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turned to Russia in all their schemes for the increase of French influence, and the thwarting of the English policy in Europe and Asia. Deeply as the Bourbons were indebted to England, no sooner were they reinstated, than they turned to St. Petersburg. The alliance of two such military powers, secretly or avowedly to oppose the growth of British influence, would have been as injurious to the peace and prosperity of Europe as the alliance of Russia, Austria, and Prussia, has been to the development of constitutionalism in Germany and Italy. The present Emperor of France is the first French monarch who has perceived that the true interests of the country can be best secured and promoted by alliance with England. His union with us in the Crimean war saved Turkey, led to the rise of Piedmont into the kingdom of Italy, and by the destruction of Russian influence in Greece, and the expulsion of Austria from Lombardy, and her minions from Tuscany, Parma, and other Italian States, has raised Greece into a liberal and constitutional power, and placed the Papacy in a condition which, sooner or later, will terminate in everlasting extinction. It is to the good faith of the Emperor of France, in his alliance with England, that Italy now enjoys a free press, liberty of conscience, political enfranchisement, and that development of material resources which now occupies the attention and taxes the energy of her statesmen. It is to this alliance that we owe the prospect of future greatness enjoyed by the at present little kingdom of Greece, and the weight of its influence on the side of popular, instead of, as it was, on the side of despotic government.
A reference to the French treaty of commerce, an essential feature of the latest phase of "Napoleonism," and a happy contrast to the policy of the first Napoleon, is enough to justify an affirmative reply to the question at the head of this article. Free trade is the life of England; but even now the remnants of the protectionist party among us, the recent outbreak of petulance in Coventry, and numerous symptoms of a desire to check the freedom of commerce, show how stern a conflict had to be waged on this side of the Channel before sound principles of commerce could be ingrained into the national mind. If such be the inveteracy of prejudice and ignorance in the freest and most enlightened people in the world, it is easy to form some opinion of the barriers to the progress of a true system of political economy in France. There jealousy of England more deeply rooted the antipathy to the principles of free trade. To the ignorance of the natural laws of manufacture and commerce prevailing in all Europe was added the Anglophobia that has distracted Frenchmen for ages past. The dread of subserving British interests blinded the eyes of statesmen to the true interests of their country, and the eyes of the merchant and manufacturer to their own prosperity. Their number was not few who would submit to a wretched state of things among themselves, if that wretchedness would check or overthrow
the greatness of England. It will be to the everlasting credit of "Napoleonism," that under the
present impersonation of it a system of restrictive commercial policy has been as effectually broken down by it, as_under the former impersonation of it the old political systems of Europe had been swept away.
The conversion of the Emperor to free-trade principles is the removal of the only barrier to their progress that is worth mentioning. It is not only that another great nation has adopted them; though this fact is certainly the precursor of the conversion of other nations, as seen in the case of Austria, just as the adoption in Eng, land was the precursor of its introduction into France. But a much more serious obstacle was removed, when France gave a trial to the effects of unrestricted commerce. The notion that free trade could benefit England only at the expense of other countries, was a most formidable objection to its adoption anywhere, but especially among our neighbours south of the Channel
. That protection was prejudi. cial, and freedom of commerce beneficial, because of the nature itself of these two opposite systems, and not because of their accidental connection with this or that nation, was a thing in which Europe had no confidence. It was reserved to the present Emperor to dissipate such delusions, and to prove that free trade in its entireness is mutually beneficial to all nations adopting its principles.
Now, from all that we can learn of the state of French feel. ings and ideas on the subject, we are of opinion that the second Napoleon was as necessary to the introduction of free trade into France, as the first was to evoke political and social order out of the chaos in which the Revolution of 1789 had plunged the people. What is done here by the people is usually done for the people in France. What the force of public opinion did for England could be done for France only by the strong arm of a Napoleon. While we deprecate the use of force in any revolution, we cannot be blind to its necessity in this case. We could wish that the change in practice had been brought about by a sincere change in opinion ; and yet we cannot but claim the adoption, whether voluntary or involuntary, of freedom of commerce as one of the great benefits conferred by " Napoleonism" directly on France, and indirectly on a great part of Europe.
