assuring her they would, to the utmost of their power, assist her in bringing the treaty of union to a happy conclusion. They desired that the proceedings of the last session of parliament, relating to the union and succession, might be laid before the house. The lords had solicited the same satisfaction; and her majesty promised to comply with their request. The lower house having heard and decided in some cases of controverted elections, proceeded to take into consideration the estimates for the service of the ensuing year, and granted the supplies without hesitation. In the house of lords, while the queen was present, lord Haversham, at the end of a long speech, in which he reflected upon the conduct of the duke of Marlborough, both on the Moselle and in Brabant, moved for an address to desire her majesty would invite the presumptive heir to the crown of England to come and reside in the kingdom. This motion was earnestly supported by the duke of Buckingham, the earls of Rochester, Nottingham, and Anglesea. They said there was no method so effectual to secure the succession as that of the successor's being upon the spot, ready to assume and maintain his or her right against any pretender; and they observed, that in former times, when the throne of England was vacant, the first comer had always succeeded in his pretensions. The proposal was vehemently opposed by the whigs, who knew it was disagreeable to the queen, whom they would not venture to disoblige. They argued, that a rivalry between the two courts might produce distractions, and be attended with very ill consequences; and observed, that the princess Sophia had expressed a full satisfaction in the assurances of the queen, who had promised to maintain her title. The question being put, was carried in the negative by a great majority. The design of the tories in making this motion, was to bring the other party into disgrace either with the queen or with the people. Their joining in the measure would have given umbrage to their sovereign; and, by opposing it, they ran the risk of incurring the public odium as enemies to the protestant succession: but the pretence of the tories was so thin, the nation saw through it; and the sole effect the motion produced was the queen's resentment against the whole party. Burnet, bishop of Sarum, proposed, that provision might be made for maintaining the public quiet in the interval between the queen's decease and the arrival of her successor; the motion was seconded by the lord-treasurer, and a bill brought in for the better security of her majesty's person and government, and of the succession to the crown of England. By this act a regency was appointed, of the seven persons that should possess the offices of archbishop of Canterbury, lord-chancellor, or lord-keeper, lord-treasurer, lord-president, lord privy-seal, lord high-admiral, and the lord chief-justice of the queen's bench. Their business was to proclaim the next successor through the kingdom of England, and join with a certain number of persons named as regents by the successor, in three lists to be sealed up and deposited with the archbishop of Canterbury, the lord-keeper, and the ministry residentiary of Hanover. It was enacted, that these joint regencies should conduct the administration; that the last parliament, even though dissolved, should reassemble, and continue sitting for six months after the decease of her majesty. The bill met with a warm opposition from the tories, and did not pass the upper house without a protest. It was still further obstructed in the house of commons even by some of the whig party, who were given to understand that the princess Sophia had expressed an inclination to reside in England. Exceptions were likewise taken to that clause in the bill, enacting, that the last parliament should be reassembled. They affirmed, that this was inconsistent with part of the act by which the succession was at first settled; for among other limitations, the parliament had provided, that when the crown should devolve to the house of Hanover, no man who had either place or pension should be capable of sitting in the house of commons. After tedious disputes and zealous altercations, they agreed that a certain number of offices should be specified as disqualifying places. This self-denying clause, and some other amendments, produced conferences between the two houses, and at length the bill passed by their mutual assent. Lord Haversham moved for an inquiry into the miscarriages of the last campaign, hoping to find some foundation for censure in the conduct of the duke of Marlborough; but the proposal was rejected as invidious; and the two houses presented an address to the queen, desiring she would preserve a good correspondence among all the confederates. They likewise concurred in repealing the act by which the Scots had been alienated, and all the northern counties alarmed with the apprehension of a rupture between the two nations. The lord Shannon and brigadier Stanhope arriving with an account of the expedition to Catalonia, the queen communicated the good news in a speech to both houses, expressing her hope that they would enable her to prosecute the advantages which her arms had acquired. The commons were so well pleased with the tidings, that they forthwith granted two hundred and fifty thousand pounds for her majesty's proportion in the expense of prosecuting the successes already gained by king Charles III. for the recovery of the monarchy of Spain to the house of Austria. On the fifteenth day of November, the queen gave the royal assent to an act for exhibiting a bill to naturalize the princess Sophia, and the issue of her body.
These measures being taken, the sixth day of December was appointed for inquiring into those dangers to which the tories affirmed the church was exposed; and the queen attended in person, to hear the debates on this interesting subject. The earl of Eochester compared the expressions in the queen's speech at the beginning of the session, to the law enacted in the reign of Charles II. denouncing the penalties of treason against those who should call the king a papist; for which reason, he said, he always thought him of that persuasion. He affirmed that the church's danger arose from the act of security in Scotland, the absence of the successor to the crown, and the practice of occasional conformity. He was answered by lord Halifax, who, by way of recrimination, observed that king Charles II. was a Roman-catholic, at least his brother declared him a papist after his death; that his brother and successor was a known Roman-catholic, yet the church thought herself secure; and those patriots who stood up in its defence were discountenanced and punished: nay, when the successor ascended the throne, and the church was apparently in the most imminent danger by the high commission court and otherwise, the nation was then indeed generally alarmed; and every body knew who sat in that court, and entered deeply into the measures which were then pursued. Compton, bishop of London, declared that the church was in danger, from profaneness, irreligion, and the licentiousness of the press. He complained, that sermons were preached wherein rebellion was countenanced, and resistance to the higher powers encouraged. He alluded to a sermon preached before the lord mayor by Mr. Hoadly, now bishop of Winchester. Burnet of Sarum said, the bishop of London was the last man who ought to complain of that sermon; for if the doctrine it contained was not good, he did not know what defence his lordship could make for his appearing in arms at Nottingham. He affirmed the church would be always subject to profaneness and irreligion, but that they were not now so flagrant as they usually had been; he said the society set up for reformation in London and other cities, had contributed considerably to the suppression of vice; he was sure the corporation for propagating the gospel had done a great deal towards instructing men in religion, by giving great numbers of books in practical divinity; by erecting libraries in country parishes; by sending many able divines to the foreign plantations, and founding schools to breed up children in the christian knowledge; though to this expense very little had been contributed by those who appeared so wonderfully zealous for the church. The archbishop of York expressed his apprehension of danger from the increase of dissenters, particularly from the many academies they had instituted; he moved, that the judges might be consulted with respect to the laws that were in force against such seminaries, and by what means they might be suppressed. Lord Wharton moved, that the judges might also be consulted about means of suppressing schools and seminaries held by non-jurors, in one of which the sons of a noble lord in that house had been educated. To this sarcasm the archbishop replied, that his sons were indeed taught by Mr. Ellis, a sober virtuous man; but that when he refused the oath of abjuration, they were immediately withdrawn from his instructions. Lord Wharton proceeded to declare, that he had carefully perused a pamphlet entitled "The Memorial," which was said to contain a demonstration that the church was in danger; but all he could learn was, that the duke of Buckingham, the earls of Rochester and Nottingham, were out of place; that he remembered some of these noblemen sat in the high commission court, and then made no complaint of the church's being in danger. Patrick, bishop of Ely, complained of the heat and passion manifested by the gentlemen belonging to the universities, and of the undutiful behaviour of the clergy towards their bishops. He was seconded by Hough of Litchfield and Coventry, who added, that the inferior clergy calumniated their bishops, as if they were in a plot to destroy the church, and had compounded to be the last of their order. Hooper of Bath and Wells, expatiated on the invidious distinction implied in the terms "high church," and "low church." The duke of Leeds asserted, that the church could not be safe without an act against occasional conformity. Lord Somers recapitulated all the arguments which had been used on both sides of the question: he declared his own opinion was, that the nation was happy under a wise and just administration; that for men to raise groundless jealousies at that juncture, could mean no less than an intention to embroil the people at home, and defeat the glorious designs of the allies abroad. The debate being finished, the question was put, Whether the church of England was in danger? and carried in the negative by a great majority: then the house resolved, that the church of England, as by law established, which was rescued from the extremest danger by king William III. of glorious memory, is now, by God's blessings under the happy reign of her majesty, in a most safe and nourishing condition; and that whoever goes about to suggest or insinuate that the church is in danger, under her majesty's administration, is an enemy to the queen, the church, and the kingdom. Next day the commons concurred in this determination, and joined the lords in an address to the queen, communicating this resolution, beseeching her to take effectual measures for making it public, and also for punishing the authors and spreaders of the seditious and scandalous reports of the church's being in danger. She accordingly issued a proclamation containing the resolution of the two houses, and offering a reward for discovering the author of the memorial of the church of England, and for apprehending David Edwards, a professed papist, charged upon oath to be the printer and publisher of that libel.
