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类型:奇幻地区:发布:2020-10-27 03:37:46

《360彩票大乐透在线》剧情介绍

GIBRALTAR.[89]

[See larger version]Why did his master break?

Vigilant Stair had discovered the ships that had been prepared at Havre, by the connivance and aid of the late king, and he insisted that they should be stopped. Admiral Byng also appeared off Havre with a squadron, and Lord Stair demanded that the ships should be given up to him. With this the Regent declined to comply, but he ordered them to be unloaded, and the arms to be deposited in the royal arsenal. One ship, however, escaped the search, containing, according to Bolingbroke, one thousand three hundred arms, and four thousand pounds of powder, which he proposed to send to Lord Mar, in Scotland.

The Bill having passed, amidst the enthusiastic cheers of the Reformers, Lord John Russell and Lord Althorp were ordered to carry it in to the Lords, and "to request the concurrence of their Lordships in the same." They did so on Monday, the 26th, followed by a large number of members. It was read by the Lords the first time, and the debate on the second reading commenced on the 9th of April. On that day the Duke of Buckingham gave notice thatin the event of the Bill being rejected, a result which he fully anticipatedhe would bring in a Reform Bill, of which the principal provisions would be to give members to large and important towns, to unite and consolidate certain boroughs, and to extend the elective franchise. Lord Grey then rose to move the second reading of the Reform Bill. The principle of the Bill, he remarked, was now universally conceded. It was admitted in the Duke of Buckingham's motion. Even the Duke of Wellington did not declare against all reform. They differed with the Opposition then only as to the extent to which reform should be carried. He adverted to the modifications that had been made in the Bill, and to the unmistakable determination of the people. At this moment the public mind was tranquil, clamour had ceasedall was anxious suspense and silent expectation. Lord Grey disclaimed any wish to intimidate their lordships, but he cautioned them not to misapprehend the awful silence of the people. "Though the people are silent," he said, "they are looking at our proceedings this night no less intently than they have looked ever since the question was first agitated. I know it is pretended by many that the nation has no confidence in the Peers, because there is an opinion out of doors that the interests of the aristocracy are separated from those of the people. On the part of this House, however, I disclaim all such separation of interests; and therefore I am willing to believe that the silence of which I have spoken is the fruit of a latent hope still existing in their bosoms." The Duke was severe upon the "waverers," Lords Wharncliffe and Harrowby, who defended themselves on the ground that the Bill must be carried, if not by the consent of the Opposition, against their will, by a creation of peers that would swamp them. The Earl of Winchilsea, on the third day, expressed unbounded indignation at the proposed peer-making. If such a measure were adopted he would no longer sit in the House thus insulted and outraged; but would bide his time till the return of those good days which would enable him to vindicate the insulted laws of his country by bringing an unconstitutional Minister before the bar of his peers. The Duke of Buckingham would prefer cholera to the pestilence with which this Bill would contaminate the Constitution. This day the Bill found two defenders on the episcopal bench, the Bishops of London and Llandaff. The Bishop of Exeter, in the course of the debate, made remarks which called forth a powerful and scathing oration from Lord Durham. The Bill was defended by Lord Goderich, and Lord Grey rose to reply at five o'clock on Friday morning. Referring to the attack of the Bishop of Exeter, he said, "The right reverend prelate threw out insinuations about my ambition: let me tell him calmly that the pulses of ambition may beat as strongly under sleeves of lawn as under an ordinary habit." He concluded by referring to the proposed creation of peers, which he contended was justified by the best constitutional writers, in extraordinary circumstances, and was in accordance with the acknowledged principles of the Constitution. The House at length divided at seven o'clock on the morning of the 13th, when the second reading was carried by a majority of nine; the numbers beingcontents present, 128; proxies, 56-184; non-contents present, 126; proxies, 49-175. The Duke of Wellington entered an elaborate protest on the journals of the House against the Bill, to which protest 73 peers attached their signatures.On the 21st of June Pitt introduced and carried several resolutions, which formed the basis of his Commutation Act. These went to check smuggling, by reducing the duty on tea from fifty to twelve and a half per cent., and to raise the house and window tax so as to supply the deficiency. A Bill was then passed to make good another deficiency in the Civil List, to the amount of sixty thousand pounds. Early in August Mr. Pitt brought in his India Bill, which differed chiefly from his former one in introducing a Government Board of Commissioners, with power to examine and revise the proceedings of the Court of Directors. This, which afterwards acquired the name of the Board of Control, was opposed by Fox, but passed both Houses with little trouble.On the 6th of January there landed at Greenwich an illustrious visitor to the Court on an unwelcome errandnamely, Prince Eugene. The Allies, justly alarmed at the Ministerial revolution which had taken place in England, and at the obvious design of the Tories to render abortive all the efforts of the Whigs and the Allies through the war, from mere party envy and malice, sent over Eugene to convince the queen and the Government of the fatal consequences of such policy. Harley paid obsequious court to the prince as long as he hoped to win him over. He gave a magnificent dinner in his honour, and declared that he looked on that day as the happiest of his life, since he had the honour to see in his house the greatest captain of the age. The prince, who felt that this was a mean blow at Marlborough, replied with a polite but cutting sarcasm, which must have sunk deep in the bosom of the Lord Treasurer, "My lord, if I am the greatest captain of the age, I owe it to your lordship." That was to say, because he had deprived the really greatest captain of his command. The queen, though she was compelled to treat Eugene graciously, and to order the preparation of costly gifts to him as the representative of the Allies, regarded him as a most unwelcome guest, and in her private circle took no pains to conceal it. The whole Tory party soon found that he was not a man to be seduced from his integrity, or brought to acquiesce in a course of policy which he felt and knew to be most disgraceful and disastrous to the peace of Europe; and being fully convinced of this, they let loose on the illustrious stranger all the virulence of the press. Eugene returned to the Continent, his mission being unaccomplished, on the 13th of March.

