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words, and he is endowed with too much good sense not to foresee the dangers which the present partition will ultimately bring upon Europe.
The fact is, the whole of the Continent must be divided into two zones; the north and the south ; and though the people both of the north and of the south all partook of the strife, and endeavoured to brivg it to a conclusion, yet it may be said, that the sovereigns of these two divisions were differently inspired, and had different objects in view. This observation has not escaped our author; for, indeed, it is the very foundation of the conduct which has been pursued by England, Russia, Prussia, and Austria on one side, and by France, Spain, and Italy on the other.
“On one side we beheld the sovereigns of the north and of Germany, themselves conducting their legions towards Paris, which they at last gained, as the period and price of a sanguinary contest, in which all might have been lost, had calculations been made upon seasons, dangers, fatigues, and, I may say, sacrifices.
“ On the other hand, the possessors of those thrones that the fall of that of Napoleon had restored, and even brought forth by an action of the same spring, beheld themselves reinvested without any other trouble than going from the seat of their exile to that of their power. One half of Europe was transferred to the other on the throne, without any effort on the part of the latter. It is here that we see the difference of disposition between those who give and those who receive." P. 7.
Hence it happens that those sovereigns whom we may believe exasperated by the greatness of the losses they have sustained, the grossness of the outrages they have experienced, by the length and impetuosity of the contest, speak only of liberty for the people, of clemency for individuals, of forgetfulness of the injuries they have sustained. They wish for approximation of minds, because, in some respect, they have followed the course of those new political feelings which have taken root in the nation they govern, because, being exasperated against the leader alone, they had no reason to revenge their wrongs on his innocent subjects, but principally because having shared the danger with their people they have conquered only for the triumph of clemency. For a contrary reason the princes, whom chance has replaced on their thrones, who have taken a part neither in the dangers nor in the labour of the struggle of which they have reaped the advantages, these consider themselves as if they had never been removed from their royal palaces, because, separated from their people, they have wanted both the opportunity and the inclination of following the progress of those same new political feelings which every where have taken possession of Europe,
and thus the school of adversity has been lost upon them, since they have learned nothing and forgotten nothing. Hence, scarcely in possession of power, they have attributed its return to force alone, they have considered themselves as the source of t'ris force, and they have even pretended that a breath from their lips will occasion every thing to disappear that has been ardently cherished during the course of a revolution which bas occupied the quarter of a century, and which has been as various in its appearances, as it has been rapid in its progress.
Spain, France, and Italy, are too mournful an illustration of this principle which still animates the princes of the south of Europe. This sad error has already cost the world too dear. It furnished an opening for the return of Buonaparte, attracted rather by his knowledge of the interior state of France, than called by the machinations of his accomplices * : the fact is, the people have acquired a knowledge of tbeir political rights; they know that they are the principle and object of society, and of its exertions; and they liave been tauglit that they do not exist for a few individuals, but that individuals exist for them; and more than a century ago Fenelon uttered this truth, and it cost bin too dear.
“ Governments act only according to their own intelligence nations with that of the inass. On what side rests the advantage? It is that which we must acknowledge, because a proof of it has just been afforded. It is the people that have redressed the governments, and have forced them to rouse themselves. Falling one after another, they had almost all sunk at the feet of Napoleon ; they humiliated themselves--the nations trembled—a refuge was sought in a concealment of the outrages the nations burned to be avenged-they joined their flags to the troops of Napoleon-they deserted his ranks, and flew into those of his enemies. Was it the
* We must however except,
First, The court of Naples, who has very magnanimously and prudently opposed a system of reaction. Naples has not now been persecuted by the tragedy she saw in the year 1799. Ferdinand IV. has learned from his misfortunes, and has endeavoured to rectify his errors.
-Secondly, The court of Florence, who has conducted itself in a mild and liberal manner, characterizing a government truly paternal. This is the second time that the grand Dukes of Tuscany, have given examples of an enlightened policy to the rest of Italy, and to the greatest part of Europe. It is said that, since the age of the Medicis, there is something in the air of Tuscany, which only disposes the hearts of men to sensations of mildness and mutual benevolence.
Prussian VOL. VI. JULY, 1916.
Prussian government or the Prussian people that gave the signal for the German insurrection against France ? When General Yorck, calculating on the new situation of Napoleon, that of his enemies, and the disposition of the Prussian nation, ranged himself on the side of the national feeling, when he declared against France, in opposition to that of the Cabinet of Berlin, where were to be found intelligence and strength? Of all the men of modern times, General Yorck has struck the most decisive blow. How many times would the Cabinet of Vienna have been able to maintain its alliance with France? The nation abjured it. The army acted with regret. How did the Saxon and other German troops act? What did the Spaniards do when Ferdinand abdicated, and sought for the title of the adopted son of Napoleon?" P. 24.
From such principles of sound policy, M. de Pradt passes to examine the meaning of the term, and the real existence of the political balance of Europe, and shews that there never has been a balance of power formed on fixed and regular basis.
