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HER MAJESTY'S MOST GRACIOUS ANSWER.
THIS representation is a farther instance of that dutiful affection to my service, and concern for the publick interest, which this house of commons has always shewn.
You may be assured, that I will give such orders, as shall effectually answer what sire of me in every particular.
THE LATE MINISTRY,
IN BEGINNING AND CARRYING ON
THE PRESENT WAR*.
Partem tibi Gallia nostri
Eripuit: Partem duris Hispania bellis:
Pars jacet Hesperia, totoque exercitus orbe
Te vincente perit.
Odimus accipitrem quia semper vivit in armis.
Victrix Provincia plorat †.
Juv. Sat. I. 50.
First published by J. Morphew, Nov. 27, 1711; a second edition, Nov. 30; the third, Dec. 2; and the fourth, Dec. 6. The uncommon pains which were taken by Dr. Swift in writing this pamphlet will appear by an attentive perusal of his Journal to Stella, from Oct. 30 to Dec. 13, inclusive. N.
+ One of these mottos was furnished by the lord treasurer. See Journal to Stella, Nov. 27. N.
"The Conduct of the Allies," Remarks on the Barrier Treaty," the "Examiner," and the "Public Spirit of the Whigs," all conspire to lay open the secret springs of affairs, not only in England, but throughout Europe. The first of them particularly will be the basis for all who write the history of those times to build upon; as it detects the artifices of the ministry, which the nation was at that time diverted from attending to by a course of victories; and exposes the baldness of our general, that ought not to be concealed by his laurels. The author, being admitted to an intimacy with the new prime minister, received, no doubt, assistance from so able a friend; and he tells us, he detained the publication of three several editions of this piece, that he might have all the advantage he could from his enemies. This tract (which was written preparatory to the peace which the ministers were then concluding), and the Remarks on the Barrier Treaty, contain the principal facts, which the author of John Bull has thrown into allegory; and greatly illustrate that piece, of which indeed it is possible they were the ground-work. H.
"The purpose of this pamphlet was, to persuade the nation to a peace; and never had any writer more success. The people, who had been amused with bonfires and triumphal processions, and looked with idolatry on the general and his friends, who, as they thought, had made England the arbitress of nations, were confounded between shame and rage, when they found that "mines had been exhausted, and millions destroyed," to secure the Dutch, or aggrandize the Emperor, without any advantage to ourselves; that we had been bribing our neighbours to fight their own quarrel; and that amongst our enemies we might number our allies. That is now no longer doubted, of which the nation was then first informed, that the war was unnecessarily protracted, to fill the pockets of Marlborough; and that it would have been continued without end, if he could have continued his annual plunder. But Swift, I suppose, did not yet know what he has since written, that a commission was drawn, which would have appointed him general for life, had it not become ineffectual by the resolution of lord Cowper, who refused the seal. JOHNSON.
I CANNOT sufficiently admire the industry of a sort of men, wholly out of favour with the prince and people, and openly professing a separate interest from the bulk of the landed men, who yet are able to raise at this juncture so great a clamour against a peace, without offering one single reason, but what we find in their ballads. I lay it down for a maxim, that no reasonable man, whether whig or tory, (since it is necessary to use those foolish terms) can be of opinion for continuing the war upon the footing it now is, unless he be a gainer by it, or hopes it may occasion some new turn of affairs at home, to the advantage of his party; or, lastly, unless he be very ignorant of the kingdom's condition, and by what means we have been reduced to it. Upon the two first cases, where interest is concerned, I have nothing to say: but, as to the last, I think it highly necessary, that the publick should be freely and impartially told, what circumstances they are in, after what manner they have been treated by those, whom they trusted so many years with the disposal of their blood and treasure, and what the consequences of this management
are likely to be, upon themselves and their posterity.
Those who, either by writing or discourse, have undertaken to defend the proceedings of the late ministry in the management of the war, and of the treaty at Gertruydenburgh, have spent time in celebrating the conduct and valour of our leaders and their troops, in summing up the victories they have gained, and the towns they have taken. Then they tell us, what high articles were insisted on by our ministers, and those of the confederates, and what pains both were at in persuading France to accept them. But nothing of this can give the least satisfaction to the just complaints of the kingdom. As to the war, our grievances are, that a greater load has been laid on us than was either just or necessary, or than we have been able to bear; that the grossest impositions have been submitted to, for the advancement of private wealth and power, or, in order to forward the more dangerous designs of a faction, to both which a peace would have put an end and that the part of the war which was chiefly our province, which would have been most beneficial to us, and destructive to the enemy, was wholly neglected. As to a peace we complain of being deluded by a mock treaty; in which, those who negotiated took care to make such demands, as they knew were impossible to be complied with; and therefore might securely press every article as if they were in earnest.
These are some of the points I design to treat of in the following discourse: with several others, which