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History of Modern Europe 1792-1878 by C. A. Fyffe

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[The Htel de Ville.]

But there existed another authority in Paris beside the Assembly of
Representatives, and one that was not altogether disposed to permit Louis
Philippe and his satellites to reap the fruits of the people's victory.
Lafayette and the Municipal Committee, which occupied the Htel de Ville,
had transformed themselves into a provisional government, and sat
surrounded by the armed mob which had captured the Tuileries two days
before. No single person who had fought in the streets had risked his life
for the sake of making Louis Philippe king; in so far as the Parisians had
fought for any definite political idea, they had fought for the Republic.
It was necessary to reconcile both the populace and the provisional
government to the assumption of power by the new Regent; and with this
object Louis Philippe himself proceeded to the Htel de Ville, accompanied
by an escort of Deputies and Peers. It was a hazardous moment when he
entered the crowd on the Place de Grve; but Louis Philippe's readiness of
speech stood him in good stead, and he made his way unhurt through the
throng into the building, where Lafayette received him. Compliments and
promises were showered upon this veteran of 1789, who presently appeared on
a balcony and embraced Louis Philippe, while the Prince grasped the
tricolor flag, the flag which had not waved in Paris since 1815. The
spectacle was successful. The multitude shouted applause; and the few
determined men who still doubted the sincerity of a Bourbon and demanded
the proclamation of the Republic were put off with the promise of an
ultimate appeal to the French people.

[Charles X.]

In the meantime Charles X. had withdrawn to Rambouillet, accompanied by the
members of his family and by a considerable body of troops. Here the news
reached him that Orleans had accepted from the Chambers the office of
Lieutenant-General. It was a severe blow to the old king, who, while others
doubted of Louis Philippe's loyalty, had still maintained his trust in this
prince's fidelity. For a moment he thought of retiring beyond the Loire and
risking a civil war; but the troops now began to disperse, and Charles,
recognising that his cause was hopeless, abdicated together with the
Dauphin in favour of his grandson the young Chambord, then called Duc de
Bordeaux. He wrote to Louis Philippe, appointing him, as if on his own
initiative, Lieutenant-General of the kingdom, and required him to proclaim
Henry V. king, and to undertake the government during the new sovereign's
minority. It is doubtful whether Louis Philippe had at this time formed any
distinct resolve, and whether his answer to Charles X. was inspired by mere
good nature or by conscious falsehood; for while replying officially that
he would lay the king's letter before the Chambers, he privately wrote to
Charles X. that he would retain his new office only until he could safely
place the Duc de Bordeaux upon the throne. Having thus soothed the old
man's pride, Louis Philippe requested him to hasten his departure from the
neighbourhood of Paris; and when Charles ignored the message, he sent out
some bands of the National Guard to terrify him into flight. This device
succeeded, and the royal family, still preserving the melancholy ceremonial
of a court, moved slowly through France towards the western coast. At
Cherbourg they took ship and crossed to England, where they were received
as private persons. Among the British nation at large the exiled Bourbons
excited but little sympathy. They were, however, permitted to take up their
abode in the palace of Holyrood, and here Charles X. resided for two years.
But neither the climate nor the society of the Scottish capital offered any
attraction to the old and failing chief of a fallen dynasty. He sought a
more congenial shelter in Austria, and died at Goritz in November, 1836.

[Louis Philippe made King, Aug. 7.]

The first public notice of the abdication of King Charles was given by
Louis Philippe in the Chamber of Deputies, which was convoked by him, as
Lieutenant-General of the Kingdom, on the 3rd of August. In addressing the
Deputies, Louis Philippe stated that he had received a letter containing
the abdication both of the King and of the Dauphin, but he uttered no
single word regarding the Duc de Bordeaux, in whose favour both his
grandfather and his uncle had renounced their rights. Had Louis Philippe
mentioned that the abdications were in fact conditional, and had he
declared himself protector of the Duc de Bordeaux during his minority,
there is little doubt that the legitimate heir would have been peaceably
accepted both by the Chamber and by Paris. Louis Philippe himself had up to
this time done nothing that was inconsistent with the assumption of a mere
Regency; the Chamber had not desired a change of dynasty; and, with the
exception of Lafayette, the men who had actually made the Revolution bore
as little goodwill to an Orleanist as to a Bourbon monarchy. But from the
time when Louis Philippe passed over in silence the claims of the grandson
of Charles X., his own accession to the throne became inevitable. It was
left to an obscure Deputy to propose that the crown should be offered to
Louis Philippe, accompanied by certain conditions couched in the form of
modifications of the Charta. The proposal was carried in the Chamber on the
7th of August, and the whole body of representatives marched to the Palais
Royale to acquaint the prince with its resolution. Louis Philippe, after
some conventional expressions of regret, declared that he could not resist
the call of his country. When the Lower Chamber had thus disposed of the
crown, the House of Peers, which had proved itself a nullity throughout the
crisis, adopted the same resolution, and tendered its congratulations in a
similar fashion. Two days later Louis Philippe took the oath to the Charta
as modified by the Assembly, and was proclaimed King of the French.

[Nature of the Revolution of 1830.]

Thus ended a revolution, which, though greeted with enthusiasm at the time,
has lost much of its splendour and importance in the later judgment of
mankind. In comparison with the Revolution of 1789, the movement which
overthrew the Bourbons in 1830 was a mere flutter on the surface. It was
unconnected with any great change in men's ideas, and it left no great
social or legislative changes behind it. Occasioned by a breach of the
constitution on the part of the Executive Government, it resulted mainly in
the transfer of administrative power from one set of politicians to
another: the alterations which it introduced into the constitution itself
were of no great importance. France neither had an absolute Government
before 1830, nor had it a popular Government afterwards. Instead of a
representative of divine right, attended by guards of nobles and counselled
by Jesuit confessors, there was now a citizen-king, who walked about the
streets of Paris with an umbrella under his arm and sent his sons to the
public schools, but who had at heart as keen a devotion to dynastic
interests as either of his predecessors, and a much greater capacity for
personal rule. The bonds which kept the entire local administration of
France in dependence upon the central authority were not loosened;
officialism remained as strong as ever; the franchise was still limited to
a mere fraction of the nation. On the other hand, within the administration
itself the change wrought by the July Revolution was real and lasting. It
extinguished the political power of the clerical interest. Not only were
the Bishops removed from the House of Peers, but throughout all departments
of Government the influence of the clergy, which had been so strong under
Charles X., vanished away. The State took a distinctly secular colour. The
system of public education was regulated with such police-like
exclusiveness that priests who insisted upon opening schools of their own
for Catholic teaching were enabled to figure as champions of civil liberty
and of freedom of opinion against despotic power. The noblesse lost
whatever political influence it had regained during the Restoration. The
few surviving Regicides who had been banished in 1815 were recalled to
France, among them the terrorist Barrre, who was once more returned to the
Assembly. But the real winners in the Revolution of 1830 were not the men
of extremes, but the middle-class of France. This was the class which Louis
Philippe truly represented; and the force which for eighteen years kept
Louis Philippe on the throne was the middle-class force of the National
Guard of Paris. Against this sober, prosaic, unimaginative power there
struggled the hot and restless spirit which had been let loose by the
overthrow of the Bourbon dynasty, and which, fired at once with the
political ideal of a Republic, with dreams of the regeneration of Europe by
French armies, and with the growing antagonism between the labouring class
and the owners of property, threatened for awhile to overthrow the
newly-constituted monarchy in France, and to plunge Europe into war. The
return of the tricolor flag, the long-silenced strains of the Republic and
the Empire, the sense of victory with which men on the popular side
witnessed the expulsion of the dynasty which had been forced upon France
after Waterloo, revived that half-romantic military ardour which had
undertaken the liberation of Europe in 1792. France appeared once more in
the eyes of enthusiasts as the deliverer of nations. The realities of the
past epoch of French military aggression, its robberies, its corruption,
the execrations of its victims, were forgotten; and when one people after
another took up the shout of liberty that was raised in Paris, and
insurrections broke out in every quarter of Europe, it was with difficulty
that Louis Philippe and the few men of caution about him could prevent the
French nation from rushing into war.

[Affairs in Belgium.]

The State first affected by the events of July was the kingdom of the
Netherlands. The creation of this kingdom, in which the Belgian provinces
formerly subject to Austria were united with Holland to serve as an
effective barrier against French aggression on the north, had been one of
Pitt's most cherished schemes, and it had been carried into effect ten
years after his death by the Congress of Vienna. National and religious
incongruities had been little considered by the statesmen of that day, and
at the very moment of union the Catholic bishops of Belgium had protested
against a constitution which gave equal toleration to all religions under
the rule of a Protestant King. The Belgians had been uninterruptedly united
with France for the twenty years preceding 1814; the French language was
not only the language of their literature, but the spoken language of the
upper classes; and though the Flemish portion of the population was nearly
related to the Dutch, this element had not then asserted itself with the
distinctness and energy which it has since developed. The antagonism
between the northern and the southern Netherlands, though not insuperable,
was sufficiently great to make a harmonious union between the two countries
a work of difficulty, and the Government of The Hague had not taken the
right course to conciliate its opponents. The Belgians, though more
numerous, were represented by fewer members in the National Assembly than
the Dutch. Offices were filled by strangers from Holland; finance was
governed by a regard for Dutch interests; and the Dutch language was made
the official language for the whole kingdom. But the chief grievances were
undoubtedly connected with the claims of the clerical party in Belgium to a
monopoly of spiritual power and the exclusive control of education. The one
really irreconcilable enemy of the Protestant House of Orange was the
Church; and the governing impulse in the conflicts which preceded the
dissolution of the kingdom of the Netherlands in 1830 sprang from the same
clerical interest which had thrown Belgium into revolt against the Emperor
Joseph forty years before. There was again seen the same strange phenomenon
of a combination between the Church and a popular or even revolutionary
party. For the sake of an alliance against a constitution distasteful to
both, the clergy of Belgium accepted the democratic principles of the
political Opposition, and the Opposition consented for a while to desist
from their attacks upon the Papacy. The contract was faithfully observed on
both sides until the object for which it was made was attained. [388]

[Belgian Revolution, August, 1830.]

For some months before the Revolution of July, 1830, the antagonism between
the Belgians and their Government had been so violent that no great shock
from outside was necessary to produce an outbreak. The convulsions of Paris
were at once felt at Brussels, and on the 25th of August the performance of
a revolutionary opera in that city gave the signal for the commencement of
insurrection. From the capital the rebellion spread from town to town
throughout the southern Netherlands. The King summoned the Estates General,
and agreed to the establishment of an administration for Belgium separate
from that of Holland: but the storm was not allayed; and the appearance of
a body of Dutch troops at Brussels was sufficient to dispel the expectation
of a peaceful settlement. Barricades were erected; a conflict took place in
the streets; and the troops, unable to carry the city by assault, retired
to the outskirts and kept up a desultory attack for several days. They then
withdrew, and a provisional government, which was immediately established,
declared the independence of Belgium. For a moment there appeared some
possibility that the Crown Prince of Holland, who had from the first
assumed the part of mediator, might be accepted as sovereign of the
newly-formed State; but the growing violence of the insurrection, the
activity of French emissaries and volunteers, and the bombardment of
Antwerp by the Dutch soldiers who garrisoned its citadel, made an end of
all such hopes. Belgium had won its independence, and its connection with
the House of Orange could be re-established only by force of arms.

[France and the Belgian Revolution.]

[France and England.]

The accomplishment of this revolution in one of the smallest Continental
States threatened to involve all Europe in war. Though not actually
effected under the auspices of a French army, it was undoubtedly to some
extent effected in alliance with the French revolutionary party. It broke
up a kingdom established by the European Treaties of 1814; and it was so
closely connected with the overthrow of the Bourbon monarchy as to be
scarcely distinguishable from those cases in which the European Powers had
pledged themselves to call their armies into the field. Louis Philippe,
however, had been recognised by most of the European Courts as the only
possible alternative to a French Republic; and a general disposition
existed to second any sincere effort that should be made by him to prevent
the French nation from rushing into war. This was especially the case with
England; and it was to England that Louis Philippe turned for co-operation
in the settlement of the Belgian question. Louis Philippe himself had every
possible reason for desiring to keep the peace. If war broke out, France
would be opposed to all the Continental Powers together. Success was in the
last degree improbable; it could only be hoped for by a revival of the
revolutionary methods and propaganda of 1793; and failure, even for a
moment, would certainly cost him his throne, and possibly his life. His
interest no less than his temperament made him the strenuous, though
concealed, opponent of the war-party in the Assembly; and he found in the
old diplomatist who had served alike under the Bourbons, the Republic, and
the Empire, an ally thoroughly capable of pursuing his own wise though
unpopular policy of friendship and co-operation with England. Talleyrand,
while others were crying for a revenge for Waterloo, saw that the first
necessity for France was to rescue it from its isolation; and as at the
Congress of Vienna he had detached Austria and England from the two
northern Courts, so now, before attempting to gain any extension of
territory, he sought to make France safe against the hostility of the
Continent by allying it with at least one great Power. Russia had become an
enemy instead of a friend. The expulsion of the Bourbons had given mortal
offence to the Czar Nicholas, and neither Austria nor Prussia was likely to
enter into close relations with a Government founded upon revolution.
England alone seemed a possible ally, and it was to England that the French
statesman of peace turned in the Belgian crisis. Talleyrand, now nearly
eighty years old, came as ambassador to London, where he had served in
1792. He addressed himself to Wellington and to the new King, William IV.,
assuring them that, under the Government of Louis Philippe, France would
not seek to use the Belgian revolution for its own aggrandisement; and,
with his old aptness in the invention of general principles to suit a
particular case, he laid down the principle of non-intervention as one that
ought for the future to govern the policy of Europe. His efforts were
successful. So complete an understanding was established between France and
England on the Belgian question, that all fear of an armed intervention of
the Eastern Courts on behalf of the King of Holland, which would have
rendered a war with France inevitable, passed away. The regulation of
Belgian affairs was submitted to a Conference at London. Hostilities were
stopped, and the independence of the new kingdom was recognised in
principle by the Conference before the end of the year. A Protocol defining
the frontiers of Belgium and Holland, and apportioning to each State its
share in the national debt, was signed by the representatives of the Powers
in January, 1831. [389]

[Leopold elected King, June 4.]

