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despotism prevalent in France, of which he adduced many instances in a publication lately under our review. We may be allowed to add, that in various instances of Gallick profligacy, stated by our author, we can vouch, from our own knowledge, for his general correctness. He mentions very truly, many names of persons, not publickly known; and he describes places and things with an accuracy, which, in our opinion, justifies a confidence in his affirmations respecting others, on which we have not equal means of tracing him. The opinion of the Panorama, on the causes and consequences of the French revolution, needs no repetition. The oppressions attendant on that convulsion, were of a nature to appear incredible, as they were utterly inconceivable to those who had Inot witnessed them; and we can almost forgive the incredulity of our countrymen,” who deny the possibility of their perpetration. May they never be convinced by the horrours of experience . This is all the notice we shall take of the earlier divisions of Mr. Goldsmith’s volume, which contains anecdotes of the constituent and legislative assemblies, of the convention, and the directory. Then follow similar communications on the life and character of Napoleon Buonaparte, and his government; these introduce his conduct to foreign powers, particularly to Great Britain, Russia, Austria, Prussia, and Sweden; his preparations for invading England; his wars on the continent, &c. The two appendices contain, the first, publick papers; the second, characters of the imperial court, and its grandees. Private
scandal is not to our purpose; we prefer to direct attention to such articles as more immediately concern our country; or have excited, or still excite, a lively interest among our countrymen. Remarks, at large, from us (though we could make many additions) would be altogether superfluous to our readers. Britons, being themselves incapable of practising those arts of seduction, which are the most dangerous weapons in the hands of our enemy, are, with difficulty, convinced of the true engines by which they themselves are moved. When the ruling philosophers sent their propagandists in swarms to London, very few, indeed, of our sober citizens, so much as suspected that they kept company with agents in French pay. When they assembled by knots of half dozens at the corners of the streets, or in publick houses, the honest, misled auditors never detected the spy in the sheechifter. Yet it is notorious, that such means were
taken to enlighten the publick, and to
promote reform. They have been resorted to since, though not so extensively. “I know from authority,” says Mr. Goldsmith, “that no less than five hundred military emissaries were sent to this country and to Ireland, independently of many secret agents.” He further asserts, that
“The mission to this country of colonel Beauvoisin, was of a more serious nature than any. He was sent here to engage persons to assassinate his majesty; and to organize a plan for the destruction of our naval arsenals at Portsmouth and Plymouth. He was also sent to * Surveiller” the Comte D’Artois, who then resided at Edinburgh.
“That colonel Beauvoisin had frequent conferences with Despard, I am convinced; he told it to Tallien in my presence. And that 1) espard was urged to commit the crime of rigicide by Buonaparte, in times of profound peace, will never be doubted, after some facts which I can communicate on that subject.
* Who, for instance, will believe that count Buffon's descendant was guillotined by Robespierre in 1793, expressly because he was the son of that great naturalist? Yet that was the fact, “Citizens' remember my name Is Buffon " were his last words— Had Robespierre reigned three months longer, scarcely a publick literary character would have been left in France.—Again, who can credit that thirty four newspapers were suppressed by the Directory in one day, and that not only the editors and proprietors, but that the journeymen printers, also, were transported to Cayenne, and all their presses destroyed? At one period there were near one hundred printing presses in safe custody in one building at Paris, supposed to be brought from the provinces, as
well as seized in the metropolis'
“About three months before Despard was apprehended, I was sitting in a coffeeroom with two English gentlemen, one of whom is now in London, and at any time ready to confirm this statement; the other is still in France, and, therefore, I cannot refer to him; a Frenchman came up and told me in the presence of those two gentlemen, “that the French government had laid a plan to have the king of England assassinated, and that he was to be shot in the park!”
Can we now wonder at the complained of severity in the sentence executed on Despard? for, certainly, our government knew his instigators and their connexions, by the same means as they procured original flashers, from Paris, containing correspondence of disaffected jacobins, British and Irish.
The reasons of state for sending away Chauvelin, the French ambassadour, very much to the regret of the liberty-boys, have been guessed at by only a few. The following proof of stage effect, produced by French money, may be included among those reasons.
out, they were all of them made prisoners of war, and sent to Verdun.
“But the great measure of Buonaparte was to effect a rebellion in Ireland. General Russell was employed on this occasion, and Mr. Emmett, brother of the barrister. I know that the latter denied this: at his trial; but I also know that Russell, Emmett, and a Mr. H–1—n, a nephew of the former, were paid by France. A person of the name of L , was employed as the travelling agent.”
Mr. Goldsmith mentions several names as implicated in this plot; such as the notorious Arthur O’Connor, Napper Tandy, Dr. Watson, and others.
Buonaparte was justified in saying that he “ had more friends in England than was known or suspected.”* Nevertheless, we believe that his party was but weak, and would not have proved efficacious in the moment of necessity. The delusion soon wore off from the publick; and the enthusiasm of animated concurrence in “the sacred duty of insurrection,” was felt only by those into whose hands weighty arguments had been committed. We incline to think that Buonaparte was aware of this fact; and that as his preparations for invading England advanced, he learned, to his vexation, that the pulse of the British nation beat high to meet him. The particulars of his plan for the conquest of this little island, deserve to be recorded; and especially, if there be any man who has not duly appreciated the Heaven-directed, the protecting battle of Trafalgar, for him, more peculiarly, we insert Mr. G’s account of the scheme and expectations of Buonaparte on that occasion.
