« ForrigeFortsæt »
power of her troops. See, then, what | government. At that time reasons were must be the attitude of Austria in Eu- not wanting for France to have said of rope. Her possessions will extend on the Switzerland as Austria now did of Naone side considerably south of the Po to ples, that her proceedings were calcuVenice, and she will have fortified herself | lated to inflame contiguous states. But on the other in Naples. Was this new
Was this new no such plea was thought of by Engstate of things likely to be permanent? land; the act of France was justly.com. Was it likely to tend to the tranquillity of plained of, because it was an act inconthe world ?' Was it probable that a new sistent with the independence of nations. order of things, never attempted to be and particularly in that most essential established before, could now be reared part, the right of a free people to choose and permanently established? If such a their own form of government. In forstate of things in Europe had heretofore mer times Great Britain had acquired debeen attempted, would'Holland have ob- served glory by the policy she adopted, as tained what she had achieved? Would the fosterer of every nascent spark of liSwitzerland ? Would the United States ? berty which was struck out of any of the Would Spain or Portugal ? They never nations in the world. The moment that could have changed their situations had spark arose, it was considered by Engthe principles of this alliance of sovereigns land, as an acquisition to be cherished, been heretofore promulgated. It were in not extinguished.
not extinguished. The greatest man who vain to hope that such principles could be had ever written upon the policy of an now established in the political state of empire, or who had enlightened any age Europe. How was it possible, in the by his wisdom, the great lord Bacon, when present advanced state of political know justly praising the principles that govern. Iedge, that principles like these could ed the counsels of queen Elizabeth in hier have a permanent acquiescence? Was intercourse with foreign states, after rethere any probability that a system which viewing the various merits which he justly attempted to place a barrier to the growth ascribed to that policy, fixed for the highof human intelligence, and to circumscribe est theme of his panegyric upon that part it within bounds which were never before of Elizabeth's conduct, where, to use his laid down, could possibly succeed? Such own words," she cultivated and encoua system if it for a moment were forced raged the liberties of other nations on the upon a people by superior strength, could continent of Europe.” Lord Bacon, also only obtain a transitory duration ; and instances ,“ her support of the low coun. must ultimately fall to the ground and tries, a people recommended to her by bring down disgrace and discomfiture their counsels so liberal, and their fortunes upon its authors and undertakers. Re- so happy.” The circumstances in the cently as this new and dangerous system late change at Naples which had armed had been agitated, its effects were already Austria against the people were, that the apparent. In Spain, it had given activity revolution had been effected by a sect, to the republican spirit which was grow aided by the revolt of an army. Exactly ing up in that country to an extent that in the same way had the revolution in the never before was thought of, and which, Netherlands been conducted, and yet no in its consequences, was likely to intro- objection was then made to the form of duce agitation into the progress of a re- the proceeding. There ought to be no volution, that otherwise would have been such objection. That jealousy was too tranquilly conducted to its close. In fastidious, which found fault with a revoFrance, were not its effects also sensibly lution prepared and consummated by the felt? Were not the hopes of a party ac
mode best adapted to the general means tually excited there; a party sometimes of the people. Rather than cavil in this called by the name of Liberales, and at
manner at the steps pursued by a strugother times Jacobins ? It was against gling people to obtain independent rights, such a system that England had repeat they ought apply to their efforts the edly acted both in ancient and modern maxim applied in another case by one of times, so late as at the breaking out of the greatest statesmen and orators who the war when Buonaparté was first consul. had ever adorned that House lord In front of the battle which England was Chatham. That great man, when speakabout to wage, was placed the unjustifi. ing of America, then struggling against able attack made by France upon the oppression, implored that, when reviewing right of Switzerland' to 'choose her own the aets of their colonies, they would
“ Be to their faults a little blind, gument of the noble marquis went to Be to their virtues very kind,
show, that Great Britain ought not to And clap the padlock on the mind.”