Thus far, a crisis which threatened the peace of Europe had been surmounted
with unexpected ease. But the first stage of the difficulty alone was
passed; it still remained for the Powers to provide a king for Belgium, and
to gain the consent of the Dutch and Belgian Governments to the territorial
arrangements drawn up for them. The Belgians themselves, with whom a
connection with France was popular, were disposed to elect as their
sovereign the Duc de Nemours, second son of Louis Philippe; and although
Louis Philippe officially refused his sanction to this scheme, which in the
eyes of all Europe would have turned Belgium into a French dependency, he
privately encouraged its prosecution after a Bonapartist candidate, the son
of Eugne Beauharnais, had appeared in the field. The result was that the
Duc de Nemours was elected king on the 3rd of February, 1831. Against this
appointment the Conference of the Powers at London had already pronounced
its veto, and the British Government let it be understood that it would
resist any such extension of French influence by force. Louis Philippe now
finally refused the crown for his son, and, the Bonapartist candidate being
withdrawn, the two rival Powers agreed in recommending Prince Leopold of
Saxe-Coburg, on the understanding that, if elected King of Belgium, he
should marry a daughter of Louis Philippe. The Belgians fell in with the
advice given them, and elected Leopold on the 4th of June. He accepted the
crown, subject to the condition that the London Conference should modify in
favour of Belgium some of the provisions relating to the frontiers and to
the finances of the new State which had been laid down by the Conference,
and which the Belgian Government had hitherto refused to accept.

[Settlement of the Belgian frontier.]

The difficulty of arranging the Belgian frontier arose principally from the
position of the Grand Duchy of Luxemburg. This territory, though subject to
Austria before the French Revolution, had always been treated as distinct
from the body of the Austrian Netherlands. When, at the peace of 1814, it
was given to the King of Holland in substitution for the ancient
possessions of his family at Nassau, its old character as a member of the
German federal union was restored to it, so that the King of Holland in
respect of this portion of his dominions became a German prince, and the
fortress of Luxemburg, the strongest in Europe after Gibraltar, was liable
to occupation by German troops. The population of the Duchy had, however,
joined the Belgians in their revolt, and, with the exception of the
fortress itself, the territory had passed into possession of the Belgian
Government. In spite of this actual overthrow of Dutch rule, the Conference
of London had attached such preponderating importance to the military and
international relations of Luxemburg that it had excluded the whole of the
Duchy from the new Belgian State, and declared it still to form part of the
dominions of the King of Holland. The first demand of Leopold was for the
reversal or modification of this decision, and the Powers so far gave way
as to substitute for the declaration of January a series of articles, in
which the question of Luxemburg was reserved for future settlement. The
King of Holland had assented to the January declaration; on hearing of its
abandonment, he took up arms, and threw fifty thousand men into Belgium.
Leopold appealed to France for assistance, and a French army immediately
crossed the frontier. The Dutch now withdrew, and the French in their turn
were recalled, after Leopold had signed a treaty undertaking to raze the
fortifications of five towns on his southern border. The Conference again
took up its work, and produced a third scheme, in which the territory of
Luxemburg was divided between Holland and Belgium. This was accepted by
Belgium, and rejected by Holland. The consequence was that a treaty was
made between Leopold and the Powers; and at the beginning of 1832 the
kingdom of Belgium, as defined by the third award of the Conference, was
recognised by all the Courts, Lord Palmerston on behalf of England
resolutely refusing to France even the slightest addition of territory, on
the ground that, if annexations once began, all security for the
continuance of peace would be at an end. On this wise and firm policy the
concert of Europe in the establishment of the Belgian kingdom was
successfully maintained; and it only remained for the Western Powers to
overcome the resistance of the King of Holland, who still held the citadel
of Antwerp and declined to listen either to reason or authority. A French
army corps was charged with the task of besieging the citadel; an English
fleet blockaded the river Scheldt. After a severe bombardment the citadel
surrendered. Hostilities ceased, and negotiations for a definitive
settlement recommenced. As, however, the Belgians were in actual occupation
of all Luxemburg with the exception of the fortress, they had no motive to
accelerate a settlement which would deprive them of part of their existing
possessions; on the other hand, the King of Holland held back through mere
obstinacy. Thus the provisional state of affairs was prolonged for year
after year, and it was not until April, 1839, that the final Treaty of
Peace between Belgium and Holland was executed.

[Affairs of Poland.]

The consent of the Eastern Powers to the overthrow of the kingdom of the
United Netherlands, and to the establishment of a State based upon a
revolutionary movement, would probably have been harder to gain if in the
autumn of 1830 Russia had been free to act with all its strength. But at
this moment an outbreak took place in Poland, which required the
concentration of all the Czar's forces within his own border. The conflict
was rather a war of one armed nation against another than the insurrection
of a people against its government. Poland--that is to say, the territory
which had formerly constituted the Grand Duchy of Warsaw--had, by the
treaties of 1814, been established as a separate kingdom, subject to the
Czar of Russia, but not forming part of the Russian Empire. It possessed an
administration and an army of its own, and the meetings of its Diet gave to
it a species of parliamentary government to which there was nothing
analogous within Russia proper. During the reign of Alexander the
constitutional system of Poland had, on the whole, been respected; and
although the real supremacy of an absolute monarch at St. Petersburg had
caused the Diet to act as a body in opposition to the Russian Government,
the personal connection existing between Alexander and the Poles had
prevented any overt rebellion during his own life-time. But with the
accession of Nicholas all such individual sympathy passed away, and the
hard realities of the actual relation between Poland and the Court of
Russia came into full view. In the conspiracies of 1825 a great number of
Poles were implicated. Eight of these persons, after a preliminary inquiry,
were placed on trial before the Senate at Warsaw, which, in spite of strong
evidence of their guilt, acquitted them. Pending the decision, Nicholas
declined to convoke the Diet: he also stationed Russian troops in Poland,
and violated the constitution by placing Russians in all branches of the
administration. Even without these grievances the hostility of the mass of
the Polish noblesse to Russia would probably have led sooner or later to
insurrection. The peasantry, ignorant and degraded, were but instruments in
the hands of their territorial masters. In so far as Poland had rights of
self-government, these rights belonged almost exclusively to the nobles, or
landed proprietors, a class so numerous that they have usually been
mistaken in Western Europe for the Polish nation itself. The so-called
emancipation of the serfs, effected by Napoleon after wresting the Grand
Duchy of Warsaw from Prussia in 1807, had done little for the mass of the
population; for, while abolishing the legal condition of servitude,
Napoleon had given the peasant no vestige of proprietorship in his holding,
and had consequently left him as much at the mercy of his landlord as he
was before. The name of freedom appears in fact to have worked actual
injury to the peasant; for in the enjoyment of a pretended power of free
contract he was left without that protection of the officers of State
which, under the Prussian regime from 1795 to 1807, had shielded him from
the tyranny of his lord. It has been the fatal, the irremediable bane of
Poland that its noblesse, until too late, saw no country, no right, no law,
outside itself. The very measures of interference on the part of the Czar
which this caste resented as unconstitutional were in part directed against
the abuse of its own privileges; and although in 1830 a section of the
nobles had learnt the secret of their country's fall, and were prepared to
give the serf the real emancipation of proprietorship, no universal impulse
worked in this direction, nor could the wrong of ages be undone in the
tumult of war and revolution.

[Insurrection at Warsaw, Nov. 29.]

A sharp distinction existed between the narrow circle of the highest
aristocracy of Poland and the mass of the poor and warlike noblesse. The
former, represented by men like Czartoryski, the friend of Alexander I. and
ex-Minister of Russia, understood the hopelessness of any immediate
struggle with the superior power, and advocated the politic development of
such national institutions as were given to Poland by the constitution of
1815, institutions which were certainly sufficient to preserve Poland from
absorption by Russia, and to keep alive the idea of the ultimate
establishment of its independence. It was among the lesser nobility, among
the subordinate officers of the army and the population of Warsaw itself,
who jointly formed the so-called democratic party, that the spirit of
revolt was strongest. Plans for an outbreak had been made during the
Turkish war of 1828; but unhappily this opportunity, which might have been
used with fatal effect against Russia, was neglected, and it was left for
the French Revolution of 1830 to kindle an untimely and ineffective flame.
The memory of Napoleon's campaigns and the wild voices of French democracy
filled the patriots at Warsaw with vain hopes of a military union with
western Liberalism, and overpowered the counsels of men who understood the
state of Europe better. Revolt broke out on the 29th of November, 1830. The
Polish regiments in Warsaw joined the insurrection, and the Russian troops,
under the Grand Duke Constantine, withdrew from the capital, where their
leader had narrowly escaped with his life. [390]

[Attempted negotiation with the Czar.]

The Government of Poland had up to this time been in the hands of a Council
nominated by the Czar as King of Poland, and controlled by instructions
from a secretary at St. Petersburg. The chief of the Council was Lubecki, a
Pole devoted to the Emperor Nicholas. On the victory of the insurrection at
Warsaw, the Council was dissolved and a provisional Government installed.
Though the revolt was the work of the so-called democratic party, the
influence of the old governing families of the highest aristocracy was
still so great that power was by common consent placed in their hands.
Czartoryski became president, and the policy adopted by himself and his
colleagues was that of friendly negotiation with Russia. The insurrection
of November was treated not as the beginning of a national revolt, but as a
mere disturbance occasioned by unconstitutional acts of the Government. So
little did the committee understand the character of the Emperor Nicholas,
as to imagine that after the expulsion of his soldiers and the overthrow of
his Ministers at Warsaw he would peaceably make the concessions required of
him, and undertake for the future faithfully to observe the Polish
constitution. Lubecki and a second official were sent to St. Petersburg to
present these demands, and further (though this was not seriously intended)
to ask that the constitution should be introduced into all the Russian
provinces which had once formed part of the Polish State. The reception
given to the envoys at the frontier was of an ominous character. They were
required to describe themselves as officers about to present a report to
the Czar, inasmuch as no representatives of rebels in arms could be
received into Russia. Lubecki appears now to have shaken the dust of Poland
off his feet; his colleague pursued his mission, and was admitted to the
Czar's presence. Nicholas, while expressing himself in language of injured
tenderness, and disclaiming all desire to punish the innocent with the
guilty, let it be understood that Poland had but two alternatives,
unconditional submission or annihilation. The messenger who in the
meanwhile carried back to Warsaw the first despatches of the envoy reported
that the roads were already filled with Russian regiments moving on their
prey.

[Diebitsch invades Poland, Feb. 1831.]

Six weeks of precious time were lost through the illusion of the Polish
Government that an accommodation with the Emperor Nicholas was possible.
Had the insurrection at Warsaw been instantly followed by a general levy
and the invasion of Lithuania, the resources of this large province might
possibly have been thrown into the scale against Russia. Though the mass of
the Lithuanian population, in spite or several centuries of union with
Poland, had never been assimilated to the dominant race, and remained in
language and creed more nearly allied to the Russians than the Poles, the
nobles formed an integral part of the Polish nation, and possessed
sufficient power over their serfs to drive them into the field to fight for
they knew not what. The Russian garrisons in Lithuania were not strong, and
might easily have been overpowered by a sudden attack. When once the
population of Warsaw had risen in arms against Nicholas, the only
possibility of success lay in the extension of the revolt over the whole of
the semi-Polish provinces, and in a general call to arms. But beside other
considerations which disinclined the higher aristocracy at Warsaw to
extreme measures, they were influenced by a belief that the Powers of
Europe might intervene on behalf of the constitution of the Polish kingdom
as established by the treaty of Vienna; while, if the struggle passed
beyond the borders of that kingdom, it would become a revolutionary
movement to which no Court could lend its support. It was not until the
envoy returned from St. Petersburg bearing the answer of the Emperor
Nicholas that the democratic party carried all before it, and all hopes of
a peaceful compromise vanished away. The Diet then passed a resolution
declaring that the House of Romanoff had forfeited the Polish crown, and
preparations began for a struggle for life or death with Russia. But the
first moments when Russia stood unguarded and unready had been lost beyond
recall. Troops had thronged westwards into Lithuania; the garrisons in the
fortresses had been raised to their full strength; and in February, 1831,
Diebitsch took up the offensive, and crossed the Polish frontier with a
hundred and twenty thousand men.

[Campaign in Poland, 1831.]

[Capture of Warsaw, Sept. 8, 1831.]

