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The progress of political events has to comprehend, and still less to treat served fully to verify those apprehen- scientifically, subjects of far more imsions, and to justify those warnings, portant interest in the political and which on various occasions, with all commercial sense. The treaty of the authority to be derived from expe- Unkiar Skelessi is an imperishable morience fof the past, fortified with facts nument in proof of this deplorable igno. occuring every day, in respect of the rance and absence of political forecast foreign policy of the empire, have and geographical combination ; the been stated and enforced in the co- Prussian Customhouse league would lumns of this publication. To dignify not have been existent at this moment that policy with the name of system, had one frontier, and one central State Would be, if not an utter prostitu- of the States composing it, however tion, a gross misapplication of terms; small in extent, and insignificant in their its course has been erratic and undisci populations, been secured by treaty, and plined as the mind of its director. so detached, as at the time was easily to Swayed by vague impulse, by fitful be accomplished. But Lord Palmer. caprice, by puerile antipathies, its ten- ston was as unconscious of the geogra. dency has been, and continues still to phical and relative bearings of the Gerbe, uncertain as the temperamental os. manic States, affected by, and now cillations of its author, and vain would combined in the Union, as of the vast be the attempt to predicate the policy commercial interests involved in, and of the morrow, from the fanciful indica. now sacrificed through his ignorance tion of that of to-day. It would in and rashness. To be vanquished by truth be as idle to look for grapes from known and avowed rivals or foes, thistles, or wheat from tares; for the Fo- should be humiliation sufficient, but reign Secretary, the master-mind that one wreath more bristles amidst the should be, but is not, is so purely inno- laurels of his Lordship-he is no less cent of the first and elementary lessons the victim of the political friends of his of his art, that it would be miraculous bosom, than of undisguised opponents. indeed if he could master its more ab- If by open foes he has been circumventstruse problems. The man who, as we ed, no less has he been betrayed and know, and have heretofore exemplified, overreached by artful allies in whom he is so entirely deficient in the ruder out- trusted. The work of pillage has been lines of geographical lore, as to be un proceeding on all sides, as well by direct acquainted with the territorial limits or assault and battery, as by secret sapping position on the map of the remarkable and mining ; but of all wars, that of localities of states, can hardly be fitted “ war in disguise” is the most formid
VOL. XLIV. NO, CCLXXVIII,
able, because the least prepared for. lost sight of. Concurring circumstances Such is the warfare now carrying on are all but too favourable for the catasby France against this country—a war- trophe preparing afar off. Powerful and fare singularly abetting the views, if not rival navies, created around us as if by covertly concerted with Russia. Leav- enchantment, and proudly careering ing for the present out of view other over seas where once the British ensigns prominent features of this creeping and floated supreme in unequalled and almost clandestine system of aggressive inroad, solitary grandeur, whilst the wooden deferring to another account and the walls of old England, which once atfinal balance sheet the gigantic strides tested the extent of her supremacy, and of French plunder and usurpation in exacted homage to her dominion where. Northern and Western Africa, let ever winds could waft or oceans bear us sum up here only the story of them, are now laid up and rotting in French invasion and French aggression ordinary-our proudest dock-yards so in America, North and South. The wasted of stores, and unreplenished, that field of encroachment is vast and vari- not one solitary spar for a lower mainous, but of the three quarters of the mast could recently be found in them world where French aggrandisement to rig out the pleasure craft of an exhas been at work, by fraud and false. vice regal Whig functionary - the hood first, and, as success emboldened, once well-garnished rooms of our spa. with front more hardy, throwing off the cious arsenals so despoiled, bargained scarcely deceptive mask afterwards, and away to France, or shamelessly made parading the resolve of force to main- away with to Spain, that it may be tain, the concerns of one quarter at truly said, scarcely a musket remains to once will suffice to task sufficiently the be shouldered, or a shot left in the temper of our readers and our own pa. locker-all this with, to crown all, a tience. The scene of action even thus Cabinet where, in its nine members, circumscribed, will serve to show, that stand prominently personified indolence however Louis Philippe may lack the and ignorance consummate, solemn lion heart and eagle eye of Napoleon the pedantry and petulance in petto, upEmperor, he is noways behind hand in start self-conceit and high-born arrothe craft and cunning of Bonaparte