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with him, would have amounted to an interference in the internal government and affairs of France. Yet it might with justice be answered, that every nation was entitled to refuse to make peace with the ruler of a people who had proved his utter contempt of all engagements.-But although this policy, which appeared the safest and wisest, might not be the policy of the allies, every one expected, that before making peace, they would deprive the French ruler of his preponderance. Yet how did they provide against this preponderance? They offered to confirm to the French empire an extent of territory which France under her kings never possessed;" because a valiant nation does not fall from its rank, by having in its turn experienced reverses in an obstinate and sanguinary contest, in which it has fought with its accustomed bravery." Thus, although they knew that France with her ancient territory, and under her ancient family, whose ambition was moderation itself when compared with the ambition of her new ruler, was almost too strong for the repose of Europe, the allies were willing to conclude a peace, leaving in the hands of Buonaparte, and confirming to him, not France, as old France, but an "extent of territory which France under her kings never knew." After such reverses as France had experienced, no sovereign, Buonaparte excepted, would have refused terms such as these, which might have given him the means of disturbing again, in a few years, the repose of Europe, and of reducing the continental powers to the necessity of again uniting their strength against him. But Buonaparte did refuse these terms; and the world owed a great obligation to his obstinacy.
On the 4th of December, the corps of the Prince Royal's army moved forward; and on their crossing the Strecknitz, Marshal Davoust precipi
and sanguinary contest, in which it had fought with its accustomed bravery. But the allied powers also wished to be free, tranquil, and happy themselves. They desired a state of peace, which, by a wise partition of strength, by a just equilibrium, might thenceforward preserve their people from the numberless calamities which had overwhelmed Europe for the last twenty years. They would not lay down their arms until they obtained this great and beneficial result-the noble object of their efforts.-They would not lay down their arms until the political state of Europe should be re-established anew-until immoveable principles had resumed their rights over vain pretensions-until the fidelity of treaties should have at last secured a real peace to Europe.
The most important parts of this declaration, are those which expressed a readiness to make peace with Buonaparte, and intimated an intention of leaving to France a more extended territory than she possessed before the revolution. Such a line of policy was by many persons considered as extremely absurd, and utterly at variance with the recorded sentiments of the allied sovereigns. The Austrian declaration distinctly stated, that " Buonaparte would not make any sacrifice to obtain peace." The answer to Buonaparte's attack in the Leipzig Gazette, upon the Crown Prince, in substance, contended that a safe peace with the French ruler was impracticable. The bulletins of the Crown Prince asserted that Buonaparte was not desirous of peace. The object of these papers, and indeed of all the others published by the allies, was to shew, that a solid peace with Buonaparte could not be expected. Yet they were now ready to make peace with him! It might have been argued, that their avowal of a different policy, of a resolution never to make peace
tately retired upon Hamburgh, leaving exposed the right wing of the Danes, which was posted at Oldeslohe. The French Marshal was pursued by General Woronzoff, who moved beyond Bergedorff, and defeated the whole French cavalry in a sanguinary engagement at Wandsbeck. General Walmoden marched upon Oldeslohe; Marshal Stedingk manoeuvered on Lubeck; and General Tettenborn, with his light troops, pushed into the interior of Holstein by Trettau, and hung on the flanks and rear of the French. He cut off all communication between the French and Danes, and took from the latter a number of prisoners, carriages, and ammunition waggons. He likewise in tercepted some important dispatches.The enemy did not hold out against these combined movements, but commenced a precipitate retreat on the Eyder. Lubeck was evacuated by the Danes, who were defeated on the 7th of December by the Swedes, and vigorously pursued by General Walmoden, when an obstinate engagement ensued betwixt a part of his troops and the whole Danish force. The action was well conducted, and the Danes were finally compelled to retire to Rendsburg. The communication between General Dornberg (who had been detached upon the right bank of the Eyder) and General Walmoden was momentarily cut off. The enemy was reinforced at Sleswick by four battalions a regiment of cavalry and ten pieces of cannon, sent from the interior. The critical position of General Dornberg obliged Tettenborn to direct his operations towards Sleswick, which place he was preparing to attack, when intelligence arrived that an armistice had been concluded with the Danes by the mediation of Austria. -The Danish cabinet, however, was not yet weaned from its attachments to French politics; and the armistice
was soon terminated. In the course of three days, the whole duchy of Sleswick was occupied by the light troops under General Tettenborn. This officer had, in conjunction with General Dornberg, so completely invested the fortress of Rendsburg, that neither the garrison, nor even the cavalry belonging to it, could find an opportunity of making a sally, for which orders had been given, on account of the scarcity reigning in the town.-The list of conquests made by the army of the Crown Prince every day increased, -Holstein was conquered-Sleswick overrun-and General Tettenborn had established his head quarters within a mile or two of Colding, the frontier town of Jutland. On the 14th of January, however, a treaty of peace and alliance with Denmark was signed by Mr Thornton on the part of England, and by Baron de Witterstedt for Sweden; according to which 10,000 Danes, who were at Rendsburg, were immediately united with the army of the north of Germany.—"There is no longer any rivalship among the nations of the north," said Bernadotte, on this occasion; "they have acknowledged that they have the same interests. United for the noblest object, they will combat together for the liberty of the continent, the independence of sovereigns and of nations? The nations of the north do not look upon the French as enemies; they recognise no other enemy but him who has done every thing to prevent their union; him who, it cannot be too often repeated, has wished to enslave all nations, and to ravish from all their independence."
