« 前へ次へ »
THE GLEANER'S PORTE-FOLIO.
a series of calamities might his country tives. The latter rescued their countries have avoided. During that long contest, from the greatest danger to which they had and the disorders of a war at home, were been ever exposed; and, chiefly by the force sown the germs of those civil commotions, of their personal character. Upon the death which at last proved fatal to the liberties of Marcellus at Nola, and of General Moore and morals of that illustrious common-, at Corunna, almost every hope of successwealth. Sparta, though her institutions fully opposing the enemy was extinguished. were eminently martial, sank for ever un. They both signalized themselves by the der the genius of the miglity Theban. In deliverance of the Spanish Peuinsula, preour own time the great military states of viously to the great events which terminated the Continent have been overrun by the the long and obstinate conflict. French with the rapidity and desolation of England lias been frequently compareti å torrent; because they had no general to Carthage, though there was nothing to capable of contending with Buonaparte. justify the comparison, but the solitary cirFrance triumphed, as long as her hero was cumstance of one baving been the greatest unrivalled : at last Wellington, like Scipio, naval and commercial state of the old world, turned the tide of invasion.
as the other is of the present time. But We cannot conceive a more base or
here the resemblance terinjnates. In every pernicious attempt than that, which has thing else the English character is essenbeen recently gaining ground, of under tially different from that handed down to us valuing the services and abilities of those of the Carthaginiaus. The proverbial want extraordinary men, who have rescued their of good faith; the giddiness in the use of country from imminent danger, and given liberty; the horrible cruelty and ingratitude its name a higher place in the scroll of fame. to their Generals, as well as their ferocity The storm, which convulsed the world, is in times of civil commotion, would apply now hushed; but the elements are not es with much greater force to the character of tinguished; and who can presume to say, the French, particularly when these were that we shall not again want the powerful in the habit of making the comparison, mind and arm, that assuaged its fury. To : than to the English. Had it been said that check this spirit, we shall occasionally allude there existed great affinity in the character, to such military occurrences, as constitute a of the Romans and that of the Eoglish, the memorable epoch in history, as well as to the assertion would be much more correet. We generals who had most influence on those can discover in both an invincible spirit of transactions. They will at least have the liberty, an extraordinary perseverance in merit of establishing a great and salutary enterprise, au unbending fortitude under truth, that justice, where every thing else difficulties, as well as great probity in their is balanced, is eminently conducive to suc transactions. The defects of the Carthacess; and that well regulated freedom is ginians have been no doubt exaggerated by one of the main foundations of public safety. the incensed and partial historians of Rome. We shall for our present purpose take two., The French have cause to complain of equal examples, one from ancient time, and ano. injustice on the part of their former oppother from our own, which have had a sig- vents. But there was much truth in the nal effect on the fate of the world, and are charges brought against both; and their marked by the appearance of four generals
characters do not seem to us to be as of the most singular genius for war. The estimable as that of their rivals. This reperiods are the second Carthaginian war, mark applies still more strongly to the and that which France waged in our time illustrious men, who commanded their against the rest of Europe. The personages armies at those two memorable periods. are Hannibal, Scipio, Buonaparte, and In a moral point of view, Hannibal can Wellington. There is considerable resem stand no competition with Scipio. The blance in many points between Hannibal same may be justly said of Buonaparte, as and Buonaparte, as there is between Scipio conipared with Wellington. The French and Wellington. The two former, after a General has been guilty of many wanton long course of the most splendid success, || and impolitic atrocities, which clouded the Jost all in a single battle, and became fugi, lustre of his great actions, and were the
THE GLEANER'S PORTE-FOLIO,
