, and arrangements for opening the ports were completed.

The fame of Sir Thomas Lawrence (b. 1769) had attained to its meridian in this period. In portrait painting he was one of the most distinguished artists of the day, and he attained proficiency in it without having gone to Italy or studied the old masters. It has been said of him, as well as of Sir Joshua Reynolds, that he painted three generations of beauties. He went to Aix-la-Chapelle in 1818, by invitation, to take the likenesses of the most distinguished statesmen who were there assembled for diplomatic purposes. During his residence on the Continent he was received by the Sovereigns of the different countries he visited, and entertained with marked distinction; and the propriety and elegance of his deportment, we are told, made an impression highly favourable to his character. On his return he found that he had been unanimously elected to succeed West as the President of the Royal Academy, and this office he continued to hold till his death, which took place on the 7th of January, 1830.Buonaparte's army now occupied the city and the right bank of the Danube. The archduke arrived, and posted himself on the left bank. The river was swollen with the spring rains and the melting of the snow in the mountains. All the bridges had been broken down by which Buonaparte might cross to attack the Austrians before they were joined by their other armies. Buonaparte endeavoured to throw one over at Nussdorf, about a league above Vienna, but the Austrians drove away his men. He therefore made a fresh attempt at Ebersdorf, opposite to which the Danube was divided into five channels, flowing amongst islands, the largest of which was one called Lobau. Here he succeeded, the Archduke Charles seeming unaware of what he was doing, or taking no care to prevent it. On the 20th of May the French began to cross, and deployed on a plain between the villages of Aspern and Esslingen. Thirty thousand infantry had crossed before the next morning, and six thousand horse, and they were attacked by the Austrians, near the village of Aspern, about four in the afternoon. The battle was desperately contested on both sides. The villages of Aspern and Esslingen were taken and retaken several times. The struggle went on with great fury, amid farm-yards, gardens, and enclosures, and waggons, carts, harrows, and ploughs were collected and used as barricades. Night closed upon the scene, leaving the combatants on both sides in possession of some part or other of these villages. On the following morning, the 22nd, the fight was renewed, and, after a terrible carnage, the French were driven back on the river. At this moment news came that the bridge connecting the right bank with the islands was broken down, and the communication of the French army was in danger of being altogether cut off. Buonaparte, to prevent this, retreated into the island of Lobau with the whole of the combating force, and broke down the bridge which connected the islands with the left bank behind them. The Austrians followed keenly upon them in their retreat, and inflicted a dreadful slaughter upon them. Marshal Lannes had both his legs shattered by a cannon-ball, and was carried into the island in the midst of the mêlée; General St. Hilaire also was killed. The loss in killed and wounded on both sides amounted to upwards of forty thousand. For two days Napoleon remained on the island, with his defeated troops, without provisions, and expecting hourly to be cut to pieces. General Hiller earnestly pressed the Archduke Charles to allow him to pass the Danube, by open force, opposite to the isle of Enzersdorf, where it might be done under cover of cannon, pledging himself to compel the surrender of Buonaparte and his army. But the archduke appeared under a spell from the moment that the fighting was over. Having his enemy thus cooped up, it was in his power to cut off all his supplies. By crossing the river higher or lower, he could have kept possession of both banks, and at once have cut off Buonaparte's magazines at Ebersdorf, under Davoust, from which he was separated by the inundation. By any other general, the other armies under his brother would have been ordered up by express; every soldier and every cannon that Austria could muster within any tolerable distance would have been summoned to surround and secure the enemy, taken at such disadvantage. In no other country but Austria could Napoleon have ever left that island but as a prisoner with a surrendered army.