By the peace with Denmark, Bernadotte was enabled to move his victorious legions to the Rhine, and to give the support of his auxiliary troops to the grand undertakings of the allies. Accordingly General Benningsen was left with 30,000 men to form
tive but to prosecute the war, and as it appeared that the invasion of France might be best accomplished through Switzerland, deputies were sent to Zurich to learn the disposition of the cantons. The Swiss in these circumstances affected to adopt the extraor dinary determination of remaining neutral. When they could be of service to Buonaparte by their active hostility against the allies, they thought not of neutrality; now that this neutrality must, if regarded, have protected the most vulnerable part of the French frontier, they declared themselves neutral. If Switzerland thus shifted her attitude and character as it might suit the policy of Buonaparte, she could not complain that the allies considered and treated her rather as the associate of the com. mon enemy, than as a neutral acting with strict impartiality towards the belligerent powers. The law of nations says, that "should a neutral favour one of the parties to the prejudice of the other, she cannot complain of being treated by him as an adherent and confederate of the enemy."-The neutrality of Switzerland was a fraudulent neutrality, of which no nation could consent to be the dupe.-The head quarters of the allies were accordingly removed to Frieburg, in the Brisgau, within a few miles of Basle; a step which formed a preliminary to the movement in contemplation, of passing through Basle, for the purpose of invading France on the side of Franche Comte.
the siege of Hamburgh, and 5000 to blockade Harburg, while the remainder moved forward to the principal scene of action.
Bernadotte probably felt the delicacy of his situation, now that he was about to invade his native country; and he was anxious to explain his motives, and the principles of his policy, to the people of France. At the command of my king," said he, "I have taken up arms, for the purpose of defending the rights of the Swedish people. After having revenged the insults which they had suffered, and assisted in effecting the liberation of Germany, I have passed the Rhine. At the moment when I again see this river, on the banks of which I have so often and so successfully fought for you, I feel the necessity of again ap. prising you of my sentiments. The government under which you live has continually had in view to treat you with contempt, in order that it might debase you; it is high time that this state of things undergo an alteration. All enlightened people express their wishes for the welfare of France; but they at the same time desire that she may no longer be the scourge of the earth. The allied monarchs have not united themselves to make war upon the people, but to force your government to acknowledge the independence of other states. This is their sole motive and aim, and I will pledge myself for the integrity of their sentiments. Adopted son of Charles the 13th, and placed, by the choice of a free people, at the foot of the throne of Gustavus, I can in future be animated with no other ambition, than that of securing the happiness of the Scandinavian peninsula. At the same time, it will give me great satisfaction (after having fulfilled this sacred duty to my adopt ed country) to secure the future happiness of my former countrymen."
As the allied powers had no alterna
Buonaparte, after several adjournments, met his legislative body on the 19th December, and, as usual, entertained that venerable assembly with a speech. He alluded to the recent offers of the allies to treat with him, and to the existing state of France. "Negociations have been entered into with the allied powers," said he ; " I have adhered to the preliminary basis which
they presented. I had then the hope that before the opening of this session, the congress of Manheim would be as sembled; but new delays, which are not to be ascribed to France, have de ferred this moment, which the wishes of the world eagerly call for."-There was much obscurity in the above allusion. While Buonaparte was at Dresden, and after Austria had declared against him, some overtures were understood to have been made, which he rejected. These overtures proceeded upon the basis, that all the Prussian fortresses should be evacuated, and that the French should retire behind the Rhine, before the assembling of a congress for peace. But after they had been beaten across the Rhine, their ruler offered to treat upon the same basis as before; the offer was, of course, rejected by the allies.-This was the negociation with the allies to which he alluded-this the basis to which he said he had adhered. He expected that his adherence would lead toa congress, which he proposed should be held at Manheim in the electorate of Baden, the only district of Germany which still remained attached to him. It was evident, however, that the hopes which he entertained from a congress were become less confident, or had en tirely vanished. He spoke of new delays, which could not be ascribed to him; he was anxious to throw the obstacles to the re-establishment of peace upon the allies. "On my side," said he," there is no obstacle."-But he accompanied these expressions about peace with a demand for numerous levies, and an increase of taxes.-Italy, at all events, it may be remarked, would have been an obstacle in limine, not only to peace but to negociation; for in a letter from Buonaparte, dated the 16th of November, to the Duke of Lodi, he declared that he would not, under any circumstances, abandon his people of Italy.
