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him, as he was going to the opera in his carriage, December the 6th, by means of the explosion of the celebrated infernal machine, in a narrow street. His preservation was almost miraculous; but the circumstance. left upon the mind of the Chief Consul the most unfavourable impressions. It aroused in his bosom the fierce and gloomy passions which had slumbered, or been effectually concealed by his policy since his assumption of the consular power. The conspiracy furnished the Government with a pretext to establish arbitrary tribunals, called extraordinary commissioners, which superseded the functions of juries in all cases of a public nature, affecting the security of the administration, thereby placing the lives and liberties of the citizens completely within the grasp of the First Consul. Thus, by an arbitrary decree, the most celebrated and obnoxious of the terrorists were banished to Cayennes without the form of a trial. La
The coteries formed by Madame Buonaparte, were selected with as much care as in established sovereignties is shown to the admission of visitors to a royal or imperial drawing-room. In fact, every step privately taken by Buonaparte, had reference to the great object of his desires, - the assumption of the imperial diadem.
We should digress too far from our main object, were we to enter into a detail of the northern confederacy, as established by the Emperor Paul, at the probable instigation of Buon, aparte, formally acceded to by Prussia, Sweden, and Denmark, and which at the close of the 18th century, threatened the very existence of Great Britain by its formidable navy, as the assertion of the principles which it advocated struck at the root of her highest maritime prerogatives. To preserve our narrative unbroken, we must anticipate the natural order of events, by stating that the ferocious violence of the Emperor Paul, and the resolution of Denmark to adhere to the principles of the confederacy, produced the expedition to Copenhagen, in April, 1800, in which Lord Nelson acquired laurels that would of themselves have conferred immortality upon any other commander, but which could hardly exalt a
reputation already above that of any other seaman since the days of Blake.
The assassination of Paul, and the accession of the Emperor Alexander, destroyed the confederacy, and deprived France of a most important aid.
We have already mentioned that the Emperor Francis refused to ratify the preliminaries agreed to by his minister. Notice was, therefore, given in the usual form of the rupture of the armistice, and when it expired Moreau attacked the whole line of the Austrian army, not with a view to produce a decisive action, but merely to ascertain the vulnerable points of the enemy's line, and make his dispositions accordingly. In this attack he was repulsed, but on the next day, 2d December, was fought the great battle of Hohenlinden. The Austrian arnıy was commanded by the Archduke John, and was divided into columns, which advanced to the attack of the French lines; but it did not escape the experienced eye of Moreau, that intervals were left between the columns in the line of their march, of which he dexterously availed himself, and penetrating between the centre and wings, destroyed the connection of the different divisions; thus placing them between two fires. The result was the defeat of the Austrians, with the loss of about 10,000 men in killed, wounded, and prisoners, 80 pieces of cannon, and the whole of their baggage. This was the last great event of the campaign. The Austrians, driven from one position to another, were incessantly and vigorously pursued by Moreau. Their army, diminished by every encounter, and thinned by constant desertions, lost its spirit, and very nearly its discipline. In vain was the Archduke Charles recalled from that obscurity to which he had been reduced by a despicable faction in the councils of his brother, · The great talents, however, of this eminent commander could not retard the victorious march of the French; and the Austrian monarchy was only preserved from destruction by the convention of Steyer, concluded within 90 miles from Vienna. The terms of this armistice were of course sufficiently favourable to the French. This treaty was subsequently extended to Italy. · The treaty of Luneville, between the Emperor Francis and the Republic, was now organized, and Great Britain was left alone to struggle with France. Such were the peculiar circumstances of the two powers, (decidedly at that time the greatest in the world,) that, with abundant inclination on both sides, no serious injury could be inflicted by either upon the other. The old menace of invasion was revived, gun-boats were collected in the ports of Normandy and Picardy, and large bodies of troops marched down to the sea coast. Attempts were made to destroy the enemy's flotilla, but with little success.