In the eyes of the Conservatives the League was now the great cause of the political ferment that had spread throughout the land. In the Quarterly Review for December a long and elaborate indictment had been published against that body, and all who were in any way connected with them, in which it was attempted to show that the means by which the League sought to attain their objects were of the worst kind. The writer of the article hinted that the League's system of levying money for the avowed purpose of forcing Parliament to alter the law of the land was criminally punishable. A Mr. Bailey had stated, at one of the League meetings, that he had heard of a gentleman who, in private company, had said that if one hundred persons cast lots, and the lot should fall upon him, he would take the lot to deprive Sir Robert Peel of life. The teller of this injudicious anecdote added, that "he felt convinced that no such attempt ought to be made under any pretence whatever; but he was persuaded of this, that when Sir Robert Peel went to his grave there would be but few to shed one tear over it." The speaker was a minister of the Gospel, and there could be no doubt that he intended his anecdote only as an illustration of the frenzy to which some persons had been wrought by the political circumstances of the time; but this fact circulated by the great Tory organs, together with all the most violent and excited passages which could be found in the innumerable speeches delivered at League meetings, and in the pamphlets and other publications of that body, tended to create a vague horror of the Leaguers in the minds of that large class who read only writers on that side which accords with their own views.

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It is true that George II. was also a brave and staunch commander, prepared to die on the spot rather than yield, as he had shown at Dettingen. But the greater part of his forces at Finchley were raw levies, and might not have stood better than the troops had done in Scotland. There was a terror of the Highlanders, even in the army; and as for London itself, the panic, when it was heard that they had got between the duke's army and the capital, was, according to Fielding, who was then in London, incredible. There was a frantic rush upon the Bank of England, and it is said that it must have closed had it not gained time by paying in sixpences. The shops were shut, business was at a stand, the Ministers were in the utmost terror, and the Duke of Newcastle was said to have shut himself up for a day, pondering whether he should declare for the Pretender or not. The king himself was by no means confident of the result. He is said to have sent most of his precious effects on board a yacht at the Tower quay, ready to put off at a minute's warning. The day on which the news of the rebels being at Derby reached London was long renowned as Black Friday. In such a state of terror, and the army at Finchley inferior in numbers, and infinitely inferior in bravery, who can doubt that Charles would for a time have made himself master of the metropolis?

In the course of 1810 the French were expelled completely from the East and West Indies, and the Indian Ocean. Guadeloupe, the last of their West India Islands, was captured in February, by an expedition conducted by General Beckford and Admiral Sir A. Cochrane. In July an armament, sent out by Lord Minto from India, and headed by Lieutenant-Colonel Keating, reduced the Isle of Bourbon; and, being reinforced by a body of troops from the Cape of Good Hope, under Major-General John Abercromby and Admiral Bertie, the Isle of France, much the more important, and generally called Mauritius, surrendered on the 3rd of December. Besides[608] a vast quantity of stores and merchandise, five frigates and about thirty merchantmen were taken; and Mauritius became a permanent British colony. From this place a squadron proceeded to destroy the French factories on the coast of Madagascar, and finished by completely expelling them from those seas.It was during the year 1838 that the Chartists became an organised body. The working classes had strenuously supported the middle classes in obtaining their political rights during the agitation for the Reform Bill, and they expected to receive help in their turn to obtain political franchises for themselves, but they found Parliament indifferent or hostile to any further changes in the representation, while the middle class, satisfied with their own acquisitions, were not inclined to exert themselves much for the extension of political rights among the masses. The discontent and disappointment of the latter were aggravated by a succession of bad harvests, setting in about 1835. The hardships of their condition, with scanty employment and dear provisions, the people ascribed to their want of direct influence upon the[456] Government. This gave rise to a vigorous agitation for the extension of the franchise, which was carried on for ten years. In 1838 a committee of six members of Parliament and six working men prepared a Bill embodying their demands. This was called the "People's Charter." Its points were six in number:—First, the extension of the right of voting to every male native of the United Kingdom, and every naturalised foreigner resident in the kingdom for more than two years, who should be twenty-one years of age, of sound mind, and unconvicted of crime; second, equal electoral districts; third, vote by ballot; fourth, annual Parliaments; fifth, no property qualification for members; sixth, payment of members of Parliament for their services.

