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been a subject of great anxiety to the minis ny, would be sure to feed a perpetual war in try. These motives co-operated to render that country. them most heartily inclined to peace. When the former negotiation was on foot,
The Bourbon courts and that of England the affairs of the king of Prussia were at the thus concurring in the same point, all diffi- lowest ebb: he was overpowered by the culties were speedily smoothed. Accord- whole weight of Austria, of Sweden, of the ingly, on the fifth of September, the duke empire, and of Russia, as determined as ever of Bedford set off for Paris, with the charac- in her enmity, and then successful; to say ter of ambassador and plenipotentiary from nothing of France. It would have been unthe court of England, to negotiate a peace; generous, on the part of Great Britain, to and on the twelfth of the same month, the have deserted him in that situation. But, at duke of Nivernois arrived in London, with the time of making the last treaty, the conthe like commission from the French court. dition of his affairs was absolutely reversed.
He had got rid of the most powerful, and NEGOTIATIONS FOR PEACE.
one of the most implacable of his enemies. VERY little time was spent in adjusting He had also concluded a peace with Sweden. the outlines of the treaty, or explaining the The treaty itself freed him from all appreprinciples on which it was to proceed. The hensions of France. He had, then, none to negotiators seemed, in some measures, to as- contend with, but a nominal army of the sume as a basis those points which were empire, and one of Austria, which, though nearest to a settlement in the treaty of 1761; something more than nominal, was wholly and to commence where that transaction unable to oppose his progress. His situation, concluded. The spirit of the two negotia- from being pitiable, was become formidable. tions, so far as regarded the peculiar interest It was, perhaps, good policy to prevent the of Great Britain, was almost perfectly simi- balance of Germany from being overturned lar. There was scarcely any other differ- to his prejudice: it would have been the ence than that Great Britain, in consequence worst in the world to overturn it in his favor. of her successes since that time, acquired These principles sufficiently explain and jusmore than she then demanded. With regard, tify the British ministy for so remarkable a indeed, to some of her allies, the principle change in their behavior towards the king of the two treaties was greatly varied; but of Prussia. this change was sufficiently justified by the The conduct of France on both those ocalteration which happened in the affairs of casions may be accounted for, nearly in the Germany, during the interval between both. same manner. She had very justly excepted Those, who conducted the negotiation in to the demand of the evacuation of Wesel, 1761, were steady in rejecting every propo- Cleves, and Gueldres, when made by Pitt in sition, in which they were not left at liberty the first negotiation; because he refused to to aid the king of Prussia with the whole put an end to the German war. In this last force of Great Britain : those, who concluded treaty, the French assented, without hesitathe peace in 1762, paid less attention to the tion or difficulty, to the very same demand; ambitious or interested views of that mon- because we agreed, in common with them, arch, though they did not neglect his safety. to be neutral in the disputes of the empire; At the beginning of the year, and before the other contending powers, being left to they had entered into this negotiation, they themselves, soon terminated their differences. refused to renew that article of the annual As the Bourbon confederacy had no pretreaty, by which his Britannic majesty would text for the quarrel with Portugal, but the have been engaged to conclude no peace advantages which Great Britain derived without the king of Prussia ;-though, at the from her friendly intercourse with that counsame time, they declared themselves willing try during the war, the article relating to his to assist him with the usual subsidy. He, most faithful majesty did not admit of the on his part, refused the subsidy unconnected least altercation. Any of his territories or with that article; and a coolness was sup- possessions in Europe, or in any other part posed to take place between both courts for of the globe, which had fallen into the hands some time after.
