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* dure the loss, unpitied; for, who can pity him 2 The fear of losing this subsidy, and when it was suspended, the hope of regaining it, acted but too powerfully on the imagination of the successour of the wise Frederick. How bitterly does he now regret his tergiversation : From a subsidized king, a bribed minister of state, a corrupt secretary, French jacobin maxims current among the army, and infidel
principles triumphant in the palace, what could be expected, but
what our eyes behold?
The craft employed by Buonaparte, in pensioning the post-masters in Germany, the thieves, robbers, and house-breakers, found and associated in his schemes, or sent and employed under his directions; the forgeries, the assaults, the murders, perpetrated by his authority and orders, are detailed in part by Mr. G. He knows but a small portion of them; and he has not told all he knows. We hope, that what he has said will have due influence on his countrymen; for, we again repeat it, such barbarities being unheard of in our island, they will obtain but a limited credence among us-These we must pass; yet, an instance in which a British plenipotentiary was concerned, may demand insertion. The truth of the fact, we suppose, may be undeniably ascertained by evidence now obtainable at home.
“One day, when lord Lauderdale was dining at Mr. Champagny’s, the police went to his lodgings, and examined his
drawers and papers' "
“Shortly before his lordship left Paris, it was the intention of Buonaparte to have him arrested; and, in order to ascertain what effect such a proceeding would have on the Parisians, he ordered an ar. ticle to be inserted in the Gazette de France, stating, that lord Lauderdale was going to reside at the country house of the governour of Paris, Junot, for the benefit of his health !
“Every creature in Paris, concluded that this was the avant coureur of the arrest of the English ambassadour. Some asked Junot, whether the fact announced was true? others asked him, whether he was to become the jailor of lord Lauderdale The thing became the subject of much conversation in Paris, and it was not thought prudent to carry it immediately into execution: but when his lordship left Paris, orders were received from Buonaparte, who had then already set off for Germany, to arrest his lordship and his suite. Fouche contrived, that the orders to be sent to Boulogne for that purpose, by the telegraph, should not be communicated till lord Lauderdale had already embarked. Thus, Fouche, on this occasion, saved his master’s reputation.”
Nor was this the only instance in which the reputation of the emperour and king has been beholden to his instrument Fouche. (Now exiled from his post and in disgrace.)
“Not long since, Buonaparte, in one of his paroxysms, declared the Prussian minister, De Stein, to be outlawed, and ordered him to be shot, if ever he should be met by French troops. In this insane decree were included, Messrs. Louis Cobentzel and De Stadion, the Austrian ministers; M. De Marcoff, the ex Russian ambassadour; and Mr. Canning. Whoever should kill the latter, the decree said, would deserve well of humanity, and that he should be rewarded by an estate in France . However, Fouche combated, with all his might, against such mad and unheard of proceedings; there. fore, when his imperial majesty's anger was abated, M. De Stein remained the only outlaw. The decree against the others was never promulgated.”
The secret treaty of Tilsit has been the subject of much political speculation. Scarcely any complete copies of it are abroad. The purport of it, with its intentions and its effects, are understood; but the terms in which they are expressed have been obtained by few. As Panoramists, we know by what person, and by what means, and at what price one copy of this instrument was obtained; but, we never saw a transcript of the
* A person, who was employed on that business, told it to me, in the presence of Mr. Paul Benfield, after lord Lauderdale left Paris.
treaty, purporting to be entire. Mr. G. gives the following, as its contents. We incline to think, that he also, has seen an incomplete transcript.
“In addition to this publick treaty, a separate treaty was signed between France and Russia, which is very little known, and which I now communicate as an authentick state paper."
“Secret Treaty of Tilsit. “Article 1. Russia to take possession of Turkey in Europe, and to pursue her conquests in Asia as far as she thinks proper. “2. The dynasty of the Bourbons in Spain, and of the Braganza family in Portugal, shall cease to exist; a prince of the blood of Buonaparte's family shall be invested with the crown of those kingdoms. “3. The temporal authority of the pope to cease, and Rome and her dependencies to be annexed to the kingdom of Italy. “4. Russia engages to assist France with her marine for the conquest of Gibraltar. “5. The towns in Africa, such as Tunis, Algiers, &c. to be taken possession of by the French, and at a general peace, all conquests which might have been made by the French in Africa during the war, are to be given as indemnities to the kings of Sardinia and Sicily. “6. Malta to be possessed by the French, and no peace ever to be made with England, unless that island be ceded to France. “7. Egypt also to be occupied by the French. “8. Vessels belonging to the following powers only, shall be permitted to navigate in the Mediterranean, viz. French, Russian, Spanish and Italian; all others to be excluded. “ 9. Denmark to be indemnified in the . North of Germany, and by the Hanse
Towns, provided she consents to give up her fleet to France.f “ 10. Their majesties of Russia and France will endeavour to come to some arrangement, that no power shall in future be permitted to send merchant ships to sea, unless they have a certain number of ships of war.; o “ This treaty was signed by prince Kourakin, and prince Talleyrand.”
