类型:奇幻地区:莫桑比克剧发布:2020-10-23 07:33:30


Goldsmith was in his poetry, as in his prose, simple, genuine, and natural. His "Deserted Village" and "Traveller" were in the metre of Pope, but they were full of the most exquisite touches of pathos, of truth, and liberty; they were new in spirit, though old in form. Charles Churchill, the satirist, was full of flagellant power. He has been said to have formed himself on Dryden; but it is more probable that his models were Lucian and Juvenal. He was a bold and merciless chastiser of the follies of the times. He commenced, in the "Rosciad," with the players, by which he stirred a nest of hornets. Undauntedly he pursued his course, attacking, in "The Ghost," the then all-powerful Dr. Johnson, who ruled like a despot over both literary men and their opinions. These satires, strong and somewhat coarse, were followed by "The Prophecy of Famine," an "Epistle to Hogarth," "The Conference," "The Duellist," "The Author," "Gotham," "The Candidate," "The Times," etc. In these Churchill not only lashed the corruptions of the age, but the false principles of nations. He condemned the seizure of other countries by so-called Christian powers, on the plea of discovery. It was only to be lamented that Churchill, who was a clergyman, in censuring his neighbour's vices did not abandon his own.


Caulaincourt, who had been sent by Buonaparte from Fontainebleau to the Allied sovereigns to treat on his behalf, returned, and informed Buonaparte of all these events. He declared that he would march on Paris; and the next day, the 4th of April, he reviewed his troops, and told them that some vile persons had insulted the tricolour cockade in Paris, and they would march there at[83] once and punish them. The soldiers shouted, "Paris, Paris!" but, after the review, the marshals produced the Moniteur, told him what had taken place, and that it was necessary that he should submit. He appeared greatly agitated, and asked them what they wished. Lefebvre said, bluntly, that he had been advised by his best friends to make peace in time, when he would have saved everything; there was nothing for it now but to abdicate. Napoleon then called for a pen, and abdicated in favour of his son. Caulaincourt and Ney were to carry this to the Allied sovereigns. They inquired what terms they should ask for himself. He replied—"None: I ask nothing." Yet, the moment the commissioners were gone, he started up and vowed that he would fight with Marmont's corps and the Guards, and would be in Paris on the morrow.

The Committee of Inquiry, stimulated by the disappointment of the public, began preparations for a fresh report; but their labours were cut short by the termination of the Session. In order to conciliate in some degree public opinion, Ministers hastened to allow the passing of a Bill to exclude certain officers from the House of Commons; they passed another to encourage the linen manufacture; a third, to regulate the trade of the Colonies; and a fourth, to prevent the marriage of lunatics. They voted forty thousand seamen and sixty-two thousand landsmen for the service of the current year. The whole expenditure of the year amounted to nearly six million pounds, which was raised by a land-tax of four shillings in the pound; by a malt-tax; by a million from the sinking fund; and by other resources. They provided for the subsidies to Denmark and Hesse-Cassel, and voted another five hundred thousand pounds to the Queen of Hungary. On the 15th of July the king prorogued Parliament; at the same time assuring the two Houses that a peace was concluded between the Queen of Hungary and the King of Prussia, through his mediation; and that the late successes of the Austrian arms were in a great measure owing to the generous assistance of the British nation.Mr. Peel publishes the letters that passed between him and Mr. Fitzgerald while the election was pending, and from these it would appear that the latter thought the contest would be violent and exasperated. After the fight was over, he said he had polled the gentry to a man, and all the fifty-pound freeholders. The organisation which had been shown was so complete and formidable that no man could contemplate without alarm what was to follow in that wretched country. Mr. Peel observes:—"The last letter of Mr. Fitzgerald is especially worthy of remark. Can there be a doubt that the example of the county would have been all-powerful in the case of every future election in Ireland for those counties in which a Roman Catholic constituency preponderated? It is true that Mr. O'Connell was the most formidable competitor whom Mr. Fitzgerald could have encountered; it is possible that that which took place in Clare would not have taken place had[276] any other man than Mr. O'Connell been the candidate; but he must be blind, indeed, to the natural progress of events, and to the influence of example, in times of public excitement, on the feelings and passions of men, who could cherish the delusive hope that the instrument of political power, shivered to atoms in the county of Clare, would still be wielded with effect in Cork or Galway.On his return Lord Cochrane received the honour of the red riband of the Bath; but he could not conceal his dissatisfaction at Lord Gambier's conduct, and declared that he would oppose any vote of thanks to him in Parliament. On this, Gambier demanded a court-martial, which was held, and acquitted him of all blame. Cochrane complained that the court was strongly biassed in favour of Gambier, and against himself, and the public was very much of his opinion.

