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to quit it at his pleasure. He difficulties. No greater error had applied himself sedulously to the yet been committed by the united improvement of his military forces, provinces than the hurrying into and was a determined enemy of an expensive war, without any Buenos Ayres, who looked upon urgent necessity, at a moment Paraguay as part of their own when their Treasury. was in no possessions, and on Francia as a condition to bear the burthen of a rebel, or at least an usurper. costly and protracted struggle. Nothing but want of force had The means, too, adopted by the hitherto prevented the arms of government to supply its wants, the confederation from being and maintain its credit, were to turned against the dictator; and the full as bold and uncalculating the dictator, therefore, found it as had been its attack
Brazil. to be his interest to draw closer The Congress had lately estabto so powerful an ally as the lished a national bank, and it emperor of Brazil. Bonpland, now enacted, that, for the two the French naturalist, had been following years, the bank should detained for several years at As- not pay its notes in cash, except sumption, the ordinary fate of during the last six months of the
scientific travellers who impru- year following the date of the law, dently trusted themselves in the to the amount of one-third of the power of Francia ; for such per- notes in circulation; during the esons he uniformly detained, from next six months, to the amount of no other apparent motive than to one-half of its circulation; during keep the rest of the world in the last six months of the second ignorance of the state of his own year, to the amount of two-thirds sovereignty. Don Pedro took of its circulation; and, even to the advantage of an application which partial extent in which payments he made for the liberation of in specie might be required, they Bonpland, to open a negotiation were to be made only in ingots with the supreme director, and ex- of the value of a thousand dollars, pressed his willingness to guarantee and of five hundred dollars. At to him the province which
he had so the same time, it was decreed, long governed. Francia replied that that the notes should be current he had envoys in Europe treating for their nominal value throughout (with the Spanish government, the whole of the territory of the and he would introduce no republic. This was a new exchange otill their mission was periment in finance; it was the ended; but, if Spain refused to first time that the world had seen receive 1. his commissioners, he the establishment of a national would then treat with Brazil, and bank, followed almost immediately send M. Bonpland to Rio Janeiro by a declaration of its inability to as his plenipotentiary
meet its engagements, and by a - In the united provinces of the suspension of cash payments. It river Plate, Rivadavia i was again added not a little to the singuelected President, almost unani- larity of the transaction, that this mously, and found himself at the forced circulation of paper money head of a government, involved in should have occurred in the very the most embarrassing financial region of gold and silver, and in
a state whose very name, in some träcted war with Brazil., The measure, connects it with metallic annual expense of the war departe wealth. r 1 Another textraordinary menti alone threatened to be circumstance was, that, in this ruinous; the Customs, in consestate of affairs with a newly estab- quence of the blockade, had belished bank unable to pay in come utterly unproductive; specie specie, and its notes enormously had disappeared. dollars were
depreciated, its sanguine contriy- procured from the interior, for the ers gravely talked of establishing purpose of making remittances to braneh banks in the different pro- Europe, at a premium of forty vinces, and expatiated on the per cent. The paper of the bank benefits which would accrue from was the only circulating medium; the wide circulation of this depre- and the government had ruined ciated paper money.
The public the character of that paper by its sanction thus given to such a own deliberate act. currency tended only to involve A spirit of disunion among the the government in further pecu- states which compose it, and a niary difficulties." As the notes jealousy of Buenos Ayres, were of the bank were to be receiv- two of the greatest disadvantages
ed, in payment of taxes, at that the confederation of the Rio their nominal value, the real de la Plata had to struggle with.
