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Martens states that these articles " never were acknowledged or officially published by the contracting parties."
Thus monarchy was preparing to defend itself.
French constitution of 1791
On September 14, 1791, the French King, Louis XVI, signed a new Constitution creating a limited monarchy. The Constitution was drawn by the National Constituent Assembly. This was the first written constitution of any importance that was ever issued by any European country.18
The reaction of the French revolutionists to these declarations by Prussia and Austria, and the measures adopted by those two Governments with reference thereto, led to a declaration of war on April 20, 1792, by France against Prussia and Austria.19
The course of events in Europe during the decade 1791 to 1800, has been given and outlined above. This period marked the triumph of the French Revolution and the rise of Napoleon, who first became First Consul of the French Republic (1799) then on May 18, 1804, proclaimed Emperor; and December 2, 1804, crowned Emperor of France.20
Alexander proposes a European league against France, under the auspices of Russia and England
The success of the French armies under the guiding genius of Napoleon had so widely extended the boundaries of France and had brought so much of Central Europe and parts of Italy within the control of France that the balance of Europe was brought almost to the verge of panic. The Tsar Paul, father of Alexander I of Russia and sometimes designated as "the crazy admirer of Bonaparte,' having been assassinated, Alexander I came to the throne of Russia. In 1804 (September 11) the Tsar, moved by the universal apprehension over France, commissioned his friend, Nikolai Nikolaievich Novosiltsov, as envoy on a special mission to London. The Third Coalition was in process of formation. Secret instructions, said to have been drawn by Czartoryski 22 were issued to Novosiltsov under date of September 11, 1804.
This instruction sets out the views of Alexander regarding his conception of the rights of peoples and governments, which views, seemingly intensified, lay behind the Holy Alliance. The following
Hayes, A Political and Social History of Modern Europe, vol. I, p. 485. 19 Ibid., p. 499.
20 Ibid., pp. 523 et seq.
"Ibid., p. 537.
"Phillips, The Confederation of Europe, p. 82.
rather copious extracts from the instruction, are of particular interest:
A combination of the resources and forces of Russia and Great Britain would no doubt constitute a great wealth of power and could not but promise the most satisfactory results. But I would not sincerely take a hand in this unless I felt certain that it would be appointed for a truly useful and beneficent purpose. I have already given my sentiment on this point in my instructions to Count Vorontzow, of which you are the bearer.
The most powerful weapon the Frenchmen have heretofore brought into use and with which they are still threatening all countries, is the universal opinion which they manage to spread that theirs is the cause of liberty and prosperity for the peoples. That so great a cause could be considered as the exclusive property of the Government which in no sense deserves to stand as its defender, would bring shame upon mankind; there would be danger for all the States to let the French hold much longer the decided advantage of keeping up that appearance. The good of mankind, the true interest of lawful authorities, and the success of the undertaking that the two powers would contemplate, demand that they wrest from the French that formidable weapon and that in the act of taking it to themselves they use it against the Frenchmen.
This is the first object concerning which I wish to arrive, if possible, at an understanding with the British Government, and you will bring it to regard this as a sine qua non condition in order to arrive at an intimate and cordial union between Russia and England. Being adverse to have mankind take any steps backward, I should like to have the two Governments agree with each other that far from aiming to restore, in the country which must be freed from the Bonaparte yoke, former abuses and a condition of affairs which minds that have had a taste of the forms of independence could not brook, an effort will be made on the contrary to guarantee to them freedom resting on its true bases. That, in my opinion, is the principle on which the two powers must take action and they must ever conform to it in their course and utterances and proclamations.
Since the countries that France oppresses may first be freed from its yoke before any thought is given to freeing France, the first matter to take up is that of settling their destinies.
[Here followed a discussion of suggested adjustments of particular States.] I will now consider the action which I felt assured must necessarily be taken with regard to France itself. After achieving success abroad and by fair, benevolent and liberal principles winning the consideration and inspiring a general and well deserved confidence, so that any promise from an ally may be relied upon to make a favorable impression on it the French nation will be told that it is not against it but only its government, which is as tyrannical to France as it is to the rest of Europe, that the action is aimed; that originally nothing more was contemplated by delivering the country from the yoke that bore upon it; that in now addressing the French people neither revolt nor disregard of law is the text but all parties which have heretofore divided it are urged to rely on the intentions of the allied powers which have no other wish than that of ridding France from the despotism under which it is groaning to allow it free to select the government it wishes to take upon itself, and that in that respect far from any desire to lay shackles upon it the purpose of the union was to break them.