“One of Buonaparte’s great advantages is, that there are a great number of unfortunate men in France, who, having been obliged to quit their country on account of their political opinions, are harnassed to the car cf that universal usurper. It is from a person of this description, a native of this country, that I am enabled to give Dover, he certainly would have attempted the invasion. “The naval officers at Boulogne, always declared it to be almost impossible to reach the English shores; for, it would have required four days for all the vessels there to work out of the harbour, and to form a line; which would have been fifty miles; extending from Etaples to Calais. .. “During that time, our different squadrons would have joined; the army on the English shore would have been prepared; and there can be no doubt, but that if the fleet and flotilla had sailed from the dif. ferent points, more than half would have been destroyed on that element, which has always proved favourable to the arms of Britain. “The army and flotilla, were, nevertheless, very formidable. The former was upwards of 200,000 strong, and was to be disposed of as follows. There were to embark at Boulogne, 100,000 men; at Calais, 10,000; at Etaples, 20,000; at Ambleteuse, 20,000: about 50,000 men were to be left in and about Boulogne, as a corps de réserve; but a stronger corps de réserve, of more than 150,000 men, was posted en echelon all the way back to Metz, which, no doubt, was intended more as an advanced guard against Austria. “The flotilla consisted of about 3,000 vessels, of three different descriptions. The first were the praames: of these there were only 40; they had each three masts, and lay very low on the water; they carried six thirty-six pounders on each side, besides one in the bow and stern. About 100 men could go in each of these praames. “Of the second description were the canoniers, likewise of three masts, with decks; but not of the same formidable size as the praames; they carried six sixpounders each side; they could carry about eighty men each; of this description of boats, the amount was 1500. . “ The remainder was the bateauaplats, which could contain about 50 men each; they had, of cousse, no deck, and only four small swivels on each side. “There were, besides, a great many Dutch hoys, smacks, and skuits, to convey cavalry, forage, and stores. The general opinion at Boulogne was, that the catamarans would have done a great deal of mischief, if ever the mad tyrant had sent his cockle shells out to sea. “There were also 30,000 men in the Texel, under the command of general Marmont; and the Irish legion, consisting of about 4,000 renegados, thieves, and vagabonds, from all nations, were to be embarked at Brest, with 10,000 French troops, under the command of general Augereau. The Irish officers felt hurt at being placed in such a disagreeable situation, as to be obliged to conduct, into their own country, such a motley band. “There was also attached to the army at Boulogne, a corps of guides, to act as Inilitary interpreters. “ Buonaparte was furnished with the names of all our officers in the army and militia, which he obtained from a Scotchman, whom he sent to this country in 1804; and who was then, and is now, a general of division in the French army. “It may be depended upon, that Buonaparte is as well acquainted with our coast, and with every creek and rivulet, as if he had been a Kent smuggler all his life. “Men of every description, conversant in English affairs, or who could speak English, were ordered to Boulogne, to assist him in his farce. “A great number of savans, men of letters, &c. were ordered also to proceed to Boulogne. “An English printing press, with the stamps [types] were also attached to this expedition. “Those who were not in Buonaparte's secret, were so confident of success, that several persons went down to Boulogne, for the purpose of passing with the army, to establish banking and commercial houses in ..ondon; and the French government encouraged them in these ideas. “That an active correspondence was kept up from the camp at Boulogne with persons in England, cannot be denied. Roats, with letters and parcels, were constantly arriving there from the English coast, “It was known, that a special bureau was about that time established, at the French office for foreign affairs, to keep up a direct correspondence with certain persons in England. The chief of that establishment, is an old member of the Constitutional Society; and a great friend of our leading English reformers. He was
“A work appeared in this country some time ago, entitled, The Memoirs of Talleyrand, in which the author says, “that the French government paid the expenses of the English deputies, who were sent from this country to France, in 1792, to congratulate the convention on the abolition of royalty, and also for the 6,000 pairs of shoes which were sent from this country to the brave sans-culottes of the French army.”
“Talleyrand who was the agent, and who paid the money for this farce, has assured me that this statement is true.
“But not content with these political agents, he sent persons over here to entice mechanicks to go to France. A great many went. They have met with the punishment due to them, though not merited from those who inflicted it; for, when the war broke
* In a conversation with count Markoff.
the following statement of what passed in
* Admiral Villeneuve, when he returned to France from this country, was assassinated, by order of Buonaparte, at JMorlaia. Four Mamelukes, dressed like gens d’armes, were sent to that place. The admiral had dimed with the prefect, and went home to dress to go to the play. When he entered his apartment, these four assassins rushed upon him, and strangled him. A report was industriously circulated, that Villeneuve destroyed himself, from dread of the vengeance, which he was informed had been expressed against him by the tyrant. This is void of all probability, as he could depend on protection from madame Joseph Buonaparte, who was his first
WOL. I.W. 3 IE
one of those, indicted for attempting to rescue his friend, Arthur O’Connor, at Maidstone.” “I beg to call the reader's particular attention to this most important fact.”
