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Nothing can be more wretched than the situation of the French army, as described in several of these letters; and, if we had had any doubt before, as to its ultimate destruction, the description there given would have sufficed to dispel it. Pistre speaks truth when he says, “ Although victorious, it will terminate its career by perishing miserably, if our govern ment perfifts in its ambitious projects.” (p. 152.) And another officer, Rozis, corroborates his statement.
“ We are exceedingly reduced in our numbers. Besides all this, there exists a general discontent in the army. Defpondency was never at such a height before ; we have had several soldiers who blew out their brains in the presence of the Commander in Chief, exclaiming to him, Viola ton ouvrage'—This is your work.' I can go no farther ; time will acquaint you with the rest.” (P. 220.) We could extract many other passages to the same effect.
The number of land forces, employed in this expedition, appears to have been 42,000, and of seamen about 20,000. Of these very few, in all probability, will ever return to their native country.
The profligacy of the Jacobin prints in this country is ably exposed in the notes; and if these do not raise a blush on the cheeks of those who patronize or encourage those detestable vehicles of disaffection, they must be callous to shame.
The editor's observations on the present state of Egypt we Thall extract, as a specimen of his style :
“ The government of Egypt, says Niebuhr, (who, in one page, has conveyed more real information on the subject than is to be found in some extenfive volumes,) is vested in a Bathaw, representative of the Grand Seignior; sometimes, indeed, neglected, but whom the in. vasion of the French will certainly restore to all his influence, and in eighteen Beys—for to this number they have now been reduced for many years. These Beys are not, as is commonly supposed, all of Christian origin, purchased in their childhood, and brought, as Naves, to Grand Cairo; so long fince as 1762, (many years before Savary was in Egypt,) five of them were already of Mahometan families ; and as the importation of Naves from Mingrelia and Giorgia has been constantly diminishing, it is very probable that the greater nun. ber of the present Beys are of the same description.
“ It has been also thought, that the military strength of Egypt confifts merely of 8,000 Mameloucs : this, too, is a mistake. Tra. vellers may have been led into it, because the troops are not-assembled, exercised, and uniformly clothed, after the European manner; but every Bey has his particular troops, which confitt principally of his vaffals: some of them have as many as 2,000 ; dispersed, indeed, about the country, but capable of being collected at the first signal.
There are, besides, many regiments (such as those of Ajab, Metd: farraka, Tejumlan, Teffékesehan, &c.) maintained by the state. The number of Janitsaries too, in the pay of the Porte, is considerable ; and as most of the officers have poslesions in the country, they are all exceedingly attached to the government. If to all these are added the hordes of Bedouins, whofe affiftance may be easily purchased against a foreign enemy, we shall find that Buonaparte will have to contend not only with more troops, but with far more formidable ones, than he had probably reckoned on.
“We could enlarge, with pleasure, on the observations of this well-informed traveller--but we forbear, as this note is already long; and as we have a point to settle with the French reviewers of this correspondence.
“ In the first part we took the liberty of expressing our surprize at the general ignorance of the 'Army of England, or, of the Eaft, respecting Egypt. This appears to have given great offence. . How, say the writers of the Decade Philofophique, Literaire and Politique, · how' (we omit their passionate preamble;) 'can people, who have never been in a distant country, know any thing of it, but from the accounts of travellers? This; as a general remark, may be very well; but, unfortunately, it has nothing to do with the point in dispute. Our surprize was occafioned, as the critics must have seen, by observing, that in a case where it imported them so greatly to collect the best information, not a man in the army, nor in the long train of Savans which followed it, should, as far as appears, have extended his enquiries beyond the jejune pages of Volney and Savary-when, besides the earlier and fuller works of their own countrymen, the judicious histories of Sandys, Shaw, Pocock, Norden, Niebuhr, (himself an hoft,) and a number of others, lay, as it were, immediately under their hands!"
Does not this confirm our supposition that the Directory were themselves deceived respecting the state of Europe, and the inference which we drew from that circumstance?
Prefixed to this volume is a fac-fimile of Buonaparte's hand-writing, given, as we suppose, (for we are not told so,) for the purpose of establishing the authenticity of a letter, which fome French critics were disposed to question. The reason should certainly have been alligned, for, on no other account, would it be excusable to make this leader of a banditti, this modern Cartouche, of so much consequence. We do not recollect that Fielding deemed it necessary to pay a similar compliment to his hero, Jonathan Wild. It proves; however, that Buonaparte fights better than he writes, for a more miserable scrawl we never beheld. Why a fac-fimile of M. Berthier's signature is given we cannot devise. It excites no interest, and answers no purpose.
Art. V. A Brief Examination into the Increase of the Re
venue, Commerce, and Manufactures of Great Britain, from 1792 to 1799. By George Rose, Esq. 8vo. Pp. 88. Price 25. Wright, Piccadilly. 1799.
'HE friends of their country must receive these authentic
and manufactures of Great Britain with exulting satisfaction. However prior administrations may be applauded by pretended patriots, there never before was a period in the annals of any nation when the finances, supplies, and expenditure of a government were so fimplified as to be rendered intelligible to every common apprehension. The fidelity of these statements cannot but be admitted ; and the periods selected by Mr. Rose for the comparative estimate of the resources and credit of this country are the most unfavourable that could be selected ; and, for the year 1792, the year of peace, is the precise time a Jacobin would have fixed upon for depreciating our present situation ; yet this is the æra which Mr. Rose parallels with the year 1799, after the kingdom has been engaged in a six years war; yet
« If a comparison, instituted on such terms, thall exhibit the country, in its present state, powerful in exertion, and more flou. rishing in revenue, commerce, and manufactures than in those days of tranquillity and ease, and fill prosperous in point of credit and fertile in resource, we may certainly indulge, without being deemed extravagantly fanguine, the consciousness of native vigour and in. berent energy, which difficulties and danger rather awaken than impair." P.6.