CHAPTER VI. REIGN OF GEORGE IV. (continued).Immediately after this, Fox encouraged the formation of a Society of Friends of the Liberty of the Press, of which Erskine and Horne Tooke were members. As several French emissaries were traversing the country disseminating their opinions, Lord Grenville, on the 19th of December, 1792, introduced a bill into the House of Lords, subjecting aliens to certain regulations not included in the ordinary Alien Bill. All foreigners were to announce themselves on their arrival, and surrender any arms brought with them; they were to take out passports, and to have them viséd on every fresh removal through the country, so that their movements might be known to the authorities; those who had arrived during the year 1792 to be particularly observed, and the motives for their coming ascertained; all such foreigners as received allowances from the British Government to be distributed into particular districts, under the eye of the authorities. With some opposition, this Bill was carried. The Marquis of Lansdowne forthwith moved that a negotiation should be immediately opened with the French Government, requiring it to receive back the numerous Frenchmen driven into exile, or to provide for their support, and at the same time to endeavour to save Louis XVI. from the terrible fate which threatened him. This was negatived on the declaration of other lords, who said that both propositions would be useless; the latter one would in all probability hasten, rather than avert, the fate of the French king. In the Commons, Fox and Sheridan strenuously resisted the new Alien Bill, and Burke as vehemently supported it. He declared that no measures of precaution could be too strict; that thousands of daggers had been manufactured in Birmingham for France, and intending to produce a startling effect he drew an actual dagger from his bosom, and flinging it on the floor of the House exclaimed, "That is what you are to obtain[412] from an alliance with France. You must equally proscribe their tenets and their persons; you must keep their principles from your minds, and their daggers from your hearts!" In the French Convention such an action would have created a sensation, but in the matter-of-fact British Parliament it produced only surprise followed by laughter. Fox endeavoured as much as possible to weaken the sense of danger of French principles, though he expressed his abhorrence of the September massacres. The Bill was passed, and was succeeded by one prohibiting the circulation of French assignats, bonds, promissory notes, etc., and another, prohibiting the exportation of naval stores, saltpetre, arms, and ammunition.To these, in 1785, the Rev. Dr. Edmund Cartwright introduced a loom for weaving by water or steam power, which soon superseded hand-loom weaving. In 1803 Mr. H. Horrocks greatly improved this, and from this germ has grown up the system of weaving cottons, silks, and woollens by machinery. Add to this the application of similar machinery to calico-printing, and the like to weaving of lace, invented by Robert Frost, of Nottingham, or by a working mechanic of that town named Holmes, which afterwards received many improvements, and we have the varied means by which the manufacturing power of England was raised far above that of all the world; and which, reaching other countries in spite of legislative impediments, soon established similar manufactures in France, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, and America. In Great Britain alone the importation of raw cotton was increased from 4,764,589 lbs. in 1771 to 151,000,000 lbs. in 1818; and such was the spread of trade of all kinds from the use of machinery, that our exports of manufactured goods in 1800, when the European nations were incapacitated for manufacturing by Napoleon's general embargo, amounted to £116,000,000.