adopt a system of neutrality between the These lines were equally applicable to the contending parties. In other words, that course which it became a nation like England ought at once to abandon the England to pursue to a state like Naples. system which she had avowed to the par. He knew it had been said, that all inter- ties, and upon which she had professed ference would be now useless; that the die her fixed determination to adhere. The was cast, and it was now too late to in- course which this government had laid terfere in the hope of promoting any down for its guidance during the pending practical good. He was not of that opi- struggle was plain, and its meaning pernion; he did not despair, even now, if fectly well understood The proposed adEngland properly interposed. But even dress was quite of a different character: were he satisfied that the people of Na. its policy was neither plain nor intelligiples were over-run by their assailants, ble; for while it called upon this country and every foot of land there in the firm to abandon its declared neutrality, it laid occupation of German soldiers, still he down no other system to govern its future should say it was not too late for that conduct towards the allied powers. The House to disclaim the principle upon first question which they had then to dewhich the congress at Troppau were now termine was, whether or not they ought acting, and to save Europe from the to abandon their present system of neueventual calamities which such a principle trality ? Suppose they did abandon it, was but too well calculated to produce. what other course would the noble marThe parliament of a country like England quis recommend for their adoption? Supwas bound at such a crisis to put on re- pose the revolution which led to the agicord its solemn disclaimer of the act in tation of this question had appeared to which Austria was engaged, and of the England to be such as to endanger her principle which governed the counsels at interests in another quarter of the globe, Troppau and Laybach from which that but that the emperors of Russia and Ausact had emanated. It was to enable tria should say, “ we see no manner of England to set herself right with the danger in this revolution, and we forbid world that he meant to submit for their you to interfere in its progress."--would lordships' adoption the following address : not England reply, “If you do not see
“ To thank his majesty for having been any danger to your interests, you are graciously pleased to lay before this certainly not called upon to interfere; but House a copy of the despatch to his ma- if we see danger, we are justified on the jesty's missions at foreign courts, on the broad principle of self-defence.” And circular communication addressed by upon that principle they would certainly the courts of Austria, Prussia, and Rus- have a right to interfere. What was the sia, to their several missions, relating to case in Naples? A revolution had been the recent transactions in the kingdom of established, to which a large portion of Naples: to express the satisfaction which the people were no party. He did not we feel that his majesty has declined be- mean to canvass the conduct of Austria coming a party to the measure in ques in interfering, for he had not sufficient in. tion, considering them to be no less re- formation upon that subject before bim. pugnant to the fundamental principles of All he was anxious to show was, that the British constitution, than destructive England had taken the proper course in of the established law of nations : and to observing a strict neutrality. The noble express an earnest hope that his majesty earl then pronounced a panegyric upon will exert all his influence with the allied the character of the king of Naples, and powers, if not too late, to prevent or to the estimation in which he was held repair the consequences of measures by the Neapolitans; and added that, notwhich may eventually disturb the general withstanding this loyalty, so great was tranquillity of Europe ; and which, espe- the power of the party who had conduct'cially when considered in combination ed the revolution, that they refused to with the doctrines that have been advance allow the king eight days to prepare a ed in their justification, are of most dan- constitution. Sicily took no part in this gerous example to the independence of revolution, and was only compelled to sovereigns and the security of nations."
submit to it by fraud and violence. So Earl Bathurst said, that the whole ar- that, if Great Britain, as had been recom, mended, had received M. Cimittelli as in their power, to prevent the consethe ambassador from Naples, she must be quence of a movement on the part of the considered as sanctioning the application allies which might eventually disturb the of the epithet of rebels to the Sicilians, tranquillity of Europe. If his noble friend who resisted the introduction of the new would look at the situation of Austria ; if state of things among them. The whole he would recollect that she stood insuof the recent arrangements had been lated among powers hostile to her, both managed at Naples by the Carbonari, from position and from prejudice; if he whose aim was not a reformation of the would consider that her defence rested on Neapolitan government, but to promote her moveable mass of military force, general ipsurrection throughout Italy; drawn indeed from the subjects of her their object was not a settled government, hereditary dominions, but paid by the but an unsettled one, by which they treasures wrung from her Italian and might profit in the confusion. Was there Polish provinces; he would see that no any thing, then, in the character of the movement could be more false or more parties, engaged in this revolution to en- fatal than that which Austria had just title them to the support of England. made upon Naples. Considering that The noble marquis had severely animado movement by itself, and without any converted upon the Austrian manifesto. But nexion with other circumstances, he would it should be recollected, that Austria say that it was one which, in the relative grounded the necessity of her present in situation in which Austria and England terference with Naples, upon the dangers were placed, it was the imperious duty of to which hier contiguous