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ent possesses the absolute power to prefer or and the reason is plain, because we ought first cashier the officers of our army. It is a prerog- to inquire into the management of that revenue, ative which he may employ for the benefit or and punish those who have occasioned the defi. safety of the public; but, like other prerogatives, ciency. They will certainly choose to leave the it may be abused, and when it is so abused, the creditors of the Crown and the honor of the na. minister is responsible to Parliament. When an tion in a state of suffering, rather than advise officer is preferred or cashiered for voting in fa- the King to make an application which may vor of or against any court measure or candidate, bring censure upon their conduct, and condign it is an abuse of this prerogative, for which the punishment upon themselves. Besides this, sir, minister is answerable. We may judge from another and a stronger reason exists for promo.. circumstances or outward appearances-from ing an inquiry. There is a strong suspicion these we may condemn, and I hope we have that the public money has been applied toward stili a power to punish a minister who dares to corrupting voters at elections, and members advise the King to prefer or cashier from such when elected, and if the civil list be in debt, it motives ! Sir, whether this prerogative ought affords reason to presume that some part of this to remain as it is, without any limitation, is a revenue has, under the pretense of secret service question foreign to this debate. But I must ob- | money, been applied to this infamous purpose. serve, that the argument employed for it might, I shall conclude, sir, by making a few remarks with equal justice, be employed for giving our upon the last argument advanced against the King an absolute power over every man's prop- proposed inquiry. It has been said that the min. erty; because a large property will always give ister delivered in his accounts annually; that the possessor a command over a great body of these accounts were annually passed and apmen, whom he may arm and discipline if he proved by Parliament; and that therefore it pleases. I know of no law to restrain him I would be unjust to call him now to a general hope none will ever exist– I wish our gentlemen account, because the vouchers may be lost, or of estates would make more use of this power many expensive transactions have escaped his than they do, because it would tend to keep our memory. It is true, sir, estimates and accounts domestic as well as our foreign enemies in awe. were annually delivered in. The forms of proFor my part, I think that a gentleman who has ceeding made that necessary. But were any of earned his commission by his services (in his these estimates and accounts properly inquired military capacity, I mean), or bought it with his into? Were not all questions of that descripmoney, has as much a property in it as any man tion rejected by the minister's friends in Parliahas in his estate, and ought to have it as well ment? Did not Parliament always take them secured by the laws of his country. While it upon trust, and pass them withoui examination ? remains at the absolute will of the Crown, he can such a superficial passing, to call it no must, unless he has some other estate to depend worse, be deemed a reason for not calling him on, be a slave to the minister; and if the officers to a new and general account? If the steward of our army long continue in that state of slavery to an infant's estate should annually, for twenty in which they are at present, I am afraid it will years together, deliver in his accounts to tho make slaves of us all.
guardians ; and the guardians, through negli. The only method to prevent this fatal conse- gence, or for a share of the plunder, should an. quenco, as the law now stands, is to make the nually pass his accounts without examination, oi best and most constant use of the power we pos- at least without objection; would that be a reasess as members of this House, to prevent any son for saying that it would be unjust in the inminister from daring to advise the King to make fant, when he came of age, to call his steward a bad use of his prerogative. As there is such to account ? Especially if that steward had a strong suspicion that this minister has done so, built and furnished sumptuous palaces, living, we ought certainly to inquire into it, not only for during the whole time, at a much greater ex. the sake of punishing him if guilty, but as a ter- pense than his visible income warranted, and yer ror to all future ministers.
amassing great riches? The public, sir, is al. This, sir, may therefore be justly reckoned ways in a state of infancy; therefore no preamong the many other sufficient causes for the scription can be pleaded against it-not even a inquiry proposed. The suspicion that the civil general release, if there is the least cause foi list is greatly in debt is another; for if it is, it supposing that it was surreptitiously obtained must either have been misapplied, or profusely Public vouchers ought always to remain on rec thrown away, which abuse it is our duty both to ord; nor ought any public expense to be incur. prevent and to punish. It is inconsistent with red without a voucher—therefore the case of tho the honor of this nation that the King should public is still stronger than that of an infant stand indebted to his servants or tradesmen, Thus, sir, the honorable gentleman who made who may be ruined by delay of payment. The use of this objection, must see how little it avails Parliament has provided sufficiently to prevent in the case before us; and therefore I trust we this dishonor from being brought upon the na- shall have his concurrence in the question. tion, and, if the provision we have made should be lavished or misapplied, we must supply the The motion prevailed by a majority cf seron deficiency. We ought to do it, whether the King A committee of twenty-one was appointed, com nakes any application for that purpose or not; I posed of Walpolc's political and personal oppo nents. They entered on the inquiry with great tion from peculators and others, who mighi visa zeal and expectation. But no documentary to cover their crimes by making the minister a proofs of importance coula be found. Witnesses partaker in their guilt. “The result of all their were called up for examination as to their trans inquiries," says Cooke," was charges so few and actions with the treasury; but they refused to so ridiculous, when compared with those put for. testify, unless previously indemnified against the ward at the commencement of the investigation, consequences of the evidence they might be re- that the promoters of the prosecution were them. quired to give. The House passed a bill of in-selves ashamed of their work. Success was demnity, but the Lords rejected it, as dangerous found impracticable, and Lord Orford enjoyed his Ditë tendency, and celerlated to invite accusa- | honors unmolested.”—Hist. of Party, ii., 316.
