这次10+3会议为何如此重要?专家解读:释放四大信号

These enactments, unaccompanied by any others the object of which was to relieve the distress of the people, only tended still more to exasperate the feelings of the working classes. In fact, nothing had been so obvious as the effect of the proceedings of Government of late in disturbing that peace which they professed themselves so desirous to preserve. They, in truth, were the real agitators. The passing of the Six Acts only made the popular resentment the deeper, and whilst this tended to render the more prudent Reformers cautious, it stimulated the lowest and most unprincipled of them to actual and deadly conspiracy. The general conspiracy believed in by Ministers never existed, but a conspiracy was actually on foot in London, which again was found to have been, if not originally excited, yet actively stimulated, by the agents of Government. The details of this transaction, and of the concluding scene of the Manchester outrage, namely, the trial of Hunt and his associates, necessarily lead us about two months beyond the death of George III., which took place on the 29th of January, 1820. In November, 1819, whilst Government were framing their Six Acts, the more completely to coerce the people, they were again sending amongst them incendiaries to urge them to an open breach of the laws in order to furnish justifications for their despotic policy. The leading miscreant of this class was a man named Edwards, who kept a small shop at Eton for the sale of plaster casts. Some of the emissaries appeared at Middleton, the place of Bamford's abode, but he was in prison awaiting his trial with Hunt and the rest, and the people tempted were too cautious to listen to these agents of Government. But in London these agents found more combustible materials, and succeeded in leading into the snare some who had been long ready for any folly or crime. Chief amongst these was Thistlewood, who had been a lieutenant in the army, a man who had, or conceived that he had, suffered injustice at the hands[154] of Ministers, and who had wrought up his temper to the perpetration of some desperate deed. Bamford when in London, in 1816, had found Thistlewood mixed up with the Spenceans, and to be met with any day at their places of resortthe "Cock," in Grafton Street, the "Mulberry Tree," in Moorfields, the "Nag's Head," Carnaby Market, No. 8, Lumber Street, Borough, and a public-house in Spa Fields, called "Merlin's Cave." At these places they might be found, amidst clouds of tobacco-smoke and the fumes of beer, discussing remedies for the miserable condition of the people. At the latter place Thistlewood was often to be found with the Watsons, Preston, and Castles, who was employed to betray them. From this spot they issued for their mad attempt on the Tower on the 2nd of December of that year. Thistlewood was one of those seized on that occasion, but was acquitted on his trial. Not warned by this, he no sooner got abroad than he sent a challenge to Lord Sidmouth, for which he was arrested, and sentenced to a year's imprisonment. He issued from gaol still more embittered against Sidmouth and his colleagues, and resolved on striking some mortal blow at them. He did not lack comrades of a like fiery and abandoned stamp, and they determined on a scheme for cutting off the whole Cabinet together. The detestable deed was to be perpetrated in the autumn of 1819, a time when the public mind, especially that of the working classes, was so embittered against the Government. They did not, however, succeed in their intentions, and it was at this crisis of unwilling delay that the man Edwards became privy to their plans. In November he carried the important, and, as he hoped, to him profitable secret to Sir Herbert Taylor, who was attached to the establishment of the king at Windsor, and by him he was introduced to Lord Sidmouth. This minister and his colleagues, with that fondness for the employment of spies, and for fomenting sedition instead of nipping it in the bud, immediately engaged Edwards, on good pay, to lead forward the conspirators into overt action. It was not enough for them that, by adding another witness or two to Edwards, they would be able to produce the most complete proof of the treason of these menthey rather luxuriated in the nursing of this plot, and thus ripening it into something bloody and horrible; and in this they succeeded.

Philip V. of Spain died on the 9th of July, and his son and successor, Ferdinand VI., showed himself far less anxious for the establishment of Don Philip in Italya circumstance unfavourable to France. On the contrary, he entered into separate negotiations with England. A Congress was opened at Breda, but the backwardness of Prussia to support the views of England, and the successes of the French in the Netherlands, caused the Congress to prove abortive. THE GREAT MOGUL ENTERING THE ENGLISH CAMP. (See p. 317.) On the 18th of June a public dinner, to commemorate the abolition of the Sacramental Test, was given at Freemasons' Hall, when the Duke of Sussex occupied the chair. The friends of the cause felt that to secure a meeting of the most opulent, talented, and influential Dissenters from all parts of the empire was a measure of no common policy, and it was evident that the illustrious and noble guests felt at once surprised and gratified to witness the high respectability and generous enthusiasm of that great company. Mr. William Smith, as deputy chairman, proposed, in an interesting and appropriate speech, "the health of the Duke of Sussex, and the universal prevalence of those principles which placed his family upon the throne." The health of the archbishops, bishops, and other members of the Established Church who had advocated the rights of the Dissenters was proposed by a Baptist minister, the Rev. Dr. Cox. The health of "the Protestant Dissenting ministers, the worthy successors of the ever memorable two thousand who sacrificed interest to conscience," having been proposed by the royal chairman, the Rev. Robert Aspland returned thanks. Another commemoration of the full admission of Nonconformists to the privileges of the Constitution was a medal struck by order of the united committee. The obverse side exhibits Britannia, seated on the right, presenting to a graceful figure of Liberty the Act of Repeal, while Religion in the centre raises her eyes to heaven with the expression of thankfulness for the boon. The inscription on this side is "Sacramental Test Abolished, May 9th, 1828." The reverse side presents an open wreath, enclosing the words, "Truth, Freedom, Peace, and Charity."