The Polish army, though far inferior in numbers to the enemy which it had
to meet, was no contemptible foe. Among its officers there were many who
had served in Napoleon's campaigns; it possessed, however, no general
habituated to independent command; and the spirit of insubordination and
self-will, which had wrought so much ruin in Poland, was still ready to
break out when defeat had impaired the authority of the nominal chiefs. In
the first encounters the advancing Russian army was gallantly met; and,
although the Poles were forced to fall back upon Warsaw, the losses
sustained by Diebitsch were so serious that he had to stay his operations
and to wait for reinforcements. In March the Poles took up the offensive
and surprised several isolated divisions of the enemy; their general,
however, failed to push his advantages with the necessary energy and
swiftness; the junction of the Russians was at length effected, and on the
26th of May the Poles were defeated after obstinate resistance in a pitched
battle at Ostrolenka. Cholera now broke out in the Russian camp. Both
Diebitsch and the Grand Duke Constantine were carried off in the midst of
the campaign, and some months more were added to the struggle of Poland,
hopeless as this had now become. Incursions were made into Lithuania and
Podolia, but without result. Paskiewitch, the conqueror of Kars, was called
up to take the post left vacant by the death of his rival. New masses of
Russian troops came in place of those who had perished in battle and in the
hospitals; and while the Governments of Western Europe lifted no hand on
behalf of Polish independence, Prussia, alarmed lest the revolt should
spread into its own Polish provinces, assisted the operations of the
Russian general by supplying stores and munition of war. Blow after blow
fell upon the Polish cause. Warsaw itself became the prey of disorder,
intrigue, and treachery; and at length the Russian army made its entrance
into the capital, and the last soldiers of Poland laid down their arms, or
crossed into Prussian or Austrian territory. The revolt had been rashly and
unwisely begun: its results were fatal and lamentable. The constitution of
Poland was abolished; it ceased to be a separate kingdom, and became a
province of the Russian Empire. Its defenders were exiles over the face of
Europe or forgotten in Siberia. All that might have been won by the gradual
development of its constitutional liberties without breach with the Czar's
sovereignty was sacrificed. The future of Poland, like that of Russia
itself, now depended on the enlightenment and courage of the Imperial
Government, and on that alone. The very existence of a Polish nationality
and language seemed for a while to be threatened by the measures of
repression that followed the victory of 1831: and if it be true that
Russian autocracy has at length done for the Polish peasants what their
native masters during centuries of ascendency refused to do, this
emancipation would probably not have come the later for the preservation of
some relics of political independence, nor would it have had the less value
if unaccompanied by the proscription of so great a part of that class which
had once been held to constitute the Polish nation. [391]

[Insurrection in the Papal States, Feb., 1831.]

During the conflict on the banks of the Vistula, the attitude of the
Austrian Government had been one of watchful neutrality. Its own Polish
territory was not seriously menaced with disturbance, for in a great part
of Galicia the population, being of Ruthenian stock and belonging to the
Greek Church, had nothing in common with the Polish and Catholic noblesse
of their province, and looked back upon the days of Polish dominion as a
time of suffering and wrong. Austria's danger in any period of European
convulsion lay as yet rather on the side of Italy than on the East, and the
vigour of its policy in that quarter contrasted with the equanimity with
which it watched the struggle of its Slavic neighbours. Since the
suppression of the Neapolitan constitutional movement in 1821, the
Carbonari and other secret societies of Italy had lost nothing of their
activity. Their head-quarters had been removed from Southern Italy to the
Papal States, and the numerous Italian exiles in France and elsewhere kept
up a busy communication at once with French revolutionary leaders like
Lafayette and with the enemies of the established governments in Italy
itself. The death of Pope Pius VIII., on November 30, 1830, and the
consequent paralysis of authority within the Ecclesiastical States, came at
an opportune moment; assurances of support arrived from Paris; and the
Italian leaders resolved upon a general insurrection throughout the minor
Principalities on the 5th of February, 1831. Anticipating the signal,
Menotti, chief of a band of patriots at Modena, who appears to have been
lured on by the Grand Duke himself, assembled his partisans on February 3.
He was overpowered and imprisoned; but the outbreak of the insurrection in
Bologna, and its rapid extension over the northern part of the Papal
States, soon caused the Grand Duke to fly to Austrian territory, carrying
his prisoner Menotti with him, whom he subsequently put to death. The new
Pope, Gregory XVI., had scarcely been elected when the report reached him
that Bologna had declared the temporal power of the Papacy to be at an end.
Uncertain of the character of the revolt, he despatched Cardinal Benvenuti
northwards, to employ conciliation or force as occasion might require. The
Legate fell into the hands of the insurgents; the revolt spread southwards;
and Gregory, now hopeless of subduing it by the forces at his own command,
called upon Austria for assistance. [392]

[Attitude of France.]

The principle which, since the Revolution of July, the government of France
had repeatedly laid down as the future basis of European politics was that
of non-intervention. It had disclaimed any purpose of interfering with the
affairs of its neighbours, and had required in return that no foreign
intervention should take place in districts which, like Belgium and Savoy,
adjoined its own frontier. But there existed no real unity of purpose in
the councils of Louis Philippe. The Ministry had one voice for the
representatives of foreign powers, another for the Chamber of Deputies, and
another for Lafayette and the bands of exiles and conspirators who were
under his protection. The head of the government at the beginning of 1831
was Laffitte, a weak politician, dominated by revolutionary sympathies and
phrases, but incapable of any sustained or resolute action, and equally
incapable of resisting Louis Philippe after the King had concluded his
performance of popular leader, and assumed his real character as the wary
and self-seeking chief of a reigning house. Whether the actual course of
French policy would be governed by the passions of the streets or by the
timorousness of Louis Philippe was from day to day a matter of conjecture.
The official answer given to the inquiries of the Austrian ambassador as to
the intentions of France in case of an Austrian intervention in Italy was,
that such intervention might be tolerated in Parma and Modena, which
belonged to sovereigns immediately connected with the Hapsburgs, but that
if it was extended to the Papal States war with France would be probable,
and if extended to Piedmont, certain. On this reply Metternich, who saw
Austria's own dominion in Italy once more menaced by the success of an
insurrectionary movement, had to form his decision. He could count on the
support of Russia in case of war; he knew well the fears of Louis Philippe,
and knew that he could work on these fears both by pointing to the presence
of the young Louis Bonaparte and his brother with the Italian insurgents as
evidence of the Bonapartist character of the movement, and by hinting that
in the last resort he might himself let loose upon France Napoleon's son,
the Duke of Reichstadt. now growing to manhood at Vienna, before whom Louis
Philippe's throne would have collapsed as speedily as that of Louis XVIII.
in 1814. Where weakness existed, Metternich was quick to divine it and to
take advantage of it. He rightly gauged Louis Philippe. Taking at their
true value the threats of the French Government, he declared that it was
better for Austria to fall, if necessary, by war than by revolution; and,
resolving at all hazards to suppress the Roman insurrection, he gave orders
to the Austrian troops to enter the Papal States.

[Austrians suppress Roman revolt, March, 1831.]

[Casimir Perier, March, 1831.]

The military resistance which the insurgents could offer to the advance of
the Pope's Austrian deliverers was insignificant, and order was soon
restored. But all Europe expected the outbreak of war between Austria and
France. The French ambassador at Constantinople had gone so far as to offer
the Sultan an offensive and defensive alliance, and to urge him to make
preparations for an attack upon both Austria and Russia on their southern
frontiers. A despatch from the ambassador reached Paris describing the
warlike overtures he had made to the Porte. Louis Philippe saw that if this
despatch reached the hands of Laffitte and the war party in the Council of
Ministers the preservation of peace would be almost impossible. In concert
with Sebastiani, the Foreign Minister, he concealed the despatch from
Laffitte. The Premier discovered the trick that had been played upon him,
and tendered his resignation. It was gladly accepted by Louis Philippe.
Laffitte quitted office, begging pardon of God and man for the part that he
had taken in raising Louis Philippe to the throne. His successor was
Casimir Perier, a man of very different mould; resolute, clear-headed, and
immovably true to his word; a constitutional statesman of the strictest
type, intolerant of any species of disorder, and a despiser of popular
movements, but equally proof against royal intrigues, and as keen to
maintain the constitutional system of France against the Court on one side
and the populace on the other as he was to earn for France the respect of
foreign powers by the abandonment of a policy of adventure, and the steady
adherence to the principles of international obligation which he had laid
down. Under his firm hand the intrigues of the French Government with
foreign revolutionists ceased; it was felt throughout Europe that peace was
still possible, and that if war was undertaken by France it would be
undertaken only under conditions which would make any moral union of all
the great Powers against France impossible. The Austrian expedition into
the Papal States had already begun, and the revolutionary Government had
been suppressed; the most therefore that Casimir Perier could demand was
that the evacuation of the occupied territory should take place as soon as
possible, and that Austria should add its voice to that of the other Powers
in urging the Papal Government to reform its abuses. Both demands were
granted. For the first time Austria appeared as the advocate of something
like a constitutional system. A Conference held at Rome agreed upon a
scheme of reforms to be recommended to the Pope; the prospects of peace
grew daily fairer; and in July, 1831, the last Austrian soldiers quitted
the Ecclesiastical States. [393]

[Second Austrian intervention, Jan., 1832.]

[French occupy Ancona, February, 1832.]

It now remained to be seen whether Pope Gregory and his cardinals had the
intelligence and good-will necessary for carrying out the reforms on the
promise of which France had abstained from active intervention. If any such
hopes existed they were doomed to speedy disappointment. The apparatus of
priestly maladministration was restored in all its ancient deformity. An
amnesty which had been promised by the Legate Benvenuti was disregarded,
and the Pope set himself to strengthen his authority by enlisting new bands
of ruffians and adventurers under the standard of St. Peter. Again
insurrection broke out, and again at the Pope's request the Austrians
crossed the frontier (January, 1832). Though their appearance was fatal to
the cause of liberty, they were actually welcomed as protectors in towns
which had been exposed to the tender mercies of the Papal condottieri.
There was no disorder, no severity, where the Austrian commandants held
sway; but their mere presence in central Italy was a threat to European
peace; and Casimir Perier was not the man to permit Austria to dominate in
Italy at its will. Without waiting for negotiations, he despatched a French
force to Ancona, and seized this town before the Austrians could approach
it. The rival Powers were now face to face in Italy; but Perier had no
intention of forcing on war if his opponent was still willing to keep the
peace. Austria accepted the situation, and made no attempt to expel the
French from the position they had seized. Casimir Perier, now on his
death-bed, defended the step that he had taken against the remonstrances of
ambassadors and against the protests of the Pope, and declared the presence
of the French at Ancona to be no incentive to rebellion, but the mere
assertion of the rights of a Power which had as good a claim to be in
central Italy as Austria itself. Had his life been prolonged, he would
probably have insisted upon the execution of the reforms which the Powers
had urged upon the Papal government, and have made the occupation of Ancona
an effectual means for reaching this end. But with his death the wrongs of
the Italians themselves and the question of a reformed government in the
Papal States gradually passed out of sight. France and Austria jealously
watched one another on the debatable land; the occupation became a mere
incident of the balance of power, and was prolonged for year after year,
until, in 1838, the Austrians having finally withdrawn all their troops,
the French peacefully handed over the citadel of Ancona to the Holy See.

[Prussia in 1830.]

[The Zollverein, 1828-1836.]

The arena in which we have next to follow the effects of the July
Revolution, in action and counter-action, is Germany. It has been seen that
in the southern German States an element of representative government, if
weak, yet not wholly ineffective, had come into being soon after 1815, and
had survived the reactionary measures initiated by the conference of
Ministers at Carlsbad. In Prussia the promises of King Frederick William to
his people had never been fulfilled. Years had passed since exaggerated
rumours of conspiracy had served as an excuse for withholding the
Constitution. Hardenberg had long been dead; the foreign policy of the
country had taken a freer tone; the rigours of the police-system had
departed; but the nation remained as completely excluded from any share in
the government as it had been before Napoleon's fall. It had in fact become
clear that during the lifetime of King Frederick William things must be
allowed to remain in their existing condition; and the affection of the
people for their sovereign, who had been so long and so closely united with
Prussia in its sufferings and in its glories, caused a general willingness
to postpone the demand for constitutional reform until the succeeding
reign. The substantial merits of the administration might moreover have
reconciled a less submissive people than the Prussians to the absolute
government under which they lived. Under a wise and enlightened financial
policy the country was becoming visibly richer. Obstacles to commercial
development were removed, communications opened; and finally, by a series
of treaties with the neighbouring German States, the foundations were laid
for that Customs-Union which, under the name of the Zollverein, ultimately
embraced almost the whole of non-Austrian Germany. As one Principality
after another attached itself to the Prussian system, the products of the
various regions of Germany, hitherto blocked by the frontier dues of each
petty State, moved freely through the land, while the costs attending the
taxation of foreign imports, now concentrated upon the external line of
frontier, were enormously diminished. Patient, sagacious, and even liberal
in its negotiations with its weaker neighbours, Prussia silently connected
with itself through the ties of financial union States which had hitherto
looked to Austria as their natural head. The semblance of political union
was carefully avoided, but the germs of political union were nevertheless
present in the growing community of material interests. The reputation of
the Prussian Government, no less than the welfare of the Prussian people,
was advanced by each successive step in the extension of the Zollverein;
and although the earlier stages alone had been passed in the years before
1830, enough had already been done to affect public opinion; and the
general sense of material progress combined with other influences to close
Prussia to the revolutionary tendencies of that year.