THE PARLIAMENT PROROGUED.
After a short adjournment, a committee of the lower house presented the thanks of the commons to the duke of Marlborough, for his great services performed to her majesty and the nation in the last campaign, and for his prudent negotiations with her allies. This nobleman was in such credit with the people, that when he proposed a loan of five hundred thousand pounds to the emperor, upon a branch of his revenue in. Silesia, the money was advanced immediately by the merchants of London. The kingdom was blessed with plenty; the queen was universally beloved; the people in general were zealous for the prosecution of the war; the forces were well paid; the treasury was punctual; and, though a great quantity of coin was exported for the maintenance of the war, the paper currency supplied the deficiency so well, that no murmurs were heard, and the public credit flourished both at home and abroad. All the funds being established, one in particular for two millions and a-half by way of annuities for ninety-nine years, at six and a-half per cent., and all the bills having received the royal assent, the queen went to the house of peers on the nineteenth day of March, where, having thanked both houses for the repeated instances of their affection which she had received, she prorogued the parliament to the twenty-first day of May following.*
* Among other bills passed during this session, was an act for abridging and reforming some proceedings in the common law and in chancery.
The new convocation, instead of imitating the union and harmony of the parliament, revived the divisions by which the former had been distracted, and the two houses seemed to act with more determined rancour against each other. The upper house having drawn tip a warm address of thanks to the queen for her affectionate care of the church, the lower house refused to concur, nor would they give any reason for their dissent. They prepared another in a different strain, which was rejected by the archbishop. Then they agreed to divers resolutions, asserting their right of having what they offered to the upper house received by his grace and their lordships. In consequence of this dissension the address was dropped, and a stop put to all further communication between the two houses. The dean of Peterborough protested against the irregularities of the lower house. The queen, in a letter to the archbishop, signified her resolution to maintain her supremacy, and the due subordination of presbyters to bishops. She expressed her hope that he and his suffragans would act conformably to her resolution, in which case they might be assured of the continuance of her favour and protection: she required him to impart this declaration to the bishops and clergy, and to prorogue the convocation to such time as should appear most convenient. When he communicated this letter to the lower house, the members were not a little confounded: nevertheless, they would not comply with the prorogation, but continued to sit in defiance of her majesty's pleasure.
CONFERENCES OPENED FOR A TREATY OF UNION WITH SCOTLAND.
The eyes of Great Britain were now turned upon a transaction of the utmost consequence to the whole island; namely, the treaty for an union of the two kingdoms of England and Scotland. The queen having appointed the commissioners  [See note 2 A, at the end of this Vol.] on both sides, they met on the sixteenth day of April, in the council chamber of the Cockpit near Whitehall, which was the place appointed for the conferences. Their commissions being opened and read by the respective secretaries, and introductory speeches being pronounced by the lord-keeper of England, and the lord chancellor of Scotland, they agreed to certain preliminary articles, importing, that all the proposals should be made in writing; and every point, when agreed, reduced to writing; that no points should be obligatory, till all matters should be adjusted in such a manner as would be proper to be laid before the queen and the two parliaments for their approbation; that a committee should be appointed from each commission, to revise the minutes of what might pass, before they should be inserted in the books by the respective secretaries; and that all the proceedings during the treaty should be kept secret. The Scots were inclined to a federal union, like that of the United Provinces; but the English were bent upon an incorporation, so that no Scottish parliament should ever have power to repeal the articles of the treaty. The lord-keeper proposed that the two kingdoms of England and Scotland should be for ever united into one realm, by the name of Great Britain: that it should be represented by one and the same parliament; and that the succession of this monarchy, failing of heirs of her majesty's body, should be according to the limitations mentioned in the act of parliament passed in the reign of king William, intituled, an act for the further limitation of the crown, and the better securing the rights and liberties of the subject. The Scottish commissioners, in order to comply in some measure with the popular clamour of their nation, presented a proposal implying that the succession to the crown of Scotland should be established upon the same persons mentioned in the act of king William's reign; that the subjects of Scotland should for ever enjoy all the rights and privileges of the natives in England, and the dominions thereunto belonging; and that the subjects of England should enjoy the like rights and privileges in Scotland; that there should be a free communication and intercourse of trade and navigation between the two kingdoms, and plantations thereunto belonging; and that all laws and statutes in either kingdom, contrary to the terms of this union, should be repealed. The English commissioners declined entering into any considerations upon these proposals, declaring themselves fully convinced that nothing but an entire union could settle a perfect and lasting friendship between the two kingdoms. The Scots acquiesced in this reply, and both sides proceeded in the treaty without any other intervening dispute. They were twice visited by the queen, who exhorted them to accelerate the articles of a treaty that would prove so advantageous to both kingdoms. At length they were finished, arranged, and mutually signed, on the twenty-second of July, and next day presented to her majesty, at the palace of St. James's, by the lord-keeper, in the name of the English commissioners; at the same time a sealed copy of the instrument was likewise delivered by the lord chancellor of Scotland; and each made a short oration on the subject, to which the queen returned a very gracious reply. That same day she dictated an order of council, that whoever should be concerned in any discourse or libel, or in laying wagers relating to the union, should be prosecuted with the utmost rigour of the law.
SUBSTANCE OF THE TREATY.
In this famous treaty it was stipulated, that the succession to the united kingdom of Great Britain should be vested in the princess Sophia, and her heirs, according to the acts already passed in the parliament of England: that the united kingdoms should be represented by one and the same parliament: that all the subjects of Great Britain should enjoy a communication of privileges and advantages: that they should have the same allowances, encouragements, and drawbacks; and be under the same prohibitions, restrictions, and regulations, with respect to commerce and customs: that Scotland should not be charged with the temporary duties on some certain commodities: that the sum of three hundred and ninety-eight thousand and eighty-five pounds ten shillings, should be granted to the Scots, as an equivalent for such parts of the customs and excise charged upon that kingdom in consequence of the union, as would be applicable to the payment of the debts of England, according to the proportion which the customs and excise of Scotland bore co those of England: that, as the revenues of Scotland might increase, a further equivalent should be allowed for such proportion of the said increase as should be applicable to the payment of the debts of England: that the sura to be paid at present, as well as the monies arising from the future equivalents, should be employed in reducing the coin of Scotland to the standard and value of the English coin; in paying off the capital stock and interest due to the proprietors of the African company, which should be immediately dissolved; in discharging all the public debts of the kingdom of Scotland; in promoting and encouraging manufactures and fisheries, under the direction of commissioners to be appointed by her majesty, and accountable to the parliament of Great Britain: that the laws concerning public right, policy, and civil government, should be the same throughout the whole united kingdom; but that no alteration should be made in laws which concerned private right, except for evident utility of the subjects within Scotland: that the court of session and all other courts of judicature in Scotland, should remain as then constituted by the laws of that kingdom, with the same authority and privileges as before the union; subject, nevertheless, to such regulations as should be made by the parliament of Great Britain: that all heritable offices, superiorities, heritable jurisdictions, offices for life, and jurisdictions for life, should be reserved to the owners, as rights and property, in the same manner as then enjoyed by the laws of Scotland: that the rights and privileges of the royal boroughs in Scotland should remain entire after the union: that Scotland should be represented in the parliament of Great Britain by sixteen peers and forty-five commoners, to be elected in such a manner as should be settled by the present parliament of Scotland: that all peers of Scotland, and the successors to their honours and dignities, should, from and after the union, be peers of Great Britain, and should have rank and precedency next and immediately after the English peers of the like orders and degrees, at the time of the union; and before all peers of Great Britain of the like orders and degrees, who might be created after the union: that they should be tried as peers of Great Britain, and enjoy all privileges of peers, as fully as enjoyed by the peers of England, except the right and privilege of sitting in the house of lords, and the privileges depending thereon, and particularly the right of sitting upon the trials of peers: that the crown, sceptre, and sword of state, the records of parliament, and all other records, rolls, and registers whatsoever, should still remain as they were, within that part of the united kingdom called Scotland: that all laws and statutes in either kingdom, so far as they might be inconsistent with the terms of these articles, should cease and be declared void by the respective parliaments of the two kingdoms.—Such is the substance of that treaty of union which was so eagerly courted by the English ministry, and proved so unpalatable to the generality of the Scottish nation.
