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What was the conduct, my lords, of lord | inevitably lead. Nay, family and tradiTorrington? Did he look to this word, or tionary history relates, that there were that word, of his instructions ? No: he vague rumours afloat at the time, that the looked, as he ought to look, and as I trust British minister for Foreign Affairs, beevery British seaman will look, not to the coming suddenly afraid of the conseletter but to the spirit and object of his quences of the wise, just, and spirited instructions. He immediately gave chase measure, which he had himself recomto the Spanish fleet, brought it to action, mended, was inclined to throw the odium and as sir Edward Codrington did at and responsibility of it on the gallant adNavarino, attacked and annihilated it. It miral who had carried it into execution. was stated at the time by lord Torrington, But, if there was any such intention on that the Spanish fleet fired first. The his part, which I trust and hope there was Spaniards denied it. I think that, under not, the administration was rescued from the circumstances, it was of no consequence that ignominy by the approbation which whether we fired first or not. They had a the gallant admiral shortly afterwards reright to say, “You came up to me ready ceived from two distinguished royal perfor action-you came either to intimidate sonages; for George the 1st, admiring the or insult me. Insult is the same thing as bravery of the achievement, wrote a letter aggression, and I had a right to resist your with his own hand to lord Torrington, aggression as I best could.” Our justifi- complimenting him upon it; and the emcation rested upon our right to become peror of Germany afterwards did the same. the aggressors, if we thought proper; and Both those letters are now preserved in not upon the casual circumstance of the archives of the family; from a laudwhich fleet the first shot came from. All able pride in the exploit of their illustrious these circumstances are the very circum- progenitor. These letters state, that the stances which recently happened at Nava- admiral had truly conceived the true spirit rino. The similarity, however, goes still of his instructions, and had acted, as further. It so happened, that at the time British seamen will always act; namely, when lord Torrington destroyed the Spanish destroy those who, if preserved, would defleet in the gallant manner which I have just feat the object for which the fleet was described, we had at home a very powerful sent out. With respect to the judgment and exasperated faction of Tories (a laugh). | which posterity has passed upon it, I have They had been long, very long, accustomed a right to observe, that posterity was quite to the possession and abuse of power, and satisfied with it; for it secured for many they were sorely exasperated at the unex- years the peace of Europe, and saved Italy pected loss of it. There were also, unfor- from the desolation of war. tunately, certain great Whig leaders, who of England were also satisfied with it; were not a little exasperated at not having because the British bad covered itself been included in the administration which with glory in the transaction, and had succeeded them. There were also some added another to its former triumphs. ex-ministers, who had framed the original And as to the objection--I particularly treaty with France; and who, after its beg the attention of the noble seconder to formation, had had the misfortune to lose this observation—as to the objection which the genial influence of the sunshine of was made by the minister of Spain, and power. There were also in the country, by the Opposition of England, to its being what I hope is now quite extinct—a set a violation of the laws of nations, Mr. of bigotted jure divino legitimates, who Secretary Craggs in the House of Comwere the secret favourers of Spain, and the mons, and lord Stanhope in the House of avowed defenders of tyranny and arbitrary, Lords,* both answered it, by showing the hereditary, and undefecated, despotism, in designs which the king of Spain was preevery quarter of the world. All these pared to carry into execution, and by parties, owing to some strange coincidence charging him, in aggravation, with having of conviction, joined in reprobating the mea- attacked the emperor of Germany, when sure which lord Torrington had executed, he was engaged in a war with the “ crying out with loud and angry voices, mon enemy of Christendom,” the Turk. that it was a gross violation of the sacred -And this, my lord, brings me back to principles of the law of nations, and prating the question from which I started; namely, very unintelligibly about the fatal ånd alarming consequences to which it must * Parl. History, vol. vii-pp. 561,564.
