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escaping; others, more fortunate, got out by means of their carriages being burst open by the concussion. The ill-fated travellers in the three first carriages were literally burnt to death, and most of the bodies were so reduced to a calcined state, that it was impossible to recognise them. Upwards of fifty persons are ascertained to have perished on this occasion—amongst whom was Admiral d'Urville, a celebrated circumnavigator. The number of
bruised and wounded was also cousiderable.”
In the Chamber of Peers the Regency Bill, after an unimportant discussion and futile opposition was adopted by a majority of 163 to 14, and the Chambers were then prorogued until the 9th of January, 1843.
* For a more detailed account of this dreadful accident, see Chnonicle for May.
so of the Spanish Cortes—Speech of the Regent–Elec
tion of Presidents and Vice-Presidents—Discussion on the Address in the Senate–Discussion in the Chamber of Deputies—Insurrection at Barcelona–Combat between the Troops of the Garrison and the National Guard—Suspension of the sittings of Cortes—Arrival of Espartero at Barcelona–Negotiations on the part of the Junta— Bombardment of the Tonn–Surrender by the Insurgents—Proclamation by General Van Halen–Execution of Carcana, Leader of the Insurgents—Fine levied upon the City. , Portugal-Municipal Elections at Lisbon–Triumphant result for Ministers—Revolt at Oporto, and Declaration in o: of the Charter, by Senhor Costa Cabral and others—Revolt spreads to Lisbon–Ministers resign— The Court resolves to adopt the Charter—Public rejoicings—New Ministry formed, including Costa Cabral–Opening of the Portuguese Cortes—Royal Speech. PRussia.-Ordinance by the King of Prussia, convening a General Assembly of Committees from the Provinces—Meeting of the Assembly–Deliberations of the Body. BAvARIA.—Inauguration of the Walhalla, by the King of Bavaria— Its object and origin of the Name.
SPARTERO opened the Spanish Cortes on the 26th of December, 1841. The Queen was seated on the Throne in the Chamber of the Senate ; her sister on her left, and Espartero on her right, but a step lower than the Queen. The Minister of Foreign Affairs delivered the Speech to the Regent, after having kissed the hand of her Majesty. It was couched in the name of the Regent. After a complimentary address to the Cortes, he entered upon foreign affairs:“I can acquaint you, with the utmost pleasure, that our relations with friendly powers continue to
gather strength by the bonds of
clusion of treaties with the South American States of Equador, Uruguay, and Chili. A treaty with Portugal on the navigation of the Tagus was in the course of negotiation— “England has given satisfaction for the disagreeable occurrence of Carthagena last May, and the French Government has seen with pain the violation of the territory of the Aldudes. The Government of Her Majesty, desiring to remove the causes which have always led to these deplorable conflicts, is negotiating a treaty with the King of the French, who has presented a project, met on our part by another on a different basis. The definitive settlement of this will be made known at the proper time.” He then turned to the state of Spain— “The revolt which broke out in the month of last October disturbed the public tranquility, and obliged the Government to proceed with activity and energy to crush it in its origin. The constitution, as well as the precious lives of our innocent Queen and her august sister, were menaced by an armed conspiracy. But Providence enabled loyal Spaniards to save those dear objects of our hopes. All the means at our disposal were employed to repress this horrible attempt, and the hand of justice chastised the principal delinquents; their criminal attempt failed against the firm attitude of the nation and the energy of the Government. The public vengeance once satisfied, the Government deemed that it might exercise clemency, and spare the lives of some of the rebels. “The events of Barcelona, which sprang from an abuse of confidence,
obliged the Government to declare that rich and populous city in a state of siege. This measure, which had for its object to avoid the effusion of blood, produced neither violence nor punishments; so that these punishments might be executed according to the ordinary laws, when the legal situation of these was re-established. The tribunals are busy with the causes to be tried, as actively as the administration of justice requires. “Since these events, peace has been restored throughout the whole monarchy by the triumph of the laws, and every cause of new disturbances has disappeared.” He next promised a variety of new measures. Roads and bridges were to be constructed; Government would proceed with the encouragement of agricultural banks; normal schools for the education of teachers had been established in several of the provinces; and education had already been extended to several parishes. The army still retained its organization. Of 50,000 men whom the Cortes authorized to be levied, more than 30,000 had been procured. New codes of justice were announced. The measures taken by Government had put a stop to Papal aggressions. The augmentation of the public funds and the arrangements of Ministers, had enabled them to fulfil their obligations to the public creditor with more punctuality than in former years. The sale of national property, consisting of the property of extinct ecclesiastical establishments, continued with activity. The necessary funds had been provided to pay the interest of the capitalization at home and abroad. “The navy, which formerly was the glory and honour of the Spanish nation, was reduced to the lowest ebb. Government, convinced that this force gives life and health to states, has paid it regularly, and has put some ships in repair to cruise upon the coast. Other vessels of various classes have been put in a state to render important service. Others are put in commission, to repair to our colonies, should it be necessary. The commercial navy occupies the attention