[See larger version]In prosecution, however, of his unrighteous engagement to Catherine, he mustered the large army he had engaged to bring against Turkey, and in February, 1788, he made a formal proclamation of war, having no cause of hostility to assign of his own, but merely that his alliance with Russia demanded that he should support that power in its equally lawless invasion of Turkey. The Prince of Saxe-Coburg, who commanded one division of Joseph's army, entered Moldavia, and spent the whole campaign nearly in the siege and reduction of the fortress of Choczim. The Emperor himself accompanied another division, the destination of which was the renewal of the siege of Belgrade. He had been led by Catherine to hope, as his reward for the co-operation, the recovery of Bosnia and Servia, the acquisition of Moldavia and Wallachia, and the extension of his boundaries to the Dnieper. But, having waited some time for the junction of the Russians, Joseph's army assembled on the banks of the Danube in February, and occupied itself in securing the banks of that river and of the Save. Joseph himself joined it in April, accompanied by his favourite marshal and counsellor, Lacy, and having also with him, but paying little attention to him or his advice, the brave and able Laudohn, who had so successfully coped with Frederick of Prussia in Silesia. On the 24th he took the little fortress of Szabatch, whilst another part of his army suffered a defeat from the Turks at Dobitza. He then sat down before Belgrade, but carried on the siege with such slackness as to disgust his own troops and astonish all Europe. He was at length roused by the advance of the vizier, Yussuff, who was coming rapidly down upon him. At his approach, Joseph precipitately retreated behind the Save, while Yussuff threw bridges over the Danube at Cladova, broke the Austrian cordon by the defeat of a portion of the forces of General Wartesleben on the heights of Meadiha, and swept through the banat of Temeswar, Joseph's own territory, which he held, and threatened to invade Hungary. Joseph hastened with forty thousand men to support Wartesleben, leaving General Laudohn to conduct the war in Croatia. The army was delighted to have Laudohn at their head instead of the Emperor. He led it on the very day of his arrival against the fortress of Dobitza, which he took; he then passed the Save, drove the Turks before him, defeated seven thousand of the enemy before Novi, and took that place, where his operations were suspended by the winter. Joseph gained little credit by his junction with Wartesleben. The Turks attacked him, and, though they were for the moment repulsed, the Emperor retreated in a dark night, and Turks and Austrians resumed their former positions. After taking Verplanka, the campaign ended with a three months' truce. But the Austrians had suffered more severely from the miasma of the marshes of the Danube and Save than from the Turks.For more than four months the invincible Massena continued to watch the lines of Torres Vedras without striking a single effective blow. In fact, instead of attacking Wellington, Wellington attacked his advanced posts near Sobral on the 14th, and drove them in with the bayonet. The French then showed themselves in some force near Villa Franca, close to the Tagus; but there the gunboats reached them, causing them rapidly to retreat, and killing General St. Croix. After this, the French made no further attempt on those mountain lines which struck Massena with despair. After occupying his position for a month he fell back to the town of Santarem, and there and in the neighbouring villages quartered his troops for the winter. His great business was to collect provisions, for he had brought none with him; and had the people obeyed strictly the proclamation of Wellington and the Junta, he would have found none at all, and must have instantly retreated. But the Portuguese thought it hard to quit their homesteads and carry all their provisions to Lisbon or into the mountains, and the miserable Junta threw all the blame of the order on the British general. Not only, therefore, was a considerable amount of provisions left in the country, but boats were left at Santarem, on the Tagus, contrary to Wellington's orders, by which provisions were brought over by the French from Spain.


