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law of parliament as he pleased : but in the course of two years Shaftesbury rose to the high pre-eminence before possessed by his adversary; and one of his first cares was to procure a vote pronouncing all these proceedings irregular, and ordering every trace of them to be expunged from the journals of the house*.
The reader is aware that in the year 1674 the prince of Orange had very unceremoniously refused the hand of the princess Mary. Succeeding events had taught him to lament his imprudence. All the flattering predictions of his advisers were falsified; and he discovered that he had given offence to the only prince, who could enable him either to conclude an honourable peace, or to continue the war with any prospect of success. Convinced that it was his interest to seek a reconciliation, he began in the first place by cultivating the friendship of the favourite minister, the lord treasurer; in the next
he condescended to solicit that union, which he had preMay viously rejected; and, alarmed at the coldness with 31.
which the proposal was received, requested permission to come to England, that he might apologize for his past conduct, and explain his views for the future. Charles, partly through a feeling of resentment, partly through
jealousy of his connexion with the popular leaders, afJune fected to hesitate; and, when he gave his consent, made 11. it an express condition that William should leave Eng. Oct. land before the meeting of parliament. At the close of 9. the campaign he joined his two uncles at Newmarket :
the lord treasurer, and Temple, who was returned from the embassy, were devoted to his interest; and their united efforts extorted from the easy monarch his consent to the immediate solemnization of the marriage, though he had previously arranged with James that it should only follow the acquiescence of the prince in their views
Marvell, i. 348. 355. 359. St. Trials, vi. 1269. North, 71. 73. Harl. MSS. 2202. Correspondence of Clarendon and Rochester, i. 6. 7. Bul. strode, 272. He acknowledged that "the bringing of the habeas corpus " was a high violation of their lordships' privileges, and a great aggrava.
See Hatsell, ii. App. 395—415.
" tion of his former offence."
A.D. 1678.] MARRIAGE OF THE PRINCESS MARY. 105 with respect to the peace of the continent. The duke Oct.
24. was surprised and mortified : but, deeming it his duty to submit to the will of the sovereign, he accompanied his brother to the council chamber. Charles announced to the lords that he had concluded a marriage between his nephew the prince of Orange and his niece the princess Mary, for the purpose of uniting the different branches of his family, and of proving to his people the interest which he took in the security of their religion. “And I," added the duke, “as father of the bride, have “ given my consent,-a consent which will prove the "falsehood of the charges so often made against me, " that I meditate changes in the church and state. The "only change which I seek, is to secure men from mo. “ lestation in civil concerns on account of their opinion “ on religious matters *."
This marriage gave universal satisfaction; and during the festivities with which it was celebrated at court, close and frequent consultations were held respecting the con. ditions which ought to form the basis of a general peace. But on these occasions the uncle and the nephew met with secret feelings of jealousy and resentment, the prince attributing the preponderance of France to the apathy of the king, the king to the obstinacy of the prince; the one insisting with vehemence that Franchecompté should be restored to Spain ; and the other as warmly contending that such a demand would oppose an insuperable obstacle to the attainment of peace. At length William yielded : the interests of his ally were sacrificed to the acquisition of a sufficient barrier between France and the United Provinces ; and both parties agreed to propose the following project of a treaty to the powers at war : that Holland and France should mutually restore the conquests which they had made; that the territory of France should remain in statu qun; that the duchy of Lorrain should be restored to the duke, the
• Danby, Letters, 130-150. 235. Temple, ii. 419. 421. James, i. 508 510. Dalrymple, ii. 126.
rightful sovereign; and that Louis should keep possession of the places and countries which he had won from Spain, with the exception of Ath, Charleroi, Oudenarde, Courtrai, Tournai, Condé, and Valenciennes, which towns should be restored, to form a chain of fortresses separating the new acquisitions of France from the ancient boundary of the republic. Charles acknowledged that the ambition of Louis ought to be satisfied with these terms: he even undertook to propose them to the acceptance of that monarch, and to require an immediate and positive answer : but no arts of the prince could draw from his uncle an engagement to join his forces with those of the confederates in the event of a refusal *.