the gance all-blustering, self-sufficiency all Corsican. Ships, colonies, and com- smirking, and solid acres in all their merce, was the cry of Bonaparte; ships, stolidity, the remnant of vigour on colonies, and conquests, the echo of the crutches, and of saintly talent everbarricade Sovereign; the insidious in- dozing—all this is indeed prophetic of tent of one, as of the other, being to wo to the land. Rottenness and coraccomplish these objects at the expense ruption are in the high places, and what of Great Britain, and by indirectly hope of safety and deliverance in times warring on her commerce, to sap the coming can be hoped for from dupes and foundations of her maritime preponde- dottards, who have deceived none but rance. Hence this country is insidi. their country, and served none but its ously attacked through the sides of its foes. Such are the men wielding, or asfirmest allies and most gainful alliances. suming to wield, with puny hands, the The blows ostensibly aimed against energies of a great nation, under whose Mexico, Buenos Ayres, and Brazil, are eyes, and in contempt of whose imbe. no other than sidelong stabs, really cility, a series of insults have been meant for the most vital points of Bri- perpetrated, and actual hostilities comtish interest, whilst in all the underplot menced, by the French upon Mexico, accessories of the same drama, the one more unprovoked and flagrant than great ruling feature of the finale is never ever characterised even the most cruel
* It is a fact, that the Marquis of Anglesey having sprung, and wishing to replace the lower mainmast of his yacht, in which he was about to make a pleasure voyage, put into Portsmouth, and afterwards into Plymouth, for the purpose. The dock-yards of both those parts were searched in vain by functionaries most anxious and obsequious to oblige a great Whig Lord. He was obliged to stand over to a French port, where he was accommodated forthwith, and might have had spars of the size requisite by the hundred. The facts are attested by the West of England Conservative, published at Plymouth and Devenport, a journal of high reputation, and justly celebrated, no less for. its peculiar sources of information, than for the spirit and talent with which it is conducted.
and capricious outbreak of Bonaparte ple of Mexico, in fact, had their glo. himself, with the single exception, per- rious three days, as two years afterhaps, of that one act, more atrocious wards the good people of Paris had than all the invasion of Spain. Let theirs; the which, if nothing else, us add, that this Mexican outrage par- should have created a fellow feeling in takes largely of a meanness the breast of Louis Philippe. The chargeable upon the France Imperial account-current of damage then furof Napoleon ; in the shabby style of a nished for pillage by eight
French estashabby sovereign, to whom even am- blishments, amounted to 122,590 dol. bition is second to the base passion of lars, of which to the extent of no less money-getting, Louis Philippe has en- than 74,800 dollars was claimed by grafted a pecuniary interest upon poli- one bookseller alone. Monsieur Hytical designs_has raised a question polite Seguin, the modest claimant for and fixed the amount of damages in the this moderate sum of about L.16,500 names of individuals and subjects; and in the article of books, admitted, with should the cause be gained, he claims edifying candour, that proofs he had the repartition of the spoil, with a view none to establish the fact of the loss to an appropriation of the lion's share in detail
, for the plunderers had done to himself. The sum of damages ar- him the good turn of carrying off his bitrarily laid is roundly taxed at books of account, along with his other 600,000 hard dollars, of the various matters in the book way. Now, taking items composing which, some few are an average of French books at four furnished with a certain detail, and the shillings the volume, which, to those Mexicans required to take the rest on who know any thing of the base quatrust. It is indeed true, that the sys- lity of the article in general, whether tem of claims to indemnities did not, as regards the wretchedness of the originate with Louis Philippe ; – he paper, the miserable type, or the sort only improved them at a monstrous of works exported from, or indeed rate of compound interest. The ac- published in France, must appear a count commenced in 1828, and when high average. The sum quoted for first rendered, fell vastly short of the this book pillage would represent a grand total now demanded. For non- library of about 82,000 volumes ; acpayment of this, the Mexican ports are cording to which, the people of the now blockaded, the Mexican territory city of Mexico must be admitted not about to be invaded, and though last, only not to be the barbarians the not of least consideration, British com- French would now make them, but to merce and property are sacrificed, or possess a passion so extraordinary for wantonly perilled, to the extent of mil- learning, that they actually gorged lions. Here indeed lies the hidden themselves with literature. The difand the chief, though unavowed incen- ference between the mobs of Paris and tive to the Mexican quarrel. To crip- Mexico was therefore immense, but