Battle of Ramillies, in which the French are defeated..... The Siege of Barcelona raised by the English fleet..... Prince Eugene obtains a complete victory over the French at Turin..... Sir Cloudesley Shovel sails with a reinforcement to Charles king of Spain..... the king of Sweden marches into Saxony..... The French King demands Conferences for a Peace..... Meeting of the Scottish Parliament..... Violent Opposition to the Union..... The Scots in general averse to the Treaty, which is nevertheless confirmed in their Parliament..... Proceedings in the English Parliament..... The Commons approve of the Articles of the Union..... The Lords pass a Bill for the Security of the Church of England..... Arguments used against the Articles of the Union, which, however, are confirmed by Act of Parliament..... The Parliament revived by Proclamation..... The Queen gives audience to a Muscovite Ambassador..... Proceedings in Convocation..... France threatened with total Ruin..... The Allies are defeated at Almanza..... Unsuccessful Attempt upon Toulon..... Sir Cloudesley Shovel wrecked on the Rocks of Scilly..... Weakness of the Emperor on the Upper Rhine..... Interview between the King of Sweden and the Duke of Marlborough..... Inactive Campaign in the Netherlands..... Harley begins to form a Party against the Duke of Marlborough..... The Nation discontented with the Whig Ministry..... Meeting of the first British Parliament..... Inquiry into the State of the War in Spain..... Gregg, a Clerk in the Secretary's Office, detected in a Correspondence with the French Ministry..... Harley resigns his Employments..... The Pretender embarks at Dunkirk for Scotland..... His design is defeated..... State of the Nation at that Period..... Parliament dissolved..... The French surprise Ghem and Bruges..... They are routed at Oudenarde..... The Allies invest Lisle..... They defeat a large Body of French Forces at Wynendale..... The Elector of Bavaria attacks Brussels..... Lisle surrendered..... Ghent taken, and Bruges abandoned..... Conquest of Minorca by General Stanhope..... Rupture between the Pope and the Emperor..... Death of Prince George of Denmark..... The new Parliament assembled..... Naturalization Bill..... Act of Grace..... Disputes about the Muscovite Ambassador compromised.
THE FRENCH DEFEATED AT THE BATTLE OF RAMILLIES.
While this treaty was on the carpet at home, the allied arms prospered surprisingly in the Netherlands, in Spain, and in Piedmont. The French king had resolved to make very considerable efforts in these countries; and, indeed, at the beginning of the campaign his armies were very formidable. He hoped that, by the reduction of Turin and Barcelona, the war would be extinguished in Italy and Catalonia. He knew that he could out-number any body of forces that prince Louis of Baden should assemble on the Rhine; and he resolved to reinforce his army in Flanders, so as to be in a condition to act offensively against the duke of Marlborough. This nobleman repaired to Holland in the latter end of April, and conferred with the states-general. Then he assembled the army between Borschloen and Groes Waren, and found it amounted to seventy-four battalions of foot, and one hundred and twenty-three squadrons of horse and dragoons, well furnished with artillery and pontoons. The court of France having received intelligence that the Danish and Prussian troops had not yet joined the confederates, ordered the elector of Bavaria and the mareschal Villeroy to attack them before the junction could be effected. In pursuance of this order they passed the Deule on the nineteenth day of May, and posted themselves at Tirlemont, being superior in number to the allied army. There they were joined by the horse of the army, commanded by mareschal Marsin, and encamped between Tirlemont and Judoigne. On Whitsunday, early in the morning, the duke of Marlborough advanced with his army in eight columns towards the village of Ramillies, being by this time joined by the Danes; and he learned that the enemy were in march to give him battle. Next day the French generals perceiving the confederates so near them, took possession of a strong camp, the right extending to the tomb of Hautemont, on the side of the Mehaigne; their left to Anderkirk; and the village of Ramillies being near their centre. The confederate army was drawn up in order of battle, with the right wing near Foltz on the brook of Yause, and the left by the village of Franquenies, which the enemy had occupied. The duke ordered lieutenant-general Schultz, with twelve battalions and twenty pieces of cannon, to begin the action by attacking Eamillies, which was strongly fortified with artillery. At the same time velt-mareschal d'Auverquerque on the left commanded colonel Wertmuller, with four battalions and two pieces of cannon, to dislodge the enemy's infantry posted among the hedges of Franquenies. Both these orders were successfully executed. The Dutch and Danish horse of the left wing charged with great vigour and intrepidity, but were so roughly handled by the troops of the French king's household, that they began to give way, when the duke of Marlborough sustained them with the body of reserve, and twenty squadrons drawn from the right, where a morass prevented them from acting. In the meantime, he in person rallied some of the broken squadrons, in order to renew the charge, when his own horse falling, he was surrounded by the enemy, and must have been either killed or taken prisoner, had not a body of infantry come seasonably to his relief. When he remounted his horse, the head of colonel Brienfield, his gentleman of the horse, was carried off by a cannon ball while he held the duke's stirrup. Before the reinforcement arrived, the best part of the French mousquetaires were cut in pieces. All the troops posted in Ramillies were either killed or taken. The rest of the enemy's infantry began to retreat in tolerable order, under cover of the cavalry on their left wing, which formed themselves in three lines between Ossuz and Anderkirk; but the English horse having found means to pass the rivulet which divided them from the enemy, fell upon them with such impetuosity, that they abandoned their foot, and were terribly slaughtered in the village of Anderkirk. They now gave way on all sides. The horse fled three different ways, but were so closely pursued that very few escaped. The elector of Bavaria and the mareschal de Villeroy saved themselves with the utmost difficulty. Several waggons of the enemy's van-guard breaking down in a narrow pass, obstructed the way in such a manner that the baggage and artillery could not proceed; nor could their troops defile in order. The victorious horse being informed of this accident, pressed on them so vigorously that great numbers threw down their arms and submitted. The pursuit was followed through Judoigne till two o'clock in the morning, five leagues from the field of battle, and within two of Louvaine. In a word, the confederates obtained a complete victory. They took the enemy's baggage and artillery, about one hundred and twenty colours or standards, six hundred officers, six thousand private soldiers, and about eight thousand were killed or wounded.*
* The French impute the loss of this battle to the misconduct of Villeroy, who, it must be owned, made a most wretched disposition. When he returned to Versailles, where he expected to meet with nothing else but reproaches, Louis received him without the least mark of displeasure, saying, "Mr. Mareschal, you and I are too old to be fortunate."
Prince Maximilian and prince Monbason lost their lives; the major-general Palavicini and Mizieres were taken, together with the marquasses de Bar, de Nonant, and de la Beaume, (this last the son of the mareschal de Tallard,) monsieur de Montmorency, nephew to the duke of Luxembourg, and many other persons of distinction. The loss of the allies did not exceed three thousand men, including prince Louis of Hesse, and Mr. Bentinck, who were slain in the engagement. The French generals retired with precipitation to Brussels, while the allies took possession of Louvaine, and next day encamped at Bethlem. The battle of Eamillies was attended with the immediate conquest of all Brabant. The cities of Louvaine, Mechlin, Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent, and Bruges, submitted without resistance, and acknowledged king Charles. Ostend, though secured by a strong garrison, was surrendered after a siege of ten days. Menin, esteemed the most finished fortification in the Netherlands, and guarded by six thousand men, met with the same fate. The garrison of Dendermonde surrendered themselves prisoners of war; and Aeth submitted on the same conditions. The French troops were dispirited. The city of Paris was overwhelmed with consternation. Louis affected to bear his misfortunes with calmness and composure; but the constraint had such an effect upon his constitution, that his physicians thought it necessary to prescribe frequent bleeding, which he accordingly underwent. At his court no mention was made of military transactions: all was solemn, silent, and reserved.
THE SIEGE OF BARCELONA RAISED.