of Government as the basis of a military navy, and as the surest means of promoting industrial and commercial prosperity. Since the restoration of peace the mercantile movement is reviving. To it the confidence of tranquility is necessary.” The Government, “sincerely attached to the representative system,” was anxious to augment the guarantees calculated to secure stability and permanency to the constitution— “With this view, there will be presented to you a project of Ministerial responsibility, designed to act as a check on men invested with power, and to secure the political principles of the Spanish nation. The necessity for ameliorating the public administration, and for harmonizing with the constitution of the state the organic law which is legitimately derived from it, induces the Government to submit to the Cortes projects of laws on the organization and functions of the municipalities, the provincial deputations, and the political chiefs. There will also be presented to you a project of law on the liberty of the press, tending to suppress the abuses and check the licence under which defamation is pursued upon system, calumny promulgated on calculation, and conspiracy against the
constitution instigated by sordid interest. Desirous to establish uniformity to the administration of all the provinces, in a manner equally conformable to the welfare of the nation and to the public faith, the Government has thought it a duty to present a project of law to modify the Fueros, of the Basque Provinces. The good order of the administration requires a new division of territory, that shall remedy the defects pointed out by experience in the present one: for this purpose, a project of law will be submitted to you, for which the public advantage loudly calls. There will likewise be laid before you a project of law for the organization of the tribunals and of the magistracy, and another on the permanency and responsibility of the magistrates and judges.” “Gentlemen, Senators, and Deputies, The nation contemplates you. Strong hopes are founded on your patriotism and justice. Your mission is serious, and tends to regenerate the nation, and the book of immortality reserves you a golden page. Depend upon my efforts and the honest heart of a soldier, who always fought for the liberty and glory of his country. Do not forget that certain impotent and criminal parties pretend, in their delirium, to combat the constitution and the throne, in order to discredit the sacred cause which we defend, and that they are endeavouring to excite Europe against us. Let us draw closer the bonds of a sincere and consolidating union, and let us consolidate the constitutional throne of a young Queen, whose magic name has always vanquished the enemies of liberty. I have no ambition for myself; my life belongs to my country and the glory of serving it with honour forms my patrimony. May the existing constitution, the throne of the young Isabella, the national independence, and the Government framed according to the wishes of the nation, be the programme of our fidelity and the point of departure whence to direct the legislative labours towards the consolidation of a strong and just Government; which, resisting the snares of ambitious factions, may secure for ever the prosperity and happiness of the nation l” The next day the Cortes proceeded in both chambers to the election of a president, vice-president and secretaries. In the senate the four following members were appointed secretaries:—Senors Torres Salanot, Onis, Mugnizo, and Chacon. In the Chamber of Deputies Senor Acuna was elected President, and although he was a member of the opposition, his return was looked upon as a triumph by ministers, as thereby Senor Lopez was excluded, whose election might have been productive of much mischief to them. The vice-presidents were Senor Alcon, Senor Lills, Senor Saquarti, Senor Viadera. In the senate, the reply to the speech of the Regent was discussed on the 17th, 18th, and 19th of January. On the first day, the principle commentators on the reply were Senors Campuzano, Marliani, and Ruiz de la Vega; while Senors Gomez Becerra, Gonzales, and Heros spoke in defence and explanation. Senor Campuzano complained of the omission of any explanation of the existing relations between Spain and Portugal, whose interests were so nearly allied, and of the apparent and tacit delivery of the latter country into the sole
guardianship of England. He criticised the policy pursued with respect to the powers of the north, and attributed their enmity to the want of a strong and stable government in Spain, which could make itself respected abroad, and unite the interests of the various provinces of the monarchy, so as to achieve power and solidity at home. The greatest sensation was, however, produced by Senor Marliami, who boldly impugned the reply on the point of its acquiescence in the asserted harmony existing between the Spanish Cabinet and those of neighbouring nations, a state of feeling which he decidedly declared did not exist on the part of that of France. He then entered into a comprehensive historical review of the policy of France towards Spain for the last 150 years, and contended that it had been uniformly an injurious one, arising out of the inimical dispositions of the reigning families of that nation. With respect to the revolution of September, 1840, he adverted to the fact, that the subsequent royal speech of the present King of the French had asserted that “the Spanish nation was in a state of anarchy"—going out of its way to libel its neighbour, and manifesting a spirit of hostility, in which the French nation at large had certainly no share. In conclusion he entered largely into the affair of M. de Salvandy's credentials, and enumerated the various circumstances connected with his appointment, his delay, and his subsequent arrival and departure, which sufficed to convince him of the continued systematic hostility of the French government, and of the imperative necessity of union amongst Spaniards and firmness in their government, and the