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None who heard the debates- declared that the allied powers the splendid debates which would intermeddle in the affairs distinguished the commencement of any nation to prevent amendof that, in his opinion, fatal ment and reform. The evil and war, could fail to remark the malignity in both cases were prewidely different pretences for cisely the same.
True it was that war, and the war against that the popular assembly had Naples.
declared their spirit and object There had been in 1792 one more openly. But the assembly overt act stated against France, at Laybach had not less plainly it was the decree of the 19th No- dictated their wishes and intenvember 1792, encouraging states to tions; and to us as well as to change their government, a decree other nations, to prevent our of fraternity with all subjects who amending or reforming our governrebelled against their sovereigns. ment. He did say, without wishThe conceptions of chimerical am- ing to excite war, that the allied bition-of power run mad-of
powers had given just cause of despotism become drunk, which war by their declaration. They originated with the allies at Trop- who invaded the security of a pau had never been dreamt of nation did in effect make war then. The grounds on which against it. The difference in the war had been defended, were that house respecting the decree the overt acts, the aggressions of the 19th of November was not growing out of the revolution in as to its character and effect, but France. The annexations of the as to the propriety of requiring an Savoy, the conquest of the Nether- explanation previously to going lands, the navigation of the to war. Mr. Fox had argued Scheldt, coupled with the decree that if the decree could be exof the 19th November, 1792, plained, refuted, or repealed, war were the successive points of jus- would become unnecessary; but tification of the war. In the if it were not so explained, represent case no resemblance could futed, or repealed, a war would be traced to the war against be just and necessary.,
It was France,
not, therefore, because he denied At non ille, satum quo te mentiris, Achilles the aggressive character of the Talis in hoste fuit.
decree, that Mr. Fox had oppoThere had been in 1792 at sed the war, but because no opleast specious grounds of quarrel ; portunity for explanation had been there was here an open violation given, and because no war should of every principle. He would be be rushed into, till every fair means bold to affirm that the declara- of preserving peace should have tion of Laybach proceeded from been exhausted. “ Justum belthe same malignant, dark, and lum quibus necessarium, et pia dangerous principles as the de. arma quibus nisi in armis nulla cree of the 19th of November. relinquitur spes.” It had been That had declared that France said by an ancient historian, that would intermeddle in the affairs if one looked at the preambles to of any nation, where the subjects the proscriptions during the dicopposed their government; this tatorships and triumvirate in
Rome, he would almost imagine offensive and defensive, with Pow that nothing could be more just land; yet next year he marched than those proscriptions. The a body of soldiers into Great preambles contained, in fact, most Prussia, declaring that he would specious reasons, most moral ar- put an end to the anarchy and guments; almost as moral as the jacobinism which prevailed there. arguments of the holy alliance; In 1795 it was found that the for the murder of innocent and principles of political philanthropatriotic men. He who read them py could not he supported withmight imagine that Marius had out the annihilation of the repubbeen a teacher of ethics, and lics. The neighbouring sovereigns Scylla a model of morality. So were obliged to divide Poland might men now suppose, from into three parts, and to leave their declarations and profess- none to the abuse of the Poles. ions, that those who had perpe- The diet of Poland assembled at trated the partition of Poland had Grodno, and, protected by 100,000 been eminent patrons of national Russian soldiers, subscribed their morality. In 1772, when the names to the surrender of their first partition had been made, the existence as a nation; a deed reasons assigned for the necessity which no force should have comwere, that anarchy and disorder peiled them to do if they had a had prevailed in Poland, and were thousand lives. The execration propagated into the neighbouring of mankind was due to them; states. To put an end to this but to the authors of the force evil, the only means discovered applied to them, and of the parwere, that the neighbouring state tition of their country, terms were should take each a slice of the due which he could not venture territory. The generous lovers to use in that house. The hosof order and peace yielded to this tilities with which Naples was necessity, and shared Poland threatened were, it was confessed, among them. In 1791 a regular undertaken upon peculiar and constitution had been established. extraordinary grounds: it was a There was an hereditary monarch; war that could not be justified there were two houses of parlia- upon any of the usual principles ment; the veto of the king had by which the affairs of nations been most properly abolished. were directed.
