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of that profound thinker Lord Auckland, yon buoyed up the spirits of the people by depictiog the declining circumstances, the approaching bankruptcy, tile inevitable ruin, of the enemy, while the London makers of false assignats were urged on with as much eagerness as if the salvation of the world had depended upon the success of their labours. They did succeed; the much-desired bankruptcy arrived; the enemy was, according to your notions, completely ruined. The sequel need not be described. Yet, even the peace of Amiens, in every article of which we fell prostrate before this declining, this bankrupt, this ruined enemy; even that compact did not remove the delusive confidence in the effects of wealth; and, when the aggrandizement of France and its fearful consequences were held forth to view, you re. ferred us, with a triumphant smile somewhat partaking of a sneer, to “the immense ovealth of this country, which was more “ than sufficient to counterbalance all the “ acquisitions of France." Your opinion was generally adopted: it was exactly consonant to the trading notions of the people: it was an homage paid to commerce and riches, and, therefore, it was sure to be graciously received. This opinion naturally

grew out of the previously adopted error of
of raising an army.

applying to the affairs of nations the principles according to which we judge of individual prosperity. that wealth gives power, and, as we know that power gives security, the deduction is, that, in order to provide for our security, we have only to amass wealth. Facts have proved, that, as applied to nations, the leading position is false. But, of this there required very little reflection to convince us. Men of shallow minds, much too shallow to be employed even in the secondary departments of the state, do, indeed, always talk of the affairs of a nation as of those of a shop or a farm; and we have heard, from some of that numerous tribe of small lawyers who inhabit the Treasury Bench, speeches upon a treaty of peace or upon a declaration of war, which, with a change of the names of the parties and of places, might have done exceedingly well for a trial at the Westininster Sessions or at Hicks's Hall. These loquacious gentlemen do not seem to observe the wide difference that exists between the nature of national wealth and that of the wealth of individuals. The latter gives power, but it gives 'power only as long as it is itself protected by the power of the state, that is to say by the governmgn; and the law, or, in one word,

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In every state of life we see

render, therefore, the reasoning upon individual riches applicable to the wealth of nations, we must first discover some extraneous power, by which each nation is protected in the exclusive possession of all the wealth which it has amassed. Amongst individuals wealth gives power and power gives security, but this is only because there is another and greater power which secures the wealth; and, as there is no such power to superintend the wealth of nations, the rich nation is no more secure than the poor one ; nay, it is much less secure, being placed in a situation similar to that in which a rich man would be without the protection of the magistrate, presenting to the plunderer the strongest of temptations with the weakest of obstacles.It is not the mere possession of the wealth that we are to regard as a mark of national decline; but the estimating of that wealth too highly, and particularly the confiding in it as a means of preserving ourselves against the assaults of a war-like enemy, a sort of confidence that was never yet entertained by any nation not in the last stages of its degradation. Another mark of national decline is the total want of a military spirit in the country: the aversion which men have to the profes. sion of arms, and the consequent difficulties I think I hear you exclaim: “What a want of a military spirit “ in the country, when I have 480,000 vo“lunteers!" I can make allowance for the esprit du corps, and also for a colonel's swelling out his muster-roll; but, I must be es: cused, if I reject the volunteer establishment as a proof of a military spirit, and even as a proof of personal bravery. I do not say, or insinuate, that the volunteers are not as brave as the rest of their countrymen; but, I deny, that their having entered into volunteer corps is any proof of their personal courage, and, in a national point of view, I regard the establishment as a striking proof of a want of a military spirit. Whence did it originate? Mr. Addington told us, in the loyalty and patriotism of the people. He knew better. All of us knew, that it principally arose from the dread of the ballot, a dread so deeply ed: graven on the minds of the people, that it will be very long before it be worn out: From this cause the ranks were filled, and replenished, till the passing of the parishofficer-project bill, which, by removing the dread of the ballot has removed about one half of the volunteers from their corps; and, when the bill comes to be thoroughly under: stood in every part of the country, it would not be at all surprising it the 480,000 men were to be reduced to 50,000, leaving n° thing but those who have assembled merely to play at soldiers, and who have not the most distant idea of ever marching ten miles from their homes. The simple fact is, then, that, of 80,000 men, capable of bearing arms, 300,000, at least, entered into volunteer corps from the dread of being forced to enter a more effective service, a service more military, and this too at a moment when they regarded the independence of their country as being at stake If this be not a proof of the want of a military spirit what proof can be given The men are excuseable for many reasons; and the ministers who had recourse to the measure have been justified upon the ground of necessity. They could not, it is said, get men in any other way. If true, this fact only strengthens the position for which I am contending. But, the original cause of the volunteer system is to be sought for in the spirit of trade. The minister, who was by no means deficient in that cunning which is usually found in a mind like his, saw in the adoption of a scheme, which would produce the appearance of vigour and security, while it left the mechanics and manufacturers at the command of their employers, the means of preserving his place for a year or two longer. It was a scheme perfectly congenial with the presumption as well as the avarice of the traders, who, at the same time that they saved, as they thought, the expense of a regular army, grasped at whatever authority was to be obtained amongst the volunteers. They regarded the volunteer force as an army entirely their own: raised for the protection of their warehouses and their banks: upon this army, therefore, of which you soon put yourself at the head, all the praises and honours were lavished : thus a system purely defensive was erected, and Britain became an island besieged.—— Of all the marks of national decline none is so unequivocal as that disposition which leads a people systematically to stand upon the defensive and wait for the attack of a threatening enemy. They first endeavour to purchase tranquillity at the expense of their o and, failing in that, forced at last into war, their best hope is to escape being conquered and yoked. Look back over the history of the world,