The coarse manners of the gentlemen were gradually yielding to refining influences, but the society of ladies amongst the upper classes was generally neglected. Husbands spent their days in hunting or other masculine occupations, and their evenings in dining and drinking; the dinner party, which commenced at seven, not breaking up before one in the morning. Four- or five-, or even six-bottle men were not uncommon among the nobility. Lord Eldon and his brother Lord Stowell used to say that they had drunk more bad port than any two men in England. The Italian Opera was then the greatest attraction. It became[441] less exclusive in its arrangements when the Opera House was under the management of Mr. Waters; but the strictest etiquette was still kept up with regard to the dress of gentlemen, who were only admitted with knee-buckles, ruffles, and chapeaux bras. If there happened to be a Drawing Room, the ladies as well as the gentlemen would come to the opera in their Court dresses.The next day the battle paused, as by mutual consent; and as it was evident that the French must eventually retreat, this day should have been spent in preparing temporary bridges to cross the rivers; but, as at Moscow, the presence of mind of Buonaparte seemed to have deserted him. He dispatched General Mehrfeldt to the Allied monarchs, to propose an armistice, on condition that he would yield all demanded at the previous ConferencePoland, and Illyria, the independence of Holland, Spain, and Italy, with the evacuation of Germany entirely. Before he went Mehrfeldt informed him that the Bavarians had gone over in a body to the Allies. But in vain did Buonaparte wait for an answernone was vouchsafed. The Allied monarchs had mutually sworn to hold no further intercourse with the invader till every Frenchman was beyond the Rhine.

During this year Buonaparte made another attempt to recover the mastery of St. Domingo. Dessalines was now emperor, having a court full of black nobles and marshals, an exact parody of Napoleon's. A French squadron, under Admiral Lessigues, consisting of five ships of the line, two frigates, and a corvette, managed to escape the British fleets, and, on the 20th of January, to anchor in the road of St. Domingo. They had just landed a body of troops, when Sir John Duckworth made his appearance with seven sail-of-the-line and four frigates. Lessigues slipped his cables, and endeavoured to get out to sea, but the wind did not favour him; Sir John Duckworth came up with him, and, on the 6th of February, attacked and defeated him. Though Sir John had the superiority in number of vessels, the French vessels were, some of them, much larger ones; and one, the Imperial, was reckoned the largest and finest ship of their navya huge three-decker, of three thousand three hundred tons, and a hundred and thirty guns. Yet, in three hours, Sir John had captured three of the French line of battle ships; the other two ran on the rocks, and were wrecked. One of these was the gigantic Imperial. Nearly the whole of her crew perished, five hundred being killed and wounded before she struck. One of these frigates which escaped was afterwards captured by a British sloop of war in a very battered condition from a storm, in addition to the fight.