Elsewhere, Mr. G. repeats this assertion.
“I have reason to believe, that there are some persons in this country, who have a direct communication with Buonaparte, through his bureau spécial, established at Paris, for the purpose of maintaining a correspondence with the disaffected in this country.”
As is well known, the French chief quitted the shore of the British channel for the banks of the Rhine and the Danube.
We should fill our columns with references, were we to mark those numerous places in our work, in which we have pointed out the mischief produced by French connexions. From the description of Gallick spies employed in other countries, our readers will infer the characters of some employed in Britain. Mr. G. says, very truly:
“The primary and most efficient cause of the subjugation of the continent of Europe, was the predilection of the higher classes at every court for every thing that was French; and the politick measure of Buonaparte, is, to foster and promote that predilection. The spy is to be found in the garb of a FEMALE DANc ER, a SINGER, or a painter, or even in a friseur; who pretend to have had reason to quit their country; who insinuate themselves, in the humble situation of persons of low condition or menial servants, into the conjidence of persons of high rank, and sometimes prove more useful to their missionars, than the most respectable accredited agent.”
In like manner, says Mr. G. in Russia:
“The emperour Paul was beset with French courtezans [madame Chevalier, an actress, and a madame Bonneuil) and guided by ministers in the pay of France.
“Knowing Alexander to be very dif. ferent from the Macedonian hero of that name, Buonaparte made him a present, of a plentiful importation of French actresses, dancers, composers, daubing painters, singers, mendicant authors, millihers, &c. &c.
“The Russian noblesse, being in an extraordinary degree attached to French fopperies, and frivolities, were not backward in adding to the stock of imperial importation.”
Those only who have never had information on the interiour of courts, will despise the hint contained in these extracts. Could such as disregard them suffer, alone, we would not so incessantly reecho this “warning voice l’”
Mr. G. names, without reserve, those pensionaries of Buonaparte, in the cabinets of Prussia and Russia, by whom their sovereigns respectively were betrayed. The wily Corsican knew, before he quitted Paris, that he had organized treachery, and that he should triumph : What can we think of such sovereigns ! What can they think of the duties attached to the office of supreme head of a nation :
Of the Austrian ministers, he says:
“Count Philip Cobentzel, as I have already observed, was more the minister of Buonaparte than of Francis. His treasons were even known to his own uncle, count Louis Cobentzel.” Nevertheless, he was allowed to remain in that situation. Had count Philip been an honest man, he would not have pressed his government to attack France before the arrival of the Russians. He should also have known, and made his government acquainted, that Buonaparte, being kept at Boulogne with an army in such an unsettled state, their impatience producing continual symptoms of mutiny, must have been much embarrassed how to act.
“The officers and men had, in fact, begun to turn him into ridicule, and consider him as a Charlatan, who pretended to things beyond his reach, in attempting the conquest of England
“Well might general Mack, when informed of the approach of Buonaparte's
army to Ulm, exclaim: ‘The Austrian cabinet is sold to Buonaparte'—We are all betrayed!’ “The despatch, from which the above is an abstract, was absolutely dictated by Buonaparte at Boulogne, and sent to Talleyrand, in Paris, to be given to Cobentzel, by him to be forwarded to Vienna. “But that Buonaparte might be assured of the devotion of Cobentzel to his interest, gens d’armes, in disguise, were sent after the bearer of the despatch, who happened to be a secretary of the Austrian legation. His papers were opened and examined, and he was allowed to proceed, the robbers contenting themselves with his purse and his watch.”f
On this ministerial treason, Mr. Goldsmith founds an exculpation of general Mack, who was, he thinks, rather betrayed, than a traitor himself. Of the Neapolitan minister at Paris, the marquis de Gallo, Mr. G. says: “This vile traitor had been for some years, one of Buonaparte's spies in Paris. His business was, to report to him what passed at the diplomatick dinners, &c. For this honourable service he received 6,000 livres per month, from the cassette of Buonaparte. In further reward for his treason, when Joseph Napoleon Buona. parte became king of Naples, he was appointed minister for foreign affairs; and he now holds the same situation under Murat.” Mr. G. asserts that count Haug. witz, the Prussian minister, with his secretary, M. Lombard, was long in Buonaparte's pay. It is well known that the king of Prussia received from France a subsidy of one million of rix-dollars [200,000l.] as the price of his neutrality. Buonaparte and Talleyrand have said that he, also, received money from the allies, as payment for his remaining neuter. So that he plundered both parties— to what purpose? To be plundered infinitely more severely; and to en
* Shortly before the last Austrian war, count Louis, then minister for foreign affairs, died of poison. No doubt it was effected by French agents.
f This is a very convenient thing for the French gens d’armes employed upon such errands; for, to make it appear that the diplomatick robbery was effected by ordinary thieves, they are always ordered to plunder those they stop. Our messenger, Wagstaff, was robbed of his watch and 200 louis d’ors,