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to entertain in order to preserve its honour and to make it respected in the world. “A “ people rising unanimously in arms, for “ the defence of their homes," you seem to regard as the most noble of spectacles; but, it would be much nobler, it would argue much greater courage and much less fear, if only a part, and, proportionally, a very small part, were to rise, while the rest remained tranquilly at home. When the domestics, in some play or romance that I have read, after long disputes as to whose duty it is to enter a haunted chamber, settle the matter by agreeing to go all together, this “unari“ mous rising" is, if I remember right, by no means attributed to an excess of bravery. The bull, when attacked marches forth alone, leaving the herd to graze in tranquillity; while the timid flock, if they venture to make a shew of resistance, never fail to make it in a body.

The want of a military spirit is naturally accompanied with an indifference for Inational honotors, for the distinctions which perpetuate those glorieus deed, which, by means of such distinctions, are ha, ded down from father to son. Ös this indifference, Sir, as prevalent in this country, we have a melancholy proof in the conduct of the government, the parliament, and the people, respecting the surrender of the honour of the flag, and the still more ancient and still higher honor of the title of King of France. What avails it to talk of the hero: de do of Nelson, since they could not prevent the dishonour of the flag, under wiich they were performed For it must never be forgotten that to give up an honour once enjoyed is to be dishonoured. The title of King of . France, together with the Lilies, you denominated “a harmless feather; ” a term aptly descriptive of that indifference the existence of which I deplore, and which is a sure and certain mark of the debasement of the national mind. “A harm, less fea“ ther, the preserving of which ought not “ to stand in the way of so great a bless'ng “ as peace" ! If peace were necessarily so great a blessing, why did you go to war * Was it to preserve your honour and dignity? Strange indeed, then, that in order to put an end to the war, you should give up the greatest honour, the most glorious need, that the nation ever won “A hormless feather " : Why, aii honours and titles and dignities are, then, harmless feathers | Did you go to war to preserve the constitution ; or, to use a term of more definite meaning, to preserve the throne? Still more strange, that, for the sake of returning to “the blessiugs of peace,” you should yield, as a harm