the propriety of the Speech from the out allies, the Russians, sent a great fleet Throne, styling the Ottoman Porte our into the Mediterranean, for the purpose of "ancient" ally; for the two Secretaries overpowering the Turks. What was the stated, in 1718, that the attack made by policy of this country? To assist the Spain upon Germany, when Germany was Russian navy. That fleet was refitted in at war wi the Turks, was a species of our harbours, and, with the munitions and delinquency which rendered all that had implements which it received from us, been done justifiable—that it was a sort burnt a Turkish town and fleet, and conof aggression against the interests of tinued cruising in the Archipelago for no Christendom and of Eatope. Strange less than five or six years. Then we coine language this, my lords, for an old and to the business of Oczakow. We had an faithful ally! very odd language! But it object in preventing Russia from possessing was accidental—they were pressed in argu- Oczakow. My lords, did Mt. Pitt, in that ment. Mr. Craggs might state this be part of his career, which I do not concause he was pressed in argument, and sider the most honourable part of his addid not know what to say; and perhaps ministration-propose an alliance with lord Stanhope might say this because he Turkey? Did he come down and say, could say nothing else ; but how does it " Here is your ancient and faithful ally happen that another Secretary of State, that is attacked ?” Did he say, “ Here is one of the greatest ornaments this country a power attacked which we are interested ever produced, the friend of lord Stanhope, in defending ?" No. Mr. Pitt knew well had," three years before, said the same enough—he must have known from his thing? Mr. Addisoti, who was not only father, there was no sort of alliance bea philosopher, but one of the wisest and tween this country and Turkey, and never best men on the face of the earth, remark- had been ; but he said this,“ We have ed upon the bad effect of the numerous established a new system in Europe”-and journalists in this country, and the great he prided himself upon it—" Prussia forms spirit of writing and reading politics in the a main part of that system, and, for the country, and went on to say, that, though interest of Prussia, we must prevent the there was no absurdity to which people, proposed aggression of Russia uport by this itch for talking and writing politics, Turkey.” My lords, Mr. Pitt was not the might not be brought, he did not believe only person who used this language at that it possible that there could be persons in time ; but I defy any of your lordships to England who could think that we were show that Mr. Pitt, or any of his friends, interested in the prosperity of the Ottoman ever spoke of Turkey at that time as our empire. Therefore, after the two political “ ancient ally." There is another indirelations we had with Turkey, in one of vidual, nearly connected with myself, which we extorted this very Greece from whose sentiments upon that occasion 1 the Turks, we have the declaration of two will not-nay, I dare not-trust myself Secretaries of State, and of another man, with mentioning to your lordships. They afterwards Secretary of State, 'as to the are, however, well known, and will not be interest which this country has in Ottoman forgotten. Mr. Burke, too, speaking on politics. But, I may be told, " these are the same subject, after the French Revoluold stories: we do not use the wordtion had disappointed the lovers of rational 'ancient in this kind of sense ; we do not freedom, and had kindled in his breast a attach a great deal of meaning to it.” pious horror of deserting ancient allies But, what happened afterwards? From and ancient institutions-Mr. Burke, that period to the year 1770, I do not speaking, as he always did speak, like a know any thing of political feeling towards man of genius and knowledge—what did the Turks; nor, indeed, until we come to Mr. Burke say about our ancient and the memorable debate in this House on faithful ally the Turk? His words, my the affair of Oczakow. Almost every man lords, were these—“ I have never bewho had held office, and had authority, fore heard it held forth, that the stated, that the opinion of lord Chatham Turkish empire has ever
béen conwas, that we should never have any kind sidered as any part of the balance of of connexion whatever with the Ottoman power in Europe. They had nothing to Porte; and that opinion was fortified do with European power; they considered during the seven years' war by a similar themselves as wholly Asiatic. Where is opinion of the king of Prussia. In 1770 l the Turkish resident at our court, the court
of Prussia, or of Holland? They despise formed for the protection of the Turkish and contemn all Christian princes, as infi- empire against its immediate invaders, it dels, and only wish to subdue and exter- is a treaty of alliance, at the invitation of minate them and their people. What have an old and natural ally, the emperor of these worse than savages to do with the Russia, to enter, for the first time, into an powers of Europe, but to spread war, de- alliance with the Turk. The words of the struction, and pestilence amongst them? first article are as follow:-"His Britannic The ministers and the policy which shall majesty, connected already with his majesty give these people any weight in Europe, the emperor of Russia by the ties of the will deserve all the bans and curses of strictest alliance, accedes by the present posterity.” Very strange language this treaty, to the defensive alliance, which has in an English House of Commons, regard- just been concluded between his trajesty ing an ancient and faithful ally! But let the Ottoman emperor and the emperor of us see how this mighty master proceeds.- Russia, as far as the stipulations thereof “ All that is holy in religion, all that is are applicable to the local circumstances moral and humane, demands an abhorrence of his empire, and that of the Sublime of every thing which tends to extend the Porte.” So that all the alliance which we power of that cruel and wasteful empire. I then made with the Sublime Porte, was Any Christian power is to be preferred to made through the intervention, and at the these destructive savages."