Had the issue of the campaign in Catalonia been such as the beginning seemed to prognosticate, the French king might have in some measure consoled himself for his disgraces in the Netherlands. On the sixth day of April king Philip, at the head of a numerous army, undertook the siege of Barcelona, while the count de Thoulouse blocked it up with a powerful squadron. The inhabitants, animated by the presence of king Charles, made a vigorous defence; and the garrison was reinforced with some troops from Gironne and other places. But, after the fort of Montjuic was taken, the place was so hard pressed, that Charles ran the utmost risk of falling into the hands of the enemy; for the carl of Peterborough, who had marched from Valencia with two thousand men, found it impracticable to enter the city. Nevertheless, he maintained his post upon the hills; and, with surprising courage and activity, kept the besiegers in continual alarm. At length, sir John Leake sailed from Lisbon with thirty ships of the line; and on the eighth day of May arrived in sight of Barcelona. The French admiral no sooner received intelligence of his approach, than he set sail for Toulon. In three days after his departure, king Philip abandoned the siege and retired in great disorder, leaving behind his tents, with the sick and wounded. On the side of Portugal, the duke of Berwick was left with such an inconsiderable force as proved insufficient to defend the frontiers. The earl of Galway, with an army of twenty thousand men, undertook the siege of Alcantra; and in three days the garrison, consisting of four thousand men, were made prisoners of war. Then he marched to Placentia, and advanced as far as the bridge of Almaris; but the Portuguese would penetrate no farther until they should know the fate of Barcelona. When they understood the siege was raised, they consented to proceed to Madrid. Philip guessed their intention, posted to that capital, and sent his queen with all his valuable effects to Burgos, whither he followed her in person, after having destroyed everything that he could not carry away. About the latter end of June, the earl of Galway entered the city without resistance; but the Spaniards were extremely mortified to see an army of Portuguese, headed by an heretic, in possession of their capital. King Charles loitered away his time in Barcelona, until his competitor recovered his spirits, and received such reinforcements as enabled him to return to Madrid with an army equal to that commanded by the earl of Galway. This general made a motion towards Arragon, in order to facilitate his conjunction with Charles, who had set out by the way of Saragossa, where he was acknowledged as sovereign of Arragon and Valencia. In the beginning of August this prince arrived at the Portuguese camp with a small reinforcement; and in a few days was followed by the carl of Peterborough, at the head of five hundred dragoons. The two armies were now pretty equal in point of number; but as each expected farther reinforcements, neither chose to hazard an engagement. The earl of Peterborough, who aspired to the chief command, and hated the prince of Lichtenstein, who enjoyed the confidence of king Charles, retired in disgust; and embarking on board an English ship of war, set sail for Genoa. The English fleet continued all the summer in the Mediterranean; they secured Carthagena, which had declared for Charles; they took the town of Alicant by assault, and the castle by capitulation. Then sailing out of the Straits, one squadron was detached to the West Indies, another to lie at Liston, and the rest were sent home to England.
PRINCE EUGENE OBTAINS A COMPLETE VICTORY OVER THE FRENCH.
Fortune was not more propitious to the French in Italy than in Flanders. The duke de Vendome having been recalled to assume the command in Flanders after the-battle of Ramillies, the duke of Orleans was placed at the head of the army in Piedmont, under the tutorage and direction of the mareschal de Marsin. They were ordered to besiege Turin, which was accordingly invested in the month of May, and the operations carried on till the beginning of September. Great preparations had been made for this siege. It was not undertaken until the duke of Savoy had rejected all the offers of the French monarch, which were sufficient to have shaken a prince of less courage and fortitude. The duke de la Feuillade having finished the lines of circumvallation and contravallation, sent his quarter-master-general with a trumpet to offer passports and a guard for the removal of the duchess and her children. The duke of Savoy replied, that he did not intend to remove his family, and that the mareschal might begin to execute his master's orders whenever he should think fit; but, when the siege began with uncommon fury, and the French fired red-hot balls into the place, the two duchesses, with the young prince and princesses, quitted Turin, and retired to Quierasco, from whence they were conducted through many dangers into the territories of Genoa. The duke himself forsook his capital in order to put himself at the head of his cavalry; and was pursued from place to place by five and forty squadrons, under the command of the count d'Aubeterre. Notwithstanding the very noble defence which was made by the garrison of Turin, which destroyed fourteen thousand of the enemy during the course of the siege, the defences were almost ruined, their ammunition began to fail, and they had no prospect of relief but from prince Eugene, who had numberless difficulties to en-counter before he could march to their assistance. The duke de Vendome, before he left Italy, had secured all the fords of the Adige, the Mincio, and the Oglio, and formed such lines and intrenchments as he imagined would effectually hinder the Imperial general from arriving in time to relieve the city of Turin. But the prince surmounted all opposition; passed four great rivers in despite of the enemy, and reached the neighbourhood of Turin on the thirteenth day of August. There, being joined by the duke of Savoy, he passed the Po between Montcalier and Cavignan. On the fifth day of September they took a convoy of eight hundred loaded mules: next day they passed the Doria, and encamped with the right on the bank of that river before Pianessa, and the left on the Stura before the Veneria. The enemy were intrenched, having the Stura on their right, the Doria on their left, and the convent of Capuchins, called Notre Dame de la Campagne, in their centre. When prince Eugene approached Turin, the duke of Orleans proposed to march out of the intrenchments and give him battle; and this proposal was seconded by all the general officers, except Marsin, who, finding the duke determined, produced an order from the French king commanding the duke to follow the mareschal's advice. The court of Versailles was now become afraid of hazarding an engagement against those who had so often defeated their armies; and this officer had private instructions to keep within the trenches. On the seventh day of September the confederates marched up to the entrenchments of the French in eight columns, through a terrible fire from forty pieces of artillery, and were formed in order of battle within half cannon-shot of the enemy. Then they advanced to the attack with surprising resolution, and met with such a warm reception as seemed to stop their progress. Prince Eugene perceiving this check, drew his sword, and putting himself at the head of the battalions on the left, forced the entrenchments at the first charge. The duke of Savoy met with the same success in the centre, and on the right near Lucengo. The horse advanced through the intervals of the foot, left for that purpose; and breaking in with vast impetuosity, completed the confusion of the enemy, who were defeated on all hands, and retired with precipitation to the other side of the Po, while the duke of Savoy entered his capital in triumph. The duke of Orleans exhibited repeated proofs of the most intrepid courage, and received several wounds in the engagement. Mareschal de Marsin fell into the hands of the victors, his thigh being shattered with a ball, and died in a few hours after the amputation. Of the French army about five thousand men were slain on the field of battle; a great number of officers, and upwards of seven thousand men were taken, together with two hundred and fifty-five pieces of cannon, one hundred and eighty mortars, an incredible quantity of ammunition, all the tents and baggage, five thousand beasts of burden, ten thousand horses belonging to thirteen regiments of dragoons, and the mules of the commissary-general, so richly laden that this part of the booty alone was valued at three millions of livres. The loss of the confederates did not exceed three thousand men killed or disabled in the action, besides about the same number at the garrison of Turin, which had fallen since the beginning of the siege. This was such a fatal stroke to the interest of Louis, that madame de Main-tenon would not venture to make him folly acquainted with the state of his affairs. He was told that the duke of Orleans had raised the siege of Turin at the approach of prince Eugene, but he knew not that his own army was defeated and ruined. The spirits of the French were a little comforted in consequence of an advantage gained about this time by the count de Medavigrancey, who commanded a body of troops left in the Mantuan territories. He surprised the prince of Hesse in the neighbourhood of Castiglione, and obliged him to retire to the Adige with the loss of two thousand men; but this victory was attended with no consequence in their favour. The duke of Orleans retreated into Dauphine, while the French garrisons were driven out of every place they occupied in Piedmont and Italy, except Cremona, Valenza, and the castle of Milan, which were blocked up by the confederates.
SIR C. SHOVEL SAILS WITH A REINFORCEMENT TO CHARLES.
Over and above these disasters which the French sustained in the course of this campaign, they were miserably alarmed by the project of an invasion from Britain, formed by the marquis de Guiscard, who, actuated by a family disgust, had abandoned his country and become a partisan of the confederates. He was declared a lieutenant-general in the emperor's army, and came over to London, after having settled a correspondence with the malcontents in the southern parts of France. He insinuated himself into the friendship of Henry St. John, secretary of war, and other persons of distinction. His scheme of invading France was approved by the British ministry, and he was promoted to the command of a regiment of dragoons destined for that service. About eleven thousand men were embarked under the conduct of Earl Rivers, with a large train of artillery; and the combined squadrons, commanded by sir Cloudesley Shovel, set sail from Plymouth on the thirteenth day of August. Next day they were forced into Torbay by contrary winds, and there they held a council of war to concert their operations, when they discovered that Guiscard's plan was altogether chimerical, or at least founded upon such slight assurances and conjectures as could not justify their proceeding to execution. An express was immediately despatched to the admiralty with the result of this council; and, in the meantime, letters arrived at court from the earl of Galway, after his retreat from Madrid to Valencia, soliciting succours with the most earnest entreaties. The expedition to France was immediately postponed, and sir Cloudesley Shovel was ordered to make the best of his way to Lisbon, there to take such measures as the state of the war in Spain should render necessary. Guiscard and his officers being set on shore, the fleet sailed with the first fair wind, and towards the latter end of October arrived at Lisbon. On the twenty-eighth day of the next month the king of Portugal died, and his eldest son and successor being but eighteen years of age, was even more than his father influenced by a ministry which had private connexions with the court of Versailles. Nevertheless, sir Cloudesley Shovel and Earl Rivers, being pressed by letters from king Charles and the earl of G-alway, sailed to their assistance in the beginning of January; and on the twenty-eighth arrived at Alicant, from whence the earl of Rivers proceeded by land to Valencia, in order to assist at a general council of war. The operations of the ensuing campaign being concerted, and the army joined by the reinforcement from England, earl Rivers, disliking the country, returned with the admiral to Lisbon.