Taking it for granted that for the good of Europe and France it is necessary · that it be given a monarchical constitution, the motion must be expected to come from the nation; some effort may be made to start it but in no wise should that intention be prematurely declared.
The cabinets of St. Petersburg and St. James will agree on all those points' and on the man and family that might be called upon to ascend the throne of France. If a Bourbon, which, and at what time will he be advised; the course that will be demanded of him, the terms to which he must subscribe and the most essential of which would be to obey any constitution that may be adopted. I deem this choice to be secondary and for my part shall attach only such importance as our operations may be hampered or promoted by it.
This is neither the time nor the place for an outline of the various forms of government that must be set up in those several countries. I leave it entirely with you to deal with the English Minister on that important point. The principles undoubtedly must everywhere be the same and that is the point on which before all an agreement should be reached. They must rest everywhere on the sacred rights of mankind, yield the order which necessarily goes with it; in all places institutions must be governed in the same spirit of wisdom and benevolence. But the same principles may have to be applied differently in different parts and the two powers with a view to arriving at an agreement on that point will consider the means of procuring on the spot fair, impartial, and full data in which faith could be placed. By strictly adhering to that course and finally tearing off the masks of a scandalous government which is alternatively ́ bringing into play despotism and anarchy in order to arrive at its ends, carefully separating its cause from that of the peoples whom it tyrannizes by humoring and tranquillizing both by word and by deeds their sensitive pride which flies up when hurt and dreads disgrace more than all else, we may rely on their sincere assistance, succeed in the noble and useful plan that may be devised, and elicit among nations a general enthusiasm for the two beneficent governments that conceived the idea, the effects of which for the good cause could not be overestimated.
In addition to the fact that the principles upon which I propose to England to act in intimate concert must be regarded as being the true and perhaps the only means of confining the French power within its just bounds they will also singularly contribute in setting upon substantial and lasting foundations the' future tranquillity of Europe. It seems to me obvious that that great end could only be regarded as achieved when the nations on the one hand are made to be more closely bound with their governments through putting the said governments in a position to take the course most conducive to the great good of the people under them while on the other hand the relations of states with one another will be placed on more precise rules, respect of which would be to their own advantage. Further consideration of these points and the experience of centuries afford sufficient evidence that those two results cannot be brought about until the internal social order is made to rest on a wise freedom which seems to impart more strength to the governments and, in a way, fence off the passions, unchecked ambition or mania which often misguides the men who happen to be at the head, and until the international law which regulates the relations of the European federation shall at the same time have been reestablished on its true principles.
When the influence of the two governments which would save Europe reaches its highest degree of consistence and power, should it not be brought into play for the purpose of strengthening and perfecting the work which I suppose would then be almost completed? The union no doubt which made those great ad
vantages possible must last so as to preserve, and if possible enlarge, those advantages. There will be nothing to prevent that, after peace, attention be given to a treaty which would become the foundation for the reciprocal relations of the European States. This is even bound to come at the time of the general pacification if it can be managed not to allow any separate peace arrangements, a purpose in which it will be of the highest interest to the two powers to bring their most consistent attention into play.
When the Treaty of Westphalia was negotiated nearly the same end had been taken in mind; but the condition of the lights and the circumstances of those days were the cause of that work which was long accepted as the code of modern diplomacy failing actually to yield the advantages that might be expected from it.
Perpetual peace is not the dream that is to be brought into being; yet that end would be neared in more than one respect if in the treaty which would make an end of general war it could be managed to lay down clear and precise principles for the provisions of international law. Why could it not be made to overrule the positive law of nations, to insure the privileges of neutrality, to insert the obligation never to start a war until all the means that a mediated third power could tender have been exhausted and in this way be made to lighten the respective grievances and make an effort to smooth them off? On such principles could steps be taken towards general pacification and birth be given to a league, the stipulations of which would, so to speak, make a new code of international law, which after being sanctioned by the greatest number of the States of Europe would easily become the unchangeable rule of the cabinets, all the more as those who would offer to break it would take the risk of drawing upon themselves the full strength of the new union.