[Insurrections in Brunswick and Cassel.]

[Constitutions in Hanover and Saxony, 1830-1833.]

There were, however, other States in northern Germany which had all the
defects of Prussian autocracy without any of its redeeming qualities. In
Brunswick and in Hesse Cassel despotism existed in its most contemptible
form; the violence of a half-crazy youth in the one case, and the caprices
of an obstinate dotard in the other, rendering authority a mere nuisance to
those who were subject to it. Here accordingly revolution broke out. The
threatened princes had made themselves too generally obnoxious or
ridiculous for any hand to be raised in their defence. Their disappearance
excited no more than the inevitable lament from Metternich; and in both
States systems of representative government were introduced by their
successors. In Hanover and in Saxony agitation also began in favour of
Parliamentary rule. The disturbance that arose was not of a serious
character, and it was met by the Courts in a conciliatory spirit.
Constitutions were granted, the liberty of the Press extended, and trial by
jury established. On the whole, the movement of 1830, as it affected
northern Germany, was rationally directed and salutary in its results.
Changes of real value were accomplished with a sparing employment of
revolutionary means, and, in the more important cases, through the friendly
co-operation of the sovereigns with their subjects. It was not the fault of
those who had asked for the same degree of liberty in northern Germany
which the south already possessed, that Germany at large again experienced
the miseries of reaction and repression which had afflicted it ten years
before.

[Movement in the Palatinate.]

Like Belgium and the Rhenish Provinces, the Bavarian Palatinate had for
twenty years been incorporated with France. Its inhabitants had grown
accustomed to the French law and French institutions, and had caught
something of the political animation which returned to France after
Napoleon's fall. Accordingly when the government of Munich, alarmed by the
July Revolution, showed an inclination towards repressive measures, the
Palatinate, severed from the rest of the Bavarian monarchy and in immediate
contact with France, became the focus of a revolutionary agitation. The
Press had already attained some activity and some influence in this
province; and although the leaders of the party of progress were still to a
great extent Professors, they had so far advanced upon the patriots of 1818
as to understand that the liberation of the German people was not to be
effected by the lecturers and the scholars of the Universities. The design
had been formed of enlisting all classes of the public on the side of
reform, both by the dissemination of political literature and by the
establishment of societies not limited, as in 1818, to academic circles,
but embracing traders as well as soldiers and professional men. Even the
peasant was to be reached and instructed in his interests as a citizen. It
was thought that much might be effected by associating together all the
Oppositions in the numerous German Parliaments; but a more striking feature
of the revolutionary movement which began in the Palatinate, and one
strongly distinguishing it from the earlier agitation of Jena and Erfurt,
was its cosmopolitan character. France in its triumph and Poland in its
death-struggle excited equal interest and sympathy. In each the cause of
European liberty appeared to be at stake. The Polish banner was saluted in
the Palatinate by the side of that of united Germany; and from that time
forward in almost every revolutionary movement of Europe, down to the
insurrection of the Commune of Paris in 1871, Polish exiles have been
active both in the organisation of revolt and in the field.

[Reaction in Germany.]

Until the fall of Warsaw, in September, 1831, the German governments,
uncertain of the course which events might take in Europe, had shown a
certain willingness to meet the complaints of their subjects, and had in
especial relaxed the supervision exercised over the press. The fall of
Warsaw, which quieted so many alarms, and made the Emperor Nicholas once
more a power outside his own dominions, inaugurated a period of reaction in
Germany. The Diet began the campaign against democracy by suppressing
various liberal newspapers, and amongst them the principal journal of the
Palatinate. It was against this movement of regression that the agitation
in the Palatinate and elsewhere was now directed. A festival, or
demonstration, was held at the Castle of Hambach, near Zweibrcken, at
which a body of enthusiasts called upon the German people to unite against
their oppressors, and some even urged an immediate appeal to arms (May 27,
1832). Similar meetings, though on a smaller scale, were held in other
parts of Germany. Wild words abounded, and the connection of the German
revolutionists with that body of opponents of all established governments
which had its council-chamber at Paris and its head in Lafayette was openly
avowed. Weak and insignificant as the German demagogues were, their
extravagance gave to Metternich and to the Diet sufficient pretext for
revising the reactionary measures of 1819. Once more the subordination of
all representative bodies to the sovereign's authority was laid down by the
Diet as a binding principle for every German state. The refusal of taxes by
any legislature was declared to be an act of rebellion which would be met
by the armed intervention of the central Powers. All political meetings and
associations were forbidden; the Press was silenced; the introduction of
German books printed abroad was prohibited, and the Universities were again
placed under the watch of the police (July, 1832). [394]

[Attempt at Frankfort, April, 1833.]

If among the minor sovereigns of Germany there were some who, as in Baden,
sincerely desired the development of free institutions, the authority
exercised by Metternich and his adherents in reaction bore down all the
resistance that these courts could offer, and the hand of despotism fell
everywhere heavily upon the party of political progress. The majority of
German Liberals, not yet prepared for recourse to revolutionary measures,
submitted to the pressure of the times, and disclaimed all sympathy with
illegal acts; a minority, recognising that nothing was now to be gained by
constitutional means, entered into conspiracies, and determined to liberate
Germany by force. One insignificant group, relying upon the armed
co-operation of Polish bands in France, and deceived by promises of support
from some Wrtemberg soldiers, actually rose in insurrection at Frankfort.
A guard-house was seized, and a few soldiers captured; but the citizens of
Frankfort stood aloof, and order was soon restored (April, 1833). It was
not to be expected that the reactionary courts should fail to draw full
advantage from this ill-timed outbreak of their enemies. Prussian troops
marched into Frankfort, and Metternich had no difficulty in carrying
through the Diet a decree establishing a commission to superintend and to
report upon the proceedings instituted against political offenders
throughout Germany. For several years these investigations continued, and
the campaign against the opponents of government was carried on with
various degrees of rigour in the different states. About two thousand
persons altogether were brought to trial: in Prussia thirty-nine sentences
of death were pronounced, but not executed. In the struggle against
revolution the forces of monarchy had definitely won the victory. Germany
again experienced, as it had in 1819, that the federal institutions which
were to have given it unity existed only for the purposes of repression.
The breach between the nation and its rulers, in spite of the apparent
failure of the democratic party, remained far deeper and wider than it had
been before; and although Metternich, victor once more over the growing
restlessness of the age, slumbered on for another decade in fancied
security, the last of his triumphs had now been won, and the next uprising
proved how blind was that boasted statesmanship which deemed the sources of
danger exhausted when once its symptoms had been driven beneath the
surface.

[Conspirators and exiles.]

[Dispersion of the Swiss exiles, 1834.]

In half the states of Europe there were now bodies of exasperated,
uncompromising men, who devoted their lives to plotting against
governments, and who formed, in their community of interest and purpose, a
sort of obverse of the Holy Alliance, a federation of kings' enemies, a
league of principle and creed, in which liberty and human right stood
towards established rule as light to darkness. As the grasp of authority
closed everywhere more tightly upon its baffled foes, more and more of
these men passed into exile. Among them was the Genoese Mazzini, who, after
suffering imprisonment in 1831, withdrew to Marseilles, and there, in
combination with various secret societies, planned an incursion into the
Italian province of Savoy. It was at first intended that this enterprise
should be executed simultaneously with the German rising at Frankfort.
Delays, however, arose, and it was not until the beginning of the following
year that the little army, which numbered more Poles than Italians, was
ready for its task. The incursion was made from Geneva in February, 1834,
and ended disastrously. [395] Mazzini returned to Switzerland, where
hundreds of exiles, secure under the shelter of the Republic, devised
schemes of attack upon the despots of Europe, and even rioted in honour of
freedom in the streets of the Swiss cities which protected them. The effect
of the revolutionary movement of the time in consolidating the alliance of
the three Eastern Powers, so rudely broken by the Greek War of Liberation,
now came clearly into view. The sovereigns of Russia and Austria had met at
Mnchengrtz in Bohemia in the previous autumn, and, in concert with
Prussia, had resolved upon common principles of action if their
intervention should be required against disturbers of order. Notes were now
addressed from every quarter to the Swiss Government, requiring the
expulsion of all persons concerned in enterprises against the peace of
neighbouring States. Some resistance to this demand was made by individual
cantons; but the extravagance of many of the refugees themselves alienated
popular sympathy, and the greater part of them were forced to quit
Switzerland and to seek shelter in England or in America. With the
dispersion of the central band of exiles the open alliance which had
existed between the revolutionists of Europe gradually passed away. The
brotherhood of the kings had proved a stern reality, the brotherhood of the
peoples a delusive vision. Mazzini indeed, who up to this time had scarcely
emerged from the rabble of revolutionary leaders, was yet to prove how
deeply the genius, the elevation, the fervour of one man struggling against
the powers of the world may influence the history of his age; but the fire
that purified the fine gold charred and consumed the baser elements; and of
those who had hoped the most after 1830, many now sank into despair, or
gave up their lives to mere restless agitation and intrigue.

[Difficulties of Louis Philippe.]

[Insurrections, 1832-1834.]

[Repressive Laws, Sept., 1835.]

It was in France that the revolutionary movement was longest maintained.
During the first year of Louis Philippe's rule the opposition to his
government was inspired not so much by Republicanism as by a wild and
inconsiderate sympathy with the peoples who were fighting for liberty
elsewhere, and by a headstrong impulse to take up arms on their behalf. The
famous decree of the Convention in 1792, which promised the assistance of
France to every nation in revolt against its rulers, was in fact the true
expression of what was felt by a great part of the French nation in 1831;
and in the eyes of these enthusiasts it was the unpardonable offence of
Louis Philippe against the honour of France that he allowed Poland and
Italy to succumb without drawing his sword against their conquerors. That
France would have had to fight the three Eastern Powers combined, if it had
allied itself with those in revolt against any one of the three, passed for
nothing among the clamorous minority in the Chamber and among the orators
of Paris. The pacific policy of Casimir Perier was misunderstood; it passed
for mere poltroonery, when in fact it was the only policy that could save
France from a recurrence of the calamities of 1815. There were other causes
for the growing unpopularity of the King and of his Ministers, but the
first was their policy of peace. As the attacks of his opponents became
more and more bitter, the government of Casimir Perier took more and more
of a repressive character. Disappointment at the small results produced in
France itself by the Revolution of July worked powerfully in men's minds.
The forces that had been set in motion against Charles X. were not to be
laid at rest at the bidding of those who had profited by them, and a
Republican party gradually took definite shape and organisation. Tumult
succeeded tumult. In the summer of 1832 the funeral of General Lamarque, a
popular soldier, gave the signal for insurrection at Paris. There was
severe fighting in the streets; the National Guard, however, proved true to
the king, and shared with the army in the honours of its victory.
Repressive measures and an unbroken series of prosecutions against
seditious writers followed this first armed attack upon the established
government. The bitterness of the Opposition, the discontent of the working
classes, far surpassed anything that had been known under Charles X. The
whole country was agitated by revolutionary societies and revolutionary
propaganda. Disputes between masters and workmen, which, in consequence of
the growth of French manufacturing industry, now became both frequent and
important, began to take a political colour. Polish and Italian exiles
connected their own designs with attacks to be made upon the French
Government from within; and at length, in April, 1834, after the passing of
a law against trades-unions, the working classes of Lyons, who were on
strike against their employers, were induced to rise in revolt. After
several days' fighting the insurrection was suppressed. Simultaneous
outbreaks took place at St. Etienne, Grenoble, and many other places in the
south and centre of France; and on a report of the success of the
insurgents reaching Paris, the Republic was proclaimed and barricades were
erected. Again civil war raged in the streets, and again the forces of
Government gained the victory. A year more passed, during which the
investigations into the late revolt and the trial of a host of prisoners
served rather to agitate than to reassure the public mind; and in the
summer of 1835 an attempt was made upon the life of the King so terrible
and destructive in its effects as to amount to a public calamity. An
infernal machine composed of a hundred gun-barrels was fired by a Corsican
named Fieschi, as the King with a large suite was riding through the
streets of Paris on the anniversary of the Revolution of July. Fourteen
persons were killed on the spot, among whom was Mortier, one of the oldest
of the marshals of France; many others were fatally or severely injured.
The King, however, with his three sons, escaped unhurt, and the repressive
laws that followed this outrage marked the close of open revolutionary
agitation in France. Whether in consequence of the stringency of the new
laws, or of the exhaustion of a party discredited in public estimation by
the crimes of a few of its members and the recklessness of many more, the
constitutional monarchy of Louis Philippe now seemed to have finally
vanquished its opponents. Repeated attempts were made on the life of the
King, but they possessed for the most part little political significance.
Order was welcome to the nation at large; and though in the growth of a
socialistic theory and creed of life which dates from this epoch there lay
a danger to Governments greater than any purely political, Socialism was as
yet the affair of thinkers rather than of active workers either in the
industrial or in the Parliamentary world. The Government had beaten its
enemies outside the Chamber. Within the Chamber, the parties of extremes
ceased to exercise any real influence. Groups were formed, and rival
leaders played against one another for office; but they were separated by
no far-reaching differences of aim, and by no real antagonism of
constitutional principle. During the succeeding years of Louis Philippe's
reign there was little visible on the surface but the normal rivalry of
parties under a constitutional monarchy. The middle-class retained its
monopoly of power: authority, centralised as before, maintained its old
prestige in France, and softened opposition by judicious gifts of office
and emolument. Revolutionary passion seemed to have died away: and the
triumphs or reverses of party-leaders in the Chamber of Deputies succeeded
to the harassing and doubtful conflict between Government and insurrection.