Conformably with the policy which had distinguished the French and Spanish branches of the House of Bourbon at the close of the war, terminated by the peace of Versailles, in 1763, Buonaparte projected and executed the invasion of Portugal through the medium of Spain. The contest was unequal, and the event such as might have been anticipated, - the humiliation of Portugal at the feet of the allies. · We must now briefly notice the progress of the war in Egypt. We have already mentioned the discontent of the army with their general, Menou, and the relaxation of its discipline. A powerful expedition, commanded by Sir Ralph Abercrombie, sailed from this country to expel the invaders. A landing was with considerable difficulty effected on 8th March, 1801. A battle took place at Nicopolis; but the decisive blow was struck by the British in the neighbourhood of Alexandria, where the gallant Abercrombie ended a life of glory, by a death of triumph. Foiled in all his attempts to penetrate the British lines, Menou returned to his original position with great loss. His troops were more numerous than those of his opponents, and were besides inured to the climate; but with ample means of presenting a protracted resistance, the French general was deficient both in talent and resolution. Cairo and Alexandria surrendered; and the French army returned to their own country upon capitulation. This great event, the most brilliant achievement of the British arms since the days of Marlborough, removed the most important difficulties in the way of a general pacification. A negociation had been on foot some months between M. Otto and Lord Hawkesbury, (now the Earl of Liverpool,) which had been very nearly broken off; it was, however, finally ratified, and the preliminaries of peace signed 1st October, 1801. By this famous convention, France recovered all her colonies, and retained possession of all her conquests, with the exception of Naples and the Roman State provisionally occupied by her troops.
It is hardly neccessary to add, that although in this country the terms of the preliminary treaty were severely and vehemently condemned by Lord Grenville's party, it was received in France, (as indeed it had been welcomed by the great majority of the nation here,) with enthusiastic demonstrations of joy.
At this period Buonaparte had attained the true meridian of his greatness. France, enlarged to the extent of her empire, compact in her territories, increased in her population, secure in a strong, and not at that time tyrannical, government; an object of terror to her ancient rival, Austria ; and of respect to her competitor, Great Britain; and by the restoration of her colonies, enabled to assume some importance as a commercial nation; was placed in a most brilliant and enviable situation among the nations of modern Europe.
Buonaparte, having accomplished the signature of the preliminary treaty with Great Britain, had now leisure to execute a design, which it is probable he had harboured since the battle of Marengo; this was no other than the assumption of the sovereignty of the Cisalpine Republic, under the specious title of President for ten years. To effect this scheme, the notables of the Cisalpine Republic were summoned to attend the Chief Consul at Lyons, whither Buonaparte repaired on 11th January, 1802, leaving Earl Cornwallis, the British ambassador, in Paris. The Consulta having been duly instructed how to play their part, the requisite honours were conferred upon Napoleon; not satisfied, however, with the sovereignty of the Cisalpine, or, as it was now denominated, Italian Republic, the new President, about this period, concluded a treaty with Spain, by which she added Louisiana to France, with Parma and the island of Elba; the two last upon the demise of the reigning Duke. By another treaty, Portuguese Guiana was ceded to France; a tract of country of great extent. General Thureau was also deputed to take possession of the Valais, with a view to its incorporation with France. Alarmed at these rapid assumptions of power, the British government signified to Buonaparte that he must now turn his attention to the negociations with Lord Cornwallis, which had been verbally suspended some months. They were accordingly resumed, and produced the definitive treaty of Amiens, signed 25th March, 1802.
Immediately upon the signature of this document, Buonaparte sent from Brest an armament with a considerable body of troops on board, commanded by his brother-in-law, General Le Clerc, to accomplish the subjugation of St. Domingo. Of this expedition we shall only observe, that on its arrival at Cape François, it was vigorously opposed by the negro general Toussaint L'Ouverture, who, after a short but most harassing warfare, in which the climate destroyed great numbers of the French army, surrendered upon conditions; and tranquillity was for a short time restored. The subsequent imprisonment of Toussaint upon a false and frivolous pretence, alarmed and incensed the blacks. The war was renewed, and assumed on each side the most savage and ferocious character; but the guilt of the first aggression, as well as of the first acts of inhumanity, decidedly rested with the French, the miserable remnant of whom, exhausted by frequent conflicts, and without the hope of succour, surrendered to the negro general, Dessalines, (afterwards the Emperor of Hayti,) and a British naval force. But to return to the subject of our memoir.
In order to conciliate the people of France by enlarging the prerogatives of the Gallican church, as well as to restrain the