THE KING OF SWEDEN MARCHES INTO SAXONY.
Poland was at length delivered from the presence of the king of Sweden, who in the beginning of September suddenly marched through Lusatia into Saxony; and in a little time laid that whole electorate under contribution. Augustus being thus cut off from all resource, resolved to obtain peace on the Swede's own terms, and engaged in a secret treaty for this purpose. In the meantime the Poles and Muscovites attacked the Swedish forces at Kalish in Great Poland, and by dint of numbers routed them with great slaughter. Notwithstanding this event, Augustus ratified the treaty, by which he acknowledged Stanislaus as true and rightful king of Poland, reserving to himself no more than the empty title of sovereign. The confederates were not a little alarmed to find Charles in the heart of Germany, and the French court did not fail to court his alliance; but he continued on the reserve against all their solicitations. Then they implored his mediation for a peace; and he answered, that he would interpose his good offices as soon as he should know they would be agreeable to the powers engaged in the grand alliance.
THE FRENCH KING DEMANDS CONFERENCES FOR A PEACE.
The pride of Louis was now humbled to such a degree as might have excited the compassion of his enemies. He employed the elector of Bavaria to write letters in his name to the duke of Marlborough and the deputies of the states-general, containing proposals for opening a congress. He had already tampered with the Dutch, in a memorial presented by the marquis d'Alegre. He likewise besought the pope to interpose in his behalf. He offered to cede either Spain and the West Indies, or Milan, Naples, and Sicily, to king Charles; to give up a barrier for the Dutch in the Netherlands; and to indemnify the duke of Savoy for the ravages that had been committed in his dominions. Though his real aim was' peace, yet he did not despair of being able to excite such jealousies among the confederates as might shake the basis of their union. His hope was not altogether disappointed. The court of Vienna was so much alarmed at the offers he had made, and the reports circulated by his emissaries, that the emperor resolved to make himself master of Naples before the allies should have it in their power to close with the proposals of France. This was the true motive of his concluding a treaty with Louis in the succeeding winter, by which the Milanese was entirely evacuated, and the French king at liberty to employ those troops in making strong efforts against the confederates in Spain and the Netherlands. The Dutch were intoxicated with success, and their pensionary, Heinsius, entirely influenced by the duke of Marlborough, who found his account in the continuance of the war, which at once gratified his warice and ambition; for all his great qualities were obscured by the sordid passion of accumulating wealth. During the whole war the allies never had such an opportunity as they now enjoyed to bridle the power of France effectually, and secure the liberties of the empire; and indeed, if their real design was to establish an equal balance between the houses of Austria and Bourbon, it could not have been better effected than by dividing the Spanish monarchy between these two potentates. The accession of Spain, with all its appendages, to either, would have destroyed the equilibrium which the allies proposed to establish. But other motives contributed to a continuation of the war. The powers of the confederacy were fired with the ambition of making conquests; and England in particular thought herself intitled to an imdemnification for the immense sums she had expended. Animated by these concurring considerations, queen Anne and the states-general rejected the offers of France; and declared that they would not enter into any negotiation for peace, except in concert with their allies.
MEETING OF THE SCOTTISH PARLIAMENT.
The tories of England began to meditate schemes of opposition against the duke of Marlborough. They looked upon him as a selfish nobleman, who sacrificed the interest of the nation, in protracting a ruinous war for his own private advantage. They saw their country oppressed with an increasing load of taxes, which they apprehended would in a little time become an intolerable burden; and they did not doubt but at this period such terms might be obtained as would fully answer the great purpose of the confederacy. This indeed was the prevailing opinion among all the sensible people of the nation who were not particularly interested in the prosecution of the war, either by being connected with the general, or in some shape employed in the management of the finances. The tories were likewise instigated by a party spirit against Marlborough, who, by means of his wife, was in full possession of the queen's confidence, and openly patronized the whig faction. But the attention of people in general was now turned upon the Scottish parliament, which took into consideration the treaty of union lately concluded between the commissioners of both kingdoms. On the third day of October the duke of Queensberry, as high commissioner, produced the queen's letter, in which she expressed her hope that the terms of the treaty would be acceptable to her parliament of Scotland. She said, an entire and perfect union would be the solid foundation of a lasting peace: it would secure their religion, liberty, and property; remove the animosities that prevailed among themselves, and the jealousies that subsisted between the two nations: it would increase their strength, riches, and commerce: the whole island would be joined in affection, and free from all apprehensions of different interests: it would be enabled to resist all its enemies, support the protestant interest everywhere, and maintain the liberties of Europe. She renewed her assurance of maintaining the government of their church; and told them, that now they had an opportunity of taking such steps as might be necessary for its security after the union. She demanded the necessary supplies. She observed, that the great success with which Almighty God had blessed her arms, afforded the nearer prospect of a happy peace, with which they would enjoy the full advantages of this union: that they had no reason to doubt but the parliament of England would do all that should be necessary on their part to confirm the union: finally, she recommended calmness and unanimity in deliberating on this great and weighty affair, of such consequence to the whole island of Great Britain.
VIOLENT OPPOSITION TO THE UNION.