[The English Reform movement.]

The near coincidence in time between the French Revolution of 1830 and the
passing of the English Reform Bill is apt to suggest to those who look for
the operation of wide general causes in history that the English Reform
movement should be viewed as a part of the great current of political
change which then traversed the continent of Europe. But on a closer
examination this view is scarcely borne out by facts, and the coincidence
of the two epochs of change appears to be little more than accidental. The
general unity that runs through the history of the more advanced
continental states is indeed stronger than appears to a superficial reader
of history; but this correspondence of tendency does not always embrace
England; on the contrary, the conditions peculiar to England usually
preponderate over those common to England and other countries, exhibiting
at times more of contrast than of similarity, as in the case of the
Napoleonic epoch, when the causes which drew together the western half of
the continent operated powerfully to exclude our own country from the
current influences of the time, and made the England of 1815, in opinion,
in religion, and in taste much more insular than the England of 1780. The
revolution which overthrew Charles X. did no doubt encourage and stimulate
the party of Reform in Great Britain; but, unlike the Belgian, the German,
and the Italian movements, the English Reform movement would unquestionably
have run the same course and achieved the same results even if the revolt
against the ordinances of Charles X. had been successfully repressed, and
the Bourbon monarchy had maintained itself in increased strength and
reputation. A Reform of Parliament had been acknowledged to be necessary
forty years before. Pitt had actually proposed it in 1785, and but for the
outbreak of the French Revolution would probably have carried it into
effect before the close of the last century. The development of English
manufacturing industry which took place between 1790 and 1830, accompanied
by the rapid growth of towns and the enrichment of the urban middle class,
rendered the design of Pitt, which would have transferred the
representation of the decayed boroughs to the counties alone, obsolete, and
made the claims of the new centres of population too strong to be resisted.
In theory the representative system of the country was completely
transformed; but never was a measure which seemed to open the way to such
boundless possibilities of change so thoroughly safe and so thoroughly
conservative. In spite of the increased influence won by the wealthy part
of the commercial classes, the House of Commons continued to be drawn
mainly from the territorial aristocracy. Cabinet after Cabinet was formed
with scarcely a single member included in it who was not himself a man of
title, or closely connected with the nobility: the social influence of rank
was not diminished; and although such measures as the Reform of Municipal
Corporations attested the increased energy of the Legislature, no party in
the House of Commons was weaker than that which supported the democratic
demands for the Ballot and for Triennial Parliaments, nor was the repeal of
the Corn Laws seriously considered until famine had made it inevitable.
That the widespread misery which existed in England after 1832, as the
result of the excessive increase of our population and the failure alike of
law and of philanthropy to keep pace with the exigencies of a vast
industrial growth, should have been so quietly borne, proves how great was
the success of the Reform Bill as a measure of conciliation between
Government and people. But the crowning justification of the changes made
in 1832, and the complete and final answer to those who had opposed them as
revolutionary, was not afforded until 1848, when, in the midst of European
convulsion, the monarchy and the constitution of England remained unshaken.
Bold as the legislation of Lord Grey appeared to men who had been brought
up amidst the reactionary influences dominant in England since 1793, the
Reform Bill belongs not to the class of great creative measures which have
inaugurated new periods in the life of nations, but to the class of those
which, while least affecting the general order of society, have most
contributed to political stability and to the avoidance of revolutionary
change.

CHAPTER XVII.

France and England after 1830--Affairs of Portugal--Don Miguel--Don Pedro
invades Portugal--Ferdinand of Spain--The Pragmatic Sanction--Death of
Ferdinand: Regency of Christina--The Constitution--Quadruple Alliance--
Miguel and Carlos expelled from Portugal--Carlos enters Spain--The Basque
Provinces--Carlist War: Zumalacarregui--The Spanish Government seeks French
assistance, which is refused--Constitution of 1837--End of the War--Regency
of Espartero--Isabella Queen--Affairs of the Ottoman Empire--Ibrahim
invades Syria; his victories--Rivalry of France and Russia at
Constantinople--Peace of Kutaya and Treaty of Unkiar Skelessi--Effect of
this Treaty--France and Mehemet Ali--Commerce of the Levant--Second War
between Mehemet and the Porte--Ottoman disasters--The Policy of the Great
Powers--Quadruple Treaty without France--Ibrahim expelled from Syria--Final
Settlement--Turkey after 1840--Attempted reforms of Reschid Pasha.

[France and England after 1830.]

Alliances of opinion usually cover the pursuit on one or both sides of some
definite interest; and to this rule the alliance which appeared to be
springing up between France and England after the changes of 1830 was no
exception. In the popular view, the bond of union between the two States
was a common attachment to principles of liberty; and on the part of the
Whig statesmen who now governed England this sympathy with free
constitutional systems abroad was certainly a powerful force: but other
motives than mere community of sentiment combined to draw the two
Governments together, and in the case of France these immediate interests
greatly outweighed any abstract preference for a constitutional ally. Louis
Philippe had an avowed and obstinate enemy in the Czar of Russia, who had
been his predecessor's friend: the Court of Vienna tolerated usurpers only
where worse mischief would follow from attacking them; Prussia had no
motive for abandoning the connexions which it had maintained since 1815. As
the union between the three Eastern Courts grew closer in consequence of
the outbreak of revolution beyond the borders of France, a good
understanding with Great Britain became more and more obviously the right
policy for Louis Philippe; on the other hand, the friendship of France
seemed likely to secure England from falling back into that isolated
position which it had occupied when the Holy Alliance laid down the law to
Europe, and averted the danger to which the Ottoman Empire, as well as the
peace of the world, had been exposed by the combination of French with
Russian schemes of aggrandizement. If Canning, left without an ally in
Europe, had called the new world into existence to redress the balance of
the old, his Whig successors might well look with some satisfaction on that
shifting of the weights which had brought over one of the Great Powers to
the side of England, and anticipate, in the concert of the two great
Western States, the establishment of a permanent force in European politics
which should hold in check the reactionary influences of Vienna and St.
Petersburg. To some extent these views were realised. A general relation of
friendliness was recognised as subsisting between the Governments of Paris
and London, and in certain European complications their intervention was
arranged in common. But even here the element of mistrust was seldom
absent; and while English Ministers jealously watched each action of their
neighbour, the French Government rarely allowed the ties of an informal
alliance to interfere with the prosecution of its own views. Although down
to the close of Louis Philippe's reign the good understanding between
England and France was still nominally in existence, all real confidence
had then long vanished; and on more than one occasion the preservation of
peace between the two nations had been seriously endangered.

[Affairs of Portugal, 1826-1830.]

It was in the establishment of the kingdom of Belgium that the combined
action of France and England produced its first and most successful result.
A second demand was made upon the Governments of the two constitutional
Powers by the conflicts which agitated the Spanish Peninsula, and which
were stimulated in the general interests of absolutism by both the Austrian
and the Russian Court. The intervention of Canning in 1826 on behalf of the
constitutional Regency of Portugal against the foreign supporters of Don
Miguel, the head of the clerical and reactionary party, had not permanently
restored peace to that country. Miguel indeed accepted the constitution,
and, after betrothing himself to the infant sovereign, Donna Maria, who was
still with her father Pedro, in Brazil, entered upon the Regency which his
elder brother had promised to him. But his actions soon disproved the
professions of loyalty to the constitution which he had made; and after
dissolving the Cortes, and re-assembling the medival Estates, he caused
himself to be proclaimed King (June, 1828). A reign of terror followed. The
constitutionalists were completely crushed. Miguel's own brutal violence
gave an example to all the fanatics and ruffians who surrounded him; and
after an unsuccessful appeal to arms, those of the adherents of Donna Maria
and the constitution who escaped from imprisonment or execution took refuge
in England or in the Azore islands, where Miguel had not been able to
establish his authority. Though Miguel was not officially recognised as
Sovereign by most of the foreign Courts, his victory was everywhere seen
with satisfaction by the partisans of absolutism; and in Great Britain,
where the Duke of Wellington was still in power, the precedent of Canning's
intervention was condemned, and a strict neutrality maintained. Not only
was all assistance refused to Donna Maria, but her adherents who had taken
refuge in England were prevented from making this country the basis of any
operations against the usurper.

[Invasion of Portugal by Pedro. July, 1832.]

Such was the situation of Portuguese affairs when the events of 1830
brought an entirely new spirit into the foreign policy of both England and
France. Miguel, however, had no inclination to adapt his own policy to the
change of circumstances; on the contrary, he challenged the hostility of
both governments by persisting in a series of wanton attacks upon English
and French subjects resident at Lisbon. Satisfaction was demanded, and
exacted by force. English and French squadrons successively appeared in the
Tagus. Lord Palmerston, now Foreign Secretary in the Ministry of Earl Grey,
was content with obtaining a pecuniary indemnity for his countrymen,
accompanied by a public apology from the Portuguese Government: the French
admiral, finding some difficulty in obtaining redress, carried off the best
ships of Don Miguel's navy. [396] A weightier blow was, however, soon to
fall upon the usurper. His brother, the Emperor Pedro, threatened with
revolution in Brazil, resolved to return to Europe and to enforce the
rights of his daughter to the throne of Portugal. Pedro arrived in London
in July, 1831, and was permitted by the Government to raise troops and to
secure the services of some of the best naval officers of this country. The
gathering place of his forces was Terceira, one of the Azore islands, and
in the summer of 1832 a sufficiently strong body of troops was collected to
undertake the reconquest of Portugal. A landing was made at Oporto, and
this city fell into the hands of Don Pedro without resistance. Miguel,
however, now marched against his brother, and laid siege to Oporto. For
nearly a year no progress was made by either side; at length the arrival of
volunteers from various countries, among whom was Captain Charles Napier,
enabled Pedro to divide his forces and to make a new attack on Portugal
from the south. Napier, in command of the fleet, annihilated the navy of
Don Miguel off St. Vincent; his colleague, Villa Flor, landed and marched
on Lisbon. The resistance of the enemy was overcome, and on the 28th of
July, 1833, Don Pedro entered the capital. But the war was not yet at an
end, for Miguel's cause was as closely identified with the interests of
European absolutism as that of his brother was with constitutional right,
and assistance both in troops and money continued to arrive at his camp.
The struggle threatened to prove a long and obstinate one, when a new turn
was given to events in the Peninsula by the death of Ferdinand, King of
Spain.

[Death of Ferdinand, Sept., 1833.]

Since the restoration of absolute Government in Spain in 1823, Ferdinand,
in spite of his own abject weakness and ignorance, had not given complete
satisfaction to the fanatics of the clerical party. Some vestiges of
statesmanship, some sense of political necessity, as well as the influence
of foreign counsellors, had prevented the Government of Madrid from
completely identifying itself with the monks and zealots who had first
risen against the constitution of 1820, and who now sought to establish the
absolute supremacy of the Church. The Inquisition had not been restored,
and this alone was enough to stamp the King as a renegade in the eyes of
the ferocious and implacable champions of medival bigotry. Under the name
of Apostolicals, these reactionaries had at times broken into open
rebellion. Their impatience had, however, on the whole been restrained by
the knowledge that in the King's brother and heir, Don Carlos, they had an
adherent whose devotion to the priestly cause was beyond suspicion, and who
might be expected soon to ascend the throne. Ferdinand had been thrice
married; he was childless; his state of health miserable; and his life
likely to be a short one. The succession to the throne of Spain had
moreover, since 1713, been governed by the Salic Law, so that even in the
event of Ferdinand leaving female issue Don Carlos would nevertheless
inherit the crown. These confident hopes were rudely disturbed by the
marriage of the King with his cousin Maria Christina of Naples, followed by
an edict, known as the Pragmatic Sanction, repealing the Salic Law which
had been introduced with the first Bourbon, and restoring the ancient
Castilian custom under which women were capable of succeeding to the crown.
A daughter, Isabella, was shortly afterwards born to the new Queen. On the
legality of the Pragmatic Sanction the opinions of publicists differed; it
was judged, however, by Europe at large not from the point of view of
antiquarian theory, but with direct reference to its immediate effect. The
three Eastern Courts emphatically condemned it, as an interference with
established monarchical right, and as a blow to the cause of European
absolutism through the alliance which it would almost certainly produce
between the supplanters of Don Carlos and the Liberals of the Spanish
Peninsula. [397] To the clerical and reactionary party at Madrid, it
amounted to nothing less than a sentence of destruction, and the utmost
pressure was brought to bear upon the weak and dying King with the object
of inducing him to undo the alleged wrong which he had done to his brother.
In a moment of prostration Ferdinand revoked the Pragmatic Sanction; but,
subsequently, regaining some degree of strength, he re-enacted it, and
appointed Christina Regent during the continuance of his illness. Don
Carlos, protesting against the violation of his rights, had betaken himself
to Portugal, where he made common cause with Miguel. His adherents had no
intention of submitting to the change of succession. Their resentment was
scarcely restrained during Ferdinand's life-time, and when, in September,
1833, his long-expected death took place, and the child Isabella was
declared Queen under the Regency of her mother, open rebellion broke out,
and Carlos was proclaimed King in several of the northern provinces.