If a statesman wishes to estimate, with precision, the merits of a Chancellor of the Exchequer, or the exertions of a government, or an administration, he ought to institute his enquiry at their introduction into office, and examine the statę of the vessel when she was entrusted to a new captain, pilot, and mariners. For such reasons he would view, in retrospect, the posture of affairs in the year 1783, when the war had left us in a depressed state, when public credit was reduced, and when our finances were presumed to be exhausted; he would then trace the steps by which we had risen from that abyss, and regained the summit of prosperity. From such investigation he would find, that the revenue of this kingdom was increased upwards of 4,000,000l. of which 1,000,oool. was not raised by new taxes, from the year 1783 to 1792. Since that period we have unavoidably experienced NO, I. VOL. II.
* A war the most eventful, and necessarily the most expensive, in which the nation was ever engaged, yet she has been able to preserve her credit unimpaired, to provide for the exigencies of that war, and to look forward, with confidence, to a provision for future contingencies." P.5.
To analyze a “ brief examination” with clearness and accuracy is almost impracticable, but we will select a few statements, which will fully prove the general prosperity of the kingdom, its increase of exports and imports, the amplitude of its revenues, and the magnanimous spirit of its inhabitants. In the year 1783 the taxes produced 10,194,2591. : in the year 1798 the total of all taxes produced 25,425,000l. ; difference, 15,230,7411. In the year 1791 the estimated peace cftablishment was 16,000,000l. ; the annual charge incurred in the war is 7,931,2151.: total, 23,931,2151. Consequently, the surplus applicable to a future increased peace establishment will be 1,493,7851. In the year 1783 the amount of British manufactures, according to custom house valuation, exported, was 10,314,000l. ; but as, according to the Infpector-general's estimate, the real value was 40 per cent. more than the entry, we rate the exportation at 14,441,600l. In the year 1798 the amount of British manufactures exported, according to custom-house valuation, was 19,771,000l.; but as it is now proved, by the convoy-bill, that the real value of the manufactures is 7ol. per cent. more than the entered valuation, the real value of Britiih manufactures exported is 33,610,700l.; of imports into Great Britain, 46,963,000l.; of foreign goods exported, 14,387,000l. : the amount of which imports and exports of 1798, above the average of the four most flourishing years of peace, gives an excess of 22,273,000l. sterling. The difference, in value of British goods exported since the present administration, is 19,169,1001.
From such calculations, the basis of which is founded on incontrovertible authorities, authorities admitted by opposition and select committees, the reader that wishes to be more particularly informed will necessarily peruse the work itself. A true Englishman will find equal cause for national exultation, in the means adopted for the liquidation of the national debt. But we will here give an extract as a specimen of the language and reasoning of the author :
“ In attributing merit to the adoption of such measures, we must not lose sight of the firm adherence to them under circumstances of the greatest difficulty. One of the chief arguments against the plan of the annual million, on the first proposal of it in 1786, was, the uncertainty of its duration ; it was urged, that in the first hour of
necessity this finking fund (as bad happened to other finking funds) would be applied, by the Minister of the time, to the exigency which might immediately press upon him: every precaution, as before oblerved, was, however, taken to prevent this. But we have now something more than a truft in legislative regulation and restriction, for our confidence in the stability of the measure, howe ever safely we might have relied on these. We have already seen times as trying to the resources of the country as the warmest oppo. nent of the mode of attaining the object foreboded ; we have leen a war, in which the most vigorous, the most extensive, and the most rapid exertions were necessary to the immediate safety and pre. servation of the empire ; we have seen this war unavoidably protracted, by the overbearing infolence and the extravagant pretensions of the enemy, and enlarged in its objects beyond any former contest in which this country had ever been engaged the expence has been proportionate ; but, in a conteft in which every thing valuable is at ftake, we were to grapple with the neceliity at any expence. Yet the means for sustaining it have been provided, without trenching, in the smallest degree, upon this fund allotted for the extinction of the national debt, and with an inflexible perseverance in the masure of providing in every new loan a surplus for the redemption of it.” Pp. 20—2 3•
· The total of capital adually redeemed, and debentures paid off by the sinking fund, from 1786 to Feb. 1, 1799, amount to 42,003,040l. in addition to 119,880l. a year of annuities expired.
Mr. Rose then proceeds to shew the meliorated system adopted by the present administration in the collection of the stamp-revenue, excise, falt-duties, and customs. He asserts, that is there are now 747 fewer persons, for the management of a revenue of 12,100,000l. a year, than there were, when the present Minister came into office, for a revenue of 6,000,oool.” (P. 47, note.) He then traces the application of the money granted to the various branches of the public service; the navy, the transport-board, the army, &c. where the most economical arrangements are stated to have been adopted. He then shews the flourishing state of the Bank of England, the great quantity of specie circulating in his Majesty's dominions, about 44,000,000l.; and the whole is concluded with seven Appendixes, as vouchers of such statements.
To such official publications as Mr. Rose's and Lord Auckland's, founded on facts and experience, Lord Landerdale, Messrs. Morgan and Payne, will not, we believe, attempt to reply.