Whilst things were in this position, Parliament met on the 13th of November. The great question on which the fate of the Ministry depended was that of the subsidies to Hesse and Russia. It was something new to see not merely an ordinary opposition, but the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the Paymaster of the ForcesLegge and Pittranging themselves against the king and their colleagues on this question. In the House of Lords the Address in reply to the royal speech, which implied approbation of these subsidies, was supported by Newcastle, Hardwicke, and the Duke of Bedford, who hitherto, since quitting office, had opposed everything, and was opposed by Lords Temple and Halifax. But the great struggle was in the Commons. The debate began at two in the afternoon, and continued till five the next morningthe longest hitherto recorded, except the one on the Westminster election in 1741. On this occasion William Gerard Hamilton made his first and almost last speech, which acquired him promotion in the Government of Ireland, and the cognomen of "Single-speech Hamilton." Murray spoke splendidly in defence of the subsidies; but Pitt, rising at one o'clock in the morning, after sitting eleven hours in that heated atmosphere, burst out upon the whole system of German subsidies with a tempest of eloquence which held the House in astonished awe. He denounced the whole practice of feeing the little German potentates as monstrous, useless, absurd, and desperate: an eternal drain on England for no single atom of benefit. He compared the union of Newcastle and Fox to the union of the Rh?ne and Sa?nea boisterous and impetuous torrent, with a shallow, languid, and muddy stream. But though Pitt's eloquence dismayed and confounded Ministers, it could not prevent their majority. The Address was carried by three hundred and eleven votes against one hundred and five; and it was now clear that Pitt must quit the Cabinet. In fact, in a very few days, not only he, but Legge and George Grenville, were summarily dismissed, and James Grenville, the other brother, resigned his seat at the Board of Trade.The Treaty of Amiens did not for a moment, even in appearance, interrupt the unlimited plans of aggression which Buonaparte had formed. Whether these plans tended to alarm Britain or not gave him no concern whatever. The encroachments on Italy never paused. Before the signing of the Peace of Amiens, Buonaparte had made himself President of the Cisalpine Republic; and though he had pledged himself to Alexander of Russia that he would not interfere further with Piedmont, because Alexander would not entertain the scheme of co-operating with France in the march to India, as his father had done, Buonaparte seized on all Piedmont in September of this year, annexed it to France, and divided it into six Departments. Charles Emmanuel, the King of Piedmont, retired to his island of Sardinia, and then abdicated in favour of his brother Victor Emmanuel. But Victor Emmanuel would not have been left long king, even of that small territory, had it not been for the protection of Britain. In October he annexed Parma and Placentia. He next made an agreement with the[487] King of Naples for Elba, and took possession of it. Every movement of this restless being showed his intention to drive Britain out of the Mediterranean, and convert it into a French lake. But on the mainland he was equally active. There was no country on the Continent in which Buonaparte did not presume to dictate, as if he already were universal monarch. In the Diet of Germany his influence was prominently conspicuous, and he prevailed to have towns and districts transferred as he pleased. To have all the territory on the left bank of the Rhine secured to France, Prussia received valuable compensation at the expense of the German empire for the cession of the Duchy of Cleves and other provinces transferred to France. Bavaria and other minor States were benefited in the same way, because Napoleon already meant to use these States against Austria and Russia, as he afterwards did. Every endeavour was made, contrary to the articles of the Peace of Amiens, to shut out the trade of Britain, not only with Franceas he had a right to dobut with Holland, Belgium, and Germany. It was in vain that Britain remonstrated. Buonaparte, through his official organ, the Moniteur, declared that "England should have the Treaty of Amiens, the whole Treaty of Amiens, and nothing but the Treaty of Amiens"; but he interpreted this treaty to give every advantage to France to the exclusion of Britain. Half Europe was closed to British trade. It was a condition of the Treaty of Lunville that the independence of Switzerland should be respected, and this was guaranteed by the Batavian, Cisalpine, and Ligurian Republics, as well as by France and Austria. But Buonaparte had already absorbed all these republics into France, and Austria he set at defiance. He had never withdrawn the French troops from Switzerland, but whilst they remained French emissaries had continued to foment the feuds between the people and the nobles, between one canton and another. He now declared this state of things must end, and he assumed the office of umpire, to settle the affairs of the Swiss for them. He had no right to assume this officeif needed, it belonged to the other Powers of Europe as well as France; but he knew that he had the mightand he used it. At the end of September he sent General Rapp to issue a manifesto announcing that Napoleon was determined to put an end to all their differences. This manifesto was immediately followed by the appearance of General Ney at the head of forty thousand men, in addition to those already in the country. Thus Switzerland was invaded, and its constitution trodden out by an armed occupation. Buonaparte assumed the title of Mediator of the Helvetic League, and dictated his own terms to the deputies of the French party who were sent to Paris.