amount of the revenue was dimin-The latter disposition could not be ished in proportion to their de- allayed by an act passed during this preciation; and it was scarcely session of congress, declaring Bụein a season of difficulty like that nos Ayres the capital of the repubwhich now existed, when the lic, an empty honour which might sources of revenue, such as they have been formally assumed at a might be, were all deranged by more favourable opportunity, while war, that Congress would venture her situation, her wealth, and her to impose new burthens to supply strength would have sufficiently the deficiency, or that the ex- secured the natural influence of ecutive could have means of com- the province. The spirit of dispelling the payment of them. On union which threatened to make the other hand, many of the ex- the states burst the bond of conpenses of the government were of federation in which they were a kind in which the notes of its united, and deprive the general bank could be of no use. British government of every thing but the and American merchants would shadow of efficient controlling not accept them in payment of power, was manifested in the naval and military stores, nor inability of that government to would they be taken in London in perform its public and solemn discharge of the interest of the contracts, i On its establishment debt of Buenos Ayres. In such it had formed the design of aiding à state of things the confederation its resources by the mineral treacould hold out little hope of being sures of the country, and had enable to meet even the necessary deavoured to allure from foreign charges of its own internal ad-countries the capital for working ministration, much less to pro- its mines which its own subjects vide for the expenses of a pro- were unable to supply. Its func,
tionaries sent directions to their zuela proved how little fundaagents in Europe to form an asso. mental laws were to be regarded, ciation for the purpose of working how feeble the bond was which the mines within its limits. This held the provinces together; and company was formed under the how completely the general goname of the Rio de la Plata vernment was dependent upon Mining Association; the govern- military leaders. General Paez, ment contracted to assign to it the military commandant of Vecertain mines as the subjects of nezuela, had been, next to Boits operation ; the capital was sub- livar, the most distinguished leader seribed ; á considerable expendi- in the revolutionary war. He was ture was incurred, and ultimately himself a mulatto ; his diviit tütred out, that the undertak- sion, consisting almost entirely of ing was a hopeless enterprise, be- mulattos, was the flower of the cause the government which se- Colombian army, and his cavalry, duced the share-holders into it, in particular, had been the tetror had not strength enough, or of the hussars of Ferdinand. honesty enough, to fulfil its Living in a perfect equality with owni engagements. The provinces his men, sharing their sports, their thought fit to dispose of their own exercises, and their meals, he was mines according to their own the idol of his own formidable views, and disavow the contract troops, and a general favourite of the general government. An throughout the army. Though agricultural and emigration asso- possessed of this dangerous power, eiation, formed under the same he had hitherto been a quiet subauspices, shared a similar fate. ject of the government of Bogota, How could a government come and had been content to act a into any money market in Europe secondary part to Bolivar, who to raise a loan, when it had al- had gained him bý prudence and teady shown itself unable, or un- affability: But an act of the gowilling, to observe the most $o- vernment, which he thought inlemn engagements ?
jurious to his honour, convinced | Financial embarrassment, dis- the executive, that he was little regard of publie credit, and in- inclined to submit in all things to ternal dissention, manifested them-- its constitutional authority, and selves still more distinctly in Co- that he was both able and willing, lombia. In some of the provinces, if much provoked, to dissolve the and especially in Venezuela, and whole confederation into its oriApure, there had long been a ginal elements. By a law of the strong spirit of discontent with general Congress for the organithe existing central form of go- zation of a militia, every male vernment, and á decided supe- throughout the republic, between rjority of opinion in favour of a the ages of sixteen and fifty, had federal constitution. By the fun- been required to enrol his name damental laws of the republic, for service. When the decree of however, no congress was to be the executive for carrying this law held, for the purpose of revising into operation appeared, great and or altering the constitution till general opposition to it was mani1831; but the example of Vene- fested, and the government, justly [395 apprehensive of the consequences Representatives ; that body, in of popular discontent, enjoined the absence of Bolivar in Peta, those who were engaged in giving whose prudence might have effect to it; to use the utmost cir- quenched the rising fame, took cumspeetion. General Paez had up the subject with great warmth, taken upon himself the respont- and sent up an impeachment of sibility of suspending its execu- the general to the senate. The tion in Venezuela altogether, un- senate admitted the decusation, tils in December 1825, he was and a decree was issued on the induced to enforée it, in conse- 30th of Mareh, depriving Paet, quence of real, or pretended, ap- in the mean time, of his comprehensions of a rebellion among mand, and calling him to Bogota the slaves of the province. Twice, to answer the charges which had in the course of December, he been preferred against him. To had summoned the inhabitants of neither of these mandates was the Caraccas by proclamation to as- haughty soldier, surrounded by his semble for the purpose of being troops, over whom his authority enrolled; but the proclamations was absolute, inelined to pay any were unheeded; of itself a suffi- obedience, and he knew well that cient proof of the utter feebleness the appearance of momentary subof the government. He issued a mission would instantly call forth third proclamation on the 6th of the hosts of his adhérents. AlJanuary, intending, as he bimself though, therefore, he made no expressed it, “to