Mr. Goldsmith seems to excuse, and even to pity Ferdinand VII. of Spain, for his venturing himself into the power of Buonaparte. Now we know, that his sister, the princess of Brazil, sent him expressly, and in the most confidential manner, a copy of this treaty, with particular observations on that part of it, which announced the impending destruction of the Spanish and Portuguese sovereigns. He ought to have been convinced, as effectually as that family was, which deluded the agents of Buonaparte, and in spite of their utmost efforts of fraud and force, found safety in flight.
But, the intention of dethroning the royal family of Spain, was no new conception. It was, in all probability, meditated from the time when Buonaparte proposed to found a new dynasty; and the first overt act to that purpose, was, if we rightly conjecture, the offer made to Louis XVIII. to resign his claim to the crown of France.
“I was particularly intimate with Mr. Esquerdo,S who was the grand faiseur of that unnatural affair, and who signed, on the part of Spain, the treaty of the partition of Portugal. From that gentleman I learned, that the dethronement of the king of Spain had been long meditated by Buonaparte; that it was at first communicated to the Spanish minister at Paris, le chevalier d’Azara, who immediately rejected all kind of further communication on this subject. The consequence was, that, in twenty-four hours after, Mr. d’Azara was poisoned, in time to prevent him from informing his court what had been intimated to him by Buonaparte. “Buonaparte, however, became, latterly, very much dissatisfied with him [Esquerdo] and told him, about eighteen months ago, in the presence of all his ministers, that he deserved to be hanged for the false statement which he had made about the publick opinion in Spain, which Esquerdo had represented as favourable to the French. Since I have been in England, I have seen an account in the newspapers, that Mr. Esquerdo was brought to Paris, in irons, from Madrid, accused of high treason.”
* The publick cannot expect from me, that I should inform them how, and by what
means I was put in possession of that important document; however, in that quarter where it was necessary to substantiate my assertion by proof, I have found no hesitation in doing it. f See my last publication, in which there are some facts relating to the intentions of France, with respect to the Danish fleet; and I must here observe, that whilst Buonaparte was thus holding out to Denmark indemnities in the North of Germany, Murat was sent on a mission to the king of Sweden, who was then in Pomerania, offering Norway to his Swedish majesty, if he would make a peace with France: # By such an arrangement, the ports of Prussia, Mecklenburgh, Oldenburgh, the Hanse Towns, and several others, must be governed by some of the leading maritime powers in Europe. § Mr. D'Esquerdo was the son of a hair-dresser in Saragossa; his father was much liked in the family of the count Fuentes, of that town, who also bore the Neapolitan title of prince Pignatelli. That nobleman gave young Esquerdo a good education, and he certainly proved to be a man of talents. In the course of time, he was introduced to court, where he became a great favourite, not only with the king and queen,
From these specimens our readers will easily form an opinion on Mr. Goldsmith’s book. We purposely refrain from noticing much that many will deem interesting. If it be asked what is the situation of France under this man’s government: Mr. G. replies, commerce there is none; manufactures are very limited; the grapes rot on the vines, yet excise duty is paid for the wine they should make; esflionmage is multiplied ad infinitum; prisons are more numerous than ever; moutons are still employed; the torture is still used; conscripts are demanded in greater numbers than the law allows; there are no wounded, or mutilated soldiers in France; if rendered unserviceable, they are slain outright. Such is the firofitable exchange made by France, of the Bourbons for the Buonapartes 1 at the expense of , but who can calculate at what expense 2
A word on the appendix, containing Mr. G.'s opinions on the
imfierial family, must conclude this article. The firinces, and firincesses, are bad enough, and too bad; but are closely followed by the great officers of honour, who compose the court. Nevertheless, Mr. G. acknowledges exceptions. He even, somewhat to our surprise, has relieved the character of Fouche from some of the dark shades in which it is usually drawn; and he finds, here and there, a marshal, or a general, not void of good qualities. Even among the Buonapartes, he describes Joseph, king of Spain, “the eldest of the family, as being of a very peaceable, mild disposition. He is a very domestick man, a good father, a good husband, and the poor man’s friend.” Lucien is a man of considerable talents, has read much, and has cultivated his mind. He is of a very independent mind, and will not implicitly receive a command from his brother. Napoleon knows that Lucien does not entertain any high opinion of his talents;” we add, nor of “his star:” for, we know from good authority, that Luciem has foretold him his doom; and will not be exalted, dreading the contingent fall. “Louis Buonaparte,” says Mr. G. “is a good, honest, well-meaning young man.” He affirms also, that he was highly approved of, as a sovereign, in Holland. We all know the consequence. As to the ladies of the family, Mr. G. calls them in plain terms —. But, we promised to avoid fiersonalities: and therefore, refer to the volume, those who are curious on the general attractions of these flublick fiersonages. We are happy to have it in our power, to escape from closer contemplation of this den of imperial banditti; this sink of Corsican corruption.
but with the prince of peace.
