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BRITISH AND FOREIGN

HISTORY

For the Year 1806.

CHAPTER I.

Cursory View of the Affairs on the Continent- State of Europe at the renewal of the Conf deracy-Campaign in Germany-Victory of Cape Trafalgar-His Majesty's Speech, and sul sequent Debate upon it, in the Lords and Commons Impeachment of Lord Melville - Supplies - Papers relating to the Marquis of Wellesley --Pullic funcral Honours to Mr. Piti-Public Treaties-Thanks of Parliament to Lord Collingwood -- Accusation of Earl St. Vincent-Continental Treaties -- Public Honours to Lord Nelson-India Affairs-- Irish Population--Public Honours to Marquis Cornwallis-Payment of Mr. Pitt's Debis,

W

E cannot commence the his- been so suddenly blasted as was

tory of the present year, the case with Austria, backed as without recurring to the battle she was by the power of Russia. of Austerlitz, the result of which, As references must frequently be though fought on the second of given to this event in the course December, was not fully ascer- of the present historical sketch, it tained in London till nearly a month may not be improper to describe afterwards. It was hoped and in- as briefly as possible the leading deed expected by every lover of circumstances of the battle, as well his country, that this engagement, as those which led to it, and others upon which so much depended, which have been the consequence would have been favourable to of it. the cause of the allies. Never was The state of Europe at the republic expectation more completely newal of the continental confederadisappointed: and there are but cy was apparently highly favourfew instances on record in which' able to the interests of the allies. the hopes of a great nation have' Buonaparte had inspired the sur

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rounding states ard nations with was vain, as depending upon him 2 diend of his power, and alarm who was destroying principalities for their own independence. The and powers at his pleasure, and aggrandisement of France had

creating new ones that should be justly become an object of extreme subservient to his views, and that jealousy to the whole of Europe. should second his ambition. At A solid peace, or indeed a truce of the end of August 1804, M. D’Ou. any length, could not be expected; bril, the Russian envoy at Paris, the gigantic projects of the em- in demanding passports, presented peror of the French seemed to for- a farewell note, in which it is de, tend a new order of things on the clared, that, “in case the French continent, and to demand every government shall compel Russia, energy that could be brought to either by fresh injuries, or by prooppose his views.

Many causes vocations aimed against her or have, however, fitally conspired against her allies, or by still threatto prevent any grand exertion in ening more seriously the security behalf of the independence of Ev. and independence of Europe, his rope ; of these, no one presented majesty will then manisest as much so insuperable a bar to an effec- energy in employing those extreme tive public league as the jealousy measures, as he has given proofs that subsisted between Anstria and of his patience in resorting to the Prussia. To this may be added the use of all the means of moderation 1:Inguor that seemed to pervade the consistent with the maintenance greater part of tlie continent whichad of the lionour and dignity of his been dispirited by the successive tri- crown.” Swedden renounced her umphs of the French, and were now political relations with France looking with painful anxiety at the from the period of the violation facility with which a French army, of the neutral territory of Eaden, miglii burst upon alınost any part and the destruction of the duke of Eurcpe, by the advantages which D'Enghien which followed it. the peace at Luneville had given These two nations, by alienating them over the German empire. themselves from the French empire, Great Britain had entered into a afforded to the British minister i war, and had carried it on almost favourable opportunity for the resingle-handed nearly two years ; vival of a continental alliance, and and such was the indifference or it should see... that some consider. timidity of the powers of Europe, ablc progress had been made in that a confederacy could scarcely the formation of a treaty with be expected, till necessity should Russia and oiher powers, before oblige tliem to enter into an union, the arrival of the letter from Buo. as the last measure to which they naparte to the king; for in his macould resort for the means of self-dc- jesty's speech to the parliament on fence and security. In the autumn the 15th of January 1805, after of 1801, the impossibility of their referring to that letter, he observes, continuing any political relations "I have, therefore, not thought it with France was publicly an- right to enter into any more parnounced. It was then discovered ticular explanation, without prethat forbearance on their part was vious communication with those no pledge for their safety, and that powers on the continent with the hope of any lasting tranquillity whom I am engaged in confidentid

