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diseases, in order to soften and diminish the physical ills which beset humanity.
In the new system, general philanthropy is not pursued to the disregard of patriotism, but they are represented as per. fectly consistent; the apostle of this new order of things, however, confines the most voluminous of his works to the care of Great Britain alone. The substance of his adnice to his countrymon, as here disclosed, is to have faith in his plan of general welfare ; to trust alone to this, and not to ministers, nor to any man or set of men: since, according to him, the several successions of ministers which we have witnessed, by pursuing the maxims of former times, by following precedents, by moving in the routine of office, by engaging in wars, and by imposing intolerable burthens, have brought on the declension of liberty and a vast accumulation of misery. We are told that we are in the sure road to destruction, and ad. vancing in the course with accelerated velocity : but, if we are bent on the salvation of the empire, we must have recourse to men who, by the art of practical improvement,' will intro. duce the new and perfect dispensation developed and proclaimed by Dr. Edwards.
Bulky as this pamphlet is, it only announces and panegyrizes the labours of the apostle of the new gospel. Within the same compass, the marrow of the system might have been given ; and it certaivly would have been more gratisying than Jamentations over ills which all admit, and invectives against abuses which none can deny, accompanied by endless repetitions of assurances that, in certain works, eshcacious remedies are pointed out, and extravagant praises of those remedies. In this way, the greater part of the tract is occupied. The writer appears as if he were afraid to make too free with the wonder. ful treatises to which he refers us, and to disclose too much of the systems which they teach. in the visions of reformers, however, and the schemes of projectors, the wise and the judicious often discover ideas by which they may profits and we are of opinion that, on this ground, the lucubrations before us may not disadvantageously' occupy a few hours of the icisure of sober men.
Art. XI. The Dangers of the Country. By the Author of War
in Disguise *. Evo. Pp. 227. 5s. Butterworth. 1807. This author is master of an eloquent pen, writes in an
excellent temper and from the most pure motives, and
* See Rev. Vol. xlvii. N. S. p. 417.
is possessed of various and important information. Of the present pamphlet, however, the first part is not, we think, composed in his happiest manner; it has not his usual animation, it dwells too much on suppositions which are revolting, and it displays a sang froid in treating of them for which we are at a loss to account. We would not be understood to dispute the important nature of the considerations which, even in this division of his tract, he submits to the government and people of this country: they doubtless well merit their attention : but we object to the mode in which they are conveyed. These pages exhibit the picture of Great Britain as a province of France. If it were allowable to sketch such a painting, only the outlices and leading features ought to have been given, and all that was minute and particular should have been excluded. Let us collect together all the horrors which have attended the subjugation of countries in past times ; and we may rest assured that they will be realized, if ever Great Brio tain be subdued by its present relentless and implacable enemy. The gigantic evil should have been alone held up to view: the minor mischiefs serve to weaken and not to heighten the effect.“ While, however, we thus state our own feelings, on perusing this part of the author's labours, let it not be thought that we are wanting in respect to the patriotic views and upright in: tentions, which so honourably distinguish the performances of this gentleman.
Friends to peace, we own that we lend an unwilling ear to those who press on us che unwelcome proposition, that it is in present circumstances more to be deprecated than desired. Yet, when we find a writer of the grave and serious turn, and of the respectable character, which belong to this author, inculcaring so afflicting a sentimens, we cannot decline to give it our most anxious attention; and if we have not in this instance been convinced, we have been so far impressed as to deem it a duty to lay before our readers a few of the leading passages which relate to this subject. - In entering on this topic, he expresses himself in the following modest and becoming terms :
* To censure a great political measure of the presert able and enlightened cabinet, is perhaps presumptuous in a private individual; and is a work which I perform with regret. I am conscious that the awful considerations which may weigh in the choice between a pacific or warlike system, cannot be perfectly known to the public at large; and the distinguished talenis now united in the ministry, certainly challenge the strongest general confidence in the wisdom of our counsels. Ye: I dare not suppress at this awful con, juncture, a very sincere, though perhaps erroneous opirion, that ; peace with France, if accomplished by the late negociations, would have been fatal to the security of the Country.'
• The true objections to the measure then, as well as at the present more a ful crisis, apply to the unavoidable nature and effects of any treaty that could be proposed ; not to its particular terms ; yet we heard of “ a good peace,” and “an bonourable peace,” as proper to be treated for with France. For
my part, if the possibility of a safe Peace can he shewn, I will heartily admit, be its articles what they may, that it is good for my country in these evil times; and not diihonourable to fier, but glorious to those who may make it. But while 10 such peace is to be boped for, I would not treat ; because I would not lead the people of England into the dangerous error of supposing, that peace with France. in her present attitude, is compatible with their safety ; nor would I lead the people of Europe, and America, to believe that England is of that opinion.'
The writer thinks that Bonaparte will again offer us the niti possidetis, but with this he is not contented; and nothing short of the status quo ante bellum for ourselves and our allies will satisfy him.
• But this, (says he) it may be cxclaimed, it would be preposterous to expect at present from France. I admit it; and therefore it would be preposterous to expect at present a peace safe for Great Britain. Theimpossibility consists in this, that France will not relinquish her new possessions on the continent; and that therefore Great Britain canciot safely relinquish her undivided possession of the sea. We cannot do 80, not only because we should, by opening the sea to our enemy, enable him soon to become a formidable maritime power, but because his usurped Empire on shore would become far more terrible and ir. resistible than it is, were its commercial communications restored. We dare not give him back his navigation, and let him keep all his new territory too.
