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and the Emperor joined together, to have invaded of the cabinet to assist the house of Austria, in or made themselves masters of any of the Brit- conformity with the articles of that guarantee. ish dominions. But will it be said they might As to the guarantee of the Pragmatic Sancnot have invaded the King's dominions in Ger- tion, I am really surprised to find that measure many, in order to force him to a compliance with objected to. It was so universally approved of, what they desired of him as King of Great Brit- both within doors and without, that till this very ain? And if those dominions had been invaded day I think no fault was ever found with it, unon account of a quarrel with this nation, should less it was that of being too long delayed. If we not have been obliged, both in honor and in- it was so necessary for supporting the balance terest, to defend them? When we were thus of power in Europe, as has been insisted on in threatened, it was therefore absolutely necessary this debate, to preserve entire the dominions of for us to make an alliance with France; and the house of Austria, surely it was not our busithat we might not trust too much to their assist. ness to insist upon a partition of them in favor ance, it was likewise necessary to form allian- of any of the princes of the empire. But if we ces with the northern powers, and with some of had, could we have expected that the house of the princes in Germany, which we never did, Austria would have agreed to any such partition, nor ever could do, without granting them imme- even for the acquisition of our guarantee? The diate subsidies. These measures were, there- King of Prussia had, it is true, a claim upon fore, I still think, not only prudent, but necessa- some lordships in Silesia ; but that claim was ry; and by these measures we made it much absolutely denied by the court of Vienna, and more dangerous for the Emperor and Spain to was not at that time so much insisted on by the attack us, than it would otherwise have been. late King of Prussia. Nay, if he had lived till
But still, sir, though by these alliances we put this time, I believe it would not now have been ourselves upon an equal footing with our ene- insisted on; for he acceded to that guarantee mies in case of an attack, yet, in order to pre- without any reservation of that claim; therefore serve the tranquillity of Europe as well as our I must look upon this as an objection which has own, there was something else to be done. We since arisen from an accident that could not then knew that war could not be begun and carried be foreseen or provided against. on without money; we knew that the Emperor I must therefore think, sir, that our guarantee had no money for that parpose without receiving of the Pragmatic Sanction, or our manner of dolarge remittances from Spain; and we knew that ing it, can not now be objected to, nor any perSpain could make no such remittances without son censured by Parliament for advising that receiving large returns of treasure from the West measure. In regard to the refusal of the cabIndies. The only way, therefore, to render these inet to assist the house of Austria, though it was two powers incapable of disturbing the tranquil. prudent and right in us to enter into that guarlity of Europe, was by sending a squadron to the antee, we were not therefore obliged to enter West Indies to stop the return of the Spanish into every broil the house of Austria might aftergalleons; and this made it necessary, at the ward lead themselves into. And therefore, we sanie time, to send a squadron to the Mediter. were not in honor obliged to take any share in ranean for the security of our valuable posses- the war which the Emperor brought upon himsions in that part of the world. By these meas-self in the year 1733 ; nor were we in interest ures the Emperor saw the impossibility of at- obliged to take a share in that war as long as tacking us in any part of the world, because neither side attempted to push their conquests Spain could give him no assistance either in farther than was consistent with the balance of money or troops; and the attack made by the power in Europe, which was a case that did not Spaniards upon Gibraltar was so feeble, that we happen. For the power of the house of Aushad no occasion to call upon our allies for assist- tria was not diminished by the event of that war, ance. A small squadron of our own prevented because they got Tuscany, Parma, and Placentheir attacking it by sea, and from their attack tia in lieu of Naples and Sicily; nor was the by land we had nothing to fear. They might power of France much increased, because Lorhave knocked their brains out against inaccessible rocks to this very day, without bringing that