states were ex-ministers to arrest. Looking, however, posed by the recent events, This would at the present state of Italy; taking a not be all. Supposing the knowledge of full view of the change which had been the presentation of this address to his effected in the manners, habits, and feelmajesty to reach Naples, whilst the Aus- ings of its inhabitants whilst under French trian army was on its march, it would domination ; recollecting that French dohave the effect of prolonging the contest, mination, whatever mischiefs it had inby inspiring new hopes in the breasts of flicted, had united into one great state the Neapolitans; and thus many would, the small principalities into which it had on the advance of the Austrians, retreat to been previously severed, and, by so doing the hills, instead of acceding to the pro. had eradicated the prejudices which the position of the allied sovereigns, and inhabitants of them had felt against each casting their eyes towards the ocean, in other ; remembering that the French had expectation of succours from England, changed the effemivate Italian into the would at last fall victims to their own hardy soldier, and had inspired him with credulity. To prevent the occurrence of ideas of glory that would not have disthese and similar misfortunes, he felt graced his remote progenitors ; rememhimself bound to oppose the address. bering that they had given thought and
Lord Ellenborough said, that his noble mind to the people of Italy upon all polifriend's objection applied merely to the tical questions, that they had imposed latter part of the address. The first part upon them a new system of laws which stated the satisfaction felt by the House, had been destroyed in all parts of it since that bis majesty had declined becoming a the restoration of the old governments, party to measures of which ministers had and that the annulling of that part of it expressed their disapprobation. If mi- which enacted the equal partition of a nisters were right in expressing their dis- man's property among his children at his approbation of the principles of the allies; decease, had rendered the younger sons it could not be wrong for their lordships of every family foes to the existing estato record their approbation of the con-blishments ; not forgetting that no man duct of ministers." He thought such a was allowed to be in power or property, proceeding necessary, because it would who had held office in any part of the give weight and authority to the remon- twenty-five years during which the French strance of the British government. The had been in possession of that country; .address did not go to recommend a war reflecting, in addition to that, that the with Austria. It called upon ministers provinces which had received great comto do that, which, if they declined to do, mercial advantages by their union had they would deserve to be impeached, lost them all, by being split again into namely to endeavour, by all the means several small states that in those small states all the bigoted prejudices of Cus- can render peace valuable. When his notom-houses and imposts had been regu. ble friend asked him, whether he supposed Jarly renewed, and that industry had thus that the Austrian army would withdraw been completely paralyzed-considering upon our making a remonstrance, he felt all these circumstances with the mind of no hesitation in answering that it would a statesman, he must say, that a more not: but it was evident that circumstances imprudent, impolitic and dangerous mea- must soon arise, in which the interposisure, could not have been adopted by tion of England would be as earnestly deAustria than the invasion of Naples. He sired by the Austrians as by the Neapothought as poorly as any noble lord of litans, and that in consequence of our conthe Neapolitan troops ; neither did he nexion with Sicily. He could not forexpect that they would be successful in get that connexion ; nor the circumstances resisting the Austrians; but could any under which a constitution liad been esman who recollected what had occurred in tablished in that island; nor the pledge Spain expect that an Austrian army which we had given to its inhabitants on would remain secure in that country? leaving it. We bad promised them that Supposing it, however, to remain secure, they should not be left in a worse situation would the occupation of Naples for five than that in which we found them. And or six years, as was proposed in the Aus- yet the king of Naples, who had no more trian manifesto, be a circumstance calcu- right to unite Naples and Sicily than the lated to promote the peace of Europe ? king of England had to unite England and What would be the effect of it in France ? Hanover, had annulled the constitution we Could there be a more dangerous spec- had guaranteed, and which he had himself tacle held up to the French people, or one sworn to observe; had annulled the conmore calculated to urge them to successful stitution which existed previously to that, rebellion, and to seek revenge for past and which he had sworn by his viceroy to disgrace than this ? To support Austria preserve inviolate; had, in violation of in such measures, therefore, would be to both constitutions, united Sicily to Naples. support her against every noble and gene. Not only the pledge which we had given, rous principle. In the last war our charac. and which we ought to have redeemed in ter had been our strength: by that we had 1816, but the combined interests of Ausrendered our alliance an object of desire tria and England called upon us to deto every state in Europe : by that, and by clare, and to support that declaration by that alone, we had conquered. What arms, if necessary, that no constitution would be our situation, however, now? should be established in Sicily to which Looking, as he did, at the situation of the the Sicilians had not consented in their country, still he must say, that under no ancient parliaments. That constitution circumstances should he be afraid of a war had been violated by the present governundertaken with the concurrence of the ment, as well as by the king, and we therepeople: but he should view with the ut- fore ought not to decline advocating the most despair the commencement of a war, cause of injured Sicily. He knew, from in which the feelings of the people