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Ireland continued, during 1831 and 1832, in a very unsettled state. The restraint imposed by the Catholic Association during the Emancipation struggle was relaxed when the object was attained, and when Mr. O'Connell was absent from the country, attending his Parliamentary duties. The consequence was that the people, suffering destitution in some cases and in others irritated by local grievances, gave vent to their passions in vindictive and barbarous outrages. O'Connell himself was not in a mood to exert himself much in order to produce a more submissive spirit in the peasantry, even if he had the power. He was exasperated by his collisions with Mr. Stanley, by whom he was treated in a spirit of defiance, not unmingled with scorn; so that the great agitator was determined to make him and the Government feel his power. Had Mr. Stanley when he was Chief Secretary for Ireland possessed the experience that he afterwards acquired when he became Earl of Derby, he would have adopted a more diplomatic tone in Parliament, and a more conciliatory spirit in his Irish administration. His character as it appeared to the Irish Roman Catholics, sketched by O'Connell, was a hideous caricature. A more moderate and discriminating Irish sketch of him by Mr. Fitzpatrick represented the Chief Secretary as possessing a judgment of powerful penetration and a facility in mastering details, with a temper somewhat reserved and dictatorial. Popularity was not his idol; instead of the theatrical smile and plastic posture of his predecessors, there was a knitted brow and a cold manner. Mr. Stanley left much undone in Ireland. But this candid Catholic writer gives him credit for having accomplished much, not only in correcting what was evil, but in establishing what was good. He is praised for putting down Orange processions, and for "the moral courage with which he grappled with the hydra of the Church Establishment." He created as well as destroyed, and "his creations were marked with peculiar efficiency." "The Irish Board of Works sprang up under his auspices. The Shannon navigation scheme at last became a reality, and the proselytism of the Kildare Place Society received a fatal check by the establishment of the national system of education. The political philippics which Baron Smith had been in the habit of enunciating from the Bench were put a stop to by Mr. Stanley. He viewed the practice with indignation, and trenchantly reprobated it in the House of Commons. It ought to be added that Mr. Stanley built a house in Tipperary, chiefly with the object of giving employment to the poor." It has been often remarked that the Chief Secretary for Ireland, on his arrival in Dublin, is always surrounded by men each of whom has his peculiar specific for the evils of the country. But Mr. Sheil said that Mr. Stanley, instead of listening to such counsel with the usual "sad civility, invariably intimated with some abrupt jeer, bordering on mockery, his utter disregard of the advice, and his very slender estimate of the adviser." Mr. Stanley made an[355] exception, however, in favour of the then celebrated "J. K. L." He acknowledged a letter from Dr. Doyle, on the education question, with warm expressions of thanks for the suggestions contained in it, and a wish to see him on his arrival in Dublin. Towards O'Connell, however, Mr. Stanley seems to have cherished a strong antipathy. They exercised mutual repulsion upon one another, and they never came into contact without violent irritation.

CHAPTER XXII. REIGN OF VICTORIA (continued).Warren Hastings had saved Madras and the Carnatic, but only at the cost of extortion. To obtain the necessary money, he began a system of robbery and coercion on the different princes of Bengal and Oude. The first experiment was made on Cheyte Sing, the Rajah of Benares, who had been allowed to remain as a tributary prince when that province was made over to the British by the Nabob of Oude. The tribute had been paid with a regularity unexampled in the history of India; but when the war broke out with France, Hastings suddenly demanded an extraordinary addition of fifty thousand pounds a year, and as it was not immediately paid, the Rajah was heavily fined into the bargain. This was rendered still more stringent in 1780, when the difficulties in Madras began. Cheyte Sing sent a confidential agent to Calcutta, to assure Hastings that it was not in his power to pay so heavy a sum, and he sent him two lacs of rupees (twenty thousand pounds), as a private present to conciliate him. Hastings accepted the money, but no doubt feeling the absolute need of large sums for the public purse, he, after awhile, paid this into the treasury, and then said to Cheyte Sing that he must pay the contribution all the same. He compelled the Rajah to pay the annual sum of fifty thousand pounds, and ten thousand pounds more as a fine, and then demanded two thousand cavalry. After some bargaining and protesting, Cheyte Sing sent five hundred horsemen and five hundred foot. Hastings made no acknowledgment of these, but began to muster troops, threatening to take vengeance on the Rajah. In terror, Cheyte Sing then sent, in one round sum, twenty lacs of rupees (two hundred thousand pounds) for the service of the State; but the only answer he obtained for the munificent offering was, that he must send thirty lacs more, that is, altogether, half a million.



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