The result of the Duke's deliberations upon the crisis and the duty of Government respecting it was stated at length in an unpublished manuscript, left in his own handwriting, and is probably a copy of the memorandum sent to the king. The following is the substance of the Duke's reflections as given in Mr. Gleig's "Life of Wellington":—The Crown had resolved to proceed against the queen by a Bill of Pains and Penalties, the introduction of which was preceded by the appointment of a secret committee, to perform functions somewhat analogous to those of a grand jury in finding bills against accused parties. Mr. Brougham earnestly protested against the appointment of a secret committee, which was opposed by Lords Lansdowne and Holland. The course was explained and defended by the Lord Chancellor, who said that the object of Ministers in proposing a secret committee was to prevent injustice towards the accused; that committee would not be permitted to pronounce a decision; it would merely find, like a grand jury, that matter of accusation did or did not exist; such matter, even if found to have existence, could not be the subject of judicial proceeding, strictly so called. The offence of a queen consort, or a Princess Consort of Wales, committing adultery with a person owing allegiance to the British Crown would be that of a principal in high treason, because by statute it was high treason in him; and as accessories in high treason are principals, she would thus be guilty of high treason as a principal; but as the act of a person owing no allegiance to the British Crown could not be high treason in him, so neither could a princess be guilty of that crime merely by being an accessory to such a person's act. Yet although, for this reason, there could be no judicial proceeding in such a case, there might be a legislative one; and the existence or non-existence of grounds for such legislative proceeding was a matter into which it would be fit that a secret committee should inquire. In no case could injustice be done, because that committee's decision would not be final. There might be differences of opinion about the best mode of proceeding, but, for God's sake, said the Lord Chancellor, let it be understood that they all had the same object in view, and that their difference was only about the best mode of procedure.WELFEN CASTLE, HANOVER.

On the 8th of February was fought the great and decisive battle of Sobraon, the name of the tête du pont, at the entrenched camp of the Sikhs, where all the forces of the enemy were now concentrated. The camps extended along both sides of the river, and were defended by 130 pieces of artillery, of which nearly half were of heavy calibre, and which were all served by excellent gunners. The British troops formed a vast semicircle, each end of which touched the river, the village of Sobraon being in the centre, where the enemy were defended by a triple line of works, one within another, flanked by the most formidable redoubts. The battle commenced by the discharge of artillery on both sides, which played with terrific force for three hours. After this the British guns went up at a gallop till they came within 300 yards of the works, where it was intended the assault should be delivered. Halting there, they poured a concentrated fire upon the position for some time. After this the assault was made by the infantry, running. The regiment which led the way was the 10th, supported by the 53rd Queen's and the 43rd and 59th Native Infantry. They were repulsed with dreadful slaughter. The post of honour and of danger was now taken by the Ghoorkas. A desperate struggle with the bayonet ensued; the Sikhs were overpowered by the brigades of Stacey and Wilkinson; but, as the fire of the enemy was now concentrated upon this point, the brave assailants were in danger of being overwhelmed and destroyed. The British Commander-in-Chief seeing this, sent forward the brigades of Ashburnham, as well as Smith's division, against the right of the enemy, while his artillery played furiously upon their whole line. The Sikhs fought with no less valour and determination than the British. Not one of their gunners flinched till he was struck down at his post. Into every gap opened by the artillery they rushed with desperate resolution, repelling the assaulting columns of the British. At length the cavalry, which has so often decided the fate of the day in great battles, were instrumental in achieving the victory. The Sappers and Miners having succeeded in opening a passage through which the horses could enter in single file, the 3rd Queen's Dragoons, under Sir Joseph Thackwell, got inside the works, quickly formed, and galloping along in the rear of the batteries, cut down the gunners as they passed. General Gough promptly followed up this advantage by ordering forward the whole three divisions of the centre and the right. It was then that the fighting may be said to have commenced in earnest. The struggle was long, bloody, and relentless. No quarter was given or asked; the Sikhs fighting like men for whom death had no terrors, and for whom death in battle was the happiest as well as the most glorious exit from life. But they encountered men with hearts as stout and stronger muscle, and they were at length gradually forced back upon the river by the irresistible British bayonet. The bridge at length gave way under the enormous weight, and thousands were precipitated into the water and drowned. But even in the midst of this catastrophe the drowning fanatics would accept no mercy from the Feringhees. Our losses amounted to 320 killed and 2,063 wounded. Of the European officers, thirteen were killed and 101 wounded. The loss of the Sikhs in the battle of Sobraon was estimated at from 10,000 to 13,000 men, the greater number being shot down or drowned in the attempt to cross the bridge. They left in the hands of the victors sixty-seven guns, 200 camel swivels, nineteen standards, and a great quantity of ammunition.NAPOLEON I. (From the Portrait by Paul Delaroche.)