OF LORD CHATHAN ON TAKING THE HANOVERIAN TROOPS INTO THE PAY OF GREAT BRITAIN,
DELIVERED IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS, DEC. 10, 1742.
INTRODUCTION, GEORGE II., when freed from the trammels of Walpole's pacific policy, had a silly ambition of appear. ing on the Continent, like William III., at the head of a confederate army against France, while be sought, at the same time, to defend and aggrandize his Electorate of Hanover at the expense of Great Britain. In this he was encouraged by Lord Carteret, who succeeded Walpole as actual minister. The King therefore took sixteen thousand Hanoverian troops into British pay, and sent them with a large English force into Flanders. His object was to create a diversion in favor of Maria Theresa, queen of Hungary, to whom the English were now affording aid, in accordance with their guarantee of the Pragmatic Sanc. tion. Two subsidies, one of £300,000 and another of £500,000, had already been transmitted for her re. lief; and so popular was her cause in England, that almost any sum would have been freely given. But there was a general and strong opposition to the King's plan of shifting the burdens of Hanover on to the British treasury. Mr. Pitt, who concurred in these views, availed bimself of this opportunity to come out as the opponent of Carteret. He had been neglected and set aside in the arrangements which were made after the fall of Walpole; and he was not of a spirit tamely to bear the arrogance of the new min ister. Accordingly, when a motion was made to provide for the payment of the Hanoverian troops, he delivered the following speech, in reply to Henry Fox, who had said that he shou!! "continue to voto er thesc measures till better could be proposed."
Sir, if the honorable gentleman determines to the place most distant from the enemy, least in abandon his present sentiments as soon as any danger of an attack, and most strongly fortified, better measures are proposed, the ministry will had an attack been designed. They have, therequickly be deprived of one of their ablest defend- fore, no other claim to be paid, than that they ers; for I consider the measures hitherto pur left their own country for a place of greater sesued so weak and so pernicious, that scarcely curity. It is always reasonable to judge of the any alteration can be proposed that will not be future by the past; and therefore it is probable for the advantage of the nation.
that next year the services of these troops will The honorable gentleman has already been in- not be of equal importance with those for which formed that no necessity existed for hiring auxil they are now to be paid. I shall not, therefore, lary troops. It does not appear that either justice be surprised, if, after such another glorious camor policy required us to engage in the quarrels of paign, the opponents of the ministry be chalthe Continent; that there was any need of forming lenged to propose better measures, and be told an army in the Low Countries; or that, in order that the money of this nation can not be more to form an army, auxiliaries were necessary. properly employed than in hiring Hanoverians 10
But, not to dwell upon disputable points, I eat and sloep. think it may justly be concluded that the meas But to prove yet more particularly that better ures of our ministry have been ill concerted, be measures inay be taken--that more useful troops cause it is undoubtedly wrong to squander the may be retained—and that, therefore, the honpublic money without effect, and to pay armies, orable gentleman may be expected to quit those only to be a show to our friends and a scorn to to whom he now adheres, I shall show that, in our enemies.
hiring the forces of Hanover, we have obstruct. 'The troops of Hanover, whom we are now ex-ed our own designs; that, instead of assisting pected to pay, marched into the Low Countries, the Queen of Hungary, we have withdrawn from sir where they still remain. They marched to her a part of the allies, and have burdened the
nation with troops from which no service can See note to Walpole's speech, p. 40. reasonably be expected.
