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The C. re
288. But the Count, on quitting the French service, does C H.A 2. not seem to have abandoned his prospects in Madagascar. Several chiefs, he tells us, required him to assume the government. Accordingly, a congress was summoned, and on the oth of O&t. 1776, the Count actually saw above thir- figns his Fr. ty princes and chiefs, and at least 50,000 of their people and is deprostrated before him, as their liege lord. The oath (or clared Am
pansacabe. rather engagement) indited by the chiefs, in their own language, having been thrice read aloud, was signed, in name of the nation, by Hiavi, King of the East; Lambouin, King of the North; and Raffangour, Rohandrian of the Sambarives. Instead of an appeal to Heaven, it contained this remarkable sanction, “ Cursed be our children who shall Singular not obey our present will.—May the most horrid slavery the chief's confound them.” They acknowledge, however, and adore oath. one God, the Creator and Preserver of all things; for Raf. Natives acfangour, an aged chief, opened this meeting, with a short, one God. but truly eloquent speech, which began thus, “ Blessed be
will amount to 6000 creoles, and 3370 Europeans, a sufficient number to fix the epoch of a colony.” These last are tủe Count's own words, which I have inserted, because they imply an approbation of the soil and climate, which more effectually convince me of their general excellence, than the direct encomiums he often bestows on both. The mortality of his troops proves nothing against the climate; for, I apprehend, if they had been landed on any coast in the world, and had experienced the fame severe labour, and equal hardships, of every kind, the very fame mortality would have enfued. For want of time and rocm, I have omitted many facts; but the Count's bill of mortality I really have forgotten; and the page, where it should have stood, being printed off, I hope to be excused for inserting it here. His corps originalty consisted of 300 men levied in Old France (p. 96) and he appears to have received fome few recruits from the Isle de France. In 1774, there died 113 of his men, in 1775, only 11 (Vol. II. p. 289.) In particular, on O&t. 3d 1775, there was not a man sick. The state of health, in 1776, does not appear.—The Count lost his only Ton in Madagascar, he and the Countess narrowly escapi:g.–But the first hardships experienced there, have seldom been exceeded.
CHA P. Zahanhar (God) who has returned to his people. Blessed be
the law of our fathers, which commands us to obey a chief MADAGAS
descended from the blood of Ramini. Our fathers and ourselves have experienced that disunion is the punishment of God.” &c. (See Memoirs, Vol. II.
The Count seems to have borne his new dignity with moderation; for, instead of grasping at the extensive power exercised by former Ampansacabe's, he proposed a constitution, which seems to have been well calculated to promote the happiness of a people imperfectly civilized, and in which the chiefs unanimously acquiesced.
289. On the 23d of Oct. the same three chiefs, in name power him to
of the “ kings, princes, chiefs and people of the north and France, &c. eastern coasts of Madagascar,” signed full powers to the
Count, as their Lord Ampansacabe, to go to Europe, and from treaties of alliance and commerce, with the King of France; and, in case he should not accept the offer, with any other European king, or nation. The Ampansacabe, on his part, engaged them to acknowledge, in his absence, Raffangour, the president of the new supreme council, or,
he failing, the Chief Sancé, a mulatto. He embarks 290. On the 14th of Dec. 1776, the Count, having assisted for France.
the French commandant at Louisbourg * with his advice, em barked on board a French ship, for the Cape of Good Hope, on his way to Europe; the native chiefs and he shedding tears of affection and regret, and mutually blessing
each other, in the name of Zahanhar. The French 291. Here the Count's journal ends, and, before we nominister's instructions,
tice his few remaining transactions, of which we have ac
* This place is often mentioned in the Count's journal, being the name of the town he founded, as appears by one of the plates, where it would appear also, that he firll imposed the name, a circumkance not mentioned, I think, in the journal.
counts, it seems but fair to insert a few particulars, from the C H, A P,
that the chief end originally proposed by forming this
ragraph. reflections respecting the colo
His Britannic Majesty.
CHA P. will not have had any difficulty in bringing them to approve
your principles, which do not differ from mine. I do not much differ from you, with regard to the Europeans; but this question will not be entirely resolved, till I can positively assure you, that His Majesty intends to have a COLONY in Madagascar.”—The only comment which this paragraph seems to require, I have anticipated, in § 278. But, however inconsistently M. de S. talks of the Madagascar colony, it would be wrong to accuse him of having TALKED, for seven years, about prohibiting the slave-trade; while' another Eu, ropean minister, without talking about it at all, has actually. adopted an effectual plan for it's abolition, as will be seen, in the ad part of this work.
292. But, to dismiss ministerial manæuvres--the last paPropof. to
pers in the Count's Memoirs are “ A Declaration,” &c. and
Proposals, &c.” to the ministry of His Britannic Majesty, to be presented at London, Dec. 25th 1783.".. But whether or not they ever were presented, does not appear. In these papers, the Count respectfully represents, inter alia, That, having succeeded in forming a colony for France, in Mada. gascar, the French ministry sent orders to him to change the system of alliance agreed upon, into an unlimited sub , mission of the chiefs and people of the island, a violation of treaty which induced him to renounce the service of France: (To this change of system, the Count alludes in his answer to the 25th query of the commissaries.) That the chiefs and people, having conferred on him the charge of fupreme judge and chief of the nation, had empowered him to form connections in Europe, for trade or friendship: That, having since been violently persecuted by the French ininistry, he had entered into the service of His Imperial Majesty, in hopes of obtaining his alistance for Madagascar; but, that the emperor not being disposed to promote his
views, he had, two years before, regularly quitted his ser- C HA P. vice. And, now, in the name of an amiable and worthy na- L tion, he proposes and submits to His Britannic Majesty, to acknowledge him Suzerain (Lord Paramount) of Madagascar; the interior government, and all the regulations of civilization, police, cultivation and commerce, remaining independent; the chiefs and people being only vassals to His Majesty. In this quality, they engage to furnish His Majesty with 5000 men, to act in India, under their own officers, Offers 5000 subject to the orders of His Majesty's Generalissimo, and 2000 fea2000 seamen, to serve in India, on board the British men of men. war, which they oblige themselves to victual, &c. &c. (The Count, in his answer to the 22d query of the commissiaries, ftates, that the iflanders are accustomed to navigation.)
293. Being ignorant of the fate of the Count's “ Declaration” and “ Proposals,” and whether they ever came before the British ministry, I must now turn to Mr. Nicholson's well written preface, where the Count's remaining transactions, together with his final catastrophe, are recorded. The substance of both is as follows.
294. The Count and his family, with some associates, ar. The C. fails rived at Baltimore in Maryland, July 8th 1784, in the Ro. to Baltimore. bert and Ann, Capt. M'Dougall, from London, with a cargo, suited to the Madagascar market, worth near £ 4000 fter. This seems to have been fubfcribed in London; for Mr. Nicholson tells us, that the late celebrated Mr. Magellan, with a spirit of enterprize worthy of his name, contributed
considerable sum*. A respectable house in Balti
* I have been told that Mr. Magellan was lineally descended from the famous Portuguese navigator, who discovered the Straits which bear his name.-The Count left with Mr. Magellan, the MSS. of which Mr. Nicholson formed the Meinoirs.
Sce Preface, p. 2.