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[See larger version]But unfortunately for the Pretender, at the moment that the Swedish hero should prepare his armament for the earliest spring, the conspiracy exploded. Whilst the leaders of it had been flattering themselves that it was conducted with the profoundest secrecy, the English Ministry were in possession of its clue. As early as October they had found reason to induce them to intercept the correspondence of Gyllenborg, and had come at once on the letters of Gortz. The matter was kept close, and as nothing was apprehended in winter, Ministers used the time to improve their knowledge of the scheme from the inspected letters passing between Gortz and Gyllenborg. On the king's return it was resolved to act, and accordingly Stanhope laid the information regarding this formidable conspiracy before the Council, and proposed that the Swedish Minister, who had clearly, by conspiring against the Government to which he was accredited, violated the law of nations, and deprived himself of its protection, should be arrested. The Cabinet at once assented to the proposal, and General Wade, a man of firm and resolute military habits, was ordered to make the arrest of the Ambassador. The general found[37] Count Gyllenborg busy making up his despatches, which, after announcing laconically his errand, Wade took possession of, and then demanded the contents of his escritoire. The Dutch Government acted in the same manner to Gortz, and the evidence thus obtained was most conclusive.The war in Afghanistan was alluded to in the Royal Speech, at the opening of the Session of 1843, in terms of congratulation at the complete success that had attended the recent military operations in that country, owing to the high ability with which they had been directed, as well as the constancy and valour of the European and native forces, which had established, by decisive victories on the scenes of former disasters, the superiority of her Majesty's arms, and had effected the liberation of the British subjects that had been held in captivity. This, therefore, is the proper time to relate briefly the incidents of that war, some of which are full of romantic interest. About the year 1837 the attention of the British[494] Government in India was attracted by the conduct of certain supposed agents of Russia, in the countries to the west of the Indus. The Russian ambassador, Simonitch, was urging the Shah to lay siege to Herat, "the key to India," and the place was soon closely invested. It was saved by the fortuitous presence in the town of a gallant young officer of engineers, Eldred Pottinger, who rallied the inhabitants and beat off the enemy. Meanwhile, another Russian agent, Vicovitch by name, had been sent to Cabul. In order to counteract his designs, it was thought desirable to establish an alliance with the rulers of Afghanistan. With this view overtures were made to Dost Mahomed Khan through a mission headed by Alexander Burnes. These having failed, chiefly from the ill-advised interference with Burnes of the Governor-General, Lord Auckland, the British Government sought to establish a friendly power in Afghanistan by aiding the exiled prince, Shah Sujah, in another attempt to regain his throne. The step, which was condemned by numerous clear-sighted people in India, was probably forced upon Lord Auckland by the Melbourne Ministry, to whom it was recommended by the military authorities at home, among them the Duke of Wellington. The chief of Cabul had an army of 14,000 men, including 6,000 cavalry, with 40 field-pieces. His brothers held Candahar and the surrounding country, with a military force of 4,000 men and 50 guns. The British force assembled to support the claims of his opponent amounted to 28,000 men, aided by a contingent force of 6,000 Sikhs, furnished by the ruler of the Panjab, and about 5,000 troops raised by the Shah's eldest son. This combined force was called "the Army of the Indus." Under the chief command of Sir John Keane, it advanced to the town of Quetta, and thence to Candahar, which was occupied without opposition; and there, on the 8th of May, 1839, Shah Sujah was solemnly enthroned. After this the march was resumed towards Cabul. The fortress of Ghuznee, believed by the Afghans to be impregnable, was blown up and taken by storm. The invading army reached Cabul, and on the 7th of August the restored sovereign made his public entry into his capital. Having thus accomplished its mission, the Army of the Indus returned home, leaving behind a detachment of 8,000 men. For two years Shah Sujah and his allies remained in possession of Cabul and Candahar, Dost Mahomed having surrendered after having won a partial success over the British on the 2nd of November, 1840.



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