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the Allies at the present moment, even supposing they should have forgot the fate of the Duke of Brunswick, who, upon their own principles, was driven out of France because he meditated the conquest of that country? Are the Allies certain that none of the feelingsvthich at that time influenced them, now occupy their minds ? Are not the acquisitions which Sweden has obtained at the expense -of Denmark, a pledge that others of the confederation are to share a portion of the spoil? Time, perhaps, will show whether we have‘ been mistaken in your conjectures. But in the meanwhile can it be believed that Buonaparté was so mad as to calculate upon retaining Moscow, and of annexing all the countries he had conquered in his progress to that capital, to ‘the French empire ? No man of common sense, can believe this, without also admitting that'it is the intention of the Emperor Alexander, to annex the German States which he has overrun, to his own dominions—nay, even France itself, should he be so fortunate as to succeed in planting the Russian Eagleon the walls of Paris. What then was the motive which led Buonaparté to Moscow, and where are we to seek for a disclosure of his views?
‘\Vhen we wish to discover the intentions of
any Power, we always look for these to their public documents; at least this is the rule which generally obtains, and we see no reason why it should not be adopted as to France. Now in the Expose’ published by Buonaparté previous to setting out on his expedition to Russia, it was distinctly stated, that the only cause of renewing hostilities against Alexander, was his violation of the treaty of Tilsit; and in all the subsequent declarations of Buonaparté, he insisted upon that infraction alone, which the Court of Russia never denied, or even attempted to pailiate'. If the infringement of treaties then is recognised, in the laws of nations,_as a justifiable cause for going to war, why should Buonaparté be abused for availing himself of it ?-——Or why should his subjects wish to dethrone him, for pursuing the same line of policy pursued by other monarchs? There is nothing in the argument, that France had dictated terms to Russia when Russia was prostrate at her feet; because all the powers of Europe have, at one period or another, acted in a similar manner. If treaties, deliberately and solemnly entered into, are not to be respected by the contracting parties, be cause one of them may afterwards‘find that some of the terms are ttosso favourable to
his interest as he could have wished ; I am afraid that there is not a. single treaty in existence which might, not be set aside on the same ground; and if such a principle were once admitted, mankind, in the present state of the world, need lay themselves out for no other occupation than that of intcrminable war. France then invaded Russia, because Russia violated her engagement with France. ' In acting thus, France conformed to the laws of nations, and to the admitted policy of European states. Buonaparté cannot be accused of burning Moscow; he could not prevent that conliagration; the only thing he could do was to punish those he found active in executing the decree which occasioned it. But such is the enmity some men bear towards him, that even this act, which in any other sovereign would have been extolled as an act of inflexible justice, was condemned in him as an instance of savage barbarity. His subsequent stay at Moscow was evidently occasioned by an expectation, that the Court of St. Petersburgh would renew her alliance with France. \Vhen he saw there remained no hopes of this, he resolved on withdrawing his army; but here, the hand of Heaven, which had done so much for him, and on more than one occasion, had enabled him to dictate a peace in the capital of his enemy, determined, ‘at last, to arrest his career, and to send him back to his people, stript of his laurels. if they had been indignant at Buonaparte for his failure in this expedition, now was the time to show this. But, instead of blaming him, they applauded his conduct; for, in a few months after, we find him, by the prompt levies which were raised, again able to take the field, and obtaining new victories over the enemies of France. Every thing, therefore, has hitherto demonstrated the falsehood of the assertion, that Buonapane is unpopular among his subjects on account of his disasters. Let us now examine whether the charges of cowardice, of a foolish temerity, and of being actually ignorant of military tactics, which are so lavishly brought against him, ought, in justice, to be applied to Buonaparté. Ifsuccess is to be regarded as the criterion of valour, and the want of it a proof of cowardice, then is Buonaparté to be held a coward, for he not only did not succeed in his views against the Allies, but he found it necessary to abandon all_tbe advantages he had obtained, and is now, in turn, obliged to defend his own territoryiagainst jlw attempts of those he formerly invaded. But if this rule be adopted in the case of Buonaparté, we cannot avoid applying it to all other cases of a similar nature. \Vhat shall we then say of the Dunkirk and the Helder retreats? or the famous VValcheren expedition? Are we to infer, from these disasters, that the commanding officers were cowards? Or in what light are we to consider the conduct of Marquis \Vellington, when he found himselfobliged to make a precipitate retreat to Torras Vedras? The news-papers were loud in extolling this movement as a proof of his superior skill. Nothing but the Fabian exploit was talked of: every one was louder than another in