The king had a stormy and rather perilous passage across the Channel. Mr. Freemantle sarcastically alludes to the feelings of the royal passenger in connection with this voyage:"The king in his journey home overtook Lord and Lady Harcourt, now the bosom friends of Lady Conyngham, stopped them, got out of his carriage, and sat with them for a quarter of an hour on the public road, recounting all his perilous adventures at sea, and flattering reception in Ireland. Lady Harcourt told me his pious acknowledgment for his great escape of being shipwrecked was quite edifying, and the very great change in his moral habits and religious feelings was quite astonishing, and all owing to Lady Conyngham." On his return to London, after a visit to Hanover, the king devoted himself to a life of seclusion for a considerable time, during which it appears that the Marchioness of Conyngham maintained an ascendency over him most damaging to his character and Government. She had not only made the royal favour tributary to the advancement of her own family, but she meddled in political affairs with mischievous effect. "Had it been confined to mere family connections," writes Robert Huish, "no voice, perhaps, would have been raised against it; but when the highest offices in the Church were bestowed on persons scarcely previously heard ofwhen political parties rose and fell, and Ministers were created and deposed to gratify the ambition of a femalethen the palace of the king appeared as if surrounded by some pestilential air. The old hereditary counsellors of the king avoided the Court, as alike fatal to private probity and public honour. The entrance to Windsor Castle was, as it were, hermetically sealed by the enchantress within to all but the favoured few. The privilege of the entre was curtailed to the very old friends of the king, and even the commonest domestics in the castle were constrained to submit to the control of the marchioness. The Court of George IV. certainly differed widely from that of Charles II., although the number and[221] reputation of their several mistresses were nearly the same in favour and character; but George IV. had no confiscations to confer on the instruments of his pleasures."

Progress of the French RevolutionDeath of MirabeauAttempted Flight of the King from ParisAttitude of the Sovereigns of EuropeThe Parties of the Right and of the LeftThe GirondistsDecrees against the EmigrantsNegotiations between Marie Antoinette and PittCondition of the French ArmySession of 1792; Debates on Foreign AffairsMarriage of the Duke of YorkThe Prince of Wales's AllowanceThe BudgetThe Anti-Slavery MovementMagistracy BillAttempts at ReformThe Society of the Friends of the PeopleProclamation against Seditious WritingsFox's Nonconformist Relief BillProrogation of ParliamentAssociations and Counter-AssociationsLord Cornwallis's War against Tippoo SahibCapture of SeringapatamPeace with TippooEmbassy to ChinaDesigns of the Powers against PolandCatherine resolves to strikeInvasion of PolandNeutrality of EnglandConquest of PolandImminence of War between France and AustriaIt is declaredFailure of the French TroopsThe Duke of Brunswick's ProclamationInsurrection of the 10th of AugustMassacre of the SwissSuspension of the KingAscendency of JacobinismDumouriez in the Passes of the ArgonneBattle of ValmyRetreat of the PrussiansOccupation of the Netherlands by the French TroopsCustine in GermanyOccupation of Nice and SavoyEdict of FraternityAbolition of RoyaltyTrial and Death of the KingEffect of the Deed on the ContinentThe Militia called out in EnglandDebates in Parliament on War with FranceThe Alien BillRupture of Diplomatic Relations with FranceWar declared against BritainEfforts to preserve the PeaceThey are Ineffectual. [See larger version]

While an impulse was thus given to the mathematical theory of light in the University of Cambridge, similar progress was being made in the sister University of Dublin, where three of her most eminent professorsSir William Rowan Hamilton, Dr. Lloyd, and Mr. M'Cullaghdevoted themselves energetically to its improvement and verification. Sir William Hamilton, a geometer of the first order, having undertaken a more complete discussion of the wave surface of Fresnel, to the equation of which he gave a more elegant form, ascertained the exact nature of that surface, and consequently the exact direction of refracted rays in the neighbourhood of the optic axes. The beautiful and unexpected results he obtained were verified by his friend Dr. Lloyd. The names of Sir William R. Hamilton and Dr. Lloyd will be handed down to posterity in connection with this discovery. "But," says Professor Forbes, "they have other claims to our respect. The former has generalised the most complicated cases of common geometrical optics, by a peculiar analysis developed in his essays on 'Systems of Rays.' To Dr. Lloyd we are indebted for several interesting experimental papers on optics, for an impartial review of the progress of the science, and for an excellent elementary treatise on the wave theory."