5 Charles VI., emperor of Germany, having no fortress into any danger.
male issue, made an instrument called a Pragmatic I do not pretend, sir, to be a great master of to devolve on his female descendants. To give this
Sanction, by which all his hereditary estates were foreign affairs. In that post in which I have the instrument greater force, he induced nearly all the honor to serve his Majesty, it is not my business powers of Europe (and England among the rest, for to interfere; and as one of his Majesty's council, reasons assigned by Walpole) to unite in a guar. I have but one voice. But if I had been the antee for carrying it into effect. But this, although sole adviser of the treaty of Hanover, and of all designed to secure Austria against a partition be. the measures which were taken in pursuance of tween various claimants, in case of his death, was it, from what I have said I hope it will appear other power to interfere in all the quarrels in which
certainly not intended to pledge England or any that I do not deserve to be censured either as a the Emperor might engage. When he became inweak or a wicked minister on that account.
volved in war with France, therefore, in 1733, by The next measures which incurred censure supporting Angustus for the vacant throne of Powere the guarantee of the Pragmatic Sanction land, against the remonstrances of Walpole, the latby the second treaty of Vienna, and the refusal | ter was under no obligation to afford him aid.
raine was a province she had taken and kept | English counsels ? And if to English counsels,
II. I now come, sir, to the second head, the
Strong and virulent censures have been cast times that sum before we could recover from on me for having commenced the war without a that danger, or repel that attack. single ally; and this deficiency has been ascrib- In all such cases there will be a variety of ed to the multifarious treaties in which I have opinions. I happened to be one of those who bewildered myself. But although the authors thought all these expenses necessary, and I had of this imputation are well apprised, that all the good fortune to have the majority of both these treaties have been submitted to and ap-houses of Parliament on my side. But this, it proved by Parliament, yet they are now brought seems, proceeded from bribery and corruption. forward as crimes, without appealing to the judg. Sir, if any one instance had been mentioned, if ment of Parliament, and without proving or de- it had been shown that I ever offered a reward claring that all or any of hem were advised by to any member of either House, or ever threatme. A supposed sole minister is to be condemn- ened to deprive any member of his office or emed and punished as the author of all; and what ployment, in order to influence his vote in Paradds to the enormity is, that an attempt was liament, there might have been some ground for made to convict him uncharged and unheard, this charge. But when it is so generally laid, without taking into consideration the most ar- I do not know what I can say to it
, unless it be duous crisis which ever occurred in the annals to deny it as generally and as positively as it has of Europe. Sweden corrupted by France ; Den
7 This “critical juncture" was occasioned by the mark tempted and wavering; the Landgrave of recent death of the Emperor Charles VI. Under the Hesse Cassel almost gained; the King of Prus- Pragmatic Sanction, his Austrian possessions fell to sia, the Emperor, and the Czarina, with whom his daughter. Maria Theresa, queen of Hungary; alliances had been negotiating, dead; the Aus- but were claimed in part by Spain, though chiefly trian dominions claimed by Spain and Bavaria ; by the Elector of Bavaria, supported by France. the Elector of Saxony hesitating whether he Frederick of Prussia, afterward called the Great, should accede to the general confederacy plan- between France and the Queen; but offered to sup
who had just succeeded bis father, was fluctuating ned by France; the court of Vienna irresolute port the latter if she would cede to bim Silesia. and indecisive. In this critical juncture, if France Walpole, who wished to defeat the plans of France, enters into engagements with Prussia, and if the advised her to yield to this demand, though unjust, Queen of Hungary hesitates and listens to France, and thus prevent a general war. Her ministers were are all or any of those events to be imputed to weak and irresolate, and the affairs of Europe were
in utter confusion. The proud spirit of the Queen 6 This is the only point on which Walpole is tame soon decided the question. She refused the surrenand weak. It is exactly the point where, if he had der of Silesia, was attacked by Frederick and the acted a manly part eighteen months before, bis de- French, and was on the brink of ruin; when she fense would have been most triumphant. He knew made, seven months after this speech was deliver there was no ground for a war with Spain; and he ed, her celebrated appeal for support to the Diet of ought to have held to the truth on that point, even Hungary, by which, in the words of Johnson, “The at the sacrifice of his office.