After undergoing so many alarms, experiencing the objectionable results of precarious or illusory independence, most governments will likely join a league which would afford them the highest guarantee of tranquillity and safety; the second-rate State in particular would go in it body and soul. If it be further considered that several of them would introduce in their own rule the seed of tranquillity and a cure against the violent course of arbitrary power, that the light, example, and trend furnished by Russia and England would more and more spread that spirit of wisdom and justice, it is reasonable to hope that Europe would then enjoy for a long period a condition of peace and prosperity as it has never had; but it is particularly the intimate tie binding the courts of St. Petersburg and London which would afford a guarantee that that condition of things would last. These two powers are the only ones in Europe which for many years may have no jealous feeling, no conflicting interests standing between them, and their union, because it could be lasting, would from that very fact be the most apt to prevent future disturbances of the peace.
There is no doubt that in order to add still more strength to such an arrangement and if it were possible in outlining it to bear in mind only the good of the States in general and the happiness of every nation in particular, we should in doing so also set the boundaries of the several countries that are best adapted to them. We should then particularly make it a point to observe those indicated by nature itself, either by mountain ranges, or by seas, or finally by outlets which must be guaranteed to all for the products of their soil and industry. We should at the same time make up every State of homogeneous peoples who would suit one another and keep in harmony with the government that rules them. The commotions that have been constantly shaking Europe for so many centuries originate for the most part in the fact that this natural equilibrium was totally ignored.
It is obvious also that the existence of States decidedly too small, would not serve the purpose that is in mind, since without any strength of their own they could only be lures and tools for ambition without being of any particular service to the general welfare. This objectionable feature could only be remedied by merging them into bigger States or forming federative unions of small States. The necessity of shackling France and of offsetting Austria and Prussia demands that these considerations be kept in mind with regard to Italy and chiefly with regard to Germany. That Empire appears from its constitution to be readier for a suitable change, but one moment of consideration is enough to satisfy any one that this is only an apparent readiness. Shall we ever succeed in creating a more intimate union, a more concentrated federative government among the several States which make up the Germanic Empire, and on this assumption would it not be desirable to part from it the Austrian and Prussian Monarchies, whose forces are so much out of proportion, as to do away with equilibrium and esprit de corps and patriotism? These are considerations that should be given careful attention if the question were to settle the fate of Germany.
Once led by the same views and the same sentiments the two governments will easily reach an understanding as to the course to be followed with regard to the other powers which would be made to take a part in the struggle. The fear of forfeiting the support of Russia and the subsidies of England will induce Austria to be led by our suggestions in the war that it is inclined to commence with us. It will be hard to have Prussia enter of her own accord in a combination against France. The engagements of that power with Russia are well known. The case will arise to decide whether it will not be advisable to compel her to take sides rather than to let her stand neutral. Russia is particularly in a position to exert pressure on her, and the Cabinet of Berlin by the dual engagements it has just made in its promise not to allow either French or Russian troops to pass, may find itself in the trying position it would have shunned.
Whoever the future cooperators may be, the English Cabinet, if it once shares our ideas, will realize the necessity of keeping our innermost views hidden, to confine itself to steering towards the contemplated aim with the means that we shall have to call upon and which must be skillfully used in common accord.
The time has come to mention the obligation that would lie upon the two powers at the end of a struggle that would be so costly, to reserve to themselves some advantages in compensation for the expenses they shall have been put to, and as testimonies to their nations of the fact that their interests have not been overlooked. Russia in particular has a right to demand that if her neighbors, Austria, Prussia, Sweden, for instance, are given advantages that can only be promised to them as an inducement for them to act, she will also get equivalent advantages. A last consideration, which comes in support of this argument, is that the tranquillity of Europe can only be maintained through a league to be formed under the auspices of Russia and England, which will be joined by all second-rate States and all those which have a genuine desire of being at peace. That league will overawe all would-be disturbers. Now in order to give it true consistency and to avoid disappointments in the results, the two protecting powers must maintain some degree of preponderance in the affairs of Europe, as they are the only ones which, on account of their position, have an invariable interest in the maintenance of order and justice, the only ones which can main