sounding'the praise of the Noble Marquis, for the generalship he displayed in escaping from the clutches of Massena. But how could the public he’so stupid as to pronounce this circumstance a proof of military skill and valour in our_general, when, at this day, they regard a similar retreat by another general, as evidence of cowardice ‘? This nation were once disposed to allow General Moreau credit for his skill in managing retreats. Amidst all the honours, howcverywhich the sovereigns of Europe are conferring upon his memory for making common cause with them against his own country, I do not see that they can avoid detracting from his merit, if the rule by which they now determine cowardice is to be held inviolablc. For my part, I admit of no such rule, and, therefore, cannot subject myself to the inconsistency in which its supporters necessarily involve themselves. I consider the character of Buonaparté for valour, too well established before the battle of Leip~ sic, to be overthrown by that event. Had he, instead of maintaining his ground, and giving battle to his opponents, fled from the field without firing a shot, I might then, perhaps, have subscribed to the charge; but finding him, amidst the innumerable difhculties with which he was surrounded —pressed on all sides by troops superior to his own in numbers and discipline; and struggling to counteract the deflection ‘of his Allies, whose forces constituted his chief strength; I cannot but admire that un-‘ daunted courage'which led him to risk a battle in‘sneh trying circumstances, and that superior ‘knowledge of military tactics which he'displayed in securing the retreat of so large‘ a portion of his army, after the fatal vresult to‘ him of that memorable battle. Had my other general than Buonapa'rté extricated himself in the manner he did from so many, perils, his name
would have been immortalized; and the '
historian, in detailing the events of that tremendous day, could not fail to record,as a proof of the great talents of the man who was forced to yield only to superior numbers, that treason existed in his camp; that at the moment victory hovered over his standard, the desertiou of at least a third‘of his troops, who instantly turned their arms against him, was the real cause of his quitting the field. This fact is too notorious to be denied: it was admitted in our government bulletin, which first announced the retreat of Buonaparté: it was afterwards acknowledged, though with apparent reluctance, in'the dispatches received by government from Lord Gathcart, and Sir Charles Stewart; and it was fully confirmed by the French bulletins, which, upon that occasion, were generally ad‘ mitted to contain a faithful report of the extent of Buonaparté’s disasters. It is true, every exertion has been made, by a servile and prostituted press, to obliterate the impression which this fact was calculated to
produce on the minds of the people of this '
country. Knowing well that» it ‘was sulficient of itself to‘ protect the reputation of Napoleon, the editors of all‘ our newspapers carefully kept it out of ‘view, while they dwelt with exultation on the profound dispositions, the extraordinary military talents, and the tmdauntcd bravery of the Crown Prince of Sweden, who, it is now gravely asserted, far surpasses his former master in every 'qoality essential to the formation of a great man,‘ and an able general. But although this sort of deception is attended every day with a success exceed‘ing the most sanguine expectations of those engaged in practisingit, we are not to suppose that the people of France are ignorant of the true cause of their reverses ; or that they are so infatuated as to hate their sovereign because he could not command victory when it was impossible to command it, and because he could not avert calamities which no other human being could either foresee or prevent. But supposing Buooaparté had been fairly beaten hy‘equal numbers, I cannot admittthat even this would have afforded a just cause for his subjects to revolt against him. ‘Neither do I see how the man that thinks differently can, 'consistent- with his opinion,- avoid censurin'g the‘ inhabitants of Russia, of Austria, and of Prussia; for these people not only 'lakraled their sove~ reigns after they had been repeatedly humbled by France, ‘but even, in 'the/ midst of those dis-asters, evinced the greatest regard
and affection for them. If Buonaparté is. that great monster, which the public 'our
nals represent him to be, how coul the
good people of Russia look upon Alexander
with indulgence, after being contaminated,
as he must have been, by his frequent per- l sonal interviews with the “ Corsican”-—| during one of which, the sovereign of all ‘ the Russias actually embraced the “ vile caitiff?” Or how could the Emperor Francis justify himself to his subjects, for sacrificing his beloved daughter, by giving her in marriage to “ the most unprincipled tyrant that'ever disgraced human nature?" The devotion of the Prussians to the successor ofthegreat Frederick ; to that monarch, whose numerous and well disciplined armies were so recently and so often defeated by the French, is so great, we are told, that they actually adore him; so much so, indeed, that, like another celebrated personage whose name is so famous in modern annals, it was with difficulty this beloved monarch escaped suffocation when he en~ tcred his capital, such was the eagerness of the ladies to embrace him. These patriotic females were, no doubt, prevented from demonstrating, in this way, their loyalty to i so good a king; but so high was their en- | tliusiasm, so determined were they to sup- I port his cause, in spite of all his misfor- ‘ tunes, that we are positively assured, upon