Hitherto the articles of the union had been industriously concealed from the knowledge of the people: but the treaty being recited in parliament, and the particulars divulged, such a flame was kindled through the whole nation as had not appeared since the restoration. The cavaliers or Jacobites had always foreseen that this union would extinguish all their hopes of a revolution in favour of the pretender. The nobility found themselves degraded in point of dignity and influence, by being excluded from their seats in parliament. The trading part of the nation beheld their commerce saddled with heavy duties and restrictions, and considered the privilege of trading to the English plantations as a precarious and uncertain prospect of advantage. The barons, or gentlemen, were exasperated at a coalition by which their parliament was annihilated, and their credit destroyed. The people in general exclaimed, that the dignity of their crown was betrayed; that the independency of their nation had fallen a sacrifice to treachery and corruption; that whatever conditions might be speciously offered, they could not expect they would be observed by a parliament in which the English had such a majority. They exaggerated the dangers to which the constitution of their church would be exposed from a bench of bishops, and a parliament of episcopalians. This consideration alarmed the presbyterian ministers to such a degree, that they employed all their power and credit in waking the resentment of their hearers against the treaty, which produced an universal ferment among all ranks of people. Even the most rigid puritans joined the cavaliers in expressing their detestation of the union; and laying aside their mutual animosities, promised to co-operate in opposing a measure so ignominous and prejudicial to their country. In parliament, the opposition was headed by the dukes of Hamilton and Athol, and the marquis of Annandale. The first of these noblemen had wwered so much in his conduct, that it is difficult to ascertain his real political principles. He was generally supposed to favour the claim of the pretender; but he was afraid of embarking too far in his cause, and avoided violent measures in the discussion of the treaty, lest he should incur the resentment of the English parliament, and forfeit the estate he possessed in that kingdom. Athol was more forward in his professions of attachment to the court of St. Germain's; but he had less ability, and his zeal was supposed to be inflamed by resentment against the ministry. The debates upon the different articles of the treaty were carried on with great heat and vivacity, and many shrewd arguments were used against this scheme of incorporating the union. One member affirmed, that it would furnish a handle to any aspiring prince to overthrow the liberties of all Britain; for if the parliament of Scotland could alter, or rather subvert its constitution, this circumstance might be a precedent for the parliament of Great Britain to assume the same power: that the representatives for Scotland would, from their poverty, depend upon those who possessed the means of corruption; and having expressed so little concern for the support of their own constitution, would pay very little regard to that of any other. "What!" said the duke of Hamilton, "shall we in half an hour give up what our forefathers maintained with their lives and fortunes for many ages? Are here none of the descendants of those worthy patriots who defended the liberty of their country against all invaders; who assisted the great king Robert Bruce to restore the constitution, and revenge the falsehood of England and the usurpation of Baliol? Where are the Douglasses and Campbells? Where are the peers, where are the barons, once the bulwark of the nation? Shall we yield up the sovereignty and independency of our country, when we are commanded by those we represent to preserve the same, and assured of their assistance to support us?" The duke of Athol protested against an incorporating union, as contrary to the honour, interest, fundamental laws, and constitution of the kingdom of Scotland, the birthright of the peers, the rights and privileges of the barons and boroughs, and to the claim of right, property, and liberty of the subjects. To this protest nineteen peers and forty-six commoners adhered. The earl-marshal entered a protest, importing, that no person being successor to the crown of England should inherit that of Scotland, without such previous limitations as might secure the honour and sovereignty of the Scottish crown and kingdom, the frequency and power of parliament, the religion, liberty, and trade of the nation, from English or any foreign influence. He was seconded by six-and-forty members. With regard to the third article of the union, stipulating, that both kingdoms should be represented by one and the same parliament, the country party observed that, by assenting to this expedient, they did in effect sink their own constitution, while that of England underwent no alteration: that in all nations there are fundamentals which no power whatever can alter: that the rights and privileges of parliament being one of those fundamentals among the Scots, no parliament, or any other power, could ever legally prohibit the meeting of parliaments, or deprive any of the three estates of its right of sitting or voting in parliament, or give up the rights and privileges of parliament: but that by this treaty the parliament of Scotland was entirely abrogated, its rights and privileges sacrificed, and those of the English parliament substituted in their place. They argued that though the legislative power in parliament was regulated and determined by a majority of voices; yet the giving up the constitution, with the rights and privileges of the nation, was not subject to suffrage, being founded on dominion and property, and therefore could not be legally surrendered without the consent of every person who had a right to elect and be represented in parliament. They affirmed, that the obligation laid on the Scottish members to reside so long in London in attendance on the British parliament, would drain Scotland of all its money, impoverish the members, and subject them to the temptation of being corrupted. Another protest was entered by the marquis of Annandale against an incorporating union, as being odious to the people, subversive of the constitution, sovereignty, and claim of right, and threatening ruin to the church as by law established. Fifty-two members joined in this protestation. Almost every article produced the most inflammatory disputes. The lord Belhaven enumerated the mischiefs which would attend the union in a pathetic speech, that drew tears from the audience, and is at this day looked upon as a prophecy by great part of the Scottish nation. Addresses against the treaty were presented to parliament by the convention of boroughs, the commissioners of the general assembly, the company trading to Africa and the Indies, as well as from several shires, stewartries, boroughs, towns, and parishes, in all the different parts of the kingdom, without distinction of whig or tory, episcopalian or presbyterian. The earl of Buchan for the peers, Lockhart of Camwarth for the barons, sir William Stuart in behalf of the peers, barons, boroughs, the earls of Errol and Marischal for themselves, as high-constable and earl-marshal of the kingdom, protested severally against the treaty of union.
While this opposition raged within doors, the resentment of the people rose to transports of fury and revenge. The more rigid presbyterians, known by the name of Cameronians, chose officers, formed themselves into regiments, provided horses, arms, and ammunition, and marching to Dumfries, burned the articles of union at the Market-cross, justifying their conduct in a public declaration. They made a tender of their attachment to duke Hamilton, from whom they received encouragement in secret. They reconciled themselves to the episcopalians and the cavaliers: they resolved to take the route to Edinburgh, and dissolve the parliament; while the duke of Athol undertook to secure the pass of Stirling with his highlanders, so as to open the communication between the western and northern parts of the kingdom. Seven or eight thousand men were actually ready to appear in arms at the town of Hamilton, and march directly to Edinburgh, under the duke's command, when that nobleman altered his opinion, and despatched private couriers through the whole country, requiring the people to defer their meeting till further directions. The more sanguine cavaliers accused his grace of treachery, but in all likelihood he was actuated by prudential motives. He alleged, in his own excuse, that the nation was not in a condition to carry on such an enterprise, especially as the English had already detached troops to the border, and might in a few days have wafted over a considerable reinforcement from Holland. During this commotion among the Cameronians, the cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow were filled with tumults. Sir Patrick Johnston, provost of Edinburgh, who had been one of the commissioners for the union, was besieged in his own house by the populace, and would have been torn in pieces had not the guards dispersed the multitude. The privy-council issued a proclamation against riots, commanding all persons to retire from the streets whenever the drum should beat; ordering the guards to fire upon those who should disobey this command, and indemnifying them from all prosecution for maiming or slaying the lieges. These guards were placed all round the house in which the peers and commons were assembled, and the council received the thanks of the parliament for having thus provided for their safety. Notwithstanding these precautions of the government, the commissioner was constantly saluted with the curses and imprecations of the people as he passed along: his guards were pelted, and some of his attendants wounded with stones as they sat by him in the coach, so that he was obliged to pass through the streets on full gallop.
Against all this national fury the dukes of Queensberry and Argyle, the earls of Montrose, Seafield, and Stair, and the other noblemen attached to the union, acted with equal prudence and resolution. They argued strenuously against the objections that were started in the house. They magnified the advantages that would accrue to the kingdom from the privileges of trading to the English plantations, and being protected in their commerce by a powerful navy; as well as from the exclusion of a popish pretender, who they knew was odious to the nation in general. They found means, partly by their promises, and partly by corruption, to bring over the earls of Roxburgh and Marchmont, with the whole squadron who had hitherto been unpropitious to the court. They disarmed the resentment of the clergy, by promoting an act to be inserted in the union, declaring the presbyterian discipline to be the only government in the church of Scotland, unalterable in all succeeding times, and a fundamental article of the treaty. They soothed the African company with the prospect of being indemnified for the losses they had sustained. They amused individuals with the hope of sharing the rest of the equivalent. They employed emissaries to allay the ferment among the Cameronians, and disunite them from the cavaliers, by canting, praying, and demonstrating the absurdity, sinfulness, and danger of such a coalition. These remonstrances were reinforced by the sum of twenty thousand pounds, which the queen privately lent to the Scottish treasury, and which was now distributed by the ministry in such a manner as might best conduce to the success of the treaty. By these practices they diminished, though they could not silence, the clamour of the people, and obtained a considerable majority in parliament, which out-voted all opposition. Not but that the duke of Queensberry at one time despaired of succeeding, and being in continual apprehension for his life, expressed a desire of adjourning the parliament, until by time and good management he should be able to remove those difficulties that then seemed to be insurmountable. But the lord-treasurer Godolphin, who foresaw that the measure would be entirely lost by delay, and was no judge of the difficulties, insisted upon his proceeding. It was at this period that he remitted the money, and gave directions for having forces ready at a call, both in England and Ireland. At length the Scottish parliament approved and ratified all the articles of the union with some small variation. Then they prepared an act for regulating the election of the sixteen peers and forty-five commoners to represent Scotland in the British parliament. This being touched with the sceptre, the three estates proceeded to elect their representatives. The remaining part of the session was employed in making regulations concerning the coin, in examining the accounts of their African company, and providing for the due application of the equivalent, which was scandalously misapplied. On the twenty-fifth day of March the commissioner adjourned the parliament, after having, in a short speech, taken notice of the honour they had acquired in concluding an affair of such importance to their country. Having thus accomplished the great purpose of the court, he set out for London, in the neighbourhood of which he was met by above forty noblemen in their coaches, and about four hundred gentlemen on horseback. Next day he waited upon the queen at Kensington, from whom he met with a very gracious reception. Perhaps there is not another instance upon record of a ministry's having carried a point of this importance against such a violent torrent of opposition, and contrary to the general sense and inclination of a whole exasperated people. The Scots were persuaded that their trade would be destroyed, their nation oppressed, and their country ruined, in consequence of the union with England, and indeed their opinion was supported by very plausible arguments. The majority of both nations believed that the treaty would produce violent convulsions, or at best prove ineffectual. But we now see it has been attended with none of the calamities that were prognosticated; that it quietly took effect, and fully answered all the purposes for which it was intended. Hence we may learn that many great difficulties are surmounted, because they are not seen by those who direct the execution of any great project; and that many schemes, which theory deems impracticable, will yet succeed in the experiment.
PROCEEDINGS in the ENGLISH PARLIAMENT.