* I do not mean express request, of Russia. Now, at the to say that I approve of the sentiments end of that treaty it is said, that notwithhere expressed. I do not quote them as standing the two high contracting parties rules for the guidance of your lordships ; are desirous to maintain it in force for ever, but I bring them, if the learned lord on or at least as long as possible, it appeared the woolsack will permit me to use such a most expedient to limit it at that time for pbrase, as evidence to the fact, and for the seven years, to be computed from the day purpose of showing that the Turk was not of the ratifications being exchanged. considered by public men as the ancient Strange to say, long before those seven ally of Great Britain. I may even add, years had elapsed, Turkey had broken all that on the accession of George Ist, to the main articles of that treaty which bound the throne of this kingdom, it was urged it to remain at peace with Russia. We had by the courtiers of that day as a strong a right to remonstrate, and we did remonargument in liis favour, that he had fleshed strate, against the conduct which it folhis maiden sword in Greece against the lowed. It broke them, too, in as far as Turks--a pregnant proof, by the bye, that they related to us; for they had bound the Turk was not at that time considered themselves to have no friends that were as the ally of Great Britain.--I now come, not our friends, and to enter into no relamy lords, to the first alliance really made tions with those who declared themselves with Turkey by this country. What was our enemies. Many of your lordships that alliance? It was an alliance formed must be aware, that long before the year in my time, in the year 1798 or 1799, in 1807, we had occasion to remonstrate consequence of the invasion of Egypt by against the great influence which general the French, who have often been reproach - Sebastiani, an agent of the emperor Naed with being, though they never acknow-poleon, had assumed in the divan. That ledged that they were, the ancient ally of of itself would have been a legitimate the Turks. It has been a reproach to the ground of war. We refrained, however, French nation that they were an ancient as long as we justly could from hostilities ally of the Ottoman empire. When they with the Ottoman Porte; but three months invaded Egypt, and not before, we entered had not passed after the expiration of the into a treaty of alliance with the Porte. treaty, before we were obliged to send a My lords, I have looked into that treaty fleet to Constantinople, to enforce our this very evening, and I am surprised to opinion, and to bring them to reason ; that find that, so far from its being a treaty of is to say, by compelling the performance alliance formed for the mutual interests of of the articles of the treaty with Russia. Turkey and England as against the rest of -Then, my lords, I do say, that I have the world, or as connected with commerce. proved to your lordships that Turkey is -So far from being a treaty of alliance, neither an ancient nor a faithful ally.
Since that time ho alliance has been made: • Parl. Historý, 4. xxix, p. 76. we have preserved the relations of peace
and amity, but we have done no more. We framed the Treaties to which the Speech have undoubtedly obtained a recognition, refers, and the great officers who have been under the treaty, of those rights which had intrusted with the execution of them will been granted as a boon so far back as the not be considered in so doing to have detime of Charles 2nd. I do not wish to go serted either the ancient ally or the ancient at present into the general question of the policy of Great Britain ; and that if, in the justice or policy of the proceeding of this course of their career, they have pursued country on the subject. I do hope that an object great and glorious to the counthose who framed the Speech are satisfied try, and have not completely succeeded in with themselves : for myself, I am con- attaining it, they will receive the praise of vinced that it is much more convenient to their countrymen for what they have efthe House, and much more respectful to- fected, and not their censure for what they wards his majesty, to defer any decision have found it impossible to execute. until all the papers are before the House. The noble lord sat down amidst loud I only lament there is another word in the cheers. Speech from the throne to which I do not Lord King said, that before their lordknow what meaning to attach. I certainly ships separated, he wished to offer a word hope that the two noble lords who have or two on a very homely subject, of which, spoken will leave the word out of the ad- he was sorry to see there was no mention dress, or give us some explanation of it. either in the Speech from the Throne or I allude to the word “untoward.” If it in the Address, though it had occupied no is meant, by" untoward,” that any blame inconsiderable portion of their lordships' is to be cast on the gallant officer who time during the last session. He meant commanded the fleet at Navarino, I must the Corn-laws. Now, that subject apsay that against the baseness and ignominy peared to him to be a more difficult subof such an insinuation I would protest in ject for the administration even than the the most solemn way. In Johnson's Dic- battle of Navarino. It would be a grievtionary the meaning is “froward, perverse, ous question to any administration, and vexatious.” If we are to understand from it would not be less so to the present, the word “untoward,” that it refers to seeing that there were in it two or three that which happened by accident, and avowed friends, two or three decided enewhich stood across the object which we mies, and--what was, perhaps, more danhad in view, if that be the meaning of it, gerous than all, two or three concealed I must also protest against it. However enemies to the Corn-laws.
