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FRENCH OCCUPATION OF EGYPT.
understood, it will be necessary for us to consider Bonaparte's general policy in relation to ourselves.
The close of the century had been signalized in France by the memorable revolution of “the eighteenth Brumaire.” The Directory had ceased to exist, and a provisional consular commission, consisting of “ Citizens " Sieyes, Ducos, and Bonaparte, was appointed. On the 13th of December, the legislative committees presented the new constitution to the nation, the votes against it being 1,562 as against 3,01 2,659 in its favour. Bonaparte was nominated first consul for ten, and Cambacères and Lebrun (nominal) second and third consuls for five years.
Although Bonaparte, as soon as he was appointed First Consul, made direct overtures to the king of England with a view to peace, he had himself to thank if his overtures met with no corresponding return. To accomplish the revolution of the “ eighteenth Brumaire,” he had found it necessary to quit Egypt. The English knew the French occupation of Egypt was intended as a direct menace to British interests in India. Lord Granville, therefore, in his official reply, without assuming to prescribe a form of government to France, plainly but somewhat illogically intimated that the “restoration of the ancient line of princes, under whom France had enjoyed so many centuries of prosperity, would afford the best possible guarantee for the maintenance of peace between the two countries.” This New Year's greeting on the part of Lord Granville put an end, as might have been expected, to all further communications.
The French, however, had no business in Egypt, and England was resolved at any cost to drive them out of that country. With this object in view, the armament under the command of Sir Ralph Abercrombie effected its disembarkation at Aboukir on the 8th of March, 1801. A severe though indecisive action followed five days afterwards. On the 20th was fought the decisive battle of Alexandria. General Hutchinson, on the death of the English commander, followed up the victory with so much vigour and celerity, that early in the autumn the French army capitulated, on
condition of being conveyed to France with all its arms, artillery, and baggage. The capitulation was signed just in time to save French honour ; for immediately after the conclusion of the treaty, a second British force, under the command of Sir David Baird, arrived from India by way of the Red Sea. Bonaparte's favourite project of making Egypt an entrepôt for the conquest of Hindostan was thus most effectually checkmated.*
On the 1st of October, 1801, preliminaries of peace between France and Great Britain were signed in Downing Street; on the 10th, General Lauriston, aide-de-camp to the First Consul, having arrived with the ratification of these preliminaries, the populace took the horses from his carriage and drew it to Downing Street. That night and the following there was a general illumination in London.
The “preliminaries” referred to were those of the very unsatis. factory “ Peace of Amiens,” as it was called. Its terins, by no means flattering to this country, were shortly these: France was to retain all her conquests; while, on the other hand, the acquisitions made by England during the war were to be given up. Malta and its *dependencies were to be restored (under certain restrictions) nominally to the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem ; the French were to evacuate Naples and the Roman States; and the British Porto Ferrago, and all the ports possessed by them in the Mediterranean and the Adriatic.
All this time a violent paper war had been maintained between the English press and the Moniteur, the official organ of the Consular Government. In the month of August, 1802, Bonaparte prohibited the circulation of the English newspapers, and immediately after the issue of the order, the coffee houses and reading rooms were visited by his police, who carried away every English journal upon which they could lay their hands. By way of answer
• “If it had not been for you English, I should have been Emperor of the East; but wherever there is water enough to float a ship, we are sure to find you in our way.”— Napoleon to Captain Maitland. See Maitland's “Narrative of the Surrender of Bonaparte," p. 99.
A PEEP AT CHRISTIE's, OR TALLY-HO AND HIS NIMENEY PIMENEY
TAKING THE MORNING LOUNGE.
A study of Lord Derby and Miss Farren (the actress), a few months before their marriage, enjoying the Fine Arts, he studying “ The Death of Reynard," she " Zenocrates and Phryne."
(Face p. 14