less feather, one of the brightest honours of that throne an honour which contributed not a little to the exciting and the preserving of, that national pride and confidence by which it was originally achieved, and on which, let coston-house politicians say what they will, both the throne and the country .depended for security. The memory of the conquest of France, recorded upon our coins, and every-where else where the armorial bearings of our sovereign appeared, was one of the most powerful incentives amongst the common people. First or last, every son asked of his father an explanation ot the meaning of the title of King of France; that generally led to a relation more or less correct, of the valorous deeds of Englishmen in former times; and the impression thus received was communicated to the next generation. “This stcry shall the good man teach his son; “And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by, “From this day to the ending of the world, “But we in it shall be remember'd.” Shakespeare, alas ! did not contemplate the possibility of times like the present. H% never imagined that the Jilies, won at Agincourt, would one day be bartered for the privilege of vending bales of goods ! —Had the surrendering of this the greatest of all our honours been condemned by the nation; had it been decidedly reprobated in parliament; had it been the sole work of a minister; then there would be some hope that it was no indication of national decline. But, parliament passed the matter over as if it were too trifling to meddle with ; and, I do not remember that any one, except my insignificant self, spoke of it, in print, at least, as a subject of regret.——I am aware, that, amongs the smooth little clerks of Downing Street, this notion of the great cosects of national honours will be regarded as an excellent subject of ridicule. They laugh at the idea of high sentiments in the minds of low men; but, not to say that the common people are not the lowest of men, and though it be not supposed that their notions of national honour are very refined, it may safely be asserted, that upon their minds those honours have a greater effect than upon those of any other class. Do we not always see them the first and the loudest in rejoicing at the victories won by the arms of their country Their joy and their pride, upon such occasions, are greater than those of any other description of persons; because, uninformed as to the various circumstances of the event, they see the glory unclouded by any reflections upon the cost or the consequences, or upon the general

character or conduct of the parties concerned.—Whoever carefully traces loyalty and patriotism to their source, will, I am persuaded, clearly discover, that neither of them can long exist where national honours are a subject of indifference. Turn over the page of history, and then say, whether those princes who have been the greatest warriors have not also been the greatest favourites, more especially of the lower classes of their subjects. Many of them have been cruel tyrants, the constant practisers of all manner of vices; but military glory, e iidearing the possessors to the hearts of the great mass of the people, have, almost without exception, enabled them to despise the opiuions of the more reflecting and criticising few. This general propensity may, and does, in certain cases, prove injurious to the humbler virtues and to individual freedom; but most assuredly it is the principal means of preserving national independence, which will ever be the first object with wise legislators and statesmen. The mere personal attachment to the sovereign, founded upon his practising those virtues which are met with in every rank of life, must necessarily be confined to the breasts of a few, and comparatively speaking, a very few indeed of his subjects. In truth, such attachment partakes not of the nature of loyalty. Loyalty is a firm and immoveable adherence to the king as king, and not as a man : it is shewn in a reverence for his title and office; in a prompt and cheerful obedience to his commands; in a devotion of life, if called for, in his service : and it arises, amongst the mass of his subjects, from an habitual, an hcreditary, persuasion, that the king is the repository of all that is necessary to the preservation of the national character, in which the heart of every man, however humble his condition, tells him that he has a share.—And, as to the other great public virtue, patriotism, which, when it exists in its proper degree, is a principle of the mind as strong and as uniform in its effects, as a love of kindred or of life itself; whence does it arise Not from the desire to get a contract or a job, like that of the patriotism of Sir Brook's committees: not from anxiety for the funds like that of the patriotism of Lloyd's and the bank: not from an affection for the earth, the mere dirt, for the dirt is still dirt, whatever be its geographical description. In the minds of the great and the rich, the principle of patriotism may be strengthened by considerations of individual interest 5, but, amongst the common people, the fighting part of the community, the prospect sel