intercourse

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intercourse and connection *.” On not but be sensibly affected at the the 19th of June following a mes- loss which he had experienced, yet sage of a much stronger nature, his mind did not bend under the and calculated to encourage and pressure of the calamity: he did to make provision for a continental not despair of the goodness of his confederacy, was delivered to the cause or of the means of retrievirg house of commons, in such terms his loss, great as it was; he accoida as could not be misconstrued either ingly published, and caused to be by this country or by the enemy. circulated throughout Europe, an The die was evidently cast, and excellent state paper, and prepared à general war was the conse- with the aid of Russia to meet the quence. Preparations were accord. power of France in another situa. ingly made on the part of France, tion. He was, however, under as well as on that of the allies; and the necessity of making great sale that army which had for many crifices : hé had applied for an months menaced this country with armistice, to which the conqueror the vain threat of invasion, was was willing to accede, upon the suddenly marched from the coast condition of having the Tyrol, for the purpose of more active Venice, and the strong posts of Geroperations. On the 24th of Sep- many put into his possession. Upon tember, Buonaparte left his capi- such ignominious terms, an armis. tal : he passed the Rhine on the tice was equal to a surrender of 1st of October, and, in the course the Austrian states and crown at of a few days only, captured discretion. The emperor therefore an immense Austrian army, con. immediately dropped his solicitar sisting of sixty thousand men, with tions, and published a manifesto, the loss on his part of less than in which he declares his resolution two thousand. In Italy the cam-' not to make a separate peace, but, paign, though less disastrous to the relying on the pledged assistance of allies, was nevertheless very un- Russia, to pursue his fortune to fortunate to their cause. Scarcely the last extremity.

He had al. had this intelligence been received, ready abandoned his capital, which, when the exhilarating news of the was in possession of the enemy on victory obtained by the British the 12th of November. In six days fleet off Trafalgar arrived. While after, the French entered Brunn, the misfortunes on the continent ex- where they found sixty pieces of hibited the superiority of the French cannen, and an immense quantity over our allies, the achievements of ammunition, and whatever else made by the navy of England, that was necessary for recruiting under the command of lord Nelson, an army. From this period 10 the removed all anxiety at home re- second of December: nothing of specting an invasion, exalted us importance happened ; but on this as a nation in the eyes of our day was fought the grand battle friends, and have checked the am in the plains of Moravia between bition of him who hoped to found Brunn and Olmutz. Five days his own greatness, “ in commerce,' before, the emperor of France, in colonies, and in ships," at the foreseeing the dreadful carnage expense of oor humiliation.

that must resuit from a contest be. The emperor of Germany could tween two such formidable armies See the commencement of the last volume, also the Public Papers contained in it.

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as

as were almost in sight of one an. the night had been spent in riot and other, had offered an armistice. The drunkenness : at sun-rise, orders terms, however, were such as the for a general attack were given, allies did not think proper to ac- and in an instant every field-marcept : they had indeed presumed shal joined his corps. A trementoo much upon their own strength, doascannonade took place along the and had notsufficiently reckoned up- whole line: not an hour had elapsed on the experience and talents of him before the left wing of the allies with whom they were to contend. was completely cut off; and by He, on the contrary, soon disco- one o'clock at noon the victory vered that the affairs of the oppos

was decided.

From the heights ing armies were conducted with of Austerlitz, the two emperors presumption and inconsiderateness. had the mortification of seeing their Of this ill-judged confidence Buona- armies routed, and the fower of parte resolved to profit : he or- their military cut off. The result dered his army to retreat in the of this day's battle was, that the night as through fear, though in allies lost 150 pieces of cannon, truth it was only that he might and 45 stand of colours. The loss secure a stronger and more advan- of lives was proportionally great. tageous position, three leagues in The allies, after a day so disastrous the rear of his present ground: to their ciluse, retired, and on the he pretended also an anxiety for next there was an interview be. fortifying his camp, and afterwards tween the emperors of France and proposed an interview with the Austria, which led first to an aremperor of Russia, who, disdain- mistice and then to a peace. ing to accede to the proposal him- It has been thought necessary self, sent his aid-du-camp, with a to give this brief sketch of the view no doubt of observing the affairs on the continent, whichi, actual state of the French army though it properly belongs to the This officer, who was a very young history of the former year, is so man, completely misled by the closely connected with the parliaarts and min@uvres of Buonaparte, mentary proceedings of the present, returned with a most delusive ac- as to render a view of the one im. count of the state of things in the perfect without a short detail of enemy's camp. Some of the ve- the other. For the same reasons, teran Austrian and Russian ge. it behoves us to refer to the funeral nerals ventured to remonstrate rites of the hero of Trafalgar, and against too much coiifidence, and to the death of Mr. Pitt, events to warn their sovereigns of the which absorbed the public attenfolly of confiding in such a report tion during the early part of the as that presented to them by the year, and which make a conspicu

ous figure in the proceedings of parThe important day of the 2d of liament. The meeting of the legisDecember at length arrived: at lature had already been fixed, and one in the morning Buonaparte men of all parties had assembled visited the posts, reconnoitred the in the metropolis, either for the purfires of the opposite camp, and, trust- pose of rendering their homage to ing to no one, gained for himself the heroism and naval talents of the and with his own eyes every possible great Nelson, or in anxions expeeinformation. He learnt that, with tation of learning the causes which the army he was about to contend, had produced the dissolution of the

continental

young officer.

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