the authority ofthe Spanish minister, resi. ' dent at Berlin, “ every Prussian female has ' delivered up her jewels and trinkets to the ’ treasury to support the war." If the people of Russia, of Austria, and of Prussia, could shew so much indulgence, and so much attachment to their governments, as we see they have done, notwithstanding all their reverses, is it reasonable to suppose that the French nation, for whom Buonapart'e fought so many battles, gained so many splendid victories, and who conferred upon them a Constitution which is the envy even of his enemies? Can it, I say, he supposed, that they will not succour him in his distress, and submit to every sacrifice which a grateful, a brave, and a high minded people ought to make, to enable him to recover his fallen fortunes? It is impossible but what they must; unless, indeed, we can believe they are prepared themselves to submit, and to look with indifference upon the submission of all Europe, to a worse despotism than that which the revolution of France so effectually annihilated. The truth is, there is not a people in this quarter of the globe among whom such gross and barbarous notions prevail respecting
, sent Senators, or Counsellors of State, into
the military divisions, in quality of our Commissioners Extraordinary; they shall be accompanied by maitres des requetes, or auditors. II. Our Extraordinary Gommissioners are charged with accelerating, l. The levies of the'conscription. ‘2. The clothing, equipment, and arming of the troops. 3. The completing of the provisioning of fortresses. 4. The levy of horses required for the service of the army. 5. The levy and organization of the National. Guards, conformably to our decrees. Out! said ‘Extraordinary Commissioners shall be authorized to extend the dispositions of the said decrees to townsand places which are not comprehended in them. Ill. Those of our said Extraordinary Commissioners who shall be sent into countries threatened by the enemy, shall order levies en masse, and all other measures whatever, necessary to the defence of the country, and commanded by the duty of opposing the progress of the enemy. Besides, special in— structions shall be given them, according to the ‘particular situation of the departments to which they belong. _ IV. Our Extraordinary Commissioners are authorized to order all measures of high police, which circumstances, and the maintenance ofpublic order, may demand. V. They are; likewise ordered to form military commissions, and summon before them, or before the special courts, all persons accused of favouring the enemy, of being in communb
cation with him, or of attempting the pub-
By the Emperor,
(Signed) The Duke of BASSANO. /
Palace ofllte T/tuilleries, Dec. 16, 1813.
- Napoleon, Emperor of the French, King of Italy, Protector of the Rhenish Confederation, Mediator of the Swiss Confederation, &c. In consequence of our Decree of this day, we have named and name for our extraordinary Cummissioners.——[Herc follow the names.] '
Silling afMomlay, Dec. 27, 1813.
His Serene Highness the Prince ArchChancellor of the Empire President. In the name of the Special Committee appointed in the Sitting of the 22d of this month, the Senator Count de Fontanes, one of its Members, obtained permission to speak, and made to the Assembly the following report:
“ My Lord,—Senalors,-——The first duty of the Senate towards the Monarch and the people is truth. The extraordinary‘situation in which the country finds itself, renders this dutystill more obligatory. The Emperor himself invites all the great bodies of the vState to express their opinions freely: a truly loyal idea! The salutary developement of those monarchical institutiqns,_ in which power centred in the hands of one, is strengthened in the-confidence of all; and which, giving to the throne the guarantee of the national opinion,Y gives to the people in their turn the consciousness of their dignity, the toojust reward of their sacrifices. Such magnanimous intentions ought not to be deceived. Accordingly, the Committee named in your Sitting of the 22d of December, whose organ lhave the honour to be, has
made the most serious examination of ‘the olficial papers submitted to their inspection by the orders'of his Majesty the Emperor, and communicated by the Duke of Vicenza. Negociations for peace have commenced; you ought to be acquainted with their progress- Your judgment must not be prejudiced. A bare enumeration of facts, by guiding your opinion, must prepare that of France. When the Austrian Cabinet had laid aside the character of a mediator; when every thing gave room to judge that the Congress at Prague was ready to be dissolved, the Emperor determined to make a last effort for the pacification of the Continent. The Duke of Bassauo wrote to Prince Metternich. He proposed to neutralize a point on the frontiers, and there to resume the negociations of Prague, even during the continuance of hostilities. Unhappily these overtures had no effect. The time when this pacific step was taken, is important. It was on the 16th of August last. The remembrance of the days of Lutzen and Bautzen was recent. This wish against the prolongation of the war may then be said to be in some degree contemporary with the date of two victories. The efforts of the French Cabinet were in vain; peace became more remote ; hostilities began again; events as— sumed another face. The soldiers of the German Princes, but now our allies, shewed more than once, while fighting under our banners, a fidelity but too dubious : all at once they ceased to dissemble, and joined our enemies. From that moment the combinations of a campaign, so gloriously begun could not have the expected success.