The advocates of the ministry have, on this those who have advised his Majesty to hire and occasion, affected to speak of the balance of pow. to send elsewhere those troops which should er, the Pragmatic Sanction, and the preservation have been employed for the Queen of Hungary's of the Queen of Hungary, not only as if they assistance. It is not to be imagined, sir, that were to be the chief care of Great Britain, which his Majesty has more or less regard to justice (although easily controvertible) might, in com- as King of Great Britain, than as Electer uf pliance with long prejudices, be possibly admit- Hanover; or that he would not have sent his ted; but as if they were to be the care of Great proportion of troops to the Austrian army, had Britain alone. These advocates, sir, have spok- not the temptation of greater proit teen laid inen as if the power of France were formidable to dustriously before him. But this is not all tha: no other people than ourselves; as if no other may be urged against such conduct. For, can part of the world would be injured by becoming we imagine that the power, that the designs of a prey to a universal monarchy, and subject to France, are less formidable to Hanover than the arbitrary government of a French deputy ; Great Britain ? Is it less necessary for the se. by being drained of its inhabitants only to extend curity of Hanover than of ourselves, that the the conquests of its masters, and to make other | house of Austria should be re-established it its nations equally wretched; and by being oppressed former splendor and influence, and enabled to with exorbitant taxes, levied by military execu- support the liberties of Europe against the enortions, and employed only in supporting the state mous attempts at universal monarchy by France ? of its oppressors. They dwell upon the import If, therefore, our assistance to the Queen of ance of public faith and the necessity of an exact Hungary be an act of honesty, and granted in observation of treaties, as if the Pragmatic Sanc consequence of treaties, why may it not be tion had been signed by no other potentate than equally required of Hanover? If it be an act the King of Great Britain ; as if the public faith of generosity, why should this country alone be were to be obligatory upon ourselves alone. obliged to sacrifice her interests for those of oth
That we should inviolably observe our treat- ers? or why should the Elector of Hanover exer; ies-observe them although every other nation his liberality at the expense of Great Britain ? should disregard them; that we should show an It is now too apparent, sir, that this great, example of fidelity to mankind, and stand firm this powerful, this mighty nation, is considered in the practice of virtue, though we should stand only as a province to a despicable Electorate; alone, I readily allow. I am, therefore, far from and that in consequence of a scheme formcd advising that we should recede from our stipu- long ago, and invariably pursued, these troops lations, whatever we may suffer in their fulfill. are hired only to drain this unhappy country of ment; or that we should neglect the support of its money. That they have hitherto been of 10 the Pragmatic Sanction, however we may be at use to Great Britain or to Austria, is evident present embarrassed, or however disadvanta- beyond a doubt; and therefore it is plain that geous may be its assertion.
they are retained only for the purposes of HanoBut surely, sir, for the same reason that we ver. observe our stipulations, we ought to excite other How much reason the transactions of almost powers also to observe their own; at the least, every year have given for suspecting this ab. sir, we ought not to assist in preventing them surd, ungrateful, and perfidious partiality, it is from doing so. But how is our present conduct not necessary to declare. I doubt not that most agreeable to these principles? The Pragmatic of those who sit in this House can recollect a Sanction was guaranteed, not only by the King great number of instances in point, from the of Great Britain, but by the Elector of Hanover purchase of part of the Swedish dominions, to also, who (if treaties constitute obligation) is the contract which we are now called upon to thereby equally obliged to defend the house of ratify. Few, I think, can have forgotten the Austria against the attacks of any foreign pow- memorable stipulation for the Hessian troops : er, and to send his proportion of troops for the for the forces of the Duke of Wolfenbuttle, which Qneen of Hungary's support.
we were scarcely to march beyond the verge Whether these troops have been sent, those of their own country : or the ever memorable whose province obliges them to possess some treaty, the tendency of which is discovered in knowledge of foreign affairs, are better able to the name. A treaty by which we disunited our. inform the House than myself. But, since we selves from Austria; destroyed that building have not heard them mentioned in this debate, | which we now endeavor, perhaps in vain, to raise and since we know by experience that none of again; and weakened the only power to which the merits of that Electorate are passed over in it was our interest to give strength. silence, it may, I think, be concluded that the To dwell on all the instances of partiality distresses of the Queen of Hungary have yet re- which have been shown, and the yearly visits ceived no alleviation from her alliance with which have been paid to that delightful country; Hanover; that her complaints have excited no to reckon up all the sums that have been spent to compassion at that court, and that the justice of aggrandize and enrich it, would be an irksome her cause has obtained no attention.
and invidious task-invidious to those who are To what can be attributed this negligence of afraid to be told the truth, and irksome to those treaties, this disregard of justice, this defect of who are unwilling to hear of the dishonor and compassion, bnt to the pernicious counse's of injuries of their country. I shall not dwell la
ther on this unpleasing subject than to express | Parliament pays no regard but to the interests my hope, that we shall no longer suffer ourselves of Great Britain. to be deceived and oppressed: that we shall at length perform our duty as representatives of The motion was carried by a considerable the people. and, by refusing to ratify this con- majority ; but Mr. Pitt's popularity was greatly trac“, show, that however the interests of Han- increased throughout the country by his resist over have been preferred by the ministers, the ance of this obnoxious measure.