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to the spot where he first drew his breath; but, his country may be conquered without at all interrupting the indulgence of this grovellino feeling; and, as to mere appellation, in that respect, even Rome h-rself has lost nothing. No, Sir; in none of these has the virtue of patriotism its foundation, but in that anxious desire, which every man of sound sense and honest nature has, to see preserved untarnished the reputation of that country which he is obliged to own, whose name he can never shake off, from whose calamities he may possibly flee, but in all whose disgraces he must inevitably share. What, for instance, induced me, when so far distant from my country, voluntarily to devote myself to her cause 2 Her commerce I neither knew nor cared any thing about it. Her funds I was so happy as hardly to understand the meaning of the word. Her lands I could, alas ! lay claim to nothing but the graves of my parents.— What, then, was the stimulus * What was T proud of 2 It was the name and fame of England. Her laws, her liberties, her justice, her might; all the qualities and circumstances that had given her renown in the world, but above all her deeds in arms, her military glory. Had she then been, as she now is, berest of the principal symbols of that glory ; had she then been, as she now is, dishonoured in the eyes of the world, a bye-word and a reproach amongst the nations, very different, indeed, situated as I was, must have been my feelings and my conduct ; and, even now, did I entertain the thought of her sinking into a mere money-mart, a mere work-shop, or a factory for traders; did I not hope, did I not, as I do, confidently hope (the causes of her decline first swept away) to see her regain her former greatness, it would, with me, be a matter of perfect indifference, who owned her soil, or who eat the produce. It would be tedious to dwell upon every striking mark of national decline: some, however, will press themselves forward to particular notice; and amongst them are: that Italian-like effeminacy, which has, at last, descended to the yeomanry of the conntry, who

are now found turning up their silly eyes in

ecstacy at a music-meeting, while they should be cheering the hounds, or measuring their strength at the ring ; the discouragement of all the athletic sports and modes of strife

amongst the common people, and the consequent and fearful increase of those cutting: and stabbings, those assassin ike ways of taking vengeance, formerly heard of in England only as the vices of the most base and cowardly foreigners, but now become so frequent amongst ours-lves as to render necessary a saw to punish sitch practices with death; the prevalence and encouragement of a bypocritical religion, a canting morality, and an affected humanity; the daily increasing poverty cf. the national church, and the daily increasing disposition still to fleece the more then halfshorne clergy, who are compelled to be, in various ways, the mere dependents of the upstarts of trade; the almost entire extinction of the ancient county gentry, whose estates are swallowed up by loan-jobbers, contractors, and nabobs, who, for the far greater part not Englishinen themselves, exercise in England that sort of insolent sway, which, by the means of taxes raised from English labour, they have been enabled to exercise over the slaves of India or elsewhere; the bestowing of honours upon the tnere possessors of wealth, without any regard to birth, character, or talents, or to the manner in which that wealth has been acquired; the familiar intercourse of but too. many of the ancient nobility with persons of low birth and servile occupations, with exchange and insurance-brokers, loan and lottery contractors, agents and usurers, in short, with all the Jew-like race of moneychangers; the loss of the spirit of independence, which is perceivable in the almost universal willingness and even eagerness, with which the higher classes seek to lean upon the Treasury, and with which the lower classes throw themselves upon the higher in the character of parish poor, thus forming the whole nation into a string of political mendicants, cringing to the minister of the day for a portion of that which he has drained from them in taxes. Upon these and many other infallible marks of national decline it would be useless to dwell; for, indeed, why need we look for any other mark than that which is exhibited in our situation considered relatively to France? When I am shown the nomerous turnpike roads and canals, the amazing manufactories of Manchester and Birmingham, the immease extent and riches of London, I see indubitable proofs of enormous individual wealth; but no proof at all of national wealth, which, properly understood, is only another word for national power. Of what use are all these riches, unless the nation is more powerful in consequence of them And, in es

