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xcviii Assessed Taxes.- Treaty with the King of the Two Sicilies.
“ reason to fear that it would have the tendency to produce a “ COMBINED RESISTANCE to the levying of the taxes, and in the “ end lead to consequences the most serious and alarming." Had the people at large exercised their constitutional right of associating, . and complained of their grievances in similar language, there is every reason to believe they would not have had their blood and marron wrung from them in the manner they are now threatened, by the increased burthens under the name of regulations!
Treaty with the King of the Two Sicilies.--Our ministers have thought proper to form a treaty of alliance and subsidy with a petty sovereign who has already by his own folly lost half of his dominions; by which treaty it is stipulated, “ That his Sicilian Ma“ jesty engages not to conclude a peace separate from England; “ and his Britannic Majesty on his part also engages not to make a “ peace with France, without comprehending and saving in it the “ interests of his Sicilian Majesty.” The cost of this precious treaty is to this country, “ 300,000l. sterling, payable at the rate of “ 25,0001. monthly, which payment shall always be made one “ month in advance.” His Britannic Majesty likewise engages “ at bis” (that is at the British nation's) “ charge and expence, to “ maintain ten thousand men, and to augment the number if the “ case should require it, for the purpose of defending the fortresses " of Messina and Augusta.” Farther to prove the extreme pecuniary liberality of his Britannic Majesty, the 300,0001, is to be paid for nearly three years back, commencing from September 10. 1895.
After the experience which this nation has had for these fifteen years past, one might have indulged the hope that ministers would have been careful how they pledged the honour of the crown and the interests of the British nation by treaties of alliance and subsidy. Have they totally forgotten how solemnly his Majesty's word was pledged “ never to consent that the Netherlands should form a “ part of France;" how many treaties of subsidy and alliance have been disregarded and annihilated almost as soon as they were signed, and others before the subsidiary payments were completed. Not a debate passes in either house on the subject of negociation, but ministers are loud in their professions of regard for the honour of the crown and the essential interests of the nation: but every real friend to the King and to the people must feel indige nant, on so frequently witnessing that the true honour of the former, and the essential interests of the latter are, without scruple, sacrificed by ministers who, like drowning men, are eagerly catching at every straw, whilst at the same time they appear incapacitated for taking the most rational means of safety.
subject, but drawn po dominion of such strong of little credit
The columns of our public prints for this month past have been filled from day to day with a variety of reports on this important subject, but drawn up in such language as evidently shews the writers to be under the dominion of such strong prejudices and passions, as to render their representations worthy of little credit. Nor can we expect accounts void of partiality from the French prints, and the Spanish prints under the influence of France. By the official papers published in the French aud Spanish Gazettes it appears that the old King of Spain, and the Prince of Asturias, after making their appeal to the French Emperor, and voluntarily leaving the kingdom, have met the latter in his own dominions at Bayonne, where they have been persuaded, or compelled to resign the throne; that the French Emperor has summoned a meeting of the grandees and the constituted authorities of Spain, to assemble at Bayonne, on the 15th instant, to receive a new form of government; that in the mean time, (on the 6th) the Einperor proclaimed his brother Joseph BONAPARTE King of NAPLES, King of SPAIN,' and that the principal grandees, and the heads of the different constituted authorities, have presented addresses of congratulation to the Emperor, and the King his brother. These addresses, with their answers, although they are drawn up in the usual style of such effusions, contain sentiments and professions respecting the new government of Spain, that give rise to a variety of reflections, which neither our limits, nor our inclination permit us for the present to lay before our readers. In our ensuing number, these documents will be inserted, and we shall probably be enabled to form a more competent judgnient on this important subject. We cannot, however, help remarking, that the earnest exhortations contained in some of the addresses of the constituted authorities to the people of Spain to submit peaceably to.“ the new order of “ things," and the representation of the dangers resulting from anarchy and insurrection, naturally raises a suspicion that some serious opposition to this “new order” is intended, which suspicion is increased by the various reports which have been circulated by several Spanish noblemen and gentlemen who have recently arrived in this kingdom.
The accounts in almost all our daily prints represent the insurrection as principally confined to one or two provinces, but at the same time, they represent the flame as likely to spread widely, and indulge the most sanguine hopes that the Spaniards will not only be able to expel their invaders, but that their success will, with the liberal and powerful assistance of this country ultimately accomplish the grand project which perpetually invigorated the imagination of Mr. Pitt's administration, and that of his friends
Revolution in Spain.
and successors now in power-THE DELIVERANCE OF EUROPE, AND THE RESTORATION OÉ SOCIAL ORDER!
If on a subject so serious and important, we may be permitted to indulge a smile, it must be when reading the “ high swelling senti“ments of liberty," which have so suddenly inspired ministers, and the whole phalanx of their writers and dependants. Nothing scarcely is now to be heard from them, but encomiums on the “ sublime spectacle of a people rising to assert their liberties, their “ religion, and their independence,” The Morning Post of the 27th. informs us ;-" That the whole North of Spain is in a com“plete state of insurrection, that there are 350,000 men in armis, " that a body of 60,000 men have marched towards Madrid of “ which 24,000 are Spanish troops of the line ..... that it is “ believed every part of Spain is in a state of insurrection, except “ the particular places in which the French troops are posted .... “ that such is the extent of the insurrection, and such the general “ enthusiasm, that every Spaniard froin the age of 17 to 40 was “ enrolling hinself, and all the priests had assumed the patriotic “ cockade, and were exciting the people to resist the usurpation, “ with which their country was threatened.” We are further informed that at a grand dinner given on Saturday last at the city of London tavern, “ to the patriotic deputies from Asturias, and other “ Spanish gentlemen in testimony of the lively interest taken in the “ issue of the arduous contest in which the brave Asturians, and “ the other patriots of Spain have so nobly engaged in defence of “ their liberties and independence the following toasts were amongst “ others drank with the utmost enthusiasm.”