[The Regency and the Carlists.]

[Quadruple Treaty, April 22, 1834.]

[Miguel and Carlos removed, May, 1834.]

For the moment the forces of the Regency seemed to be far superior to those
of the insurgents, and Don Carlos failed to take advantage of the first
outburst of enthusiasm and to place himself at the head of his followers.
He remained in Portugal, while Christina, as had been expected, drew nearer
to the Spanish Liberals, and ultimately called to power a Liberal minister,
Martinez de la Rosa, under whom a constitution was given to Spain by Royal
Statute (April 10, 1834). At the same time negotiations were opened with
Portugal and with the Western Powers, in the hope of forming an alliance
which should drive both Miguel and Carlos from the Peninsula. On the 22nd
of April, 1834, a Quadruple Treaty was signed at London, in which the
Spanish Government undertook to send an army into Portugal against Miguel,
the Court of Lisbon pledging itself in return to use all the means in its
power to expel Don Carlos from Portuguese territory. England engaged to
co-operate by means of its fleet. The assistance of France, if it should be
deemed necessary for the attainment of the objects of the Treaty, was to be
rendered in such manner as should be settled by common consent. In
pursuance of the policy of the Treaty, and even before the formal
engagement was signed, a Spanish division under General Rodil crossed the
frontier and marched against Miguel. The forces of the usurper were
defeated. The appearance of the English fleet and the publication of the
Treaty of Quadruple Alliance rendered further resistance hopeless, and on
the 22nd of May Miguel made his submission, and in return for a large
pension renounced all rights to the crown, and undertook to quit the
Peninsula for ever. Don Carlos, refusing similar conditions, went on board
an English ship, and was conducted to London. [398]

[Carlos appears in Spain.]

With respect to Portugal, the Quadruple Alliance had completely attained
its object; and in so far as the Carlist cause was strengthened by the
continuance of civil war in the neighbouring country, this source of
strength was no doubt withdrawn from it. But in its effect upon Don Carlos
himself the action of the Quadruple Alliance was worse than useless. While
fulfilling the letter of the Treaty, which stipulated for the expulsion of
the two pretenders from the Peninsula, the English Admiral had removed
Carlos from Portugal, where he was comparatively harmless, and had taken no
effective guarantee that he should not re-appear in Spain itself and
enforce his claim by arms. Carlos had not been made a prisoner of war; he
had made no promises and incurred no obligations; nor could the British
Government, after his arrival in this country, keep him in perpetual
restraint. Quitting England after a short residence, he travelled in
disguise through France, crossed the Pyrenees, and appeared on the 10th of
July, 1834, at the headquarters of the Carlist insurgents in Navarre.

[The Basque Provinces.]

In the country immediately below the western Pyrenees, the so-called Basque
Provinces, lay the chief strength of the Carlist rebellion. These
provinces, which were among the most thriving and industrious parts of
Spain, might seem by their very superiority an unlikely home for a movement
which was directed against everything favourable to liberty, tolerance, and
progress in the Spanish kingdom. But the identification of the Basques with
the Carlist cause was due in fact to local, not to general, causes; and in
fighting to impose a bigoted despot upon the Spanish people, they were in
truth fighting to protect themselves from a closer incorporation with
Spain. Down to the year 1812, the Basque provinces had preserved more than
half of the essentials of independence. Owing to their position on the
French frontier, the Spanish monarchy, while destroying all local
independence in the interior of Spain, had uniformly treated the Basques
with the same indulgence which the Government of Great Britain has shown to
the Channel Islands, and which the French monarchy, though in a less
degree, showed to the frontier province of Alsace in the seventeenth and
eighteenth centuries. The customs-frontier of the north of Spain was drawn
to the south of these districts. The inhabitants imported what they pleased
from France without paying any duties; while the heavy import-dues levied
at the border of the neighbouring Spanish provinces gave them the
opportunity of carrying on an easy and lucrative system of smuggling. The
local administration remained to a great extent in the hands of the people
themselves; each village preserved its active corporate life; and the
effect of this survival of a vigorous local freedom was seen in the
remarkable contrast described by travellers between the aspect of the
Basque districts and that of Spain at large. The Fueros, or local rights,
as the Basques considered them, were in reality, when viewed as part of the
order of the Spanish State, a series of exceptional privileges; and it was
inevitable that the framers of the Constitution of 1812, in their attempt
to create a modern administrative and political system doing justice to the
whole of the nation, should sweep away the distinctions which had hitherto
marked off one group of provinces from the rest of the community. The
continuance of war until the return of Ferdinand, and the overthrow of the
Constitution, prevented the plans of the Cortes from being at that time
carried into effect; but the revolution of 1820 brought them into actual
operation, and the Basques found themselves, as a result of the victory of
Liberal principles, compelled to pay duties on their imports, robbed of the
profits of their smuggling, and supplanted in the management of their local
affairs by an army of officials from Madrid. They had gained by the
Constitution little that they had not possessed before, and their losses
were immediate, tangible, and substantial. The result was, that although
the larger towns, like Bilbao, remained true to modern ideas, the country
districts, led chiefly by priests, took up arms on behalf of the absolute
monarchy, assisted the French in the restoration of despotism in 1823, and
remained the permanent enemies of the constitutional cause. [399] On the
death of Ferdinand they declared at once for Don Carlos, and rose in
rebellion against the Government of Queen Christina, by which they
considered the privileges of the Basque Provinces and the interests of
Catholic orthodoxy to be alike threatened.

[Carlist victories, 1834-5.]

There was little in the character of Don Carlos to stimulate the loyalty
even of his most benighted partizans. Of military and political capacity he
was totally destitute, and his continued absence in Portugal when the
conflict had actually begun proved him to be wanting in the natural
impulses of a brave man. It was, however, his fortune to be served by a
soldier of extraordinary energy and skill; and the first reverses of the
Carlists were speedily repaired, and a system of warfare organised which
made an end of the hopes of easy conquest with which the Government of
Christina had met the insurrection. Fighting in a worthless cause, and
commanding resources scarcely superior to those of a brigand chief, the
Carlist leader, Zumalacarregui, inflicted defeat after defeat upon the
generals who were sent to destroy him. The mountainous character of the
country and the universal hostility of the inhabitants made the exertions
of a regular soldiery useless against the alternate flights and surprises
of men who knew every mountain track, and who gained information of the
enemy's movements from every cottager. Terror was added by Zumalacarregui
to all his other methods for demoralising his adversary. In the exercise of
reprisals he repeatedly murdered all his prisoners in cold blood, and gave
to the war so savage a character that foreign Governments at last felt
compelled to urge upon the belligerents some regard for the usages of the
civilised world. The appearance of Don Carlos himself in the summer of 1834
raised still higher the confidence already inspired by the victories of his
general. It was in vain that the old constitutionalist soldier, Mina, who
had won so great a name in these provinces in 1823, returned after long
exile to the scene of his exploits. Enfeebled and suffering, he was no
longer able to place himself at the head of his troops, and he soon sought
to be relieved from a hopeless task. His successor, the War Minister
Valdes, took the field announcing his determination to act upon a new
system, and to operate with his troops in mass instead of pursuing the
enemy's bands with detachments. The result of this change of tactics was a
defeat more ruinous and complete than had befallen any of Valdes'
predecessors. He with difficulty withdrew the remainder of his army from
the insurgent provinces; and the Carlist leader master of the open country
up to the borders of Castile, prepared to cross the Ebro and to march upon
Madrid. [400]

[Request to France for assistance, May, 1835.]

The Ministers of Queen Christina, who had up till this time professed
themselves confident in their power to deal with the insurrection, could
now no longer conceal the real state of affairs. Valdes himself declared
that the rebellion could not be subdued without foreign aid; and after
prolonged discussion in the Cabinet it was determined to appeal to France
for armed assistance. The flight of Don Carlos from England had already
caused an additional article to be added to the Treaty of the Quadruple
Alliance, in which France undertook so to watch the frontier of the
Pyrenees that no reinforcements or munition of war should reach the
Carlists from that side, while England promised to supply the troops of
Queen Christina with arms and stores, and, if necessary, to render
assistance with a naval force (18th August, 1834). The foreign supplies
sent to the Carlists had thus been cut off both by land and sea; but more
active assistance seemed indispensable if Madrid was to be saved from
falling into the enemy's hands. The request was made to Louis Philippe's
Government to occupy the Basque Provinces with a corps of twelve thousand
men. Reasons of weight might be addressed to the French Court in favour of
direct intervention. The victory of Don Carlos would place upon the throne
of Spain a representative of all those reactionary influences throughout
Europe which were in secret or in open hostility to the House of Orleans,
and definitely mark the failure of that policy which had led France to
combine with England in expelling Don Miguel from Portugal. On the other
hand, the experience gained from earlier military enterprises in Spain
might well deter even bolder politicians than those about Louis Philippe
from venturing upon a task whose ultimate issues no man could confidently
forecast. Napoleon had wrecked his empire in the struggle beyond the
Pyrenees not less than in the march to Moscow: and the expedition of 1823,
though free from military difficulties, had exposed France to the
humiliating responsibility for every brutal act of a despotism which, in
the very moment of its restoration, had scorned the advice of its
restorers. The constitutional Government which invoked French assistance
might, moreover, at any moment give place to a democratic faction which
already harassed it within the Cortes, and which, in its alliance with the
populace in many of the great cities, threatened to throw Spain into
anarchy, or to restore the ill-omened constitution of 1812. But above all,
the attitude of the three Eastern Powers bade the ruler of France hesitate
before committing himself to a military occupation of Spanish territory.
Their sympathies were with Don Carlos, and the active participation of
France in the quarrel might possibly call their opposing forces into the
field and provoke a general war. In view of the evident dangers arising out
of the proposed intervention, the French Government, taking its stand on
that clause of the Quadruple Treaty which provided that the assistance of
France should be rendered in such manner as might be agreed upon by all the
parties to the Treaty, addressed itself to Great Britain, inquiring whether
this country would undertake a joint responsibility in the enterprise and
share with France the consequences to which it might give birth. Lord
Palmerston in reply declined to give the assurance required. He stated that
no objection would be raised by the British Government to the entry of
French troops into Spain, but that such intervention must be regarded as
the work of France alone, and be undertaken by France at its own peril.
This answer sufficed for Louis Philippe and his Ministers. The Spanish
Government was informed that the grant of military assistance was
impossible, and that the entire public opinion of France would condemn so
dangerous an undertaking. As a proof of goodwill, permission was given to
Queen Christina to enrol volunteers both in England and France. Arms were
supplied; and some thousands of needy or adventurous men ultimately made
their way from our own country as well as from France, to earn under
Colonel De Lacy Evans and other leaders a scanty harvest of profit or
renown.

[Continuance of the war.]

The first result of the rejection of the Spanish demand for the direct
intervention of France was the downfall of the Minister by whom this demand
had been made. His successor, Toreno, though a well-known patriot, proved
unable to stem the tide of revolution that was breaking over the country.
City after city set up its own Junta, and acted as if the central
government had ceased to exist. Again the appeal for help was made to Louis
Philippe, and now, not so much to avert the victory of Don Carlos as to
save Spain from anarchy and from the constitution of 1812. Before an answer
could arrive, Toreno in his turn had passed away. Mendizabal, a banker who
had been entrusted with financial business at London, and who had entered
into friendly relations with Lord Palmerston, was called to office, as a
politician acceptable to the democratic party, and the advocate of a close
connection with England rather than with France. In spite of the confident
professions of the Minister, and in spite of some assistance actually
rendered by the English fleet, no real progress was made in subduing the
Carlists, or in restoring administrative and financial order. The death of
Zumalacarregui, who was forced by Don Carlos to turn northwards and besiege
Bilbao instead of marching upon Madrid immediately after his victories, had
checked the progress of the rebellion at a critical moment; but the
Government, distracted and bankrupt, could not use the opportunity which
thus offered itself, and the war soon blazed out anew not only in the
Basque Provinces but throughout the north of Spain. For year after year the
monotonous struggle continued, while Cortes succeeded Cortes and faction
supplanted faction, until there remained scarcely an officer who had not
lost his reputation or a politician who was not useless and discredited.

[Constitution of 1837.]

[End of the war, Sept., 1839.]