of the French and Spaniards, were to be The adjustment of affairs in the empire evacuated by their troops, and restored in the did not form any material obstruction to the same condition they were in when conquered. progress of the treaty. Both parties readily After the concerns of the allies were proagreed to withdraw themselves totally from vided for, the most important part of the the German war. They thought, and right- treaty still remained, which was to adjust ly, that nothing could tend so much to give everything that related to the settlements peace to their respective allies, as mutually and commerce of Great Britain and of the to withdraw their assistance from them; and Bourbon courts. The circumstance, which to stop that current of English and French so much impeded this adjustment in the premoney, which, as long as it ran into Germa- ceding negotiation, was the intervention of the claims of Spain. The attempt of the In this respect they followed the plan of the Bourbon powers to intermix and confound former negotiation, except that some imtheir affairs at that juncture, had a share in provements were added. making the war more general: on this occa- In the first place, that article of the treasion it had a contrary effect. As the whole ty of Utrecht was established, by which the was now negotiated together, it facilitated French were admitted to fish, and to dry the peace, by affording easier methods of their fish on the north-east and north-west regulating the system of compensation, and parts of Newfoundland, from Cape Bonafurnishing more largely to the general fund vista to Point Biche; and were excluded of equivalents.
from the rest of the island. They were also The great object, and the original cause permitted to fish within the Gulf of St. of the war, had been, the establishment of Laurence; but with this limitation, that precise boundaries in America. This was they should not approach within three therefore the very first point to be now at- leagues of any of the coasts belonging to tended to; and it must be observed, that it England. was settled much more accurately, than it. The second restriction imposed on the promised to be in the negotiation of the French fishery was, that it should not be exforegoing year. For the French, not hav- ercised but at the distance of fifteen leagues ing ascertained the limits between their from the coasts of the island of Cape Breown possessions, with greater exactness ton, which was ceded to England. "In rethan they had those which separated them turn for this, the French obtained the full from the British possessions, it was not clear, right of the small islands of St. Pierre and in ceding Canada, how much they really Miquelon, his most Christian majesty engave up. Disputes might have arisen, and, gaging not to erect any fortifications on in fact, did immediately arise upon this sub- these islands, nor to keep more than fifty ject. Besides, the western limits of the soldiers there to enforce the police. In this southern British colonies were not mention- article the plan of the former negotiation ed; and those limits were extremely ob- was pursued. scure, and subject
With regard to the pretensions of Spain, Such discussions contained in them the she entirely desisted from the right she seeds of a new war. In the present treaty, claimed of fishing on these coasts. A more it was agreed, that a line drawn along the satisfactory, or more unequivocal expression middle of the river Mississippi, from its should, and undoubtedly would have been fource to the river Iberville, and thence insisted upon, if it had been of any great along the middle of this river, and the lakes consequence, in what terms a right was reof Maurepas and Pontchartrain, to the sea, nounced, which for a long time had never should irrevocably fix the bounds of the two been exercised. The claim itself was alnations in North America. This line includ- most as obsolete as that of the king of Enged a very large tract of country, which for- land to the dominions of France. The Britmerly made a part of Louisiana, in addition ish ministry laid very little stress on such a to what was properly called Canada ; and trifle ; but they suffered it to be thrown, as these newly acquired territories of Great a sort of make-weight, into the scale of Britain, were farther enlarged and com- Spanish sacrifices. pletely rounded by the cession of Florida, When the affairs of the West Indies came on the part of Spain. As the northern to be settled, though they caused great difboundaries had been long since settled by ference of opinion among the public, they the treaty of Utrecht, all occasions of lim- did not seem to raise any considerable diffiitary disputes seemed to be effectually cut culty in the negotiation. There England of; and the British possessions in America had made great conquests, and there also were as well defined, as the nature of such she had made great concessions. She rea country could possibly admit.
stored to France the islands of Martinico, The Newfoundland fishery was a subject Guadaloupe, and Marigalante, besides an of much controversy. In a commercial view assignment, or surrender, of the neutral islit is certainly of great estimation : but it and of St. Lucia. Of her late acquisitions has been considered as even more material she only retained Dominica, Tobago, St. in a political light. It is a grand nursery of Vincent's, and the Grenades. To the three seamen, and consequently one of the prin- former she had an old claim, which was now cipal resources of the marine. Scarcely any confirmed : the latter were ceded and guarobject could be of more importance to two antied to her in full right. nations, who contended for a superiority of As the intelligence of the success of the naval power. The English ministry de- British arms at the Havannah had arrived spaired of excluding the French entirely before the settlement of this part of the treafrom the fishery, and endeavored as much ty relative to the West Indies, it was in or. as possible to diminish its value to them. Ider to obtain the restoration of that valuable VOL IV.