make them feel preparations for proceeding to the my authority, and to proceed with capital, he opposed no ostensible an energy becoming the honotir of resistance to general Escalona, the military power.” This procla- who had been appointed his suemation was no better obeyed than cessor, assuming the command of the others had been, and Paez an army, which he was perfectly forthwith had recourse “ to mili- aware would not submit, without tary energy;" filling the streets his own orders, to have any comwith patroles, who seized the citi- mander but himself. zens, and dragged them by force The decrees of the senate adto the barracks. These arbitrary mitting the impeachment, and proceedings were suspended only suspending the generai from his by the interposition of the inten- command, were promulgated at dant of the province, and the con- Valencia on the 29th of April. duct of Paez was represented to Paez professed the most implicit the exeéutive in no favourable deference, and expressed his wilcolours, while the excéutive itself lingness to comply with the ordets did not dare to show much favour of the general government. But towards an officer who had ex- the troops, as he had expected, posed its deerees to popular odium. immediately broke out into open The complaints of the public of revolt, demanded the restoration a violation of their civil rights by of Paež to his command, spread military force were loud; the alarm and tumult through the national Congress was sitting; the town, and murdered several permunicipality of Caraccas de- sons whose views were supposed nounced Paez to the House of to be hostile to them. The mis
nicipality joined them in their with which public opinion has inclamours, not probably so much vested me, because I could not from any wish to see retained in neglect the demonstration of affechis command the very officer of tion towards me shown by my whose arbitrary proceedings they countrymen, nor see them, with themselves had complained, as indifference, exposed to internal from inability to resist the soldiery, disorders, at a season when I have and the necessity of submitting to the most powerful reasons for them to preserve the city from dreading the one and the other. bloodshed and pillage. Not sa- “ I shall second the object of this tisfied, however, with restoring movement by maintaining the him to his military command, public tranquillity with the armed which, i-of itself, was setting at force under my orders, and by defiance the powers of the general securing the other benefits arising government, the municipality as- from it, and this force shall not sumed all the privileges of inde- interfere with the resolutions of pendence, and conferred upon the people in the exercise of their Paez the supreme authority of the sovereignty for the provision of province, civil as well as military. their welfare and security.”: The The general accepted it, with meaning of all this simply was, many protestations of reluctance that he applauded the province and moderation, the usual marks for having set the government at of rebellious ambition. “ The defiance, and that the people, in entire population," said he, writ- the exercise of their sovereignty, ing to Bolivar, 4 assembled in the might act as they pleased, promunicipal hall, loudly demanding vided they did not interfere with that the decree from Bogota should his control over the army, or the be suspended, and that I should control of the army over them." be retained in the command, I It is not probable, that, the accepted the charge, because I merely personal interests and amthought it necessary to the main- bition of Paez would have made tenance of good order, and my his quarrel be adopted as a popuauthority was instantly recognized lar cause throughout the province. by the troops.". He immediately In all his communications with issued a proclamation, on the 3rd Bolivar, he complained bitterly of May, declaring that his remo- of general Santander, the viceyal had been obtained by the im- president, as abetting and for portunities of his personal ene- warding intrigues which were inmies, and was an outrage upon tended for his ruin ; but the pothe national honour.“ The peo- pularity of Santander was proof ple,” said he, through the organ against the ebullitions of his irritaof the military intendant of Va- tion. On the 15th of May, the lencia, sanctioned by the legiti- vice-president tendered his resigmate authorities, have restored to nation, but it was refused by me a power which I had resigned Congress almost unanimously, in virtue of that subordination only five members. voting that it which has ever marked my mili- should be accepted. Paez, theretary career ; but I have thought fore, immediately secured his fit to take upon myself the office own personal interests, by wedding