chief cause of his overwhelming reverses. , having committed great errors, had the reHis rival waged war in the spirit of the best putation of having been beaten by fortune times; and to the confidence which his pro- || and not by his enemies. lu the rapidity of bity inspired, Wellington owed a large their marches, the number of their pitched share of his success. Hannibal is accused battles, the slaughter of their enemies, and of the grossest perfidy; and this vice was pro- | their long tide of success, there is a strong bably the cause of his having failed in an en resemblance between the French and Carterprise, the boldest and most ably conduc. || thaginian Generals. At the same time, ted that is recorded in history. If this opi- | the fortunes of both were decided in one nion be correct, it offers a signal proof of the battle, and by Generals whom they never utility of good faith. For our own part, we before encountered. To coinplete the simihave not the faintest doubt, that justice is larity, they were both compelled to fly from absolutely necessary to permanent prospe- || the countries they liad illustrated by their rity. The contrary quality may prosper for a || victories, and had nearly raised to undistime, but its final miscarriage is generally the || puted empire. Hannibal, it is true, after more marked; and it consoles us amidst the the battle of Zama, filled the highest office many disorders and violences of the politi- in Carthage; and it was ouly the implacal world, to see that crime rarely escapes || cable hatred and jealousy of the Romans, discomfiture and punishment. Hannibal | which procured from his ungrateful and possessed in an incomparable degree the fickle country the order for his banishment. qualities of a soldier and a statesman, and || Buonaparte's flight was not so honourable; he nevertheless failed, through his bad faith though the fears and hostilities of bis oppoand cruelty, in an enterprise planned and nents were equally manifest. Hannibal executed with consummate talents. Buo- | maintained his courage to the last; and his naparte has notoriously miscarried from the death was one of the vilest stains on the same vices of character; and with a genius poli of the Romans, and the noblest ho. for war and civil administration of the mage they could have possibly paid to his highest order, he has seen his mighty scheme extraordinary genius. Buonaparte has not, of glory and empire burst like a bubble. in our opinion, displayed an equal degree
The Carthaginian, in addition to his mi-of maguanimity; and cannot, therefore, litary and political talents, exercised an stand a comparison with Hauvibal in his astonishing command over the minds of his deportment iu bad fortune. followers. Never, perhaps, were such he Scipio, like Wellington, appeared toterogeneous materials collected under the wards the close of the war, after all the sanie standard; and to have kept them to- | other Generals, who had been opposed to gether, after they had been euriched by their antagonists, had been defeated; and the plunder and corrupted by the luxuries when very few hopes of safety seemed to of Italy, conveys a wonderful idea of the remain to their countrymen. Both in their ascendency of his character. Buonaparte, | modes of warfare were accused of excessive in this respect, will stand a comparison | temerity, and of endangering the existence with Haunibal. But he was much his in- of the state. Scipio was opposed by all ferior in fertility of resources. Whenever the wisdom, reputation, and influence then Hannibal committed an error, or sustained || in Rome; and having obtained the pera' check, with what rapidity he extricated | mission of the Roman people to raise an himself from the one, and retrieved the army, he was at the point of losing the other! Buonaparte, it is true, after his dis command, the expedition was considered astrous campaign in Russia, and the sigual so rash. Even bis success did not stifle defeat he sustained at Leipsic, collected, animadversion; and the battle of Zama in each instance, an army with a degree of continued to be misrepresented by certain promptitude that had an appearance of the Romans, who were dazzled by the genius, marvellous. And how near upon both oc. and stunned by the victories of Hannibal. casions was he of wresting the victory from Yet never was an expedition planned with his opponents! But Hannibal, till bis last more consummate wisdom; for it offered the defeat, never suffered himself to be reduced only means of withdrawing the Carthagito such extremities. Yet Buonaparte, after I nians froin Italy. Had it failed, Rome
THE GLBANER'S PORT-FOLIO.
would not have been in a worse condition ; por; it broke the mighty charm of French and it is even problematical' whether it invincibility and evidently prepared all would have been in so bad a one; for Car those great results which have since changed thage would bave hardly risked the inva the face of the political world. sion of Italy a second time. It was one of This last battle has led to more imthose enterprizes, which confound common
portaut consequences, than any perhaps calculations, and are aloue justified by suc recorded in history; and it is a curious coIt was, in a word, one of the boldest,
incidence in the lives of these great Geneand yet one of the most prudent adventures, || rals, that Waterloo is now, as Zama was recorded in all history.