conquest, that Spain agreed to some articles (could not fail of success. The reduction of before enumerated, namely, the evacuation Manilla had actually taken place; but the of all conquests made upon Portugal, or her news, though conveyed with extraordinary foreign colonies ; the cession of Florida, dispatch, did not reach England till the with the forts of St. Augustine and Pensa- April following. cola ; the renunciation of the right to the PRELIMINARIES OF PEACE SIGNED. Newfoundland fishery; and, in addition to Such were the chief articles of a treaty these, Spain also consented not to disturb which put an end to the most sanguinary the English in their occupation of cutting and expensive war in which Great Britain logwood in the bay of Honduras, and to per- had ever been engaged. But, to her honor, mit them to build houses there for the con- it must be added, that her efforts had not, in veniency of their trade. It was stipulated, any contest, been ever crowned with greathowever, in this last grant, that they should er glory and success. The preliminaries demolish their fortifications on that coast, as were signed by the British and French mina tacit acknowledgment, that the privilege isters, at Fontainbleau, the third of Novemthey were now suffered to enjoy was not ber; and the twenty-fourth of the same founded upon right, but derived from favor. month, the duke of Nivernois, who had been
In Africa, Goree was restored to France, employed in the negotiation at the court of and Senegal remained to Great Britain. In London, as ambassador extraordinary and the East Indies, all the factories and settle- plenipotentiary from the most Christian king, ments taken from the French since the be- made a speech to his Britannic majesty on ginning of the war, were given up to them, the occasion. on condition of their engaging in the first But however highly the French ambassi· place, not to erect any forts, nor to keep any dor might estimate the blessings of peace, number of soldiers whatsoever in the prov- the people of England were very much diince of Bengal; and secondly, to acknow- vided in their sentiments respecting the ledge the reigning subas of Bengal, Decan, merits of the treaty. This clash of contendand the Carnatic, as the lawful sovereigns ing interests and opinions excited throughof these countries. In Europe, Minorca and out the kingdom the most violent heats, Belleisle were to be restored to their former which were blown into a combustion by possessors; and the fortifications and harbor every art, and every instrument of party, of Dunkirk were to be demolished, agreea- that had ever proved effectual upon similar bly to the stipulations of former treaties. occasions.
There was one article totally omitted in CHANGES IN THE CABINET. the present treaty, though it had been the In the course of these political conflicts, subject of the most warm and obstinate con- and particularly after the signing of the pretroversy in the former negotiation. This liminaries had been formally announced to was, the restitution of the prizes made by the public, some efforts were used to bring England previous to the declaration of war. about a coalition between the duke of NewOn this point, the ministers of the two courts castle and Mr. Pitt, who had hitherto kept appeared at that time equally positive, the aloof from each other, at the head of their one to demand, the other to refuse, such a respective adherents. They were not so irrestitution. It was, indeed, ossible, for reconcilable, so completely hostile to one the former to relinquish, or for the latter to another, as each of them was to the earl of admit the claim, without bringing some re- Bute. Common enmity therefore united the proach on their respective governments. two parties; and they joined their endeavors France could not now make a greater sacri- to persuade the people, that the parliament fice to the honor of Great Britain, in the would never ratify, or, at least, pass over eyes of all Europe, than by passing over without heavy censure, the conditions of a that matter in total silence.