It is impossible within the limits of one, or of even half a dozen such articles as can appear monthly in the British Controversialist, to do justice to so intricate and comprehensive a subject as that at present under discussion; and we are not sure that the most favourable aspects of “Napoleonism" have yet been noticed in this paper. But enough has been stated to show that, with all the qualifications which have to be made, the effects of the principles and the policy of those two great Emperors of France, have operated, and will long continue to operate, beneficially upon the progress of society in Europe.
м. н. NEGATIVE ARTICLE.-1. Some time since it was shown in these pages that the effects of the
French Revolution of the last century, or Napoleonism, while convulsing the whole of Europe as with an earthquake, had been materially beneficial to France. By a parity of reasoning it would seem to follow that those political and social changes, which had proved so beneficial to France, must also, in a measure, benefit Europe generally. But, unfortunately for humanity, this inference does not hold good. Napoleonism has undoubtedly brought glory, power, and unity to France; it has made her respected abroad and prosperous at home ; but, by a most curious anomaly, all this has been done without conferring any commensurate advantages upon those nations with which she came in contact in her chaotic state, but always at their most bitter cost.
In tracing the rise and progress of Napoleonism, we are struck with the thorough and complete manner in which the founder of this new policy always identified himself with France. He was France personified. His interests, all his sentiments and aspirations, were those of France. If ever it could be said of a king that he was the representative of his people, thinking their thoughts, and craving their objects, this could be affirmed of Napoleon. Between himself and France the rapprochement was perfect,
And thus it followed, that as soon as his ambitious dreams had taken form and substance in his waking_thoughts, they were instantaneously caught up by the whole French people, and henceforth became the dearest objects of the national life.
The rapidity of Napoleon's rise was not more remarkable than the duration and stability of the policy which he inaugurated, and which is now known as Napoleonism. Following after the whirlwind of the Revolution, which swept away a rapacious aristocracy and all the usual social concomitants of a feeble and corrupt government, there suddenly shot up into the sky the eccentric but brilliant “star” of that strange individual who delighted to be portrayed as the Man of Destiny. At the siege of Toulon, in 1793, in the subordinate capacity of chef de bataillon, there first appeared before Europe that unique military genius, but unwise statesman, Napoleon Bonaparte. This ambitious spirit, soon scorning the trammels of Committees of Safety, and all such weak inventions of an unstable republicanism, quickly placed himself, first as Consul, and then in 1804, as Emperor, at the head of the French people. This vain. glorious nation was now animated by a far different spirit from that which smouldered in its breast during the old régime. It was then but a people of serfs, despised by a cruel aristocracy, and abandoned by a feeble government. But the electric thrill of the Revolution reversed all this ; every Sans-culotte was now a citizen. But yet another change immediately followed, and from being citi. zens, the whole nation suddenly became soldiers. We now behold the fickle people pursuing glory with all the ardour which had formerly animated them towards liberty. They now loved the new mistress as they had loved the old one, “not wisely, but too well;" and fortune having favoured them in the field, they speedily
became intoxicated with the effects of military successes, and frenzied with national vanity.