during the lifetime of Scipio, a subject for Wellington has this in common with || detraction to those who were in the habit Scipio, that his success astonished his coun
of predicting irretrievable defeat instead of trymen, and far exceeded their hopes. | victory. But these exhalations of ignorance When he carried the war into Spain, the land malice are only the forerunners of that Continent lay prostrate under the feet of bright historical day in wbich the achieve Buonaparte. Hope was almost extinct, in ments of Welliugton will appear with unevery bosom. It was considered madness clouded lustre. Such a display of talents to oppose a torrent, which swept away for war as Wellington has given, reflects a every obstacle with incredible fury. Spain || lasting honour upon his nation, and is one was dejected by her reverses, and showed of the most sigual favours which Provis several signs of lukewarmness in the cause. dence can confer upon a country. It has a The rest of the Continent looked upon the || tutelary, instead of a destructive charac. coutest as a wanton and useless prolonga- | ter; and to the genius of Wellington may tion of hostilities. England herself main- || be fairly ascribed the digoified repose, the taived the contest from a point of honour profound security, the plans of retrenchmore than from a hope of final success. She ment, and the hopes of reviving prospe. was partly influenced in her conduct at rity, which now so happily and unexpecte that memorable period by the magnanimity | edly distinguish our beloved country. of her character, and partly by the policy, In one point, the parallel between Scipio that it was better to fight the enemy at a and Wellington, it is to be hoped, will nedistance from home, than to have her shores
ver bear the most distant affinity. The exposed to the constant menace of invasion. treatment of Scipio by his countrymen was But she had no great confidence in the
an act of ingratitude, for which there could results. Her General, however, continued
be no excuse, and for which no indulgence undisturbed in the prosecution of his mighty || has been showu by after ages. It has been: plan. He was rapid, or slow, bold or ever since mentioned with unqualified cencautious, aggressive or defensive, as cir sure; and as it formed an exception in the cunstances required; but when his opera conduct of that people, it can be accounted tions appeared to have a doubtful character for only on the supposition, that Scipio they were regulated with a view to the
was too great for his age, and that his movements of the allies in Spain and Ger. character was too lofty for the standard of many, in whose favour he wished to make Roman feeling and judgment. It raises, a diversion. Upon these occasions he was however, the merit of the man, and proves, obliged to risk much, and to swerve from | beyond the possibility of contradiction, the severer rules of the art. But whenever that the defeat of such an antagonist as he acted independently of those motives, | Hannibal, belongs to Scipio, without parand solely in the prosecution of his own ticipation on the part of his country, There plan, his arrangements were uniformly made was a wonderful elevation, besides a numand executed with the skill of a cousum ber of distinctive features in the character mate master of the art. He displayed, l of this Roman. He seemed to be fully conduring that memorable period, a force of scious that his country owed more to him character, a constancy of purpose, and a than he did to his country, and though his variety of resources, which raise our won great mind was, no doubt, indignant at the der the more we contemplate them. His | triumphs of the Carthaginians, it ceased to success roused the Contiuent froin its stų. feel the violent enmity of liis countrymen,
as soon as the cause of their fears were re ter, Wellington would not have have promoved. His victories bore all the marks | bably had an opportunity of developing the of this elevated feeling; and he is the only | full resources of his genius, without an Roman who did not consider that success event which happened at an early period gave him a right to dictate cruel and insult- | of his command in the Peninsula. It may ing terms of submission. In all his mili- || be said, without incurring the suspicion of tary achievements, clemency was a promi- | courtly panegyric, that the era of the Renent feature; and it was incredibly height- gency was necessary to the developement ened by the contrast presented in the con of his genius, and the full growth of his duct of all the other Roman Generals. His fame. It is more than doubtful whether mode of waging hostilities was marked by the same favourable and fostering circumthe humanity by which modern warfare is stances would have occurred at any previous distinguished; and his magnanimity, as period during this, or the last reign. Juscompared with that of Cæsar, had this tice likewise requires, that grateful mendifference, that in him it was natural and tion should be made of the share which the uniform; on the part of the Dictator, arti- illustrious person, who is at the head of the ficial and capricious.
army, has had'in raising that imperishable Wellington has been more fortunate: bis || fabric of glory which has been constructed exploits have had more discriminating || by British courage, patriotism, and genius, judges and a more grateful public. His in our time. country has a right to share in the lustre of
In these reinarks, reference has only been his successes, because she is sensible of their made to Wellingtou as a General. The value. Merit cannot nieet more impartial time is vot come to do justice to him as a judges or more warm advocates than the man; but he has displayed so much wisdom British public. This circumstance is also in all the relations of life, that it is probathe chief secret of their power, and the ble bis reputation, when history shall fix most solid pledge of its continuauce. Yet his character, will appear as excellent in a with this happy peculiarity in their charac- | private, as in a public capacity.
HISTORY OF REGENCIES.
The first Regency that we find after , sented to them, “ That though the conduct the Conquest, was in the year 1216. of the late King had given the confederated When King John died, he left the kingdom | Barons a pretence for complaining, it was in a most critical situation; his eldest son not reasonable to take the crown from a and beir, Henry III. was only ten years of family which had worn it so long, much age; the army of the crown consisted of less to give it to a foreigner: that King foreign mercenaries, who could not feel for John's faults being personal, it would be the interest of England, and could not be unjust to punish the Priuce, his son, for much relied upon : the heir to the crown them, whose tender age secured him from of France had been called into England by all imputations on that score.—'That the a great body of the English Barons, who remedy made use of by the confederated adhered to him, and acknowledged him as Barons, was worse than the discase, since their King.
it tended to reduce the kingdom under a In this extremity of affairs, the wise and shameful servitude; and therefore in the gallant William Marshal, Earl of Pem- present posture of affairs, nothing was able broke, not despairing of the common weal, to deliver them from the impending yoke, undertook to support young Henry, to but their firm union under a Prince, wlio drive the French out of Englaud, and restore was, beyond all doubt, the lawful heir to the monarchy to its former splendour. the crown)."