The secrets of the previous negocia tions to which Buonaparte alluded, have never yet, indeed, been fully explained to the world. It was generally known, however, that during the are mistice, and even subsequently to it, different proposals, and projets were submitted to him through the medium of the Emperor of Austria, who, although he had assumed the attitude of a belligerent, still wished to act as a mediator. Before he joined the allies, he submitted the following as a basis of negociation; the cession to himself of the Illyrian provinces and of Venice; the erection of Dantzic into a free city, and the evacuation, as already mentioned, of the Prussian for tresses. This proposal having been rejected, Austria joined the allies. The course of events induced Buonaparte to do that by compulsion which he had refused to do from choice; and he was driven across the Rhine. A few days after he arrived at Metz, an officer was dispatched to Frankfort with a declaration of his readiness to open a nego ciation upon the preliminary basis which had been formerly proposed. In the altered situation of affairs the allies rejected this overture; but in their turn they are said to have made offers to him, to which they alluded in general terms in their declaration, viz. to leave France more powerful than she had ever been under her kings. In reply to this, Buonaparte is said to have consented to the independence of Germany and of the peninsula-a mighty concession from him who had no longer a foot of ground in those countries! This proposal was answered by a declaration on the part of the allied sovereigns, that the French empire must be bounded on the side of Italy by the Alps. To this Buonaparte would not accede.
The project of making peace with France, even on such terms, gave great offence in England. It was justly
ful, less strong, less rich, less fruitful was France in the year eight, when, threatened on the north, invaded on the south, torn to pieces in the interior, exhausted in her finances, disorganised in her administration, discouraged in her armies, the seas brought her hope, the victory of Marengo restored her honours, and the treaty of Luneville brought back peace to her."-Now if France was more powerful at the close of 1813, than she was in the year 1801, the inference was obvious, that she might insist upon being placed in a better situation than she was by the peace of Luneville. If France, with inferior means in 1801, was able to dictate the terms of peace, with greater means she would demand better conditions.-In what situation did that peace place her? Absolute mistress of the Netherlands, the Frickthal, and of Italy, with the exception of the city of Venice, which was reserved for Austria.-Buonaparte thus announced by one of his agents, that he would not hear of any proposition which should reduce him to the position in which he stood at the peace of Luneville; that he would not be contented with Italy and the Netherlands alone. He understood, of course, that more than this was meant by the proposal of the sovereigns, to confirm to the French empire an extent of territory "which France under her kings never knew." -No reasonable man could any longer question the policy which demanded a continuance of the war till the French ruler and his adherents should be brought to a just sense of their condition; and a sure basis should be laid, in their entire discomfiture and humiliation, for the future repose of the world.
remarked, that by peace, France would gain every thing. She would have restored to her at least 300,000 of her best troops-one half of her best officersand seamen sufficient, in numbers, to man 50 sail of the line. The obstinacy of Buonaparte had thrown away the military means of France. Never again might Europe expect to find her so much reduced in her armies, so exhausted in her finances; never again could Europe expect to see a more formidable military force opposed to the ambition of this power. The crisis was great; it was in favour of the allies, not only beyond expectation, but beyond example; and if they did not reap the full advantage of it, they might soon have cause to repent their folly. In six months after peace, France might have fifty sail of the line, well manned, and an army of half a million of men, commanded by a great military genius. One victory might give him possession of Vienna, and Europe might be replunged into all the difficulties against which it was now in her power to erect an effectual barrier. This barrier might be found in the confinement of France to her ancient limits, as existing in 1789. Even those limits had been found scarcely compatible with the balance of power in Europe; and shall we, it was asked, extend them now that we have it in our power to lay the foundations of a better and wiser system of policy?
That Buonaparte had not any serious intention of concluding such a peace as the allies could prudently accept, was manifest from a passage in the speech of M. St Jean D'Angely, his favourite orator, who was appointed to explain his views. "Less power