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When Buonaparte reached Lyons, the soldiers, in spite of the Duke of Orleans, of Monsieur, and of Marshal Macdonald, went over to him to a man. He was now at the head of seven thousand men, and Macon, Chalons, Dijon, and nearly all Burgundy declared for him. Marseilles and Provence stood out, the authorities of Marseilles setting a price upon his head. But being now in Lyons, Buonaparte issued, with amazing rapidity, no fewer than eight decrees, abolishing every change made by the Bourbons during his absence, confiscating the property of every Emigrant who had not lost it before, restoring the tricolour flag and cockade, and the legion of honour; abolishing the two chambers, and calling a Champ-de-Mai, to be held in the month of May to determine on a new constitution, and to assist at the coronation of the Empress and the King of Rome. He boldly announced that the Empress was coming; that Austria, Russia, and Great Britain were all his friends, and that without this he could not have escaped. These decrees, disseminated on all sides, had a wonderful effect on the people, and he advanced rapidly, reaching Auxerre on the 17th of March. He rode on several hours in advance of his army, without Guards, talking familiarly with the people, sympathising in their distresses, and promising all sorts of redresses. The lancers of Auxerre and Montereau trampled the white cockade under foot and joined him. He appointed Cambacrs minister of justice; Fouch, of police; and Davoust Minister of War. But Fouch, doubting the sincerity of Buonaparte, at once offered his services to Louis, and promised, on being admitted to a private interview, to point out to the king a certain means of extinguishing the usurper. This was presumed to mean assassination by some of his secret agents, and was honourably rejected by Louis, and an officer was sent to arrest Fouch; but that adroit sycophant retired by a back door, locking it after him, got over a wall, and was the next moment in the house of the Duchess of St. Leu, and in the midst of the assembled Buonapartists, who received him with exultation.Before Buonaparte, therefore, could proceed to Spain, he determined to meet the Czar at Erfurth, in Germany, by their open union to overawe that country, and to bind Alexander more firmly to his interest by granting him ampler consent to his designs on Turkey and on Finland. The meeting took place on the 27th of September, and terminated on the 17th of October. Both Emperors returned in appearance more friendly and united than ever, but each in secret distrusting his ally. Buonaparte, who was now intending in earnest to divorce Josephine, and marry a daughter of a royal house, by whom he might have issue, and thus league himself with the old dynasties, made a proposal for one of the Russian archduchesses, which was evaded by Alexander, on the plea of the difference of religion. Such a plea did not deceive the keen sagacity of Buonaparte; he felt it to result from a contempt of his plebeian origin, and a belief in the instability of his giddy elevation; and he did not forget it. To impress on Europe, however, the idea of the intimate union of the Czar and Buonaparte, they addressed, before leaving Erfurth, a joint letter to the King of Great Britain, proposing a general peace. To this letter Canning answered to the Ministers of Russia and France, that Swedenagainst whom the Czar had commenced his war of usurpationSpain, Portugal, and Sicily, must be included in any negotiations. The French and Russian Ministers, on the contrary, proposed a peace on the principle of every one retaining what they had got. This, Canning replied, would never be consented to; and the two emperors knew that very well, but the letter had served Buonaparte's purpose. It enabled him to tell France and the world how much he was disposed to peace, and how obstinate was Britain; it served to make the world believe in the close intimacy of the Czar and himself. He now hurried back to France, and, opening the session of the Corps Lgislatif, on the 25th of October, he announced that he was going to Spain to drive the "English leopards"for such he always absurdly persisted in calling the lions in the royal arms of Great Britainout of both Spain and Portugal. On the 27th he set out.
Prevented by the arrival of Daun from utterly destroying Dresden, though he had done enough to require thirty years of peace to restore it, Frederick marched for Silesia. Laudohn, who was besieging Breslau, quitted it at his approach; but the Prussian king, who found himself surrounded by three armies, cut his way, on the 15th of August, at Liegnitz, through Laudohn's division, which he denominated merely "a scratch." He was instantly, however, called away to defend his own capital from a combined army of Russians under Todleben, and of Austrians under Lacy, another Irishman; but before he could reach them they had forced an entrance, on the 9th of October. The Russians, departing from their usual custom of plunder, touched nothing, but levied a contribution of one million seven hundred thousand dollars on the city. At Frederick's approach they withdrew.
The Opposition made no objection to the re-election of Onslow as Speaker of the Commons, but they made a determined attack on the Address. Lord Noel Somerset moved that in the Address his Majesty should be desired not to engage this kingdom in a war for the defence of his Hanoverian dominions. This was seconded by Shippen, who declared that he had grown old in the House of Commons only to see all the predictions of his life realised in the management of the nation. Pulteney seemed to be animated by a double portion of patriotic indignation. He reviewed Walpole's whole administration, and accused him, not merely of individual acts of erroneous policy, but of deliberate treachery. The Whigs, elated by this fiery denunciation of the Minister, called for a division; but Pulteney, aware that they had not yet a majority, observed that dividing was not the way to multiply. Walpole, on his part, offered to leave out the paragraph thanking his Majesty for his royal care in prosecuting the war with Spain; but this was only regarded as a proof of conscious weakness, and Pulteney proceeded to charge Walpole with purposely ruining the nation to serve the Pretender. This called Walpole up, and he defended himself with all his accustomed self-command and ability. He retorted the charges of serving the Pretender on his enemies, and these with real grounds. He referred to Chesterfield's recent visit to the Pretender's Court at Avignon. He asked, as he had done before more than once, whether he, as Minister, had raised the war in Germany, or advised the war with Spain? Whether he was amenable for the deaths of the late Emperor and the King of Prussia, which opened up all these complications? Whether the lawless ambition of Frederick, and the war between Sweden and Russia, were chargeable on him? He offered to meet the Opposition on the question of the state of the nation, if they would name a day. This challenge was accepted, and the 21st of January, 1742, was fixed upon. The clause respecting the Spanish war, as Walpole had suggested, was also struck out, and the Address then was carried unanimously."She may be ill some time. Would it be asking too much of you to look after her?" The bachelor showed in that.
Landor came sliding and running down. His face was misshapen with the anger that means killing. She saw it, and her powers came back to her all at once. She put both hands against his breast and pushed him back, with all the force of her sinewy arms. His foot slipped on a stone and he fell.