of his own personal observation, the attachEngland were against the counsels of the ment of the Sicilians to England; it had government, and the hearts of foreign na originated in the hour of common danger, tions not with them... His noble friend and had been cemented in the field of vice had said, that to adopt this address would tory. Would they not then have a power. be to advise a change of the whole foreign ful means of negotiating with Austria and policy of the country, He denied the Naples, when they had Sicily at their truth of the position. All that was pro- back? But they would have a greater ad. posed in the address was, that such mea- vantage than this. If the sect of the Carsures should be taken as would prevent bonari was so dangerous as was repreany evil consequences arising from the sented, and they wished to put it down movement on Naples ; that was, ministers effectually-how could their purpose be were called upon to take a large and libe- better accomplished than by taking from ral view of the affairs of Italy, were desired them a part of the people among whom to use their influence and the influence of they disseminated their principles? By their country in counteracting those mea- agreeing to the address, they would show sures which all men viewed with appre- themselves alive to the true interests of hension, and were implored to preserve Italy, of England, and the rest of Europe; peace under all the circumstances that they would show that, notwithstanding the present dangers which surrounded this The Earl of Aberdeen deprecated the great question, they had dared to take a adoption of the address, in the absence of statesman-like view of its most remote and all satisfactory information, with respect distant dangers : they would show that to the real state of the case between Austhey had determined to support ministers tria and Naples. For his own part, he in giving full effect to any negotiation was not ashamed to confess, that he which they might institute for the preser- placed great confidence in the good faith vation of tranquillity; and by so doing of the declaration which had been issued they would confer credit on their country by the allied sovereigos. This confidence and themselves.
was confirmed by the former conduct of The Earlof Westmoreland said, that not- Austria, who, when put in possession of withstanding the temporary distress under the fortified places of Naples, evacuated which this country was labouring, he liad them, even before the period prescribed no doubt of its possessing abundant re- by the treaty which put them into her sources for any war in which justice or hands. In saying this, however, he begged honour might require it to engage; but, to be by no means understood as expressin the present instance, he contended, ing any approbation of the principle of that both justice and policy demanded what was called the Holy Alliance. Althat we should maintain a strict neutrality. though he sincerely believed, that the moHe denied, both on the general principle, tives of the sovereigns by whom it was and with reference to the particular in- formed were pure, yet it was a system liastance of Naples, that we had any right ble to so much abuse, that he could not to interfere in such a case as the present; too strongly reprobate it. At the same and, with respect to the address proposed time, he was convinced that the present by the noble marquis, it would be altoge- invasion of Naples was not considered in ther inefficient and nugatory, unless ac- a just light by those who attributed it to companied by an address to his majesty the Holy Alliance. This was not candid. to prepare an armament to enforce it. The interests of Austria were alone con
The Earl of Darnley maintained, that his cerned in the affair. Unquestionably no noble friend's proposition wasin no way cal. man could contemplate the attempt of a culated to break in upon the neutrality which military despotism to beat down the inhis majesty's government were disposed fant independence of any state without to preserve. But he thought it due from emotion. In a contest between a strong that House to make a declaration on the and a weak power, a generous mind nasubject, conformably to the principles of turally sympathised with the latter. There their ancestors. England was peculiarly was also something extremely captivating entitled to remonstrate against the re- in the very name of liberty. But it was cent movements of Austria. For how did not absolutely necessary that the weaker Austria pay her army? With English power, in any contest, must therefore have money. To this country she was indebt. justice on its side. It was not absolutely ed at least seventeen millions.
necessary that what was called liberty Lord Calthorpe supported the motion, must therefore really be so. With respect on the ground that it was highly import- to the conduct of Austria towards Naples, ant there should be no possible misunder- he was pot prepared positively to prostanding of the opinion of this country on nounce that that conduct was justifiable; a subject in which the rights and liberties neither did the transactions which had ocof an independent people were so deeply curred at Naples warrant any one in proinvolved. We owed it to Austria herself, nouncing that the conduct of Austria was to exert over her all the moral influence unjustifiable. The revolution in Naples that we possessed, and to show her how was incontestably the work of the Carbofull of danger her present course was, even nari. The principles of that sect were not if it should prove successful; and how de- confined to the assertion of constitutional structive, if ihe result should be disastrous. liberty in opposition to despotic governIn the latter case, how would the Austrian ment, but directly aimed at the destrucgovernment, with a diminished army, an tion of every standing government. No exhausted treasury, and a dishonoured doubt could be entertained of the despotic name, be able to meet the demands made influence of that sect over the parliament upon it by its own people, who might per- at Naples, and that there was not a single haps require a constitution less monarchi- movement of the government now exist'cal even than that which they were now ing there, which was not controlled by endeavouring to destroy ?