Queen, the Beauty, set the world in arms."
been asserted. And, thank God! till some proof less than £8,000,000 of our debt has been actbe offered, I have the laws of the land, as well ually discharged, by the due application of the as the laws of charity, in my favor.
sinking fund; and at least £7,000,000 has been Some members of both Houses have, it is true, taken from that fund, and applied to the ease of been removed from their employments under the the land tax. For if it had not been applied to Crown; but were they ever told, either by me, the current service, we must have supplied that or by any other of his Majesty's servants, that it service by increasing the land tax; and as the was for opposing the measures of the adminis- sinking fund was originally designed for paying tration in Parliament ? They were removed off our debts, and easing ns of our taxes, the apbecause his Majesty did not think fit to continue plication of it in ease of the land tax, was certhem longer in his service. His Majesty had a tainly as proper and necessary a use as could be right so to do; and I know no one that has a made. And I little thought that giving relief right to ask him, " What doest thou ?" If his to landed gentlemen, would have been brought Majesty bad a mind that the favors of the Crown against me as a crime. should circulate, would not this of itself be a III. I shall now advert to the third topic of good reason for removing any of his servants ? accusation : the conduct of the war. I have alWould not this reason be approved of by the ready stated in what manner, and under what whole nation, except those who happen to be circumstances, hostilities commenced ; and as I the present possessors ? I can not, therefore, am neither general nor admiral—as I have nothsee how this can be imputed as a crime, or how ing to do either with our navy or army-I am any of the King's ministers can be blamed for sure I am not answerable for the prosecution of his doing what the public has no concern in; for it. But were I to answer for every thing, no if the public be well and faithfully served, it has fault could, I think, be found with my conduct in no business to ask by whom.
the prosecution of the war. It has from the beAs to the particular charge urged against me, ginning been carried on with as much vigor, and I mean that of the army debentures, I am sur- as great care of our trade, as was consistent prised, sir, to hear any thing relating to this affair with our safety at home, and with the circumcharged upon me. Whatever blame may at- stances we were in at the beginning of the war. tach to this affair, it must be placed to the ac- If our attacks upon the enemy were too long decount of those that were in power when I was, layed, or if they have not been so vigorous or so as they call it, the country gentleman. It was frequent as they ought to have been, those only by them this affair was introduced and conduct are to blame who have for many years been haed, and I came in only to pay off those public ranguing against standing armies; for, without securities, which their management had reduced a sufficient number of regular troops in proporto a great discount ; and consequently to redeem tion to the numbers kept up by our neighbors, I our public credit from that reproach which they am sure we can neither defend ourselves nor had brought upon it. The discount at which offend our enemies. On the supposed miscarthese army debentures were negotiated, was a riages of the war, so unfairly stated, and so unstrong and prevalent reason with Parliament justly imputed to me, I could, with great ease, to apply the sinking fund first to the payment frame an incontrovertible defense. But as I of those debentures; but the sinking fund could have trespassed so long on the time of the House, not be applied to that purpose till it began to I shall not weaken the effect of that forcible exproduce something considerable, which was not culpation, so generously and disinterestedly adtill the year 1727. That the sinking fund was vanced by the right honorable gentleman who then to receive a great addition, was a fact pub- so meritoriously presides at the Admiralty, liely known in 1726; and if some people were If my whole administration is to be scrutinized sufficiently quick-sighted to foresee that the Par- and arraigned, why are the most favorable parts liament would probably make this use of it, and to be omitted? If facts are to be accumulated cunning enough to make the most of their own on one side, why not on the other? And why foresight, could I help it, or could they be blamed for doing so ? But I defy my most inveterate 9 Here Walpole dexterously avoids the main point enemy to prove that I had any hand in bringing of the difficulty. In 1717, it was provided by law these debentures to a discount, or that I had any be converted into what was called the Sinking
that all the surplus income of the government should share in the profits by buying them up.