The English parliament assembling on the third day of December, the queen, in her speech to both houses, congratulated them on the glorious successes of her arms. She desired the commons would grant such supplies as might enable her to improve the advantages of this successful campaign. She told them that the treaty of union, as concluded by the commissioners of both kingdoms, was at that time under the consideration of the Scottish parliament; and she recommended despatch in the public affairs, that both friends and enemies might be convinced of the firmness and vigour of their proceedings. The parliament was perfectly well disposed, to comply with all her majesty's requests. Warm debates were presented by both houses. Then they proceeded to the consideration of the supply, and having examined the estimates in less than a week, voted near six millions for the service of the ensuing year. Nevertheless, in examining the accounts some objections arose. They found that the extraordinary supplies for the support of king Charles of Spain, amounted to eight hundred thousand pounds more than the sums provided by parliament. Some members argued that very ill consequences might ensue, if a ministry could thus run the nation in debt, and expect the parliament should pay the money. The courtiers answered, that if anything had been raised without necessity, or ill applied, it was reasonable that those who were in fault should be punished; but as this expense was incurred to improve advantages, at a time when the occasion could not be communicated to parliament, the ministry was rather to be applauded for their zeal, than condemned for their liberality. The question being put, the majority voted that those sums had been expended for the preservation of the duke of Savoy, for the interest of king Charles against the common enemy, and for the safety and honour of the nation. When the speaker presented the money-bills, he told her, that as the glorious victory obtained by the duke of Marlborough at Ramillies, was fought before it could be supposed the armies were in the field, so it was no less surprising that the commons had granted supplies to her majesty, before the enemy could well know that the parliament was sitting. The general was again honoured with the thanks of both houses. The lords in an address besought the queen to settle his honours on his posterity. An act was passed for this purpose; and, in pursuance of another address from the commons, a pension of five thousand pounds out of the post-office was settled upon him and his descendants. The lords and commons having adjourned themselves to the last day of December, the queen closed the year with triumphal processions. As the standards and colours taken at Blenheim had been placed in Westminster-hall, so now those that had been brought from the field of Ramillies were put up in Guildhall, as trophies of that victory. About this time the earls of Kent, Lindsey, and Kingston, were raised to the rank of marquisses. The lords Wharton, Paulet, Godolphin, and Cholmondeley, were created earls. Lord Walden, son and heir-apparent to the earl of Suffolk, obtained the title of earl of Bindon. The lord-keeper Cowper, and sir Thomas Pelham, were ennobled as barons.
THE COMMONS APPROVE OF THE ARTICLES OF THE UNION.
The parliament being assembled after their short recess, the earl of Nottingham moved for an address to the queen, desiring her majesty would order the proceedings of the commissioners for the union, as well as those of the Scottish parliament on the said subject, to be laid before them. He was seconded by the duke of Buckingham and the earl of Rochester; and answered by the earl of Godolphin, who told them they needed not doubt but that her majesty would communicate those proceedings, as soon as the Scottish parliament should have discussed the subject of the union. The lords Wharton, Somers, and Halifax observed, that it was for the honour of the nation that the treaty of union should first come ratified from the parliament of Scotland; and that then and not before, it would be a proper time for the lords to take it into consideration. On the twenty-eighth clay of January, the queen in person told both houses that the treaty of union, with some additions and alterations, was ratified by an act of the Scottish parliament: that she had ordered it to be laid before them; and hoped it would meet with their concurrence and approbation. She desired the commons would provide for the payment of the equivalent, in case the treaty should be approved. She observed to both houses, that now they had an opportunity of putting the last hand to a happy union of the two kingdoms; and that she should look upon it as a particular happiness if this great work, which had been so often attempted without success, could be brought to perfection in her reign. When the commons formed themselves into a committee of the whole house, to deliberate on the articles of the union, and the Scottish act of ratification, the tory party, which was very weak in that assembly, began to start some objections. Sir John Packington disapproved of this incorporating union, which he likened to a marriage with a woman against her consent. He said it was a union carried on by corruption and bribery within doors, by force and violence without; that the promoters of it had basely betrayed their trust, in giving up their independent constitution, and he would leave it to the judgment of the house, to consider whether or not men of such principles were fit to be admitted into their house of representatives. He observed that her majesty, by the coronation oath, was obliged to maintain the church of England as by law established; and likewise bound by the same oath to defend the presbyterian kirk of Scotland in one and the same kingdom. Now, said he, after this union is in force, who shall administer this oath to her majesty? It is not the business of the Scots, who are incapable of it, and no well-wishers to the church of England. It is then only the part of the bishops to do it, and can it be supposed that those reverend persons will, or can act a thing so contrary to their own order and institution, as thus to promote the establishment of the presbyterian church government in the united kingdom? He added, that the church of England being established jure divino, and the Scots pretending that the kirk was also jure divino, he could not tell how two nations that clashed in so essential an article could unite; he therefore thought it proper to consult the convocation about this critical point. A motion was made, that the first article of the treaty, which implies a peremptory agreement to an incorporating union, should be postponed; and that the house should proceed to the consideration of the terms of the intended union, contained in the other articles. This proposal being rejected, some tory members quitted the house; and all the articles were examined and approved without further opposition. The whigs were so eager in the prosecution of this point, that they proceeded in a very superficial manner, and with such precipitation as furnished their enemies with a plausible pretence to affirm, that they had not considered the treaty with the coolness and deliberation which an affair of this importance required.
Before the lords began to investigate the articles of the union, they, at the instance of the archbishop of Canterbury, brought in a bill for the security of the church of England, to be inserted as a fundamental and essential part of that treaty. It passed through both houses without opposition, and received the royal assent. On the fifteenth clay of February, the debates concerning the union began in the house of lords, the queen being present, and the bishop of Sarum chairman of the committee. The earls of Rochester, Anglesea, and Nottingham, argued against the union; as did the bishop of Bath and Wells. Lord Haversham, in a premeditated harangue, said the question was, whether two nations independent in their sovereignties, that had their distinct laws and interests, their different forms of worship, church-government, and order, should be united into one kingdom? He supposed it a union made up of so many mismatched pieces, of such jarring incongruous ingredients, that should it ever take effect, it would carry the necessary consequences of a standing power and force to keep them from falling asunder and breaking in pieces every moment. Pie repeated what had been said by lord Bacon, that an unity pieced up by direct admission of contrarieties in the fundamental points of it, is like the toes of Nebuchadnezzar's image, which were made of iron and clay—-they may cleave together, but would never incorporate. He dissented from the union for the sake of the good old English constitution, in which he dreaded some alteration from the additional weight of sixty-one Scottish members, and these too returned by a Scottish privy-council. He took notice, that above one hundred Scottish peers, and as many commoners, were excluded from sitting and voting in parliament, though they had as much right of inheritance to sit there as any English peer had of sitting in the parliament of England. He expressed his apprehension of this precedent; and asked what security any peer of England had for this right and privilege of peerage, which those lords had not. He said, If the bishops would weaken their own cause, so far as to give up the two great points of episcopal ordination and confirmation; if they would approve and ratify the act for securing the presbyterian church-government in Scotland, as the true protestant religion and purity of worship; they must give up that which had been contended for between them and the presbyterians for thirty years, and been defended by the greatest and most learned men in the church of England. He objected to the exempting articles, by which heritable offices and superiorities were reserved. He affirmed that the union was contrary to the sense of the Scottish nation; that the murmurs of the people had been so loud as to fill the whole kingdom; and so bold as to reach even to the doors of the parliament; that the parliament itself had suspended their beloved clause in the act of security for arming the people; that the government had issued a proclamation pardoning all slaughter, bloodshed, and maiming committed upon those who should be found in tumults. From these circumstances he concluded, that the Scottish nation was averse to an incorporating union, which he looked upon as one of the most dangerous experiments to both nations. Lord North and Grey complained of the small and unequal proportion of the land-tax imposed upon Scotland. The earl of Nottingham said it was highly unreasonable that the Scots, who were by the treaty let into all the branches of the English trade, and paid so little towards the expense of the government, should moreover have such a round sum by way of equivalent. The same topics were insisted on by the lords North and Grey, Guernsey, Granville, Stawel, and Abingdon. The earl of Nottingham, after having opposed every article separately, concluded with words to this effect; "As sir John Maynard said to the late king at the revolution, that having buried all his contemporaries in Westminster-hall, he was afraid, if his majesty had not come in that very juncture of time, he might have likewise outlived the very laws; so, if this union do pass, as I have no reason to doubt but it will, I may justly affirm I have outlived all the laws, and the very constitution of England: I, therefore, pray to God to avert the dire effects which may probably ensue from such an incorporating union."