The Queen Regent, who from the necessities of her situation had for awhile
been the representative of the popular cause, gradually identified herself
with the interests opposed to democratic change; and although her name was
still treated with some respect, and her policy was habitually attributed
to the misleading advice of courtiers, her real position was well
understood at Madrid, and her own resistance was known to be the principal
obstacle to the restoration of the Constitution of 1812. It was therefore
determined to overcome this resistance by force; and on the 13th of August,
1836, a regiment of the garrison of Madrid, won over by the Exaltados,
marched upon the palace of La Granja, invaded the Queen's apartments, and
compelled her to sign an edict restoring the Constitution of 1812 until the
Cortes should establish that or some other. Scenes of riot and murder
followed in the capital. Men of moderate opinions, alarmed at the approach
of anarchy, prepared to unite with Don Carlos. King Louis Philippe, who had
just consented to strengthen the French legion by the addition of some
thousands of trained soldiers, now broke entirely from the Spanish
connection, and dismissed his Ministers who refused to acquiesce in this
change of policy. Meanwhile the Eastern Powers and all rational partisans
of absolutism besought Don Carlos to give those assurances which would
satisfy the wavering mass among his opponents, and place him on the throne
without the sacrifice of any right that was worth preserving. It seemed as
if the opportunity was too clear to be misunderstood; but the obstinacy and
narrowness of Don Carlos were proof against every call of fortune. Refusing
to enter into any sort of engagement, he rendered it impossible for men to
submit to him who were not willing to accept absolutism pure and simple. On
the other hand, a majority of the Cortes, whose eyes were now opened to the
dangers around them, accepted such modifications of the Constitution of
1812 that political stability again appeared possible (June, 1837). The
danger of a general transference of all moderate elements in the State to
the side of Don Carlos was averted; and, although the Carlist armies took
up the offensive, menaced the capital, and made incursions into every part
of Spain, the darkest period of the war was now over; and when, after
undertaking in person the march upon Madrid, Don Carlos swerved aside and
ultimately fell back in confusion to the Ebro, the suppression of the
rebellion became a certainty. General Espartero, with whom such distinction
remained as was to be gathered in this miserable war, forced back the
adversary step by step, and carried fire and sword into the Basque
Provinces, employing a system of devastation which alone seemed capable of
exhausting the endurance of the people. Reduced to the last extremity, the
Carlist leaders turned their arms against one another. The priests
excommunicated the generals, and the generals shot the priests; and
finally, on the 14th September, after the surrender of almost all his
troops to Espartero, Don Carlos crossed the French frontier, and the
conflict which during six years had barbarised and disgraced the Spanish
nation, reached its close.

[End of the Regency, Isabella, Queen, Nov., 1843.]

The triumph of Queen Christina over her rivals was not of long duration.
Confronted by a strong democratic party both in the Cortes and in the
country, she endeavoured in vain to govern by the aid of Ministers of her
own choice. Her popularity had vanished away. The scandals of her private
life gave just offence to the nation, and fatally weakened her political
authority. Forced by insurrection to bestow office on Espartero, as the
chief of the Progressist party, she found that the concessions demanded by
this general were more than she could grant, and in preference to
submitting to them she resigned the Regency, and quitted Spain (Oct.,
1840). Espartero, after some interval, was himself appointed Regent by the
Cortes. For two years he maintained himself in power, then in his turn he
fell before the combined attack of his political opponents and the extreme
men of his own party, and passed into exile. There remained in Spain no
single person qualified to fill the vacant Regency, and in default of all
other expedients the young princess Isabella, who was now in her fourteenth
year, was declared of full age, and placed on the throne (Nov., 1843).
Christina returned to Madrid. After some rapid changes of Ministry, a more
durable Government was formed from the Moderado party under General
Narvaez; and in comparison with the period that had just ended, the first
few years of the new reign were years of recovery and order.

[War between Mehemet Ali and the Porte, 1832.]

The withdrawal of Louis Philippe from his engagements after the
capitulation of Maria Christina to the soldiery at La Granja in 1836 had
diminished the confidence placed in the King by the British Ministry; but
it had not destroyed the relations of friendship existing between the two
Governments. Far more serious causes of difference arose out of the course
of events in the East, and the extension of the power of Mehemet Ali,
Viceroy of Egypt. The struggle between Mehemet and his sovereign, long
foreseen, broke out in the year 1832. After the establishment of the
Hellenic Kingdom, the island of Crete had been given to Mehemet in return
for his services to the Ottoman cause by land and sea. This concession,
however, was far from satisfying the ambition of the Viceroy, and a quarrel
with Abdallah, Pasha of Acre, gave him the opportunity of throwing an army
into Palestine without directly rebelling against his sovereign (Nov.,
1831). Ibrahim, in command of his father's forces, laid siege to Acre; and
had this fortress at once fallen, it would probably have been allowed by
the Sultan to remain in its conqueror's hands as an addition to his own
province, since the Turkish army was not ready for war, and it was no
uncommon thing in the Ottoman Empire for one provincial governor to possess
himself of territory at the expense of another. So obstinate, however, was
the defence of Acre that time was given to the Porte to make preparations
for war; and in the spring of 1832, after the issue of a proclamation
declaring Mehemet and his son to be rebels, a Turkish army led by Hussein
Pasha entered Syria.

[Ibrahim conquers Syria and Asia Minor.]

Ibrahim, while the siege of Acre was proceeding, had overrun the
surrounding country. He was now in possession of all the interior of
Palestine, and the tribes of Lebanon had joined him in the expectation of
gaining relief from the burdens of Turkish misgovernment. The fall of Acre,
while the relieving army was still near Antioch, enabled him to throw his
full strength against his opponent in the valley of the Orontes. It was the
intention of the Turkish general, whose forces, though superior in number,
had not the European training of Ibrahim's regiments, to meet the assault
of the Egyptians in an entrenched camp near Hama. The commander of the
vanguard, however, pushed forward beyond this point, and when far in
advance of the main body of the army was suddenly attacked by Ibrahim at
Homs. Taken at a moment of complete disorder, the Turks were put to the
rout. Their overthrow and flight so alarmed the general-in-chief that he
determined to fall back upon Aleppo, leaving Antioch and all the valley of
the Orontes to the enemy. Aleppo was reached, but the governor, won over by
Ibrahim, closed the gates of the city against the famishing army, and
forced Hussein to continue his retreat to the mountains which form the
barrier between Syria and Cilicia. Here, at the pass of Beilan, he was
attacked by Ibrahim, outmanoeuvred, and forced to retreat with heavy loss
(July 29). The pursuit was continued through the province of Cilicia.
Hussein's army, now completely demoralised, made its escape to the centre
of Asia Minor; the Egyptian, after advancing as far as Mount Taurus and
occupying the passes in this range, took up his quarters in the conquered
country in order to refresh his army and to await reinforcements. After two
months' halt he renewed his march, crossed Mount Taurus and occupied
Konieh, the capital of this district. Here the last and decisive blow was
struck. A new Turkish army, led by Reschid Pasha, Ibrahim's colleague in
the siege of Missolonghi, advanced from the north. Against his own advice,
Reschid was compelled by orders from Constantinople to risk everything in
an engagement. He attacked Ibrahim at Konieh on the 21st of December, and
was completely defeated. Reschid himself was made a prisoner; his army
dispersed; the last forces of the Sultan were exhausted, and the road to
the Bosphorus lay open before the Egyptian invader.

[Russian aid offered to the Sultan.]

[Peace of Kutaya, April, 1833.]

In this extremity the Sultan looked around for help; nor were offers of
assistance wanting. The Emperor Nicholas had since the Treaty of Adrianople
assumed the part of the magnanimous friend; his belief was that the Ottoman
Empire might by judicious management and without further conquest be
brought into a state of habitual dependence upon Russia; and before the
result of the battle of Konieh was known General Muravieff had arrived at
Constantinople bringing the offer of Russian help both by land and sea, and
tendering his own personal services in the restoration of peace. Mahmud had
to some extent been won over by the Czar's politic forbearance in the
execution of the Treaty of Adrianople. His hatred of Mehemet Ali was a
consuming passion; and in spite of the general conviction both of his
people and of his advisers that no possible concession to a rebellious
vassal could be so fatal as the protection of the hereditary enemy of
Islam, he was disposed to accept the Russian tender of assistance. As a
preliminary, Muravieff was sent to Alexandria with permission to cede Acre
to Mehemet Ali, if in return the Viceroy would make over his fleet to the
Sultan. These were conditions on which no reasonable man could have
expected that Mehemet would make peace; and the intention of the Russian
Court probably was that Muravieff's mission should fail. The envoy soon
returned to Constantinople announcing that his terms were rejected. Mahmud
now requested that Russian ships might be sent to the Bosphorus, and to the
dismay of the French and English embassies a Russian squadron appeared
before the capital. Admiral Roussin, the French ambassador, addressed a
protest to the Sultan and threatened to leave Constantinople. His
remonstrances induced Mahmud to consent to some more serious negotiation
being opened with Mehemet Ali. A French envoy was authorised to promise the
Viceroy the governorship of Tripoli in Syria as well as Acre; his
overtures, however, were not more acceptable than those of Muravieff, and
Mehemet openly declared that if peace were not concluded on his own terms
within six weeks, he should order Ibrahim, who had halted at Kutaya, to
continue his march on the Bosphorus. Thoroughly alarmed at this threat, and
believing that no Turkish force could keep Ibrahim out of the capital,
Mahmud applied to Russia for more ships and also for troops. Again Admiral
Roussin urged upon the Sultan that if Syria could be reconquered only by
Russian forces it was more than lost to the Porte. His arguments were
supported by the Divan, and with such effect that a French diplomatist was
sent to Ibrahim with power to negotiate for peace on any terms.
Preliminaries were signed at Kutaya under French mediation on the 10th of
April, 1833, by which the Sultan made over to his vassal not only the whole
of Syria but the province of Adana which lies between Mount Taurus and the
Mediterranean. After some delay these Preliminaries were ratified by
Mahmud; and Ibrahim, after his dazzling success both in war and in
diplomacy, commenced the evacuation of northern Anatolia.

[Treaty of Unkiar Skelessi, July, 1833.]

For the moment it appeared that French influence had decisively prevailed
at Constantinople, and that the troops of the Czar had been summoned from
Sebastopol only to be dismissed with the ironical compliments of those who
were most anxious to get rid of them. But this was not really the case.
Whether the fluctuations in the Sultan's policy had been due to mere fear
and irresolution, or whether they had to some extent proceeded from the
desire to play off one Power against another, it was to Russia, not France,
that his final confidence was given. The soldiers of the Czar were encamped
by the side of the Turks on the eastern shore of the Bosphorus; his ships
lay below Constantinople. Here on the 8th of July a Treaty was signed at
the palace of Unkiar Skelessi, [401] in which Russia and Turkey entered
into a defensive alliance of the most intimate character, each Power
pledging itself to render assistance to the other, not only against the
attack of an external enemy, but in every event where its peace and
security might be endangered. Russia undertook, in cases where its support
should be required, to provide whatever amount of troops the Sultan should
consider necessary both by sea and land, the Porte being charged with no
part of the expense beyond that of the provisioning of the troops. The
duration of the Treaty was fixed in the first instance for eight years. A
secret article, which, however, was soon afterwards published, declared
that, in order to diminish the burdens of the Porte, the Czar would not
demand the material help to which the Treaty entitled him; while, in
substitution for such assistance, the Porte undertook, when Russia should
be at war, to close the Dardanelles to the war-ships of all nations.

[Effect of this Treaty.]

By the Treaty of Unkiar Skelessi, Russia came nearer than it has at any
time before or since to that complete ascendency at Constantinople which
has been the modern object of its policy. The success of its diplomatists
had in fact been too great; for, if the abstract right of the Sultan to
choose his own allies had not yet been disputed by Europe at large, the
clause in the Treaty which related to the Dardanelles touched the interests
of every Power which possessed a naval station in the Mediterranean. By the
public law of Europe the Black Sea, which until the eighteenth century was
encompassed entirely by the Sultan's territory, formed no part of the open
waters of the world, but a Turkish lake to which access was given through
the Dardanelles only at the pleasure of the Porte. When, in the eighteenth
century, Russia gained a footing on the northern shore of the Euxine, this
carried with it no right to send war-ships through the straits into the
Mediterranean, nor had any Power at war with Russia the right to send a
fleet into the Black Sea otherwise than by the Sultan's consent. The Treaty
of Unkiar Skelessi, in making Turkey the ally of Russia against all its
enemies, converted the entrance to the Black Sea into a Russian fortified
post, from behind which Russia could freely send forth its ships of war
into the Mediterranean, while its own ports and arsenals remained secure
against attack. England and France, which were the States whose interests
were principally affected, protested against the Treaty, and stated they
reserved to themselves the right of taking such action in regard to it as
occasion might demand. Nor did the opposition rest with the protests of
diplomatists. The attention both of the English nation and of its
Government was drawn far more than hitherto to the future of the Ottoman
Empire. Political writers exposed with unwearied vigour, and not without
exaggeration, the designs of the Court of St. Petersburg in Asia as well as
in Europe; and to this time, rather than to any earlier period, belongs the
first growth of that strong national antagonism to Russia which found its
satisfaction in the Crimean War, and which has by no means lost its power
at the present day.

[France and Mehemet Ali.]

In desiring to check the extension of Russia's influence in the Levant,
Great Britain and France were at one. The lines of policy, however,
followed by these two States were widely divergent. Great Britain sought to
maintain the Sultan's power in its integrity; France became in an
increasing degree the patron and the friend of Mehemet Ali. Since the
expedition of Napoleon to Egypt in 1798, which was itself the execution of
a design formed in the reign of Louis XVI., Egypt had largely retained its
hold on the imagination of the leading classes in France. Its monuments,
its relics of a mighty past, touched a livelier chord among French men of
letters and science than India has at any time found among ourselves; and
although the hope of national conquest vanished with Napoleon's overthrow,
Egypt continued to afford a field of enterprise to many a civil and
military adventurer. Mehemet's army and navy were organised by French
officers; he was surrounded by French agents and men of business; and after
the conquest of Algiers had brought France on to the southern shore of the
Mediterranean, the advantages of a close political relation with Egypt did
not escape the notice of statesmen who saw in Gibraltar and Malta the most
striking evidences of English maritime power. Moreover the personal fame of
Mehemet strongly affected French opinion. His brilliant military reforms,
his vigorous administration, and his specious achievements in finance
created in the minds of those who were too far off to know the effects of
his tyranny the belief that at the hands of this man the East might yet
awaken to new life. Thus, from a real conviction of the superiority of
Mehemet's rule over that of the House of Osman no less than from
considerations of purely national policy, the French Government, without
any public or official bond of union, gradually became the acknowledged
supporters of the Egyptian conqueror, and connected his interests with
their own.