FRU) M THE BRITISH CRITIC K.
The Hermit, with other Poems. By Richard Hatt. 12mo. Price 5s. 1810.
WHY will young men waste their time, money, pen, ink, and paper, in writing and printing such verses as these which follow. It were absurd to call them poetry.
“SONG. To THE NEW YEAR. .
“Says a pin to a needle,
The young gentleman's name, forsooth, is Hat.—Where is the Head 2
FROM THE MONTHLY REVIEW,
Soirées d’Automne, &c. i. e. Autumnal Evenings, or Vice punished and Virtue rewarded. For the Instruction of Youth and the Use of Schools. By Mlle, G. Bertholet.
12mo. 4s. 6d. boards. 1810.
THE introductory dialogues, with which this work commences, are rather dull and superfluous, and seem to be written merely in imitation of madame de Genlis's Veillées du Chateau; but Mlle. Bertholet has told the history of Joseph and his brethren, in a very animated and interesting manner. She appears, however, to think that a love story is indispensable to the effect of a tale; and she has accordingly, heightened the picture of Joseph’s grief at his banishment from his father, by describing him as being torn also from the amiable Semira, at the very moment when Hymen prepared to crown their mutual love. Perhaps, in strict critical severity, we should object to the mention of Hymen's pagan name among these pious Israelites. At any rate, this introduction of a fictitious fair one, causes improbabilities, while it lessens Joseph's merit in resisting the blandishments of Zora; so that, instead of appearing as the triumphant servant of God, he becomes a mere faithful Corydon to the amiable Semira. A story, which has already
been related in history, or in holy writ, should not be altered, even if it may be amplified; and, therefore, we hesitate in commending the writer for having softened the character of Potiphar’s wife. Instead of the recorded entreaty, the Zora of the present performance only takes hold of Joseph’s garment, in order to tell him that he is made free; while he is so fearful of temptation that he will not stay to hear her. His coat of many colours is also changed into a wedding robe, woven by Semira. * We must have been, “like Niobe, all tears,” to have sympathized in the numerous weepings of Joseph and his brethren; and we suspect that the writer has fallen into this sentimental errout, by endeavouring to copy the style of Gesner, instead of trusting to her own. Her language, however, is pure and elegant; the incidents which she imagines are, generally, probable and pleasing; and the whole composition seems to be judiciously adapted to its professed end—“the amusement and instruction of youth.” "
“I have much to say in behalf of that Falstaff—Henry IV. Part 1, Act 2, Scene 4.
IF ever genius “held the mirror up to nature,” it surely was in the production of this character. He is a personage the best known, the most conspicuous, and the most original in all the compositions of Shakspeare, or of any of our other dramatick writers. The critick who delights in the motes that trouble the mind’s eye, and in the search after difficulties which admit not of a solution, may find a wide field for his lucubrations in that important question: “What gave rise to that admirable character?” and to him we leave the decision of a point equally important, namely: Whether the name of Oldcastle was that which was first assigned to him by his illustrious godfather, the poet? For my own part, “Davus sum, non CEdipus.” Heaven avert such disquisitions from an epistolary quill! Those who are not thorough-bred black letter dogs, may content themselves with the account left us by the profound and erudite “Master Robert Shallow, justice of the peace and coram,” that he had been page to Thomas Mowbray, duke of Norfolk; but as we believe little to be known of his birth, parentage, and education, we may, without regret, leave such considerations to the descendants of Aristarchus.
To reduce the conduct of mankind to some fixed principles, and to bring the thousand shades of hu
man character to one standard, has long since occupied men of speculative habits and confined experience. Every one, however, who has examined his own actions, and their respective motives, can readily perceive that the aim of such theorists is a shadow of their own creating; and that they are, as Falstaff himself expresses it, “essentially mad without seeming so.” Can it be any thing but infatuation, to endeavour to prescribe limits to that which is ever changing, and to fix the most volatile of all things? What naturalists affirm of a certain species of shells, that there are not two alike, may be, in an unqualified manner, asserted of the characters of men. The reason of this must be, that the infinite number of impressions from contingent and external circumstances, which tend more immediately to constitute individual character, cannot be the same in any two possible instances. These remarks are fully illustrated in the character before us. Shakspeare, whose knowledge was derived from that infallible source, the page of Nature, had not studied it so much in vain, as to be ignorant of the principal feature in it—that “foolish, compounded clay, man.” Falstaff is represented by him, as teeming with the striking and prevalent imperfections of his fellow creatures; though they are so well