The treaty of Westphalia is the only monument of this kind; but the shocks which Europe has suffered since that peace have not been sufficiently powerful nor general to make it desirable to go much further. The favourable opportunity offered at the commencement of the war, for the succession of Spain was lost; nor a better use was made of the other, at the epoch of the contest for the succession of Charles VI. A few years after at the most critical of all periods, the French Revolution happened, produced by an infinity of causes, which were all of them calculated to exhibit the weakness of the political system of Europe. There was not, iberefore, much trouble required to break up interests so discordant. But has the Congress of Vienna applied a more durable cement in its works? This is the queslion which M. de Pradt has endeavoured to solve with great clearness and tolerable impartiality. He cannot help, however, being sore upon the constraint which has been laid upon France, and very freely, though not very openly, he condemns several measures of its government. He is neither the friend of Napoleon, nor the partizan of the Bourbons, he can generally say amicus Plato, umicus Socrates, sed magis amica veritas, but as a Frenchman he feels still the same amor patriæ, which animated the allies when they changed the names of several streets and bridges of Paris. In this we cannot condemn hiin as a man, but we do as a writer; and our reader shall be made ac. quainted with our reflexions whenever we happen to differ from him. Indeed, as Englisbinen, we should do so very ofteu; but as critics we shall endeavour to silence our feelings, lest we should fall into the same error which we have laid to his charge.
In detailing the reasons which have directed his judgment, M. de Pradt considers the position of all the powers of Europe separately, and does not fail to lay open the consequences which are likely to result from the contending interests which will ani. mate so discordant a mass. But as our narrow limits do not allow us sufficient space to follow his details, we shall confine ourselves to a few principal points.
When Europe astonished and rejoicing at the success of the allied armies, looked forward with eagerness and pleasure on the Congress of Vienna, the general feeling throughout Europe was “ tranquillity and repose.” Wearied with the military government with which France had governed them, groaning under the rod of a despotism which was so much the more unbearable, as they knew that it tended only to gratify the ambition of one individual, the nations of Europe were all aware of the difficulty which would attend an endeavour to merge even private interest in the general good. Amidst so many new kings whom Napo. leon had created, and so many whom he had dethroned, the Congress had very little power to choose, and still less to hesitate. As the right of conquest had been the cause of the erection of almost all, the very same right, it is evident, gave to the allied sovereigns the power of reinstating the old ones. For this reason, as the adoption of the French system had been particularly obnoxious to Europe, it was seen with pleasure that the allied sovereigns had taken legitimacy for the basis of a treaty which was to settle all discordant interests, and give peace to Europe. They had been invested alike by their own victory, and, by the wish of all nations, with the full power to fix a general order of things wisely combined, intelligently and liberally marked out, pursuing certain interests and certain systems. It was in this light we dare to affirm it without fear of contradiction, that every European beheld the Congress at Vienna; and thus did he ex. pect to see it proceed. The continued good understanding among the sovereigns, induced a belief, that a mode of concert had been established and arrangements made beforehand. The promptitude and facility with which the state of France had been determined; the union of Belgium and Holland, showed at once the nature of their operations, and the celerity with which they proposed to carry them into effect.
In establishing two distinct principles relative to persons and to things, the Congress has the credit of having abulished every species of reaction, of having prevented vengeance succeeding to vengeance, and bloodshed to bloodshed. But in not having more earnestly insisted upon the new governments following a principle so prudently and so nobly adopted by themselves, we have been presented with the appearance of that spectacle which
Spain has exhibited, and which it is much to be feared, will event experience in France an eventual triumph.
M. de Pradt asserts that the political principles which animated the Congress, appears to have been,
• First, to secure Germany from any new acts of supremacy on the part of France, and to prevent the latter from making use of Germany either against herself or against others.
“ Second, To keep in reserve certain vacant territories, as a common fund, whence they might draw such indemnities as it should be necessary to apportion.
“ Third, To stipulate for the establishment of constitutions, in which the people should discover a respect paid to their understandings, and a better guarantee for the future.
“ Fourth, To re-establish, as far as possible, each sovereign in his possessions; in only requiring sacrifices for the general benefit, and assuming lcgitimacy for the basis of the restitutions; and considering it as the principal title to the restoration of the so long violated order of Europe, and the conservator of that order, which it was the great object of the Congress to establish.” P.71.
But, though we must allow that these views were distinguished .by their generosity and elevation, yet our author thinks they were not sufficiently extended. But the fact is, that all the great powers went to the Congress with their hands full; that is, ihey availed themselves too much of the opportunity which presented itself of obtaining the peculiar objects of their own convenience. Russia went, in fact, with the Duchy of Warsaw, retained beforehand. On her side Austria had retained Italy. Prussia did the same with Saxony; and England, though certainly entitled to more, and with far greater right than any of these powers, had relained Malta, Heligoland, and the Cape of Good Hope.
In regard to the three first powers, certainly their retention can in no way be justifiable; because it is a palpable infringement on the rule which the Congress has adopted, both in regard to right, and in regard to the consequences that must ulti
Our Archbishop charges the Congress with having committed many errors, and such even as 10 prostrate the very aim for which it was summoned. He thinks that the present peace is grounded on a precarious basis, and the effect of that general Ja situde which would sacrifice much to the idea of monientary quiet. li is true that this species of lassitude makes us accommedate ourselves to every thing in preference to that state of things which had excited the last dreadful conflict. But in a short time the dispositions become changed, the idea of past #vils is effaced, and gives rise to other ideas produred by pre