There had been What course did the empress no direct offence; no infraction Catherine, that guardian of the of the rights of any other state rights of mankind, take then? on the part of the Neapolitan She published a manifesto, de- government,
• Non hic agitur claring that she would stand up de vectigalibus, de sociorum inagainst innovation, and in de- juriis, sed de libertate humanæ fence of the ancient liberties of gentis, de libertate nostra.” What Poland. The king of Prussia must be our own condition, if had recognised the hereditary, new principles like these were to monarchy, the two houses of be sanctioned and adopted into legislature, and the other improve- the policy of the greater states ? ments of the Polish government; He would say at once, that Eu, he had entered into an alliance, ropecould not retain its civilization,
nor the different members of Romania ? It was not even imit their independence, in secu- possible that indemnity should be rity one hour, if such a system found in the north of Germany, were introduced. Prince Metter or in his majesty's patrimonial nicb himself could not be rendered dominions. A circumstance not so insensible to the natural ope- dissimilar to this had already ration of moral causes as not to taken place in a former instance. see that, should the success of It might occur as one of the rethe allied armies be as complete sults of that balanced system of as their own predictions would power which had been so often and represent it to be certain, there loudly eulogised, it might happen must still remain a sense of indig. that the prince, who had been nation that subsequent results among the first to admit foreign must be yet apprehended; and troops into his dominions, should that after they should have de- ultimately have to forfeit his fograded a sovereign into a vassal, reign inheritance. Much had been that the empty decoration of the said on the subject of the right of kingly title would scarcely serve vicinage; it was thrown as a subto accomplish him as the instru- sidiary though important weight ment of their purposes. Was it into the scale; and in this view expected that the present king of he should submit a few observaNaples could be so bound as that tions respecting it. In the treaty he should never enter into a treaty of Vienna, the only danger excontaining provisions utterly con- plicitly declared with regard to trary to those which he might be Naples, as a danger which reinduced to subscribe under the quired certain guards and cauinfluence of compulsion ? Look tions, was that of the Neapolitan at the character of those treaties government adopting institutions which had succeeded each other, subversive of monarchy, or measince it was vainly hoped that sures hostile to the repose and the treaty of Westphalia had fixed interests of neighbouring powers. the balance of power on a stable This was not to demand security foundation in Europe. As long for crushing the designs of the as men continued men, as long Carbonari ; this was not pointed as they retained human feelings against the Spanish constitution. in their hearts, so long as they He feared that its object was to were not a caput mortuum in the prevent the slightesť relaxation hands of despots, such changes of a stern military despotism, and and revocations would take place. that, howeverobscurely expressed, He should like to hear from the we might regard the proceedings noble lord what was the security in Italy as only giving effect to contemplated by him and his col- intentions then entertained. It leagues against the entire absorp- was well known by those at all tion of Italy under the Austrian acquainted with the actual state yoke. If such an event should of Naples, and the condition of occur, was it not likely that the Neapolitan people, that one Russia would think it necessary of the heaviest grievances suffered that she should be indemnified by in that country was arbitrary imthe possession of Gallicia and prisonment. Many illustrious, 1821.