« Our noble Asturian visitors, and their patriotic countrymen, with all " those Spaniards, who bave so bravely come forward in defence of their “ liberties and independence ; and success to their cause ;"_" The Prince “ Regent of Portugal, and may the people of Portugal, follow the splendid " example set them by the patriots in Spain, and succeed in expelling the “ invading foe."-" Thanks to his Majesty's ministers for the ardent zeal " they have displayed in aiding the patriots of Spain !"-May the disinter“ ested co-operation of Great Britain with the noble Asturians, and « other patriots of Spain contribute to the effectual security of their “ liberty and independence, and convince the whole world that the only “ view of Great Britain in the continuation of the war is, the eman“ cipation of Europe from the despotism of France, and the restoration of 6 social order !
On our first perusal of these high encomiums of our ministerial writers, on the “ patriotic Spaniards for rising in defence of their “ liberties and independence," we were somewhat inclined to exclaim in the language of Dean SWIFT to a statesman of his day on reading the motto to his arms:
“ Libertas et natale solum !
Revolution in Spain.
We now perceive that these writers are studying the vocabulary so much in use at the commencement of the French revolution, and the “ holy duty of insurrection," a phrase which inspired at the time such numbers of our countrymen with horror, is now likely to be the fashionable language in our ministerial circles and journals.
But it is not only in newspapers, and at taverns that this enthusiasm in the cause of Spanish liberty and independence is excited, but likewise in the senate. Mr. SHERIDAN has discovered extraordinary eagerness to engage this country in one common cause with the Spanish insurgents: his sentiments were echoed by Mr. Secretary CANNING and the ministerial side of the house ; but our limits prevent us from adverting to that debate, although its importance, considering it in connection with the affairs of Spain, will demand some observations in our uext, when the plan of ministers will be more fully developed. · Although so many and such long reports have been circulated about the insurrection in Spain, yet we have no information respecting its authors, its nature, and design. As to the Spaniards rising in defence of their liberties, religion, and independence, it is an abuse of language to use such terms when applied to the nation under its old government, which was totally despotic in its principles, and, as must be the case where priests bear sway, most miserably administered. Although we will yield to no one living in our ardent wishes for the happiness of the whole human race, nor in our fervent prayers, that slavery of every kind, political, civil, and religious—that state-craft, and priestcraft, in all its forms and degrees, may be banished from the face of the earth, we know not till we have further information, what may be for the interest of the Spanish nation. There is amidst all the confusions wbich attend the present revolution, this consolation renjaining, that almost any change in the government must be for the better.
The Spanish patriots, we should imagine, will be somewhat suspicious of the disinterested friendship and assistance of this nation, if they recollect its conduct before the commencement of the war. They will consider Britain as justly indebted to Spain for the four millions of property which we piratically seized whilst in the act of negociation, thus forcing her into a war which has proved the means of reducing her to her present state. What opinion must the Spanish deputies form of our generous friendship, when at the festival alluded to, and in the intervals of drinking the patriotic toasts so expressive of the disinterestedness of Britons, they were insulted with the song of Rule Britannia! If they have a right to the name of. Patriots, what inust have been their feelings on such an occasion to hear this country boasting the sovereignty of the seas, that
Revolution in Spain.-Extension of the French Empire..
“ this was the charter of their land,” and that Britain should always remain " the dread and envy of all other nations,”!
EXTENSION OF THE FRENCH EMPIRE. A decree has passed the French senate, by which the dukedoms of PARMA and PLACENTIA, under the name of the department of the TARO, and the states of TUSCANY under the name of the department of the ARNO, the department of the MEDITERANEAN, and the department of OBRONA, are declared to be united to the French empire. By another decree the PAPAL territories are united to the kingdom of ITALY. These gigantic strides of ambition, these vast accessions to the power and influence of France, must naturally occasion alam to the surrounding states of Europe. Unhappily the people of these different states, have never felt it their interest to defend their old governments; and till sovereigns pay a greater attention to the welfare of their subjects, till the latter have, something else to fight for than systems of political and ecclesiastical despotism; so long as the inferior ranks of the people are harrassed, vexed, and impoverished by oppressive taxation, they never will take up arms with that ardour necessary to repel invading French armies with NAPOLEON at their head. At the moment we are writing, we perceive the proclamations which have been published by the Spanish insurgents: if they have not some better reasons to : offer to their countrymen to excite them to defend their country than “ the restoration of their former monarch and the old govern“ment;" if they have no other appeals to make than “ to the aid « of the miraculous conception, and the glorious apostle Șt. Jacob, “ the intercession of our lady of battles, (who her warlike ladyship “ is, we really cannot inform our readers,) whose image is worshipped “ in the most ancient temple of Corvadanga, and in whom they “ place perfect confidence that she cannot forsake them in so just a “cause:"_if" above all” they are to preserve their “ sacred religion,” in its present state, we believe the people at large will feel that they have little to fight for; and it is well if the promises made by the French Emperor of an amelioration of their government in church and state, of the reformation of abuses, and an improvement of the condition of the people at large, together with his threats should he meet with opposition, do not render Spain an easy conquest. We were in hopes the Spanish patriots would have held out some noble motives, so that the sacred flame of liberty might liave animated the breasts of their countrymen. The proclamations however we have hitherto read, appear to contain nothing more than a medley of that fanaticism peculiar to the popish clergy in the most bigotted and enslaved countries, and of that outrageous, coinmonplace abuse which has lately filled the columns of the Morning Post,