« 前へ次へ »
“ plenty of steel", without, however, on the approach, sparing the gun-powder.
It would appear that the French have nearly run their race. They have nearly completed the circle, and necessity will bring things back to their natural level, which is, that though nations may
occasionally fight, no one will be able to hold all others in subjection, as it has been the ambition of France ta do, and as France for a time has done.
Sir Thomas Graham, who was the first to place the British standard on French ground, after Lord Wellington had driven their marauding armies out of Spain, is now going to assist in establishing freedom in Holland! What a glorious military career for one who began to be a soldier after the age of forty, when many men think of retiring and seeking ease.
LORD G. L. GOWER,
A DIPLOMATIC character, of well-tried abilities, but whose mission to the continent was at the unfortunate period when an evil star prevailed, and baffled all the efforts of Great Britain. Honour and reputation are seldom ever acquired where there is not success; and on the contrary, where success is, there honour and reputation are almost certainly acquired.
The dark ages that succeeded the fall of the Roman empire were of vastly longer duration, but they were scarcely at any period more dismal, than the disastrous period that followed the fall of the throne of France. Desolation of states, and degradation of monarchs, were the only things that were witnessed for twenty years, after the savages of France burst forth from the centre of Europe, (and from the most civilized nation), to overrun the continent, nearly as the uncivilized hordes of the north had burst forth in the fifth century. As it was during this dark period that Lord L. Gower was employed, and before there was any prospect of approaching light*, he could do nothing of importance where, in fact, there was nothing to be done.
One of the circumstances that chance produces,
* The darkness spread gradually over Europe from 1793 till 1808, when it was at its greatest pitch. The first step towards a chauge arose out of the atrocious, unprovoked, and unwise attack of France upon Spain. This was a remarkable era, when a ray of light broke furth. Having deprived the people of that country of their king, they were obliged to comply and submit as a people, or to make war and resist as a people. While a weak king was at the head of affairs, he could let Buonaparte rule Spain at second hand without any difficulty; but the matter became very different when the intermediate means of oppression was removed, and when the slavery assumed its real form, then it was that the flamne broke forth that has since illumined Europe, and expelled the darkness that had covered it. First, the resistance of Spain and Portugal, aided by a generous nation, and commanded by an able general, taught other nations that the French were neither invincible nor irresistible; and secondly, it shewed that if a people are determined to be free, they will be free.
The wild attack on Russia that succeeded gave another brave people and their magnanimous emperor a similar motive for resist
It was instantly made the war both of the chief and of the inhabitants, till all Germany caught the spirit of resistance of wrong, and the sacred flame of liberty blazed all over the continent, and expelled that worse than Gothic night that had covered desolate and degraded nations.
which brought forth the most observation on this no bleman's character, was the lamented murder of the prime minister of England by the hand of an assassin who complained of injustice done him by the English government while Lord G. was in Russia.
Bellingham the assassin turned out to be one of those unfortunate madmen whose imagination gets deranged on one single point, but who, on all others, reasons correctly enough. What
the most strange in the business is, that Lord L. Gower seems to be the person with whom he had the most reason to be offended, by his own account: yet that he made no attempt to be revenged on him, which wonld have been very easy. He, on the contrary, sought another victim, to whom he was personally unknown, whom he attacked with considerable difficulty, and whom he succeeded in murdering in the midst of a considerable number of people in a most strange manner.
There are some circumstances attendant on this atrocious act that deserve attention.
Bellingham complained of Lord Gower, but he had no particular complaint to make of Mr. Perceval. He might at any time have obtained an audience of Lord L. Gower, and without difficulty have assassinated him; whereas he did not even know MA
Perceval by sight when he first formed the design; and after he had, by looking through an opera glass at a distance, learned to know the man, he deliberately entered the lobby of the house of commons, amongst a number of persons, and, as if he knew the moment Mr. Perceval was to come, shot him the instant that he entered. This was done with a promptitude and firmness almost without example, and both the action and the motive astonished every one.
It must be remembered that just previous to the fatal event, the inflexibility, and a sort of scornful and contemptuous deportment, were complained of in Mr. Perceval, who, it was said, without half the abilities of Mr. Pitt, carried matters with a much higher hand than ever he had done. This, it appears probable, had worked on the mind of Bellingham, nearly as the misfortunes of France, had worked on the mind of Charlotte Corday, when she murdered Marat*; so that he went
There will he many persons who may feel offended at any comparison; but let them observe, the comparison only applies to. the workings in the minds of the persons who committed the mure ders, and by no means to the persons murdered, than whom nu two could be more unlike. Marat was a monster, and boasted of his