ple as well as to humble Great Britain, the balance of civilisation and taste whilst at the same time filling his cof- was all in favour of the half-clad sava. fers from the mines of Mexico, dra- ges of the Andes. The Parisian ligooning her into treaties of commerce berty boys, as we can testify, were on unequal terms, forcing markets for solely occupied, during their three the manufactures, and aggrandising the days of robbery and riot, with the marine of France—these form the art- sack of palace and private house trapfully woven meshes of the policy within pings, and the well-garnished tills of the toils of which the cherished Down- shopkeepers—with clearing out restau. ing Street hunter of Parisian salons lies rateurs, iron-grated bakeries, and perdu—from which the less enervated wine shops. Such was the lack of Aztecs of the Cordilleras are hardily relish for literary plunder, that shortly struggling to get free. In humble imi- afterwards, during another glorious tation of Louis Philippe himself, let us emeute, we ourselves witnessed, with take the money question first in order, pain indescribable, the splendid and and then the commercial and political plenteously-furnished library of the
On the 4th of December, 1828, an Archbishop of Paris contemptuously insurrection of the masses was celebra- pitched out of the windows into the ted in Mexico, and a general sack of Seine, whose course it choked up, al. property took place, known as the Sa- though the jolly brutes, less lettered quee del Parian. The sovereign peo, than those of Mexico, were specially conservative, for their own use, of the the king reserves to itself the liquidaArchbishop's larder and wine cellar. dation of the 600,000 dollars, as also The book-damage case of M. Seguin, it the division thereofamongst the Frenchwill be seen, was preposterous enough, men who have been sufferers in the and he must have reconciled the esti. Mexican territory," &c. Nothing, we mate to his conscience by taxing the apprehend, could well be more conclu. books according to weight, on the sive of the real opinion entertained of Prussian Custom-house system, his the equity of the grossly fraudulent trumpery stock of stale Paris shop- claims than this impudent intimation of keepers being placed in the scales, a design to share with the robbers, if and weight for weight reduced into not to appropriate the whole of the golden onzas at par. Finding in the spoil. It forms truly a melancholy Government a disposition to entertain exhibition of the degraded state of pothe question of these exorbitant claims, litical morality in France. subject of course to a preliminary pro- It is far beyond our purpose, and cess of examination, another smaller would be of our limits, to examine in batch of indemnity demands was pain- detail such items or pretensions as are fully got up seven months afterwards, adduced by the French envoy in part for 30,500 dollars, followed in two justification only of the solid mass of monthis more by another list of less metalico proposed to be abstracted voracious, or more bashful blood from the Mexican mint, and transfersuckers, for other 15,317 dollars. In red to the treasury of Louis Philippe; this state was the indemnity question but the dissection of a few will suffice at the appearance on the scene of Ba- for the character of the whole, with ron Deffandis, the new Plenipoten. scarcely more than one exception, and tiary of France, who, in a note to the that is in the case of five Frenchmen Mexican Foreign Secretary, dated the cruelly murdered during some tumults 19th of January, 1836, pressing for a at Atenzingo in 1833, the atrocious settlement, stated the sum total at perpretators of which could not be 168,378 dollars. During eight years, sufficiently disentangled from out the therefore, the amount and the number mob, and therefore the ends of justice, of claims remained stationary, from notwithstanding every exertion on the which it is fair to conclude that, du- part of the Mexican authorities, were ring the interim, French residents had defeated. In behalf of the families of no peculiar causes for complaint. the victims a pecuniary mulct of
With the advent of Baron Deffan- 15,000 dollars is claimed, the equity of dis, however, a change came over the which there is little reason to dispute. spirit of the times; grievance monger. But whilst admitting this, what must ing under such auspices was a traffic be thought of another item of 20,000 too gainful to be confined to the Se- dollars; at which the lives of two French guins—more lucky riots occurred in pirates are charged in the same acMexico-a brace of French buccaneers count ? The sufferers at Atenzingo were shot at Tampico-some French are represented as honest industrious smugglers were caught in the exercise artizans or mechanics, who perished of their honest craft, and the contra- during a sudden outbreak of a misled band property seized at Mazatlan— populace against foreigners; the crime othertimely incidents fellout at Tehuan. is visited at the rate of 3000 dollars tepee, Oajaca, and Orizava, so that, each honest head only; but a deodand upon the whole, a goodly supplement is levied at the rate of 10,000 dollars to the Seguin catalogue was in course per head of two notorious freebooters of less than