SPEECH OP IORD CHATHAM ON A MOTION FOR AN ADDRESS OF THANKS AFTER THE BATTLI OF DET.
TINGEN, DELIVERED IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS, DECEMBER 1, 1743.
INTRODUCTION. The battle of Dettingen was the last in wbich any English monarch has appeared personally in the bekl. It was fought near a village of this name in Germany, on the banks of the Mayn, between Mayence and Frankfort, on the 27th of June, 1743. The allied army, consisting of about thirty-seven thousand En. glish and Hanoverian troops, was commanded, at the time of this engagement, by George II. Previous to his taking the command, it had been brought by mismanagement into a perilous condition, being hemned in between the River Mayn on the one side and a range of precipitous bills on the other, and there reduced to great extremities for want of provisions. The French, who occupied the opposite side of the Mayn in superior force, seized the opportunity, and threw a force of twenty-three thousand men across the river to cut off the advance of the allies through the defile of Dettingen, and shortly after sent twelve thousand more into their rear, to preclude the possibility of retreat. The position of the French in front was impregnable, and, if they had only retained it, the capture of the entire allied army would have been inevitable. But the eagerness of Grammont, who commanded the French in that quarter, drew him off from his vantage ground, and induced him to give battle to the allies on more equal terms. When the engagement commenced, George II., dismounting from his horse, put himself at the head of his infantry. and led his troops on foot to the charge. "The conduct of the King in this conflict," says Lord Mahon, "deserves the highest praise; and it was undoubtedly through him and through his son (the Duke of Camberlaod), far more than through any of his generals, that the day was won." The British and Hano Ferian infantry vied with each other under such guidance, and swept the French forces before them with un impetrosity which soon decided the battle, and produced a complete rout of the French army. The exhausted condition of the allies, however, and especially their want of provisions, rendered it impossible ée them to pursue the French, who left the field with the loss of six thousand men.
The King, on his return to England, opened the session of Parliament in person; and in reply to bis speech, an Address of Thanks was moved, “ acknowledging the goodness of Divine Providence to this nation in protecting your Majesty's sacred person amid imminent dangers, in defense of the common cause and liberties of Europe." In opposition to this address, Mr. Pitt made the following speech. In the former part of it, either from erroneous information or prejudice, he seems unwilling to do justice to the King's intrepidity on that occasion. Bat the main part of the speech is occupied with an examination,
I. or Sir Robert Walpole's policy (which was that of the King) in respect to the Queen of Hungary and the balance of power.
IL Of the conduct of the existing ministry (that of Lord Carteret) in relation to these subjects.
The speech will be interesting to those who have sufficient acquaintance with the history of the times to enter fully into the questions discussed. It is characterized by comprehensive views and profound rea. tion on the leading question of that day, the balance of power, and by a bigh sense of national honor. It has a cortingous line of argument running throughout it; and shows the error of those who imagine bat "Lord Chatham never reasoned.'
SPEECH, &c. From the proposition before the House, sir, ister (Walpole] betrayed the interests of his we may perceive, that whatever alteration has country by his pusillanimity; our present minbeen, or may be produced with respect to for- ister (Carteret) would sacrifice them by his eigo measures, by the late change in administra- Quixotism. Our former minister was for nego tion, we can expect none with regard to our do- tiating with all the world; our present minister mestic affairs. In foreign measures, indeed, a is for fighting against all the world. Our for. most extraordinary change has taken place. mer minister was for agreeing to every treaty, From one extreme, our admiristration have run though never so dishonorable; our present min.