peace so inadequate to the successes of the But if the honor of the British crown was war, so far below the just expectations of consulted with so much delicacy in this very the nation. disputable affair, the fears of the Bourbon The ministry, thus threatened by a formicourts were not less effectually removed by dable opposition, did not fail to take the most another article, which stipulated, that the effectual steps for securing the approbation conquests not included in the treaty, either of the legislature. Mr. Fox was eminently as cessions, or restitutions, should be given useful to them on this occasion. Though he up without compensation. France and Spain continued in his old place of pay-master, he knew themselves exposed in almost every undertook to conduct the affairs of governquarter : they had no armament on foot, ment in the house of commons, for which no from which they could expect any consider- man could be better qualified. George Grenable advantages: whereas the British min-ville, whose employment would naturally istry had great reason to hope, that the im- have engaged him in that task, resigned the portant expedition against the Philippines seals of secretary of state, and was appointed first lord of the admiralty. The earl of fishery, from which she ought," as they alHalifax had vacated his seat at the head of leged, “to have been entirely excluded.” this board, in order to accept of Grenville's In reply to this, it was asserted, “ that place, as joint secretary with the earl of France would never have agreed to a total Egremont This exchange, as it may be dereliction of the fishery: that the cession, called, was made in order to give full scope on her part, of the isles of Cape Breton, and to Mr. Fox's talents, with which the useful St. John to England, was more than an equivparliamentary duties of a secretary of state, alent to the sheltering places of St. Pierre if a commoner, might in some degree inter- and Miquelon, which she was not allowed to fere. Other arrangements were also made, fortify, nor to keep any troops in, except and almost the whole landed interest was such a small number as were barely necesfound to be well affected to the measures of sary to enforce the police." administration.
But the restitution of the conquests, parPARLIAMENT MEETS, DISCUSSIONS ON ticularly of those which had been made in THE PEACE.
the West Indies, was the object of the seWhile the most vigorous preparations verest and most vehement censure. “ The were thus making by both parties for a trial authors of such an infamous and improvident of strength, the parliament met on the twen- treaty," said the opponents of administration, ty-fifth of November; and the session was " seem to have lost sight of that great funopened by a speech from his majesty. damental principle, That France is chiefly,
In answer to this speech, each house pre- if not solely to be dreaded by us in the light pared an address, containing general com- of a maritime and commercial power. By pliments of congratulation on the approach the impolitic concessions made to her in the of peace, and on the birth of the prince of fishery, and by restoring all her valuable Wales.
West India islands, we have put into her That part of the public, which had been hands the means of repairing her prodigious flattered with the hope that the peace would losses, and of becoming once more formidabe severely censured by parliament, was to ble at sea. The fishery trained up an innutally disappointed, when the preliminary ar- merable multitude of young seamen; and ticles came to be taken into consideration by the West India trade employed them when both houses. The opposition in the lords they were trained. France," they observed, was feeble, and the house did not divide, but " had long since gained a decided superioriapproved of the preliminaries, without any ty over us in this lucrative branch of comqualification or reserve.
merce, and supplied almost all Europe with The triumph of the minister in the com- the rich commodities, which are produced mnons was not so easily obtained. The chan- only in that part of the world. By this comcellor of the exchequer had laid a copy of merce she enriched her merchants, and aug. the preliminary articles before the house on mented her finances; whilst, from a want the twenty-ninth of Novernber, and on the of sugar-land, which has been long known ninth of December they were taken into and severely felt by England, we at once consideration, and the house was moved to lost the foreign trade, and suffered all the concur in an address to his majesty expres- inconveniencies of a monopoly at home.” sive of their approbation of such advantageous They looked upon the concessions made terms. This motion was made by Fox, who to Spain, in the same part of the world, as took the lead in support of the peace, and equally unjustifiable. “Florida,” they mainwas strongly resisted by Pitt, at the head of tained, was no compensation for the Havanthe few who disapproved of the conditions. nah. The Havannah was an important con
The first article which the censurers of quest. From the moment it was taken, all the peace attacked was the regulation of the the Spanish treasures and riches in America cod fishery. They compared it with what lay at our mercy. Spain had purchased the had been proposed in the former treaty. "At security of all these, and the restoration of a time,” they said, “ when Great Britain had Cuba also, with the cession of Florida only. not half so much right as at present to pre-It was no equivalent. There had been a barscribe terms to her enemies, she only con- gain; but the terms were inadequate. They sented to give up one small island, that of were inadequate in every point, where the St. Pierre, as a shelter to the French fishing- principle of reciprocity was affected to be boats, and with indispensable restrictions. introduced.” If these were deemed expedient in the ces- They represented the privilege obtained son of one island, they were doubly neces- from Spain, in favor of our logwood-cutters, sary in the cession of two. But nothing as too uncertain and precarious to be considcould justify the absolute, unconditional sur-ered among the list of equivalents. "Inrender of St. Pierre and of Miquelon, which stead of establishing," said they, “a solid would enable France to recover her marine, right in this long-contested trade, we have and by degrees to acquire the best part of a engaged to pull down our forts, and 10 destroy the only means of protecting it. What her power and increase there could never security have we, that our logwood-cutters become formidable, because the existence shall not be molested in their naked and de- of her settlements depended upon ours in fenceless situation? The king of Spain's North America, she not being any longer promise! It is not words, but the power of left a place, whence they can be supplied repelling force by force, that can prevent with provisions. hostilities or injustice.”