As there were much I may lament the effusion of blood in the present administration some persons which has taken place at Navarino-how- who had been in the last administration, ever much I may lament that we have not and in the administration before the last, yet accomplished so great an object as the and who most probably would also bé pacification of two contending countries, found in the next administration, it was and the liberation of Greece-that coun- to be hoped, that while they were busy in try from which we derived no small por making terms, and no doubt good terms, tion of all those virtues which exalt and for themselves, they had not forgotten to dignify our nature, and to which we owe make equally good terms for their own prinall that gives life and animation to our de- ciples of free trade, and for a new Corn-law. bates however much I may mourn over He would, however, ask what security the the deferred hopes of a brave and gallant country had upon the point? It was said, people—still if by that word it is meant to that the country had the same President say, that the battle of Navarino is an ob- of the Board of Trade that it had before. stacle to the independence of Greece, I Now, he thought that the country would cannot agree to its justice. I think it has have a much better security, if the noble furthered and promoted it. I look upon duke at the head of the government, who it as a step, and a great step, towards the had the whole substantial power—who pacification of Europe: and consider it of had not only the common and ordinary more use than a contrary policy could powers of prime minister, but had concenhave been, in promoting that great and trated in himself the civil and military desirable object. I defer the discussion power-was known to entertain views faon the other parts of this subject to avourable to free trade, and to the subject future opportunity. All I wish at pre- to which he alluded; but when he recolsent to prove is, that those who have | lected the noble duke's conduct last year,
he thought it a most inadequate security have taken place in that part of the world, merely to have the continuance of the same render the preservation of the Ottoman person who, for a few months, had occu- power as an independent power, capable pied the place of President of the Board of defending itself, an essential object. of Trade. The country had been told, My lords, I would likewise say, that not that it had obtained security that the fo- only has the preservation of that power been reign policy of the former administration an object to this country, but it has likewise would not be departed from, seeing that been an essential object to Russia. I beit had the same Foreign Secretary still in lieve I may safely say that, had it not been office. Now, he considered that security for the influence of the councils of this not a whit better than the security they country over the Ottoman power during had obtained on the other question : he the late war, the disaster which finally led believed that both those personages were to the establishment of Europe in the state mere satellites of the person at the head in which it is now found would not have of the government, and must necessarily occurred to the extent to which it did ocbe drawn into his vortex. The old saying, cur in the year 1812. Under these cirthat“ there was a power behind the Throne cumstances, although the word "ancient greater than the Throne itself,” seemed to ally” will not apply to an alliance by treabe totally reversed ; for there semed to be ties of a hundred years standing, yet there a power before the Throne more formida- is no doubt whatever that the Ottoman ble than the Throne itself. He should be power has been an ally of this country, happy if the securities turned out better and certainly an old ally. My lords, there than he expected. He should be de- is another term made use of by his majeslighted to give his support to any mea- ty in his Speech, and in the Address, i sures of free trade, which, it was said, cer- mean the term “untoward event.” My tain persons had secured, and should lords, the sense in which untoward is used be greatly disappointed if they were not is this. Under the treaty, which has not carried into effect.
yet been laid before the House, and which The Duke of Wellington said:-My lords, cannot come regularly under discussion if there be any one subject more than an- until it has been so laid, but which we other, on which the country is agreed as have all read, it is particularly stated, as one man, it is, that there should be a com- one of the stipulations of the alliance, that plete settlement of the Corn question. I the operation of the treaty was not to lead have, therefore, very great pleasure in being to hostilities, and that the contracting enabled to inform your lordships, that it powers were to take no part in hostilities. is the intention of his majesty's govern- Therefore, my lords, I say, that when, unment, at an early period of the present fortunately, the operations under the treaty session, to submit to the consideration of did lead to hostilities, it was an untoward parliament a measure relative to the Corn- circumstance, My lords, it was hoped laws, and for regulating the importation and expected, I believe, by the former of corn, founded upon the principle of government, that this object would be the measure which was introduced last effected without hostilities. I believe it, session. Having thus been under the not only from the treaty itself, but I benecessity of addressing your lordships, in lieve it because the force they provided to answer to the question put to me by the noble carry the measure into execution was such baron, I hope I may be permitted to say a as to render it almost impossible that there few words in answer to what fell from the should be hostilities. That being the case, noble lord who addressed the House just I say that when these hostilities unfortunow. First, with regard to the term nately took place, that when the course of "ancient ally," I must state that the Ot- the measures of the late government astoman power has long been an ally of this sumed the character of hostilities, instead country : that the Ottoman power is an of that of peace, it was an untoward event. essential part of the balance of power in I say, also, that understanding there was Europe; that the preservation of the Ot- some chance—some prospect-after the toman power has been, for a considerable account of this event had reached Connumber of years, an object, not only to stantinople, that it might have ended in this country, but to the whole of Europe ; war, that that was an untoward event. and that the revolutions which have oc- His majesty now tells us, that these curred, the changes of possession which chances have disappeared; he hopes that