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January. A decree was issued on the occasion, which associated the Queen with his majesty in the government, and contained the thanks of the King for her majesty's wise exercise of the supreme authority during the period she had been invested with it.
The King's next aet was formally protesting against, and revoking, the decree “extorted” from him during his illness, by which he re-established the Salique Law as the rule of succession, and which, if acted on, would have excluded his daughter from the throne, and established the claim of his brother, Don Carlos. Connected with this subject, two most important documents were promulgated by the King in April: one ordering his subjects to take a general oath of allegiance to his daughter; the other convoking the Cortes for the 20th of June.
The Spanish Cortes assembled at Madrid on the appointed day, for the purpose of swearing fidelity to their future Queen, the young Princess Asturias. The members were required to take an oath, that they had been empowered to assemble, and were met exclusively for that purpose. Don Francisco de Paulo Antonio first took the oath to the King in person; after him the other princes of the blood. The grandees took the oath to the Duke de Medina Celi. The minister of the King of Naples, before the ceremony began, protested against it on behalf of his master, whose claim to the succession would be prejudiced thereby. This circumstance is said to have conșiderably annoyed King Ferdinand and his minister Zea Bermudez.
Thus matters continued until August, during the whole of which period the King was understood to have been suffering from severe indisposition, which confined him much to his chamber. It was at first proposed by his physicians that the Madrid Gazette should publish bulletins regarding his health; but this was deemed impolitic, and not acceded to. A regency was also talked of, composed of the Queen, the Infant Don Francisco, and Marshal Castanos, to whom the direction of state affairs was proposed to be confided, in case of the King's death during the minority of his daughter. It does not appear that this regency was actually consolidated before the King's death; but amidst the uncertainty as to the future policy of the government, some new measures were determined on by the existing administration, favouring the progress of wise and moderate reform. Juntas for charitable purposes were formed in the principal towns of the kingdom; their object being to root out the habits of mendicity of a large class of the population—habits which, as noted by us last year, form a serious draw-back on the country's prosperity. Diligences and inns were also established on a great number of roads, which, owing to the want of them, had hitherto been almost impassable. Periodical publicationstoo, under the name of Official Bulletins, were commenced in almost every city, and in places where, it is said, no newspaper of any kind ever appeared before.
The cholera morbus was committing serious ravages in Spain at about this period, especially in the province of Andalusia. In Seville, out of eighteen cases, which occurred in one day, no less than thirteen died, and three were reported as hopeless.
On the 29th of September, at three o'clock in the afternoon, died Ferdinand the Seventh, King of Spain. On this event happening, a council was immediately summoned, at which steps were taken for the proclamation of the young Queen, and the assumption of the regency by the Queen Mother. The capital remained tranquil, but news was soon received of a Carlist insurrection in Bilboa, where Don Carlos was proclaimed King, and serious apprehensions were entertained of risings in other quarters. But assistance, if necessary, in favour of the young Queen, was relied on from France (whither despatches were immediately forwarded), whose government immediately acknowledged her sovereignty.
The Spanish provinces in general remained undisturbed, with the exception of Biscay. It had been stated that the Queen's party meditated the withdrawing of the peculiar privileges of the Biscayans, and they rose on the intelligence of the King's death. The Franciscan friars of Albia, and the royalist volunteers, joined by the people, proclaimed Don Carlos. One of the deputies of the province, who had vowed fealty to the young Queen, was assassinated, a corrigedor was imprisoned, and all the authorities overcome. Troops were sent from Tolosa to suppress the tumult, but they were beaten, and their general (Castanos) forced to retreat. At Ardonna, too, the second town of Biscay, an old officer, named Ybarrola, had mustered a Carlist force, which overcame all opposition, and he proclaimed Don Carlos King. At Vittoria, the like proclamation is said to have been made. The rallying cry of the apostolical party was, “Viva el Rey, Mueran los Liberales.”
Meantime, it was understood that the French army of observation, 50,000 strong, under Marshal Molitor, would cross
the Pyrenees, if Bourmont, or any of the French Carlist officers, took part with Don Carlos in any attempt on the throne of Spain.
· The King's will, which was found in a secret drawer about a week after his death, bore date the 12th of June, 1830. It conferred the title and powers of Regent on his widow, and ordained the appointment of a “consulting” Council of Regency during his daughter's minority, but without vesting such Council with any restrictive powers over the authority of the Queen Mother. A royal decree was immediately issued, ordering the Council appointed by the will of Ferdinand to assemble, and give their advice on the means most expedient to be adopted, at a time when the insurrection in Biscay appeared to gain strength, and symptoms of disaffection had appeared in Navarre.