some of the first families in Na
sure of our great moral poet, al-ples had felt the weight of this ways great, and not the least so monstrous injustice. Allowing in his political morality--(Milton's himself for a moment to suppose Sonnets):-that a law equivalent to that of “ License they mean when they cry liberty; our Habeas Corpus had been in “But who means that must first be wise troduced, or that a promise of
and good.” what was tantamount to so great
What they had done, the sin a blessing had been held out to which they had committed, was the people, would not this have that of imitating our example; filled the people with delight; their unpardonable fault was, that would it not have been viewed as they had endeavoured to establish one of the best securities on which amongst themselves a British contheir individual comfort and free- stitution. No doubt this country dom could be made to rest ? On was equally without excuse in the the other side they could see no eyes of the allied sovereigns on thing, under the yoke of Austria the continent, for having set the they could feel and dread nothing, example, and for still holding it but a continued military and fo- forth to the world. It was indeed reign despotism. When the a lasting satire on their own people of Naples therefore pre- power; it was of a nature to propared to defend themselves against duce alarm in despotisms, and the united invasion of the allied would, he hoped, continue till the powers, they were resisting an latest period to tempt less fortuaggression made, not upon any nate nations to its imitation. doubtful political principles re- Notwithstanding the exhaustion duced to dangerous practice; not of the house, and that under which upon the new constitution of he was himself beginning to laSpain; not upon any wild or im- bour, he must still beg leave to practicable mode of government, submit one or two further obsersuggested in the ardour of their vations on a subject not yet fully imaginations to men unskilled in discussed. A practice had now human nature, or in the diversity for some time prevailed in the of human action ;- but it was an continental courts, of setting forth open war on liberty itself, even to the public, as it accorded with under its best regulated form. their convenience, the views which What was it that the allied pow- they entertained at different ers had combined their efforts to periods, and the schemes which put down? What had the peo- they perhaps were on the point of ple of Naples hitherto done to executing. These papers were show themselves unworthy of that notoriously published under the freedom to which they aspired ? authority of the respective governNeither the anarchy which follow- ments whose designs or policy ed licentiousness, nor the military they were employed to justify. government which was its ordi- Amongst the persons engaged in nary cure, had yet sprung up in drawing up these papers was the the newly cultivated soil. Nothing celebrated M. Gentz, an individual had yet appeared to show that whose talents and eloquence no the Neapolitans merited the cen man admired more than himself,
but who had put the designs of the recognized in this country; they Austrian court in a most glaring were practically abjured at least light. In the Austrian Observer from the earliest period when our of the 10th of November last, a government took a settled form. dissertation appeared, which seem Since the reign of John our coned to inculcate nothing more nor stitution stood upon a basis which less than that the rights of the was the very reverse of those armed triumvirate were superior principles. When “ England's to all other rights. It was said barons clad in arms, and stern that the emperor of Austria would with conquest," tore from their act in conformity with his own reluctant monarch the great charter will, and that his will was to per- of our rights, did they imagine petuate peace in Europe. Now, that their posterity would stigmait would not, he believed, be con- . tize them as rebels? Did the sidered fair amongst these royal authors of the revolution in 1688, gentlemen when they imposed or those who provided for the treaties on a royal neighbour, if protestant succession, ever enterthe latter afterwards set up the tain a fear that ministers of the plea of duress as a justification house of Brunswick would brand for departing from such treaties. similar events in other countries They were held to be just as bind- with the title of popular usurpaing as if they had originated in a tion? He would appeal to every spontaneous desire of making ces man who valued human freedom, sions. The principles assumed or who had a drop of blood in his by the allied sovereigns admitted heart, to say whether he could of no qualification; their authority, endure the supposition. When it was pretended, was supreme the petition of right was at last and uncontrollable. The right of sanctioned - and he alluded to interference claimed by this high this event as next in importance magistracy — by this tribunal, to the great charter and the revocomposed as it were of the lords lution, though anterior in time to paramount of mankind, extended the latter-when, after a tissue of to the punishment of all rebel- feebleness and obstinacy, and a lions. Let the house and let his continued course of evasion, that majesty's ministers reflect a mo instrument was ratified, our anment on the consequences that cestors took care to record that it must inevitably flow from the ad- proceeded from the exertions of a mission of this doctrine. If they parliament which was the true would not stigmatize our history friend and representative of the
- unless they were prepared to people. If, however, he were taint the memory of their forefa. called upon to refer to any act of thers, and to confess themselves the British parliament that comto be descended from a band of bined in a peculiar degree the revolted slaves-if they would largest views of domestic policy not apply to those mighty strug- with the noblest spirit of pagles by which our freedom was triotism, he should undoubtedly attained, the name of popular select the statute of habeas corusurpations, they would treat the pus. Liberty of person had always doctrine with indignant contempt been an original right under No such principles had ever been our constitution, but it was not
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