timating her power, we must not, like those profound statesmen Lords Castlereagh and Hawkesbury, count the number of her ships, so amen and boys, and also of her soldiers, militia, and volunteers, compared with the numbers of her own forces of former times and former wars, and conclude, that, because we find he present numbers greater, the nation must now be more powerful than she was in those times. Power is a relative endowment: nor, in speaking of the power of a nation, must we consider it relatively to the power of the nations of the world promiscuously, or in general; but to that of her neighbours, and especially of that particular nation, who has long been known as her rival and antagonist. I may easily beat a child or an old man ; I may mow down whole crowds of cripples; but, am I yet able to encounter the man who is shy equal in age, health, and size, and with whom I have fought in all the stages of life, from infancy up to manhood 2 This is the question

which every man will put to himself, in order

to satisfy his own mind as to the fact, whe ther, in point of bodily strength, he has, or has not, declined. And, as to his neighbours, if they see him suing for a cessation of the combat under the pretext of a necessity for “taking breath,” and of gathering strength “ against another day of trial;" if they see him submitting to the grossest of insults lather than make that trial; and, when at last compelled to it, if they see his utmost hole, his “glory,” confined merely to the preservation of his existence, must they not conclude that he is a fallen and still falling man It was, therefore, Sir, with great pain and with no small degree of 'shame, that, I heard you, in your defence of the peace of Amiens, join in the boastings with respect to the secure state and proud attitude of England, when compared with the “ degraded nations of the contiment;" and when I heard you exult over the fall of Tippoo Sultan as “one of the * events which had given the greatest con“ solidation to our strength !" But, Sir, it was not a comparison between England and Holland, or between England and Spain or Sardinia, that could afford triumph to any man of common sense ; the comparison to be made was one between England and France; between the combatants who had been opposed to each other, and not between those who had been fighting ou the same side, the cornparison in the latter case being merely of a negative kind, and yielding only the miserable, not to say base consolation, that, while our companions had been stripFrg of their garments, and, in some places,

of their skin, we had escaped without any other loss than that of our badges of honour, our trident and our lilies 1–And here, Sir, I will, for a minute, interrupt the thread of my observations, in order to do what I should have done before, namely, remove, in advance, the objection which will, by the small lawyers and petty statesmen of Downing Street, be urged against my arguments founded on the loss of the lilies, seeing that we throw them away during the war, or, in the words of the Poet Laureat, “ indignantly scratched them from the shield;” and this, for the sake of easy comprehensior, I shall do in the recital of a fable. “ The beaver,” says AEsop, “ which “ is a very timid though laborious animal, has a certain part about him for the ob“taining of which he is often hunted down ‘ and killed. Once upon a time, as one of these creatures was hard pursued by the dogs, and knew not how to escape, recollecting within himself the reason of his “ being persecuted, he, with great result: tion, bit off the part which his hunters “ wanted, and threw it towards them." Whether this answered the purpose of the poor beaver, we are left uninformed, but ours it certainly has not answered; on the contrary, it seems only to have rendered out hunters more keen in pursuit of the carcase. The moral, which Croxall has added to his fable of the hunted beaver is singular enough : “ Indeed,” says he, “when life “ is pursued, and in danger, whoever values “ it, should give up every thing but his honour to preserve it.”——To return to the boasting comparison; it was not the defeat and total overthrow of Tippoo Sultan that we should have heard of; it was the overthrow of Bonaparte, or, at least, of the reduction of his power to within such limi" as would have rendered it not so obviously dangerous to England. What was the 4. feat of Tippoo Sultan to the people of ho kingdom The best purpose it could possibly answer was to insure the tranquility of * lonies the most distant of any that the mo" ther country possesses, the most expens" to her, as is now clearly proved by the * counts submitted to parliament, and the least subsidiary to her native strength," say nothing about the many ways in which it enfeebles her. How, then, could the fall of Tippoo, which has been followed by * upon war ever since, be placed in the bilance against the immense addition which, at the time of peace, had been made to solid power of France, that power which now enables her to keep us in a stal” siege 2 - - -

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