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These were his first decrees:I. The British Isles were declared in a state of blockade. II. All commerce and correspondence with Britain was forbidden. All British letters were to be seized in the post-houses. III. Every Englishman, of whatever rank or quality, found in France, or the countries allied with her, was declared a prisoner of war. IV. All merchandise or property of any kind belonging to British subjects was declared lawful prize. V. All articles of British manufacture, and articles produced in her colonies, were, in like manner, declared contraband and lawful prize. VI. Half of the produce of the above confiscations was to be employed in the relief of those merchants whose vessels had been captured by British cruisers. VII. All vessels coming from Britain or British colonies were to be refused admission into any harbour in or connected with France. These decrees were to be binding wherever French power extended, but they had no effect in checking the commerce of Britain; the distress to Continental merchants, however, and the exasperation of the people deprived of British manufactures, grew immediately acute. Bourrienne says that the fiscal tyranny thus created became intolerable. At the same time, the desire of revenue induced Buonaparte to allow his decrees to be infringed by the payment of exorbitant licences for the import of British goods. French goods, also, were lauded with incredible impudence, though they were bought only to be thrown into the sea. Hamburg, Bordeaux, Nantes, and other Continental ports solicited, by petitions and deputations, some relaxation of the system, to prevent universal ruin. They declared that general bankruptcy must ensue if it were continued. "Be it so," replied Buonaparte, arrogantly; "the more insolvency on the Continent, the more ruin in England." As they could not bend Buonaparte, merchants, douaniers, magistrates, prefects, generals, all combined in one system of fraudulent papers, bills of lading or certificates, by which British goods were admitted and circulated under other names for sufficient bribes. The only mischief which his embargo did was to the nations of the Continent, especially Holland, Belgium, Germany, and to himself; for his rigour in this respect was one of the things which drove the whole of Europe to abominate his tyranny, and rejoice in his eventual fall.

Buonaparte posted himself in his centre, near the farmhouse of La Belle Alliance, having Ney and Soult near him, but Counts Reille and D'Erlon being in immediate command of the centre. His left, which stretched round the chateau of Hougomont, was commanded by his brother Jerome; his right by Count Lobau. Wellington took his post on the ridge near where the great mound of the dead surmounted by the Belgian lion now stands. His troops were divided into two lines; the right of the first lineconsisting of British, Hanoverian, and Belgian troopsunder Lord Hill. The centre, under the Prince of Orange, consisted of troops of Brunswick and Nassau, flanked on the right by the Guards under General Cooke, and on the left by the division of the Hanoverian general Alten. The left wing consisted of the divisions of Picton, Lambert, and Kemp. The second line consisted of troops in which less confidence was placed, or which had suffered severely at Quatre Bras on the 16th. In and around the farmhouse of La Haye Sainte, in advance of the centre, was placed a body of Germans. The plan of each commander was simple: Wellington's, to keep his ground till Blucher should come up, and then all simultaneously charge forward to drive the French from the field; Napoleon's, by his brisk and ponderous charges to break and disperse the British before the Prussians could arrive.

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