With this view he convened the Lords This speech was received with general who had followed the fortune of King || applause, and the Lords cried out, with one John, and presenting young Henry to them, voice, We will have Henry for our King. he said, behold your King.--He then repre." The coronation ceremony was performed at No. 117.-Vol. XVIII.
Gloucester with little pomp, by the Bishops, of Edward III. ; and in compliance with the of Bath and Winchester, in the presence law, which required that a minor
King of an inconsiderable number of Lords, with should have guardians, and the state duriog Gallo, the Pope's Legate, who, by order of the minority, Regents, made choice of his master, espoused young Henry's cause; twelve from among the Bishops, Earls, and the Archbishop of Canterbury was then at Barons, of whom Heury Earl of Lancaster, Rome. King John's crown having been a Prince of the blood, descended from lost in the well-stream, the Lords were Henry. III. was declared the president. obliged to make use of a plain circle, or The Queen,mother, however, seized the chaplet of gold, which served at this in- || government, and ruled the state by her auguration instead of a crown.
minister and favourite Mortimer, until the The ceremony being over, the assembly King, at the age of eighteen, assumed of the Lords, who at that time represented the reigns of government, with the consent the whole nation, chose the Earl of Pem- of a parliament, held at London; and broke, guardian to the King, aud Protector | reigoed without a Regent. and Regent of the kingdom. These offices When Richard II. succeeded at the age he held till the year 1219, when he died, of eleven to his grandfather Edward III. to the great grief of the whole kingdom, the Duke of Lancaster, voele to the young which he had freed from slavery. His body King, assumed the name and authority of lies buried in the Temple church, London, Regent, till the parliament met. The first where his effigy, in a coat of mail, is still care of that body was to settle the adminito be seen in the ground.
stration of affairs during the king's minority. He was succeeded in the office of Regent To that purpose they appointed several by Peter des Roches or de Rupibus, Bishop governors to the King, to take care of his of Winchester. The appointment of the education; and ordered that his three latter was by the authority of parliament. uncles, John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster,
Hubert de Burgo (the ancestor of the Edmund de Langley, Earl of Cambridge, Burkes, Earls of Clanricarde, of Mayo, afterwards Duke of York, and Thomas of &c.) was, by the same authority, made Woodstock, Dake of Buckingham, and af. Chief Justiciary of England, or, as it were, terwards Duke of Gloucester, should be the Lord Lieutenant of the kingdom under Regents of the kingdom; but they joined the Regent. This Lord finding the Regent with them some Bishops and lay-lords: an obstacle in his way, got the Pope to issue this precaution was taken on account of the a bull, declaring the King of full age, when danger there might be in trusting the perin fact he had not completed his seventeenth
son and affairs of a minor King to the sole year. The King's majority would of course management of his nearest relations, who have put an end to the authority and office of in the administration might have self-interthe Regent, but the Barons declared they ested views.--This was a great mortifica. would pay no regard whatever to the bull, li tion to the three Princes. ??? Oravi because it was directly contrary to the laws The favourites of the young King soon of the land, by which the King could not be succeeded in driving the Prioces from the considered as of age till he was twenty-one government of public affairs; but though
In 1226 a parliament was hield, in which they were able to make him change his the King was, as it were, by a new law de- council, they did not find il so easy a mátclared by the authority of that assembly to ter to change his temper: full of his own be of age, though he was only turned of merit, le beheld himself with extreme retwenty; and here, of course, ended the gret under the direction of others, at a time minority and Regency together.
when he was of age to hold the reins of The next Regency was in the beginning of the governmeut himself. Upon his having the reign of Edward III. after the deposition entered into his twenty-third year, he called of his father Edward II. The parliament, his council, ordering all the members to be as soon as their commissioners returned
present. from Kenelworth Castle with the resigua When they were met, be asked them how tion of Edward II., caused his son to be old he was? to which answer was made, immediately proclaimed King, by the name ! he was full twenty-two years of age,