the very verge of another. Our former min. I ister will give ear to none, though never so res
sonable. Thus, while both appear to be extrav- an insult to the sovereiga ? Suppose it should agant, this difference results from their opposite appear that our ministers have shown no regard conduct: that the wild system of the one must to the advice of Parliament; that they have ex. subject the nation to a much heavier expendi. erted their endeavors, not for the preservation as ture than was ever incurred by the pusillanimity the house of Austria, but to involve that house of the other
| in dangers which otherwise it might have avoid. The honciable gentleman who spoke last (Mr. ed, and which it is scarcely possible for ou now Yorke) was correct in saying, that in the begin to avert. Suppose it should appear that a body ning of the session we could know nothing, in a of Dutch troops, although they marched to the parliamentary way, of the measures that had Rhine, have never joined our army. Suppose it been pursued. I believe, sir, we shall know as should appear that the treaty with Sardinia is little, in that way, at the end of the session ; for not yet ratified by all the parties concerned, or our new minister, in this, as in every other step that it is one with whose terms it is impossible of his domestic conduct, will follow the example they should comply. If these things should apof his predecessor, and put a negative upon ev- pear on inquiry, would not the address proposed ery motion which may tend toward our acquir- be most ridiculously absurd ? Now, what as. ing any parliamentary knowledge of our late surance have we that all these facts will not lurr. proceedings. But if we possess no knowledge out as I have imagined ? of these proceedings, it is, surely, as strong an I. Upon the death of the late Emperor of Ger argument for our not approving, as it can be for many, it was the interest of this nation, I Walpole'r our not condemning them. Sir, were nothing grant, that the Queen of Hungary should poling: relating to our late measures proposed to be in be established in her father's dominions, and that serted in our address upon this occasion, those her husband, the Duke of Lorraine, should be measures would not have been noticed by me. chosen Emperor. This was our interest, be. But when an approbation is proposed, I am com.cause it would have been the best security for pelled to employ the knowledge I possess, wheth- the preservation of the balance of power; but er parliamentary or otherwise, in order that I we had no other interest, and it was one which may join or not in the vote of approbation. We had in common with all the powers of Eu What though my knowledge of our late meas. rope, excepting France. We were not, there ures were derived from foreign and domestic fore, to take upon us the sole support of this innewspapers alone, even of that knowledge Iterest. And, therefore, when the King of Prus. must avail mysell, when obliged to express my sia attacked Silesia—when the King of Spain, opinion; and when from that knowledge I ap. the King of Poland, and the Duke of Bavaria prehend them to be wrong, it is my duty, surely, laid claim to the late Emperor's succession, wo to withhold my approbation. I am bound to per- might have seen that the establishment of the sist in thus withholding it, till the minister bei Queen of Hungary in all her father's dominions pleased to furnish me with such parliamentary was impracticable, especially as the Dutch re. knowledge as may convince me that I have been fused to interfere, excepting by good offices misinformed. This would be my proper line of What, then, ought we to have done? Since we conduct when, from the knowledge I possess, could not preserve the whole, is it not evident instead of approving any late measures, I think that, in order to bring over some of the claim. it more reasonable to condemn them. But sup- ants to our side, we ought to have advised her posing, sir, from the knowledge within my reach, to yield up part? Upon this we ought to have that I consider those measures to be sound, even insisted, and the claimant whom first we should then I ought not to approve, unless such knowl. have considered was the King of Prussia, both edge can warrant approval. Now, as no sort because he was one of the most neutral, and one of knowledge but a parliamentary knowledge of the most powerful allies with whom we could can authorize a parliamentary approbation, for treat. For this reason it was certainly incum. this reason alone I ought to refuse it. If there- bent upon us to advise the Queen of Hungary to fore, that which is now proposed contain any accept the terms offered by the King of Prussia sort of approbation, my refusing to agree to it when he first invaded Silesia. Nay, not only contains no censure, but is a simple declaration should we have advised, we should have insisted that we possess not such knowledge of past upon this as the condition upon which we would measures as affords sufficient grounds for a par. assist her against the claims of others. To this liamentary approbation. A parliamentary ap- the court of Vienna must have assented ; and, in probation, sir, extends not only to all that our this case, whatever protestations the other claim. ministers have advised, but to the acknowledg. ants might have made, I am persuaded that the ment of the truth of several facts which inquiry Queen of Hungary would to this day have re. may show to be false ; of facts which, at least, have been asseried without authority and proof.
This, it is now known. was the course urged by Suppose, sir, it should appear that his Majesty
Walpole on the Queen of Hungary. He strongly
advised her to give up Silesia rather than involvn was exposed to sew or no dangers abroad, but
Europe in a general war. She replied that she those to which he is daily liable at home, such would sooner give up her under petticoat ;" and as the overturning of his coach, or the stumbling as this put an end to the argument, he could do noth mi bis horse, would not the address proposed, in- ing but give the aid which England had promised
ad of being a compliment, be an allront and / --See Coxe's Walpole iii.. :48.