Fund, which was to be used for paying off the pubIn reply to those who confidently assert that lic debt. This principle was strictly adhered to the national debt is not decreased since 1727, down to 1729, when more than a million of this fund and that the sinking fund has not been applied was used for corrent expenses, instead of laying to the discharge of the public burdens, I can taxes to meet them. The same thing was done in with truth declare, that a part of the debt has six other instances, under Walpole's administrabeen paid off; and the landed interest has been tion. Now it is true, as Walpole says, that by thus
applying the fund, he lessened the land tax. Still, very much eased with respect to that most unequal and grievous burden, the land tax. I say sign; and if the taxes had been uniformly laid for
it was a perversion of the fund from its original deso, sir, because apon examination it will appear, all current expenses, and the fund been faithfully that within these sixteen or seventeen years, no applied to its original purpose, the debt (small as it may not I be permitted to speak in my own fa- | to see those honors which their ancestors have vor? Was I not called by the voice of the King worn, restored again to the Commons. and the nation to remedy the fatal effects of the Have I given any symptoms of an avaricious South Sea project, and to support declining cred- disposition ? Have I obtained any grants from it? Was I not placed at the head of the treas- the Crown, since I have been placed at the head ury when the revenues were in the greatest con- of the treasury? Has my conduct been differfusion? Is credit revived, and does it now flour- ent from that which others in the same station ish? Is it not at an incredible height, and if so, would have followed ? Have I acted wrong in to whom must that circumstance be attributed ? giving the place of auditor to my son, and in Has not tranquillity been preserved both at providing for my own family? I trust that their home and abroad, notwithstanding a most un advancement will not be imputed to me as a reasonable and violent opposition? Has the true crime, unless it shall be proved that I placed interest of the nation been pursued, or has trade them in offices of trust and responsibility for flourished? Have gentlemen produced one in which they were unfit. stance of this exorbitant power; of the influence But while I unequivocally deny that I am sole which I extend to all parts of the nation; of the and prime minister, and that to my influence and lyranny with which I oppress those who oppose, direction all the measures of the government and the liberality with which I reward those must be attributed, yet I will not shrink from who support me? But having first invested me the responsibility which attaches to the post 'I with a kind of mock dignity, and styled me a have the honor to hold; and should, during the prime minister, they impute to me an unpardon-long period in which I have sat upon this bench, able abuse of that chimerical authority which any one step taken by government be proved to they only have created and conferred. If they be either disgraceful or disadvantageous to the are really persuaded that the army is annually nation, I am ready to hold myself accountable. established by me, that I have the sole disposal To conclude, sir, though I shall always be of posts and honors, that I employ this power in proud of the honor of any trust or confidence the destruction of liberty and the diminution of from his Majesty, yet I shall always be ready to commerce, let me awaken them from their de- remove from his councils and presence when he lusion. Let me expose to their view the real thinks fit; and therefore I should think myself condition of the public weal. Let me show them very little concerned in the event of the present that the Crown has made no encroachments, that question, if it were not for the encroachment that all supplies have been granted by Parliament, will thereby be made upon the prerogatives of that all questions have been debated with the the Crown. But I must think that an address to same freedom as before the fatal period in which his Majesty to remove one of his servants, withmy counsels are said to have gained the ascend-out so much as alleging any particular crime ency; an ascendency from which they deduce against him, is one of the greatest encroachments the loss of trade, the approach of slavery, the that was ever made upon the prerogatives of the preponderance of prerogative, and the extension Crown. And therefore, for the sake of my mas. of influence. But I am far from believing that ter, without any regard for my own, I hope all they feel those apprehensions which they so earn- those that have a due regard for our constitution, estly labor to communicate to others; and I and for the rights and prerogatives of the Crown, have too high an opinion of their sagacity not to without which our constitution can not be preconclude that, even in their own judgment, they served, will be against this motion. are complaining of grievances that they do not suffer, and promoting rather their private inter- This speech had a great effect. The motion est than that of the public.
then was) might perhaps have wholly been extin. $ One who held himself bound to neither party.
for an address was negatived by a large majority. What is this unbounded sole power which is But the advantage thus gained was only temimputed to me? How has it discovered itself, porary. A spirit of disaffection had spread or how has it been proved ?