two years scraped toge- and assassins taken in the act. The ther, and without troubling himself or facts of the case of these men were annoying the government with a bill of notorious to all Mexico; all the auall particulars, the Baron at once, by a thentic documents and examinations process of arithmetic all his own, sum- were in the hands of the French enmed up and sent in a total demand for voy, so that not a shadow of doubt 600,000 dollars, to be paid down on could rest upon it; yet not only are the nail without question or demur, these murderous robbers and ruffians not to the parties complaining, but to elevated into martyrs, but their lives the French treasury; for, says the valued at more than three times the agent of the crafty and money-griping price of really unoffending subjects, acLouis Philippe, "the government of cording to the moral code of Louis Philippe their mutual sovereign! The New Orleans to join the expedition, following is a brief recapitulation of the upon the understanding that it was incidents of the Tampico grievance. destined for Texas; and once on board, In December, 1835, a small American were compelled by their comrades, bark from New Orleans, having on when off Tampico to accompany them board a body of adventurers, brought to the assault. Such a defence was to off Tampico, and having reason untenable on that or any ground, to know that the castle of the port was Texas was a province of Mexico, al. poorly garrisoned, and the town open though in a state of insurrection—a fact and undefended bytroops, a landing was of which they did not pretend ignoeffected, and the place assaulted. The rance. The truth, however, was, and inhabitants, however, took up arms, they must have known it, that it was and with the help of the few troops no better than a marauding expedition there repulsed the assailants, who hasti. on the hunt for chances of plunder. ly retreated, leaving twenty-eight pri. Megia, under whose orders they were, soners in the hands of the Mexicans, was an expelled rebel. Tampico was all foreigners, and among them the two selected as the point of attack, not Frenchmen in question. They were only because ill-prepared and unsusof course all tried before a military tri- picious of danger, but because the bunal, according to military law, con. brigands had notice, that by various demned, as was inevitable, and shot. conductas from the interior and the The vessel in which they were em. mines a vast treasure was accumulatbarked sailed under no flag; on land- ed there, estimated at 4 or 500,000 ing they fought under none; they had dollars in specie, the far larger portion forfeited therefore all rights as subjects of it British property, waiting the arof a friendly state, even if those rights rival of the first packet for transmishad not been lost by the act of carry- sion to England. Such are the partiing arms against a country with which culars of the so called " butchery of their own was at peace, according to Tampico," and such a faithful version the French civil code itself, (Art. 21, of the story and the exit of the two sec. 1. cap. 2. vol. i.) All the docu- French pirates Demonssent and Sausments relative to the landing, the as- sier. Let the common sense and comsault, the capture, the trial before a mon honesty yet to be found in the tribunal, presided over by the general world decide upon the scandalous percommanding in these parts, though not version of truth, and the insolent disat the action, assisted by an assessor, regard of the rights of an independent were duly laid before the French en. state, evinced in this single transacvoy, authenticated throughout by the tion on the side of the French governrequisite formalities and parties, and ment. It is singular, that with respect yet this man had the hardihood to as- to the fate of the other twenty-six sert in his ultimatum that no satisfac- foreigners, associated in the freetory explanation of the proceedings had booting foray, no complaint has been been furnished. With remarkable as- uttered by the States of which they surance he descants therein upon “the were born subjects, and the cause is butchery at Tampico in 1835, wherein clear; their crimes had disqualitied twenty-eight foreigners, amongst whom them from the privileges of birthright, were two Frenchmen, made prisoners had erased them from the category of by the Mexican troops, in consequence nationality and citizenship, as in the of an attack which they meditated upon case of the two Frenchmen. If compenthe territory of the Republic, in favour sation were justified in the one instance, of the Tejanos, were put to death a so it must be in the other, so that at the few days afterwards, in a yard, where rate of 10,000 dollars a head, Mexico they were surrounded and shot like should be called upon for 260,000 dollars wild beasts, and without the Mexican more-at such a rate, not even the Government, up to the present mo- mines of Mexico in most splendid bonment, nearly two years that France has anza could satisfy the endless drain. solicited, being able to show by virtue The United States alone might prefer of what law, nor according to what claims far more just for embattled citi. judicial formality, they had been sen. zens slain fighting under the insurgent tenced and executed."