The following is a note on the persons composing the Council: Cardinal Don Francisco Marco y Catalan, a man of no political importance, but attached to the privileges of the clergy-Marquis de Santa Cruz, Ambassador from the Cortes to Paris, of a liberal tendency-Duke of Medina Celi, the head of the first family of Spain, with pretensions to the crown, in support of which he makes an hereditary protest at the accession of each sovereign; he was the constitutional Alcaid of Madrid under the Cortes, and is of a liberal tendency Don Xavier Castagnos, the oldest general in Spain, not known as a politician, but principally remarkable for his conversational powers and brilliant wit—the Marquis de las Amarillis, Captain-General of Andalusia, Constitutional Minister of War in 1820; of a very moderate liberal tendency, having abandoned the cause of the constitution on the refusal of the Chambers to modify such parts of it as he considered too liberal—Don J. M. Puig, Chief of the Council of Castile, a firm and upright magistrate, who was the principal means of defeating the intrigues of Calomarde to substitute the name of Don Carlos for that of the young Princess in the will of Ferdinand; his political opinions are not much known,-a remark which applies also to the remaining member of the council, Don Xavier Caro, a man of American extraction, and owing his nomination solely to his situation as chief of the Council of the Indies. The supplementary members are : Don Thomas Arras de Rota, an ecclesiastic unknown in public affairs—the Duke del Infantado, the minister representing the Absolutist party, and of great wealth and influence—the well-known Count d'Espagne-Don José de la Cruz, the present Minister of War, the right hand of Zea Bermudez; and Don Nicolas Garoli and John Jose Heria, neither of whom are much known.
One of the first acts of the Queen Regent was to direct her minister to quit the head-quarters of Don Miguel, and formally to acknowledge Donna Maria as sovereign of Portugal.
The Madrid Gazette of the 24th of October contained several deerees which had not been expected. One proclaimed a partial amnesty to the liberal exiles; another related to the internal government of the country, and prescribed the adoption of a system resembling the one which prevails in France. A third nominated two commissioners, formed, it is said, of honourable and enlightened men, for the purpose of revising the regulations of the corn trade. A fourth referred to the state of the police, and defined its duties.
Queen Isabella was proclaimed in Madrid on the 24th of October. The ceremony of the proclamation lasted three days, during which the strongest demonstrations of fidelity and attachment were received by the Regent and the young Queen, from the great majority of the inhabitants of the capital. The disarming of the royalist volunteers took place on the 27th. was not unattended with resistance, and several lives were lost in consequence. The populace themselves seem to have vented their rage against the unpopular militia, by attacking and putting to death all the royalist volunteers who ventured out singly in the streets in the dress
The civil war still raged in the north of Spain, yet with varying success: extinguished by the superior power of the government troops in one district, or kept down by their temporary presence in another, the spirit of revolt flew to other quarters, where it broke out with fresh vigour; the strife was, however, chiefly confined to the provinces of Navarre and Biscay. The French papers of the 15th and 16th of November contained a proclamation of Don Carlos, purporting to have been issued at Valencia de Alcontara, and another from General Quesada, to the inhabitants of Old Castile. The latter breathed fierce and uncompromising war, on the part of the Queen Regent's friends, against the denounced monks and their supporters
At the close of the year the spirit of insurrection in favour of Don Carlos was not yet extinct. The cause of the young Queen, however, appeared to be prosperous, while the adhe rents of Don Carlos were scattered in every direction. Not
of their corps.
only had Vittoria, the seat of Carlism, surrendered to the Queen's troops, but Bilboa, where the standard of revolt was first reared, had been taken possession of without opposition. General Sarsfield had been superseded by Valdez, as .commander-in-chief; the former being appointed Captain General of Navarre. Valdez immediately drove the insurgents from Mondragon and Ognate, and established a communication with Castagnon at Tolosa. Generals Castagnon and El Pastor continued their pursuit of the Carlist band in the north, and had so far dispersed them as to open all the roads. The bands of Merino still, however, continued to infest the Castiles, one of them having pushed within a few leagues of Madrid. General Quesada had offered 10,000 reals to any one who would deliver up Merino, and 5000 reals a-piece for each of his four principal adherents. General Rodil had entered the Portuguese territory with an army, for the purpose of seizing Don Carlos at Mirand; the attempt was unsuccessful, but we are told that the general occupied the town, and that under his direction it declared in favour of Don Pedro. An official document had been issued from the Government to the people of Adoa, in which a pardon was offered to all the insurgents under the rank of captain, who, within a fortnight, presented themselves before the magistrate, or lawful authorities of their districts, and surrendered their arms.
PORTUGAL.—The state of affairs in Portugal, at the close of the year 1832, was such as to induce a belief that the enterprise in which Don Pedro had engaged, with the view of establishing his daughter's claim to the crown which his brother Don Miguel had usurped, had become little less than desperate. Time, however, and the course of events, have this year wrought wondrous changes. In our last volume we left Don Pedro, with his constitutional band, closely pent up in Oporto, the Miguelite forces having erected batteries at the mouth of the Douro, which were playing with vigour on the town, and almost succeeded in cutting off the supply of provisions. In the early part of 1833, hostilities still continued without any decided result. On the 24th of January, a severe affair occurred, by a part of the army embarking
in boats to attack St. John's, and two forts on the Douro. The troops engaged were 1,400 English, 700 French, and three regiments of caçadores, under Colonel Le Place. They were completely successful, driving the Miguelites by the bayonet. One of the forts mounted eight guns. They retained pos