throughout the kingdom; and the next elecWhat have been the effects of the corruption, tions, which took place a few months after, ambition, and avarice with which I am so abund- showed that the power and influence of Walpole antly charged ?
were on the decline. Still he clung to office Have I ever been suspected of being corrupt- with a more desperate grasp than ever. He ed? A strange phenomenon, a corrupter him- used some of the most extraordinary expedients self not corrupt! Is ambition imputed to me? ever adopted by a minister, to divide the Oppo. Why then do I still continue a commoner ? I, sition and retain his power. He even opened a who refused a white stats and a peerage. I had, negotiation with the Pretender at Rome, to ob. indeed, like to have forgotten the little ornament tain the support of the Jacobites. But his ef. about my shoulders (the garter), which gentle- forts were in vain. He lost his majority in the men have so repeatedly mentioned in terms of House; he was compelled to inform the King sarcastic obloquy. But surely, though this may that he could no longer administer the governbe regarded with envy or indignation in another ment; he was created Earl of Orford with a place, it can not be supposed to raise any resent- pension of £4000 a year, and resigned all his ment in this House, where many may be pleased offices on the 11th of February, 1742.
WILLIAM PULTENEY, first Earl of Bath, was born in 1682. He was elected a member of Parliament in early life, and applied himself to the diligent study of the temper of the House, and the best mode of speaking in so mixed and discordant an assembly. He made no attempts to dazzle by any elaborate display of eloquence; for it was his maxim, that “there are few real orators who commence with set speeches." His powers were slowly developed. He took part in almost every important debate, more (at first) for his own improvement than with any expectation of materially changing the vote. He thus gradually rose into one of the most dexterous and effective speakers of the British Senate.
His speeches, unfortunately, have been worse reported, in respect to the peculiar characteristics of his eloquence, than those of any of his contemporaries. The following one, however, though shorter than might be wished, is undoubtedly a fair specimen of the bold, direct, and confident, though not overbearing manner, in which he ordinarily addressed himself to the judgment and feelings of the House. The language is uncommonly easy, pointed, and vigorous. The sentences flow lightly off in a clear and varied sequence, without the slightest appearance of stateliness or mannerism. It is the exact style for that conversational mode of discussion which is best adapted to the purposes of debate.
Walpole, when displaced by the exertions of Pulteney in 1742, had the satisfaction of dragging down his adversary along with him. He saw that the Opposition must go to pieces the moment they were left to themselves; that a new administration could never be framed out of such discordant materials; and that whoever should undertake it would be ruined in the attempt. He therefore induced the King to lay that duty upon Pulteney. The result was just what he expected. The King insisted on retaining a large proportion of Walpole's friends. Comparatively few offices re. mained for others, and both Whigs and Tories were disappointed and enraged. Pulteney shrunk from taking office himself, under these circumstances. He professed great disinterestedness; he had no desire for power; he would merely accept a peerage, which all parties regarded as the reward of his perfidy. He was created Earl of Bath; and the name of Patriot, as Horace Walpole tells us, became a term of derision and contempt throughout all the kingdom. When the newly-created earls met for the first time in the House of Lords, Walpole walked up to Pulteney, and said to him, with a mixture of pleasantry and bitterness, for which he was always distinguished, “ Here we are, my Lord, the two most insignificant fellows in England.” Pulteney died on the 8th of June, 1764.
OF MR. PULTENEY ON A MOTION FOR REDUCING THE ARMY, DELIVERED IN THE HOUSE OF
SIB,_We have heard a great deal about Par- tion. A standing army is still a standing army, liamentary armies, and about an army continued whatever name it be called by. They are a body from year to year. I have always been, sir, and of men distinct from the body of the people; they always shall be, against a standing army of any are governed by different laws; and blind obekind. To me it is a terrible thing, whether un-dience, and an entire submission to the orders of der that of Parliamentary or any other designa- | their commanding officer, is their only principle.