These arguments and objections were answered by the lord-treasurer Godolphin, the earls of Sunderland and Wharton, the lords Townshend, Halifax, and So-mers, the bishops of Oxford, Norwich, and Sarum. They observed that such an important measure could not be effected without some inconveniences; but that these ought to be borne in consideration of the greatness of the advantage: that the chief dangers to which the church was exposed arose from France and popery; and this union would effectually secure it against these evils: that Scotland lay on the weakest side of England, which could not be defended but by an expensive army. Should a war break out between the two nations, and Scotland be conquered, yet even in that case it would be necessary to keep it under with a standing army, which any enterprising prince might model for his ambitious purposes, and joining with the Scots, enslave his English dominion; that any union after a conquest would be compulsive, consequently of short duration; whereas now it was voluntary, it would be lasting; that with regard to ecclesiastical affairs, all heats and animosities might be allayed by soft and gentle management. The cantons of Switzerland, though they professed different religions, were yet united in one general body; and the diet of Germany was composed of princes and states, among whom three different persuasions prevailed; so that two sorts of discipline might very well subsist under one legislature. If there was any danger on either side, it threatened the Scots much more than the English, as five hundred and thirteen members could certainly be too hard for forty-five; and in the house of lords, six-and-twenty bishops would always preponderate against sixteen peers from Scotland. Notwithstanding all the opposition made by the lords of the tory interest, every article was approved by a great majority, though not without a good number of protestations; and a bill of ratification was prepared in the lower house by sir Simon Harcourt, the solicitor-general, in such an artful manner as to prevent all debates. All the articles, as they passed in Scotland, were recited by way of preamble, together with the acts made in both parliaments for the security of the several churches; and, in conclusion, there was one clause by which the whole was ratified and enacted into a law. By this contrivance, those who were desirous of starting new difficulties found themselves disabled from pursuing their design. They could not object to the recital, which was barely matter of fact; and they had not strength sufficient to oppose the general enacting clause. On the other hand, the whigs promoted it with such zeal that it passed by a majority of one hundred and fourteen, before the others had recollected themselves from the surprise which the structure of the bill had occasioned. It made its way through the house of lords with equal despatch; and, when it received the royal sanction, the queen expressed the utmost satisfaction. She said she did not doubt but it would be remembered and spoke of hereafter to the honour of those who had been instrumental in bringing it to such a happy conclusion. She desired that her subjects of both kingdoms should from henceforward behave with all possible respect and kindness towards one another, that so it might appear to all the world they had hearts disposed to become one people.
PARLIAMENT REVIVED BY PROCLAMATION.
As the act of union did not take place till the first of May, a great number of traders in both kingdoms resolved to make advantage of this interval. The English proposed to export into Scotland such commodities as entitled them to a drawback, with a view to bring them back after the first of May. The Scots, on the other hand, as their duties were much lower than those in England, intended to import great quantities of wine, brandy, and other merchandise, which they could sell at a greater advantage in England after the union, when there would be a free intercourse between the two nations. Some of the ministers had embarked in this fraudulent design, which alarmed the merchants of England to such a degree, that they presented a remonstrance to the commons. Resolutions were immediately taken in the house against these practices, and a bill was prepared; but the lords apprehending that it in some measure infringed the articles of the union, and that it might give umbrage to the Scottish nation, it was dropped. The frauds had been in a good measure prevented by the previous resolutions of the house; and the first day of May was now at hand; so that the bill was thought unnecessary. On the twenty-fourth day of April the queen prorogued the parliament, after having given them to understand that she would continue by proclamation the lords and commons already assembled, as members in the first British parliament on the part of England, pursuant to the powers vested in her by the acts of parliament of both kingdoms, ratifying the treaty of union. The parliament was accordingly revived by proclamation, and another issued to convoke the first parliament of Great Britain for the twenty-third day of October. The Scots repaired to London, where they were well received by the queen, who bestowed the title of duke on the earls of Roxburgh and Montrose. She likewise granted a commission for a new privy-council in that kingdom, to be in force till the next session of parliament, that the nation might not be disgusted by too sudden an alteration of outward appearances. The first of May was appointed as a day of public thanksgiving; and congratulatory addresses were sent up from all parts of England; but the university of Oxford prepared no compliment; and the Scots were wholly silent on this occasion.
THE QUEEN GIVES AUDIENCE TO A MUSCOVITE AMBASSADOR.
In the course of this session the commons, in an address to the queen, desired she would resettle the islands of St. Christopher's and Nevis in the West Indies, which had been ravaged by the enemy. They likewise resolved, that an humble address should be presented to her majesty, praying she would concert measures for suppressing a body of pirates who had made a settlement on the island of Madagascar, as also for recovering and preserving the ancient possessions, trade, and fishery in Newfoundland. The French refugees likewise delivered a remonstrance to the queen, recapitulating the benefits which the persecuted protestants in France had reaped from the assistance of her royal progenitors, acknowledging their own happiness in living under her gentle government, among a people by whom they had been so kindly entertained when driven from their native country; and imploring her majesty's interposition and good offices in favour of their distressed and persecuted brethren abroad. She graciously received this address, declaring she had always great compassion for the unhappy circumstances of the protestants in France; that she would communicate her thoughts on this subject to her allies; and she expressed her hope that such measures might be taken as should effectually answer the intent of their petition. In the month of May she granted an audience to an ambassador-extraordinary from the czar of Muscovy, who delivered a letter from his master, containing complaints of king Augusts, who had maltreated the Russian troops sent to his assistance, concluded a dishonourable peace with Charles king of Sweden, without the knowledge of his allies, and surrendered count Patkul, the Muscovite minister, as a deserter, to the Swedish monarch, contrary to the law of nations, and even to the practice of barbarians. He therefore desired her Britannic majesty would use her good offices for the enlargement of the count, and the other Russian prisoners detained at Stockholm; and that she would take into her protection the remains of the Russian auxiliaries upon the Rhine, that they might either enter into the service of the allies, or be at liberty to return in safety to their own country. The queen actually interposed in behalf of Patkul; but her intercession proved ineffectual, and that unhappy minister was put to death with all the circumstances of wanton barbarity. As many severe and sarcastic writings had lately appeared in which the whigs and ministry were reviled, and reflections hinted to the prejudice of the queen's person, the government resolved to make examples of the authors and publishers of these licentious productions. Dr. Joseph Browne was twice pilloried for a copy of verses, intituled "The Country Parson's Advice to the Lord-Keeper," and a letter which he afterwards wrote to Mr. Secretary Hailey. William Stevens, rector of Sutton in Surrey, underwent the same sentence, as author of a pamphlet called "A Letter to the Author of the Memorial of the Church of England." Edward Ward was fined and set in the pillory, for having written a burlesque poem on the times, under the title of "Hudibras Redivivus;" and the same punishment was inflicted upon William Pittes, author of a performance, intituled "The Case of the Church of England's Memorial fairly stated."
PROCEEDINGS IN CONVOCATION.
The lower house of convocation still continued to wrangle with their superiors; and though they joined the upper house in a congratulatory address to the queen on the success of her arms, they resolved to make application to the commons against the union. The queen being apprised of their design, desired the archbishop to prorogue them for three weeks, before the expiration of which the act of union had passed in parliament. The lower house delivered a representation to the bishops, in which they affirmed no such prorogation had ever been ordered during the session of parliament. The bishops found in their records seven or eight precedents of such prorogations, and above thirty instances of the convocation having sat sometimes before, and sometimes after, a session of parliament; nay, sometimes even when the parliament was dissolved. The queen, informed of these proceedings, wrote a letter to the archbishop, intimating that she looked upon the lower house as guilty of an invasion of her royal supremacy; and that if any thing of the same nature should be attempted for the future, she would use such means for punishing offenders as the law warranted. The prolocutor absenting himself from the convocation, the archbishop pronounced sentence of contumacy against him. The lower house, in a protestation, declared this sentence unlawful and altogether null. Nevertheless the prolocutor made a full submission, with which the archbishop was satisfied, and the sentence was repealed. About this period the earl of Sunderland was appointed one of the secretaries of state, in the room of sir Charles Hedges. This change was not effected without great opposition from Harley, who was in his heart an enemy to the duke of Marlborough and all his adherents; and had already, by his secret intrigues, made considerable progress in a scheme for superseding the influence of the duchess.