• These principles, in any day but the present, would have needed no demonstration If we can safely make peace with France in her present most alarming attitude, we have been fighting since 1799, and even in all our wars since the treaty of Ryswick, not only without necessity, but upon the most irrational and extravagant viests that ever governed the policy of a nation.'
Granting the premises, this reasoning is forcible : but the ineligibility of a peace on any other terms than those of the statius quo ante belluon must first be proved; and who can point out a period at which such extreme terms are likely to be obtained ? The consequence, then, must be perniament war.
In the following passage, the author suggests an idea which, it is exceedingly to be regretted, was not sufficiently considered before it was too late :
• There was a time perhaps, when it might have been more prudent to open the sea to France, leaving her in a state of great con. tinental aggrandizement, than to risque her pushing her conquests any
still further, if that could have been prevented by any pacific con. ventions that we had power to make, for ourselves and our allies ; but if there was ever a proper season for such policy, it plainly exists no longer; and this, not only because our enemy has shewn that no confidence can be placed in any treaty which opposes his thirst of universal empire ; but because it may now fairly be doubted, whether further increase of his dominions would really add to his power,
The writer next expresses a sentiment that has been before advanced, but on which we cannot too frequently reflect :
• For my own part, however singular the opinion may seem, I should have less apprehension of danger from the arms of Napoleon, if the remaining territories of Prussia, and Austria, and even the immense domains of Russia, and Turkey, were added to his conquests, than I feel at the present moment. At sea, the acquisition of every bottom still friendly to this country, would not now enable him to cope with us; and on shore, he has power enough already for our destruction, when it can be brought into action against us. The momentum of the vast machine, on its present scale, is more than we can hope finally to resist : but every enlargement of its dimensions, and multiplication of its intricate movements, increases its tendencies to interior derangement ; and therefore, without adding to our im. mediate peril, improves our chance of escape. Buonaparte has hitherto been so astonishingly prudent, or fortunate, that we naturally begin to doubt whether there be any thing too difficult for him to accomplish; but his power is already composed of so many discordant elements, that their cohesion is truly wonderful: and as he proceeds, he is gaming at double or quits. Even the large armies, which he kas to station in so many conquered countries will soon be very diffi. cult to govern : they, or their generals, will probably recollect, that the Roman legions bestowed the purple, as well as kept the provinces in subjection; and revolutions in this extraordinary age move with a celerity of which history has no example.'
It is the opinion of this author that, if peace be made, hostility will still be continued by the enemy against our commerce :
"It is impossible, (he observes,) when we consider Napoleon's maxima of commercial policy, to doubt that he will avail himself, as soon as the sea is open, of all his enormous power and influence, to exclude us by means of treaties, and of municipal laws, not only from France, but from every other country in Europe, to the Government of which he can dictate. With a sincerity unusual to him, he has already pretty plainly intimated that such will be his pacific system, by protesting, in limine, when he began to negociate, against every stipulation in fa. vour of our commerce. He would have no commercial treaties with us whatever.
• And here I must own myself quite at a loss to comprehend the views of those, who regard the interests of our commerce and manu. factures, as considerations on the side of peace. That such is not the Rey. MARCH, 1807.
opinion of our merchants in general, is well known; and yet they judge perhaps only from the necessary effects of a free peace competition against them, under the present great disadvantages of the country without taking into the account the unfair preferences and exclusions, to be systematically opposed to them in foreign countries.
• Who that attentively considers the spirit of Napoleon's late decree against our commerce, can be insensible to the danger of his acting on the same principle in time of peace ? He might then perhaps find means to carry into effect, what he now impotently threat. ens. The necessities of his subjects, and of the subjects of his allics and dependents, will secure to us their custom during war, in spite of his prohibitions ; for it cannot be supposed that our Government will omit to employ the obvious means of counteracting them. I hope rather that we shall embrace the fair opportuuity which it affords of asserting more firmly our maritime rights, and thereby giving new vigour to British commerce. But when we shall have no longer the power of opposing to regulations on shore, the pressure of our hos. tilities by sea; when the ships of France, Spain, Holland, Genoa, and Venice, and all the other maritime Countries now hostile to us, shall be able to navigate without interruption, on every voyage, and with every species of merchandize; the same interdict on our trade, in the inoffensive form of municipal laws, may produce the desired effect, and gradually exclude us from almust all the ports of Europe.
• Commerce, it is true, will force its way in spite of prohibitions, where the demand and the profits sufficiently excite the enterprise of the merchant; but it is difficult to believe that the manufactures and trade of this country, under the extreme pressure of our publie burthens, will long retain inherent energy enough in the comparative cheapaess and skill with which they are conducted, to supplant other maritime nations, in their own, or neighbouring markets; and if by a hostile system which we cannot retaliate, they shall be further en. cumbered with all the disadvantages and risques of a contraband carriage, while our rivals can trade - safely, and with every encouragement that commercial laws can afford, I see not how we can hope long to maintain the unequal contest. In this view the comparison between peace and war is plain and simple. Napoleon is fully resolv. ed to deprive us of the commerce of the continent; but in war he has the inclination without the power; in peace he will have both. He holds the continental gates of the market ; but in war we command all the roads that lead to it, and can therefore starve him into the admission of our trade :- in peace, the roads will be free to him, and he will still command the gates.'
We allow some force to an observation made by this author, which is founded on the ruling passion of Bonaparte ; his personal feelings,' he states, still more than his interest or his policy render his adherence to a pacific system utterly hopeless. Neither the example of the administration which treated at Amiens, nor that of the present cabinet and Mr. Fox, would afford any sanction for a new experiment on the good faith and moderation of France, after the battle of Auerstadt