— The Emperor perceived that it was time to order the French to evacuate Germany. He returned with them fighting at almost every step; and on the narrow route where so many open defections and silent treacheries confined his progress and his motions, new trophies marked his return. \Ve followed him with some-uneasiness in the midst of so many obstacles, over which he alone could triumpha With joy we saw him return to his frontiers, not with his accustomed good fortune, but not without heroism and without glory. Having returned to his capital, he turned his eyes from those fields of battle where the world had admired him for 15 years; he even detached his thoughts from the great designs which he had conceived. I use his own expressions; he turned to his people, his heart opened itself, and we lead in it our own sentiments. He desired peace, and as soon
sible, he hastened to seize it. The events of the war led the Baron de St. Aignan to the head-quarters of the Allied Powers. There he saw the Austrian Minister, Prince Metternich; and the Russian Minister, Count Ncsselrode. Both, in the name of their Courts, laid before him in a cor't'~ fidential conversation the bases of a general pacification. The EnglislrAmbassador, Lord Aberdeen, was present at this conference. Observe thislast fact, Senators, it is important. Baron St. Aignan, being desired to acquaint his Court with all he had heard, faithfully acquitted himself of this commission. Though F rancehad a right to hope forother proposals, the Emperor sacrificed every thing to his sincere wish for peace‘. He caused the Duke of Bassano to write to Prince Metternich, that he admitted as the basis of negociation, the general principle contained in the confidential report of M. de St. Aignan. Prince Metternich, in reply to‘ the Duke of Bassano, seemed to think there was something vague in the‘ ac‘ceptance (adhesion) - given by ‘France.
Then, to remove every difficulty, the Duke
of Vicenza, after having taken the orders of his Majesty, made known to the Cabinet of Austria, that ‘his Majesty adhered to the general and summary basis communiealed by M. de St. Aignan. The Duke of Vicenza’s letter is of the-‘id of December; it was received on the 5th of the same month. Prince Metternich did not answer till the 10th. These dates must be care— fuily observed; you will soon see that they are not without importance. just hopes of peace may be conceived on reading the answer of Prince Metternich to the dis‘ patch of the Duke of Vicenza; only at the end of his letter he announces, that'hefore the negociations are opened, it is necessary to confer aboiit them with the Allies. These Allies can be no other than the English. Now their Ambassador was present at the conversation of which M. de St. Aignan had been witness. \Ve do not desire to excite distrust; we relate.“ We have carefully noted the date of the last correspondence between the French and the Austrian Cabinets; we have said that the Duke of Vicenza's letter must have been received on the 5th, and that the receipt
as the hope of a negociatlon seemed pos
was not’ acknowledged till the 10th. In the interval a Gazette, now under the influence of the Allied Powers, published to all Europeadeclaration, which is saidto be furnished wi h their authority. It would be melancholy to believe it. This declaration is of a nature unusual in the diplomacy of Kings. It is no longer to Kings like themselves that they explain their grievances, and send their manifestoes. ltis to the people that they address them: and from what motive do they adopt such a new method of proceeding? ft is to separate the cause of the people from that of their governors, though the interest of society has every where united them. May not this example be fatal? Should it be given, especially at this period, when people’s minds, agitated by all the diseases of pride, are so averse. to bending under
‘the authority which protects them, while 'it represses their audacity? And against
whom is this indirect attack aimed ? Against a great man, who merited the gratitude of all Kings; because, by re-establishing the throne of France, he has closed up the crater of the volcano which threatened them all.—It must not be dissembled,‘ that, in certain respects this extraordinary manifesto is in a moderate tone. This proves, that the experience of the coalition has ined perfection. It may be remem eled, perhaps, that the Manifesto of
the Duke of Brunswick irritated the pride,
ofa great people. In fact, even those who did not join in the opinions prevalent at: that period, when they read this insulting Manifesto, found themselves ofiknded in the national honour. Another language has therefore been assumed. Europe fatigued, has more'need of repose than of passions. But if there be so much n10deration in the councils of our enemies, wherefore, while they continually speak of peace, do they still menace our frontiers, which they had promised to respect,when we should have no other barrier than the Rhine? If our enemies are so moderate, why have they violated the capitulation of Dres~
den‘? why have they not done justice to the
noble complaints of the General who>com~
manded in that place ?r---If they are so
moderate, why have they not established
the exchange of prisoners, conformably to ("To be continued.)
Published by R. BAGSHA'W, Mes-Street, Current-Garden. LONDON: Printed by J- M‘Creery, BlaebHorso-Conrt, Fleet-street.
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