[Rule of Mehemet and Ibrahim.]

Sultan Mahmud had ratified the Preliminaries of Kutaya with wrath in his
heart; and from this time all his energies were bent upon the creation of a
force which should wrest back the lost provinces and take revenge upon his
rebellious vassal. As eager as Mehemet himself to reconstruct his form of
government upon the models of the West, though far less capable of
impressing upon his work the stamp of a single guiding will, thwarted
moreover by the jealous interference of Russia whenever his reforms seemed
likely to produce any important result, he nevertheless succeeded in
introducing something of European system and discipline into his army under
the guidance of foreign soldiers, among whom was a man then little known,
but destined long afterwards to fill Europe with his fame, the Prussian
staff-officer Moltke. On the other side Mehemet and Ibrahim knew well that
the peace was no more than an armed truce, and that what had been won by
arms could only be maintained by constant readiness to meet attack. Under
pressure of this military necessity, Ibrahim sacrificed whatever sources of
strength were open to him in the hatred borne by his new subjects to the
Turkish yoke, and in their hopes of relief from oppression under his own
rule. Welcomed at first as a deliverer, he soon proved a heavier
task-master than any who had gone before him. The conscription was
rigorously enforced; taxation became more burdensome; the tribes who had
enjoyed a wild independence in the mountains were disarmed and reduced to
the level of their fellow-subjects. Thus the discontent which had so
greatly facilitated the conquest of the border-provinces soon turned
against the conqueror himself, and one uprising after another shook
Ibrahim's hold upon Mount Lebanon and the Syrian desert. The Sultan watched
each outbreak against his adversary with grim joy, impatient for the moment
when the re-organisation of his own forces should enable him to re-enter
the field and to strike an overwhelming blow.

[The commerce of the Levant.]

With all its characteristics of superior intelligence in the choice of
means, the system of Mehemet All was in its end that of the genuine
Oriental despot. His final object was to convert as many as possible of his
subjects into soldiers, and to draw into his treasury the profits of the
labour of all the rest. With this aim he gradually ousted from their rights
of proprietorship the greater part of the land-owners of Egypt, and finally
proclaimed the entire soil to be State-domain, appropriating at prices
fixed by himself the whole of its produce. The natural commercial
intercourse of his dominions gave place to a system of monopolies carried
on by the Government itself. Rapidly as this system, which was introduced
into the newly-conquered provinces, filled the coffers of Mehemet Ali, it
offered to the Sultan, whose paramount authority was still acknowledged,
the means of inflicting a deadly injury upon him by a series of commercial
treaties with the European Powers, granting to western traders a free
market throughout the Ottoman Empire. Resistance to such a measure would
expose Mehemet to the hostility of the whole mercantile interest of Europe;
submission to it would involve the loss of a great part of that revenue on
which his military power depended. It was probably with this result in
view, rather than from any more obvious motive, that in the year 1838 the
Sultan concluded a new commercial Treaty with England, which was soon
followed by similar agreements with other States.

[Campaign of Nissib, June, 1839.]

The import of the Sultan's commercial policy was not lost upon Mehemet, who
had already determined to declare himself independent. He saw that war was
inevitable, and bade Ibrahim collect his forces in the neighbourhood of
Aleppo, while the generals of the Sultan massed on the upper Euphrates the
troops that had been successfully employed in subduing the wild tribes of
Kurdistan. The storm was seen to be gathering, and the representatives of
foreign Powers urged the Sultan, but in vain, to refrain from an enterprise
which might shatter his empire. Mahmud was now a dying man. Exhausted by
physical excess and by the stress and passion of his long reign, he bore in
his heart the same unquenchable hatreds as of old; and while assuring the
ambassadors of his intention to maintain the peace, he despatched a letter
to his commander-in-chief, without the knowledge of any single person,
ordering him to commence hostilities. The Turkish army crossed the frontier
on the 23rd of May, 1839. In the operations which followed, the advice and
protests of Moltke and the other European officers at head-quarters were
persistently disregarded. The Turks were outmanoeuvred and cut off from
their communications, and on the 24th of June the onslaught of Ibrahim
swept them from their position at Nissib in utter rout. The whole of their
artillery and stores fell into the hands of the enemy: the army dispersed.
Mahmud did not live to hear of the catastrophe. Six days after the battle
of Nissib was fought, and while the messenger who bore the news was still
in Anatolia, he expired, leaving the throne to his son, Abdul Medjid, a
youth of sixteen. Scarcely had the new Sultan been proclaimed when it
became known that the Admiral, Achmet Fewzi, who had been instructed to
attack the Syrian coast, had sailed into the port of Alexandria, and handed
over the Turkish fleet to Mehemet Ali himself.

[Relations of the Powers to Mehemet.]

[Quadruple Treaty without France. July, 1840.]

The very suddenness of these disasters, which left the Ottoman Empire
rulerless and without defence by land or sea, contributed ultimately to its
preservation, inasmuch as it impelled the Powers to combined action, which,
under less urgent pressure, would probably not have been attainable. On the
announcement of the exorbitant conditions of peace demanded by Mehemet, the
ambassadors addressed a collective note to the Divan, requesting that no
answer might be made until the Courts had arrived at some common
resolution. Soon afterwards the French and English fleets appeared at the
Dardanelles, nominally to protect Constantinople against the attack of the
Viceroy, in reality to guard against any sudden movement on the part of
Russia. This display of force was, however, not necessary, for the Czar, in
spite of some expressions to the contrary, had already convinced himself
that it was impossible to act upon the Treaty of Unkiar Skelessi and to
make the protectorate of Turkey the affair of Russia alone. The tone which
had been taken by the English Government during the last preceding years
proved that any attempt to exercise exclusive power at Constantinople would
have been followed by war with Great Britain, in which most, if not all, of
the European Powers would have stood on the side of the latter. Abandoning
therefore the hope of attaining sole control, the Russian Government
addressed itself to the task of widening as far as possible the existing
divergence between England and France. Nor was this difficult. The Cabinet
of the Tuileries desired to see Mehemet Ali issue with increased strength
from the conflict, or even to establish his dynasty at Constantinople in
place of the House of Osman. Lord Palmerston, always jealous and suspicious
of Louis Philippe, refused to believe that the growth of Russian power
could be checked by dividing the Ottoman Empire, or that any system of
Eastern policy could be safely based on the personal qualities of a ruler
now past his seventieth year. [402] He had moreover his own causes of
discontent with Mehemet. The possibility of establishing an overland route
to India either by way of the Euphrates or of the Red Sea had lately been
engaging the attention of the English Government, and Mehemet had not
improved his position by raising obstacles to either line of passage. It
was partly in consequence of the hostility of Mehemet, who was now master
of a great part of Arabia, and of his known devotion to French interests,
that the port of Aden in the Red Sea was at this time occupied by England.
If, while Russia accepted the necessity of combined European action and
drew nearer to its rival, France persisted in maintaining the claim of
the Viceroy to extended dominion, the exclusion of France from the
European concert was the only possible result. There was no doubt as to
the attitude of the remaining Powers. Metternich, whether from genuine
pedantry, or in order to avoid the expression of those fears of Russia
which really governed his Eastern policy, repeated his threadbare
platitudes on the necessity of supporting legitimate dynasties against
rebels, and spoke of the victor of Konieh and Nissib as if he had been a
Spanish constitutionalist or a recalcitrant German professor. The Court
of Berlin followed in the same general course. In all Europe Mehemet Ali
had not a single ally, with the exception of the Government of Louis
Philippe. Under these circumstances it was of little avail to the Viceroy
that his army stood on Turkish soil without a foe before it, and that the
Sultan's fleet lay within his own harbour of Alexandria. The intrigues by
which he hoped to snatch a hasty peace from the inexperience of the young
Sultan failed, and he learnt in October that no arrangement which he
might make with the Porte without the concurrence of the Powers would be
recognised as valid. In the meantime Russia was suggesting to the English
Government one project after another for joint military action with the
object of driving Mehemet from Syria and restoring this province to the
Porte; and at the beginning of the following year it was determined on
Metternich's proposition that a Conference should forthwith be held in
London for the settlement of Eastern affairs. The irreconcilable
difference between the intentions of France and those of the other Powers
at once became evident. France proposed that all Syria and Egypt should
be given in hereditary dominion to Mehemet Ali, with no further
obligation towards the Porte than the payment of a yearly tribute. The
counter-proposal of England was that Mehemet, recognising the Sultan's
authority, should have the hereditary government of Egypt alone, that he
should entirely withdraw from all Northern Syria, and hold Palestine only
as an ordinary governor appointed by the Porte for his lifetime. To this
proposition all the Powers with the exception of France gave their
assent. Continued negotiation only brought into stronger relief the
obstinacy of Lord Palmerston, and proved the impossibility of attaining
complete agreement. At length, when it had been discovered that the
French Cabinet was attempting to conduct a separate mediation, the Four
Powers, without going through the form of asking for French sanction,
signed on the 15th of July a Treaty with the Sultan pledging themselves
to enforce upon Mehemet Ali the terms arranged. The Sultan undertook in
the first instance to offer Mehemet Egypt in perpetuity and southern
Syria for his lifetime. If this offer was not accepted within ten days,
Egypt alone was to be offered. If at the end of twenty days Mehemet still
remained obstinate, that offer in its turn was to be withdrawn, and the
Sultan and the Allies were to take such measures as the interests of the
Ottoman Empire might require. [403]

[Warlike spirit in France, 1840.]

The publication of this Treaty, excluding France as it did from the concert
of Europe, produced a storm of indignation at Paris. Thiers, who more than
any man had by his writings stimulated the spirit of aggressive warfare
among the French people and revived the worship of Napoleon, was now at the
head of the Government. His jealousy for the prestige of France, his
comparative indifference to other matters when once the national honour
appeared to be committed, his sanguine estimate of the power of his
country, rendered him a peculiarly dangerous Minister at the existing
crisis. It was not the wrongs or the danger of Mehemet Ali, but the slight
offered to France, and the revived League of the Powers which had humbled
it in 1814, that excited the passion of the Minister and the nation. Syria
was forgotten; the cry was for the recovery of the frontier of the Rhine,
and for revenge for Waterloo. New regiments were enrolled, the fleet
strengthened, and the long-delayed fortification of Paris begun. Thiers
himself probably looked forward to a campaign in Italy, anticipating that
successfully conducted by Napoleon III. in 1859, rather than to an attack
upon Prussia; but the general opinion both in France itself and in other
states was that, if war should break out, an invasion of Germany was
inevitable. The prospect of this invasion roused in a manner little
expected the spirit of the German people. Even in the smaller states, and
in the Rhenish provinces themselves, which for twenty years had shared the
fortunes of France, and in which the introduction of Prussian rule in 1814
had been decidedly unpopular, a strong national movement carried everything
before it; and the year 1840 added to the patriotic minstrelsy of Germany a
war-song, written by a Rhenish citizen, not less famous than those of 1813
and 1870. [404] That there were revolutionary forces smouldering throughout
Europe, from which France might in a general war have gained some
assistance, the events of 1848 sufficiently proved; but to no single
Government would a revolutionary war have been fraught with more imminent
peril than to that of France itself, and to no one was this conviction more
habitually present than to King Louis Philippe. Relying upon his influence
within the Chamber of Deputies, itself a body representing the wealth and
the caution rather than the hot spirit of France, the King refused to read
at the opening of the session in October the speech drawn up for him by
Thiers, and accepted the consequent resignation of the Ministry. Guizot,
who was ambassador in London, and an advocate for submission to the will of
Europe, was called to office, and succeeded after long debate in gaining a
vote of confidence from the Chamber. Though preparations for war continued,
a policy of peace was now assured. Mehemet Ali was left to his fate; and
the stubborn assurance of Lord Palmerston, which had caused so much
annoyance to the English Ministry itself, received a striking justification
in the face of all Europe.

[Ibrahim expelled from Syria, Sept.-Nov., 1840.]

[Final settlement, Feb., 1841.]

[The Dardanelles.]

The operations of the Allies against Mehemet Ali had now begun. While
Prussia kept guard on the Rhine, and Russia undertook to protect
Constantinople against any forward movement of Ibrahim, an Anglo-Austrian
naval squadron combined with a Turkish land-force in attacking the Syrian
coast-towns. The mountain-tribes of the interior were again in revolt. Arms
supplied to them by the Allies, and the insurrection soon spread over the
greater part of Syria. Ibrahim prepared for an obstinate defence, but his
dispositions were frustrated by the extension of the area of conflict, and
he was unable to prevent the coast-towns from falling one after another
into the hands of the Allies. On the capture of Acre by Sir Charles Napier
he abandoned all hope of maintaining himself any longer in Syria, and made
his way with the wreck of his army towards the Egyptian frontier. Napier

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