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gave them half the saltpetre from Purnea, and allowed no others to make purchases of that article; and gave them half the chunam (lime) prepared in the district of Sylhet for five years. He agreed to "maintain 12,000 horse and 12,000 foot in the three provinces, and besides which, the Company's troops were to attend him whenever they were wanted;" to receive, wherever he should fix his court, a Resident or political agent, and to appoint a like official on his part at Calcutta ; to reverse and annul the free-trade edict of Mir Kasim, the differential tolls and duties to be levied on the natives as before; to "give thirty lacs for defraying the expenses of the war" with the superseded Regent; to reimburse losses incurred by private individuals, either in money or by assignments of land; and not to "allow the French to erect fortifications, maintain forces, hold lands, zemindaries, &c. ; but to make them pay and carry on trade" as formerly. Experience had taught the aged Prince that the pledges and promises of his allies were not trustworthy, and he sought to obtain some higher guarantee for the fulfilment of these new covenants than that afforded by the signatures of the ever-changing Council at Calcutta. The terms of his demand, appended to the treaty, and accepted by all the members of the Council, are worthy of historic note. There they stand full to the brim with reproach of broken faith.
"I now make this request, that you will write in a proper manner to the Company, and also to the King of England, the particulars of our friendship and union; and procure for me writings and encouragement, that my mind may be assured from that quarter that no breach may ever happen between me and the English, and that every Governor, Councillor, and chiefs of the English that are here, or may hereafter come, may be well disposed and attached to me."
He then proceeds to enumerate many ways in which mutual forbearance and respect by subordinates on each side ought to be enjoined and enforced. It has never been even pretended that, by him or his successors, any attempt was made to depart from the stipulations of this treaty; yet, by degrees, one after another of its covenants have been infringed and frittered away by the stronger party, to the detriment of the weaker, until at last it has been coolly proposed, in a suppressed recommendation by a Secretary of State, that the whole substance and spirit of this fundamental treaty should be set at nought, and that the very existence of a Soubahdar of Bengal, from whom we were glad in 1763 to accept grants of land and privileges, should, after the lifetime of the present Prince, on grounds of financial expediency be publicly denied.
Suja-ul-Dowla, the Vizier of Oude, warmly espoused the cause of the fugitive Regent, and to threats of the Company's hostility returned a dignified rebuke of their ill-concealed designs. "To what," he wrote, "can all these wrong proceedings be attributed, but to an absolute disregard of the court (of Delhi), and to a wicked design of seizing the country yourselves. If these disturbances have arisen from your own improper devices, deviate from such improper behaviour in future; interfere not in the affairs of government; withdraw your people from every part, and send them to their own country; carry on the Company's trade as formerly, and confine yourselves to your own commercial affairs." Shah Alum also began to be alarmed at the state of affairs in Bengal, and with the Vizier he entered the province at the head of a powerful force in 1764.
For some months desultory skirmishes greatly harassed the European army, but a pitched battle was finally fought at Buxar, in which they were victorious. The Vizier sued
for peace, which the Company would only grant on condition of Mir Kasim's expulsion from Oude; the Padishah opened separate communications with the victors, with whom he made his own terms. Ultimately peace was concluded by the cession of the districts of Allahabad and Korah by the Vizier to the Padishah; and while the negotiations lingered, in January 1765, Mir Jaffir died, and was succeeded by his son, Nudjum-ul-Dowla.
"In consideration of the services of the English Company, we have granted them the Dewanny of the provinces of Bengal, Behar, and Orissa, as an ultumgau (free gift). It is requisite that the said Company engage to be security for the sum of twenty-six lacs a year for our royal revenue, which sum has been appointed from the Nawab Nudjum-ul-Dowla Behauder; and as the Company are obliged to keep up a large army for Bengal, we have granted them whatsoever may remain out of the revenue, after remitting the sum of twenty-six lacs, and providing for the expenses of the Nizamut."
-FIRMAN OF SHAH ALUM.1
WHEN the partakers in the first harvest of spoil re
turned to England, laden with unlooked for riches, wonder, curiosity, envy, and emulation filled the minds of men. Dreams of speculation and adventure, such as had quickened the popular pulse after Raleigh's voyage of discovery, or when the city had been bewitched by the golden promises of Law, once more occupied the thoughts of youth and age, of the well-to-do and the runagate. Clive was looked upon as another Cortez, who had, for the benefit of his countrymen, broken into a distant storehouse of exhaustless wealth. The way was opened for the attainment of treasure without toil, and the enjoyment of power without the waste of years in apprenticeship. Who would not go
1 Firman of Gift of Dewanny to the Company, 12th August 1765.
for a share in the Indian lottery? The scene was distant, the passage long, the climate tropical, and the manners of the natives strange. But every wastrel who had courage left every bankrupt whose credit was run out, every reckless soldier who had neither money or interest to secure promotion, every daring seaman who was impatient of the rough nights and scant wages of winter voyages in the German Sea, every younger son of quality who, bred in ease and pleasure, despaired of finding a fat living or a place at court, a legal sinecure or an heiress for a wife, began to meditate exploits in Bengal or the Deccan :
"To spill a few bright drops of blood,
The hope of Oriental spoil spread like an epidemic; and, like other diseases, its taint once generally diffused, it became, among certain classes, families, and connections, normal and hereditary. Reasoning, where all the elements of calculation were illimitably vague, seemed but waste of time; and scruples about international or individual right or wrong, were of course regarded as mere sentiment. The tone of political society in England, at the accession of George III., was eminently propitious to the growth of such ideas. To the unchecked corruption of the previous reign, was added the development of arbitrary notions, encouraged by the Court. The Church was fast asleep, and the religious revival led by Wesley had made but little way. The slave trade and West Indian slavery, with their showers of golden fruit, were the tallest trees in the fashionable orchard; while the hardy growths of American industry were regarded with comparative disdain. by the statesmen and courtiers, jurists and critics, who