During this period a vast empire was beginning to unfold itself in the East Indies, destined to produce a vast trade, and pour a perfect mine of wealth into Great Britain. The victories of Clive, Eyre Coote, and others, were telling on our commerce. During the early part of this period this effect was slow, and our exports to India and China up to 1741 did not average more than 148,000 per annum in value. Bullion, however, was exported to pay expenses and to purchase tea to an annual amount of upwards of half a million. Towards the end of this period, however, our exports to India and China amounted annually to more than half a million; and the necessity for the export of bullion had sunk to an annual demand for less than 100,000. The amount of tea imported from China during this period rose from about 140,000 pounds annually to nearly 3,000,000 pounds annuallyan enormous increase.

The campaign in Flanders opened in April. The British faithfully furnished their stipulated number of men (twenty-eight thousand), but both Austria and Holland had most disgracefully failed. Holland was to send fifty thousand into the field, and keep the other ten thousand in her garrisons; but she had sent less than half that number, and Austria only eight squadrons. The French had a fine army of seventy-five thousand men under the able general, Marshal Saxe; and the King of France and the Dauphin had come to witness the conflict, which gave a wonderful degree of spirit to their troops. On the part of the Allies, the Duke of Cumberland was chief in command, but, from his youth, he was not able to set himself free from the assumptions of the Austrian general, old Marshal K?nigsegg, and the Dutch general, the Prince of Waldeck. As it was, to march against the French before Tournay was to rush into a certain contest with the whole French army of nearly eighty thousand men, whilst the Allies could have only about fifty thousand. Saxe made the ablest arrangements for the coming fight. He left fifteen thousand infantry to blockade Tournay, drew up his army in a very strong position a few miles in advance, and strengthened it by various works.

The fame of this battle, thus fought without any advantage of ground, and with such a preponderance on the side of the French, produced a deep impression both in Great Britain and France. The major part of the British side was composed of British troops, most of the Portuguese having been sent to Marshal Beresford, and this gave a vivid idea of the relative efficiency of British and French troops. Buonaparte had already satisfied himself that Massena was not the man to cope with Wellington, and Marshal Marmont was on the way to supersede him when this battle was fought, but he could only continue the flight of Massena, and take up his headquarters at Salamanca. With Massena returned to France also Ney, Junot, and Loison; King Joseph had gone there before; and the accounts which these generals were candid enough to give, in conversation, of the state of things in Spain, spread a very gloomy feeling through the circles of Paris.

One of the pioneers of the science of political economy at this time was Dr. Davenant, the son of Sir William Davenant, the poet. He had no genius for drawing principles and theories from accumulated facts, but he was a diligent collector of them, and his porings amongst State documents and accounts have served essentially the historians and political economists of our day.

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In literature, and the amount of genius in every branch of it, as well as in mechanical skill, few ages ever transcended that of George III. Though he and his Ministers did their best to repress liberty, they could not restrain the liberty of the mind, and it burst forth on all sides with almost unexampled power. In fact, throughout Europe, during this period, a great revolution in taste took place. The old French influence and French models, which had prevailed in most countries since the days of Louis XIV., were now abandoned, and there was a return to nature and originality. "The Reliques of Ancient English Poetry," collected by Percy, the Bishop of Dromore, and the publication of the old Scottish ballads by Walter Scott, snapped the spell which had bound the intellect since the days of Pope, and opened the sealed eyes of wondering scholars; and they saw, as it were, "a new heaven and a new earth" before them. They once more felt the fresh breath of the air and ocean, smelt the rich odour of the heath and the forest, and the oracles of the heart were reopened, as they listened again to the whispers of the eternal winds. Once more, as of old to prophets and prophetic kings, there was "a sound of going in the tops of the trees." In Great Britain, Scott, Wordsworth, Coleridge, Southey, Byron, Shelleyin Germany, Goethe, Schiller, Wieland, Richterin Scandinavia, Tegner, Oehlenschl?ger, Stagneliuswith a world of lesser lights around them, stood in the glowing beams of a new morning, casting around them the wondrous wealth of a poetry as fresh as it was overflowing. As in poetry, so in prose invention. The novel and romance came forth in totally new forms, and with a life and scope such as they had never yet attained. From Fielding and Sterne to Godwin and Scott, the list of great writers in this department shed a new glory on the English name. In works of all other kinds the same renewal of mind was conspicuous; history took a prominent place, and science entered on new fields.