This new passion for conquest having been fed by a long series of victories obtained over almost the whole of Europe combined, France grew excessively arrogant in her pretensions; and Napoleon, rendered madly presumptuous by the spectacle of nearly all the states of the Continent lying maimed and bleeding at his feet, conceived, at this triumphant conjuncture in his career, the idea of universal supremacy—that fatal idea, the pursuit of which has been at once the glory and the curse of France, while to Europe at large it has been fraught with ills unmitigated and incalculable. France now claimed to be the most powerful military nation in the world. She openly boasted of being the most chivalrous and enlightened, the most liberal and polite, of people. She assumed to lead the van of civilization, to be a pattern to Europe, and the exemplar of all the graces and virtues which can ennoble a nation or adorn an individual. Napoleon having thus arrogated to France the chief place in Europe, as the model and example of all other states, he bad but to advance another step in order to assume that it was both the duty and the destiny of the grand nation to enforce, if need be, her example and precepts upon the sullen and refractory neighbours who so stolidly rejected her theories. Nor did Napoleon hesitate to take this step. And henceforth, by all means in his power, whether persuasive or military, the process of improving and ameliorating Europe-i.e., of aggraudizing Francewent forward. Napoleon became infatuated with the idea of being the arbiter of Europe. Wherever wrongs existed, there should France be found to set them right-to " adjust" them, as the French intellect so concisely expresses it. If oppressed nationali. ties, vainly opposing might against right, cried out against the oppressor, France should rise up, and be the champion of the weak and the enemy of the strong. Her eagle eye should range over the whole earth, and not a wrong, though done darkly in obscure places, should escape the vigilant glance of the potentate who sat on the throne and guided the destinies of this the foremost nation of the world. Such were the sounding sentiments with which Napoleon heralded his insidious designs, such the formula which was used to hide the arrogant assumptions which always lie at the root of Napoleonism. For, in reality, the policy which these fine sentiments served to cloak consisted in perpetually meddling with the affairs and interests of those petty states who were not strong enough to resent the encroachments of the usurper, and in fomenting, quarrels between the chief powers of Europe, so that, out of their weakness, France might grow strong. The lust for power and dominion was thus the characteristic of Napoleonism. This is, in faet, Napoleonism; and no other more qualifying definition will suit. This mad desire for universal domination was the master passion of the first Napoleon; and now, in the third of that race, it still fiercely lives, though masked by many pretences, and disguised
in many forms. In the presence of this fell idée Napoléonne, when thrust before the startled eyes of Europe, and backed, as it always has been, by myriads of glittering bayonets in the distance, how many kings and kaisers have scorned and quailed! And the diabolic instigator stands aloof, like Mephistophiles, and laughs the while.
Such being Napoleonism, it appears to be a necessary consequence that the effects of its action upon Europe must be disastrous, and we do not see how this conclusion can be avoided. But let us examine more in detail the manner in which the policy in question has operated and still continues to operate. It is evident that there are but two ways in which the proceedings of one state can affect the interests of another, namely, by the active use of its material and of its moral powers. The material power of Napoleon was his army; his moral power consisted, first, in his personal influence as a man and an emperor ; and secondly, and in a passive sense, in the demoralization produced by his armies and his civil measures upon those countries which were so unfortunate as to have been occupied or coerced by him, and which remained as indelible social stains long after peace had been proclaimed.
We presume that no one will be bold enough to maintain that the wars of the first Napoleon were productive of any good, either to France or to Europe ; and we may, therefore, at once dismiss this part of the question, and direct our attention solely to those subsequent ills with which the Napoleonic policy and domination have afflicted Europe. For this purpose we will advert, first, to the pecuniary cost of Napoleonism to Europe, as being the least important element in the argument. But in this matter the account against France is so prodigious, that the figures used to represent the sum of her devastations approach the infinite in their magnitude, and are far beyond the grasp of our comprehension. What information, for instance, is conveyed by the dry assertion that England alone, in the task of opposing the aggression of Napoleon the First, spent the enormous sum of about eight hundred millions sterling, of which nearly five hundred and fifty millions were raised by loans, and are now a dead weight upon the country? Adding to this the quota contributed by other nations as the cost of their efforts to withstand the domination of France under the inspiration of Napoleonism, and we arrive at a total sum, the immensity of which the human mind fails to comprehend ; and, àpropos of this pecuniary, phase of the question, we append the following arguments and calculations published by M. Legoyt, “ chef de division at the ministry of agriculture, commerce, and public works," and who is, consequently, in a position to possess correct data. The quotation is extracted from La France, and forms the basis of its arguments in favour of that latest move by Napoleon on the diplomatic chessboard,--the proposal of a general congress for the amicable discussion of European affairs. Referring to the present cost to the principal states of Europe of those large standing armies which are one of the results of Napoleonism, M. Legoyt states that