They did not deny the importance of the They concluded their strictures on the Havannah; but they, at the same time, insubject of restitutions with asserting that sisted upon the value of the objects which Goree on the coast of Africa had been sur- had been obtained in return for it. The rendered without the least apparent necessi- whole country of Florida, with fort St. Auty; that in the East Indies, though the trea- gustine and the bay of Pensacola, was far ty mentioned an engagement for mutual res- from being a contemptible acquisition. It titution of conquests, the restitution was all extended the British dominions along the from one side. We had conquered every- coast to the mouth of the Mississippi : it thing, we retained nothing. In Europe, removed an asylum for the slaves of the France had only one conquest to restore, English colonies, who were continually makMinorca ; and for this island, we had given ing their escape to St. Augustine: it affordher the East Indies, the West Indies, and ed a large extent of improvable territory, Africa. Belleisle alone, they affirmed, was a strong frontier, and a good port in the bay a sufficient equivalent.
of Mexico, both for the convenience of trade, The advocates for the peace defended all and the annoyance of the Spaniards in any those concessions on the following grounds : future contest. The liberty and security,
** The original object of the war,” said which the king of Spain engaged to afford they, " was the security of our colonies upon to the English logwood-cutters, was another the continent of America. The danger to material consideration; and though the forwhich these colonies were exposed, and, in tifications on the coast were to be demolishconsequence of that danger, the immense ed, it did not appear by what other means waste of blood and treasure which ensued a claim of such a peculiar nature could be to Great Britain, together with the calami- adjusted. * We never," said they, “ set up ties which were, from the same source, pour- any pretensions to the territory, nor even ed upon the four quarters of the world, left directly to the produce; but only a privilege no sort of doubt that it was not only our of cutting and taking away this wood by best, but our only policy, to guard against indulgence. That privilege is now confirniall possibility of the return of such evils. ed. What more, consistently with reason Experience has shown us, that while France and justice, could we demand? The right possesses any single place in America, of erecting fortifications would imply an whence she may molest our settlements, absolute, direct, and exclusive dominion over they can never enjoy any repose; and, of the territory itself, to which we had not even course, that we are never secure from being the shadow of a claim.” plunged again into those calamities, from They asked, whether his Catholic majesty which we have at length, and with so much could have made a fuller or more adequate difficulty, happily emerged. To remove compensation for the Havannah, without dis France from our neighborhood in America, membering his empire, or exposing its comor to contract her power within the narrow-merce to inevitable ruin? “Had Great est limits possible, was, therefore, the most Britain," as they argued, “ fought for hercapital advantage we could obtain, and was self alone, and restricted her efforts to her worth purchasing by almost any concession own element, she might have assumed a (1)."
more peremptory tone in dictating the terms They insisted that the absolute security of the treaty; and if they were not acquiderived from this plan, included in itself an esced in, she might have resolved to keep indemnification: they pointed out the great all her conquests, and to prosecute hostiliincrease of population in those colonies ties to the full accomplishment of her wishes. within a few years. They showed, that But she was saddled with the protection of their trade with the mother country had her allies; and, on their account, involved uniformly increased with this population. in a double continental war, the expense of North America alone would supply the de- which overbalanced all the advantages she ficiencies of our trade in every other part of could derive from the success of her arms. the world.
France and Spain had declared, in plain Having, for these reasons, made very terms, that, without the restitution of the large demands in North America, it was islands and of the Havannah, peace could necessary to relax in other parts. France be of no service to them; that they would would never be brought to any very con- rather hazard the continuance of the war, siderable cession in the West Indies: but which, in the long run, must exhaust the