The king felt the awkwardness of the new character which he had assumed. Hitherto he pretended to no other office than that of mediator, now he took upon himself to arbitrate between the contending powers. He was bound by secret treaty to Louis; he received from him a yearly pension; he had been in the habit of making to him protestations of gratitude and friendship: and yet he was about to dictate conditions of peace which would arrest that monarch in his career of victory, and A.D. 1678.] LOUIS REJECTS THE KING'S PROPOS AL. 107 which Louis himself had given up all pretensions; that the people of England were so deeply interested in the fate of that country, that the king could never live at
tear from him a valuable portion of his conquests. Nov. Having selected lord Feversham † for the mission, he 10. gave him instructions to deliver his message in the least
offensive manner; to state that the restoration of the seven towns was a condition from which nothing could induce the prince of Orange to recede ; that it was considered necessary for the preservation of Flanders, to * * James, i. 510. Danby, 152–156. Temple, ii. 422. Temple, indeed, affirms that the king pledged himself to make war in case of a refusal on the part of Louis (p. 426). It is, however, evident, from the letter of Danby to the prince of Dec. 4th, that up to that day no such pledge had been given (p: 162). It may be, that Temple writing from memory has Orcasionally confounded dates and circumstauces. Danby writing at the time, and to the prince, respecting a negotiation in which they were both eugaged, could not be in error.
+ Louis Duras, marquis de Blanquefort, and nephew to the great Turenne, was a French protestant, naturalized in Eugland, and appointed captain of his guard by the duke of York, He was created baron Durns (19th January, 1673); and on the death of his father-in-law, the earl of Feversham, succeeded to that title in 1677.
ease with them,” if he were to suffer it to be annexed to France either by war or treaty; that, as the parliament had already compelled him to withdraw from his alliance with Louis, so it was to be feared that they might at last force him into a war against that monarch; and that, should the project of peace be accepted, the acquiescence of the French king in that point
“ would remove " all accidents that might obstruct the existing friend
ship between the two crowns.” Feversham proceeded to Paris ; and, as he had nothing more in command than
to desire the most Christian king's judgment on the “ proposal," it was expected that he would not be detained above two days : but a fortnight passed without
Nov. any tidings of his return, and the prince of Orange was
28. compelled by despatches from the continent to hasten back to the theatre of war *.
In the French cabinet Colbert argued warmly in favour of the project; Louvois, who spoke the sentiments of his sovereign, contended for the prosecution of the
After several delays Feversham received this answer, that Louis had read the proposal with surprise ; that to call on him to surrender the seven fortresses was as unreasonable as to amputate a man's feet, and then bid him walk; but that, in proof of his moderation, he would consent to a truce for all the towns, whether they belonged to Spain or Holland, which were situated between the Meuse and the sea, according to the demar
30. cation of 1668+. The envoy returned; and the next
* The instructions for lord Feversham have been published by lord John Russell, in his life of William lord Russell, ii. 218–224. They show how incorrect Temple is in his statement of the terms to be proposed by Feversham to Louis.
† Danby, i. 161. By the treaty of April 5, 1668, an. imaginary line was drawn from Ostend through Ghent, Ruplemond, and Mechlin to Argenteau, and it was agreed in the event of a refusal to make peace on the part of Spain, that England and Holland should make conquests on the north, and France on the south, of that line. See Dumont, vii. 89.
post brought advice that in defiance of the season the French army had taken the field, and had invested Guis. lain, which was expected to fall in a few days. Such
conduct irritated the pride of Charles; he ordered the Dec. adjournment of parliament to be shortened from April 3. the 4th to January the 15th *; and compelled Montague,
the ambassador, who had obtained leave of absence, to 4. return in all haste to Paris. He was instructed to ex
press the surprise of the king, that the epithet“unreason. “able” should be applied to an arrangement which was necessary for the preservation of Flanders; his apprehension that the rejection of the project would compel him to adopt measures which it was his most anxious wish to avoid ; his persuasion that the sacrifice demanded of Louis was tritling in comparison with the risk which he himself must encounter from the discontent of his subjects, and his intention of meeting his parliament before the French army could have time to extend its conquests in Flanders %. On the same day Charles sent directions to Hyde, the ambassador at the Hague, to propose to the States a new treaty after the model of the triple alliance, by which the two powers should be bound to each other, not only to defend themselves against all aggressors, but also to declare war, England against France, the States against Spain, if either France or
Spain should reject the proposed treaty of peace. The 11. prince of Orange received this intelligence with feelings
of astonishment and triumph. He had not expected such
* That this was the real cause is plain from the instructions to Hyde and Montague. Danby, 161. 327. "Life of Lord Russell, ii. App. 225. The shortening of the adjournment could not have proceeded, as Dalrym. ple asserts, (p. 128,) from resentment on account of the stoppage of the French pension ; for the first took place on Dec. 3, the latter on Dec. 17. Neither is Dalrymple more correct in his account of the manner of ad. journment. The king announced by proclamation that the attendance of distant members on the 3rd of December would be unnecessary, as the house would meet only to adjourn to the 4th of April: on account, how. ever, of the change of circumstances, wheu they did meet, they adjourned at the king's request only to the 15th of Jan. Journals, Dec. 3, 1667.
+ See Life of William lord Russell, ii. App. 224-227. Montague's message was taken by Louis and Louvois as conveying a threat of hostilities to follow. Dauby, 41, 42.